Game 46. Yanks edge O’s in 10, 2-1.

Jordan Montgomery pitched a great game after having had a couple of clunkers lately, and the Yankees’ bullpen completed the job in a 2-1 win in 10 innings over Baltimore on Saturday afternoon.

The win was the Yankees’ (25-21) fourth straight.

The Yanks scored right away in the bottom of the first when D.J. LeMahieu doubled, Luke Voit flied to right, moving D.J. to third, Aaron HIcks walked, and Clint Frazier hit a SF.

We’ll read more about Voit getting the job done again in a couple more paragraphs.

The Yanks would have a couple scoring opportunites in the game, especially when in different innings, Frazier (third inning) and Brett Gardner (eighth) got two-out triples, but they were left stranded.

The O’s tied the game in the sixth due to the Yankees’ fielding miscues. A single, an error by Gardner, then, after an out, and with the Yankees playing the infield in, a pop single that second baseman Thairo Estrada went back for but had glance off his glove. If Estrada was at normal depth he would have had it, but that’s baseball.

In the bottom of the tenth, D.J. LeMahieu started the inning at second base, what with these 2020 extra inning rules. He advanced to third on a wild pitch and Voit did his job, winning the game with a sac fly.

The Yanks got only five hits and made three errors, but still won the game.


Montgomery 5 2/3 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 H, 1 W, 9 K. 4.76
Green 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.98
Britton 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.40
Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 5.14
Holder (W, 3-0, 2.12) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K

Mark Newman, long time front office exec for the Yankees, died at the age of 71.

Game 45. Voit, Tanaka lead Yanks to DH Sweep, 10-1.

Luke Voit hit two homers to tie for the MLB HR lead with 16, and Masahiro Tanaka settled in after giving up a first-inning HR as the Yanks (24-21) crushed Baltimore 10-1 to sweep yesterday’s doubleheader at the Stadium. (See Game 44 for first game results).

With Judge and Stanton on the DL, what Voit is doing is impressive and with a lot of the lineup struggling (Sanchez, Gardner, Hicks, Ford, Wade, Estrada, Andujar all at .220 or below), Voit should get MVP consideration along with LeMahieu.

As of this morning, Voit’s 16 HR are tied for the MLB lead, and LeMahieu’s .359 batting average leads the A.L.

After Tanaka gave up a solo HR in the first, the Yankees came right back with four runs in the bottom of the first, thanks in part to some luck and shoddy play by the Orioles.

LeMahieu walked, and Voit singled him to second. On a fly to left, LeMahieu surprisingly tug up and would have been out at third, but the ball was dropped. Voit moved up to second behind LeMahieu. Clint Frazier hit a grounder to short, LeMahieu tried to score, and would have been out if the throw was good. So the Yanks got lucky and got a run. Gleyber Torres then singled to make it 2-1, and Miguel Andujar’s double made it 4-1.

After a shaky start to the top of the second, Tanaka settled in, retiring each of the last 12 batters he faced.

Voit hit a three-run HR in the fourth to make it 7-1. He then hit another three-run HR in the fifth to make it 10-1, which wound up as the final score.

With the win, the Yanks moved to within 1/2 a game of second place Toronto in the AL East.

LeMahieu 2 hits (.359 leads A.L; won batting title in NL in 2016)
Voit 3 hits, TWO 3-run HRs (16), 6 RBI Tied for MLB lead in HR.
Torres 2 hits, RBI. Looks like Torres finally getting back to being Gleyber.
Andujar 2 RBI



Tanaka (W, 2-2, 3.16) 5 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 5 K. Gave up 1 HR. 1 HBP.
Cessa 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.65
Kriske 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K. 14.73

In that first round of the playoffs, a best of 3, it appears like Cole and Tanaka are locks to be starters, but surprise! the best candidate for that third starter spot could be 21 year old Deivi Garcia. —–over Happ and Montgomery. As for Paxton, we don’t even know if he’ll be back this season. Right now, I’d say it is between Happ (horrible start to season, better lately) and Garcia.

Game 44. Cole dominates in first game of DH. Yanks win 6-0.

Gerrit Cole pitched a complete game, 7-inning (2020 DH / CCP virus rules) 2-hit shutout in Game 1 of a doubleheader today over the Orioles. The Yankees (23-21) won 6-0.

The Yanks got things started right away. D.J. LeMahieu led off the bottom of the first with his sixth HR of the season. After a single by Luke Voit and a WP, Brett Gardner hit his fourth HR of the season. Three batters into the bottom of the first, and the Yanks were up 3-0.

