6:00 PM — Ray Kruml may be ready to play tomorrow, according to Franklin. Austin Romine is “further away” and his return is still uncertain.
5:45 PM — Spoke to Dellin Betances about facing Bryce Harper tomorrow, so stay tuned for that. Also, I’ve got some Tony Franklin comments for y’all…
“We just had a little bit more of a concentrated effort on defense (pre-game). It’s a basic day, it’s nothing that’s really out of the ordinary. We just turned our focus to defense a little bit. I had the chance to talk to them about some things that we weren’t doing well and what I need to see them do during the course of the game, and we took about 30 minutes to do it instead of maybe the 10 or 15 minutes in a group that we would have during batting practice time.”
“I was hoping that we were past this point where I would have to continue to repeat myself over and over. It’s pretty obvious that it probably isn’t, as much as I would like for it to. What I’d like for them to understand — and I was told early on in my coaching career that if you tell youngsters a thousand times, you’ll probably have to tell them two thousand — it’s very important to play good defense. It’s a defensive game, it always has been. There’s a lot of emphasis put on hitting and pitching, and there should be. But defense allows you to win games, and when guys have more of a concentrated effort on defense, I think we’ll be better.”
“(On slow starts in games) I don’t think that way, I think that what we’ve done is come back in games and given ourselves a chance to stay in it and compete and those types of things. But it doesn’t help us a lot if we’re behind all the time in games, because it’s always an uphill climb. I’d like to have more of a cleaner game in the beginning of the game and not have to be so cautious about what we do out there. We have to play with more openness and all-out abandon, and it’s tough to that when you’re behind.”
“(On 10-24 record since Jeter left) We oughta get him back. (Laughs) I said this last night, I didn’t see anybody out there not giving everything they’ve got. Everybody’s out there trying. Is there a such thing as trying too hard? I don’t think so. I think it’s part of our nature to go out there and give everything we’ve got. I don’t see anybody quitting or laying down, but what I do see is a lack of execution.”
3:45 PM — Lineups…
The man was not kidding.
From the right field line, Justin Pope is hitting fungoes to the outfielders, who are standing in center.
The pitchers are, as usual, working on PFP (pitchers fielding practice), which is being done with the help of a bevy of corner infielders. And Franklin is hitting fungoes from just beyond second base, shortstop and third.
I should have lineups shortly…
Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com