NEW YORK -- Despite hints that he might be ready to play for the Yankees before the All-Star break, joe Girardi pretty much ruled out a return for Derek Jeter until the Yankees resume play on July 19 against the Red Sox in Boston.
"What’s my pat answer? He’s ready when he's ready," Girardi said. "I think what you have to do is you have to see how he’s moving around, how he’s responding physically from playing every day. You have to build him up. He has to be able to play more than five innings once every three days. So I mean we’ll go through this week, I’m sure, and we’ll make an evaluation."
Jeter played five innings Saturday night for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and went 0-for-2. He will DH today, but beyond that, Girardi could nto provide a timetable for his progression.
"Well, I don’t ever put a time limit on it, because I don’t think its fair to the player and I don’t think it’s fair to us, because if you say a player’s supposed to be here on this day, and he’s not ready to go, then it becomes a whole 'nother story," Girardi said. "And that’s not what we want. So I’m not saying anything about when hes going to be here or when he’s not going to be here. I just don’t like to put a date on it."
Asked directly if that meant Jeter would not be back until after the break, Girardi said, "He’ll probably play in the field a couple of days in a row and we’ll go from there. It’s just a slow buildup, kinda like, if it’s spring training, and yesterday he played the field the first day, he’d probably have today off."
Since there are only seven days left before MLB shuts it down for four days, it's safe to assume that Jeter will not able to accomplish the goals the Yankees have set out for him between now and next Sunday.
"If there’s one positive thing in all of this, you do have the four days that we are off, so even if he was ready on those days, you can’t bring him back anyway," Girardi said. "I don’t think you want to run a player out there if he’s not ready to play. I think you risk of injury doing that and you have a whole 'nother DL stint and set of circumstances. So I so it allows players to get the time that they need."