CINCINNATI -- Left-handed pitcher Sean Marshall took another big step forward on Wednesday by throwing his first bullpen session since experiencing shoulder surgery in May.
"It went good," Marshall said. "It's been a little bit of a stretch here where I haven't been on the mound and to get my feet back on the mound, my cleats in the dirt, digging in felt really good. Threw about 22 pitches, all fastballs two-seamers. I cut a couple of them, but just trying to get my arm speed back and get my feet wet. So it was a successful bullpen for sure.
"I've been doing great on the long toss, on the flat ground, but getting on that slanted surface decline back to home, [I] wasn't sure what to expect. But from the first throw to the last throw felt good."
Marshall, who is 32 years old, was expected to be shut down for the season and potentially for the rest of his career when he had surgery in May to repair what appeared to be a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder. However, during the surgery no tear was found and surgeons only had to remove scar tissue that obscured the MRI results.
Since then, Marshall has been able to make an incredible recovery and Reds manager Bryan Price still isn't ruling out a possible return before the end of the season. Price said Marshall will join the team on its 10-game road trip to continue his recovery by throwing another bullpen session in a couple of days.
"Today was his first bullpen and he threw the ball really well," Price said. "He looked like a normal guy without inhibitions and limitations in his arm action. This is of course the first bullpen he's thrown in some time so it's still a ways away, but he's going to go on the trip with us and throw regularly off the mound. We hope that we can get him back into competition before the year's over."
Marshall hasn't pitched since June 10, 2014, against the Dodgers when he suffered a torn labrum. He has only appeared in 31 games since the start of the 2013 season, also experiencing left shoulder tendinitis in 2013. He led the Majors with 231 appearances from 2010-12.
Robert Bondy is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.