PORTLAND – New York Yankees left-hander Andy Pettitte will pitch at Hadlock Field on Monday night, bringing his control, his trademark stare and, undoubtedly, a lot of fans to Portland.
Pettitte, 39, making a comeback after retiring prior to the 2011 season, will pitch for the Yankees’ Double-A minor league team — the Trenton Thunder — in a 6 p.m. game against the Portland Sea Dogs. Yankees Manager Joe Girardi made the announcement Friday before New York’s game against Detroit.
Pettitte will be the second major leaguer pitching at Hadlock this homestand, following Boston’s Daisuke Matsuzaka today at 1 p.m. About 300 tickets remain for today’s game.
According to the Sea Dogs, about 2,600 tickets remain for Monday’s game.
Pettitte pitched for 16 years in the major leagues and retired after the 2010 season, when he went 11-3, with a 3.28 ERA for the Yankees.
On March 16, Pettitte announced he was coming out of retirement. He signed a minor league contract with the Yankees. After a stay in extended spring training, Pettitte began pitching minor league games, two with advanced Class A Tampa, and last Wednesday with Trenton.
In his start for the Thunder last week, Pettitte threw five-plus innings (81 pitches), allowing seven hits, three earned runs and one walk, while striking out three.
“I don’t feel like the strength is there yet,” Pettitte told the media in Trenton that night.
The speculation that Pettitte might come to Portland began after that Wednesday start. His next scheduled appearance would be Monday, and the Yankees’ Triple-A team was not playing on Monday. Therefore, it made sense he might pitch in Portland.
That logic was confirmed by Girardi.
Pettitte’s comeback is receiving extra attention because the Yankees suddenly need pitching.
Michael Pineda is out for the season with a shoulder injury, and both Freddy Garcia and Phil Hughes have been ineffective.
Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be contacted at 791-6411 or at: