Burnett advances to throwing off mound

Burnett advances to throwing off mound

PITTSBURGH -- Pirates starter A.J. Burnett continues to make progress in his recovery from a flexor strain in his right elbow, reaching the point this week where he's able to throw off the mound.

Burnett was placed on the 15-day disabled list July 31 and received a platelet-rich plasma injection in his throwing elbow Aug. 3. At that time, the Pirates estimated it would take four weeks for him to return.

Nearly three weeks later, Burnett has at least returned to the bullpen mound. He threw 25 fastballs Thursday, manager Clint Hurdle said, and the Pirates hoped to have him throw a light side session Saturday.

The 38-year-old right-hander, who will retire after the season, earned his first All-Star Game selection with a dominant first half then struggled in three starts after the break. He last pitched July 30, when he allowed 10 hits in 4 1/3 innings.

Burnett has said he hopes to return before the end of the season. He declined an interview request Saturday to discuss his status.

Top Pirates prospect Tyler Glasnow struck out nine and allowed only four hits and two walks over 6 1/3 scoreless innings Saturday for Triple-A Indianapolis.

Glasnow has allowed three earned runs while striking out 34 batters and walking 15 in 27 1/3 innings over five Triple-A starts.

• Right-hander Vance Worley has pitched well since accepting his outright assignment to Indianapolis. Making his second Triple-A start Friday, Worley allowed one unearned run on three hits while striking out nine over seven innings.

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.