<
>

Brown's rehab on back making progress

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- New York Yankees pitcher Kevin Brown
is making progress in his rehabilitation program for a back injury
and might be able to rejoin the team in September.

Brown is 4-7 with a 6.50 ERA in 13 starts during an
injury-marred season. He has been re-examined by Dr. Robert
Watkins, who reported a marked improvement in Brown's back.
"There's a chance if he continues to improve that he'll be able
to pitch for us in September," manager Joe Torre said before
Tuesday night's game at Tampa Bay. "Whether that's out of the
bullpen or other than that, we'll wait and see."
Brown will continue undergoing treatment with his therapist in
Macon, Ga. He has not resumed throwing.
"The fact that the doctor was pleased with the changes, that's
a plus," Torre said.
Another injured starter, Chien-Ming Wang, has thrown off a
bullpen mound twice in the past five days. He has been sidelined
since mid-July with right shoulder inflammation. New York has not
ruled out a return next month for the rookie, who is 6-3 with a
3.89 ERA in 13 games.
Jaret Wright, who allowed two runs over 6 1/3 innings in winning his first start Monday night since being placed on the
disabled list in late April with a right shoulder injury, reported
no problems one day later.
"Normal stuff," Wright said. "It feels all right."
Yankees owner George Steinbrenner issued a statement Tuesday,
praising pitching specialist Billy Connors for his role in Wright's
recovery.
"Bill Connors did a wonderful job with Jaret Wright,"
Steinbrenner said. "He brought him along. He was patient, and he
stuck with him with great results. What a pro."
Connors helped Wright with his mechanics, which the right-hander
said were "really screwed up" when he resumed throwing during his
rehab program.
"He really helped me get back into synch," Wright said.