READING, Pa. -- Just call him Triple-A Rod.
In what's expected to be his final tuneup before a return to the big leagues, embattled Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez will play four games with Triple-A Scranton, starting Thursday night.
Rodriguez could be called up to the Yankees if all goes well this weekend.
Monday marks the end of Rodriguez's 20-day minor league stint. The Yankees play the Rangers in Texas that day.
"It's the plan that we talked about [since rehab began], and we haven't deviated, not even one step with the exception of a little rain here and there. So we're on schedule," Rodriguez said Wednesday morning.
Ten games into his rehab stint, Rodriguez is 5-for-28 (.179) with one home run and six strikeouts.
Rodriguez did not play in Double-A Trenton's game Wednesday against the Reading Fightin' Phils. Instead, he took batting practice and fielded ground balls in the morning. Rodriguez had played four straight games prior to Wednesday but said he felt good enough to play with Double-A Trenton, if necessary.
"After playing four straight games, seven or eight plus innings, and being able to play today if I had to, that's a great sign," said Rodriguez, who had hip surgery in January and is embattled in baseball's Biogenesis scandal.
Rodriguez began his rehab in the lowest levels of the minor leagues in Tampa, Fla. He said Wednesday that he looks forward to playing at the Triple-A level and, hopefully, returning to the Bronx soon thereafter.
"I'd still like to see myself slide breaking up a double play, but I think we've checked almost every box," Rodriguez said.
QUESTION: What is reasonable to expect from A-Rod?