Category Archives: Managers and Coaches

Game 95. Bullpen woes cost Yankees. Lose 5-4 in 10.

The Yankees had a short bullpen, with the IL and COVID IL having O’Day, Peralta, Cortes, Loaisiga & King on it, and both Zack Britton and Aroldis Chapman were unavailable due to recent usage.

Next man up, but….

those men didn’t deliver as the Yanks blew a 3-1 lead in the 9th, then a 4-3 lead in the tenth as the Yanks (50-45, 3rd, 8 GB) lost 5-4 in Boston. Another late inning bullpen meltdown, and the Yanks have had too many of those lately.

Poor Jordan Montgomery pitched well and once again got little run support. The Yanks only got four hits all game long.

They did go up 1-0 in the fourth. Brett Gardner and Giancarlo Stanton walked to lead off the inning. After an out, a passed ball moved both runners up, and Gardner scored on a groundout by Gleyber Torres.

There was a 55 minute rain delay in the fifth inning.

Boston tied the game, helped by an error by Tyler Wade, in the seventh.

The Yanks went ahead 3-1 in the eighth. D.J. LeMahieu and Gardner both walked to lead off the inning, then Stanton singled to make it 2-1. Rougned Odor bunted both runners over and Torres hit a SF.

Luis Cessa pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, but manager Aaron Boone went to his closer for the night, Chad Green, for the ninth. Strikeout, single, single, lineout, and the Yankees were one out away. Instead, a double tied the game before Green then got the last out.

In the top of the tenth, Tyler Wade was the ghost runner at second. He moved up to third on a ground out and scored on a SF by Gardner.

Then to a wild, terrible bottom of the tenth. Brooks Kriske came in to pitch, and FOUR wild pitches by Kriske basically gave Boston the game. Boston had their ghost runner. WP moved him to third. Another WP and the game was tied, and Boston did nothing to earn that. A walk. A WP moved the winning run to second. Another WP moved him to third. A strikeout. A SF to win the game. What an ugly way to lose.

Torres 2 RBI

Montgomery 5 2/3 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 1 W, 6 K. 3.96 1 WP
Romano (H, 1) 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 5.06 (Combined Cin/NYY; see below)
Luetge (BS, 2) 2/3 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 H, 0 W, 0 K. 3.20
Cessa (H, 1) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.82
Green (BS, 2) 1 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.06
Kriske (L, 1-1; BS, 1) 2/3 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 10.80 FOUR wild pitches.

Before the game, the Yanks DFA’d Asher Wojciechowski and brought up Sal Romano. Romano was with the Reds 2017 through this year and going into this game, had a career record of 15-19, 5.15 (ERA+ 85). 83 games, about half of which were starts.

Kriske was sent down after the game.

Game 88. Pure guts. Cole pitches CG shutout, Yanks win 1-0 on Judge HR.

Masterpiece.

Pure guts.


Gerrit Cole threw a complete game shutout and in the end, it was pure guts. Pure willpower. He threw 129 pitches, and with two out in the 9th, persuaded manager Aaron Boone to leave him in. Result? Three pitches, three strikes. The last two outs were strikeouts. It was like no way Cole was going to lose this game. Pure determination.

The only run of the game came on a 419 ft. HR (21) by Aaron Judge in the third inning.

Before the game, Miguel Andujar (hand) and Jonathan Loaisiga (Covid) were put on the IL. Albert Abreu and Brooks Kriske brought up.

The Yanks had six hits, Houston had three.

The complete game may have been necessary. Given the way Aroldis Chapman has been lately, I don’t think anyone would have been comfortable with Chapman in the game in that ninth inning. It was Cole’s to win or lose. And even with a high pitch count, I, and others, would rather take our chances there with Cole and his heart, guts and determination.

With the win, the Yanks (46-42, 3rd place) are now 8 back.

Judge HR (only run of game) #21

Cole (W, 9-4) 9 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 2 W, 12 K. 2.68





Mid-Season Report Cards. It isn’t pretty.

Today’s Yankees’ rainout allows me to do the midseason report cards. At present the Yankees are 41-39, very disappointing. Game 81 is the halfway point, (and tomorrow–Friday’s—game is in jeopardy of being rained out as well) so here goes. As you may guess, this won’t be pretty. After all, the Yanks are 12th (out of 15 in AL) in runs scored, next to last in doubles and triples, last in SB, 9th in batting average (.236), OPS+ average at 99 (100 is average). They are 4th in ERA (ERA+ 114). Grades much better for pitchers than hitters.

One thing surprising (or not). Some grades have really changed over the past few weeks. Aroldis Chapman, for instance.

Another thing. Grades are also made based not only on what they have done, but on what you expected from them. You expect more from say, Aaron Judge than from Tyler Wade. So grades are also made on whether they are performing up to expectations (or salary, if you prefer).

Gary Sanchez B. A month ago, this grade would have been lower. Yes, he still exasperates you. The talent vs. what you actually get. Yes, he won’t hit .270 (.238 right now). But his 14 HR are tied for second on the team. His defense is still below par. Some bad baserunning. But wait. His OPS+ (on base pct. plus slugging average) is 130. 30% above league average. It’s third on the team. This from a guy who lost his job a month ago. Yeah, the average isn’t great. But it’s better than the .147 of last year or the .186 of a couple years ago. And if he hits 30 HR … not many catchers do that. Recent hot streak raised grade from a D.

