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Deduno remains on track to start Friday

Deduno remains on track to start Friday

Deduno remains on track to start Friday

DETROIT -- Right-hander Samuel Deduno threw a bullpen session without any issues on Wednesday, and is slated to make his scheduled start on Friday against the Indians.

Deduno, who has been dealing with right biceps tendinitis, threw in front of pitching coach Rick Anderson, bullpen coach Bobby Cuellar and head trainer Dave Pruemer, and was encouraged by the results.

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"I felt pretty normal," Deduno said. "I didn't feel anything. I just want to keep my mind strong."

It was welcome news for the Twins, considering they still haven't named a starter for Saturday's game after optioning right-hander Kyle Gibson to Triple-A Rochester on Monday.

Right-hander Liam Hendriks, who threw eight scoreless in his last start with Rochester, is the front-runner to make that start on Saturday, but the Twins will wait to announce the starter on Thursday.

Long reliever Anthony Swarzak is out of the running to make that start, as he'll be ready for action on Friday in case Deduno falters. Deduno has a 7.02 ERA over his last three starts.

"We have extra pitchers, so if [Deduno] struggles or gets hurt or doesn't feel right, we're covered," Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said. "But it's a relief. Hopefully, he goes out there and pitches a good game."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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