The speculation on when Derek Jeter will return to the New York Yankees in the 2013 season is over, as Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports has reported that he will officially make his return to the team and debut on Thursday at Yankee Stadium against the Kansas City Royals.
Jack Curry from the YES Network also confirmed that Jeter will in fact be returning to the Yankees today against Kansas City in the final game of their four-game series. It will be the first time Jeter will be wearing the pinstripes since fracturing his ankle back in October during Game 1 of the 2012 ALCS against the Detroit Tigers when he went to field a ground ball and he went down in a heap of pain, pounding the ground and clutching his ankle. Jeter had off-season surgery to repair the ankle.
The 39-year-old Yankees captain played in four rehab games at Class-AAA Scranton Wilks-Barre and did make a throwing error in his last game on Wednesday night, but most scouts did say that his swing has looked really good and were impressed how quickly he regained it.
Jeter did attempt to come back for the Yankees during spring training in March and played a few games for the team, but stopped because it was revealed that his surgically repaired ankle had a slight crack in it, which only delayed his progress and forced him back to the sidelines for this long.
In Jeter's absence, the team has used Eduardo Nunez, Luis Cruz, Jayson Nix and Alberto Gonzalez at shortstop while Jeter has been on the DL for the first three-plus months of the season. With the Yankees at 49-42 and six games out of first place in the A.L. East, the Yankees definitely could use Jeter's bat and presence in the lineup, in the field and in the locker room to give them a much needed boost.
Jeter batted .316 with 15 home runs, 58 RBI and lead the league with 216 hits while finishing seventh in the A.L. MVP voting back in 2012 and was hitting .333 for the Yankees in the playoffs before his season-ending injury back in October.
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