Bombers bits

Bombers bits

• Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner was not in the lineup on Thursday, and Girardi said that was just to give the speedster a break after he appeared to tire near the end of the first half.

"I felt like today was a good day," Girardi said. "He probably won't get a day off for a while after that because the schedule is really conducive to playing every day. I'm just trying to be smart about it."

• Rutgers head football coach Kyle Flood will throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to Friday's game at Yankee Stadium.

• On this date in 1998, the Yankees dedicated a Monument Park plaque in honor of Mel Allen, the "Voice of the Yankees" from 1939-64.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.