Jose Fernandez threw a bullpen session today for the first time since going on the disabled list with a strained biceps muscle and it went so well that the Marlins are now hoping he can rejoin the rotation within two weeks.
General manager-turned manager Dan Jennings was full of optimism after Fernandez threw 30 pitches, telling Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald:
I think it went something like, wow. I talked to [trainer Sean Cunningham], and he said it was very impressive. He said he’s right on track, looks good, jumped out of his hand. So we’ll start to build that up now.
Jennings also told Spencer that another bullpen session followed by a simulated game will likely be needed before Fernandez is cleared to return, so “somewhere early to mid-September is probably a realistic target date.”
Fernandez missed much of the season recovering from Tommy John elbow surgery, debuting on July 2. The bad news is that he made just seven starts before going back on the disabled list. The good news is that it appears to be a minor injury and he looked every bit like his dominant, pre-surgery self before the DL stint, going 4-0 with a 2.30 ERA and 53/10 K/BB ratio in 43 innings.