4/29/2014 11:56 P.M. ET
Back strain to cost Pineda three to four weeks
By Bryan Hoch / MLB.com
NEW YORK -- The Yankees will be without Michael Pineda for longer than anticipated, as the right-hander ended his simulated game on Tuesday after just one inning when he felt tightness under his pitching arm.
Following an MRI exam, team physician Christopher Ahmad diagnosed Pineda with a Grade 1 strain of the teres major muscle in his upper back. The Yankees said that Pineda will be shut down from activity for 10 days, and the injury will cost him three to four weeks.
Pineda is currently on the restricted list, serving a 10-game suspension after being ejected for having pine tar -- an illegal substance -- on his neck in last Wednesday's game at Fenway Park.
That suspension is slated to end next Monday, when the right-hander was expected to pitch against the Angels in Anaheim. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said late Tuesday that he is looking into how the team will satisfy Pineda's suspension with his upcoming trip to the disabled list.
Pineda is 2-2 with a 1.83 ERA in four starts this season, having rung up 15 strikeouts against three walks in 19 2/3 innings. He did not pitch in the big leagues during the 2012 and '13 campaigns because of right labrum surgery.
Earlier on Tuesday, Girardi said that the club will continue to use David Phelps as a spot starter while Pineda is unavailable. Phelps owns a 3.86 ERA in nine relief appearances this season. He is scheduled to start on Wednesday against the Mariners and will be asked to throw 70-75 pitches.
Ellsbury sits out with left hand soreness
NEW YORK -- Jacoby Ellsbury will be out of the Yankees' starting lineup for at least one game as the outfielder rests a sore left hand that has been bothering him in recent games.
Manager Joe Girardi said that Ellsbury had tests on the hand during Monday's off-day, and no structural damage was found.
Girardi said that he was not sure how Ellsbury initially hurt the hand; Ellsbury was not available to speak to reporters before the Yankees' scheduled game against the Mariners on Tuesday.
"It's just been bothering him for a few days," Girardi said. "He's been playing through it. We sent him to take a test and the test came back good, which is good news."
Ellsbury would be available to play defense or pinch-run on Tuesday, Girardi said. Ellsbury was just 1-for-10 in the three-game series against the Angels over the weekend, dipping his season average to .311.
Brett Gardner replaced Ellsbury in center field, batting leadoff, with Ichiro Suzuki slotted to play left field.
Nova's elbow surgery performed as planned
NEW YORK -- Ivan Nova underwent Tommy John surgery on Tuesday to repair the partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, the Yankees announced.
Dr. James Andrews performed the procedure in Pensacola, Fla. The surgery went as expected, the team said.
Nova sustained the injury during an April 19 start against the Rays at Tropicana Field. He began the year as the No. 3 starter in New York's rotation and was 2-2 with an 8.27 ERA in four starts, including allowing a career-high four homers in his final outing.
The recovery time for Tommy John surgery is approximately 12-18 months.
• Yankees manager Joe Girardi applauded the NBA's ruling to suspend Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life, with a $2.5 million fine, following racist comments that Sterling made in an audiotape that became public last weekend.
"I think the NBA handled the situation well," Girardi said. "I think they did their own investigation and basically made a statement that there is no room for racism. We're all people. We all need to get along and understand that we're all different. I applaud the NBA."
• Robinson Cano, who is making his first trip to the Bronx as a member of the Mariners this week, should be recognized for his extreme durability. As noted by The New York Times, Cano played in all but 14 of 1,134 possible regular-season games for the Yankees from 2007-13, or 99 percent. Beginning on May 3, 2005, Cano played in 1,374 out of a possible 1,432 regular-season games during his nine Yankees seasons, or 96 percent.
• On this date in 2006, the Yankees scored at least one run in every inning of a 17-6 win over the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium. That marked the second time they had done so in franchise history, and just the sixth occurrence in American League history.