Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Nick Swisher RF
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Marcus Thames DH
Randy Winn LF
Juan Miranda 1B
Ramiro Pena 3B
RHP Javier Vazquez
Jason Bartlett SS
Carl Crawford LF
Ben Zobrist RF
Carlos Pena 1B
Willy Aybar 3B
B.J. Upton CF
Pat Burrell DH
Sean Rodriguez 2B
Dioner Navarro C
LHP Carlos Hernandez
TIME/TV: 7:05 p.m., YES Network
WEATHER: Some clouds, but ultimately a sunny sky and blue sky. Temperatures will be in the upper-50s.
UMPIRES: HP Eric Cooper, 1B Marty Foster, 2B Mark Carlson, 3B Andy Fletcher
ON THE LINE: None of the fifth starter candidates will be pitching out of the bullpen, instead the Yankees will get their first look at Chan Ho Park… Marcus Thames, Randy Winn and Brett Gardner also have another chance to get three at-bats or so, trying to improve their numbers. Joe Girardi said this afternoon that Gardner is indeed the favorite to open the season as the Yankees third outfield starter.
UPDATE, 6:51 p.m.: A few notes from this afternoon’s session with Girardi.
• Girardi has said every fifth starter candidate will get a chance to pitch at least once more before being eliminated from the race. It’s possible either Chad Gaudin or Sergio Mitre could be knocked out tomorrow. “It’s conceivable,” Girardi said. “It’s not necessary.”
• The Yankees would like to make a decision on the fifth starter by the end of next week, but they could push it until the final week of spring training. “If everyone pitches great, we might run them all out again,” Girardi said.
• Trainer Steve Donohue told Girardi that Damaso Marte is “better than he thought he would be.” Marte will probably pitch tomorrow at home.
• The final job on the bench is pretty much between Marcus Thames and Jamie Hoffmann. Girardi once again mentioned David Winfree as someone the Yankees are interested in, but that right-handed outfield role will probably come down to Thames or Hoffmann. “Those are the two main guys we’re looking at right now,” Girardi said.
• For those of you trying to guess the lineup every day, most guys are not going to play three days in a row at this point. That’s why Alex Rodriguez, for example, is out of the lineup today. “He played two days in a row,” Girardi said. “That’s kind of where we’re at right now. Two days in a row and then we’ll work to three eventually.” Girardi didn’t say so, but it does seem that some guys might have to play three in a row for tomorrow’s split squad.
UPDATE, 8:02 p.m.: Sorry for the lack of updates tonight. My deadlines are early and I’ve been frantically writing for the newspaper. After some miscommunication with Jorge Posada — both went after a ball in front of the plate, but neither ultimately fielded it — Vazquez has escaped a two on, two out jam in the third and has so far allowed one run through three innings. I assume most of you are watching on TV, but if you’re not, Derek Jeter’s two-out, two-run double has given the Yankees a 2-1 lead.
UPDATE, 8:20 p.m.: Javier Vazquez is finished, Romulo Sanchez is in. Vazquez went 3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K. He threw 60 pitches, 38 strikes.
UPDATE, 8:33 p.m.: So, Romulo Sanchez. He wasn’t very good. Loaded the bases for Boone Logan, who struck out Carl Crawford to end it, but not before a passed ball scored a run. Rays lead it, 3-2.
UPDATE, 9:13 p.m.: Ladies and gentlemen, Colin Curtis! Three run home run has put the Yankees back in front, 5-3. If those offseason adjustments are going to make this sort of difference, Curtis could really push for a big league call-up this season. The upper levels are thin in the outfield, and Curtis could easily begin to stand out. A lot of talent there, just hasn’t led to big numbers in the minors.
UPDATE, 9:18 p.m.: Mark Melancon is in to pitch for the Yankees in the seventh. Every starting position player is out of the game.