April 01, 2013
Alex Rodriguez had not spoken to reporters since February's report in the Miami New Times.
/Getty Images

NEW YORK -- After missing all of spring training while recovering from hip surgery, Alex Rodriguez donned a Yankees uniform for the first time in 2013 before their Opening Day game against the Red Sox. He also met with reporters for four and a half minutes in the hallway outside the home clubhouse, addressing -- no comment-ing, mostly -- the Miami New Times report from February linking him to the Biogensis clinic.

Predictably, Rodriguez offered little additional insight about Major League Baseball's ongoing investigation into documents that allege purchase of performance-enhancing drugs. The third baseman stood by his initial statement denying involvement. He acknowledged having met with union officials and also said he wasn't concerned about a possible suspension.

"No, I'm not," Rodriguez said. "But I'm not going to further discuss this. At some point, I feel like everything will be good."

For now, however, he will be a spectator -- one of four Yankees regulars, along with Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson -- who are opening the season on the disabled list.

Rodriguez did provide some update on his recovery, saying he's at "stage one" of the process. He met with his surgeon, Dr. Brian Kelly of Manhattan's Hospital for Special Surgery, roughly once a week.

"The recovery's going very well," he said. "The hip's getting better."

Rodriguez declined to speculate on when he'd return to action, leaving that decision up to the doctor, but said his level of play "can be very high" and that the discovery of the labrum team was "a bit of relief" as it helped explain his poor postseason. A-Rod went 3-for-25 in the postseason with three singles, two walks and 12 strikeouts. He was pinch-hit for and benched at various times.

"I was able to go in and fix it, rehab and I think once I'm mended and I'm back to being 100 percent," he said, "there's no reason why I can't play at a very high level."

Rodriguez will soon slip into the background again to continue rehabbing, the timing of his chance to prove the doubters wrong uncertain and presumably not arriving anytime soon. Until then, all the same questions about Biogenesis and his future play for the Yankees -- he has five years and $114 million remaining -- will persist, nothing have been cleared up today.

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