Yankees Notebook: Lackey goes off, CC throws simulated game
If you thought Lackey’s reaction to being pulled in the seventh after just 86 pitches was something, that was nothing compared to some of his postgame comments — which had little to do with his performance.
“Let me tell you the truth, 30 minutes before the game I got a text message on my cell phone from one of you, somebody, in the media, talking about personal stuff, and I shouldn’t even be standing up here having to do deal with this,” Lackey said “I’m sitting here, listening to music, I don’t know who, who got my phone number but that’s over the line. Anything else you want to talk about?”
Eventually, his performance was discussed, but Lackey kept his comments brief.
CC Sabathia threw his simulated game before the opener of the doubleheader. He pitched to bullpen catcher Roman Rodriguez while facing Greg Golson, Chris Dickerson and Ramiro Pena.
Sabathia threw 65 pitches in a session that concluded shortly before gates opened at 11 a.m.
“My arm feels great, my body feels great, so I’m pretty much ready to go,” Sabathia said.
Sabathia will throw a bullpen session Tuesday and then will get the scouting reports on Texas and Detroit in preparation for Game One at Yankee Stadium
Return of the effective curve for AJ?
A.J. Burnett frequently refers to his curveball as a “hook” and in Game One, he threw 40 of those. In his last three starts, Burnett has thrown 117 curveballs, 77 for strikes and 37 that were swing and misses.
In that span Burnett said this is the best his curveball has felt all year. The average speed of 82.5 mph is a slight decrease from the last time he truly got lit up.
That was in Baltimore a month ago. He allowed nine runs and nine hits in five innings while throwing 47 curveballs for an average speed of 83.3.
Posada cleans up
Jorge Posada batted cleanup for the first time since Sept. 28, 2009 against Kansas City. It was the 54th time Posada started as a cleanup hitter and the reasoning was a combination of his experience off Tim Wakefield and good numbers off right-handed pitching.
Against Wakefield, Posada is 16-for-70 and since 2004, he is 6-for-34 off the knuckleballer. Against right-handed pitchers, Posada is a .272 hitter, which is fourth among regulars on a team hitting .258 off righties.
Posada raised that average slightly with a two-run home run in the third off Wakefield. That gave him 14 home runs – all off right-handed pitchers. It also earned him a curtain call from the crowd.
Posada later added a base hit for his third multi-hit game since Aug. 7 – the night Girardi announced his role would be reduced.
“We loved it. He got another base hit and he swung the bat good today,” Girardi said. “He was right in the middle of our offense. He gave us a four-run lead, so it was good to see.”
Jesus all but on the roster
The postseason roster will not become official until the end of the week and when it does, figure on rookie Jesus Montero being on it. Montero hit his fourth home run Saturday in his 15th game and became the fifth Yankee to do so. The others were Steve Whitaker (1966), Kevin Maas (1990), Oscar Azocar (1990) and Shelley Duncan (2007). That quartet has a combined 113 career home runs.
“I can’t envision a scenario where he won’t be on our postseason roster,” manager Joe Girardi said.
Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.