Nova expected to make next start despite ailing ring finger

Nova expected to make next start despite ailing ring finger

TORONTO -- Ivan Nova worried he might have fractured his right ring finger after being struck by a comebacker in Friday's 4-3 victory over the Blue Jays. But the Yankees' hurler has continued to receive treatment and is expected to make his next start as scheduled.

Nova reached for Troy Tulowitzki's third-inning chopper, deflecting it to shortstop Didi Gregorius, who stepped on second base for a fielder's choice as Toronto scored. Nova threw four warmup pitches for manager Joe Girardi and head athletic trainer Steve Donohue, convincing them to keep him in the game.

"I thought I broke my finger. It was hurting bad," Nova said. "But I see Joe and Stevie coming out, I thought, 'We've got to keep pitching. We've got to keep pitching.' You've got to give your team a little bit of room, because we have been using the bullpen a lot. I was focused on going deep in the game."

Nova completed seven innings of three-run, five-hit ball, and Girardi said on Saturday he expects Nova to bounce back in time to pitch against the Twins on Wednesday at Yankee Stadium. Nova is 5-4 with a 3.57 ERA in nine starts.

"I'm sure it hurt a little bit, but he was able to handle it," Girardi said. "He did a really nice job the rest of the game. It's a relief to us, because you don't want to lose a pitcher like that. As much as you tell them, don't go after the ball [barehanded], it's instinct."

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for 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.