TAMPA — The Yankees' Alex Rodriguez is set to play tonight in his first minor-league game on a rehabilitation assignment, with rainy weather in the bay area sending him to South Carolina instead of the customary rehab games with Tampa of the Florida State League.
Rodriguez, who last played Oct. 18 and had left hip surgery in January, said he felt fine and was eager to get on the field.
"Awesome," he said Monday at the Yankees' spring training complex. "I'm really excited."
Rodriguez, 37, is scheduled to start for host Single-A Charleston in the South Atlantic League, playing at least three innings against Rome. Rodriguez, who turns 38 this month, said he didn't have a timetable for rejoining the team.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said he still envisions him as an everyday third baseman.
Last week, Rodriguez tweeted that his hip surgeon cleared him for rehab games. GM Brian Cashman said Rodriguez hadn't been cleared by team doctors. "It's all been very positive," Rodriguez said. "We've talked to all our doctors. Everyone has approved it."
Daulton Surgery: Darren Daulton's surgeon said the former Phillies All-Star catcher is dong fine after a seven-hour operation to remove two brain tumors in Philadelphia. Dr. Kevin Judy said Daulton, 51, who has a residence in Clearwater and for several years has been a Philadelphia-area radio host, is expected to be released this week.
Diamondbacks: The team's uniforms will include a memorial patch for the rest of the season to honor 19 firefighters killed while battling a wildfire northwest of Phoenix. … RHP Trevor Cahill went on the 15-day disabled list because of a bruised right hip, and the club purchased the contract of RH reliever Chaz Roe from Triple-A Reno.
Rangers: DH Lance Berkman revealed that a sore right knee was caused by a fall on steps on the team's charter plane Thursday night. Asked if it was just a freak accident, Berkman said: "No, premeditated."
Gun Raffle Canceled: Double-A Huntsville (Ala.) canceled a gun raffle that was to be featured at Wednesday's Second Amendment Night promotion. Minor League Baseball officials said the promotion was likely not in the franchise's best interest. Members of the National Rifle Association will still get in free.