Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Game Day - Yankees vs. Phillies

Today's game between the Yankees and Phillies features Andy Pettite's Grapefruit League debut and Joba Chamberlain on the mound in a must-show-improvement appearance. It's a mild day in Clearwater, with temperatures in the mid-60's. The game begins at 1:05 p.m. and is not airing on television, but if you have a MLB.tv account you can watch on there.

Yankees
Gardner - CF
Johnson - DH
Teixeira - 1B
Rodriguez - 3B
Thames - LF
Winn - RF
Cervelli - C
Pena - SS
Russo - 2B

LHP Andy Pettitte

Phillies
Rollins - SS
Victorino - CF
Werth - RF
Howard - 1B
Francisco - LF
Ransom - 3B
Castro - 2B
Ruiz - C
Blanton - P

RHP Joe Blanton

Things to Watch: As bad as Chamberlain has looked thus far, he gets a chance to redeem himself and start the evaluations from scratch today. After what Hughes showed yesterday, Joba really needs to step his game up and show better command. Look for him to throw about 50-60 pitches. Andy Pettitte is making his first start of the spring after being brought along slowly in camp. He'll probably only go 40 pitches or two-three innings. Also scheduled to pitch - DeMaso Marte (also making his spring debut), Royce Ring, Amaury Sanit and Ryan Pope. Gardner is leading off for the second time this spring. Thames and Winn both get a look in the lineup, they need to start hitting.

Game Notes: The Yankees fell to the Phillies 6-2. Chamberlain answered the call to improve and looked excellent. He closed the game with four solid innings, allowing one run on two hits and one walk and struck out five. He was on such a low pitch count that he threw in the bottom of the ninth even though the game was already over, in that simulated frame he struck out two in a 1-2-3 inning. He was throwing strikes and attacking the zone, being very agressive on the mound. He was working quickly and seemed in complete control. Most importantly, he was locating his pitches well. A very encouraging outing. LoHud has audio of Joba talking about his day. DeMaso Marte got shelled in his first spring action, allowing three runs on four hits without recording an out. He gave up a homer to Jayson Werth, notorious lefty killer, and then he was drilled in the back by a Ryan Howard line drive and had to leave the game. Not the way he wanted to start off. Bombers Beat reports the Marte suffered only a bruise and will be fine. Andy Pettitte looked good throwing four innings and allowing two runs on five hits and a walk and struck out four. He threw 55 pitches, 36 for strikes. The veteran is right on track. Gardner went 2-for-3 with a triple and his first stolen base of the spring. Winn had a two-out single and then scored from first on a double, showing his speed. Cervelli went 3-for-3 with a double and a RBI. Amaury Sanit continued to impress with a perfect inning, striking out two batters.

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