This has been a topic of discussion in Yankees land today, and some Yankees fans (myself included) believe it would be a better move to have the struggling Derek Jeter (who hit .207 in August) move down in the order. Joe Girardi moved Jorge Posada down in the lineup in 2011 and he flat-out benched Alex Rodriguez in 2012. But despite the outside cries, Girardi won’t move him–even though the Yankees are in the middle of a race for the second Wild Card spot.
“You look up and down our numbers and there’s a lot of .240s and .230s,” Girardi said. “I’m not so sure why he’s the one that’s necessarily picked on here. As I’ve said, this guy has been a money player his whole career and we need him to be the last month.”
To answer Joe Girardi’s question: Jeter is the one picked on because of where he is in the batting order, his numbers and his inability to hit with RISP of late. He’s hitting in-between Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner, who have arguably been the Yankees best position players all season and if Ellsbury happens to gets on base during a Yankees rally, Jeter has a chance of hitting the ball to an infielder to initiate a double play, since the majority of Jeter’s hits are ground balls.
Let’s put things in perspective: if it were any other player, say..Brendan Ryan or Stephen Drew, Joe Girardi wouldn’t hesitate to move them down in the order or potentially bench them due to their numbers. However, since Girardi is looking at Jeter’s career as a whole, he’s basing on where he hits in the order. I understand Jeter has done a lot to help the Yankees in his 20 season career, but Jeter is struggling this season, and it’s hard to accept a non-move due to it affecting the entire team.
— Masahiro Tanaka was cleared by doctors to continue his throwing program. It turns out Tanaka’s arm injury was actually nothing, just simply arm fatigue.
“Every manual test that they did came out really well,” Girardi said. “They just said he had some arm fatigue. He’s scheduled to throw a bullpen sometime this week and hopefully he’s ready to do it.”
— Jacoby Ellsbury was named the AL Player Of The Week, making him the second player on the Yankees to have the honor. Brett Gardner was the other Yankee who was AL Player Of The Week, which occurred last month.
— David Phelps threw a 25-pitch bullpen session today and he plans to throw a 35-pitch bullpen session on Friday. The Yankees plan to bring Phelps back as a reliever in the pen, versus a starter, a role he had done well in this season.