Encouraging news for Anibal

Maybe Anibal Sanchez will be back in less than two months after all.

On the disabled list since May 8 with a right shoulder strain, Sanchez is back doing light throwing. On Friday, the 25-year-old played catch at 90 feet for about 10 minutes.

Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez was pleasantly surprised to hear that Sanchez was back throwing.

“When we were in Colorado, I took it that for three or four weeks he would not throw a ball,” Gonzalez said.

On Friday, team trainer Sean Cunningham called Gonzalez over and said Sanchez played catch.

“He said his range of motion was good, his strength was good,” Gonzalez said of his conversation with Cunningham. “That is very encouraging.”

The Marlins are hopeful Sanchez will begin throwing off the mound before the end of their 10-game homestand, which began on Friday with the Dodgers at Land Shark Stadium.

Initially, the thinking was Sanchez would miss two months. Now, that time line could improve, depending on how rapidly he starts throwing to hitters.

Sanchez is 1-4 with a 5.79 ERA in six starts.

His last outing was on May 7 against the Braves, when he exited after 4 2/3 innings with shoulder discomfort.

There is concern because he underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum on the same shoulder in 2007.

Asked how long Sanchez expects to be out, he replied: “I don’t know.”

But he made it clear he anticipates being back this season. Now, there are indications that could be sooner than two months.

– Joe Frisaro

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