Yankees Daily Briefing 09/01/11

Thursday’s start at Fenway for A.J. Burnett may very well be his last chance to demonstrate he should remain in the Yankees’ rotation. He will have to hope that the call up of Jesus Montero can help provide the run support he will likely need. The Yankees will face Jon Lester (14-6, 3.09).

Discussion of the Day: Would you trust Boone Logan in a high leverage situation in the postseason? Why or why not?

Behind Enemy Lines: Joe McDonald notes that Bobby Jenks is still not pitching. Although the Red Sox bullpen has their share of pitchers pulling their weight, the absence of one of its bigger names is notable.

1) Wallace Matthews considers the impact of Francisco Cervelli.

Cervelli’s offensive stats may not be all that impressive, but he has quickly gained a reputation for being one of the most energetic personalities on the team. While he has hit only three major league home runs, each of the home runs has been significant -- a home run in Atlanta in 2009 that many see as the turning point of the season, a grand slam in Texas earlier this season after a down period for the offense, and then last night, a much needed insurance run for the Yankees.

2) Larry Koestler at The Yankee Analysts looks at Brett Gardner’s tendencies to hit infield flies.

Gardner has been slumping for the past month, something perhaps obscured by Derek Jeter’s hot hitting of late. Gardner’s defense and speed when he does get on base certainly help to compensate, and such a high infield fly percentage likely has a luck component to it. Still, if there is an issue with Gardner’s mechanics, the Yankees are well equipped to fix it.

3) Brien Jackson notes one glaring weakness in the Yankees’ offense.

The Yankees arguably have the best offense in baseball, so talking about weaknesses on offense might be only relative, but since the Yankees are in a position to make their team even stronger, there is no reason not to do so. As Jackson notes, the Yankees (perhaps not so surprisingly given the dimensions of Yankee Stadium) have a weakness hitting right-handed pitching. The Yankees will hope that the call up of Montero will help to remedy the weakness.

4) The minor league season is beginning to wind down.

Triple-A Scranton beat Lehigh Valley, 6-2.

Montero did not play.

Double-A Trenton beat New Hampshire, 7-2.

Austin Romine was hitless in four at bats.

High-A Tampa split a doubleheader with Daytona, losing the first game, 6-3, and winning the second, 4-1 while Low-A Charleston had a scheduled off day.

Short Season Staten Island beat Vermont, 3-2, while the Rookie GCL Yankees won the GCL Championship Series, as they defeated the GCL Marlins 3-1 in game three of the best-of-three set.