The Yankees opened their arms to accept Mark Teixeira and Kevin Youkilis back from the disabled list. But the two most famous members of this club remain far from a return. While third baseman Alex Rodriguez (hip surgery) rehabilitates at the club’s complex in Tampa, Fla., shortstop Derek Jeter (broken ankle) continues to work out here in The Bronx. Both are tentatively scheduled to return after the All-Star Break. Rodriguez figures to be closer than Jeter. Jeter stopped by batting practice to play catch before Saturday’s game against Boston. He also chatted with a man named Bernando LaPollo, a 111-year-old Yankees fan. Manager Joe Girardi explained why Jeter would want to be near his teammates, and how his presence aided them, too. “I think for a player, you always want to feel like you’re a part of it,” Girardi said. “Sometimes when you go down to Tampa to rehab, you feel like there’s a big distance between what you really want to do and what you’re doing. So I think mentally it’s good for players to be around. “And it’s great to have him around. He’s encouraging, he’s upbeat all the time. For a guy that’s usually playing every day, his attitude has been pretty uplifting considering what he’s going through. You don’t see him pouting. You see him working and trying to get better. That’s good to see.” Jeter can only complete so much baseball activity, though. He intends to head back to Tampa when the team leaves for a 10-game West Coast road trip starting June 6. Down there, he can catch up with Rodriguez.
Derek Jeter around, but still not close to return
Newark Star-Ledger | Jun 2