ANAHEIM -- Shohei Ohtani's next opportunity to test the progress of his sprained right elbow will come Monday, when the two-way phenom is scheduled to throw 45-50 pitches in his second simulated game.In preparation for the workout, Ohtani completed a 21-pitch bullpen session on Saturday and said it went well.
ANAHEIM -- Shohei Ohtani's next opportunity to test the progress of his sprained right elbow will come Monday, when the two-way phenom is scheduled to throw 45-50 pitches in his second simulated game.
In preparation for the workout, Ohtani completed a 21-pitch bullpen session on Saturday and said it went well. Manager Mike Scioscia said the simulated game is not expected to affect Ohtani's availability as a hitter for Monday night's series opener against the Rockies.
Ohtani has not pitched for the Angels since June 6 because of a Grade 2 sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, but the club has been encouraged by the progression of the 24-year-old rookie's rehab. Ohtani has said he is confident that he will return to pitch before the end of the season.
"I'm really looking forward to going back on the mound," Ohtani said on Saturday through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. "I was supposed to be pitching throughout the whole year. I wasn't able to do that, but I'm almost back on track to do that."
Prior to the elbow injury, Ohtani posted a 3.10 ERA with 61 strikeouts over 49 1/3 innings as a right-handed pitcher. He spent a month on the disabled list before returning exclusively as a designated hitter on July 3 and entered Saturday batting .269 with an .868 OPS, 13 home runs and 38 RBIs over 251 plate appearances.
Injury updates: Upton, more
• Justin Upton (left index finger laceration) has started gripping a bat but has not resumed swinging. Upton still has four stitches in the finger after cutting himself while cleaning a wine glass on Sunday.
• Tyler Skaggs resumed throwing on Friday for the first time since landing on the DL with a left adductor (hip) strain on Aug. 12. He progressed to throwing from approximately 80 feet during the workout and said he felt good.
Skaggs said he was shut down for nearly two weeks to finally give the injury time to properly heal, as the nagging ailment has sent him to the DL three times this season.
"I'm just sick and tired of trying to grind through things," Skaggs said. "It came to a point where it was affecting me a lot on the mound, and I decided to take a few weeks off, and I feel pretty good."
Skaggs said he is confident that he'll be able to return to pitch for the Angels before the end of the season.
• Nick Tropeano (right shoulder inflammation) also played catch on Friday.
• Matthew Shoemaker (right forearm surgery) threw approximately 45 pitches during a three-inning simulated game on Friday in Arizona. Scioscia said the Angels will evaluate Shoemaker before they determine his next step, though he could be close to beginning a rehab assignment.
• Hansel Robles (right shoulder impingement) threw a bullpen session on Friday and is inching closer to a return. Robles is eligible to be activated off the disabled list on Sunday.
Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.