Webb eager to take next step toward return

Webb eager to take next step toward return

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Rangers right-hander Brandon Webb threw 62 pitches in a live batting practice session on Thursday and is hoping to graduate to either a simulated or B game soon.

"I'd like to have a 15-pitch inning, sit down and then throw 15 more," Webb said. "A game situation would be different. This is fun, throwing live batting practice. I haven't been able to do that for a long time. But hopefully I can get in a game soon."

Webb said he felt great. He said his timing is off -- he was rushing his pitches -- and that created some control issues when he plunked a couple of his right-handed-hitting teammates. That can be smoothed out with more time on the mound and he believes his velocity will come around.

"There is more in there," Webb said. "This is obviously not game speed. I'm not sure where I'm at but there are a few more ticks than can come in a game."

Webb has not pitched in a game since April 6, 2009, when he was the Diamondbacks' Opening Day pitcher. He has been sidelined since then with a shoulder injury that required surgery on Aug. 3, 2009. He signed a one-year contract with the Rangers in the offseason.