FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Right-hander Mike Pelfrey threw his first official bullpen session of Spring Training on Thursday, and said he plans on being ready for Opening Day despite undergoing Tommy John surgery last May.
Pelfrey, who signed a one-year deal worth $4 million this offseason after seven seasons with the Mets, is ahead of schedule in his rehab. He said he'll be treated like the rest of the pitchers this spring and that he's had no setbacks so far.
"If the season started tomorrow, I would have worked up to be ready at this point," Pelfrey said. "Realistically, after 7 1/2 months, I threw 90 pitches to hitters, so I could pitch [now]. They told me the other day, 'No restrictions. You're on the schedule with everybody else.' That's what I wanted."
Pelfrey began rehabbing his shoulder on Aug. 21 and finished his throwing program in December before taking three weeks off. He then started it back up again on Jan. 14.
He estimated he's already thrown off a mound 40 times since the surgery, including six times off the mound since mid-January. The Twins will continue to monitor his health and told him they plan to try to limit him to about 180 innings this season.
But Pelfrey said he could exceed that figure if he still feels healthy that late in the season. He's thrown more than 180 innings four times in his career, including throwing more than 200 innings in both 2008 and '10.
"My whole thing is if I get 160 and I'm tired, I'm going to end it and tell them I'm tired," Pelfrey said. "If I get to 180 and I feel good, I'm going to keep going. As long as I feel good, I'm going to keep doing it. I've busted my butt and worked my tail off to get back. I don't think if it gets to 200 it's going to be an issue. I've done it before."