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Wilson begins Class A rehab stint with perfect inning

ST. LOUIS -- Dodgers reliever Brian Wilson pitched a perfect inning in his first rehab appearance Wednesday, starting for Class A Rancho Cucamonga.

Wilson, who signed with the Dodgers on July 30 but is on the disabled list recovering from the elbow surgery he underwent in 2012, threw eight pitches (five strikes), according to Wilson induced two groundouts and notched a strikeout.

"Just moving him forward, helping get him ready," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Trying to prepare him, giving him, I guess, a semi-Spring Training."

Mattingly said the plan is to have Wilson in the big leagues in a couple of weeks, but the Dodgers won't rush his return.

"We want him to be ready and we want him to feel like he's ready," Mattingly said. "There's no hard deadline when he has to be here, but as soon as possible. As soon as he feels like he's ready and everybody is good with it."

As for whether Wilson's trademark beard will be joining him in Los Angeles, Mattingly said he wasn't aware of any policies the Dodgers have on facial hair that would require him to shave it.

"I guess if it was something that was a distraction for the whole club, then we'd deal with it, but I'm not really anticipating any problems with any of that," Mattingly said. "I don't really care what guys do, honestly. Just come here ready to play, just respect the game from that standpoint."

Chad Thornburg is an associate reporter for
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