New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi is batting starting pitcher David Phelps eighth in their lineup Wednesday night instead of the more traditional ninth spot in an interleague game against Colorado.
Girardi took the unusual step to help protect his left-handed heavy lineup against a Rockies bullpen filled with left-handed relievers.
The Rockies are starting right-hander Juan Nicasio.
The Yankees lose the designated hitter for the matchup in a National League ballpark.
Girardi says he borrowed the idea of batting his right-hander eighth from Tony La Russa. He spoke to the former St. Louis Cardinals manager a couple of years ago asking him when he employed the tactic and what the benefits were.