Alex Rodriguez suffered a non-displaced fracture in his left hand when he was hit by a Felix Hernandez slider on Tuesday night and will go on the disabled list, the Yankees announced after the 4-2 loss to the Mariners.
Here’s the video.
Even though it wasn’t a fastball at 88 mph, it looked like Rodriguez suffered a break from the moment he was hit. He was in serious pain as he rolled around on the ground, and he showed no interest in moving his wrist as he walked off the field.
Jayson Nix pinch-ran for Rodriguez. He and Eric Chavez figure to split time at third base for at least the next couple of weeks for the Yankees. While it’s good news that Rodriguez didn’t suffer a more serious fracture that would have been guaranteed to knock him out for at least 4-6 weeks, it still isn’t all that likely that he’ll be ready to go when his 15 days are up. For what it’s worth, Chavez said after the game that he missed five weeks in 2004 with a break similar to the one A-Rod suffered.
A-Rod was Hernandez’s second hit batter of the inning and third of the game. Derek Jeter was also hit in the hand by a pitch in the eighth, and while he seemed to be in considerable pain initially, he stayed in the game.
Hernandez was pulled following the A-Rod HBP, but he ended up with the win after allowing two runs in 7 1/3 innings. The second run scored after he left the game in the eighth. Lucas Luetge got out of the jam from there — though not before he knocked down Raul Ibanez with some chin music — and Tom Wilhelmsen closed it out for his 11th save.
Still trying to win a close game. the Yankees declined to send any messages back to the Mariners in the bottom of the eighth. One wonders if Ivan Nova will drill a batter early in Wednesday’s series finale. While it wasn’t obvious that any of the Mariners’ plunkings tonight were intentional, the fact that there were three, followed by the Ibanez dusting, could be considered worthy of retaliation.
The dust hasn’t quite settled after right-hander Dellin Betances‘ arbitration hearing with the Yankees on Saturday. The case was decided in the team’s favor, awarding Betances with a $3 million salary for the 2017 season instead of the $5 million he initially requested. Yankees’ president Randy Levine held a press conference to voice his outrage over the figure presented by Betances and his agency, saying it had “no bearings in reality” since Betances does not have the elite closer status required for a salary bump of that magnitude.
Needless to say, the comments caused some consternation within Betances’ camp. The reliever publicly addressed the outburst, telling the press that he was prepared to put his differences with the team aside until he heard what Levine had to say. Via MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch:
Players union executive Rick Shapiro and Betances’ agent, Jim Murray, also spoke out in the right-hander’s favor. Shapiro presented Betances’ case during the hearing on Saturday and called Levine’s comments “an absolute disgrace to the arbitration process and to all of Major League Baseball.” In a report from FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, Shapiro added: “The only thing that has been unprecedented in the last 36 hours is that a club official, after winning a case, called a news conference to effectively gloat about his victory – that’s unprecedented.”
Murray spoke exclusively to Rosenthal, accusing the president of effectively bullying the 28-year-old during the arbitration process and claiming that Levine had both mispronounced Betances’ name throughout the hearing and blamed the reliever for “declining ticket sales and their lack of playoff history.” Like Betances, Murray said that the agency was ready to accept the arbiter’s decision and move on before Levine’s decision to air his grievances to the media. “The only person overreaching in this entire situation is Randy,” Murray told Rosenthal. “He might as well be an astronaut because nobody on earth would agree with what he is saying. Even the others in the room would disagree with him.”
Royals’ manager Ned Yost is shaking things up in 2017, starting with left fielder Alex Gordon. Yost told MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan that “every scenario is open,” and expects to utilize Gordon in right and center field this spring while he figures out where to position Jorge Soler and Brandon Moss.
Gordon, 33, hasn’t manned right field since a three-game experiment with the Royals back in 2010 and has yet to play center field during any regular season to date. The focus, however, isn’t on Gordon’s capabilities. Among the three outfielders, he carries the best defensive profile and appears to be the most versatile of the bunch.
According to Flanagan, Soler and Moss are average on defense and will continue working closely with Royals’ coach Rusty Kuntz as the season approaches. One arrangement could see Gordon in center field, flanked by Soler in right field and Moss in left, though Yost foresees Soler taking some reps at DH if his defensive chops aren’t up to snuff.
While Moss is prepared to see starts at either outfield corner, Yost appears to be set on keeping Soler in right field, at least for the time being. The club is hoping for a bounce-back season from the 24-year-old outfielder, who was acquired from the Cubs in December after batting a lackluster .238/.333/.436 and sustaining a slew of minor injuries throughout the 2016 season.