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Carlos Beltran likes Yankees' chances -- if they stay healthy

Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran prepares for batting practice

Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran prepares for batting practice during spring training at George Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015. Photo Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

TAMPA, Fla. - Carlos Beltran doesn't know what to expect in 2015, but right now he's healthy, a significant first step for a better season than last.

"Physically I feel fine," he said Monday. "I just want to be healthy. If I'm healthy, I have a lot of confidence in myself."

Beltran wasn't healthy last season, limited to a mostly unproductive 109 games because of a bone spur in his right elbow. Though he turns 38 April 24, he sees a bounce-back season, both for himself and the Yankees, who struggled to score runs in 2014.

He noted the injuries to himself and Mark Teixeira, as well as Brian McCann's struggles in his first year in pinstripes.

"I think we're going to be better than last year, no doubt about it," said Beltran, who hit .233 with a .301 on-base percentage, 15 homers and 49 RBIs. "There's no reason why it shouldn't be better if the health is there."

Beltran has been taking batting practice and working in the outfield, though he's proceeding cautiously. He has not tested his arm beyond 150 feet but said that's not atypical for drills.

"I don't think I have ever thrown somebody out from 150 feet,'' he said. "Normally when you throw people out, you throw people out from 120, you kind of charge the ball. That's just kind of to put the arm in shape."

CC Sabathia, almost 21/2 years removed from his last good season, said over the weekend that he comes to camp with something to prove. Beltran understands.

"I show up every year," he said, "with the mentality of proving myself."

Miller nasty as advertised

Joe Girardi watched Andrew Miller, signed to a four-year, $36-million contract during the offseason, throw his first bullpen session of camp and came away impressed.

"Downhill plane was great, slider was really good," Girardi said. "Everything as a manager you want to see and everything I didn't like seeing when we faced him."

 

Focus on Severino

Righthander Luis Severino, the club's top-rated prospect and a player who many think could help the club this season, threw a bullpen session on the main field under the eyes of most of the team's player personnel department, including its pro scouts, who are in town for meetings. One of them is Matt Daley, a Garden City High School graduate and a pitcher in the organization the last two years. He retired during the offseason because of lingering shoulder issues but took a job with the team as a professional scout.

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