Fasano starts right away in Texas

Fasano starts right away in Texas

ARLINGTON -- The Yankees made their first move leading up to the trade deadline on July 31, acquiring backup catcher Sal Fasano from the Phillies for Minor League infielder Hector Made on Wednesday.

Fasano, 34, batted .243 with four home runs and 10 RBIs in 50 games with Philadelphia before landing on the disabled list on July 4 with inflammation in the left knee. He was designated for assignment on July 22.

"When he was designated, we were all on the same page in thinking it could be an upgrade for us," manager Joe Torre said. "It's no guarantee, but that's our feeling going in."

"You have two fears: Am I going to get a job, and am I going to get a job with a team that's not in contention," Fasano said of being designated. "When I found out the Yankees were interested, I was extremely excited. It changed the whole demeanor of my house. It was a good day in the Fasano household."

Fasano spent the 2004 season in the Yankees organization, spending Spring Training with New York before being sent to Triple-A Columbus for the year. When he walked into the clubhouse, he was greeted by several familiar faces, from catcher Jorge Posada to former Columbus teammates such as Andy Phillips and Scott Proctor.

"It makes it real easy," Fasano said. "I saw them at the beginning of their development, and now they're turning into big leaguers. The old guy in me says, it's great to see them have success, while the player in me wants to play with these guys."

To make room for Fasano on their roster, the Yankees designated Kelly Stinnett for assignment.

"He's very professional in the way he goes about his business -- not that Kelly isn't; we just felt he was a better option for us," Joe Torre said. "He's probably played a little bit more, especially this year. We were comfortable with him a couple of years ago, but we had a little more depth with John Flaherty."

Stinnett, 36, hit just .228 in 34 games with the Yankees this season, striking out 29 times in 79 at-bats. He was signed by the Yankees this winter to replace Flaherty as Posada's backup, but he did not live up to expectations at the plate. Torre informed Stinnett of the decision after Tuesday night's game.

"We're still going to count on Jorge," Torre said. "Offensively, we may not have to pinch-hit as often as we did before, so at least the days that Jorge is going to get off, he'll get off."

Made, 21, hit .286 in 86 games with Class A Tampa in 2006. He was signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic on July 17, 2001.

Fasano had one piece of business to take care of before leaving Philadelphia for Arlington, trimming his Fu Manchu into a regular mustache, along with cutting the back of his hair.

"The jury is still out on the mustache," he said. "If I get some hits and we win, I might keep it. If we lose, I'm shaving it off. That was the tough part; the Fu Manchu was easy to get used to. I liked it. I also cut off about 20 inches of hair. You know the rules when you get here; it's part of being a professional."

Mark Feinsand is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.