Yankees Notebook: Pettitte taking rehab slowly

Pettitte broke his fibula on a comebacker to the mound in late June.
GETTY IMAGES

The next time Andy Pettitte is offered to chance to look at an X-ray of
his fractured left leg, he will decline. He will just listen to the
results and follow the instructions of doctors.

“I kind of quit
looking at the X-rays after I got back from Seattle,” Pettitte said
before last night’s game with Texas. “Obviously after the first X-ray, I
felt like it was healing real good and then now you start having bones
growing. I’m not a doctor so it’s kind hard for me [to tell]. So I never
should have started saying that I saw the X-ray. That was my fault.”

Pettitte did have an X-ray Monday on his fractured left fibula and was told that it “looked good.”

Pettitte
skipped last week’s road trip to Detroit and Toronto to do some work in
the pool to supplement his light throwing regimen. The next step is
likely some long tossing to go along with continuing to ride a
stationary bike.

“You have to watch Andy every step of the way,”
manager Joe Girardi said. “He thought it was going to heal in two weeks
and he was going to be back on the mound in four. That’s just Andy.
That’s the competitive nature in him, so you have to watch what he does
to make sure he’s right.”

The most important thing Pettitte hopes to know is the date he can get back on a mound.

“I’m
feeling really good. Obviously my question is tell me when I can get on
a mound and he can’t tell me that yet and that’s all I care about. So
I’m just trying to do what they tell me to do and trying to take it as
easy as I possibly can and try to get on a mound. Obviously as soon as I
can do that, I can have some kind of an idea when I can be ready.

Pettitte
said he was hopeful he could return to the mound on Sept. 1, but also
cautioned that any setback will further deter his rehab.

“It is
what it is,” Pettitte said. “I know that now if I have another setback
then we got a serious problem. So now I’m going to be over-cautious and
try to figure out what we can do to make sure I’m back and what do I
need to get ready. We planned it before. I had this thing with my groin.
My groin hurt in 2010, so been there done that but there’s a lot of
unknown.”

Pettitte made nine starts after re-joining the Yankees
on May 13. He was 3-3 with a respectable 3.22 ERA, but most noticeable
were his 59 strikeouts in 58 2/3 innings.

“Unfortunately I was
just starting to feel like I was getting all my strength back when this
happened,” Pettitte said. “So I’m hoping that everything I build up — my
strength and everything — will still be there and I’ll be able to do
what I need to do.”

Martin familiar with Lowe

Nobody
is more familiar with catching Derek Lowe than Jason Varitek. Varitek
caught Lowe’s 2002 no-hitter and also caught him 255 other times for a
total of 814 innings.

But after catching the first four innings
of Lowe’s Yankee debut Monday, Russell Martin has caught him 90 times
for a total of 556 innings.

The first 552 innings were
accumulated in Los Angeles, where Lowe signed as a free agent following
the 2004 season and became a teammate of Martin from 2006-08.

“He’s
the same guy I caught in L.A.,” Martin said. “He had great stuff and
kept getting better. He got a lot of swings and misses so that’s a good
sign.”

As for Lowe, after getting a good night’s sleep, he wasn’t
going to get overly excited about going 11 years and one day between
saves, though he enjoyed it when he heard a favorable reaction in the
sixth inning Monday.

“Derek, I love you,” Lowe said. “I don’t know if it was for me or for Jeter.”

Girardi said Lowe was unavailable Tuesday and likely for Wednesday.

Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.



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