Posada likely to return on Sunday

Posada likely to return on Sunday

NEW YORK -- The Yankees on Saturday played what they hope will be their final game without Jorge Posada, who also sat out the previous two days with a bruised left ring finger.

"I feel like that extra day is going to help him," manager Joe Girardi said prior to the game on Saturday. "He wants to play, but to be on the safe side, let's see if we can give this another 24 hours."

Posada injured the finger when a foul tip off the bat of Nelson Cruz nicked his glove in the eighth inning of Wednesday's game against the Rangers. X-rays taken at Yankee Stadium that evening were negative, but the finger has been sore ever since.

On Saturday, Posada, 28, sported a wrap -- what Girardi called "a contraption" -- on the finger, which the team hopes will help dull the pain when he catches. Though he did not play, Posada caught a bullpen session to test the finger.

"I think he wants to play every day," Girardi said. "I think he wanted to play yesterday."

Posada, batting .277 with 17 homers, had been riding something of a hot streak before the injury -- a .384 average, two home runs and eight RBIs over his past four games. Jose Molina has started all three games in his absence.

The injury news was no better for outfielder Brett Gardner, who took Saturday off from batting practice after feeling a recurrence of pain in his left thumb. Gardner, who has been on the disabled list with a fractured thumb since July 26, said he planned on being cautious with the thumb going forward.

"I'm not sure if it's something that I should work through," Gardner said. "It doesn't feel like I messed it up."

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.