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Casilla's health continues to improve

Casilla's health continues to improve

SAN FRANCISCO -- Right-hander Santiago Casilla's rapid recovery from a strained right hamstring is continuing unabated.

Manager Bruce Bochy said on Friday that Casilla, who was injured on May 21 at Colorado on an ill-advised sprint to first base during a rare plate appearance, will throw off a bullpen mound for the second time on Saturday. Barring setbacks, Casilla will repeat that exercise on Tuesday, at which point the Giants will decide whether he should face hitters in batting practice or begin a Minor League injury rehab assignment.

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The Giants initially feared the worst about their top setup man as he writhed in pain at Coors Field.

"We didn't know if we were going to see him this year," said Bochy, who observed that Casilla's superb physical condition has probably helped him rebound quickly.

In addition, first baseman Brandon Belt expected to have the stabilizing pins removed from his fractured left thumb before Friday's game. Once that procedure is complete, the Giants' medical staff will be able to outline details for Belt's rehab program.

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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