New York Yankees

Masahiro Tanaka AP

Masahiro Tanaka to be named the Yankees Opening Day starter


Yesterday Joe Girardi admitted that, based on how the Yankees spring rotation has been set up, CC Sabathia would be on short rest for Opening Day, making him unlikely to start that day. Who is in line: Masahiro Tanaka.

Sabathia has started the past six Opening Days for the Yankees. Before that he started the previous three for the Cleveland Indians. The last time he didn’t start an Opening Day game was 2005. But he did in 2003 and 2004, meaning that the big guy has started 11 of the past 12 openers in his 14 season-career.

I wonder if all of the people who are mad that the Mets are starting their big old dude on Opening Day are going to be mad that the Yankees aren’t.

A-Rod has given Joe Girardi confidence that he can be a useful player

Alex Rodriguez

Despite so many people saying that his days as a useful player were over, that he was going to be a distraction and that he was only going through the motions of wanting to play because there’s so much money in it for him, Alex Rodriguez has shown this spring that he can be a useful player for the New York Yankees.

That’s not my opinion. That’s his manager’s:

“I definitely think he’s swung the bat pretty good,” Girardi said. “I just think his at-bats are more consistent; his timing is more consistent.” . . . Rodriguez has shown Girardi enough in the field to give the manager confidence to play him at third base if Chase Headley needs a day off, and while A-Rod hasn’t played first base in a game yet, it looks like that will happen at some point before the spring ends.

He’s hitting .286 with two homers and three runs driven in in 13 games this spring. Oh, and we’ve heard almost nothing from him in terms of quotes or other sorts of antics that could label him a distraction.

If he can avoid a cratering of his average, particularly against lefties, hit a handful of homers and stay out of the tabloids, I think that would exceed most people’s expectations of what he’d be able to provide.

Video: Yankees recreate scene from “The Sandlot”

jacoby ellsbury

If you read this blog, you probably love “The Sandlot” and you’ll probably enjoy this clip …

Brian McCann really steals the show here with his Hamilton Porter impression. Jacoby Ellsbury and those glasses get an honorable mention. That’s a pretty good Squints there, Jacoby.