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Alex Rodriguez to skip Yankees' spring training opener, goes 0 for 2 in intrasquad game

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TAMPA, Florida — Alex Rodriguez will not play in the New York Yankees' exhibition opener against Philadelphia in Clearwater on Tuesday.

Back from a season-long suspension for violations of baseball's drug agreement and labor contract, Rodriguez was not on the travel roster posted Monday. He could make his spring training debut Wednesday, when the Yankees host the Phillies.

Rodriguez went 0 for 2 as the designated hitter in an intrasquad game Monday. Hitting off a pitching machine, he grounded to third on the second pitch and flied out to short right on the first pitch.

The game was played before about 100 fans in mostly empty Steinbrenner Field. Rodriguez spent most the game in a chair next the first-base dugout wearing a helmet and occasionally swinging a bat as he awaited his next plate appearance. He received cheers walking to the plate from the small gathering.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi and general manager Brian Cashman say Chase Headley will be their starting third baseman and Rodriguez will compete for at-bats at designated hitter.

Rodriguez has been working out at third and first base, and could see limited time at both.

The three-time AL MVP has not played a full season since 2007 because of the suspension, operations on both hips and other injuries.

Adam Warren will start for the Yankees Tuesday. Position players making the trip to Clearwater include outfielders Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner and Chris Young.

NOTES: CC Sabathia made 42 pitches in his fourth bullpen session and is to throw batting practice later in the week. The left-hander was hobbled by a degenerative cartilage problem in his right knee last season that resulted in season-ending surgery in July. ... Spring training instructor Reggie Jackson arrived at camp. ... Retired naval officer and teacher Richard Albero started his walk from home plate at Steinbrenner Field to home plate at Yankee Stadium — a trip of over 1,200 miles — in support of the Wounded Warrior Project.

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