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Yankees' Ace CC Sabathia Expects to Return From DL Friday

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 03:  CC Sabathia #52 of the New York Yankees pitches in the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Yankee Stadium on August 3, 2012 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 03: CC Sabathia #52 of the New York Yankees pitches in the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Yankee Stadium on August 3, 2012 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
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CC Sabathia, who is recovering from elbow inflammation, expects to return to the New York Yankees rotation Friday, according to George A. King III of the New York Post.

"CC Sabathia will throw his first bullpen session since going on the disabled list today and said he believes he will return Friday in Cleveland.

While manager Joe Girardi would certainly welcome the Yankees’ staff ace back to the rotation the first day Sabathia is eligible, he is waiting to see how the big left-hander does during workouts."

King noted that Sabathia would have preferred to stay off the disabled list in the first place, and didn't believe the injury was very serious. The 6-foot, 7-inch lefty had another short DL stay earlier this season for a groin issue.

Sabathia, 32, is 12-3 with a 3.56 ERA, 1.21 WHIP and an even 4.00 strikeout-to-walk ratio. While still above average, his ERA is the highest it has been since 2005 when he posted a 4.03 mark with the Cleveland Indians.

The Yankees are 71-48, six games up on the Tampa Bay Rays and seven up on the Baltimore Orioles in the American League East.