CC Sabathia wasn’t good today. That much was obvious and, equally obviously, he’ll work on his mechanical issues during his side sessions so he can be better the next time out. Such is life in spring training.
While Sabathia was discussing poor mechanics on one side of the room, however, Nick Johnson was on the other wall talking about his improved mechanics at the plate. Johnson has been working with hitting coach Kevin Long on turning his back foot through (as opposed to sliding), and he said that adjustment has allowed him to start pulling the ball more. Witness what he did this afternoon, when he crushed two home runs, both of which went to the right-center part of the park.
Someone mentioned Johnson, who has a career-high of 23 home runs, possibly surpassing that this year if he’s able to pull the ball at Yankee Stadium. “I don’t like to put any numbers on guys,” Joe Girardi said. “(But) we know he’s a really, really good hitter.”
Curtis Granderson was also pleased with his fifth-inning triple, particularly since it allowed him to get out and run a little. “Nice to stretch the legs,” he said. Granderson has been in touch with several of his former teammates in Detroit – he recently had dinner with Dontrellle Willis – and he’s looking forward to facing them tomorrow in Lakeland. “That’s one of the days on the calendar that’s marked,” he said.
Here’s Girardi’s postgame audio. You might notice a long pause early on – that was when he got up to turn off the TV so that it would be a little quieter.