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








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Yankees (55-52) @ Red Sox (48-60), Friday, August 1, 2014, 7:10pm
(2 Comments - 8/1/2014 6:23:57 pm)

The “New” Yankees vs. the “Old” Yankees
(26 Comments - 8/1/2014 5:08:26 pm)

TGS NY: Stephen Drew traded to Yankees
(104 Comments - 8/1/2014 10:33:46 am)

CBS New York: Yankees Linked To Several Players As Trade Deadline Fast Approaches
(143 Comments - 7/31/2014 4:21:33 pm)

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink
(14 Comments - 7/31/2014 9:54:54 am)

Yankees (55-51) @ Rangers (42-65), Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 8:05pm
(39 Comments - 7/30/2014 11:14:18 pm)

Yankees.com: Seven-run sixth helps Yanks hold off Rangers
(6 Comments - 7/30/2014 7:21:07 pm)

The Sustainability of TPBG
(18 Comments - 7/30/2014 4:34:22 pm)

Yankees (54-51) @ Rangers (42-64), Tuesday, July 29, 2014, 8:05pm
(101 Comments - 7/30/2014 12:22:46 am)

Anonymous MLB Scout: They[The Yankees] have more in their farm system than people think
(19 Comments - 7/29/2014 4:48:09 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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Friday, August 1, 2014

Yankees (55-52) @ Red Sox (48-60), Friday, August 1, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-1, 4.30) vs. BOS: Anthony Ranaudo (#0, 24, RHP, 0-0, undef)

Lineups
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. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

Boston
1. Brock Holt (L) RF
2. Dustin Pedroia (R) 2B
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
5. Allen Craig (R) LF
6. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS
7. Will Middlebrooks (R) 3B
8. David Ross (R) C
9. Mookie Betts (R) CF

These games used to mean something.

Apparently Martin Prado was acquired to ride the pine…

--Posted at 4:30 pm by SG / 2 Comments | - (0)



The “New” Yankees vs. the “Old” Yankees

With the recent acquisitions of Chase Headley, Stephen Drew and Martin Prado, it’s fair to say the Yankees should have a better lineup going forward than they’ve had for most of the season.  The question is, how much better?

Here are the rest of the season Steamer projections for the Yankees’ most frequently used lineup to this point of the season.

Order Player Pos PA wOBA Outs BR
1 Brett Gardner LF 4.45 .328 3 0.54
2 Derek Jeter SS 4.00 .311 3 0.42
3 Jacoby Ellsbury CF 4.00 .332 3 0.51
4 Mark Teixeira 1B 4.00 .348 3 0.54
5 Brian McCann C 4.00 .336 3 0.50
6 Carlos Beltran DH 4.00 .353 3 0.57
7 Ichiro Suzuki RF 4.00 .297 3 0.39
8 Brian Roberts 2B 4.00 .296 3 0.42
9 Kelly Johnson 3B 4.00 .318 3 0.53
36.45 .324 24.00 4.41
p162 714.85

wOBA: Weighted on-base average
BR: Linear weights batting runs
Outs: Outs made at the plate per game

Here’s what the lineup could look like now with the new additions.

Order Player Pos PA wOBA Outs BR
1 Brett Gardner LF 4.56 .328 3 0.55
2 Derek Jeter SS 4.00 .311 3 0.42
3 Jacoby Ellsbury CF 4.00 .332 3 0.51
4 Mark Teixeira 1B 4.00 .348 3 0.54
5 Brian McCann C 4.00 .336 3 0.50
6 Carlos Beltran DH 4.00 .353 3 0.57
7 Chase Headley 3B 4.00 .337 3 0.51
8 Martin Prado RF 4.00 .322 3 0.47
9 Stephen Drew 2B 4.00 .306 3 0.43
36.56 .330 24.00 4.50
p162 728.96

Standard caveats about projections apply.  They are imprecise attempts to estimate a player’s true talent and could be inaccurate in either direction for a myriad number of reasons.

The Yankees added about one-tenth of a run per game.  Over a full season that might be worth a win or two.  We can also probably assume that the defense will be better with Headley at 3B and Drew at 2B, although he’s never played the position before.

The Yankees still face long odds to qualify for the postseason given where they are in the standings and the fact that they still aren’t a particularly good team.  But they are better today than they were on Wednesday, and they did it without harming themselves in the long-term.

It’s hard to complain about that.

--Posted at 9:10 am by SG / 26 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, July 31, 2014

TGS NY: Stephen Drew traded to Yankees

The Boston Red Sox have completed a rare trade with the rival New York Yankees, sending shortstop Stephen Drew to New York, sources told ESPN.

Drew was the fourth member of the Red Sox to be dealt ahead of Thursday’s non-waiver trade deadline, joining Jon Lester, John Lackey and Andrew Miller in the mass exodus from Boston.

Drew joins a Yankees infield that already includes shortstop Derek Jeter, third baseman Chase Headley and shortstop Brian Roberts.

Wow.  I am pumped for the rest of the season now.  Adding a 63 OPS+ bat to displace Brian Roberts’s 85 OPS+ was really the missing piece.

My guess, Kelly Johnson (who got traded for Drew) will out-WAR him over the rest of the season.  My other guess, it’s an irrelevant move.

Just like how the Yankees are becoming irrelevant.

Update: Yankees have acquired [Martin] Prado from Arizona

Prado’s a pretty valuable player because he hits around league average and can play pretty good defense at 3B, 2B and LF.  He’s signed for two more seasons so he gives the Yankees some flexibility when trying to construct their roster going forward.  The cost is believed to be Pete O’Brien, who’s shown great power in the minors, but whose defense and plate discipline make hinder him in his quest for a significant major league career.

--Posted at 3:00 pm by SG / 104 Comments | - (0)



CBS New York: Yankees Linked To Several Players As Trade Deadline Fast Approaches

What they do before Thursday’s 4 p.m. non-waiver trade deadline will likely shape whether or not they make the postseason.

Yankees working hard on trying to improve rotation and bullpen according to a pair of NL GM’s.— Nick Cafardo (@nickcafardo) July 29, 2014

With starting pitchers CC Sabathia (knee) and Ivan Nova (elbow) out for the season, and the likelihood of Masahiro Tanaka (elbow) getting back to pre-injury form sketchy at best, the Yankees have gotten by with the likes of youngsters David Phelps, Chase Whitley and Shane Greene, but they likely cannot be counted on during a pennant race. The Bombers hope to get Michael Pineda (shoulder) back in the middle of August, but definitely could use another starter.

According to multiple reports the Yankees have been linked to big ticket items like Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies, as well as solid youngster Jake Arrieta of the Chicago Cubs and veteran left-hander Brett Anderson of the Colorado Rockies.

I predict the Yankees will make a move or two, but it won’t help them much.  Hopefully it won’t hurt them further down the line.

--Posted at 8:49 am by SG / 143 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

ARLINGTON—One night after producing their biggest inning of the season, the Yankees’ bats quickly went cold against Colby Lewis and the Rangers’ pitching staff in a 3-2 loss on Wednesday at Globe Life Park.

Lewis retired the final 13 batters he faced in a sharp seven-inning outing, recording his second quality start against the Yankees in a week. Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury hit solo homers, accounting for the Yanks’ only run production.

After Derek Jeter was honored by a pregame ceremony that included a surprise appearance by former President George W. Bush, Hiroki Kuroda allowed three first-inning runs as the Yankees were handed their fourth defeat in the last five games.

In the five-hit first inning, Elvis Andrus ripped a run-scoring double down the left-field line, Adrian Beltre knocked home a run with a single to center field, and Leonys Martin blooped a run-scoring hit in front of Gardner in left field.

Very impressive showing by the offense tonight.  In their defense, when you’re facing a tough customer like Colby Lewis, runs are hard to come by.

--Posted at 10:15 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (55-51) @ Rangers (42-65), Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (39, RHP, 7-6, 3.99) vs. TEX: Colby Lewis (34, RHP, 6-8, 6.23)

Lineups
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. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
8. Zoilo Almonte (S) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

Rangers
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) DH
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) LF
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I hope Kuroda’s up for going nine innings today.  Well eight, since the Rangers won’t need to bat in the bottom of the ninth.

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



The Sustainability of TPBG

Brett Gardner came into 2014 with a career SLG of .381 in 2228 PA.  Gardner’s been a very valuable player for the Yankees in his career, but it’s primarily been due to his ability to get on base at an above-average rate, his ability to use his speed on the bases, and his defense in the outfield.  Since he was often called “The Speedy Brett Gardner” and I am too lazy to keep typing that, he became TSBG.

After a couple of big games in Texas Gardner is now slugging .455 this year and he has hit 13 home runs in 385 at bats this season after hitting 23 in 1932 prior at bats in MLB.  If Gardner has roughly a .381 true talent SLG, here is the standard deviation of his slugging percentage.

+2:.434
+1:.408
Mean:.381
-1: .354
-2: .328

Now it’s worth noting that players do add power as they get older.  If Gardner is closer to a .400 SLG true talent player now, his .455 is still about two standard deviations above his mean.

The truth is, Gardner’s been a different player over the last two season.

Year PA AVG OBP SLG OPS+ BB/PA K/PA P/PA GB% FB% LD% BABIP
2008-2012 1619 .266 .355 .368 93 11.0% 19.5% 4.29 49.3% 28.4% 18.4% .319
2013-2014 1052 .277 .349 .432 116 8.9% 24.0% 4.32 46.6% 29.5% 19.6% .341

He’s been swinging at more pitches, which has led to a reduced walk rate and an increased strikeout rate.  But more importantly, it also means he’s been hitting the ball harder, and he’s been a more valuable offensive player.  The walks have been mostly replaced by hits so his OBP has not changed much, and he’s still seeing a lot of pitches in every plate appearance.  He’s gone from The Speedy Brett Gardner to The Powerful Brett Gardner.

Can he keep it up?  I don’t know. 

Using Baseball-Reference’s play index, I found 472 players that had at least 2000 PA and a SLG of less than .400 through age 29.  Of those players, just 14 had at least 2000 more PA and slugged over .400.

Gardner doesn’t have to slug .400 to still be pretty useful, and it’s been fun to watch his progression to where he is now.  Here’s hoping he can continue to defy the odds.

--Posted at 9:54 am by SG / 18 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Seven-run sixth helps Yanks hold off Rangers

ARLINGTON—The Yankees erupted for their biggest inning of the season on Tuesday night, sending 11 men to the plate in a seven-run sixth inning. It could have been a laugher, but instead they had to hang on for a 12-11 victory over the Rangers at Globe Life Park.

Brett Gardner had four hits, including a homer, as the Yankees snapped a three-game losing streak. They rallied to wipe away an early deficit, helping Brandon McCarthy notch his third victory in four starts since joining the club earlier this month.

It didn’t come easily; J.P. Arencibia drove in seven runs for Texas, hitting a seventh-inning grand slam off Dellin Betances, Arencibia’s second homer of the night. Arencibia entered the game batting .152 and finished 4-for-4, also stroking a pair of doubles.

New York was limited to Gardner’s leadoff homer, his career-high 13th long ball of the season, before they pounded Rangers rookie Nick Martinez in the decisive sixth inning. The Yanks did their damage on five hits, two walks, a sac fly and an error.

That was a lot more stressful than it needed to be.

--Posted at 12:10 am by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Yankees (54-51) @ Rangers (42-64), Tuesday, July 29, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 5-10, 4.49) vs. TEX: Nick Martinez (#22, 23, RHP, 1-6, 4.73)

Lineups
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. Zoilo Almonte (S) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

Rangers
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) LF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) DH
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I am stunned that Almonte is getting a second consecutive start.  They must be trying to showcase him for a trade.

--Posted at 4:08 pm by SG / 101 Comments | - (0)



Anonymous MLB Scout: They[The Yankees] have more in their farm system than people think

One American League scout on the Yankees’ farm system: “They have more in their farm system than people think. They have some arms, they have the Aaron Judge kid, [Luis] Severino, [Gary] Sanchez, [Peter] O’Brien, [Eric] Jagielo. If they wanted to make a deal, they have enough to give up.”

Sure, if the Yankees are willing to trade most of their top five prospects they can make a deal. 

I sure hope they don’t.

--Posted at 9:12 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Monday, July 28, 2014

Yankees.com: Gardner has Yu’s number, but Yanks fall in Texas

ARLINGTON—Brett Gardner continued to show off his head-scratching dominance of Yu Darvish, but the Rangers batted around against David Phelps in a four-run fifth inning and defeated the Yankees, 4-2, on Monday night at Globe Life Park.

New York lost its third straight game, flushing an early lead on a night when Gardner homered twice and Derek Jeter went 3-for-4, passing Carl Yastrzemski with his 3,420th career hit and claiming sole possession of seventh place on baseball’s all-time list.

J.P. Arencibia’s two-run single with two outs served as the go-ahead knock off Phelps, who had hurled four scoreless innings to start the game but left a mistake over the plate on an 0-2 pitch to the Texas first baseman, who came into the game batting .147.

- Yu Darvish is very good
- The Yankee offense aside from TPBG is not. 
- David Phelps made one bad pitch to Arencibia, and that was pretty much the game.

