NEW YORK -- When the Yankees begin hitting in Spring Training, Joe Girardi doesn't worry much about their stats. The manager is more concerned with how their at-bats look, not what their results are.
That's how he's treating Alex Rodriguez's Minor League rehab assignment. The third baseman is just 1-for-6 in three games in Class A, but Girardi isn't focusing on what the numbers say.
"You try to watch his at-bats, and how hard he's hitting the ball. The contact is probably the most important thing, not whether he went 2-for-3 or 3-for-4," Girardi said. "I'd like to give him seven or eight days before you start to do that and see if you see an improvement, kind of like Spring Training."
Girardi and Rodriguez have spoken almost daily since the third baseman began his rehab assignment on Tuesday, and the conversations are mostly about how he's feeling and how his body and injured hip are responding, not necessarily about how he's playing.
The final day of Rodriguez's rehab assignment is July 22, but Girardi wouldn't say whether or not he would be back before then.
"I wouldn't assume that [he'll take the full 20 days], but that's what we're allowing him to do," Girardi said. "That's why I don't put a time on it. If he needs 20 days, he needs 20 days."
Josh Vitale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.