Friday, February 12, 2010

Girardi has tough calls to make

With spring training only a few days away, New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi is focused on some of the tough calls he will have to make. In an interview with Mike Francesa, Girardi highlighted three key decisions: who plays center and left field, who bats second and fifth in the line-up, and who will be the Yankees fifth starter.
"We feel good about the pieces," Girardi said, referring to the acquisitions of Curtis Granderson, Nick Johnson, Randy Winn and Javier Vazquez. "It's just that we have to assemble them the right way."
Girardi did not commit to Brett Gardner being a full-time outfielder, saying Winn will compete for a starting position. He also said he is open to alternating the lineup so that Granderson hits second versus righthanders while Johnson bats second against lefties.
Interestingly, Girardi also said that both Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes could end up in the bullpen. The battle for the fifth spot has been thought to be between the homegrown youngsters, but Girardi sounds like he's willing to give Alfredo Aceves, Chad Gaudin and Sergio Mitre a genuine shot at the spot. The manager hopes to make a decision by March 25 to give the guys who don't end up as a starter time to adjust to their bullpen roles.

Thanks to SFC Richard Guzman, USAREC via Wikipedia for the photo.

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