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Yankees OF Carlos Beltran and RHP Kelley take steps toward a return from injuries

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NEW YORK, N.Y. - Carlos Beltran has had a pain-free batting practice session as he nears a return to the Yankees lineup rather than heading toward surgery to remove a bone spur in his right elbow.

Beltran said Friday before New York played Minnesota that he was relieved he had no problems swinging from both sides of the plate. He is waiting for the next step in his rehabilitation; the injury has sidelined him since May 13.

Setup man Shawn Kelley, out since May 7 with a lower back strain, had a 45-pitch bullpen session. Manager Joe Girardi said Kelley will likely throw another bullpen Sunday before a plan is made for the right-hander.

Girardi said both Kelley and Beltran would need to play in some minor league games before joining the Yankees.

Also, Mark Teixeira is back in the lineup after sitting three games because of inflammation in his surgically repaired wrist.

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