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Lohse progressing, Penny close

Kyle Lohse was expected to start throwing today for the first time since surgery on his pitching forearm.

He told that doctors decided to push things back a little bit. But he's not calling it a setback. Lohse said things are going very well and the reason for the change was made on the side of playing things safe.

"I thought at the beginning of this week that I was headed toward throwing on Monday, but all the doctors got together and just wanted to give it a little more chance to heal," Lohse told "The reason they gave was that originally they were just going to [operate on] the one muscle that showed up in the MRI, but just to make sure there wasn't any further problem, they did all the muscles. So they just want to make sure, because [the surgery] was a bit more intrusive.


"They want to make sure they give it a little more time to heal, because in their eyes, the worst thing I could do at this point is to go out and try to start throwing when you're still trying to strengthen," Lohse told "I feel like the strength is really good. I've got my full range of motion back now. It's just a matter of, there's still some bruising in there."

There's not target date for Lohse to return to the Cardinals. At least not one that has been made public. But it looks like he has a decent chance of coming back in 2010, which is something that was in doubt at the time he went under the knife.

Fellow injured St. Louis starter Brad Penny said over the weekend that he is finally pain free. Hopefully the Birds will only be without him for a couple of more turns though the rotation. A day off today will give the Cardinals a chance to continue using a four-man rotation to continue to go without him.

Ultimately, Lohse may be needed to relive the stress on rookie pitcher Jaime Garcia. Don't forget, the lefty is only a year removed from Tommy John surgery, so it might not be the best to try to get 200 innings out of him his first season back.