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Lindstrom closing in on rehab assignment

CHICAGO -- Chicago White Sox reliever Matt Lindstrom could be a little more than a week away from heading out on a minor league injury rehab assignment and inside of three weeks from a return to the bullpen.

The right-hander, who has been out of action since May because of surgery in the area of his left ankle, threw a bullpen session Saturday and is set to go on the White Sox’s next road trip to continue his rehab.

“I’m going to throw another bullpen (Monday) then I’ll throw live BP (to Avisail Garcia) up in Minnesota,” Lindstrom said of next weekend’s series against the Twins. “And then I guess we’ll take it from there, whether I will do another one, but I really don’t want to do another one after that, I would rather go on a rehab assignment.”

Lindstrom knows the White Sox could be asking for as many as four rehab outings, but he hopes it’s in the two-to-three range.

“I’m so eager to get back with the club,” he said. “I see we are playing pretty good ball since the break started. I don’t know, it’s been a long time. It seems like I have been away longer than two months. For me, I just want to play so that’s the main thing.”

Lindstrom had handled the closer duties for the first two months of the season, recording six saves with a 3.32 ERA, and ever since he has been injured the role has been in flux.

Manager Robin Ventura said Lindstrom won’t get the closer job automatically when he returns.

“We’ll figure that out when he gets back,” Ventura said. “We’ll see how everybody is pitching.”

Even though Garcia will be participating in a live hitting session next weekend, his rehab schedule remains the same after surgery on his left shoulder and he is not expected to return this season.