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Pregame notes: Gardner’s elbow injury not ligament-related

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Brett Gardner didn’t say much this afternoon. He was back in the Yankees clubhouse, one day after visiting Dr. James Andrews, but he wouldn’t go into detail about any sort of preliminary diagnosis on his sore right elbow.

“I haven’t been too awful disappointed, so I guess that’s good news,” he said. “I’d rather not get too much into it, but hopefully I’ll be back before too long.”

Joe Girardi didn’t say much either, but he did reveal that Gardner’s injury is not related to the ligament and there’s no concern about Tommy John surgery.

“I don’t think it has anything to do with that,” Girardi said. “I want to see what the other doctor says, then we’ll see what we’re going to do and how we’re going to approach it. I don’t think Gardy’s is anything to do with the ligament.”

Gardner will go to Dr. Timothy Kremchek in Cincinnati on Thursday. After that evaluation, we should know more about what exactly is going on. For now, Gardner and Girardi both seem to agree that Gardner will play again this season. And Gardner seems to think it might not take too long. The elbow didn’t bother him nearly as much after last week’s setback as it did after his first setback a month ago.

“I definitely think I will (play this year),” Gardner said. “I definitely think I’ll be back and be back hopefully pretty soon.”

Gardner said he “really, legitimately” thought his elbow was completely healed before he began his most recent rehab assignment in Charleston. Then again, he thought the same thing before his rehab assignment a month ago with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He still felt fine until his third at-bat on Friday, which he described as a long at-bat with a swing and miss and a few foul balls that he barely made contact on. By the end of that at-bat, he knew he wasn’t ready to be activated.

“It’s not as much of a pain tolerance thing as it is a range of motion,” Gardner explained. “It just affects my swing. Going into Charleston, my first at-bat was 100 percent, but my third at-bat, halfway through it, I wasn’t. It’s not as much of a pain tolerance thing as it is just being able to function 100 percent. I was functioning 100 percent when I got there, but unfortunately, after a couple of at-bats, I just wasn’t feeling too well.”

[3]• Mariano Rivera had surgery today. The surgery was strictly to repair his torn ACL. Nothing was done to his meniscus, apparently because the meniscus wasn’t actually damaged. “The clot went away,” Girardi said. “So I think it’s the initial shock of the injury that’s the hardest part, then you kind of get your mind focused on coming back.”

• Girardi confirmed that Dave Robertson will join the Yankees tomorrow. The plan is that he’ll be activated on Friday. Robertson threw a 14-pitch hitless inning for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this afternoon. It was his final rehab appearance following last month’s strained oblique.

• Girardi’s not sure whether Rafael Soriano will be available tonight. “I’m going to let him play catch and see how it feels today and we’ll go from there,” Girardi said.

• If Soriano can’t pitch, the Yankees bullpen will be extremely short because Clay Rapada, Boone Logan and Cory Wade have each pitched three days in a row and Girardi doesn’t want to use any of them tonight. We’re going to need some distance out of CC, and some other guys are going to have to help us out,” Girardi said.

• Sabathia has a 3.69 ERA, so it’s not like he’s been a particularly bad pitcher this year, but he’s run into some stretches that haven’t been as sharp as usual. “It just at times his fastball cuts,” Girardi said. “When that happens, he seems to get in a little bit of trouble. When he doesn’t command the down and away to right handers, he seems to get in a little bit of trouble.”

• Hiroki Kuroda was able to sprint and throw a light bullpen today. His bruised foot felt fine, and he should have no problem making tomorrow’s start.

Associated Press photos