“I don’t know if he can help us or not,” Cashman said. “But I’m willing to put a no-risk, possible reward option that’s been on the table the whole time. We’ll put him in, get him ready and get him into competition. See if there’s anything there. If there is, we’ll have some decisions to make. If there’s not, nothing ventured, nothing gained.”
Nick Swisher was hobbled after his at-bat in the sixth inning Wednesday, fouling a pitch off his left instep while batting against the Blue Jays’ Jo Jo Reyes.
- Girardi said that the Yankees want Golson to go to Minor League camp and get more at-bats just in case Curtis Granderson isn’t ready for the season to start. Golson was sidelined from March 7 until Tuesday with an oblique strain of his own.
- Freddy Garcia gets the ball in a Minor League game Thursday afternoon at 1 p.m., though Girardi said there isn’t much Garcia can do to change the opinions of his bid for a rotation slot. “I think we have a pretty good feel on what Freddy can do,” he said. Jesus Montero will catch Garcia.
- Alex Rodriguez had two more hits, including a double, and is batting .429 this spring.
- Asked for his most impressive performers of camp, Girardi named lefty Manny Banuelos among the youngsters, and Bartolo Colon as the most impressive veteran. He also complimented the jumps Melky Mesa has been getting in center field.
- The Yankees claimed left-hander Jose Ortegano off waivers from the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday and optioned him to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He will report to Minor League camp. In 2010 with Triple-A Gwinnett and Single-A Myrtle Beach, he combined to go 5-15 with a 5.98 ERA.
- A.J. Burnett allowed four runs in 5 2/3 innings on Wednesday pitching to a lineup of Class-A Phillies batters. He surrendered six hits, walked three and struck out eight in a 94-pitch outing, throwing to Austin Romine.
- Steve Garrison and Ryan Pope were optioned to Double-A Trenton. Eric Wordekemper was reassigned to Minor League camp after Wednesday’s game.
Vice President Joe Biden was on the infield grass at George M. Steinbrenner Field this afternoon, watching as the Yankees went through a workout before tonight’s game against the Blue Jays.
The Yankees are hopeful Curtis Granderson’s strained oblique won’t force him to miss Opening Day.
Joe Girardi said the Yankees are still looking at this spring pitching competition as four names for three slots, with the decision needing to come soon between Bartolo Colon, Freddy Garcia, Sergio Mitre and Ivan Nova.
- Colon: 1-0, 2.40 ERA in four starts; 15 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 17 K’s
- Garcia: 1-1, 5.93 ERA in four starts; 13 2/3 IP, 13 H, 9 ER, 2 BB, 12 K’s
- Mitre: 1-1, 5.73 ERA in five games (two starts); 11 IP, 13 H, 7 ER, 1 BB, 8 K’s
- Nova: 1-0, 1.29 ERA in four games (three starts); 14 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K’s
Yankees centerfielder Curtis Granderson suffered a strained right oblique during batting practice this afternoon at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla.
Maybe it’s the popcorn?
- Hello from Clearwater, where the Yankees and Phillies are facing off for the fifth time this spring. They’ve split the first four meetings; it’s in the high 70s and gorgeous here this afternoon, without a cloud in the sky. The flags are blowing moderately from right field to left field, and they’re doing brisk business at the Frenchy’s tiki hut next to the left field bullpen. I’ve said it before, but this place is what Spring Training is supposed to be.
- A few brief notes this morning — Phil Hughes said he has no disappointment with being the Yankees’ No. 3 starter, saying that “it honestly doesn’t make any difference.” His reasoning is that it all gets jumbled up during the year anyway, so the real concern is the playoff rotation. Yes, they can think this far ahead.
- Andruw Jones was scratched from the trip and will get at-bats in a Minor League game instead today. He’s on tomorrow’s trip to Port Charlotte vs. Tampa Bay.
- Joe Girardi said the assessment is that Austin Romine is still better defensively than Jesus Montero, but Montero “has closed that gap” this spring with his blocking, throwing and game-calling.
- This is the second time Brett Gardner has hit leadoff in front of Derek Jeter this spring. Girardi seems to be seriously entertaining the notion of doing it this year, pointing out that having Gardner’s high on-base percentage atop the lineup creates runs to be driven in by “the big boys” and could mean 50 to 75 more plate appearances for Gardner.
- Reggie Jackson arrived in camp today. He was slowed by back surgery in January.
- Don’t look now, but Alex Rodriguez now has a hit in all 13 spring games he’s played in. He doubled this afternoon off the Phils’ Joe Blanton.
- There are 11 days until Opening Day.