BOSTON -- Now that the Yankees feel that they have added some outfield help, it is less imperative that they hurry Carlos Beltran back to right field. He will continue to toss, but the team has no reason to rush him.
Thursday's addition of Martin Prado allows the Yankees that flexibility. Beltran has not appeared in the outfield since May 12 due to a bone spur in his right elbow, and he had recently progressed to playing catch at a distance of 100-120 feet.
"We have more options -- we were carrying three outfielders for a while there," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "Carlos was the fourth, and then we were running infielders out there.
"But with Martin, who's played a lot of outfield, and then having [Ichiro Suzuki], too -- we'll make sure he's ready when he goes out there."
Ichiro had been seeing regular duty in right field, but Prado's acquisition is expected to bump Ichiro back to a reserve role. Girardi said that could help the 40-year-old veteran from a physical standpoint.
"I think at this point in the season, you kind of go day by day. But we acquired Prado to play a lot," Girardi said. "We'll go day by day [with Ichiro]."
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.