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Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Morning Joe: Youk's hip, Joba's future

By Wallace Matthews

TAMPA, Fla. -- Joe Girardi spoke for a whopping 13 minutes this morning, but the first couple were concerned with the weather, which is nasty today; tornado warnings in the area and heavy rain coming down in Tampa. The Yankees pushed their bus ride to Clearwater, about 20 minutes to the West, back to 11:15, anticipating a possible rainout. Here were today's other topics of discussion:

1. YOUK OUT: Kevin Youkilis reported some minor sorness around his left hip and Joe scratched him yesterday afternoon before even seeing or talking to him. Youk, who said he could have played today, laughed the whole thing off and said he learned a lesson: Never tell Girardi you're sore unless, well, yoo're really, really sore.

2. BIG YEAR FOR JOBA: Girardi said that if Joba Chamberlain still has aspirations to be a closer, it's important the he pitch well this season in his expected role as the 7th-inning man out of the bullpen. "I think he's got the ability, it's just a question of keeping him on the mound," he said.

3. D-ROB STILL THE HEIR TO MO: After saying he thought it was "unfair" to compare anyone to Mariano Rivera or expect any pitcher to be "the next Mariano," Joe anointed David Robertson as the Yankee most likely to succeed Mo as the closer if The Great One decides to retire after this season. "I think he could do it, because he has strikeout stuff, big strikeout stuff," Girardi said.

We'll keep you posted on the status of the game, but as of now (11:00 AM) it is pouring in Tampa.