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BOSTON -- Alex Rodriguez will not return from the disabled list because of a Grade 1 strain of his left quadriceps.
The New York Yankees slugger, who has missed the entire season after a second hip surgery, was slated to make his 2013 debut this week in Texas if he was able to stay healthy during his final minor league rehab tuneup for Triple-A Scranton this weekend.
"I am extremely disappointed with the results of the MRI and hoping to be back as soon as possible and continue with my goal of coming back and helping the Yankees win a championship," Rodriguez said in a statement released through his public relations firm.
On Saturday, Rodriguez came to the ballpark with what he described as stiffness in the quad. After playing Saturday for Scranton as the designated hitter, he was not in the lineup on Sunday, and the Yankees sent him back to New York for an MRI and examination from their team physician, Dr. Christopher Ahmad, who diagnosed the injury. A Grade 1 strain is considered the mildest level.
Rodriguez, who turns 38 this week, will now return to the team's training complex in Tampa, Fla., for rest and treatment, the Yankees announced. He remains on the disabled list, and it is unclear when he will return to the field.
It is unlikely that Rodriguez will be able to return to the Yankees by next weekend in New York against the Rays, a baseball official with knowledge of Rodriguez's and the team's plans told ESPNNewYork.com.
"He is going to be out for a while so we'll just deal with it and continue to play," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.
Girardi said he did not have an exact timetable.
"You never know how quick a guy is going to heal," Girardi said.
Also looming for A-Rod is a potential suspension from the Biogenesis scandal. There is no set date when punishments will be announced, though they are expected at some point in the second half of the season.
Even if he is suspended, Rodriguez can appeal, keeping himself eligible to play this season. Players' association executive director Michael Weiner has said that player grievance cases likely won't be resolved quickly and, if suspensions hold up, they could be served in 2014.
Sunday was the final day of Rodriguez's 20-day rehab assignment. Since he is not being reinstated to the major league roster, the club would have to petition MLB for him to participate in a new minor league assignment under terms of the collective bargaining agreement.
Before leaving Scranton, Rodriguez told reporters that he thought the MRI would not be a problem and he would be able to go to Texas and play.
"I spoke to [Yankees GM Brian] Cashman, Girardi and the plan is pretty much as scheduled as 20 days ago with one exception: get an MRI, get on a flight to Texas, probably get a workout tomorrow and strap it on Tuesday," Rodriguez said. "I do feel confident, between the MRI and having whole staff sign off, and we'll play Tuesday. I think that's all we can do."
Instead, Rodriguez joins the long list of players who have been re-injured this season. Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Curtis Granderson and Kevin Youkilis have all gone on the DL twice. Teixeira is done for the season, and Youkilis likely is, too.
The Yankees have had 16 players go on the disabled list this season.
On Sunday night against the Red Sox, Luis Cruz started at third base for the Yankees and batted ninth.