Rule 5 pick Pendleton sent back to Yanks

Rule 5 pick Pendleton sent back to Yanks

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Driving along Interstate 4 on his way to Yankees camp in Tampa, Fla., pitcher Lance Pendleton on Sunday expressed disappointment about not being able to stick with his hometown Astros, who tendered him back to the Yankees.

The Astros drafted Pendleton, a Houston native who played at Rice University, in the second round of the Rule 5 Draft in December. He had to remain on the 25-man roster the entire season or be offered back to the Yankees. He'll report to Yankees Minor League camp and begin the season in Triple-A.

"I didn't have the Spring Training that I needed to have or wanted to have," said Pendleton, who has allowed five runs in 7 2/3 innings this spring. "I was thinking they might be able to work out a trade for me and be able to send me to [Triple-A} Oklahoma City, but you just never know. I figured that's what they were waiting for to see if something like that was going to happen. I wasn't surprised.

"I was disappointed, not in the decision, but in myself and the Spring Training I had. I kind of got out of whack and didn't throw the way I wished I would have. You're dealt the cards you're dealt and you've got to play and that's how it went. I learned a lot and enjoyed the time I had with the Astros and the experience. No matter what happens, I need to get a little bit better and grow and work hard."

Astros general manager Ed Wade said he tried to work out a trade to keep Pendleton, but couldn't come up with a match with the Yankees. Right-hander Aneury Rodriguez, taken in the first round of the Rule 5 Draft from the Rays, remains in camp.