A Daily look at New York Yankee News and Rumors of interest to Yankee fans.
Pitchers and catchers report on February 13.
Pitchers and catchers report in just twelve days with the full squad reporting to spring training on February 18 at the Tampa, Florida training facility, George M. Steinbrenner Field. Workouts will begin immediately with the first game on Saturday, February 22, at home against the Toronto Blue Jay. In the first week, they will play the Jays, Pirates, Nationals, Tampa Bay, and the Tigers. The Yankees will play twelve games that will be televised by the YES Network, and one game will be on ESPN. The Yankees regular-season opener will be away at the Orioles Park at Camden Yards on March 26.
Manager Aaron Boone and the coaches will be watching closely to evaluate all the players. Although the Yankees are relatively set in the lineup, they will be watching first base players Luke Voit and Mike Ford to see who will win out for the opening day start at first. They will also look at the hot corner, and Gio Urshela, who they have already said will start at the hot corner, and that it is his to lose. That being said, they will also be watching Miguel Andujar closely as they try to figure out where he will best play. They have options, including trying him at first and in the outfield. He, of course, will be available to play at third base. Many that watch the televised spring training games will be looking for the Yankees to win their games, but that is not the primary objective. Preparing players for opening day is tantamount when the games count.
Curtis Granderson retires!
Curtis Granderson was a beloved Yankee on and off the field. He was the Yankees ambassador here and around the world. Curtis loves baseball and has promoted it everywhere. He has traveled to England, Italy, the Netherlands, France, South Africa, China, New Zealand, South Korea, and Japan to promote baseball. He has worked tirelessly to support inner-city black children through his Grand Kids Foundation. Yesterday he announced the end of his 16-year baseball career as he retired from the game. He played the bulk of his career with the Tigers, the New York Yankees and the Mets. In his later years, he played a year for the Dodgers, Blue Jays, Brewers, and finally, last year in the minors for the Marlins.
In announcing his retirement, he said in part: “As I close out this wonderful chapter in my life and step away from the days on the field, I know that my role in this game is only just getting started. I look forward to continuing my work helping to diversify the sport, paving the way for young kids to learn and grow. Thank you — to the MLB, MLBPA, my teammates and coaches, front office staff, members of the media, partners, and the fans — for the ride of a lifetime. This journey would not be possible without those who came before me, breaking barriers to allow a young Curtis Granderson to live out his dream. It’s been an honor to wear my socks high.”
Have A-Rod and Jeter patched things up?
As many of you may know, Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez have been on and off friends, both on the field and off. First, here is the back story. Both Jeter and A-Rod were superstar shortstops, one for the New York Yankees and other for the Seattle Mariners. In many ways, their careers had many parallels at the start. Before their debuts in the majors, they both met for the first time in 1993 at a college baseball game between the University of Michigan (Jeter went to high school in Kalamazoo) and the University of Miami (Rodriguez went to high school in Miami). They were somewhat fascinated with each other.
They broke through and became superstars in 1996 and 97 and were featured together on the cover of Sports Illustrated. They became inseparable and great friends. As time passed, Jeter, because of playing in New York and not Seattle, was getting all the attention, especially with his string of girls following him. Apparently, A-Rod started to become jealous as he wasn’t getting the attention he thought he should be getting. Their relationship started to become strained. For the next several years, their relationship would be best called a roller coaster. After having huge years with the Texas Rangers, A-Rod would go to the Yankees who would take on his $252MM contract, but again he would be overshadowed by Jeter when he had to relinquish his position at short to Jeter, moving to third base. In an interview with ESPN, A-Rod said: “He just doesn’t do the power numbers,” in reference to why he deserved a more significant contract than Jeter.
In 2001 A-Rod offered to Esquire Magazine: “The thing about Mike Lupica (Lupica writes the “Sporting Life” for Esquire) that pisses me off,” he says, “is that he makes me look like the biggest dickhead in the world, and then he takes a guy like Jeter and just puts him way up there.” “Jeter’s been blessed with great talent around him,” Alex said. “He’s never had to lead. He can just go and play and have fun. And he hits second — that’s totally different than third and fourth in a lineup. You go into New York, you wanna stop Bernie and O’Neill. You never say, Don’t let Derek beat you. He’s never your concern.” From here on, their relationship was pretty much like toast, even if it didn’t appear that way on the field.
In 2007, Rodriguez admitted that his relationship with his old best friend wasn’t what it used to be. “People start assuming that things are a lot worse than what they are, which they’re not,” Rodriguez said. “But they’re obviously not as great as they used to be. We were like blood brothers.” Since both have retired, many things have changed. Jeter went on to marry his wife Hannah, a model, the pair have two children, and Jeter became part-owner of the lowly Florida Marlins.
A-Rod became a successful broadcaster and is engaged to be married to one of the most beautiful and talented women in the world, Jennifer Lopez. On Wednesday night in Miami, Jeter and A-Rod would be seen together at Rao’s at the beach. Rao’s is a restaurant notorious for not being able to get a table unless you know someone. The restaurant is charging $10k for a table of six this week during the Superbowl. Jeter, who is now 45, was seated having dinner with friends, and A-Rod, who is now 44, walked up. Page six was told the two sluggers “engaged in quite the friendly conversation” for about five minutes at the beachside restaurant. Apparently, time heals old-time jealousy and wounds.