Game 21: Yankees at Red Sox

What were the Yankees expecting from Michael Pineda when they reported to Spring Training this season? There were hopes that he would be able to regain his form and make that big trade with the Mariners look like more of a win, sure, but no one really knew for sure what kind of pitcher Pineda could be. Labrum tears are tricky like that; it was certainly fair to have questions and doubts about what the Yankees had on their hands.

And yet here we are at Fenway Park, as Pineda will take the ball carrying a 2-1 record and a sterling 1.00 ERA in his first three starts for the Yankees. He has already defeated the Red Sox once this season – the ‘pine tar/dirt’ game on April 10 at Yankee Stadium – and will be trying to chalk up his third straight victory tonight after blanking the Cubs his last time out. John Lackey has the ball for Boston.

“We weren’t sure what we were going to get from [Pineda] when the season started, that’s for sure, when we came to Spring Training,” manager Joe Girardi said today. “But the way I saw him throw the ball in Spring Training, I’m not surprised what he’s done so far. Obviously our job is to kind of take it a little bit slow with him and we’ve done that, we’ll continue to do that, but we’re really pleased with what he’s done. He’s been dynamite.”

The game will be televised on the YES Network and ESPN, and can be heard on WFAN.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

YANKEES (12-8)

Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Derek Jeter SS
Carlos Beltran DH
Brian McCann C
Alfonso Soriano LF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Brett Gardner RF
Brian Roberts 2B
Kelly Johnson 3B

Michael Pineda RHP (2-1, 1.00)

RED SOX (9-12)

Grady Sizemore RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
David Ortiz DH
Mike Napoli 1B
Mike Carp LF
A.J. Pierzynski C
Xander Bogaerts SS
Brock Holt 3B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF

John Lackey RHP (2-2, 5.25)

Game 20: Yankees at Red Sox

BostonThe Yankees continue their road trip tonight, opening a three-game series against the Red Sox here at Fenway Park. The contest will mark Jacoby Ellsbury’s return to Boston after signing a seven-year, $153 million deal with the Yankees, as well as Masahiro Tanaka’s first encounter with the Green Monster. It should be a good one to watch. Jon Lester has the ball for the Sox.

The game will be televised on My9 and can be heard on WFAN.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

YANKEES (11-8)

Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Derek Jeter SS
Carlos Beltran DH
Alfonso Soriano LF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Brian McCann C
Yangervis Solarte 3B
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Brian Roberts 2B

Masahiro Tanaka RHP (2-0, 2.05)

RED SOX (9-11)

Grady Sizemore RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
David Ortiz DH
Mike Napoli 1B
Jonny Gomes LF
A.J. Pierzynski C
Xander Bogaerts SS
Brock Holt 3B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF

Jon Lester LHP (2-2, 2.17)

Surgery recommended for Ivan Nova

Ivan Nova, Joe GirardiIvan Nova’s season appears to be over. The Yankees right-hander has been advised to have Tommy John surgery to repair a partially torn right ulnar collateral ligament.

Nova was examined on Tuesday by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad at New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York, where an MRI arthrogram confirmed the original diagnosis of a partial tear of the right ulnar collateral ligament.

The recovery time for Tommy John surgery is approximately 12 to 18 months.

“We had an inkling that was going to be the recommendation,” manager Joe Girardi said. “It’s unfortunate and obviously he has to make a decision now. It’s what you don’t want to hear.”

Girardi said that he had not spoken to Nova, who sustained the injury during an April 19 start against the Rays at Tropicana Field, but the Yankees have already decided how they will patch the hole left by his departure.

Vidal Nuno, who pitched five scoreless innings in a spot start against the Rays on Sunday, will slide in as the fifth starter for the foreseeable future. Nuno’s next start has been set for Saturday against the Angels at Yankee Stadium.

“He pitched extremely well,” Girardi said. “Now you would think that you could move him to 80, 85 pitches the next time, which is almost where our starters were the first start; pretty close.”

Girardi said that Nova has the option to seek another opinion before undergoing surgery. Nova was 2-2 with an 8.27 ERA in four starts for New York this season, including allowing a career-high four homers in his last start.

“We had high hopes for him because of what he did at the end of last year,” Girardi said. “His Spring Training was very, very good. We had big expectations for him. This is a blow to our rotation, but no one is going to feel sorry for you. As a ball club, we have to figure it out.”

Game 19: Yankees at Rays

It’s been a busy morning and afternoon here at Tropicana Field. Ivan Nova has been placed on the disabled list with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament and could require Tommy John surgery, and the Yankees have Mark Teixeira back in the lineup for the first time since April 4. Preston Claiborne and Bryan Mitchell are here to help out a pitching staff that allowed 27 runs to the Rays in the last two nights; Scott Sizemore has been optioned to Triple-A and Matt Daley was designated for assignment.

We’re underway, with Vidal Nuno making his first start of the year for New York. Cesar Ramos has the ball for the Rays. The game is on YES, MLB Network and WFAN.

Here are today’s lineups:

YANKEES (10-8)

Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Derek Jeter SS
Carlos Beltran RF
Alfonso Soriano DH
Mark Teixeira 1B
Yangervis Solarte 3B
Brett Gardner LF
Brian Roberts 2B
John Ryan Murphy C

Vidal Nuno LHP (0-0, 14.54)

RAYS (9-9)

Sean Rodriguez LF
Ben Zobrist DH
Logan Forsythe 2B
Evan Longoria 3B
Wil Myers RF
James Loney 1B
Brandon Guyer CF
Yunel Escobar SS
Ryan Hanigan C

Cesar Ramos LHP (0-1, 7.50)

Ivan Nova has partially torn ulnar collateral ligament

The MRI on RHP Ivan Nova last night has revealed a partial tear of ulnar collateral ligament of his right elbow.

He will be placed on the disabled list today and will be further examined tomorrow in New York by Yankees team physician Dr. Chris Ahmad.

“Tommy John” surgery is a possibility, though the Yankees will look at the chance that the injury can be rehabbed first.

“It’s really unfortunate,” manager Joe Girardi said. “It’s a guy that obviously we were counting on pretty heavily this year. He’ll be re-evaluated by Dr. Ahmad tomorrow and I guess you go from there to see what the next step is.”

Today’s roster moves:

Reinstated 1B Mark Teixeira from the 15-day disabled list; recalled RHP Preston Claiborne from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and RHP Bryan Mitchell from Double-A Trenton; placed RHP Ivan Nova on the 15-day disabled list with a right elbow ulnar collateral ligament injury; optioned INF Scott Sizemore to Triple-A Scranton/WB; designated RHP Matt Daley for assignment.

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