The Yankees have dropped three straight games.

--Posted at 10:14 pm by SG / 8 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (54-50) @ Rangers (41-64), Monday, July 28, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 5-4, 3.77) vs. TEX: Yu Darvish (#0, 27, RHP, 9-6, 2.92)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) 1B
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Chase Headley (S) 3B
6. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Zoilo Almonte (S) LF

Rangers
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) RF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) DH
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) LF
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Chris Gimenez (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I don’t suppose there’s any chance this game can get rained out after 5 innings?

The Yankees have recalled Zoilo Almonte for some bizarre reason, and have designated Jeff Francis for assignment.  He will be missed.

--Posted at 5:39 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)



USA Today: Injured Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki shows up at Yankees game

Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, who landed on the 15-day disabled list with a hip flexor strain, flew to Philadelphia Saturday to have a specialist examine him. According to MLB.com’s Thomas Harding, Tulowtizki visited Dr. William Meyers, who performed surgery on Tulowitzki in 2012. It’s not uncommon for players to seek a second opinion from a trusted doctor, and no one could criticize Tulowitzki for making his health a priority.

What is a little strange was Tulowitzki’s appearance at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. Tulowitzki went to New York and was shown on the YES Network during the Blue Jays-Yankees game.

Tulowitzki, who has spent his entire career in Colorado, and is a four-time All-Star. Tulowitzki signed a six-year contract extension in 2010 guaranteeing more than $150 million that would keep him in Colorado until 2020. With the Rockies in last place in the NL West, they may prefer to send Tulowitzki elsewhere.

The timing of Tulowitzki’s visit to the Yankees is awkward for a few reasons. He said before the season started that it would be an “honor” to replace Derek Jeter as the Yankees’ shortstop, and said in July that he doesn’t want to become baseball’s Dan Marino.

If Tulowitzki really wants to win a World Series title, there are probably much better places to go than the Yankees.

--Posted at 2:37 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees end homestand with 5-4 loss to Blue Jays

NEW YORK – The Yankees’ 10-game post-All-Star break homestand covered the gamut, starting with celebration and renewed hope following a sweep of the Cincinnati Reds.

Then, there was a wild and whacky four-game set with the Texas Rangers that included a 14-inning marathon, heroics from newly-acquired third baseman Chase Headley and a frightening thunderstorm and tarp fiasco by the grounds crew. The Yankees won three of four.

It ended in bitter disappointment as they dropped the final two games of a three-game set to the division rival Toronto Blue Jays, including a 5-4 loss this afternoon at Yankee Stadium before 45,063 sun-splashed fans, among them Rockies All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

“Any loss is tough, especially in the second half,” said reliever Dellin Betances, who allowed a run. “We had a great homestand but we had a chance to win this series today.”

Despite the loss, the Yankees (54-50) finished their crucial homestand with a 7-3 mark and made up ground in the AL East and the second wild card race.
At the All-Star break, the Yankees trailed the Orioles by five games in the division race and were 3 ½ games out of the second wild card. They are now four games behind Baltimore and one game behind Toronto for the second wild card.

Before the homestand I’d have been happy with 7-3, but to win seven of the first eight and then drop the last two winnable games to a team that you are fighting with in the standings is pretty rough and kind of takes the luster off the homestand.

--Posted at 8:23 am by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, July 26, 2014

Blue Jays (54-50) @ Yankees (54-48), Saturday, July 26, 2014, 1:05pm

TOR: Drew Hutchison (#36, 23, RHP, 6-9, 4.54) vs. NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-1, 4.55)

Lineups
Toronto
TBA

Yankees
TBA

Chris Capuano makes his long-awaited Yankee debut!

--Posted at 9:22 am by SG / 92 Comments | - (0)




Friday, July 25, 2014

Blue Jays (54-49) @ Yankees (53-48), Friday, July 25, 2014, 7:05pm

TOR: Mark Buehrle (#0, 35, LHP, 10-6, 2.86) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 6-6, 3.88)

Lineups
Toronto
TBA

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) 1B
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

--Posted at 2:30 pm by SG / 52 Comments | - (0)



MLB.com: Cashman prioritizes adding bat before August

NEW YORK—The reformulated Yankees rotation has performed better than Brian Cashman would have anticipated, and the general manager said that he’d prefer to focus his attention on acquiring a big bat as the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches.

“It’s weird,” Cashman said in an interview with ESPN New York 98.7 FM. “Our pitching has been drastically altered because of the injuries, and despite losing four out of five starters and all that stuff, our pitching has survived—surprisingly—to this point. I think our offense should be better.

“It still feels like the pitching needs more help, but honestly, the offense has been consistently poor throughout the entire year. The answer has to be an offensive piece, I guess.”

I’ve felt all along this team was a few bats short of a legitimate offense.  I’m encouraged that Cashman feels the same way.  The most obvious place where they could use an upgrade is probably RF if we assume Beltran is more or less restricted to one pitch plate appearances as a DH.  But I haven’t really looked at who might fit the bill and would be available.  I still don’t understand why they won’t give Zoilo Almonte a legitimate shot at MLB playing time.  All it would cost them is some Ichiro plate appearances…

--Posted at 10:04 am by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, July 24, 2014

CBS Sports: Yankees acquire Chris Capuano from Rockies for cash

The New York Yankees have acquired left-handed pitcher Chris Capuano from the Colorado Rockies for cash considerations, the club announced Thursday evening.

The Yankees will be the third franchise for Capuano this season, as he started off with the Red Sox and was later released on July 1. He then signed a minor-league deal with the Rockies on July 4.

Eh, why not?

--Posted at 9:00 pm by SG / 7 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Victorious McCarthy continues to stabilize Yanks

NEW YORK—When Brandon McCarthy learned he’d been traded to the Yankees earlier this month, the right-hander experienced a rush of relief, knowing that his unimpressive season statistics could effectively be flushed. This would be, he said, a fresh start.

McCarthy is making the most of that second season, fitting nicely into pinstripes and providing the Yankees with another solid outing on Thursday. He permitted just one run over six innings as New York defeated the Rangers, 4-2, at Yankee Stadium.

Chase Headley and Francisco Cervelli each contributed run-scoring hits against Texas starter Colby Lewis to pace the attack as the Yankees took three of four games from the Rangers.

Acquired from the D-backs on July 6 in exchange for left-hander Vidal Nuno, McCarthy has bolstered a reconstructed Yankees staff, improving to 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA in his three starts for New York. He was 3-10 with a 5.01 ERA with Arizona.

The pitching continues to carry this team.

--Posted at 3:07 pm by SG / 20 Comments | - (0)



Rangers (40-61) @ Yankees (52-48), Thursday, July 24, 2014, 1:05pm

TEX: Colby Lewis (#48, 34, RHP, 6-7, 6.37) vs. NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 4-10, 4.63)

Lineups
Texas
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) LF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) 1B
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) DH
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

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

It would be nice if this game also got rained out after four and a half innings since the Yankees tend to do what little scoring they do in the first three.

--Posted at 11:36 am by SG / 55 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Yankees.com: Phelps, Yanks take rain-shortened win over Rangers

NEW YORK—David Phelps hurled five strong innings and Brett Gardner homered as the Yankees defeated the Rangers, 2-1, in a rain-shortened game on Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium.

Heavy rain and wind stopped play at 8:46 p.m. ET with one out in the home half of the fifth inning, and the Yankees’ grounds crew needed 14 more minutes to apply the tarpaulin.

The game was called nearly two hours later, once it was determined the field was unplayable for the rest of the night.

Phelps was credited with the first complete game of his career, and is the first Yankees pitcher with a complete game and save in the same season since 2006, when Chien-Ming Wang accomplished the double.

The Yankees produced two runs in 4 1/3 innings against Texas starter Yu Darvish, who scattered four hits and was charged with the loss; both runs came across in the third inning.

Yay rain!

--Posted at 11:21 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0)



Rangers (40-60) @ Yankees (51-48), Wednesday, July 23, 2014, 7:05pm

TEX: Yu Darvish (#0, 27, RHP, 9-5, 2.88) vs. NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 4-4, 3.87)

Lineups
Texas
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) LF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) 1B
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) DH
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Chris Gimenez (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

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) 1B
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

Remember when the Yankees made a comically low “bid” on Yu Darvish?

--Posted at 2:48 pm by SG / 64 Comments | - (0)



Dan Szymborski: Headley RoS ZiPS in Yankee Stadium

Headley RoS ZiPS in Yankee Stadium: 253/331/426.

That .757 OPS would rank fourth on the Yankees right now.

--Posted at 9:06 am by SG / 9 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Yankees.com: Newcomer Headley Yanks’ walk-off hero in 14th

NEW YORK—In his first game as a Yankee, Chase Headley connected for a game-winning single in the 14th inning, lifting the Yankees to a 2-1 victory over the Rangers late Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium.

The decisive hit came off right-hander Nick Tepesch, the ninth Texas pitcher of the evening. Brian Roberts laced a one-out ground-rule double, and Francisco Cervelli singled through the right side of the infield to set up Headley’s flare to left-center field.

J.P. Arencibia had put the Rangers ahead in the top half of the 13th with a solo home run into the left-field bullpen off left-hander David Huff, marking the first run of the game.

The Yankees answered in the home half, as Brett Gardner greeted closer Joakim Soria with a double, advanced on a sacrifice and scored on Jacoby Ellsbury’s single to right field. After another hit, Soria got Brian McCann to hit into a inning-ending double play.

--Posted at 11:12 pm by SG / 9 Comments | - (0)



Rangers (40-59) @ Yankees (50-48), Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 7:05pm

TEX: Nick Martinez (#22, 23, RHP, 1-6, 5.10) vs. NYY: Chase Whitley (#39, 25, RHP, 4-3, 5.10)

Lineups
Texas
1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) RF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Jim Adduci (L) LF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Leonys Martin (L) CF
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
8. Rougned Odor (L) 2B
9. Daniel Robertson (R) DH

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) 1B
6. Kelly Johnson (L) RF
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B

Yawn.

--Posted at 4:15 pm by SG / 107 Comments | - (0)



MLB Trade Rumors: Yankees Acquire Chase Headley

The Yankees announced that they have officially acquired Chase Headley from the Padres. The Yankees will send Yangervis Solarte and minor league right-hander Rafael De Paula to the Padres in return for Headley and $1MM.

Headley, a lifetime member of the Padres, is hitting just .229/.296/.355 with seven homers this season, though he’s playing outstanding defense at third base, per both UZR/150 (+19.7) and Defensive Runs Saved (+7). Headley is earning $10.535MM in 2014, of which $3.97MM remains. He is eligible for free agency following the season.

I don’t get the point, but whatever.

--Posted at 12:51 pm by SG / 24 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Yankees commit five errors in 4-2 loss to Texas Rangers

On Monday night, it wasn’t easy being Greene.

A sloppy, five-error effort and a slew of lifeless bats caused the Yankees to drop a 4-2 game to the AL-worst Rangers in front of 45,278 in the Bronx. Rookie starter Shane Greene took his first career loss in his first appearance at Yankee Stadium in a game in which the Yankees had as many errors as hits.

“It was an ugly game on our part,” Joe Girardi said. “Our defense was bad, we weren’t swinging the bats particularly well. Their pitcher worked hard the first two innings and he ends up getting into the eighth inning. It was an ugly game.”

The Yankees (50-48) struck first with some small ball in the first. Derek Jeter drew a one-out walk, advanced to second on a balk and then to third on an infield hit by Jacoby Ellsbury. Carlos Beltran brought him home with a sacrifice fly. Ellsbury would later put the Bombers up 2-1 with a home run over the right field wall to lead off the fourth.

Nothing like losing to team that had lost 20 of its last 24 games.

I thought Joe Girardi stuck with Greene one batter too long, but I also figured that when Matt Thornton came in he’d blow it.  To be fair to Thornton, the hit that gave the Rangers the lead would likely have been fielded if the Yankees hadn’t put a Derek Jeter figurine at shortstop last night.  If you were to look at surface stats like ERA or FIP, Thornton has been okay this year, but if you look at his RE24 which estimates how his performances have changed the opposing team’s run expectancy he’s been pretty terrible (-5.21).  To put that in context, Dellin Betances’s RE24 this season is 22.67.

Again though, if this team had an offense it’s a game they probably would have won.  But they don’t.  So they didn’t.

--Posted at 8:52 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Monday, July 21, 2014

Rangers (39-59) @ Yankees (50-47), Monday, July 21, 2014, 7:05pm

TEX: Miles Mikolas (#36, 25, RHP, 0-2, 10.05) vs. NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 2-0, 1.32)

Lineups
Rangers
TBA

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Carlos Beltran DH
5. Kelly Johnson (L) 1B
6. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B

Is tonight the night Shane Greene gets exposed?  Texas is injury-ravaged, but their team OPS+ of 94 blows away the Yankees’ OPS+ of 93.

--Posted at 3:43 pm by SG / 46 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: A Bloop Leads to a Blooper, Lifting the Yankees to a Sweep

When a batter is facing a pitcher who throws 102 miles per hour, there is not really time for directional hitting. It is the kind of heat that sends murmurs through the crowd during warm-ups. The pop of the baseball when it hits the catcher’s mitt echoes an extra beat, and even major league hitters take notice of the radar-gun readings. At the plate, hitters just hope for the best.

