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MIAMI -- The Los Angeles Dodgers activated reliever Brian Wilson from the 15-day disabled list Monday, more than 16 months after he last pitched in a major league game.
Wilson is attempting to return from a second round of Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery. He first underwent the surgery while at LSU in 2003.
"I told him today the first one probably won't be bases-loaded, nobody out or anything," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "We'll try to get him out there a few times without putting him in the middle of the fire."
Wilson, known for a colorful personality and for his long black beard, made just two appearances for the San Francisco Giants last season, with his final appearance on April 12.
The Dodgers signed him in July to a one-year deal hoping he could be a reliable right-handed setup man to get the ball to closer Kenley Jansen.
He pitched 4 1/3 scoreless innings in minor-league rehab games and worked a simulated game Friday against Dodgers hitters in Philadelphia.
"It's only been 17 months," Wilson joked before the game.
Wilson is a three-time All-Star with 171 career saves. Until Monday, his entire career was with the Giants, with whom he won two World Series titles. The Dodgers optioned outfielder Scott Van Slyke to Triple-A Salt Lake to make room on the roster for Wilson.