Category Archives: Scandal

Yanks’ game suspended, meanwhile, Seattle’s Cano suspended, too.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yankees game vs. the Nationals was suspended after 5 1/2 innings with the score tied at 3. The game will be resumed Wednesday at 5 PM, before the regularly scheduled game.

I hate inter-league games at NL parks where the Yanks lose the DH. Masahiro Tanaka started tonight and batted 8th in the lineup.

My grammy beating a rug had a better swing than most pitchers. I am a traditionalist when it comes to baseball except for the DH. Watching a pitcher hit is like enduring Chinese water torture.

Because of inter-league, and the possible need for another PH on the bench, Clint Frazier was called up from SWB and David Hale was DFA’d (again… the Yanks DFA’d him earlier this year, he went to the Twins, THEY DFA’d him and he came back to the Yanks. Some spring for Hale). How long Frazier’s call up lasts, who knows. It could be just for these 2 inter-league games vs. the Nationals.

Robbie Cano was suspended for 80 games by MLB. A couple things about this. When asked if he knew about PED use by Cano, and if that was why the Yanks didn’t re-sign Cano when Robbie became a free agent, Yankees’ GM Brian Cashman stated that he had no knowledge, because knowledge requires you to report it and if not reported, it is a $1MM fine. But, Cashman stated, knowledge is one thing and suspicions another. A very telling line by Cashman.

Maybe there were suspicions. The Yanks did offer 7 years and $180MM, but were blown away by Seattle’s $240MM, 10 yr offer.

Maybe the suspicions made the Yanks low-ball Cano.

The suspicions would be this: Cano’s two best friends on the Yankees were A-Rod and Melky, both of whom were busted. His charity was run by someone whose name became linked to Biogenesis. It could be Robbie was getting away with it for years but finally was caught.

What he was caught for was furosemide, the generic of Lasix, a diuretic. Furosemide in and of itself is not a PED, or steroid. But it can be used as a masking agent to hide steroids. Cano denies that it was used for that purpose, but MLB apparently had evidence that it was.

So Cano is suspended for 80 games, and is ineligible for the postseason should Seattle make it.

But here is the rub. The suspension begins immediately. Cano was appealing the suspension until he had his hand broken while hit by a pitch the other day. So he’d have been out 6-8 weeks anyway because of the break. So the suspension runs concurrently with his time on the DL.

This is wrong. MLB should change the rules so that any suspension like this starts AFTER THE PLAYER COMES OFF THE DL. That is why Cano dropped the appeal, because he knew that because of the broken finger, he would miss only a few weeks of REAL time.

Cano is listed as one of the top 10 2B of ALL TIME. His HOF credentials just took a serious hit today. Because of this, he may never make the HOF.

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Game 12. The Kraken wakes up in 10-7 Yanks’ win. Benches clear.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Gary Sanchez was 2 for 36 before Wednesday night’s game. But he did have 4 career HR off of David Price. That’s a lot considering Sanchez’ short MLB career so far.

Price was the remedy Sanchez needed to right himself. Make that 5 career HR now.

Sanchez went 3 for 5, scored 3 runs and drove in 4 as he hit two two-run HR in the Yanks’ 10-7 win over the Red Sox in a game that featured two bench clearing incidents.  The win evened the Yanks’ record at 6-6.

Not only did Sanchez have a good game, but so did Giancarlo Stanton. Maybe he has righted himself too.

You wonder if the weather has had a factor. Now that it is finally started to get warmer and the Yanks (except for that opening series in Toronto’s dome) can finally play games in temps over say, 45, will they heat up along with the weather? Some players just have trouble playing in the cold…

One disturbing trend that continued is that for the fourth time this year—in only 12 games—is that a Yankees’ pitcher gave up a grand slam. I wonder if that is a record. Four grand slams given up in just 12 games at the start of a season? Sheesh.

The Yanks got four in the first and knocked out Price, who left because of a sensation he felt in his pitching hand. Gardner singled, Judge walked, Stanton tripled home two, and after Didi popped up, Sanchez hit his second HR of the year, a two-run shot, to make it 4-0.

Tanaka gave up a HR to Hanley Ramirez in the bottom of the first. He really has to concentrate on not hanging his splitter and on throwing his fastballs off the plate. His fastballs, if left over the plate, aren’t overpowering batters and get crushed.

In the third, Sanchez doubled, Walker singled, and Austin singled in Sanchez. Tyler Wade bunted into a force, and the Red Sox took offense at Austin’s slide (I remember when a takeout slide was normal. The game has really changed. See the 1977 ALCS and McRae taking out Randolph for example) and the benches cleared.

In the fourth, Gardner and Judge singled and Gardner moved to third on a flyball by Stanton. Didi got in Gardner with a SF and Sanchez hit his third HR of the season, and second two-run HR of the game, to make it 8-1.

Smooth sailing, right? Wrong.