Kyle Higashioka hit a 2-run homer, his first of the season, in the second inning to give the Yanks a 5-0 lead, and the way Cole was going, that was more than enough.

The final Yankees run came in the bottom of the sixth. Gleyber Torres led off the inning with a double, and Gary Sanchez walked. After a passed ball, Mike Tauchman singled in Torres.

LeMahieu solo HR (6)
Leads AL in batting average. Already won a batting tile in NL.

Gardner 2 hits, 2 RBI, 2-run HR (4)
Tauchman 3 for 3, RBI
Higashioka 2-run HR (1)

Cole (W, 5-3, 3.20) 7 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 1 W, 9 K.

The Cole the Yanks paid all that $$$ for.

Game 2 will have Tanaka on the mound.

Thoughts after a rainout.

Recently I saw some thoughts on the Yankees, and some I agree with, others need more thought. But I thought I would share those and my thoughts with you.

One. Rest? Balls to the wall right now. The person who wrote what I saw questioned why Boone is giving so much rest and off days to players IN A SIXTY GAME SEASON. I have to agree. Not only that, rest because of doubleheaders? The doubleheaders are just seven inning games! I get the injury problems, but how much rest is needed in a sixty game season in which a lot of games so far are seven inning affairs?

Second. The writer wrote to dump Montgomery and go with Clarke Schmidt in the rotation from now on. Ok. Teams haven’t seen Schmidt (0-0, 7.71 in two relief outings) while Monty is 2-2, 5.72. Who knows. Schmidt is more used to starting. Monty hasn’t been good the last few times out. Udecided on this one.

It does look as if Deivi Garcia will have to stay in the rotation. James Paxton has suffered a setback in his forearm problem. This means a few things. One, Garcia in his three MLB starts is 1-1, 3.06. Paxton was 1-1, 6.64 in five starts. But Paxton is a free agent after the year (along with Tanaka), and given this problem and Paxton’s injury history, would you bring him back? I wouldn’t. As for Tanaka, yes. But the biggest free agent that the Yankees HAVE to re-sign is LeMahieu, who as he did last year, is leading the team in WAR (Wins Above Replacement).

Third. The outfield problem. There isn’t a lot that can be done here as long as Judge and Stanton are on the IL. The author of the piece I saw suggested benching Gardner (.165-3-9, OPS+ 65) for Tauchman (.238-0-10, OPS+ 83). Ok, but not a lot of improvement. Hicks (.209-4-13) isn’t helping much either, but at least Hicks (114 OPS+) is drawing walks, leading the team in them.

What this leads to is Clint Frazier. At .288-5-17, OPS+ 159, he has to play everyday. And this means when/if Judge returns, Boone should go with Frazier in LF, Hicks CF and Judge in RF. You can use Tauchman or Gardy for a defensive replacement late for Frazier. As for Gardy, he just turned 37. I don’t expect him back in 2021.

As for Andujar, you can’t afford his lack of OF experience out there right now. He has to play 3b (which he doesn’t do well) or, with Stanton out, DH.

There are only 17 games left. The 22-21 Yankees are clinging to the last playoff spot, only there because of the special circumstances with the CCP virus in 2020.

Balls to the wall.

As for the DH today, fingers crossed. The Yanks are only 2-7 in those 7–inning affairs this year. That has to improve.

And as for Sanchez. Whew. I don’t know what to do there. J.T. Realmuto is a free agent after the season. He’ll be 30 next year. Catchers usually break down at 32, 33. 5 years, $100 Million? Do the Yanks have the $ for him, and if so, would they give up on Sanchez? And what to do with Sanchez.

Excuse me, I have to take an aspirin. Sanchez has been giving me, and I am sure you, headaches this season.

Yankees game rained out. DH tomorrow.

The Yankees/Otioles game scheduled for tonight (Thursday) has been rained out. There will be a DH starting at 4 PM tomorrow.

The Yanks did sign Ryan Buchter and assign him to the extended camp. Buchter, a LH relief pitcher, is 33 and 2-0, 4.50, ERA+ 105 for the Angels this year. For his career (Atlanta 2014, San Diego 2016-2017, KC 2017, A’s 2018-2019 and Angels 2020) he is 17-4, 2.90, ERA+ 146.

Game 43. Yanks end losing streak with a 7-2 win.

And a child shall lead them…

Well, maybe not children, but the Yanks were led last night by 23 year old Gleyber Torres and 21 year old Deivi Garcia.

Having lost 15 of their last 20, and the last five in a row, the Yanks (22-21) were desperate for a victory after seeing their record drop from 16-6 to 21-21 and also seeing their playoff hopes clinging by a thread.

