Madson throws for first time since landing on DL

When Ryan Madson made three appearances in four days against the Diamondbacks earlier this month, his velocity up from previous outings, the veteran reliever was as encouraged as he had been all season about the way he was pitching and the way his arm felt.

Then on the flight home from Arizona, Madson felt a cramp in his right pectoral muscle. And a week later, having not pitched in a game since, he was placed on the 10-day disabled list.

Madson-Throws-Red-Sidebar.jpg"I didn't feel it pitching, or during the game," Madson said today, his first comments on the injury. "I just felt a little stickiness in my shoulder during the flight. Just normal things that pitchers do all the time to get the cricks out. It just felt like a cramp in my pec. The next day we had an off-day, then it rained out a couple times, and it was just really sore. And it wasn't going away. So that's why I finally said something."

Madson doesn't expect to miss significant time due to this ailment. He was on the field this afternoon making 25 throws at 50 percent effort, and was pleased with the results.

"I was trying to go as little effort as possible," he said. "But it was coming out good. ... It was just a gauge to see where it's at, how it responds."

Madson will progress from here and expects to be throwing at full velocity off a mound soon. He didn't want to put a timetable on his return, but he spoke of it in terms of "weeks" and not "months."

How, though, did this injury crop up after the 37-year-old admittedly felt the best he has all season over a stretch of several outings?

While in Arizona, Madson did pay a visit to the EVO Sports facility that helped resurrect his career following Tommy John surgery and received what he described then as a "tune-up." He proceeded to retire 12 of the 13 Diamondbacks batters he faced in three appearances over four days, twice recording four outs in a game.

"I didn't feel anything while I was pitching," he said. "I threw a lot that week, and also I was throwing harder than usual, with more extension than usual. It might've been too much with that newfound stuff that I had. I mentioned how sharp everything was, and I was feeling good. I just don't think it was ready for that much workload at that speed, that newfound speed that I had.

"But I had no reservations before that game, or any of those games in Arizona that I thought something might happen. I didn't feel fatigued. I felt good with that newfound stuff, so I wanted to get back out there. I had no warning signs or anything like that."

Madson isn't worried that he'll need to be used considerably less when he returns from the DL, though manager Davey Martinez admitted today he'll "have to keep a really close eye on how we use him," especially after the reliever needed a week off in April after pitching in three straight games.

"I don't think this falls under the same category where it was overuse," Madson said. "It was heavy use, but I should be able to do that and get through it. And I did and I was happy. And then for some reason on the plane, I made a funny move and it cramped up on me. So it was a weird situation. I don't blame the workload. That was accomplishable, I think. But they'll probably be a little more cautious, at least until playoff time. That's when you step on the gas pedal, which is fine."

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