TAMPA -- Already without Curtis Granderson, Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira for the start of the season, the Yankees may also be without Derek Jeter on Opening Day.
Jeter, who suffered a broken left ankle in the American League Championship Series last October, received an injection of cortisone Wednesday, a day after he was scratched from the Yankee lineup because of inflammation.
He's expected to miss at least a couple of days, and general manager Brian Cashman says Jeter's availability for the April 1 opener against the Red Sox could be in jeopardy.
"The doctor has said basically that you can experience a lot of different things along the pathway,'' said Cashman. "It's not a surprise. Sometimes you can get through this stuff and sometimes you can't. It barked a little bit, so we just have to back off. He's going to have some ups-and-down in the early portion [of his comeback], but eventually, at some point, it will dissipate and he'll be past it.
"But obviously, it's still really early in the process, so we just have to make sure we take the right steps until eventually, it's behind him.''
Cashman said he couldn't forecast when Jeter might be on the field again, and couldn't promise that the shortstop will be in the lineup on April 1 when the Yankees host the Red Sox in the regular season opener for both clubs.
"I don't know yet,'' said Cashman. "The season's starting to approach and I know if you asked [Jeter], Opening Day would be a certainty. But in fairness, I don't know yet. We've got to be in a position where he can play a full nine innings of defense and be able to go back-to-back [days] and all this other stuff. There's some time left. We'll see how he responds. But I can't give you certainty now that what he's just experienced isn't going to push it back a little bit. I just don't know yet.
"I can't rule out [that he starts the season on the DL]. We've got to do what's right for him. Whatever's right for him will be right for us. I'm not saying he's going to be DL'd, but I can't tell he won't be.''