Verlander likely to start rehab assignment on Sunday

Iglesias, Avila, V-Mart making progress in injury recoveries

Verlander likely to start rehab assignment on Sunday

OAKLAND -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus didn't even think to ask ace right-hander Justin Verlander how his arm felt the day after throwing a simulated game.

"I saw him and said hello," Ausmus said. "He wasn't complaining. He was upbeat."

That's good news for a pitching staff that has been taking several hits the past week. Kyle Lobstein went on the disabled list with a sore left shoulder on Sunday and Alfredo Simon was placed on the bereavement list on Tuesday night so he could be with his ailing father.

Verlander was in good spirits before Wednesday's game, running around the clubhouse like a man getting ready to go on a rehab assignment.

Ausmus said Verlander would "probably" pitch Sunday in Indianapolis, where Triple-A Toledo is scheduled to play. He'd like to see Verlander throw between 80-85 pitches.

The team will make a decision regarding Verlander after Sunday's start. He could return to the Tigers rotation or make another rehab start.

• Shortstop Jose Iglesias remains day to day with a bruised knee. He was out of the starting lineup a third straight day, though he has been available to pinch hit.

"It was still swollen, I saw it yesterday," Ausmus said. "He did take batting practice and was able to take groundballs right at him. The only time it bothers him is when he's running. When he thinks he can play, he'll play."

• Catcher Alex Avila (knee) is close to participating in baseball-related activities and Victor Martinez (left knee inflammation) is progressing with his rehab.

Rick Eymer is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.