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Bruney slowly making his way back

Bruney slowly making his way back

NEW YORK -- The Yankees aren't ready to put a timetable on Brian Bruney's return to big league action, but they feel he is moving closer.

The right-hander is scheduled to throw 30 pitches in a bullpen session on Sunday at Yankee Stadium, resting after 15 pitches and then completing his workload to reach the allotted count.

"It's a step in the right direction," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "We'll make an evaluation where we think he is after [Sunday]."

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Bruney is on the disabled list for the second time this season with a strained right elbow, having come back from the injury to throw a perfect eighth inning on May 21, but complaining of discomfort after that appearance.

After throwing 20 pitches on Friday, Bruney said that he felt fine and believes he could be available to pitch in less than two weeks. Bruney would almost certainly have to go on a Minor League rehab assignment before rejoining the Yankees bullpen.

The Yankees need Bruney to be more forthcoming about his status. After Bruney pitched with pain during a May 17 rehab appearance at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, he said he would be ready for big league duty, but almost immediately had to go back on the disabled list.

"The big thing is that he tells us exactly what's going on," Girardi said. "If there's no pain, then he'll take the next step. As long as we take steps in the right direction, that's a good positive thing. It shouldn't be too long."

In other injury updates, Damaso Marte (left shoulder), who is scheduled to continue his throwing program on Monday in Tampa, Fla., is considered further off than Bruney.

Xavier Nady (right elbow) is set to play again in an extended spring game on Saturday and will also throw, while Cody Ransom (right quadriceps) is scheduled to play in his third rehab game for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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