They perhaps hope, as Brian McCann did, that the angle of the afternoon sun coupled with a light southerly breeze might play tricks on a languid pop-up to short right field and help it drop for a hit.

It does not happen often, but it happened Sunday to account for the Yankees’ winning hit in a 3-2 victory against the Cincinnati Reds at Yankee Stadium.

Reds closer Aroldis Chapman faced three batters in the ninth inning and threw 15 pitches that reached triple digits. But after a leadoff single by Jacoby Ellsbury, who stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch, Chapman could not escape the inning with a 2-2 tie intact. He struck out Mark Teixeira to get one out before McCann blooped a 1-0 pitch into right that fell among three Reds fielders.

Much has been made of McCann’s recent performance since he’s hit .310/.333/.437 over his last 75 PA.  But I’d say that with his BABIP of .364 over that stretch and the relatively low isolated power and discipline in that data as well as the ridiculously small sample size of it I’m not all that convinced he’s turned the corner just yet.

That being said, I think he’ll be a significantly better in the second half.

The Yankees were fortunate to catch Cincinnati with Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips out, but a sweep is a sweep.  Yay sweep.

--Posted at 9:31 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, July 20, 2014

Reds (51-46) @ Yankees (49-47), Sunday, July 20, 2014, 1:05pm

CIN: Johnny Cueto (#47, 28, RHP, 10-6, 2.13) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 6-6, 4.10)

Lineups
Reds
TBA

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

I still can’t believe the 2014 Yankees scored a week’s worth of runs in one game.  Have the Yankees swept a series yet this year?  With Cueto going I don’t like their chances today.  As opposed to all the other days where I also don’t like their chances.

--Posted at 10:03 am by SG / 45 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, July 19, 2014

Reds (51-45) @ Yankees (48-47), Saturday, July 19, 2014, 1:05pm

CIN: Alfredo Simon (#0, 33, RHP, 12-3, 2.70) vs. NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 3-10, 4.80)

Lineups
Reds
1. Billy Hamilton (S) CF
2. Zack Cozart (R) SS
3. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
5. Devin Mesoraco (R) C
6. Brayan Pena (S) 1B
7. Chris Heisey (R) LF
8. Donald Lutz (L) DH
9. Kristopher Negron (R) 2B

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

Alfredo Simon has a FIP of 4.34.  Brandon McCarthy has a FIP of 3.76.

Advantage Yankees!

--Posted at 10:34 am by SG / 50 Comments | - (0)




Friday, July 18, 2014

Reds (51-44) @ Yankees (47-47), Friday, July 18, 2014, 7:05 pm

CIN: Mike Leake (#44, 26, RHP, 7-7, 3.54) vs. NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 3-4, 3.94)

Lineups
Reds
1. Billy Hamilton (S) CF
2. Zack Cozart (R) SS
3. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
5. Devin Mesoraco (R) C
6. Ryan Ludwick (R) DH
7. Brayan Pena (S) 1B
8. Chris Heisey (R) LF
9. Ramon Santiago (S) 2B

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

There was a time not long ago where the All Star Break seemed interminable. 

Now I’m sad it’s already over.

--Posted at 3:47 pm by SG / 18 Comments | - (0)



NJ.com: Yankees Midseason Report: Much needs to happen to save the season

Disorder surrounds the Yankees.

High-priced bats have failed. Injuries have shredded the pitching staff. And there doesn’t seem to be anyone on the trade market who can ride to the rescue. They are a .500 team, and yet, they are contenders.

As the Yankees open the second half tonight in the Bronx against the Cincinnati Reds, they are 3 ½ games removed from the second Wild Card spot in the American League, and against the odds, still carry grand, Yankee-esque aspirations.

A tough climb awaits them, along with a nervous question. Will their knockout rookie, Masahiro Tanaka, and his ailing right elbow return this season? If not, sport’s most storied franchise may wind up out of the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time in twenty years, leaving the club with final drama: The countdown to Derek Jeter’s final game.

I don’t really like the Yankees’ chances over the remainder of the season, but I guess I could envision a scenario where they sneak into the postseason.  I think it will have to be done via winning the division, not through a wild card spot.  The Angels and Mariners are currently sitting in the two wild card slots and get to play more games against Texas and Houston teams that aren’t very good.  You could counter that by saying the Yankees get games against Tampa Bay and Boston teams that have similar records to Texas and Houston but I would argue that those records are misleading and both teams are better than they’ve shown so far.

Anyway, we’ll see what happens.  I am not expecting them to make the postseason this year, so I’d like to see a few things happen with an eye towards 2015.

1) Masahiro Tanaka comes back healthy.
2) Michael Pineda returns to the mound and finishes the season well
3) Robert Refsnyder gets called up at some point and shows enough to be penciled in as the starting 2B next season.
4) Luis Severino dominates AA and puts himself into the rotation picture for the tail-end of 2015.
5) David Robertson re-signed.

I’d also like to see Derek Jeter stay healthy and get up to sixth place on the all-time hits list.

What I don’t want to see and what I am very fearful of seeing are dumb trades that further mortgage an already shaky future for maybe a 10% chance at a 50% chance of getting into a postseason series.

--Posted at 9:22 am by SG / 16 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Yankees.com: Jeter goes out in style to fitting All-Star farewell

MINNEAPOLIS—The afternoon of Derek Jeter’s final All-Star Game started with a ride in the back of a slow-moving pickup truck, waving to the crowds along the red-carpeted streets of Minneapolis as the vehicle rolled toward the players’ entrance of Target Field.

It concluded with the retiring Yankees captain doffing his cap to a standing ovation that lasted more than three minutes, finishing 2-for-2 with a double and a run scored as the American League’s leadoff hitter before being replaced at shortstop for the fourth inning.

“Any player that says they don’t want to go to an All-Star Game is lying to you,” Jeter said. “It’s something everyone wants to be a part of. I’ve been fortunate to be a part of a few of them and I’m happy that I had a chance to do it one last time.”

I didn’t watch the game all that closely as I was over at someone’s house for a late dinner but I did watch some of it later on DVR and it wasn’t nearly as tacky as I was expecting it to be, especially when Mike Trout deservedly won the MVP over Jeter despite Jeter’s solid performance.  Seeing the vile Bud Selig made me wonder how his farewell tour was going.  I haven’t heard much about it for some reason.

The season will resume Friday, with David Phelps toeing the rubber at home against Cincinnati.  If you want to get a sense of the Yankees’ chances over the rest of the season, realize that their first three starters after the All Star Break when you can essentially set your rotation to your best advantage are Phelps, Brandon McCarthy and Hiroki Kuroda.

It’s not impossible the Yankees can make a run at a postseason spot.  But it’s pretty damn unlikely at this point.  I don’t really have the interest in running my Monte Carlo simulations but I’ll just point to the Fangraphs playoff odds instead.

Division winning odds: 8.3 %
Wild card odds: 3.0 %
Qualifying for postseason odds: 11.4 %
Making it to the divisional series odds: 9.8 %

I don’t know what those assume about a return by Masahiro Tanaka, but that’s pretty much a requirement for this team to have any actual chance at making a postseason run.  The Yankees have 68 games left this season.  If they play at a 95 win pace they would win 40 of them and end the year at 87 wins.  That could win the AL East. 

And monkeys could fly out of my butt.

--Posted at 7:10 am by SG / 78 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, July 15, 2014

N.L. All-Stars @ A.L. All-Stars, Tuesday, July 15, 2014, 8:00 pm

NLS: Adam Wainwright (#0, 32, RHP, 12-4, 1.83) vs. ALS: Felix Hernandez (#0, 28, RHP, 11-2, 2.12)

Lineups
NL
CF Andrew McCutchen, Pirates
RF Yasiel Puig, Dodgers
SS Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies
1B Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks
DH Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins
3B Aramis Ramirez, Brewers
2B Chase Utley, Phillies
C Jonathan Lucroy, Brewers
LF Carlos Gomez, Brewers

AL
SS Derek Jeter, Yankees
LF Mike Trout, Angels
2B Robinson Cano, Mariners
1B Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
RF Jose Bautista, Blue Jays
DH Nelson Cruz, Orioles
CF Adam Jones, Orioles
3B Josh Donaldson, Athletics
C Salvador Perez, Royals

Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter, Derek Jeter.


Derek Jeter.

--Posted at 3:48 pm by SG / 43 Comments | - (0)



USA Today: Derek Jeter remains stoic in final All-Star appearance

MINNEAPOLIS — They are freaking out everywhere in this city.

Fans are lined up across the street from the players’ downtown hotel, screaming at the mere sight of him.

Teammates are calling it among the greatest thrills of their lives.

His opponents already are scheming on different ways to celebrate the occasion.

I thought Mariano Rivera’s All Star Game appearance last year was one of the highlights of the 2013 season.  I fear this one is going to be far less organic and the leaked Nike commercial has already soured me on what we are likely to see.

But it will be nice for Jeter to get a send-off from all of baseball, even one as overwrought and forced as tonight’s will likely be.  It’s not just Jeter retiring, it’s pretty much the final nail in the coffin of the late 90s Yankees, one of the best stretches of baseball that any fan of any team at any time in history got to enjoy.

Those days are long gone. It’s hard to believe the 1998 team was 16 years ago and it’s hard to believe that Jeter’s sublime 1999 was 15 years ago.  He doesn’t look that much different, aside from the hair being gone…

--Posted at 8:02 am by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)




Monday, July 14, 2014

Yankees.com: Whitley, Yanks suffer rain-shortened loss to O’s

BALTIMORE—When Chris Davis punched an opposite-field home run out of Oriole Park at Camden Yards to put the O’s ahead of the Yankees in the fourth inning on Sunday, it just seemed like a blow.

The Yankees, in need of a win to take two of three from the Orioles and cut their division lead to three games, still had five innings to make a comeback. After 4 1/2 innings, the wind picked up and the rain started falling in Baltimore. A delay began.

An hour passed. Then two. With 4 1/2 more innings separating baseball from the All-Star break, there was an urgency for the two teams’ five All-Stars to make their way to Minneapolis for the festivities. Midnight came and went, most of the 34,483 in attendance left and eventually, the umpires called it. The Orioles won, 3-1, and the two teams hadn’t even played five innings.

The odds of this Yankee lineup scoring again if given another four innings were essentially nil anyway so who cares?

--Posted at 3:12 am by SG / 20 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, July 13, 2014

Yankees (47-46) @ Orioles (51-42), Sunday, July 13, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: Chase Whitley (#39, 25, RHP, 4-2, 4.94) vs. BAL: Kevin Gausman (#39, 23, RHP, 3-2, 3.51)
Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) DH
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Kelly Johnson (L) LF
9. Yangervis Solarte (S) 3B

Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Steve Pearce (R) LF
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Nelson Cruz (R) DH
5. Chris Davis (L) 1B
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Manny Machado (R) 3B
8. Caleb Joseph (R) C
9. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B

--Posted at 4:15 pm by SG / 52 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, July 12, 2014

Yankees.com:  Yanks rookie Greene excels with poise of vet 4 hours ago

BALTIMORE—The appeal of an easy weekend highway drive into the Inner Harbor meant that there were plenty of supportive faces clutching tickets when Shane Greene looked up from the infield grass in the eighth inning on Saturday, trying to absorb a standing ovation.

Greene said that he felt goosebumps, and the Yankees sensed that they may have found an answer for their dented rotation. Greene allowed four hits over 7 1/3 stellar innings, earning his second big league win with a 3-0 victory over the Orioles.

“It was awesome, for sure,” Greene said. “It means a lot. It means a lot that I got the opportunity, and it means a lot that I can come up here and help the team win.”

I want to believe that Greene can be this good but it is hard when you look at his minor league numbers.

--Posted at 11:53 pm by SG / 12 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (46-46) @ Orioles (51-41), Saturday, July 12, 2014, 4:05pm

NYY: Shane Greene (#61, 25, RHP, 1-0, 2.84) vs BAL: Chris Tillman (#30, 26, RHP, 7-4, 4.11)

--Posted at 1:21 pm by SG / 28 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Kuroda hangs tough, but Yanks fall to O’s in 10

BALTIMORE—The last pitch of the night was a slider that hung in the strike zone, and as it whizzed over Adam Warren’s head to land safely in center field, the Yankees once again sputtered back to the break-even mark with a .500 record.

Kicking off a weekend series between division rivals, Nick Hundley delivered the decisive hit off Warren in the 10th inning, a solid single that chased home Manny Machado with the winning run as the Orioles defeated the Yankees, 3-2, on Friday night at Camden Yards.

“We want to gain some games on these guys, and it didn’t go our way tonight,” Warren said. “We’re just trying to get the first game of the series and trying to take momentum, and it just didn’t happen for us.”

The Yankees lost for the third time in four games, falling to 46-46 despite an effective seven-inning performance from Hiroki Kuroda, who locked into an entertaining duel with Baltimore counterpart Miguel Gonzalez.

Help us Jeff Francis.  You’re our only hope.

