Sunday, May 12, 2013
KANSAS CITY—Robinson Cano and Vernon Wells hit back-to-back homers, and Hiroki Kuroda pitched into the eighth inning as the Yankees won their fifth straight contest on Sunday, defeating the Royals, 4-2, at Kauffman Stadium.
Kuroda picked up his third victory in his last four outings, and Cano and Wells teamed for the damage against Royals starter Ervin Santana, who permitted four runs in 6 1/3 innings.
Cano blasted a two-run shot over the right-field bullpen—using a pink Mother’s Day bat—in the third inning, his team-leading 10th of the season, and Wells followed with his ninth home run.
Wells tacked on a fifth-inning RBI single to support Kuroda, who limited Kansas City to two runs in his effort as the Yankees completed the three-game sweep.
I didn’t get to see any of the games in this series but yay sweep.
Saturday, May 11, 2013
KANSAS CITY—Andy Pettitte recaptured the control of his cutter and Vernon Wells gave his team the lead with a two-run homer as the Yankees defeated the Royals, 3-2, on Saturday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Pettitte had struggled in his previous two outings as he searched to command a pitch that is usually in his back pocket, and as he struck out seven Royals in a strong performance, the veteran left-hander seemed to have figured out what he had been missing.
David Robertson pitched a scoreless eighth inning to set up Mariano Rivera for his 14th save in as many opportunities this season. It marked the 70th victory that Rivera has saved for Pettitte, further extending the all-time Major League record for win-save combinations between any two pitchers.
New York won its fourth straight game as it scratched just enough against Kansas City’s James Shields, who allowed three runs (two earned) and six hits in eight innings of work.
Wells gave the Yankees the lead in the fifth inning with his eighth home run of the season, a shot into the left-field bullpen with Chris Stewart aboard.
i’ll admit that Pettitte was starting to concern me so it was nice to see him pitch well tonight.
I am still not sure how this team is in first place all by their lonesome, but there they are for at least one night.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
NEW YORK—Manager Joe Girardi was not willing to call Tuesday’s eked-out victory the end of a slump at the plate, but the Yankees appeared to be cured of whatever ailed them during Wednesday’s 8-3 win over the Royals.
Girardi spent much of his pregame news conference defending Alex Rodriguez, who suddenly began facing questions about his age in the midst of a power slump.
Yes, Girardi said, Rodriguez can still carry a team with his bat.
Maybe A-Rod’s power isn’t quite all gone yet.
I’d have been happy if Andy Pettitte pitched at the level of a fourth starter after a year off and given his age. So far he’s been a lot better than that. I wouldn’t bet on him maintaining an ERA in the mid 2s all year, but he’s come up big twice for a team that needed it pretty badly.
Derek Jeter’s three hits moved him into a tie for 16th place on the all-time hit list, and he’s now two hits behind George Brett for 15th.
The team still stinks though.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
NEW YORK—The Yankees acknowledged it might take a few breaks to snap their slump with runners in scoring position, and they got three on Tuesday to load the bases and finally push across a few runs.
The rally gave New York a lead and ultimately a 3-2 win over the Royals at Yankee Stadium.
I’m reticent to say that Phil Hughes has turned the corner, but I’m happy to see him pitching much better over his last five starts than he did over his first four.
|First 4 starts||16.0||24||18||14||6||17||5||2||81||7.4%||21.0%||7.88||6.44|
|Last 5 starts||31.3||28||12||12||7||29||6||1||130||5.4%||22.3%||3.45||4.40|
Unless he can hit with runners in scoring position it probably doesn’t matter, but it does give us some cause for optimism.
By my estimation, 91 wins should get the second wild card in the AL. At 22-21, the Yankees project to finish the year around 87-75 right now. They’d have to win 69 of their 119 remaining games to get to 91, which is roughly equivalent to a 94 win pace over a full season. I don’t think they’re a 94 win team, but they don’t necessarily have to be to play at that pace over 3/4 of a season.
Sunday, May 6, 2012
KANSAS CITY—Phil Hughes brought more than just an extra-zippy fastball with him as he returned to the mound for the seventh inning on Sunday. He seemed to be carrying a few extra ounces of his manager’s trust.
Hughes’ strong effort earned him a chance to head back out and wrap up an impressive day of work in which he made a big lead stand up for a 10-4 win over the Royals that figures to keep him in the Yankees’ starting rotation.
I just finished watching my DVR of the game, and Hughes looked the best he’s looked all year. He was hitting 95 in the 7th inning and was actually somewhat efficient for most of the game, getting through several innings with fewer than 20 pitches. I’m still not sure he’s going to end the year as an effective member of the starting rotation, but over his last four starts he’s walked 4.4% of the batters he’s faced while striking out 21.1%. A ratio like that is generally an indicator of someone who can be a successful pitcher, even if his 7.52 RA over that stretch disagrees.
The lineup looks a lot better with Nick Swisher back in it, and hopefully he’ll be joined by Brett Gardner soon, and then maybe the Yankees can move out of fourth place.
Friday, May 4, 2012
KANSAS CITY—Eduardo Nunez’s go-ahead RBI triple opened the floodgates in a four-run seventh inning as the Yankees rallied to top the Royals, 6-2, on Friday at Kauffman Stadium.
Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter also homered as New York snapped its three-game losing skid behind eight strong innings from ace CC Sabathia, who won his fourth straight start.
That was a much needed win, more to regain sanity than anything else.
This seems like a good idea if it means using Robertson in the higher leverage situations.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
KANSAS CITY—Robinson Cano teed off on a monster three-run homer toward the right-field fountains at Kauffman Stadium, highlighting the Yankees’ offensive attack in a 9-7 victory over the Royals on Tuesday night.
Cano’s fourth-inning blast off Kansas City starter Danny Duffy helped the Yankees patch over a rare blip from their own young hurler, Ivan Nova, who has found the Royals to be a more challenging opponent than expected this year.
I was driving when Cano’s PA against Duffy started in the fourth inning and I think I covered about 10 miles by the time it ended. 12 pitches, seven straight foul balls and then boom.
Nova wasn’t good tonight, but I’m hopeful it was just a blip.
And we won’t know for sure for another game or two, but it does look like we just saw another chapter of WWWMW™ and not the end of the line for the greatest closer of all time. Shame on any of us who thought differently.
Monday, August 15, 2011
KANSAS CITY—Derek Jeter stood near the base of the mound at Kauffman Stadium on Monday, his hand on A.J. Burnett’s shoulder as he offered a few words of encouragement before the pitcher headed for the dugout.
What Burnett may have appreciated even more, though, was Jeter’s two-run triple in the sixth inning, lifting the embattled hurler to his first August win as a member of the Yankees in a 7-4 victory over the Royals. The win pulled New York into a first-place tie with the idle Boston Red Sox in the American League East.
The only difference between Burnett today and Burnett last time out is that his team scored him more runs. Burnett again failed to give the team a quality start (at least 6 IP, 3 or fewer runs allowed), something he’s managed in only eight of his 25 starts. For comparison’s sake:
Other than that, nice win. They got some positive offensive contributions from everyone except Eric Chavez, and the pen pitched well aside from one person. It was also good to see signs that WWWMW™ is possibly over as well.
Thursday, May 12, 2011
NEW YORK—In his young Major League career, Ivan Nova has made a habit of trusting his defense. He pitches to contact and lets his teammates do most of the work. That strategy—and Nova’s stuff—betrayed the right-hander in the Yankees’ 11-5 loss to the Royals on Thursday.
It was just one of those nights, which makes a loss like yesterday’s that should have been a win that much more irritating.
This team doesn’t look good right now, which should make this weekend’s series a blast.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
NEW YORK—Alex Rodriguez slashed a two-run single that put the Yankees ahead and Dave Robertson escaped from a key seventh-inning jam, securing a 3-1 victory over the Royals on Tuesday.
Rodriguez has been fiddling with a mechanical adjustment to his leg kick, hoping to escape a power drought that has followed the slugger for weeks, and he now has even more reason to be encouraged by the results.
The Yankees took the lead in the fifth inning, as Kansas City starter Kyle Davies walked Brett Gardner and allowed a one-out Derek Jeter single before hitting Mark Teixeira in the left thigh with a two-out pitch.
Jeter went 2 for 4 and both hits were hit solidly up the middle. He’s now hitting .283/.336/.354 in a league where the average SS has hit .254/.310/.352 (entering tonight). I don’t know if he’s back or not, but I am less pessimistic than I was a week ago.
Freddy Garcia had another solid outing after being hit a bit harder in his last two starts, although he allowed the first two runners to reach in the seventh, which brought Robertson into the game. Robertson made things interesting by loading the bases with one out, but he came back to fan the last two hitters of the inning. Joba Chamberlain pitched what might have been his best inning of 2011, and Mo closed it out with a nice stab on a shot up the middle that he was able to turn into a double play.
Hopefully they can keep it going tomorrow.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
KANSAS CITY—The first sign of the frustrating afternoon to come for the Yankees was in the second inning, when the dugout jumped to witness a baseball exploding off Alex Rodriguez’s bat, only to see it die on the warning track.
A-Rod returned to the dugout shaking his head and cursing the wind, but by the end, the Yankees had run out of other excuses. Bryan Bullington worked eight magnificent innings to outpitch A.J. Burnett and post his first Major League victory in a 1-0 Royals victory on Sunday.
Bullington has seen action in five major league seasons (20 games, 7 starts including today), and has NEVER gotten a win. Until today.
