Category Archives: Ex-Players

The minors on 7-25-14.

AAA: SWB won the completion of the suspended game, 12-4, and then went on to win the regularly scheduled game as well.

In the suspended game, 2b Rob Refsnyder had 2 hits, which were a double and a solo HR. RF Zoilo Almonte had 4 hits, 3 of them HR, and drove in 7 runs. SS Carmen Angelini 3 h, 2 rbi. C Austin Romine 3 hits. SWB had 18 hits for the game.

The regularly scheduled game only went 7 innings, then. SWB won that one 3-1. LF Taylor Dugas 2 rbi. C John Ryan Murphy 2 h, rbi.

AA: 6-5 win for Trenton. Luis Severino went four innings, 2 R, 6 H, 1 walk and 7 K. C Gary Sanchez 2 h, 3 rbi. DH Ben Gamel 2 rbi.

Yankees fans may remember a 3B that the Yanks had in the early 1970s named Celerino Sanchez. It’s just funny that for a while, Trenton’s battery in the game last night was Severino and Sanchez.

High A: 6-1 win for Tampa. 2 h, HR, 2 rbi 1B Greg Bird. RF Anderson Feliz 2 h, 2 rbi. LF Jose Rosario 3 h, rbi. Caleb Smith, 6 IP, 1 R, 2 h. He was recently promoted from low A Charleston. He’ll be 23 soon and the lefty is 7-7, 2.79 in 20 starts overall this season. 91 K in 90 1/3 IP.

Low A: Charleston won 10-3. 3B Miguel Andujar 2 h, 3 rbi. DH Tyler Wade 4 h, 2 rbi.

Game 101. Yanks win 4-2.

A change of scenery has done Brandon McCarthy some good so far. When the Yanks traded for McCarthy, he was 3-10, 5.01 for Arizona. In three starts as a Yankee, he is 2-0, 1.45.

Thursday afternoon McCarthy pitched six innings, 1 R, 4 h, 2 walks and 5 K as he improved to an overall record of 5-10, 4.49.

Adam Warren 2/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 walk and 0 K. 2.77.

Matt Thornton 1/3 ip, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walk and 0 K. 2.91.

Dellin Betances 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1 K. 1.49.

David Robertson with his 25th save. 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk and 2 K. 2.39.

After Texas got a run in the third, the Yanks tied it in the fourth when Gardner doubled and two outs later scored on a single by another newly-acquired Yankee, Chase Headley.

The Yanks went ahead for good in the fifth. Ichiro walked and Cervelli doubled him home. After a sac bunt and a walk, Gardner’s SF made it 3-1.

Warren gave up a solo HR in the seventh, but the Yanks got an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth when Beltran singled and McCann doubled him in.

The win puts the Yanks at 53-48, three behind Baltimore in the AL East. However the win also puts the Yanks in a virtual 3-way tie for the second wild card spot with Toronto, with Seattle a 1/2 game back. The Yanks play Toronto at the Stadium this weekend.

Also, the Yanks picked up lefty Chris Capuano for cash considerations yesterday from the Rockies. Capuano will be 36 soon. He has been used solely in relief this year, going 1-1, 4.55, ERA+ 87 for Boston. Boston released him July first, and Capuano was picked up by Colorado on the 4th of July, but he didn’t pitch for the Rockies. Last year he was 4-7, 4.26 in 24 games for the Dodgers, with 20 starts. For is career, Capuano is 74-84, 4.28, ERA+ 96. His best year was in 2005 for Milwaukee, when he won 18 games. He was an All-Star in 2006. Although he has mostly been a starter in his career, he has only pitched in 31 2/3 innings this year in 28 games.

One note I saw. SS Tom Veryzer, who played mostly for the Tigers and Indians in the 1970s, passed away at the age of 61 on July 8th. He was a .241 hitter with an OPS+ of 61.

Game 77. Yanks end skid with 5-3 win.

The Yanks snapped their four-game losing streak by beating Toronto 5-3 Wednesday night.

