I’ll make this quick so I can get on the road.
• Derek Jeter played only four innings in the field, but that was according to plan. He played five innings yesterday. “Next time I’ll try to maybe go six and five, and just keep trying to increase it,” Joe Girardi said. “We’ll see. I’ve got to see how he’s doing. We’ve got to be somewhat still cautious even though he has that 100 percent (medical clearance).”
• Slade Heathcott was sent to minor league camp today. Zoilo Almonte was also officially sent across the street (he’d been technically optioned but hadn’t left camp). Heathcott is still dealing with that patellar tendonitis. “He needs to go down there and get healthy and play,” Girardi said.
• The Yankees won’t say that Brennan Boesch is locked into a roster spot, but assuming he does make the team — which seems like a safe assumption — Girardi said he plans to use Boesch in right field with Ichiro in left.
• Brian Cashman made it clear that Boesch signed to a split contract. He’ll earn a rate of $1.5 million while he’s on the major league roster, and only $500,000 if he’s optioned to the minors. “I see him competing for as many at-bats and a position on this 25-man roster just like these other guys,” Cashman said. “But nothing’s been promised to him at all, hence the split that was negotiated in the contract.”
• Why was Brett Gardner batting seventh today? “Don’t read into anything,” Girardi said.
• After throwing a sim game this morning, Boone Logan said he hopes his next appearance will be in an actual game. Girardi wasn’t quite ready to commit to that, but he didn’t dismiss it either. “Let’s just see how he feels tomorrow,” Girardi said.
• For the first time this spring, Mariano Rivera pitched with a runner on base. He walked a guy today, then got a double play and a strikeout. “You need to get work in,” Rivera said. “Most of the time, it’s not going to be like that (with the bases always empty).”
• What caught Girardi’s eye about Rivera’s outing? “He got in a couple of three-ball counts and actually threw a ball in the dirt,” Girardi said. “He’s a little rusty. Me and Jorge (Posada) were commenting on it, you never see him throw a ball in the dirt. He was just a little rusty.” Rivera blamed it on rushing his mechanics.
Associated Press photo