Pavano starts rehab..hopeful for '08 return

Pitchers and catchers are due to report to Tampa on Thursday for the beginning of Spring Training. Yesterday, one Yankee tried to get an early start on the 2008 season , his name...Carl Pavano.

pavano2.JPGI'm sure most of us forgot he was STILL apart of the team. He is entering the final year of his four-year, $39.95 million contract that he signed back in 2003. Pavano, has been sidelined with injuries for the majority of his Yankees tenure. He last pitched for the Yanks last April in Minnesota and recorded the win. Since then he has been out of the rotation. If you remember Pavano was the opening day starter in 2007. (That's a mind boggling fact.) This latest rehab is stemming from Pavano's Tommy John surgery he underwent on his elbow back in June.

"Sometime this summer, that's the best-case scenario for him to be competitively pitching," GM Brian Cashman said. "Whether that's rehab games or more, we'll see."

Pavano had a 12 minute throwing session in front of Yankees Vice President Billy Connors and new pitching coach Dave Eiland.

"He feels great," Eiland said. "The ball came out of his hand well."

Pavano is 5-6 in 19 starts with the Yankees. He will be a free agent at the end of the year, and logic tells you he will be finding a new home, but as I always say, stranger things have happened. If all goes well for Pavano with his rehab and the progression of his injury, it's very possible that Carl could be helping the Yanks down the strecth and hopefully in October. Before we get ahead of ourselves lets get back to reality...Pavano just played catch for a few mins and we should take it as nothing more. If the Yankees get anything out of him, consider it a miracle.

(Frank's articles can also be read at OnTheBlockNY )
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