Apr 25, 2014; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran (36) hits a double against the Los Angeles Angels during the sixth inning of a game at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Beltran Getting Close To Return

New York Yankees’ slugger Carlos Beltran took batting practice Thursday during the Yanks’ off-day. He and hitting coach Kevin Long, worked for a few minutes hitting 25 slow toss pitches. Beltran said he felt good and did not feel any pain in his elbow from the bone spur. Beltran has been taking cortisone shots and also worked out Friday with good results and no pain.

The 36-year-old is eligible to come off the DL, but the Yankees want to keep close tabs on his condition. Beltran will take batting practice again today and if everything goes well, Beltran may have a few minor league games before his return. Beltran says he may not need any minor league games, but either way it’s promising he’ll be back into the lineup in the next week or so.

To prevent any further damage to his injured elbow, manager Joe Girardi may be forced to use Beltran as the team’s designated hitter for most of the remainder of the season. If Beltran has any set backs, he would most likely opt for surgery, which would keep him out between 8-12 weeks before resuming any type of baseball activities or beginning a rehabilitation assignment. In his absence, the Yankees have been using a combination of Ichiro Suzuki, Alfonso Soriano, and Zoilo Almonte in right field.

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