© 2008 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.

04/05/08 1:49 PM ET

Pettitte off disabled list, on the mound

Left-hander happy to have his season finally under way

NEW YORK -- The Yankees activated left-hander Andy Pettitte from the 15-day disabled list on Saturday, permitting him to start against the Rays at Yankee Stadium.

Pettitte was placed on the disabled list retroactively to March 21 with lower back spasms that forced him to miss his final two starts of Spring Training.

The 36-year-old last pitched on Sunday in a Minor League intrasquad game, throwing six scoreless innings and 77 pitches against the Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. Because of the injury, the Yankees rearranged their rotation and slotted Pettitte, originally envisioned as New York's No. 2 starter, as the No. 5 starter.

"I'm just ready to pitch, more than anything," Pettitte said. "I'm definitely used to pitching a lot sooner than Game 5. I'm looking forward to getting out there and getting my season under way and get three or four starts under my belt.

To make room on the Yankees' 25-man roster, right-hander Jonathan Albaladejo was optioned to Triple-A. Albaladejo made his Yankees debut on Friday against Tampa Bay, throwing 2 2/3 scoreless innings and allowing one hit while striking out four.

In other news, Jorge Posada was back behind the plate on Saturday, catching Pettitte. The 36-year-old had been held out of the lineup for two games and served as New York's designated hitter on Friday due to right shoulder stiffness.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.