Ichiro gets start in center as Girardi rests Grandy

Ichiro gets start in center as Girardi rests Grandy

Ichiro gets start in center as Girardi rests Grandy
TORONTO -- Yankees manager Joe Girardi made a slight tweak to his lineup for Friday's series opener against the Blue Jays.

Girardi gave Curtis Granderson a day off and replaced him in center field with Ichiro Suzuki.

"I was going to give him one of these three [games] off," Girardi said about Granderson. "Ichiro will probably get one of the three, I just chose to do it today.

"Hopefully it kind of reenergizes him [Granderson] with a day game [Sunday in Detroit]. Physically, it's a grind, there is no doubt about it. Give him a little bit more life."

Ichiro played center field for the first time since 2008, and he admitted before the game that it would require an adjustment.

"In right field, I don't need to think," Ichiro said. "It all depends on what the team needs."

Ichiro has played six games in left field with the Yankees since coming over from Seattle after playing in right exclusively with the Mariners. Girardi says it is not common to have a starting player that can play all three outfield spots, but he considers it a luxury.

"It's unusual to have a starter that can do that," Girardi said. "Not necessarily maybe a role player in that sense. But to have a starter ... it's somewhat unusual."

Girardi said because of the artificial turf in Toronto, he will juggle his lineup over the three-game set at Rogers Centre.

He also plans to get first baseman Mark Teixeira off the field for one of the games, but didn't say whether he would use him as the team's designated hitter.

"It can wear on your legs a little bit playing on this turf," Girardi said.