Aside from two games last season, never in the history of “Who’s on first?” has the answer been Alex Rodriguez.
But with the Yankees’ options dwindling at the position and Mark Teixeira injured (again), this time after fouling a ball off his left foot, the team has found itself contemplating the very thing Brian Cashman once deemed a non-starter. “If we have to put him on the field somewhere, we’re in trouble,” he told reporters before spring training.
Joe Girardi on the same subject yesterday: “It’s something that we’ll continue to talk about.”
Not that Rodriguez needs to blow the dust off his glove anytime soon, Girardi stressed — only that it could be something to consider if A-Rod puts more work in at first base. “He’s just had the one day of work, so I’m not ready to commit to that yet,” he said. “Right now, I’m going with Ref [Rob Refsnyder] there.”
Rodriguez, who didn’t seem interested in testing out his fielding skills in spring training, has had a change of heart as his playing time has dwindled — a result of his quiet bat. (He was hitting .218 before homering in the second inning Monday night). He fielded grounders during the All-Star break, he said, and worked out at the position shortly after the break. A-Rod in the field also would mean more rest for Carlos Beltran, who, at 39, no doubt could use the break the DH spot affords him.
Eovaldi starts Tuesday night
Nathan Eovaldi contributed as a reliever, but Girardi said the righthander — who will start Tuesday night against the Orioles — belongs in the rotation. “We still consider him a starter,” he said. “He was helpful down there . . . and that’s been a piece that we’ve struggled to find until June . . . It wasn’t necessarily a struggle [to put him back in the rotation] because we think he’s a starter.”