Twinned once more, Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez continued their rehabilitation programs on Friday at the Yankees’ complex in Tampa, Fla. For weeks, Rodriguez (hip surgery) appeared to be closer to a return than Jeter (broken ankle). Now the gap between them has apparently shrunk, with Jeter now seeing minor-league pitching in simulated encounters.

“I’m not sure who you’ll see in a game first,” manager Joe Girardi said before opening a three-game series against the Orioles. “Alex has obviously has more simulated at-bats than Derek. But we’ll just see how it goes.”

After igniting a controversy on Twitter this week, Rodriguez is said to have revealed concerns about his condition during conversations with managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner, and later with president Randy Levine and general manager Brian Cashman. The team has said repeatedly they have not set a date for Rodriguez to begin a rehab assignment.

Rodriguez ran the bases and took part in sliding drills on Friday, according to reporters in Tampa. Jeter was cleared to run outdoors earlier this week, having been confined to indoor conditioning since re-fracturing his ankle in April.

The two also continue to take “simulated at-bats.” Girardi explained how that works: The player gets into the box for an at-bat or two against minor-leaguers working out at the complex. Then he heads into the field to scoop grounders. Then he repeats the process. This is a step short of a simulated game.