Fister works strong first two frames in second rehab start at Reading

Nationals right-hander Doug Fister (lat strain) completed 3 2/3 innings for Double-A Harrisburg Friday night at Reading in his second rehab start. Harrisburg defeated Reading 9-4.

Fister worked a "very strong first two" innings according to Reading Phillies broadcaster Steve Degler. He allowed two hits, two runs, three walks and struck out five, firing 76 pitches, 46 for strikes. Fister threw 25 pitches in the fourth inning. He went 1-for-2 at the plate with a single.

Degler said Fister "struggled a bit with location" in the third and fourth innings, but got a lot of foul balls. Fister had a pair of strikeouts in each of the first two innings.

All indications are that Fister is on track to be activated off the 15-day disabled list and return to the Nationals next week. The Senators confirmed after the game he is expected to make his first start for the Nationals next week, which would be Wednesday's home start against the Los Angeles Dodgers at 1:05 p.m.

"Came out fine, yeah," Nationals manager Matt Williams said in Philadelphia. "They said something about he got almost to his pitch count, 78. But everything was good."

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