Pavano plays catch for first time

Pavano plays catch for first time

MINNEAPOLIS -- Right-hander Carl Pavano has yet to throw a bullpen session but played catch on Monday for the first time since being placed on the disabled list with a right shoulder strain on June 4.

Pavano, who officially has a right anterior capsular strain, has been working to rebuild strength in his shoulder.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire indicated that Pavano still has a ways to go before rejoining the rotation because he still needs to build up his pitch count once he starts throwing off the mound.

"He's just doing his rehab work," Gardenhire said. "He has not gone off the mound yet. He's just doing his tossing program. There's not too much to it. It's a process. We're just letting him do his thing with the trainers. It's a program they have set up with a list, but we're not close."

Twins general manager Terry Ryan said he was encouraged that Pavano has started throwing but agreed with Gardenhire's assertion that Pavano isn't close to returning.

"I don't have a timetable but at least we're to that point," Ryan said. "I've always said it would be July, but I'm hoping it's more the middle of July than late July."