Latest Jeter setback of quad strain is frustrating for Yankees and the captain
By Rich Mancuso
BRONX, NEW YORK, JULY 13-Friday night hours before the New York Yankees defeated the Minnesota Twins on a rain drenched evening in the Bronx, Derek Jeter was not on the lineup card of manager Joe Girardi. After sitting out 91 games because of a setback to surgery of his left ankle, Jeter was sidelined again.
This time Jeter may not be disabled, but he and the Yankees will have to wait after the all-star break to see if a Grade 1 strain of his right quad is healthy enough to take the field.
Jeter, after going 1-for-4 Thursday afternoon, had to be removed from the game after aggravating the quad in his third at bat. An MRI result revealed the strain. General Manager Brian Cashman expressed concern Friday about the strain, though a possible return to the disabled list for the Yankees captain is not out of the question.
Though the question will be asked, was Jeter rushed back onto service sooner than expected because the Yankees have been pressing to score runs?
“It could resolve after that time, it could take more time, and I can’t rule out ultimately a disabled list,” said Cashman referring to possibly Jeter missing more time.
So, whatever enthusiasm the Yankees had a day before was quickly exhumed by this latest setback to their captain. Obviously the presence of Jeter in the lineup does have meaning and the Yankees for the time being again will go with Eduardo Nunez at short, Luis Cruz or Alberto Gonzalez.
Jeter was the designated hitter Thursday. And that was the plan for the time being to assure that the ankle was fit for an everyday role at short. However, the Yankees were always playing the precautionary role when it came to Jeter returning to the Bronx.
He was scheduled to play another game at Triple-A Scranton Thursday, but Cashman left a message for Jeter Wednesday night to pack his bags and come back to the Bronx,
“I guess you gotta be careful even when it’s just a DH situation,” said Cashman late Friday afternoon when asked about the circumstances of Jeter returning sooner than expected.
He added, “If there is a lesson to be learned on that, moving up one day appeared to be a harmless circumstance at the time. But listen, you go through the process for a reason.” He was referring to the rehab stint that Jeter went through to get back in the lineup.
Girardi said, Jeter wanted to play Friday night. He will have a short bench with Jeter not available for the last two games before the all-star break. “His frame of mine is good. He wants to give it a shot after these seven days to see where he’s at.”
Jeter was not available to the media for comment though he released a statement that said, “It’s frustrating. I don’t know what else you want me to say. I worked hard to get to the point of rejoining the team yesterday. It’s not how you draw it up, but hopefully I’ll be back out there soon and help this team win some games.”
Mariano Rivera closed out the win Friday night and recorded his 30th save. Part of five World Series championships with Jeter, he said about the latest setback “It was hard.”
“He worked so hard to come back and play and be with his teammates and help this team as much as he can. It’s incredible. You have to find out a way to get it done, get healthy and help the team.”
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