The spring training Greg Bird needed ends with hiccups, not the grinder


TAMPA – When the name of Greg Bird was included in the second group of Friday's practice session at batting 2, it indicated that his right elbow was healthy enough to hit a bat.

Then, standing in front of his locker before the Yankees lodge the Phillies at the George M. Steinbrenner Stadium on Friday night, Bird said he was not preparing for the baton.

The immediate reaction was that his elbow was not ready to leave, even though a scanner showed no structural damage to the joint after being hit by a throw on Wednesday at West Palm Beach, which allowed him to be removed from the training. the next day to Jupiter.

Fortunately for Bird and the Yankees, the first baseman announced that he would be in training for Saturday's game against the Blue Jays at GMS Field.

"Do not swing and do not start today, take exercises and run everywhere," Bird said. "The plan is to play [Saturday]. "

While wearing a short-sleeved shirt, Bird revealed that the swelling in the area had not completely disappeared, but that progress had been made.

"He's still here," Bird said, comparing his right arm (thrower) to his left arm. "It's better than yesterday, and yesterday was better than the day before."

After suffering ankle injuries during the last days of spring training in the previous two years that required surgery and slowed his development as a major league player, Bird avoided another expensive injury near the first day.

Bird thought the ground had touched the cushion, but that did not stop the pain from escaping.

"I think it hit the pad because I heard it and I said," Ooh, it hurts, "said Bird, who will be looking at a larger pad." I felt as if it touched the pad, I do not know, I'm glad it's good. "

Knowing how much a right shoulder surgery cost him all season 2016 and that ankle interventions have limited him to 130 total games over the next two seasons, Bird was worried while waiting for the results of the test.

"Nothing, try to think nothing, that's all," said Bird about the time elapsed between the test and the result.

At the opening of the camp, it was obvious that the Yankees had no room for two players from first base to Luke Voit and Bird. Giancarlo Stanton was to be the first designated batter and to play on the left court. Then Aaron Hicks' back began to bark. He has received two injections of cortisone and is unlikely to be removed from the injury list when he is eligible on April 3rd.

This has opened up a place in the formation, and there is a good chance that Voit and Bird will form the team that will face the terrible Orioles on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.

At the first goal, Bird was second on the list of depths since the minute General Manager Brian Cashman said, during the winter, that the job was a loss for Voit considering what he had last year (.333, 15 homers, 33 RBIs in 39 games). .

Both excelled and together they could generate big numbers from a position that did not generate much production until Voit was diverted from the Cardinals last year by Chasen Shreve, Giovanny Gallegos and the international money supply.

Spring training numbers – good or bad – are often intelligently ignored but ultimately play a role in player decisions. And if the Yankees had to choose between Voit and Bird, who both have options but would be crushed to be in Triple-A instead of the Bronx, it would be a very difficult choice.

Voit, 28, took part in the Friday night action as the Yankees DH beat .316 (12-38) with four home runs and 11 RBIs in 14 games. Bird, 27, was 333 (13-in-39) with three homers and eight RBIs in 17 games.

"It's great, I'm really happy," said Bird about his spring. "Very excited to go there."

And do not have a body part being prepared for surgery.


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