Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte nearing spring debuts

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Yankees Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte will each make their Grapefruit League debuts within the next week. Jeter, recovering from left ankle surgery that ended his season abruptly in the 2012 American League Championship Series, received the thumbs-up from his doctor. His debut could come as early as Sunday against the Blue Jays. Manager Joe Girardi plans to use him as a designated hitter:

“I’m OK with that,” Girardi said. “I won’t be giving him any must-go’s, those type of things. So I’ll see how he feels and go from there.

Jeter, turning 39 years old at the end of June, hit .316 during the regular season, leading the league in hits and plate appearances.

As for Pettitte, the lefty could make his debut on Wednesday against the Phillies. He missed time between late June and mid-September due to a fractured fibula and has been working during the off-season to get back into starting shape. Pettitte:

“Hoping to be able to get into a game now. I feel really good. Hopefully we’ll get into a game the next time. Everything’s feeling good.”

He posted a 2.87 ERA over his 12 starts and the 40-year-old hopes to build on that as he enters his 18th Major League season.

Yankees acquire A.J. Cole from the Nats

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The New York Yankees have acquired reliever A.J. Cole from the Washington Nationals for cash considerations.

Cole was supposed to be the Nats’ fifth starter this year but that didn’t work out too well. He pitched in four games for the Nats, starting two, to the tune of a 13.06 ERA, having given up six home runs in 10.1 innings. That’s . . . something.

Don’t get too used to Cole on the New York roster, as this seems like one of those “give us an arm” for a couple of days deals, after which Cole will be DFA’d and will either accept an assignment to Scranton or be cut loose. Such is life at the fringes for a guy who is out of minor league options.