1. Yankees Get Their First Win: The Yankees avoided being swept at the hands of the Astros yesterday, in part because of 5.2 solid innings from starter Ivan Nova. The real story however, was rookie Yangervis Solarte. Girardi penciled Solarte in at third base for his first ever major league start, and he didn’t disappoint. Solarte went 3-for-3 with a walk and a RBI, the first of his hits coming in the third. He also made a terrific catch late in the game. Carlos Beltran had a sac fly, and Derek Jeter added an RBI single as well. New closer David Robertson came in to finish the game in the ninth, and he picked up right where Mariano left off, pitching a perfect 1-2-3 ninth, as the Yankees earned their first victory of the season 4-2. The win improved the Yankees record to 1-2, and dropped the Astros to 2-1.
2. Lineup Shakeup: After struggling mightily the first two games, the Yankees’ lineup looked a little different last night. Jacoby Ellsbury, Brian McCann, and Kelly Johnson all got the night off, replaced in the lineup by Ichiro, Francisco Cervelli, and Yangervis Solarte respectively. Now when you have the injury reputation of Jacoby Ellsbury, and you’re 0-2 to start the season, naturally people are going to be concerned. However, Ellsbury put those fears to rest, when he confirmed before the game that it was indeed just a day off (he did enter late in the game as a defensive replacement however).
3. Solarte Has Players Sign Lineup Card: Before yesterday’s game when Yangervis Solarte learned he was going to be starting for the first time in his big league career, he took the lineup card, and asked all of the Yankees players who were also starting that day, to sign the card for him. It was no doubt a very special and humbling moment for Solarte, who just weeks ago wasn’t sure if he’d ever make it to the big leagues. Just look at him now.
4. Tonight’s Game: Masahiro Tanaka will be making his long anticipated MLB debut tonight, as the Yankees take on the Blue Jays in Toronto. Tanaka had a very successful first spring training, finishing with a record of 2-0, and a 2.14 ERA. We’ll see if that success carries over to the regular season. And those are your Bomber Bites for Friday, April 4th!