Spring Training Game Thread: Meet the Nats



The first week of Grapefruit League games is not yet complete but it still feels like the day-to-day grind of baseball has returned. It’s wonderful. Meaningless Spring Training games are not for everyone, I get that, but I’ve always felt these games are fun in their own way. We get to see a bunch of prospects we otherwise never get to see and the results don’t mean anything. You can just sit back and enjoy some baseball. It’s wonderful.

This afternoon’s game will be Derek Jeter‘s third at shortstop this spring. He made it through the first two just fine following his lost leg injury plagued season, but obviously there is a long way to go before he’s ready to play nine-inning games on an everyday basis. That’s what these next four weeks will be all about. Ivan Nova has a rotation spot already locked up, he’ll just be preparing for the season and getting work in today. He says he feels like he’s competing for a job, but we all know that’s not the case.

The Nationals made the long trip across the state from Viera for today’s game, so their roster is a skeleton crew. None of their best players made the trip. Denard Span, Danny Espinosa, Scott Hairston, and Jose Lobaton are the only guys in the starting lineup who remotely qualify as MLB regulars. Left-hander Ross Detwiler will be on the mound for Washington. Here is the Yankees’ starting lineup:

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. SS Derek Jeter
  3. C Brian McCann
  4. 2B Brian Roberts
  5. DH Frankie Cervelli
  6. 3B Kelly Johnson
  7. RF Ichiro Suzuki
  8. LF Zoilo Almonte
  9. 1B Corban Joseph

And on the mound is Nova. Since this is his second Spring Training outing, he’s probably scheduled for something like three innings or 50 pitches, whichever comes first. Don’t hold me to that though.

Available Pitchers: RHP David Robertson, RHP Shawn Kelley, RHP Danny Burawa, RHP Yoshinori Tateyama, RHP Robert Coello, and RHP Jim Miller are all scheduled to pitch. This will be Robertson’s spring debut and Kelley’s second outing. Matt Thornton can’t be too far behind. RHP Chase Whitley, RHP Mark Montgomery, and RHP Brian Gordon are also available if needed.

Available Position Players: C John Ryan Murphy, 1B Jose Gil, 2B Zelous Wheeler, SS Addison Maruszak, 3B Jose Pirela, LF Ramon Flores, CF Mason Williams, and RF Adonis Garcia will all come off the bench to replace the starters. C Francisco Arcia, C Peter O’Brien, C Gary Sanchez, IF Dean Anna, IF Yangervis Solarte, and OF Antoan Richardson are also on the bench.

They play these games in Florida (and Arizona) for a reason, and that’s because the weather is just perfect for baseball. It’s in the mid-70s with a few scattered clouds in Tampa. Can’t wait until that weather hits New York. This afternoon’s game will begin a little after 1pm ET and can be seen live on YES, MLB Network, and Enjoy.


  1. The Great Gonzo says:

    Game is not on MLB Audio today. that…. well, that sucks

  2. dkidd says:

    someone told harper that pettitte was pitching and he refused to get on the bus

    • lightSABR says:

      I went back and re-watched that game at some point. Awesome stuff. I’ve never seen such a good hitter get so totally dominated before.

  3. jjyank says:

    Woo, first game of the year I can watch! BASEBALL!

  4. jjyank says:

    Nice curve there, Nova.

  5. dkidd says:

    nova throwing an easy 95

  6. Havok9120 says:

    Nice K Nova.

    CoJo, straighten up.

  7. jjyank says:

    And again. His curve looks real good today.

  8. dot says:

    Nova look great. Hitting 95 on the black with the 4SFB, throwing his hard curve and loopy curve for quality strikes.

    This is encouraging.

    • dkidd says:

      i forgot he has 2 different curves. who needs a slider?

    • nycsportzfan says:

      His stuff is insane. If you were talking bout Novas stuff without mentioning his name, people would think your talking about a borderline Ace. Add in you’ve all ready seen a 16 WIN season outta the kid, and he pitched to a 3.10ERA just last yr, and hes still only 27yrs old(just turned), and you really would think that.

      Hes another reason I think this team is vastly underrated.

  9. I’d do an umpire review, but it’s only Spring Training. I have some new stuff for those including 7 new umpires full time.

    Also come on, its Ross Detweiler, we should win easily.

  10. Chip Rodriguez says:

    Nova’s looking sharp.

  11. dkidd says:

    total domination

  12. jjyank says:

    Love that outing Nova. Easy velocity, down in the zone, sharp curveball. It would be really great if Nova really broke out this year.

  13. Macho Man "Randy Levine" says:

    Oh, god. That is fucking horrifying.

  14. mustang says:



  15. dkidd says:

    ichiro “reverse split” suzuki

  16. TheRealGreg says:

    Just a question, but what do you guys think of this Yangervis Solarte kid?

    • jjyank says:

      Second coming of the love child between Babe Ruth and Mariano Rivera.

    • Macho Man "Randy Levine" says:

      Ranks about a 90 on the 20-80 scale for his name.

      Also ranks about a 300 on the same scale for “Look at all the idiots reading waaaaaay too much into spring stats and thinking he’s the second coming.”

    • Chip Rodriguez says:

      He’s awesome, but he’s no Scott Sizemore.

