New York Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, of Japan, throws from the outfield Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015, at the Yankees' minor league complex in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara
February 17, 2015

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Masahiro Tanaka threw for 34 minutes on level ground in his first workout of the year at the New York Yankees' minor league complex.

Tanaka missed 2 1/2 months last year while rehabilitating a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, managed to avoid surgery and returned for two late-September starts.

After arriving from Japan, he threw at up to about 200 feet. He ended his session by using his delivery to make 16 level ground pitches at 60 feet.

Tanaka didn't speak with reporters after the workout.

''He looked good,'' teammate Ivan Nova said. ''I'm sure he worked really hard. The way he handled it, unbelievable.''

Signed to a $155 million, seven-year contract, Tanaka went 13-5 with a 2.77 ERA in 20 starts. The Yankees say he has been throwing as part of his normal conditioning program in Japan.

NOTES: Nova might throw off a mound this week for the first time since elbow ligament-replacement surgery and appears on track to rejoin the team by June. He tore a ligament in his right elbow last April 19 during a game against Tampa Bay and had surgery 10 days later.

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