Here is the lineup:
Mussina RHP (8-9, 5.22)
Pregame chatter: Yanks are facing RHP Justin Verlander (13-4, 3.63). … The Yankees are 2-4 on their road trip and fly home tonight to face Boston tomorrow. Andy Pettitte, tomorrow’s starter, has already gone ahead. … Jeter says he’s fine after sitting yesterday. … This will be back-to-back days at first for Giambi, which is inviting trouble. He says his foot feels fine, however, and this is a night game after a day game.
This is clearly their best, most-balanced lineup from an offensive standpoint. They’ll need it against Verlander.
UPDATE, 6:05 p.m.: The Yankees assigned seven prospects to Peoria of the Arizona Fall League, which starts Oct. 9. Right-handers Steven Jackson, Ross Ohlendorf, Kevin Whelan and Steven White were selected along with shortstop Reggie Corona, first baseman Juan Miranda and outfielder Brett Gardner.
UPDATE, 6:16 p.m.: I thought you’d find this amusing:
Actual exchange with Derek Jeter this afternoon
Reporter 1: “It’s been about 48 hours between games for you, has that made a big difference with your knee?”
Jeter: “Yeah, I’m fine.”
Reporter 1: “Is it improved since yesterday?”
Jeter: “I’m good to go.”
Reporter 2: “How much benefit to get from getting one day off when you’re banged up like that?”
Jeter: “Um, I’m fine.”
Reporter 3: “Derek, has your body had anything to do with the slump you’re in?”
Jeter: “I’m in a slump? Really? Well, we’ll see.”
UPDATE, 6:27 p.m.: The Tigers put Gary Sheffield on the DL. Had I to guess, he’ll shut it down for the rest of the season. Sheff would rather sit on his good numbers than play hurt and hurt his value.
Timo Perez was called up.
UPDATE, 7:21 p.m.: So we’re in the clubhouse today and suddenly I hear this weird sound. Kind of like a burp but also like a kazoo.
I’m no hunter, but supposedly you blow on this thing, it sounds like a deer, an actual deer shows up and – bang – it’s bye-bye Bambi.
Mariano Rivera, sitting in the next locker, watched curiously as Farnsy worked on different sounding calls. When a few nosy writer types ambled over to ask what the animal the call was for, Mo laughed.
“You guys,” he said. “See, it worked.”
Kyle tooted away for a while but no deer showed up. Which is good, because I’m fairly sure he could have figured out a way to kill them.
UPDATE, 7:33 p.m.: Hey Mike, Joey from Westchester, long-time listener, first-time caller. Still think Melky can’t play center?
UPDATE, 7:38 p.m.: 30 pitches/19 strikes for the Moose. That can’t keep up.
UPDATE, 8:12 p.m.: Well, he knew what was at stake, he had four days to prepare and he’s getting rocked. At this point you’d have to be surprised if Mussina is on the mound against Tampa Bay on Saturday.
The Hank Aaron Pitch-Back?
Torre was trying to be optimistic before the game when he talked about it. But he didn’t hide the idea that the Yankees would be willing to make a change.
UPDATE, 8:40 p.m.: I truly thought before the game that Mike Mussina would figure out a way to at least keep the Yankees in the game and give himself another shot. What happened tonight was a scenario I didn’t envision. He wasn’t just bad, he was nearly as brutal as he was the other night. Sure, Cano could have dove for that ball. But would it have mattered? Carlos Guillen crushed those two pitches he hit. Mussina was throwing strikes like the Yankes wanted and the Tigers hit them.
Meanwhile, has the Edwar Ramirez Fan Club disbanded? It’s OK to be a reliever with one pitch if that’s a moving fastball. Not if it’s a changeup. His fastball is just not good enough for this level based on what we have seen.