Notes from Joe Girardi’s office
Joe Girardi just completed his closed-door session with the beat reporters. Much of the discussion concerned his lineup changes for Game 2 of the World Series, putting Jerry Hairston, Jr. in the lineup for Nick Swisher and continuing to stay with the battery of Jose Molina and A.J. Burnett.
Girardi was asked if it was difficult to tell Swisher: “I was on that side too, when I didn’t play every day of the World
Series. Jorgie and I kind of split it up. We just kind of liked the
matchup. We talked about what was the best thing to do. At this point,
we thought we’d play Jerry.”
The move was made both because Swisher has struggled in the postseason (4-for-35 -.114 – with no homers and one RBI) and because of Hairston’s success against Pedro Martinez — 10-for-27 (.370).
“It’s a combination of everything. If you’ve got a guy hitting .500 in
the postseason, you probably don’t take him out. Swish has done some
good things. He’s did some good things in Game 6 and played good
defense. We just liked the matchup.”
On taking Posada out of the lineup for Molina: “It’s never easy when it involves taking Jorgie out. It never is. We
feel it has worked pretty well and we thought we’d stay with it.”
Girardi said that he didn’t strongly consider using Posada as a DH because Matsui is more used to it and has had success.
More on Swisher’s at-bats: “They’ve pitched him tough. A lot of his at-bats have been long at-bats,
but inevitably they’ve gotten him out. That’s the one thing that Swish
is going to always do, he’s always going to put a tough at-bat. They’ve
made some good pitches and at times he’s had to chase with two strikes
out of the zone. We looked at his at-bats last night- he popped up a
couple of times, but his swing was short. He just was a little off.”
A few other assorted notes:
— The Yankees talked about leaving Dave Robertson in the game last night and not using Brian Bruney, but then Robertson wouldn’t have been available for Game 2. It wasn’t a situation for Alfredo Aceves, who they want for multiple innings. With right-handed bats coming up, Girardi liked the matchup of Bruney’s stuff, but he made mistakes.
— Girardi sees Phil Hughes’ big issue as being behind in the count. That’s making him throw strikes and not expand the zone. His fastball has not been crisp or located.
— The Yankees will wait until after Game 3 to announce who will start Game 4. Hard to imagine they’d send Chad Gaudin out down 3-0 or 2-1.
— If the Yankees make a switch for defense tonight, don’t expect to see Swisher. More likely, Melky Cabrera would move to right field and Brett Gardner would play center field. Also, Hairston is the emergency third catcher.
— The Yankees will work out tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. ET at Citizens Bank Park.
One more thought on tonight’s Game 2, as Girardi flashed back to the 1996 World Series: “This is an important game. You don’t want to go there down two games to zero. But I was also part of a club that was down 2-0 and knew we were going to see (Tom) Glavine, (John) Smoltz and (Greg) Maddux. And we rebounded.”