The Curse of Jerry Hairston, Jr./Eric Hinske:
 








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Blue Jays (77-76) @ Yankees (79-74), Saturday, September 20, 2014, 4:05pm
(22 Comments - 9/21/2014 2:41:27 am)

Blue Jays (77-75) @ Yankees (78-74), Friday, September 19, 2014, 7:05pm
(25 Comments - 9/20/2014 8:14:40 pm)

NY Times: Against Blue Jays, Derek Jeter and Yankees Show Signs of Life
(24 Comments - 9/19/2014 4:02:27 pm)

Blue Jays (77-74) @ Yankees (77-74), Thursday, September 18, 2014, 7:05pm
(25 Comments - 9/19/2014 9:14:56 am)

NJ.com: Derek Jeter breaks his slump
(19 Comments - 9/18/2014 6:36:21 pm)

Yankees (76-74) @ Rays (74-78), Wednesday, September 17, 2014, 7:10pm
(38 Comments - 9/18/2014 10:13:41 am)

Yankees.com: Rays open floodgates on Yanks after close call
(21 Comments - 9/17/2014 3:22:32 pm)

Yankees (76-73) @ Rays (73-78), Tuesday, September 16, 2014, 7:10pm
(37 Comments - 9/16/2014 11:10:30 pm)

NY Post: Yankees eliminated from East, wild-card hopes all but over
(42 Comments - 9/16/2014 4:50:39 pm)

Yankees (76-72) @ Rays (72-78), Monday, September 15, 2014, 7:10pm
(34 Comments - 9/16/2014 3:55:59 pm)



Player

Current Projected

Look what people have to say about the RLYW!

CAIRO just takes the Marcels and changes the underlying assumptions and components in a bunch of ways that make the Yankees look better.
-alskor

Wow, two stupid posts in one day. I think you’ve reached your yearly quota.
sabernar

I don’t know if any of you current posters were around for that, but if so, I just can’t understand how you can call yourselves Yankee fans. Pathetic quitters is what you sounded like. Of the lame posts I could stand to read, the only person who had any confidence in the Yankees at that point was a (yeesh) Red Sox fan.
Jeter is King

Quite the attitude you have SG. Maybe you should shitcan this blog and join Steve at WasWatching? Or follow some other stupid team that has made the PS 15 of the last 17 years. Jeez… and some people think Yankee fans are entitled.
OldYanksFan




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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Blue Jays (77-76) @ Yankees (79-74), Saturday, September 20, 2014, 4:05pm

TOR: Marcus Stroman (#54, 23, RHP, 10-6, 3.80) vs. NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 2-3, 4.55)

--Posted at 12:43 pm by SG / 22 Comments | - (0)




Friday, September 19, 2014

Blue Jays (77-75) @ Yankees (78-74), Friday, September 19, 2014, 7:05pm

TOR: Mark Buehrle (#56, 35, LHP, 12-9, 3.40) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 10-9, 3.81)

Lineups
Blue Jays
TBA

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brett Gardner (L) LF
7. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

I look at the Yankees lineup and I realize this season really can’t end soon enough.

--Posted at 2:54 pm by SG / 25 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: Against Blue Jays, Derek Jeter and Yankees Show Signs of Life

The flashbulbs portion of the season has finally arrived. That was one of the first surefire signs of Derek Jeter’s final regular-season homestand at Yankee Stadium: the winking lights from digital cameras greeting his every at-bat.

There were many more signs, and more to come still. The farewell tour has turned its final corner. But with the Yankees still ostensibly in the hunt for the postseason — at least according to the standings — Jeter was hardly in a mood for remembrance.

He jogged right past the No. 2 logo painted along each baseline, and remained in the dugout as fans cheered his name after a sixth-inning home run, forgoing a curtain call so that Brian McCann could focus on his at-bat.

I figured Jeter would never have another extra base hit again, so the homer was a pleasant surprise.

The Yankees aren’t playing for anything now, so it’s basically going to be a Jeter love-fest for the rest of the season.

Am I a bad person for hoping Jeter sits out the final series in Fenway?

--Posted at 8:08 am by SG / 24 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, September 18, 2014

Blue Jays (77-74) @ Yankees (77-74), Thursday, September 18, 2014, 7:05pm

TOR: R.A. Dickey (#43, 39, RHP, 13-12, 3.84) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 5-3, 3.56)

Lineups
Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Jose Bautista (R) RF
3. Edwin Encarnacion (R) DH
4. Adam Lind (L) 1B
5. Danny Valencia (R) 3B
6. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B
7. Josh Thole (L) C
8. Kevin Pillar (R) LF
9. Anthony Gose (L) CF

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) DH
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Chris Young (R) RF
6. Brett Gardner (L) LF
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

The final homestand of the 2014 season starts tonight.  I’ll predict the Yankees score a total of four runs over the next eight games.

--Posted at 2:46 pm by SG / 25 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Derek Jeter breaks his slump

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — It hasn’t happened often for the Yankees in 2014, but just about everything went right for them Wednesday.

Their win went much like the way they envisioned many more of them going at the start of the year. The 3-2 victory over the Rays at Tropicana Field feature a strong outing from starter Brandon McCarthy, who lasted seven innings, some timely hitting and an easy save by David Robertson.

Unfortunate, it’s too little, too late — a theme with which these Yankees are all too familiar.

PLAYOFFS?
In reality, there’s no shot. But let’s talk math, which still says the Yankees can make the postseason. With 11 games remaining, the Yankees climbed within 5.5 games of the Royals in the race for the second American League Wild Card spot.

The .600 OPS watch continues for Jeter (.249/.298/.297).

--Posted at 9:37 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Yankees (76-74) @ Rays (74-78), Wednesday, September 17, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 9-14, 3.98) vs. TBR: Alex Cobb (#53, 26, RHP, 9-7, 2.75)

Lineups
WOE
TBA, but an embarrassment

Rays
The 1927 Yankees

--Posted at 12:29 pm by SG / 38 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Yankees.com: Rays open floodgates on Yanks after close call

ST. PETERSBURG—A gift, an aggressive play, some late scoring and, as usual, a lot of good pitching led the way for a 6-1 Rays win over the Yankees on Tuesday night at Tropicana Field.

The Rays (74-78) won for the fourth time in five games while clinching the three-game series and moving to 11-7 against the Yankees this season.

Trailing, 1-0, in the fifth, the Rays got some help from the Yankees when they benefited from two New York errors. The first came when Kevin Kiermaier reached on a throwing error by second baseman Brendan Ryan. After Ryan Hanigan walked, Yankees starter Michael Pineda made the second error while covering first base on Ben Zobrist’s chopper. First baseman Brian McCann flipped Pineda the ball, then watched as Pineda played hot potato until finally dropping the ball. Kiermaier scored from second on the play.

Different night, same crap.

--Posted at 10:16 pm by SG / 21 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (76-73) @ Rays (73-78), Tuesday, September 16, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Michael Pineda (25, RHP, 3-4, 2.20) vs. TBR: Jake Odorizzi (24, RHP, 10-12, 4.08)

Lineups
Yankees
TBA, but guaranteed to stink

Rays
1. Ben Zobrist (S) LF
2. David DeJesus (L) DH
3. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
4. James Loney (L) 1B
5. Nick Franklin (S) 2B
6. Matt Joyce (L) RF
7. Yunel Escobar (R) SS
8. Kevin Kiermaier (L) CF
9. Ryan Hanigan (R) C

Am I a bad fan because I don’t watch the games anymore and am actively rooting for the Yankees to finish below .500?

--Posted at 3:36 pm by SG / 37 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: Yankees eliminated from East, wild-card hopes all but over

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Standing in a solemn clubhouse that grows more quiet with each passing loss, Brett Gardner rolled back the clock to March.

“Coming into spring training the lineup we put together, it looked good on paper,’’ Gardner said.

Now, two weeks from the end of a second straight season in which there will be no games in October, the Yankees appear to be swinging wet newspapers instead of bats.

I love ya Brett, but this lineup never looked very good on paper.  They didn’t look this bad, but they didn’t look good.

And I don’t see a blueprint to make them appreciably better in the next few years, aside from “hope a bunch of players in their mid to late 30s play better a year further removed from the typical peak age for a baseball player.”

--Posted at 7:57 am by SG / 42 Comments | - (0)




Monday, September 15, 2014

Yankees (76-72) @ Rays (72-78), Monday, September 15, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 2-3, 4.90) vs. TBR: Alex Colome (#37, 25, RHP, 1-0, 2.79)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Brett Gardner (L) LF
3. Martin Prado (R) 2B
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. John Ryan Murphy (R) C
9. Brendan Ryan (R) SS

Rays
1. Ben Zobrist (S) CF
2. Brandon Guyer (R) LF
3. Evan Longoria (R) DH
4. Wil Myers (R) RF
5. Yunel Escobar (R) SS
6. Logan Forsythe (R) 2B
7. James Loney (L) 1B
8. Sean Rodriguez (R) 3B
9. Curt Casali (R) C

--Posted at 3:37 pm by SG / 34 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: Yankees Grab Lead in the Ninth, but Then It Slips Through Their Hands

BALTIMORE — For the past couple of weeks, the Yankees have suffered several seemingly devastating losses, only to remain mathematically alive in the race for the second American League wild-card spot. Sunday’s loss seemed devastating enough to finally do them in for good.

Hiroki Kuroda pitched very well, and Brian McCann hit a ninth-inning home run to give the Yankees a late lead. But David Robertson, pitching for the third straight day, blew the save chance in the bottom of the ninth, and the Yankees lost, 3-2, to the Baltimore Orioles, their third loss in four games here.

I haven’t really found any of the losses to be that devastating.  I haven’t seen them which may be part of the reason.

And really, this team was eliminated from the postseason before the season started.

--Posted at 7:09 am by SG / 10 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, September 14, 2014

Yankees (76-71) @ Orioles (88-60), Sunday, September 14, 2014, 8:00pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 10-9, 3.91) vs. BAL: Chris Tillman (#30, 26, RHP, 12-5, 3.36)

Lineups
Yankees
WOE

Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Alejandro De Aza (L) LF
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Nelson Cruz (R) DH
5. Steve Pearce (R) 1B
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
8. Nick Hundley (R) C
9. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B

I was thinking about how a game this important really should have been in prime time.  I hope TGS gets a 0.0 rating for this crap.

--Posted at 3:09 pm by SG / 55 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees’ Derek Jeter has bad stats, good at-bats, Joe Girardi says

BALTIMORE — Derek Jeter is hitless in 20 at-bats and is having a terrible second half to what will be his final season.

But manager Joe Girardi said he’s not looking so much at the numbers when it comes to Yankees hitters.

“You look at at-bats,” he said after Saturday’s 3-2 win over the Orioles. “We don’t get so caught up in what the numbers are. You look at the at-bats.

“Sometimes you could be swinging horrible and be getting hits, too. So I thought he hit a ball on the screws last time. He hit a couple the other day. He didn’t have much to show for it.”

I feel better now knowing that.

--Posted at 9:55 am by SG / 9 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, September 13, 2014

Yankees (75-71) @ Orioles (88-59), Saturday, September 13, 2014, 1:05pm

NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 4-3, 3.57) vs. BAL: Miguel Gonzalez (#50, 30, RHP, 9-7, 3.22)

--Posted at 8:07 am by SG / 16 Comments | - (0)




Friday, September 12, 2014

Yankees (75-69) @ Orioles (86-59), Friday, September 12, 2014, Doubleheader

What’s worse than a Yankee game?  Two of them.

Game 1: NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 9-14, 4.13) vs. BAL: Kevin Gausman (#39, 23, RHP, 7-7, 3.83)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Martin Prado (R) 3B
3. Brian McCann (L) DH
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Chris Young (R) LF
6. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
7. John Ryan Murphy (R) C
8. Brendan Ryan (R) SS
9. Antoan Richardson (S) RF

Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Alejandro De Aza (L) LF
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Nelson Cruz (R) DH
5. Steve Pearce (R) 1B
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
8. Nick Hundley (R) C
9. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B

Game 2: NYY: Bryan Mitchell (#65, 23, RHP, 0-0, 0.00) vs. BAL: Bud Norris (#25, 29, RHP, 12-8, 3.92)
Lineups
Yankees
TBA

Orioles
TBA

--Posted at 12:41 pm by SG / 79 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: Yankees’ VP of baseball operations Mark Newman retiring: sources

After a disappointing 2013 season, owner Hal Steinbrenner said he was going to look at all aspects of the system, including player development and amateur scouting.

Damon Oppenheimer’s recent amateur drafts have been solid, and he is believed to be safe.

There is some belief that if Newman didn’t retire, the Yankees wouldn’t renew his contract. The contract expires this year.

Asked Thursday afternoon if he had heard anything about his future, Newman said he hadn’t.

A message left early Thursday night pertaining to possible retirement wasn’t immediately returned.

Actual movement instead of inertia?  What’s next?

--Posted at 10:39 am by SG / 3 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, September 11, 2014

Yankees.com: Young’s late heroics rescue Yankees

Chris Young broke up Alex Cobb’s no-hit bid in the eighth and then hit a walk-off three-run homer in the ninth to pull N.Y. within 4 games of the WC.