What they got was seven superb innings from Garcia, making just his third MLB start, and a HR and 4 RBI from Torres.

For Garcia, it was his first MLB win. For Torres, who hit 38 HR last year, he finally got his second HR of this season… .and the first one was on Opening Day….way too long of a stretch between homers.

Torres started things off with the HR. A solo shot in the top of the second to put the Yanks up 1-0.

Garcia gave up a 2-run blast in the bottom of the second and the Yanks were down 2-1.

D.J. LeMahieu homered (5) in the top of the third to tie it up for the Yanks.

The Yanks went ahead with three runs in the top of the fifth. Tyler Wade singled, went to second on a groundout by LeMahieu, and scored on a single by Luke Voit to make it 3-2. Aaron Hicks walked, and after Clint Frazier struck out, Torres doubled in Voit and Hicks to make it 5-2.

The Yanks got two insurance runs in the top of the ninth. LeMahieu reached on an error, moved to second on a groundout, and stole third. HIcks walkded, and Frazier singled in LeMahieu, with Hicks moving to third. Frazier stole second, and Hicks scored on an RBI groundout by Torres.

LeMahieu solo HR (5)
Frazier 2 hits, RBI
Torres 2 hits, solo HR (2), 4 RBI

Garcia (W, 1-1, 3.06) 7 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 0 W, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR. FIRST MLB WIN.
Britton (H, 3) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.57
Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 3 K. 6.00

Game 42. Yanks fall to .500 with 2-1 loss.

Let’s face it. It’s been hard and depressing to watch, read or write about.

From 16-6 to 21-21. Five losses in a row. Seven in the last eight games. 15 losses in the last 20 games. All in a 60 game season.

The Yanks haven’t had a losing season since 1992. There are only 18 games left. What are the odds of that streak ending?

The Yankees are clinging to the eighth and final playoff seed by 1/2 a game over…. Baltimore. Unfathomable. Even if they hold on, guess who the Yanks would play in the first round? Tampa Bay, against whom they went 2-8 this season.

And if not for the expanded CCP playoffs of this year, fuhgeddaboutit.

GM Brian Cashman had a pregame meeting with the team, but the Yanks still went out and lost to Toronto, 2-1.

J.A. Happ did his job, making just one mistake in giving up a 2-run HR. I question pitch selection again here. Gameday suggests five straight fastballs with the fifth one being the HR. Mix it up a little? The same with the game before where Chad Green threw nine or ten straight fastballs. It makes me scratch my head.

The YES network, on the postgame show, is criticizing players for mental mistakes. Maybe some of it is pressing, like swinging at the first pitch after the pitcher has thrown X many balls in a row.

That two-run HR given up by Happ came in the second inning and was all the Blue Jays needed. The Yanks only got five hits in the game, two by Miguel Andujar.

With two out in the first inning, the Yanks loaded the bases on three straight walks but Mike Tauchman flied out.

They had first and second, one out in the second and didn’t score. Second and third with two out, same inning.

Two on, two out in the fourth, couldn’t score. The chances were there.

The only run came in the fifth. Luke Voit and Aaron Hicks singled, Clint Frazier walked. Bases loaded, no out. No advance on a flyout by Gleyber Torres. Mike Tauchman hit a SF. But only one run out of it.

The Yanks were 0 for 7 w/RISP and left 10 on.

Andujar 2 hits

Happ (L, 1-2; 4.31) 6 1/3 IP, 2 R, 4 H, 2 W, 10 K. Gave up 1 HR.
King 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 6.14
Britton 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.77

Happ is pitching much better after a terrible start to the season. But is it too late?


Gene Budig, the last AL president before the NL and AL offices were consolidated under the Commissioner in the late 1990’s, has passed away, age 81. 

Game 41. 10-run inning dooms Yanks, 12-7.

Lately, it seems like every move Aaron Boone is making is backfiring on him.

Especially when it comes to the bullpen.

Right now, Brian Cashman is with the team, and after last night’s 12-7 loss, I wouldn’t be surprised if heads roll after this season.

Watching part of the YES postgame show, it seemed like ex-Yankee and current YES broadcaster John Flaherty had a couple of criticisms, and was more critical than normal.

In the line of fire would be pitching coach Matt Blake, bullpen coach Mike Harkey and even manager Boone himself.

Blake had no coaching experience before getting the pitching coach job this year and was a bit of a surprise choice to replace the fired Larry Rothschild (now with SD).

You may argue that maybe going with David Cone, who interviewed for the job, may have been a better choice.

