Category Archives: Postseason

WS Game 7, Houston wins 1st WS Title. , AFL, Tanaka, Minor Leagues…

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The WS is over. Masahiro Tanaka has 3 days now to decide if he wants to opt out of his Yankees’ contract or not. We’ll know by Saturday.

The Houston Astros are WS champs for the first time in their history with a 5-1 win, because just as in Game 3, Yu Darvish stunk. In both games, Darvish was knocked out in the second inning, Games 3 and 7.

In the first inning, a double by George Springer, a 2-base error by Cody Bellinger (who set a WS record for striking out) and a groundout led to 2 runs.

In the second, after one run had already scored, Springer hit a 2-run HR to make it 5-0.

But why, down 2-0 in the bottom of the first, and needing to get back in the game, after a leadoff double, don’t the Dodgers bunt the guy over?

Springer’s HR was his fifth of the WS, tying a WS record set by Reggie Jackson (1977) and by Chase Utley (2009).

Deservedly so, Springer is the Willie Mays’ WS MVP.

For Houston, some joy after the hurricane damage.

The only thing with Utley is that his team (Phillies) lost to the Yankees, four games to two, in that WS.

Clayton Kershaw did come into Game 7 and pitch 4 scoreless innings of relief for LA, but where was that when he blew a 4-0 lead in Game 5?

In the Arizona Fall League, Yankees’ prospects:

SS Thairo Estrada, 1 for 5, 2 RBI. .340
LF Billy McKinney 2 for 3, walk, .310

Reliever Cody Carroll, 2 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 0 w,  K. 0.00. 4th save.

Scottsdale won 7-5.

Good news for the future for the Yankees:

MILB.com listed the Yankees as having the best farm system. Add these guys to youngsters they have now, and the future looks bright.

Kevin Reese was promoted in Yankees’ front office to take over for Gary Denbo, who left to join Jeter in FL.

Keep an eye on the Marlins this offseason. Fire sale coming which could involve big names.

Could the Yanks be interested in some of those names? At what price?

 

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Dodgers force WS Game 7 with 3-1 win. AFL action also.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The third oldest Stadium in the majors, Dodger Stadium, which opened in 1962, will finally host a World Series Game 7 because the Dodgers forced that game by beating Houston 3-1 Tuesday night.

Houston’s George Springer hit his fourth HR of the WS in the third, giving Houston a 1-0 lead.

But LA touched Justin Verlander in the sixth for two runs. Austin Barnes singled and Chase Utley was HBP. Chris Taylor doubled in one run and Corey Seager hit a SF for another.

Joc Pederson’s HR in the seventh gave LA an insurance run.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale won 6-2. Yankees’ prospects:

CF Estevan Florial 0 for 3 w/a walk. Scored a run. .293.
1B Billy McKinney 0 for 3, RBI. .282
SS Thairo Estrada 1 for 3, walk, scored a run. .354.

 

Astros take wild Game 5, 13-12 in 10.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Add Jerry Hairston, Jr. to the list of possible Yankees’ mangerial candidates. The long-time utility player is 41 and was a member of the 2009 WS Champion Yankees. He’s with the Dodgers in a broadcasting capacity right now. But another without managerial experience.

WS Game 5 was wild. Houston won 13-12 in 10 innings to take a 3 games to 2 lead in the WS, and they have Verlander going in Game 6 Tuesday night.

Going blow by blow could take me years.

LA had a 4-0 lead with Kershaw on the mound. Seemed safe, right? Nope.

Houston came back to tie it. LA then went up 7-4. Houston came back to tie it. In the seventh, LA went up 8-7, Houston came back with four to go up 11-8. Both teams traded runs in the 8th, then the Dodgers scored 3 in the 9th to tie it up at 12. Houston scored in the bottom of the 10th to win it.

Altuve, Correa and Gurriel, 3-4-5 in the Astros’ lineup, combined for 10 RBI.

Alex Bregman with the GW hit, and Kensley Jansen is being mortal this WS.

With Kuechel and Kershaw, you expected a pitcher’s duel. Nope.

Two wild extra-inning games in this WS, and both went to the Astros.

The Arizona Fall League is off Sundays.

Cubs’ bench coach Dave Martinez is now the new manager of the Washington Nationals. The Phillies are apparently hiring Gabe Kapler.

WS Game 4. LA evens series with 5-run 9th.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Remember that with the dismissal of Joe Girardi, the new manager will most likely have an all new coaching staff. All of the coaches have contracts expiring Tuesday, and hiring a manager whose coaching staff has been pre-picked for him makes so sense.

