NEW YORK -- Right-hander Vin Mazzaro, who was brought up to start against the Yankees on Wednesday night, wasn't manager Ned Yost's only option, of course. Yost just decided Mazzaro was the most logical choice.
One consideration was to bring up left-handed prospect Everett Teaford.
"The only other guy for me now would have been Teaford, and he's in the 'pen now," Yost said. "I could've brought Teaford up, but against these guys here, you look at their lefty matchups, and even their left-handed hitters are all pretty good against left-handed pitching."
Because of Monday's open date, Yost could've moved Sean O'Sullivan into Bruce Chen's starting spot on Wednesday night, moved up his other starters and brought up another starter from the Minor Leagues to move into the rotation in three days. That could've meant a promotion for a hot prospect like Danny Duffy or Mike Montgomery from Triple-A Omaha.
But not so fast.
"We have to make sure that when these kids get here, they are absolutely ready, and we're not quite ready with these kids yet," Yost said. "They're doing fine, but we're not quite there yet with these kids."
Yost pointed out that Mazzaro has big league experience, was 6-8 last year for Oakland and was already on the 40-man roster, which Duffy and Montgomery are not.
Starting to cool, Gordon gets breather
NEW YORK -- Despite pinch-hitting for Brayan Pena in the eighth inning, left fielder Alex Gordon rested for most of Wednesday night's game against the Yankees, sitting out of the starting lineup for just the second time this season.
"I got benched," Gordon said with a smile. "There's never a day off. Put that in -- I got benched."
It is true that Gordon's hot start has tailed off. In eight games since May 1, he was just 5-for-31, batting .161. Another factor was that Gordon is only 2-for-15 lifetime against Yankees starter A.J. Burnett.
"I got a home run off him; I know that," Gordon said. "The skipper knows the numbers better than I do, so he probably has a good reason behind it."
Gordon was right about the homer and right about manager Ned Yost knowing the statistics.
Yost said that after each game, he meets with hitting coach Kevin Seitzer and third-base coach Eddie Rodriguez about which hitters might benefit from a day off.
"If they say one of them needs a day off," Yost said, "then I go straight and look at the matchups, and Seitz thought it would benefit Gordon to take a day off. In the matchups, he was 2-for-15 against this guy."
Without hesitation, Yost raised rookie Eric Hosmer, in just his fifth big league game, right into Gordon's No. 3 spot in the batting order.
"It'll be good to see what he does in there," Yost said. "I think down the road, he'll be a 3-4-5 hitter."
Gordon has been meeting with Seitzer about his recent slowdown, and they've decided it's simply a matter of pitch selection.
"Just choosing better pitches to swing at and taking the pitches I shouldn't swing at," Gordon said. "We'll figure it out."
Gordon can start in Thursday night's series finale. Yost said the "benching" is for one game only.
Making first trip to NY, Dyson leads off
NEW YORK -- With Alex Gordon out of the Royals' starting lineup and Melky Cabrera moving into his left-field position, rookie Jarrod Dyson got the nod over veteran Mitch Maier to play center field on Wednesday. This is Dyson's first trip to New York.
"I'm just excited to get to play here, period, against a lot of veteran guys, a lot of Hall of Fame guys -- it's pretty awesome," Dyson said. "This is my first time here. It's pretty busy out here, man. Where I'm from, you don't see this many people on the street."
Dyson is from McComb, Miss., population 13,337.
Dyson was put in the leadoff spot for the sixth time this year.
"I'm just going to go out there and give it all I've got," Dyson said.
O'Sullivan has history pitching in Bronx
NEW YORK -- Royals right-hander Sean O'Sullivan, who'll start on Thursday night, is an old veteran of the new Yankee Stadium. Remember what happened to him last year?
"I lived here for about a week," O'Sullivan said. "I pitched here twice in five days. Four days in between, two starts in a row."
O'Sullivan's first start at the Stadium was for the Angels last July 20. He was traded to the Royals, who were coming into New York, and just stayed around, starting for Kansas City on July 25.
"The second time out was much easier than the first time," O'Sullivan said. "The first time, there was a lot of, 'OK, man, this is Yankee Stadium, this is the Yankees. I grew up watching these guys and all the history that took place with this team.' There was a lot more of that going on in my head the first time.
"The second time was more, 'Just get back to baseball.' I was more mentally attached to the trade -- just got here, still trying to get to know my new teammates. So I think that throwing in Yankee Stadium again was kind of secondary in my mind that time."
O'Sullivan won his first outing, pitching for the Angels, then lost his start for the Royals. So this, ho-hum, is his third start at the new Bronx palace.
"But this time, I'm excited -- one of the best teams and best stadiums in all of baseball," O'Sullivan said. "A lot of kids, when they dream about being in the World Series and this and that, it's usually against the Yankees, in Yankee Stadium. Bases loaded, 3-2, two outs. That's why I think I'm excited. I love the atmosphere -- very high energy. It's like everything is on the line with every pitch. I think that's what makes the game real fun."
Odorizzi continues to flash potential
NEW YORK -- Good dividends continue to roll in from one-quarter of the return in the Zack Greinke trade -- right-handed pitcher Jake Odorizzi.
Odorizzi has a 3-0 record and 1.97 ERA after Class A Advanced Wilmington's 3-1 victory over Salem on Tuesday night. Odorizzi, 21, pitched six shutout innings and notched 13 strikeouts -- giving him 51 whiffs in 32 innings.
Odorizzi came from Milwaukee with shortstop Alcides Escobar, pitcher Jeremy Jeffress and outfielder Lorenzo Cain in the deal that sent Greinke and shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt to the Brewers this past offseason.
Before Wednesday night's game against the Yankees, Escobar was hitting .233 with often spectacular fielding, Jeffress was 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA in 12 relief outings and Cain had a .295 average for Triple-A Omaha. For Milwaukee, Greinke got off to a late start because of a cracked rib and is 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA and 15 strikeouts spanning two starts and 10 innings. Betancourt is batting .230 with 13 RBIs.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.