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Drabek scheduled to throw off mound this week

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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Kyle Drabek, who was forced to leave a game last June against the Washington Nationals at Rogers Centre when he felt a "popping sensation" in his throwing elbow, is set to start throwing off a mound this week.

"We've got him and [Drew] Hutchinson down [in Dunedin] doing their rehab. Everything's moving right along, but it's going to be a while," manager John Gibbons said before Tuesday's game against the Red Sox at JetBlue Park. "He's not going to be ready until the middle or the end of the summer."

Following the injury, Drabek underwent Tommy John surgery for the second time in his career. After undergoing the procedure four years ago as a member of the Phillies' farm system, the 25-year-old was back in action within 13 months.

Knowing the seriousness of the injury, Gibbons won't be rushing Drabek.

"When you come off that type of surgery, you want to make sure you get at least a year in," Gibbons said. "He's a good ways off, but he's doing really well right now."

Drabek was 4-7 with a 4.67 ERA in 13 starts last year. In parts of three Major league seasons, the right-hander is 8-5 with a 5.34 ERA.

Melissa Couto is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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{"event":["spring_training" ] }
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