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Nationals anticipate Gio Gonzalez will return to rotation early next week

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ST. LOUIS - Gio Gonzalez showed the Washington Nationals he's ready to return to the rotation.

Manager Matt Williams said Friday that, barring a setback, the left-hander will come off the 15-day disabled list from shoulder soreness early next week. He struck out seven and walked four in a four-inning minor league rehab stint Thursday and is eligible to come off the DL on Tuesday.

Gonzalez has lost his last three starts and is 3-4 with a 4.62 ERA in nine starts overall. He was a 21-game winner in 2012 and would replace Blake Treinen, who is 0-3 but with a 2.08 ERA.

The Nationals optioned Treinen to Triple-A Syracuse and recalled lefty Xavier Cedeno from Syracuse. The 27-year-old Cedeno has appeared in one major league game, working 1 1-3 innings of scoreless relief against the Angels on April 21.

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