Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Welcome Back… ?

Posted By: Miss October

After a long absence, Hideki Matsui will most likely be back in the Yankee lineup tonight, serving as the DH. It’s been four months since he suffered the wrist injury that ended his consecutive game streak and forced the Yankees to rely on young Melky Cabrera to fill in and play left field for most of the season. After his shaky brief appearance with the Yankees last year, Cabrera has exceeded all expectations by playing solid defense – including a strong outfield throwing arm that the Yankees have been seriously lacking in recent years – along with a .286 batting average.

While it will be nice to eventually see the familiar # 55 back in left field, especially for the playoff run, you have to wonder where that leaves Melky. With a solid Bobby Abreu in right field, even Gary Sheffield feels a little threatened and is taking ground balls at first base to give him an opportunity for some more playing time once he comes off of the DL.

While Matsui doesn’t seem like one who will disrupt team chemistry, having Cabrera on the bench will take a little spark out of the Yankee lineup. It’s been fun watching he and fellow youngster Robinson Cano come through in the clutch and speed around the basepaths. I’m sure it will only take the first Godzilla home run to settle some of the Yankees’ fans concerns … and it’s comforting to know there’s a sparkplug on the bench just waiting for an opportunity to get in the game in a big spot.

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