--Posted at 7:03 am by SG / 5 Comments | - (0)




Friday, July 11, 2014

Whatever

Hey, at least the Yankees got Jeff Francis.  That’ll make up for not having Tanaka.

--Posted at 6:12 pm by SG / 23 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, July 10, 2014

Tanaka Tanaka Tanaka Tanaka Tanaka Tanaka…Oh, and the Yankees Still Stink

The Yankees had two losses tonight, one much more significant than the other.

First off, they blew a three run lead in the seventh inning and got destroyed by the Indians as Matt Thornton and Jim Miller were just awful, leading to a 9-3 loss.

But more importantly, Masahiro Tanaka has a partial tear of his ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow.and will be out at least six weeks.

This does not officially mean that he will need Tommy John Surgery, as every surgeon that the Yankees brought Tanaka to said that they did not think that surgery was necessarily needed, and pitchers do recover from injuries like this without getting Tommy John Surgery, as this could essentially “just” be an elbow sprain. However, more often than not even seemingly small tears (which luckily this was) end up requiring Tommy John Surgery, and thus the Yankees would lose Tanaka for not just this season but for 2015, as well. That would be…unpleasant. All we can do now with regards to Tanaka is just hope for the best in six weeks (by the way, that’s six weeks until he can possibly begin throwing again - he’d have to build up arm strength, so even if everything goes perfectly, which, let’s face it, is a pipe dream, he wouldn’t be back until September).

--Posted at 10:41 pm by Brian Cronin / 57 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (46-44) @ Indians (44-46), Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 7:05pm

NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 3-4, 4.01) vs. CLE: T.J. House (#58, 24, LHP, 1-2, 4.24)

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

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

WTH?  Where is Iron Horse Brian Roberts?

--Posted at 3:37 pm by SG / 43 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Yankees.com: Ellsbury’s homer in 14th ends tough day with win

CLEVELAND—It took five extra innings, but on what was a particularly stressful day for the Yankees, a late-night victory helped take some of the sting out of their afternoon.

Jacoby Ellsbury connected for a two-out, solo home run off Vinnie Pestano in the top of the 14th inning, lifting the Yankees to a 5-4 victory over the Indians on Wednesday night at Progressive Field.

The win went into the books after the Yankees absorbed a heavy dose of bad news, hours after ace right-hander Masahiro Tanaka boarded a flight to New York and had an MRI exam on his sore right elbow before being placed on the 15-day disabled list.

Chase Whitley picked up the win, and David Robertson pitched a scoreless 14th for his 22nd save.

Yay meaningless win.

--Posted at 11:42 pm by SG / 41 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (45-44) @ Indians (44-45), Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 7:05pm

NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#205, 30, RHP, 3-10, 5.01) vs. CLE: Josh Tomlin (#43, 29, RHP, 5-6, 4.11)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) DH
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
6. Ichiro Suzuki (L) LF
7. Zoilo Almonte (S) RF
8. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B
9. Brendan Ryan (R) SS

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

McCarthy seems like an intelligent and thoughtful guy, and because of that I feel terrible for him that he has been traded to the 2014 Yankees.

I was going to make a sardonic remark about having Jeter DHing then I realized that after watching Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Beltran DH all year, how much worse could it be, really?

And Masahiro Tanaka is officially on the DL.  Except season-ending surgery by the All Star Game.

--Posted at 4:44 pm by SG / 78 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: Masahiro Tanaka flies back to New York for MRI on right arm

Masahiro Tanaka has left the Yankees and is flying back to New York for an MRI exam on his right arm, The Post has learned.

Tanaka had his worst start as a major leaguer Tuesday night in Cleveland, allowing 10 hits and five runs over 6 2/3 innings in a 5-3 loss to the Indians. Tanaka was scheduled to start Sunday in Baltimore – his final start before the All-Star break. He is 1-3 with a 4.25 ERA in his past four starts.

After the game, Tanaka said he “didn’t feel that bad” and thought location was his bigger issue.

“I think a lot of it had to do with command of my pitches,’’ he said. “I feel a lot of my pitches were right down the middle and pretty easy for the batters to hit.’’

But on Wednesday there was enough concern for the Yankees to send the 25-year-old for the test.

J-E-T-S!

Just
End
The
Season

--Posted at 2:45 pm by SG / 33 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Yankees minor league prospect Rob Refsnyder has potential - and patience

Yankees superscout Gene Michael, here on Monday, said he believes Refsnyder can play second in the big leagues. “I haven’t seen anything I don’t like,” he said.

For now, however, the Yankees’ need for power in the outfield is such that Refsnyder will start playing games in the outfield this week.

“I’m not presently looking to call him up, but he’s demanding that we pay attention,” Cashman said. “If he came up here (in the coming weeks), it would likely be in the outfield.”

Sure, because you’re getting yeoman’s work out of second base…

And of course you’re not looking to call him up.  He’s young and has upside.  What would be the purpose of that?

--Posted at 1:19 pm by SG / 22 Comments | - (0)



Masahiro Tanaka vs. Masahiro Tanaka

Start End GS IP BF ERA FIP xFIP FBv bb/bf k/bf hr/fb GB% FB% LD% IFFB% babip
4/4/2014 6/17/2014 14 99.7 389 1.99 2.72 2.44 91.2 4.1% 29.0% 14.1% 45.6% 27.4% 23.6% 3.5% .279
6/22/2014 7/8/2014 4 29.7 119 4.25 4.13 3.53 90.8 2.5% 18.5% 15.2% 41.7% 34.4% 21.9% 2.1% .303

FIP: Fielding-independent pitching
xFIP: Expected fielding-independent pitching
FBv: Average fastball velocity
bb/bf: Walks per batters faced
k/bf: Strike outs per batters faced
hr/fb: home runs per fly ball (league average is around 10-11%)
gb%: ground ball percentage
fb%: fly ball percentage
ld%: line drive percentage
iffb%: infield fly ball percentage
babip: batting average against on balls in play

Update: Added more stats per request

Start End O-Swing% Z-Swing% Swing% O-Contact% Z-Contact% Contact% Zone% F-Strike% SwStr%
4/4/2014 6/17/2014 38.6% 67.6% 50.2% 54.2% 85.6% 71.8% 40.2% 61.5% 14.1%
6/22/2014 7/8/2014 26.4% 50.9% 38.2% 42.9% 65.8% 57.6% 36.7% 61.1% 12.3%

O-Swing%: The percentage of pitches a batter swings at outside the strike zone.
Z-Swing%:  The percentage of pitches a batter swings at inside the strike zone.
Swing%:  The overall percentage of pitches a batter swings at.
O-Contact%:  The percentage of pitches a batter makes contact with outside the strike zone when swinging the bat.
Z-Contact%:  The percentage of pitches a batter makes contact with inside the strike zone when swinging the bat.
Contact%:  The overall percentage of a batter makes contact with when swinging the bat.
Zone%:  The overall percentage of pitches a batter sees inside the strike zone.
F-Strike%: The percentage of first pitch strikes.
SwStr%:  The percentage of total pitches a batter swings and misses on.

--Posted at 10:47 am by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)



Player A vs. Player B

Player Age PA BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ GDP HBP Rbat Rbaser Rdp Rfield Rpos RAA WAA Rrep RAR bWAR
A 33 365 .237 .351 .431 .782 124 0 3 9 0 1 2 -3 8 0.8 12 20 1.9
B 30 374 .279 .346 .390 .736 105 7 2 2 4 0 -7 2 1 0.3 13 14 1.5

bWAR explained

Both players are signed through age 37.

--Posted at 8:49 am by SG / 11 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

FINAL: Indians 5, Yankees 3. Staked to an early lead, Masahiro Tanaka couldn’t hold it, as the righty allowed five runs on 10 hits over 6 2/3 innings.

Tanaka had the worst start of his MLB career, but the offense just had one of their typical bad days.

I’m not worried about Tanaka.  And if the Yankees aren’t worried about their offense, I’m not sure that there’s any point in us worrying about it either.  This is at best a .500 team.  And more likely than not, they won’t be one by the end of the year.

--Posted at 9:02 pm by SG / 3 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (45-43) @ Indians (43-45), Tuesday, July 8, 2014, 7:05pm

NYY: Masahiro Tanaka (#19, 25, RHP, 12-3, 2.27) vs. CLE: Trevor Bauer (#47, 23, RHP, 2-4, 4.42)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) DH
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Kelly Johnson (L) 1B
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B

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

Forget Tanaka Day.  It’s Zelous Day!

--Posted at 3:07 pm by SG / 39 Comments | - (0)




Monday, July 7, 2014

Yankees.com: Greene victorious in first Major League start

CLEVELAND—There wasn’t a great deal of advance notice to prepare, but Shane Greene gave the Yankees exactly what they needed in his first Major League start, hurling six strong innings as the Yankees defeated the Indians, 5-3, on Monday at Progressive Field.

Brian McCann, Ichiro Suzuki and Brett Gardner each contributed three hits as the Yankees pounded Justin Masterson for five runs in one of the shortest outings of his career, providing Greene with the necessary cushion for his first victory in the big leagues.

The 25-year-old Greene was 5-2 with a 4.61 ERA in 15 games (13 starts) at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, and was summoned for his fourth stint of the season in the big leagues when New York dealt left-hander Vidal Nuno to the D-backs for right-hander Brandon McCarthy on Sunday.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi said before the game that “if [Greene] throws strikes, I believe he can have some success.” A 15th-round selection in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, Greene made good on that, holding Cleveland hitless until Nick Swisher homered with two outs in the fifth inning.

Greene’s definitely got major league pitches.  Prior to last season and for most of this season, that whole throwing strikes thing has been problematic for him.  Just getting to the majors as a 15th-round pick is pretty impressive on its own, but with the Yankee rotation in tatters, he’s got a chance to try and force his way into a good number of starts over the rest of the season if he can do what he did tonight with regularity. 

And I am not sure if I’ve mentioned it, but it is an outrage that Brett Gardner is not on the All Star team.

--Posted at 9:18 pm by SG / 22 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (44-43) @ Indians (43-44), Monday, July 7, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Shane Greene (#39, 25, RHP, 0-0, 0.00) vs. CLE: Justin Masterson (#63, 29, RHP, 4-5, 5.16)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian McCann (L) DH
6. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

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

You may look at Shane Greene’s 0.00 ERA and think this one is in the bag, but we all know his 24.11 FIP is a more accurate reflection of his skill.

You may cry sample size, and that we can’t judge him off one-third of an inning.  I retort with Bill James’s signature significance.  Some small-sample events are so extraordinary that it is essentially impossible for them to happen to an average team or an average player.  I think a 24.11 FIP qualifies.

This one could get ugly folks.  Hide the women and children.

--Posted at 4:33 pm by SG / 65 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, July 6, 2014

Yankees.com: Jeter to be joined by Tanaka, Betances at All-Star Game

Congrats to Dellin Betances and Masahiro Tanaka for making the All-Star Team alongside voted in starter Derek Jeter!

Brett Gardner probably deserved a spot more than Yoenis Cespedes, but the rest of the squad seems to be well-chosen.

Gardner looks to be the biggest snub of the game. Kyle Seager is the only other real choice, but Seager was stuck behind Josh Donaldson and Adrian Beltre, who are both having better years than him.

--Posted at 7:16 pm by Brian Cronin / 36 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Fast start propels Yankees to series win over Twins

With management focused on adding arms, the Yankees are trying to make do with the bats they already have.

Sunday’s 9-7 win over the Twins at Target Field was a sign—albeit a brief one—that the current lineup might be enough to get by.

It was clear from the get-go that Twins starter Ricky Nolasco was in for a rough afternoon. He used his first seven pitches to walk leadoff hitter Brett Gardner before surrendering a single to Derek Jeter that began an early onslaught.

Mark Teixeira singled home Gardner, and then Brian McCann—a late addition to the lineup after nursing a sore foot—brought home Jeter with a double past center fielder Sam Fuld’s glove near the base of the outfield wall.

After Hiroki Kuroda set down the home team with a 1-2-3 first, Nolasco stepped back on the mound for more.

The Yankees greeted him with three straight singles from Brian Roberts, Ichiro Suzuki and Kelly Johnson to load the bases. After Jeter picked up an RBI with a sacrifice fly, Jacoby Ellsbury knocked a line-drive three-run home run to the right-field porch to make it 6-0, and the rout was on.

Even after Nolasco (5.90 ERA this season) exited, the Yankees’ lineup was efficient. Suzuki and Johnson pieced back-to-back singles together against reliever Anthony Swarzak in the fourth. Another single by Jeter and a groundout by Ellsbury scored both of them, and then Ellsbury ended up scoring from third on a balk by Swarzak for a 9-0 lead.

Great to see the offense score so many runs, but disappointing to see Kuroda pitch so poorly when finally given a big lead. Also, David Robertson sure seems to struggle with Minnesota for some odd reason.

Anyhow, taking three out of four from the Twins was big for the Yankees, what with the rest of their division sucking recently.

Apparently Shane Greene will get the start tomorrow. That should be…uhm…fun?

