Category Archives: Ex-Players

Game 39. Rays edge Yanks, 5-4.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Joe Girardi was attending his daughter’s graduation. Bench coach Rob Thomson filled in as manager, and Thomson made a couple of moves that have Yankees’ fans scratching their heads after a 5-4 Yankees loss to Tampa Bay that dropped their record to 24-15.

Luis Severino gutted out five innings, giving up just one run and leaving with a 2-1 lead. The Yanks got a run in the first when with one out, Ellsbury singled, Holliday doubled and Castro got an RBI groundout. Judge singled Holliday to third and stole second, but the Yanks couldn’t add on; Didi struck out. It would cost them later.

The Rays tied the game in the bottom of the first. In the third, Gardner got a bunt single and went to second on an error by Evan Longoria. It’s about the only thing Longoria did wrong all night. He had four hits against the Yankees, including the GW RBI. Ellsbury doubled Gardner home.

Jonathan Holder pitched a scoreless sixth and after that, the Yankees’ bullpen, which has been so great this year so far, let the game get away.

Thomson brought in Warren to pitch the seventh. I hate when managers go “by the book” or “by the formula.” If a pitcher is doing well, leave him in. Change for changes sake, I hate. Seventh inning guy, eighth inning guy, etc. Phooey. Too many cooks (or pitchers) spoil the soup (or game). Holder gave up a double in the sixth, but no runs and had two strikeouts. Why not leave him in? If a guy is doing well, and is smoking, use your own eyes and gut and go with the hot hand. Leave him in.

That over managing, seventh-inning guy, eighth-inning guy, etc., is a change to the game I grew up with that I do not like. A change for the worse. I’m old school, remembering the days when a Gossage or Lyle would come in in the seventh and really close a game out, going 2 1/3 scoreless or so. People older than me may remember Joe Page…

I miss those days.

The move to Warren, who has been great and probably was due for a clunker, backfired. Warren gave up 3 runs in the seventh. Rays 4-2. The key blow was a double that 3B Ronald Torreyes couldn’t come up with, shortly after it appeared Warren Shreve was squeezed on a pitch by the home plate umpire.

In the top of the eighth, Matt Holliday hit a two-run HR (8) to tie it, 4-4.

But Tyler Clippard gave up a run and the game in the bottom of the eighth.

In the bottom of the ninth, with two out, Thomson let Austin Romine hit for himself instead of pinch-hitting Gary Sanchez for him. This is a move, or non-move if you will, that has Yankees’ fans scratching their heads. Even the Yankees’ broadcasters on WPIX, Ken Singleton and John Flaherty, were a bit surprised by the non-move. Sanchez has a far greater chance of tying the game up with a HR than Romine did or does, and you are just PH-ing catcher for catcher. Why Sanchez wasn’t up there, who knows. Romine tapped back to the pitcher, game over. Not only that, Romine (0 for 4) has been slumping lately (0 hits in at least his last 16 at bats) and is down to .247.

So that’s that.

Ellsbury 2 for 4, RBI; Holliday 2 hits, HR, 2 RBI. Castro 2 hits, RBI (.352).

Chris Carter was 0 for 3 with two strikeouts. Tyler Austin’s start of his rehab was rained out.

Severino 5 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 3 W, 7 K. 3.64
Holder (H, 3) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.04
Warren (BS, 2) 2/3 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.31
Shreve 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 0.00
Clippard (L, 0-2, 1.53) 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 2 W, 3 K.


Game 32. Nemesis Keuchel beats Yanks as Ellsbury gunned down at plate to end game, 3-2.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Sometimes you have someone who owns you. Years ago, Frank Lary of the Tigers was known as the Yankee Killer.

Dallas Keuchel of Houston can wear that motto now. The Yanks have had trouble touching him the past few years, and he is 4-2, 1.41 against them lifetime. That doesn’t include him shutting out the Yankees in the wild card playoff game two years ago.

