NEW YORK -- After exactly four weeks, Jorge Posada put on the catcher's gear and started behind the plate for the Yankees on Sunday against the Astros.
Posada hadn't caught a game since he suffered a hairline fracture in his right foot on a Michael Cuddyer foul tip on May 16. He had started the past 10 games at designated hitter.
"He's been excited to get back there," said manager Joe Girardi. "It's what he loves to do. When something is taken away for a while, it's hard. Players want to do what they're used to doing and accustomed to doing. ... He really misses being behind the plate."
Girardi said Posada showed a "nice little smile" when he told Posada yesterday that he would be back behind the plate Sunday. With the day off on Monday, it gives Posada plenty of time to recover for the series opener against the Phillies on Tuesday night.
"Until he catches a few games, there's always going to be that question, 'How does he come back the next day?'" said Girardi, who's more concerned about Posada's level of fatigue than he is about any setbacks with the foot.
Girardi still seems hesitant to start Posada on three consecutive days since the veteran suffered a calf injury the last time he started on back-to-back-to-back days. That said, the Yankees manager does want Posada behind the plate as much as possible.
"He's not going to DH every day. He's going to catch, and we want him to catch," Girardi said. "This is a guy who's caught multiple World Series and was the World Series catcher last year. We need him to catch for us."
Sunday will be Posada's 1,460th career game behind the plate.