Baltimore Orioles right-hander Jason Hammel successfully completed a bullpen session over the weekend, and manager Buck Showalter told reporters -- including Jeff Seidel of MLB.com -- that the starting pitcher is now slated to make a minor league rehab assignment on Thursday with the team's Double-A affiliate.
When Hammel takes the mound tomorrow for the Bowie Baysox, Showalter noted that he will throw between 45 and 50 pitches, or two or three innings, whichever comes first. Hammel threw 60 pitches over the weekend during his bullpen session.
If all goes well tomorrow, Hammel will throw another bullpen session in the next few days. Beyond that, Showalter didn't let on what the plan is for Hammel.
While Hammel was the Orioles' ace for much of last season, he struggled mightily before hitting the disabled list on July 29. The roster move coincided with the acquisition of Bud Norris, who took over Hammel's spot in the rotation.
The Orioles would certainly like a productive Hammel back, but there's not a clear spot for him in their rotation, especially after the acquisitions of Norris and Scott Feldman. For this reason Baltimore could take its time with Hammel as he recovers from his flexor mass strain.
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