HOUSTON -- Rehabbing right-hander Lance Lynn faced hitters Monday for the first time since sustaining a strained left oblique muscle. However, Lynn and Cardinals officials cautioned against making too much of the throwing session in the short term.
It's basically a certainty that Lynn will not pitch again in 2011, regardless of whether the Cardinals make the playoffs or how deep they go in October. In fact, Monday's session represented the primary target for Lynn, who was injured on Aug. 9 and is on the 60-day disabled list.
"That was our goal, to get to where I could throw to hitters," Lynn said. "So we're where we wanted to be, just to make sure going into the offseason that I would be fully healthy to do everything I need to do to be ready for Spring Training.'
Lynn had been throwing off a mound for some time before Monday, but the early afternoon exercise represented his first time throwing with hitters in the box. Adron Chambers, Shane Robinson and Tony Cruz took swings during Lynn's 20-pitch throwing session at Minute Maid Park.
"He was healthy and everybody wanted to see it, and he was very impressive, actually," manager Tony La Russa said. "But nothing beyond that."
If the Cardinals were to advance to the National League Championship Series, Lynn could, by rule, be added to the active roster. But that is not in the picture at this time.