Yanks look to deliver some punch vs. Price, Rays

Yanks DH Ben Francisco is just 2-for-22 (.091) this year.

Yankees DH Ben Francisco is just 2-for-22 (.091) this year. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Kevin Youkilis is tethered to a table in the trainer’s room at Tropicana Field, his lower back keeping him from making a difference in the Yankees’ lineup. Mark Teixeira is on the bench but unable to make contact with baseballs as he tries to repair his right wrist. We’d imagine Derek Jeter is doing whatever world-famous professional athletes do on a Tuesday night in Charlotte, N.C.

All this means that the Yankees lineup they’ve got going for Phil Hughes against David Price tonight … leaves something to be desired. Joe Girardi believes they’ll find a way to get it done because it’s baseball and anything can happen on any given night, but it doesn’t look all that wonderful on paper. Girardi acknowledged tonight that he’d love to have Youkilis in the lineup, and while he’s at it, he wants the switch-hitting Teixeira and the right-handed Jeter back as well.

“You feel it a lot. You definitely feel it a lot because of what they’ve done against left-handers in their careers,” Girardi said. “A leadoff hitter and a middle-of-the-order hitter, you’ve got those two guys out, that’s something substantial.”

The good news for the Yankees is that Youkilis is expected to return on Thursday, when the Yankees come back to New York and open a series at Yankee Stadium. The Yanks haven’t done much against left-handed pitching this year – their .190 team batting average (42-for-221) is tied for the lowest in the American League and second only to the Pirates’ .169 mark – but Girardi is hopeful that it’s still just a small sample size.

“We haven’t seen that many lefties. I still think it’s a small sample,” Girardi said. “We’ve had some people out of the lineup too, which is a problem, but I think our guys are going to hit better against left-handers. Some of the right-handers, I think are going to hit better against the left-handers.”

Lineups and expanded game information are available via MLB GameDay. 


Bryan, where do they get the reinforcements from? And what are they going to have to give up to get them? Aging veterans can help you in the short haul but not the long. They’re too prone to injury and they are on the downside of their career and not going to be able to play every game and to hit well every game. Wells has been a good surprise. But the jury is still out on Youk and Boesch and Fransisco. Fransisco is a bust. And our bull pen which was supposed to be strong this season has not pitched with confidence or consistency.


Bryan this team early in the season is looking like a team that one day we may say about them, “It was a team of strong character.” Are you getting that impression?


Could be. They’ve exceeded expectations for now. They’ve also got a lot of veterans who seem to have fit in, like Youkilis and Wells. If they can hang in there and pick up a few key reinforcements along the way, I think they can stay in the thick of the race.


Yankees come back in the 9th and score 2 runs of the closer Rodney. Good for Suzuki to get a single with bases loaded ona 99 mph fast ball. Rivera comes and the expectation is that he’ll strike out the side or at least protect the lead and win the game and first pitch he gives up the long ball to Longoria. A dangerous hitter. Can Mo pull it out? A lot easier with 2 run lead than 1. I guess we’ll know soon.


Got to give it to Hughes after getting into trouble in the 1st. Has pitched strong since. What will happen when he turns it over to the pen? The pen has not pitched well for the Yankees the last few games. They’ve spoiled some good starting pitching. Not much offense tonight from either team.


friggin Hughes. Doing his thing again giving up runs in the early innings and forcing the team to hit out of a hole. When is management going to trade this guy or put him into the bull pen for good? I know CC gave up 4 runs last night in the first inning but for Hughes it’s the same story every game. He just doesn’t have it and we’ve known that for the past 2 years and he’s back in the rotation again this year and it’s deja vu all over again. What is in this guy’s contract that the Yankees can’t trade him or put him in the bull pen? Is this Girardi’s doing or Cashman;’s? Drives me nuts.


man, they yankee lineup looks weaker and weaker. Now without Youk until Thursday. I can’t see much offense coming out of this lineup tonight. And if Hughes gives up the home run ball as he is prone to you, this could chalk up to another game in the loss column. Don’t like the Yankees chances but this is going to be the way it is until a few of the regulars come back and what kind of shape will they be in when they do? They are all old and prone to further injury. It’s amazing this team is where it is considering the lineup. And Fransisco in the lineup again with a batting average of .092? You’ve got to be kidding me. That’s all we have in the system as DH to hit lefties? I’d take Hafner or Boesch over Fransisco even if they bat left. Price is a great pitcher so he’s not going to give up much. Moore was real stingy last night. Yankee hitters have got to learn to hit these guys or we’re in trouble. Easy to beat up on the poor teams in the league.


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