Francisco Cervelli was pretty stunned yesterday. He said he woke up in the morning convinced his left foot was bruised and not broken — it was sore but not especially painful, there had been no significant swelling — but the news from the Yankees medical staff was a sobering reminder that spring training is not good for him.
Three of the past four years Cervelli’s been injured in spring training, always on or around his birthday, which is tomorrow. When he wasn’t hurt in spring of 2009, he was terribly sick leading up to the World Baseball Classic.
“I think I’m going to change my birthday,” he said.
Cervelli turns 25 tomorrow, and a lot of family flew into Tampa to celebrate. This was supposed to be a good weekend. Instead, Cervelli came hobbling into the Yankees clubhouse on crutches.
“A little sad yesterday,” Cervelli said. “But I talked to my mom. It’s good when I have my family here. Today’s different. I’m positive. A lot of people in the world, they don’t have legs, they don’t have arms. I’m healthy. I just have something in my foot, and it’s going to be OK.”
Is he confident his job will be waiting for him when the crutches are gone and the boot comes off?
“I hope, but if it’s not, I’ll fight again,” Cervelli said. “This is me. You have to fight every year for something. I’m not going to cry because somebody is going to take my job. No. I’m going to charge back.”
• Andrew Brackman faced hitters this morning. He threw roughly 30 pitches in the bullpen, then threw 25 to Austin Krum and Brandon Laird. “It was good,” Brackman said. “No problems.” He hopes to pitch in a game within a few days.
• Warner Madrigal also threw live BP this morning. Freddy Garcia, Ivan Nova, Dellin Betances and Adam Warren threw sides.
• A lot of former Yankees roaming around in the Nationals clubhouse. Chad Gaudin is starting for Washington. He’ll be pitching to Ivan Rodriguez, with Jerry Hairston Jr. playing center field. Alberto Gonzalez is on the Nationals bench. Former Yankees Chien-Ming Wang and Tyler Clippard are in camp with Washington but didn’t make the trip.
• Scheduled to play off the bench: C Austin Romine, 1B Brandon Laird, 2B Kevin Russo, SS Doug Bernier, 3B Brad Suttle, LF Justin Maxwell, CF Melky Mesa, RF Colin Curtis, DH Greg Golson
• Available out of the bullpen: Joba Chamberlain, Dave Robertson, Romulo Sanchez, Ryan Pope, Robert Fish, Steve Garrison, Daniel Turpen, David Phelps and D.J. Mitchell
• Tomorrow’s travelers today: The Yankees have a road game against the Astros in Kissimmee tomorrow. Phil Hughes starts for the Yankees, Brett Myers for Houston.
Pitchers who are making the trip: Brian Anderson, Steve Garrison, Phil Hughes, D.J. Mitchell, Hector Noesi, David Phelps, Andy Sisco, Adam Warren and Eric Wordekemper
Position players who are not making the trip: Francisco Cervelli, Jorge Posada, Austin Romine, Ronnie Belliard, Ramiro Pena, Jorge Vazquez, Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson and Nick Swisher