WTH did that come from?  Too bad it was meaningless, but it was still awesome.

--Posted at 9:26 pm by SG / 23 Comments | - (0)



Rays (70-76) @ Yankees (74-69), Thursday, September 11, 2014, 7:05pm

TBR: Alex Cobb (#53, 26, RHP, 9-7, 2.83) vs. NYY: Michael Pineda (#35, 25, RHP, 3-4, 1.80)

Lineups
Rays
1. Ben Zobrist (S) 2B
2. David DeJesus (L) DH
3. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
4. James Loney (L) 1B
5. Wil Myers (R) RF
6. Matt Joyce (L) LF
7. Yunel Escobar (R) SS
8. Kevin Kiermaier (L) CF
9. Curt Casali (R) C

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Chase Headley (S) DH
6. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
7. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
8. Chris Young (R) LF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 3B

I am convinced at some point before the year is out, Pineda will lose a game where he allows zero runs.  You really can’t ask him to pitch better than he’s pitched in 2014, but unfortunately for him he’s surrounded by a wretched hive of an offense.

Anyway, for all intents and purposes, the Yankees’ season is over.  So I’ll mainly be watching to see if Derek Jeter can keep his OBP above .300 and his OPS above .600 by season’s end.

Today’s “fun” stat. 

Brian Roberts: .237/.300/.360, OPS+ 86
Jeter: .256/.303/.306, OPS+ 74

--Posted at 3:24 pm by SG / 47 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees’ Carlos Beltran: Elbow surgery decision could happen soon

NEW YORK — If the pain from the bone spur in Carlos Beltran’s elbow doesn’t subside within the next few days, the Yankees’ slugger will end his season and have surgery to remove it, he said Wednesday.

“It’s been frustrating, but it is what it is,” he said after the Yankees’ 8-4 win over the Rays at Yankee Stadium. “Nothing I could do about it.

Beltran sat out the victory. He felt pain in the elbow during batting practice before it started and manager Joe Girardi immediately pulled him out of the DH spot in the lineup.

Beltran has followed a similar routine each time the elbow pain has flared up since he discovered the injury May 13. He would get a cortisone shot, rest a few days and return to the Yankees’ lineup.

But the 37-year-old has already had three of the shots and won’t have another.

Just think.  Beltran’s only signed for two more seasons after this.

Assuming he’s done for the year, the Yankees will have paid Beltran $15M for -0.1 bWAR and -0.4 fWAR. 

Is that good or bad?

--Posted at 8:26 am by SG / 12 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks erase four-run deficit in comeback win

Mark Teixeira legged out a rare go-ahead triple, Brian McCann and Chris Young homered and the Yankees rallied to keep their postseason hopes alive with their biggest comeback win of the year, an 8-5 victory over the Rays on Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium.

Down by four runs after Chris Capuano managed to record only one out in the first inning, the Yankees struck back for six unanswered runs against Tampa Bay starter Jake Odorizzi, chasing the right-hander in the fifth.

McCann started the surge with his 18th homer of the season, 16 of which have come in the Bronx, then delivered a two-run single to trim the deficit in the third. Young tied the game in the fourth with his first homer as a Yankee, a solo shot to left field.

New York grabbed the lead in the fifth as McCann was hit by a pitch, then chugged around the bases to score as Teixeira’s triple—his first since July 6, 2012—was kicked around in the right-field corner, knocking Odorizzi from the game. Chase Headley tacked on by greeting reliever Jeff Beliveau with an RBI single.

Here’s an interesting note about the playoffs - right now there is no guarantee at all that the Athletics make the playoffs. They’re only 1.5 games up on Detroit/Seattle for the first wild card. Can you imagine how many fully erect U.S. sportwriters there will be if Billy Beane’s team doesn’t make the playoffs after Beane wrote that Brad Pitt movie about how awesome he was?

--Posted at 11:33 pm by Brian Cronin / 4 Comments | - (0)



WSJ: Yankees Want Tanaka Back Soon, but Not to Save the Season

If and when he returns to the mound, injured Yankees ace Masahiro Tanaka will not do so as a savior of the 2014 season. Even if the Yankees were closer to contending, the two starts he’d likely make wouldn’t be enough to turn the tide.

Tanaka’s return, which could come at the end of next week after a promising throwing session on Tuesday, has little to do with this year and everything to do with 2015.

I’m not sure seeing Tanaka back for two starts at the end of the season will make any difference in prognosticating him remaining healthy next year, but I guess it’s better that he does make it back than not.

--Posted at 7:21 am by SG / 45 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Rays (69-75) @ Yankees (73-68), Tuesday, September 9, 2014, 7:05pm

TBR: Chris Archer (#22, 25, RHP, 8-8, 3.60) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 10-8, 3.78)

Lineups
Tampa Bay
1. Ben Zobrist (S) 2B
2. David DeJesus (L) DH
3. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
4. James Loney (L) 1B
5. Wil Myers (R) RF
6. Matt Joyce (L) LF
7. Yunel Escobar (R) SS
8. Kevin Kiermaier (L) CF
9. Ryan Hanigan (R) C

New York
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Chris Young (R) LF

I’m not sure why they are even playing these games at this point.

--Posted at 3:16 pm by SG / 33 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Yankees remain hopeful on reaching postseason, but weak offense says otherwise

The narrative would practically write itself.

Who didn’t think the Yankees would make the postseason and give Derek Jeter one last October, so we’d have one more Flip Play, one more clutch hit, one more highlight clip for his Yankeeography?

Raises hand.

--Posted at 8:32 am by SG / 16 Comments | - (0)




Monday, September 8, 2014

CBS Sports: Yankees, Fans Pay Tribute To Derek Jeter

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Derek Jeter remained as cool and collected as his play at shortstop when the New York Yankees honored their retiringcaptain with a 45-minute ceremony that included appearances by NBA great Michael Jordan and baseball ironman Cal Ripken Jr.

Jeter spoke to fans for about three minutes before Sunday’s game against Kansas City. The Yankees didn’t retire his No. 2 or unveil a plaque in Monument Park, no doubt setting up a Derek Jeter Day 2 at some future time. New York took a similar approach a half-century ago, holding a Mickey Mantle Day in September 1965 before his 2,000th game, then retiring his No. 7 in June 1969 after his playing days.

I ended up enjoying the ceremony a lot more than I thought I would.  It’s hard to believe that It’s been 20 seasons since Jeter debuted in 1995.  Whether the mainstream media has overrated Jeter is not really that important to me. 

What is important to me is that I can’t think of Jeter’s Yankee tenure as anything but an absolutely fantastic time to have been a Yankee fan.

We were spoiled by what the Yankees did from 1995 through 2012.  We almost certainly won’t see a run like that again in our lifetimes.  Jeter’s retirement will effectively close the book on that era.

The Yankees aren’t making the postseason this year, so I guess the rest of the season will be an extended Jeter send-off.  It’s kind of disappointing, but it was the same situation with Mariano Rivera last year and honestly I enjoyed it a lot more than I likely would have enjoyed a flawed Yankee team squeaking into a wild card and getting eliminated in either the play-in game or the LDS.

Hopefully I’ll enjoy the rest of 2014 in a similar way, even though I loved Mo and I hate Jeter*.

I do not really hate Jeter.  I hate the fact that his defensive limitations got ignored by large swaths of the media and that he was overrated because of that.

Update: I was wondering why Andy Pettitte wasn’t there yesterday, and apparently it was because he was on a long-planned hunting trip with his family.  I’m sure Pettitte will make an appearance at some point before the end of the season.

--Posted at 8:21 am by SG / 43 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, September 7, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks fall to Royals on Jeter’s special day

NEW YORK—After all the pageantry, nostalgia and ballyhoo that surrounded “Derek Jeter Day” at Yankee Stadium, the captain punctuated his speech during a pregame ceremony by reminding the sold-out crowd of 48,110: “Now we’ve got a game to play.”

The Yankees want to extend Jeter’s career for as long as possible and make this final month much more than an extended goodbye to the face of their franchise for two decades. To do so, they must win games in a hurry, so losses like Sunday’s 2-0 defeat to the Royals are especially damaging.

It pushed New York five games back of Seattle’s hold on the second American League Wild Card spot with just 21 games remaining on the Yankees’ schedule.

Jeter probably wishes he retired before this season.  It’s unfortunate his legacy will be sullied by being associated with this sorry team.

--Posted at 4:09 pm by SG / 21 Comments | - (0)



Royals (78-63) @ Yankees (73-67), Sunday, September 7, 2014, 1:05pm

KCR: Yordano Ventura (#30, 23, RHP, 11-9, 3.38) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 4-2, 3.88)

Lineups
Royals
1. Nori Aoki (L) RF
2. Omar Infante (R) 2B
3. Alex Gordon (L) LF
4. Salvador Perez (R) C
5. Eric Hosmer (L) 1B
6. Josh Willingham (R) DH
7. Mike Moustakas (L) 3B
8. Alcides Escobar (R) SS
9. Jarrod Dyson (L) CF

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Martin Prado (R) 2B
4. Carlos Beltran (S) RF
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
7. Stephen Drew (L) DH
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) LF

The Yankees are just playing out the string now, but at least it’s Derek Jeter Day, which means the first 20,000 fans get a gift basket.

It’s also the free game on MLB.tv today if you are not in the Yankees’ TV market, which is pretty cool.

The Yankees have had like 50 “Days” this season in a fairly transparent attempt to drum up interest since the team they’ve put on the field this year doesn’t really do it.  To me that cheapens things like what will happen today for Jeter, or at least makes it seem less noteworthy.

While I have no problem with honoring players like Paul O’Neill and such, what will they do next year when the team is likely to be worse and they’ve run out of good players to honor?  Luis Sojo Day?  Enrique Wilson Day?  Dale Polley Day?

--Posted at 9:51 am by SG / 41 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, September 6, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks jump on Royals to keep pace in Wild Card

The Royals lost their starting pitcher, Danny Duffy, to left shoulder soreness after he threw one pitch, and the Yankees capitalized for a 6-2 victory at Yankee Stadium on Saturday.

It may have been the break New York’s scuffling offense needed after being shut out by James Shields and Wade Davis on Friday night.

With the win, the Yankees pulled to within four games of Seattle for the second American League Wild Card spot. The Mariners play later tonight against the Rangers in Texas.

Duffy has been one of the Royals’ most reliable pitchers as they have made their run to the top of the American League Central. He owns a 2.42 ERA and had allowed more than two earned runs only once since July 6.

Liam Hendricks was thrown into the unenviable task of being asked to pitch with little notice. In four innings, he gave up seven hits and four runs (three earned). Then the Yankees tagged Casey Coleman for two runs in the fifth.

It remains to be seen if this game will help the Yankees burst out of their season-long offensive struggles, but they received contributions from various members of the lineup.

Last night’s pathetic loss was the nail in the coffin, but, well, better for them to win than to not, right? Especially since they’re not getting a top 10 pick.

Martin Prado returned, which was very helpful. How shitty is it that that guy had to get hurt after his hot streak? Even now he seems kind of hurt, but luckily he’s a good enough of a hitter to work through the injury.

In possibly cool news, Tanaka ‘getting stronger’ after latest bullpen session:

Masahiro Tanaka believes his arm fatigue is now behind him after completing his latest progression—a 34-pitch bullpen session featuring all his pitches on Saturday—toward rehabbing his injured right elbow.

Manager Joe Girardi was not sure what Tanaka’s next step would be, but it will likely be a simulated game or throwing live batting practice.
Tanaka is trying to avoid Tommy John surgery by rehabbing the partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. He was sent back to New York from Toronto a week ago with arm fatigue that came about a couple of days after he threw a simulated game in Detroit. Still, Tanaka said he was not concerned about any lingering pain arising after his latest throwing session.
“I really do feel that I’m getting stronger, so I’m really not worried about it,” he said.

Yeah, I think I’m going to be worried about it…constantly.

--Posted at 6:26 pm by Brian Cronin / 6 Comments | - (0)




Friday, September 5, 2014

Royals (77-62) @ Yankees (71-66), Friday, September 5, 2014, 7:05pm

KCR: James Shields (#33, 32, RHP, 12-7, 3.38) vs. NYY: Michael Pineda (#35, 25, RHP, 3-3, 2.09)

Lineups
Royals
1. Nori Aoki (L) RF
2. Omar Infante (R) 2B
3. Alex Gordon (L) LF
4. Salvador Perez (R) C
5. Eric Hosmer (L) 1B
6. Billy Butler (R) DH
7. Mike Moustakas (L) 3B
8. Lorenzo Cain (R) CF
9. Alcides Escobar (R) SS

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brett Gardner (L) LF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
7. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

The Royals are so far ahead of the Yankees in a race for the postseason that this series is essentially meaningless.  The Royals are five games ahead of the Yankees, which makes them one of only six American League teams that can say that.

In other words…

Whatever.

--Posted at 2:53 pm by SG / 40 Comments | - (0)



FoxSports: Reports: Cashman expected to get extension from Yankees

The New York Yankees have had an up-and-down year, but it appears as though it won’t cost general manager Brian Cashman his job.

