Brett Gardner CF
Nick Johnson DH
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Marcus Thames LF
Jon Weber RF
Ramiro Pena SS
Mike Rivera C
RHP Alfredo Aceves
Jason Bourgeois CF
Kaz Matsui 2B
Hunter Pence RF
Carlos Lee LF
Chris Johnson 3B
Cory Sullivan DH
Chris Shelton 1B
Tommy Manzella SS
Humberto Quintero C
RHP Brett Myers
TIME: 1:05 p.m.
WEATHER: This might be the nicest day yet. Perfectly blue sky. Temperatures in the 70s. Light breeze blowing out to right.
UMPIRES: HP Larry Vanover, 1B Mike Reilly, 2B Jeff Nelson, 3B Laz Diaz
ON THE LINE: Alfredo Aceves is making another spring start, trying to build on a terrific start to spring training… Marcus Thames is in the lineup again, trying to put up some numbers to win the last spot on the Yankees bench… Obviously the Yankees have to find out whether they can play a spring game without Marty Foster umpiring.
UPDATE, 1:08 p.m.: First-pitch bunt single from Gardner. Perfectly placed down the third-base line. That’s his third bunt hit of the spring.
UPDATE, 1:09 p.m.: And just like that, Gardner is picked off first. Snap throw from the catcher.
UPDATE, 1:27 p.m.: A few notes from this afternoon’s session with Joe Girardi:
• Phil Hughes will pitch in relief of A.J. Burnett on Sunday. Joba Chamberlain will start on Monday.
• Girardi didn’t have much to say about the decision to start Weber over Hoffmann: “Web’s been playing well,” Girardi said. “Hoffmann is going to play today.”
• Girardi said Kevin Russo wouldn’t need a full season at shortstop to convince the Yankees he can play there, but they would like him to keep playing the position occasionally: “We want to see him play shortstop more,” Girardi said. “We know that he can do second and third, but we’re just trying to get a look at him at short.”
• The Yankees have not eliminated anyone from the fifth-starter competition after last night. “We haven’t had a chance to talk about,” Girardi said. “We’re going to sit down and talk in the next couple of days, decide what the next plan of action is.”
UPDATE, 1:40 p.m.: How often do you see a guy triple to left? Gardner just did it, right down the line in the third inning. He’s at third with one out and the Yankees leading 1-0 on a second-inning homer by Robinson Cano.
UPDATE, 1:49 p.m.: Rodriguez drives in two more and the Yankees are up 3-0.
UPDATE, 2:04 p.m.: Back-to-back two-out doubles from the bottom of the order, one from Ramiro Pena and one from Mike Rivera, have given the Yankees a 4-0 lead in the fourth. The Yankees have six hits off Brett Myers: Five extra-base hits and Gardner’s bunt single.
UPDATE, 2:14 p.m.: Hit batter, stolen base and an RBI double have put Houston on the board. That’s the second run Aceves has allowed this spring.
UPDATE, 2:16 p.m.: RBI single by Hunter Pence makes it 4-2. He’s allowed two runs and this is already the worst outing of the spring for Aceves.
UPDATE, 2:25 p.m.: After his second double of the game, Rodriguez is out of the game for pinch runner David Winfree.
UPDATE, 2:31 p.m.: The Yankees have made all of their changes except at catcher and right field. Melancon getting loose in the pen.
UPDATE, 2:32 p.m.: Sorry, Ramiro Pena is still out there too. Russo went out to play second instead of short.
UPDATE, 2:40 p.m.: An infield single has loaded the bases and chased Aceves from the game with one out in the fifth. It’s still 4-2 Yankees. Mark Melancon is in to try to escape.
UPDATE, 2:42 p.m.: Melancon got a ground ball to short, but the Yankees couldn’t turn two and a run scored on the fielder’s choice.
UPDATE, 2:46 p.m.: Aceves’ line is complete: 4.1 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP. He threw 74 pitches, 48 strikes. By far his worst start of the spring. Meanwhile, Melancon is also struggling, having allowed back-to-back, two-out base hits that led to three runs and a 6-4 Astros lead.
UPDATE, 3:00 p.m.: The rest of the Yankees changes: Russo moves to short, Nunez in to play second, Cervelli at catcher and Gorecki in right.