<
>

Jeter plays field before second rehab game

MOOSIC, Pa. -- Even though he is the designated hitter Sunday, Derek Jeter got some field work in.

After batting practice, Jeter remained on the field while the rest of the Scranton RailRiders headed back to the clubhouse, taking about 40 ground balls at shortstop.

Jeter appeared fine, although he didn't have to move very far for most of the balls, and didn't put much stress on his surgically repaired left ankle.

He did not speak with reporters prior to the game.

The Yankees are being cautious with Jeter, since Sunday's game begins at 1:05 p.m., after a 7:05 p.m. game the night before. Jeter played five innings at shortstop Saturday night, and went 0-for-2 with a walk at the plate, in his first minor-league rehab game.

As for batting practice, Jeter was spraying line drives all over the field, as usual. And he was playfully interacting with his temporary Triple-A teammates, who appeared to be goading him into trying to hit a home run.

Jeter did hit one ball off the top of the wall in left field, eliciting shouts from the Scranton players gathered behind the batting cage.

At one point, a young boy emerged from the dugout and handed Jeter a towel -- it's another sweltering day here. Jeter accepted the towel gladly, but said, "We don't need towels, we need hits."

Another big crowd is expected here at PNC Field for Sunday's game, after a sellout crowd of 10,000 fans packed the park Saturday night.

When the gates opened at 11:30 a.m., hundreds of fans flocked to the front rows down the third-base line, hoping to get a closer look at No. 2.

After he was done taking grounders, Jeter spent several minutes signing autographs for the fans near the RailRiders dugout. Then he retreated to the cluhouse to prepare for the game.