Looking to close out a series sweep against the Mets, the Yankees once again hand the ball to Andy Pettitte. Russell Martin has said there’s a different energy on the days Pettitte starts, and some of that is surely because of Pettitte’s legacy and experience. But surely some of that is also because of Pettitte’s own unique energy on the mound.
“Andy has his little quirks during his starts,” Joe Girardi said. “He’ll yell sometimes. He’ll talk to himself sometimes. It’s just Andy being Andy.”
It’s all familiar here in the Bronx, and the Yankees have seen the same old Pettitte in almost every way since his return from a premature retirement. It seems little coincidence that the rotation has found some stability since Pettitte’s arrival.
“Andy’s huge for our pitching staff,” Mark Teixeira said. “He brings a wealth of knowledge, a lot of experience, and (he’s) just a great guy. You want to be around Andy and learn from him.”
Today’s not about learning, it’s about winning, and a series sweep could be enough to push the Yankees into first place in the American League East.
“I think our guys feel good about the way we’re playing, and I think it all starts with starting pitching,” Girardi said. “They’ve shut teams down and allowed us to get a lead and build on some of those leads, and know that you don’t have to score a ton of runs every day to win. Whenever you have that, you feel confident.”
• Hiroki Kuroda threw a bullpen this morning, which seems to be a good sign for his bruised left foot. He was throwing it as Girardi spoke to the media, so we probably won’t know how it went until after the game.
• Dave Robertson begins a Triple-A rehab assignment today. He’s scheduled to pitch an inning for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. D.J. Mitchell is starting that game.
• Today is Garcia’s 36th birthday.
• Sunday mornings are always quiet in the clubhouse, but today was especially uneventful. Girardi’s pregame press conference lasted less than three minutes, and there weren’t many players around, so most of my morning was spent talking to Chris Stewart about Washington D.C. and then making fun of Marc Carig’s shirt. Real hard-hitting stuff here at the stadium today.
Associated Press photo