Category Archives: Media

Game 63. Herrera’s MLB debut results in 7-5 Yanks’ loss.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

That first game in the majors has to be exciting. Unfortunately for Ronald Herrera, it resulted in a loss.

Herrera was called up from AA Trenton earlier in the day when Ben Heller was sent back to the minors.  The Yanks needed a fresh arm. He gave up a late 2-run HR that doomed the Yanks as they lost 7-5 to the Angels Wednesday night. The loss cuts the Yanks’ (38-25) AL East lead to two games since Boston beat the lowly Phillies.

It started out good. In the first, Gardner singled, and with one out, Judge singled. Judge stole second and Matt Holliday just missed a 3-run HR as he hit a SF. After Castro was HBP, Sanchez hit a 3-run HR (11) to make it 4-0.

But Michael Pineda didn’t have much tonight, giving up a run in the first, two in the second and two more in the third. He did gut out six innings.

That run in the first that Pineda gave up could have been more. Aaron Hicks took a grand slam away from Luis Valbuena. It went as a SF instead.

In the second, the Yanks wasted a one-out triple by Rob Refsnyder. I would have loved to have had Gardner squeeze in a run, but as readers of this blog know, the one criticism I have of Girardi is that he never squeezes home a run. This, and other things, contributed to the loss. Instead, Refsnyder was left stranded.

Didi Gregorius (.337) extended his hitting streak to 16 games, but was hit by a batted ball on a single by Chase Headley in the fourth when the Yanks got three hits but no runs.

In the fifth, with two out, Judge reached on an error and Holliday and Castro both singled. Judge was thrown out at the plate however, on a bad send by 3B coach Joe Espada. Judge hadn’t even reached third when the LF fielded the ball and Judge was out easily.

The Yanks did tie the game in the sixth when Sanchez singled and went to second on an error. After Didi struck out, Headley singled to tie the game at five.

In the seventh, Hicks laid down a beautiful bunt for a hit. I wish Gardner had done that with Refsnyder on third in the second.

After Pineda went six innings, Girardi brought in Herrera. I was a little surprised at that because of the flight to CA (figure you’d give a guy a chance to rest a day after the flight before bringing him in… flight could take something out of you, esp. cross-country, and esp. after a 3:30 AM wakeup call to tell you you’ve been promoted) and also that Herrera was doing great as a STARTER at AA Trenton. You don’t know how he would do as a reliever. That’s a different area. Herrera gave up a 2-run HR to Andrelton Simmons in the seventh which decided the game.

It seems as if Girardi was looking long term (at least, according to a NY Post article) and willing to sacrifice one game for the long term benefit of his bullpen, which he described as “fried.”

The Yanks got a break in the ninth, when with two out, Hicks’ long drive seemed to be caught against the wall by the RF. The call was overturned and Hicks was given a double, meaning Judge was up as the tying run. Although he hit the ball hard, Judge grounded out to third to end the game.

Gardner 2 for 5. Hicks 2 for 5 (.314). Sanchez 3 for 4, scored 2 runs, 3 RBI, HR. Headley 2 hits, RBI.

Pineda 6 IP, 5 R, 10 H, 1 W, 2 K. 3.71. Gave up 1 HR.
Herrera (L, 0-1, 9.00) 2 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 1 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR.

CC was diagnosed with a Grade 2 hamstring strain. Still no word on how long he’ll be on the DL. CC says he feels good and hopes to miss just one start, but this could put him out until mid-August.

Aroldis Chapman is expected to return to the Yanks on Sunday after a couple of rehab stints.

 

 

 

Game 55. Trouble for Tanaka again in Yanks’ 5-4 loss.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The disturbing and troubling season of Masahiro Tanaka continued last night when he gave up 5 runs, including 3 HR in 5 IP as the Yanks lost to Boston 5-4.

Tanaka had such a great spring training. His fall from ace to Kei-Igawa-like performances has been shocking.

The loss decreases the Yanks’ lead over Boston to one game. The Yankees are 32-23.

That 32-23 has been built strangely. They started 1-4, went 20-5 over the next 25, and are 11-14 in their last 25.

Even though they are still in first place, there are a couple of problem areas that need to be addressed, and let’s start with Tanaka.

With the Yanks 10-11 in their last 21 games (stats via Joel Sherman’s NY Post article), Tanaka is 0-5, 10.72 in that span. If Tanaka was his old ace-like self, he would have gone, say 4-1. Now the Yanks would be 14-7 in this span and we wouldn’t be as concerned.

The season is just over 1/3 over, and Tanaka has already given up 17 HR.

