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08/29/11 10:30 PM ET

MRI on thumb for A-Rod; Boston set in doubt

Yanks may be without third baseman's bat at Fenway

BALTIMORE -- Alex Rodriguez was sent to New York to have an MRI exam performed on his sore left thumb and could miss the Yankees' upcoming series against the Red Sox, which will begin at Fenway Park on Tuesday night.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that Rodriguez will rejoin the team on Tuesday in Boston but added that it is "really questionable" whether Rodriguez would be available to play in the three-game showdown.

"He's day to day -- I don't know if he'll be able to play," Girardi said. "With his thumb, you've got to let it heal, so I can't tell you exactly when he's going to be back. It's just when he feels better."

Rodriguez originally sprained his thumb while stopping a Joe Mauer infield single in Minnesota on Aug. 21, his first game back from a stint on the disabled list.

Rodriguez aggravated his thumb injury in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader against the Orioles, going 0-for-4 at the plate, and did not speak to reporters after the games. Hand specialist Melvin Rosenwasser saw Rodriguez in New York.

"He came back and he said he irritated it a little bit more, so we just have to be smart about it," Girardi said.

Rodriguez has played in just four games since coming off the DL from surgery to repair a torn right meniscus, going 3-for-17 (.176) with a home run.

"You'd like to give him some continuity," Girardi said. "You figure your timing gets better the more at-bats you have in a row, and his have been broken up. It's just something we're going to have to deal with."

Jeter expects to return for opener in Boston

BALTIMORE -- Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter was moving around better on Monday, one day after he fouled a ball off the top of his right kneecap, and the captain said that he expects to be in the lineup on Tuesday against the Red Sox at Fenway Park.

On Sunday, Jeter underwent X-rays that came back negative, but he was out of New York's starting lineup on Monday for the finale of its series against the Orioles, replaced at shortstop by Eduardo Nunez.

"It's a whole lot better than it was last night," Jeter said after the Yankees' 3-2 victory at Camden Yards. "We made a lot of progress going from last night to today, and hopefully we can make some more. The plan is to play tomorrow."

Jeter was hobbled during a third-inning at-bat against Baltimore's Zach Britton on Sunday but stayed in the game, going 0-for-4 in New York's 2-0 loss, the first game of a doubleheader that the two clubs split.

Jeter was taken out of the lineup minutes before the first pitch of Game 2 due to swelling, saying it was "really bizarre" how the knee reacted. He received treatment for most of the day on Monday and was wearing a light wrap as he left to board the team's charter flight.

Yanks shut down Marte, Feliciano for now

BALTIMORE -- Yankees left-handers Pedro Feliciano and Damaso Marte have each suffered setbacks in their rehabilitation in the Gulf Coast League and are unlikely to rejoin the big league club this year.

Manager Joe Girardi said that both pitchers were sore after their most recent outings in Tampa, Fla., and have been shut down indefinitely.

Feliciano has been bothered all season by a left rotator cuff strain, and Marte had surgery on his left shoulder last year. Girardi had said for some time that the Yankees couldn't count on either pitcher making it all the way back.

"I think knowing the severity of Feliciano's injury, I held out a little bit of hope, but I thought it would be really difficult for him to get back," Girardi said.

"I wasn't sure on Marte because he'd had the surgery and you didn't know. We knew the surgery was a serious surgery, and we didn't really know how he was going to respond to it."

Feliciano had been seen by Dr. James Andrews earlier this year and was attempting to rehabilitate his arm before undergoing surgery that could wipe out his entire 2012 season.

Thus, Feliciano may complete his two-year, $8 million deal with the Yankees without actually throwing a single regular-season pitch for them.

"If he has surgery, he's going to miss a whole year anyway, and it might be career-[ending]," Girardi said.

Bombers bits

The Yankees optioned right-hander Hector Noesi to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Monday in order to make room for right-hander Freddy Garcia on the active roster. It is likely that Noesi will rejoin the big league club at the conclusion of the Minor League season on Sept. 5.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @bryanhoch. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.