CHICAGO -- Tigers left-hander Doug Fister said he felt fine after throwing around 60 pitches in a full bullpen session Wednesday.

A left side strain has held Fister out since May 28. He said he felt stiff when he started, but much better as the session went on.

"Once it loosened up, I threw a couple pitches and didn't feel it again," Fister said. "We're going to take it day by day and find out how I feel [Thursday]."

Head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said the bullpen session went "very well," and Fister will be re-evaluated Thursday. Fister said he's not sure when the plan for return is, but he may know more after seeing how he feels Thursday.

"Taking a good step in the right direction is definitely exciting," he said. "I don't want to rush it, don't want to baby it."

Dirks able to run, but not close to returning

CHICAGO -- Tigers left fielder Andy Dirks ran Wednesday, but isn't ready to return in the near future.

Head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said Dirks isn't pain-free from Achilles tendinitis, which has kept him out since May 30.

"He was able to do more today than he was {Tuesday]," Rand said. "He's still moving ahead. There's just a couple of movements he's making that he's feeling discomfort on."

Detroit manager Jim Leyland said whenever Dirks is ready for game action, he'll likely be sent on a rehab assignment.

Worth noting

• Manager Jim Leyland expressed his confidence in reliever Phil Coke, who pitched two innings Tuesday, allowing one unearned run. Leyland said Coke will likely be off until the Tigers return home Friday.

"He's my most experienced guy, by far," Leyland said. "He can get right-handed guys out."