The Yanks shut out the Reds 4-0 in their first night game of the spring, while Hideki Matsui picked up his first hits.
L - Johnny Damon (CF)
R - Derek Jeter (SS)
L - Bobby Abreu (RF)
R - Alex Rodriguez (3B)
L - Jason Giambi (1B)
S - Jorge Posada (C)
L - Hideki Matsui (DH)
R - Nick Green (2B)
L - Brett Gardner (LF)
Pitchers: Joba Chamberlain, Billy Traber, Mariano Rivera, Ian Kennedy, LaTroy Hawkins
Subs: Morgan Ensberg (1B), Chris Woodward (2B), Alberto Gonzalez (SS), Cody Ransom (3B), Chad Moeller (C), Jason Lane (RF), Justin Christian (CF), Colin Curtis (LF), Wilson Betemit (DH)
Opposition: The Reds' starters.
Big Hits: Doubles by Alex Rodriguez (2 for 3) and Colin Curtis (1 for 1). Hideki Matsui was 2 for 3 in his second game of the spring.
Who Pitched Well: Everyone, as the Yankees didn't allow a run nor an extra-base hit and walked just one man, but in order: Mariano Rivera stayed perfect in his second spring inning and has yet to allow a ball out of the infield. Ian Kennedy lasted four innings allowing just two singles and a walk while striking out two and retiring his last eight hitters in order. LaTroy Hawkins pitched around a single in the ninth, though he only got one out on the ground. Billy Traber faced three men, allowed a single, struck out one, and got the third to fly out. Joba Chamberlain was inefficient, lasting just 2 1/3 innings while throwing 49 pitches, and only struck out one, but he also allowed just two singles and walked none. He also threw more strikes as the game went on, throwing only 57 percent of 23 pitches for strikes in the first inning, but 73 percent of 26 pitches for strikes over his remaining inning and a third. Pete Abe reports that the lone strikeout came on an "unholy" curve ball to Edwin Encarnacion, but that it was the 14th pitch of that at-bat as Encarnacion kept fouling off sliders. More on Kennedy and Chamberlain, plus audio, from Pete Abe here.
Nice Plays: Chamberlain picked rookie Jay Bruce off first base.
Oopsies: A wild throw by Alex Rodriguez.
Ouchies: Rodriguez and Posada both played the field and picked up hits, though one wonders if that wild throw had something to do with the sore lat muscle the limited Rodriguez to DH duty over the weekend.
New Faces: In need of an extra backstop following Francisco Cervelli's injury, the Yankees have signed veteran Chad Moeller to a minor league deal. Moeller is a 33-year-old major league vet with a career .224/.284/.346 line. He split last year between the Reds and Dodgers, picking up just 56 at-bats along the way (while posting an OPS+ of 3, yes, three). He was available because he'd just been released by the Nationals, who had him in camp as an NRI. He's purely minor league filler, but will be the triple-A starter and thus the Yankees' third-string catcher. Chad Jennings called him this year's Raul Chavez. Bingo. Meanwhile, the Yankees are giving Billy Crystal one hell of a 60th birthday gift. Crystal will do his best not to get killed in Thursday's game. Frankly I'd be surprised if Joe Girardi isn't drawing blood from biting his tongue over this stunt.
Other: Andrew Brackman got pranked. Back when Brackman was in grade school, Mo was getting advice from Steve Howe.