After making it through batting practice and fielding drills this morning, Derek Jeter is set to DH this afternoon in a minor league game. The veteran shortstop was shut down earlier this week due to inflammation in his surgically-repaired left ankle and received a cortisone injection on Wednesday.
While Jeter is obviously making progress, he told reporters this morning that he doesn’t plan to provide daily updates on his ankle moving forward. Via Bryan Hoch of MLB.com:
“I will not address how anything feels anymore,” Jeter said. “It’s good. It’s not broken. Some things, you’ve got to work through, like I told you. It’s really pointless to sit here and say each and every day, ‘How’s it feel? Does it feel better?’
“It’s pointless. Some days are good, some days are bad, but you’ve got to work through it. That’s what I’m going to do.”
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman expressed some doubt this week whether Jeter will be ready for Opening Day, so he could stay on the minor league side for a little while in order to leave open the possibility of backdating a stint on the disabled list. The Yankees likely want to see him play a full nine innings at shortstop and/or back-to-back days before clearing him for the start of the season, even though he figures to be used at DH quite a bit in the early going.
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.