The Yankees are expected to offer Cashman, whose three-year, $9 million deal expires in October, an extension at the end of the season, according to multiple reports.

“There hasn’t been any discussions yet,’’ a source told New York Newsday. “But he’s done a good job.’‘

Cashman has served as the team’s GM since 1998, helping the team win four World Series titles. But the Yankees have struggled the past couple of seasons and are in danger of missing the playoffs in back-to-back years for the first time since 1992-93.

Eh.  It’s hard to judge how good of a GM Cashman is given the meddling he gets from the people he reports to.  Here’s what I do think.  The Yankees have a bunch of crappy contracts.  The Yankees have a crappy minor league system.  The Yankees will have missed the postseason two years in a row despite the addition of a second wild card which sets the bar for qualifying for the postseason at a markedly mediocre level.  It’s getting harder and harder to get franchise-changing players via free agency.

And the Yankees appear to have little interest in making changes to address any of those things.

--Posted at 9:49 am by SG / 23 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, September 4, 2014

Yankees.com: Thrill of the Chase: Headley delivers walk-off blast

NEW YORK—The Yankees have no plans of going away quietly. Mark Teixeira hit a game-tying homer and Chase Headley followed with the winning blast, a solo shot to right field, as the Bombers celebrated a 5-4 walk-off victory over the Red Sox on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.

After slogging through the first eight frames, the Yanks came alive in the ninth against Koji Uehara. Mired in a slump for most of the last month-plus, Teixeira slammed his first homer since Aug. 17, and Headley came up one out later with the game-winning shot.

Headley raised his right hand immediately as he trotted down the first-base line and was doused with an ice bucket shower by his teammates as he reached home plate, helping the Yankees take two of three games in the series from Boston.

A rare bit of excitement in a season that’s been the polar opposite of exciting.  We can ignore the fact that the Yankees probably had to sweep this series, and not have gone 3-4 in the road trip prior to it, and that you need a magnifying glass to see their postseason odds and just enjoy a fun win.

--Posted at 9:31 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0)



Red Sox (61-78) @ Yankees (71-66), Thursday, September 4, 2014, 7:05pm

BOS: Brandon Workman (#67, 25, RHP, 1-8, 4.93) vs. NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 2-3, 4.24)

Lineups
Red Sox
1. Brock Holt (L) 2B
2. Mookie Betts (R) CF
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Yoenis Cespedes (R) LF
5. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
6. Allen Craig (R) RF
7. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS
8. Will Middlebrooks (R) 3B
9. Christian Vazquez (R) C

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brett Gardner (L) LF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

Whatever.

--Posted at 2:36 pm by SG / 48 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: Searching for Ways to Improve Yankees’ Anemic Lineup

Some of the Yankees wear T-shirts under their jerseys with a three-word slogan — more like an exhortation — on the back: DO YOUR JOB! Carlos Beltran wore his on Wednesday. Like most of the hitters, though, he has not answered the demand.

Things were different on Wednesday, when the Yankees scored five runs off the junior varsity of the Boston Red Sox while rapping 11 hits in a 5-1 victory in the Bronx. Brian McCann had four hits, including a homer, but his on-base percentage is still below .300.

“There’s a month left, and we’re fighting for a playoff spot,” McCann said. “Stats are out the window at this point.”

True enough, and if the Yankees continue to outplay their run differential and somehow reach the playoffs, it may soothe the sting of their offensive troubles. Still, the final numbers will probably be the team’s sickliest in years, and Kevin Long, the hitting coach, bares the daily burden of trying to improve them.

Chris Young should be the answer.

--Posted at 8:27 am by SG / 16 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Red Sox (61-77) @ Yankees (70-66), Wednesday, September 3, 2014, 7:05pm

BOS: Anthony Ranaudo (#63, 24, RHP, 3-0, 4.50) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 9-8, 3.88)

Lineups
Red Sox
1. Brock Holt (L) 3B
2. Mookie Betts (R) CF
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Yoenis Cespedes (R) LF
5. Daniel Nava (S) RF
6. Allen Craig (R) 1B
7. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS
8. Christian Vazquez (R) C
9. Jemile Weeks (S) 2B

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brett Gardner (L) LF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

Zzz.

--Posted at 2:50 pm by SG / 71 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Dropping Derek Jeter in Yankees’ lineup pointless now

What Jeter has become is clear. He’s 40-year-old doing something almost no 40-year-olds do in baseball: holding on to a starting job, in only by the tips of his fingers.

That’s impressive. But it’s not enough to warrant a top-of-the-order spot for a team who’s mantra has been championship or bust since the start of the Steinbrenner era.

The problem: We’re past that point. It’s too late. The buzzards are circling, eying the meat beneath the pinstripes.

Nothing Girardi does from today through Sept. 28, the Yankees’ last regular season game, is going to turn their offense into a playoff-caliber force. Especially not moving Jeter and putting someone else in his No. 2 spot.

I agree that moving Jeter down in the lineup at this point is like putting lipstick on a pig.  With 26 games left in the season, you could put Jose Abreu’s league-leading OPS (slash line of .320/.381/.602) in Jeter’s #2 spot in the lineup replacing his .261/.308/.311 line and it would only be worth 12 runs.  And you aren’t going to get a Jose Abreu line that can play shortstop even as poorly as Jeter does.

Nope.  This team’s problems are much larger than Jeter.  They needed Brian McCann, Carlos Beltran and Mark Teixeira to hit like middle-of-the-order bats.  Instead, they’ve hit for a collective line of .233/.305/.408 in 1299 PA.  Luckily, the Yankees aren’t on the hook for any of them through at least the end of 2016…

So how do you make this a better offense in 2015?  The return of Alex Rodriguez?

--Posted at 8:11 am by SG / 29 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

NEW YORK—The Yankees have not yet arrived at the do-or-die stage of their season, at least in the eyes of manager Joe Girardi, who nevertheless acknowledged on Tuesday afternoon that his club “obviously” needs to win most of the games on this homestand. They are one loss closer to the win-or-else portion of the schedule.

Shane Greene was thumped for six runs, including two homers, in his shortest start of the year and Brett Gardner was ejected at the conclusion of a promising rally as the Red Sox posted a 9-4 victory at Yankee Stadium.

Daniel Nava connected for the big blow off Greene, a three-run homer in the third inning that gave the Red Sox a five-run lead at the time. Xander Bogaerts also homered in that inning for Boston, which entered the evening ranked dead last among the 15 American League clubs in runs scored.

The Red Sox pounced on Greene quickly in the first, as Yoenis Cespedes logged a run-scoring double—his 24th RBI in 29 games—and Mike Napoli lifted a sacrifice fly to center field, chasing home David Ortiz with the second Boston run.

The Yankees stink.

--Posted at 9:38 pm by SG / 8 Comments | - (0)



Red Sox (60-77) @ Yankees (70-65), Tuesday, September 2, 2014, 7:05pm

BOS: Joe Kelly (#56, 26, RHP, 2-3, 4.14) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 4-1, 3.09)

Lineups
Boston
1. Brock Holt (L) 2B
2. Mookie Betts (R) CF
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Yoenis Cespedes (R) LF
5. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
6. Daniel Nava (S) RF
7. Will Middlebrooks (R) 3B
8. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS
9. David Ross (R) C

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brett Gardner (L) LF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) RF
6. Brian McCann (L) DH
7. Martin Prado (R) 2B
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C


What’s worse than a Boston/Yankees game? 

Trick question. There is nothing worse.

I guess you could say a Boston/Yankees game in September that for all intents and purposes is meaningless would be worse.

Sort of like this game. 

Go Shane Greene I guess.  Also, the Yankees’ best hitter is hitting third.  Granted, that just means he’ll come up with two outs and the bases empty in each of his three PA, and you’d rather have your best hitter getting more PAs than fewer, but in the conventional wisdom of baseball, there is no better spot for your best hitter.

I think this is probably the first time Gardner has batted third in his career.  A quick check of Baseball Reference shows he does have one PA batting third, which I assume came after a pinch-running appearance.

What is amazing to me is that despite how bad the Red Sox offense has been this year (last in the AL in runs scored per game despite playing in a farce of a ballpark, and last in the AL in OPS+)  I count at least eight players in their lineup who would be better than 88.888888888889% of the Yankees’ lineup.

--Posted at 2:31 pm by SG / 83 Comments | - (0)



Newsday: Yankees are running out of time

The Yankees didn’t bury themselves with their 3-4 road trip, but they didn’t do anything to improve their position, either.

And with the calendar flipping to September on Monday, it’s no longer about “winning series,” as Joe Girardi likes to say.

They have to do better than that—meaning a sweep or two or three—to avoid a second straight dark October.

“You know what’s in front of you and you need to win games,” said Girardi, whose team starts a nine-game homestand Tuesday night at the Stadium against the Red Sox. “The trip started off well, it didn’t end up well and we have to make up for it on our homestand.”

The Yankees (70-65), off Monday, picked up a half-game on the AL East-leading Orioles but still trail Baltimore by 8 1/2 games. In the battle for the second wild-card spot, the Yankees and Indians are four games behind the Tigers and 21/2 games behind the Mariners.

“It’s tough,” Derek Jeter said of the Yankees’ situation with 27 games left. “We only have so many series left, we only have so many games left. I don’t necessarily look at it as [winning] series because we’re not going into series saying we need to win series. We need to win games. We need to win every day that we go out there; that’s the approach we need to have.”

Jeter, coming off a rough August—.207 with a .226 on-base percentage—said the Yankees still control their destiny. That’s why he said he doesn’t look at the standings.

I don’t look at the standings either, because they are depressing as hell.

I don’t think the Yankees are running out of time.  I think they’re out of time.

As of this morning, Baseball Prospectus puts their odds of winning the AL East at 0.9% and their odds of qualifying as a wild card at 5.3%.

Fangraphs is slightly more sanguine, at a whopping 2.0% to win the East, and 4.9% for a wild card.

The Yankees really need an insane run to get to the postseason.  It’s probably going to take 90 wins to get the second wild card, and at 70-65 that means they’d have to go 20-7 to get there.  Can this team play better than the 1998 Yankees over their last 27 games?  I’m not sure stranger things have ever happened.

But who knows?

--Posted at 9:04 am by SG / 32 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, August 31, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

TORONTO—Brandon McCarthy gave up a trio of homers and the Yankees saw a three-run lead evaporate in a 4-3 loss to the Blue Jays in Sunday’s series finale at Rogers Centre.

New York dropped two of three in the series and finished its seven-game road trip with a 3-4 mark, after losing its final two contests in Toronto.

I thought the Yankees probably needed a 5-2 road trip to keep their already meager postseason hopes alive. Instead we got 3-4 and a Masahiro Tanaka setback.

At least we can watch Derek Jeter closing out his career as shell of what he once was.

--Posted at 6:40 pm by SG / 30 Comments | - (0)



Yankees vs Blue Jays, Sunday August 31, 2014

They are probably already losing but I cannot be bothered to check.

--Posted at 12:27 pm by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, August 30, 2014

Yankees (70-63) @ Blue Jays (67-67), Saturday, August 30, 2014, 1:07pm

Joined in progress with the Yankees already shockingly losing, 2-0.

--Posted at 12:53 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)




Friday, August 29, 2014

Yankees (69-63) @ Blue Jays (67-66), Friday, August 29, 2014, 7:07pm

NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-3, 4.37) vs. TOR: Mark Buehrle (#56, 35, LHP, 11-8, 3.41)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Martin Prado (R) 3B
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
7. Brett Gardner (L) LF
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Stephen Drew (L) 2B

Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Jose Bautista (R) RF
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Dioner Navarro (S) C
6. Danny Valencia (R) 3B
7. Steve Tolleson (R) 2B
8. Colby Rasmus (L) DH
9. Kevin Pillar (R) CF

Congratulations to Brett Gardner on his promotion to the seventh spot in the lineup.

--Posted at 3:36 pm by SG / 57 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: In Season of 63 Losses So Far, Yankees Find Few as Agonizing as This One

DETROIT — The Yankees sat in silence, eating their postgame meals or sitting at their lockers, staring at their phones, perhaps searching for solace. For several minutes, though, after an agonizing loss, they seemed as inconsolable as they had been all season.

It had been barely 10 minutes since an Alex Avila shot off the right-field wall with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning had eluded Ichiro Suzuki and given the Detroit Tigers a 3-2 win — not enough time for the Yankees to shake off one of their most painful losses of the year.

In recent days, the Yankees had been playing better than they had for much of the season. But the feeling that they were once again playoff contenders made the loss hurt that much more.

“That was about as bad as I’ve felt walking off a mound in my career,” Shawn Kelley said Thursday after giving up the winning hit. Kelley, who slammed his glove to the ground before the ball even landed, added, “Not good.”

Thankfully I was at work and not watching, but following the bottom of the ninth on Gameday was excruciating.

It would have been nice to gain a game on one of the teams in front of them for the wild card, but at least they didn’t lose much ground either. 

I feel like they have to sweep the next series with Toronto, but I don’t see that happening.

