Today is Jackie Robinson Day around Major League Baseball. The Yankees had planned on doing something pretty cool today in honor of another great leader and pioneer: they were going to place a plaque for Nelson Mandela in Monument Park. Unfortunately, steady rain forecast for tonight has postponed the game and the ceremonies, and now both will take place tomorrow.
In town for the festivities: Jackie Robinson’s widow, Rachel Robinson, his daughter Sharon Robinson, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig, former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, Rev. Al Sharpton as well as several members of Nelson Mandela’s family, South African officials and figures in Mandela’s foundation.
Now they get a nice honor for Mandela and a twin-bill to boot.
Nathan Eovaldi hasn’t pitched in a month due to right elbow inflammation, but he told Chad Jennings of the Journal News today that he expects to pitch out of the bullpen if the Yankees advance to the ALDS against the Royals.
Eovaldi was originally expected to throw a 35-pitch bullpen session today, but the Yankees moved up his timetable after the news that CC Sabathia was checking into alcohol rehab. Instead, he threw 10 pitches in a bullpen session before facing hitters for the first time since his injury.
There isn’t enough time for Eovaldi to get stretched out to start during the ALDS, but he could still play an important role for the Yankees, especially with Adam Warren looking like the most likely option to replace Sabathia in the rotation.
Yadier Molina suffered a mild ligament tear in his left thumb on September 20, but the Cardinals announced Monday that they remain “optimistic” he’ll be on the roster for the upcoming NLDS.
Molina visited a hand specialist Monday and Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that he’ll have a custom splint built in hopes that he’ll be able to hit and catch. He’s still not 100 percent, but even a limited Molina could be better than the alternative. That would be Tony Cruz in this case.
The Cardinals will meet the winner of Wednesday’s Wild Card game between the Cubs and the Pirates. Game 1 of the NLDS will take place Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET in St. Louis.