Joe: A-Rod's knee no big deal

October, 1, 2011
10/01/11
5:36
PM ET
Two days after saying Alex Rodriguez would be healthy enough to play in every game in the ALDS, Joe Girardi hinted that his injury issue was blown out of proportion because of the market he plays in.

Rodriguez sat out of the Yankees' loss to Tampa Wednesday due to knee soreness.

"I really think if it wasn't New York and it wasn't Alex, this wouldn't have been such a big deal, that a guy was a little cranky," Girardi said. "I think you probably could have asked about ten of our players in Tampa on Wednesday if any of their knees were a little cranky from playing on the turf, and you probably would have gotten about seven 'Yeses.' Because it's Alex, it's a big deal."

Girardi reiterated that Rodriguez is healthy enough to play.

"He was out early yesterday. He's going out early today. I wouldn't make too much of it," Girardi said.

Rodriguez ran into problems with his knee earlier this season. He underwent arthroscopic knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus in July, an injury that caused him to miss 38 games. That injury was a driving for behind Rodriguez's playing just 99 games this season.

Rodriguez also battled a thumb injury when he returned from the disabled list in August.

Because he missed so many games, Rodriguez finished with just 16 home runs and 62 RBIs, snapping the 36-year-old's streak of 13 straight 30-homer, 100-RBI seasons. He said Thursday that he's excited to enter the postseason and try to win his second championship with the Yankees.

"It's a new season and that's one of the great things about playing in New York, it's all about what happens late, especially in October and that's the case for me and my 25 teammates and the coaches and managers," Rodriguez said. "We play here for one reason and that's to win a championship."

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Yangervis Solarte
BA HR RBI R
.373 1 9 5
OTHER LEADERS
HRC. Beltran 4
RBIC. Beltran 9
RA. Soriano 9
OPSY. Solarte 1.017
WC. Sabathia 2
ERAM. Pineda 1.00
SOM. Tanaka 28

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