Here’s the Yankees’ lineup for Game 5 of the ALCS this afternoon against C.J. Wilson:
1. Derek Jeter, SS
2. Nick Swisher, RF
3. Robinson Cano, 2B
4. Alex Rodriguez, 3B
5. Marcus Thames, DH
6. Lance Berkman, 1B
7. Jorge Posada, C
8. Curtis Granderson, CF
9. Brett Gardner, LF
Mark Teixeira’s season-ending hamstring injury has forced the Yankees to alter their lineup against a left-handed starter for the first time this postseason. Berkman replaces Teixeira in the lineup and at first base, with Swisher remaining in right field after serving as the in-game replacement for Teixeira at first base last night. Cano moves into Teixeira’s spot in the batting order, hitting third in front of Rodriguez.
Berkman hit just .171 versus lefties this season and the Yankees rarely played him against lefties after acquiring him from the Astros, so his batting sixth against Wilson is odd. Austin Kearns has to be wondering why the Yankees even bothered to include him on the playoff roster.
The Texas Rangers have signed Josh Hamilton to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
Not at all surprising. The Rangers released Hamilton last August, but that was simply to make some room on the 40-man roster. His season was already toast due to the surgery he underwent to repair lateral and meniscus cartilage in his left knee which had the added bonus of revealing that he had an ACL injury as well, which required reconstruction. At the time of his release both he and the Rangers made noises about him coming back on a minor league deal in 2017.
Hamilton turns 36 in May. The smart money has it that his big league career is over, but Hamilton would be silly to retire given that he is owed $30 million this coming season. That the Angels are paying $26.41 million of that makes it far less painful for the Rangers as well. If he can hit in the spring, hey, let him DH some and pay him low money. If not, no skin off of anyone’s nose. He can request a release on April 1 if he hasn’t made the big league roster.
Alex Rodriguez’s transition into retirement has featured a serious move into the business world. He has gone back to school, worked seriously on investments and has started his own corporation. Yes, he’s set for life after making more money than any baseball player in history, but even if his bank account wasn’t fat, you get the sense that he’d be OK given what we’ve seen of his work ethic and savvy in recent years.
He’s going to be getting another paycheck soon, though. For hosting a reality show featuring athletes who are not in as good a financial shape as A-Rod is:
Interesting. Hopefully, like so many other reality shows featuring the formerly rich and famous, this one is not exploitative. Not gonna hold my breath because that’s what that genre is all about, unfortunately, but here’s hoping A-Rod can help some folks with this.