Monday, February 20, 2012

A Busy First Day in Tampa

With pitchers and catchers reporting to Tampa this morning for the first workouts of the season, there was obviously media hype surrounding some players.
  • Mariano Rivera, without actually saying it, hinted that this would be his final season. "How many times have I told you guys that this is my last year?" Rivera said. "I keep telling guys, after this year, I'm not going to play. Then there it is, I play two more years, a contract for three more years. Then another three more years. But this one is different. This is it. This one is my decision. When I let you guys know what it is, you guys will know." The thought of Rivera not jogging in from the bullpen when the Yankees have a lead in the ninth certainly scares me, and all other Yankee fans.
  • The Yankees have agreed to terms on a deal with Raul Ibanez for one year and a salary of $1.1 million with plate appearance incentives that could potentially drive up his pay to $4 million.
  • The Yankees are still interested in bringing back Eric Chavez, but on their terms. Chavez recently said that it was a 50/50 shot that he would return to the Yankees in 2012, but he clearly wants to come back based on word from his agent earlier in the off-season.
    Michael Pineda
  • Michael Pineda had his first Yankee bullpen session today, with Russell Martin catching him. Martin was singing the praises he had of Pineda. "You could tell he’s been working on the changeup. Larry (Rothschild) was saying that he’s changed the grip a little bit, and it’s working. We’ll see how hitters react to it, but from my perspective, it looked like a pretty good pitch. His slider is a plus slider. Everybody knows he’s got a live arm."
  • A.J. Burnett is officially a Pirate. In an interview, Burnett said that maybe he allowed "tinkering" from too many people in the Yankees organization. Martin agreed when asked about Burnett, saying that there were outside factors that got to A.J. Regardless. there won't be anymore questions regarding Burnett and his inconsistency. The days of Girardi and Brian Cashman standing up for A.J. are over. It is a team game and talking about one player all season takes away from how the rest of the team is performing.
  • One of the things on pitchers' agenda today: PFP, or pitchers fielding practice. I have never played professionally, but it sounds like a drag.
  • When asked about his lineup for 2012, Girardi expressed that he would have Cano, Rodriguez and Teixeira bat 3-4-5 and that Jeter would bat lead-off ,but also reminded everyone that he is not married to that order.
Those are the notes from Yankees camp in Tampa, Florida. Thank you to Chad Jennings, Marc Carig and the rest of the Yankees beat crew for keeping everyone up-to-date today on Twitter and on the Yankees LoHud blog. Day two of workouts will convene tomorrow morning from Tampa.

Photo of Pineda provided by the Yankees LoHud Blog.

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