Tag Archives: Shelley Duncan

A JD return? I argue against it.

Various blogs report via Ken Davidoff that the Yanks have talked to Johnny Damon.

I like JD. I also think the Yanks made the right move in moving from him last year. JD is now 37 and to be truthful, can’t play the OF anymore. I don’t want his lack of an arm out there.

Besides, he is a lefty bat. I thought the Yanks were looking for a righty (speaking of, Kearns is back to Cleveland. Cleveland has Shelley Duncan. Could Shelley now be available? Shelley’s numbers against lefties aren’t shabby, he can play LF, RF and 1B, and is popular among Yankee fans. He’s 31 and although he is just a .227 career hitter (OPS+ 96), he is a .264 hitter vs. lefties with an .823 OPS. Against righties the OPS is just .641. As a guy who is used solely vs. lefty pitching, could Shelley be a good return? Hmmm….).

Ok, here is what I really would rather have. Brandon Laird, who could be a better option than Duncan or Damon. This winter, Laird went to the Arizona Fall League to learn the corner OF spots. In the minors, Laird (brother of Gerald) played 1B and 3B. He’s just 23, perfect for a move away from age (Damon) to youth. You already have a SS about to be 37, a 41 year old closer, a DH that will be 40 in 2011 and a 3B who will be 36. You also are praying that a pitcher who will be 39 in 2011 will return. Now do you really want a 37 year old who will struggle to get DH at bats (against the soon to be 40 year old) and who can’t play the OF anymore because of a weak arm? Laird hit .281-25-102 between AA/AAA last year. Granted .246-2-12 at AAA, so you don’t know if he needs more AAA at bats. But he a) is younger than Damon, b) would be less expensive, c) has more pop and d) if he took or takes to the corner OF could possibly fill in at 1B/3B/LF and RF as well as DH if needed; hence he’d be more versatile.

All things considered, I’d pass on JD and go with Laird. The kids need a shot sometime.      

Hairston to SD becomes reality

Since the WS, OF’s (and OF/DHs) Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon (it appears), Melky Cabrera and Eric Hinske have departed the Yankees. Not to mention minor leaguer Austin Jackson and Shelley Duncan.

Add Jerry Hairston to that list today, as he signed with the Padres.

As of now, it’s Gardner, Granderson, Swisher…and…who else? Jamie Hoffmann? 

Who else will there be?

Free agent signings.

It’s looking like Holliday will be going back to the Cards on a possible 7-year deal. What this means for JD? Who knows.

…and the Red Sox get a 3B, as they reach a one-year deal with Beltre. Of course now they have to flip Mike Lowell somewhere. You may recall that the trade of Lowell to Texas fell through due to Lowell needing surgery. Beltre had an off-year in 2009 due to missing 50 games or so. He has had some nice years in his career, but that 2004 really looks out of place doesn’t it? He does have two Gold Gloves, so Boston will have some D (he and Youkilis) at the corners.     

Update, 1/5/10: Chad Jennings over at LoHud reports that Shelley Duncan has signed with the Indians.

Goodbye Charlie? Steelers in trouble?

Once again, ND’s defense let them down and they lost another close one. You can’t say their games this year haven’t been thrillers. But from 6-2 to 6-6 (and you know what I think about 6-6 teams going to bowl games…they shouldn’t). It looks like ND is now searching for a new coach…with a LOT of money still to be paid out to the one being exiled.

…and after getting whupped by Tim Tebow and Florida, you wonder if Bobby Bowden at Fla. St (6-6) is on his way out.

My favorite NFL team, the Steelers go against the Ravens tonight in a “must-win” game. Should they lose, they’ll drop to 6-5. Only thing is, Big Ben is out with post-concussive syndromes. Backup QB Charlie Batch is out. It falls to 3rd-stringer Dennis Dixon—making his first NFL start. Ouch.  

…and you still wonder what’s up with the Tiger accident…

Wait, someone in the Post wants Shelley Duncan in the OF for the Mets? Don’t they know that Citi Field has a huge OF? Have they seen Shelley play the OF? Sheesh.

Update: The Steelers lost in OT, 20-17, falling to 6-5. They are still in the hunt for the WC, but in a scramble. They’ve lost a bunch of close ones this year (KC, Chicago, Cincy, now the Ravens). They should beat Oakland at home next week. But then, they should have beaten KC in KC. It doesn’t look like their year.

