A little more than a week ago, when Eduardo Nunez was hit by a pitch in Detroit, Joe Girardi said his backup plan involved putting Francisco Cervelli at second base and Robinson Cano at short.
Last night, with Nunez again sidelined, Girardi put that plan into action.
Here are the guys involved, talking about last night’s ninth-inning infield. They never got a ground ball, but with Nunez expected to sit until Tuesday, they just might get another chance tonight.
Girardi: “I wasn’t making it up before. I knew exactly what I was going to do if we got in that situation. I went and talked to Boeschy before the inning started and said, ‘If we get in a situation in that position, and Nix comes up, and we’ve got a chance to win the game, I’m going to pinch-hit you.’ I called down, said, ‘Stew get ready. This is what’s going to happen,’ so no (there was no hesitation). … I know what we have. I’ve seen Cervy take enough ground balls in the days that I’ve seen him that he’s actually pretty smooth. If you ever watch him do it, he’s pretty smooth at it.”
Cervelli: “I think it’s weird to see myself at second. Cano, I think he can play every position in the infield. You know how it is. He makes everything look easy. … It’s OK. I love to catch, but the situation, I’m going to do what the manager says. I (use) my chest if I need it to block a ball or catch a ground ball.”
Cano: “Weird. First time that I played there since 2002, but I know that was the situation that I’m the only guy there. Whatever it takes to help the team, I will do. … I was ready because at least I take ground balls there with Nuney and Jeter (in spring training). We always joke around to see who’s going to make more errors. If they hit me a ground ball, I was ready.”
Associated Press photo of Cano warming up at short