The Yankees have signed right-hander Jason Bulger to a minor league deal, the team announced. The 33-year-old was released by the Twins not too long ago after giving up ten runs in four Spring Training innings. The former Angel is low-90s fastball type with both a slider and a changeup. Bulger’s career strikeout (9.34 K/9 and 24.2 K%) numbers are great, but not his walk (5.08 K/9 and 13.1 BB%) and ground ball (40.5%) rates aren’t anything special. Just some more Triple-A fodder.
For the first time in 2012, the Yankees will be playing in a Major League stadium today. It’s not just any stadium either, it’s the new Marlins park in Miami. The Yankees are playing two exhibition games there to help break the place in before the regular season, kinda like how the Cubs played in those two Yankee Stadium exhibition games back in 2009. Here’s the lineup, which looks an awful lot like the one we’ll see on Opening Day this Friday…
SS Derek Jeter
CF Curtis Granderson
2B Robinson Cano
3B Alex Rodriguez
1B Mark Teixeira
RF Nick Swisher
DH Raul Ibanez
C Russell Martin
LF Brett Gardner
LHP CC Sabathia
Available pitchers: RHP Mariano Rivera, RHP Rafael Soriano, RHP Cory Wade, RHP George Kontos, LHP Clay Rapada, RHP Brandon Pinder, RHP Mark Montgomery, LHP Juan Cedeno, and SwP Pat Venditte.
Available position players: C Frankie Cervelli, 1B Eric Chavez, 2B Doug Bernier, SS Eduardo Nunez, 3B Bill Hall, LF Chris Dickerson, CF Dewayne Wise, and RF Justin Maxwell will replace the starters.
Today’s game starts at 1:05pm ET and can be seen on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy.
Just a heads up, today is the last day to vote for our 2012 Prospect Watch. We’ve gotten over 2,700 responses so far and Mason Williams is starting to distance himself from Manny Banuelos, though fewer than 100 votes separate the two. Make sure you get your vote in before I close the poll this evening.
Saturday: Via Bryan Hoch, the Yankees saved about two months worth of salary with the move. “They feel like I’ve got another three or four weeks of rehab, so they’ve decided to rehab me,” said the slugger. “At the end of that rehab, we’ll see where we are.”
Friday: Via Mark Feinsand, the Yankees have released Russell Branyan from his minor league contract. They then re-signed him to a new minor league deal. They may have changed the terms following the back injury that has kept him on the shelf all Spring Training, or they could have circumvented the $100k retention bonus. He’ll probably continue rehabbing just in case he ever gets healthy and Raul Ibanez stinks. Either way, welcome back Russ, even though you never really left.
The Yankees and Astros played Homerun Derby this afternoon, with the good guys coming out on top 5-4. They also won the rain-shortened game 11-9. Robinson Cano hit his second jack of the spring, Raul Ibanez hit his third (woulda been fourth if it wasn’t for Jason Heyward), Jose Gil got hit first, and — get this — Dante Bichette Jr. hit not one, but two dingers. He only saw two pitches too [Marc Carig]. Now that’s pretty cool.
Adam Warren’s final bid for a bullpen spot didn’t go well; he gave up six runs on ten hits in 5.2 IP. Now that he has a virtual lock on the second lefty job, Clay Rapada went ahead and gave up a homer to the left-handed hitting Brian Bogusevic. How about that timing? Here’s the box score and here’s the rest from Tampa…
- Andy Pettitte threw a 33-pitch live batting practice session this afternoon, calling it “another step in the right direction.” Joe Girardi was pleased, but it seems unlikely that Pettitte will get into a game before the end of Spring Training. [Bryan Hoch & Erik Boland]
- George Kontos is dealing with a blister, which isn’t that big of a deal given all the other injury stuff going on around camp. [Chad Jennings]
- In case you missed it, we have some Michael Pineda (shoulder tendinitis) and Cesar Cabral (stress fracture in his elbow) injury updates earlier today.
Here is tonight’s open thread. The Devils, Knicks, and Nets are all playing tonight, plus MLB Network will be airing a game later on tonight. Talk about whatever you want here, go nuts.
Update (1:33pm): Via Marc Carig and Mark Feinsand, Cabral has a stress fracture at the tip of his elbow. He underwent a battery of tests, but for now he’s in a splint with no treatment plan in place yet. Needless to say, he’s going to be out for a long time.
11:19am: Via Marc Carig and Erik Boland, Joe Girardi said left-hander Cesar Cabral has a “significant injury,” but doesn’t know the specifics yet. Cabral had his arm in a sling last night. That really bites. Clay Rapada will likely get the second lefty spot in the bullpen by default. If Cabral misses the entire year, the Rule 5 Draft rules will carry over to 2013.
Update (12:59pm): Via Marc Carig, Brian Cashman said Pineda will be shut down for 10-15 days. That’s pretty much the only thing they can do. Cashman also said the MRI revealed no structural damage; Pineda’s labrum and rotator cuff are fine.
11:18am: Via Marc Carig and Dan Barbarisi, the Yankees are sending Michael Pineda to the 15-day DL with shoulder
inflammation tendinitis. They’re obviously relieved that it isn’t anything more serious, and you should be too.
I don’t like that Pineda kept the soreness from the coaching staff and trainers, but I guess that’s what happens when you’re told you’re in a competition for a rotation spot. The Yankees plan to be very conservative according to David Waldstein, which isn’t surprising at all. Hopefully he heals up after some rest and comes out throwing darts sooner rather than later.