S.T. Game 18. Yanks, Tigers, tie 2-2. Gleyber sent down.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

This is one reason why I don’t care too much about the final score of spring training games.

Not until say, the last 10 games or so. Maybe less than that.

Giovanny Gallegos gave up a run in the top of the ninth to blow the save as the Yanks tied the Tigers 2-2 on Tuesday.

Come the regular season, Gallegos isn’t pitching the ninth, no offense to him. It’s gonna be Chapman, Betances or Robertson, and the latter two only if Chapman needs a day off.

CC started and pitched well, giving up just one run on a HR by Leonys Martin in 4 IP.

In the bottom of the eighth, Didi tied it with a HR, then Hicks singled, and with one out, Lind walked. Torres walked and Shane Robinson hit into a forceout which put the Yanks up 2-1.

A single, WP and single off Gallegos tied the game for the Tigers in the top of the ninth.

The Yanks had a chance to win it. Jeff Hendrix walked, stole second and went to third on an error but the Yanks could not get him in. (Message to Aaron Boone, squeeze, unlike Girardi, who never did). Jace Peterson and Kyle Higashioka both struck out. Tyler Wade walked and went to second on defensive indifference (Wade being the winning run, the other team isn’t doing THAT in the regular season) but Estevan Florial grounded out.

Gleyber Torres and Kyle Higashioka were reassigned to minor league camp.

The Yanks only got four hits in the game. They struck out 11x.

CC 4 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 1 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Warren, 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K.
Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K.
Robertson 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.
Green 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.
Gallegos (BS) 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K.

I feel sorry for the Mets’ David Wright, who had another setback. Troubled with back problems the past few years, the great Mets’ 3B should just retire. I admire him trying but really, it’s time to retire.





S.T. Game 17. Yanks fall, 2-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks lost 2-1 to the Twins Monday night to drop their S.T. record to 11-6.

Masahiro Tanaka went four innings, giving up a 2-run HR to Bobby Wilson in the second.

Tyler Austin hit a HR for the Yanks in the fourth.

Ronald Torreyes and Tyler Wade each had two hits. Each had a double.

Tanaka (L) 4 IP, 2 R, 4 H, 1 W, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Betances 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.
Shreve 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K.
German 3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 3 K.
Kahnle 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.

As I have mentioned before, I really like German as the emergency starter to come up from AAA over Cessa.

Yanks sign 2B Neil Walker to 1 yr. $4MM deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

This free agent market and the bargains out there are ridiculous.

The Yanks signed veteran 2B Neil Walker to a 1-yr., $4MM deal.

Walker, 32, a switch-hitter, made $17.2 MM last year (took the qualifying offer), and 10.5 MM the year before that. MLB trade rumors had him projected to get a two-year, $20MM deal. The Yanks get him for a year at $4MM? (Plus incentives that could make him more $$).


This Yankees’ lineup is getting downright scary.

Walker has battled some injuries the past two years, but his 162 g. average is .272-20-80 with an OPS+ of 113. In this lineup he could be batting 8th or 9th.

20 HR/80 RBI from a guy hitting 8th or 9th? That reminds me of Scott Brosius in 1998 when he hit .300-19-98, OPS+ 121 batting at the bottom of the lineup, and we all know how good that 1998 team was.

Last year, Walker missed some 45 games but between the Mets and Brewers, hit .265-14-49, OPS+ 111.

Can you imagine a lineup something like Gardner/Judge (batting 2nd because of his AL leading 127 walks and an OBP of .422 last year) Stanton (so Judge and Stanton both bat in the first inning, putting that much pressure on the starting pitcher) Didi (to break up the righty bats) Sanchez, Bird, Hicks, Walker and Drury?


OK, you have an OPS+ of 100 that is average. Here is what the OPS+ was last year, with that lineup, in the order I gave you.

104/171/165/106/126/84 (Bird was hurt most of last year, but was 135 when he came up at the end of 2015 let’s hope it’s that)/ 122/111 and 89. Drury, who hit .267-13-63 is the low guy there at the end.

Let’s repeat that, and give Bird the 135.


100 is league average.


Walker has played for the Pirates (2009-2015), Mets (2016-2017) and Brewers (2017). He has that NY experience with the Mets.

Twice he has popped 20 or more HR in a season. He has one Silver Slugger Award.

