Masahiro Tanaka OK after throwing

Updated: September 2, 2014, 4:52 PM ET
By Andrew Marchand |

NEW YORK -- Masahiro Tanaka once again has been cleared by the New York Yankees' team doctor to rev up his throwing program in an effort to return this season from the slightly torn ligament in his pitching elbow.

Tanaka, out for nearly two months, played catch Tuesday and reported no problems, according to manager Joe Girardi.

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AP Photo/Steve NesiusMasahiro Tanaka reported no problems after playing catch Tuesday and is expected to throw a bullpen session later this week.

He will throw a bullpen session later in the week, though Girardi declined to reveal which day it would occur. With less than four weeks left in the regular season, the Yankees are trying to see if Tanaka can pitch again for them this season.

Tanaka announced last Friday that he had "general soreness" in his right arm, halting his throwing program. He said at the time he wanted to be cautious.

Yankees team doctor Chris Ahmad saw Tanaka on Monday and diagnosed the rookie ace with arm fatigue.

"Every manual test that they did came out really well," Girardi said. "They just said he had some arm fatigue and he is scheduled to throw a bullpen sometime this week. Hopefully, he is ready to do it."

Girardi had no timetable for when Tanaka possibly could be on a major league mound again. In 18 starts, Tanaka was 12-4 with a 2.51 ERA this season.

Tanaka was placed on the disabled list July 9, when an MRI revealed a small tear of the ulnar collateral ligament.

On the advice of four specialists, Tanaka and the Yankees decided to try a non-surgical approach, administering a platelet-rich plasma injection and controlled throwing program.

Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »



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