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05/26/08 3:16 PM ET

First rehab game in books for Posada

Veteran catches five frames, hopes to throw more later in week

BALTIMORE -- Yankees catcher Jorge Posada caught five innings and went 0-for-5 with a walk in his first extended spring game on Monday.

Posada was on the field in Clearwater, Fla., against a selection of Phillies Minor Leaguers, and he has been sidelined since April 27 with an inflamed right rotator cuff.

"I got a lot of innings behind the plate, that's all I wanted," Posada told The Associated Press. "I wanted just to get ready to catch again."

According to The AP, Posada played catch before entering the game, and he threw the ball back to the pitcher. He began a throwing program on May 12, but he's not expected to start throwing to the bases until later this week.

"Probably Thursday or so, I'll start throwing again," Posada said. "I feel good enough to throw right now, but I'm taking one step at a time. First of all, get my legs underneath me and then get ready to catch, throw and doing all that."

Posada is batting .302 with one homer and 11 RBIs in 63 at-bats. He is expected to play in another extended spring game on Tuesday, and the Yankees have targeted the first week of June for his possible return to the lineup.

The Yankees have filled Posada's absence with veterans Jose Molina and Chad Moeller sharing duties behind the plate, but neither was expected to approach the offensive output of Posada, a five-time All-Star who signed a four-year contract in the offseason after hitting .338 with 20 homers and 90 RBIs last season.

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