Here are some player and injury updates that we've been closely monitoring for the last several weeks, and in some cases, several months:
- Phil Hughes is unlikely to return to action from his broken rib before August, according to Joe Girardi via the NY Daily News. He will have another bone scan this week and will not begin playing catch until the test comes up clean. Hughes himself reported on his own blog in recent days that he's not feeling any pain.
- Ian Kennedy ‘felt good' after a limited 30-pitch bullpen session on Monday under the watchful eyes of Dave Eiland and Mike Harkey. He's scheduled to throw another bullpen session any day now and will likely begin a rehab assignment as early as next week. Unless last night's outing by Darrell Rasner becomes a pattern, Kennedy will probably end up pitching in the Scranton rotation for awhile upon his return to action.
- Brian Bruney is way ahead of schedule recovering from the torn ligament in his foot and is now in Tampa rehabbing and playing catch. According to Joe Girardi, Bruney could return to the Yanks around the All Star Break "if everything goes perfect."
- Andrew Brackman, the Yankees' first-round draft pick in 2007, underwent an appendectomy in Tampa and will be out of action for three weeks. Brackman was not expected to see game action during the 2008 regular season anyways, so this will not setback his recovery from TJ surgery. He is expected to participate in one of the fall leagues late this year.
- Alan Horne returned to action last Sunday after being out for two months as a result of a biceps strain. He was a bit shaky with his control (82 pitches, 44 strikes), but had decent results nonetheless (4.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 K). He is scheduled to make his next start on Friday night.
- J.B. Cox was placed on the 7-day DL yesterday with a sore right shoulder. Although details are scarce, the injury is completely unrelated to his TJ recovery. There is no timetable for his return as of this writing, but this is at least a temporary setback for the Yankee bullpen since Cox was supposed to be one of the most likely candidates to be called up in the coming weeks.
- Mark Melancon continues to mow down Double-A hitters after pitching two more scoreless innings last night. His Trenton numbers are downright nasty (3-0, 1.25 ERA, 0.55 WHIP, 8 G, 21.2 IP, 10 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 19 K). He has now thrown 47.0 IP total on the season and is on the fast track to the Bronx.
- David Robertson pitched two scoreless innings for Scranton last night and may have leapfrogged the now ailing J.B. Cox as the first candidate to be called up this season to help out the Yankee pen. His Scranton numbers are impressive in his own right (2-0, 2.25 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 14 G, 24.0 IP, 15 H, 6 ER, 12 BB, 34 K) and seems to have solved some of his control issues he had earlier in the season.
Anthony McCarron reports via Brian Cashman that J.B. Cox has been diagnosed with shoulder tendinitis and appears to be out of action for three weeks. Obviously, this is a setback in the Yankee bullpen plans in the coming weeks.