Yanks have faith Feliciano can return strong

Yanks have faith Feliciano can return strong

NEW YORK -- When the Yankees left their Spring Training facility in Tampa, Fla., they left behind three injured relievers without a thought of when they might rejoin the roster in New York. There are still no specific timetables for David Aardsma, Joba Chamberlain or Pedro Feliciano, but each is throwing and making progress.

Manager Joe Girardi always envisioned Aardsma and Chamberlain joining his bullpen at some point this season, and they remain on track. Aardsma is pitching in rehab games with the Gulf Coast League Yankees, and Chamberlain is throwing batting practice.

But Feliciano last pitched in 2010 with the Mets and underwent left rotator cuff surgery in September. Girardi said that Feliciano threw a bullpen session on Tuesday in Tampa.

"If he's throwing bullpens and doesn't have a lot of setbacks, I think it's realistic [he will return]," Girardi said. "Only time's going to tell. I think if Pedro thought he would never pitch again, he probably wouldn't put himself through all this rehab and grueling stuff he's been through. It's not just the physical setbacks, it's the mental setbacks, too, when you want to pitch. I think it's possible."