Yankees notes from St. Louis
OH, DOCTOR: The Yankees contingent could not avoid questions about the American League’s starting pitcher, Roy Halladay — not after the Blue Jays ace told reporters that he believes it’s about a 50-50 chance that he will be traded in-season.
Derek Jeter said that he isn’t the type of person who would go out of his way to recruit someone like Halladay, especially in the middle of the season, when any move would mean the Yankees would have to dump a player off their roster. But Jeter said he was relishing not having to face Halladay and having him on his side for a change.
“You see what he’s done to us,” Jeter said. “That’s pretty much all you’ve got to say.
I’ve said it time and time again. He’s the best pitcher in the league.”
Mark Teixeira lauded Halladay as a competitor and hard worker. He said that even if the Yankees don’t wind up with Halladay in pinstripes, the hope is that the right-hander would be traded out of the American League East, and preferably to the National League.
“Every winter, I look at the free agent list of pitchers and I hope
that every one of those pitchers pitches in the opposite league,” Teixeira said. “That’s
just the way it is. This division is so stacked as it is, you don’t
want any extra players coming into it.”
UP IN THE AIR: Jeter, Rivera and Teixeira
shared a charter flight here Sunday from the West Coast after the loss
to the Angels. Teixeira said that he spent a great amount of the flight
talking baseball with Rivera — Yankee dynasty edition, as Rivera
killed time by regaling his new teammate with some of the stories from
the 1996-2000 dynasty era.
“I got to talk with Mo a lot,” Teixeira said. “We just talked about New
York and how special it was when they were winning. The All-Star Game
is kind of old hat for these guys – they’ve done it so much that it’s
just, ‘Hey, it’s July, let’s go to the All-Star Game!'”
“It was a nice time,” Rivera added. “I was sharing how we did it in
those years and what we accomplished. Tex is a tremendous ballplayer.
We haven’t had a first baseman like that in a long time, since Tino
HEY, BUDDY: Jeter said that he is looking forward to catching up with Joe Torre, who will be in uniform as a coach for the National League. Torre still keeps up with Jeter and the Yankees, and they communicate frequently and check in by phone every once in a while. They haven’t met in person since the winter in New York.
“It’ll be awkward, probably, to see him,” Jeter said.
PRINCE ALBERT’S SHOW: The pace here in St. Louis will be a lot less hectic for Jeter and Rivera than it was last year in New York, when they were being shuttled all around town. That’s part of the benefit and problem of having the All-Star Game in your home city. Now, the Yankees can enjoy being guests and not hosts this week.
“You definitely enjoy it,” Jeter said. “Last year was unbelievable, the way the fans treated not
just me, but the Yankees players in general during those few days. During
the game was really something. Last year was more of a celebration of Yankee Stadium than
anything. This year it seems like it’s almost a celebration of Albert.”