Michael Pineda pitched well for the Yanks, making one big mistake, but had the misfortune to go up against Keuchel.

Still, the Yanks almost pulled it out. Down 3-1 with two out and two on in the ninth, Gary Sanchez singled for one run, but Jacoby Ellsbury, attempting to tie the game, was gunned down at the plate to end the game.

Pineda gave up a 2-run HR to Carlos Correa in the first inning, and the way Keuchel owns the Yanks, you knew that may just be enough.

Houston went up 3-0 in the fifth.

The Yanks got one in the fifth on a bases-loaded catcher’s interference call. Ellsbury was at the plate and it was the 28th time in his career he reached on catcher’s interference—one short of the all-time record held by Pete Rose.

The Yanks got 1st and 3rd with no one out in the sixth but couldn’t score.

That set up the ending.

The Yanks struck out 14x in the game.

I’m not the only one down on Chris Carter. Reading some Facebook and Twitter posts, I’m disappointed and down on him, but some of those posts are quite vicious.

I just hope Tyler Austin is healing well and can come back soon. Also that when Greg Bird is healthy, we see the real Greg Bird.

Lots of rumors about maybe the Yanks dipping into their prospect base to go after Pirates’ ace Gerrit Cole at the deadline?

Pineda (L, 3-2, 3.27) 6 2/3 IP, 3 R, 6 H, 1 W, 7 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Warren 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 W, 0 K. 0.47
Holder 2/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 1.98
Shreve 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 0.00

The move when Chad Green was returned to the minors was that the Yanks brought up reliever Giovanny Gallegos.

We’ll see how the rest of the weekend pans out. Houston (now with McCann and Beltran) has been playing well and is 24-11 with the win. The Yanks are now 21-11.

Game 26. All Rise! Judge HRs again in Yanks’ 8-6 win. Ex-Twins mgr. Mele dies.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks’ overcome a bad start by CC Sabathia and beat Toronto 8-6 on Wednesday night to go to 17-9 on the season. They got HRs by Matt Holliday and Aaron Judge in the victory. They are off today and head to Chicago for a weekend series against the Cubs. They should be getting Gary Sanchez back Friday as well.

CC gave up 4 runs in the first inning, but the Yanks got three back on Holliday’s HR, his fifth of the season and #300 of his career.

But CC gave up two more in the top of the second.

Judge got two back in the third with his 13th HR of the season.

The Yanks had the bases loaded in the fifth, and at this point, probably every Yankees’ fan was rooting for Kyle Higashioka to finally get his first MLB hit, but he struck out. Higashioka will be sent down for Sanchez, and unfortunately will be taking an 0 for 18 back with him.

Joe Girardi didn’t like the umps’ strike zone and was ejected.

Shortly after the ejection, with one out in the bottom of the seventh, Judge singled, Headley doubled him to third, and Carter singled to tie the game. PH Didi Gregorius singled to make it 7-6 Yanks, and later on Aaron Hicks walked with the bases loaded to give the Yanks an insurance run.

Gardner 2 Hits and drew 2 walks. Holliday 3-run HR.
Judge 3 hits, inc. HR. 2 RBI. Carter 2 hits, RBI. Hicks walked 3x.

Sabathia 4+ IP, 6 R, 7 H, 4 W, 5 K. Gave up 1 HR. 5.45
Warren 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 H, 1 K. 0.63
Clippard 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 w, 2 k. 1.54
Betances (w, 3-1, 0.93) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.
Chapman (S, 6) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 0.87

The Yanks’ bullpen cleaned up for CC, going 5 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 6 K. And check their ERA’s.

Sam Mele died a few days ago at the age of 95. He was an OF/1B for the Red Sox 1947-1949, Senators 1949-1952, White Sox 1952-1953, Orioles 1954, Red Sox again 1954-1955, Reds 1955 and Indians 1956. He led the AL in doubles in 1951. His 162 game average was .267-12-84 OPS+ 97.

