Dice-K well on his way to a return to action

Dice-K well on his way to a return to action

Dice-K well on his way to a return to action
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Daisuke Matsuzaka continues to impress the Red Sox in his comeback from Tommy John surgery, and there's no reason to think he can't rejoin the club by around midseason, perhaps even a little earlier.

The right-hander reeled off a 40-pitch bullpen session on Saturday under the watchful eye of pitching coach Bob McClure and assistant pitching coach Randy Niemann.

"It was 40 pitches total, where he threw 20 and we had him sit, like in the middle of an inning, and then do 20 more," McClure said. "As far as from what I'm seeing, from a health standpoint it was hard to tell he was ever even hurt from the way he's throwing the baseball right now. That doesn't mean he's ready by any means. I'm just saying it's free and easy, it's coming out of his hand really good. It's clean, it looks sharp. It looks like he's on schedule."

Things are progressing so well for Matsuzaka that he's been able to spend a lot of time of his time during camp working on mechanics.

McClure thinks the adjustments could be vital in that they could lessen the stress on Matsuzaka's arm and reduce the risk of further injury.

"We're really dealing with some issues as far as a mechanical standpoint in order to get his body in the right position so this doesn't happen again," McClure said. "There's a little bit from the rehab where he got into some bad habits. Randy Niemann and myself are trying to correct those bad habits and have him to where he was before he got hurt."

The way McClure explains it, the issue is for Matsuzaka to keep his delivery more compact and not allow his head to rotate out of proper position.