• Kyodo


Yu Darvish was back in action for the first time in over a year, allowing only a walk over two shutout innings in his first rehab start on Sunday afternoon.

Darvish, who had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow in March of 2015, threw 32 pitches for the Frisco RoughRiders, the Texas Rangers’ Double-A affiliate, against the Corpus Christi Hooks.

Darvish struck out two and walked one, touching 97 mph (156 kph) on the gun and taking a big step towards making his scheduled return to the majors later this month.

“I’ve been told the speed gun here is about two miles per hour slower than it should be,” Darvish said. “So make sure you write that.

“It’s a huge relief, to be perfectly honest. I’m just really glad. Seriously, I was worried about whether my elbow would blow or not.”

Darvish drew a huge ovation from the crowd as he took the mound in the first, throwing a 94 mph (151 kph) fastball with his first pitch. He got both strikeouts with a sharp slider.

Darvish, who is in his fifth year in the U.S., said Sunday was the second most enjoyable moment he’s had since the operation.

“The second best day after the day I had my baby,” Darvish said, referring to the son he had in July. “I’m just really grateful (the fans) didn’t forget me even though I was away for a year.

“Apart from being overexcited, everything went well. It was my first rehab start, but emotionally I felt like I was back in the majors in a bases-loaded situation with no outs.”

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