--Posted at 8:35 am by SG / 29 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, August 28, 2014

Yankees (69-62) @ Tigers (71-60),  Thursday, August 28, 2014, 1:08pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 9-8, 3.94) vs. DET: Kyle Lobstein (#53, 24, LHP, 0-0, 4.76)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Martin Prado (R) 2B
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Brett Gardner (L) LF
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) RF

Detroit
. Rajai Davis (R) CF
2. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
3. Miguel Cabrera (R) 1B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. J.D. Martinez (R) RF
6. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
7. Don Kelly (L) LF
8. Alex Avila (L) C
9. Andrew Romine (S) SS

Yeah, bat your best offensive player 8th.  I guess to be fair, Lobstein is a left-hander.

Can’t say I like this pitching matchup very much for the Yankees.

--Posted at 11:56 am by SG / 93 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Yankees sign Mets reject Chris Young to minor-league deal

DETROIT — Chris Young was a bust with the Mets. Can he redeem himself on the other side of town?

The outfielder inked a minor-league deal with the Yankees on Wednesday, reporting to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

“Obviously it’s a guy that’s had some success in his career,” Joe Girardi said. “It’s a very good outfielder, it’s a guy who can hit the ball out of the ballpark. We’re going to see what we have.”

Young hit .205/.283/.346 with eight home runs and 28 RBI in 88 games for the Mets this season before being released on Aug. 15. An All-Star in 2010 with the Diamondbacks, Young has four career seasons of 20-plus homers, his best campaign coming in 2010 when he had 27 homers, 91 RBI and 28 stolen bases.

See, this is where I make a snarky comment along the lines of “If you’re not good enough to play for the Mets…”, but the Mets actually have a better run differential than the Yankees this year.  Granted, that’s in the inferior National League, but still.

Anyway, I don’t have a major problem with this.  Young has hit lefties reasonably well in his career (.254/.357/.458) and could be useful on the bench when rosters expand if he shows them anything in AAA.  If not, he doesn’t get on the roster.

--Posted at 8:42 am by SG / 10 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Yankees.com: Detroit sock city: Yanks hammer Price, gain in WC race

DETROIT—The Yankees have been talking about working better quality at-bats throughout their batting order, one through nine, over their last winning week. In one memorable inning Wednesday night at Comerica Park, every single hitter in the lineup delivered on that promise.

Beginning with leadoff man Jacoby Ellsbury, nine straight batters collected hits as the Yankees took a swing at the record books. The resulting eight-run inning sent David Price to the showers early as New York defeated the Tigers, 8-4, to move to within 2 1/2 games of Seattle for the second American League Wild Card spot.

The Yanks are quite familiar with Price from his previous service in the AL East, but they have never seen him like this. After being forced to throw 43 pitches in the first two innings, Price didn’t record an out in the third as eight earned runs came around, matching his career high.

Derek Jeter had two RBIs in the frame, starting the damage with a run-scoring double to right field off the left-hander. The Yankees stayed on Price’s pitches throughout the inning, as Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann followed by stringing three consecutive RBI hits together.

Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli also collected run-scoring singles before Tigers manager Brad Ausmus finally claimed the ball from Price, who recorded no swings and misses in the inning. Blaine Hardy recorded the first out on an Ellsbury sacrifice fly, and Jeter lifted a sac fly to push home the eighth run.

The nine straight hits off Price—who hadn’t allowed nine hits in any of his last 10 starts—were three shy of a Major League record set by the 1920 Cardinals and equaled by the 1930 Brooklyn Robins. Price permitted 12 hits overall, working two-plus innings.

The Yankee offense actually looked like a legitimate MLB offense for an inning there.  Still, take away those nine straight hits and eight runs in the third inning and they lose 4-0.

Shane Greene had another strong game and I am starting to believe he’s developed to the point that his minor league track record is of limited utility when trying to forecast him going forward.  There’s nothing in his peripherals that indicate particularly unsustainable good fortune, as he entered the game with a BABIP against of .321 and a HR/FB rate of 12.5%, both above league average.  He’s pitched about as well as his ERA says he has.

I was just hoping the Yankees wouldn’t get swept here, but now a series win seems like a real possibility. 

Not a likely one, but a possibility nonetheless.

--Posted at 9:40 pm by SG / 9 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (68-62) @ Tigers (71-59), Wednesday, August 27, 2014, 7:08pm

NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 3-1, 3.17) vs. DET: David Price (#14, 28, LHP, 12-9, 3.00)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Smellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Martin Prado (R) 2B
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) RF
6. Brian McCann (L) DH
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Brett Gardner (L) LF
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

Detroit
1. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
2. Torii Hunter (R) RF
3. Miguel Cabrera (R) 1B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. J.D. Martinez (R) LF
6. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
7. Alex Avila (L) C
8. Eugenio Suarez (R) SS
9. Rajai Davis (R) CF

Yeah, bat your best offensive player 8th.  I guess to be fair, Price is a left-hander.

Can’t say I like this pitching matchup very much for the Yankees.

--Posted at 3:53 pm by SG / 85 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Yankees GM Cashman reveals how the last-minute deal for Martin Prado went down

Lately Martin Prado has provided a much-needed spark for the Yankees’ revived offense, hitting .417 with six doubles and three home runs while his ballclub was winning seven of nine games to get back in the wild-card chase.

Though he went 0-for-4 in a 5-2 loss to the Tigers on Tuesday night, Prado has been invaluable, playing four different positions while injecting the Yankees’ clubhouse with energy and selflessness that seem to have changed the vibe.

And to think, by about 3 p.m. on July 31, an hour before the trading deadline, Brian Cashman had pretty much given up on trying to make a deal for Prado.

Cashman had engaged Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers for several days on the possibility, and the rebuilding D-Backs were willing to trade Prado, no doubt at least partly because he is owed $22 million over the next two seasons.

But Towers was looking for a bigger haul in return than simply Pete O’Brien, the slugging minor league catcher. In the days leading up to the deadline, and for much of that Thursday, he proposed multi-player deals asking for various Yankee prospects Cashman wasn’t willing to trade.

It’d be interesting to see who Towers was asking for.

--Posted at 8:43 am by SG / 17 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Yankees.com: McCarthy battles, but Yankees’ win streak snapped

DETROIT—The Yankees used Brandon McCarthy’s most dominant outing in pinstripes as a springboard to a five-game winning streak, one that resuscitated their flagging postseason dreams. Eyeing this series as crucial to that cause, they’ll now need to start a new roll.

McCarthy didn’t have that same razor-sharp command against the Tigers, who peppered the right-hander for nine hits over 6 1/3 innings in handing the Yankees a 5-2 loss on Tuesday night at Comerica Park in a game delayed more than an hour at the start due to rain.

The loss put the Yankees three games back of Detroit and Seattle in the race for the second American League Wild Card spot.

Eh, I’m just hoping the Yankees don’t get swept here.  And I’ll keep hoping that even after they lose tomorrow and Thursday.

--Posted at 10:11 pm by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (68-61) @ Tigers (70-59), Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 7:08pm

NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 8-12, 4.01) vs. DET: Rick Porcello (#21, 25, RHP, 14-8, 3.10)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) DH
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) RF
6. Martin Prado (R) 2B
7. Stephen Drew (L) SS
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) LF

Detroit
1. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
2. Torii Hunter (R) RF
3. Miguel Cabrera (R) 1B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. J.D. Martinez (R) LF
6. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
7. Alex Avila (L) C
8. Eugenio Suarez (R) SS
9. Rajai Davis (R) CF

I miss TPBG™...

The Tigers entered 2014 as arguably the best team in the American League on paper, but are now staring into the abyss.  They still control their own destiny with six games left against Kansas City, and they have the advantage of a fairly soft schedule over the test of the season with heaping helpings of the Indians, Twins and White Sox.

Not to mention the three-game cream puff series that starts tonight.

The Yankees are not even remotely in the same class as Detroit, and it would be a miracle if the were to win even one game of this series.  Think 2012 ALCS, but make the Tigers better and the Yankees worse and you should get a sense of the carnage that will be unfurled, beginning tonight.

--Posted at 3:12 pm by SG / 71 Comments | - (0)



A Tale of Two Offenses

Offense PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO HBP GDP SB CS BA OBP SLG OPS LOB
A 4891 4409 514 1101 197 18 118 481 373 903 45 93 93 23 .250 .312 .383 .695 897
B 4809 4331 515 1065 182 18 114 484 370 933 45 103 95 24 .246 .310 .375 .685 856

 

--Posted at 8:41 am by SG / 22 Comments | - (0)




Monday, August 25, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks’ streak to five after makeup-game win in KC

KANSAS CITY—Michael Pineda turned his back to home plate in the fifth inning Monday night and gazed out at center field following his fourth strikeout. A few hundred feet away, the Kauffman Stadium CrownVision HD scoreboard provided a replay of Mike Moustakas’ solo home run off the Yankees’ right-hander, two innings earlier.

Pineda observed this, then turned around, stomped on the mound, and redeemed himself by making Moustakas strikeout victim No. 5.

The Moustakas home run was all Pineda would allow in New York’s fifth straight win, a 8-1 triumph over the Royals. The Yankees visited Kansas City to make up a June 9 postponement, and they now head to Detroit to continue a tough stretch that includes 13 games—and four different cities—in 13 days.

The Royals managed just five hits in 6 1/3 innings off Pineda, who made his MLB-leading 15th straight start allowing six hits or fewer. Pineda’s control and command matched his dazzling repertoire, as he issued zero walks and struck out five. His seventh start this season surrendering two runs or fewer dropped his ERA to 1.95.

It usually takes the Yankees a week to score eight runs.

Pineda’s continued to look strong since returning from the 60 day DL.  Let’s hope he can stay healthy.

--Posted at 9:18 pm by SG / 12 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (67-61) @ Royals (72-57), Monday, August 25, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Michael Pineda (#35, 25, RHP, 2-2, 2.05) vs. KCR: James Shields (#33, 32, RHP, 12-6, 3.28)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
6. Martin Prado (R) LF
7. Chase Headley (S) 1B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B

Kansas City
1. Jarrod Dyson (L) CF
2. Omar Infante (R) 2B
3. Alex Gordon (L) LF
4. Billy Butler (R) 1B
5. Salvador Perez (R) C
6. Raul Ibanez (L) DH
7. Lorenzo Cain (R) RF
8. Mike Moustakas (L) 3B
9. Alcides Escobar (R) SS

No Gardner = No chance.

We know just how hot Kansas City can be around this time of the year.  Forecast for 94 degrees at first pitch.  Hopefully Pineda’s pine tar doesn’t melt.

--Posted at 3:27 pm by SG / 77 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Masahiro Tanaka makes for meaningful September for Yankees

Nothing comes easy for the Yankees these days, certainly not scoring runs, and so even after they scratched out a 4-3 walk-off win against the White Sox on Friday night, their chances of playing meaningful baseball deep into September seem to be iffy at best.

And in that case it’s only natural to ask if it makes sense to pitch Masahiro Tanaka regardless.

The Yankees say it does and I tend to agree. They need to find out if his elbow will hold up under game conditions rather than waiting until spring training, because if he winds up needing Tommy John surgery, obviously the earlier the better.

In other words, the last thing they should do is bring the 2016 season into question, in addition to 2015.

But are they putting Tanaka at greater risk by pitching him in the coming weeks, after he was diagnosed in July with a small tear in his elbow ligament?

“We’ve asked the doctors that same question like three times,” GM Brian Cashman said by phone on Friday. “Should we slow him down? Should we sit him down? And they say no, he’s doing all the right things.

“So we’re following their instructions. A small tear can repair itself with rehab, and that’s why the doctors have recommended this course of action. So we’re going to let him pitch. It’s in our best interests for him to declare himself healthy.”

So far so good on Tanaka’s rehab.  If he’s back in the rotation in September it still may not be enough for the Yankees to get into the postseason, but it will make things more interesting and make me more optimistic about his 2015 availability.  I’ll still worry about every pitch being “the one”, but I suppose that is the case for every pitcher.

--Posted at 8:27 am by SG / 27 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, August 24, 2014

Yankees.com: McCann’s three-run HR extends Yanks’ streak

NEW YORK—Pumping his right fist, Brian McCann screamed as he bounced off first base, tracking the flight of his deep drive into the right-field seats. He made three hard left turns and charged toward a waiting mob of celebrating teammates, having just watched the ink dry on his new Yankees signature moment.

McCann came off the bench to deliver a pinch-hit, three-run home run in the bottom of the 10th inning on Sunday, lifting the Yankees to a 7-4 victory over the White Sox. The winning rally keeps momentum on the Bombers’ side as they prepare to embark on a crucial road trip.

“It was awesome,” said McCann, who was doused with two icy showers while he spoke in front of the home dugout. “Pinch-hitting is not the easiest thing to do, so to lay off some tough pitches and get a pitch up in the zone, then not miss it with the game on the line—it’s really, really special.”

I was out all day and figured there was no way in hell the Yankees would win a game started by Chris Sale, so catching what happened on MLB network was a pretty nice surprise.

