Yankees keeping close tabs on Cabral

TAMPA, Fla. -- The Yankees are watching Michael Pineda's workouts as the hurler attempts to join the big league rotation this year, but they're also keeping a close eye on left-hander Cesar Cabral.

Cabral and Pineda both threw 25-pitch bullpen sessions on Friday at George M. Steinbrenner Field, and the Yankees are hopeful that Cabral could make an impact for them in the near future.

"It won't be this spring, but he's progressing well," manager Joe Girardi said. "He's a guy that we like the upside in him, we like his arm, but he won't quite be ready."

Cabral, 24, appeared to be on the verge of making the Yankees' roster last spring before suffering a fractured elbow near the end of camp, which effectively clinched Clay Rapada's spot on the team.

A Rule 5 Draft selection from the Red Sox in 2011 by way of the Royals, Cabral compiled a 3.61 ERA in 132 Minor League appearances from 2006-11, all in Boston's chain. Girardi said that it is possible Cabral could be pitching in Minor League games around May.

"When you look at a reliever compared to a starter, they don't need as much time because they're not going to be built up," Girardi said.