Giants' Mark Melancon: Throws live BP, nearing rehab assignment

Melancon (elbow) threw live batting practice Thursday and could be ready to start a rehab assignment over the weekend, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The righty lasted 20 pitches during Thursday's session and apparently was effective enough to where the Giants are mulling sending him on a rehab assignment as early as Sunday. Melancon has been on the shelf since the start of the season, so he'll likely need a multi-week stay in the minors before being activated off the 60-day disabled list. Hunter Strickland, who has nine saves in 11 attempts, will continue to close for the Giants in Melancon's absence.

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