The win puts the Yanks at 40-37, keeps them in third in the AL East, 2 1/2 back of Toronto, 1 behind Baltimore. They are one game out of that last WC spot.

Mark Teixeira homered and drove in three runs, Hiroki Kuroda went 6 1/3 innings for the win and David Robertson picked up a five-out save.

Kuroda’s first pitch of the game was hit for a HR by Jose Reyes.

The Yanks came back with four in the third. Johnson walked, Cervelli doubled him home, and after two out, Ellsbury singled in Cervelli and Teix hit his 14th HR of the year (355 career).

Ex-Yankee Melky Cabrera has been a thorn in the Yanks’ side this year in these games vs. Toronto, and he was again in the fifth, driving in two to cut the lead to 4-3.

A walk, HBP, walk and SF by Teix gave the Yanks an insurance run in the seventh.

Kuroda went 6 1/3 (W, 5-5, 4.23), 3 R, 8 H, 2 walks and 4 K.

Kelley 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 3.98.

Thornton 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 0 K. 2.87.

Warren 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 2.85.

With an off-day today, the need for a win after a four-game losing streak, and the fact that Robertson didn’t pitch in a week, Girardi went early to Robertson for the five-out save.

Robertson 1 2/3, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 3 K. Save #18. 3.08.

Jeter got hit #3388.

Earlier in the day, Tim Lincecum of the SF Giants threw a no-hitter against the Padres. It was the third no-hitter this season, following ones by the Dodgers’ Josh Beckett and Clayton Kershaw. It was the second of Lincecum’s career—both against SD. The only other pitcher to have two no-hitters, with both coming against the same team, was HOF Addie Joss of the Cleveland Indians, who did it against the Chicago White Sox in 1908 & 1910. Joss tore a ligament in his elbow a few months after his second no-hitter and died at the age of 31 in 1911 of a form of meningitis. Joss was a forgotten great who died much too soon. Lincecum became the second Giant to throw multiple no-hitters, the other being HOF Christy Mathewson.

Game 74. O’s blank Yanks 8-0, beat Tanaka.

It was nice to see some people from both my Lehigh Valley Yankees Fan Club (with whom I went up to the Stadium for Old-Timer’s day via a bus trip) and also some members of Pinstripe Mania yesterday once I got to the Stadium.

It was also nice to see some great Old-Timer’s Day festivities and see Goose Gossage get a plaque for Monument Park.

It wasn’t nice to see what happened in the actual game, for the Yanks got blanked, 8-0, and Tanaka got the loss.

Tanaka didn’t pitch badly. In 15 starts this season, every single start has been a quality start.

He gave up two hits to lead off the game, but got out of it with a flyball and two strikeouts.

In the bottom of the first, Gardner tripled. At least we thought it was a triple to lead off the bottom of the first. Instead, upon review, it was determined that in sliding into third, Gardner came off the bag and was then out when he was tagged. Right there and then it probably wasn’t going to be the Yankees day, for he had beaten the throw.

Tanaka gave up a HR in the second, but settled in. After six innings, it was just 1-0 Orioles.

But the Yanks offense was doing nothing.

In the seventh, Tanaka gave up two runs. He went 7 innings, 3 R, 6 H, 1 walk and 6 K. Even with the loss, that puts him at 11-2, and his ERA is 2.11.

But the Yanks got four hits all game, two by Ichiro. No support.

Yangervis Solarte is 0 for 27 since June 8th. Hopefully he snaps out of it soon. Maybe he has to be sent down soon. Before you balk at that, remember that in 1951, the great Mickey Mantle, in his rookie season, had to be sent down for a while to get straightened out. But hopefully Solarte does get straightened out soon.

The game really got out of hand in the eighth, when Adam Warren came in and had nothing. Two Yankees errors didn’t help, even though the O’s Steve Pearce probably got away with baserunner interference.

Warren 1 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 1 walk, 0 K. 2.88.

David Huff pitched the 9th and gave up a HR. 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 walk and 1 K. 5.76.