I wonder if the Yankees need to take a good, hard look at how their pitching philosophy has or hasn’t worked lately. One reason they have been coming up short has been their rotation. Just getting Cole may be like putting a band-aid on what seems to be a bigger problem.

When you lose 14 of 19, and have free-falled your way into clinging to the 8th and last playoff spot (and that spot is only there because of the virus of 2020), you can expect fans not to be happy on Twitter. And, it appears, there isn’t much happiness on the YES postgame show or in the front office. I would guess Hal isn’t too happy either.

Injuries are one thing, but bad play is another.

If ever there is a time for a good ripping into a team to wake them up, now is the time.

The Yanks (21-20) took a 6-2 lead into the bottom of the sixth, only to see Chad Green and Adam Ottavino give up 10 runs in what turned out to be a 12-7 loss.

Flaherty, on the postgame show, wondered why Boone stayed with Ottavino (who didn’t record an out, all six batters scoring) so long. He also criticized Boone’s body language during the inning. Just an observation, but Flaherty’s words sounded like someone angling for Boone’s job. They were quite critical, and you may add, harsh.

But this was really bad. It’s one thing to lose 14 of 19 in a 162 game season, but in a 60 game season? We’re talking 1/3 of the season here.

The Yanks got back-to-back HR from Luke Voit (14) and Aaron Hicks (4) in the top of the first to take a 2-0 lead.

But as has been their wont lately, the Yankees’ pitchers, Jordan Montgomery in this instance, gave runs right back, and Montgomery joined the cast of Yankees’ starters not giving any length, thus putting more pressure on a failing bullpen.

Montgomery gave up a run in the first, another in the second, and the game was tied.

The Yanks got a run in the fourth when Miguel Andujar hit his first HR of the season. 3-2 Yanks.

In the fifth, with one out, D.J. LeMahieu and Luke Voit both singled, and with two out, Clint Frazier’s double scored two runs. 5-2, Yanks.

A bases-loaded walk to Hicks in the top of the sixth made it 6-2.

Then the roof fell in, as Green and Ottavino gave up ten runs in the bottom of the sixth. The final indignity came when Ottavino gave up a grand slam. The bottom of the sixth lasted 43 minutes and took up 67 pitches.

I have wondered about pitch selection a lot lately. In checking out the game on MLB’s gameday, I had to shake my head when, during a 9 or 10 pitch at bat (which resulted in Luke Voit making an error), Green threw nothing but fastballs. Really? Eventually the batter will time the fastball, especially after seeing nine or ten in a row.

There is a difference between pitching and throwing. Yes, there was criticism of that in Twitterworld, and I think, on the YES postgame show as well (I’m not too sure about YES, but YES was a bit critical last evening, and rightfully so).

The Yankees’ defense, suspect lately, made two more errors. Nothing is going right.

The Yanks got a run in the top of the ninth on an RBI groundout by Andujar.

But this game signified “just when you think things can’t get worse…”

Something’s gonna happen. It has to. This can’t continue.

Because the Yanks are close to missing out on the playoffs entirely.

Voit 2 hits, solo HR (14)
Hicks solo HR (4), 2 RBI
Frazier 2 hits, 2 RBI
Andujar solo HR (1), 2 RBI

Montgomery 3 1/3 IP, 2 R, 6 H, 2 W, 1 K. 5.72
Holder 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.25
Green 1/3 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 H, 2 W, 0 K. 4.26
Ottavino (L, 2-3; BS, 3; 7.82) 0 IP, 6 R, 4 H, 2 W, 0 K. Gave up grand slam.

Cessa 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.81
Schmidt 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 W, 2 K. 7.71

Game 40. Yanks fall to 3rd place after 5-1 loss.

More of the same as the Yankees (21-19) lost to Baltimore Sunday, 5-1.

The same recently, as the Yanks have lost 13 of their last 18, has been a lack of hitting, errors that lead to the other team scoring unearned runs, and relievers letting inherited runners score.

With the loss, the Yanks fall to third place in the AL East, and are only two games ahead of 4th place Baltimore. Right now, with only 20 games left in the season, the Yanks are the 8th and last seed for the playoffs. If not for the expanded CCP virus playoffs this year, they’d be on the verge of going home.

And as the 8 seed, guess who their opponent would be if the postseason started today? Yup. The Rays, against whom the Yanks are 2-8 this season.

At 21-19, they risk becoming the first Yankees team since 1992 to finish the season under .500.

I don’t know if they have had a team meeting, but something needs to be done to shake them up.

One thing that did happen before the game is that Gary Sanchez (.130, 13 for 100, 48 strikeouts) was benched.