They need to get him straightened out. But how? He is earning so much $$ and $$ talks. Can they just pull him from the rotation? Who would replace him? Chad Green, who was fabulous in relief last night? Chance Adams? They would need to create a roster spot for Adams (who pitched last night also, see my minor league report) who isn’t on the 40-man roster.

Boston got a run right away in the first inning on a couple of singles and an RBI forceout. The Yanks tied it in the second on a walk to Hicks, single by Didi, and Hicks scored on a throwing error by Boston RF Mookie Betts.

But in the fourth, Tanaka gave up three runs on back-to-back homers. He gave up another HR in the fifth and Boston was up 5-1. The Yanks couldn’t come all the way back.

Chris Carter (a problem we’ll get to in a bit) hit his fifth HR of the year in the bottom of the fifth to cut Boston’s lead to 5-2.

Castro and Hicks singled in the sixth, and Castro scored when Didi GIDP.

The Yanks got a break in the eighth that made you think maybe the gods were with them and they’d pull it out. Matt Holliday doubled and went to third on a groundout. After Hicks popped up, Didi Gregorius struck out for what should have been the third out, but the ball was a wild pitch and Didi reached, Holliday scoring to cut the lead to 5-4. You thought with a break like that, maybe…

But no…

Tanaka (L, 5-6, 6.55) 5 IP, 5 R, 5 H, 1 W, 2 K. Gave up 3 HR.
Layne 0 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K. 7.50. More on him in a bit.
Green 3 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 5 K. 1.62. See above. Replacement for Tanaka? Did great.
Shreve 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 w, 1 K. 0.57.

Judge, Hicks and Gregorius each had two hits. Carter had the HR.

But even with Carter’s HR, 1B is a position that the Yanks need improvement on. Bird was 6 for 60 (.100-1-3) and Carter is 21 for 115 (.183-5-15). So that is a combined 27 for 175, which comes out to .154-6-18. Somehow, the Yanks are in first place despite getting the worst production in MLB from their first basemen.

3B also is a problem. Chase Headley is down to .225, and rumors are that the Yanks are shopping for a 3B. Rumors also are that if Gleyber Torres starts adjusting to AAA pitching, that the Yanks may bring him up to play 3B, with Headley moving to a backup 1B/3B role, which would mean cutting Carter (Carter $3.5 MM left for this year, Headley is owed the rest of $13MM this year and $13MM for 2018).

Headley is at .225-3-23, but since April 18, has hit .168-1-19 in his last 37 games. When you take what he is doing at 3B, and the lack of production at 1B, it’s like the Yanks are playing with a 7-man lineup. That can’t continue if they want to stay in first place. Headley hasn’t homered since April 19.

So the Yanks desperately need to get better production from 1B, 3B and Tanaka. We’ll see how and if that happens.

The final thing may be minor. Tommy Layne hasn’t performed that well, and the Yanks do have a solution there if necessary. Tyler Webb has been doing well at SWB and could be a replacement for Layne. LOOGY for LOOGY.

 

Ex-All Star Piersall, subject of movie, dies at 87.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Jimmy Piersall, a 2x All-Star whose battle with bipolar disorder was the subject of the 1957 movie “Fear Strikes Out” starring Tony Perkins and Karl Malden, died at the age of 87.

Piersall was a 2x All-Star and 2x Gold Glove winner who played for the Red Sox 1950, 1952-1958, Indians 1959-1961, Senators 1962-1963, Mets 1963, and Angels 1963-1967.

Upon hitting his 100th career HR with the Mets in 1963, he ran the bases backward.

He suffered a nervous breakdown in 1952 and his experiences were portrayed in the movie.

He and Billy Martin once had a huge, celebrated fight.

He was named an All-Star in 1954 and 1956, and won Gold Gloves in CF in 1958 and 1961. He led the majors in doubles in 1956, sacrifice bunts in 1953 and sac flies in 1956.

Primarily a CF, he also played LF, RF, SS and 3B in his career.

He got MVP consideration five times, finishing 9th in 1953.

He hit .272 in his career, with a 162 g. average of .272-10-55, 11 SB, OPS+ 93.

He later became a broadcaster for Texas, and also for the Chicago White Sox.

 

For more on Piersall, check out his biography on Wikipedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Piersall

 

 

 

Yankees/Royals rained out. Ellsbury to DL.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Thursday afternoon’s Yankees/Royals game has been rained out, and is rescheduled for Monday, September 25.

Meanwhile, Jacoby Ellsbury had suffered a concussion and a neck sprain.