He managed the Twins from 1961-1967, winning the 1965 AL pennant. They lost that series in 7 to the Dodgers. He had a .546 winning percentage. His teams also finished second in 1962 and 1966.

Minor League Report. Torres returns.


The major leaguers made one move yesterday, DFA’ing Pete Kozma when Didi Gregorius came back. You wonder if another may be made soon.

Greg Bird is down to .109. He is 6 for 55. It’s amazing that the Yanks are 14-7 despite him (and also despite Gardner under .200 with zero RBI). But you have to wonder how long the rope is before the Yanks will be forced to send him down to straighten himself out.

Meanwhile, Ji-Man Choi, a 1B and lefty hitter just like Bird, is hitting .360 at SWB after two hits and an RBI in SWB’s (11-9) 6-3 win last night. I hope Bird heats up soon, but if he continues like this, you wonder if a flip-flop could be forthcoming.

Choi does have MLB experience, 54 games with the Angels last year, .170-5-12. He is only 25 himself, 26 in a few weeks. While not a “savior,” he may be able to do better than Bird is doing right now (until Bird gets straightened out) and be in a platoon with Carter.

But Bird got to take flight soon (sorry, had to throw that in there).

3B Ruben Tejada had a 2-run HR and is at .383. DH Dustin Fowler 2 for 2, triple, RBI. RF Rob Refsnyder and SS Cito Culver each had 2 hits.

Camarena (W, 2-0, 1.46) 6 IP, 3 R, 2 earned, 5 H, 1 W, 7 K.
Gallegos (H, 3) 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 3.60
Frieri (S, 4) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.86

AA: Gleyber Torres returned from the DL and DH’d. He was 0 for 3 with a walk and is off to a slow start at .220. Trenton (12-8) lost 4-2. 1B Mike Ford 3 of Trenton’s 6 hits.

German (L, 0-3, 2.95) 4 2/3 IP, 2 R, 7 H, 1 W, 8 K.
Cortes 1 2/3 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 4 W, 1 K. 1.46
Graham 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 0.00
Hissong 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 7.00

High A: Tampa scored in the seventh, eighth and ninth to walk-off with a 3-2 win.

LF Tito Polo 3 hits.

Swanson 6 IP, 2 R, 7 H, 1 W, 2 K. 3.00. Gave up 1 HR
Pena 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 3 K. 3.24
Schwaab (w 2-0, 1.13) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.

Low A:  Charleston (12-11) won 3-1. 3 hits for CF Blake Rutherford. 1B Brandon Wagner 2 hits, and 2 hits & an RBI for RBI for SS Oswaldo Cabrera.

Diehl (w, 3-0, 2.33) 5 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 W, 5 K.
Sosebee (H, 1) 3 IP, 0 r, 2 H, 1 W, 6 K. 4.70
Gomez (S, 4) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.70

Former MLB player Luis Olmo died at age 97. He played for the Brooklyn Dodgers 1943-1945, 1949-1950 and for the Boston Braves in 1951. Mostly a backup OF who also played 2B and 3B, Olmo did play regularly when the majors were depleted during the war years of 1944 and 1945, doing well in those years.
1944: .258-9-85, 10 SB, OPS+ 84
1945: .313-10-115, 15 SB, led NL with 13 triples, OPS+ 127 and 17th in MVP voting.

He went 3 for 11 with a HR and 2 RBI in the 1949 WS against the Yankees.

In 462 MLB games, he hit .281. His 162 g. average was .281-10-95, OPS+ 102.

Yanks ppd. Day/Night DH in Boston 7-16. And guess who might be the Marlins’ new owners?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yankees’ game vs. Boston was ppd. due to rain today in Boston and will be made up as part of a day/night DH in Boston on Sunday July 16. The first game will be at 1 PM and the second, probably an ESPN game, at 8 PM.

