Good news on the Alex Rodriguez rehab front.
According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, the veteran third baseman told Yankees manager Joe Girardi on Saturday that he is able to run slowly on a treadmill without feeling any sort of lingering pain or discomfort in his surgically-repaired hip. “He was pretty fired up about that,” Girardi said later in a talk with the media.
Rodriguez underwent major hip surgery in January and is not expected to be ready for major league action again until after the All-Star break. Kevin Youkilis has been playing third for the Yankees.
Michael S. Schmidt of the New York Times reported Friday that A-Rod (or one of his associates) tried to purchase documents from the Miami-based Biogenesis clinic with the intention of destroying them. Major League Baseball is currently investigating Biogenesis, so the attempt by A-Rod could be viewed as a violation of the Joint Drug Agreement — which demands cooperation from players during PED investigations.
And that violation could alone lead to a suspension of some kind. Something to watch for.
Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:
CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos
SP Yovani Gallardo
With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.
LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar
SP David Price
After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.