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Chad Billingsley injury: Dodgers' starter encouraged after throwing off mound

The right hander, who missed the final month of last season with a partially torn ligament in his right elbow, might be able to avoid offseason Tommy John surgery and be ready to pitch for the Dodgers in 2013.

Stephen Dunn

Los Angeles Dodgers' right hander Chad Billingsley pitched two pain-free innings on Monday, which might mean the 28-year-old can avoid reconstructive elbow surgery this offseason and be ready to pitch in 2013, according to Dylan Hernandez of The Los Angeles Times.

Billingsley missed the final month of last season with a partially torn ligament in his right elbow and faced the possibility of offseason Tommy John surgery, which would cost him the entire 2013 season. He threw 35 to 40 pitches during his workout – his second time throwing off a mound since he was injured – tossing a four-seamer, two-seamer, curveball and changeup, and apparently touched 94 mph on the radar gun.

in 25 starts for the Dodgers in 2012, Billingsley went 10-9 with 128 strikeouts, 45 walks and a 3.55 ERA.

If he's healthy in 2013, the sixth-year pro figures to be the Dodgers' No. 2 starter behind left hander Clayton Kershaw.