HOUSTON — Without directly saying so, Joe Girardi indicated that Matt Holliday will be returning to the Yankees’ lineup.
And likely sooner rather than later.
“Stay tuned,” Girardi said with a slight smile Thursday afternoon, referring to potential playing time for the 37-year-old DH against the Astros in the ALCS.
Holliday, who could get the nod in Game 1 against Houston lefthander Dallas Keuchel, did not play in the Yankees’ five-game ALDS victory over the Indians. He has not appeared in a game since Oct. 1 against Toronto, when he went 1-for-4 with a home run. Jacoby Ellsbury and Chase Headley shared DH duties in the Cleveland series and combined to go 0-for-16.
“We’re going to look at it on a daily basis, what we think is the best thing to do, and you go from there,” Girardi said of his DH plans for the series.
Holliday, signed to a one-year, $13-million contract before the season, hit .231 and slugged .432 with 19 homers in 105 games this season. A viral infection suffered in mid-June interrupted a promising season. After returning July 14, Holliday hit .179 with four homers in 37 games.
Righthander Chad Green, the Yankees’ best reliever during the second half of the season, made only one appearance in the ALDS, allowing Francisco Lindor’s grand slam in Game 2.
Girardi said Green is healthy and to expect more opportunities for the reliever this series.
“I just didn’t use him,” Girardi said. “I think he has a chance to be really important in this series.”
Astros star shortstop Carlos Correa praised his opposite number in this series, Didi Gregorius, whom he watched hit two homers off Corey Kluber in Game 5 of the ALDS.
“For me, I’m a shortstop, and for me personally, he’s a top five shortstop in the league,” Correa said. “He’s an incredible talent. He’s really good defensively and he put up great numbers this year. His performance yesterday was fun to watch.”