The purpose of spring training is to get you roster ready for opening day. Stats, wins and losses aren't all that important as long as a roster is ready for opening. That's why it makes a lot of sense for Joe Girardi to use the last couple of games to figure out who is making the team. Now that the Yankees know who their 5th starter is, the only question that really needs answering is who is going to start in the big league pen. For the past two games Joe has only allowed relief pitchers to pitch. This shows that he has yet to make up his mind about who belongs in the pen. Based off the fact that he started today's game with Chris Leroux, and then went to Matt Daley, I am going to guess that the final roster spot will go to one of them. I'm not sure who the clear winner is but they both have looked good this spring.
Leroux started the game for the Yankees, and came into the game with a 2 run lead. The lead was the result of a 2 run single by Kelly Johnson, the single scored Derek Jeter and Carlos Beltran. This early lead came off of R.A Dickey so it's definitely worth mentioning. Jeter reached base off a walk and Beltran got on with a single. Leroux had an easy first inning versus the Bluejays starting lineup, as he retired them 1-2-3.
In the second inning the Yankees scored 4 more runs, to give Leroux a 6 run lead. The 4 runs were scored by a double by Dean Anna, a double by Beltran and a sacrifice fly by Soriano. All of these runs came off of Dickey, so the Yankees offense was really good today. Anna doing so well versus Dickey, really helps his case for a roster spot. Considering that he is on the 40-man roster, it rwould eally shock me if he didn't win a job.
Leroux came back out for two more innings and allowed two more runs. The first run came courtesy of a Brett Lawrie homerun in the second inning. And the third run came off a single from Edwin Encarnacion. Leroux predictably struggled the second time through the order, but it seems doubtful that he'd ever have to pitch for more than one inning if he made the Yankees.
The Yankees were done scoring for the day, and the Jays simply exploded in the 5th. Fred Lewis who had already gotten two outs in the 4th was kept in for the fifth and allowed two hits and one run. He was quickly relieved by Preston Claiborne, who couldn't get anyone out. His stuff just hasn't been here this spring, and he has clearly lost his roster spot. Claiborne allowed an inherited run to score, and preceded to give up 6 more runs. He will begin the year in AAA, and will be given plenty of chances to earn a callup, but this is a missed opportunity for him.
Betances on the other hand continued to make the most of his opportunity, as he had an easy 1-2-3 inning. In that inning he struckout big leaguer Adam Lind, and got Moises Sierra, and Lawrie to fly out. While no official announcement has been made I think it's a pretty safe bet he made the team. In addition to Betances the Yankees used the following pitchers: Jim Miller, Yoshinori Tateyama, and Danny Burawa. Burawa walked two batters, but was able to escape a jam, and the other two relievers looked solid. Hopefully Herndon is the reliever with an opt-out clause because I really like the idea of keeping Miller as a depth guy.
On offense the only really important thing to note is that Anna, Scott Sizemore, and Yangervis Solarte, all had a hit today. I don't know who Girardi will pick but the fact that Sizemore's option is in May, allows the Yankees to take their time with him. I think Anna and Eduardo Nunez make the team, though Nunez's leash is probably really short at this point. If Solarte stays hot in AAA I could see him making the team at some point.
Overall I was pleased that the team was able to score off of Dickey, and I think that some of the offensive players are starting to get adjusted at the plate. Opening day is less than a week away so it's good to see these hitters doing well. The bullpen will figure itself out, and will change so many times during the season that the final spot in the pen can go to a bunch of different people.