Jacoby Ellsbury gets start at DH

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When you look at the lineup, the first thing that jumps out at you isn’t Kelly Johnson playing left field…it’s Jacoby Ellsbury as the Yankees DH. It turns out, Ellsbury becoming the Yankees DH wasn’t an accident.

“He just needed it,” Girardi said. “Physically he needs it.”

Ellsbury had a day-off before the Yankees hit the road, but what caused Joe Girardi to give Ellsbury a break were his stolen base numbers. Ellsbury had only stolen two bags since June 20 and he was caught thrice on the basepaths.

“When you get those speed guys, they get beat up,” Girardi said. “Physically they get beat up. … We talked about it. He probably could have used (a DH day) yesterday, but we just decided to do it today instead.”

No one is sure what exactly is nagging Ellsbury, but the fact that he’s “beat up” could just mean he’s tired. I’m sure Ellsbury will be interviewed about that after the game but for now, it seems to be a non-issue.

“When you play every day, and you’re running around, and you’re playing center field, your body is going to hurt. It’s probably a different spot every day,” Girardi said. “It just kind of moves around depending on what you do that day. Is there anything serious? No, but he’s just beat up.”

Some Notes

– The Yankees have announced the pitching rotation for the Cincinnati Reds series at Yankee Stadium:

Friday: David Phelps
Saturday: Brandon McCarthy
Sunday: Hiroki Kuroda

I’m mostly intrigued about Saturday’s game; it’s Brandon McCarthy’s first start at Yankee Stadium. He had a great start on the road against the Indians but him being at Yankee Stadium is a true test for him.

Carlos Beltran is slated to come off the disabled list once the Yankees return from break. The obvious corresponding move would be Bryan Mitchell, who was bought up as a ‘just in case’ guy for this game.

 “We just felt that, if we get into a crazy game, I’d rather be protected on the pitching side,” Girardi said. “Dellin has been worked hard, Adam has been worked hard. If you don’t need them or something, you’d hate to have to use them.”

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