Scheduled for two innings, Michael Pineda lasted just 15 pitches in today’s extended spring training start. He was shut down after feeling familiar soreness in the back of his right shoulder.
“That’s the one thing that you can’t control is, when the intensity turns up, how a guy is going to feel,” Joe Girardi said. “He still felt it.”
Pineda is scheduled for more tests on Monday. Until today’s setback, the Yankees believed he was making good progress from the shoulder tendinitis that landed him on the disabled list in the final week of spring training.
“I think it’s somewhat significant just because you were expecting him to build up,” Girardi said. “Now you’re going to have to give him probably a little bit more time than we did before. I can’t tell you when we’ll get him back now.”
• There is much better news on Andy Pettitte, who is scheduled to make his next minor league start on Wednesday with Double-A Trenton. He’s scheduled for 80-85 pitches. Sounds like the plan is for three more minor league starts before a possible return to the big leagues. “I think that’s realistic to look at,” Girardi said. “Three more minor league starts and then you make an evaluation of where he’s at and what he needs.”
• Sounds like Pettitte might wrap up his minor league outings in Trenton. Normally, a Triple-A start or two might make sense, but with the Triple-A team constantly on the road, the situation isn’t ideal. “I think the key is, a lot of times it’s more about pitching at home where you don’t have to travel a lot,” Girardi said.
• Brett Gardner said this afternoon that his strained elbow is feeling much better — it actually felt quite a bit better today than it felt yesterday — but he’s going to wait a while longer before testing it in batting practice. He can’t come off the DL until May 3, so there’s no sense trying to push it right now.
• Girardi said he’s likely to stick with the current left field platoon. It’s possible he would have Andruw Jones and Raul Ibanez in the same lineup one day, but that’s not likely. Essentially, this means a similar platoon for Eduardo Nunez and Eric Chavez, who will give infielders occasional DH days. For now, it seems Chavez will be a regular against lefties and Nunez will be a regular against right-handers. “Unless I was to give Robbie a DH day (against a right-hander) is the only way that it probably wouldn’t happen,” Girardi said.
• Why leave Ibanez in to face a lefty yesterday? “Having a three-man bench is one reason,” Girardi said. “Number two, I felt good about the way Ibanez has swung the bat. It has not been a guy that has been platooned the last 15 years or 16 years, so I just felt it was early enough that I would wait. If something happens to another outfielder, you’re in trouble.”
• That hole in the left field wall is still there right now, but Girardi’s not sure it will still be there for the game. There’s basically a panel missing between the Ball and Strike indicators. “Usually you notice holes in scoreboards,” Girardi said. The Yankees have been told that a ball will be ruled a ground rule double if it’s hit into that hole.
Mike Aviles SS
Ryan Sweeney RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Adrian Gonzalez 1B
David Ortiz DH
Kevin Youkilis 3B
Jarrod Saltalamacchia C
Cody Ross CF
Darnell McDonald LF
Associated Press photos