According to the NY Post,

Ellsbury will go on the seven-day disabled list for concussions, manager Joe Girardi announced after the game, and it wouldn’t surprise to see him sit out for considerably longer….

Figure on Mason Williams or Rob Refsnyder getting the call for Ellsbury’s roster spot rather than Clint Frazier or Dustin Fowler; the Yankees wouldn’t want their higher-end guys riding the bench, plus neither Frazier nor Fowler is currently on the 40-man roster.

Thankfully Ellsbury wasn’t hurt worse and didn’t have any more plays in the top of the first, when the Yanks misdiagnosed the injury and left him in the game before taking him out between innings.

Today’s rainout gives Masahiro Tanaka another day to figure things out after a couple of bad performances.

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 3. 2-out woes for Pineda again. Yanks fall, 4-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

All last year, we couldn’t help but wonder why Michael Pineda can’t get the third out. So often, he would give up all his runs, or most of them, when there were two out. He just couldn’t close out an inning.

That worrisome trend continued tonight in the Yankees’ 4-1 loss to the Rays that dropped their record to 1-2.

Pineda gave up a HR to the first batter he faced, and in the second inning, gave up three runs—all with two out.

He really is an enigma. He got 11 outs as he was knocked out in the fourth, and six of his outs were by strikeout.

So much potential. So little results.

He is a free agent at the end of the season. If how he has been the past few years continues throughout this year, then I hope the Yankees let him go.

He has this year to prove himself. To the Yankees and to others. In order to do so, he has to get that third out and get out of innings.

The Yanks only got one run. That came on a HR by Jacoby Ellsbury. A couple times they had chances, hit the ball hard, but the ball didn’t find a hole. Instead it was a DP.

The three Baby Bombers, Sanchez, Bird and Judge, are struggling right now, but we are only three games in. Patience is needed with them.

Ellsbury had 3 of the Yanks’ 8 hits. The hot Headley had 2.

The Yanks were 0 for 9 with RISP.

Pineda (L, 0-1) 3 2/3 IP, 4 R, 8 H, 0 walks, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR. 9.82
Layne 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk, 0 K. 0.00
Warren 2 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, and 4 K. Nice job. Maybe he should have won a starter job after all….. over Pineda.
Shreve 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk, 0 K.

Nice job by the Yankees’ bullpen, who didn’t give up a run or hit tonight and kept the Yanks in the game. Too bad the offense couldn’t capitalize.

The Yanks’ bullpen hasn’t given up a run in the three games. It’s just Tanaka (knocked out in the third) and Pineda (knocked out in the fourth) who have.

CC pitched five scoreless innings.

It is early, but the starters are going to have to give more length.

Rumors are already flying that A-Rod and J-Lo are thinking of tying the knot. If so, it would be A-Rod’s 2nd marriage, J-Lo’s 4th.

One rumor not true: Suzyn Waldman went on a radio show and said that Yankees’ prospect Clint Frazier asked if the Yankees unretired numbers and if so, he wanted  #7 (Mickey Mantle’s). The answer is no, they don’t unretire them and no, he couldn’t get #7. The Yankees and Frazier stated he never said that.

The Yankees’ plan was for Jordan Montgomery and Chad Green to pitch tomorrow, Montgomery at AAA and Green in AA. Both at the same time so both would be lined up for the April 16 start in which the Yanks finally need a #5 starter. Best man in the mano a mano duel wins. Because of bad weather in the northeast, both will be pitching for High A Tampa tomorrow. One starts, other comes in relief. James Kaprielian was supposed to start that game, but now, no.

 

Yankees in the WBC.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I’ll admit, I don’t follow the WBC. This information comes from NJ.com.

Betances: Dominican Rep. 0-0, 0.00. 3 games. 2 Ip, 0 R, 2 H, 3 walks, 2 K.

Gregorius: Netherlands. 8 for 23. .348. 4 doubles, 1 HR. 8 RBI. 5 games. Went 0 for 4 this morning vs. Cuba in Netherlands’ 14-1 win.

Clippard: USA. 1-0, 0.00. 2 games, 3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk, 5 K.

Layne: Italy. 0-0, 0.00. 3 games, 3 1/3 IP, 0 R, 4 H, 3 walks, 4 K.

Solano: Colombia. 3 for 14, .267. 2 RBI in 3 games.

Gallegos: Mexico. 0-0, 4.50. 1 game. 2 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 0 walk, 1 K,. Gave up HR.

In addition to them, 1B coach Tony Pena is managing the Dominican Republic, and third base coach Joe Espada is a coach for Puerto Rico.