Yesterday, Derek Jeter was cleared by doctors to begin running and baseball activities. This is big news for the Yankees as the offense has been struggling and the team seems to be in dire need of their captain.
This still puts Jeter at roughly 6 weeks away, the typical length of a spring training. So best case scenario, he joins the Yankees at the end of July/beginning of August. It would be a great addition for the Yankees to get Jeter back just in time for the playoff push, but there is no telling if he will be able to stay on schedule during his rehab. The soon to be 39-year-old has already suffered one major setback this season and the Yankees have their fingers crossed it will be smooth sailing this time around.
The biggest concern will be keeping things together the next six weeks or so until he returns. With his back-up, Eduardo Nunez, suffering injuries and setbacks himself, the Yankees are running thin at the shortstop position. Jayson Nix will be the starter in the meantime, who will provide very little offense. This makes Jeter’s return all the more important to the Yankees.
The one thing about Jeter, he doesn’t carry an offense, he never has and never will. He provides a spark and leadership that very few are capable however. Whether it be getting a base hit, moving a runner over or coming through with a clutch hit, Jeter always finds a way to help his team win. Jeter has a knack for making the players around him better and that is an attribute the Yankees could really use.
We will know soon enough whether Jeter is able to return to form or if Father Time has finally caught up with him.