Yankees Notebook: Andy Pettitte to return Sunday

Andy Pettitte went five innings for Scranton-Wilkes Barre last time out.

General manager Brian Cashman announced before Tuesday night’s game with the Rays that Andy Pettitte will be slotted in to pitch Sunday against the Mariners at Yankee Stadium.

“I think everyone is in agreement that he’s not going to really benefit from any more time down below,” Cashman said.

There was some thought that Pettitte might need another minor league start, but the Yankees felt four was enough. In those starts, Pettitte had a 3.71 earned run average in 17 innings.

“At some point you make a call, especially with veterans it’s kind of difficult,” Cashman said. “You’ve seen Andy go through the process. There’s only so much you’re going to see at a certain level. It’s not necessarily always performance related. Obviously you have to see stuff, you have to see a lot of different things, but sometimes it’s hard to judge on the results.”

“Reports that I’ve gotten have been pretty good,” manager Joe Girardi said. “He struggled a little bit in his last with command of some of his pitches, but that doesn’t mean that he’s ready or he’s not ready. We feel that he’s physically ready.”

Pettitte has not faced major league hitters since Game 3 of the 2010 ALCS on Oct. 18, 2010. He allowed two runs on five hits in seven innings, while his four-seam fastball averaged 88.7 miles per hour and his cut fastball averaged 82.3.

During his minor league appearances, Pettitte’s velocity was reportedly in the mid-80s, though he maintained those appearances had little to do with velocity. In preparation for his return, Pettitte threw off flat ground Monday near his home in Westchester, N.Y. He will follow that by likely throwing two bullpen sessions.

Sunday’s start could be a tentative one because the Yankees face the possibility of weather issues this week. That would be Ivan Nova’s next scheduled start after Tuesday, but the Yankees did not say what move would be made to accommodate Pettitte’s return to the rotation.

“I don’t want guys approaching this start, saying if I don’t do well this could be my last start,” Girardi said. “People are going to write that enough and the manager doesn’t need to say it. So we’re going to make a determination on what we feel is best for the club and we will move forward after Sunday.”

If Pettitte pitched to the same ERA he had in the minors, or to his 3.88 career ERA, that would be better than everyone but Hiroki Kuroda’s 3.75 mark. CC Sabathia has pitched better and lowered his ERA to 4.15, Nova took a 5.58 mark into last night, Phil Hughes has a 6.67 ERA and Freddy Garcia was sent to the bullpen after posting a 12.51 ERA in four starts.

“It would help, but at the same time there’s still the unknown,” Cashman said. “There’s a gap between what the old Andy Pettitte is and what we’re going to get. I just don’t know yet, but I look forward to adding another healthy arm to the mix here because depth has been challenged and some of our healthy starters have been inconsistent.

“So it would be nice to start pulling together a string of consistently strong starters one through five. Hopefully that can include Andy as well.”

Pettitte will turn 40 on June 15 and when he reaches that date, he will be the first 40-year-old to start a game for the Yankees since Roger Clemens made 17 starts in 2007 as a 44-year-old and then 45-year-old. The last 39-year-old to start for the Yankees was Mike Mussina, who won 20 games in 2008.

“I think all of us probably expect that we’re going to see Andy Pettitte and what we’re used to seeing is a guy that grinds out starts and has the ability to get double plays,” Girardi said. “I think you can only go back to what you’ve seen from him. I think his stuff is going to be pretty similar to what he had when he walked away in 2010.”

Cashman confirms complications for Rivera

Mariano Rivera consulted with Dr. Chris Ahmad and Russell Warren Monday at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, but no surgery has been scheduled.

Reports circulated that Rivera experienced some complications and that was confirmed by Cashman. Cashman did not comment on the reports, but said it would not impact Rivera’s ability to pitch and that the closer would be at Yankee Stadium to address that.

“I’ll let Mo talk about it when he is here,” Cashman said. “Any follow-ups on that should go to Mo. He is in good spirits and you’ll see him tomorrow.”

Another reason for no surgery being scheduled is that ACL surgery usually occurs seven to 10 days after the initial injury in an effort to reduce swelling. Rivera suffered the injury last Thursday and based on that timetable Friday would be seven days.

Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.

NBA

Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.