If a catcher could earn a save, Francisco Cervelli deserved one for his role in the Yankees' 1-0 win over the Detroit Tigers on Thursday.
With Ian Kinsler at third base and two outs in the ninth inning, Cervelli blocked two pitches in the dirt to keep him there.
Of course, Cervelli had an inkling that those pitches were coming. He called for both curveballs and said he wanted David Robertson to throw them down, which the righthander did -- and then some.
One pitch bounced in front of the plate. The other was down and in. Cervelli made an outstanding stop on that one. "I just put it in my brain that you need to stop them,'' he said. "I don't know how. I just got to stop it. Forget about mechanics. Forget about everything. Just stop it.''
Mark Teixeira, as expected, was not available Thursday, a day after receiving three stitches in his left pinkie to close a gash after getting spiked while sliding into home plate.
Girardi was unsure just how much time off Teixeira will need before he returns, but all indications are he'll avoid a trip to the disabled list. "He'll be day-to-day,'' Girardi said, "and we'll see how many days he needs here.''
Masahiro Tanaka, hoping to avoid Tommy John surgery, played catch in the outfield again. Tanaka threw from distances of 60 and 90 feet and will need to reach 120 feet before he is cleared to throw off a mound for the first time, Girardi said.
"So it'll be a couple days of that,'' he said, "and then we'll take the next step.''
Rogers gets a start
Esmil Rogers, claimed off waivers from Toronto on July 31, will make Friday night's start against the Indians. He will take the spot of David Phelps, who was placed on the disabled list Monday with elbow inflammation. The Yankees have floated the possibility that Michael Pineda will be ready to come off the disabled list the next time this spot comes up in the rotation next week in Baltimore.