Derek Jeter made his debut in 1996 and Kelly Johnson now his teammate was in the eighth grade. I
was a senior in high school and it is crazy how time passes by. Johnson said he is now 32 and that
isn't even that young. He said it is surreal, that he feels like he is back to being a rookie again.
He said it is amazing to be playing next to him, he grew up watching him. It was a comfortable
feeling for the Yankees and their fans to see Jeter back at shortstop and smiling again. He was
0-2 and didn't have to make a play in the field but he looked good running and everything seems
to be fine. He won't play on Friday but should be back in the lineup on Saturday and then just start
getting more into the flow of things. David Phelps said he is the leader and it was nice having him
out there. He said even on a pop up hearing him say who has it and good job Phelps, things like that.
Phelps in his first spring start got through two innings allowing a run. He struck out four guys though
and didn't walk anyone. He said his control was good and he was pleased with the outing.
Phelps is off the radar a little although he will be a big part of the team either as a fifth starter or out
of the bullpen. He doesn't get the attention of Michael Pineda or Mashahiro Tanaka and even joked
about that. He said it has been nuts all the extra media to see him. I think that is pretty funny and
it seems like a good group so far that is having fun. They seem to be meshing together well and that
is a good thing. We will have to see how it translates on the field but so far so good.
Brian Roberts was the last of the regulars to make his spring debut and said the strangest part was
putting on a different uniform. He said he has played against the Yankees a lot and staying in the
same division makes it easier. Mark Teixeira will get into a game next week as he is taking it slow
coming back from a major wrist injury.
Roberts said the basic same thing as Jeter. That he isn't worried about anything injury wise, he feels
good and expects to play. It doesn't mean that he will play all the time and I would have my concerns
most with him. He hasn't played a full year in four years although last year is the most he has played
and he was healthy the whole second half so that is a good sign.
Eduardo Nunez was feeling better on Thursday. He said it was just bad salmon he ate on Tuesday
and not related to what Alfonso Soriano had. Nunez had a good line about missing a week like
Soriano. He said "A week, if I miss a week I don't make the team." I agree though he is on the
bubble. This is probably his last chance, he needs to make the team and play well and stay healthy.
I think he could be their third baseman with Kelly Johnson but the Yankees don't seem to feel the
Q & A with Charlie Hayes
8 months ago