Notes and quotes: Overbay in outfield again, setback for Nunez
David Phelps is on the mound tonight for the Yanks, looking to bounce back from the worst start of his career last time out, when he threw 31 pitches and recorded just one out in a 9-4 loss to the Mets.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that once Phelps gets through the first inning, he’s usually pretty good, and there’s no exact explanation for why a pitcher struggles to settle into a ballgame.
“I think it’s a pitcher’s thing. There’s a lot of pitchers that are like that,” Girardi said. “I think it’s just getting a feel for the mound, a feel for what you’ve got out there, because a lot of times what they have in the bullpen doesn’t come out necessarily in the game.”
Lyle Overbay will make his second big league start tonight in right field, as Brett Gardner picks up a day off against Indians lefty Scott Kazmir. Girardi said that he has watched Overbay a little bit in batting practice and was pleasantly surprised by his defensive proficiency.
“Arm strength wasn’t a concern of mine. You look at routes,” Girardi said. “I talked to Topper (coach Rob Thomson) about it, Topper thought he did a pretty good job in the little bit that he’d seen him do it.”
There’s good news to report on Michael Pineda, who has been scheduled to make his first Minor League rehabilitation start on Saturday for Class-A Tampa.
And it wouldn’t be a Yankees update without a new injury. Eduardo Nunez felt more discomfort in his oblique while swinging a bat on Tuesday in Tampa, so the Yankees will just have to wait longer for his return.
“It’s kind of how the year has went, in a sense,” Girardi said. “We thought we’d get him back after a week of sitting him down. He wasn’t ready to go. Obliques are hard. They’re hard muscles to heal sometimes. You can feel pretty good just doing everyday stuff but when you have to do that rotation, it hurts. That’s what he’s going through.”