Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter went 1-for-2 with a walk and a run scored Saturday evening in his first minor league rehab game at Double-A Trenton.
He also played five innings of flawless defense at shortstop, reporting no abnormal pain or discomfort in his once-strained right calf.
Jeter is scheduled to play just one more rehab game with Trenton before rejoining the Yankees for their series-opener Monday night in Cleveland.
The veteran spoke about his recovery, his mindset, and his current fitness to Tim Bontemps of the New York Post:
“I feel good,” Jeter said after the game. “There are no problems whatsoever. It’s just getting at-bats and playing, but I feel good. We play this game every day for a reason. You have to get into a rhythm.”
Jeter’s fill-in, Eduardo Nunez, went 3-for-4 with a home run Saturday in the Yankees’ defeat of the crosstown Mets and is batting .339/.381/.525 since taking over starting shortstop duties on June 14. Nunez will head back to the bench on Monday, but he has earned himself more playing time going forward.
Jeter will return to a .260/.324/.324 batting line. He’s sitting on 2,994 career hits.
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.