Kyle Higashioka. B. Yes, a .198 batting average. A little leniency to backup catchers who play once a week. The OPS+ is 95, just 5% below league average. Most backup catchers have OPS+ in the 60s or 70s. 10 of his 18 hits are for extra bases, and there is a reason he catches Cole all the time. Average notwithstanding, he hasn’t been too bad.

Ok. Now to First base. Ugh.

Jay Bruce. F. 4 for 34. .118. OPS+ 30. 70% below league average. So bad he retired.

Mike Ford F. 8 for 60. .133. OPS+ 57. So bad he was traded—to Tampa Bay, a division rival!

Chris Gittens F. Given a chance. Went just 2 for 21. OPS+ 21. Remember 100 is league average.

Luke Voit. D. .195, OPS+ just 67. The fact he was hurt saves him from an F here. Led majors in HR (22) in 2020. Injuries and the IL have limited him to three so far this season. His loss, and the pathetic play of his replacements, have really hurt the Yanks. Needs to get back to normal in second half.

D.J. LeMahieu C. Hasn’t been bad, but just average. Therefore a C. From .327 and .364 the past two seasons to .271. Power, RBI, clutch hitting all down from the last two years (when he was the best player on the team). OPS+ 101. Average. The defense also seems to have slipped a bit.

Gleyber Torres F. 24 HR in 2018 as a rookie. 38 in 2019. SIX TOTAL SINCE. Out of position at SS. Only 24 but what has happened? OPS+ 122, 127, 102 and now 79. From hitting in the .270s the first two seasons to the .240s the past two. His HUGE dropoff has been a killer.

Rougned Odor C Minus. .211. OPS+ 91. He is what he is. Can hit a HR (has 8) but low average, too many strikeouts. Had 3 30-HR years in Texas, but hit .204 one year, .205 another. Had years there of 162 and 178 strikeouts. Giving Yanks same. I wasn’t sold on getting him. Unfortunately one of the few lefty bats they have.

Tyler Wade. C. We already know he can’t hit much, if at all. So expectations were low to start out with. OPS+ 54. Versatile and has played OF more than in the past, nice range there, and not bad out there. One of the few guys on the team that can run (Yanks last in AL in SB).

Gio Urshela. B. Great defense again. Banged up. But .272, 10 HR, OPS+108. Been solid.

Clint Frazier F. LF job given to him. His to lose. He lost it to Andujar, a novice OF. .186. OPS+ just 77. Only 5 HR, 15 RBI.

Brett Gardner. F. I wasn’t in favor of bringing him back. Turns 38 in August. Looks old and done. .204. Just 11 RBI. OPS+ 79. And playing almost every day since Hicks is out for the season. If he wasn’t the Yanks best (only?) CF option, I’d advocate he just retire NOW.

Aaron Hicks. F. I thought batting him (.233 career average) third was a huge mistake. I thought giving him the multi-year deal they did was a mistake too. He thought he’d hit 30 HR this year? Injured, out for season. Before the injury, .194, mostly righty, nothing from hitting lefty. OPS+ 74.

Miguel Andujar. D. Learning the OF. But has his beginner moments. Uncomfortable around the wall. Throwing to the wrong base. A man without a position? Not good at third, not much at first, now in left. An indictment of Frazier that Clint lost his job to Andujar. .257 ok, but just 12 RBI, and doesn’t walk. OPS+ just 86. He, Frazier and Torres, three youngsters, have really killed the Yanks with their regression. And their regression hasn’t been slight but considerable.

Aaron Judge. A. Leads team in BA, HR and RBI. Also in OPS+ 148, and anything over 140 is MVP consideration material. Best hitter and non-pitcher on the team. Gets screwed by umps who won’t adjust the strike zone to adjust to the fact Judge is 6’7″. As a result low pitches below his knees are called strikes as if Judge were 5’10”. Defense still great, and forced to play CF at times.

Giancarlo Stanton B. I would give him an A except he can’t play the field. His inability to (or the Yankees refusal to) play him in the OF occasionally means Judge or Sanchez can’t have a day at DH. This inflexibility hurts the Yanks, and also when the Yanks play in NL parks (no DH; see the Phillies series where the Yanks lost both games, Stanton couldn’t play). 136 OPS+ is solid. Needs to stay healthy. Also needs to be able to play the OF once in a blue moon!

No grades for the lack of much playing time for Mike Tauchman (traded after 3 for 14), Ryan LaMarre (0 for 7 in 3 games) or Estevan Florial (just one game). The exceptions were made for Voit’s 1B fill-ins.

Pitching.

Gerrit Cole A. Been struggling a bit lately, but 8 wins, ERA 2.66, ERA+ 161, which if continued all merit CYA consideration. Yanks wasting his starts by giving him no run support.

Jordan Montgomery B. ERA+ 106. ERA 4.06.
Lot of no-decisions, just 3-2, but Yanks 11-4 in his starts (Cole, b/c of lack of run support, is 8-8).

Corey Kluber B+. Was 4-3, 3.04 ERA+142 with a no-hitter when the shoulder acted up. Any ERA+ over 140 CYA worthy. Big loss.

Domingo German. C. Inconsistent. Two lousy outings, sent down, came back, very good for two months, now lousy again. 4.50 ERA, ERA+ 95. Fields his position very poorly.

Jameson Taillon F. Rarely gives innings. 3-4, 5.43. ERA+ just 79.

Michael King C. Better as reliever (2.29 ERA) than starter (5.47). He, and some others, can’t get out of the first inning unscathed. 0-4, 4.06, ERA+ 106.

