Schmidt eyes rehab stint next week

Schmidt eyes rehab stint next week

LOS ANGELES -- There have been so many false starts that expectations are virtually non-existent, but Jason Schmidt is working on yet another comeback.

He came out of a Wednesday bullpen session cautiously optimistic that he'll be able to join Triple-A Las Vegas sometime next week before that club's season ends on Labor Day. Schmidt has had two Minor League rehab assignments cut short with renewed discomfort in the shoulder that was operated on 14 months ago.

Whether Schmidt will be able to rebuild arm strength enough for a starter's pitch count and pitch in a Major League game this year remains doubtful. But he seemed to be throwing without restriction on Wednesday and said he was pain-free. He said cutting back the amount of pitches thrown in bullpen sessions seems to be helping.

Scott Proctor, out since June 22 with right elbow tendinitis, threw a bullpen session Tuesday and also is targeted for a rehab assignment next week.

Cory Wade, out since Aug. 9 with right shoulder irritation, probably will return to the active roster without needing a rehab assignment.

Forgotten reliever Yhency Brazoban, who was rehabbing in the Dominican Republic and pitched for the Dodgers' Summer League club there Monday night, suddenly surfaced with Triple-A Las Vegas on Wednesday night and pitched a shaky ninth inning for a save. Brazoban has battled right shoulder problems the past two years but, if healthy, could earn a September promotion. He appeared in four Major League games for the Dodgers this May.

Takashi Saito, out with a sprained ligament in his right elbow, is throwing off flat ground every other day, but there's no guess when, or if, he'll return.

Hong-Chih Kuo, roughed up in his last two relief appearances, said he's just had a couple of bad games and there's nothing wrong physically, although he was only lobbing the ball in the outfield while other relievers were playing pregame catch.

Manager Joe Torre said he's not aware of any physical limitations for Kuo.

Torre said center fielder Andruw Jones, on a Minor League rehab assignment with Las Vegas, missed games Tuesday and Wednesday after tweaking his right knee stepping in a hole on the field. The right knee is the one that Jones had surgically repaired during the season. He's currently on a rehab assignment for patellar tendinitis of his left knee.

Delwyn Young also is with Las Vegas, but still has discomfort from an oblique strain.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.