- Ian Begley, ESPN Staff Writer
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At the plate: For the first time since Sept. 14, A-Rod homered in a live game.
Rodriguez crushed a fifth-inning fastball well beyond the wall in left-center field for a two-run homer. It was his first homer since he went deep against Tampa Bay in mid-September.
"That one felt pretty good, it felt pretty awesome. It's been a long time," Rodriguez said. "To take a mid-90s fastball and hit it that way, I was certainly not able to do that the last two or three months of the season last year, so that's definitely a good check in the box."
On the night, Rodriguez finished 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a strikeout. He reached on an error by the Reading Fighting Phils' third baseman in the third and struck out in the sixth.
Rodriguez is 5-for-25 with five RBIs and seven strikeouts since his rehab assignment started July 2.
"Tonight was probably by far the best I've felt," he said.
Rodrgiuez could return to the majors on July 22 against the Rangers in Texas, which would mark the end of his 20-day minor league rehab assignment.
When asked how quickly he felt he could return to the big leagues, Rodriguez smiled and said he was "about six days away."
In the field: Rodriguez was solid, if not spectacular, over seven innings at third base.
He fielded a high hopper with ease in the first and showed flexibility by getting to a low grounder in the second.
He also charged in on a grounder and made a strong throw to first in the fourth inning and was involved in a rundown.
On the bases: Rodriguez, who had hip surgery in January, seemed to be pain-free while running out the bobbled grounder to third in the third inning. Also, his home run trot seemed to be in midseason form.
What's next: Rodriguez is scheduled to play with Trenton against Reading again on Tuesday night.