Eric Chavez could return Tuesday

7/25/2011 - MLB Eric Chavez New York Yankees + more

NEW YORK -- New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Eric Chavez could return Tuesday after the team was satisfied with an evaluation of the third baseman on Monday night.

Chavez, who was placed on the disabled list May 6 with a fractured fifth metatarsal in his left foot and has battled other injuries since, said he has heard that he will be activated for Tuesday's contest against the Seattle Mariners.

"It feels good," Chavez said of being close to rejoining the Yankees. "Everything has been going good and I'm just ready to get back at it."

Chavez, who has missed 70 games entering Monday's game against Seattle, said he's feeling about as good as he could health-wise and it might take some time to get back to where he was prior to the injury with such a long layoff.

Chavez injured himself running the bases against Detroit on May 5. At the time, Chavez had been off to a great start with the Yankees, batting .303 on the year while driving in six runs as he backs up the corner infield positions.

"When I broke my foot, when I was rehabbing it was kind of like a you roll your eyes type of deal," Chavez said. "Frustration definitely when I broke my foot because everything was going so good and I was playing well. I haven't been playing that well the last two years, so it was definitely a high level of frustration."

As he's tried to work his way back to the Bronx, Chavez has had to battle new injuries along the way. Right as his left foot healed, Chavez experienced kidney stones and back problems, which prolonged his stay on the disabled list.

Back injuries derailed Chavez's career when he previously played for Oakland and he said he's not sure what exactly caused the new back injury, although he said the injury came about in the same timing as the kidney stones. Chavez said that the thought of going home to his wife and family crossed his mind following the back injury, but he had a quick recovery.

"The thing that made it tough was being away for a six-week period and then trying to get back into shape and having to wait another seven to 10 days," Chavez said. "The back stuff really threw me off by like seven to 10 days."

With Chavez's return to the Yankees imminent, Girardi said he is not sure how he will immediately use the 33-year-old. With regular third baseman Alex Rodriguez out for at least a few more weeks, Chavez could be used regularly at third base, but Girardi wants to see how Chavez feels before making that determination.

The manager added that it wouldn't hurt to give backup infielder Eduardo Nunez a day off, as Nunez has been the primary third baseman in Rodriguez's absence, and there's a chance that Chavez could be in the lineup right away. Girardi also didn't rule out the possibility of Chavez playing seven straight days.

Chavez hopes he can help the Yankees down the stretch with the final two months of the regular season approaching.

"When the frustration set in, just knowing that this team is a really good team and hopefully going to make the playoffs, that's why I'm here," Chavez said. "Now I got a chance to contribute and can hopefully do that."

Matt Ehalt is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.