Joint irritation in pitching elbow lands Suppan on DL

MILWAUKEE -- The Milwaukee Brewers placed right-hander Jeff Suppan on the 15-day disabled list because of joint irritation in his pitching elbow Monday, temporarily making room on the roster for new acquisition CC Sabathia.

Suppan said he hurt his elbow during an at-bat in his May 23 start at Washington, and it wasn't getting any better as he attempted to pitch through the injury. Suppan said he wasn't sure if the injury was affecting his pitching.

"It's hard to say," Suppan said. "I don't really know. All I really know is it wasn't getting any better."

Because of the All-Star break next week, Suppan could return to Milwaukee's roster after missing only one start and still get the rest he needs.

"I want him healthy," Brewers manager Ned Yost said. "I want him strong for August and September."

Suppan said he hadn't been feeling much soreness on the mound but sought out the team's training staff when he felt some pain after throwing a warm-up pitch in his most recent start. An MRI revealed no structural damage to the joint.

Assuming Suppan returns on schedule, Yost will be faced with some decisions about his starting rotation later this month. The team added Sabathia, the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner, in a Monday trade with Cleveland and will eventually have to make room for him in the rotation.

The two most likely candidates for bullpen duty would be Seth McClung and Dave Bush. But Yost said both have been pitching well lately and he might consider giving each the chance to make starts later in the season, based on which pitcher matches up better against a given opponent.

"I don't know what we're going to do, to be honest," Yost said.