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Giambi set to start rehab assignment, says he's 'fired up'

TAMPA, Fla. -- New York Yankees slugger Jason Giambi is set
to start a minor league rehab assignment Friday night with Class-A
Tampa and hopes to rejoin the team next week.

The designated hitter, who has been sidelined since May 30 after
tearing tissue in his left foot, said he will play two games with
the Yankees' Florida State League team before he is re-evaluated
Sunday.

"I'm to that point where I really can't do anymore working out,
taking BP and running," Giambi said. "Now it's going to be more
game activity. I think that will be a gauge to see how I do."

Giambi took on-field batting practice for the second time
Wednesday and went through an extensive base running session.

"I'm fired up," Giambi said. "It's gone faster than I
expected."

Giambi is hitting .262 with seven homers and 23 RBIs. His foot
began bothering him soon after he played the field for the first
time on April 28, and he hit .117 in May with three homers and six
RBIs.

The Yankees' offense is putting up staggering numbers, scoring
63 runs in its last five games going into Tuesday night's game
against the Royals in Kansas City. That's the first time New York's
offense has scored 63 times in a five-game span since July 26-29,
1931, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Even so, manager Joe Torre said, it will be good to have Giambi
back.

"You certainly don't discount the ability of Jason Giambi,"
Torre said. "Streaks are streaks, and Jason is probably as steady
a player as you want to find in terms of his on-base percentage.
That's usually important for us in the way we play the game."