Brett Gardner isn’t down to play every day, but the lefty-hitting left fielder showed his two-way value to the Yankees again in their 8-3 victory over the Twins Tuesday night.
Gardner batted eighth and reached base all four times, delivering two doubles off lefty pitching — his first extra-base hits of the season — and walking twice. Plus, he stole a base and made a great diving catch in left.
“I’ve said all along it doesn’t matter to me (facing) lefties or righties,” said Gardner, who’s off to a .321 start. “It’s all the same thing. Guys are trying to get you out and you’re trying to get on base.
“I guess it’s good, trying to let them know that I can do a little bit against (lefties), too. But it’s not something I really worry about.”
Joe Girardi said: “He’s going to play a lot. I want to keep him fresh. The way he plays, it takes a lot out of you.”
Gardner’s catch came in the third, ending the inning for CC Sabathia with a man on and two runs in. Gardner raced in and made his dive.
“I hate to say you expect it, but he’s a great outfielder,” Sabathia said.
But Gardner hurt his right wrist making the catch.
“It actually feels better now than when it happened,” Gardner said. “So I’m definitely positive. It’s usually the kind of thing that gets worse as the game goes on. I’ll see how it feels tomorrow, but I expect it’ll feel pretty good.”