Manager Dale Sveum says he is happy with the way the back end of his pitching staff is shaping up because of improved performances from middle relievers and the closer.

And with the anticipated return of veteran right-handed starter Matt Garza to the rotation soon, the entire staff figures to improve.

Recovering from a strained left latissimus dorsi muscle, Garza pitched six shutout innings Thursday for Triple A Iowa, allowing just two hits and striking out six.

"We'll talk about it maybe (Saturday) morning after his side (session), and see where we are," Sveum said. "He did what we asked him to do, that's for sure."