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Mid-Morning Yankee News

This is A.J. Burnett's third August with the Yankees, and last night was his first August win. A part of me says "so what?" But a part of me hopes that the monkey is now off his back, that his teammates made him feel supported and appreciated, and that relaxes him enough to go on the kind of hot streak we know he's capable of.

The Yankees have "no plans" to call up Manny Banuelos to serve as a second lefty out of the pen.

On the one hand, given the way Girardi manages his pen in the postseason (in case you've forgotten, his postseason slogan is Use 'em All), ManBan would be an asset. On the other hand, if you know your kid is likely to crash the care, you don't let him drive the Jag- having seen the mental and physical damage done to Joba and Hughes by bouncing between the rotation and the pen, it's probably best to steer Banuelos away from the bullpen until he's had chances for success as a starter.

Four finger Freddy won't say exactly where, when, or how he cut his hand. General Joe, a stickler for honesty in the clubhouse, seems fine with that:

"How he did it doesn't matter," Girardi said before the Yankees' 7-4 victory over the Royals last night. "The bottom line is the finger is cut, he can't throw his splitter and we have to wait for it to heal."

What that says to me is that the Yankees know how it happened and they're fine with it. Much as with AJ's black eye last season, so long as it doesn't continue to effect things on the field, I don't care.

While the Yankees were moving themselves into a tie atop the AL East, Jim Thome was belting his way into baseball's inner circle.