DENVER -- The Padres got good news Tuesday about their No. 2 prospect
, right-handed pitcher Casey Kelly, who was scratched from a Monday start with soreness in his right elbow. Kelly left Triple-A Tucson to get an MRI and to be examined by team doctors in San Diego.
"Dr. [Heinz] Hoenecke [head team physician] informed us that there was no structural damage," manager Bud Black said before Tuesday's game with the Rockies. "He's got some inflammation around the elbow. We're going to go with a cautious conservative approach here in the next two to three weeks to let the elbow calm down. Hopefully, from there he'll be feeling much better, get back on the horse, start throwing, and get him to a progression where he gets back into games."
Black confirmed that Kelly will not throw in that initial period. Kelly will rehabilitate at the Padres' Spring Training facility in Peoria, Ariz.
Kelly was Boston's first-round pick in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft, and came to San Diego in December of 2010 as part of the Adrian Gonzalez trade. He's 21-16 in 67 Minor League starts, and has a 2.25 ERA in two starts for Tucson this year after going 2-0 with a 1.74 ERA in the Cactus League. He pitched in six games and made two starts during Spring Training, throwing 20 2/3 innings while allowing two walks and striking out 18.
"He had such a great Spring Training," Black said. "He went at it pretty hard in Spring Training, and he's going at it hard now. This could be a little bit of a blessing that he has to take a step back and rest a bit."
Kelly has no walks in 12 innings over two starts, allowing a total of 12 hits and 14 strikeouts. In his second Triple-A start Wednesday, Kelly pitched six shutout innings of five-hit ball, striking out nine and walking none.
"Casey wants to be a Major League pitcher," Black said. "From that standpoint, it's a bummer for him. There's hard times when you get nicked up and banged up and you have to go to the sidelines and regroup, and that's where Casey is."