Bullington’s longest outing ever in his career was 6 innings. Until today.
I’m not even encouraged that A.J. Burnett pitched non-terribly, because a) it was against the Royals and b) the only thing we can tell about the next A.J. Burnett start from the prior start is whether or not he’ll be healthy enough to make it.
The Yankees really should have taken three of four from Kansas City, especially after only splitting with Boston and Texas in the two prior series.
At least they’ve got Javier Vazquez starting tomorrow against Max Scherzer. Scherzer has been having a decent season so far, and is part of Detroit’s haul in the Curtis Granderson trade which is starting to look like a disaster for one of the three teams involved.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Tampa couldn’t hit and lost. Boston flushed another lead and lost. And the umpires at Kauffman Stadium refused to call a game the Royals were leading in the home fifth despite torrential rain.
Instead, the umps allowed the rain to fall for two-plus hours and resumed the action. And still, the Yankees couldn’t shake the lowly Royals, dropping a 4-3 decision in front of 30,680.
The defeat left the Yankees two games ahead of the Rays and six up on the third-place Red Sox in the AL East, but has to be viewed as a missed opportunity.
“We had a couple of opportunities to win the game and we weren’t able to get it done,” said Joe Girardi, whose club went 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position and stranded 11 runners.
When play resumed after a second rain delay of 2 hours and 10 minutes in the fifth inning, the temperature had dropped to 73 degrees, which was a welcome relief from the 98 it was when Kyle Davies threw the first pitch.
Mike Cole was right! Just give the Red Sox the 2010 AL East division title now.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
The heat was oppressive and unbearable, as it was expected to be. But the ninth inning was even more unbearable.
’ However, any win in the heat of Kansas City is a good one.
I think the KC radar gun was juiced, because it had CC Sabathia hitting 97-99 with consistency, and had
John Wetteland David Robertson hitting 94.
It was Sabathia’s 15th win, which will probably mean we’re going to start hearing about CC as a Cy Young candidate.
Truthfully though, if I had a Cy Young vote (I don’t), right now my ballot would look like this:
1) Cliff Lee
2) Clifton Lee
3) Clifton Phifer Lee
Actually, it’d probably look like this:
1) Cliff Lee
2) Felix Hernandez
3) Jered Weaver
CC’s in my top ten, along with guys like Jon Lester, John Danks, Justin Verlander, David Price, Clay Buchholz and Carl Pavano. Yes, that Pavano. There’s still plenty of time for that to change though.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
NEW YORK—Curtis Granderson hit a pair of solo home runs and Phil Hughes won for just the second time in July as the Yankees beat the Royals 12-6, on Sunday.
Granderson’s leadoff homer into the bullpen in right-center in the third was the Yankees’ first hit of the game and first off of Royals’ starter Sean O’Sullivan in a span of seven innings—dating back to his Tuesday start against them when he was a member of the Angels.
Granderson’s second homer an inning later was a bomb into the second deck in right field, and it gave the Yankees a 5-3 lead.
Who is this Granderson person, and why hasn’t he been playing this year until today?
Thursday, July 22, 2010
NEW YORK—Alex Rodriguez sent his 599th home run over the wall and Derek Jeter legged out the second inside-the-park homer of his career as the Yankees defeated the Royals, 10-4, on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.
Rodriguez’s knock on the doorstep of the 600-homer club came in the seventh inning facing Kansas City reliever Robinson Tejeda, who grooved an 0-2 pitch that was dispatched by A-Rod, rocketing over the right-field wall for his 16th home run of the season.
A-Rod had the option of trotting, but Jeter didn’t in the third, smashing a drive toward the New York bullpen that eluded David DeJesus when the center fielder crashed into the plexiglass fence and suffered a right thumb sprain. Jeter slid home safely with his first inside-the-parker since Aug. 2, 1996, off Kansas City’s Jeff Montgomery.
Despite the final score, this was a bit too close for comfort through the first 7 and a half innings. Brett Gardner’s arm saved the Yankees a big run, and Jorge Posada’s arm cost them one and almost cost them again. Posada’s clearly making the case to keep Jesus Montero at catcher, as it’s not possible he could be any worse defensively.
CC Sabathia wasn’t good, but he was due for a clunker, and managed to at least get out of the fifth inning, a sore spot for many of the Yankee starters of late. The Yankees are going to need innings with Andy Pettitte out for the next month, with Kei Igawa in an A.J. Burnett mask starting every fifth day and with Phil Hughes irreparably damaged .because the Yankees skipped his turn in the rotation once.
And don’t look now, but Mark Teixeira’s seasonal line is creeping to respectability. He started the night at .256/.366/.471 and exited it at .261/.369/.475. Now we can turn our attention to Jeter’s quest for a .400 SLG.
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