Sorry for the lack of a game wrap on Friday night’s 8-4 loss to the Red Sox. I was travelling. Yesterday, the Yankees won a pair of split-squad games against the Pirates (13-10) and Astros (3-1). That’s too many lineups to list here, so I’ll skip right to the Big Hits, etc.
Jesus Montero hit a grand slam off Chris Bootcheck of the Pirates, and walked in his two other plate appearances over the last two days. Austin Jackson homered off Denny Bautista of the Pirates and went 2-for-6. Johnny Damon hit a solo homer off Wandy Rodriguez, going 1-for-3 against the Astros. Cody Ransom tripled off Tim Wakefield and doubled off Wandy Rodriguez, going 3-for-7. Xavier Nady doubled off Wakefield, went 1-for-6, and still hasn’t drawn a walk this spring. Shelley Duncan doubled of Takashi Saito, going 2-for-4. Kyle Anson doubled in four at-bats. Angel Berroa went 3-for-6.
Who Pitched Well:
A.J. Burnett pitched four perfect innings against the Astros, striking out three. Brett Tomko allowed just two singles in 3 1/3 innings against Boston while striking out five. Ian Kennedy struck out five Pirates while allowing just an unearned run on three hits and a walk (though he also thew wild on a pickoff and hit a batter). Brian Bruney pitched a perfect eighth against Houston striking out two. Steven Jackson pitched a perfect sixth inning against the Red Sox. Jonathan Albaladejo pitched a perfect fourth inning against the Pirates. David Robertson retired the only batter he faced to save the game against Pittsburgh. Edwar Ramirez pitched around a single for a scoreless seventh against the Astros in his spring debut. Jason Johnson pitched around a pair of singles for a scoreless ninth against Houston.
Chien-Ming Wang gave up seven runs (though only one was earned due to a Juan Miranda error), on six hits, including home runs by Mike Lowell and David Ortiz, in a mere 1 2/3 innings. Mark Melancon gave up five runs on a walk and six hits, four of them for extra bases, while recording just two outs in the ninth inning against the Pirates.
Brett Gardner went 1-for-5 with a walk and a steal. Melky Cabrera went 1-for-4. Nick Swisher went 0-for-2 with a walk and a steal. He still doesn’t have an extra-base hit, while Xavier Nady, who went 1-for-6, doubled but still doesn’t have a walk.
Robinson Cano (right shoulder tendonitis) and Damaso Marte (left shoulder tendonitis) had MRIs yesterday after returning from the WBC. Cano’s injury is believed to be normal spring training discomfort. Alex Rodriguez is off his crutches. Mariano Rivera threw 40 pitches in batting practice and will get into his first spring game on Tuesday. Edwar Ramirez (shoulder) and Jason Johnson (cancer) each pitched in a game for the first time this spring yesterday; both pitched well.
Ian Kennedy, Christian Garcia, and Michael Dunn were optioned. Don’t expect to see either of them before September, if then.
Kevin Russo, Colin Curtis, Kyle Anson, Austin Romine, Jesus Montero, and Mark Melancon were reassigned to minor league camp. Melancon could reappear in the bullpen as early as April. None of the rest are likely to see the majors this year as Garcia is coming back from an assortment of injuries and Romine and Montero are starting the year at High-A Tampa.