Norris to throw off mound, could return in '15

Tigers' rookie progressing quicker than expected; Sanchez also set to throw soon

Norris to throw off mound, could return in '15

DETROIT -- A return this season is looking more realistic for Daniel Norris, who's scheduled to throw off a mound Sunday for the first time since straining his right oblique last month.

It'll be a light mound session, maybe 10 pitches. But it's sooner than he was expected to throw off a mound when the injury occurred.

"It's kind of been expedited, interestingly enough," Norris said, "but I'm feeling good. So it's just kind of a day-to-day thing. I've been doing some weight room testing, and it's been encouraging."

Anibal Sanchez is expected to have a similar session in the next couple days as he works his way back from a rotator cuff strain. Both Sanchez and Norris went on the disabled list on Aug. 19, leaving the Tigers scrambling to fill their rotation spots. Though Randy Wolf pitched well his first couple starts, the overall rotation struggles have been notable since the injuries.

Sanchez fans Dyson in the 5th

Both want to get out on the mound for a team that has fallen out of contention and now occupies last place in the American League Central, rendering the final weeks of the schedule as a test for motivation. For Sanchez, a return is at least a little about peace of mind after the rotator cuff scare, allowing him to go through his offseason workouts.

Norris, who's nearing his innings total from last season, said he wants to pitch again.

"I want to get out there. There's still some fight left in the dog," Norris said. "I just want to get out there and compete. It's one of those things that you can't harness. It's just in there, and you want to get out there."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.