If you were hoping to see Derek Jeter and today was the only game you were going to this season, then you’d be out of luck–Jeter is sitting out.
Manager Joe Girardi understands fans want to see Jeter in his final season, but he also has to focus on Jeter’s health and well being.
“I have to manage him with a focus of winning games and keeping him healthy, not being a farewell tour,” said Girardi, who placed Dean Anna at shortstop for today’s afternoon game. “I wasn’t hired to put on a farewell tour.”
Girardi was also asked if there was a chance Jeter could get in later in the game, but the chances didn’t seem likely.
“Then you start to run out of infielders and that sounds like to me it is for a farewell tour,” Girardi said. “It is not the last week of the season. These games are obviously very important to us. They are important today, tomorrow, the next month, I have to manage that. I’m sorry if people came to see him today. I have to be smart about it.”
Girardi admits he’s a bit torn at the moment with trying to please the fans and trying to keep Jeter healthy, but in order for the fans to see Jeter, Girardi would have to manage how he plays him.
There is not a whole lot I can do about that,” Girardi said. “When you start running guys out there too much, you risk injury. I think people would be a little bit more upset if he were out two weeks or a month or something like that. I understand that fans want to see him play. I want to see him play. I would like to run him out there 162 times. But I have to do what is best for him and the team.”
– Mark Teixeira is slated to come off the disabled list Sunday against the Tampa Bay Rays and he believes he’s on the right track to return. He’s going to hit in the cage Saturday before the game and finds the upcoming scheduling perfect. Since the Yankees are heading to Florida, he can travel with the team and participate in extended Spring Training games before being activated from the disabled list.