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David Hernandez sidelined with sore elbow

CLEARWATER, Fla. - David Hernandez - who entered spring training as the favorite to leave here as the Phillies closer - is sidelined with soreness in his right elbow, manager Pete Mackanin said Tuesday.

Hernandez has not pitched in a game since March 1. He was scheduled to pitch on Saturday, but was not used. Hernandez said on Sunday that he did not pitch because he wanted to take it slowly and get ready for the season.

"He has some issues with his elbow," Mackanin said. "I don't know what they are. Issues is the best way I can put it. I don't know if it's even serious or they're just backing off on it."

Hernandez, 30, missed the first half of last season because of  Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. He pitched in 40 games last season with Arizona. The Phillies signed him in December to a one-year contract.

"I want to know exactly how far he's been set back," Mackanin said. "Obviously he's been set back. I'm curious to find out how soon he can get back out there."