Yankees Notebook: Jeter running better than ever since return

Derek Jeter made his return Monday night. Credit: Getty Images
Derek Jeter has looked better and better since his return to the team in Toronto.
Credit: Getty Images

Despite scoring nine runs Monday, there was not really an individual performance that stood out for the Yankees. In other words, there was not someone hitting a big home run or having four hits or even driving in more than two runs.

However, if you look beyond the final box score, the day for Derek Jeter was the most noticeable and not just for his two RBI singles.

The more noticeable aspect was how Jeter ran a week after returning from the DL with a calf injury. The running aspect has been something to watch since Jeter has had ankle, quad and calf injuries in this unique year for him.

The combination of injuries has limited him to 46 at-bats entering Tuesday. That is two fewer than what he had in a 15-game cameo during the 1995 season and nine more than he had in an 11-game appearance with Greensboro of the Single-A South Atlantic League three years earlier.

In earlier returns, Jeter has been told to run restrained and to some extent he did Monday, at least once the Yankees were up by nine runs. Before that, there was nothing restrained about him taking an extra base on an error in left field or taking third on a fly ball to right field that required a throw.

“That made me feel pretty good,” manager Joe Girardi said. “And the fact that he got to second on the ball he hit. That made me feel better.”

It’s been an odd sight all year watching five others play shortstop in Jeter’s absence. It’s also been a strange sight watching someone go through what essentially is spring training in the middle of a playoff race.

“It’s been kind of a unique season,” Jeter said. “Now it’s just trying to have some good at-bats and swing at strikes and hopefully get some hits but sometimes you can do your job without getting hits. Sometimes my job is to move guys over and I’ve done that the last couple days. Of course I’d like to get hits every single time, but that doesn’t ever happen. But there’s still other ways to help teams win.”

In the meantime, Jeter will try to block out any thoughts of any injury when he runs the bases or ranges to make a defensive play.

“I don’t really have a choice,” Jeter said. “We only have 20-something games left, so our job is to win as many games as possible, and it’s kind of hard to play games when you’re thinking about not getting hurt.”

Still the Yankees are remaining cautious, which is why Jeter was the designated hitter for the second time in three games.

“I’m trying to make sure that we run him out there almost every day, nothing physical, just trying to run him out there every day,” Girardi said before Tuesday’s game.

Combating fatigue for Kuroda

One of the possible reasons for Hiroki Kuroda allowing opponents to hit .315 last month, his worst such month as a major leaguer, might be fatigue from throwing 171 1/3 innings.

Even if that is actually the case, which is possible, a team in the state the Yankees are in can’t afford not to pitch him unless there is some kind of injury.

They can afford to reduce some of the in-between start routines, which is why Kuroda did not throw his usual bullpen session over the weekend.

“You can back off on some of your work in between starts,” Girardi said. “But it’s not like you can afford not to start him. He got an extra day here and we’re hoping that helps. You can watch his pitch count and we’ve done that all year long and we haven’t extended him because he’s not one of those guys that’s 25 anymore. So we’ve had to watch him but he’s got to go out and pitch for us.”

Even without a bullpen, which a pitcher decides to do, other things such as throwing on flat ground take place.

“It’s a decision usually made by the pitcher, ‘You know what I think I’m going to skip a bullpen,’” Girardi said. “You don’t do it a lot. You don’t do it a number of times in a row but every once in a while you do it. I wouldn’t say it’s exactly the same but sometimes you skip B.P. [batting practice] and those sort of things because you feel like some guys need to save their energy for the game and that’s what he did.”

Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…