Deivi Garcia F. 2 starts. 0-2, 6.48 in MLB. But 8.80 at AAA. Only 21 but what a regression.

Aroldis Chapman C. Wow. A few weeks ago, this would have been an A. On June 9, Chapman had an ERA of 0.39. Since then, it’s ballooned to 3.77, and it would be higher except that he has been saved by a triple play. Should take a little off his pitches and concentrate on just getting the ball over. Overthrows. Of course, HRs he gave up ended both of the Yankees’ last two seasons.

Jonathan Loaisiga A. His “coming-out” year. Been fabulous as a set-up man. 7 wins second on team (and all in relief!). ERA 2.32. ERA+ 186. Even though a setup man, deserves an All-Star slot.

Lucas Luetge. B+. Would have been an A until the recent meltdown against the Angels. Has come out of nowhere to post an ERA of 3.15, ERA+ 137.

Chad Green. A. 2.48 ERA, 174 ERA+. With Loisiga, pretty solid.

Luis Cessa B. 3.31 ERA, ERA+ 131. Been solid, but mostly used in garbage time. Like King, better in relief than as a starter, but I am a little surprised King went into rotation (King had no MLB experience there, whereas Cessa did. King’s experience as a starter was all in the minors.)

Darren O’Day. A. Has done well, but on IL, hasn’t pitched much.

Justin Wilson F. A 5.65 ERA for a short reliever is horrible. Went on IL.

Zack Britton no grade. Has missed almost the whole season so far with injury. Just five games.

Brooks Kriske F. As with Britton, just five games, but you can’t ignore a horrible 12.60 ERA.

Nestor Cortes, Jr. A. Can give innings. Compare his 1.02 to Wilson’s 5.65.

Wandy Peralta. F. Why Aaron Boone trusted the guy (Peralta is now on the IL) so much baffles me. 5.28 ERA. About same as Wilson, so same grade. Yanks traded Tauchman to SF for him. Tauchman hasn’t done much for SF, so… even.

Albert Abreu A. Too bad on the rollercoaster. Up/down, UP/Down. 2.13 ERA. Done well when brought up.

Nick Nelson F. 9.75 ERA. And the Yanks protected him and Kriske instead of Garret Whitlock, who went to Boston via the Rule 5 draft and who has a 1.42 ERA for Boston. Hoo boy.

Aaron Boone. D. I don’t mind Boone, think he’s an OK manager. But I am tired of him not calling out his underperforming team and making excuses for them. Time to get mad and pissed at them! Of course what happens in private, we don’t know. But Aaron, can you show some anger, equal to as much as we fans are pissed off right now? And stop looking at the big picture, so to speak by giving guys days off so much? You are saving guys for playoffs, that, the way the team is playing, you won’t qualify for!

Brian Cashman F. I’ve defended Cashman often. He’ll be in the Hall of Fame one day. But this year? No. A lineup devoid of lefty hitters. Yankee Stadium is made for lefty hitters, and those few lefties on the team haven’t done anything. The lineup has too many righty bats. Too many guys who can’t run (last in SB), don’t make contact, don’t hit and run, can’t bunt, don’t hit behind the runner, don’t run the bases well—meaning taking the extra base (and too many thrown out on the basepaths), one-dimensional, HR or nada. Some guys are playing out of position. The LeMahieu contract for a number of years, ok. Cole’s? OK. You are stuck with Stanton’s. But 7 years to Hicks? (rolling eyes). Not giving Hoy Jun Park (hitting over .350 at AAA right now) a chance but sticking with Odor? The same with Trey Amburgey vs. Frazier/Andujar? The team is constructed poorly. That falls on Cashman. Boone can only work with what he has been given. Hence an F for Cashman, a D for Boone. Preseason predictions for this team were for possibly 100 wins. They are 41-39. And the schedule the next month is difficult. They easily could be 49-55 or something like that at the end of July. Yes, that means going 8-16 in the next 24 games. Look at the schedule. Mets (do they face DeGrom? Luckily, no), Houston, Boston, Tampa Bay. I think those four teams encompass 17 of the next 24 games. The Yanks have not had a losing season since 1992. They better step it up, or else…. Forget the playoffs. They could finish under .500.







Game 80. Yanks score 7 in 1st, but give up 7 in 9th, lose 11-8. Brutal.

There were two rain delays totaling about an hour and 40 minutes. By the time the second rain delay was over, the game resumed around 11:30 PM and ended after 1 AM.

I’m glad I didn’t see the ending. My blood pressure would have caused another PE or a heart attack.

After last night, stick a fork in the Yankees. They are done. Sure, comebacks (think 1978) happen. But do any of you think it will happen with this team? They are now 41-39, 4th in the AL East, and 8 1/2 back.

And last night’s loss? Just excruciating. The Yanks scored 7 runs in the first inning, just one the rest of the game, took an 8-4 lead into the ninth, and gave up 7 runs in the top of the ninth to blow it and lose 11-8. Pathetic.

Before the game, controversy. The Yanks get swept in Boston last weekend. Their GM says “They suck.” The manager says that “the season is on the line.” But in a game with Ohtani on the mound, both Aaron Judge and Gio Urshela are out of the lineup. Where is the urgency? This “looking at the big picture stuff” as far as resting players right now is BS. What big picture? The playoffs (Cue Jim Mora here) that you won’t qualify for the way you are playing right now? What are you saving them for? Manager Boone says they are banged up. A lot of us remember a crippled, banged up Mickey Mantle playing through hellish injuries. Same with a banged up Thurman Munson. What crap. You should have heard the Michael Kay show on the YES network yesterday. Boy were they criticizing the Yanks over this.

