OAKLAND -- Derek Jeter has reached a stage in his mission to rewrite baseball's history books that every name he passes is going to a big one, all boasting Cooperstown credentials.
The most recent rung on the hits ladder belonged to Hall of Famer George Brett, whom Jeter surpassed with a first inning single off Tommy Milone in the Yankees' 2-0 victory over the A's on Sunday.
Now with 3,155 hits, Jeter has surpassed Brett for sole possession of 14th place on the all-time list.
"It goes without saying how great of a player he is," Jeter said. "I've always had a lot of respect for George Brett and what he was able to accomplish. I was aware of it a few days ago. But we're out there trying to win games, so I'm not up there thinking about who I could pass or anything like that."
Brett acknowledged Jeter's accomplishment in a statement released by the Yankees. The 1999 Hall of Fame inductee played 21 seasons, all with the Royals, from 1973 through 1993, and had a lifetime .305 batting average.
"I'm always kind of bummed out when guys pass you, because you had your own place in the record book for a while, and I had that one there for a while," Brett said. "But a guy like Derek comes around and passes you, really, I think it all depends on the type of person that did it. I have the utmost respect for him.
"I've only met him one time, very briefly, but for a guy to play as long as he has in New York, and I've never heard one bad thing said about the guy. He's definitely a team player, he's a clutch player. He's been the backbone of [the Yankees] for a long, long time, and when a guy like that passes you, I'd like to shake his hand and look him in the eye and say 'Congratulations.'"
Comparing Jeter and Brett, Yankees manager Joe Girardi said, "Two tremendous hitters; one who is in the Hall of Fame and one who is going to the Hall of Fame. It's quite an accomplishment. It just shows you the durability and consistency that Derek Jeter has had for a long, long time."
Earlier this weekend, Jeter moved ahead of Paul Waner (3,152). He has surpassed boyhood idol Dave Winfield (3,110), Tony Gwynn (3,141) and Robin Yount (3,142) since the season started, Hall of Famers all.
"My job is to get hits, get on base, score runs," Jeter said. "That's always been the job. I just try to be as consistent as possible."
The next player on the all-time list for Jeter to pursue is Cal Ripken Jr., who ranks 13th with 3,184 career hits. Jeter acknowledged that being considered near Ripken in any category is meaningful.
"With him being a shortstop, it's someone that I really looked up to," Jeter said. "So, yeah, that would be special. You tie Cal, or pass Cal, or are close to Cal in anything, it's pretty remarkable."
Martin misses series finale with stiff neck
OAKLAND -- Yankees catcher Russell Martin was held out of Sunday's lineup against the Athletics with a stiff neck, but the team is hopeful he will not miss more than one game.
"It was pretty bad yesterday; it's better today, but it's not quite where it needs to be," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Sunday. "Hopefully he'll be able to play [Monday]."
Martin did not catch on Saturday against the Athletics, but that was not unexpected because backup catcher Chris Stewart and ace CC Sabathia have been working together since the middle of April.
"I aggravated it lifting [Saturday] before the game," Martin said. "I was doing a dumbbell press, explosive movement on the way up, and on the way up I jerked my neck. I tweaked it somehow."
The 29-year-old Martin has endured a frustrating start to his season. He is batting .177 with four home runs and 10 RBIs in 39 games, having batted .237 with 18 homers and 65 RBIs in 125 contests for New York last season.
"Maybe it'll keep my head locked in better at the plate," Martin said.
Hot-hitting Cano happy to see others heat up
OAKLAND -- Robinson Cano's offensive production has warmed up in the month of May, and the Yankees' second baseman is glad to see that Mark Teixeira seems to have joined the party.
Cano has homered in each of the first two contests against the Athletics, and in three of his last four games, and he said that Teixeira's two homers on Saturday are a good indication that the lineup will be back in sync.
"It's been important," Cano said. "You don't want just a few guys, you want the whole team to get going. ... It's good to see. [Teixeira] can get his confidence back. You can see the last few days, he's been really good at the plate."
Cano said that he can sense the Yankees' clubhouse is beginning to relax after a frustrating homestand that saw them scuffling, particularly with runners in scoring position.
"Of course. When you're losing, you try to figure out what's wrong," Cano said. "When you're winning, you can joke around and have fun in the game."
Yankees pitcher Phil Hughes said that he expects to have about 20 friends and family members on hand for his start Monday at Angel Stadium, near where he grew up in Orange County, Calif. Hughes took the loss in the 2010 All-Star Game in Anaheim.
The Yankees are the only team this year not to win a game in which they have not homered, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The Yankees are 0-10 in such situations, the longest losing streak to start a season in franchise history. They were 0-8 to begin 2007, the previous record.
On this date in 1933, the Yankees scored 12 runs in the eighth inning to defeat the White Sox, 15-11, at Yankee Stadium. The rally was capped by Bill Dickey's grand slam, and Lou Gehrig also drove in three runs.