A-Rod out of Yankees' lineup vs. Phils

Updated: June 16, 2010, 1:49 AM ET
By Andrew Marchand | ESPNNewYork.com

NEW YORK -- Alex Rodriguez was not in the New York Yankees' lineup for the fourth consecutive game because of a strained right hip flexor.

However, he and manager Joe Girardi expect him to be in Wednesday night's lineup against the Phillies.

"That's the plan," Rodriguez said before the Yankees beat the Phillies 8-3 on Tuesday night.

Rodriguez felt fine during pregame drills, which was the final hurdle for his recovery. Both Girardi and Rodriguez thought that Rodriguez could pinch-hit and possibly even play the field as a reserve, if needed, Tuesday night. He didn't get in the game, though.

For Wednesday, Girardi thought that Rodriguez would be "full-go."

Girardi's original plan was to use Rodriguez at designated hitter and start Jorge Posada at catcher on Tuesday. Instead, after the team's medical advisers recommended a more cautious approach for A-Rod, Posada was slated to DH with Francisco Cervelli behind the plate.

"We want to be smart about this and take more of a long-term approach," Rodriguez said. "Obviously, it's something we have to keep an eye on."

A-Rod tested his groin during drills before the game. He fielded grounders, made throws, hit off a tee and took batting practice.

"I felt OK. No setbacks," he said. "I've never really had any groin situations and obviously from what I hear, you have to be sensitive to it."

Rodriguez left New York's 4-3 loss at Baltimore on Thursday night after one inning, hampered by tightness in his groin for the second time in a couple of days. He had an MRI on Friday that revealed tendinitis in his right hip flexor. The injury is a concern for the Yankees, but Rodriguez and the team say that the groin tightness he's been feeling doesn't appear to be related to last year's hip surgery. On Tuesday, Rodriguez reiterated that it is unrelated to his hip surgery, while admitting that it is a condition that may not fully go away.

"It's way on the other side," Rodriguez said. "The pictures came out as clean as they could possibly be."

Something that has been eye-popping is A-Rod's lack of power. Rodriguez, who has just eight homers, said it has nothing to do with his hip.

"My home runs are just down," Rodriguez said. "The year is not over yet."

Girardi said Rodriguez "didn't really have a problem" until he played a 14-inning game on turf in Toronto last Saturday, which was a day game after a night game. The three-time AL MVP is batting .290 with eight homers and 43 RBIs.

With Rodriguez out, Girardi started Ramiro Pena at third and batted him ninth. Robinson Cano moved up to the cleanup spot in the lineup. Cano doubled and scored a run in five at-bats while Pena went 0-for-3 with a strikeout.

The Yankees also made a roster move prior to Tuesday night's game, putting right-hander Sergio Mitre on the DL with an oblique injury. They recalled lefty Boone Logan from Triple-A.

Girardi said Mitre tweaked a muscle on his side during batting practice Sunday.

Andrew Marchand covers baseball for ESPNNewYork.com. You can follow him on Twitter. Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »

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