But it probably wouldn't be too long.
"I don't have an exact day, but I'm not thinking it's going to take three to four weeks once he gets started," Girardi said. "That's not my plan. But we don't know. We don't know how his knee is going to respond. But everything's been good so far, and that's encouraging."
Girardi has been communicating with A-Rod on his progress mostly via text messages recently, and Rodriguez hasn't mentioned any pain since undergoing right knee surgery to repair a meniscus tear on July 11.
"I don't think it's 100 percent," Girardi said of A-Rod's knee, "but I think it's to the point where they think he can start doing stuff."
Heading into the opener of a four-game series against the White Sox on Monday, the Yankees had gone 13-7 since A-Rod's last game on July 7.
Rodriguez -- slated to get an evaluation on his progress by a physician on Monday -- has been recovering in Miami, with the initial stages of his rehab overseen by Dr. Lee Kaplan, who performed the surgery. A-Rod would have to play in at least a couple of rehab games before being activated from the disabled list.
The Yankees previously set an estimated return of mid-August for their third baseman. And if nothing else, Monday's news did nothing to discourage that.
"The fact he's going to start doing baseball activities on Thursday is a great sign," Girardi said.