Indy stays undefeated. Great game tonight (Monday) as the Patriots take on undefeated New Orleans.

Thanksgiving Thoughts and a look ahead.

The one and only “Yankee Truth”, Josh, sent me a gift this week. It’s a Yankee Trivia Teaser book first printed in 2007. While appreciative (you know the saying about not looking a gift horse in the mouth?), I do NOT recommend the book.

It has more errors in it than the gloves of the 1962 Mets. Let’s see, if I call the publisher (that is, if it is still in print) and get paid X amount of dollars for each error I caught, I’d make…

Here’s one. When discussing Vic Raschi, the book states that he gave up Hank Aaron’s first MLB HR in August of 1953. There is a problem. Hammerin’ Henry did touch Vic for #1 of his 755, but Aaron didn’t come up to the majors until 1954 (1st HR, April 23, 1954). Raschi was still with the Yanks in 1953 (as part of a killer quartet of Reynolds, Raschi, Lopat and Ford—Reynolds was used mostly in relief, though).

I picked up Baseball Insider this week, which I usually don’t do. I did it because they have a feature where they analyze projected 2012 lineups. Interesting, since who in 2006 had CC, AJ or Teixeira on the Yankees? Who in 2006 would have predicted the decline of Wang due to injury? Who would have predicted Swisher? You don’t know about free agency, injuries or trades.

Nonetheless, here is what they had (lineup order from me, as to where I’d put them if their prediction becomes true).

Gardner CF
Jeter SS (at 37 on Opening Day 2012, with some 3140 hits in tow?)
Teixeira 1B
Alex 3B (at 36 Opening Day 2012, which makes you wonder about the D on the left side of the infield; in the spring of 2012, A-Rod shouldn’t be too far behind Mays’ 660 HR and should have about 2830 hits himself as he hopes to end 2012 with #3000).
Cano 2B
Montero DH (at the age of 22)
Jackson RF (that’s Austin at age 25, not Reggie!)
Cabrera LF (ummm…Melky, not Miggy).
Cervelli C (but as Baseball Insider points out, possibly Austin Romine at 23).

Young with A-Jax, Montero and Romine. You wonder about some power, which Montero is expected to provide (.325, 37 HR in 257 minor league games so far and still not 20 yet—a few days away). Austin Jackson hit .300 at AAA this year at age 22, but had just 4 HR. 24 SB. You hope the power starts to develop.

No Damon (38), Matsui (37), Swisher, or Posada (40). But as I’ve noted, this doesn’t take into account any free agent signings or trades from now until 2012.

Now for the pitchers.

CC, AJ, Hughes, McAllister and Brackman as the starters with Joba closing.

Ok, Pettitte would be 39 and most likely retired. Mo would be 42, and who knows about him?

Hughes would still be just 25 on Opening Day 2012. Joba would be 26.

As for Zach McAllister, he would be 24 at that time. This year the 21 year old went 7-5, 2.23 for AA Trenton in 22 starts. He is 30-22, 2.81 in his minor league career. He and CC could be power forwards for the 0-14 Nets (maybe they should be). McAllister is 6’6″ and weighs 230.

I can’t figure out how Brackman made this list. Granted Baseball Insider (USA TODAY) states that Brackman was slowed by TJ surgery, but his 2009 numbers were horrendous. He will be 24 on December 4th (meaning 26 on Opening Day 2012) but has a LONG way to go after a 2009 which saw these numbers:

2-12, 5.91 at LOW A Charleston. 19 starts out of his 29 games. 106 2/3 IP.
103 K, but 76 walks. 10 HBP and 26 wild pitches.

But hey, he is 6’10″ and 270…there’s always the Nets…(BTW, my local newspaper’s NBA coverage is so poor you need a magnifying glass to see it).

Interesting signings. This year the Chisox let Jim Thome go (right after he passed Reggie on the HR list with #564). The 39 year old’s chances of hitting 600 don’t look good unless he can find an AL team. After going to the Dodgers at the end of August, he was just 4 for 17, all as a PH. He hasn’t played in the field since 2007. With the White Sox in 2009 he was .249-23-74, OPS+ still a good 122 (Overall .249-23-77, 118). He does still whiff a lot, 123 times, but the OPS+ numbers show something may be left. The White Sox let him go in August…presumably to get younger??? (Trade for a minor leaguer).

