Top prospect Stephenson cleared to throw

Righty completes 'pen session after being held back due to concerns about shoulder

Top prospect Stephenson cleared to throw

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Reds top prospect Robert Stephenson worked off the mound Sunday for the first time after being held back at the start of camp.

As a precaution, the medical staff delayed the right-handed Stephenson from pitching because of concerns over his shoulder. After getting the green light, he threw 20 pitches in the bullpen.

"I felt really good," said Stephenson, who turns 22 on Tuesday. "Obviously, I'm just throwing all fastballs right now, no offspeed. It was just taking it easy and making sure I'm not rushing anything."

Stephenson, who plans to throw 25 pitches again on Wednesday, was not overly concerned about his shoulder. He never previously had any issues there.

"It didn't feel quite right," said Stephenson, who pitched at Double-A Pensacola last season. "It was not really 100 percent, so I just wanted to make sure I was completely healthy before I started doing anything. I want to make sure I go into the season healthy. That way I can make it through the whole season."

Other items from Reds camp on Sunday:

• Reds starter Homer Bailey, who is returning from flexor mass tendon surgery, has not yet been cleared to pitch from a mound. Bailey has been throwing, but the righty took Saturday off, which was just a normal rest day.

"It takes a little longer for him to get loose, he's still breaking up scar tissue in his elbow and things of that nature," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "But he feels good. We haven't had a setback since the surgery date, and I think at this point in time, I haven't discounted having him open the season on our active roster."

Outlook: Bailey, SP, CIN

• Price has been very pleased with the performances of several pitchers in the early days of camp. One is starting pitching prospect Jon Moscot, who pitched at Pensacola and Triple-A Louisville last season.

"I never had seen Jon Moscot pitch, and I had heard nothing but great things," Price said. "He has not disappointed in the least."

• The full squad officially reports on Monday, with the first workout with everyone on Tuesday. Several hitters were on the back fields taking batting practice Sunday, including Joey Votto, Marlon Byrd, Zack Cozart, Billy Hamilton and Jay Bruce.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.