Butler encouraged by 35-pitch session to CarGo

Butler encouraged by 35-pitch session to CarGo

DENVER -- Outside of a minor blood blister, right-hander Eddie Butler (right rotator cuff inflammation) felt good following his batting practice session against Carlos Gonzalez on Saturday.

Butler threw 35 pitches, mixing them up and even getting the best of Gonzalez a few times.

"I threw a couple good changeups, one or two good sliders and one good curveball before I started blowing up my fingertip," said Butler, ranked as the Rockies' second-best prospect. "It felt good, especially with CarGo knowing what's coming. I was still able to get away with a couple. I know it's his first time seeing [velocity] too, so it's tough on him, tough on me."

All 35 pitches were consecutive without a break, and Butler said he felt fine endurance-wise. After he gets the blister drained, the next step is to throw a 45-50-pitch simulated game. He's looking forward to operating in a more realistic setting.

"I'll feel like I'll actually be able to finish a pitch without hitting [the screen]," said Butler of Saturday's batting practice environment. "I felt like a couple times I was pulling up a little bit."

The Rockies have been playing it cautious with Butler since he felt soreness in his pitching shoulder following his Major League debut on June 6. There was some optimism that he could make it back with a minimal stint on the disabled list before the team opted to slow down his throwing program three weeks ago.

Butler resumed throwing on June 24, and Saturday was another step in the right direction.

"He's pain-free and we're ready to amp him up and get him rolling," manager Walt Weiss said. "I think it won't be too long before we see him out there."

Cody Ulm is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.