Maryland state troopers in Yankees dugout asked Jeter and Swisher for autographs during game

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OK, this is a weird one.

George King of the New York Post reports that two Maryland state troopers assigned to the Yankees dugout for Game 1 of the ALDS last night asked Derek Jeter and Nick Swisher for autographs … during the game.

In the ninth inning, to be exact, although it’s unclear if the request was made before, after, or during the Yankees’ five-run outburst.

Jeter was asked afterward if he’d ever experienced something like that before and replied: “What do you think?”

And according to King’s unnamed source Swisher “was livid” about the whole thing. Pretty safe to assume they won’t be in the dugout for Game 2 tonight, although hopefully they’ll at least take the George Costanza “was that wrong?” route just in case.

Between state troopers asking him for autographs and missing Russell Martin’s homer because he was in the bathroom, Jeter had an interesting night at Camden Yards.

2017 Preview: The American League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East

Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams.  The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.

Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:

Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.