Price, the 24-year-old left-hander of the Rays, was announced the starter by Yankees and AL manager Joe Girardi on Monday. In only his second full season in the majors, Price is 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA. He is tied for the AL lead in victories and leads it in ERA.
“It’s awesome,” Price said. “Obviously, it’s an honor just to be here, but to start is incredible. Sure, I wanted it.”
Once he had it, however, he kept it to himself. That, too, says something about Price.
Most players would have run around telling everyone. Not Price, whose teammates didn’t even know.
“I sat next to him on the plane ride out here,” third baseman Evan Longoria said. “At one point, I asked him, ‘Are you starting?’ And he nodded yes. Then he said, ‘Nah, I’m kidding.’ So I really didn’t know. When we landed, I asked him again. ‘Are you starting?’ And he finally told me that he was.”
Said leftfielder Carl Crawford: “I asked him every day, and he kept saying he didn’t know. He’s pretty good at playing hooky.”
Longoria and Crawford will join Price in tonight’s starting lineup. Longoria will hit sixth. Crawford will hit ninth.