TAMPA — Opting to talk instead of tweet, rehabbing Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez said Saturday his rehabilitation from hip surgery and his relationship with the club are great.
"Absolutely," Rodriguez said in a brief interview when asked if he and the Yankees were okay. "Ready to get back on the field. All good."
They were Rodriguez's first in-person comments since Tuesday, when he said on Twitter that Dr. Bryan Kelly, who operated on his hip in January, had cleared him to play games.
The tweet prompted Yankees GM Brian Cashman to tell ESPN New York that Rodriguez "should just shut the (expletive) up." An ensuing conference call Wednesday among the player, Cashman and team president Randy Levine went a bit better, reports said.
Saturday, Rodriguez and rehabbing SS Eduardo Nunez (oblique) took batting practice in an indoor cage inside Steinbrenner Field.
"I feel like my swing is definitely getting back to form," Rodriguez said. "I hit a ball to right-center the other day that, man, I couldn't hit a ball like that, you know, I think last year to save my life. So it's getting better."
Also Saturday, SS Derek Jeter (ankle) got a hit in a handful of simulated at-bats against Yankees farmhands at Steinbrenner Field.
ACE TO DL: Reds RHP Johnny Cueto went on the disabled list for the third time this season with right lat muscle tightness. RHP Logan Ondrusek was called up from Triple-A Louisville.
CRAWFORD REHAB: Dodgers LF and ex-Ray Carl Crawford, out since June 1 with a left hamstring strain, was set to begin a rehab assignment today with Class A Rancho Cucamonga. In other Dodgers news, RHP Josh Beckett will have season-ending surgery on a compressed nerve in his pitching arm.
D'BACKS: Closer J.J. Putz, out since May 7 with a strained right (pitching) elbow, was activated from the 15-day disabled list.
PIRATES: LHP Wandy Rodriguez, out since June 5 with forearm tightness, was shut down after he felt sore during a throwing session.
ROYALS: RF Jeff Francoeur was designated for assignment.
Times staff writer Joey Knight contributed to this report.