The last time Francisco Cervelli played at first base, he was 15 years old. Now, he gets his first Yankees start at first base while Kelly Johnson takes the day off and Mark Teixeira is shelved on the disabled list. Despite it being years since he’s played first in a game, Cervelli has taken ground balls there and feels confident enough that he could do the job.
“If I’ve got to pitch, I’ll go, too,” Cervelli said. “It’s not like I feel like I’m Mark Teixeira, but I think I’m going to be comfortable with more games. I think it’s like every other position. If I feel I’m not going to catch the ball, I’m going to block it.”
If it works out today, this could add to Cervelli’s versatility and Girardi could use him occasionally for these types of purposes.
“If it works out, it’s more flexibility during the course of the season.” Girardi said. “We don’t anticipate Tex being out very long, but you never know.”
With Cervelli taking the chance to play first base, many wondered why not Brian McCann, the Yankees every day catcher? Wouldn’t McCann have been an option?
“I’ve seen Cervelli take ground balls and I like what I’ve seen,” Girardi said. “I’ve never seen Brian McCann take a ground ball.”
— David Robertson has officially been placed on the disabled list with a Grade-1 groin strain. The Yankees have called up LHP Cesar Cabral to be in the bullpen. This is an interesting move because now the Yankees would have three lefties in the pen (Matt Thornton, Vidal Nuno and Cabral).
— There was a stat on the Yankees scoreboard yesterday which I found extremely interesting: Brett Gardner has 24 career home runs. The Yankees are 21-3 in those games. I think it’s time he hits more home runs. They seem to be a Yankees good luck charm.
— Speaking of the Yankees scoreboard, Jacoby Ellsbury’s name was misspelled. It’s not like anyone noticed it; just the 48,000 fans that attended the stadium on Opening Day.