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KC@NYY: Jeter singles, scores in first inning back

Derek Jeter made his return to the Yankees' lineup Thursday, but he won't be back out there Friday for the opener of a three-game series with the Twins, sidelined for the weekend with a Grade 1 quad strain.

As the designated hitter Thursday, Jeter saw action for the first time since his left ankle was surgically repaired from a double fracture he sustained last October, singling in his first at-bat. But Jeter left the game early, as his right quad tightened up late in the contest. And after an MRI was taken, Jeter was declared out for the series and through the All-Star break.

The hope was to play Jeter at shortstop for the first time this season in Friday's game, but that plan was scuttled when the results of the MRI came back and the Yankees decided to shut him down again. He won't play again until July 19, at the earliest.

"We're not going to play him this weekend, then we've got four days for the All-Star break, so we're going to play it safe for the weekend and see what happens," said Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, who wouldn't rule out a return to the disabled list for Jeter.

For Friday's opener vs. Minnesota, the Yankees will start righty Hiroki Kuroda, who did not face the Twins in their month-opening four-game series at Target Field on July 1-4, in which the Yankees swept the floundering Twins. Kuroda is 7-6 with a 2.77 ERA on the season.

The Twins will turn to Scott Diamond, as Minnesota is still looking for its second win of its 10-game road trip. The left-hander is 5-8 this season with a 5.52 ERA.

Diamond pitched the series opener with the Yankees at Target Field on July 1, giving up three runs, two earned, on seven hits through 6 2/3 innings. He also walked one and struck out five. He gave way to the bullpen, which allowed seven runs to give the Yankees a 10-4 win. Diamond had left the game with a 4-3 lead.

Twins: Road woes continue to plague Minnesota
The road has not been a kind place for the Twins this season, as they are 16-29 away from home. That mark ranks next to last in the Major Leagues, and worst in the American League.

Part of the issue is the Twins' .228 team batting average on the road.

"Just hanging," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "That's exactly what I'm doing. Hanging in there. Not easy. It's not easy, but I have a lot of confidence in these guys out there. As long as we play hard, we'll go about our business and let the chips fall where they fall."

Yankees: Gardner in, A-Rod still rehabbing
Brett Gardner was back in the Yankees' lineup on Friday.

Gardner wasn't in the starting lineup Thursday after he took a pitch to his right ankle Wednesday night. He did pinch-hit for Jeter in the eighth inning, but before getting back in the starting lineup, Gardner said he would need to get the ankle loosened up.

"I have to get some treatment," Gardner said Thursday. "My legs are a big part of my game, and if I can't run, there's no sense in playing. Hopefully, I'll be able to run."

As for Alex Rodriguez, Cashman reported that A-Rod will not return to the Yankees before July 22. Rodriguez is currently rehabbing from surgery on his left hip last offseason.

Worth noting
• Right-handed reliever Michael Tonkin made his Major League debut Thursday for the Twins. He threw 1 1/3 innings, striking out one.

• The Yankees are 30-1 when scoring more than five runs. Comments