--Posted at 4:40 pm by Brian Cronin / 11 Comments | - (0)



USA Today: Yankees acquire Brandon McCarthy from Diamondbacks

The New York Yankees have acquired right-handed starter Brandon McCarthy from the Arizona Diamondbacks as baseball’s trade market for pitchers continues to percolate.

The Yankees sent Vidal Nuno to the Diamondbacks, who will also pay a portion of McCarthy’s remaining salary and $1 million assignment bonus this season.

McCarthy, who turns 31 this week, is just 3-10 with a 5.01 earned-run average, but has pitched better over the last month and should get a boost getting away from the last-place Diamondbacks.

And given their paucity of top prospects, McCarthy is probably about as good as the Yankees could expect to do in this trade market.

McCarthy’s had a rough season, with an ERA of 5.01.  His peripherals indicate that he has a decent chance to pitch better going forward (3.79 FIP, 2.89 xFIP).  Nuno may or may not end up being a decent back-end starter, but I can’t say I’ll miss him all that much.

The Yankees have also designated Alfonso Soriano for assignment.  This probably opens the door for Zoilo Almonte unless the Yankees make more moves.

I guess we can use this as the game thread as well.

Yankees (43-43) @ Twins (39-47), Sunday, July 6, 2014,  2:10pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 5-6, 4.08) vs. MIN: Ricky Nolasco (#47, 31, RHP, 5-6, 5.49)

Lneups
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 Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B

Twins
1. Brian Dozier (R) 2B
2. Eduardo Nunez (R) SS
3. Chris Parmelee (L) 1B
4. Josh Willingham (R) LF
5. Oswaldo Arcia (L) RF
6. Kurt Suzuki (R) C
7. Trevor Plouffe (R) 3B
8. Chris Colabello (R) DH
9. Sam Fuld (L) CF

--Posted at 11:36 am by SG / 47 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Yanks fall to Twins on 11th-inning throwing error

Francisco Cervelli was helpless as he watched the game slip out of his hand and into right field.

“I couldn’t stop the ball,” he said.

After stepping on home for the second out of the bottom of the 11th inning on Trevor Plouffe’s grounder, Cervelli tried to throw to first and end the frame with a double play.

But with Plouffe in his line of vision running down the first-base line, the catcher tried to halt his throwing motion too late and overthrew first baseman Mark Teixeira by a country mile. The gaffe allowed Josh Willingham to waltz in from third base for the game-winning run in a 2-1 Twins victory on Saturday afternoon at Target Field.

“It’s bad,” Cervelli said. “We don’t want to end the games like that. Especially myself.”

The Yankees have obviously had worse losses than this one this season, but this was possibly their most embarrassing loss.  Yohan Pino is just flat out not a good pitcher and the Yankees not only could only score one run off of him, but even the run they did score they probably should not have scored, as Ichiro Suzuki was wrongly called safe at second base on a stolen base attempt that the Minnesota coaches did not challenge because Ron Gardenhire had been ejected earlier (why that caused them to not challenge the play is beyond me). So yeah, not being able to score more than one run in eleven innings against an awful starter and a mediocre Minnesota bullpen is extremely embarrassing - ending the game on a throwing error was just the icing on a terrible cake.

--Posted at 3:15 am by Brian Cronin / 9 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, July 5, 2014

Yankees (43-42) @ Twins (38-47), Saturday, July 5, 2014, 2:10pm

NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 3-4, 4.26) vs. MIN: Yohan Pino (#63, 30, RHP, 0-2, 6.32)

Lineups
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. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Alfonso Soriano (R) LF
9. Zelous Wheeler (R) 3B

Twins
1. Brian Dozier (R) 2B
2. Kurt Suzuki (R) C
3. Chris Parmelee (L) 1B
4. Kendrys Morales (S) DH
5. Josh Willingham (R) LF
6. Oswaldo Arcia (L) RF
7. Trevor Plouffe (R) 3B
8. Eduardo Escobar (S) SS
9. Sam Fuld (L) CF

With the news that CC Sabathia is likely to miss the rest of the season, the Yankees supposedly made pitches to the Cubs for both Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammell.  Oakland trumped the Yankees and got both, so I wonder who the Yankees will go after now?  I think they need a lot more than one or two starting pitchers to make it into the postseason, but I don’t think they have the chips to do it.

--Posted at 11:11 am by SG / 41 Comments | - (0)




Friday, July 4, 2014

Yankees (42-42) @ Twins (38-46), Friday, July 4,2014, 3:10pm

NYY: Chase Whitley (#39, 25, RHP, 3-2, 4.70) vs. MIN: Kyle Gibson (#44, 26, RHP, 7-6, 3.77)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
7. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
8. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
9. Brendan Ryan (R) SS

Twins
1. Brian Dozier (R) 2B
2. Kurt Suzuki (R) C
3. Chris Parmelee (L) LF
4. Kendrys Morales (S) 1B
5. Oswaldo Arcia (L) RF
6. Trevor Plouffe (R) 3B
7. Chris Colabello (R) DH
8. Eduardo Escobar (S) SS
9. Sam Fuld (L) CF

Happy Fourth of July to all.

--Posted at 11:58 am by SG / 74 Comments | - (0)



Zelous Wheeler Ate His A

MINNEAPOLIS—For the first time in his career, Masahiro Tanaka didn’t provide a quality start. But thanks to ex-Yankee Phil Hughes, he didn’t need to.

New York used two big innings, including homers by Carlos Beltran and Zelous Wheeler in the fifth, to snap a season-high five-game losing skid with a 7-4 victory over the Twins on Thursday night at Target Field.

“The number one thing is for the team to win, and I think the offense came through and got me a lot of run support tonight,” Tanaka said through his translator.

After collecting just one hit through the first four frames against Hughes, who had beaten the Yanks earlier this season, the New York bats came alive in the fifth. Mark Teixeira and Brian McCann led off with singles, and then Beltran smacked a three-run homer—a 401-foot shot to right-center.

“The one big mistake of the game was the pitch to Beltran,” Hughes said. “The other at-bats, I went hard-in, but I thought I’d try to get a ground-ball double play and threw a two-seamer away, but it caught too much of the plate.”

The blast gave New York a 3-2 lead, and moved Beltran to fourth all-time among switch-hitters with 367 home runs.

Two batters later, Wheeler, who was called up from Triple-A on Thursday and made his Major League debut, belted a solo shot for his first career hit. The rookie crushed a 3-1 Hughes fastball into the Yankees’ bullpen in left-center to extend the lead to two runs.

“I got a pitch over [the plate], elevated up and put good wood on it,” Wheeler said. “I was like, ‘Wow, I really hit a home run!’”

Yeah, but it was against Phil Hughes so it’s really only a half home run.

I think the quality start streak people have been bandying about with Tanaka is bogus, because the definition of quality start that I am familiar with does not exclude unearned runs.  Ergo, he lost his quality start streak when he gave up four runs to the Cubs in his ninth game of the season even though only three were earned.

Anyway, back to .500 for a day.  With Chase Whitley going today it may not even be 24 hours at .500, but what can you do?

--Posted at 7:22 am by SG / 8 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, July 3, 2014

Yankees (41-42) @ Twins (38-45), Thursday, July 3, 2014, 8:10pm

NYY: Masahiro Tanaka (#19, 25, RHP, 11-3, 2.10) vs. MIN: Phil Hughes (#45, 28, RHP, 8-4, 3.58)

Lineups
Yankees
Don’t know, don’t care

Twins
A better lineup than the one the Yankees will be using

In one corner, one of the best and most exciting young pitchers in baseball will be toeing the rubber.  In the other corner, it’ll be Masahiro Tanaka.

Tanaka has been great, far better than the Yankees could have hoped for.  But the problem is he’s on the Yankees, which makes his games effectively meaningless.  Maybe one day he can pitch for a contender.

--Posted at 2:38 pm by SG / 45 Comments | - (0)



TGS NY: Refsnyder second to none in 2014

Refsnyder, who didn’t rank among the Yankees’ top-10 prospects at the start of the year (despite an on-base percentage of over .400 in Single-A last season), has played his way into a potential recall in the near future. He’s hitting .343, including .348 at Triple-A. He’s hitting .420 in his last 38 games, which is why Yankees general manager Brian Cashman indicated Refsnyder is closing in on a recall.

“I said to him the other day ‘I knew you were good, but I didn’t know you were this good,” said Scranton hitting coach (and former Yankees catcher in the mid-80s) Butch Wynegar. “He’s intelligent, he’s a hard worker and he makes adjustments pitch to pitch. He’s short and quick with his swing. He’s really coachable. He does a lot of things I’m very impressed with. He’s bigger than Dustin Pedroia, but he plays the game like Pedroia does. If I was asked, I would say yes, (he’s major-league ready). I see no reason why he’s not going to be a good major-league hitter.”

Getting Refsnyder up and playing 2B every day could potentially be the easiest way for the Yankees to upgrade their pathetic offense.  Granted, he’s only got 338 PA above class A, and his defense is likely still a work in progress, but he’d certainly make a team that’s really tough to watch a bit more interesting.

--Posted at 11:24 am by SG / 21 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, July 2, 2014

MLB Trade Rumors: Yankees To Sign Eight Top International Prospects

The Yankees have agreed to a $2.25MM bonus with international prospect Nelson Gomez, reports MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez (via Twitter). Gomez is an infielder out of the Dominican Republic. Murray also approximated a $2.25MM bonus for Gomez last month (Twitter link).

Prospect analysts agree that Gomez is one of the best players available, with MLB.com ranking him second overall and Baseball America putting him at sixth. He has a large frame and offers power at the plate and with his arm. Those physical tools could play anywhere on the diamond, but of course his value depends in part upon his position. Though MLB.com says there is some chance he could stick at short, BA sees him as a third baseman who could have to shift over to first or into the outfield.

If all these guys end up panning out, the Yankees could be pretty good again as soon as 2022!

--Posted at 10:45 pm by SG / 18 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

NEW YORK—It has been a disastrous homestand for the Yankees, who have lost five straight games and nine of their last 11 to fall below the .500 mark. If they’re going to straighten out their issues before the All-Star break, it’ll have to happen on the road.

Sean Rodriguez didn’t do them any favors, blasting a go-ahead, two-run homer off Shawn Kelley in the sixth inning on Wednesday. The shot lifted the Rays to a 6-3 victory over New York, completing a three-game sweep at Yankee Stadium.

Whatever.

--Posted at 4:07 pm by SG / 15 Comments | - (0)



Rays (37-49) @ Yankees (41-41), July 2, 2014, 1:05pm

TBR: Jake Odorizzi (#23, 24, RHP, 3-7, 4.14) vs. NYY: Vidal Nuno (#57, 26, LHP, 2-4, 5.42)

Lineups
Rays
1. Desmond Jennings (R) CF
2. Ben Zobrist (S) DH
3. Brandon Guyer (R) LF
4. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
5. James Loney (L) 1B
6. Logan Forsythe (R) 2B
7. Sean Rodriguez (R) SS
8. Ryan Hanigan (R) C
9. Kevin Kiermaier (L) RF

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) C
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Kelly Johnson (L) 1B
6. Alfonso Soriano (R) RF
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) CF
8. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
9. Yangervis Solarte (S) 3B

Everything’s blue in this world.
The deepest shade of mushroom blue.
All fuzzy.
Spilling out of my head.

--Posted at 11:10 am by SG / 42 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Yankees.com: Yankees Stink

NEW YORK—James Loney hit a go-ahead home run in the sixth inning off Hiroki Kuroda and David Price took it from there, holding the Yankees in check over seven strong innings as the Rays posted a 2-1 victory on Tuesday at Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees were sent to their fourth straight defeat and their eighth in the last 10 games, dropping to .500 at 41-41 after managing just four hits against the hard-throwing Price, who blocked out the swirling winds of trade speculation to log his seventh victory of the year.

A prime subject of discussion as the non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches, Price held the Yankees hitless until Derek Jeter’s double to open the fourth. The double was the 534th of Jeter’s career, tying Lou Gehrig for first place on the Yankees’ all-time list.

Kuroda turned in a solid outing, holding Tampa Bay to a pair of runs on nine hits over eight innings, but he toiled waiting for run support that never arrived thanks to Price’s nine-strikeout performance.

.500 is here.  Below .500 coming shortly.

--Posted at 9:37 pm by SG / 29 Comments | - (0)



Rays (36-49) @ Yankees (41-40), Tuesday, July 1, 2014, 7:05pm

TBR: David Price (#14, 28, LHP, 6-7, 3.63) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 5-5, 4.23)

Lineups
Rays
1. Desmond Jennings (R) CF
2. Ben Zobrist (S) SS
3. Matt Joyce (L) LF
4. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
5. James Loney (L) 1B
6. Logan Forsythe (R) 2B
7. Cole Figueroa (L) DH
8. Jose Molina (R) C
9. Kevin Kiermaier (L) 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. Alfonso Soriano (R) RF
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
9. Yangervis Solarte (S) 3B

I said for most of last week that the Yankees would be below .500 by today.  I was wrong, but probably only by a couple of days.

--Posted at 4:15 pm by SG / 27 Comments | - (0)



Can The Yankees Offense Regress Their Way to a Better Second Half?

