BOSTON -- The Yankees understandably kept close tabs on Alex Rodriguez's recovery during his time with their top Minor League farm club, but several of the club's other injured big leaguers are also making significant progress down at the organization's Tampa, Fla., training facility.
Outfielder Curtis Granderson is taking batting practice and should participate in simulated games shortly, according to manager Joe Girardi, and right-hander David Phelps threw a bullpen session on Saturday as he aims to rejoin the Yankees' starting rotation.
"He said he felt better than his last bullpen," Girardi said of Phelps, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a right forearm strain. "I don't think he means so much physically, but he probably threw the ball a lot better. When you don't throw for two weeks, you're going to be a little off."
Girardi said that he is uncertain what the Yankees' plan will be for Phelps, who is 6-5 with a 5.01 ERA in 18 games (12 starts) this year.
"He left as a starter, and we envision him as a starter," Girardi said. "I'm not sure what exactly is going to happen, though, when he comes back. We've got to see how he feels and how he does."
Girardi noted that catcher Francisco Cervelli is taking dry swings and throwing, and "says every day his arm feels better." Infielder Jayson Nix got six at-bats in a simulated game on Saturday but did not test his strained right hamstring on the bases.
Running is Jeter's greatest remaining hurdle
BOSTON -- Derek Jeter dipped into his stash of Louisville Sluggers and disappeared down the ancient Fenway Park runway, a dank passageway that leads from the visitors' clubhouse to the playing field.
Was this a significant step in the Yankees captain's recovery? Not just yet. Jeter has not been cleared to resume swinging a bat; instead, he was volunteering to stand in as a visual aid while Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes threw bullpen sessions as preparation for their next starts.
"It'd be kind of hard to swing while they're throwing a bullpen," Jeter joked. "I think I'm hitting tomorrow. I think."
Jeter is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list from his strained right quadriceps next Saturday against the Rays at Yankee Stadium, but it is less than certain that he will be able to do so.
"I guess anything is possible," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "I'm just not sure. I think the biggest hurdle he would have to clear is running. I wouldn't rule it out, but I wouldn't say I'm 100 percent sure he'll be back [on Saturday]."
The Yankees have not yet cleared Jeter to resume light jogging, let alone run the bases or take ground balls, but Jeter believes he will be ready to play shortstop in the minimum possible time frame.
"I've got a whole week," Jeter said. "I think I will be there."
Jeter said that he has not felt any discomfort in his quad for several days. He said that he generally speaks to head athletic trainer Steve Donohue on a daily basis to iron out his recovery progress and what he will be permitted to do.
"I come here, I get my treatment and I understand it takes time," Jeter said. "I can't play until Saturday anyway, so there's no reason to go out and start running the bases at full speed today. I know things take time, but I don't really sit around and dissect what I'm doing on each particular day.
"I do what I'm told. I want to play as soon as I can play."
• Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia celebrated his 33rd birthday on Sunday. Three previous times, he had made a start on his birthday (2002 and '06 with Cleveland, and '11 with the Yankees), going 0-2 with a 5.94 ERA in those outings.
• Robinson Cano carried an 11-game hitting streak into Sunday's series finale against the Red Sox, marking a Yankees season high. Cano, who singled in the second inning to extend his streak to 12, entered Sunday hitting .389 (14-for-36) with three runs scored, two doubles, a homer, 10 RBIs, nine walks and a .500 on-base percentage during the stretch.
• On this date in 1984, the Yankees retired Roger Maris' No. 9 and Elston Howard's No. 32, dedicating plaques in their honor in Monument Park.