CLEVELAND -- Jake Westbrook took a positive step Sunday in his attempt to come back from Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery. Westbrook threw 50 pitches in a simulated game in front of general manager Mark Shapiro and head athletic trainer Lonnie Soloff at Progressive Field. About 20 of those pitches came against live hitters. Westbrook reported no pain. "Everything went well," Westbrook said. "We're progressing on. It's another step."
His last start came June 12 when he was making a rehab start for the Double-A Akron Aeros. He was due to make another start for the Triple-A Columbus Clippers, but that was scrapped after he felt something in his right elbow. Westbrook had dealt with post-operation soreness before, but it intensified in his start for the Aeros. After consulting Dr. Lewis Yocum, who performed the surgery on June 12, 2008, Westbrook decided to stop all baseball activities for 14 days. This is his first significant action since then. "It's a little disappointing, because I was feeling so good," Westbrook said. "It wasn't unexpected, but it was a bit frustrating because I was so close." Westbrook will pitch another simulated game on Friday. He said he is uncertain what the next step after that would be.
Matt O'Donnell is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.