But who do they sign this week? Andruw Jones. Yup. Andruw Jones, who will still (believe it or not) is just 32 but whose last couple years have been like this:

2007 .222-26-94 OPS+ 87 Atlanta
2008 .158-  3-14 OPS+ 35 (you read that right; pitcher’s stats) 75 games. Dodgers 
2009 .214-17-43 OPS+ 100 (league average; 82 games in the hitter’s park in Texas).

You may talk about Andruw’s defense (10 GG) , but consider this…he only played 17 games in the OF for the Rangers this past season. The rest of the time, it was DH… 

Before that signing this week, the Pale Hose signed Omar Vizquel, who is 42. Omar did decently enough this past year, .266-1-14 as a backup for Texas. Vizquel’s career OPS+ is just 83. He’ll be an interesting HOF case. Over 2700 hits, .273 (same as Rizzuto), 389 SB. 11 GG.

I don’t see the upside in Andruw, and wonder how much Vizquel has left.

Heck, Ozzie Guillen is just 39 months older than Vizquel. Ozzie will be 46 in January.

Guillen’s last full year came at the age of 33 in 1997. His last year was in 2000. The ROY in 1985 and Manager of the Year in 2005 (when the White Sox won their only WS since 1917) hit .264 as a player (3x AS, 1 GG). The OPS+ was only 68 because he NEVER walked. His 162 game average was .264-2-50 with 14 SB but just 19 walks. AN OBP of … ugh…. .287.

Alex Gonzalez (of Game 4 2003 WS Jeff Weaver infamy) left Boston to go to Toronto. MLBTR states that Boston has interest in Scutaro.

Shelley Duncan, taken off the 40-man, refused an assignment back to AAA SWB and is now a free agent.



Girls aren’t the only ones who just wanna have fun

According to the NY Post, The Yanks denied a published report that they have let teams know that Swishalicious is available.

I commented on Swisher a bit in yesterday’s post. The Post states that Swish isn’t expensive (well, baseball-wise). $6.75M in 2010, $9 M in 2011.

More importantly, the Post says that Swish’s personality is a big hit with Girardi and Cashman.

Between Swish and AJ, the Yanks did seem to lighten up a lot this year. They seemed to have fun again. You saw the change in A-Rod when he decided to make baseball his focus and to have fun doing so. How many times did he tense up in past postseasons? 

For many years, the Yankees corporate on-the-field image (the off-the-field corporate image, with the megabucks, will ALWAYS be there) was used to ridicule them. Who can forget the phrase that “rooting for the Yanks was like rooting for GM”? (That is, when GM was kicking ass instead of what the auto industry has become today)…

That phrase really irked Tony Kubek. Kubek once remarked about that phrase by stating something like this, “Do you think we just throw our gloves on the field and win? A phrase like that makes us seem like robots. We all worked hard to become as good and consistent as we have been.” Well, not in those exact words, but you understand what I am getting at. It seemed like all the hard work was being pooh-poohed with no credit given to that.

But that corporate image could be suffocating. The pressures of the Northeast (I use Northeast because NYC isn’t alone; try Boston or Philly pressure) can suck the life and joy out of a player, especially when the team is EXPECTED to win every year.

It’s still a game, although one with major implications money-wise. But by having a little levity in the locker room, be it Swisher’s joy or AJ’s pies, the Yanks finally breathed this year, and it paid off.

In other news, LoHud has an article about the Yankees prospects in the Arizona Fall League now that the AFL short season has ended.   

If the allegations against Kansas football coach Mark Mangino are true, he should be canned immediately. By the way (and not to be cruel), how can players be motivated to stay in shape when Mangino, Andy Reid, Charlie Weis… well, you get the point.

Our friend Mike F. has a post up on going after Halladay. I comment a bit over there. Frankly, I’d like Andy back, and would like a nice solid #4 (Lackey?) with Gaudin #5. A killer bullpen of Aceves/Joba/Robertson/Hughes and Mo? Goodness for the LOOGY. I do wonder if the Yanks have interest in Mike Gonzalez. They did have interest in him a few years back but Gonzalez may command $4 to $5M a year. He did have a good season (5-4, 10 saves, 2.42) for the Braves and has only had one real “blip” year in his career (2008 Braves). 

I don’t feel as if the Yanks will make a big free agent splash this year however. Maybe I just feel as if they went for broke last year. Maybe if they lose $13M in Matsui or Damon they will re-allocate the money towards someone. Randy Wolf went through the Phillie wars so he is used to the northeast. Just average, though but good for a #4 spot? 12-10, 4.13  162g average. ERA+ 103. All NL though, and you wonder how he’d translate to the AL East. Would probably cost only half of what it would take for Lackey, though.