It’s a one-year deal, so what it means for Gleyber Torres and/or Tyler Wade remains to be seen. For now, it probably sends them both to the minors and buys more time. SWB should have one killer team this year. How it also affects say, a Thairo Estrada or Abiatal Avelino is to be determined also, not to mention Tyler Austin or Adam Lind if Walker is slated to backup at 1B.

I wonder if some prospects could be moved in a blockbuster for a top-notch pitcher.

Primarily a 2B, Walker has a little experience at 3B and 1B also. Hopefully he does better for the Yanks in the postseason than he did for Pittsburgh. In 8 postseason games, he is 2 for 31.

To clear roster space, the Yanks DFA’d OF Jake Cave, released INF Danny Espinosa and sent INF Kyle Holder down to minor league camp.

Yankees’ advisor Reggie Jackson is scheduled for knee surgery after a fall.


Singleton to retire as Yankees’ broadcaster.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

From his Twitter account:

LOOKOUT! 👀 This will be my final season of calling baseball games. I’ve been playing or talking baseball ever since I was 4 years old. It’s time for this enjoyable ride to end. Thanks fans for allowing me into your homes & businesses. It’s been my pleasure.

S.T. Game 16. Didi and Judge HR, but Montgomery struggles in 7-5 loss.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Didi Gregorius and Aaron Judge homered, but the Yanks (11-5) lost their spring training game to Miami 7-5 on Sunday.

Jordan Montgomery, recently confirmed as the #5 starter, started and struggled.

He gave up a triple to ex-Yankee Starlin Castro with two out in the first but got out of it, but gave up a 2-run double with two out in the second to Miguel Rojas.

In the third, with one out, he gave up a walk and a single. Brady Lail replaced him and gave up a 3-run HR to Brian Anderson to put the Marlins up 5-0.

The Yanks got two in the fourth when Bird and Sanchez singled and both moved up on a passed ball. Didi grounded out to score one runner and move the other up and Miguel Andujar hit a SF to score the other.

Sanchez, by the way, looks really good in spring training so far, offensively AND defensively.

Wade LeBlanc gave up a 2-run HR to Cameron Maybin in the fifth to put Miami up 7-2. This also happened with two out. With two out, Anderson doubled and Maybin hit his HR. I think it’s safe to say that LeBlanc will NOT be beating out Chasen Shreve for the second lefty in the bullpen spot behind closer Aroldis Chapman.

The Yanks got two in the top of the sixth. Sanchez reached on an error, was PR for by Kyle Higashioka, and Didi hit a 2-run HR. Miguel Andujar almost went back to back, hitting a triple off the fence, but was stranded at third.

Judge hit a mammoth shot in the seventh for the final score of 7-5.

Judge solo HR.
Didi 2-run HR, 3 RBI
Andujar triple, RBI. He’s going to make it tough to send him down.

Montgomery (L) 2 1/3 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 2 W, 3 K.
Lail 1 2/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR.
LeBlanc 2 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Carroll 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 3 K.
Harvey 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K.

For Miami, Castro had that triple, and ex-Yankee Garrett Cooper had 3 hits.

Meanwhile, Clint Frazier is still having trouble with that concussion.



S.T. Game 15. Stanton HR’s in 10-3 Yanks’ win.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Giancarlo Stanton homered today in a 10-3 Yanks’ win over the Mets that made their spring training record 11-4.

The Gardner/Judge/ Stanton 1-2-3 today was a thing of beauty. In the first, Gardner and Judge singled and Stanton was HBP. Brandon Drury singled in one run and Tyler Austin’s force out brought in another.

I am not a big fan of Luis Cessa. Driving home from a 1/2 day of work today, both John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman on the radio criticized Cessa for nibbling even though he throws 97. Good point. Cessa, it seems, struggles to get hitters out even when he is doing well. It doesn’t come easy. No easy outs. It’s one reason why if the Yanks need an emergency starter, I would rather have Domingo German than Cessa.

Cessa reached his pitch limit before he even pitched two innings. He was pulled with the bases loaded after just 1 1/3 innings pitched.

Then you saw something incredible.

We had not seen David “Houdini” Robertson pitch yet this spring training. Partly because of a touch of food poisoning he got recently. So in his first spring training appearance, “Houdini” comes in with the bases loaded and one out.

He strikes out both batters he faces. Really?

In the third, Gardner singled and Judge doubled. An RBI ground out by Drury made it 3-0 Yanks.

