Pitching today: Chien-Ming Wang followed by Tomko, Jackson, De La Rosa, Dunn, Claggett, Kontos.
Pitching for Houston: Mike Hampton followed by Russ Ortiz, Jose Valverde, Chad Paronto and Wesley Wright.
Notes: This is the first game for Wang since he tore a ligament and tendon in his right foot running the bases against Houston last June. …Jorge Posada is back and will play some long toss before the game.
UPDATE, 9:26 a.m.: I hung back in Tampa to watch CC Sabathia throw a simulated game. He’s going to throw 25 pitches of so.
UPDATE, 11:32 p.m.: Here we are in Kissimmee. Sabathia threw 28 pitches to Kevin Cash and Hideki Matsui, who alternated at-bats. By my count, he threw 19 strikes. Two balls were put in play. Cash had a grounder to shortstop and Matsui a single into right field.
CC will start his first game on Friday. He said he feels fine and has been getting enough work.
“It was the first time throwing to guys without a screen up and it felt good,” he said. CC was working on getting his cutter down in the strike zone. He said that is usually the last pitch to come around in the spring. The Yankees did not have a gun on him but his fastball was right where it needed to be given how the hitters were reacting to it.
UPDATE, 11:56 p.m.: According to the AP, A-Rod has arrived at the Dominican team camp in Jupiter on the other side of the state.
UPDATE, 12:07 p.m.: Here is the pitching rotation for the next eight days:
Next Monday: Pettitte
UPDATE, 12:39 p.m.: Houston RHP LaTroy Hawkins has joined Team USA in place of Joe Nathan. Hawkins started last season with the Yankees, pitched poorly then was traded to Houston. He was lights out for the Astros, allowing one ER in 21 innings. Hawk is a good guy who had a bad time of it in New York. It didn’t help that some fans verbally abused him for being the first player since Paul O’Neill to wear No. 21.
UPDATE, 1:10 p.m.: Good start for the Yankees. Damon singles to right and Cabrera triples to center as the ball deflects off the glove of Michael Bourn. 1-0.
Roy Oswalt starts for Team USA tomorrow by the way.
UPDATE, 1:14 p.m.: Swisher walks. Posada sharp single over the head of the second baseman. Cabrera scores, Swisher hustles to third. 2-0, no outs, runners on the corners.
UPDATE, 1:15 p.m.: Ransom 4-6-3. Run scores. 3-0.
UPDATE, 1:26 p.m.: Good inning for Wang. He allowed a two-out single by Berkman (after getting squeezed on a 2-2 pitch by Jerry Layne) then got Lee to fly to right. 12 pitches, 8 strikes.
UPDATE, 1:35 p.m.: Double by Berroa and then a two-out RBI single by the Melkman. The CF competition is starting to heat up.
UPDATE, 1:39 p.m.: Jesus Montero’s groin strain apparently is not too serious. He was dressed and wanted to go on the road trip today. The Yankees held him back, however.
UPDATE, 1:45 p.m.: Wang allowed a two-out bloop single by Erstad then got Kata to ground out. Swisher saved him from trouble by making a nice running catch in the corner to rob Blum of a double.
Wang has thrown 23 pitches and that probably is it for him.
UPDATE, 1:51 p.m.: Yep, Wang is done. Tomko in to pitch. 4-0 Yankees middle of the third inning.
UPDATE, 2:03 p.m.: Striking a blow for senior citizens everywhere, Angel Berroa just homered to center. 5-0 Yankees.
UPDATE, 2:42 p.m.: I’ll be headed down to the clubhouse soon. The Yankees are up 5-2 in the middle of the sixth inning. All sorts of subs are in.