With the loss, the Yanks drop to 39-35 and into a tie for 2nd in the AL East with Baltimore. They are 1 1/2 back of Toronto and now go to Toronto for a three-game set. The Yanks and O’s are tied for the final WC spot, one pct. point above Seattle.

It appears the Yanks will be needing a starting pitcher and a bat soon. The trade deadline is five weeks away. Stay tuned.

Just to clarify one thing from the Old-Timer’s Day festivities: John Sterling, in announcing Joe Torre, stated that Torre was the second manager to win three consecutive World Series. He was wrong. Joe McCarthy was the first (1936-1939), Casey Stengel the second (1949-1953) and Joe Torre was the third (1998-2000). As a Yankees broadcaster, Sterling should have known that (not to be a curmudgeon about it, but…). I don’t know why everyone forgets about “Marse Joe” ‘s accomplishment.

Now the A’s won three straight WS from 1972-1974, but with two different managers. Dick Williams was there in ’72 & ’73, but it was Alvin Dark who skippered them in 1974.

Jesse Barfield homered off of David Cone in the Old-Timer’s game.

Game 73. O’s snap Yanks 4-game win streak, 6-1.

There’s been talk that Vidal Nuno is pitching to keep his spot in the rotation. He didn’t do anything to help himself on Saturday.

The Yanks offense didn’t do anything to help Nuno either, as the Yanks lost 6-1. The loss snapped the Yanks four-game winning streak.

Nuno gave up 3 HR in falling to 1-4, 5.88. He went 6 1/3, 5 R, 4 ER, 6 H (3 of which were HR) 2 walks and 4 K.

Jose Ramirez shows promise, but is raw. Hopefully he develops. He did give up a run (HR) in his 2 2/3 IP, but also struck out 4.

2 2/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 walk, 1 HBP and 4 K. 5.63.

The Yanks only run came on a HR by Teixeira (12, 353 career).

Before the game, Tino Martinez was honored with a plaque in Monument Park. The Yanks will honor Goose Gossage with a plaque tomorrow (Sunday) on Old-Timers’ Day.

As for Nuno, we’ll have to wait and see. Although he hasn’t done well, the Yanks don’t exactly have a ready replacement for what really is the #8 starter (3 of what were supposed to be in the rotation are on the DL—-CC, Pineda and Nova).

You wonder if a trade is brewing, who would go and who may come to replace Nuno in the rotation.

Jeter got one hit. 3386.

Because I’ll be heading up to the Stadium early tomorrow morning for the game, there will be no minor league report on the games of today.

HOF Tony Gwynn dies at age 54.

Tony Gwynn, probably the greatest Padre ever, died today at the age of 54 due to cancer, caused by using smokeless tobacco.

Gwynn was inducted into the HOF in 2007 after a career that saw him get 3141 hits and hit .338.

He was a 15x All-Star. He led the league in R once, hits 7x and batting average 8x. Seven times he hit over .350, including .394 in the strike-shortened 1994 season. Over a five-year stretch from 1993-1997, he averaged .368.

In his first full season, 1984, he finished 3rd in the MVP voting as the Padres won their first pennant. He would win another pennant with them in 1998.

While in his 20′s he had speed, winding up with 319 SB, including 56 in 1987. His OPS+ for his career was 132.

He never struck out more than 40 times in a season.

Although never an MVP, he finished in the top 10 seven times.

Gwynn won seven Silver Slugger awards, and five Gold Gloves. Gwynn hit .289 in his rookie year of 1982, in 54 games. He never hit below .300 again.

In the postseason, he hit .306-1-11 in 27 games. The HR came in Game 1 of the 1998 World Series. Even though the Yanks swept that series, Gwynn hit .500 in the four games.

Four-time SB winning coach Noll dies at 82.

I happen to be a fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and today is a bit of a sad day.

Chuck Noll, the only coach to win four Super Bowls, died yesterday, June 13, at the age of 82.

Noll coached the Steelers from 1969-1991, going 209-156-1 (of which 16-8 were in the postseason). He coached the Steelers to four SB victories in six years, winning Super Bowls IX, X, XIII and XIV.

He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1993.

