Slowly but surely, Kuo close to game action

Slowly but surely, Kuo close to game action

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers reliever Hong-Chih Kuo, tugging on the reins imposed by the medical staff, had a 43-pitch bullpen session Monday and is getting closer to his first game action of the spring.

Kuo, always a special case because of the four operations on his arthritic elbow, figures to have another bullpen session this week, then would face hitters in a batting-practice session and be in a game by next week. He hasn't had any setbacks this spring but is being brought along slowly as a precautionary measure.

The victim hit hardest by the flu bug that has swept through Camelback Ranch-Glendale is outfielder Jay Gibbons, who missed his third game Monday and will make it four on the sidelines Tuesday before he returns as a designated hitter Wednesday at the earliest, manager Don Mattingly said.

First baseman John Lindsey also remains sidelined with a strained calf muscle suffered last week.

Non-roster starting pitcher Dana Eveland reinjured his strained hamstring during a bullpen session he cut short and will need to back off. He suffered the injury in the first workout of the spring.

Pitcher Javy Guerra faced hitters for the first time since suffering a gash on a finger of his pitching hand in a November kitchen mishap. He is moving closer to game action.