Poll: When Will Derek Jeter Return?

Pineda, Cabral, and Rapada continue rehabbing in Tampa
2013 Draft: Aaron Blair
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

It has been nearly six months since Derek Jeter had his left ankle surgery and nearly one month since he was setback by inflammation and required a cortisone shot. Yesterday we heard the Cap’n had to scale back his rehab work over the weekend, and that was before Joe Girardi confirmed Jeter isn’t particularly close to appearing in rehab games. From Andrew Marchand:

“[Early May] was a date that was thrown out there,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “The easiest way for me to say it is he will be back when he is back — when he can physically do it on an everyday basis, and I don’t think any of us will know the exact date until we go through some trial and error.

“He is not ready to play in games. I don’t think they necessarily have an exact date where they know he is going to play in games. We’ll just go day by day and see how he feels.”

(snip)

“Sometimes you can take too many ground balls,” Girardi said. “They talked about lessening that load just because he was taking so many. Derek is such a creature of habit. To get him to break a cycle sometimes is difficult. He is going to want to do as much as he can as soon as he can, so we are just trying to make sure we don’t go too fast. But there was no setback.”

Girardi added that the scaled back the workload was not a setback — they’re making sure he doesn’t press too hard and aggravate anything, apparently — but saying Jeter “will be back when he’s back,” doesn’t sound particularly promising.

The Yankees will continue to rely on Eduardo Nunez at shortstop for the time being, assuming pitchers stop hitting him with pitches at some point soon. Jayson Nix is safe as the utility infielder even though he’s been dreadful on both sides of the ball so far. They simply don’t have another option right now. I do think they should start combing the trade market for a better backup infielder though, especially since a 38-year-old shortstop with a bum ankle will be need a capable backup even once healthy.

Anyway, the Yankees will be without Jeter for what will almost certainly be the entire month of April. How much longer will be miss after that? Who knows. Let’s find out what everyone thinks.

How long until Jeter is activated off the DL?
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Pineda, Cabral, and Rapada continue rehabbing in Tampa
2013 Draft: Aaron Blair
  • Barry

    4 weeks I think. I doubt he’s happy about missing time, he’ll keep working hard.

    • whozat

      I don’t think it’s an issue of working hard. No one’s ever accused Derek Jeter of not working hard, but he’s old and this was a bad, bad injury for a shortstop. Frankly, I think he needs to be prevented from OVER-working and setting himself back over and over again. He doesn’t seem the kind of person that admits limitations well. That’s why I think it’s going to take all the time, because he’s going to need to be held back for his own good to make sure that he doesn’t come back too fast — and also that they’re going to have to be conservative because he can’t be trusted to be honest about how he’s doing. He wants to play too much, sort of.

      • Manny’s BanWagon

        Yep.

        An ankle fracture that required surgery on a 38 year old shortstop is a hideous injury and I don’t think people realized just how bad this injury really was.

        • fat jeter

          I agree. I just don’t see why people didn’t see this coming. The facts are plain and simple. 38 year old SS. Broken ankle. I hope for a speedy recovery, despite the moniker — just don’t see it happening. Take into account what he’s currently doing — running bases, playing catch — essentially light baseball duty. Now take into account the need for a full spring training, the ability to play 2 back-to-back games at some unknown organizational level, and his body needs to respond as if its just another day at the office. Sorry Mike, but a poll with the range of 2 weeks to 6 weeks does not do justice to the severity of this injury. It won’t be long before we question whether he comes back at all.

  • http://ryanhandt.com handtius

    I’m thinking 6 weeks. 2 more weeks of slow progression then a month or rehab games, but i’ll say half will be in ext spring in fla so they can control it more. just my guess.

  • DC

    I’m guessing a last week of May/first week of June scenario.

  • Manny’s BanWagon

    I see mid May as best case scenario and more realistically the 1st week of June.

    • Jim Is Bored

      I’m in this boat too.

  • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

    Quite frankly, I’m surprised ‘no’ was not an option on that poll.

    You know it would have gotten votes…

    • Scott

      Agree: or, my own option, “he’ll be back but largely or entirely limited to righty DH & pinch-hitting duty.”

  • Andy

    I’m coming over from England June 18th to see 3 games at the stadium, hope he’s back by then it’s my last chance to see him, Andy and mariano! I agree with the post above i think a first week of June date would be most likely.

  • Preston

    My initial reaction to seeing Jeter collapse on the field was that his career was over. I no longer think that he won’t play again. But I think at some point the team will realize that if the goal is to prepare him to be the everyday SS, it isn’t attainable. It’s just hard to see a 38 yo with a metal plate in his ankle fielding 9 innings routinely. If Jeter comes back he will probably have to accept a lesser role, say a 50/50 split at SS with Nunez and DH against LHP.

  • Eddard

    I think it’ll be 4 weeks. Granderson will return in early May, then Jete then Texiera. As long as Nuney can stay healthy we’ll be just fine. It’s when Nix has to play that balls get booted and strikeouts occur. At least Stewart provided some offense last night, Nix sat on one Verlander change and that’s been his contribution.

    • Preston

      Already forgotten the triple play?

      • Jim Is Bored

        Eddard doesn’t record the events of any particular game in his memory.

        He gets ideas, and holds on to those with all of his might.

        • Havok9120

          I’m sticking with my “anterograde amnesiac” theory.

  • http://www.twitter.com/mattpat11 Matt DiBari

    I’ll optimistically say four weeks.

  • trr

    Longer than 6 weeks.
    I think it’s gonna be a while, folks.

  • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

    Seriously surprised there wasn’t a ‘no’ option on this poll.

    You know people would have picked it…

    • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

      …feel free to delete that repeat, or any of other THIRTY SEVEN that will be appearing shortly. I hate my IT director. Sigh…sorry.

  • Twains Yankee

    All star break

  • LarryM Fl

    My vote was for 6 weeks. I’m optimistic about Jeter’s recovery with that vote. Its not the bones. The tendons and ligaments were damage in the break. I believe the decision will come when the doctors tell Jeter while you are playing there will be some discomfort. Either you play with the pain or sit and wait for the day which may never come. He’s going to 39 even a healthy 39 would have problems playing as often as he does.

  • fabricio

    according to bryan hoch jeter fielded more ground balls and took more batting practice today

  • Larry

    I say he’s back in 6 weeks but as part time DH/SS. I admire him and have for his entire career but I’m kind of tired of reading the same crap over and over that he will retire as the starting shortstop. He should move positions if it will allow him to play a few more years being he can continue to hit. Otherwise, just retire rather than forcing something that just isn’t possible. He’s not superman.

  • mike

    as long as Jeet has some free time maybe he can try to work with Papi on his investigation into finding out how those freaking ‘roids got anywhere near him

  • Monterowasdinero

    It should be more than 6 weeks but it won’t be. I am very concerned that he will reinjure it and that will = retirement. So much goes into playing SS in a major league game.

    There is no rush for him to be back before the all star break.

    Seriously.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I’ll say six weeks unless he’s kidnapped by Eddard in the name of all that is love and Nuney.

  • djyank

    he’s starting to remind me or another derek, or derrick that is….

  • Reuben Sierra’s Chains

    4th of July

  • i like bacon

    first off i love jeet, but i got jumped on during spring training when i said he would play less than 100 games. he’s going to have a lot of trouble playing at major leauge level with that injury. i wish him the best, but this year will be a stuggle for him.