Burnett’s elbow has no damage

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TORONTO (AP) – Blue Jays pitcher A.J. Burnett has no structural damage in his right elbow, but there is no timetable for his return to Toronto’s rotation.

Burnett was examined Monday in Birmingham, Ala., by Dr. James Andrews, who said the right-hander has a mild ligament sprain and a straining of scar tissue.

Andrews performed ligament replacement surgery on Burnett’s elbow in 2003.

“Everybody feels he’ll be pain-free eventually. It’s just something that needs a little rest,” general manager J.P. Ricciardi said. “The elbow is fine. The ligament is fine. The tendons are fine. He’s got a strong elbow. He just has a little tweak in it.”

Burnett was placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday. He left his start against Boston on Friday after four innings with soreness in his elbow.

Burnett, who signed a $55 million, five-year deal with Toronto in the offseason after spending seven years with the Florida Marlins, began the season on the DL after scar tissue broke off in his elbow March 18 during spring training.

Ricciardi said Dr. Andrews confirmed the pitcher sustained the same injury he had in spring training.

“It’s treatment and rest at this point and then we’ll take it from there,” Ricciardi said. “It’s nothing to be alarmed about. It’s another bump in the road. We’ve just got to get over it.”

Burnett was alarmed by the pain and loss of velocity he experienced Friday. He said he’d be willing to miss a month to get it right.

Ricciardi said there are no plans for Burnett to throw in the next week or so. He has been on the DL seven times in the last six years.

The hard-throwing right-hander was a key piece of Toronto’s offseason overhaul. The Blue Jays also added closer B.J. Ryan for $47 million over five years, signed catcher Bengie Molina and traded for slugger Troy Glaus and first baseman Lyle Overbay.

The Blue Jays haven’t said who will replace Burnett in the rotation.

AP-ES-04-24-06 2129EDT

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