DENVER -- Right-hander Jon Gray threw about 35 pitches in his first simulated game Tuesday since suffering a navicular stress fracture in his left foot on April 12. He followed the session with some light fielding drills, as well.Gray, the Rockies' Opening Day starter, faced the left-handed-hitting Raimel Tapia and
DENVER -- Right-hander Jon Gray threw about 35 pitches in his first simulated game Tuesday since suffering a navicular stress fracture in his left foot on April 12. He followed the session with some light fielding drills, as well.
Gray, the Rockies' Opening Day starter, faced the left-handed-hitting Raimel Tapia and right-handed Pat Valaika.
"It felt really good to get back on the mound again," Gray said. "To actually see hitters in there is a little different, but the more it went on, the more it felt like a game. I'm headed in the right direction."
Gray threw his fastball, curveball, slider and changeup and felt close to game speed, and he believes his changeup is sharp. The biggest issue was the understandable apprehension to immediately throw a fastball inside -- after all, he was facing teammates.
The fielding drills involved comebackers and bunt plays, and he finished covering first base on a 3-6-1 double play at about three-quarters speed.
Manager Bud Black said the Rockies will monitor how Gray feels before scheduling his next simulated game.
What also hasn't been determined is when Gray will return after being cleared for a Minor League rehab assignment. Black has said Gray will need three games, but the right-hander said Tuesday he'd like to return after two. Black said he'd like for Gray to be able to throw 6-7 innings before rejoining the Rockies' rotation.
• The Rockies placed utility man Alexi Amarista on the paternity list and announced that he is the proud father of a baby girl, Amy Alannah Amarista Gil. The club recalled Tapia from Triple-A Albuquerque in his place, while Amarista will rejoin the club in Chicago on Thursday.
• Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino, on the 10-day disabled list since May 30 with right shoulder inflammation, will throw a bullpen session Wednesday. He is eligible to return from the DL on Friday.
"His arm feels as good as it's felt since Spring Training," Black said.
• Catcher Tom Murphy began his Minor League rehab assignment at Triple-A by playing Saturday and Sunday, and he will catch again Tuesday. Murphy received a high number of at-bats in extended spring training before joining Albuquerque, but Black said he won't be back quickly.
"He'll need games just to get back into baseball shape, timing, catching and all that -- it'll be a while," Black said.
• Outfielder David Dahl's recovery from his stress reaction in the sixth rib, suffered in Spring Training, hasn't gone as quickly as the club hoped.
"This is one of those things where the body tells you what you can do, and he's feeling some discomfort and soreness when he makes certain moves," Black said of Dahl, who is working out at the team's training center in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb and** like his Facebook page**.