Derek Jeter, playing his first game in over nine months after breaking his ankle in the playoffs last season, hit a single on the first pitch he saw, an auspicious start for the New York Yankees as they went on to beat the Kansas City Royals 8-4. As was reported earlier, Jeter was pulled from the contest in the eighth inning after hurting his right quadriceps.
Speaking after the game, Jeter said he was unable to sleep because he was so anxious, having found out that he’d be be playing today at 11 p.m. last night:
Couldn’t fall back asleep. I was nervous going into the game. It’s almost like it’s opening day for me, even though we’re in — what are we in, July now? I lost track of the months.
Kansas City started off the game hot as Salvador Perez hit a two-run double off Andy Pettitte in the first inning, which was followed shortly by a sacrifice fly from Lorenzo Cain. They didn’t score after the second, though, while the Yankees used a three-run fifth inning to put the game away.
The Yankees are now 50-42 on the year and 5.5 games behind the Boston Red Sox for first in the American League East.