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Jason Hammel on track for September return to Orioles

Division Series - Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees - Game Five

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 12: Jason Hammel #39 of the Baltimore Orioles pitches against New York Yankees during Game Five of the American League Division Series at Yankee Stadium on October 12, 2012 in New York, New York. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

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Out since late July with a strained forearm, Orioles right-hander Jason Hammel is scheduled to throw off flat ground twice before advancing to a mound session Friday.

Daniel Gallen of the Baltimore Sun reports that Hammel will likely make at least two minor-league rehab starts before coming off the disabled list, which means he’ll be cutting things close in terms of when the actual minor-league season ends.

If all goes well Hammel could be ready to rejoin the Orioles in early September, giving their rotation another option for the stretch run. Hammel hasn’t been able to duplicate his career-best 2012 performance, posting a 5.20 ERA in 21 starts before the DL stint.

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