Nolasco feels good after rehab start; next step forthcoming

Righty, on DL with elbow inflammation, throws five innings for Class A Cedar Rapids

Nolasco feels good after rehab start; next step forthcoming

MINNEAPOLIS -- Right-hander Ricky Nolasco said his rehab outing with Class A Cedar Rapids went well on Sunday, but he's not sure if he'll need another rehab start before being reinstated from the 15-day disabled list.

Nolasco, on the DL retroactive to April 9 with right elbow inflammation, went five innings, giving up one unearned run on three hits with five strikeouts. Twins manager Paul Molitor said he plans to talk with general manager Terry Ryan on Tuesday to decide the plan for Nolasco going forward and if he'll need another rehab start.

"Ricky came through with his start very well," Molitor said. "I think the biggest concern was how he'd feel throwing breaking balls, but it wasn't an issue. We haven't decided what we'll do going forward, but I plan on talking to Terry in the next 24 hours."

Nolasco threw 67 pitches on Sunday, and he was pleased with the way he felt, especially with his curveball, which was an issue for him in his lone start of the year on April 8 against the Tigers.

"I felt good," Nolasco said. "I was able to throw free and easy, which was huge. We've been aggressive as trying not to lose out on what I did in spring with the build-up process. I've just been honest with myself and trying to push it. But I've passed every test and the big one was yesterday, obviously."

Nolasco played catch at Target Field on Monday to see how his arm felt, but said everything was normal, and he'll find out his plan moving forward on Tuesday.

"I just came in today and they wanted to see how I felt today," Nolasco said. "But I felt good. Just some general soreness. But I played catch and it felt great. I think tomorrow we'll figure everything out."

The Twins have an interesting decision to make once Nolasco returns, as his replacement, Trevor May, has pitched well since being called up from Triple-A Rochester. May was hit near his elbow on a comebacker on Saturday, but is expected to make his next start.

Fellow right-hander Mike Pelfrey, who was scheduled to open the year in the bullpen before Ervin Santana was suspended 80 games for the use of a performance-enhancing drug, has also pitched well and is coming off throwing seven scoreless innings against the Royals on Wednesday.

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.