Last night’s loss to the Rays was the Yankees’ 81st game of the season.  If you double what their offense has done this year and compare it to last season, you can get a sense of how much the Yankees’ big offseason spending spree has helped improve the offense.

Year Age G PA R H 2B 3B HR SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ GDP
2014 times 2 33.1 162 6144 652 1402 248 30 138 116 32 492 1128 .254 .318 .384 .703 95 120
2013 31.9 162 6024 650 1321 247 24 144 115 31 466 1202 .243 .308 .377 .685 88 121

Yeah.

Obviously, the Yankees had hoped to get a lot more offense out of Alfonso Soriano, Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran than they have to this point.  They may have wishcast better than they’ve gotten from Jacoby Ellsbury, but if they did they were idiots because he’s basically doing what he was projected to do.  Some might say that it’s not worth $153M for seven years, but I digress.

Anyway, despite the disappointing play of Soriano, McCann and Beltran I’m not sure the Yankee offense has been particularly unfortunate.  But you can’t just double what the team has done so far and assume that’s what they’ll do the rest of the way.  So, let’s do a quick and dirty estimate using the Steamer rest of the season forecasts available on Fangraphs.

If the Yankees get the exact same playing time over the second half of the season as they did over the first half of the season,

Player PA ytd_wOBA ros_wOBA Improve?
Brett Gardner 342 .348 .324 No
Jacoby Ellsbury 342 .334 .332 No
Yangervis Solarte 270 .333 .306 No
Brian McCann 285 .286 .340 Yes
Mark Teixeira 253 .357 .351 No
Derek Jeter 315 .297 .314 Yes
Kelly Johnson 180 .309 .319 Yes
Ichiro Suzuki 174 .304 .300 No
JR Murphy 65 .299 .287 No
Scott Sizemore 16 .327 .289 No
Zoilo Almonte 19 .206 .312 Yes
Brian Roberts 265 .299 .303 Yes
Austin Romine 1 .000 .286 Yes
Dean Anna 25 .227 .314 Yes
Brendan Ryan 38 .295 .266 No
Francisco Cervelli 25 .266 .288 Yes
Carlos Beltran 230 .296 .352 Yes
Alfonso Soriano 227 .273 .303 Yes
Total 3072 .312 .321 Yes
Runs 325 349 Yes

ytd_wOBA: Weighted-on base average for 2014 through June 30
ros_wOBA Steamer’s projected wOBA over the rest of the season

A lot has been made of Yankee injuries, but I actually feel they’ve been a bit fortunate on the position player side.  Teixiera has missed some non-trivial time, but I expected that.  Jeter has been healthier than I expected, and of course this is the season that Brian Roberts decides to impersonate Cal Ripken by never missing a game while impersonating Enrique Wilson’s offensive value.

Obviously we don’t know how playing time will shape out over the rest of the season, and there are a few players who have overachieved to this point so even if the Yankees who have not played as well as expected start to better it doesn’t appear that they are going to be all that much better on offense.  I mean, 20 runs over half a season is certainly a difference, but is it enough of a difference?  The Yankees have been outscored by 33 runs this season, so even if they pitch/defend the same as they have over the first half that makes them a slightly below average team over the second half.

It’s hard to see a trade or series of trades that will make this team particularly good.  I suppose it’s possible they bring up Robert Refsnyder, who has an MLE of .287/.341/.436 in 328 PA split between AA Trenton and AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this season and is likely a better offensive player than Brian Roberts right now.  They could also give some of the playing time that was going to Alfonso Soriano to Zoilo Almonte, although he’s really only likely to be good from the left-side and Joe Girardi doesn’t seem to prefer him playing over Ichiro.  But it’s hard to see them improving their offense much with what they have in-house.

If they add a second top-flight starting pitcher they could be dangerous in a short series if they can get there, I guess.

In conclusion, yes, the Yankees offense should be better than they have been.  But the difference is not that big.  They just aren’t that good of a team.

--Posted at 9:40 am by SG / 15 Comments | - (0)




Monday, June 30, 2014

Rays (35-49) @ Yankees (41-39), Monday, June 30, 2014, 7:05pm

TBR: Chris Archer (#22, 25, RHP, 4-5, 3.29) vs. NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 3-4, 4.35)

Lineups
Rays
1. Desmond Jennings (R) CF
2. Ben Zobrist (S) SS
3. Matt Joyce (L) DH
4. Evan Longoria (R) 3B
5. James Loney (L) 1B
6. Brandon Guyer (R) LF
7. Logan Forsythe (R) 2B
8. Ryan Hanigan (R) C
9. Kevin Kiermaier (L) RF

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

In his career, Chris Archer has faced 103 Yankees and has held them to a line of .155/.194/.227. 

--Posted at 3:06 pm by SG / 48 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: An Adjustment Essential to the Yankees’ Future

Brian McCann made seven All-Star teams in nine seasons with the Atlanta Braves, but he also offered something intangible. He became, in some ways, the soul of his team. To the Yankees, McCann’s talent and character were worth $85 million in free agency.

Unfortunately to this point, McCann’s offense has not been worth $85 million.  While it’s most likely the Yankees will trade for a pitcher before a position player, I don’t see how this team makes any noise over the rest of the season with the offense they have now.

--Posted at 8:29 am by SG / 21 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, June 28, 2014

Red Sox (36-44) @ Stinkees (41-37), Saturday, June 28, 2014, 7:15pm

BOS: Jon Lester (#31, 30, LHP, 8-7, 3.14) vs. NYY: Masahiro Tanaka (#19, 25, RHP, 11-2, 2.11)

Lineups
Red Sox
1. Brock Holt (L) RF
2. Daniel Nava (S) LF
3. Dustin Pedroia (R) 2B
4. David Ortiz (L) DH
5. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
6. Stephen Drew (L) SS
7. Xander Bogaerts (R) 3B
8. Jackie Bradley Jr. (L) CF
9. David Ross (R) C

Stinkees
Brett Gardner and eight players that stink

--Posted at 5:42 pm by SG / 141 Comments | - (0)



Yankees.com: Yanks blank Sox behind Nuno, trio of blasts

There was a spark of defiance in Joe Girardi’s voice on Friday afternoon as the Yankees manager defended—yet again—a decision to keep his team in rotation, handing the ball to Vidal Nuno for the opener of a three-game series with the Red Sox.

It was a move ripe for second-guessing, and there was plenty, but it also turned out to be the correct call. Nuno spun 5 2/3 innings of scoreless two-hit ball in his best outing of the season and the Yankees hit three home runs, fueling a 6-0 thumping of Boston on Friday.

“It’s a confidence booster, to show that I can still belong here and attack these guys,” said Nuno, who retired 10 straight through one stretch and exited to a standing ovation from a sellout crowd of 48,522.

Kelly Johnson and Brett Gardner hit back-to-back home runs off Red Sox starter Brandon Workman, and Brian McCann added a long two-run shot off Craig Breslow as the Yankees won their second consecutive game.

This is just going to make the Red Sox beating Tanaka Saturday night all the more painful.

--Posted at 4:40 am by Brian Cronin / 21 Comments | - (0)




Friday, June 27, 2014

Red Sox (36-43) @ Stinkees (40-37), Friday, June 27, 2014, 7:05pm

BOS: Brandon Workman (#67, 25, RHP, 1-0, 2.88) vs. NYY: Vidal Nuno (#57, 26, LHP, 1-4, 5.88)

Lineups
Red Sox
1. Brock Holt (L) RF
2. Dustin Pedroia (R) 2B
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
5. Jonny Gomes (R) LF
6. A.J. Pierzynski (L) C
7. Xander Bogaerts (R) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) SS
9. Jackie Bradley Jr. (L) CF

Stinkees
Brett Gardner and eight players that stink

--Posted at 3:43 pm by SG / 32 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: Do Yankees have the prospects to make a trade?

Brian Cashman is on record saying he does not want to wait to make a trade. That approach is wise; with the American League East so tight, this thing could be decided by one move, and the Yankees need a starting pitcher now.

It has become almost cliche to say that the Yanks do not have the prospects to swing a big deal, and that might turn out to be true. The organization itself concedes that the farm system is middle-of-the-pack, but a few players have emerged this year as curiosities, at least.

On the major league team, only Dellin Betances is marketable in the type of trade the Yanks need to make, and it is hard to imagine Cashman dealing the breakout reliever (unless, of course, he agrees with the scouts who see Betances as a “slinger” whose delivery leaves him at risk for shoulder problems).

So who are some minor leaguers that the Yanks will have to push, in order to obtain a Jeff Samardzija, or even a Jason Hammel?

Why do I get the sense the Yankees are going to wind up making a bad trade that is not going to end up making a meaningful difference on their deeply flawed roster?

--Posted at 12:02 pm by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, June 26, 2014

j’s look at Greg Bird

As part of Mike and Clay’s look at the Yankees minor league depth, I’ll be putting together some quick looks at the swings of some noteworthy minor leaguers. Today, it’s Greg Bird.
Bird put up a .944 OPS in his 2012 split between the Gulf Coast Yankees and Staten Island Yankees in a little over 100 PA’s, which I’m sure got some folks wondering what could be. Well, the .288/.428/.511 in nearly 600 PA’s he put in 2013 at Charleston only stokes that fire.
Despite his success, clean, high quality video of Bird as a professional from the side angle isn’t anywhere to be found on the internet.  I did find a prospect profile of him front high school. His current swing looks fairly unchanged, and it’s what we have, so let’s look at that first.

Full Swing

My goal in evaluating a hitter’s swing is to determine (1) if he’s deriving his power from his hips and core, (2) if he has habits that lead to overall inefficiencies, and (3) if he has adjustability issues in any direction.  The way to do this is to evaluate how the hitter progress between specific milestones. I’ll go through that in detail with Bird:

Toe touch: The hands should have moved back, stretching the muscles between the back shoulder and the front hip. His front arm should be bent around 140˚ high across his chest, and he should be in a position where he’s loaded his back arm scapula. Bird gets an A for this.
Toe Touch

Heel touch/foot down: When the heel goes down, the hips start to rotate. What I’m looking for here is evidence that the rotation of the hips starts, but the rotation of the shoulders doesn’t. Bird’s gets an A here, too (notice that it looks like his hips just get a little wider in the shot, it’s because they’re opening.)
Heel Touch

Point of contact: Did the back elbow slot into his torso? Did the bat come down and end up outside of the back shoulder? Did the angle of the front arm (~140˚) stay the same and is it still bent high across his chest? Yes, yes, and yes. Bird stays compact, brings his elbow in to couple his arms (and thus the bat) to his now rotating torso, and puts his bat outside of his back shoulder to create a swing plane that will be a disc that extends through both his front and back shoulder. He gets to the pitch down the middle by tilting his shoulders 45˚ instead of dropping his hands. You should also notice that the knob of the bat follows a circular path and you very distinctly see a point where the bat starts traveling much faster.  These are all indications that Bird is using his hips to power his swing and that the control his hands lead to the bat head whipping through the hitting zone. You can also see that Bird’s back foot comes off the ground, which shows that he’s transferred all the weight from his back foot to the outside of his front foot – he didn’t leave any power unused. Another A for Bird.
POC

For the third category, I used the term adjustability, by which I mean adjustability to a pitch’s location (up and down, left and right) and speed. For location adjustability, the hitter should be maintaining a swing path from his back shoulder to his front shoulder, and tilting that plane (by tilting his shoulders) so that it intersects with the plane of the pitch.  You can see Bird do that in all the clips above. The pitch is down the middle, and he gets his hands to it by tilting his shoulders, and not dropping his hands. Higher pitches need less tilt, lower pitches need more tilt.  Adjustment to pitches that are outside requires waiting so that the slotting of the back elbow doesn’t become undone; if that were to happen, the power generation from the hips can’t be used. 

Adjusting to the speed of the pitch is a little trickier. Let me preface by saying that I believe that a good hitter is one that has both good swing mechanics and can execute them to hit a pitch in a game. That may sound like a silly statement, but it’s the reason why you might see guys hit 425 ft homeruns in batting practice and then not be able to SLG .400. Terms like “patience” and “knowledge of the strike zone” get thrown around, and certainly a hitter does himself a favor by knowing where he’s more likely to have success and trying to swing at only those pitches. But a hitters timing, or, said another way, his ability to put himself in a position to judge a pitch and put his best swing on it consistently, is what I believe to be the biggest factor that determines a hitter’s success.

This gets a little more fun because we can use some video of Bird from 2013.

Here’s a shot of Bird hitting a double on 6/20/13:
2B - 6/20

..and a homerun on 8/16/13:
HR - 8/16

.. and another double on 8/19/13:
2B - 8/19

They all look similar, but I’ll show you some very subtle differences and expose how Bird is adjusting to the speed of pitches. Once we know that, we know what to look for if he starts to struggle since his swing mechanics are so clean and compact.
Bird does a leg lift, which is a pretty common way for hitters to keep themselves from lunging forward with their weight.  The problem inherent with this approach (which is not to necessarily say that it can’t be successful, as many, many major league hitters use it) is that the foot needs to get down to start the swing. So let’s track Birds foot, see how he adjusts and what the results are:

Here’s Bird at the moment before he lifts his foot, in all 3 swings, side by side:

Side by Side 1

 
Notice the slight difference in where each pitcher is with their mechanics. For the first two pitchers, the pitchers are still stretching out and getting separation between their front hip and their throwing arm. The third pitcher is already at the high cocked position, which is slightly later than the other two.  While the velocity each of these pitchers has is very likely to differ, it’s unlikely that the time between their milestones is much different. So, we see our first issue with Bird. Ideally, his milestones with his mechanics are based off the milestones of a pitcher’s mechanics, and unless he’s dealing with some odd pitcher, they’re consistent.

