By Sweeny Murti
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Some Friday nuggets from Yankee camp:
*Still too early to tell when David Robertson will get back on a mound, but it would appear he can do it again this spring now that we know his right foot has only a bone bruise and nothing more.
You can be sure, though, that the Yankees will wait till he’s 100% before they send him back out there. Although, no one can prove it for sure, there has been a strong feeling in Yankee-land that Chien-Ming Wang hurt his arm while he was compensating for the foot injury he suffered in 2008.
*Is Phil Hughes’s second start of the spring important? It’s important enough for Joe Girardi to take a 2½-hour ride to see it.
Hughes and CC Sabathia are both scheduled to pitch in split-squad games Sunday. Half the Yankees are at home against the Phillies, while the other half goes to Fort Myers, about 130 miles south of Tampa, to face the Twins. Sabathia, the veteran gets to skip the bus trip, so Hughes will pitch against the Twins on the road. Nothing unusual about that.
However, the manager usually opts to skip the long drive when given the chance. But Girardi wants to watch Hughes pitch. So even though it will only be March 10, and the home game will feature Sabathia, Mariano Rivera, Derek Jeter, and Alex Rodriguez…Girardi is making the trek down I-75 to watch Hughes in a game in which he is scheduled to pitch three innings.
*Rivera’s appearance on Sunday will be his first of the spring. He usually makes anywhere from 7 to 10 appearances before pronouncing himself ready for the season.
*While top catching prospects like Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez, and J.R. Murphy get most of the ink (and of course Jesus Montero before being traded), some pitchers have privately mentioned how good a receiver Kyle Higashioka is. A 21-year old from Huntington Beach, CA, Higashioka was a 7th round draft pick in 2008.
*Chris Dickerson is a player some scouts have shown interest in this spring. Dickerson is out of options, but he has already been outrighted to AAA, so the Yankees don’t have to trade him necessarily. Still, he’s a guy the Yanks should get hits on as the spring winds down.