Yankees-Tigers Game 4 postponed to 4 p.m. Thursday
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DETROIT -- The heavy rains didn't arrive until more than two hours after the scheduled 8:07 p.m. first pitch, and there was no rain at all for an hour and a half.
Still, there were no dissenting voices from the Yankees regarding the decision to postpone Game 4 of the ALCS.
"The weather report was fairly obvious," general manager Brian Cashman said, speaking just before 10 o'clock Wednesday night. "Turned out to be an unfortunate situation where there was no rain for this period of time, but the rain was going to hit regardless and make it an unplayable circumstance."
Cashman and Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski huddled with representatives of the commissioner's office to discuss what to do. "I think it was an obvious decision based on what the radar was," Cashman said.
The pitching matchup for Game 4, rescheduled for Thursday at 4 p.m., stays the same. CC Sabathia, who left the clubhouse before reporters were allowed in after the rainout announcement, faces the Tigers' Max Scherzer.
"You don't want your top guys throwing like two or three innings ," catcher Russell Martin said. "You want your ace to be able to throw his game and not have it dependent on the weather."
Could the extra day act as a reset button of sorts for the Yankees, who trail 3-0 in the series?
"We were ready to go, so I wouldn't say it was a benefit," Cashman said. "We were ready to go but it doesn't matter. We'll be ready to go again tomorrow."
Cashman did nip in the bud one area of conjecture by those trying to look ahead. There is no chance, he said, that if the Yankees somehow push the series to a Game 7 Sunday that Sabathia would be brought back on two days' rest.
"But I'm not thinking that far ahead," Cashman said. "If we take care of business tomorrow, we can worry about the next day. I want to be in position to do that."
Cashman was on the spot before the game talking about a second straight lineup submitted by Joe Girardi that had radical changes, done once again to try and spark the slumping offense.
Alex Rodriguez, 3-for-23 this postseason, again did not start.
"I'm obviously not doing somersaults, I'm not happy about it," Rodriguez said. "You come to the ballpark feeling like you can help the team win. And when you see your name is not in the lineup, you're obviously disappointed. You've just got to shift to being a cheerleader and also make sure you're ready when your number's called.''
Rodriguez refuted a recent report that he openly flirted with some women in the stands Saturday night near the end of Game 1, calling it "laughable."
Cashman said A-Rod's benching the last two games was "purely baseball related."
Curtis Granderson, 3-for-29 with 15 strikeouts, also was benched, replaced by Brett Gardner, who would have started in center and hit eighth.
Asked if he was upset about not starting, Granderson said: "Not at all, I understand it, we've got to make changes and adjustments. I'll be ready to help in any form or fashion. You want to go out and do a lot more to help the team, but unfortunately I haven't been able to do that. Maybe the change of . . . not being in there will help that out."
Rightfielder Nick Swisher, benched in Game 3, was penciled in to bat second. Eric Chavez, 0-for-14 with six strikeouts, was listed to play third and hit sixth. "His at-bats I feel have been pretty good," Girardi said of Chavez. "You have to look at those things."
The Yankees entered Game 4 hitting .200 this postseason.
"I'm concerned about all our guys," Girardi said. "This is difficult. When I went into the postseason, this is not what I imagined having to do. You thought you'd have a set lineup and you might change it a little bit if it was a lefthander or righthander, but the struggles have been tough and we've just felt we had to make some changes."
With Marc Carig and Anthony Rieber