Girardi sets travel roster for Grapefruit opener
TAMPA, Fla. -- The Yankees have set their travel roster for Saturday's Grapefruit League opener, against the Braves in Lake Buena Vista. As manager Joe Girardi said on Thursday, the starting lineup will include first baseman Mark Teixeira, second baseman Robinson Cano and infielder Eduardo Nunez behind starter David Phelps.
Catchers Francisco Cervelli and Austin Romine, both battling -- along with Chris Stewart -- for two spots on the roster, will make the trip, with Cervelli getting the start. Also hopping on the bus will be outfield candidates Juan Rivera and Matt Diaz, and corner infielder Dan Johnson.
Phelps is expected to throw two innings or 35 pitches, and he will be followed in some order by right-handers Brett Marshall, Mike O'Brien, Kelvin Perez, Branden Pinder and Chase Whitley, and left-hander Nik Turley.
Girardi is eager to see Cervelli and Romine finally get behind the plate in a game situation. He admitted earlier this week that they couldn't do much to put themselves in position to win a roster spot in drills, although he cautioned once again that he won't judge their performances too closely this soon.
"You want to see the competition," Girardi said. "They've got to get their bodies physically in shape. They've got to get their timing down offensively, get to know the pitchers. They're going to catch a lot of pitchers early on that they don't know."