UPDATE: Thursday, June 27, at 2:20 p.m. ET by Tom Kinslow
Derek Jeter spoke to the media today about Alex Rodriguez and the controversy around him and the rehab on his injured hip (via Brian Hoch of MLB.com)
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ESPN's Wallace Matthews, Rodriguez is wary of the Yankees' wishes for him this season:
According to a source, Rodriguez thinks the Yankees are deliberately slowing down his return to their active roster in the hope they can have him declared medically unfit to play this season, enabling them to recoup 80 percent of his $28 million salary through insurance.
"Alex thinks there's something really off about this situation," the source said. "Here we have a doctor declaring him fit to play. You think they would be happy about that."
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UPDATE: Wednesday, June 26, at 4:26 p.m. ET by Eric Ball
Andy McCullough of Sports Illustrated provides the final tidbit that matters the most regarding how Cashman feels about Rodriguez:
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In an interview with Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York, the 45-year-old had some choice words for the oft-scrutinized third baseman.
"You know what, when the Yankees want to announce something, [we will]. Alex should just shut the f--- up. That's it. I'm going to call Alex now," Cashman remarked.
On Monday, Cashman shot down a report that A-Rod, who is recovering from a torn labrum, was ready for a rehab assignment, telling ESPN.com that "he has not been cleared by our doctors to play in rehab games yet."
But on Tuesday afternoon, Rodriguez tweeted a direct contradiction to that statement:
It's easy to see why Cashman is upset.
Rodriguez responded to Cashman's comments on Wednesday, according to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News:
No matter the reason, and no matter who's at fault, whenever players and teams are making statements that completely belie each other, it doesn't exactly make the team or the communication within the organization look very good.
People are already beginning to take sides.
Sports Illustrated's Joe Sheehan notes that Rodriguez shouldn't be the bad guy:
But The Boston Globe's Pete Abraham seemed to quite enjoy the straightforward nature of Cashman's statement:
As Marchand states, this won't exactly help an already rocky relationship between the Yankees and A-Rod, who asked for a woman's phone number during Game 1 of last year's ALCS and is now a main target of an ongoing MLB investigation.
Rodriguez hit .272/.353/.430 last season with 18 homers and 57 RBI. In the postseason, he went 3-of-25 with just one run scored, zero home runs, zero RBI and 12 strikeouts.
He is expected to start a rehab assignment sometime soon, although now the exact details of that aren't exactly clear.