Goodbye, Shelley? Chad Jennings of LoHud reports the additions (and one subtraction) to the 40-man roster. No surprise in protecting A-Jax. Shelley Duncan didn’t make the cut.    

Update: Jennings has more on Duncan.

Shelley Duncan was outrighted to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, but that doesn’t mean he’ll end up there.

The first time a player clears waivers and is sent outright to the minor leagues, he has no choice but to accept the assignment. The second time, he has the right to refuse the assignment. Duncan was outrighted off the 40-man last winter and went to Triple-A. If Duncan clears this time, he will refuse the assignment.

“I’ll wait and see,” Duncan said. “I might clear on Monday or something, and if do, then I’ll become a free agent.”   

Some “Minor” news.

Congrats to Tampa, who won the FSL title (High A). Tampa’s manager is a familiar face—Luis Sojo.   

Key contibutors: C/DH Jesus Montero was .356-8-37 before he was called up to Trenton this year; C Austin Romine .276-13-72. Lance Pendleton 11-5, 2.58. 3B Brandon Laird .266-13-75. D. J. MItchell 8-6, 2.87. Jeremy Bleich 6-4, 3.40 before he went up to AA Trenton. Jonathan Hovis 2-2, 22 saves, 3.38. Pat Venditte was 2-0, 2.21, 2 saves after his callup from low A Charleston. You can check the stats here. On the other hand, Dellin Betances was a disappointing 2-5, 5.48.

Venditte was 4-2, 1.87 with 22 saves (A-/A+) for the year.

SWB (AAA) however, lost to Durham for the International League title as they were swept 3 games to 0. Durham gets revenge for losing in the championship to SWB in 2008. The final game was a 3-2 loss in 12 IP. The first two games were both 4-1 losses. After losing the IL title, 1B Juan Miranda was called up to the Yankees.

Here are stats for the SWB Yankees.  I don’t know how versatile Kevin Russo is, since he is stuck behind Cano, but Russo did hit .326-5-31 in 90 games. Last year Russo hit .307 for AA Trenton. A-Jax finished at .300-4-65 with 24 SB. He’ll probably start at AAA next year as the Yanks hope he develops some pop. We would hope to see him sometime with the Yanks in 2010. He turns 23 next February. Juan Miranda appears to be trade bait. .290-19-82 isn’t bad, but stuck behind Teix. Shelley Duncan was the IL MVP, .277-30-99. Igawa (who must really be homesick for Japan. Hope he enjoys the Poconos) was 10-8, 4.15 and seemingly stuck in SWB like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day. Zach Kroenke was 7-1, 1.99.

AA Trenton just missed out on the playoffs. Click on the link for their stats. SS Eduardo Nunez hit .322. Montero went .317-9-33 at AA after his callup. His combined stats were .337-17-70 and he won’t be 20 until November. It’ll be interesting to see where he begins 2010. 20 and in AAA already? Should he come to SWB, I may have to take some more runs up to SWB or over to Coca-Cola Park in the LV. Zach McAllister was 7-5, 2.23 for Trenton. Kanekoa Texeira 9-6, 2.84. Kevin Whelan 4-0, 2.63. Bleich struggled at AA (3-6, 6.65) after his callup.

I see where Pete Abraham, who I read and mention a lot on this blog due to the lineups, insight and commentary he provides, is moving on and apparently up. He is leaving the Lower Hudson Journal and Yankees coverage for the Boston Globe and (ugh) the Red Sox. Opinions can always differ, and no one agrees with columnists or broadcasters all the time. Heck, I’m sure you readers don’t agree with me all the time. When I differed with Pete, I wrote my opinions on this blog, and when Pete made a really good point, I stated so and gave credit. Most importantly, Pete’s blog for Lohud was always informative and you could always tell that the guy hustled. If there was a story, he was on it. Being a Yankees’ beat writer, he had the lockerroom access that we don’t and he shared it constantly with readers. Best of luck to him, but we do have to be honest here….that best of luck comes with a caveat. Since he’ll now be switching over to the “dark side,” let’s hope that there isn’t too much home paper WS coverage in his future, but “Guest” coverage instead.

Speaking of… always feel free to register and comment on the posts. Just keep it clean. Would love to hear from you!

