Ellsbury joins Yanks camp after birth of child

Outfielder, Gardner viewed as keys to boosting club's lineup this season

Ellsbury joins Yanks camp after birth of child

TAMPA, Fla. -- The Yankees have their full roster in camp following the arrival of outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, who was granted a late report because his wife, Kelsey, was delivering the couple's second child.

Ellsbury participated in batting practice on a back diamond of the George M. Steinbrenner Field complex on Tuesday, hitting in a group with Matt Holliday, Aaron Judge and Kyle Higashioka.

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Yanks manager Joe Girardi said that Ellsbury might be "three or four" days behind the rest of the team's position players.

"We'll watch him the next few days," Girardi said. "Obviously, he's a couple of days behind. His wife, Kelsey, is great, the baby is great. Physically, he looks good. We'll see where he is sometime at the end of the weekend or early next week."

This will be the fourth season in pinstripes for the 33-year-old Ellsbury, who batted .263/.330/.374 with 24 doubles, five triples, nine home runs, 56 RBIs and 20 stolen bases in 148 games last year. Ellsbury signed a seven-year, $153 million deal prior to the 2014 campaign.

"Jacoby is a great player," Yankees managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner said earlier this month. "He comes to play every day, he's been great with the young kids. The stats are what the stats are. But I've enjoyed having him on the club."

Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner believes that he and Ellsbury are capable of producing more this season. They are viewed as keys to boost a lineup that produced just 680 runs last year, ranking 12th among the 15 American League clubs; only the Royals (675), Rays (672) and A's (653) scored fewer.

"When he and I are both going well, I feel like we're pretty good together, getting on base and scoring runs," Gardner said. "That's what the game is all about. Offensively, I think both of us can improve on what we did last year, no matter where we're hitting in the lineup. Not just me and him, but as a unit we've got to score more runs to win more ballgames."

Bombers bits
• Left-hander James Reeves has been diagnosed with a mild ligament sprain in his pitching elbow, and he is expected to miss three to four weeks, according to Girardi. Right-hander Ronald Herrera is expected to miss 10 days to two weeks with inflammation in his pitching shoulder.

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.