TAMPA, Fla. -- The fierce rainstorm that soaked Tampa for about an hour this morning cut the Yankees' workout to an abbreviated batting practice session on the main field, sent most of the veterans to the indoor cages -- which are off-limits to the media -- and cancelled most of the fielding drills.
Still, Manny Banuelos, Matt Thornton, Shawn Kelley, Cesar Cabral and Matt Daley all threw live batting practice to five hitters -- Francisco Cervelli, Scott Sizemore, Russ Canzler, Antoan Richardson and Dean Anna. And while Joe Girardi said he thought they all looked good, there were a lot better swings today than there were against Masahiro Tanaka on Friday.
"Looked pretty good," Girardi said of Banuelos, who threw 25 pitches, five each to the five hitters. "Obviously missing a year you’re going to be a little bit rusty. But it looked like the ball was coming out of his hand great. I like what I see."
A couple of the hitters stung the ball off Banuelos, but only Sizemore had what could be definitely called a hit, a solid line drive into the right-center gap. Banuelos said his elbow felt good after his first live BP of the spring.
Godzilla ball: Sizemore also got a few swings in against Hideki Matsui, his Oakland Athletics teammate for the 2011 season who is in camp as a guest instructor. Sizemore gave Matsui high marks as a batting practice pitcher: "all fastballs, plenty of strikes."
Sick call: Girardi thought Alfonso Soriano was in the midst of a recovery from the flu when he came in for a brief gym workout on Friday, but Soriano apparently worsened Friday night and was not in camp today. Nor will he be present tomorrow and Girardi said Soriano would be "re-evaluated" on Monday. Soriano, who is expected to log most of the right-handed DH at-bats this year, has yet to take part in a workout.
Walking wounded: Three Yankes were held out of workouts today with injuries that Girardi termed "little nicks" -- OF Tyler Austin (sore right wrist), RHP Jim Miller (strained calf) and LHP Nik Turley (arm tightness). Girardi did not know when any of them would be ready to go again.
Oh, Jesus: Girardi said he was "surprised" to hear reports out of Seattle about former Yankees prospect Jesus Montero coming to camp overweight, and an exasperated Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik saying he has "no expectations" for the player for whom he gave away Michael Pineda.
"You’re always a little bit surprised," Girardi said. "Sometimes you’re not sure why things happen, but I think [manager] Lloyd [McClendon] said it best -- you worry about the guys in your camp. We’ve had some issues here sometimes and you’ve got to take care of it, but you want your players in the best physical condition, because obviously they can do more baseball skills that way.''
Big day Sunday: That's the day Girardi will announce his starting pitchers for the first two games of the spring, on Tuesday vs. Florida St. and Wednesday against the Pirates in Bradenton. Can't wait.