Joe Girardi started his pregame media session with an unexpected announcement.
“Dave Eiland took a personal leave of absence,” Girardi said. “He’ll be gone as long as he needs. That’s all I’m going to share.”
Girardi wouldn’t say whether Eiland actually made the trip to Toronto before leaving the team. He was with the team yesterday and spoke to the media after CC Sabathia’s start. At the time, he was dressed for the team flight. Girardi indicated that this is a personal issue for Eiland, not a sign of a rift between the manager and his pitching coach.
“Everything is great between Dave and I,” Girardi said.
With Eiland away, Mike Harkey will step in as pitching coach. Charlie Wonsowicz, who is always with the Yankees as a scout and head video coordinator, will take over for Harkey as bullpen coach. Wons, as he’s called among the team, has spent 18 seasons in the Yankees organization and was a pitcher at St. John’s.
• Curtis Granderson gets the start tonight, then he will sit tomorrow. He’ll play again on Sunday and get Monday’s off day to rest. “Then I think he’s pretty much full go,” Girardi said.
• Jorge Posada still has not been cleared to begin catching drills. “I’ll continue to talk to Geno and our doctors,” Girardi said. “Hopefully it will be soon.”
• Francisco Cervelli just has a standard day off. Girardi didn’t want to play him in another day game after a night game, like he did earlier in the week. “You can either choose the day game or the night game,” Girardi said. “And I chose the day game.”
• Blue Jays lineup
Fred Lewis LF
Aaron Hill 2B
Adam Lind DH
Vernon Wells CF
Jose Bautista RF
Alex Gonzalez SS
Lyle Overbay 1B
John Buck C
Edwin Encarnacion 3B
Associated Press photo of Eiland during A.J. Burnett’s last start.