For the first time in what feels like forever, Chris Tillman went through a scheduled throwing session when he was supposed to without experiencing any setbacks. Manager Buck Showalter told Orioles reporters before Sunday’s spring training game against the Blue Jays that Tillman’s throwing went well today and he’ll be throwing again on Tuesday, as previously planned.
That’s finally some good news about Tillman, or at the very least the stopping of continuing bad news. It’s been one bad thing after another ever since Tillman reported to camp and everyone learned he had a platelet-rich plasma injection in his shoulder back in December.
Tillman’s work on Sunday consisted of playing catch at 60-90 feet. He’s expected to work with longer distances on Tuesday before he starts working his way back into the routine of actually pitching.
Showalter also told reporters that Tillman would accompany the Orioles when they head north from Sarasota rather than remaining behind to pitch in extended spring training. That probably means they’ll just do the bullpen session parts of his rehab in Baltimore rather than having him be distant in Sarasota. It also means he’ll get to be a part of the Opening Day atmosphere, even if he’s not the Opening Day pitcher.
There was no indication that this changes the timeframe of the Orioles expecting Tillman to miss at least all of April. All of the setbacks have robbed him of the usual spring training period to build up his arm strength for a regular workload. If he stays on track to toss again on Tuesday, maybe he really won’t miss much more than April and all of the ballyhooing about the fifth starter will really just be for 3-4 starts.
That wouldn’t be so bad, as long as Tillman doesn’t wake up tomorrow or Wednesday with the kind of soreness that leads them to shut him down again.
For today, the news is good, which hasn’t been the case for a while, so that’s something O’s fans can enjoy.