Before the game, Justin Wilson up off of rehab, Albert Abreu sent down.


A slumping Domingo German gave up a 2-run HR in the top of the first inning to Phil Gosselin, and the Yanks were down 2-0 right away. I don’t know what it is with Yankees’ starters that they can’t make it out of the first inning unscathed. The homer came with two out and two strikes on Gosselin. Of course it did.

Shockingly, Angels’ star Shohei Ohtani had nothing as his control was off. The Yankees knocked him and his bat (the Angels forgoed the DH what with Ohtani and his 28 HR starting) out of the game after just 2/3 of an inning.

D.J. LeMahieu walked. Luke Voit walked. A passed ball. Gary Sanchez walked to load the bases. Giancarlo Stanton singled in a run, Gleyber Torres singled in another. After Rougned Odor struck out, Miguel Andujar made it 3-2 with an RBI groundout. Clint Frazier was HBP to reload the bases. Brett Gardner walked to force in a run, force Ohtani from the game, and make it 4-2. LeMahieu doubled to clear the bases. 7-2. Yankees’ fans were feeling good, not knowing what was to come later. What was to come later was just one more run, and a shocking defeat.

German gave up a run in the second. He was pulled after the first rain delay. Jared Walsh (we will hear from him later) homered in the fifth off of Luis Cessa to make it 7-4.

Brett Gardner homered in the eighth (3) to make it 8-4 Yankees. Game in the bag, right? Wrong.

In his first 23 games this season, Aroldis Chapman gave up just 1 earned run for an ERA of 0.39. That is through June 9. Starting on June 10 (when he gave up two 2-run HRs in the bottom of the ninth to blow a game), Chapman has given up 12 runs, 11 earned, in just 5 2/3 innings. It would be worse than that except for a triple play that saved his bacon. That ERA has gone from 0.39 to 3.77.

He walked the bases loaded, then gave up a game-tying grand slam to Walsh. Lucas Luetge came in and gave up three runs to complete the implosion. Ugh.

There aren’t any words. Well, yes, there are, but none you would use around children.

LeMahieu 3 RBI
Stanton 2 hits, RBI
Gardner 2 for 2, 2 walks, scored 2x, 2 RBI. Solo HR (3)

German 3 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 3 W, 2 K. 1 HBP. Gave up 1 HR. 4.50
Wilson 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 5.65
Cessa 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. gave up 1 HR. 3.31
O’Day (H, 4) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.70
Loaisiga (H, 10) 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.32
Chapman 1/3 IP, 4 R, 1 H, 3 W, 0 K. Gave up Game-tying grand slam. 3.77
Luetge (L, 2-1) 2/3 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 1 W, 2 K. 3.15






Game 75. Yanks lose to Boston, 5-3.

For those of you who may have watched the game on the MLB network (I watched on YES), some words from David Cone last night. He was talking mostly about Domingo German, last night’s starter, but it also applies to Michael King and tonight’s starter, Jordan Montgomery, as well.

They have to change up their pre-game routine. They are too often putting the Yankees into an early first-inning hole.

Last night, German gave up three first-inning runs. The Yanks did come back to tie it up in the second, but that was all the offense did in a 5-3 loss up in Boston last night.

In the first inning alone, German has an ERA of 7.71 this year. Montgomery’s is 6.43. King’s is 14.40. You can’t have your team keep coming from behind so often.

With the loss, the Yankees are 40-35, 3rd in AL East, 5 games back (and if the season ended today, 4 1/2 out of the last wild card spot). They are 5-8 against Tampa Bay, and 0-4 against Boston. So 5-12 against the teams above them in their division. Doing simple math, if they were 9-8 or 8-9 against those teams, the Yanks would be much more in the thick of things. Only a game or two out.

So German gave up the three runs in the first inning. The Yanks tied it in the second when Giancarlo Stanton walked, Luke Voit singled. After an out, Gio Urshela reached on an error (more on Gio later) to load the bases. After Miguel Andujar struck out, Clint Frazier walked to force in a run, and D.J. LeMahieu singled in two more. Aaron Judge grounded out to end the inning.

The Yanks got two on with one out in the top of third, but Gleyber Torres, 2 for his last 39, GIDP.

German helped lose his own game in the fourth. A walk to lead off the inning, then a WP. After an out, German couldn’t field a comebacker and everyone was safe. A SF, which should have been the third out, instead put Boston up 4-3.

In the top of the fourth, a huge mistake by Yankees’ 3B coach Phil Nevin. I am all in favor of replacing Nevin, NOW, as third base coach. How many Yankees have we seen, and are going to see, get thrown out at the plate this season? Gio Urshela led off the inning with a double. Miguel Andujar singled, but Urshela was thrown out at the plate. Let’s remember something here. Gio has been dealing with leg injuries. He was HBP on the shin a few days ago and had missed the two games prior to this one! No excuse (and all commentators on the YES postgame show said as much) for sending Gio there. Instead of first and third, no out, the Yanks had man on first, one out. Frazier then flied out, a ball that would have been a game-tying SF. But no.

In the bottom of the eighth, Zack Britton had to leave the game as it appeared he tweaked his hamstring. We’ll see if he goes back on the IL (most likely) and who replaces him on the roster. Boston went on to score an insurance run in the inning to go up 5-3.

The Yanks got singles in the top of the ninth by Urshela and Andujar, so down two runs, they had first and second, no out. But Frazier struck out, then LeMahieu GIDP to end the game.

