Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Jacoby Ellsbury expects to be ready for Opening Day for New York Yankees

When the New York Yankees open their 2014 regular season against the Houston Astros, they should have their new center fielder in the lineup and batting lead-off.

Jacoby Ellsbury, who has been battling a sore right calf for the last couple weeks, said on Friday that he plans to be ready to go for Opening Day. Quoted on

I felt pretty good…I played it like a normal game, busting it out of the box. I played like I normally would.”

Manager Joe Girardi expressed optimism that his center fielder will be ready to go:

I’m pretty confident that he’s through this, but we’ll just wait and see.”

In nine spring training games Ellsbury has still been searching for his swing, batting .174 in 23 at-bats. Even so, the Yankees are certainly more concerned about his health for the start of the season than they are about his spring statistics. This off-season the Yankees signed Ellsbury away from the rival Boston Red Sox with a seven-year, $153 million deal.

Ellsbury is a career .297 hitter. In 2013 he batted .298/.355/.426 in 134 games for the World Champion Red Sox.

Tags: Jacoby Ellsbury New York Yankees