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Orioles expecting Chen to return in early July

Orioles expecting Chen to return in early July

Orioles expecting Chen to return in early July

DETROIT -- Orioles pitcher Wei-Yin Chen could rejoin the team before the All-Star break as the lefty continues to progress favorably from a left oblique strain.

"If everything goes well, he'd be an option for us in early July," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said on Monday. "First week of July."

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Chen, who is at the team's spring facility in Sarasota, Fla., threw a 45-pitch bullpen session on Monday and will throw a simulated gamed on Thursday. Showalter said Chen, who has now thrown off a full mound twice, would have another simulated game after that.

Chen was placed on the disabled list on May 14 (retroactive to May 13) and went 3-3 with a 3.04 ERA in his first eight starts.

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.

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