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YANKEES: Alex Rodriguez has a mild strain of his right quadriceps and will rejoin the team today in Chicago.

A-Rod was injured Sunday in New York's 7-1 win at Baltimore. He returned to New York to be examined rather than accompany the team to Chicago, where the Yankees start a series against the White Sox tonight. Rodriguez was to see a physical therapist later Monday, Yankees spokesman Jason Zillo said.

Rodriguez will be evaluated again today, according to Zillo, who was unsure whether the third baseman would be available to play in the series opener.

- Hank Steinbrenner thinks Joba Chamberlain can become an elite starting pitcher but realizes his place is in the bullpen for now.

"We're not going to rush him," the New York Yankees co-chairman said Monday at the team's spring training complex in Tampa, Fla. "I think most people agree with me, including the baseball people and most of the fans, that sooner or later it would be nice if he was a starter."

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Steinbrenner and the team's front office were in agreement on the role of the 22-year-old right-hander, who is 1-0 with a 1.42 ERA as Mariano Rivera 's setup man this year after going 2-0 with an 0.38 ERA in 19 games when he arrived in the major leagues last season.

Cashman expects the switch to the rotation to come sometime this year.

"He'll finish out as a starter. He won't start as a starter," the GM said.

Steinbrenner has high expectations for Chamberlain, comparing his potential to that of Boston ace Josh Beckett .

"We need a Beckett, we don't have one, and he's the one that can do it." Steinbrenner said.

BRAVES: One day after leaving a game with an ailing right quadriceps, Chipper Jones was back in the lineup for Monday's game against the Washington Nationals.

BREWERS: Ace Ben Sheets will skip his start Wednesday because of soreness in his right triceps that caused him to leave his last start.

Sheets will be replaced in the rotation by Dave Bush , who got passed over Sunday when Yovani Gallardo returned from the 15-day disabled list.

GIANTS: Lefty Noah Lowry had an MRI on Monday after feeling a tingling sensation in his injured forearm.

Lowry had planned to throw off the mound Monday for the first time since his surgery six weeks ago, but he scrapped that plan in favor of the exam.

Manager Bruce Bochy declined to call it a setback and said he expected Lowry to throw today.

REDS: Promoted veteran infielder-outfielder Jerry Hairston Jr . and designated infielder Juan Castro for assignment.

The Reds activated Matt Belisle from the DL to start Monday night's game against the Dodgers. He struggled, giving up 12 hits and five earned runs in four innings.


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