Good afternoon Yankee fans. Over the last 24 hours, the outfield situation has morphed quite a bit, and we have some updates on how things are shaping up.
By now, everyone should be familiar with the Brennan Boesch signing. Although Jon Heyman reported that Boesch would earn an extra $600K in incentives based on at bats, Cashman clarified that it was a split contract, that would pay Boesch $1.5 million while in the Major Leagues, and $500K as a Minor Leaguer.
Boesch also spoke about the situation, and how the last week shaped out for him. When the outfielder heard about the Yankees’ interest, he told his agent, Scott Boras, to immediately get the deal done. There’s some more to the story, and it seems that he’s genuinely excited about the change of scenery.
In today’s first game against the Phillies, Boesch played right field, with Ichiro Suzuki in left field. The numbers say that Boesch is not a great right fielder, but Comerica’s right field is much larger than Yankee Stadium’s. Nick Swisher adapted very quickly, so there’s a chance his defense doesn’t allow too many additional tuns. One thing to take out of this, is that Ichiro will be the left fielder for the first month of the season.
In more outfield news, Slade Heathcott was sent to Minor League camp. Cashman publicly stated at the beginning of the month that Heathcott was a dark horse candidate for the third outfield job, but a recent thumb injury and now patellar tendinitis are plaguing the left-hander. Though Heathcott offered a quality glove and speed, it’s probably best for his development that he start the season in Double-A.
In rehab news, Boone Logan (elbow) threw a painless simulated bullpen today, and his next outing should be in a Spring Training game. Meanwhile, Phil Hughes threw another side session, and should be approaching a Spring Training start himself.
The Yankees lost the first game to the Phillies today. Hiroki Kuroda pitched 6.0 innings, gave up 4 runs, 2 earned, 6 hits, 1 walk, 1 home run, and 2 strike outs. Mariano Rivera, and David Aardsma pitched scoreless innings, and Shawn Kelley got hit around a bit int he 9th. Offensively, Derek Jeter and Kevin Youkilis doubled, while Gil Velazquez, Brett Gardner, Luke Murton, and Walter Ibarra (2) singled.