First Pitch: Taking care of Tanaka

HOUSTON -- The Yankees were scheduled to fly to Tampa after Thursday night's game and arrive in Toronto at 5 a.m. The tough travel schedule makes it very likely that Derek Jeter will not start on Friday.

With the Yankees having a day game Saturday after the 7:30 p.m. start on Friday, it is a difficult little stretch. However, there could be another reason that Girardi will choose to rest Jeter on Friday.

With Masahiro Tanaka making his first start, Girardi may want to have a little more range at short to pick up the grounders caused by Tanaka's menu of seven pitches, including his go-to splitter and slider. If the slick-fielding Brendan Ryan weren't hurt, this would be a perfect spot for him. Since Ryan is still on the DL with his back injury, Dean Anna figures to make his initial Yankees start on Friday night.

Pitching matchups: Friday vs. Blue Jays: Tanaka (24-0, 1.27 ERA in Japan in 2013) vs. Dustin McGowan (0-0, 2.45 in 2013)

Saturday: Michael Pineda (no record in 2013) vs. R.A. Dickey (0-1, 10.80 in 2014)

Sunday: CC Sabathia (0-1, 9.00 ERA in 2014) vs. Drew Hutchinson (1-0, 0.00 in 2014).

Question of the Day: How will Tanaka do?