Nick Johnson is hitting .135, Mark Teixeira is hitting .129 and Curtis Granderson hasn’t had a hit in a week, but the Yankees lineup tonight is the exact same as it was on Opening Day.
“The concern is short-term, not long-term,” manager Joe Girardi said.
Girardi said he was happy with Teixeira’s at-bats yesterday — “A couple of walks, he hit two bullets,” Girardi said — and the Yankees remain encouraged by Johnson’s on-base percentage. Girardi said there was some discussion of batting Brett Gardner second tonight, but ultimately they kept Johnson in the spot they expected him to hit when they signed him.
“Nick, like Tex, is a proven hitter,” Girardi said. “And I think it’s important that you stick with your guys because you know that they’re going to come around. You try to go with a set lineup. Maybe if you put Gardy up there, it changes Gardy’s game a little bit because of who’s hitting behind him.”
As for Granderson, he’s stuck in an 0-for-17 slide that is the second longest hitless streak of his career. Granderson compared it to a basketball player who can’t miss a 3-pointer one game and can’t hit one the next, or a golfer who drives one ball straight and hooks the next one.
“Nothing is changing,” Granderson said. “You’re using the same bats. You’re going against some of the same guys you’re facing. Night games and night games, day games and day games. The situations are the same. Whatever reason, sometimes you’ve got the feel, sometimes you lose it a little bit.”
• Girardi said he does not want to catch Jorge Posada four days in a row, and so Francisco Cervelli will catch either tomorrow or Friday.
• Chan Ho Park had another MRI that revealed the same thing as before. “It’s basically still he low, low grade strain but he’s not progressing he way we thought he would,” Girardi said. “Just keep rehabbing him.”
• Girardi said Alfredo Aceves is the only reliever he wouldn’t want to use tonight.
• Randy Winn said his back foot simply slipped on that throw to the plate last night. He’d never had that happen before on a dry field.
• Winn, Johnson, Granderson, Marcus Thames and Boone Logan took the World Series trophy to Bethesda Naval Hospital this morning. Winn said everyone he talked to just wanted to get back with his or her fellow soldiers. “They never waver,” Winn said. “They’re itching to get back. That’s one of the reasons we have to go, to say thank you.”
• Get this, Derek Jeter said he’d never heard of the Sports Illustrated cover jinx until Sweeny Murti, Mark Feinsand and I talked to him about this afternoon. “That thing comes out every week,” Jeter said. “That’s a lot of jinxes.” Of course, Jeter then realized that he and Jorge Posada each made errors last night, the week that they’re on the cover. “So me and Sado were jinxed?” he said.
UPDATE, 6:35 p.m.: Orioles lineup
Adam Jones CF
Nick Markakis RF
Ty Wigginton 2B
Miguel Tejeda 3B
Matt Wieters C
Garrett Atkins 1B
Nolan Reimold DH
Lou Montanez LF
Cesar Izturis SS
Associated Press photos