NEW YORK -- The Yankees' clubhouse was more lively than usual Wednesday morning as laughter echoed off the walls and old friends reunited after months apart.
Infielder Brendan Ryan, who went on the disabled list during Spring Training with a right calf strain, was activated and started at shortstop while batting ninth against the Nationals. Outfielder Ramon Flores and infielder Jose Pirela were sent down to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in other roster moves.
Ryan didn't waste much time getting back into the swing of the things, going 2-for-3 with a triple, an RBI and a run in the Yankees' 5-4 loss to the Nationals in 11 innings.
Ryan got the call from general manager Brian Cashman Tuesday night as he was pulling into the stadium at Double-A Trenton.
"He said, 'Just take a couple of at-bats, go ahead and DH and then head on back up,''' Ryan said. "Day game today so you want to get in at a reasonable hour, get some food, get some sleep."
After he went on the disabled list, Ryan then hurt a hamstring while rehabbing in Florida, which set his recovery back even further.
Ryan attributed part of his struggle to the heat in Florida.
"The heat in Florida is just beyond intense. I just couldn't hydrate enough and I think that's what got to me with the hamstring each time," he said. "Regardless of being in Florida or not, I'm just making sure I'm drinking a lot of Pedialyte and Gatorade. That just can't happen again."
Going forward, the 33-year-old said that now that he's older, his game day routine has to change if he is going to continue to stay healthy. The days of showing up to the stadium and immediately getting dressed to play are now over.
Ryan said he's been doing more band work and is running on the treadmill to get a sweat going before game time in order to help prevent injury.
Manager Joe Girardi spoke highly of Flores and said the decision to send him down was a tough one.
"He said, 'I'm going to go play, I'll be ready when the phone rings,'" Girardi said. "And I don't doubt it one bit."
Grace Raynor is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.