The Yankees beat the Blue Jays on the road this afternoon, with the big hit being Juan Rivera’s bases loaded double into the right-center field gap (off a lefty). Kevin Youkilis managed to chug all the way around from first to score on the play. That hit accounted for all three runs of the game. David Phelps was dynamite yet again, allowing three hits in five scoreless innings. He’s allowed one run in 14 total innings this spring and is the clear leader for the fifth starter’s job at the moment, assuming it’s an actual competition. Still three weeks to go before Opening Day, however. Here’s the box score and here’s the rest from Tampa…
- CC Sabathia threw a 40-50 pitches in a simulated game this morning and is scheduled to make his Grapefruit League debut on Friday. “(He’s) ahead of where he’s been the last two springs (in terms of) arm strength, pitch-wise, and delivery-wise” said pitching coach Larry Rothschild. Meanwhile, Andy Pettitte is likely to make his Spring Training debut on Wednesday. [Jayson Stark & Erik Boland]
- Derek Jeter is likely to play again tomorrow after making his Grapefruit League debut yesterday. He’ll DH again but could play shortstop as soon as Wednesday. That would be something. [Adam Berry]
- Mariano Rivera is likely to make his next appearance on Wednesday. The Yankees presumably want to give him more than one day off between appearances at this point, and he sure as heck isn’t traveling for the road game on Tuesday. [George King]
- David Robertson (shoulder) will pitch in a game a “shortly.” He is scheduled to throw a bullpen session tomorrow along with Rivera, Phil Hughes (back), and David Aardsma (groin). [Chad Jennings]
- The Cardinals are coming to Tampa tomorrow afternoon, a game that will be broadcast on ESPN in addition to YES and MLB.tv. Hiroki Kuroda gets that start.
Here is your open thread for the evening. Both the Devils and Islanders are in action, plus Team USA is playing Canada in the World Baseball Classic. That game is on MLB Network right now and the winner advances to the second round with the loser being eliminated. Talk about any of that stuff and more. Go nuts.
Via Chad Jennings: The Yankees are indeed giving Ronnie Mustelier a look at third base in the wake of Mark Teixeira’s wrist injury. “We’re going to look at him,” said Joe Girardi, in case you didn’t believe me.
Mustelier, 28, is 6-for 16 (.375) with a triple, a homer, two walks, and four strikeouts in camp so far. B-Ref’s OppoQual stat indicates he’s faced mostly Triple-A caliber pitching so far this spring, which isn’t a surprise since most of his work has come off the bench. Because Kevin Youkilis can play either corner infield spot, the Yankees are free to seek a first or third baseman as they look to replace Teixeira’s production. There’s no harm in giving Mustelier a look, but his bat is going to have to carry him because the defense is lacking. · (30) ·
Finally, some good injury news. Lefty reliever threw his first bullpen session in about two weeks this morning, and afterwards he told Mark Feinsand he was pain-free. “I’ve never been so excited to throw a bullpen,” said the southpaw, who insisted he will be ready for Opening Day.
Logan, 28, was sidelined by a barking elbow a little more than a week ago, but an MRI did come back clean. The Yankees had been taking it easy on him early in camp following last year’s career-high workload, which included 55.1 innings spread across a league-leading 80 appearances. Second lefty reliever Clay Rapada has been shut down for 7-10 days with shoulder bursitis, so the Yankees are currently without a healthy southpaw for the bullpen. Good thing the season doesn’t start for another three weeks. · (7) ·
Via Nick Cafardo: The Yankees have inquired about the availability of Chase Headley. Padres GM Josh Byrnes recently told Peter Gammons his third baseman isn’t available, but that is typical GM speak. Even if he is available they would say he isn’t just to create leverage. For what it’s worth, Bill Madden reported last week San Diego has started listening to offers for their franchise cornerstone.
Headley, 28, hit .286/.376/.498 (145 wRC+) with 31 homers and 17 steals last season, including .308/.386/.592 (170 wRC+) with 23 homers and ten steals after the All-Star break. The switch-hitter is an above-average defender at third and is under team control as an arbitration-eligible player through 2014. He’ll earn $8.575M this summer. The Yankees did not contact the Padres about Headley at the Winter Meetings following the news of Alex Rodriguez’s hip surgery, but I guess they’re a little more desperate for offense these days. The cost would be substantial — two top prospects plus one or two lesser pieces? — but Headley is a star-caliber player in his prime years with multiple years of team control remaining. · (92) ·
The Yankees lost to the Braves this afternoon, but the outcome of the game was secondary to the return of Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter. Mo struck out two in a perfect inning while the Cap’n singled and grounded out in his two at-bats as the DH. Both guys were making their Grapefruit League debuts, as you know.
Other than that, Jose Ramirez was a star of the game, allowing one hit and zero walks in four scoreless innings. He struck out four and was very, very sharp. Ichiro Suzuki singled twice while Ronnie Mustelier had an opposite field triple, which pretty much sums up the offense. The Yankees have scored zero or one run more times this spring (six) than they have three or more runs (five). That should (hopefully) correct itself once all the regulars start playing in the same lineup together. Here’s the box score and here’s the rest from Tampa…
- Phil Hughes (back), David Robertson (shoulder), and David Aardsma (groin) all threw bullpen sessions this morning and everything went fine. There were no issues. Hooray for that. [Chad Jennings]
- Right-handers Tommy Kahnle and Kelvin Perez were both reassigned to a minor league camp. By my unofficial count, the Yankees still have 64 players in big league camp. [Jennings]
- The Yankees will be in Dunedin to face the Blue Jays tomorrow afternoon. David Phelps gets the start and Frankie Cervelli, Dan Johnson, Jayson Nix, Kevin Youkilis, and Brett Gardner are the projected big leaguers making the trip. That game will be on MLB.tv only.
Here is tonight’s open thread. The Devils, Knicks, and Nets are all playing, plus you’ll have USA vs. Italy in World Baseball Classic on MLB Network at 9pm ET. If USA loses, they’re as good as eliminated. Talk about those games or anything else here. Enjoy.
Mariano Rivera formally announced that he will retirement from baseball following the 2013 season earlier this morning, and while I liveblogged the press conference, I figured a bunch of you would want to see the thing yourself. The above video is the actual announcement from Rivera, the below video the Q&A session with the media.
This afternoon, Mariano Rivera will make the first appearance of his final season as a player. The long-time closer officially announced he will retire at the end of the season this morning, meaning the farewell tour is underway. Today will be his last first Spring Training appearance and tomorrow will bring another last first something. It’s bittersweet.
The exciting thing is that Rivera will not be the only legacy Yankee to make his Grapefruit League debut today. Derek Jeter is also in the lineup for the first time and will unsurprisingly DH. It will be a few days/weeks before he gets back on the field and plays shortstop in a game following his offseason ankle surgery. Here’s the lineup.
- DH Derek Jeter
- RF Ichiro Suzuki
- SS Eduardo Nunez
- 1B Juan Rivera
- 3B Jayson Nix
- LF Matt Diaz
- C Chris Stewart
- CF Melky Mesa
- 2B Corban Joseph
This afternoon’s game is scheduled to start a little after 1pm ET and it can be seen on both YES and MLB.tv (no local blackout). Enjoy.
Barring a complete surprise, Mariano Rivera will announce his retirement from baseball following the 2013 season during a press conference in Tampa this morning. The 43-year-old has been hinting at retirement for two years now, so the announcement will be no surprise. The show starts at 10am ET and can be seen on YES. I’ll liveblog the particulars below.