DETROIT -- On his road to recovery after undergoing right elbow surgery in March, Nathan Eovaldi is almost ready to go.
Eovaldi has been progressing well during his rehab. He threw a bullpen session earlier this week, hitting between 96 and 99 mph on the radar gun, Rays manager Kevin Cash said Wednesday.
Cash expects Eovaldi to make a rehab start in the Minor Leagues next week and the club is thinking he could make his season debut with the Rays as early as the week of May 21.
"He's champing at the bit," Cash said. "Obviously, I would be too if I was throwing 99 in a bullpen session. We're going to have to really manage what he's doing because he's going to push our hand on everything he does."
Chirinos to see doctor Thursday
After heading to the 10-day DL with a right forearm strain, rookie pitcher Yonny Chirinos is expected to see a doctor Thursday when the team returns home from a 10-game, three-city road trip.
Cash said Tuesday the Rays are exercising extra caution with Chirinos, the organization's No. 21 overall prospect according to MLB Pipeline, but don't anticipate his injury is a major one.
Chirinos was scheduled to start Friday against Toronto, and the club hasn't made a final decision who will start in his place. Cash said he expects it to be fellow rookie Ryan Yarbrough, though he wants to get through Wednesday's series finale in Detroit before making a decision.
Yarbrough was recalled from Triple-A Durham on Tuesday after Chirinos went to the DL. It was a brief stint with the Bulls for Yarbrough, who was just sent down Sunday after picking up his first career Major League win.
Yarbrough joined the team in Detroit about 1:30 a.m. ET Wednesday, after leaving the Bulls in Norfolk, Va., during batting practice prior to a game against the Tides. He traveled Sunday from Boston to Norfolk, then had a layover in Atlanta before connecting to Detroit, calling it a bit of an exhausting trip.
"I obviously let everyone know that I'm on the right plane, I'm making the right flight, and then obviously checking the score," Yarbrough said of the Rays' game Tuesday in Detroit, making sure he wouldn't be arriving to a wild late-night, extra-innings game.