Sean Newcomb pitches two shutout innings in Gwinnett rehab

The Braves’ Sean Newcomb pitched two scoreless innings in Triple-A Gwinnett on Saturday night. The big-league team hopes it will be his only rehab outing before returning from the injured list.

Newcomb struck out five and allowed just one hit.

Newcomb, who had found a role in the Braves’ bullpen, was struck in the back of the head by a liner during a spot start last weekend.

The Braves initially didn’t believe he would need time on the IL, but it proved the safest option. Newcomb might return as soon as Tuesday in Chicago.

“It’ll be good that he goes two just so he can sit down and get back up,” manager Brian Snitker said. “Then we make sure that he’s OK. I think he will be.”

Newcomb’s return would further bolster a bullpen that’s suddenly become a strength. Since May 22, when Anthony Swarzak debuted, the Braves lead the majors with a 2.83 bullpen ERA.

Bryse Wilson, Newcomb and Wes Parsons combined on a seven-hit shutout as the Stripers (40-33) defeated the Syracuse Mets 2-0.