Thursday, September 15, 2011

A-Rod's Return to Yankees' Lineup on Friday Still Looks Uncertain

New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez had another day to rest his sprained thumb in Toronto, but said  he wasn't sure  he would be playing against the Blue Jays.  Goodbye Cameron.  Helloooo Nunez. 

While the rest of the Yankees spend their last off-day of the regular season prepping for the stretch run, A-Rod said he will will test his swing on Friday and make a decision after that.

Asked by reporters if that means he won't play against the Blue Jays, Rodriguez said, "That depends on how the session goes."

Only yesterday, Joe Girardi was optimistic about A-Rod's Friday night encore.

"We decided  for him to not hit [Wed.]," said the manager.  "We said, you know what, if we can give him two more days before he actually swings on it, it's probably better off for our plans just to put him there Friday."

Contrary to what Girardi said about A-Rod's Friday night return to the lineup yesterday, he has now backed off by saying his slugger is more day-to-day.

"I haven't touched a bat in five days," said Rodriguez.  "Maybe Girardi has more confidence than me."

The third baseman injured his left thumb Aug. 21 against the Minnesota Twins.   He played in nine games since then and is hitting .258 (8-for-31) with two home runs and 4 RBI's over that span.

Rodriguez was expected to miss only three or four games since the digit acted up again Sept. 9.  That is, until it was slow to heal this week.

Girardi planned on using A-Rod if the slugger could swing a bat on Thursday.  He didn't, so it doesn't look good.

A-Rod took ground balls and threw long-toss before Wednesday's game against the Seattle Mariners.

"I was at the point I had to stop because I was unable to do my job," said Rodriguez. "It's not going to feel 100%, but you have to play through it." 

The Yankees play 14 games in 13 days before closing out the regular season-- all against AL East rivals.

For A-Rod, this has been a tough week.  Besides breaking up with his long-time actress girlfriend, Cameron Diaz, the put-offish player was named the sixth "Meanest Major League Baseball Player" in a Sports Illustrated player's poll.

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