Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Philadelphia Phillies right-handed reliever Mike Adams saw his 2013 season cut short due to shoulder surgery, but the veteran appears to be making positive progress in his efforts to get back on the mound. Adams threw his second bullpen session on Saturday, according to MLB.com’s Paul Hagen. He could face live batters for the first time on Thursday.
GM Ruben Amaro Jr., pitching coach Bob McClure, bullpen coach Rod Nicholas, Triple-A pitching coach Ray Burris, and Brad Lidge (who’s in camp as a special instructor) all reportedly watched Adams throw on Saturday. He came away sounding pleased with his progress:
"I think it went real good. Very, very good. I’ve noticed the advances I’ve made over the last couple bullpens and how it’s coming out of my hand. Right now, everything is going the way I’d hoped."
A 9 year veteran, Adams was limited to just 25.0 IP during the 2013 season. He’d post a 3.96 ERA and 1.360 WHIP over that span, making 28 appearances before being shut down mid-season. His status for Opening Day remains uncertain but there has to be some relief within the Phillies’ camp that he appears to be recovering on schedule.
Philadelphia projects to enter the season with a lot of uncertainty in their bullpen and a number of arms without much experience. Jonathan Papelbon is the only one in the mix with any significant exposure to Major League hitters, though Antonio Bastardo and Brad Lincoln have each seen numerous opportunities. Beyond that the group mostly includes arms with less than a year of service time and there are not many veteran options remaining on the open market that the team could pursue. Getting Adams back into the mix, be it for Opening Day or shortly thereafter, could provide a boost to an inexperienced group that could be important to the Phillies’ success in 2014.