After last night’s injury-riddled victory over the Boston Red Sox, the Yankees found themselves in a strange situation. They finished the game with a 16-year big league veteran manning first base for the first time in his career. When Francisco Cervelli exited the game with a pulled right hamstring, that left a thin Yankees’ bench to make up the ground. Normal back-up first baseman Kelly Johnson was playing third for Yangervis Solarte, who was playing second base for the injured Brian Roberts. Dean Anna was playing shortstop for the slightly injured Derek Jeter. So who could play first base? Jeter? Ichiro Suzuki? Nope. Try right-fielder Carlos Beltran, who had to use Cervelli’s first baseman’s mitt because that was the last thing Beltran had ever envisioned when he signed a 3-year deal to join the Bronx Bombers.
None of the remaining available Yankees were too enthused about the possibility of having to play first base, but as has been the custom with Beltran throughout his career, he’ll do what it takes to help his team win. Beltran shared his thoughts with reporters after the game:
I was just praying that the ball wasn’t ever hit towards me. I hope I never have to do it (play first base) ever again.
Let’s hope for the amount of money that the Yankees have invested in Beltran’s bat and leadership, that GM Brian Cashman can come up with a few better alternatives so he won’t have to risk Beltran getting…injured!