Yankees, Mets, trade rumors, free agents, off-the-wall predictions and other MLB musings.
Nick Swisher, Phil Hughes and David Einhorn
It's a beautiful night here at the Stadium. No weather delays tonight. I promise.
--With the Rangers starting left-hander Derek Holland, and with Derek Jeter on the disabled list (as you might have heard), the Yankees are hitting Nick Swisher leadoff. It's a worthwhile experiment. If you look at Swisher's splits, you can see how well he's performing against left-handers this season.
However...Swisher's one true run at hitting leadoff came with the 2008 White Sox, and friends say he hated it. He put up a respectable .354 OBP, but a dreadful .324 SLG. So it'll be interesting to see if Swisher tries to tailor his approach to his lineup slot, or if he just deals with it as another day at the office.
Why not Curtis Granderson leading off? Joe Girardi said he wanted to keep Granderson in the number two slot, given how well he has hit there. Can't argue with that.
Why not Brett Gardner leading off, just as he does against righties? After all, his .364 OBP against lefties exceeds his .361 OBP against righties. Well, the Yankees feel like they might as well play Andruw Jones against lefties, since they're paying him $2 million. And Jones is in leftfield, rather than starting at DH, because Girardi likes using the DH against lefties as a half-day for one of his veterans. Today, it's Alex Rodriguez.
Furthermore, Girardi said, he liked giving Gardner and his legs a day off, anyway.
We'll continue to monitor Girardi's lineup machinations during Jeter's absence. It's particularly interesting against lefties, since this was the one area in which Jeter was performing well.
--Girardi said that Phil Hughes will next pitch Sunday, and the plan calls for Hughes to pitch in an actual game, thereby starting his 30-day rehabilitation clock. So if Hughes' progress goes smoothly, we should see him in July.
--Forbes Magazine is reporting that David Einhorn can take over the Mets in three years for the price of $1, if the Wilpons can't return Einhorn's initial $200 million investment. The Mets have denied it in a statement, and from doing my own due diligence, I'm compelled to believe the denial.
Ultimately, though, it doesn't cloud the greater point: There's a clock ticking on the Wilpons. It seems just a matter of time, whether it's three years, five years or some other relatiavely short time frame, before they relinquish control of their club.
-Barry Bonds filed a motion to either be acquitted on his obstruction of justice conviction or to be re-tried on that count.
--Have a great night.