Jeter misses Sunday's game with quad tightnessAfter missing Saturday's game, Jeter again sat out Sunday with quad tightness
According to the skipper, Jeter didn't exactly tell him that he was hurting, but Girardi could sense something was up while watching The Captain during Friday's game.
"We saw him stretching a little bit on Friday. When something happens, you're going to see players move around a little different, and you always watch things like how they run," Girardi said. "It's a concern of mine when someone tells you something's tight, because there's a chance it's something more serious if you don't work that stiffness out."
Saturday had been a scheduled off-day for Jeter because it was a day game after a night game, but according to the skipper, he decided in the middle of that day's victory to keep Jeter out the rest of the weekend.
"About the fifth or sixth inning (Saturday) I started thinking it probably makes sense to give him (Sunday), because in a sense it gives him two more days," Girardi said. "He went through some tightness in his calf in spring training, and he played through it, but it probably makes more sense to give him today. I could've put him in there and that was originally the plan, but I changed my mind yesterday."
The skipper added though that Jeter, as you might expect, wanted to be back in the lineup before the starting nine was penciled in.
"He's not real happy, but I told him missing one game was better than missing possibly four-to-six weeks if something did happen," Girardi said. "He always fights me, but he's been like that since day one. It's never a real comfortable situation when you tell him you're going to give him a day; I think he understands what you're trying to do, but in his heart, he wants to be out there."
Jeter was "available in an emergency" according to Girardi, although The Captain did not play despite the Yankees losing Francisco Cervelli to injury during Sunday's game. That said, with two games off followed by a Yankees' off day on Monday, the skipper was comfortable thinking that Jeter will be back in the lineup on Tuesday - a special day in and of itself because the Yankees will welcome the Cubs into town on Jackie Robinson Day.
"I feel good about putting him out there on Tuesday; we're just trying to be smart about it," Girardi said. "Obviously, Jackie has meant a ton to all of us, and he meant so much to Mo and the way Mo wore his number with pride. I'm sure it means a lot to Derek to play on those days."
Going forward, Girardi said he will certainly be mindful to monitor Jeter's status in regards to health and playing time, but it's still an "inexact science" when it comes to planning The Captain's off days.
"He's 39 years old, and you have to be smart about it and understand there are times you're going to have to give him a day off," Girardi said. "We ran him out there seven days in a row and I don't know if that's something that I'll think about the next time, but as I said, it wasn't going to be an exact science; I was going to watch him, and a lot of it depends on how he was doing. He looked great and was running fine and was swinging the bat, so I left him in there. (Going forward) there will be some obvious days that he will get off, like yesterday, but some of them won't be so obvious; it's just by how I feel and what I see. I'm not saying I won't do seven in a row again, but I have to be aware of what's going on."
Overall though, in the first two weeks of the season, the Yankees skipper is happy with what he's seen from his Captain.
"(Offensively) he's been pretty good, and I've been pleased with the way he has swung the bat; I think we've seen how he's improved every week," Girardi said, "and on the field I think he's been really good. Obviously as we all get older we're not quite what we used to be; I moved better at 25 than at 35 myself. But as far as his ankle goes, I think it's been healthy and hasn't hindered him at all."