Here’s Bird when each pitcher releases the ball:

Side by Side 2
 
It looks pretty consistent, which means that Bird got his foot up where he wanted it despite starting late in the third clip. Again, this could be a just a “one off” situation, or something Bird did purposefully to time that pitchers specific mechanics.
Finally, here’s Bird putting his heel on the ground and starting his swing:

Side by Side 3
 
It’s slight, but the distance Bird is from each pitch is different. In the first and third clips, the ball is on Bird faster. He’s a bit late on it and hits it to LCF.  In the second video, Bird’s ready a bit too early, and pulls the ball down the RF line.
The concern here is whether or not Bird is incorporating an actual delaying mechanism where he lifts his leg, holds it at the top of the lift, and then gets it down to deal with the speed and location of the pitch. From the three clips above, it looks like Bird may just be lifting his leg and putting it down with the same timing regardless of pitch location and speed.

Now, here are three clips from Bird from high school. You’ll see that he employs nearly the same timing sequence that he used in the Sally League in 2013:
 
1
2
3

Despite similar other articles that attempt to draw conclusions, there’s unfortunately no “ah ha!” moment here, nor should there be. This is merely meant to illustrate what delaying mechanism Bird might be employing so that it could be referenced if he starts to struggle. The clips that show the foot going up and down at consistent points in the pitchers delivery and the pitch trajectory show a little bit of an issue. I’m encouraged by the fact that Bird’s swing and timing mechanisms are basically unchanged from high school. He had an advanced approach and a compact swing then, and he’s still got it now.  As the pitchers get better and the velocity differences between fastballs and offspeed pitches get more drastic, we’ll see if Bird’s leg lift prevents him from getting his swing executed in time. Bird’s MiLB career line also shows him to be a high OBP guy. I bring that up because we’re looking at highlight clips of Bird. It’s clear that he has the skillset to wait for pitches he knows he can hit. When he starts facing pitchers who can throw pitches for strikes that he can’t for power as easily, it’ll test his timing mechanism and recognition abilities.

You may have noticed that it’s been a while since I posted something. I’d like to apologize to all of you and Mike and j for that. j obviously put a ton of work into this and Mike put some good work into our positional prospect overview that was never completed as well. I’m trying to make sure this doesn’t happen again. - Snuggles

--Posted at 3:53 pm by Snuggles T. Porcupine / 32 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: Derek Jeter unfazed about turning 40

TORONTO — The baseball universe is fascinated that Thursday is Derek Jeter’s 40th birthday.

It’s a feeling the Yankees’ shortstop doesn’t share, and it has nothing to do with being ungrateful that people care how old he is.

“It’s like turning any other number, I don’t pay attention to numbers,’’ Jeter said before the Yankees’ 5-3 victory over the Blue Jays Wednesday night at Rogers Centre. “I really don’t sit down and look at my age and adjust or compare. I really have never done that and I probably shouldn’t start now.’’

Happy Birthday to the Captain.

There have been three players in MLB history who played at least 75% of their games at SS and got at least 400 PA in their age 40 season.  Honus Wagner averaged an OPS+ of 114 in the three seasons he did it, Luke Appling average an OPS+ of 121 in the three seasons he did it, and Omar Vizquel had an OPS+ of 61 in the lone season he did it.  Jeter’s current OPS+ of 83 is at least better than Vizquel’s   At his current pace Jeter would end the year at around 1.2 bWAR, although I think the number of shifts the Yankees have been deploying this year is making his defensive numbers look more favorable than they should.

I was hoping Jeter would be a bit better than he’s been so far this year, but that probably wasn’t realistic.  At the very least, he’s far from the biggest problem on a team that has quite a few of them.

--Posted at 8:35 am by SG / 27 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Stinkees.com: They Still Stink

TORONTO—A four-run third inning gave the Stinkees the boost they needed as they avoided the sweep and downed the Blue Jays, 5-3, at Rogers Centre on Wednesday night.

Mark Teixeira’s two-run shot capped the early-inning rally as the Stinkees snapped a four-game losing streak heading into an off-day on Thursday.

Hiroki Kuroda recovered from a leadoff home run by Jose Reyes in the bottom of the first inning—on the first pitch he threw in the game—to improve to 5-5 on the season. The right-hander pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on eight hits, with two walks and four strikeouts.

After allowing the leadoff homer followed by a single to Melky Cabrera, Kuroda settled in and limited the Blue Jays to three singles until the fifth inning, when he ran into trouble.

--Posted at 9:35 pm by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)



Stinkees (39-37) @ Blue Jays (44-35), Wednesday, June 25, 2014, 7:07pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 4-5, 4.23) vs. TOR: Drew Hutchison (#36, 23, RHP, 5-5, 3.86)

Lineups
Stinkees
Brett Gardner and eight players that stink

Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Adam Lind (L) 1B
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) DH
5. Dioner Navarro (S) C
6. Juan Francisco (L) 3B
7. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
8. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B
9. Anthony Gose (L) RF

--Posted at 5:35 pm by SG / 33 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, June 24, 2014

BlueJays.com: Blue Jays withstand Yanks’ rally, walk off with win

TORONTO—Jose Reyes hit a leadoff double in the ninth inning before third baseman Yangervis Solarte threw away the ball on a sacrifice-bunt attempt as the Blue Jays walked off with a 7-6 victory over the Yankees on Tuesday night.

Reyes’ double came on 1-0 changeup from right-hander Adam Warren and put the Blue Jays within striking distance of the dramatic victory. Melky Cabrera followed with a bunt down the third-base line, and while the intention was to advance the runner, it ended up doing a lot more than that.

Solarte fielded it cleanly, but the perfectly placed bunt caused him to rush the throw. It would have been a close play at first, but the safe or out call became irrelevant when Mark Teixeira was unable to get a glove on the ball as the throw sailed well wide of the bag and Reyes easily came around to score.

I checked the score once while stuck at work and saw it was 6-0, then checked it again when I got home to see the final.  I’m glad I didn’t have to witness the CT.  My condolences to those of you who did.

I stand by my prediction.  By next Monday the Yankees will be below .500.

--Posted at 9:38 pm by SG / 17 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (39-36) @ Blue Jays (43-35), Tuesday, June 24, 2014, 7:07pm

NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 3-4, 3.86) vs. TOR: Mark Buehrle (#56, 35, LHP, 10-4, 2.32)

Lineups
Yankees
Whatever

Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Adam Lind (L) DH
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
6. Dioner Navarro (S) C
7. Juan Francisco (L) 3B
8. Kevin Pillar (R) RF
9. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B

--Posted at 4:28 pm by SG / 52 Comments | - (0)



Player A vs. Players B, C and D

Name bWAR Salary Salary/bWAR
A 2.4 $24,000,000 $10,000,000.0
B 1.2 $21,142,857 $17,619,047.5
C 0.1 $17,000,000 $170,000,000.0
D -0.3 $15,000,000 ($50,000,000.0)
B+C+D 1.0 $53,142,857 $53,142,857.0

 

--Posted at 7:41 am by SG / 40 Comments | - (0)




Monday, June 23, 2014

Yankees.com: Whitley’s tough night sets tone as Yanks fall to Jays

TORONTO—Chase Whitley took his first loss of the season on Monday night as the Yankees suffered an 8-3 defeat at the hands of the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

Entering the game with a 3-0 mark in six starts, the rookie right-hander was knocked around for eight runs on 11 hits over 3 1/3 innings as the Yankees lost their third straight game.

After taking an early 1-0 lead in the opening frame, the Blue Jays erupted for six runs in the second, thanks to six singles and a big three-run homer from Adam Lind. It was only the second time this season Whitley had allowed a homer.

The trouble started when the Blue Jays led off that inning with three straight singles from the bottom of the order. Juan Francisco, Munenori Kawasaki and Anthony Gose all reached base to load the bases with nobody out for Jose Reyes.

Reyes grounded into a forceout at second that scored Francisco to make it 2-0 Blue Jays.

Melky Cabrera then swatted a single to left field, scoring Kawasaki, before Lind came through with his homer to center field.

Whitley’s record fell to 3-1 with the loss, which came five days after he beat the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium in a five-inning, two-run outing. Prior to the loss, the Yankees were 5-0 on the road with Whitley starting.

You have to figure Whitley was due for a clunker, and it came tonight.  Unfortunately, his teammates have already had their share of clunkers and added another one.

The Yankees have now been outscored by 35 runs on the season, and although they’re 39-36 in real life, their run differential points to a team that should be around 34-41.

My guess is that by this time next week they will be under .500.

--Posted at 9:19 pm by SG / 8 Comments | - (0)



Yankees (39-35) @ Blue Jays (42-35), Monday, June 23, 2014, 7:07pm

NYY: Chase Whitley (#39, 25, RHP, 3-0, 2.56) vs. TOR: Marcus Stroman (#54, 23, RHP, 3-2, 5.14)

Lineups
Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Brian McCann (L) C
6. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) SS

Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Adam Lind (L) DH
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
6. Dioner Navarro (S) C
7. Juan Francisco (L) 3B
8. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B
9. Anthony Gose (L) RF

Is it starting to smell around here?

--Posted at 4:02 pm by SG / 24 Comments | - (0)



The Rise and Fall of Yangervis Solarte

Yangervis Solarte seemingly came out of nowhere with a strong spring training to win a spot on the Yankees’ 25 man roster on Opening Day.  He forced his way into a full-time role with his hitting and had an impressive line of .336/.414/.521 entering May 15.  Since then he’s been pretty bad.

Start End PA avg obp slg ops isoD isoP
4/2/2014 5/14/2014 142 .331 .408 .512 .921 .078 .182
5/15/2014 6/22/2014 118 .190 .274 .286 .559 .083 .095

Start End gb% fb% ld% iffb% hr/fb bb% so% babip xbabip
4/2/2014 5/14/2014 39.4% 35.8% 22.9% 1.8% 10.3% 12.0% 12.0% .350 .316
5/15/2014 6/22/2014 46.3% 33.7% 14.7% 5.3% 6.3% 9.3% 11.9% .200 .269

isoD: isolated discipline (obp - avg)
isoP: isolated power (slg - avg)
gb%: ground ball percentage
fb%: fly ball percentage
ld%: line drive percentage
iffb%: infield fly ball percentage
hr/fb: home runs per fly ball
bb%: walk percentage
so%: strikeout percentage
babip: batting average on balls in play
xbabip: expected babip (calculated as 0.15 x fb% + 0.24 x gb% + 0.73 x ld%

Calculating expected batting average on balls in play is not nearly an exact science, but I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Solarte was playing over his head to start the year and has probably not been as bad as his numbers since May 15.  I’m encouraged by the fact that his walk rate and strikeout rate have been fairly consistent, but not so encouraged by the drop in his line drive percentage.

The defensive metrics peg Solarte as a hair below average at both 2B and 3B, albeit in too small of a sample size to be particularly useful.

Solarte is probably stretched as a full-time starter, but given the Yankee roster he may still deserve to start at either second or third base fairly regularly.  Here are the wOBA projections for the Yankees’ primary options for 2B and 3B over the rest of the season.

ROS projections steamer zips
Solarte .309 .305
Roberts .303 .304
K. Johnson .316 .319

Kelly Johnson should probably be playing more than he has, especially in lieu of Brian Roberts, but he’s only played two innings at 2B this year despite it being his primary position throughout his career. 

Rumor has it the Yankees are seeking another starting pitcher as their primary target as we move towards the trade deadline.  But I think they would get more benefit from adding an infielder that can outperform what they have at 2B or 3B.  But they seem to love starting pitchers even though their offense is probably their biggest problem right now.

--Posted at 8:23 am by SG / 37 Comments | - (0)




Sunday, June 22, 2014

Orioles (38-35) @ Yankees (39-34), Sunday, June 22, 2014, 2:05pm

BAL: Chris Tillman (#30, 26, RHP, 5-4, 4.82) vs. NYY: Masahiro Tanaka (#19, 25, RHP, 11-1, 1.99)

Lineups
Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Steve Pearce (R) DH
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Nelson Cruz (R) LF
5. Chris Davis (L) 1B
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Manny Machado (R) 3B
8. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B
9. Caleb Joseph (R) C

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

It’s Old Timer’s Day, and it’s also Tanaka Day!

--Posted at 10:43 am by SG / 56 Comments | - (0)




Saturday, June 21, 2014

Yankees.com: Nuno stung by homers as Yanks’ win streak ends

Left-hander Vidal Nuno’s struggles have been magnified at Yankee Stadium, in large part due to his inability to keep the ball out of the air.

