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Next step for Rangers ace Darvish is pitching in a game

By STEPHEN HAWKINS
AP Sports Writer

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Texas Rangers ace Yu Darvish is close to throwing in a game for the first time since his elbow surgery last year.

Darvish threw 47 pitches Thursday in his third session on the mound for live batting practice.

The next step in his rehab could be pitching in a game for Double-A Frisco next Tuesday night. The Japanese right-hander said he felt good but wanted to think about it before deciding if he will be ready.

Darvish is on track to be back in the Rangers rotation by late May. General manager Jon Daniels says Darvish looked healthy during the session facing rehabbing slugger Josh Hamilton and Rangers catchers Brett Nicholas and Bryan Holaday.

Darvish hasn't pitched in a game since Aug. 9, 2014. He had Tommy John surgery in March 2015 after one spring training start.

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