Francisco Cervelli will be checked out again on Sunday, and he’ll see a neurologist on Monday. Depending on how those two appointments go, Cervelli could be back in the lineup by the middle of next week.
“Maybe Tuesday or Wednesday, but I’m not going to rush it,” Joe Girardi said.
This is Cervelli’s second concussion in the past four months. He also had one in November when he was hit in the head by a bat during winter ball. He was catching and the batter got him on the left side of his head, right where today’s pitch from Zech Zinicola landed.
Here’s Cervelli talking about his noggin.
That’s Jesus Montero in the picture, but Girardi said this afternoon that his No. 3 catcher is Mike Rivera. If this Cervelli situation proves worse than expected, it’s Rivera who would likely open the season on the Yankees bench.
“He has big league experience,” Girardi said. “He knows what the job entails. That’s why we went out and got him.”
Rivera has been in the big leagues each of the past four years, and he was in the big leagues for parts of three seasons before that. He has a higher career batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage than Jose Molina.
Here’s the Girardi audio.
• Jorge Posada on A.J. Burnett’s changeup: “He’s starting it down, that’s the big thing. He’s finishing it well. There was one of them that was up, hit off the end of the bat, but I thought he did a great job.”
• Change of plans for tomorrow’s travel squad. Cervelli (obviously) will not go. Instead, Rivera will go to catch Gaudin and Mitre. Amaury Sanit will also not travel after getting in today’s game.
• Another nice outing from Boone Logan, who pitched two hitless innings and retired three lefties: Lyle Overbay, Jeremy Reed and Travis Snider. After his four-up, four-down debut — also retiring three lefties — he’s making a strong case (but a very early case) for a spot in New York.
• Mark Melancon also looked awfully good again today, so did Jason Hirsh. Both finished off strikeouts with good curveballs. Oh, and don’t sleep on Kevin Russo, who had another hit and made a nice diving play at second.
• Dave Eiland confirmed that Mariano Rivera, Damaso Marte and Chan Ho Park will each throw a batting practice session on Monday. They are the only pitchers in camp who have not faced live hitters.
• Andy Pettitte has a two-inning simulated game tomorrow morning and will move forward as if he pitched in a real game. “It will count as his first start,” Eiland said.
• If you missed it in the game post, Nick Johnson took batting practice this morning and felt good after. “I took a few swings in the cage,” he said. “Felt loose.”
• I don’t want to make a big deal of it, but Kei Igawa did pitch well yesterday and this afternoon Girardi said he couldn’t rule out the idea of Igawa creating a place for himself as a left-handed reliever. Just throwing it out there.