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Eovaldi dealing with mild groin discomfort

MLB.com @BryanHoch

TAMPA, Fla. -- Nathan Eovaldi had a recent side session pushed back due to tenderness in his right groin, but the right-hander said the discomfort is mild and he is not concerned about falling behind the Yankees' other starting pitchers.

"They're just being extra cautious with it," said Eovaldi, who will throw off the mound on Wednesday. "They don't want to do anything to prolong. They're taking it really careful."

TAMPA, Fla. -- Nathan Eovaldi had a recent side session pushed back due to tenderness in his right groin, but the right-hander said the discomfort is mild and he is not concerned about falling behind the Yankees' other starting pitchers.

"They're just being extra cautious with it," said Eovaldi, who will throw off the mound on Wednesday. "They don't want to do anything to prolong. They're taking it really careful."

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Eovaldi said he sustained the injury while performing conditioning drills on flat ground last week. He said it has not forced him to miss a day of catch, though the Yankees held him back from throwing live batting practice last Thursday.

General manager Brian Cashman said that, like with outfielder Brett Gardner, the Yankees are simply taking things slow with Eovaldi because Opening Day is so far in the future.

"It's like everything else right now," Cashman said. "Whether it's him, whether it's Gardy, it's like, hey, there's a little issue. We have time, so you give the time because you have the time. I guess if this was the last 10 days of camp maybe I'd have a different feeling toward it. It's not."

Eovaldi said he has had groin injuries in the past, but never in his landing leg, and that they have never forced him to miss a start. If this were the regular season, Eovaldi said he would be ready to pitch.

"If it was during the season, I wouldn't have missed any time," Eovaldi said. "It's something so minor. They're just being really cautious with it because it's Spring Training and we have time to use, time to our advantage."

Eovaldi was 14-3 with a 4.20 ERA in 27 starts last year, but his season ended on Sept. 5 due to right elbow inflammation. Eovaldi said the elbow has not been an issue this spring. Manager Joe Girardi said Eovaldi's Grapefruit League debut will be slightly delayed, but that is not a major concern.

"It moves back a couple of days, but he'll still get his six starts in, which is what you want every starter to do," Girardi said.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch, on Facebook and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat.

New York Yankees, Nathan Eovaldi