When the New York Yankees take on the Kansas City Royals Thursday afternoon, Derek Jeter will once again put on his pinstripes and see his name in the lineup. Jeter is scheduled to bat second as the team’s designated hitter in his return to the Yankees.
At 39 years old, the Yankees captain has not yet taken the field for the Bronx Bombers this year following left ankle surgery last October. So far, New York has fared just fine without Jeter taking the field in their signature pinstripe uniform. The Yankees are just six games back in the American League East.
Despite the team being in the divisional hunt with a record of 49-42 the team still has a vast hole at the shortstop position, and also lack the run production needed to make a run in the second half likely. New York is just 12 out of 15 in runs scored, and ranks second from the bottom in OPS by shortstops.
The return to the big leagues comes a bit early for the Yankee shortstop. Derek Jeter will finish his rehab in pinstripes after Travis Hafner and Brett Gardner suffered injuries in Wednesday’s game. Both men were forced to leave the game as a result of leg contusions received during the game.
“Derek will finish rehab in the big leagues,” said general manager Brian Cashman.
Before the season Derek Jeter planned on joining his teammates for opening day, however he felt discomfort in his fifth spring training game, and eventually a new break was discovered.
Struggling during his rehab assignment in Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes/Barre, Jeter went just 1-9 with four walks during his four games with the club. Derek Jeter will need to hope the pinstripes help bring his performance back to where it should be so that the Yankees can continue to get better and make a run towards the playoffs.
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Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express