Alex Rodriguez #13 of the New York Yankees takes batting...

Alex Rodriguez #13 of the New York Yankees takes batting practice before the game against the Minnesota Twins. (Aug. 21, 2011) Credit: Getty Images

Alex Rodriguez had a date with an X-ray machine Tuesday night after spraining his left thumb Sunday in Minnesota and getting scratched from Tuesday night's Yankees lineup.

While discussing the injury -- which A-Rod thinks will cause him to miss only a game or two -- Rodriguez revealed that he has another date scheduled: with Major League Baseball's investigators Friday in Baltimore.

Rodriguez has been under investigation by MLB for allegedly taking part in high-stakes illegal poker games with Hollywood types. While baseball's power to discipline him for that is next to zero, he is willing -- perhaps even eager -- to discuss the matter with investigators.

Rodriguez, in his brief public statements on the issue, has denied any wrongdoing. He has gotten into hot water with MLB before about his alleged penchant for high-stakes gambling, though to date, all baseball has been able to do is scold him.

"Friday," Rodriguez told reporters when asked if a meeting had been scheduled. "Baltimore. So I'll be talking to you guys Friday afternoon. Can't wait."

A-Rod also couldn't wait to get back in the lineup following knee surgery, and he finally did Sunday. He went 0-for-5 and said his knee felt fine, but he injured his thumb while trying to backhand a Joe Mauer single in the eighth inning in the Yankees' 3-0 victory over the Twins.

"I just jammed my thumb a little bit on that play when Mauer hit it," he said. "I kind of stepped on it. It swelled up a little bit. Hopefully, it's just a day."

Rodriguez did not come out of the game Sunday. He said the thumb swelled up during Monday's day off. He was in manager Joe Girardi's original lineup for Tuesday night's game against the Athletics, but was scratched at about 5:30 p.m. after hitting some underhanded tosses from batting coach Kevin Long before batting practice.

"We were down at a charity event [Monday] night and it was kind of swelling up," he said. "Iced it around the clock a little bit and came out to swing early with Kevin Long and it felt pretty painful."

The X-rays were negative, the Yankees announced during Tuesday night's 6-5 loss to the A's. Rodriguez said he expected to be available to pinch hit, but he was not called upon. He said putting a glove on his hand is the most painful part; the Yankees' original lineup had him playing third base, but A-Rod could be limited to designated hitter duty when he returns.

The bright side? Every day he misses gives his knee another day to heal.

"The good news is the knee feels great," he said. "Knee feels great, body feels good. Just a little hopefully bump in the road here."

Eric Chavez replaced Rodriguez at third base and Mark Teixeira moved into the cleanup spot against A's righthander Brandon McCarthy.

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