Bailey sharp in first rehab start

June 11th, 2017
Homer Bailey, who had elbow surgery in February, pitched five shutout innings Saturday. (AP)

LOS ANGELES -- Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey began a Minor League rehab assignment on Friday and delivered an encouraging outing in his first start of 2017.

Bailey, who underwent right elbow surgery in February, pitched five shutout innings, scattering three hits with five strikeouts and one walk for Double-A Pensacola. The Reds originally planned for Bailey to work four innings, but he felt good enough to pitch another inning after cruising through four on 51 pitches.

"He was so efficient and felt so good that going back out there for the fifth was a good idea," Reds manager Bryan Price said on Saturday. "He ended up finishing strong. I think 64 pitches in five innings. Very efficient, sharp, came out of it feeling good."

The Reds are hoping Bailey can return to their rotation by the end of June. He still has at least two more rehab starts planned. The extra inning of work Friday will not speed up Bailey's timetable, Price said.

"I think he has to make those next two starts and then we'll reevaluate him," Price said. "So I definitely think he'll pitch in [Class A Advanced] Dayton and [Triple-A] Louisville and make sure that he's built up a little bit of an innings log, as we would with any starting pitcher before they start the season. It just to me suggests that everything went well and he felt good enough to where pitching the fifth inning seemed like a good idea to everybody who was there. I'm glad he did it."

Worth noting

• Outfielder was held out of the lineup again Saturday as he continues to deal with an illness. He has not played since Thursday.

"Still not feeling great, feeling a little bit better," Price said. "I don't think his night went as well as we hoped it would go. I don't think it was an easy night. We had him come in on the second bus, trying to get him more rest in hopes that either later on today he'll feel good enough to be able to help out in some way, shape or form, or if not, get closer to feeling ready to play tomorrow or in San Diego."

did not start Saturday as Price looked to get his center fielder some needed rest.

"He's just a little beat up," Price said. "It's nothing that would prevent him from playing, but just to the point where a day off serves him well."

• Catcher (right hamstring) is getting closer to being activated from the 10-day disabled list. Turner has appeared in nine games with Louisville since beginning a Minor League rehab assignment on May 28.

"He's certainly getting close," Price said. "That will be an organizational decision on that, so I don't know what to say to it other than the fact I'm happy he's playing regularly and doing well."