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05/12/08 11:46 PM ET

Improving A-Rod to miss rest of week

With quad not completely healed, Yankees being cautious

ST. PETERSBURG -- Alex Rodriguez's strained right quadriceps will not permit him to resume playing games this week, forcing the defending American League MVP to sit out this weekend's Subway Series against the Mets.

Rodriguez had an MRI exam taken on Monday morning in Tampa, Fla. Rodriguez will also be held out of extended Spring Training games this week, though he will continue to work out at the club's Minor League complex.

"It's still not completely healed," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said on Monday at Tropicana Field, where the team opened a four-game series with the Rays. "It's still not where it needs to be."

Dr. Allen Miller, a team physician based in the area, plans to compare Monday's MRI to an earlier image to gauge its progress and get a better idea of how they can predict Rodriguez's recovery. The team expects to have that analysis by Tuesday afternoon.

Rodriguez had been tentatively scheduled to play extended Spring Training games in hopes of coming off the disabled list Thursday, the first day he would have been eligible.

"I think we were all definitely hoping, but we can't rush him," Yankees outfielder Johnny Damon said. "We need to make sure he's 100 percent before we rush him back and have another setback. It's unfortunate, but guys have to deal with it and we have to step up."

Rodriguez was placed on the 15-day disabled list on April 30 with a Grade 2 strain of his right quadriceps, an injury he originally sustained running out a ground ball on April 20 at Baltimore and aggravated when he returned to the lineup after missing three games. He has not played since April 28.

"You can't afford to have him come back for two days and lose him again for six weeks," Girardi said.

The Yankees' main concern is the first aggressive burst Rodriguez would make after jumping out of the batter's box at game speed, which was how he re-aggravated the injury against the Orioles.

Rodriguez worked out Monday following the MRI, and he will be permitted to continue hitting and fielding. He told The Associated Press, "So far, so good," following his workout.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.