This past Friday Masahiro Tanaka threw a 35 pitch bullpen session. He was able to throw all of his pitches, with no problem. Tanaka has had no set backs yet (knock on wood) and will have another bullpen session in Washington on Monday. If all goes according to plan, Tanaka could be making a rehab start as early as next week.
Tanaka has not felt any symptoms of tightness or tendonitis in his right forearm, which is what sent him to the DL on April 23rd. The Yankees have been extra cautious with the right-hander, and rightfully so. Tanaka, on the other hand, would rather speed up the process. He disagreed with going on the DL, and thought he should have missed just one start minimum. On Sunday Tanaka did some light soft toss with a nice mustache, kinda showing he was ready to come back and join the stache brigade.
Joe Girardi has been very happy with Tanaka’s progress. When talking to the press Girardi said, Tanaka’s been out such a short amount of time that he doesn’t know if he will need to face any batters during a batting practice session.
Since it is only May the New York Yankees are taking more time with Tanaka then if it was in late August, and it was a playoff push. Last year they rushed Masahiro Tanaka back to try to make the playoffs, and that was the wrong move. The Yankees have learned from their mistakes, and they are taking their time with Tanaka. It also helps that the Yankees are in first place, and when he is healthy and ready to go, he will give the team a great boost.
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