LeMahieu 2 RBI
Voit 2 hits
Urshela 2 hits
Andujar 3 hits


German (L, 4-5) 4 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 5 H, 1 W, 3 K. 1 WP. 4.32. Made a crucial error.
Luetge 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 W, 2 K. 2.37
Loaisiga 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 4 K. 2.43 a WP led to a 4K inning, 3rd time in Yankees history.
Britton 1/3 IP, 1 R, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K. 4.15
Cessa 2/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.03

Before the game, Boston retired #15 for 2B Dustin Pedroia.

Game 72. Yanks leave too many on base in 6-5 loss. O’Day, Wilson start rehab.

The Yankees had many chances to blow the game open. But they didn’t. They went 0 for 10 with RISP and left 13 men on base, and this came back to bite them in a 6-5 loss to KC last night.

With the loss, the Yankees are now 38-34, 3rd in AL East, 5 1/2 back.

The main culprits were Giancarlo Stanton, 0 for 3 (did walk twice) left six on, Gleyber Torres 0 for 4, all strikeouts (did walk once, left 3 on), and Clint Frazier (0 for 5, 3 strikeouts, left 6 on ). Torres is something like 2 for his last 33, and his batting average has dropped over 30 points. Where Torres’ power has gone is baffling too. I don’t expect 38 HR as in 2019, but we are close to the halfway point of the season, and Torres has just 3 HR. Something close to Torres’ 2018 rookie year when he hit 24 would be enough and expected.

The Yanks scored first, when Luke Voit, just off of rehab, hit the first pitch he saw 423 feet for a two-out HR, Voit’s 2nd HR of the season. The Yankees went on to load the bases, but Frazier grounded out.

In the second, Kyle Higashioka homered for his sixth HR of the season. It put the Yanks up 2-0. But with two on and one out, Voit popped up and Stanton struck out.

Right then I had a bad feeling. Yes, the Yankees were up 2-0 with their ace, Gerrit Cole, on the mound, but when you leave five men on base in the first two innings and don’t break the game wide open, it often comes back to bite you, and it did for the Yankees last night.

A bad break (literally) for Cole in the third when a couple broken bat hits led to a KC run as the Royals cut the Yanks’ lead to 2-1. Cole gave up a game-tying HR in the fourth. 2-2. Those were the only hits Cole gave up.

The Yanks left the bases loaded in the fourth, when Stanton grounded into a force out. Another blown chance to salt the game away.

In the seventh, the Yanks went up 3-2. Luke Voit tripled. A fan tried to catch the ball (kick him out of the park. I hate when fans reach over the wall. They know better and still do it). There was no interference, and it was unclear if the ball would have cleared the fence anyway. Pinch-runner Tyler Wade then scored on a wild pitch.

Jonathan Loaisiga came in for the eighth inning. Cole had once again done a fine job, but the Yanks didn’t support him enough. Cole is 8-3 this season, but the Yankees are 0-4 when Cole gets a no-decision. Loaisiga has been great this season, but didn’t have it last night, giving up four runs.

D.J. LeMahieu got the Yanks back in the game with a two-run HR (6) in the bottom of the eighth to cut the Royals’ lead to 6-5. Aaron Judge then just missed tying the game up, as he doubled. So the Yanks had the tying run on second with one out. Once again, nothing. Rougned Odor popped up, and Stanton grounded out.

The Yanks got two on in the ninth, but Brett Gardner popped up to end the game.

The lack of getting just one clutch hit to break the game open really killed the Yanks last night. What a frustrating loss.

LeMahieu 2 hits, 2 RBI. 2-run HR (6)
Judge 2 hits
Voit 2 hits, triple and a solo HR (2)
Urshela 2 hits
Higashioka solo HR (6)

If only Stanton, Torres or Frazier had come through just once. Sigh.

Cole 7 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 3 W, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR. Two broken bat his and the HR. That was all. 2.33
Loaisiga (L, 7-3; BS, 2) 2/3 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.52
Luetge 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.48


Minor League Notes, and a lot to think about and discuss here:

The 40-man roster creates some problems. Say someone is doing well (see below) but isn’t on the roster? Well, you want to add him, but who does he replace?


AAA: SWB (29-11) crushed Lehigh Valley, 14-5, in a game in which both Darren O’Day and Justin Wilson both started rehab stints. Both pitched a scoreless inning of relief. Hoy Jun Park, a 2B/SS, played CF. Read into that as you wish. He had 3 hits and an RBI, and is hitting .366 for SWB. He hits lefty. Interesting he played CF last night. Meanwhile, the Yanks aren’t getting anything from their lefty hitters. Odor (.193-7-15, OPS+ 78; 100 is average). Gardner .206-2-8, OPS+ 77. Gardner turns 38 in August. But Park isn’t on the 40-man roster. I’ve advocated bringing Park up. But at whose expense, and why did Park play the OF for the first time last night? I do have to wonder. RF Ryan LaMarre 3 hits, RBI. DH Trey Amburgey 3 RBI. Erik Kratz, former big-league catcher, and ex-Yankee, really likes Amburgey, a righty hitter. Amburgey is hitting .360 at SWB. Right now, he may be a better option than Frazier (.187-5-12, OPS+ 77) or Miguel Andujar (.242-5-9, OPS+77). Amburgey, like Park, is not on the 40 man roster, so if you give him a chance, at whose expense? The point is, if someone is raking at AAA, when do they get rewarded with a promotion? And at whose expense? How long do you continue playing someone whose adjusted OPS is 22-23% BELOW league average, as is the case with Odor, Gardner, Frazier and Andujar? These are legitimate questions GM Brian Cashman and manager Aaron Boone must decide, especially if the Yankees are to improve.

