TAMPA, Fla. -- Jason Giambi should get a feel Monday night for how opposing fans will treat him during the regular season.
Giambi was among seven regulars chosen Sunday for the travel
squad for the New York Yankees' split-squad game against the Boston Red Sox in Fort Myers. It will be the first meeting of the rivals
since Boston beat the Yankees in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series last October, becoming the first major league team to
overcome a 3-0 deficit in a postseason series.
"I want to go play. I'm not worried about it," Giambi said.
"They're not going to say anything I haven't heard before or I
haven't said myself."
After an offseason in which Giambi was in the spotlight because
of steroids, he played his first road game of spring training
Saturday against Detroit in Lakeland. He was warmly received, but
the crowd was filled with many Yankees fans.
None of the Yankees' regular pitchers is down for the trip. The
scheduled starter is Chien-Ming Wang.
Giambi has been available for fans and given hundreds, if not
thousands, of autographs this year at spring training. He
anticipates he'll be signing in Fort Myers.
"I've gone there and signed autographs before," he said.
"There's a lot of fans of baseball and everything down there."
Alex Rodriguez, who made last year's trip to Fort Myers in his
first season with the Yankees, will be missing the trip. Several
Boston players took verbal swipes at him at the start of spring
training, revving up the already tense rivalry.
A-Rod wasn't intrigued about the reception he would have
"It's not like last year I got a standing ovation," he said.