Lidge targeting next homestand for return

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Brad Lidge says he would like to return to the Philadelphia Phillies before the end of this month.

The closer has been pitching in minor league games in Florida while recovering from offseason surgeries on his knee and elbow. Lidge was in Philadelphia on Thursday to receive his NL championship ring.

Lidge was a perfect 48 for 48 in save opportunities, including playoffs, in 2008, helping the Phillies win the World Series. He struggled last season, blowing a major league-high 11 saves.

Left-handed reliever J.C. Romero also is closer to returning after having surgery on his elbow last year.