First Pitch: DJ4K?

Will DJ3K become DJ4K one day?

Derek Jeter’s former manager doesn’t think so.

“When people start talking about 4,000, it’s probably out of reach,” Joe Torre said Sunday, “but I’ve never questioned anything this kid has set his mind to, so we’ll see.”

Why does Torre see it that way?

“Because he has a long way to go, and this game is not easy to play on an everyday basis,” Torre said. “I think a savior here is that you have the DH where even though it’s not a day off, it’s still a little less stressful. And I don’t think Derek Jeter -- and I’m not putting words in his mouth, I’m just going from my observance -- I don’t think he’s going to hang around for a personal record unless he’s able to contribute to his team doing well.”

Jeter, 38, is signed through next season and has a player option for 2014. He currently has 3,186 career hits, meaning he’s 814 away from 4,000.

Jeter is on pace for 204 hits this season -- he has 98 already -- meaning he’d get to 3,292 by the end of 2012. That would mean he’d need to average 177 hits over the next four seasons to get there, which would put him at 42. (Of course, Jeter has hit .242 in his last 48 games, so who’s to say he can keep up that pace?)

Sounds like a stretch. But as Torre said, you can’t ever count out the Captain.

Question: What do you think of Jeter’s chances of reaching 4,000? Is it attainable?

Up now: Johnette Howard examines Phil Hughes in her latest column. The 25-year-old right-hander has pitched quite well of late, winning five of his last six starts. I wrote news stories on Joe Torre saying Roger Clemens should be a Hall of Famer and the Yankees acquiring veteran reliever Chad Qualls. There are several items up on the blog as well, including the latest Yankeemetrics from Katie Sharp.

On deck: The Yankees take on the Rays in a three-game series starting Monday night. Wallace Matthews has you covered from the road. Stay tuned to the blog for the latest updates, and, as always, thanks for reading.