    • The Great Gonzo says:

      He will win the Jorge Vaszquez Award, for ‘AAAA dude who should stay in AAA but all the forums will want him in the Show”….

    • mitch says:

      his batting average would be so high we couldn’t say it aloud in one breathe

    • dkidd says:

      his name is finnish for “angry sun”

      • I'm One says:

        Not sure which of these comments I like best. Gun to my head, I think I’d choose Chip Rodriguez’s. But they are all great and right on target.

    • lightSABR says:

      Serious answer: 26 years old, hit reasonably well in 2010 and 2011 at AA and below. Never really succeeded in AAA, though – he’s spent the last two seasons hitting 91 wRC+ in the PCL, where Dean Anna hit 140 wRC+ last year.

      Maybe he magically figured it out this offseason, but smart money’s against it.

  17. Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:


  18. Bryan says:

    Roberts to Cervelli to Johnson back to back to back hits. Probably one of only two or three times that will happen. Just don’t use them all before the season guys!

  19. Macho Man "Randy Levine" says:

    Ichiro: Rally Killer.

    Oh, wait, an error.

  20. dkidd says:

    i don’t need a platoon partner!!!

  21. jjyank says:

    Suck it, Detwiler.

  22. Havok9120 says:

    This is always fun to watch.

  23. So, Roberts, Cervelli, Johnson, Ichiro, Almonte and Joseph all reach in a row against Detweiler. Can we get 9 in a row?

  24. jjyank says:

    First game of the year, first Yankee rally. I’m in quite a good mood.

  25. dkidd says:

    i know it’s just one game in spring training against a squad of back-ups but…

    we’re winning the world series

  26. mustang says:

    How can this be even in spring training the Yankees beating one of top 3 Baseball Prospectus published their top 25 and under talent rankings.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:

      It’d be fun if those rankings actually mattered. As if a really good 26 year old doesn’t matter. Or a great 32 year old.

      More than one way to win a baseball championship, fortunately.

      • Tanakapalooza Floozy says:

        Of course good players of all age matter, but come on – if we had a roster full of 24 year old studs you’d be all over it. Hell, if we had even a single 24 year old stud you’d be all over it.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:

          That wasn’t my point at all. You totally added meaning where there was none.

          I just meant, as Yankee fans, as great as it would be to have a fantastic 24 year old, I want to win. If we have great 30 year olds, more power to them.

  27. vicki says:

    so cool they televise batting practice.

  28. jjyank says:


    …wait, it’s only a spring training game? Oh.


  29. Bryan says:

    Make it so RAB.

  30. Note to self, give crap about Carlson’s strike zone in the first game with the Yankees during the regular season. I’m not liking it.

  31. The Great Gonzo says:


  32. dkidd says:

    first of many

  33. Havok9120 says:

    There’s another first for the year.

    First of many, dangit..

  34. Macho Man "Randy Levine" says:

    So in other news, does anyone think that Drew, Santana and Morales will ever sign?

    • They will, and I think Santana before the season starts, because he doesn’t want to lose time you’d think.

      • Macho Man "Randy Levine" says:

        It’s almost starting to remind me of what happened after the ’94 strike. I remember that there were a ton of veteran free agents who hadn’t been signed by anyone as spring training started, so they all banded together and started training together so that they’d get in shape in case anyone wanted to sign them. Gradually, one by one, all of them were picked up. But it was weird because there was a lot of good players in that camp.

        But with these three guys, it’s all because teams don’t want to give up draft picks. Can’t wait until the next CBA at this rate.

    • dkidd says:

      my prediction:

      blue jays sign santana
      morales and drew wait for june

    • jjyank says:

      Kind of crazy. I’d actually forgot about these guys. Yes, even Drew.

  35. jjyank says:

    More good reports about Pineda. My cautious optimism level rises ever so slightly.

  36. dkidd says:

    if sizemore says pineda is good, that’s enough for me

  37. Chip Rodriguez says:

    Nice play by Jeter to end that AB.

  38. Havok9120 says:

    Kelley busting a move.

  39. dkidd says:

    brett the jet

  40. jjyank says:

    Nice hustle Gardy! Looking forward to him and Ells on the base paths at the same time.

  41. jjyank says:

    Some shit luck for Burawa this inning.

  42. dkidd says:

    and a wipeout breaking pitch to finish the inning

  43. Jorge Steinbrenner says:

    Jeter grounded into a DP. Nova pitched well. Macho Man “Randy Levine” has a thing for velvet-voiced men of color. This is what I just learned for skimming.

    Thanks for nothing. Bring on the regular season crew. I miss Anderson Silva.

  44. Jorge Steinbrenner says:

    Jeter hit into a DP. Nova pitched well. Macho Man “Randy Levine” has a thing for velvet-voiced men of color. That’s what I learned from skimming.

    Thanks for nothing, dickweeds. Bring on the regular season crew. I miss Anderson Silva.

  45. nycsportzfan says:

    Mike, these games are anything but meaningless games. Maybe there meaningless to the rare player that is healthy and just getting ready for regular season without any worry, but most of the team, especially the young guys, are showing off, and doing there best, and your getting to see that, and its huge audition for em. I’d say its borderline WS for guys like Dean Anna, Dellin Betances, just to name a couple.

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