TAMPA, Fla. -- There are plenty of eyes fixed upon Masahiro Tanaka with each windup, watching his face cautiously for any hint of a grimace. Thus far, there has been no reason for the Yankees to be concerned.
Tanaka threw his second bullpen session of the spring on Sunday afternoon at George M. Steinbrenner Field, firing 35 pitches to catcher Austin Romine. He said that he felt "absolutely good," with no discomfort.
"I think I was able to throw a little bit better than the last time," Tanaka said through an interpreter. "I think the No. 1 thing is, I'm throwing a little bit harder than last time."
Tanaka said that he made an effort to work in more breaking balls this time. In a 21-pitch bullpen on Thursday at the Yanks' Minor League complex, Tanaka said that he threw two splitters.
"The overall number of pitches I threw were more than last time, so I threw more breaking balls." Tanaka said. "I'm trying to build that in right now."
The Yankees are hopeful that Tanaka's right elbow will have no more issues after rehabbing a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament. Tanaka said he is scheduled to throw at least one more bullpen session before facing live hitters.
"I thought he was good," manager Joe Girardi said. "He threw 35 pitches, threw everything and had no issues. That was encouraging."
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.