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05/27/09 7:45 PM ET

Posada could rejoin Yankees on Friday

Veteran catches five innings at extended spring training

ARLINGTON -- Jorge Posada could be on a flight to Cleveland and back behind the plate for the Yankees on Friday, when the club is scheduled to open a four-game series with the Indians at Progressive Field.

Posada moved closer to his big league return when he caught five innings in an extended spring training intrasquad game in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said it is possible that Posada will return after another workout on Thursday in Tampa.

"It's a big bat we've been missing, and with the absence of Melky for a little bit, that helps," Girardi said. "Jorge is another switch-hitter where left-handed and right-handed doesn't seem to affect him. It's another big bat to add to the middle of that order."

On the 15-day disabled list since May 5 with a strained right hamstring, Posada ran from first to third on a double, scoring on an error on that same play, and threw out a runner attempting to steal second base.

He went 0-for-4 at the plate, flying out twice, striking out, reaching on an error and drawing a walk.

"It feels good when I'm running," Posada told The Associated Press. "The hamstring is good. Now, it's seeing some pitches, getting some at-bats and catching more."

Girardi said that he is not sure if the Yankees will continue to carry three catchers once Posada is activated. New York's current backstop tandem is comprised of rookie Francisco Cervelli and understudy Kevin Cash.

"It's something that we're going to have to discuss tomorrow to see exactly what move we'll make," Girardi said. "I don't think there's anything set in stone right now. It's something we're going to talk about."

Outfielder Xavier Nady (right elbow ligament) and infielder Cody Ransom (right quadriceps) also took part in the game as designated hitters. Nady went 1-for-3 with a walk, and Ransom homered and walked twice.

Backup catcher Jose Molina (left quad) went through defensive drills and Damaso Marte (left shoulder) made 15 throws from each of 75, 90 and 110 feet before finishing with 15 throws from 60 feet on flat ground.

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