Besides the rehab stints of O’Day and Wilson, and the continued success and questions about Park and Amburgey, some other notes on SWB’s win: 2B Derek Dietrich 3 hits, RBI. 3B Armando Alvarez 2 hits, 2 RBI, solo HR. 1B Rob Brantly 2 RBI. C Max McDowell 2 hits. SS Andrew Velazquez, 2 hits, 4 RBI, a 2-run HR.

AA: Somerset ppd.

High A: Hudson Valley (26-16) won 12-3. SS Josh Smith 2 hits. C Josh Breaux 2 hits. CF Brandon Lockridge 2 hits, 4 RBI, a 3-run HR. 3B James Nelson 2 hits, 2 RBI. 1B Chad Bell 3 hits, 2 RBI. RF Frederick Cuevas 2 hits, RBI, solo HR.

Low A: Tampa was up 2-0 when the game was suspended in the top of the second inning.





Game 70. Yanks overcome 4-1 deficit for a 7-5 win. Voit to return Tuesday.





Gio Urshela overcame getting a splinter in his eye early in the game to hit a key late-inning HR, and the Yankees (37-33, 3rd, 5 1/2 back) overcame a 4-1 deficit to defeat Oakland 7-5 yesterday. One good thing: The Yanks were once 9 back, and it’s now 5 1/2.

A couple of different Yankee fan clubs were at the game.

In the middle of the game, Gio’s bat splintered as he GIDP. A piece of the bat got into his eye and, in pain, Gio had trouble trying to run to first, enabling the A’s to turn two. After getting the splinter removed and presumably some eye wash, Urshela later homered.

Domingo German was shaky. He gave up a HR to the second batter of the game, and Oakland had a quick 1-0 lead.

He gave up another HR in the top of the fourth, and the A’s were up 2-0.

The Yanks got a run back in the bottom of the fourth. Aaron Judge singled, and an out later, moved to second on a WP. Giancarlo Stanton walked, and Urshela (after the bat incident, which happened in the second inning) singled in Judge.

German then gave up two runs in the top of the fifth and the A’s were up 4-1. But here is where Nestor Cortes, Jr. became the savior of the game.

With the Yanks down 4-1, and runners on first and third with no one out, Cortes struck out the next two batters and got a fly out to keep it at 4-1. Cortes pitched three scoreless innings of relief to keep the Yankees in the game.

Gary Sanchez led off the bottom of the sixth with his 11th HR of the season to make it 4-2. The comeback was underway.

The Yanks tied it up in the seventh. Clint Frazier led off the inning with a double, and two outs later, Judge singled him in. Sanchez walked, then Stanton singled to tie up the game.

In the bottom of the eighth, Urshela homered (9) to lead off the inning. PH Chris Gittens walked, and Tyler Wade then pinch-ran for Gittens. Frazier walked, and Brett Gardner bunted both runners over. D.J. LeMahieu singled both runners in to make it 7-4.

The Yanks would need those insurance runs, since the A’s got a run off of Aroldis Chapman in the top of the ninth before Chapman closed out the game. Not before manager Aaron Boone got ejected for arguing balls and strikes, though.

LeMahieu 2 RBI
Judge 2 hits, RBI
Sanchez solo HR (11)
Stanton 2 for 2, 2 walks, RBI
Urshela 2 hits, 2 RBI, solo HR (9)
Frazier 2 hits.


German 4+ IP, 4 R, 7 H, 2 W, 6 K. Gave up 2 HR. 4.22
Cortes 3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 3 K. 1.46 Saved Yankees in this game.
Green (W, 2-4) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 3 K. 2.55
Chapman (S, 15) 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.05


MInor League Notes: Voit homers back Tuesday. O’Day starts rehab Tuesday.

AAA: SWB PPD.

AA: Somerset (26-14) lost 14-5. DH Luke Voit led off the bottom of the first with a HR, then was removed from the game. He is expected to rejoin the Yankees on Tuesday. SS Oswald Peraza (keep an eye on him) 3 hits, RBI, solo HR (.302 for AA since callup; .305-7-19 overall, 16 SB in 39 games). C Jason Lopez solo HR.

High A: Hudson Valley (24-16) won 8-4. LF Elijah Dunham 2 RBI. 3B James Nelson 2 hits, 3 RBI, 2-run HR. 2B Oliver Dunn 2 hits, solo HR. RF Frederick Cuevas 2 hits, RBI.

Low A: Tampa (28-13) won 7-6. DH Anthony Volpe 3 hits, 4 RBI, 2 HR, a 3-run shot and a solo HR (.307-8-36). C Austin Wells 2 hits, 2 RBI, 2-run HR (.280-5-36).

Game 69. Ex-Yanks’ prospect beats Yanks, 5-3.

A few years back, James Kaprielian was a top Yankees’ prospect. Then injuries slowed his development, and he was traded to the A’s with others for Sonny Gray. We know how poorly Gray turned out.

Last night, Yankees fans got a taste of what might have been. Kaprielian and the A’s shut down the Yankees (36-33, 3rd in AL East, 6 back) 5-3.

