Category Archives: Media

Game 48. Rays batter Pineda, beat Yanks 9-5.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Michael Pineda continued to exasperate Yankee fans, coaches, the front office and the owner yesterday. Recently the NY Post reported that Hal Steinbrenner called out several underperforming players and that Pineda was one of them. They also reported on Girardi and the coaches’ frustration with him.

Pineda has been more like a pinata this year, getting hit hard, especially early in games. Those first inning struggles continued when he gave up three in the first and then he gave up two more in the second. The Yanks were down 5-0 after two and could not come back, losing 9-5 Saturday afternoon.

The Yanks have been getting decent performances from Tanaka, Eovaldi, Nova and CC but Severino and Pineda have been killing them. The Yanks are 23-25. Severino and Pineda are a combined 2-12, the rest of the team 21-13. You can see the difference. You can do the math.

What the Yanks do with Severino, who starts a rehab game on Sunday, when he gets healthy will be interesting. Put him (0-6, 7.46) back in the rotation, or let him get straightened out in the minors?

Pineda does have options and can be sent down. He is 2-6, 6.92. The Yanks can’t just keep sending pitchers out there with ERAs of 7, especially since we’ve reached Memorial Day.

But what and who is the alternative? Either someone like a Cessa, Green, etc. would have to be given a shot (Green had one start recently, 6 R, 4 ER in 4 IP), Severino or Pineda must step up, or the Yanks have to make a deal. 2-12 vs. the rest at 21-13. The two have been dragging the team down. Something needs to be done, and if/when it is, I’ll report it.

Carlos Beltran hit a HR in the fourth to cut it to 5-1. Beltran’s 12th HR of the year was #404 lifetime, placing him three behind Duke Snider on the all-time list. It was his 2500th hit.

Tampa Bay got a run in the fourth and three in the fifth on a HR by Hank Conger off of Luis Cessa. Conger came into the game with no extrabase hits. He had two doubles and a HR yesterday. He drove in 3 runs for the Rays. Evan Longoria had a HR and 4 RBI.

Down 9-1, the Yanks tried to fight back but the deficit was too large. They got two in the seventh on a Romine single and a bases-loaded walk to Torreyes, and two in the eighth on singles by Gregorius and Romine.

A-Rod (.176) was 0 for 5 with 3 strikeouts.

Chase Headley was 3 for 3, and  Austin Romine 3 for 4 with 2 RBI.

Pineda (L, 2-6, 6.92) 3 2/3 IP, 6 R, 9 H, 0 walks, 3 K. Gave up HR.
Goody 1/3 IP, 2 R, 1 H, 1 walk, 0 K. 3.55
Cessa 4 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 walk, 3 K, 2.57. Gave up a HR.

Cessa can’t be used for a while, b/c he went four, but you wonder if he may be placed in the rotation for a while with Pineda/Severino removed?

Something has to be done, and something tells me it’ll be done soon.

Game 47. Tanaka and 2 HR down Rays, 4-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Masahiro Tanaka was masterful, and two of the Yanks’ 4 hits were HR in a 4-1 win over Tampa Bay Friday night.

It was a scoreless game into the sixth, thanks to a great catch at the wall by Brett Gardner. In the top of the sixth, with one out, Gardner walked and went to third on an error on a pickoff attempt. He later scored on a McCann groundout. After the groundout, A-Rod hit a 2-run HR (6, #693 career) to put the Yanks up  3-0.

Carlos Beltran made it 4-0 in the 8th with his 11th HR of the year, #403 career.

Kirby Yates gave up a HR in the bottom of the 9th to the Rays,. Final 4-1.

Tanaka (w, 3-0, 2.89)  7 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 walks, 4 K.
Miller 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks (1 HBP) 2 K. 0.92
Yates 2/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 1 K. 2.37 Gave up a HR
Chapman 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 2 K. 2.16. Got a K, but runner reached on a PB.

The Yanks are 23-24.

Update: From the NY Post: Beltran, 39, and A-Rod, 40, became the first pair of Yankees 39 or older to homer in the same game since Baseball Reference data dating back to 1913 became available.

Game 38. Yanks fall, 5-3.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks lost to Arizona and Zach Greinke Tuesday night 5-3 to drop to 16-22. With the quarter-pole of the season approaching, it is apparent some changes have to be made.

Here are just a couple of suggestions. Constructive criticism, if you will.

The Yanks are 1-11 with Pineda and Severino, with a combined ERA close to 7.00. They are 15-11 otherwise. Pineda does have options. The Yanks should consider removing both from the rotation and sending both to AAA to get straightened out or should even consider trading Pineda (but who’d take him right now?). Even John Sterling, on air, was exasperated by Pineda. Such talent, but wasting it.

But the Yanks really don’t have anyone to bring up. The loss of Bryan Mitchell really hurts here. You can’t get something for nothing in a trade. You’d have to give up a top prospect.

But the Yanks can’t just keep throwing Pineda and Severino out there.Some change has to be made, be it a promotion/demotion or a trade.