If only the Yankees hadn’t shit the bed against Houston in the first two games of this homestand…

--Posted at 6:44 pm by SG / 9 Comments | - (0)



White Sox (59-69) @ Yankees (65-61), Sunday, August 24, 2014, 1:05pm

CHW: Chris Sale (#49, 25, LHP, 10-3, 2.12) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda Chris Capuano (#, 35, LHP, 1-3, 4.35)

Lineups
White Sox
1. Alexei Ramirez (R) SS
2. Carlos Sanchez (S) 2B
3. Jose Abreu (R) 1B
4. Avisail Garcia (R) RF
5. Conor Gillaspie (L) 3B
6. Paul Konerko (R) DH
7. Dayan Viciedo (R) LF
8. Tyler Flowers (R) C
9. Jordan Danks (L) CF

Yankees
1. Derek Jeter (R) SS
2. Martin Prado (R) LF
3. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Chase Headley (S) 3B
6. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
7. Zelous Wheeler (R) RF
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) CF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

Here’s the list of qualified starting pitchers that have a better ERA+ than Chris Sale 2014.

Clayton Kershaw

What happens when a pitcher as good as Sale faces a lineup as anemic as the Yankees?  I’m guessing nothing good for the Yankees.

--Posted at 8:27 am by SG / 85 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, August 23, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks punctuate Torre’s day with third straight win

NEW YORK—Over the last several days, manager Joe Girardi has insisted that his players’ effort has been there and that he still believed the team’s lackluster offense will turn around. Even position players initiated a midweek meeting, hoping to ignite their underachieving bats.

Saturday afternoon’s 5-3 victory over the White Sox wasn’t a giant offensive leap in the right direction, but marked some noticeable progress. The win was the Yankees’ third in a row and first time since Aug. 8 that they scored more than four runs in a game.

“I’ve said all along this offense has the ability to score more runs and they’ve worked really hard at it,” said Girardi. “Today, we put together some good at-bats and some walks in there and took advantage of a miscue on their part and did a nice job.”

I had no idea this team could actually score more than four runs in a game.  What’s next, beating Chris Sale tomorrow?

--Posted at 6:01 pm by SG / 5 Comments | - (0)



White Sox (59-69) @ Yankees (65-61), Saturday, August 23, 2014, 1:05pm

CHW: Scott Carroll (#67, 29, RHP, 5-7, 4.99) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 8-8, 3.97)

Lineups
White Sox
1. Alejandro De Aza (L) LF
2. Carlos Sanchez (S) 2B
3. Jose Abreu (R) 1B
4. Adam Dunn (L) DH
5. Avisail Garcia (R) RF
6. Conor Gillaspie (L) 3B
7. Alexei Ramirez (R) SS
8. Jordan Danks (L) CF
9. Adrian Nieto (S) C

Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Brett Gardner (L) LF
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Martin Prado (R) 2B
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) SS
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

If the Yankees win today and Baltimore loses, the Orioles’ division lead will shrink to a mere seven games! #Season2Watch!

--Posted at 10:08 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Friday, August 22, 2014

Yankees.com: Prado homers, delivers walk-off winner for Yanks

NEW YORK—Martin Prado connected for a game-winning single to center field in the bottom of the ninth inning, lifting the Yankees to a 4-3 victory over the White Sox on Friday night at Yankee Stadium.

The decisive hit came off Daniel Webb. Ichiro Suzuki started the ninth with a single to center field and advanced on a Brett Gardner sacrifice bunt. Derek Jeter lined softly to center, and after an intentional walk, Webb walked Mark Teixeira to load the bases.

Prado worked the count full, then hit a ground ball up the middle and was mobbed between first and second as the Yankees celebrated their second straight win.

Martin Prado, True Yankee™.

--Posted at 10:51 pm by SG / 16 Comments | - (0)



White Sox (59-68) @ Yankees (64-61), Friday, August 22, 2014, 7:05pm

CHW: John Danks (#50, 29, LHP, 9-8, 4.94) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 3-1, 2.91)

Lineups
White Sox
1. Alejandro De Aza (L) LF
2. Carlos Sanchez (S) 2B
3. Jose Abreu (R) 1B
4. Adam Dunn (L) DH
5. Avisail Garcia (R) RF
6. Conor Gillaspie (L) 3B
7. Alexei Ramirez (R) SS
8. Jordan Danks (L) CF
9. Tyler Flowers (R) C

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Martin Prado (R) 2B
6. Brian McCann (L) DH
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) RF

Yay, Zelous is back!

Boo, he’s on the Yankees.

--Posted at 3:09 pm by SG / 26 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees’ Brandon McCarthy explains adjustment that’s helped him dominate

NEW YORK — It’s still unclear whether some of Yankees general manager Brian Cashman’s midseason gambles will pay off. Chase Headley had been solid. Stephen Drew hasn’t. Martin Prado has been OK. So has Chris Capuano.

One that’s obviously paid off? Brandon McCarthy. After throwing a complete-game shutout in a 3-0 win over the Astros Thursday, the tall righty improved to 5-2 with a 1.90 ERA since coming to the Yankees in an early-July trade with the Diamondbacks in exchange for lefty starter Vidal Nuno.

But things weren’t going so well for McCarthy before the deal. The 31-year-old was 3-10 with a 5.01 ERA before donning pinstripes for the first time.

On Thursday, McCarthy said the biggest difference between his time in Arizona and in New York has been that the Yankees have encouraged him to reincorporate his four-seamer and cutter into his regular repertoire.

Here’s how McCarthy said the change went down.

It’s fairly apparent the Yankees have a budget under Hal Steinbrenner.  They will have about $30M coming off the books next season, and I doubt they will spend much more than that in the offseason given the less than dazzling array of available talent.  Missing the playoffs again and losing the #Season2ScratchMyAss thing may entice them to go above budget, but I’d be surprised if they go significantly higher than that.

I’m convinced they will make a strong push for Jon Lester, which I am not crazy about.  I think they’ll make a decent effort at keeping David Robertson.  If both of those things are true, they likely can’t keep McCarthy.  McCarthy has been great with the Yankees, and his peripherals with Arizona indicated that he was likely pitching better than his raw data indicated. 

Should the Yankees try and bring McCarthy back next year?  He’s not without risk given his past health record, but he could probably be re-signed on a shorter-term deal than the more marquee free agents.  His average fastball velocity this season is the highest of his career, and 2 mph faster than his career average. 

Frankly, I think they’d be better off with McCarthy, Robertson and some other mid-tier free agent position player.  Lester is not as good as CC Sabathia was when he was signed, and he’ll be a couple of years older than Sabathia was.  The back-end of a Lester contract could be every bit as bad as Sabathia’s looks right now.

McCarthy could make four to six more starts this year.  If he continues doing what he’s done as a Yankee to this point, I think they will try and bring him back.

--Posted at 9:33 am by SG / 31 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, August 21, 2014

FanGraphs: Brian McCann Probably Couldn’t Be Given Away For Free

Well, there’s a few things. First, here’s an incredibly depressing list of numbers:

13.1 — 10.8 — 9.0 — 9.7 — 6.4

You don’t know what those are. I’ll tell you what they are. They’re McCann’s walk rate, declining pretty steadily from 2010 until now, where it’s less than half what it was, and this is sort of the thing: McCann’s lousy year isn’t any one thing. It’s a few small things, adding up. Giving back 30 or so free trips to first base isn’t fatal by itself, but it certainly isn’t helping. It’s not why his batting average is lousy, obviously; it is a part of why his OBP is below .300.

There’s also this: McCann’s power, which everyone figured would translate well to the short right field porch at Yankee Stadium, hasn’t come with him. It’s actually less that he’s failed to take advantage of right field in the Bronx, and more that it’s been the only thing making his homer totals look even respectable.

It seems like almost any free agent contract seems like a bad one as soon as it’s signed.  I doubt anyone would trade for the Robinson Cano contract as well as he’s played this year, for example.

In the non-injury division, McCann is probably the biggest disappointment on this year’s Yankees team, at least for me.  I liked his signing, figured a year removed from shoulder surgery he’d hit better than he did in 2013 and also figured it was a massive upgrade over what the Yankees got out of catcher in 2013.  I didn’t expect Beltran to do much this year or over the life of his contract, and as much crap as I give the Ellsbury signing he’s been the Yankees’ second best position player this year.  Granted, that’s sort of like being the best-groomed Red Sock or the healthiest member of the Yankees rotation, but he hasn’t been a problem.  He’s been an asset, albeit an overpaid one.

CAIRO had McCann pegged at around 3 WAR, without incorporating pitch framing where he has rated well again this year.  Instead he’s a bit over 1 WAR and not likely to get much past that at this point.

I’d like to think he’ll be better next year, but I wouldn’t bet a penny on it.

It’s particularly frustrating given the fact that the Yankees have organizational depth at catcher and could’ve potentially used the money spent on McCann elsewhere.  But what’s done is done, and now I’ll just hope he hits well over the rest of the season and gives us some reason to think 2015 will be better.

--Posted at 6:41 pm by SG / 27 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: McCarthy masters Astros in four-hit shutout

NEW YORK—The Yankees enjoyed yet another strong outing from Brandon McCarthy, this one a dominating four-hit shutout that helped his club to a 3-0 victory over the Astros on Thursday afternoon, salvaging the finale of a three-game series at Yankee Stadium.

McCarthy has been terrific since being acquired in a midseason trade, and the right-hander flashed that form in a 107-pitch outing, walking none and striking out eight.

Chase Headley connected for a two-run double to highlight a three-run second inning, giving McCarthy an early lead and accounting for the Yankees’ scoring off Houston lefty Dallas Keuchel.

New York had been 2-for-19 with runners in scoring position in losing the first two games of the series against Houston, but Headley capitalized on the team’s first chance of the afternoon after hits by Mark Teixeira and Martin Prado, banging a ball down the right-field line.

If two crappy teams play a meaningless day game, does it make a sound?

Good for the Yankees salvaging an impressive 2-4 record against Houston this year.  It’s not likely to end up mattering, but if they do end up missing the postseason by a game or two, this can be pointed to as one of the reasons.

As could the decision to let Robinson Cano go and replace with him about 30% of his value at around 300% of his cost*.

But I digress.

*Estimated, may not be completely accurate

--Posted at 3:23 pm by SG / 7 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: Joe Girardi out of options as Yankees’ ship sinks

The end comes slowly, one painful injury, one telling loss after another.

That is what is happening to the Yankees.

On a night Carlos Beltran was scratched from the lineup with more elbow pain, the Yankees dropped their second straight game to the lowly Astros, 5-2, Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium, the fourth loss in five games to Houston this season.

Manager Joe Girardi didn’t do himself any favors, bringing in David Huff and Esmil Rogers in the seventh inning as the Yankees blew a 2-1 lead. The 42,102 fans at the Stadium let loose with the loudest boos of the season as the bullpen surrendered five singles and four runs in the inning, ruining Michael Pineda’s effort.

Girardi’s offense continues to be stuck in reverse.

Yes, the Yankees’ STARTING ROTATION has been hurt by injuries.  Their offense has not, unless they really thought Carlos Beltran was going to hit at the level he hit at back when they should have signed him 10 years ago.

Their offense hasn’t really been hurt by injuries.  They are just a bad offense. 

It makes for boring baseball and I don’t see how it’s going to change in the near future..

--Posted at 11:43 am by SG / 25 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

NEW YORK—The Yankees’ fading postseason hopes were dealt another major blow on Wednesday. Relievers David Huff and Esmil Rogers were knocked around in a four-run seventh inning as the Astros rallied for a 5-2 victory at Yankee Stadium.

Houston rapped out five straight hits, all singles, as they batted around to spoil a solid second start off the disabled list by Michael Pineda, who held the Astros to one run over the first six innings before issuing a walk to start the seventh.

With manager Joe Girardi’s bullpen choices limited after the recent barrage of close games, Huff faced two batters and allowed a hit. Rogers gave up hits to the next four; Jake Marisnick had an RBI single, Robbie Grossman knocked home two and Jose Altuve collected an RBI single before Rogers escaped with two strikeouts.

The loss, the Yankees’ seventh in their last nine games, will further dent New York’s chances of keeping the lights on in October. New York dropped five games behind the Tigers for the second American League Wild Card slot, and have lost four of five to the Astros this season.

Houston’s a really good team, so there’s no shame in losing to them at home.

I think you can consider the Yankees’ season effectively over now.

--Posted at 11:22 pm by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)



Astros (53-73) @ Yankees (63-60), Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 7:05pm

HOU: Scott Feldman (#46, 31, RHP, 6-9, 4.45) vs. NYY: Michael Pineda (#35, 25, RHP, 2-2, 1.82)

Lineups
Astros
1. Robbie Grossman (S) RF
2. Jose Altuve (R) 2B
3. Chris Carter (R) DH
4. Dexter Fowler (S) CF
5. Jason Castro (L) C
6. Jon Singleton (L) 1B
7. Marwin Gonzalez (S) SS
8. Matt Dominguez (R) 3B
9. Jake Marisnick (R) LF

Whatever
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) DH
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Stephen Drew (L) SS
8. Martin Prado (R) 2B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

Wake me up when the season’s over.

