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Thursday, July 18, 2013
Rapid Reaction: A-Rod powers two-run shot

By Ian Begley

MOOSIC, Pa. -- Alex Rodriguez cleared another hurdle toward his expected return to the big leagues Thursday night.

Rodriguez went 1-for-4 with a two-run, opposite-field homer in his first game with Triple-A Scranton.

Here is a breakdown of Rodriguez's night:

AT THE PLATE: Rodriguez homered for the second time in three games. He deposited a fastball over the right-field wall in the third inning in an impressive display of power. Rodriguez's homer to a right is another sign that he's getting more comfortable at the plate.

On Monday, Rodriguez hit a 400-foot homer to left field. It was his first homer since Sept. 14.

In his first at-bat, Rodriguez hit a shot to right field that died at the wall. He also struck out with the bases loaded in the fourth.

In the sixth, Rodriguez grounded out to first and was out on a tag by Mike Hessman. No, A-Rod didn't attempt another rendition of the slap play.

Overall, Rodriguez is 6-for-32 with two homers and seven strikeouts in 11 rehab games.

Sunday is the final day of Rodriguez's 20-day stint.

At that point, the Yankees have to decide whether they want to recall Rodriguez to the majors or keep him on the disabled list.

IN THE FIELD: Before Thursday's game, Rodriguez said it might take him a few weeks to regain his full range in the field. His play in the field Thursday illustrated that point.

Rodriguez couldn't get to a ball down the line in the fourth. The ball was hit hard, but it's one that Rodriguez may have gotten to with a sharp dive toward the line.

Rodriguez has shown that he can make the routine play in his last three games, but has yet to get to a ball that would be considered challenging on the major league level.

ON THE BASEPATHS: Rodriguez didn't have many chances to test his surgically-repaired hip on the base paths. He showed no rust on his trot around the bases, though. Rodriguez said two situations he'd like to face in a game are going from first to third on a single and breaking up a double play.

WHAT'S NEXT: Rodriguez is expected to be in the lineup at third base on Friday night for Triple-A Scranton.