The New York Yankees started the season with two road series against their biggest rivals in the American League East.
They won both series, after dropping the first game in each series, and opened at home yesterday with a 4-2 record.
Brett Gardner was key in some of the Yankee wins in this first road trip of the year. But in the finale Sunday afternoon in Tampa Bay, Gardner failed to get on base for the first time this season.
Gardner went 0-for-4 with one strikeout, while hitting ninth in the lineup.
With the start against Tampa Bay, Gardner had started four of the six games the Yankees have played.
He got into the one game against Boston that he did not start, played a pivotal role as he drew a walk, and then annoyed Jonathon Papelbon before stealing second.
In yesterday's home opener, a game the Yankees won against the Angels 7-5, Gardner started in left field.
In this game he had four plate appearances. He was 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and a walk.
Gardner still has a great deal to prove if he hopes to be the regular left fielder.
After showing considerable potential in the first four games he played, Gardner has shown absolutely nothing at the plate in the last two games.
This inconsistency is why Gardner lost the starting center field job last year. Right now the Yankees are very good, having won five of their first seven games. They can afford to give Gardner a longer test run as long as the team is doing well.
But Gardner must prove he deserves to play every day and thus far, his answer is a mixed message.
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