The Angels just signed Tim Lincecum. The former CYA isn’t what he used to be, but I wonder if the Yanks had any interest. They should have, considering the struggles of Pineda and Severino. Heck, maybe the Yanks could talk Mark Buehrle out of retirement.

The Yanks should also consider dropping Mark Teixeira down in the lineup. Teix, 0 for 4 with 3 strikeouts last night, has 0 HR and 3 RBI since April 13. You can’t just keep batting him 3rd or 4th. Here is where the loss of Greg Bird hurts.

Starlin Castro homered (5) in the second to give the Yanks a 1-0 lead but the offense didn’t do too much against Grienke. They did get two in the eighth to make the score close. Losing the DH in an NL park the past two games hasn’t helped.

Pineda (L, 1-5, 6.60) 5 IP, 5 R, 9 H, 1 walk, 9 K. Gave up 1 HR.
9 K in 5 inn, but 5 runs given up.
Shreve 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 2 K. 3.71.
Yates 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1.76.

 

Yanks’ prospect dies in crash.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I just saw this news on milb.com and am sharing it.

Yankees Minor Leaguer Sandy Acevedo was killed in a car accident in his native Dominican Republic on Saturday night, the team said. Acevedo was 18 years old.

Prior to their Sunday game against the Rays, the Yankees held a moment of silence in memory of the third baseman. Acevedo had not appeared in any Minor League games since signing with New York as an international free agent last July 6, his 18th birthday.

MLB.com’s David Adler cited a 2015 Scout.com interview in which Donny Rowland, New York’s director of international scouting, said of discovering the infielder, “Acevedo was one of the hitters that we brought in to face [pitching prospect Yoan Lopez, now the D-backs’ No. 8 prospect], and he absolutely owned him in three out of four at-bats and crushed stuff.

“That’s where our staff became sold on this guy. ‘We like the pitcher, but who is the hitter?'”

According to the Yankees media guide, Acevedo hailed from the Dominican capital Santo Domingo and was expected to make his Minor League debut this season.

Acevedo’s death is the latest in a rash of road accidents that have claimed the lives of young prospects in the Dominican Republic. In the span of six days in January, 23-year-old Astros pitching prospect Jose Rosario and 20-year-old Orioles infield prospect Ramon Ramirez were killed in separate motorcycle accidents. Former top Cardinals prospect Oscar Taveras died in a car crash in Puerto Plata on Oct. 27, 2014, one day shy of a month after making his Major League debut.

S.T. Game 21. File under forgettable. Yanks lose 13-0.

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Thank goodness this was just a spring training game.

File this one under forgettable.

Masahiro Tanaka got lit up, the Yanks made four errors (albeit all by the farmhands), the Yanks scored no runs despite getting ten hits, two by Brett Gardner, and they lost Wednesday to Washington, 13-0.

The loss drops their spring training record to 9-10-2. Of course, in a couple of weeks, none of that will matter.

The most disconcerting thing was Tanaka. Hopefully he gets straightened out for Opening Day.

Tanaka (L) 4 IP, 7 R, 9 H, 1 walk and 3 K. He gave up 2 HR, one to Stephen Drew, and committed a balk.
Goody 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K.
Cessa 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K.
Barbato 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 2 K. Looking like he could make the team. The Yanks got him a year ago for Shawn Kelley.
Swarzak 1/3 IP, 6 R (ALL UNEARNED) 3 H, 1 walk and no K.
Rumbelow 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K.

Other Yankees news yesterday:

A-Rod announced that 2017 will be his last year, that he will retire when his contract expires. So, barring injury, he should get the HR needed to pass the Babe and should finish third* on the all-time HR list behind Barry Bonds* and Hank Aaron.

Also, former MLB player and broadcaster Joe Garagiola died yesterday at the age of 90, just six months after his friend since childhood Yogi Berra. As Joe said, “not only wasn’t I the best catcher in the majors, I wasn’t even the best on my block!”  Both grew up in the same St. Louis neighborhood. Garagiola played nine years in the majors and was the catcher, at the age of 20, for the 1946 WS Champion Cardinals. He got four hits in one of those WS games (a then record) and hit .316 for that Series. He was a broadcaster for the Yankees for a few years in the 1960s before going national with NBCs Game of the Week. He broadcast many World Series games. He also was on the Today show and sometimes hosted the Tonight show, including once in 1968 when his guests were John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

It looks increasingly like Austin Romine will be the backup catcher to start the season. Gary Sanchez is hitting just .048 for the spring.

Thoughts and reflections so far.

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A little more than halfway through spring training, I am happy with the pitching so far, the defense needs to pick up, worried about the hitting, happy with Castro….  here are some thoughts and reflections, with many coming from the NY Post today.

First, the defense. Here is Joel Sherman of the NY Post.

If A-Rod were able to play even 15-20 games at third and at first, the Yankees’ roster situation would be so much better. But age and multiple hip surgeries has left Rodriguez so defensively limited that the Yankees have said he will not play the field.

So the Yankees’ current back-up infield set up is Dustin Ackley at first, where he is below average defensively; Ackley and Rob Refsnyder at second, where both are viewed as sub-par defensively; Starlin Castro at short, a position he played himself out of in Chicago; and Refsnyder at third, a position he just began learning.

A-Rod’s DH-only status means Carlos Beltran — really a DH at this point — will have to play below-average right field on ravaged knees to keep his bat in the order. Older players whose bodies the Yankees would like to rest but whose bats they would like to use (think Brian McCann and Mark Teixeira) cannot get regular DH at-bats. The Yanks cannot comfortably go to a 13th pitcher.

The Yanks this week offered a minor league deal to Ruben Tejada, who was released by the Mets. Tejada rejected it and signed with the Cardinals, who will be without Jhonny Peralta for a while. Tejeda is best known for having his leg broken by Chase Utley in a playoff game last year when Utley went in hard in trying to break up a DP.

Gary Sanchez may not make the Yanks as the backup catcher after all. he is 1 for 16 this spring and Joe Girardi states that the youngster may be pressing a bit. Austin Romine, who is out of options, is having a good spring. It may be no surprise then, to see Romine kept (since he is out of options), and Sanchez sent to AAA to start the season to play every day and get more seasoning.

Lastly, manager Joe Girardi states that Bryan Mitchell is still in the hunt for a rotation spot. That would be shocking. If you go by the assumption that four spots are locked in by Tanaka, Pineda, Severino, aand Eovaldi, that leaves just one spot. If Mitchell gains that last ROTATION spot, it means BOTH Nova and CC are headed to the bullpen. It’s safe that say that three bullpen spots are locked up—Miller, Betances and Shreve. Chapman’s spot, of course, is locked up on May 9th when he is eligible to come off of his suspension.

It is going to be VERY INTERESTING who the long men/spot-emergency starters will be out of the Yankees bullpen come opening day. I think Mitchell will be in that role, personally. Who joins him, Nova or CC is up for debate.

Nova starts today. Mitchell may follow. Let’s see how they do.

Baseball passings.

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Tony Phillips and Jim Davenport, two infielders of the Bay Area, passed away this week.

Phillips, 56, was a utility man who was on the 1988 A’s AL Championship team and also the 1989 WS Champion A’s team. He played in the majors from 1982-1999 for Oakland, Detroit, the Angels, White Sox, Angels again (first Angels when they were the California Angels, the second time the Anaheim Angels), Toronto, the Mets, and back with the A’s again.

He finished 16th in the 1993 MVP voting when he hit .313 for Detroit and led the majors with 132 walks.

The versatile Phillips played over 100 games at five different positions (2B, SS, 3B, LF, RF) and 97 games at a sixth (CF), and played over 100 games at DH as well.

His 162 g. average was .266-12-61, with 13 SB, 99 walks and an OPS+ of 109. Phillips led the league in runs scored in 1992 and walks in 1993 and 1996.

Davenport was a slick fielding 3B for the SF Giants from 1958-1970. He was the 3B on the 1962 NL Champion Giants squad. Davenport, 82, was an All-Star, Gold Glove, and finished 24th in MVP voting in 1962.

Davenport’s 162 g. average was .258-8-49, OPS+ 90. Besides 3B, he put some time in at 2B and SS as well. He led the majors in sac bunts in his rookie year of 1958.

I would like to understand the logic and criteria of some radio hosts where I live. Granted, I was coming home from work and only heard the last half hour of the show, so maybe I missed something. But they were talking about the 100 most famous athletes of the last 100 years. Not best, mind you, but famous. I did scratch my head when they weren’t going to include Tiger Woods.I could see and understand their exclusion of Jim Thorpe, who as talented as he was, is mostly forgotten today except by the most avid and knowledgeable of sports fans.

I nominated Yogi Berra. They poo-poohed it, saying that “other than Yankee fans…”

Really? Yogi was one of the most recognizable people in America. He crossed over from the sports culture to everyday life culture. Even people who know little about baseball would a) recognize Yogi Berra in an airport b) recognize one of his famous quotes. Maybe it was just that unique face of his, maybe it was the quotes, maybe it was the commercials he did. But Yogi wasn’t just a baseball icon, he was an AMERICAN icon. That is my point. If that (crossing over from a sports icon to an AMERICAN icon) doesn’t qualify as famous, what does? They did list Derek Jeter.

I’d love to hear their point. Granted they (the hosts) are some 20 years younger than me and not as experienced  (or as knowledgeable as they think they are). But by famous, are they talking just in the USA or worldwide? As I mentioned, this wasn’t about BEST athletes in the past 100 years, but the most famous. They did mention Derek Jeter. I’d love to see how many of their choices are of more recent vintage as opposed to people like Berra, Mantle or DiMaggio, for instance.

Or even a Wilt.

UPDATE: The Yanks will continue to wear Yogi’s #8 on their uniforms this season as a tribute to the legend who passed away late in the 2015 season.