Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that Derek Jeter has been diagnosed with a left ankle fracture and is out for the remainder of the postseason.
Girardi said that the injury has a three month recovery period. It’s not career ending, Girardi made sure to say, but it does mean the Yankees will be without their captain for the rest of 2012.
The Yankees will activate Eduardo Nunez for tomorrow’s Game 2.
2012 AMERICAN LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES – GAME 1
NEW YORK YANKEES (3-2/95-67) vs. DETROIT TIGERS (3-2/88-74)
LHP Andy Pettitte (0-1, 3.86) vs. RHP Doug Fister (0-0, 2.57)
Saturday, October 13 • 8:07 p.m. et • TBS • Yankee Stadium
Doug Fister RHP
Derek Jeter SS
Ichiro Suzuki LF
Robinson Cano 2B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Raul Ibanez DH
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Nick Swisher RF
Curtis Granderson CF
Russell Martin C
Andy Pettitte LHP
AT A GLANCE: The Yankees will play Game 1 of the 2012 American League Championship Series vs. the Detroit Tigers tonight at Yankee Stadium…marks the Yankees’ 15th ALCS all-time, going 11-3 in the series, including a 7-2 mark in their last nine since 1996 – which have been a “best of seven” format…is their third ALCS in five years under Joe Girardi (also 2009 and ‘10)…are 34-14 in 48 “best-of-seven” series all time.
OFF ON THE RIGHT FOOT: The Yankees have won the first game in each of their last four postseason series and nine of their last 11.
ANDY’S TURN: LHP Andy Pettitte will make his seventh career Game 1 start, first since the 2005 NLCS at St. Louis w/Houston… is his fifth Game 1 start as a Yankee, first since the 2001 ALCS at Seattle… is his first Game 1 start at home since the 2000 World Series vs. the Mets (6.2IP, 8H, 3ER in the ND)… overall, is s 2-2 with a 5.59 ERA (37.0IP, 23ER) in his six previous Game 1 starts.
ð The start by Pettitte snaps a streak of seven consecutive postseason Game 1s started by CC Sabathia dating back to 2009.
NEW YORK – Alex Rodriguez returned to the Yankees’ lineup for Game 1 of the American League Championship Series, one day after the third baseman was benched for the decisive ALDS Game 5 against the Orioles.
Rodriguez will bat sixth and play third base in New York’s 8:07 p.m. ET contest against the Tigers at Yankee Stadium.
“This is a guy that we really need to get going,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “This is a guy that, in 2009, you think about what he did throughout the playoffs, I just believe in my heart that he’s ready to go. I believe he’s going to contribute. We’re going to put him back in there.”
Rodriguez is batting .125 (2-for-16) in four postseason games this year, including going hitless with nine strikeouts in 12 at-bats against right-handed pitching. Girardi pinch-hit for Rodriguez in both Games 3 and 4 before sitting him completely in Game 5.
The Tigers figure to have nothing but right-handed starters in the ALCS, beginning with Doug Fister in Game 1, but Girardi said that he does not expect that to be a problem.
“I don’t think so. I expect him to do well; I do,” Girardi said. “He’s back in there and we need him to play well, just like all our other guys.”
Before Friday’s Game 5, Rodriguez said that he was “not happy” and “disappointed” by Girardi’s decision, but did not blame the manager, saying he needed to “look in the mirror.”
“I wanted to be in there in the worst way,” Rodriguez said. “But I keep telling you guys, this is not a story about one person, this is about a team.”
Girardi had one opportunity to insert Rodriguez as a pinch-hitter in Game 5, as manager Buck Showalter dared him to pull the trigger by inserting left-hander Troy Patton in the sixth inning. Girardi declined, sticking with Raul Ibanez, who struck out.
While Rodriguez received the nod in Game 1, Girardi said that he believes “it’s possible” that Chavez could re-appear at third base later in the series.
Chavez is hitless in eight postseason at-bats thus far but hit .298 over 245 at-bats against right-handed pitching this season and pummeled the Tigers in nine games, batting .516 (16-for-31) with two homers and five RBIs.
“I’ve talked about this at length, that I make my lineup every morning in my head when I watch the tapes and I watch the films and the at-bats against guys,” Girardi said. “As far as worrying about tomorrow’s [Game 2] lineup, I’m not worried about tomorrow’s lineup. Let’s just be productive today.”
New York elected to take 12 pitchers into the ALCS against the Tigers, as Detroit’s stable of right-handed starting pitchers – beginning with Doug Fister in Saturday’s Game 1 – made it less likely the Yankees would need Nunez’s bat to counter left-handed pitching.
The Yankees continue to carry Jayson Nix as a backup infielder, who would play shortstop in the event Derek Jeter is unavailable. A bone bruise on Jeter’s left foot forced him to DH in Game 4 of the ALDS against the Orioles, though Jeter was back at shortstop on Friday as the Yankees won Game 5, 3-1, over the Orioles.
The roster decisions may suggest that David Phelps is in line to start Game 2 of the ALCS on Sunday against the Tigers, though manager Joe Girardi said he would not reveal that decision until later on Saturday. The Yankees could also start both Hiroki Kuroda and CC Sabathia on short rest in Games 2 and 3, respectively. Andy Pettitte is scheduled to start Saturday’s Game 1.
Behind Pettitte and Phelps, plus Sabathia, Kuroda and Phil Hughes, the Yankees’ seven-man bullpen has two left-handers, Boone Logan and Clay Rapada. The Yankees’ stable of right-handed relievers is comprised of Joba Chamberlain, Eppley, Derek Lowe, David Robertson and closer Rafael Soriano.
Chris Stewart is on the roster as the backup to starting catcher Russell Martin. New York’s starting infield of Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, Jeter and Alex Rodriguez will have Nix and Eric Chavez in reserve. It is unknown if Rodriguez will start in Saturday’s ALCS Game 1 after being benched in favor of Chavez for Friday’s ALDS Game 5.
The Yankees’ starting outfield of Ichiro Suzuki, Curtis Granderson and Nick Swisher has Raul Ibanez and Brett Gardner in reserve. Ibanez will likely see designated hitter duty in the series after his hot ALDS, including his game-tying and game-winning home runs in ALDS Game 3 against the Orioles.
Here’s a PDF version of the ALCS Roster.