Before his coaching career (assistant and head coach) began, Noll played for the Cleveland Browns from 1953-1959. Those Browns’ teams won NFL titles in 1954 and 1955, and lost the NFL title game in 1953 and 1957.

Ex-CYA Bob Welch dies at age 57.

Bob Welch, who is the last pitcher to win 25 or more games in a season, died Monday of an apparent heart attack. He was 57.

In this day of five-man rotations and quick hooks, Welch is the last man to win at least 25 games in a season. In 1990 he won the CYA while going 27-6, 2.95 with Oakland. He led the majors in wins and winning pct. that year, ERA+ 125, and finished 9th in MVP voting. He pitched until 1994 but never came close again to his 1990 greatness.

Welch came up with the Dodgers in 1978. In Game 2 of the WS, with the Dodgers clinging to a 4-3 lead and a couple of runners on base, Welch struck out Reggie Jackson in a climactic confrontation to save the game. Reggie got back at Welch by homering off him as the Yanks won the WS in Game 6.

Welch was an All-Star in 1980 and 1990. Besides 1990, he also received CYA consideration in 1983 and 1987.

He pitched for the Dodgers 1978-1987, being on the 1978 pennant winners, the 1981 WS champs, as well as making the playoffs in 1983 and 1985.

He went to the A’s in 1988, and helped the A’s to three straight AL pennants (1988-1990), the 1989 WS Championship and a division title in 1992. He concluded his career with Oakland, 1988-1994.

His career record was 211-146, 3.47. His 162g average was 15-10, 3.47, ERA+ 106. Solid.

In the postseason, he was 3-3, 4.56 in seventeen games, nine of them starts.

He hit .151 as a hitter, with 2 HR.

Game 63. Yanks edge Seattle, 3-2.

Derek Jeter got 2 hits (3372) and scored two runs, and Jacoby Ellsbury not only got the GW hit, but made a couple of fine defensive plays as the Yanks edged Seattle 3-2 Tuesday night.

The Yanks broke out early, scoring two in the first when Jeter singled, Teixeira singled, Beltran doubled in one and McCann singled in another.

Starter Vidal Nuno gave one back in the bottom of the first.

Nuno went 5 2/3, 1 R, 4 H, 1 walk and 2 K in lowering his ERA to 4.97. Nuno picked up a no-decision, because for the 11th consecutive game, the Yanks scored 4 or fewer runs. Sometimes when that happens, the offensive breakout occurs when you don’t need it. For example, Tanaka pitches tonight.

Nuno got help from his D. Ellsbury made two superb catches and Ichiro made a superb catch of his own.

Seattle tied the game in the seventh off of Betances.

Betances 1 1/3 IP, (W, 4-0, 1.69) 1 R, 2 H, 0 walks and 2 K. He hurt himself with a HBP and WP, but picked up the win.

In the eighth, Jeter got his first XBH in a while, a one-out double, and scored on Ellsbury’s single.

Warren and Robertson then shut down Seattle.

Warren 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 2.31.

Robertson (15th save) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk and he struck out the side. 3 K. 3.68.

The win puts the Yanks back over .500 at 32-31 and into a tie for 2nd in the AL East with Baltimore, 5 1/2 back of Toronto.

In other Yankees news:

Shawn Kelley should be back tomorrow. I’d expect Jose Ramirez to be sent down.
Johnny Damon & Hideki Matsui will be attending Old-Timer Day ceremonies on June 22.
2b Robert Refsnyder was promoted from AA to AAA.

Zim. 1931-2014.

Don Zimmer, who never received a paycheck out of baseball, died yesterday at the age of 83. Zimmer spent 66 years working in professional baseball as a player, adviser, coach, manager. What a life.

Zimmer was a great prospect, but two beanings nearly killed him. From Wikipedia (I edited it a bit, all blockquotes from there).

During a minor league game on July 7, 1953, Zimmer was struck by a pitch thrown by pitcher Jim Kirk, causing Zimmer to faint. He suffered a brain injury that required surgery. He woke up two weeks later, thinking that it was the day after the game where the incident took place. This led to Major League Baseball adopting batting helmets as a safety measure to be used by players when at-bat. Phil Rizzuto was the first player to use the batting helmets.

