Davis nearing return to Royals' red-hot bullpen

All-Star closer progressing in rehab from right flexor strain

Davis nearing return to Royals' red-hot bullpen

MIAMI -- Royals closer Wade Davis, who saved 21 games in 23 opportunities this season before going on the disabled list a second time with a right flexor strain, tested his arm on Wednesday at the team's Spring Training facility in Surprise, Ariz.

Davis logged one scoreless inning, yielding one hit and striking out one for the Surprise Royals in their 4-2 loss to the Indians.

"He threw live batting practice on Sunday and he'll throw an inning today," manager Ned Yost said before Wednesday night's 3-0 loss to the Marlins. "He is continuing to get closer and closer to getting back."

Davis went on the 15-day DL in early July with the injury. It halted an outstanding start to the 2016 season. Davis converted 19 of 21 save opportunities and posted a 1.23 ERA over 30 appearances.

Davis made his return on July 16, but after five subpar appearances, it was clear he hadn't returned to full strength. In those five outings, although he was successful in both save chances, Davis scuffled with a 4.15 ERA. Davis was returned to the DL on July 31, retroactive to July 27.

Kelvin Herrera has handled the closer duties in Davis' absence. In 10 chances entering Wednesday, Herrera had recorded eight saves while posting a 1.91 ERA over 56 2/3 innings.

While the Royals' bullpen has caught fire without Davis, having him in his usual role only adds to its capabilities.

"We're looking forward to it," Yost said. "It's another big piece to add to our bullpen. He's making great progress."

Worth noting
• Left-hander Mike Minor is back at Triple-A Omaha as he continues to have issues with his surgically repaired left shoulder. Minor signed a three-year deal with the Royals as a free agent in February.

"He got shut down completely," Yost said.

• Right-hander Kris Medlen scuffled in an injury rehab assignment on Tuesday. Out since May 11 with right rotator cuff tendinitis, Medlen threw 1 2/3 innings for Omaha in a 7-0 loss. Medlen yielded five runs on five hits. He gave up two home runs, walked a batter and did not record a strikeout in the 34-pitch outing.

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com based in Miami. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.