A conglomerate led by Jeb Bush and Derek Jeter won the auction to buy the Florida Marlins. Now to baseball and the owners to approve the sale. Price? $1.3 billion.

Game 16. Aaargh, Matey. Pirates beat Yanks, 6-3.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

CC Sabathia gave up HRs and 2 runs in each of the first two innings, and the Yanks (10-6)  lost to the Pirates, 6-3, on Friday night.

The Yanks’ lineup will be interesting this weekend in Pittsburgh. For one thing, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorius, the Yanks’ starting C and SS, are both still on the DL, and the Yanks lose the DH in the NL park.

In case you are wondering, the last Yankee pitcher to hit a HR was Lindy McDaniel in 1972.

Starlin Castro batted 3rd and had 2 hits, and Jacoby Ellsbury, the cleanup hitter, had 3 hits.

But I’m still trying to get used to Ellsbury in the 4 slot.

CC gave up a HR to the first batter he faced, then the Pirates struck for another run in the first.

In the second, he gave up a 2-run HR and the Yanks were in a quick 4-0 hole.

They got one in the third on a walk to Gardner, a double by Headley, and Gardner scored on a fielding error on the play. Greg Bird just missed tying the game later in the inning on a long drive that was just foul.

The Yanks made it 4-3 in the fifth on singles by Ellsbury and Judge, and both scored on a fielding error on a ball hit by Bird.

Any hopes for a comeback evaporated in the seventh when a two-out, two-base error by Castro led to two Pirate runs. The Yanks threatened, getting the tying run to the plate with two out in the ninth, but it wasn’t to be.

Sabathia (L, 2-1, 2.70) 5 IP, 4 R, 7 H, 2 walks, 3 K. Gave up 2 HR.
Warren 1 2/3 IP, 2 R, both unearned, 0 H, 1 walk, 3 K. 0.84
Layne 0 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk, 0 K. Faced one batter, walked him. 2.25
Holder 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 1 K. 0.00
Clippard 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 2 K. 2.57


Game 11. Despite it all, Yanks win sixth in a row, 3-2.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Ok. The Yanks aren’t getting Didi back until May. They won’t get Sanchez back until mid-May as well. Bird is 1 for 26 with 13 strikeouts. Carter (who did have an RBI today) is 4 for 22, 8 strikeouts. So that is 5 for 48 between those two with 21 strikeouts.

Matt Holliday was a late scratch because of a stiff back.

Jacoby Ellsbury has been hitting cleanup (!)

The Yankees struck out 17x today.

They were 1 for 13 with RISP and left 12 men on base.

Tanaka has struggled.

And despite all that, they still managed to win their sixth straight game to improve to 7-4. Go figure.

Hey, we’ll take it.

CC Sabathia was great for 7 1/3 innings, leaving after he gave up a gopher ball that cut the Yankees’ lead to 3-1. The win was #225 of CC’s career, moving him past Catfish Hunter and Jim Bunning on the all-time list.

In the first, the Yanks got a run thanks to two walks (they drew 8 for the game), a passed ball and a wild pitch.

In the sixth, no one could find Ronald Torreyes’ popup in the sun and it fell in for a gift double. After a groundout moved him to third, a comebacker and error helped Torreyes score and put Aaron Hicks on second, and he scored on Chris Carter’s single to make it 3-0.

Thanks for the gifts, Cardinals.

CC gave up a HR in the eighth, and Tyler Clippard a HR in the ninth. Clippard had more trouble in the ninth but got the final out with the tying and go-ahead runs on base.

Ellsbury had 2 of the Yanks’ 5 hits.

Sabathia (W, 2-0, 1.47) 7 1/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 walk, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Warren (H, 2)  2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H,  0 walks, 1 K. 0.00
Clippard (S, 1) 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 walk, 3 K. 3.00 Gave up 1 HR.

Last night I got into a discussion with someone who called Roger Maris a one-year wonder. My rejoinder? How can a guy who won TWO MVP awards be a one-year wonder?