A-Rod making progress in Vail rehab
VAIL, Colorado ” Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is making progress in his rehab program in Vail, Colorado after right hip surgery, but is unlikely to rejoin the team before New York breaks spring training camp on April 1.
“I’m not anticipating it,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Monday. “It’s only 10 days. His rehab is going well.”
Rodriguez had surgery on March 9. He is rehabbing in Vail, Colo., and is expected to be out until May. He has been riding a stationary bike, working out in a pool and doing range of motion drills.
In other news, Girardi said if the regular season were under way that Xavier Nady would be the starting right fielder over Nick Swisher.
“Nady did a lot of good things last year, so obviously he had somewhat of the upper hand coming in,” Girardi said. “Swish gives us a lot of flexibility.”
Nady was acquired from Pittsburgh last July 26. He hit .268 with 12 homers and 40 RBIs in 59 games with the Yankees. Swisher, who plays first and all three outfield positions, was obtained in a November trade with the Chicago White Sox.
“I know Swisher is obviously going to be a big part of this team,” Nady said. “We both plan on playing a lot.”
Girardi also confirmed that Chien-Ming Wang is scheduled to start the first exhibition game at the new Yankee Stadium on April 3 against the Chicago Cubs. A.J. Burnett and Andy Pettitte will both pitch in a second exhibition game with Cubs one day later.
CC Sabathia remains on line and is expected to start the regular-season opener.
“I do feel good about this team,” Girardi said. “I like the depth of our rotation. I like the fact that we have kids pitching at Triple-A that have big league experience. I like the fact that you send a kid like Phil Hughes down who has a very good spring training and competed at a high level. I feel like we have a lot more depth in that area. That’s an area we didn’t have depth in last year.”
Shortstop Derek Jeter will be rejoining the Yankees shortly from the World Baseball Classic. The Yankees captain played his last WBC game in the United State’s semifinal loss to Japan on Monday night.
Girardi said there is time left for Jeter to get enough at-bats and playing time at short before spring training ends.
“It shouldn’t be an issue,” Girardi said.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.