Tanaka played catch in a rain-shortened session.
Max Goodman @MaxTGoodman
Rain started coming down again so Masahiro Tanaka quickly wrapped up his throwing. On his way off the field, he chucked the ball into the second deck, waving to fans that aren’t there 😂 Another great sign that Tanaka is making progress and in good spirits. https://t.co/Yu0Vmj8GLg
"He has been able to play catch a couple times now," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said, per Max Goodman of Sports Illustrated. "He's responding well to the elevated heart-rate stuff where he's on the bike, on the elliptical, doing his arm-care work and responding well."
New York initially placed Tanaka into MLB's concussion protocol after he was released from a local hospital following the incident.
"Anytime we're talking about a concussion, we're making sure we're moving slowly and smartly," Boone said. "So, no plan in place about when exactly things are going to happen, but he is at least responding how we how we hoped."
The Yankees still have 12 days before their season opener against the defending World Series champion Washington Nationals on July 23. The game is scheduled as the first official contest of the season, but it's unlikely Tanaka would be in line to start even if he's cleared.
Gerrit Cole, who signed a nine-year, $324 million deal to join the Yankees during the offseason, will serve as the team's No. 1 starter.
Still, New York is focused on how lucky Tanaka was not to sustain a more serious injury. Goodman reports the line drive that hit the 31-year-old was clocked at 112 miles per hour.
Even Tanaka's fellow starting pitchers are impressed with his recovery.
"It's amazing. He seems great; he seems completely normal," teammate James Paxton said. "I think we got extremely lucky in that situation, it could have been way worse and he's bounced back incredibly."