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06/01/12 9:50 PM ET

Putz ready to go after neck stiffness

SAN DIEGO -- It didn't take long Thursday for D-backs closer J.J. Putz to realize his stiff neck was good to go.

"I woke up and cracked my neck and I was good," Putz said.

Putz woke up Wednesday with a stiff neck and was unable to loosen it up after spending that afternoon receiving treatment.

The right-hander attempted to play catch during the fourth inning of the D-backs game against the Giants and after he was unable to do so, he let manager Kirk Gibson know that he would be unavailable to pitch.

As a result, Ian Kennedy pitched deeper into the game, throwing a career-high 122 pitches, while setup man David Hernandez recorded the final four outs to pick up the save.

Kubel returns from paternity leave

SAN DIEGO -- Outfielder Jason Kubel was reinstated from the paternity list Friday after missing Wednesday's game to be present for the birth of his daughter.

Outfielder A.J. Pollock, who was called up Wednesday, was optioned back to Triple-A Reno.

Kubel's wife, Blake, was scheduled to have labor induced next Thursday, an off-day for the team. However, Wednesday morning she began to go into labor.

"I really wasn't thinking about it so it caught me off guard," Kubel said.

Blake texted her husband a couple of times, but the noise his text alerts made did not wake him. Finally, she phoned him at 5 a.m.

Kubel then woke senior director of team travel Roger Riley, who got Kubel on the next flight to Phoenix while Blake drove herself to the hospital.

Kubel landed in Phoenix and took a cab to the hospital. He walked in at 11:50 a.m. and his daughter was born seven minutes later.

"We're very excited," Kubel said.

Drew to play in final game of extended spring

SAN DIEGO -- D-backs shortstop Stephen Drew played seven innings in an extended spring game Friday and is scheduled to play nine Saturday, which would mark the first time he's played in back-to-back games since beginning his rehabilitation from last season's ankle injury.

Drew was 2-for-3 with a pair of singles and a walk. His out was a fly ball to the warning track and he handled one routine grounder in the field.

There is still no timetable for his return, but Saturday will be the last time he plays in extended spring, because their season ends.

"If he wants to play after that he's got to go to the Minor Leagues," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said.

If Drew comes out of the back-to-back games feeling good, he could then begin a Minor League rehab assignment.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.