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Reliever Brad Lidge has been a positive influence in the Nats' clubhouse all season. A return from injury could provide an added boost. (Image Credit: Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE)

Brad Lidge To Return Mid-June

Prior to Wednesday night’s series finale against the Philadelphia Phillies, relief pitcher Brad Lidge threw off a mound for the first time since undergoing surgery three weeks ago for a sports hernia. It was the first step towards returning to the Washington Nationals bullpen.

According to Mark Zuckerman, Lidge will head to the team’s Spring Training facility in Viera, Florida where he will “ramp up his activity” until he’s deemed ready to start a minor league rehab assignment. The team is hoping the veteran right-hander will be ready to return by mid-June. The team is targeting their three game series in Toronto from June 11-13.

In seven appearances before the injury, Lidge posted a 5.14 ERA and 2 saves, while striking out as many batters (7) as he walked. He hasn’t been the dominant reliever that he once was in his career for the past few seasons but he was still brought in by the Nationals to provide some veteran leadership to a relatively young bullpen. By most accounts he’s been the positive presence the organization was hoping for, now if he can just remain healthy for the remainder of the season he should give the bullpen a boost.

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