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Spring headlines: Derek Jeter OK’d for full return; Brett Lawrie expected to be ready for opening day

Big League Stew

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Another day, another New York Yankees story. This news? It's the opposite of what the Yankees have been getting lately.

It's, it's, it's ... good!

Derek Jeter passed his final check-up, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, and is now cleared to return to full baseball activities.

Jeter's been inching back to 100 percent this spring, recovering from a broken ankle suffered in the ALCS. And now, he's ready to get back in the lineup.

From Friday's Post:

[Manager Joe] Girardi didn’t say if Jeter would make his exhibition debut tomorrow against the Braves. Since Jeter didn’t work out Thursday the best bet for his return is Monday against the Cardinals at Steinbrenner Field.

[Related: Farewell to Mariano Rivera and the best pitch ever thrown]

The Yankees will need Jeter, 38, to add stability to a team that's devastated with injuries. He's their captain. If anybody can do it, it's him.

Strained rib cage to cost Lawrie up to three weeks: Brett Lawrie's strained rib cage is bad news for Team Canada's World Baseball Classic prospects. He's out. But Lawrie's main gig, as the third baseman for the Toronto Blue Jays, looks better.

On Thursday, the team said Lawrie is still expected to be ready for opening day.

Here's more from Gregor Chisholm of

"He has a mild strain [and will miss] two to three weeks, on the conservative side," Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos said. "It could be less than that; hopefully, it's two weeks, but right now, based on that, you would expect him to be ready for Opening Day."

Anthopoulos appeared relatively calm and relaxed when dealing with the media at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, but his heart likely skipped a beat late Wednesday night when he was informed of Lawrie's departure from Team Canada's game.

Lawrie suffered a similar injury last season and missed more than a month of action before eventually returning on Sept. 7 and finishing the season without any setbacks.

Hicks' three homers power Twins past Phillies: Congrats to Aaron Hicks, who had the best stat line of Thursday. The Minnesota Twins outfield prospect was 4-for-5 with three home runs and six RBI. Oh, and a stolen base too. Yes, yes, it's only spring training, but for a 23-year-old on the cusp of his first starting job in the big leagues, that's a day to remember.

Photo of the Day: Tommy Lasorda wonders, "Who is this Timberlake kid and why is he touching me?"

Tweet of the Day: Ian Desmond's Day Off? Naw, probably not.

Spring training is here. Stretch out with us.
Follow @MikeOz and @bigleaguestew, on Twitter, along with the BLS Facebook page.

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