Gardner eyes starting role in 2010

Brett Gardner stole his way into the hearts of many Yankee fans in 2010. The question remains, however, if he can steal his way into his second straight Opening Day start.

In 2010, Brett Gardner will have some competition in recently acquired Marcus Thames and Randy Winn, as well as Rule 5 Draftee Jamie Hoffmann.

Currently in the Yankees minor league complex in Tampa, Gardner spoke with reporters from the Daily News and The Associated Press. Gardner told reporters he has focused this winter on squaring around on the ball and working on laying down bunts.

“That’s the good thing about hitting off a [pitching] machine,” Gardner said, according to the Daily News. “You can bunt 50 or 100 balls in 15 or 20 minutes. No time. I’ve been bunting a lot, working on that more and trying to bring that back into my game.

“Now it’s just a matter of being comfortable enough with it not to be scared to do it in a game and have confidence that I’m going to put it where I want it. Not only can it be a tool to get on base, but it keeps defenses honest and can bring the corners in and maybe I can shoot some balls by them.”

Source: Yankees.com

One debate brewing this off-season regarding Gardner has been the possibility of him playing center field and Curtis Granderson moving to left. As for Gardner, he’s alright wherever the Yankees want him. He just wants to play.

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4 Responses to Gardner eyes starting role in 2010

  1. Eric @ THTGB says:

    He’ll be a force to reckon with if he can start laying down some bunts. Let’s hope all this practice pays off for him.

  2. smurfy says:

    Amen, everybody should. A bunt artist who can place where the third baseman has be a hero to get him makes for exciting baseball, and if he can bounce it past the pitcher towards second, they will lose some composure.

    I mean, what, b-b-bunt? The next thing they’ll be trying to steal home, and mess up that beautiful homer swing. Pshaw!

  3. Stephen Crociata says:

    It's scary that Gardner only had 1 bunt hit last season… it may not seem like much but say he would've had 6 bunt hits (Ichiro's bunt hits in 2009) his avg would've went from .270 to .294 pretty large difference.

  4. Chris Barrows says:

    It's those kind of facts that make me love the "little things" in baseball.