Masahiro Tanaka had a slow start, giving up a 2-run HR in the first inning to the second batter of the game. The Yankees only got four hits in the game, three by Miguel Andujar (who also made a huge error, leading to Baltimore runs), so that 2-run HR doomed the Yankees from the start.

After that single, HR, single, walk start, Tanaka settled in, but to no avail.

In the second, the Yanks scored their only run of the game. Clint Frazier walked. with one out, Andujar singled. Mike Tauchman walked to load th bases. Erik Kratz grounded into a force out, Frazier scoring.

Andujar, as mentioned, had 3 of the Yanks’ four hits in the game. The last one was a triple. Coming into the game, Andujar, who missed almost all of 2019 due to injury, was 12 for his last 84. He was 6 for 47 in 2019, and 6 for 37 in 2020 before this game. What was even more shocking is that Andujar, the runnerup for Rookie of the Year in 2018, didn’t have an extra base hit since 2018. All 12 of those hits were singles. This from a guy who had 47 doubles and 27 HR in 2018. That triple broke a 14 for 87 streak of nothing but singles.

In the sixth, Andujar make an error that let the Orioles’ leadoff hitter reach base. Tanaka was pulled with men on first and second, one out. As has been the Yankees’ custom during this bad streak, the reliever (Luis Cessa in this case) couldn’t get out of the inning, but let the inherited runners score. Two runs came in, 4-1 Otioles.

An error by Mike Ford at first base gave the Orioles another unearned run in the seventh. 5-1 Orioles, the final score.

The Yanks have been tough to watch lately. Something has to be done to shake them up. Team meeting?

One more thing. I understand Boone wanting to go lefty/righty, lefty/righty with the lineup. He should stop that.

Yesterday’s lineup had Brett Gardner (now at .180) batting third (and I won’t get into why Gardner, a leadoff guy most of his career, is batting third) and Mike Ford, hitting .141, batting fifth. As mentioned, I see the lefty / righty thing but if these guys are not even at the Mendoza line (same goes for the .130 hitting Sanchez batting fifth), why are they hitting in prime spots in the lineup?

But then you have Tyler Wade (.158) at the bottom.

It’s as if Boone is filling out the lineup with his fingers crossed, hoping some guys finally start to hit.

Like I wrote, it’s been tough to watch. …. and write about.Andujar 3 hits.

Tanaka (L, 1-2, 3.38) 5 1/3 IP, 4 R, 2 ER, 6 H, 1 W, 5 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Cessa 2/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 1 W, 1 K. 3.14
Nelson 2 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 0 W, 4 K. 5.27

Three of the five runs the Yanks gave up were unearned.

HOF OF Lou Brock passes away, age 81.

Tom Seaver earlier this week. Now Lou Brock.

HOF OF Lou Brock has passed away at the age of 81. Brock played for the Cubs (1961-1964) and Cardinals (1964-1979). As a Cub, he was one of only three players to hit a HR into the CF bleachers at the Polo Grounds.

In 1964 he was traded by the Cubs to the Cardinals. From June on, he hit .348 for the Cardinals and led them to the World Champtionship. For sparking the Cardinals as he did, he finished 10th in MVP voting.

He ended his career with over 3000 hits (3023) and over 900 (938) stolen bases. He stole 118 bases in 1974, a MLB record until Rickey Henderson broke it in 1982. It’s still the NL record.

Brock led the majors in runs scored 2x. Doubles once. Triples once (both in the same season). He led the NL in steals 8x, the majors six of those eight years.

A 6x All-Star, he was the MLB Player of the Year in 1974 when he stole those 118 bases (the same year Hank Aaron broke the HR record).

In 1964, he hit .315-14-58 with 43 SB (caught 18 times to lead the majors) but after the mid-June trade, hit .348 for the Cardinals.

He stole 7 bases in both the 1967 and 1968 World Series. Besides a 1964 WS ring, he got another in 1967. He led the Cards to the 1968 pennant but they blew a 3 games on 1 WS lead that year to the Tigers.

Besides his 10th place MVP finish in 1964, he finished in the top 10 in 1967, 1968, 1973 and 1974. He was runnerup to Steve Garvey in 1974. 5x top 10 MVP.

He got MVP consideration in 10 different years.

He wasn’t a great defensive outfielder, but was one of the greatest leadoff hitters and stolen base players ever.

His 162 game average was .293-9-56 with 58 SB. OPS+ 109.

His #20 is retired by the Cardinals.

He was elected to the HOF in his first year of eligibility.

In 21 WS games , he was outstanding , hitting .391 with 4 HR, 13 RBI and 14 SB.