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Andy Pettitte staying in minors, for now

5/1/2012

Andy Pettitte will make at least one more minor-league start before making his return to the big leagues, manager Joe Girardi confirmed on Tuesday.

"I can’t tell you exactly where, that has not been determined," said Girardi, before the Yankees hosted the Orioles on Tuesday night. "They have to look at the schedule and see which town fits him the best, in a sense."

Pettitte threw 96 pitches in an outing against Phillies minor-leaguers in Clearwater, Fla., on Monday, giving up six runs (five earned) on 10 hits in 5 2/3 innings of work. Despite the not-so-pretty numbers, Pettitte pronounced himself ready to come back to the majors after the game.

"I feel I'm strong enough and ready to make my next start with [the Yankees]," Pettitte told MLB.com. "I feel good and it was another solid day. I felt the quality of pitches were as good as I've had in any of my starts up to now, and I was able to hold my velocity throughout. I feel like I'm ready to help the team."

Girardi said that Pettitte's next minor-league outing, which is expected to happen on either Saturday or Sunday, may or may not be his final tune-up before his return to the bigs. "It has to be determined by the people that are watching," Girardi said. "I get reports, but my eyes aren’t on him to know exactly what’s going on."

On Tuesday, Pettitte was in Washington, DC, testifying in the Roger Clemens perjury trial.

Girardi was asked if, when he last spoke with Pettitte, he sensed the upcoming testimony was weighing on Pettitte's mind.

"I spoke to him before he pitched [on Monday]," Girardi said. "He didn’t really lead me to believe that it was going to affect the way he threw the baseball, but I’m sure it was on his mind."