Kelley unavailable to pitch in series opener

Kelley unavailable to pitch in series opener

MILWAUKEE -- Yankees right-hander Shawn Kelley was unavailable to pitch on Friday due to a stiff lower back, manager Joe Girardi announced after the club's 5-3 victory over the Brewers.

Kelley said that he had an MRI performed after experiencing discomfort during the team's flight from California to Milwaukee. The tests were negative and ruled out any disk problems; Kelley hopes to be available to pitch on Saturday.

"We tried to pinpoint something, but it was just a little bit of stiffness that I tried to just kind of count off and not give it too much," Kelley said. "I kept pushing through it and it got a little bit tighter."

Kelley said that he has never had back problems before, but he started to notice some stiffness during the Yankees' series against the Angels earlier this week. He is 1-2 with a 3.52 ERA in 16 relief appearances for New York this season.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.