Yankees wait for diagnosis, next move on Pavano's injury

Updated: May 19, 2007, 1:24 AM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- The Yankees hope to announce next week whether Carl Pavano will need surgery.

Pavano hasn't pitched since April 9 and might have a reconstructive elbow operation, which would sideline him for the remainder of this season and most, if not all, of next year.

He has been examined by four doctors -- the Yankees' team physician and three outside specialists.

"We've gotten one of three of the [diagnoses] in writing back," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said before Friday night's 3-2 loss to the Mets. "He's waiting for us to tell him what we want him to do based on the [diagnoses]."

Since the Yankees gave him a $39.95 million, four-year contract before the 2005 season, Pavano is 5-7 in 19 starts, including 1-0 with a 4.76 ERA in two starts this year. He was sidelined from June 27, 2005, until last month by shoulder, back, buttocks, elbow and rib injuries, then began feeling forearm soreness during his second outing, a win at Minnesota on April 9.

Cashman said the Yankees had told Pavano to rest. Pavano was not with the team at Shea Stadium on Friday night.

"There's no reason for him to be here right now. This place is small enough," Cashman said. "It's a space thing."

Pavano's agent, Gregg Clifton, said he and the pitcher were waiting to hear from the Yankees.

With interleague play starting, Yankees manager Joe Torre said before the game that Jason Giambi likely would be limited to pinch hitting during the weekend series at the Mets. Giambi, who has been a designated hitter most of this season, was hoping special shoes that were to arrive Friday night would ease pain caused by a bone spur near his left heel. He pinch hit in the ninth and ended the game by striking out against Billy Wagner with a runner on, and Torre said it was possible Giambi could play first base this weekend.

"I think he's real close," Torre said after the game. "He feels good with the new orthotics. We'll see what it looks like tomorrow."

Torre started Melky Cabrera in right field over struggling Bobby Abreu because he didn't like the matchup of Abreu against left-hander Oliver Perez.

Torre also said that Tyler Clippard would be the Yankees' starting pitcher for Sunday night's series finale. Clippard, who would be making his major league debut, would become the fifth starter used by the Yankees this season in his major league debut and the seventh rookie to start. He would be the 11th starter overall used by the Yankees.

"We liked him a lot in spring training," Torre said. "He showed us real good command, a good slider. He just seems to have a big, loose arm, but what is he going to do out here Sunday? I can't tell you."

Clippard, a 22-year-old right-hander, is 3-2 with a 2.72 ERA in eight starts at Triple-A Scranton. In his last five outings, he is 3-0 and has allowed four earned runs in 25 2/3 innings.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press