PITTSBURGH -- Injured pitcher Andrew Cashner threw a bullpen session before Monday's game, his second this week. Though it was a beginning step as he works back from the disabled list, Cashner was ready to do more.
"I saw him on the elevator on the way to the park this morning and I thought maybe he was starting tonight," manager Mike Quade said. "You talk about a kid that's going nuts. He's so anxious to get started. We're going to have to put the reins on him a little bit. ... But if it was up to him, he'd be on my card tonight."
Cashner's goal is to be off the disabled list in 2-3 weeks. Quade was less optimistic.
"Just to see him pitch healthy, somewhere, before the end of this thing would give me a big lift," Quade said.
Cashner was placed on the 60-day DL in early April with a strained right rotator cuff. He had made just one start, on April 5, in which he allowed two hits and one run in 5 1/3 innings.
The right-hander suffered a setback in May when an MRI showed he had re-aggravated the injury, but said rehab has been going well since then. He said he threw about 20 pitches in a bullpen session Saturday and 22 pitches on Monday. He was scheduled to throw again on Thursday.
"We just went on how it felt, we went week-to-week, and now my shoulder feels really strong," Cashner said. "I don't see any reason why I won't pitch again this year."
Quade said he would like to see Cashner return as a starting pitcher when he is healthy.
"It was a short window, but the last couple starts of Spring Training and his first start of the year, I absolutely loved what I saw," Quade said. "To see that every fifth day, if he could continue to improve on the power sinker and the curveball, that's something I would love to see."