--Posted at 3:48 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Whatever

NEW YORK—Chris Carter was having about the worst kind of night at the plate as you could imagine through four at-bats Tuesday night, going 0-for-4 with four strikeouts in his first game since being named the American League Player of the Week.

He made up for it with one mighty swing in the ninth inning.

Carter broke a tie by launching a no-doubt, three-run home run to left field on a 3-0 pitch off David Robertson with one out—his career-high 30th homer of the season—to send the Astros to a 7-4 win over the Yankees at Yankee Stadium.

--Posted at 10:12 pm by SG / 18 Comments | - (0)



Astros (52-73) @ Yankees (63-59), Tuesday, August 19, 2014,  7:05pm

HOU: Brett Oberholtzer (#39, 24, LHP, 4-8, 3.87) vs. NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-3, 4.13)

Lineups
Houston
1. Robbie Grossman (S) RF
2. Jose Altuve (R) 2B
3. Chris Carter (R) DH
4. Dexter Fowler (S) CF
5. Jason Castro (L) C
6. Matt Dominguez (R) 3B
7. Jon Singleton (L) 1B
8. Jake Marisnick (R) LF
9. Gregorio Petit (R) SS

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Martin Prado (R) 2B
7. Brian McCann (L) C
8. Chase Headley (S) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

The Yankees pretty much have to sweep this homestand if they want to keep their laughably small postseason odds from dwindling to imperceptible levels.  They play arguably the hardest schedule of any of the postseason contenders over the remainder of the season, and that includes the upcoming three home games against the Astros and three more home games against the White Sox.

--Posted at 4:10 pm by SG / 94 Comments | - (0)



North Jersey: Out on Castillo

NEW YORK – The Yankees won’t be signing Cuban outfielder/second baseman Rusney Castillo, according to an industry source.

It’s tempting to get mad about this as another indicator of the Yankees’ tightening purse strings, but Castillo wasn’t really a great fit for the roster the Yankees have now and for the foreseeable future.  I’d rather see what Refsnyder can do at 2B at a fraction of the cost of Castillo anyway, and if Castillo’s best position is CF, that doesn’t really work on a team that has a brilliant CF in LF and a mediocre one in CF.

--Posted at 7:51 am by SG / 25 Comments | - (0)



Newsday: Ambidextrous Pitcher Pat Venditte Hoping for His Call to the Majors

Yankees minor-leaguer Pat Venditte is one phone call away from his dream of making it to the major leagues. But there are two sides to this pitcher’s story. If that call comes, Venditte will become the first man in major-league history to be promoted as an ambidextrous pitcher.

There have been countless switch hitters in the game’s history, of course, but there has never been a pitcher to make it to the majors who could routinely throw with both arms. And Venditte is determined to prove that his pitching style is not a gimmick. He believes he can get big-league hitters out—with either hand—if given the chance.

“Any time you’re different in this game, there’s a level of doubt that comes along with it,” he said. “You overcome that with good performance.”

Venditte’s performance in the minor leagues shows he could be ready for the call. He has a 2.65 ERA and has held opposing hitters to a .217 batting average while playing in Double-A and Triple-A this season.

Still, the injury-depleted Yankees have reached into the minor leagues for a pitcher 25 times this season but have never called on the 29-year-old switch pitcher.

General manager Brian Cashman said last week that Venditte’s name has come up lately in the team’s conversations when a reliever was needed.

“I visualize myself coming out of that bullpen in New York every day,” Venditte said. “It’s a thought that crosses my mind, and it would be crazy if it didn’t.’‘

It seems unlikely to me that we’ll ever see Venditte, but boy would it be a blast. They already have a special rule written for him (the pitcher must indicate which arm he is going to use when he comes to the mound. Once he has done so, he cannot switch during an at-bat except for rare exceptions like the pitcher injuring himself and being unable to pitch from that side) so I’d love to see it actually used!

--Posted at 12:55 am by Brian Cronin / 6 Comments | - (0)




Monday, August 18, 2014

NY Times: Thanks to Pitchers, Yankees Finish Trip on an Upbeat Note

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The grim and near silent atmosphere in the visitors’ clubhouse Friday, when the hitting instructor Kevin Long noted that morale was low, suggested the dreary reality facing the Yankees.

After two miserable losses in Baltimore and a shutout defeat here Friday that extended their losing streak to five games, one more loss in the sequence could easily have doomed the fragile 2014 Yankees.

But it did not come, and what started out as a disastrous trip turned into something a tad less odious.

Seems like I picked a perfect time to go on vacation and not see a single pitch of a Yankees game. 

Actually, that can be said for large swaths of the season.

--Posted at 11:49 am by SG / 27 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, August 17, 2014

Yankees.com: If At First You Don’t Succeed in Losing, Try, Try Again

Hiroki Kuroda retired 17 straight batters to highlight a dominant outing and Brett Gardner drove in two runs as the Yankees completed their road trip with a 4-2 victory over the Rays on Sunday at Tropicana Field.

Mark Teixeira also hit an eighth-inning homer as New York wrapped up a weather-shortened five-game trip with a pair of weekend wins over Tampa Bay, heading home 2-3 overall after dropping two games to the Orioles in Baltimore.

The Yankees were held hitless into the fifth inning by Jeremy Hellickson, but mounted a two-out rally that produced three runs. Martin Prado notched the Yankees’ first hit of the afternoon, a double to left field that moved Stephen Drew to third base after a walk.

Gardner cashed both runs with a base hit into center field, and after Derek Jeter singled through the left side of the infield, Jacoby Ellsbury picked up his first hit of the road trip with a single to left field. Ellsbury had been in an 0-for-17 skid.

The Yankees get an off day tomorrow and then begin what is most likely their biggest homestand of the season, six games against the Astros and the White Sox. If they can’t go at least 4-2 on the homestand then their season is more over than it already is.

--Posted at 5:07 pm by Brian Cronin / 14 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (62-59) @ Rays (61-62), Sunday, 17 August 2014, 1:40pm

Hiroki Kuroda vs. Jeremy Hellickson


YANKEES
TBA

RAYS
TBA

I am not going to be around Sunday afternoon, so I figured I’d get a placeholder thread up here for discussions.

--Posted at 11:00 am by Brian Cronin / 24 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, August 16, 2014

Yankees.com: Well, You Can’t Lose Them All

These series between the Yankees and Rays have always been circled on Derek Jeter’s calendar, since they provide the opportunity to sleep in his own bed, just a short drive away from Tropicana Field. This one sounded and felt a lot like a home game.

Jeter connected for a run-scoring, go-ahead single in the ninth inning off Jake McGee on Saturday, lifting New York to a 3-2 victory over Tampa Bay that snapped the Bombers’ five-game losing streak.

Brett Gardner scored from second base on the ground ball, shooting past a diving attempt by second baseman Logan Forsythe. Jeter had tried unsuccessfully to bunt the runner ahead, but his knock was rewarded with a standing ovation from much of the sellout crowd of 31,042.

David Robertson, pitching for the first time since Aug. 7, recorded the final three outs for his 32nd save. Dellin Betances was credited with the victory, having pitched a scoreless eighth inning with a strikeout.

Shane Greene struck out a career-high 10 men over six-plus innings but settled for a no-decision after the Rays mounted a soft seventh-inning rally that tied the game.

I’ve already checked out on this season, so I will instead look to the positives for next season.

1. Shane Greene is looking pretty damn good.

2. Masahiro Tanaka hasn’t hit his inevitable setback during his rehab yet.

3. Carlos Beltran’s return to right field signals that his age 38 season will be a healthy season spent in the field and it will offensively be a marked improvement over his age 37 season.

Okay, that last one was a stretch.

--Posted at 7:05 pm by Brian Cronin / 29 Comments | - (0)



Ships That Pass in the Night

Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence.

-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Yankees (61-59) @ Rays (61-61), Saturday, 16 August 2014, 4:10pm

Shane Greene (25, RHP, 3-1, 2.89) vs. Drew Smyly (25, LHP, 7-10, 3.73)

YANKEES
Gardner LF
Jeter DH
Ellsbury CF
Teixeira 1B
Beltran RF
Headley 3B
Prado 2B
Cervelli C
Ryan SS

RAYS
Jennings CF
Zobrist 2B
Joyce LF
Longoria 3B
Loney 1B
Escobar SS
Belnome DH
Casali C
Kiermaier RF

The Rays are in the midst of passing the Yankees in the standings and it is pretty depressing.

--Posted at 11:57 am by Brian Cronin / 41 Comments | - (0)




Friday, August 15, 2014

Yankees.com: The Last One to Leave Has to Turn the Lights Off

The Yankees have run out of ways to explain their season-long difficulty in scoring runs. The numbers aren’t matching up to the backs of the baseball cards, and the time for excuses has expired. They need production, and they need it urgently.

For at least one more night, that proved to be easier said than done. Alex Cobb handcuffed their lineup to six hits over 7 1/3 innings as the Yankees lost their fifth straight game, dropping a 5-0 decision to the Rays on Friday at Tropicana Field.

The Yankees managed one runner as far as second base through the first seven innings against Cobb, who struck out eight and helped Tampa Bay reach the .500 mark for the first time since April 22. The Yankees have totaled seven runs during this losing skid.

Good golly, Miss Molly, this team is so bad.

--Posted at 10:32 pm by Brian Cronin / 11 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (61-58) @ Rays (60-61), Friday, 15 August 2014, 7:10pm

Brandon McCarthy (30, RHP, 7-11, 4.31) vs. Alex Cobb (26, RHP, 7-6, 3.41)

YANKEES
Gardner LF
Jeter SS
Ellsbury CF
Teixeira 1B
Beltran DH
Headley 3B
Drew 2B
Prado RF
Cervelli C

RAYS
Jennings CF
Zobrist LF
Joyce DH
Longoria 3B
Loney 1B
Forsythe 2B
Escobar SS
Casali C
Kiermaier RF

Well, let’s just hope that when this series ends, the Rays are not over .500. It is crazy that they have a realistic chance of passing the Yankees in the standings. Stupid Yankees.

--Posted at 2:34 pm by Brian Cronin / 35 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Steinbrenner: Offense needs to step it up

Hal Steinbrenner believes it is important to factor injuries into evaluations of how his Yankees have performed this season to date, but the team’s managing general partner also is firmly pointing his finger at the bats to score more runs.

Steinbrenner spoke with a small group of reporters at the quarterly Owners Meetings, taking place at the Hyatt Regency Baltimore. The Yankees have not received the expected returns after investing a combined $283 million on Jacoby Ellsbury, Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran as free agents this past offseason.

“All teams have injuries, but when you lose four of your starting pitchers by the All-Star break, three by the first or second week in May—it’s going to have an impact on any club, in my opinion, regardless of how good their farm system is,” Steinbrenner said.

“That’s certainly been part of it. But we put a lot of money into the offense as well, and they have been, as a whole, inconsistent. It’s been a problem. And it needs to change, needless to say.”

The Yankees entered play on Wednesday ranked 11th in the American League in runs scored (471) and OPS (.696), and ninth in home runs (107). They had scored in just three of their past 29 innings, and they’ve scored one run or fewer in 22 games this year.

Steinbrenner, who authorized the July acquisitions of Stephen Drew, Chase Headley and Martin Prado in an attempt to upgrade the lineup, said that he wants to see the production improve over the season’s final 44 games.

“They have to. They know that,” Steinbrenner said. “They’re professionals and the talent is there. But they’ve got to step it up and they know that. ... Look, my job is to be an optimist, and I am confident.”

Steinbrenner added that he has not made any decisions about general manager Brian Cashman’s future. Cashman has held his current position since February 1998, and his current three-year contract expires after 2014.

Ah, I see. So that was the issue all along. The owner just forgot to tell the offense to do better. Well, that should be solved now. Phew.

Seriously though, I wonder if Cashman’s job might actually be in jeopardy this time around.

--Posted at 9:03 am by Brian Cronin / 37 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, August 14, 2014

ESPN: Rob Manfred one vote short on 1st ballot

Rob Manfred was one vote short of the required three-quarters majority Thursday in balloting to succeed Bud Selig as baseball commissioner, a person familiar with the balloting told The Associated Press.

Manfred, baseball’s chief operating officer, received 22 votes and Boston Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner got eight, the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity because no statements were authorized.

I don’t think it is overselling it to suggest that the winner of the Manfred/Werner competition might be one of the most important developments in baseball for the next five or so years.

Like Bud Selig or not, electing Manfred is a vote for things staying pretty much the way they are. If you like labor peace, Manfred is the way to go.

Werner, meanwhile, is supported by a dedicated eight owner bloc led by Chicago White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf that want to try to do to the players what the other leagues have done in their respective recent labor disputes. They look at the NFL, the NHL and the NBA (where Reinsdorf owns the Chicago Bulls) and say, “They all broke their players unions and got massive concessions from the players. Why can’t we do that, too?”

So if you’re a fan of labor peace, a fan of sharing the vast MLB wealth with the players, a fan of not having a former Boston Red Sox owner becoming the Commissioner of Major League Baseball and, of course, a fan of a system that allows the Yankees to exploit their economic advantages, then you should be pulling for Manfred here.

It’ll be fascinating to see who caves.

