Derek Jeter could be back playing shortstop as early as this week.
All he needs to do is give New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi the OK.
“If that’s what he feels he’s ready to do, then we’ll do it,” Girardi said. “He has a 100% clearance from the doctor.”
Jeter played designated hitter during a spring training tilt Saturday, his first game since breaking his ankle in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series back in October.
The Yankees captain is scheduled to DH again Monday but said he plans to discuss playing shortstop with Girardi soon.
After his debut Saturday, in which he recorded a hit, Jeter said his life can finally get back to normal.
“Now it’s normal spring training,” he said. “I played a game. So now it’s just continue to get more and more comfortable. More at-bats. More pitches. More times running on the bases.”
Also making his spring debut for the Yankees on Saturday was closer Mariano Rivera, who tore his ACL last year. He struck out two batters in one inning. Starting pitcher CC Sabathia, coming off surgery to remove a bone spur in his left elbow, will make his spring training debut Friday, according to reports.
MANNY TAKES SHOW TO TAIWAN
Unable to find any major-league takers, Manny Ramirez is taking his talents to Taiwan.
Ramirez was set to touch down in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Monday after signing with the EDA Rhinos of the four-team Chinese Professional Baseball League, according to CBS Sports.
The 40-year-old slugger will try to parlay his time spent in Taiwan to a job in Japan or back in Major League Baseball.
Ramirez played for the Oakland Athletics’ triple-A affiliate last season, batting .302 with 14 RBI and no home runs in 17 games before being released.
He last played in the majors for the Tampa Bay Rays in 2011, going 1-for-17 in 5 games before being suspended for PED use.
NO CHANCE FOR ESCOBAR
Kelvim Escobar’s comeback bid ended soon after it started.
The 36-year-old former Toronto Blue Jays and Los Angeles Angels righty was released by the Milwaukee Brewers after being diagnosed with a pinched nerve in his pitching hand.
Escobar signed a minor-league contract with the Brewers during the off-season with hopes of making their big-league roster. He made one appearance in Cactus League play, giving up one earned run with two walks and a hit batsman in two thirds of an inning.
Escobar has dealt with right shoulder issues over the last few years and has pitched in one major-league game since 2007.
Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz is in danger of missing the season opener. An MRI showed inflammation in his right heel where he suffered a season-ending Achilles injury last season ... A's starting pitcher Brett Anderson left Sunday’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks with a strained right trapezius after facing two batters and throwing eight pitches ... Seattle Mariners reliever Josh Kinney will be sidelined for several weeks after tests showed a stress reaction in his left rib area.