Paulino indicated Wednesday that he's recovered from September surgery to remove a bone spur from his pitching elbow, Hunter Atkins of the Houston Chronicle reports.

One of the top pitching prospects in the organization last season, Paulino's stock dipped a bit after he was tagged for a 6.52 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and eight home runs over 29 innings in six starts with the big club before he was handed an 80-game suspension in July for violating MLB's performance-enhancing drug policy. Paulino acknowledged that he used the illegal substance in large part to combat the effects of a nagging elbow injury, which surgery ultimately remedied. After missing out on important development time due to the suspension, Paulino isn't expected to break camp with the Astros and looks likely to open the season as a member of the rotation at Triple-A Fresno.

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