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Brian Cashman downplays severity of Derek Jeter's latest setback

Derek Jeter reacts while at bat in the

Derek Jeter reacts while at bat in the fourth inning of a game against the Boston Red Sox. (Sept. 7, 2013) Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

BALTIMORE -- A handful of reporters still lingered within the mostly abandoned visitors' clubhouse during batting practice Monday night at Camden Yards, until a Yankees representative stepped over to inform the group that the entire team was outside.

All except for one player, that is.

Derek Jeter was in the building, but manager Joe Girardi reiterated that Jeter wouldn't resume baseball activities until Tuesday at the earliest. Jeter was lifted for precautionary reasons after a base hit during Saturday's loss to the Red Sox.

Jeter did not address the media before last night's game, but GM Brian Cashman did. He downplayed the significance of Jeter's latest setback.

"Right now it's just a day-to-day thing like anything else," Cashman said. "He was a little sore the other day, something he wasn't really speaking to, but you could see how he was moving around so we pulled the plug on it."

The results of a CT scan on Jeter's left ankle came back negative Saturday, but to be safe the Yankees sent the results to Dr. Robert Anderson, who performed Jeter's ankle surgery last October. Cashman said he doubted he'd know those results before Tuesday.

"When you do a CT scan, it sends like 2,000 images," Cashman said. "It's not like you can transport that through email files."

Cashman said Jeter had already been scheduled to undergo a routine CT scan at the end of the season. The Yankees simply pushed up the timetable.

"It wasn't like, 'Hey, just do it,' " Cashman said. "It was, 'Might as well just do it now and get it out of the way.' "

This is the latest in a series of lower-body injuries for the 39-year-old shortstop, who fractured his left ankle in Game 1 of last season's ALCS. Jeter did not return until July 11 and left after one game with a quadriceps injury. He returned on July 28, then injured his calf a couple of days later. Before sitting Sunday, Jeter had played in every game since returning from that injury on Aug. 26.

"I just know we didn't want to be in a situation where we're in March and it's sore and you're trying to play through the soreness and something else happens," Cashman said. "That's why we try to do all we can do to close the gap between the known and the unknown."

Cashman said there was no chance the Yankees would shut Jeter down for the season. The time off now, he said, could even improve his mental health.

"I think from his perspective this was probably a good mind healer," Cashman said. "I'm thinking this was in the back of his mind even though he didn't ask for it."

The Yankees' 4-2 loss to the Orioles Monday night dropped them three games behind the Rays for the second wild-card spot. Before the game, Girardi left open the possibility of a cameo appearance by Jeter Monday night, which did not happen.

"I might use him in an emergency if I had to use him," Girardi said. "That's the situation we're in."

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