Colorado Rockies pitcher Jorge De La Rosa, who hasn't pitched in the majors in nearly 16 months, could make his return this week. De La Rosa started for the Class-A Modesto Nuts on Saturday and allowed three earned runs in five innings. He threw 71 pitches.
If he is cleared by team doctors and on regular rest, De La Rosa will likely pitch on Thursday at San Francisco. De La Rosa pitched in 10 games in 2011 before suffering an elbow injury that required surgery. In those starts, he was 5-2 with a 3.51 ERA in 59 innings.
During his rehab, De La Rosa has made seven starts in four levels of minor league baseball. He has compiled a 6.64 ERA, 1.77 WHIP and 22 strikeouts in 20⅓ innings.
The Rockies reportedly are not looking to add any free agent pitchers in the offseason, so De La Rosa's recovery is crucial. He has an $11 million player option for next season and will likely a key cog in Colorado's rotation.