He has allowed 13 home runs here and the Yankees are 1-6 at home when he takes the mound. Those problems were back on display during Saturday’s 6-1 loss against the Orioles. Nuno had trouble locating his fastball, and Baltimore tagged him for three home runs—matching Nuno’s career high for homers allowed.

Nuno will apparently make his next start because the Yankees don’t have any clearly better alternatives.

At least it’s Tanaka day tomorrow.

--Posted at 6:25 pm by SG / 10 Comments | - (0)



Orioles (37-35) @ Yankees (39-33),  Saturday, June 21, 2014, 1:05pm

BAL: Bud Norris (#25, 29, RHP, 6-5, 3.73) vs. NYY: Vidal Nuno (#57, 26, LHP, 1-3, 5.90)

Lineups
Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Steve Pearce (R) LF
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Nelson Cruz (R) DH
5. Chris Davis (L) 1B
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Manny Machado (R) 3B
8. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B
9. Caleb Joseph (R) C

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. Kelly Johnson (L) 3B
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

No, Masahiro Tanaka is not pitching today.

--Posted at 10:07 am by SG / 21 Comments | - (0)




Friday, June 20, 2014

Yankees.com: Beltran rips thrilling walk-off blast to beat O’s

Carlos Beltran clobbered a game-winning three-run home run in the bottom of the ninth, and the Yankees beat the Orioles, 5-3, in dramatic walk-off fashion Friday night, their first walk-off homer of the season.

Brett Gardner led off the ninth with a single against lefty Zach Britton. After Britton retired Derek Jeter and Jacoby Ellsbury, the two-out magic began. Mark Teixeira walked and Brian McCann followed with a line drive to center field to score Gardner. Then Beltran stepped to the plate.

Working a 3-1 hitter’s count, Beltran whipped his bat around and sent a high 96-mph fastball deep into the night, ensuring the comeback and providing the Yankees their fourth straight win, all against division rivals.

When Joe Girardi decided to bring David Huff in in a one-run game in the ninth and Huff gave up a run (unearned due to a Yangervis Solarte error at third), did anyone think that this game would possibly be a win? Especially with recently installed Orioles closer Zach Britton entering the game with a 0.72 ERA. And then, well, the improbable happened. With two outs and a runner on first, the Yankees proceeded to get a walk, an RBI single from McCann and then a walk-off three-run home run from Beltran, the first home run of three or more runs since over a week ago (Teix hit a three-run home run off of Chris Young in Seattle).

So the Yankees walked off with a shocking, but awesome 5-3 victory. The win became even more important when Toronto came back from an 8-0 deficit to win 14-9 against Cincinnati (not a good night for good closers - Aroldis Chapman gave up four runs tonight). So the Yankees hold steady with Toronto. We just have to hope that Toronto loses tomorrow, since tomorrow is Vidal Nuno day…which is not a fun day.

--Posted at 11:07 pm by Brian Cronin / 13 Comments | - (0)



Orioles (37-34) @ Yankees (38-33),  Friday, June 20, 2014, 7:05pm

BAL: Ubaldo Jimenez (#31, 30, RHP, 2-8, 4.86) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 4-5, 4.32)

Lineups
Orioles
1. Nick Markakis (L) RF
2. Steve Pearce (R) DH
3. Adam Jones (R) CF
4. Chris Davis (L) 1B
5. Nelson Cruz (R) LF
6. J.J. Hardy (R) SS
7. Manny Machado (R) 3B
8. Ryan Flaherty (L) 2B
9. Nick Hundley (R) C

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

No, Masahiro Tanaka is not pitching today.

--Posted at 2:48 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)




Thursday, June 19, 2014

Yankees.com: Yanks put brooms on first-place Jays

Carlos Beltran plated a pair of runs behind a solid outing from David Phelps as the Yankees now trail by 1 1/2 games in the AL East race.

And tied in the loss column.

Phelps’s first two starts of June were brutal, as he allowed 13 runs over 11.2 innings.  He’s now allowed two over his last two starts in 13 innings, and the seven he gave the Yankees was critical with their two best relievers unavailable.  Even if CC Sabathia and Michael Pineda make it back and are effective (something I would not bet on), there’s likely a permanent rotation spot available for one of Phelps, Chase Whitley or Vidal Nuno and Phelps is certainly making his case for it, as is Whitley.  Nuno, probably not.

--Posted at 10:05 pm by SG / 38 Comments | - (0)



Blue Jays (41-32) @ Yankees (37-33), Thursday, June 19, 2014, 7:05 pm

TOR: Drew Hutchison (23, RHP, 5-4, 3.62) vs. NYY: David Phelps (27, RHP, 2-4, 4.32)

Lineups
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) DH
6. Juan Francisco (L) 3B
7. Erik Kratz (R) C
8. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
9. Steve Tolleson (R) 2B

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

No, Masahiro Tanaka is not pitching today.

--Posted at 3:02 pm by SG / 47 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: How much of Whitley’s success is owed to Tanaka?

I recently encountered an official from a team that went aggressively after Tanaka, only to fall short to the Yankees.

“Did you think he’d be this good?” I asked.

“Yes,” the official responded, without blinking.

So if we’re going to discuss the most shocking contributor to this Yankees season, we might just have to place Chase Whitley above Tanaka.

It cost teams $20 million (the posting fee to the Rakuten Golden Eagles) just to talk to Tanaka before even discussing contract terms. Last winter, at the Rule 5 draft, any of the other 29 teams could have taken Whitley for $50,000; the Yankees didn’t protect him on their 40-man roster. All 29 passed.

And now Whitley, mostly a reliever in the minor leagues, owns a 3-0 record and 2.56 ERA in seven major league starts after beating the Blue Jays Wednesday night. He owns a very healthy 6.5 strikeout-to-walk ratio, and his FIP (a metric on the ERA scale that removes fielding from the equation) is 2.71. So it’s not like his results are illusory; he’s been about as good as he seems.

--Posted at 12:27 pm by SG / 4 Comments | - (0)



NY Times: Parity Could Be a Plus for the So-So Yankees

Cashman said he expects to make a deal, because that is what he always does. But do the Yankees have the talent to get what they want?

“I feel that we do have the ability to make trades if that’s a route we so choose,” Cashman said. “How we line up with other clubs, I don’t know. It is in the eye of the beholder. But I definitely have people that are wanted within the industry. But we want those guys, too.”

The Yankees have gotten strong bullpen work from the homegrown Dellin Betances and Adam Warren, and those pitchers would have value. But the Yankees need them. With McCann on board for five years, they might consider dealing their top prospect, the Class AA catcher Gary Sanchez. But Sanchez was benched last week for unspecified disciplinary reasons and is hitting .246 with seven homers.

The sooner the Yankees act, Cashman said, the higher the price they will pay. He is not dwelling on the reasons the Yankees are mired in the middle.

“There’s a lot of reasons we are where we are right now,” he said. “The job is to get it where it belongs, which is first place.”

I have a hard time envisioning a trade that makes the Yankees the favorites to win the AL East at this point.  Actually, I can envision a few trades that would accomplish that, but none that are realistic.  Unless my dream of Alfonso Soriano for Mike Trout interests the Angels…

I’d rather see them stand pat at this point and hope for a miracle than further mortgage an already murky future to try and eke out another handful of wins this year.

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



Yankees.com: McCann’s five RBIs lead Yankees past first-place Jays

When the Yankees signed catcher Brian McCann in the offseason, they undoubtedly envisioned the kind of offensive performances the lefty slugger displayed Wednesday night.

McCann busted out of a prolonged power-hitting slump by tying a career high with five RBIs, led by a go-ahead two-run homer off starter Mark Buehrle in the fourth inning, guiding the Yankees to a 7-3 victory over the American League East-leading Blue Jays.

“It’s much different when you get contributions up and down your lineup,” said manager Joe Girardi. “We really believe in him as an offensive force, and he really showed it tonight.”

Trailing, 2-1, in the bottom of the fourth, the Yankees reclaimed the lead for good when McCann greeted Buehrle’s 10th pitch of the at-bat with a line drive that just snuck over the right-field wall. In the seventh, McCann broke things open off lefty reliever Brett Cecil, clearing the bases with a triple that dropped just out the reach of a diving Colby Rasmus. A few feet made all the difference.

“[I was thinking],‘Please don’t catch it,’” said McCann. “And when it fell, I knew I had a good chance for three.”

I knew McCann had been struggling, but I didn’t know that he hadn’t hit a home run since May 23 and had only one extra base hit in June up until tonight’s home run and triple. That’s just odd. Oh well, I’ll take it!

I think many of us were worried about Chase Whitley being exposed against Toronto tonight and to a certain extent he was, but he did some fine battling and pitched well overall. He just threw too many pitches. That’s more of a sign of how good Toronto’s offense is, though. They sort of make you throw a lot of pitches. Adam Warren was lights out and while I don’t begrudge Girardi for freaking out after Jose Ramirez looked lost in the eighth inning, I would have preferred to have seen Shawn Kelley in the ninth inning up four than D-Rob. If Kelley can’t be trusted to pitch a single inning without giving up four runs, then why is he even on the team?

Anyhow, it was a great win. Let’s hope that we get the good David Phelps tomorrow in the series finale!

--Posted at 12:26 am by Brian Cronin / 12 Comments | - (0)




Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Blue Jays (41-31) @ Yankees (36-33), Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 7:05 pm

TOR: Mark Buehrle (#56, 35, LHP, 10-3, 2.28) vs. NYY: Chase Whitley (#39, 25, RHP, 2-0, 2.41)

Lineups
Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Jose Bautista (R) RF
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Brett Lawrie (R) 3B
6. Juan Francisco (L) DH
7. Dioner Navarro (S) C
8. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
9. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B

Yankees
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Whoever (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Alfonso Soriano (R) RF
6. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
7. Brian McCann (L) C
8. Yangervis Solarte (S) 3B
9. Brian Roberts (S) 2B

No, Masahiro Tanaka is not pitching today.

--Posted at 3:26 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)



NY Post: No excuse for Yankees power outage at home

Joe Girardi needs to call a team meeting.

Not the traditional clubhouse kind in which he and the team leaders offer inspiration or fury or some combination to try to launch the club.

Girardi should gather his position players at home plate Wednesday before the second game against the Blue Jays, and then walk them out to right field. Reintroduce them to what used to be called around here “The Short Right Field Porch,” but now plays for the home squad like a fence too far.

If I had to pick the Yankees’ biggest flaw on the field right now, it’s their lack of power.  And I don’t think an introduction to the right-field fence is going to correct it.  They need to get better players, but that is easier said than done.

--Posted at 10:49 am by SG / 15 Comments | - (0)




Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Yankees.com: Tanaka tops Jays to earn Majors-best 11th victory

NEW YORK—In Mashario Tanaka’s first start in the Majors, the first batter, the Blue Jays’ Melky Cabrera, greeted him with a leadoff home run.

Tanaka faced the Blue Jays again on Tuesday, and this time, Jose Reyes sent the first pitch he saw from Tanaka over the right-field wall for a 1-0 lead.

But Tanaka eventually settled in, as he did during that first start, and guided the Yankees to another victory, this one a 3-1 final against the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday. Tanaka’s 11 wins lead the Majors, and his 1.99 ERA is the best in the American League.

Brett Gardner gave the Yankees the lead in the bottom of the third inning with a two-run homer off the right-field foul pole.

The Jays made Tanaka work pretty hard today, which limited him to six innings, but we can add yet another quality start to his ledger.  The Yankees are now 12-2 in games started by Tanaka vs. 24-31 in all other games.

Can he pitch every day?  Please?

--Posted at 9:45 pm by SG / 15 Comments | - (0)



Blue Jays (41-30) @ Yankees (35-33), Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 7:05pm

TOR: Marcus Stroman (#54, 23, RHP, 3-1, 5.18) vs. NYY: Masahiro Tanaka (#19, 25, RHP, 10-1, 2.02)

Lineups
Blue Jays
1. Jose Reyes (S) SS
2. Melky Cabrera (S) LF
3. Jose Bautista (R) RF
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Brett Lawrie (R) 3B
6. Dioner Navarro (S) C
7. Juan Francisco (L) DH
8. Munenori Kawasaki (L) 2B
9. Anthony Gose (L) CF

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

--Posted at 2:43 pm by SG / 49 Comments | - (0)



NYDN: As Jays come to Bronx, Yankees open 15-game stretch that will show if Bombers are contenders

The trips to the West Coast are over, the week in Chicago is in the past, and the 10 games without the use of a designated hitter are finally done.

After spending six weeks roaming around the rest of the divisions in baseball, it’s time for the Yankees to get down to business in the AL East.

Tuesday, the second-place Yankees welcome the first-place Blue Jays to the Bronx for a key three-game set that also jumpstarts a string of 15 straight games against AL East opponents that could help determine whether the Yankees will spend their summer as contenders or pretenders.

“You don’t want to make too much of it, but it’s obviously an important period when you’re going to see the teams that we’re going to see,” Joe Girardi said. “It’s a huge stretch against East Coast teams. You have a chance to make up ground and put distance between other teams and yourself. I think it’s really important.”

It’s crunch time.

--Posted at 9:43 am by SG / 18 Comments | - (0)



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