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Adams on verge of returning to Phillies' bullpen

Out since July, reliever could be activated Monday after rehab outing Saturday
MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies' bullpen needs help, and it hopes Mike Adams is a solution.

Adams could rejoin the team as early as Monday following a rehab assignment Saturday with Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Adams has not pitched for the Phillies since last July, when he had right shoulder surgery. Nobody knows how he will perform once he returns, but the Phillies hope he offers at least a little stability to a bullpen that has struggled through nine games.

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PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies' bullpen needs help, and it hopes Mike Adams is a solution.

Adams could rejoin the team as early as Monday following a rehab assignment Saturday with Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Adams has not pitched for the Phillies since last July, when he had right shoulder surgery. Nobody knows how he will perform once he returns, but the Phillies hope he offers at least a little stability to a bullpen that has struggled through nine games.

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Their 'pen has a 4.81 ERA, which ranks 23rd in Major League Baseball. It has allowed 60 percent (6-of-10) of its inherited runners to score, which is the second-highest mark in the game.

"I feel great," Adams said Friday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. "Everything has gone above and beyond what I've expected. The bouncebacks have been great. The soreness [has been minimal]. I'm just looking forward to tomorrow."

The Phillies signed Adams to a two-year, $12 million contract before the 2013 season, but he has made only 28 appearances. His fastball averaged 91.3 mph in 2012, when he pitched for the Rangers. It averaged just 89.8 mph last season, according to FanGraphs.

Adams said his velocity during his rehab assignment has been 89-90 mph.

"It's around where I was last year, I guess," Adams said. "Maybe a little better. Hopefully coming up here and getting into a big league ballgame, I can trigger a few extra notches, but we'll see what happens. The main thing is I've been locating pretty well, changing speeds and working on a few things. The main thing is as long as I keep the ball down, 89-90, that'll work."

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com.

Philadelphia Phillies, Mike Adams