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Dice-K's elbow improving, could begin throwing soon

Dice-K's elbow improving, could begin throwing soon

NEW YORK -- Daisuke Matsuzaka seems to have avoided the worst.

Matsuzaka's inflamed right elbow improved markedly from Sunday to Monday, generating hope that he can begin a throwing program by the end of this week. Though Matsuzaka will not return from the disabled list when eligible on Aug. 10, initial fears of a much longer DL stay appear unfounded.

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"The inflammation's down a lot," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "The medication he took is working, so he's feeling pretty good."

The Mets' most versatile pitcher, Matsuzaka holds a 3.87 ERA in nine starts and 19 relief appearances. He has started, closed, set up and pitched in long relief.

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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