The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Friday morning notes: Minor concern in the bullpen

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Notes on Mar 18, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

We’ve reached the point in spring training when nagging injuries have the potential to become Opening Day problems.

The Yankees are encouraged by Sergio Mitre, who’s scheduled for three or four innings this afternoon. Joba Chamberlain’s strained oblique was healthy enough for long toss yesterday, and he’ll throw a bullpen tomorrow. Pedro Feliciano has a little soreness in his upper arm, and he’ll also throw a bullpen tomorrow.

“If the bullpen goes well, then it’s minor,” Joe Girardi said.

Girardi also acknowledged that, at this point, one or more of these injuries could impact the roster. The Yankees don’t expect any of the injuries to be long-lasting, but Opening Day is less than two weeks away, and the Yankees need to keep these small problems from becoming significant setbacks.

Boone Logan, for example, seemed to be past a little bit of a dead arm period when he pitched a scoreless inning last night, but he now has back spasms.

“As long as they’re just back spasms, it’s usually four or five days,” Girardi said. “They’re no fun, I know that.”

• Girardi promised that he’ll announce a No. 2 starter tomorrow. He wants to let A.J. Burnett and Phil Hughes know first.

• Girardi downplayed the Feliciano injury, saying he’s just getting “extra rest” similar to what Logan needed earlier this month.

• Spring results don’t mean much, but Girardi said he can’t help but think about how good Alex Rodriguez could be this season when he sees the way Rodriguez is hitting this spring (three home runs in the past three days, yesterday’s was hit to Orlando). “You do take notice of the way he’s swinging the bat in spring training,” Girardi said.

• Eric Chavez is getting another turn at first base this afternoon. “I really haven’t thought much about his health because of the way he’s moving on a daily basis,” Girardi said.

• A.J. Burnett gets the start this afternoon against the Blue Jays, his former team.

• After the latest round of cuts — Steve Garrison, Andrew Brackman, Ryan Pope, Kevin Russo, Brandon Laird and Melky Mesa — none of the six players cleared their lockers in the Yankees clubhouse. All six are making today’s road trip, and their assignment to minor league camp has been little more than a paper move.

Out of the bullpen: Sergio Mitre, Andrew Brackman, Steve Garrison, Eric Wordekemper, Ryan Pope, Amaury Sanit and Kevin Whelan. Sanit and Whelan are up from minor league.

Off the bench: C Gustavo Molina, 1B Jorge Vazquez, 2B Kevin Russo, SS Doug Bernier, 3B Brandon Laird, LF Andruw Jones, CF Justin Maxwell, RF Jordan Parraz, DH Jose Gil

• Melky Mesa, Jesus Montero and minor league infielder Walter Ibarra will also make the trip as backups.

Associated Press photo of Mitre

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