Verlander, Rondon complete bullpen sessions

Verlander, Rondon complete bullpen sessions

ST. LOUIS -- Justin Verlander and Bruce Rondon took positive steps in coming back from the disabled list for the Tigers after the righties completed successful bullpen sessions Friday.

For Rondon (bicipital tendinitis), the big test wasn't the actual throwing, but how he responded the next day. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said Rondon felt good.

"I talked to him this morning. [It was] an excellent sign, because that was kind of the last hurdle I think, being able to throw all-out and still feel OK the next day," Ausmus said before Saturday's game against the Cardinals.

Verlander (right triceps strain) threw 35 pitches, mixing his fastball, slider and changeup. Ausmus described the session as good, saying everything was "free and easy."

Ausmus isn't sure when the two will go out on a rehab assignment. He said Rondon is closer than Verlander, simply because he is a reliever and doesn't have to build up a pitch count.

Additional bullpen sessions or a simulated game might be the next step before a rehab assignment, according to Ausmus.

Joe Harris is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.