Tanaka fell apart in the fifth, giving up five runs, including a grand slam to J.D. Martinez.

The Yanks got two back in the sixth to make it 10-6. Gardner walked, stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error. After Judge struck out, Stanton singled in a run. Two wild pitches moved Stanton to third and he scored on a Didi SF.

In the seventh, Austin, whose hard slide began that benches clearing incident earlier, was drilled by Boston pitcher Joe Kelly, and charged the mound. He, Kelly, Tommy Kahnle, and Yankees’ 3B coach Phil Nevin were all ejected.

Aroldis Chapman had a shaky ninth inning, giving up a run before nailing down the win.

Gardner 2 hits, 2 walks, scored 3x.
Judge 2 hits, walk. Scored 2x
Stanton 3 hits, 3 RBI. Scored 2x.
Didi 2 RBI on 2 SF.
Sanchez 3 hits, 2 HR, 4 RBI. Scored 3x.

Tanaka (W, 2-1, 5.19) 5 IP, 6 R, 7 H, 2 W, 3 K. Gave up 2 HR, one a grand slam.
Green 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.57
Robertson 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 4.70
Chapman 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 3.00

No word on when Hicks, Ellsbury, Clint Frazier or Drury may return. I’d expect Hicks Friday in Detroit.

Also, with Tyler Wade hitting .111 and Miguel Andujar .107, we may be seeing Gleyber Torres replacing one of them soon. Keep an eye on that if Wade and Andujar don’t heat up soon.

Update: Hicks will be activated for Thursday night’s game vs. Boston.

Game 11. Yanks embarrassed, 14-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Before the game, a couple of moves. The Yanks brought up OF Shane Robinson and DFA’d Jace Peterson.

They also made a minor league move, trading with the Mets and getting L.J. Mazzilli, Lee’s kid, for OF Kendall Coleman. A righty bat, Mazzilli, 27, has mostly played 2B, and spent most of last year in AA. In 110 games between AA/AAA last year, he hit .254-5-40. He was suspended a few years back for 50 games for a drug violation. Coleman, 22, a lefty hitting OF, has barely made it up to low A Charleston, and has struggled to a .207 average in his minor league career.

The pitching duel was between the CYA runnerup last year, Chris Sale, and Luis Severino, who finished third.

Seve didn’t have it (a friend told me that Rick Sutcliffe on ESPN suggested that Severino was tipping his pitches) and the bullpen was horrible, giving up nine in the sixth, in a 14-1 Yankees’ loss that dropped them under .500 to 5-6 on the season.

Meanwhile, after an Opening Day loss, Boston has won nine in a row and are 4 1/2 up on the Yanks.

An Aaron Judge HR (3) was the only highlight of the night. He had 3 hits. Didi had 2.

After two strikeouts, Giancarlo Stanton had a single and double, hopefully signs he is snapping out of it. One article I read yesterday suggested that Stanton is like Teixeira in that both would always get off to slow starts, then heat up.

But you have to wonder when Gary Sanchez will be dropped in the lineup or when he’ll wake up. Batting fourth or fifth all year, Sanchez is now 2 for 36.

Tyler Wade is only at .136. If Gleyber Torres heats up, you have to wonder if there could be a switch there. Miguel Andujar is struggling at .125. An Andujar error led to six unearned runs. The kid’s aren’t alright.

Too many grand slams given up. I can remember Robertson gave one up in Toronto, Holder in the extra inning loss at home to Baltimore, and now Shreve last night.

Severino (L, 2-1, 3.50) 5 IP, 5 R, 8 H, 3 W, 6 K.
Kahnle 2/3 IP, 5 R, 3 ER, 2 H, 3 W, 0 K. 7.11
Shreve 1 1/3 IP, 4 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 W, 3 K. 0.00. Gave up grand slam.
Cessa 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 0.00

Not much more to say about this game. It was a stinker.

 

 

 

 

News on two former Yankees’ pitchers….

Yankee Stadium Frieze

An interesting, and sad, day regarding two former Yankees’ pitchers.

Esteban Loaiza, who was briefly with the Yankees in 2004 (but long enough to lose Game 5 of the ALCS to Boston), was caught with 44 pounds of cocaine or heroin, worth $500K.

According to Fox News,

the two-time All-Star is being held on $200,000 bail. He was booked into the South Bay Detention Center (San Diego) just before 6 p.m. Friday. Loaiza was first stopped for a traffic infraction after leaving an Imperial Beach home. His car is believed to be used in a drug smuggling operation.

Loaiza, a Mexican-born pitcher, won 126 games during his career. He played for eight teams in 14 seasons: Pittsburgh Pirates, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, Washington Nationals, Oakland A’s, Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers.

He capped off his career pitching in 10 games for the White Sox and Dodgers in 2008. His had his best season in 2003 when he won 21 games and finished second in American League Cy Young voting while with the White Sox.

He made $43.7 million during his career, Baseball Reference reported.

