Francisco Cervelli left in the first inning after he broke his hand on a foul tip and Ivan Nova left in the third with elbow pain, but the Yankees still managed to beat the Blue Jays 6-4 at the Stadium Friday night.
Nova left the game with two men on and no outs and David Phelps came in and promptly let the Blue Jays to go ahead 2-1 on a Colby Rasmus RBI-single. Phelps would give up just one more run, an Edwin Encarnacion solo shot, his second of the game, and pitched a strong four innings that kept the Yankees right in the game leaving with a 4-3 lead. His final line: 4 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 9 K, 1 HR.
The rest of the Yankees bullpen gave up one run over the final three innings, but the Yankees got tack on runs thanks to poor defense by J.P. Arencebia and a solo shot by Brett Gardner.
• Cervelli will have surgery to repair the fracture in his hand and will need at least six weeks before he will return. Austin Romine will be called up in his place and it sounds like he’ll at least split time with Chris Stewart behind the plate.
• Romine, of course, gain or lose playing time depending on how well he hits. He didn’t hit well in very limited time last season with a .158/.200/.158 line in 20 plate appearances. He is hitting .341/.400/.415 in 45 plate appearances in Triple-A so far this year.
• Nova actually told Girardi after the second inning that he was experiencing some stiffness in his elbow, but wanted to go out and give it a try in the third inning. Joe Girardi went to check on him after the first two batters reached and Nova said he wasn’t feeling well. Results of the MRI weren’t immediately available after the game, but Girardi indicated that it might be more of a triceps injury than something that would require surgery.
• David Phelps will likely take Nova’s spot in the rotation with Adam Warren serving as the long man. My guess is that Cody Eppley will get called up if Nova goes on the DL. Phelps isn’t completely stretched out to be a starter, but threw 77 pitches tonight. He’ll probably be limited to 90-100 pitches if he does start in place of Nova.
• Chien-Ming Wang wouldn’t get called up mostly because he isn’t on the 40-man roster, but he probably isn’t physically ready yet. He will also make a prorated portion of $3 million if he is promoted to the majors.
• The Yankees got just six hits, but walked 10 times. Vernon Wells, who went 2-for-3, was the only one with multiple hits. Jayson Nix, Ichiro Suzuki, and Travis Hafner combined to go 1-for-7 with six walks.
• Mariano Rivera pitched on a Friday night in April for the final time of his career. He made it interesting, loading the bases with two outs, but got through the ninth without allowing a run.
• Kevin Youkilis missed his sixth consecutive game with back problems.