Jered Weaver extended his long-toss sessions to nearly 300 feet Wednesday and could resume throwing off a mound early next week, a strong indication the Angels ace could return from a lower-back strain soon after he is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list June 15.

"Some people are quick healers, I guess," said Weaver, who was injured in the first inning of a May 28 game against the New York Yankees. "I don't want to take any more time than I need."

A quick return for Weaver might give Garrett Richards only one more start to prove he deserves to remain in the rotation over struggling right-hander Ervin Santana, who is 2-7 with a 5.33 earned-run average and has given up a major league-high 16 home runs.