Thursday, June 23, 2011
Updated: June 25, 10:25 AM ET
Derek Jeter still has soreness
By Ian Begley and Mike Mazzeo
Special to ESPNNewYork.com
NEW YORK -- Will Derek Jeter's chase for 3,000 hits be delayed further?
The New York Yankees shortstop is eligible to come off the disabled list on June 29, but his injured right calf is still sore and he hasn't been cleared to do anything more than throw.
"We're getting to the point where Wednesday is probably in jeopardy, but I can't rule it completely out," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Friday.
Jeter has been throwing in Tampa but hasn't begun to run yet and hasn't swung a bat. He won't be cleared to do so by the team's medical staff until his strained calf muscle is completely healed. He will then do a minor league rehab assignment before re-joining the Yankees.
"He's still not really doing baseball activities. He's still a little bit sore so (we'll) just continue to monitor it every day and go slow until it's ready," Girardi said.
Jeter has been on the DL since June 14 with the Grade 1 strain to his right calf. Jeter, hitting .260 with two homers and 20 RBIs, first suffered the injury on June 13 against the Cleveland Indians.
"I can't give you a timetable," Jeter said upon being asked about when he'll return. "Best way to put it: When I'm ready to play I'll be back."
Jeter, who turns 37 on Sunday, is currently six hits shy of becoming the 28th player in baseball history to reach the 3,000-hit club.
"He's not doing anything functionally yet other than long toss," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Friday. "He still feels it in his calf."
Cashman added: "He can't do any defensive work, can't swing the bat. Just getting treatment right now. Until that's resolved there, we can't really get him going yet."
Jeter is averaging 1.1 hits per game (68 hits in 62 games). June 29 would be the second-game of a three-game series at home against Milwaukee. Many projected that Jeter could reach 3,000 during the Yankees' three-game series against the Mets July 1-3. But that projection appears premature, based on what the Yankees said Friday.
Girardi could not say how long Jeter's return would take once the Yankee captain started baseball activities.
"He's got to through all the drills and make sudden starts and have quick movements so I don't really have an exact date for how long it would take but not too long," Girardi said.
Once the calf is healed, Jeter likely will face a rehab assignment in the minor leagues as well.
Cashman also dismissed speculation that the Yankees might be interested in shortstop Jose Reyes, who will be a free agent at the end of the season and has told the Mets he won't talk about a new contract until then.
"I have a shortstop in Derek Jeter and I have a young shortstop in Eduardo Nunez," Cashman said Friday. "It's a waste of conversation."
In other Yankees injury news, right-hander Bartolo Colon and infielder Eric Chavez increased their on-field drills as they continue their rehab.
Colon, sidelined by a strained right hamstring, ran sprints in the outfield for the first time, in addition to his third consecutive day of long toss. He threw a bullpen session on Friday and will throw a 50-pitch simulated game on Monday, according to Girardi.
"Hopefully that goes well and we can continue to move forward with [Colon], too," Girardi said Friday.
Chavez, out with a broken left foot, said he was fine after running from home to first about a half-dozen times.
"His running is at a slow pace but he's making progress," Girardi said.
Ian Begley and Mike Mazzeo are regular contributors to ESPNNewYork.com. Information from Matt Ehalt and The Associated Press was used in this report.