Results tagged ‘ Chan Ho Park ’
Here are the early notes as the Yankees (68-60) and Rays (73-53) prepare to meet under the roof here at Tropicana Field, with CC Sabathia and David Price matching up for the 7:10 p.m. ET start:
Brett Gardner is not in the Yankees’ lineup, but it has nothing to do with his right hand, which was hit last night by a 95 mph Chris Archer fastball. Gardner had X-rays this morning on the hand and they showed no break. Gardner said the hand is a little swollen, but manager Joe Girardi said he wasn’t planning on playing Gardner against the left-hander Price anyway.
Girardi also said he thought Ichiro Suzuki‘s at-bats were good against Price the last time the Yankees saw him.
Derek Jeter is scheduled to play tonight for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre against Pawtucket and then would be in the Yankees’ lineup on Monday at Toronto if everything goes well. The captain went 0-for-3 with a walk and run scored on Friday for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
Girardi’s scouting report on Price: “You look at him three or four years ago and you see he threw 80-85 percent fastballs. But now he’s developed his repertoire. He’s got a curveball, slider a very good backdoor slider to righties. He’s got a very good changeup. He’s just evolved as a pitcher is what he’s done. He’s always had the great fastball but his secondary stuff is now pretty good.”
And what Girardi is looking for from Sabathia tonight: “This is a lineup that if you make mistakes, they’re going to hit the ball out of the ballpark and you got to stay away from the mistakes. Your sinker has to be effective, your changeup has to be effective, and you go from there.”
Girardi was asked if Sabathia’s weight loss might have anything to do with his struggles this season: “I don’t think so. It’s not like he’s 210 pounds. He’s not Mr. [Edwar] Ramirez that we used to have here. He’s still a big man. He’s still strong. I think he’s in tremendous shape.”
Yes, that’s right, there was an Edwar Ramirez reference today. Bet you weren’t counting on hearing anything about the man they called “Flacco.” I do miss watching Mariano Rivera stuff Ramirez into the lockers at the old Stadium.
Two other random thoughts about Ramirez, since my memory has been jogged — Mark Feinsand of the Daily News once made Ramirez cry, asking him about a grand slam that he gave up to Mark Teixeira, who was then with the Angels. Watching Edwar mop his tears with his uniform was just about the saddest thing you can see in a clubhouse. And then there’s the great quote from Kevin Millar about Ramirez: “Cute little fella. That’s good hittin’.”
Other notes — Adam Warren should be available in long relief out of the Yankees’ bullpen. … Lyle Overbay isn’t having a fun trip; he’s still having some flu-like symptoms, and it’s uncertain if he would be available to play tonight. Hey, at least he’s doing better than Chan Ho Park was in Boston. … The Yankees were watching the California/Connecticut Little League World Series game on the clubhouse TVs.
My Beat The Streak pick tonight: Alfonso Soriano. Streak is at zero after Alex Rodriguez went hitless last night.
And we’ll wrap today’s pre-game notes with a Debbie Downer not-so-fun fact for the Yankees: they’re 5-15 in their last 20 games at Tropicana Field dating back to July 21, 2011.
While most of the news was coming out of Sarasota, there was this ugly tidbit of a pitching line filtering in from the Himes Avenue complex back in Tampa, where CC Sabathia pitched in a Triple-A game against the Phillies’ top farm club:
Sabathia: 3.2IP, 7 H, 7 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HBP, 2 HR – 88 pitches, 58 strikes
Joe Girardi didn’t have any details, but upon hearing the results, he said: “That’s not what we’re necessarily looking for.” Maybe it’s a good thing that Sabathia’s facing the Red Sox on Opening Night and not the Triple-A Lehigh Valley club.
Following the outing, Sabathia threw an additional 12 pitches in the bullpen. He was caught in the game and bullpen by Jorge Posada, who went 2-for-3 (two singles) off the Phillies’ Roy Halladay.
- Once again, Alex Rodriguez found a side door at Ed Smith Stadium, walking past the autograph seekers and into a waiting luxury car to leave the Yankees. He was apparently headed for his reported meeting with federal investigators regarding his possible connection to a Canadian physician under investigation. A-Rod did not comment to reporters, and Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that he did not know if Rodriguez would be available to play on either Friday or Saturday.
- Back in Sarasota, Girardi thought that Sergio Mitre (2 IP, 1 ER) looked pretty good, but Alfredo Aceves (2 IP, 6 ER) was up in the zone and paid for it. Girardi said that he thought both pitchers were dealing with some emotions after learning they wouldn’t be the Yankees’ fifth starter.
- Earlier we mentioned that the Yankees might find it difficult to carry two situational lefties, and they consider Damaso Marte as one. Boone Logan’s changeup is an intriguing pitch for Girardi, and one they want to keep looking at. It’s a pitch that might elevate him past just the left-on-left battles.
- One explanation for Marcus Thames’ struggles this spring, from Girardi – he’s going to primarily be on the roster to bat against left-handed pitching, and the Yankees haven’t seen much this spring. They’ll draw Jamie Moyer tomorrow, and you can bet Thames will be in there. Girardi wants to see him get going.
