Spring Training: Day 11 Notes

Masahiro Tanaka 9

Yesterday was full of baseball news while today was extremely quiet since the Yankees did their workout early to go on a team bonding trip. However there was some news from camp so lets end the final day of workouts before an actual game with some notes.

Masahiro Tanaka believes he’s ready to get into a Spring Training game, although he’s not sure when that will be.

Tanaka is able to throw up to 35 pitches at this point of Spring Training along with Hiroki Kuroda and CC Sabathia. If anything, Tanaka might be his first Spring action this weekend.

“You’re still trying to see, does a guy want one more BP or does he feel that he’s ready to go?” Girardi said. “It’s not etched in stone. … I think you want to see him out there against big league hitters, see how he does and see how he reacts. I’m happy with the progress that he’s made and how he has not tried to do too much. I think he’s adapted to what we’ve asked him to do, and I think he’s kind of embraced it. I do want to see him out there.”

To get Tanaka accustomed to pitching in the Major Leagues, the Yankees are slowly going to work on having Tanaka pitch every fifth day versus every week. They’ll start him off with at least four days and work their way up from there.

– Girardi was encouraged by his top three starters after he saw Sabathia and Kuroda throw a bullpen session.

“Just consistency of location, consistency of maybe a slider or changeup or split; different pitches that they’re working on,” Girardi said. “The first thing you get going is your arm strength, and then you start trying to incorporate your other pitches, and you’re seeing more consistency in those other pitches.”

– Girardi commented on the Brett Gardner extension news and is thrilled he’ll be able to manage Gardner for the next few seasons.

“Excited. I like what he brings to the table, offensively, defensively, and just his clubhouse presence. I like it. The way he plays the game, he’s a grinder.”

– The Yankees spent their entire afternoon playing pool as a team bonding exercise. The Yankees also played pool in 2009 and we all know how that season turned out. Girardi says if the Yankees win the World Series again this year, he’ll make pool an every Spring Training thing.

– The biggest name on the Yankees you’ll see in a game tomorrow is Brett Gardner, but Eduardo Nunez and Scott Sizemore are unsure if they’ll play. Sizemore did say he was encouraged with where he was with his performance this Spring.

“Managing to hit a few line drives around there every once in a while,” Sizemore said. “Feeling pretty comfortable at the plate, and I’m sure it will continue to get better the more pitches that I see.”

 

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