Oakland Athletics pitcher Dallas Braden won't be traveling to Japan with the team to start off the season against the Seattle Mariners, but after being out for most of last year, Braden is happy that he has the chance to be ready to pitch for the team when it returns to the States.
Braden, who pitched the 19th perfect game in MLB history back in May of 2010 against the Tampa Bay Rays, is slated to pitch 25 fastballs off a mound Monday for the first time since having shoulder surgery last May, according to MLB.com.
"I feel great," he said, according to the site. "I feel really strong. It's nice to know all the hard work we put into the offseason and the days you didn't want to get up and the days you didn't want to push through, you now understand why it's important to do so."
MLB.com notes that "a realistic time frame" for Braden's return may be "more like mid-April."