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Lorenzen, DeSclafani start rehab assignments

Castillo, Romano get nod for Saturday's doubleheader
MLB.com @m_sheldon

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Reds bullpen has come together nicely of late, and it could soon become even more fortified with the return of Michael Lorenzen. On Monday, Lorenzen worked his first rehab-assignment game with Double-A Pensacola and pitched one scoreless inning with one hit and one strikeout while throwing 12 pitches.

Lorenzen has been out since the middle of March, when he strained the right teres major muscle near his right shoulder.

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SAN FRANCISCO -- The Reds bullpen has come together nicely of late, and it could soon become even more fortified with the return of Michael Lorenzen. On Monday, Lorenzen worked his first rehab-assignment game with Double-A Pensacola and pitched one scoreless inning with one hit and one strikeout while throwing 12 pitches.

Lorenzen has been out since the middle of March, when he strained the right teres major muscle near his right shoulder.

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"With not having to be stretched out as much, I think he's got a schedule where he will go at least three more times," Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said before Pensacola's game began vs. Biloxi. "We want to get him to where he does throw back-to-back days and/or multiple innings."

Since Lorenzen is on the 10-day disabled list, he can return whenever he is deemed ready.

"We're probably looking at a week to 10 days," Riggleman said.

After a rough start to the season, Cincinnati's bullpen entered Monday leading the Major Leagues in ERA since April 27 (2.60) with a league-leading 77 strikeouts over the past 65 2/3 innings. Adding Lorenzen to a strong bullpen will give Riggleman another option.

"It's a good issue to have," he said.

DeSclafani makes rehab start

Before Lorenzen made his relief appearance, Anthony DeSclafani made his first rehab-assignment start for Pensacola. DeSclafani, who is on the 60-day DL with a strained left oblique, pitched three perfect innings with four strikeouts while throwing 31 pitches.

DeSclafani was scheduled for four innings and 60-65 pitches but he had the misfortune of a rain delay happening two batters into his start. Before the game, the club had planned on him reaching his pitch count in the bullpen if he didn't get there vs. Biloxi.

Riggleman did not have a specific timeline for DeSclafani's activation. He hasn't pitched for the Reds since he was injured in mid-March and is not eligible to come off the DL until May 28.

"We have not talked about that specifically at all. We're looking at late May or early June," Riggleman said.

Pitcher rehab assignments can last up to 30 days.

Doubleheader starters named

The Reds announced that Luis Castillo and Sal Romano would be the starters Saturday vs. the Cubs in a day-night doubleheader. One of the games is a makeup for an April 3 rainout.

Riggleman did not reveal the order in which the starters would pitch. Since the club is allowed to carry a 26th man for the second game, a reliever will likely be called up to help the bullpen.

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Cincinnati Reds, Anthony DeSclafani, Michael Lorenzen