Monday, April 6, 2015

No surprises in the Yankees' first starting lineup of the season, as the Bombers host the Toronto Blue Jays this afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for around 1:15 pm ET. 

The starting lineup

CF Jacoby Ellsbury
LF Brett Gardner
RF Carlos Beltran
1B Mark Teixeira
C Brian McCann
3B Chase Headley
DH Alex Rodriguez
2B Stephen Drew
SS Didi Gregorius

SP Masahiro Tanaka

Three things to be watching for

1. Of course, everybody will be watching as Alex Rodriguez steps on the Yankee Stadiun field today for the first time since 2013. A-Rod put together a good spring training down in Florida, but struggled in his last couple of exhibition matchups, going 0-for-8 with six strikeouts to finish the spring. 

2. Aside from A-Rod, #VeloWatch will be on everyone's radar. Masahiro Tanaka is coming off of a 2014 season that included a couple of elbow injuries that forced him to toy around with the idea of Tommy John surgery. He opted against that and is hoping to stay healthy this season. What about his velo? Don't expect much, says the Japanese right hander. 

3. Should the Yankees go into the 9th inning with small lead, who will we see attempt to close out the game? How Girardi has gone on record saying the Yankees will go into the season with co-closers, using both Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller. Girardi says he and Pitching Coach Larry Rothschild will determind each day's closer based on the numbers and matchups.

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