Anibal Sanchez was forced from his rehab start Monday night at High-A Lakeland after taking a line drive off his left calf in the top of the second inning.
But the right-hander is apparently feeling just fine.
According to MLB.com’s Jason Beck, Sanchez has been cleared to return to the Tigers’ starting rotation on Saturday evening to face the Indians. Sanchez will be on a fairly strict pitch count because he failed to make it even two frames in his only rehab outing.
The 29-year-old has been out since mid-June with a shoulder strain. He had a 2.76 ERA, 1.15 WHIP and 101/23 K/BB ratio in 81 2/3 innings before the injury.
Detroit finished play Tuesday with a 44-38 record — a half-game back in the American League Central.
Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.
Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.
Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.
Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.