WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Curt Schilling wouldn't pronounce himself ready to return to the Diamondbacks for this weekend's series against the National League West-leading San Francisco Giants.
He had just finished six innings, throwing 96 pitches in the Class AAA Tucson Sidewinders' 5-3 Pacific Coast League victory over the Sacramento River Cats on Monday night at Raley Field. He allowed six hits, two of which left the ballpark. He struck out nine and walked two.
"It went well out there," said Schilling, who has mended from a broken bone in his right hand. "Everything felt better. I felt stronger."
When asked if he was ready for the Giants either Saturday or Sunday in Phoenix, Schilling said he'd have to wait until Wednesday to make that decision.
"It's been a while. I'll go back to Phoenix and see how I feel come Wednesday," he said. "I had no discomfort throwing my curveball. I had good velocity and my speed on my fastball was up there."
Of Schilling's 96 pitches, 71 were strikes and 54 registered 90-plus mph on the radar gun. One hit 94 and seven hit 93. The gun at Raley Field is considered off by two to three mph, which means Schilling may have hit 95-97 mph.
In two starts for the Sidewinders, both against Sacramento, Schilling allowed five runs on 10 hits, struck out 15 and walked three in nine innings of work. He allowed three home runs which accounted for all five earned runs.
Outfielder Danny Bautista made his first rehabilitation start since landing on the disabled list with a left hamstring sprain. He played five innings and struck out in the first, grounded to third in the fourth and had a run-scoring single in the fifth.