The Dodgers evened the WS up at two games apiece by winning Game 4, 6-2. They scored five runs in the top of the 9th. It was the first postseason game this year that Houston lost at home.

Houston scored first, when George Springer’s homer broke up a no-hit bid and put Houston up 1-0.

Cody Bellinger doubled and scored on a Logan Forsythe single to tie the game in the seventh.

A single, walk, and double by Bellinger put LA up 2-1 in the top of the ninth. After a strikeout and intentional walk to load the bases for a possible inning-ending DP, a SF by Austin Barnes and 3-run HR by Joc Pederson put LA up 6-1. Houston got an Alex Bregman HR in the bottom of the ninth for the final score of 6-2.

The two homers for the two Houston runs were the only hits Houston had all game.

Once again, a case where someone does well, and instead of leaving him in, a manager goes to his “closer.” In this case, Devenski has a 1-2-3 eighth for Houston, gets pulled and Giles blows the game.

When will managers learn to keep effective pitchers in the game?

Don’t get me wrong, because of family outside LA, I’m pulling for the Dodgers since the Yankees are out of it, but…

Game 5. Kuechel vs. Kershaw. Maybe the key game of the Series. Should be a good one.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale (8-7-1) won 11-3. Yankees’ prospects:

LF Billy McKinney 2 for 5, double, 4 RBI. .306
RF Estevan Florial 0 for 3, walked 2x, scored 2 runs. .316

Starting pitcher Justus Sheffield (W, 2-1, 2.37) 5 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 0 W, 6 K.
Reliever Andrew Schwaab 1 IP, 1 r, 2 H, 1 W, 1 K. 8.31.

Too bad MLB suspended Yuri Gurriel for 5 games next year and not for during this WS. What he did was uncalled for. But MLB wanted to penalize him and not his teammates for his inappropriate gesture.

A long shot, but besides someone like Raul Ibanez, many say Jason Giambi has what it takes to be a manager, but would Cashman hire someone without managerial experience?

Hearrtbreaker for my alma mater, Penn State, who just like in last year’s Rose Bowl, blew a 2-touchdown or more lead late in the game. This time it’s a 39-38 loss at Ohio State.

 

 

Yanks’ mgr. search, WS Game 3, AFL and Clemente award.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Tim Naehring, front office exec, says he isn’t interested in managing the Yanks, so rule him out.

A couple other names to think about. One is Raul Ibanez, who has been talked about for a few years now as managerial material.

I wonder about Matt Holliday, who is at the end of the line. Would he retire to become manager? He has the respect of the clubhouse and is a leader, but would Cashman and Hal go with someone with no managerial experience?

John Farrell, recently canned by the Red Sox,  has interviewed with Washington.

Houston won WS Game 3, 5-3, knocking out Dodgers’ starter Yu Darvish with four runs in the second inning. Houston now has a two games to one lead in the Series. Rookie Cody Bellinger, Dodger’s 1B who set the NL rookie record for HR in a season with 39, took the Golden Sombrero. So Judge isn’t the only rookie striking out a lot this postseason.

Ex-Yankees’ C Brian McCann of Houston had 3 hits and an RBI. 1B Yuri Gurriel homered for them. Brad Peacock threw 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief for the save.

Anthony Rizzo of the Cubs was named the winner of the Roberto Clemente Award. Brett Gardner of the Yankees was up for it.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale won 6-5.

Yankees’ prospects:

RF Estevan Florial, 1 for 3, doubled, scored a run, walked. .343.
1B Billy McKinney 0 for 3, rbi, walk. .290
SS Thairo Estrada 1 for 3 , scored a run, RBI, walk. .390

Cody Carroll got the save (3). 1 scoreless inning, 0 hits or walks, 2 K. 0.00.

 

 

 

Yankees prospects in the AFL, Hank Aaron awards, and WS Game 2.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

To the Arizona Fall League and Yankees’ prospects. Scottsdale, 6-7, lost 8-2.

SS Thairo Estrada, 4 for 5, .395
LF Billy McKinney 2 for 4, RBI, walk. .321

I don’t know if this will be an omen of things to come via the MVP voting, but the Hank Aaron awards went to Giancarlo Stanton in the NL and Jose Altuve in the AL.

In WS Game 2, the game went extra innings, with both bullpens failing. Houston pulled out a 7-6 win in 11 innings to even up the Series.

It is the first WS win in Houston’s history.

