Better late than never, Kevin Millwood arrives

As the rest of the Yankees prepare to go North, Kevin Millwood arrived in Tampa today to begin a minor-league assignment that he hopes will lead him back to the majr leagues. Millwood, who can opt out of his Yankee deal if he is not added to the big-league roster by May 1, admitted that maybe he should have gotten here in time to participate in the contest for the No. 5 starter's spot, won by Freddy Garcia. However, he and agent Scott Boras were holding out for a major-league deal that never arrived.

“It probably would have been nice to get here a little earlier, yeah,'' Millwood said "But it’s not going to do me any good to look back on it now. Now it’s just try to get ready, do what they want me to do, and see where it takes me.”

Where it will probably take Millwood is to the bullpen and the long relief job that now belongs to Bartolo Colon, the runner-up to Garcia. "If that’s all they’ve got, that’s all they’ve got,'' Millwood said. "Obviously I’d prefer to be a starter and go that way, but we’ll see what happens.''