Pair of hurlers post positive outings

Pair of hurlers post positive outings

PHOENIX -- Two injured D-backs pitchers have taken steps forward in their quest to rejoin the team.

Max Scherzer had a successful Minor League rehab start Thursday night for Class A Visalia, while veteran reliever Tom Gordon faced hitters for the first time in a batting-practice situation Friday afternoon at Chase Field.

Scherzer (right shoulder) threw 95 pitches and touched 96 mph on the radar gun while allowing two runs -- one earned -- on one hit in 4 2/3 innings. The right-hander walked four and struck out five.

"I felt good," Scherzer said. "I was able to get some good work in."

Scherzer is scheduled to start for the D-backs on Tuesday against the Cardinals.

"I'm ready to go," Scherzer said. "I've done everything I've needed to in order to be ready."

Gordon (right elbow) threw 31 pitches to hitters plus another 20 pitches in the bullpen, and said he hasn't felt this good since before the All-Star break in 2006.

"It looked pretty crisp to me," manager Bob Melvin said. "Hard breaking ball, good hard cutter, was letting it go with the fastball."

A timetable for Gordon's return has not been set, but it should become clearer Saturday when he sits down with Melvin, pitching coach Bryan Price and the training staff.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.