Alex Rodriguez claps after the Yankees scored a run against...

Alex Rodriguez claps after the Yankees scored a run against the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon. (June 6, 2010) Credit: Getty Images

Ramiro Peña replaced Alex Rodriguez to start the bottom of the ninth inning Sunday, and A-Rod was glad he did.

Vernon Wells began the inning by sending a sharp grounder to third on which Peña fielded a difficult in-between hop and threw Wells out.

Rodriguez, removed because he felt tightness in his right groin, was sitting with ejected manager Joe Girardi inside the clubhouse and was only half- kidding in his reaction to seeing the play on television.

"We were joking about it," A-Rod said. "I said, there would have gone my groin right there."

He said he first felt the tightness before the game and that it was something that got "a little bit worse" during the game. But he attributed that to playing 14 innings Saturday and most of yesterday's game on the hard Rogers Centre turf.

"It's fine now," he said. "I'll be ready to go on Tuesday."

Girardi agreed with that prognosis. "He said it was not painful," he said. "He said it just felt a little tight and it's probably the three days a row on the turf, the 14 innings yesterday. I expect he'll be fine Tuesday."

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