Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Today the fake games get a little less fake.

The Yankees opened their spring schedule yesterday against Florida State University, and today they play an actual major league club in their Grapefruit League opener.

Ivan Nova will be on the bump for the Yankees in this one. He's already got a spot in the Yankees rotation this season as the likely 4th starter -- unless something very unexpected happens during the spring.

Preston Claiborne and Dellin Betances will be among the pitchers coming out of the bullpen behind Nova.

Also making their spring and Yankees debuts today will be three of the four big offseason acquisitions: Brian McCann, Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran will be making the trip to Bradenton.

Those three are expected to play four to five innings, according to manager Joe Girardi.

Eduardo Nunez will also be taking the bus ride with the team. I wrote this before the lineup was announced, and expect that he'll be play shortstop. This spring is very important for him. If he wants to be part of the plan to replace Derek Jeter next year, he's going to have to give the Yankees a reason to keep him around past this season.

Jeter won't be in the lineup for this one, but is expected to make his spring debut tomorrow in Tampa against the same Pirates squad. That game will be aired live on YES, but today's game will be without TV and radio once again.


Gavin Ewbank is the Lead Writer of Yanks Beat Blog, and you can follow him on Twitter @GavinEwbank.


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