Gavin Floyd won't factor into the Detroit mix, but he's getting closer to a return. Floyd, who has been on the disabled list retroactive to Aug. 27 with a right elbow flexor strain, threw a bullpen during Thursday's off-day. He threw around 55 pitches in a long session, and while he is yet to throw any curveballs, he gave a thumbs-up to the sliders employed in the session.
"I was a little apprehensive because the last time I threw sliders was like every time I threw it, it bothered me," said Floyd, who also mixed in fastballs and changeups. "So it was nice to throw some sliders and have no pain.
"Very minimal soreness, ache. So it was good, better than I expected. We have one more bullpen Sunday to throw curveballs and I think that will be the final test as to how it feels and see how it reacts when I throw."
Floyd would like to return to the rotation as soon as he is healthy and believes he can do so without throwing any simulated games. The right-hander even thought the Detroit series was possible, although manager Robin Ventura was not as convinced.
"He's got to feel right to be able to do that," Ventura said. "Again, I don't like sending guys out there not feeling 100 percent. I don't want them going with any reservations when he's going out there. As soon as he's fit to do it, we'll look at where he best fits in."
"We'll see what happens Sunday," Floyd said. "I think the plan is to get me back there as soon as we can."