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.
Not all players coming in to spring training are in The Best Shapes of Their Lives. Some have put on a few pounds, such as Miguel Sano, notes Twins GM Thad Levine:
Sano has been given medical clearance to engage in all baseball workouts with his teammates, his surgically reinforced left shin now completely healed, though the Twins intend to lighten his schedule to prevent any new injuries.
They’d like to lighten something else, too: His “generous carriage,” as General Manager Thad Levine delicately put it last week. Sano’s conditioning understandably lags, after a winter largely spent incapacitated by the surgery.
Sano’s conditioning has often been a topic of conversation among the members of the Minnesota press corps, though not always in good faith. For example, last year when Sano injured his shin by fouling a ball off of it, one member of the The Fourth Estate found a way to make a column out of blaming the freak injury on Sano’s conditioning. At least in this instance his colleague is correctly noting that the poor conditioning is a result of the injury and not the cause.
Still, it’s just another issue facing Sano this spring. He’s out of shape, coming off of an injury, and — not that he’s due any sympathy for it — he’s facing a likely suspension arising out of the allegations of sexual assault leveled against him late last year.
So this spring we’ll be seeing more of Sano, it seems. At least until that time we’ll be seeing less of him.