Cervelli to have surgery Wednesday
Catching prospect fractured wrist in home-plate collision
TAMPA, Fla. -- Yankees catching prospect Francisco Cervelli will undergo surgery on his fractured right wrist on Wednesday in New York and is expected to miss eight to 10 weeks.
Cervelli was injured in a violent home-plate collision in Saturday's game against the Rays at Legends Field. Attempting to score on a double, Tampa Bay infielder Elliot Johnson lowered his shoulder and crashed into the 22-year-old backstop, who held on to the ball and recorded the second out of the inning before leaving the game.
Cervelli will undergo surgery at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. The procedure will be performed by Dr. Melvin Rosenwasser.
After Saturday's game, Yankees manager Joe Girardi openly criticized the Rays' play, calling it "unnecessary" and saying that catchers should not be hit in that fashion during Spring Training.
Rays manager Joe Maddon disagreed, calling the play "hardball," and Don Zimmer -- a Tampa Bay special advisor who mentored Girardi with the Yankees -- said he was "dumbfounded" to hear of Girardi's reaction. Johnson explained that he was trying to make an impression on the Rays' coaching staff.
The Yankees and Rays are scheduled meet again on Wednesday in St. Petersburg. Girardi said that he was not worried about possible retaliation from Yankees pitchers for the play, which occurred in the closing moments of a 4-1 Rays victory.
"I'm not worried. It's baseball," Girardi said. "We're going to play baseball tomorrow. We'll approach tomorrow like any other day."
Girardi said that he does not feel as though he has to speak to Maddon, and that he does not believe players in his clubhouse feel the matter is unresolved.
"I don't necessarily get that feeling," Girardi said. "There's competition every day and there's fire every day, no matter who you're facing. Things are going to happen in the game that just happen. That's the bottom line."
A well-regarded prospect who has been lauded for his defensive abilities, Cervelli played last year at Class A Tampa in the Florida State League, batting .279 with two home runs and 32 RBIs in 89 games. He was slated to open the year at Double-A Trenton of the Eastern League before the injury.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.