We’ll start this day with a little bit of batting practice video I shot a couple of days ago and never got around to posting on the blog. Why? Partially because I don’t want to go searching for yet another Derek Jeter picture, and partially so that there will be at least a little bit of baseball on the blog today.
The concern at the moment is the way the sky looks this morning.
Weather.com tells me there’s a 60 percent chance of rain today. There are quite a few dark clouds in the sky over Steinbrenner Field, and it looks fairly threatening at the moment. Obviously the Yankees are expecting to play today and get Jeter on the field for the first time. No clue what would happen if the game were rained out. Take Jeter on the road tomorrow? Push his debut back? Have him get work in at the minor league complex tomorrow or somewhere indoors today?
Best hope is that the rain holds off and the game goes on as planned. This is one of those days in Yankees camp when there’s an obvious main event and a clear focus.
This is the day Jeter’s supposed to play. Rain, rain, go away.
· Eduardo Nunez feels fine today. He said he ate some bad salmon on Tuesday night. That’s what led to his stomach issues. It’s not the same thing Alfonso Soriano had. He’s scheduled to make the trip to Lakeland tomorrow, and he expects to play.
· Pretty good line from Nunez about not having the flu, which caused Soriano to miss almost a week of workouts: “A week?” Nunez said. “If I miss a week, I don’t make the team.” Give the guy credit for knowing he’s got to earn it this spring.
· No update on Tyler Austin. He went to a doctor yesterday for a series of tests, and he expects to hear back later today. Last year he was diagnosed with a bone bruise. He said he’s feeling much better and hoping for a diagnosis that’s similarly minor this time. Mostly, though, he just wants to know what’s going on.
· No official word from the Yankees, but it certainly looks like Addison Maruszak has been added to big league camp. He was called up yesterday to provide an extra infielder, but he’s back with the team today and now he has a locker with his name on it. Other day-by-day minor league additions never get lockers of their own. Yankees might have decided they’d like to have the additional infielder and flexibility.
· Three pitchers up from minor league camp available if necessary: Branden Pinder, Brett Gerritse and Jeremy Bleich. The lefty Bleich is a former supplemental round pick who’s battled injury problems, but he was healthy all last year and pitched pretty well in Trenton. I actually wondered if he might get a big league invite this spring. Pinder was in camp last year as a NRI, back when the Yankees had an absurd number of minor leaguers in camp.
· Random conversation of the morning was with outfielder Antoan Richardson. You really never expect a Bahamas accent in a baseball clubhouse, but Richardson is from Nassau and still spends his winters there (played high school ball in Florida, college ball at Vanderbilt). He’s an insanely nice guy. I went to the Bahamas a couple of years ago, and Antoan told me he’d invite me back. I’m absolutely going to try to make him my best friend by the end of camp so that he’ll actually follow up on that promise.
· Only one live batting practice session today: David Herndon is scheduled to throw a simulated game, pitching to Jose Gil and facing both Richardson and Wheeler.
· Batting practice groups (starts at 10:15):
Group 1: Derek Jeter, Brian Roberts, Ichiro Suzuki, Francisco Cervelli
Group 2: Russ Canzler, Brett Gardner, Kelly Johnson, Mason Williams
Group 3: Adonis Garcia, Jose Pirela, Brendan Ryan, Austin Romine
Group 4: Ramon Flores, Corban Joseph, Zelous Wheeler, John Ryan Murphy
Group 5: Carlos Beltran, Jacoby Ellsbury, Alfonso Soriano, Brian McCann
Group 6: Eduardo Nunez, Scott Sizemore, Mark Teixeira, Pete O’Brien
Group 7: Zoilo Almonte, Dean Anna, Antoan Richardson, Gary Sanchez
Group 8: Yangervis Solarte, Francisco Arcia, Jose Gil, Addison Maruszak
· Today’s second string: C John Ryan Murphy, 1B Jose Gil, 2B Corban Joseph, SS Brendan Ryan, 3B Zelous Wheeler, LF Jose Pirela, CF Ramon Flores, RF Adonis Garcia.
· Today’s available relievers: Jim Miller, Chris Leroux, Mark Montgomery, Robert Coello, Yoshinori Tateyama
· Tomorrow’s travel squad for Lakeland
Pitchers: Dellin Betances, Bruce Billings, Dan Burawa, Preston Claiborne, Matt Daley, Brian Gordon, Shawn Kelley, Fred Lewis, Adam Warren, Chase Whitley
Catchers: Francisco Arcia, Jose Gil, Brian McCann, Pete O’Brien, Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez
Infielders: Dean Anna, Russ Canzler, Corban Joseph, Eduardo Nunez, Jose Pirela, Brendan Ryan, Yangervis Solarte, Zelous Wheeler
Outfielders: Zoilo Almonte, Carlos Beltran, Jacoby Ellsbury, Ramon Flores, Adonis Garcia, Antoan Richardson, Mason Williams
From minor league camp: Addison Maruszak, Caleb Cotham, Zach Nuding, Diego Moreno
Associated Press photos (the bottom one is Bryan Mitchell)