From the New York Post’s George King :

The Yankees’ postseason dreams took a big hit yesterday in Los Angeles, where Dr. Lewis Yocum told Mike Mussina to avoid pitching for an undetermined period of time.

After hurling three-plus innings Monday night in Seattle, Mussina’s inflamed right elbow didn’t start to feel better, even if he did nothing as far as throwing. When it became more irritated Thursday, he and the Yankees’ medical staff decided he would fly from San Francisco to L.A. and be examined by Yocum.

Mussina underwent an MRI and X-rays and then was examined by Yocum.

“He told me it was tendinitis in the elbow and that I needed time for it to calm down before I do anything else,” Mussina said.

Aaron Small will start today in Mussina’s spot. Randy Johnson will start Tuesday, Al Leiter Wednesday and Aaron Small, today’s starter, will go Thursday.

That would leave Shawn Chacon, tomorrow’s starter, to open the Red Sox series Friday night at Yankee Stadium. Johnson will go Sunday, so Torre needs a pitcher Saturday.

Don’t count out Hideo Nomo as a possible emergency call-up ; the veteran right-hander went 7 1/3 scoreless innings for in Columbus (AAA) last night in the Clippers’ 5-0 win over Toledo.