Brian Cashman says Alex Rodriguez is not ready for minor-league rehab game
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Alex Rodriguez is getting closer, but no date has been set for his first minor-league rehab game, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Monday.
While A-Rod continues to progress in his rehab from hip surgery, Cashman refuted a published report that said A-Rod had been OK'd to play for Class A Tampa next Monday.
"We have not set a timeline for him," Cashman said in a telephone interview. "He's getting close, but no one has talked to me about when."
Asked what the process would be for selecting Rodriguez's minor-league rehab debut, Cashman said: "I don't need to go through a process. Bottom line is no one has talked to me about when he's going to play. He's getting close, I acknowledge that. He's taking batting practice, he's throwing, he's taking ground balls. But we have not set what date it will actually occur because he hasn't gotten to the point where he's ready."
The Yankees hope Rodriguez can rejoin them after the All-Star break in mid-July. However, the looming Biogenesis scandal and baseball's reported desire to suspend Rodriguez could cloud that timetable, too.
Cashman, though, said "I [couldn't] care less" when asked if he is concerned about MLB's investigation affecting Rodriguez's ability to return.
"We support the commissioner's effort to rid the game of cheaters," Cashman said. "And I [couldn't] care less if that involved the Yankees or not. If you cheated, you need to go down. If you didn't cheat, then it's business as usual. If anybody is wrapped up in this stuff from the Yankees' end, then hopefully the commissioner's office will show that. If not, play ball."
Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Eduardo Nuñez took batting practice Monday in Tampa, but the news surrounding Mark Teixeira is not good.
Teixeira received a cortisone shot in his right wrist a little more than a week ago to combat soreness and inflammation, but it did not alleviate all of the pain.
Cashman said Teixeira's doctors are "looking into" the next step. Is season-ending surgery to repair a partially torn tendon sheath more likely today?
"I wouldn't say," Cashman said. "I'm not ready for that. I'm acknowledging that he's still having pain."
Teixeira, who declined to comment on his wrist on Sunday, played in 15 games for the Yankees but went back on the disabled list last week after batting .151 with three home runs and 12 RBIs.
Teixeira suffered the injury while getting ready for the World Baseball Classic in March. At the time, he was told there was a 30-percent chance he would need surgery.
Cashman indicated that struggling Phil Hughes is not in as much danger of losing his rotation spot as some may think, even after Ivan Nova's stellar outing in his return from the minor leagues on Sunday.
"Nova pitched well," Cashman said. "That doesn't all of a sudden change everything overnight . . . Nova vs. Hughes is not something I'm focusing on."
Asked if Hughes needs to pitch better to keep his spot, Cashman said: "I'm not going to say that, because in this town that stuff's explosive. He hasn't pitched well for a short period of time . . . Hopefully, his latest performance is just him getting on the wrong side of the mound. He normally doesn't stay there."