Girardi toys with batting order vs. lefty
With the Blue Jays starting a lefthander, Daniel Norris, Yankees manager Joe Girardi made the first significant change in the batting order Thursday night. Left-handed batting Brett Gardner, Brian McCann and Stephen Drew were all on the bench.
Girardi noted that Gardner’s not starting had nothing to do with his getting hit by a pitch in Wednesday night’s victory over Toronto. The manager plans to rest Gardner or Jacoby Ellsbury but not both against left-handed starting pitching. Chris Young, whose double began the eighth-inning rally Tuesday night, started in left field.
McCann also was hit by a pitch the night before but was just given a blow that allowed backup John Ryan Murphy a start. Gregorio Petit got his first start for the Yankees at second base in place of Drew. Didi Gregorius, who struggles against lefthanders, was kept in the lineup at shortstop and drove in the Yankees’ first run with a single to center field in the fifth inning.
Another major change in the lineup was the move of designated hitter Alex Rodriguez from seventh to second, which might have gotten him an extra at-bat. Girardi has liked the way A-Rod has swung the bat over the first two games.