EDITED TO ADD: Well,  THAT didn’t take long. Rob Manfred is the new Commissioner of Major League Baseball. As it turned out, it was the Nationals who broke from Jerry Reinsdorf’s eight-owner voting bloc (earlier, Milwaukee and Tampa Bay had also done so, back when Reinsdorf had a tentative ten-owner bloc) to vote for Manfred. Here are the teams whose owners held out against Manfred:

White Sox
Red Sox
Blue Jays
Angels
Diamondbacks
Athletics
Reds

Note that the way the system works is that once there is a majority, everyone agrees to vote for the winning candidate “officially,” so he was technically elected unanimously. Just throwing that out there in case anyone is confused by headlines like “Manfred elected unanimously.”

Well, as stated, I’m a fan of this move, if only because he is the lesser of two evils. Let’s hope that 2016 doesn’t bring any labor strife.

--Posted at 4:58 pm by Brian Cronin / 24 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: After Pineda’s solid start, Yanks let one get away

The deep eighth-inning drive off Adam Jones’ bat disappeared over the left-center-field fence to find a safe landing spot in the bullpen, and the Yankees’ hopes of catching the Orioles in the American League East may have vanished with it.

Dellin Betances served up a game-tying Jonathan Schoop homer, spoiling his third inning of relief, and Jones blasted a go-ahead three-run homer off Shawn Kelley that sent the Yankees to a 5-3 loss on Wednesday at Camden Yards. The defeat dropped New York a season-high eight games behind Baltimore for the division lead.

“That’s where we are? Well, I think we were more looking at that second Wild Card spot,” Kelley said. “That’s a little bit better number. That seems a little more achievable at this point, but we’ve got to win every day. We’ve got to go out there and we got to win series and we got to win in our division. We didn’t get it done.”

You almost have to love the ability of Bryan Hoch (who is a very good writer) to avoid just pointing out crazy cuckoo bananas this game was by Yankee manager Joe Girardi. He literally brought Dellin Betances in in the 6th inning and then tried to get 2 and 2/3rd innings out of the guy with a 2-1 lead. Say whaaaaaaa???? Like I said, it was just crazy cuckoo bananas. Especially learning after the game that David Robertson was going to come in had Betances gotten the second out of the 8th. So D-Rob could get four outs with an off day tomorrow but not six? For serious?

Yankee killer Jonathan Schoop had a hilarious quote about his success against the Yankees (4 of his 11 home runs have come against the Yankees): “I don’t know exactly why, but I think I put more emphasis, more focus on [those at-bats], I need to learn how to do that every at-bat.” Yeah, probably a good idea there, Schoop. What an odd thing to say.

Anyhow, while clearly this is up there with the most painful losses of the season, I can’t help but come away still pretty pleased about two things…

1. Michael Pineda was excellent. He doesn’t even look fully healed and he was still excellent. I think he’ll even be better once he’s fully healthy. Awesome news for next year.

2. Speaking of next year, Masahiro Tanaka continues to throw without incident. He became the latest flat ground all star today and as he notes, things went well

“It’s feeling really good,” Tanaka said through an interpreter. “Really, I didn’t feel anything special compared to just regular tossing. I thought everything went well.”

It seems pretty hard to believe he seemingly is coming back, but, well, all we can judge is what he’s doing and so far he’s doing okay.

--Posted at 12:25 am by Brian Cronin / 35 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Yankees (61-57) @ Orioles (68-50), Wednesday, 13 August 2014, 7:05pm

Michael Pineda (25, RHP, 2-2, 1.83) vs. Chris Tillman (26, RHP, 9-5, 3.73)

YANKEES
Gardner LF
Jeter SS
Ellsbury CF
Teixeira 1B
Beltran DH
Headley 3B
Drew 2B
Prado RF
Cervelli C

ORIOLES
Markakis RF
Davis 3B
Jones CF
Cruz-DH
Young LF
Pearce 1B
Flaherty SS
Schoop 2B
Hundley C

The Yankees are pretty much screwed this year, but it’s weird, as screwed as they are (and they definitely are screwed) it is just too hard to look at a team that’s 2.5 games out of the playoffs on August 13th and say “Yeah, it’s over. They’re done.” That just can’t be. It is UNLIKELY that they will make the playoffs, but to be so close to the playoffs with over forty games left to play, you just can’t give up yet.

Luckily, even if you disagree with that sentiment, the Yankees are still giving us reasons to pay attention tonight as Michael Pineda returns to the team tonight. He was one of the few early bright spots and if he can return well, then at least 2015 will look a little bit brighter.

--Posted at 5:13 pm by Brian Cronin / 115 Comments | - (0)




Monday, August 11, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees can’t keep up with first-place Orioles

The Yankees arrived at Camden Yards recognizing what a pivotal week this will be for their postseason chances, perhaps determining if they have a realistic shot at the division or should instead focus their attention upon one of the Wild Card spots.

After one game, the early returns aren’t what they would have hoped. Chris Davis hit a go-ahead fifth-inning homer, Nelson Cruz also went deep and the Yankees’ bats couldn’t respond in an 11-3 loss to the American League East-leading Orioles on Monday evening.

Davis started the night on the bench before replacing Manny Machado, who exited in the third inning with a right knee sprain. The slugger’s 21st home run carried deep into the right-field seats off Yanks starter Chris Capuano, boosting Bud Norris to a win in his five-inning effort.


Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright,
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light;
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children run amok,
But there is no joy in New York— because the Yankees fucking suck.

--Posted at 11:22 pm by Brian Cronin / 50 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (61-56) @ Orioles (67-50), Monday, 11 August 2014, 7:05pm

Chris Capuano (35, LHP, 1-2, 3.91) vs.  Bud Norris (29, RHP, 9-7, 3.68)

YANKEES
Gardner LF
Jeter SS
Ellsbury CF
Teixeira 1B
Beltran DH
Headley 3B
Drew 2B
Prado RF
Cervelli C

ORIOLES
Markakis RF
Machado 3B
Jones CF
Cruz DH
Young LF
Pearce 1B
Joseph C
Flaherty SS
Schoop 2B

No Chris Davis or JJ Hardy tonight, so the Yankees really need to win this game. Of course, they “really need” to win every game against Baltimore going forward, seeing as how they are six games back of the Orioles with 45 games to go, but still.

--Posted at 3:40 pm by Brian Cronin / 43 Comments | - (0)



ESPN: Michael Pineda to start Wednesday

The Yankees will forgo another rehab start for Michael Pineda and throw him into the fire for Wednesday night’s series finale against the Baltimore Orioles.

Originally, Esmil Rogers had been listed as the probable starter, and Pineda, who has made two rehab starts for Triple-A Scranton, had been slated to make one more. But with time, and games, running out on the Yankees in their quest to remain in the AL East race—they trail the Orioles by six games, with 10 remaining between the teams—the Yankees have decided to get Pineda back into the rotation.

He will face right-hander Chris Tillman (9-5, 3.73 ERA) in a 7:05 p.m. ET start

It is kind of crazy to think that he hasn’t pitched since April 23rd.

It seems a bit rash to skip a last rehab start to throw him against a decent offense like Baltimore, but I suppose these are desperate times.

--Posted at 2:31 pm by Brian Cronin / 6 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, August 10, 2014

Yankees.com: Kuroda, Yanks go quietly in finale loss to Tribe

It was understandable when the Indians’ Corey Kluber, one of the American League’s top pitchers this season, put the Yankees’ bats to sleep Saturday. But it was quite puzzling, if not frustrating for the 46,152 in attendance, to see Carlos Carrasco produce the same result Sunday.

Making his first start since April 25, Carrasco, who was moved to the bullpen after just four starts this year, limited the Yankees to only two hits over five innings and 77 pitches. The Indians’ bullpen then tossed four solid frames, and the Yankees dropped the rubber match to the Tribe, 4-1.

“We ran into some pretty good pitching this week,” said manager Joe Girardi. “That’s part of the game. You’re going to go through that as an offense.”

After a loud 10 runs on Friday, the Yankees’ offense was baffled again by Cleveland’s pitching staff, which produced 19 straight scoreless innings against them, dating back to the last two innings of Friday’s game. Jacoby Ellsbury hit a solo homer in the ninth to break that streak, but the Yankees’ fifth hit of the day was too little, too late.

This is up there with one of the most embarrassing losses of the season. On top of that, the Tigers blew a five-run lead behind David Price and then lost in the nineteenth inning to the Blue Jays.

Not good, people. Not good.

--Posted at 8:20 pm by Brian Cronin / 15 Comments | - (0)



Indians (58-59) @ Yankees (61-55), Sunday, August 10, 2014, 1:05pm

CLE: Carlos Carrasco (#59, 27, RHP, 3-4, 3.88) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 7-7, 3.97)

Lineups
Cleveland
1. Jason Kipnis (L) 2B
2. Jose Ramirez (S) SS
3. Michael Brantley (L) DH
4. Carlos Santana (S) 1B
5. Yan Gomes (R) C
6. Lonnie Chisenhall (L) 3B
7. Zach Walters (S) LF
8. Chris Dickerson (L) CF
9. Ryan Raburn (R) RF

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
7. Martin Prado (R) 3B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

It would be nice if Kuroda doesn’t give up more runs in the first inning than the Yankees will score all game.

The Yankees are running out of time in their quest for the postseason.  With 46 games remaining for both them and the Orioles, if the Orioles go 23-23 the Yankees would have to go 28-18 just to tie them at 90 wins.  Can this Yankee team play at the equivalent of a 99 win pace over 46 games?  I guess they could, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

The Angels are a game ahead of the Orioles and seem even less likely for the Yankees to catch.  So it’s essentially a four team race for the second wild card spot between surging Kansas City(14-3 in their last 17 games), the Mariners(that get to play Texas and Houson 13 more times), the Blue Jays, and the only one of those four teams that has scored fewer runs than they’ve allowed (the Yankees).

Interestingly, Toronto and Seattle have yet to play this season and have seven games remaining against each other.  So it’s likely those games will have a big impact on which of those teams is still there at the end.  It’s also conceivable that the Royals could catch Detroit for their division lead, which just means the Yankees would be contending against another better team for a wild card spot.

Wouldn’t it be hilarious if the Mariners end up taking that spot, with their margin over the Yankees the difference in WAR between Robinson Cano and a certain highly overpaid CF? A gap that currently sits at about 2.5 wins?

Hilarious.

--Posted at 9:42 am by SG / 46 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, August 9, 2014

Yankees.com: Effective McCarthy absorbs first loss with Yanks

NEW YORK—Brandon McCarthy made one costly mistake, but it was all the Indians needed to ride another dominant performance by Corey Kluber toward Cleveland’s 3-0 victory at Yankee Stadium on Saturday.

McCarthy allowed a two-run home run to Jose Ramirez in the second inning, the rookie shortstop’s first career home run, and Cleveland never looked back.

McCarthy (4-1) was solid again, which has become expected since he was traded to the Yankees last month. The veteran right-hander allowed two runs on seven hits while striking out eight in 6 1/3 innings.

This was McCarthy’s first loss in six starts as a member of the Yankees, and it ended a personal six-game winning streak.

Kluber stifled the Yankees’ offense throughout his six innings. The Yankees mounted their best scoring chance against the right-hander when they led off the sixth inning with a pair of singles, one of which came off the bat of Derek Jeter. The captain’s 3,431st career hit moved him past Honus Wagner and into sole possession of sixth place on Major League Baseball’s all-time list.

It can be annoying when you have one of those tip your hat to the opposing pitcher games when it feels like the offense is to blame and not the pitcher, but this one didn’t feel like that.  Kluber’s on one a hell of a run, and the Yankees couldn’t do much against him.  Paul O’Neill deserved better.

--Posted at 5:46 pm by SG / 17 Comments | - (0)



Indians (57-59) @ Yankees (61-54), Saturday, August 9, 2014, 1:05pm

CLE: Corey Kluber (#28, 28, RHP, 12-6, 2.55) vs. NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 7-10, 4.37)

Lineups
Cleveland
1. Jason Kipnis (L) 2B
2. David Murphy (L) LF
3. Michael Brantley (L) DH
4. Carlos Santana (S) 1B
5. Yan Gomes (R) C
6. Nick Swisher (S) RF
7. Lonnie Chisenhall (L) 3B
8. Jose Ramirez (S) SS
9. Chris Dickerson (L) CF

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Chase Headley (S) 1B
6. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
7. Martin Prado (R) 3B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

Remember how good Masahiro Tanaka was this season?  In some ways, Kluber has been as good or even better.

Player Age Tm Lg W L ERA IP H R ER HR BB SO BF ERA+ FIP WHIP
Kluber 28 CLE AL 12 6 2.55 165.2 144 54 47 10 35 177 664 147 2.49 1.08
Tanaka 25 NYY AL 12 4 2.51 129.1 111 39 36 15 19 135 508 154 3.07 1.01

Needless to say, I am not loving the Yankees’ chances today.  Maybe the pre-game tribute to Paul O’Neill will get them amped up though.

