Results tagged ‘ Luis Ayala ’

Pregame notes: Mariano reports improvement

Mariano Rivera played catch in the outfield at Cleveland’s Progressive Field today and said that his sore right triceps feels better, but he still feels something in there. He’ll give manager Joe Girardi a full report after the session, but told reporters that it’d take an emergency for him to pitch tonight.

Earlier today, Rivera said the toughest person to convince is usually Gene Monahan, who’ll nod when a player says he feels OK and then tell the manager to give him another day off. You’ve seen it before, but Rivera might get a little extra leeway with Girardi because of who he is and what he’s been through.

“Basically, you know your body,” Rivera said. “Those things are going to happen. You always have some aching feelings and soreness. I’m not concerned because I haven’t done nothing wrong. I expect that it’s something that’s going to calm and go away, the same way it came.”

Other pre-game tidbits:

  • Derek Jeter is in the lineup, batting leadoff and playing shortstop. Girardi said he checked with Jeter last night and today to make sure he’d be ready to go. They wouldn’t commit to a start on Wednesday here in Cleveland.
  • Luis Ayala is available tonight. Cory Wade has pitched in three of four, so he’s out. Eduardo Nunez is available off the bench, Girardi said.
  • Just a day off for Russell Martin after catching four straight, and a half-day for Mark Teixeira, who’s DHing while the Yanks play this stretch of 13 in a row. Girardi said that it’s to the point now where he doesn’t think twice about having Jorge Posada play first base.
  • They’re expecting 100 pitches out of Phil Hughes tomorrow.
  • Another setback for Eric Chavez, who felt something in his abdominal and has been sent back to New York for tests. Meanwhile, Rafael Soriano is set to throw a bullpen in Tampa tomorrow. Best case for Soriano is the first game after the All-Star break, but a little cushion room is more likely.

Yanks to call up Hector Noesi

The Yankees are ready to make their first Minor League call-up of the season. It’ll be right-hander Hector Noesi, summoned from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to replace right-hander Luis Ayala on the active roster, according to ESPN’s Enrique Rojas.

Noesi, 24, started on Saturday at Rochester, allowing three runs (two earned) on nine hits in five innings, getting a no-decision.

You might remember Joe Girardi and Brian Cashman giving Noesi an outside chance this spring at the fifth starter vacancy, the one that eventually went to Freddy Garcia. Noesi was delayed getting to camp by some visa issues and that was pretty much that, but he may get a chance to contribute on some level now.

He was 14-7 with a 3.20 ERA in 28 games (27 starts) with Class-A Tampa, Double-A Trenton and at Triple-A last year, walking just 28 batters while striking out 153. He held lefties to a combined .220 average (63-for-286, two homers).

Noesi’s promotion creates a vacancy in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s rotation for Kevin Millwood. He’s been working out in Tampa with the Extended Spring Training clubs, but needs to begin getting some starts soon. The Yankees must decide to promote Millwood by May 1 or he can opt out of his contract.

Brett Gardner to lead off vs. right-handers

The Yankees have decided how they want to stack the top part of their lineup, planning on having Brett Gardner lead off against right-handed pitchers with Derek Jeter batting second, beginning with tomorrow’s opener against the Tigers’ Justin Verlander.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi has said that “you can bank on” having Jeter in the leadoff spot against left-handed pitching.

Gardner hit .287 (97-for-338) off righties last year, posting a .387 on-base percentage and .391 slugging percentage. Jeter hit .246 (111-for-451) off righties, with a .316 on-base percentage and .317 slugging percentage.

“It possibly gives him 50-60 more at-bats during the course of the year. Maybe 70,” Girardi said of Gardner. “If he’s on close to 40 percent of the time, he’s going to score more runs. It doesn’t take a lot. Maybe he can steal second and steal third, [and score on a] sac fly. We think he’s going to score more runs, and that’s why we’re doing it. And just how he’s able to disrupt pitchers.”

Off lefties in 2010, Gardner was .252/.373/.353, while Jeter was .321/.391/.481. Jeter’s career numbers against lefties are .335/.408/.498, compared to .307/.377/.437 against righties.

Assuming Curtis Granderson comes through his Minor League game fine in Tampa this afternoon and joins the team in New York tonight, this could be the Yankees’ Opening Day lineup:

Brett Gardner LF, Derek Jeter SS, Mark Teixeira 1B, Alex Rodriguez 3B, Robinson Cano 2B, Nick Swisher RF, Jorge Posada DH, Curtis Granderson CF, Russell Martin C, CC Sabathia LHP

If Granderson needs to be scratched, the Yankees would probably start Andruw Jones in left field, moving Gardner to center field.

  • Also, righty Luis Ayala will be the 12th man on the pitching staff, replacing lefty Pedro Feliciano, who is headed for the disabled list. The Yankees announced the Ayala move this afternoon, but Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News got the heads-up hours earlier. How? This one’s a case of right place, right time: Ayala was sitting next to Feinsand on the flight to Newark this morning.
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