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Anderson set for second bullpen session

Mid-August return possible for right-hander; Espino recalled, Blazek sent to Triple-A
MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

MILWAUKEE -- It remains to be seen whether the Brewers add a starting pitcher by Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, but they are on a path to add a significant one about two weeks after that.

Right-hander Chase Anderson, Milwaukee's best starter before straining his left oblique on June 28 in Cincinnati, is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday at Miller Park. It would be his second such session, and if it goes well, Anderson would remain on a path to rejoin the Brewers' big league rotation sometime in the middle of August.

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MILWAUKEE -- It remains to be seen whether the Brewers add a starting pitcher by Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, but they are on a path to add a significant one about two weeks after that.

Right-hander Chase Anderson, Milwaukee's best starter before straining his left oblique on June 28 in Cincinnati, is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday at Miller Park. It would be his second such session, and if it goes well, Anderson would remain on a path to rejoin the Brewers' big league rotation sometime in the middle of August.

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Anderson threw 25 light pitches Wednesday at Nationals Park in his return to the mound for the first time since getting hurt. Saturday is likely to be at a higher intensity.

"That's the nature of rehab. You just do a little bit more every time," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "He'll do a little more this time, and we'll check how he feels and we've got the next step penciled out. If he passes all the tests, he'll go to the next step. He's healing very well."

Anderson is 6-2 with a 2.89 ERA in 16 starts, including his injury-shortened outing against the Reds. His 1.11 WHIP, 8.5 strikeouts per nine innings and 3.15 strikeout-to-walk ratio are all career bests.

Roster move

Needing a fresh arm for the bullpen, the Brewers recalled right-hander Paolo Espino from Triple-A Colorado Springs on Friday and optioned Michael Blazek. The move came a day after Blazek surrendered six home runs in his first Major League start, including back-to-back-to-back-to-back blasts in the Nationals' five-homer third inning.

It marks Espino's fourth stint in the Majors this season. He has a 6.11 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP in 17 2/3 big league innings this season, but the 30-year-old Espino has been effective in a larger sample at Triple-A, where he has a 3.84 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP in 63 1/3 innings.

In the Minors

Minor League right-hander Corbin Burnes, who vaulted up to No. 7 this week on MLBPipeline.com's updated list of the Brewers' Top 30 prospects, exited a rain-delayed start for Double A Biloxi in Pensacola, Fla., on Thursday after tweaking his left knee when he slipped on wet grass trying to field a comebacker. Brewers farm director Tom Flanagan described Burnes' exit after two innings as precautionary and said he was day to day.

Even after allowing four earned runs in two innings Thursday, Burnes has a 1.65 ERA in 20 starts between Class A Advanced Carolina and Biloxi.

Speaking of Carolina, No. 21 Brewers prospect Cody Ponce returned to the mound for the Mudcats on Thursday for the first time in 17 days after missing time with a left oblique strain. Ponce allowed two hits and a walk while striking out three batters in two scoreless innings.

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Milwaukee Brewers, Chase Anderson