Pavano suffers bruised backside

Pavano suffers bruised backside

TAMPA, Fla. -- On the first day of Spring Training, the Yankees pushed Carl Pavano's schedule back by a few weeks because of a balky back.

On the final day of Spring Training at Legends Field, Joe Torre sat in the same spot in his office and revealed another minor setback for the pitcher, though this one isn't expected to keep him on the sideline for more than a couple of days.

Pavano suffered a bruised backside on Tuesday when he dove into first base while fielding a ground ball. The injury didn't prevent him from taking the mound for one inning in a Minor League game on Thursday, but Torre noticed Pavano wincing in pain during the 12-pitch outing, even visiting the mound once during the inning.

"As far as we know, it's not related to anything other than being uncomfortable for him," Torre said. "We'll wait and see when the soreness is out, then proceed."

Pavano was scheduled to throw two innings in an extended Spring Training game on Sunday, but Torre said that the team would wait to see how he feels in the next day or two before penciling him in for his next outing.

"I don't think we can schedule him now until the soreness gets out," Torre said. "When you think about it, it doesn't push him back at all even if he misses four days. We never had any specific date that we needed to have him ready."

Pavano, who didn't mention the injury while speaking with reporters, seemed encouraged by his second one-inning outing of the week. Pitching against Double-A Reading, he faced four batters, with one of them reaching base on an error.

"I felt good with my location and I used all my pitches again," Pavano said. "The environment down there is a little different, but I felt good."

While the Yankees head west to Arizona for two final exhibition games this weekend, Pavano will remain in Tampa, working toward a return in late April or early May.

"There's definitely frustration, but I guess I can use it to my motivation, too, so that when I get back, I'm there to help and there for the long haul," he said of staying behind. "That's really my goal. Sometimes, it's unfortunate when these things happen, but if I keep telling myself that, it's not a positive.

"I know what I have to do, the track I have to take to get where I want to be."

Mark Feinsand is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.