The Mets got a run in the fourth off Betances because Jose Reyes stole second and third off him. When asked in an in-game interview if he would prefer Betances slide-step, manager Aaron Boone said no, he doesn’t want to screw Betances up, but to let Betances concentrate on getting the batter out. But Betances’ slow move to the plate is a concern. He needs to hold runners on better. Boone’s point was to not let them get on base in the first place.

The Yanks got two in the fifth to make it 5-1 on Stanton’s HR.

An RBI single by Reyes in the sixth made it 5-2, and the Yanks got lucky on the play. Tyler Wade dove for the ball and rolled over his wrist. At first, it appeared as if he may have broken or severely sprained it, but he is OK.

The Yankees got two in the bottom of the sixth on a walk to Jace Peterson, a double by Ronald Torreyes, and a 2-run double by Kyle Holder. 7-2 Yanks.

The Mets got a run in the seventh but the Yanks came back with three in the eighth.

Francisco Diaz and Jace Peterson singled. A force out by Abiatal Avelino drove in one run. Holder singled to put runners at first and second. Estevan Florial singled, one runner scored and an error put runners on second and third. Shane Robinson hit a SF to make it 10-3 Yanks.

One friend of mine is still critical of Judge batting second because of his 52 HR last year. He would like to drop him down in the lineup. He is critical of the 208 strikeouts last year, too. But a guy batting first or second is a guy you want to have a good OBP. Judge, despite the strikeouts, did lead the AL with 127 walks, so his OBP was excellent, the best in the league. You want good OBP guys in front of Stanton and Sanchez. So Judge does fit the bill there.

The fact that Gardner/Judge/ Stanton makes a pitcher wary of facing BOTH Judge and Stanton right away in the first inning is a valid point.

Earlier, I advocated a Gardner/Judge/Bird/Stanton/Sanchez/Didi first six.

I change my mind. Instead, I would like Gardner/Judge/Stanton/Didi/Sanchez/Bird front six.

I say this for a couple of reasons. One, get both Judge and Stanton up right away in that first inning.

The other? Instead of Bird splitting up the righty bats, use Didi instead. If one is on first base, and Sanchez doubles, who is more likely to score from first on the double, Didi or Bird? That is why, even though unconventional, I would bat Didi cleanup.

Gardner 2 for 3 with a walk, scored 2 runs.
Florial 1 for 1
Judge 2 for 2 with a walk, scored 2 runs. Finally broke out.
Stanton 2-run HR.
Drury 2 RBI.
Kyle Holder 2 for 2 with 2 RBI.

We saw a lot of the bullpen today.

Cessa (W) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 3 W, 2 K. Really, not good. 3 walks. Nibbling too much. Way off. Four outs. Five base runners. Three by walk.
Robertson (H) 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. See above. Fabulous.
Chapman (H) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.
Betances (H) 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K.
Warren (H) 2 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 0 W, 3 K.
Green 1 2/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K.
Reeves 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K.
Foley 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K.

Yankees’ pitchers combined for 14 K.





S.T. Game 14. Sanchez, Gray, good, but Yanks fall 3-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks only got three hits tonight, two by Gary Sanchez (one a HR) in losing to the Braves, 3-1.

The loss puts the Yanks spring training record at 10-4.

Sonny Gray started and pitched great, giving up just one hit in 3 2/3 scoreless innings.

The Braves got a run in the fifth and Sanchez tied it in the top of the sixth with his HR.

Atlanta got two in the seventh for the game.

Spring training stats mean nothing, for someone hot in spring training could get cold to start the season and vice-versa, but Greg Bird needs to get it together. 0 for 4 tonight, 3 strikeouts, and only .095 so far in spring training.

It looks as if Tyler Wade will win the 2B job. Gleyber Torres, who hasn’t played much above High A, and who missed 1/2 of last year because of an injury, probably needs to go to AAA to shake off some rust. He’s at .150 this spring training.

Gray 3 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 W, 3 K.
Kahnle 2/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K.
Shreve 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K
Hale (L) 1 2/3 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 5 H, 1 W, 2 K.
Holder 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.

The Yanks made a couple more cuts. INF Thairo Estrada, recovering from a gunshot wound due to a botched robbery attempt, and didn’t play in any spring training games, was sent to minor league camp, as was RHP Albert Abreu, recovering from having his appendix removed.

Also sent down was RHP Jonathan Loaisiga.