The Yankees expect to be without their star shortstop for the second straight game Tuesday when they meet the Boston Red Sox in a battle for first place in the AL East at Yankee Stadium.
New York (34-22) opened the four-game series Monday with a 13-5 victory without Jeter, who sat out with a bruised right thumb.
Hoping to play, Jeter went out for batting practice to test his thumb. But the Yankees captain had trouble throwing the ball and didn’t even try to swing a bat due to the thumb, injured when he was hit by a pitch in Sunday’s 11-4 loss at Baltimore.
“I’m not counting on him for a couple of days,” New York manager Joe Torre said.
The Yankees didn’t miss him Monday, batting around in the second and third innings and knocking out Red Sox starter Josh Beckett early. Phillips and Jason Giambi had three-run homers to highlight a seven-run second inning as New York won for the eighth time in 10 games.
Phillips has started the last seven games at first base, going 14-for-30 with 11 RBIs and homering in three of his last four starts. He’s taken advantage of playing time made available by injuries to Gary Sheffield and Hideki Matsui that have forced Torre to employ Giambi as the designated hitter.
“We care about those guys and you want to see them get back,” Phillips said. “But at the same time, we use that as an excuse and we’ll be at the bottom looking up.”
New York, which moved one-half game ahead of the Red Sox back into first place, finished with 11 hits—its 12th consecutive game with at least 10. That broke the franchise record of 11 games set in May 1937.
Yankees closer Mariano Rivera pitched a scoreless ninth inning in his first action since last Tuesday. He had been unavailable the previous four games because of back spasms.
Boston has dropped three straight to New York after winning four of the first five meetings this season.
Designated hitter David Ortiz is 0-for-12 with five strikeouts in the last three losses to New York. Ortiz, who has given the Yankees major trouble over the past few years, went 10-for-21 with 10 RBIs over the first five meetings.
Left fielder Manny Ramirez is 13-for-28 with five homers and 13 RBIs against the Yankees this season.
The Red Sox are hoping closer Jonathan Papelbon will get a chance to extend his scoreless streak of 11 2-3 innings. Papelbon leads the majors in saves, going 20-for-20, and has allowed one run, 13 hits and three walks in 28 innings.
Chien-Ming Wang (5-2, 4.82) returns to the rotation for the Yankees on Tuesday. Wang made 12 straight starts this year before pitching two-thirds of an inning for his first career save in a 6-5, 10-inning victory at Baltimore on Saturday.
The right-hander has struggled in his two-year career against Boston, going 0-2 with a 6.04 ERA against the Red Sox in four appearances, including three starts. Wang is 0-1 with an 8.18 ERA in two starts against the Red Sox this season.
New York will get its first look at Boston’s David Pauley (0-0, 12.46), who will make his second career start in place of an injured David Wells. Pauley gave up six runs and 11 hits over 4 1-3 innings of an 8-6 victory at Toronto in his debut Wednesday.
Pauley, a right-hander acquired from San Diego prior to the 2005 season, went 2-3 with a 2.39 ERA in 10 starts with Double-A Portland this year before being recalled by Boston.