Notes: Alas, the dream of fielding the Opening Day lineup for the third time all season remains a fleeting one. Jason Giambi (left foot) is out for a second straight day. … This is the first start for Jorge Posada since April 25. He should get a nice hand when he comes to the plate. … Thanks to Brian Heyman for calling in the lineup. … The clock is ticking for the draft, which starts at 2 p.m.
Back later with updates.
UPDATE, 2:28 p.m.: Very interesting draft news. The Pirates (Alvarez) and Royals (Hosmer) are clearly not worried about signability.
Meanwhile, Joe West has a brutal strike zone at the Stadium.
UPDATE, 2:41 p.m.: Another poor performance for Wang, who didn’t get any help from Melky Cabrera.
I’m not sold on the idea that Wang is simply having problems with his arm slot. He’s had that problem before and he’s fixed it in one bullpen session. You have to wonder whether there is something wrong with him physically because he can’t “finish off” his sinker.
Wang is not the type to complain and, as we know, the Yankees don’t reveal much about injuries. At some point, and we’re at that point, you can’t ignore the results over a long period of time.
UPDATE, 2:52 p.m.: Words can’t describe how bad Bud Selig is when he announces the picks during the draft. He makes David Stern look like Dean Martin. The commish had done a decent enough job but baseball should hire Ryan Seacrest to make public appearances in his behalf. Let Bud stay in Milwaukee.
Meanwhile, ESPN has Steve Phillips, Chris Singleton, Peter Gammons, Keith Law and Jim Callis on hand.
The two guys who know the most about the draft- Law and Callis – are not on the set in Orlando. Makes perfect sense.
UPDATE. 3:04 p.m.: They caught a break when Barajas lost the ball. But what is Bobby Mecham thinking there, letting Damon tag up on a pop fly to the second baseman? Damon should have been out by 10 feet. Off the top of my head, Meacham has made four mistakes already this season. That’s four more than Larry Bowa made last season.
It’s one thing to be aggressive but that’s over the top.
UPDATE, 3:20 p.m.: Looks like we have a game. Wilson Betemit doesn’t do much but he does have some power when he makes contact.
UPDATE, 4:07 p.m.: The Yankees might be catching a break in the draft. Lots of hitters going high. They could get a big-time arm at 28. Cole, maybe. Might they take Casey Kelly? We’ll know soon.
UPDATE, 4:25 p.m.: The draft is opening up well for the Yankees as position players continue to go. I’d personally like to see then take one of these pitchers:
1. Shooter Hunt
2. Gerrit Cole
3. Tanner Scheppers
UPDATE, 4:33 p.m.: 10 minutes until the Yankees pick.
UPDATE, 4:36 p.m.: Great catch by Wilkerson. That ball falls and it’s 8-7 and Metallica is playing in a few minutes. Wow.
UPDATE, 4:39 p.m.: Yankees draft next. Total speculation, but they’ll take Cole.
* * * * * YANKEES SELECT GERRIT COLE WITH FIRST PICK * * * * *
UPDATE, 4:43 p.m.: The Yankees have taken RHP Gerrit Cole with their first pick of the draft, No. 28 overall.
UPDATE, 4:47 p.m.: Here is the Baseball American scouting report on Cole:
Cole is the best righthander out of Southern California since Phil Hughes starred at Santa Ana’s Foothills High in 2004. Cole’s four-seam fastball ranges from 93-96 mph, occasionally peaking at 97-98. He adds a hard, late-breaking curve which shows bite, tilt and depth. Cole used his changeup sparingly early in the season, though he used it more later. Adding to Cole’s considerable appeal to scouts is his tall, lanky and projectable frame, which is nearly ideal for a prep righthander. Scouts are split over whether Cole profiles as a starter or closer. He maintains velocity and pitch movement deep into games, but his inconsistent command and tendency to run up high pitch counts may move him to the bullpen. Some scouts have compared him to Mariners closer J.J. Putz. Cole does bring mechanical concerns. He lands on a stiff front leg, and he recoils his arm during his follow-through. Both hurt control and raise injury concerns. Complicating the situation, Cole’s adviser is the Scott Boras Corp., which may eliminate many clubs from consideration. Cole also hasn’t endeared himself to scouts or teammates with what one scout described as his immature mound demeanor.
My take: Cole is from Orange (Calif.) Lutheran HS. Big, big arm with a dominating fastball. This goes right in line with Brian Cashman’s desire for talent regardless of what risks there are.
Obviously they’re hoping that Cole will mature as he becomes a professional. Great pick based on getting that kind of ability at 28.
They next pick at 44.
UPDATE, 4:56 p.m.: Robinson Cano has two sac bunts since the start of the 2006 season. Why would you have him bunt now? I realize that a professional ball player should know how to bunt. But that is not part of his game.
Meanwhile, you just can’t use Farnsworth two days in a row. His stuff fades.