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Hunter looks good in side session

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ARLINGTON -- Orioles closer Tommy Hunter, who is on the disabled list with a left groin strain, threw a bullpen prior Tuesday night's game against the Rangers as he continues to make impressive strides toward a return.

"That went well," manager Buck Showalter said of Hunter's side session in front of pitching coach Dave Wallace and bullpen coach Dom Chiti. "Did a little light PFP [pitchers fielding practice]. The plan is to do some more PFP tomorrow and see if he will go out and pitch on Thursday or if he needs another side day. That's kind of where we are in the decision process."

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Hunter, who has dealt with the same injury several times in the past, said he was happy with the way he bounced back this time around and he could be an option for the O's early next week.

"Yeah, I am actually [encouraged]," said Hunter, who has missed up to a month with a groin injury earlier in his career. "Four days ago, I think, was the last time I felt it. Five days ago. That's pretty awesome. It's pretty cool not feeling it, cause it [stinks] when you do."

The Orioles placed Hunter on the disabled list on May 22.

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

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