On Tuesday the 33-year-old righty struck out four in two innings, with his only baserunner reaching on a throwing error by the shortstop during a rehab appearance with Double-A Reading. It was his eighth rehab appearance since April 10 and his second with Reading.
Lidge started the season on the disabled list after offseason surgery on his knee and elbow. And, he sounds confident that his problems are in the past.
Lights Out Lidge appears ready to return to the Phillies. With his pitches up to speed -- his fastball in the low 90s and his slider in the low 80s -- he could be ready to return to his 2008 perfect-season form rather than the worst-closer-in-baseball form he exhibited last season.
Lidge is set to return to the team this weekend after the Phillies return from their nine-game road trip, according to the Daily News.
"After (Tuesday night), I feel ready, to be honest," Lidge told MLB.com. "Velocity-wise and command-wise I feel like I'm ready to go."
If Lidge is back to form it couldn’t come soon enough for the Phillies who have stumbled to a 3-5 record that has cost them first place in the NL East.
If Lidge returns Friday it would come just in time for the Phillies to welcome the first-place Mets (Yes, it hurts to write that) to town for a weekend series.
It should be noted that Lidge wasn’t the main event with the Harrisburg Senators in Reading Tuesday. Instead Nationals’ No. 1 overall pick Steven Strasburg, who is being seasoned in the minors, stole the show by going five innings without allowing a hit.
“From what I saw tonight, he was doing everything pretty much right,” Lidge said about Strasburg. “It's not very often you'll see a guy who throws that hard with that kind of command. Hopefully our hitters will figure him out when he gets called up.”
And, hopefully teams will have trouble figuring out Lidge once he’s back.