The Dodgers took a 3-1 lead into the eighth. Houston had gotten an RBI single in the third, but the Dodgers got a solo HR by Joc Pederson in the fifth, and a two-run HR by Cory Seager in the sixth.

So going into the eighth, it appeared that LA had solved Keuchel & Verlander back-to-back. Verlander only gave up two hits, but both were homers.

Then the Dodger bullpen failed. Brandon Morrow gave up a leadoff double to Alex Bregman leading off the eighth. Even though closer Kenley Jansen came in, he gave up a single to Carlos Correa which cut it to 3-2.

In the ninth, Jansen gave up a HR to Marwin Gonzalez that tied the game.

In the tenth, both teams traded blows. Josh Fields replaced Jansen and gave up back-to-back homers to Jose Altuve and to Correa. 5-3 Houston. Altuve and Correa combined as the first players to ever go back-to-back in extra innings in Fall Classic history.

But the Dodgers tied it in the bottom of the tenth. Yasier Puig homered to cut it to 5-4. After two strikeouts, Logan Forsythe, a defensive replacement in the top of the inning, walked. A WP and a single by Enrique Hernandez tied the game.

Brandon McCarthy became the new Dodgers’ pitcher and promptly gave up a single to Cameron Maybin, a SB, then a 2-run HR to George Springer which was the deciding blow.

With two out in the bottom of the eleventh, Charlie Culberson homered for the Dodgers to cut it to 7-6, but Puig then struck out to end the game.

A lot of back and forth in the last few innings, but Houston came out on top as both bullpens were bad in those last four innings.

Even though Houston won, relievers Ken Giles and winner Chris Devenski struggled.

If you check the boxscore, you’ll see too often guys who were effective for an inning pulled. Why? Effective, leave him in. Instead you get these guys who came in and stunk. Houston used five pitchers in the game, the Dodgers nine. As a result, you got that slugging match in the end.

Eight HRs were hit. According to mlb.com:

Five of those big flies came in extra innings, setting a record for any MLB game, regular season or postseason — not just the World Series.

 

 

Boras, Ellsbury, the AFL and WS Game 1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Scott Boras is known as a top-notch agent.

He inflates the importance of players to get them ridiculous salaries they don’t deserve, and at a commission.

Often, these salaries are for too long, for too much, and is a burden on the teams that fall for Boras’ BS.

One such example is with Jacoby Ellsbury. Ellsbury probably has the worst contract with the Yankees right now, and maybe in all of baseball.

In 2013, Ellsbury helped the Red Sox to a WS title, and made $9MM that year. After the season, the free agent signed with the Yankees for seven years with an option for an eighth at a little over $21MM per year. Nice jump.

And little production since. The oft-injured CF has averaged .264-10-50 with 26 SB a year in his four seasons with the Yankees, and lost his CF job. His OPS+ is 95. 5% below league average, and he is not known for his throwing arm, either.

$21MM for a fourth OF/DH. One with average stats, nice speed, not the greatest arm. And three more guaranteed years on his contract.

One who this season hit .264-7-39 with 22 SB and who went 0 for 9 in the postseason.

One who hasn’t hit .270, hit 10 HR, driven in 60, stolen 25 bases or has had an OPS+ of 100 (league average) in any of the last three years.

So Bore-A$$ starts complaining about his playing time.

Hey Bore-a$$, shut up. Continue fleecing teams for your 15% commission or whatever you get and stop trying to be their manager.

As for Ellsbury, maybe he last a comeback in him at age 34. But the last three years don’t signify that. The Yanks would love to dump his salary if they could, even if they have to eat most of it.

A bad deal. Bore-a$$ should just laugh his way to the bank, having found a sucker who signed Ellsbury for that much.

And he should just STFU about playing time.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale won 3-1. Yankees prospects:

RF Estevan Florial 0 for 4, struck out 3x.
1B Billy McKinney 2 for 4 with a strikeout.
SS Thairo Estrada 1 for 4, solo HR, one strikeout.

Starting Pitcher Albert Abreu 5 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Relief pitcher Andrew Schwaab 1 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K.
Relief Pitcher Cody Carroll (S, 2) 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 3 K.

In WS Game 1, LA beat Houston 3-1. Chris Taylor hit Dallas Keuchel’s first pitch of the game for a 447 ft. HR. Houston tied it in the fourth on a HR by Alex Bregman but in the bottom of the sixth, Justin Turner’s 2-run HR was the deciding blow. Clayton Kershaw outduelled Keuchel. Kershaw went 7 innings, giving up one run on three hits, and struck out 11.