Tanaka slated to throw third bullpen session

Tanaka slated to throw third bullpen session

KANSAS CITY -- Right-hander Masahiro Tanaka will accompany the Yankees to Washington, where he will throw one more bullpen on Monday at Nationals Park and then could be set to begin a Minor League rehabilitation assignment.

It will mark the third bullpen session for Tanaka, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since April 29 with right wrist tendinitis and a right forearm strain. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that if all goes well, Tanaka's first rehab start could take place on Thursday.

"We just felt that it would be good for him to throw one more [bullpen], because he hasn't thrown in a while," Girardi said. "We'll make sure he's sharp, then he'll go down and make a rehab start."

Girardi said that he was not sure where Tanaka's rehab start would take place, but Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre is a likely choice; the RailRiders are home vs. Durham at 6:35 p.m. ET on Thursday.

The Yankees have talked about having Tanaka back on the big league mound at some point in June, but Girardi said they are not yet subscribing to a definite timetable.

Tanaka's bullpens to date have been 30 and 35 pitches, and Girardi said that he was not certain if Tanaka would need more than one rehab start.

"I think you have to see where he's at and how many pitches he gets to," Girardi said. "The one thing you don't want is to have to be in a situation where he can only give you three or four innings."

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch, on Facebook and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.