By Evan Brunell
Derek Jeter is hitting the disabled list with a right calf strain, manager Joe Girardi announced Tuesday. The team delayed the announcement until 6 p.m. so Jeter could confer with a doctor as the team was hopeful he could avoid the DL.
After collecting his 2,994th hit on Monday, Jeter pulled up lame with a calf strain in the sixth inning and had to exit the game. The DL stint will be his first since 2003 when he missed six weeks with a shoulder injury after Ken Huckaby slammed into Jeter's shoulder while trying to tag him out. Before that, Jeter had minimum-stay stints on the 15-day DL in 1998, 2000 and 2001.
When Jeter returns, it will be to a .260/.324/.324 line in 293 plate appearances, easily the worst performance of his career. He signed a three-year, $51 million deal in the offseason, so both Jeter and the Yankees will hope the rest does him some good and he comes back strong.
Jeter will be eligible to return June 29 and has a good chance of meeting that timetable, as his injury is thought to only last a week or just over. That date is the second game of a three-game set with the Brewers at home. The Yankees then embark on a six-game road trip. Their first opponent on this road trip will be the Mets, but at least Jeter will get a chance at hit No. 3,000 in the same city, although Yankees fans may not appreciate it coming in the Mets stadium. Cleveland is the next stop, and with all due respect to the city and Indians, it's not a place that's nearly as acceptable as it would be for the Captain to get 3,000 at Wrigley Field (Cubs) or at Great American Ball Park (Reds), where the Yanks are headed Friday.
Taking Jeter's roster spot is infielder Ramiro Pena, who will serve off the bench as Eduardo Nunez fills in at shortstop. Nunez is considered by some in the organization to be Jeter's eventual permanent replacement.
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