Thursday, October 04, 2007

No Love for Giambi

The New York Yankees will take to the field tonight and play game 1 of the American League Division Series against the Cleveland Indians at Jacobs Field tonight.

When the team takes the field in the bottom of the first it will likely be Doug Mientkiewicz and not Jason Giambi manning first base.

Joe Torre has elected to stick with his best defensive option during the playoffs. At least during times he feels it is most necessary and groundball pitcher Chien-Ming Wang will be getting the start tonight so it is expected that Mientkiewicz will be as well.

“Jason is considered more of a DH who could play first base," Torre said to the NY Post. “Right now, I'm leaning toward Doug. Jason coming off the bench or DH’ing is probably what his role is going to be.”

As for Giambi there is a chance he will not be playing tonight at all as the Yankees face-off against the tough lefty C.C. Sabathia which means Torre might start right-hand hitting Shelley Duncan at DH tonight.

“I don't know if I'll be in there or not, but I will be prepared to play. I will study up on Sabathia, and get my swing right,” Duncan said to the NY Daily News. “Whatever happens, happens. I'm going to have fun with this either way."

Even if Giambi doesn’t see much time at first base don’t expect to see him play everyday as the DH. Hideki Matsui had fluid drained from his knee this week and is expected to see the bulk of his him as the DH while Johnny Damon will man left-field.

Whatever happens Giambi says he’ll be ready, “At the end of the season I felt I swung the bat well and took some good at-bats," Giambi said to the Post. “But whatever is best for the team."

Mientkiewicz finished the season with a hot bat. During the month of September he hit .429 and had one homerun and eight RBI’s over a 22 game span. Giambi was quite the opposite. Since returning from his foot injury on August 7 he hit only .200 which includes a .164 average and two homeruns over 55 during the month of September.

Read all of my articles at HSNY.

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