James Taillon started for the Yanks, and gave up a HR on a two-out, 0-2 pitch to put the A’s up 1-0 in the first inning. I feel as if the Yanks need to make a deal for a starter (two, preferably) ASAP. Taillon, in 13 starts this season, has only thrown 58 innings, an average of only 4 1/2 innings per start. Only twice in those 13 starts has he gone more than 5 IP. He has ONE win. The ERA is 5.59. He is coming off two TJ surgeries in his career, as well as overcoming cancer. But he isn’t cutting it. Also, Michael King is better as a reliever and not a starter. He also isn’t providing length (since replacing the injured Corey Kluber in the rotation, King is averaging less than 4 innings/start in his 4 starts). King’s ERA in 13 relief appearances in his career is 3.93 but it is 7.28 in eight career starts.

But the Yanks don’t have replacements handy. Luis Severino’s return has been delayed because of the groin injury. Deivi Garcia has been horrible at AAA. Clarke Schmidt has not thrown a pitch yet. Promising youngsters are at AA, or below, not at AAA.

I don’t believe the Yanks can make up ground with Taillon and/or King in the rotation. GM Brian Cashman needs to make a trade ASAP.

Taillon gave up a run in the top of the third to make it 2-0, Oakland.

The Yanks tied it up in the bottom of the third when with two out, Brett Gardner walked and D.J. LeMahieu followed with a 2-run HR (5). The Yanks only got 4 hits in the game.

The Yanks took a 3-2 lead in the fifth when Rougned Odor homered (7).

But Wandy Peralta gave up a 3-run HR in the top of the sixth that put Oakland up 5-3, and that stayed as the final score.

Looking at Peralta’s ERA (5.28 as a Yankee), I think manager Aaron Boone trusts him too much. The Yanks will get help here. Both Darren O’ Day (who was doing well before getting hurt) and Justin Wilson (who wasn’t) should be back soon.

LeMahieu 2-run HR (5)
Odor solo HR (7)


Taillon 4 2/3 IP, 2 R, 4 H, 1 W, 5 K. Gave up 1 HR. 1 HBP. 5.59
Peralta (L, 3-2; combined SF/NYY record) 1 1/3 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 0 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR 5.32 (combined SF/NYY ERA)
Luetge 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 1 HBP; 1 WP 2.91
Cessa 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 3.10

Minor League Notes (VOIT ON REHAB):

AAA: SWB (27-11) won 7-5. Nick Nelson 4 1/3 IP, 1 R; Albert Abreu 2 IP, scoreless, 5 K (in his brief time with Yanks, 4 games, Abreu has done well this year). CF Greg Allen 2 hits, 2 RBI, 2 -run HR. Two hits, RBI. LF Trey Amburgey 2 hits, RBI. Amburgey is hitting .372 at SWB. Former Yankees C Erik Kratz likes him. Neither Clint Frazier or Miguel Andujar is lighting it up. Why not give Amburgey a chance? 1B Rob Brantly 2 hits, 3 RBI, solo HR. 3B Derek Dietrich solo HR.

AA: Somerset (26-13) won 8-1. Janson Junk (2-1, 1.03) 6 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR. 1B Luke Voit on rehab: 3 for 4, scored 3, drove in 3, double, solo HR. DH Oswald Peraza 2 hits, RBI. 2B Oswaldo Cabrera 3 hits, 3 RBI. CF Tom Milone 2 hits, solo HR.

High A: Hudson Valley (23-16) split a DH.

Game 1: lost 6-2. SS Josh Smith solo HR.
Game 2: won 2-0. Smith DH, 2 hits, scored both runs. 2B Ezequiel Duran 2 hits, 2 RBI.

Low A: Tampa (27-13) lost both games of a DH.

Game 1: lost 3-1. All 3 runs unearned. RF Juan De Leon solo HR.
Game 2: lost 8-2. Infielder (2B/SS) Jesus Bastidas 2 hits, RBI.

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Game 68. Yanks sweep Jays, 8-4 in game featuring a triple play.

The Yankees (36-32, 3rd, 6 out) got a much-needed sweep of the Blue Jays with an 8-4 win that featured a lot.

For one thing, for the first time in franchise history, the Yankees have turned TWO triple plays in the same season. This one was the first 1-3-6-2-5-6 triple play in MLB history.

On top of that, Gio Urshela and Aaron Judge each made great defensive plays, and for the third straight game, a pinch-hitter that manager Aaron Boone sent up to the plate came through big time.

In the bottom of the first, Yankees’ starter Michael King (who is better in relief than as a starter) walked Marcus Semien, the leadoff hitter, then gave up a single to Bo Bichette. A WP moved the runners to second and third. Then came the unique triple play. Vlad Guerrero, Jr. bounced one back to King, who threw to first to get Guerrero. Out #1, Bichette was trapped between second and third, and Yankees’ 1B D.J. LeMahieu threw to SS Gleyber Torres. Semien, also trapped, broke for home. Torres threw to C Gary Sanchez, who ran Semien back to third before flipping to 3B Gio Urshela, who tagged Semien out. Out #2. Urshela then spun around and threw to Torres, who tagged out Bichette, who tried to move up when the Yankees tagged Semien out. Out #3. Got that? Any way, a triple play, the Yanks’ second of this season, and the first one ever that went 1-3-6-2-5-6.

The Yanks then scored right away in the top of the second. Urshela doubled, and Brett Gardner singled him to third. Miguel Andujar hit into a fielder’s choice, and reached on an error, Urshela scoring. Yanks up 1-0. Gardner was then caught at the plate on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Tyler Wade, and although the Yanks did load the bases back up, they didn’t score anymore that inning.

