Well, today would be a dream for anyone who absolutely adores baseball. It’s a split squad game, meaning there’s two games today, at the same time but the team is just cut in half. The Yankees that are most likely heading to Panama this evening will play at home against the Orioles while the players that are expected to stay behind will head to Clearwater and play against the Phillies.
Although it’s a split squad day, the real story is Michael Pineda will pitch for the Yankees at home and he’ll make his first televised start of 2014. Pineda dazzled in his last outing, going two innings of no run ball and he looks to capitalize on that later this afternoon. Pineda will be on the mound for three innings or 45 pitches, whichever comes first. Ivan Nova will have the start in Clearwater as he looks to bounce back from his previous outing.
— Joe Girardi made a change to his Panama roster: Brian McCann will stay in Tampa and Francisco Cervelli will go instead. The reason behind it is Girardi wants McCann to become familiar with Masahiro Tanaka and Hiroki Kuroda, who respectively pitch on Sunday and Monday. It’s possible there could be a trade involving Cervelli with the sudden roster move, since Cervelli had caught Tanaka all Spring minus a Spring Training game here and there.
— Masahiro Tanaka threw a side this morning and went to go lift some weights. The interesting part was he put on a pair of batting gloves as if he was going to take batting practice. He was asked if he was a good hitter and he didn’t need a translator to answer that question. “No, no, no.”