The last time Derek Jeter was on a baseball diamond, it was on September 7, 2013. A few days later, he announced he was done for the 2013 season after a third unsuccessful attempt to return from an ankle injury. Today, Jeter will make another come back and this time aims to be successful. Jeter will make his Grapefruit League debut, and he says he’s ready to get out there and have a normal spring.
“Last year, I felt like I was rehabbing,” Jeter said. “This year, I’m just here to play.”
Manager Joe Girardi agreed Jeter looked like himself this year and looks forward to managing a normal spring training for Jeter, something he was unable to do last season.
“The good thing is, he is healthy and it’s been a while,” Girardi said. “I will run this like a normal spring training for him, and if I have to back off, I’ll back off. But right now the plan is just to run it like a normal spring training.”
So what’s the plan for Jeter as Spring Training goes along? How many games will he play? How many games will he start at short stop? How many games will he be the DH or sit on the bench? If the Yankees knew the answer, they weren’t biting.
“I think it’s unfair to put an idea on it exactly what you’re going to get from him, because I think it has to be from watching him and communicating with him,” Girardi said. “If you put a number on it, you might end up limiting how much you would play him, and I don’t want to do that. I want it really to be determined by him, in a sense, and how he’s doing.”