08/12/10 12:45 AM ET
Eager Posada returns to lineup Wednesday
By Bryan Hoch / MLB.com
Posada mentioned to manager Joe Girardi that he noticed something in his right shoulder after a throw to second base on Monday in New York, and Girardi stood on the side of caution Tuesday, refusing to even use Posada as a pinch-hitter.
That proved to be notable because the Yankees had a prime situation in the eighth inning of a 4-3, 10-inning loss to the Rangers where Posada could have pinch-hit with the bases loaded. Instead, Francisco Cervelli popped out weakly, and Posada insisted he could have both hit and stayed in the game to catch.
"I felt something, but it's fine," said Posada "It happens every year. It's nothing different than other years."
Posada returned to the Yankees lineup Wednesday after a day off, following three consecutive games behind the plate against the Red Sox, including the Monday game when he made an awkward throw to second base on a Joba Chamberlain pitchout.
Posada has been nicked up this year with injuries to his right calf, left knee, right shoulder and right foot, and Girardi acknowledged that he is actively trying to keep Posada from going back on the disabled list, as he was in May for a fractured foot.
"It's something that we're going to have to deal with," Girardi said. "I know he wants to play seven days in a row and 13 out of 15. It's very difficult to do. I have a job to make sure he stays healthy. Sometimes we think with our hearts instead of our head.
"... I have to remind Jorgie he's not 25. I mean, he's going to be 39 in a week. Physically, he's had knee issues and other issues that we've had to deal with. I can run him out there five days in a row, but I'm not sure when we'd get him back."
Posada naturally would prefer to be on the field, but he is on board with Girardi's stated plan to have him catch three of every five games, if not more.
"It is what it is. He makes the lineup," Posada said. "I'm OK. ... Two out of three, three out of four, whatever. I just want to play."
Jeter passes Ott, moves to 38th on hits list
ARLINGTON -- Derek Jeter dropped a sinking line drive into right field in the first inning in Wednesday's 7-6 win over the Rangers for his 2,877th Major League hit, surpassing Hall of Famer Mel Ott for the most all-time by a player wearing a New York uniform.
Jeter, 36, broke a tie with Ott for 38th place on baseball's all-time hits list with his single off the Rangers' Cliff Lee. The Yankees captain had surpassed Babe Ruth (2,873) with a run-scoring single on Sunday.
"Any time your name is alongside one of the all-time greats, it's a special moment," Jeter said then.
Next up for Jeter on the all-time hits list is Frankie Frisch (2,880), who played 19 seasons with the New York Giants and the St. Louis Cardinals from 1919 through 1937.
Ott played his entire 22-year career with the Giants from 1926 into 1947, batting .304 with 511 home runs in 2,730 games and earning selection to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1951.
Granderson seeks Long's guidance
ARLINGTON -- Curtis Granderson has offered few excuses for his unimpressive year to date. But hoping that it is not too late to turn it all around, the Yankees' outfielder has submitted his swing for a late-season overhaul.
Hitting coach Kevin Long said that Granderson reported before Tuesday's game for a "very detailed hitting session" in which Long was able to pick apart several components of Granderson's swing and offer new suggestions.
"I think you're going to see a little different look," Long said. "A little shorter to the baseball-type look. You've got some moving stuff with his hands, with his load. He's got some movement forward. We're going to try to address those."
Granderson wasn't in the starting lineup for Wednesday's game against the Rangers in Arlington, despite good career numbers (12-for-40, .300) against Cliff Lee. The alterations to Granderson's swing have been so notable, Long wants to offer one more day for them to marinate.
"Everything I've done up to this point is trying to get to the point I'm trying to get to, and there's a couple of moving parts," Granderson said. "We're just trying to eliminate some of those moving parts to get to the balance point every hitter is trying to get to, in strong balanced position ready to attack the baseball."
In short, Long wants to make Granderson's swing as short and compact as possible, correcting a lengthy swing that Granderson has been successful with in the past but may have now run its course.
"We've left it in there and tried to work within his scheme," Long said. "Up to this point, it hasn't worked right. We're going to try some new things, and he was completely open to it. As a matter of fact, he said, 'What would you suggest? I want to do something different.'"
Long also suggested that Granderson make his stance more square, alter the position of his hands and keep two hands on the bat during swings -- changes that were also suggested to Nick Swisher last year, first as a playoff Band-Aid and then in more intensive offseason workouts.
Owning a .239 batting average with 10 homers and 33 RBIs in his first 87 games as a Yankee, including just 21 hits in 102 at-bats (.206) against left-handed pitching, Granderson has submitted to three batting practice sessions with the alterations so far.
Long figures by the time the Yankees take the field in Kansas City on Thursday, Granderson will be moving toward reprogramming his swing with five or six runs under the microscope.
"Like he said, 'How much worse can it get?' And I agree," Long said.
Teixeira expected to rejoin Yanks in KC
ARLINGTON -- Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira is expected to rejoin the team on Thursday, when the club opens a four-game series against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium.
Teixeira was granted permission to remain in New York for the Rangers series, attending to his wife, Leigh, who gave birth to the couple's third child -- a boy, William Charles -- on Tuesday.
With Teixeira absent, the Yankees started Lance Berkman at first base for both games against the Rangers.
Right-hander Alfredo Aceves (strained lower back) was "not sharp" in Tuesday's rehab outing for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, according to manager Joe Girardi, but that was to be expected. Aceves will next pitch on Friday for Double-A Trenton. ... Andy Pettitte (strained left groin) is scheduled to throw two innings to batters in simulated action on Thursday. ... The Yankees are 4-3 in extra innings this year, tied for the fewest extra-inning games in the Majors with the Indians, Tigers and Blue Jays.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.