The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News

Spring Game 19: Twins at Yankees

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Mar 15, 2009 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Posada C
Damon LF
Teixeira 1B
Matsui DH
Swisher RF
Cabrera CF
Berroa 3B
Pena SS
Bernier 2B

Pitching today: Andy Pettitte, Phil Coke, Jose Veras.

Span LF
Hughes 2B
Gomez CF
Kubel DH
Harris 3B
Buscher 1B
Redmond C
Winfree RF
Plouffe SS

Pitching today: Glen Perkins followed by Nick Blackburn, Rob Delaney, Sean Henn, Ben Julianel.

Notes: Posada is expected to catch only three innings as he gets behind the plate for the first time since having extensive surgery on his right shoulder last July. “I’m sure he’ll lobby for more,” manager Joe Girardi said. He’s hitting first so he gets a few at-bats. … This is Pettitte’s second start of the spring. … The game is on WCBS but not on YES.

Back with more later on.

UPDATE, 10:15 a.m.: Based on the lockers being cleaned out, Jesus Montero, Christian Garcia and Mark Melancon are off to minor-league camp.

UPDATE, 10:26 a.m.: Kevin Russo and Ian Kennedy, too.

UPDATE, 10:37 a.m.: Watching CMW throw in the bullpen. He and Dave Eiland are working on his arm slot.

UPDATE, 11:24 a.m.: Just spoke to Brian Cashman, who confirmed those cuts mentioned in previous updates. Catcher Kyle Anson also was re-assigned.

UPDATE, 11:45 a.m.: Here are some comments from Brian Cashman:

On Cano and Marte: “There’s a yellow flag. … Hopefully it’s just rest and recovery. But until we see (the MRIs), we just don’t know. I hope there’s no bad news.”

On Ian Kennedy: “I just know that he went home and processed what took place last year. It was the first time in his career that he failed. Went to winter ball, made some adjustments, came out of winter ball with the confidence, came to camp in a great frame of mind and heads over to Scranton the same way.

“He’s got some things with his secondary pitches he’s going to have to work out. But we saw some good things when he was here. The most important thing is he has a game plan he’s very comfortable with and he knows where he’s going. His development in the pro game has been very short. Because he had so much success early, he didn’t finish off some things he had to work on and now he’s back on that track. I think he’s going to have a big year, I really do. It’ll be a different Ian Kennedy for this franchise in 2009 than there was in 2008.”

On Phil Hughes: “You’re seeing that curve and his changeup more and more and to me, that’s a very good sign. He’s becoming more complete.”

On Mark Melancon: “He’s somebody we’re excited about. He’s got ability, he works hard and he wants it. That’s a good recipe right there.”

On Jorge Posada: It’s good that we got to this day. Not this specific day, but we thought we wouldn’t be ready to catch until mid-March to catch in games and here we are. So we go from this point, that’s an important first step of many more. These next few weeks, we’ll really see it.

“I guarantee — and this is just me thinking knowing how injuries are — that in the back of his mind he probably doesn’t trust it yet. Until he gets to the point where it’s instinct and it just happens and he says, ‘Wow, I didn’t think about that.’ That’s where he’ll work through the final phase of this thing.

“I need Matsui’s knees to be fine and I need Posada to be a catcher. That gives our lineup length and depth, with guys with plate discipline, with guys with the ability to give professional at-bats. Those guys know what they’re doing. If these guys aren’t available to us, it changes the lineup radically, especially 6, 7, 8, 9. I don’t want to be in that position, honestly.

“He’s feisty, he’s hungry and he wants to win. He doesn’t get enough credit for the leadership he has in that clubhouse. He is intense. Sometimes that intensity can carry into some emotional outbursts that aren’t always a bad thing. We missed him both on that field and in that clubhouse last year. Losing Wang and the way our pitching went last year was devastating. But our biggest loss was Jorge Posada.”

UPDATE, 1:18 p.m.: We’re underway here at Big Stein Field. Andy Pettitte is pitching to Jorge Posada. We’re going to party like it’s 1999.

Jorge is going to catch three innings, which is about how long Andy will go.

The game is on television back to Minnesota, so if you have DirectTV, maybe you can get it.

UPDATE, 1:25 p.m.: Pettitte gave up a single, but emerged unscathed. Posada just led off the bottom of the inning with an infield single.

UPDATE, 1:33 p.m.: 1-0 Yankees. After Posada singled, Damon singled. Then Teixeira fouled out well behind first, allowing Posada to tag up. He scored when Matsui grounded into a force play. Matsui beat the throw to first to stay out of the double play.

So Posada can catch and Matsui can avoid inning-ending double plays. Good day for the Yankees so far.

UPDATE, 1:41 p.m.: Pettitte allowed a two-out double by Redmond then fanned Winfree.

UPDATE, 1:46 p.m.: 2-0 Yankees. Melky doubled to left, Berroa bunted and Pena dropped a broken-bat flare into center over a drawn-in infield.

I have Pettitte with 31 pitches as he comes out for the third inning.

UPDATE, 1:53 p.m.: That’s it for Andy and Jorge. Pettitte: 3 2 0 0 0 1. 5 groundballs.

UPDATE, 2:21 p.m.: Pettitte just told us he was working on his curveball. He also said Posada looked the same. “It was good to see him back there,” Andy said.

UPDATE, 2:39 p.m.: Turns out Posada caught a fourth inning. We were down in the clubhouse talking to Pettitte when he caught Coke.

Posada didn’t have to make a throw but he was throwing to second base between innings. He said his shoulder felt strong.

UPDATE, 2:47 p.m.: Just like he did for the Kansas City A’s back in the day, Angel Berroa just whapped a two-run double to the gap in left. The Yankees lead 5-1.




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