OAKLAND, Calif. — It’s been a slow go for Alex Rodriguez, both on the basepaths and in the healing of his right hamstring strain.
The 40-year-old DH was eligible to come off the disabled list Thursday night, but two days earlier, Joe Girardi said that wasn’t going to happen, pointing instead to Saturday.
That’s still in play, but after watching A-Rod run the bases before Thursday night’s game, the manager didn’t sound as sure.
“Saturday’s probably still a question mark,” Girardi said. “My hope is [yes], but we’ll see how he feels tomorrow. It’s still not where he needs it to be yet.”
The “it” is Rodriguez’s ability to push himself while running. A-Rod said that although “every day I think I’ve gotten 5, 10 percent better,” he hasn’t felt comfortable going all-out.
“I just want to keep going every day and get to the point where I feel like I can just let it go and not think about it,” said A-Rod, who again took a full round of batting practice before the game.
Part of his hesitation is making a mild injury, which he hasn’t felt in “a while,” worse.
“Hamstrings are always tricky,” he said. “The key for me is be patient, be smart. When I come back, I want to come back for good.”
Girardi said Luis Severino is scheduled to play catch Friday and will require a rehab start before being activated. The struggling 22-year-old, 0-6 with a 7.46 ERA, likely was going to be sent to Triple-A before he got hurt, and Girardi would not commit to Severino’s destination when he’s healthy.
“That’s way too far down the road,” he said. “He’s one of our starters and our plan is for him to be one of our starters, and let’s just see where he’s at. The big thing is we’ve got to get him right.”
Bay Area native CC Sabathia, who figures he’ll have 75 to 125 assorted friends and family in the stands Friday night when he comes off the disabled list to start against the A’s, hopes to build on his last start. That was May 4, when he threw seven shutout innings against the Orioles.
“I’m healthy and ready to go,” said Sabathia, who was sidelined by a left groin strain.
Sabathia added that pitching near where he grew up is just another start to him these days. He said with a smile, “It just costs me money to play here now.”