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Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Morning Notes: Don't forget to duck!

By Wallace Matthews

TAMPA, Fla. -- No tent show today, no surprise arrivals, just a standard spring training workout day, but we have already had one noteworthy moment and the players haven't even taken the field yet. Today's drama took place before the official workout and out of the view of just about anyone but some early arrivals in the pressbox.

1. LOOK OUT!: David Phelps and three of his teammates -- Adam Warren, Brett Marshall and Nick Turley -- threw a simulated game this morning beginning at 8:45, and like most sim games it passed largely without incident. But there was one slight scare when outfield prospect Ronnie Mustelier lined one back through the box and nearly behaded the guy in compeition to be the Yankees No. 5 starter. "I heard it, but I didn't see it,' Phelps said. "It whizzed over my shoulder and hit the screen. Robbie (Cano) probably would have had it.''

2. TODAY'S SCHEDULE: The players watched an inspirational movie from motivational coach Chad Bohling this morning, followed by stretch at 11 and batting practice at 12:05 on Field 2, which is the back field at The Boss. Same groups as yesterday: Cano, Derek Jeter, Travis Hafner and Eduardo Nunez in group 1, Mark Teixeira, Kevin Youkilis, Dan Johnson and Jayson Nix in group 2. On Field 1, the big field, it will be Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson, Ichiro Suzuki and Juan Rivera in the first group, followed by Matt Diaz, Melky Mesa and Mustelier in the second group.

3. JOBA THE NUTT: Chronicling the antics of Joba Chamberlain can be a daily pursuit if you want it to be. The other day he curled his rather large frame into a laundry basket and begged teammates to push him around the clubhouse. Today, he stalked through the clubhouse wearing a T-shirt with a caricature of a man in an extremely painful situation and on the back, the words, "Protect the Goods."

4. ON THE MUSCLE Performing a muscle-up on the rings hanging from the ceiling outside the Yankees clubhouse is becoming an obssession among the beat crew, now that we have learned Joe Girardi does them on a daily basis. Today, we learned that even Dana Cavalea, the Yankees muscular strength and conditioning coach, can't do one. Still, we are locked into a battle to see who will be the first to accomplish the feat. Barbarisi of the WSJ and Klapisch of the Bergen Record seem confident, but I wouldn't count out my chances, either.