Pregame notes: The vice president stops by • 03.23.11
Vice president Joe Biden stopped by Yankees camp this afternoon. I have no idea why, but he stood along the third-base line with a slew of staff members, Secret Service agents and photographers.
The VP was fortunate enough to witness perhaps the most boring off all spring training drills: Fielding drills for situational base running. A rotating cast of infielders and pitchers took turns going through the motions for pickoff moves, double steals, sacrifice bunts, etc.
Thrilling stuff here at Steinbrenner Field!
Some other notes from today:
• You might have noticed a ton of oblique injuries this spring. “(The staff) talked about it yesterday,” Joe Girardi said. “Is there anything (causing it)? It’s really not much different than what we did last year. It’s the same thing it’s just, for whatever reason, it’s happening this year. Maybe it’s the heat. It’s hot, the guys get dehydrated. That could be part of it. Last year they were hydrated. It rained every day.”
• A.J. Burnett threw 94 pitches in a minor league game this afternoon. His line: 5.2IP, 6H, 4ER, 3BB, 8K. Austin Romine was his catcher.
• Girardi said Joba Chamberlain came through yesterday’s outing just fine. Looks like he’s past his oblique issue. Greg Golson is scheduled to play off the bench today, so it’s like he’s more-or-less out of the woods as well.
• CC Sabathia’s start on Saturday might come at the minor league complex. Girardi said they’re talking about shuffling some rotation plans for Saturday and Sunday. Bartolo Colon and Manny Banuelos are being discussed as possible starters this weekend. Colon could go Saturday. “You have to start thinking about, if a guy makes a start on Sunday, and he’s possibly on your team, and he’s possibly going to be the long man, you’re going to limit how many pitches he could possibly give you on Thursday (for the opener),” Girardi said.
• Freddy Garcia will make a minor league start tomorrow. Girardi once again said there’s really nothing Garcia can show the Yankees to impact their decision at this point. This is just about getting him ready.
• If you’re curious, the Yankees outfielders were in the cage while the infielders, catchers and pitchers went through those fielding drills. Jorge Posada and Nick Swisher were with the infielders, doing their reps at first base. Eduardo Nunez was at third, Ramiro Pena at short and Ronnie Belliard at second. The other infielders, you can probably guess where they were.
• Off the bench: C Gustavo Molina, 1B Brandon Laird, 2B Ronnie Belliard, SS Ramiro Pena, 3B Eduardo Nunez, LF Jordan Parraz, CF Melky Mesa, RF Greg Golson
• Out of the bullpen: Mariano Rivera, Boone Logan, Luis Ayala, Steve Garrison, Eric Wordekemper, Ryan Pope, Buddy Carlyle and Josh Schmidt.
Associated Press photos of Biden’s visit