Entering tonight’s game, the Yanks’ magic # for a playoff spot is 4. For the AL East and AL best record, it is 10.

Game 147. Jays @ Yankees. Cervelli’s walkoff wins it, 5-4.

YANKEES (93-53)
Magic #s. 6 for playoffs. 12 for Division. 12 for best AL record.

+7 pythagorean. OPS+ 120; ERA+ 102
Jeter SS .332*-17-64-26*/31*-128 (2729 hits; 3rd in AL BA; tied for 3rd in runs scored, Damon is 2nd)
Hairston LF (a day for JD) .258-2-11-0/0-110 (as Yankee)
Teixeira 1B .286-35*-111**-2/2-142*
Rodriguez 3B .285-25-84-11/13-142*
Matsui DH .277-24-82-0/1-128
Swisher RF .257-27-79-0/0-130
Cano 2B .320-23-77-4/10-124 (7th in AL BA; leads AL in games played–he’s only missed one…can you believe he is tied for 2nd in the league in total bases? Teix is 1st…)
Cabrera CF .280-12-63-10/12-101
Molina C (probably a good thing Posada sits against the Jays tonight…)

Pitching: RHP Chad Gaudin (1-0, 3.42 with Yankees; ERA+ 131).
The fill-in as Andy’s shoulder gets some rest. Hopefully that rest helps!

The 2010 Yankees schedule is out. They open and close in Boston, as previously reported. Opening Day at the Stadium is against those pesky Angels. Interleague is strange. The Yanks go to LA and Arizona (and the Dodgers have NEVER visited Yankee Stadium for Interleague….only the WS). Of course there is the home and home vs. the Mets. The Astros and Phils join the Mets as interleague home games. I don’t understand why the Phils. After all, the Phils played three in Yankee Stadium this year. You’d think the Yanks would have to go to Philly, but no. So it is Mets H and A, Phils and Astros @ H, LA and Arizona Away. The Yankee Fan Club has their road trip next year, and some thought it would be an interleague game. Unless Club Prez Chuck is chartering a plane (and that is HIGHLY unlikely), I would say the answer is no.

You can check the whole schedule here.

The Post stated that only twice before have the Yanks opened and closed a season at Fenway. They were in 1938 and 1950. Being that the Yanks won the WS in both of those years (and both times in sweeps), hopefully it is an omen!   

Just saw this. Somewhere in the land called Honah Lee, Puff the Magic Dragon is crying. Mary Travers, of Peter, Paul and Mary, passed on today at the age of 72.

Puff the Magic Dragon
Mary has left us.

The Yanks got two in the first on and RBI double by Teix and a single by Godzilla but then the bats went silent. Toronto was forced to go to the bullpen and piece it together after Tallet went down with an injury but the Yanks couldn’t capitalize.

Gaudin pitched well and it’s 4-2 Toronto in the 7th. In 5 2/3, Gaudin gave up 3 runs. Not bad, and he actually has been more reliable in his spot starts than AJ or Joba have been recently. Bruney came in, and his postseason spot could be in jeopardy as he gave up a run without getting an out. If the Yanks go with a 3-man rotation in round one (because of the extended schedule), Joba drops into the bullpen. Robertson (who will begin throwing again soon) could be ready. Joba, Robertson, Aceves, Gaudin, Hughes and Mo are six righty relievers. Bruney could be the odd man out. You then would have Coke and Marte. Eight relievers with the three starters.

Two big updates from Pete Abraham:

UPDATE, 6:53 p.m.: More on the suspensions:

Posada and Carlson were initially given four games without pay and a $3,000 fine. Both appealed and it was reduced to three days with pay and the fine. They start serving tonight. Posada wasn’t going to play tonight anyway and he has a stiff neck from the fight.

Meanwhile, Rod Barajas got a $1,000 fine. Shelley Duncan got three games and a fine. Edwar “The Terminator” Raimrez was fined as was an apparently feisty Kevin Long.

Joe Girardi, meanwhile, came to the defense of John McDonald.

“There’s been some reports that John McDonald gave me my little thing on my eye and that is totally incorrect. John McDonald is a local kid that is a good man. From watching the tape. I didn’t see John McDonald touch me, and he actually sought me out today and we talked about it. He was quite disturbed that his name was mentioned in that sort of situation. He’s a peacemaker, he’s a local kid and I just want to clarify that.

“I got elbowed by one of my own players that I won’t disclose because it was an accident trying to pull someone off, so I don’t want John McDonald to have a bad name because this is a good man.”

