Pitching: RHP Phil Hughes (season debut).
Pitching: RHP Edwin Jackson (1-1, 2.77).
HUGHES THE MAN: Phil Hughes was 3-0, 1.86 in three starts for Triple-A Scranton. In 19.1 innings he allowed 17 hits and four earned runs. He walked three and struck out 17. Opponents hit .233 against him.
BAD TREND: The Yankees walked once and struck out 17 times in the last two games.
CANO ON A ROLL: Robinson Cano is up to .380 and has hit in 14 straight at 22 of 61. He has hit safely in 28 of 29 games dating last to last season.
NICK NEEDS A KNOCK: Nick Swisher is 6 of 35 (.171) with two RBI in his last nine games. His battig average has gone from .406 to .284.
MATTY MAKING STRIDES: Hideki Matsui 11 of his last 27 and has hit safely in seven straight.
SPUTTERING: The Yankees have scored three runs in the last 19 innings.
APRIL SHOWERS: The Yankees are 32-39 in April the last three seasons.
MINOR MATTERS: Eric Hacker was called up from Trenton to replace Hughes in the Scranton rotation. … Ian Kennedy has allowed 1.59 ERA in his first four starts. … Colin Curtis has a 12-game hit streak for Trenton. … Jeremy Bleich threw six scoreless innings for Tampa last night, fanning six. Jesus Montero is hitting .364, fourth in the FSL. … Manny Banuelos allowed one run in four innings for Charleston. Garrison Lassiter is hitting .346 and has nine RBI in 14 games.
Back later with much more.
UPDATE, 3:34 p.m.: Word is the Yankees are about to announce a cut in some ticket prices. More as that becomes available.
UPDATE, 3:40 p.m.: See details in the previous post on the new ticket prices for some seats.
UPDATE, 4:26 p.m.: Steven Jackson has been sent back to Scranton. Jackson was active for eight games but never got in.
UPDATE, 5:17 p.m.: Posada has a sore hamstring, hence his absence. … A-Rod took live BP today. Sergio Mitre was throwing. … Wang threw a 50-pitch bullpen.
UPDATE, 6:13 p.m.: This from the AP:
Alex Rodriguez participated in a sliding drill for the first time and got 15 at-bats Tuesday during his initial simulated game since undergoing right hip surgery last month.
The New York Yankees third baseman slid five times on a sliding mat, a key step in his rehab program. He also faced rehabbing pitchers Sergio Mitre (elbow) and Paul Patterson (shoulder) in the simulated game.
“A good day. It felt good,” Rodriguez said. “Good to be out there.”
He hit several hard liners to right field and several strong grounders up the middle.
Rodriguez could start playing in extended spring training games this week. The Yankees expect him to rejoin the team by May 15, although it is possible he might be back sooner.
The three-time AL MVP continued to increase his other workouts. Rodriguez took 28 swings in regular batting practice before the simulated game, 66 afterward, and started fielding popups off a pitching machine.
Also, Chien-Ming Wang threw 50 pitches off the mound and might pitch in an extended spring training game late this week.
Wang, on the 15-day disabled list with weakness in his hips, has started working out in a pool. He is doing some of the same work that Rodriguez does as part of his off-field program.
UPDATE, 6:15 p.m.: Joe Girardi, ever coy, said A-Rod was “very close” to playing in an extended spring game. I would guess that comes tomorrow or Thursday. And while the Yankees are sticking to May 15, he’s not going to need two weeks of games. I suspect we will see A-Rod back with the Yankees by May 6 or 7. Certainly by when they go to Baltimore on May 8.
Meanwhile, all those who called Posada a loafer yesterday now feel a little silly as we learn he was “running” with a hamstring pull. Posada thinks he’ll be OK, but it’s enough of an injury to have kept him out of the lineup for two days.
Look for Chien-Ming Wang to get into a game of some sort by Saturday. He’ll throw another bullpen on Thursday. That game, likely extended spring, would be 40-50 pitches. He had two physical therapy sessions today on his hips.
UPDATE, 6:31 p.m.: Here is Joe Girardi’s pre-game interview:
UPDATE, 7:14 p.m.: Hughes is having trouble with his curveball but got Granderson with 94 heat. Good sign.
UPDATE, 7:17 p.m.: Curveball was working there against Polanco.
UPDATE, 7:19 p.m.: Three up, three down. Welcome back to the majors, Mr. Hughes.
Meanwhile, Berroa wouldn’t have gotten his walker within five feet of that ball.
UPDATE, 7:33 p.m.: So far, so good for Hughes. 32 pitches, 20 strikes, three strikeouts. His curve isn’t steady yet but he’s spotting his fastball well and that is half the battle for a starter. He’s 92-94 with it, which is plenty.
UPDATE, 7:54 p.m.: Hughes looks great and he just fanned Everett with a nice hook. But after getting ahead of Everett 0-2, he needed six more pitches to get him. That’s too many. Learning to be economical is a big thing for a young starter.
Meanwhile, Deryl Cousins isn’t doing him any favors with his strike zone.
UPDATE, 8:24 p.m.: The Yankees are now 8 of 53 with RISP in the last five games. That’s .151.
Cano up to 15 games. … Now Hughes need to find a way out of this jam. A 6-4-3 would work nicely.
UPDATE, 8:31 p.m.: Hughes squirms out of trouble there. He is keeping his composure nicely. Now maybe the Yankees can get him a few runs.
UPDATE, 8:44 p.m.: What a great job by Hughes so far. 5 innings, 2 hits, 0 runs, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts. He’s at 81 pitches. If he’s economical, he can give them another two innings.
UPDATE, 9:00 p.m.: That was a dropped third strike and Cano didn’t run. Once he was tagged, he was out. Cano probably thought it was a foul ball.
Heck of a game.
UPDATE, 9:09 p.m.: Who’s the man? Phil Franchise, that’s who.
6 innings, 2 hits, 0 runs, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts. I have him for 99 pitches, 58 strikes.
Nobody warming up in the Yankees pen. If somebody does, it better be Mark Melancon and not one of the Firestarter Five.
UPDATE, 9:16 p.m.: Second and third for Posada. They have to walk him, no?
Now this means Angel Berroa has to play third. Oh, boy.
UPDATE, 9:20 p.m.: Weird scoring there. Posada gets a sac fly and the second run scores on an error by Anderson.
Regardless, Yankees lead 2-0. Looks like Hughes is staying out there. I would have to think he’s batter by batter at this point. But nobody is warming up.
UPDATE, 9:30 p.m.: Looks like Melancon is warming up now. … After scoring three runs over a span of 25 innings, the Yankees have four so far here in the seventh.
Long inning. He’s at 99 pitches. 4-0 lead. Do you get Hughes out? Tough call. I’d go batter by batter.
UPDATE, 9:40 p.m.: With this long inning, I think it’s time to pat Hughes on the back and call it a night. If the bullpen can’t hold a 6-0 lead …
UPDATE, 9:43 p.m.: There’s Panda-monium here at the ballpark as Jose Molina delivers a grand slam. It’s 10-0.
Nice night, Phil.
The Yankees saw 56 pitches in that inning.
UPDATE, 9:54 p.m.: Phil Hughes six scoreless followed by a 1-2-3 innings by Mark Melancon? The Yankees are partying like it’s 2010.
It’ll get lost in a 10-0 game. But this is a really good night for the Yankees to have those two guys pitch as well as they did.
At any rate, I have my newspaper story to finish. Enjoy the rest of the game. Sorry for the technical problems as well. I alerted the office and hopefully it’ll get taken care of.