NEW YORK -- The Yankees have yet to set a date for surgery on the torn anterior cruciate ligament in Mariano Rivera's right knee, as he first must treat a blood clot in his right calf and attempt to strengthen his knee.
The 42-year-old closer was back in the clubhouse for the first time this homestand before the Yankees played the Royals on Tuesday and was walking well without the aid of crutches. Any pain is more a result of the blood clot than the torn ACL, Rivera said.
Rivera said the focus now is to take care of the blood clot while also taking part in limited physical therapy to improve the range of motion in his knee.
"When I think of someone tearing an anterior cruciate, I don't think of them walking around so well," said manager Joe Girardi. "The doctors are talking about waiting until it's really strong, because then the rehab is easier. It may take a little longer now, but it might be a little shorter on the back end."
Rivera said he is not experiencing any frustration because there is nothing he can do. He has the same mentality about his teammates, who entered Tuesday having lost six of seven games to drop to .500.
"The team's not doing so well, but we've been through that before," Rivera said. "You don't have to feel sorry for yourself. As long as our mentality is good, everything will pass."