LOS ANGELES -- Injured reliever Hong-Chih Kuo might be returning to the Dodgers' beleaguered bullpen sooner than expected after an impressive one-inning rehab start for Class A Inland Empire on Thursday night.
Kuo struck out two in a perfect, 12-pitch inning, then went down to the bullpen to throw another eight pitches. He had been limited to only two innings in Spring Training because of chronic elbow problems.
Ronald Belisario, on the restricted list after reporting to Spring Training five weeks late because of visa problems, made his second game appearance at extended spring training Wednesday with a 12-pitch inning that club officials said was sharper than his first game Monday.
Both pitchers could be activated within the next week.