In the top of the third, Giancarlo Stanton singled and one out later, Urshela homered (8) to make it 3-0.

Toronto scored twice in the bottom of the third inning to cut the Yanks’ lead to 3-2. In this inning, Gleyber Torres tweaked his back and had to be removed for a pinch-hitter in the top of the fourth. He appears OK and day-to-day, though.

In the bottom of the fourth, Gio Urshela made an excellent defensive play for the last out of the inning.

Toronto tied it in the fifth, and went ahead 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth. It could have been even worse. Shortly after going ahead 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth, Blue Jays’ RF Cavan Biggio hit a deep drive to right that appeared to be a 2-run HR that would have given Toronto a 6-3 lead except that Aaron Judge jumped, extended his arm over the wall, and robbed Biggio of that possible HR to keep the score at 4-3.

The Yanks came right back with four runs in the top of the seventh inning. Rougned Odor, who replaced Torres earlier, led off the inning with a single, and Stanton homered (13) to put the Yankees up 5-4. Sanchez and Urshela both singled, then Gardner bunted them over. After an out that didn’t advance the runners, Chris Gittens pinch-hit for Tyler Wade and laced a two-run single to make it 7-4.

In the top of the ninth, Sanchez singled. Urshela struck out after just missing a 2-run HR. The ball was just foul. Gardner walked and both runners then moved up on a WP. After a walk to Andujar loaded the bases, Gittens hit a sac fly to make it 8-4, which wound up as the final score.

Stanton 2 hits. 2 RBI. A 2-run HR (13).
Urshela 3 hits. Double, 2-run HR (8). Excellent defensive play.
Judge robbed a batter of a 2-run HR.
Gittens 1 for 1, 3 RBI


King 4 1/3 IP, 3 R, 5 H, 2 W, 1 K. 1 WP 4.08
Luetge 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.00
Green (W, 1-4) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.62
Loaisiga (H, 9) 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 3 K. 1.70
Britton 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 1 HBP. 0.00

Earlier in the day, the Yanks traded Mike Ford to Tampa Bay for $100K and a player to be named later.


Minor league Notes.

AAA: SWB (26-11) won 4-2. SS Hoy Jun Park 1-2, 2 walks (.372 at AAA). RF Socrates Brito 2 hits, 2 RBI, 2-run HR. DH Kellin Deglan solo HR.

AA: Somerset (25-13) won 9-3. Starter Ken Waldichuk 4 2/3 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 5 W, 7 K. Gave up 2 HR. Waldichuk had pitched 30 2/3 scoreless innings for High A Hudson Valley before a callup. This was his first start at AA. He hurt himself with 4 walks in the first inning. Two pitchers 4 2/3 scoreless, hitless innings of relief (Nick Green and Ron Marinaccio). CF Michael Beltre 2 hits, RBI on a solo HR. 3B Oswaldo Cabrera 3 hits, 2 RBI, 2 solo HR. 2B Diego Castillo 3 hits, 2 RBI. C Donny Sands 4 RBI, a 3-run HR.

High A: Hudson Valley (22-15) won 3-2. SS Josh Smith 2 hits. DH Anthony Seigler 2 hits. LF Elijah Dunham 3 hits.
Starter Shawn Semple 6 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 W, 11 K. Gave up 1 HR.

Low A: Tampa rained out.


Ex-Yankee pitcher Art Ditmar passes away at the age of 92.

Art Ditmar, an ex-Yankees’ pitcher who was involved in a controversy regarding the 1960 World Series, passed away last week at the age of 92.

Ditmar pitched for the Philadelphia A’s (1954), Kansas City A’s (1955-1956), Yankees (1957-1961), and back with the Kansas City A’s (1961-1962).

He beat the Yankees for his first MLB victory in the last game the A’s played at old Shibe Park (at that time renamed Connie Mack Stadium) before the A’s moved to KC in 1955. In this game, Yogi Berra played 3B and Mickey Mantle played SS.

Ditmar led the league in losses in 1956, going 12-22.

He pitched well for the Yankees in the 1957 and 1958 World Series, getting a ring for the 1958 World Champs.

He went 13-9, 2.90 in 1959 (ERA+ 126) and 15-9, 3.06 (ERA+ 118) in 1960, his two best years in the majors.

He then started game 1 of the 1960 WS. This prevented Whitey Ford from pitching in Games 1, 4 and 7 and may have cost the Yankees the WS. Ditmar lost both games he started, getting knocked out of Game 1 in the very first inning, getting just one out, and getting knocked out in the second inning of Game 5.

The decision to start Ditmar, and not go with Ford (who threw complete game shutouts in Games 3 and 6) contributed to the Yankees losing the WS and in letting manager Casey Stengel go after that 1960 World Series.

Many years later, a TV commercial insinuated incorrectly that Ditmar was the one who gave up the WS winning HR to Bill Mazeroski (it was Ralph Terry) in that WS. Ditmar sued but the case was dismissed.

Ditmar was 72-77, 3.98 in his MLB career (ERA+ 97; 100 is average). His 162 game average was 11-12, 3.98. That average would be about 24 starts, 20 relief appearances over 162 games.

He pitched six scoreless innings, across two games, against the Braves in the 1957 WS, and 3 2/3 scoreless innings in one game of the 1958 WS against the Braves. But in that 1960 WS against the Pirates he was 0-2, 21.60.

In five WS games, two starts, he was 0-2, 3.18.

As a hitter, he hit .178 with 2 HR.