Reds righty Homer Bailey targets early June return after Monday's elbow surgery

GOODYEAR, Arizona -- Homer Bailey managed a smile and a laugh when he was asked if he’s confident he’s finally over the hump.

“Round 3?” Bailey said. “Sure. We’re bound to get it right this time. Trust me, I’m as frustrated as everybody. But it’s not going to do anybody any good. You try to go forward.”

Bailey, the 30-year-old right-hander, had a third surgery on his right elbow Monday. The previous surgeries limited him to 34 innings over the last two season.

“We’re going to let some of swelling go down, which is just about gone now, and start throwing in a couple of weeks,” he said.

Bailey will not throw for four to six weeks. He then has to build up his innings. His return to the big leagues forecast?

“I think right now we’re looking at the very beginning of June,” he said. “I know one of the things is: Do you go on the 60-day and open roster? Or will you be ready before then? I’ll start (throwing) right at the beginning of April... It’s going to depend on how the progress is early. That’ll set a gauge on where we are.”

Bailey was shut down twice last year. In retrospect, it was probably the bone spurs.

“It’s been lingering a little bit,” he said. “I didn’t know then because we didn’t take any images all year. When I went to New York, they took images, saw the bones spurs, saw the swelling and said there’s pretty good chance that’s what it is.”

“I wasn’t feeling pain where the ligament did, where the tendon did,” he said. “It was in a bunch of different places. That’s mainly due to elbow swelling. It's good that we finally got some answers.”

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