Strop throws 20-pitch simulated game

HOUSTON -- Pedro Strop (lower back strain) threw a 20-pitch simulated game on Tuesday afternoon and the plan is for him to take a day off and fly to Sarasota, Fla., to throw an inning on Thursday for possible reinstatement this weekend.

"He feels good physically," manager Buck Showalter said of Strop, who is eligible to come off the disabled list on Saturday and will rejoin the team in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Friday. "Threw the ball really well today. Wasn't a lot of fun to try to find two or three guys to hit off him. Not my idea of a fun afternoon in Houston. They had the roof open then."

Strop, who threw to teammates Alexi Casilla and Steve Pearce, said he mixed up his pitches like he normally would during a game and has been using the time on the DL to work with pitching coach Rick Adair on making his delivery more compact.

"More in line, just vertical movements. Just try to get on top of the ball and everything, and it's been pretty good so far," said Strop, who has no issues with his back. "Nobody wants to get hurt, but the situation, if you got hurt don't just sit around, 'Oh I'm hurt.' If you are able to do some stuff and work on the things you need, it's good."

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.