Mixed results for Mariners’ Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma in bullpen sessions

May 27, 2017, 2:39 PM | Updated: 3:04 pm
Felix Hernandez has been out of action since his April 25 start in Detroit. (AP)...
Felix Hernandez has been out of action since his April 25 start in Detroit. (AP)

BOSTON – A pair of welcome sights Saturday afternoon for the Mariners as Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma took the mound in the visitors bullpen at Fenway Park. It was the first bullpen sessions for both since going on the disabled list with shoulder injuries. The results? Mixed.

“The shoulder feels good,” said an energetic Hernandez, who has shoulder bursitis, following his throwing session.

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“I think it was okay,” said a more subdued Iwakuma, who has shoulder inflammation, through interpreter Antony Suzuki. “It’s not perfect, it is what it is. I felt OK.”

While Kuma’s comments and demeanor were not quite encouraging, he did not see the session as a setback.

“It wasn’t the best BP, but it is what it is. We just have got to make progress with it and move forward,” he said.

Felix would like to move forward to a start – the sooner, the better.

“I can be on the mound tomorrow but they don’t want me (to),” he mused. “It’s been tough. Two years in a row on the DL is not good for me.”

Felix has missed 28 games since coming out of his April 25 start in Detroit with a shoulder that didn’t feel right. On Saturday he was able to throw 25 pitches in the bullpen, mixing in his changeup and sinker with his fastball. All he wanted out of the session was to be able to throw pain-free, which he was able to do. An added bonus: his mechanics felt right after the layoff, as well.

“Actually it was really good,” he said. I was throwing a lot of strikes.”

The Mariners are in the process of putting together a throwing schedule to get Felix into rehab games. If he checks out pain-free the day after his first bullpen, he should throw another in the next few days. Bullpens will lead to throwing to hitters in a sim game and then eventually a rehab assignment. Team officials believe we are looking at a mid-June return if everything continues to move in a positive direction for Felix.

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Mixed results for Mariners’ Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma in bullpen sessions