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Yankees Notebook: Jeter on fire, Pettitte update

The good start is not the only thing happening for Jeter. He is also getting a degree.

It was a year ago that Derek Jeter attempted to alter his approach by trying to hit without striding. A year ago, he was hitting just .240 with one extra base hit and as a byproduct of the slow start, he disposed of the approach.

“I thought it would work,” Jeter said. “It didn’t work. I just wasn’t comfortable. Why did I try it? [I tried it] because I wanted to do better.”

Jeter has 15 hits in nine games. That is his third-most through nine games behind the 18 he had in 1997 and the 17 in 1999. In those seasons, Jeter finished with averages of .291 and .349.

The good start is not the only thing happening for Jeter.

Siena College in upstate New York announced that Derek Jeter will receive an honorary doctorate degree on May 13. The Yankees will be in Seattle that night so Jeter is planning on having a video played at the ceremony.

Sabathia a man of few words

For the second year in a row, CC Sabathia has taken his first two turns without getting a win. This year he has a 6.75 ERA as opposed to the 1.38 mark a year ago.

It is not his worst ERA through two starts. That occurred during 2008 when Sabathia had a 7.44 ERA for the Indians.

So when asked to describe two starts against Tampa Bay and Baltimore, Sabathia simply said: “Bad.”

“CC has been a notoriously slow starter,” manager Joe Girardi said. “As it starts to get warmer -- we know he likes the heat -- he starts to pitch better.”

Through two starts, Sabathia’s four-seam fastball is averaging 91.5 mph. A year ago through two starts, both occurring in colder weather at Yankee Stadium, he averaged 92.6 mph.

Pineda and Pettitte news

Michael Pineda threw 26 pitches during his bullpen session before last night’s game and experienced no problems.

Andy Pettitte’s next appearance for Class A Tampa will be Friday night in Daytona Beach against the Florida State League affiliate of the Cubs. Pettitte threw 47 pitches Sunday and is expected to throw roughly 60 pitches Friday.

Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.