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05/21/09 4:20 PM ET

Nady takes batting practice

Outfielder has plasma injected into ailing right elbow

NEW YORK -- Yankees outfielder Xavier Nady took another step towards returning to action on Wednesday, taking his first live batting practice in more than a month with the club.

"I hit on the field, did my normal routine in the cage, and probably took more swings than I was supposed to," Nady said. "I probably took four or five rounds. It felt good. I'm encouraged with that."

Nady went on the DL on April 16 with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow , which he injured two days earlier while making a routine throw back to the infield on a single to right field while the club was playing against the Rays in St. Petersburg.

The next move for Nady will likely be his heading to the Yankees' complex in Tampa, Fla., next week to continue his rehab in extended Spring Training or Minor League games. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that it is "possible" Nady will leave New York when the team heads out of town next week for a seven-game road trip to Texas and Cleveland beginning Monday.

Under the care of Yankees team physician Dr. Chris Ahmad, Nady had two injections of platelet-rich plasma directly in the area around his injury. The blood is drawn from Nady and spun to isolate the platelets, which doctors believe can help speed healing.

While the procedure has a track record in sports, having helped Red Sox reliever Takashi Saito and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward, it was used more widely in Europe, and was recently approved in the United States.

Nady said the idea was suggested by the Yankees medical staff as an option to what Nady had feared was a foregone conclusion: a second Tommy John surgery, having also had that performed in September 2001. He said the injections were extremely uncomfortable, but his swings Wednesday felt comfortable.

"It felt pretty good," Nady said. "I was more hesitant the first couple of swings just to guide through it. I'm hoping it keeps feeling good."

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