One of his own players? No wonder Joe was so ripped last night.

UPDATE, 7:40 p.m.: Ian Kennedy is pitching tonight for Scranton in the IL Finals. You can watch the game live by clicking on the video link at www.swbyankees.com. Good luck to Ian as he continues his comeback.        

Edwar fined. Now that is funny. Edwar is so skinny that you can’t imagine him fighting. He’s so thin you have to find him to land a punch. Like trying to hit a pencil.

As I wrote before, the Joba rules could come off next year and be replaced by the Hughes rules (think about it, with Phil in the bullpen now and in the rotation next year…)…meaning maybe Kennedy takes over the 2009 Hughes role? Getting Ian back on track could be huge for the 2010 Yankees.

Yanks have a shot in the bottom of the 7th. Hairston up, bases loaded, down 4-2, two out. Nope, he makes out. 7 innings played. Yanks have 4 hits. Only 2 since the first. I know the plane is waiting for Seattle but…

…and after Seattle it’s those pesky pests the Angels. Huge series for best record in the AL.

Hughes gets work in. A 1-2-3 8th.

Texas losing. Magic # for a playoff spot could go to 5.

One of the other magic #’s, AL or Division will drop to 11 since the Angels are playing Boston.

SO CLUTCH! Goodness how he will be missed. Godzilla ties it with a 2-run HR.   

To the 9th. Mo in. Bunt single. Forceout, 1-6. People sometimes forget how great a fielder (except for that one occasion, Game 7 of the 2001 WS) Mo is. Flyout. SB. Ground out. The incomparable Rivera has another shutout inning and the ERA drops to 1.66.

God, I’d love to see Gardner win it with a walkoff, but for him, it might have to be an inside-the-parker. Wouldn’t that be something? 

Gardner does do his job. Singles. Now for the SB.

…and he gets it. People sometimes forget how important the speed game can be. Just look at the double steal the other night. SB #22. Jeter grounds out. Gardner to third.

Cervelli up. Now HERE is the time for the squeeze! 

Nope, but Cervelli does win the game with a single. 5-4 Yankees. 94-53. Texas lost, so the magic # to clinch a playoff spot is now FIVE.

The magic # for AL best record is now 11. AL East also 11. One of those numbers will drop to 10 tonight, depending on who wins the Angels-Red Sox game (now tied 7-7 in the 8th as I write).

Minors: Tampa (High A) is up 4-0 in the 5th and can win the FSL title with a win tonight. SWB (AAA) lost 4-1 and is down 0-2 in their best of five finals of the International League. The good news is that Ian Kennedy threw 3 innings. 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and six Ks. The bad news? He was replaced by Igawa. 3 R in 4 IP.   

Later…have a good evening. 



Posada gets four, no, make that three game suspension, Duncan gets three

From Pete Abraham (blog link at right):

UPDATE, 4:50 p.m.: So much for the night off. According to the Daily News, Posada got four games and a $3,000 fine, which is pretty much what was expected. Jesse Carlson got the same.

No word on appeals yet. But Posada should take his four games and come back Monday in Anaheim. Fighting it means the process gets delayed and he could miss games against Boston later in the month.

UPDATE, 5:22 p.m.: Word now is that Shelley Duncan will get three games for his role in the brawl. He was, as you would expect, an active participant. There also will be assorted fines.

You have to hand it to Shelley. He has been in the majors parts of three seasons and been suspended twice.

Pete updates (emphasis mine):

UPDATE, 5:51 p.m.: The MLB justice system is impossible to understand. Anyway, Posada and Carlson apparently have three games — apparently on the condition of not appealing. It starts tonight. Barajas was fined $1,000. Gaston confirmed the Carslon suspension.

The problem with all this is that there are no rules. It’s up to Bob Watson. The appeals process also has flexibility. It could take a month, it could take 10 minutes.

Bottom line: Posada can’t play until Sunday.

Game 138. First game of a Labor Day DH. Yanks take the opener, 4-1.

Derek Jeter needs 3 hits to tie, and 4 to pass, Lou Gehrig to become the all-time Yankees’ hit leader. With a doubleheader today, could today be the day?

Ernie Banks
Ernie’s kind of day. The
Yanks are playing two.

Today’s lineup. Welcome back, Gardner.

JD gets the day, as does Matsui. I’d guess they both get the nightcap vs. Sonnanstine, and that Molina catches AJ (thus we don’t get the soap opera of AJ/Posada again).

