(AP) Jeter to miss weekend series with quad strain
By HOWIE RUMBERG
AP Sports Writer
Derek Jeter was not going to take it easy, not after spending 91 agonizing games sidelined with a broken ankle. That’s not Jeter.
At 39 years old, the New York Yankees captain might not have been ready to return to the team at his desired level of play.
In his first game this season, Jeter strained his right quadriceps in his third at-bat Thursday. He will miss the weekend series against Minnesota, and New York won’t rule out a return to the disabled list.
After just four rehabilitation games, the Yankees pushed up the star shortstop’s return one day after Brett Gardner and Travis Hafner got hurt Wednesday night. Jeter had been telling the team he was ready to return, and general manager Brian Cashman said reports from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre were positive.
So Jeter returned to a huge ovation and beat out an infield hit in his first at-bat. He also scored a run and had an RBI on a groundout that ended in a close play at first. He was pinch hit for in the eighth inning.
Either way, Jeter is out again. An MRI showed a grade one strain.
Jeter, of course, was against going straight to the disabled list. The plan is to keep the shortstop out for the three-game series against the Twins, and then he will have four days for the All-Star break to receive further treatment before the Yankees reevaluate. After the break, they start a series at Boston on July 19.
Cashman wouldn’t blame age as a factor for Jeter’s latest injury: “I don’t want to say it’s Father Time knocking on his door.”
But manager Joe Girardi was realistic about how he uses the Yankees career hits leader.
In a season full of makeshift lineups because of absent former All-Stars, the Yankees appear to have been snakebit twice.
Call it DL 2.0.
Jeter joins Mark Teixeira (wrist surgery), outfielder Curtis Granderson (broken pinkie) and catcher Francisco Cervelli (broken hand), who have been hurt and then had setbacks or second injuries.
Teixeira returned briefly before season-ending surgery. Cervelli developed a stress reaction and is shut down for now. Granderson, who broke his forearm in his first at-bat in spring training only to be hit again after eight games back, was just cleared Thursday to take dry swings, Cashman said.
Alex Rodriguez (hip surgery) was due to play seven innings for Class-A Tampa on Friday night, but the game was rained out. He is just 2 for 15 in his rehab assignment with one RBI.
Cashman was eager to get his stars back but with all the setbacks and uncertainty, he can expect to explore trades as the July 31 deadline approaches.
Either way, Girardi thinks the team, which is 50-42 despite all the injuries, will do just fine.
NOTE: The Yankees completed a contract with their third first-round draft pick, Aaron Judge, No. 32 overall for $1.8 million. The outfielder out of Fresno State was a compensation pick for losing Nick Swisher to free agency.