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Assistant pitching coach Howell back with Dodgers

Assistant pitching coach Howell back with Dodgers

Assistant pitching coach Howell back with Dodgers

CHICAGO -- Back in uniform for the Dodgers on Saturday was Ken Howell, the assistant pitching coach who has been sidelined for nearly two months with complications from diabetes.

Howell had been the Dodgers' bullpen coach for four years, but his role and title changed this year to reduce the amount of necessary travel. Howell split time between the Major League and Minor League clubs, while Chuck Crim took over as bullpen coach.

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That worked out until mid June, when Howell developed a pancreatic infection. He was hospitalized for eight days, then needed intravenous antibiotics every day for three weeks.

"It was more serious than I thought and it took a while to get my energy back," he said. "But I feel really good now. I just have to monitor it, because with diabetes anything can pop up. I'm getting back on the field today and I'm excited to get to do what I do.

"I may not have the same ability and strength to do it on the field, but I still can make an impact on guys with their release point and their delivery and what I see them doing in the game."

Howell, 52, said he will travel to St. Louis with the team Sunday night. His work schedule after that, which might include working with recently signed Brian Wilson, will be determined in St. Louis.

"I want to see how I'm bouncing back each day," he said. "I'm just taking it one step at a time. But it's good to be back, really good."

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

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