Hochevar leads injured crew making progress

Hochevar leads injured crew making progress

KANSAS CITY -- The Royals' sidelined pitching contingent -- Luke Hochevar, Gil Meche, Brian Bannister and Robinson Tejeda -- is doing well.

"They all feel great, they're all champing at the bit, ready to go," manager Ned Yost said.

While the Royals were on the West Coast, Hochevar (right elbow sprain) got back on the mound. He's hoping for a couple of Minor League rehab appearances later in the month, with a return to the Majors quickly following.

"It feels great," Hochevar said. "It really does feel good. Everything is coming along great. I'm throwing free and easy."

Meche (right shoulder bursitis) decided against surgery and is aiming to return in a bullpen role.

"Meche threw today and I thought he looked good last time but he looked twice as good this time," Yost said. "He had a real hard, tight breaking ball, nice cutter, good fastball. Command was off a little bit but he threw really well so he's getting closer."

Bannister has no injury, but was moved to the bullpen to work on smoothing out mechanical flaws. He hasn't been used in a game and Yost considered bringing him back on Sunday against the Yankees, but reiterated on Thursday that Bryan Bullington was in line to make that start.

Tejeda (right biceps tendon strain) is just two days away from possible reinstatement from the disabled list.