- Chan Ho Park (2 IP, 0 ER) was “exceptional,” the skipper said.
If Derek Jeter’s throwing hand was bothering him at all while playing the field on Thursday, it came as news to Yankees manager Joe Girardi.
Girardi said that he learned there might have been an issue with his shortstop only after he was asked about it on the YES Network, as the telecast caught Jeter wincing and flexing his right hand while manning his position.
“He’s fine,” Girardi said. “I asked him and he said, ‘My hand’s fine.’ I didn’t know about it until they said it [on television] in the fifth inning.”
Jeter never drops hints about possible injuries and left George M. Steinbrenner Field on Thursday without speaking to reporters, but the play in question appeared to happen in the fourth inning, when Jeter dove for a Pat Burrell single.
As Girardi pointed out, Jeter looked good enough in his next at-bat, singling in the bottom half of the fourth off the Rays’ Heath Rollins.
“He got a hit after that,” Girardi said, adding, “He’ll play [Friday].”
Legs under him: Javier Vazquez allowed Carlos Pena’s first hit of the spring after 21 fruitless at-bats, and it went a long way over the right field wall. But other than that, Vazquez was pretty sharp, allowing two hits in three innings while walking two and striking out three.
He said that he felt his mechanics got out of sync at times but overall, Vazquez told pitching coach Dave Eiland that he was feeling pretty good after 60 pitches.
“I felt I could keep going,” Vazquez said. “It felt pretty good today. I feel my legs are strong. I’ve been working hard on them.”
Vazquez mentioned something interesting in that he felt this spring was more predictable than last, because he’d pitched in winter ball to get ready for the World Baseball Classic. But unlike some pitchers, he wasn’t saying the WBC participation was a bad thing.
“I threw a little bit more, and I felt last spring that I was ready quicker than usual,” Vazquez said. “This is just a normal spring for me.”
Cheering section: Chan Ho Park’s Yankees debut was brief, but it had a loud audience in Joba Chamberlain and Dave Robertson, who were impressed watching Park pounce on a fifth-inning Pena tapper and by the movement on a strikeout pitch to Willy Aybar.
“His outing was so sharp, I forgot he pitched,” Girardi said.
Scouting from the press box: Girardi mentioned how he saw Boone Logan pitch for the White Sox during his season as a FOX broadcaster in 2007, and liked his arm then, as he does now. Logan has been asked to make some minor adjustments and is throwing the ball “pretty decent,” striking out the only batter he faced tonight around a passed ball.
Gotcha: If you’d walked by the travel roster for Friday’s game against the Rays in Port Charlotte tonight, the name ‘Rivera, Mariano’ had been circled by a clubhouse prankster. Rivera wasn’t buying it, and after the game, Rob Thomson pitched the altered travel roster in the trash and replaced it with the real deal.
Could Andy Pettitte make it through the whole spring without pitching against another team? It’s starting to look that way, but Joe Girardi promises they’ll find a way to get him into a game with four starts remaining.
Baseball wasn’t meant to happen today, though, as the Yankees got about 80 miles up the interstate before spinning the bus back around toward Tampa – washed out against the Nationals in Viera.
Instead, Pettitte threw a three inning simulated game at George M. Steinbrenner Field, the same way that A.J. Burnett did after last night’s washout. Girardi said that he didn’t consider altering the rotation to have Pettitte go Saturday in one of the Yankees’ split-squad games, believing that Pettitte knows how to handle himself after so many springs.
“If it wasn’t a veteran, you might make him pitch tomorrow,” Girardi said.
Javier Vazquez will start against the Orioles tomorrow in Tampa, with Chad Gaudin going against the Tigers in Lakeland. Alfredo Aceves, Royce Ring and Dave Robertson will pitch against Baltimore, while Grant Duff, Boone Logan, Sergio Mitre, Amaury Sanit and Zack Segovia have all been listed on the travel roster to see Detroit.
Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and Nick Swisher are among those heading to Tiger Town on what should be a much nicer day for baseball.
Other notes as we close up shop on what might just be a half-day in Tampa (though I’d bet against it…):
- A-Rod has “a bounce in his step every day,” Girardi said. Rodriguez has been able to limit the amount of hip exercises he does to loosen up compared to last season, and Girardi thinks he looks more like the player who was healthier and more confident in September and October.
- Aceves has been managing some back stiffness well. He’s been skipping fielding practice on some of the days he pitches, instead heading inside to do core work. It’s not considered a serious issue at this point.
- Chan Ho Park should throw batting practice tomorrow. That puts him on the Mariano Rivera (3/16) and Damaso Marte (3/17) schedule for getting into games.
- Girardi’s lineup had Curtis Granderson in left field today, and he might be back there tomorrow with Brett Gardner in center field. Girardi wants to see how Granderson reacts to the balls hit on different angles.
“It makes it real easy when you have players that are willing to do anything you ask,” Girardi said. “That’s a manager’s dream. It just shows you that they check their egos when they come in the clubhouse.”