BALTIMORE -- David Phelps understands how important first impressions can be in baseball, and the Yankees right-hander is certainly making a positive one.
After firing 2 1/3 innings of perfect relief on Tuesday with four strikeouts -- all looking -- Phelps entered Wednesday's game without having permitted a baserunner over his first two appearances in the big leagues, spanning three frames that included five punchouts.
"I wanted to be comfortable, wanted to have fun," the 25-year-old Phelps said. "It's really carried over. I'm having the time of my life right now."
Phelps made the Yankees' Opening Day roster as a long reliever after going 7-7 with a 2.99 ERA in 20 Minor League starts last season, taking a spot that was created by Michael Pineda's right shoulder injury.
A 14th-round pick of the Yankees in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft, Phelps said the most important difference this year has been having the ability to drive his fastball down in the zone and attack hitters.
"I just want to go out there and show them that I can do this," Phelps said. "Go out there, have fun and enjoy it while I can. ... I'm trying to prove to everyone -- myself included -- that I can get big league hitters out. It happens little by little."
Yanks opt against calling up spare arm
BALTIMORE -- The Yankees' bullpen figures to be short-handed on Wednesday behind ace CC Sabathia, so an available Rafael Soriano could be very useful for manager Joe Girardi as he navigates the late innings.
Soriano tore the fingernail of his right middle finger while warming up in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 5-4, 12-inning win over the Orioles and will play catch on Wednesday to determine if he will be able to pitch.
"I sure hope so -- we could sure use him," Girardi said of Soriano. "We're going to have to find out as he goes through his catch tonight."
Because Girardi does not want to use pitchers three days in a row, he figures to be without both closer Mariano Rivera and setup man David Robertson on Wednesday, as they pitched in the first two games of the series against Baltimore.
Cory Wade (42 pitches on Tuesday) and David Phelps (31 pitches on Tuesday) are also unavailable, so if Soriano is unavailable, the calls would probably go to Boone Logan and Clay Rapada.
Girardi said that the Yankees thought about making a move to summon another arm from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre but decided against it. He suggested that Phil Hughes could see mound time if the club desperately needs help.
"We have CC on the hill today, and we have an off-day [Thursday]," Girardi said. "I guess we thought we could get through."
MLB.com has Yanks' home opener covered
BALTIMORE -- MLB.com will have extensive coverage of the Yankees' home opener on Friday against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, including a live pregame show at Yankee Stadium from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET.
Jeff Nelson and Jeremy Brisiel will be hosting the program, featuring guest appearances by select Yankees players. The show will feature the opening ceremonies, interviews and more.
Former Yankees catcher Jorge Posada is scheduled to throw out the ceremonial first pitch, and Jeremy Jordan, a star of the Broadway musical "Newsies," will sing the national anthem before a Navy F-18 Super Hornet ceremonial flyover.
Rivera earned the save in Tuesday's win at Baltimore, marking the 39th of his career at Camden Yards. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it tied Trevor Hoffman's 39 saves at Dodger Stadium for the highest total for any visiting player at any ballpark.
On Friday, the Yankees Museum presented by Bank of America will unveil a new exhibit entitled "Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig: Baseball's Hardest Hitting Teammates." Featured artifacts will include the bat used by Ruth to hit Yankee Stadium's first home run, ticket stubs used to attend Gehrig's "Luckiest Man" speech and game-worn jerseys from the 1932 season.
Wednesday is Mark Teixeira's 32nd birthday.
On this date in 1912, the Yankees wore pinstripes for the first time, playing their final home opener at Hilltop Park in a 5-3 loss to the Red Sox. The Yankees abandoned the look in 1913 and '14 but restored the pinstripes for good in '15. On this date in 2004, Mike Mussina recorded his 200th career victory in a 5-4 Yankees victory over the White Sox.