--Posted at 10:31 am by SG / 41 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: One-Legged Man Wins Ass-Kicking Contest

NEW YORK—The home clubhouse at Yankee Stadium was clearing out late on Thursday afternoon, and behind closed doors, the Yankees had decided that Esmil Rogers was the best choice to serve as their spot starter for Friday’s series opener against the Indians.

There was only one problem: Rogers’ cell phone kept kicking over to voice mail, and so manager Joe Girardi guessed that his pitcher was on the subway. Rogers eventually got the message and so did the Yankees’ bats, pounding the Indians in a 10-6 victory.

New York sent 10 men to the plate in a five-run first inning, providing Rogers—who was claimed off waivers from the Blue Jays on July 31—with all of the support he’d need in his first Yankees start.

“Unbelievable; an unbelievable opportunity,” Rogers said. “When you come in the first inning and they got five right away, I just told myself try to throw five or six innings and win the game.”

Rogers worked five solid frames of one-run ball before Carlos Beltran blew the game open in the sixth with his 11th career grand slam and first as a Yankee, crushing a John Axford pitch into the lower deck in right field.

The Indians had intentionally walked Jacoby Ellsbury to load the bases for Beltran, who was 1-for-8 lifetime against Axford before that matchup.

“I faced John Axford many times in the National League; I guess I had maybe like one hit against him,” Beltran said. “He felt that it was the right matchup for me. I was able to put a good at-bat and come through for the team.”

You’d have thought the Yankees could finally win via an easy blowout when they scored five runs in the first. 

You’d have been wrong.  But a win is a win.

Congratulations to Derek Jeter on tying Honus Wagner on the all time hits list.  It’s virtually impossible that Jeter will get past anyone else by the end of the season, but passing Wagner would be a pretty major accomplishment.

--Posted at 12:05 am by SG / 12 Comments | - (0)




Friday, August 8, 2014

Indians (57-58) @ Yankees (60-54), Friday, August 8, 2014, 7:05pm

CLE: Trevor Bauer (#47, 23, RHP, 4-6, 4.20) vs. NYY: Esmil Rogers (#53, 28, RHP, 1-0, 5.84)

Lineups
Cleveland
1. Jason Kipnis (L) 2B
2. Mike Aviles (R) 3B
3. Michael Brantley (L) DH
4. Carlos Santana (S) 1B
5. David Murphy (L) LF
6. Nick Swisher (S) RF
7. Chris Dickerson (L) CF
8. Jose Ramirez (S) SS
9. Roberto Perez (R) C

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Chase Headley (S) 1B
7. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
8. Martin Prado (R) 3B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

The over/under on innings pitched by Rogers tonight is two.
The over/under on runs allowed by Rogers is nine.

--Posted at 2:57 pm by SG / 86 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees: Esmil Rogers will take David Phelps’ start Friday

NEW YORK — The weeklong mystery is finally over.

Esmil Rogers will start for the Yankees against the Indians on Friday, the team said.

David Phelps was set to start the game, but the righty went on the disabled list Monday with elbow inflammation.

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports the team will call up righty Bryan Mitchell from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Mitchell would serve as bullpen depth.

The Yankees claimed Rogers off waivers from the Blue Jays on July 31.

Well, this ought to be interesting.  Rogers has made 42 career starts and has an ERA of 5.59 in those games.  Opposing batters have hit .300/.367/.482 in 1002 plate appearances in those starts.

--Posted at 8:20 am by SG / 22 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, August 7, 2014

Yankees.com: Sun Rises in the West

NEW YORK—It is a small sample size, but the battery of rookie right-hander Shane Greene and catcher Francisco Cervelli has produced favorable results, to the point where Yankees manager Joe Girardi has expressed a preference to keep the pair together.

Now, there is little doubt that Cervelli should count on getting an assignment behind the plate in five days. Greene sailed through eight scoreless innings, scattering four hits to pick up his third Major League win in a 1-0 victory over the Tigers on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.

Greene surrendered a leadoff single to Ian Kinsler in the ninth before Girardi summoned David Robertson, who shut the door for his 31st save as the Yankees took three of four games from the Tigers in the series.

New York produced its only run off starter Rick Porcello in the third inning. Carlos Beltran stroked a two-out single, moved to third on a Chase Headley hit and scored as Stephen Drew lifted a ground-rule double down the left-field line.

Have to be happy beating one of the top two teams in the league three times in a four game series.

Well, not necessarily happy since this team still stinks.  How about, less unhappy?

--Posted at 3:36 pm by SG / 32 Comments | - (0)



Tigers (62-49) @ Yankees (59-54), Thursday, August 7, 2014, 1:05pm

DET: Rick Porcello (#21, 25, RHP, 13-5, 3.18) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 2-1, 3.68)

Lineups
Detroit
1. Rajai Davis (R) LF
2. Ezequiel Carrera (L) CF
3. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. J.D. Martinez (R) RF
6. Don Kelly (L) 1B
7. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
8. Alex Avila (L) C
9. Andrew Romine (S) SS

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Martin Prado (R) 3B
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Chase Headley (S) 1B
6. Stephen Drew (L) SS
7. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

I’m trying to tell if that’s a house money lineup or not.  It kind of is, and it kind of isn’t.

It’s pretty wild that Porcello and Greene are effectively the same age (25 years and 223 days vs. 25 years and 263 days).  One has 1010 MLB innings, and one has 29.1.

The Yankees have already won two more games in this series than I expected them to, but it would be kind of nice if they actually won the series. 

It won’t happen, but it would’ve been nice.

--Posted at 9:35 am by SG / 77 Comments | - (0)



Newsday: Yankees lefthander CC Sabathia knows how it feels to be David Price

The Yankees would have preferred Price to be starting for them rather than the Tigers, who added a third Cy Young winner to their collection with the July 31 deadline deal. It’s not like Brian Cashman didn’t try.

Not only did Cashman call his Rays counterpart, Andrew Friedman, about trading for Price, he also dialed up the Red Sox’s Ben Cherington to discuss Jon Lester and John Lackey. Those conversations didn’t get very far.

Both GMs told Cashman they had been given approval by ownership to trade their elite pitchers anywhere in the majors—except to the Yankees.

Cashman expected as much from the Red Sox. Who do you think came up with the term “Evil Empire” anyway? He held out a sliver of hope on Price, but Friedman soon gave him the thumbs-down. So the Yankees, the contender that most wanted an ace-type starter, got shut out while the two teams that least needed one—the Tigers and A’s—wound up with Price and Lester, respectively.

I can kind of see the Red Sox’s point of view if they do intend to make a serious run at Lester once he hits free agency.  I don’t know why the Rays wouldn’t at least listen to what the Yankees might have offered.

--Posted at 8:18 am by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink a Bit Less

NEW YORK—Brian McCann connected for a go-ahead home run off Justin Verlander in the seventh inning, leading the Yankees to a 5-1 victory over the Tigers on Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium.

Chase Headley also slugged a fifth-inning homer into the second deck in right field, his second as a Yankee, while Verlander remained winless at the current Yankee Stadium.

Chris Capuano received a standing ovation from the home crowd after striking out eight Tigers over 6 2/3 scoreless innings, permitting five hits and just an unearned run.

Adam Warren relieved Capuano after a pair of two-out singles in the seventh, qualifying for the win when McCann gave the Yankees the lead with a blast that carried into the right-field bullpen—his 13th homer of the season.

Warren pitched out of trouble in the eighth after Stephen Drew committed two errors on the same play—bobbling Victor Martinez’s grounder and then throwing wildly to first base. Warren struck out J.D. Martinez and got Nick Castellanos to fly out, stranding two men aboard.

When Drew made his errors I thought for sure this one was going to end up as another tough loss, but kudos to Warren for getting out of a mess.

All is not rosy though, as Mark Teixeira came out of the game with some sort of hand injury, the severity of which is yet to be announced.  Hopefully it won’t be too long.

--Posted at 9:59 pm by SG / 23 Comments | - (0)



Tigers (62-48) @ Yankees (58-54), Wednesday, August 6, 2014, 7:05pm

DET: Verlander (10-9, 4.66) vs. NYY: Capuano (1-2, 4.50)

Lineups
Tigers
1. Rajai Davis (R) LF
2. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
3. Miguel Cabrera (R) 1B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. J.D. Martinez (R) RF
6. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
7. Bryan Holaday (R) C
8. Andrew Romine (S) SS
9. Ezequiel Carrera (L) CF

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Martin Prado (R) RF

A 4.50 ERA is better than a 4.66 ERA.  Advantage, Yankees.

--Posted at 3:50 pm by SG / 53 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

NEW YORK—The Yankees’ one-run victory over the Tigers on Monday marked the team’s 15th straight game decided by two runs or fewer. Manager Joe Girardi said afterward that he didn’t mind the consecutive narrow games so long as they won them.

But Tuesday night, after seeing a two-run lead disappear, and ultimately dropping the second game of the series to Detroit, 4-3, it appeared as though preserving the win in their 16th straight close game had begun to finally wear on them.

Locked in a 3-3 game in the 12th inning, Alex Avila crushed his eighth home run of the season to deep right-center field off Matt Daley in the Yankees reliever’s second inning of work.

The loss spoiled a superb night from Hiroki Kuroda, who spun one of his most efficient games this season, lasting seven innings and surrendering three runs over just 91 pitches.

Annoying game.  Annoying season.

--Posted at 10:27 pm by SG / 30 Comments | - (0)



Tigers (61-48) @ Yankees (58-53), Tuesday, August 5, 2014, 7:05pm

DET: David Price (#14, 28, LHP, 11-8, 3.11) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 7-7, 3.98)

Lineups
Detroit
1. Rajai Davis (R) CF
2. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
3. Miguel Cabrera (R) 1B
4. Victor Martinez (S) DH
5. Torii Hunter (R) RF
6. J.D. Martinez (R) LF
7. Nick Castellanos (R) 3B
8. Alex Avila (L) C
9. Andrew Romine (S) SS

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Martin Prado (R) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

I haven’t seen a matchup this one-sided since yesterday.

--Posted at 4:30 pm by SG / 131 Comments | - (0)



Heyman: Nationals Claim Matt Thornton on Waivers, so the Yankees Let Them Have Him

#nats put in claim on matt thornton, and nats get him

I’m guessing the Yankees jumped at the chance to lose the second year of Thornton’s deal.  On the surface, Thornton’s stats look pretty good with a 3/1 K/BB rate and a 2.55 ERA.  But if you look beyond those,he’s had a negative impact in a lot of the situations he’s been asked to deal with.  His RE24 is -2.54, which I think paints a better picture of how he’s impacted the team.

The Yankees do still have David Huff, who’s not really a lefty specialist.  Then again, I’m not sure Thornton who throws nothing but 92-95 mph straight fastballs was either. 

--Posted at 1:40 pm by SG / 29 Comments | - (0)



WSJ: Masahiro Tanaka Feels Nothing, Yankees Rejoice

Masahiro Tanaka’s priceless right elbow didn’t explode Monday. It didn’t bark, it didn’t grab. The Yankees’ invaluable ace played catch for the first time since he left the rotation in early July with an elbow injury, and there were no tweaks, there was no soreness. It was a normal game of catch, and that represents one of the biggest victories of the Yankee season so far.

“I think it all went well,” Tanaka said.

It was the first major test for Tanaka, whose arm holds the key to the Yankees’ season. After dominating the league for the first three months of the season, Tanaka complained of elbow soreness after a loss to Cleveland on July 8. An MRI revealed he had a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow.

Because the tear was small, doctors advised him to undergo a platelet-rich plasma injection and hope the area would stabilize without season-ending surgery.

Tanaka took three weeks off, finally picking up a baseball on Monday to make 25 throws from 60 feet in the Yankee outfield before the team’s game against Detroit. Had he felt any discomfort at all, his season might have been over. Next season, too.

It seems to me that the true test will be how he feels over the next few days than how he felt yesterday but this is good news.

--Posted at 10:31 am by SG / 17 Comments | - (0)




Monday, August 4, 2014

Yankees.com: Blind Squirrel Finds Acorn

NEW YORK—The Yankees knew that starting a homestand against the American League Central-leading Tigers was going to be challenging. They knew that facing the last three AL Cy Young Award winners in the first three games of their series was going to be even more challenging. They knew that they would need to score runs.

But what they didn’t know—and maybe what they should have known—was that Monday night, Brandon McCarthy was going to be the Brandon McCarthy they’ve come to know over the last few weeks. He outpaced Tigers ace Max Scherzer for nearly six innings, allowing an unearned run, which was just good enough for a hard-fought 2-1 victory for New York.

The win was McCarthy’s fifth win in six Yankees starts in what could be called a midseason renaissance since starting the season 3-10 in Arizona. The most noticeable change he has instituted has been varying his pitch selection, which had become too sinkerball-heavy with the D-backs. His comfort with catcher Brian McCann continued to play a large role in the opener.

On Monday, McCarthy wasn’t his most-dominant self—he had thrown 69 pitches after three innings—but it was his ability to escape jams that impressed. In the second, he avoided bases-loaded trouble by striking out the next three batters, going on to record eight strikeouts.

McCarthy’s certainly making a case to be in the Yankees’ rotation in 2015.

--Posted at 9:48 pm by SG / 20 Comments | - (0)



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