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Brett Gardner “doubtful” to return from disabled list when eligible Thursday

May 2, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

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Brett Gardner is eligible to come off the disabled list Thursday after missing two weeks with a strained elbow, but manager Joe Girardi said yesterday that the left fielder is “doubtful” to be ready by then.

Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that the Yankees will likely ask Gardner to make at least one minor-league rehab appearance before being cleared to return, meaning Eduardo Nunez may not be finished seeing action in the outfield quite yet despite committing an error last night.

Nunez had never started a game in left field as a major leaguer or minor leaguer prior to Monday, when he was pressed into outfield duty because Gardner is on the DL and Nick Swisher is active but sidelined with a hamstring injury.

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