Joe Saunders pleased with rehab start
That's where left-hander Joe Saunders was making a rehabilitation start for the Diamondbacks Arizona League rookie level team against Cleveland.
Saunders pitched decently, going 4.1 innings while allowing three hits, five runs (three earned) while walking five and striking out seven. The D-backs fell 8-5 and Saunders was saddled with the loss, but winning was not the ultimate objective.
"I felt good, it was nice to get back out there," Saunders said after his 78-pitch outing. "It was frustrating to get more walks than I wanted to, but it's tough down here -- you don't know the hitters and they like to swing the bat.
"I thought I did pretty good though."
Saunders was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left shoulder after he was unable to get loose for a scheduled start on June 22 against the Cubs. He threw a 51-pitch simulated game at Chase Field last week and declared himself ready to return at that point, but agreed to make a minor league rehab start to further fine tune things.
"Next step is going to be Wrigley Field," Saunders said. "I was looking forward to that, and they wanted me to get one more start down here, so I did it, now let's get it going."
The Diamondbacks pick up their post All-Star break schedule Friday in Chicago for a three-game series against the Cubs. Barring a setback, Saunders should start the second game of the series Saturday against Chicago right- hander Ryan Dempster.
Arizona Sports' Kyndra de St. Aubin contributed to this report
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