Zimmer nearly died after being hit with a pitch in the temple while with St. Paul in 1953. He was not fully conscious for 13 days, during which holes were drilled in his skull to relieve the pressure of swelling. His vision was blurred, he could neither walk nor talk and his weight plunged from 170 to 124. He was told his career was finished at age 22.

Zimmer was beaned again in 1956 when a Cincinnati Reds fastball broke his cheekbone, but he persevered. Because of these beanings, it has been widely reported that he had a surgically implanted steel plate in his head. This rumor is false, although the holes drilled in the surgeries following the 1953 beanball were later filled with four tantalum metal corkscrew-shaped “buttons.”

Zim was a major league player from 1954-1965. He played in MLB with the Dodgers (1954–1959, 1963), Chicago Cubs (1960–1961), New York Mets (1962), Cincinnati Reds (1962), and Washington Senators (1963–1965). He was a member of the 1955 and 1959 Dodger WS Champs, 1955 in Brooklyn and 1959 in Los Angeles (he was there early in 1963, when the Dodgers won another WS, but wasn’t there at the end of the season, just the beginning). In 1955, he hit only .239, but did have 15 HR and 50 RBI (OPS+ 88) in just 280 at bats. He had a bad 1959, and was replaced at SS mid-season by Maury Wills. Zim hit just .165-4-28, OPS+ 37 in 1959.

He hit .235 in his career. His 162 game average was .235-13-52, OPS+ 77. He primarily played 2B, SS or 3B but did see 35 games at catcher and a few games in the outfield.

He made the All-Star team in 1961, a season in which he hit .252-13-40, OPS+ 82.

Despite being an All-Star in 1961, he was left unprotected and was taken by the Mets in the expansion draft. On April 11, 1962, the Mets lost the first game in their history, 11-4, to the Cardinals. Batting 7th and playing 3b was Don Zimmer. Zimmer only played 14 games for the Mets.

After his playing career ended,

Zimmer began his coaching career. He worked in minor league baseball, before coaching the Montreal Expos (1971), San Diego Padres (1972), Boston Red Sox (1974–1976, 1992) New York Yankees (1983, 1986, 1996–2003), Cubs (1984–1986), San Francisco Giants (1987), Colorado Rockies (1993–1995), and Tampa Bay Devil Rays / Rays (2004–2014). He served as manager for the Padres (1972–1973), Red Sox (1976–1980), Texas Rangers (1981–1982), and Cubs (1988–1991).

Zimmer was 885-858 as a manager, .508. That translates to an 82-80 season. His average finish with these teams was 3rd or 4th place.

As a manager, he’s most famous for managing the 1978 Red Sox, who lost a 14-game lead they had over the Yankees. The AL East needed an extra game to break the tie between New York and Boston, and it was the Yankees who won that 163rd game (the Bucky Dent game) and who went on to win the World Series.

Despite guiding the Red Sox to a 97-64 record in 1977 and 99-64 in 1978, Zimmer and the Red Sox got no postseason play out of it, as the Yanks won the WS in both seasons.

In 1989, Zimmer was named NL manager of the year for guiding the Cubs to a division title with a 93-69 record. They lost the NLCS to San Francisco.

Later, he was best known as Joe Torre’s bench coach during the Yanks’ great run of 1996-2003 (before Boston broke the “curse” in 2004), during which the Yanks won six pennants and four World Series in an eight-year run.

In 1999, Zimmer filled in for Manager Joe Torre while Torre was recuperating from prostate cancer.  Zimmer went 21-15 while guiding the Yankees during Torre’s absence. This record however, is credited to Torre’s managerial record.

Zimmer’s playing and managing record don’t merit the Hall of Fame, but maybe he should be considered for the Hall as a result of a long history of meritorious service to the game. There are some owners and commissioners in there for that reason, and, for example, who do you think did more for the game of baseball, Don Zimmer or Bowie Kuhn?