Loaiza was the husband of singer Jenni Rivera, who died in a Mexico plane crash in 2012.

Loaiza is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

Meanwhile, HOF pitcher Rich “Goose” Gossage is not welcome at the Yankees’ spring training. Gossage would be a guest instructor in prior years, but his general grumpiness about the game today, in which he would rant about one-inning guys like Rivera and Chapman, must have gotten under GM Brian Cashman’s skin, among others.

Cashman had no comment, but Gossage ranted today about Cashman, and nothing he had to say about the GM was very good.

Goose may have a plaque in Monument Park, but there seem to be plenty of bridges that are burned here.

 

Yanks sign Espinosa to minor league deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I feel as if the Yanks will be going with Andujar at 3B, and Torres (after he spends the first two weeks at AAA to push back his arbitration/free agency a year) at 2B.

But to hedge their bets, the Yanks signed Jace Peterson to a minor league contract a few weeks ago.

Today, they hedged their bets a bit further, signing Danny Espinosa to a minor league deal.

The plusses to Espinosa: 30, 31 in April. Still in his “prime.”

Switch-hitter with power. 21 HR in 2011 for the Nationals. 24 in 2016.

Postseason Experience with the Nationals in 2012, 2014 & 2016.

Mostly 2B/SS, has played some 3B.

The negatives: .221 career batting average, OPS+ just 82, 18% below league average.

189 strikeouts led the NL in 2012. 174 K in 2016.

In 93 games in 2017, most with the Angels, but some w/Seattle and Tampa Bay, .173-6-31, OPS+ a dreadful 43.

In 2016 for Washington, .209-24-72, OPS+79.

162 g. average: .221-18-59, 12 SB, OPS+ 82. 45 walks, 175 K.

I’m not enthused by the move. But experience in case the rookies (Andujar/Wade/Torres/Estrada) don’t pan out. And a minor league deal, which means little $$$.

The Indians announced they are soon scrapping Chief Wahoo as their symbol, bowing to the PC crowd, calling Chief Wahoo racist.

I never looked at Chief Wahoo (who looks a lot like one-time Indian Don Mossi, by the way) as racist. He was just a logo to me, the same as Chief Nok-a-Homa was with the Braves in the 1970s.

The same with the Redskins nickname in football. But that’s just me. I probably have thicker skin than others.

But with these snowflakes, sheesh. Grow a pair, get some thin skin. Really, just grow up.

So sensitive.

 

Once again, time to strip the HOF ballot from some BBWAA members.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

As the Baseball HOF ballots are being counted (and new, if any, members are to be announced January 24) once again we see that the BBWAA should seriously consider stripping voting privileges away from some of its members.

This year’s case in point (so far): Bill Livingston of the Cleveland Plain Dealer who only voted for two ex-players: former Indians Jim Thome and Omar Vizquel.

If he wants to skip over known and suspected steroid users like Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa and Manny Ramirez, that is one thing.

But what about others who may need every vote they can in order to receive the 75% it takes to get in? Ex-players like Mike Mussina, Trevor Hoffman, Vladimir Guerrero or Edgar Martinez?

If someone like Mussina winds up with 74.7%, they don’t round up. Hoffman missed by only a handful of votes last year.

And, if someone like Mussina just misses, he has a legitimate gripe against voters like Livingston.

Voters like Livingston (and others who vote for candidates clearly not HOF worthy just to give them a vote—maybe they were drinking buddies with that player?) should have their voting privileges revoked.

Things not as easy for Jeter now that he’s in the front office.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

In his short time as a Marlins’ executive, Derek Jeter has made, and may yet make, some unpopular, controversial decisions, and the public relations, which always were so good when he was Yankees’ SS and captain, have been pretty bad.

First off, he let some popular Marlins figures go, including “Mr. Marlin”, Jeff Conine. Some people were offered positions back, but at significant pay cuts.

Jeter knew coming into this job that he inherited a mess. Lots of cost-cutting and decisions would have to be made that will make Jeter look like the bad guy. This was the first of those types of moves.

Some moves may be necessary, but Jeter will and has come across as heartless, cold and calculating.

Secondly, the problem with Giancarlo Stanton and his huge contract. 10 more years, $295MM. Stanton most likely will be traded this offseason, and it most likely won’t resonate well with Marlins’ fans who will hate to see the 2017 NL MVP go. Stanton won’t be alone, either. Other Marlins players will go as the Marlins seek to gut the team to get to a very low payroll.

Now, another move that is just bad P.R. and may be the icing on the cake so far. A Marlins scout was just let go. The problem is, this scout just had surgery for colon cancer, and needs a kidney transplant. The scout was informed of his layoff while he was, yup, in the hospital, and Jeter did not inform the scout personally but some underling did the dirty deed instead.

Jeter is finding out being a front office exec of the Marlins is a little different than being the beloved captain of the Yankees.