You know what I think of Cano and his RISP numbers hitting 5th. (Types as he holds nose).  

YANKEES (87-50, +7.5 in AL East. Magic #19.)
More magic numbers…22 over the Angels for #1 AL seed.
16 to make the playoffs.

A pedestrian 13-12 down the stretch would still give the Yanks 100 wins.

Pythagorean, +7. OPS+120; ERA+ 102.

Yes, the 102 is only slightly above average, but that 120 is kicking ass. If there is anything to worry about, it is the pitching.

BA; HR; RBI; SB/total att; ops+ and comments.
*= team leader; **=AL leader

Jeter SS .334*-17-61-24*/29*-130 (see above for the hit count; 4th in AL BA) 
Swisher RF .249-24-75-0/0-125
Teixeira 1B .279-33*-102**-2/2-138*
Rodriguez 3B .276-24-78-10/12-138*
Cano 2B .318-23-75-4/10-126 (RISP .214)
Posada C .286-20-71-1/1-133 (shhh….don’t tell him he is 38)
Hinske DH .246-7-12-0/0-142 (stats Yanks only. 10 of 16 hits for extra bases)
Cabrera LF .276-12-56-10/12-99
Gardner CF .275-3-20-20/25-99

Pitching: LHP CC Sabathia (16-7, 3.48). ERA+ 128.

Yanks face Garza in the opener at 1 pm today. The nightcap will be at 7 pm, AJ vs. Sonnanstine. Pete Abraham reports that Shelley Duncan has been called up. The Yanks are headed to the postseason, Shelley. Easy with those forearm bashes.

Batting race: Mauer .366 (and remember, the record for a catcher is .362, which Mauer is chasing. Dickey, 1936). Ichiro is at .362.

Interesting with the speed. Even with JD sitting, four guys have ten or more steals.

1st. CC with 2 K’s. Looking good and rolling again. One walk. Carlos Pena removed from the game with an injury.

No 2719…not yet. Jeter flies to RF.

Come to think of it, you would want Damon and Godzilla in Game 2, but does that mean Hairston at 3B? After all, you do need to rest A-Rod’s hip, which means he doesn’t go two…and you can’t have two DHs (Alex and Godzilla).  

With two out, E-6 on Bartlett and Teix reaches. A-Rod scorches one, RBI double. Cano confirms my doubts of him in the 5-hole by whiffing with 2 out and Alex on second. That RISP average…ouch.

Blinders for Cano?
Can we get Blinders for Cano when there are RISP?  

The Desperate Housewife goes Long(oria) off of CC in the 2nd to tie the game.

End of 3, tied at 1. Jeter (6-3) is 0 for 2. 

Top 5. Welcome back, BG. Diving catch. The D! 

Mid 6th. Still 1-1.

CC ace-like again today, but so is Garza. CC 7 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 4 walks and 10K.

But 1-1 going to the bottom of the 7th.

Still 1-1 going into the 8th. CC out. Hughes in. Jeter 0 for 4 in the opener so far.

Crawford walks but Posada nails him! One out. After escaping that problem (walking triple?) Fabulous Phil the Franchise gets a ground out and a pop up.

Bottom 8th. Swish a leadoff walk. Teix a hit, there is an error. 2nd and 3rd, none out and looking good. Hairston PR for Swish. A-Rod intentionally walked.

Bases loaded for Cano. Can Robbie come through this time? His RISP isn’t good, and we know he isn’t that patient. He draws few walks (26, worst of any regular; BG has 23 but BG has just 200 AB going into today. By contrast, Cano had 551 AB).

Cano comes through with a SF.

Jorge comes through (Shh…he’s 38) with an RBI single. 3-1 Yanks.

Hinske SF. 4-1 Yanks. Late-inning lightning again.

Let’s see how the leg is bothering him. Mo for the 9th. Hughes’ ERA drops to 3.07. CC to 3.40.

No problem with the Great Rivera. After a walk, he K’s the Desperate Housewife, gets a popup, and a K. 2 K’s. Problem? What problem? ERA down to 1.75. Could this be year #9 under 2.00?

39th save for Mo. Tied with Fuentes for the MLB lead. …and to think, Mo is 39.

Hughes is now 6-3, 3.07.

Unless Jeter has a monster game in the nightcap, it looks like Gehrig’s mark lives for one more day.    

Boston lost. The magic # for the division title drops to 17