Tag Archives: Aldred

Game 152. Successful Seve return as Yanks shutout Angels, 8-0. Betances tears Achilles, done for season. Torres hits #38; Magic # 1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Good and bad news healthwise. Stanton to be activated today or Thursday. Encarnacion feels like he’ll be back. Now, no news yet on Sanchez, but

tonight, Luis Severino finally came back off of injury and in his season debut pitched four scoreless innings as the Yanks (99-53) beat the Angels, 8-0.

We’ll see how he feels tomorrow and how he comes through this. But very encouraging.

The magic # is 1 to make the playoffs, and also is 1 to win the AL East. Houston won so the Yanks remain tied with Houston for best record in the AL (Houston has the tiebreaker). The Dodgers are one game behind both the Yanks and Houston (Yanks hold tiebreaker over LA). The Yanks have a 10 game lead over Tampa Bay in the AL East with 10 games to go.

The bad news is that Dellin Betances is done for the year with a partially torn Achilles tendon.  He is a free agent after the season, and a bad year to miss the whole year. We’ll see what happens in the wintertime.

The Yanks got two runs in the second inning when Gleyber Torres singled and Luke Voit walked. One out later, Gio Urshela singled in one run and then Cameron Maybin doubled in another to put the Yanks up 2-0.

They broke the game open with six runs in the fourth. With one out, Urshela singled. Cameron Maybin singled, then after another out, all six runs scored with one out. D.J. LeMahieu singled in a run to make it 3-0. Aaron Judge walked to load the bases. Didi Gregorius doubled in two runs to make it 5-0. Torres then hit a 3-run HR (38) to cap things off at 8-0.

LeMahieu 2 hits, RBI  .329
Gregorius 2 RBI
Torres 2 hits, 3 RBI; 3-run HR (38)
Urshela 2 hits, RBI.  .328
Maybin 2 hits, RBI

Severino 4 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 2 W, 4 K.  0.00
Loaisiga (W, 2-1, 4.23) 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 3 K
Tarpley 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 0 W, 4 K.  7.71
Gearrin 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K.  4.18
Adams 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K.  7.20

In the race for the new team MLB record, the Twins have 289, the Yankees 287. The Twins have played one less game.

UPDATE: Breyvic Valera was DFA’d.

UPDATE 2: From the NY Post.

The Yankees have let go of five minor league staff members.

According to minor league head Kevin Reese, the team didn’t renew the contracts of hitting coordinator Edwar Gonzalez, field coordinator Jody Reed, pitching coordinator Scott Aldred, Trenton hitting coach Ty Hawkins and Charleston hitting coach Greg Colbrunn.

Aldred’s departure follows the departure of fellow pitching coordinator Danny Burrell, who left to take the pitching coach job at Georgia Tech.

Hate seeing Aldred go.

Game 108. Gleyber slams the Bosox, Yanks win 4-2.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I forget who wrote it, but it was suggested that when James Paxton pitch, that the Yanks use an opener that day because of Paxton’s first inning problems.

He had that again tonight, getting two outs but then giving up a walk and a 2-run HR to Boston’s J.D. Martinez. Paxton’s ERA in the first inning is a ghastly 11.37.

But Paxton settled down after that, and who knew that all the runs in the game would be had in the first inning?

In the bottom of the first, Gleyber Torres hit a grand slam. Torres’ 21st HR of the season made it 4-2 and that was all the scoring in the ballgame.

Both teams combined for just eight hits in the game, a far cry from recent games that the Yanks and Red Sox have played.

The Yanks are now 2/3 of the way through the season and with a record of 69-39, a 103.5 win pace. With the win the Yanks are 7 1/2 up on Tampa Bay and 11 1/2 up on Boston.

LeMahieu 2 hits.
Torres grand slam, HR #21

Paxton (W, 6-6, 4.61) 6 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 3 W, 6 K.
Kahnle (H, 21) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.  2.62
Britton (H, 21) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K.  2.40
Chapman (S, 28) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K.  2.74

Didi Gregorius did not play, and hopefully he isn’t bound for the IL with a problem with his hand.

Before the game Brett Gardner was activated, J.A. Happ put on paternity leave. Tyler Wade was sent down and Stephen Tarpley brought up.

Happ on paternity leave creates a problem. With a DH tomorrow, Domingo German will start one game and the other will probably be an opener game with heavy bullpen use. Happ was scheduled to start Sunday night. With him on paternity leave, now what? Remember CC is on the I.L.

MLB.com listed the favorites for AL MVP and Mike Trout was the unanimous pick so far. What upsets me is NO mention of D.J. LeMahieu.

One last mention. Minor League pitching coordinator Danny Borrell will be leaving the Yanks to go to Georgia Tech. Borrell handled the lower levels, and Scott Aldred the higher levels. The Yanks almost lost Aldred last year. I hope they don’t lose Aldred, who has done a great job and is highly regarded. Besides, current pitching coach Larry Rothschild is 65 and I would hope Aldred may be his replacement come due time.

Feller passes away; some history and some Yankees news.

Hall of Famer Bob Feller  passed away at the age of 92. I met Feller a few years back and got an autographed baseball. Unfortunately, Feller signed in felt-point, not ball-point and you can guess what happened. Faded away. Sigh. I did thank him for his military service.

Feller won 266 games, all with the Indians, 1936-1941 and 1945-1956. He missed 3 2/3 years due to WWII, when he was with the Navy fighting the Japanese in the South Pacific.

Look at his stats (click the link) from 1939-1947 and consider those years he missed.

Feller was only 17 when he reached the majors. An 8x All-Star, he finished 3rd, 2nd and 3rd in MVP voting in 1939, 1940 and 1941. He finished top-10 in 1946, 1947 and 1951. Six times he was a 20-game winner, including seasons of 24-27-25 (1939-1941) and 26 wins (1946). Six times he led the AL in wins (3x all of MLB). He led the AL in ERA once. Games pitched AL  3x (MLB 1x). Games started 5x (MLB 4x). CG 3x (MLB 2x). 44 career shutouts. He led the AL in shutouts 4x (MLB 1x). 5x he led the AL in IP, the majors 4x. Three times he pitched over 300 innings in a season, including 371 1/3 in 1946! 4x he led the majors in walks. “Rapid Robert” was said to hit 98 with his fastball, but it’s unknown how high he actually hit, given the rudimentary measuring devices of his day. Many thought he was the fastest since Walter Johnson. Seven times he led the majors in strikeouts, and he had the record of 348 from 1946 to 1965 when Sandy Koufax topped it (Nolan Ryan broke that in 1973). I could go on, but you get the picture.

Before he turned 18, he had a 15 and a 17 strikeout game. For many years, he had the record of 18 strikeouts in a game (it is now 20).

Most players who lost significant time during WWII lost 1943-1945, as did Rizzuto, Williams and DiMaggio. He lost all of 1942-1944 and most of 1945. Since he won 24 games in 1939, 27 games in 1940 and 25 in 1941, if we give him 75 wins for 1942-1944 and another 20 for 1945, those 95 wins would take him from 266 career wins to 361.

In 1945, the war ended in time for him to come home and start 9 games. After some 3 2/3 to 3 3/4 years away, he went 5-3, 2.50.

In his first game back in the majors in almost four years, 8/24/45 (shortly after the atomic bombings of Japan—Feller was in the Navy in the South Pacific, fighting on the U.S.S. Alabama), Feller pitched a complete game victory, 2 R, 4 H and 12 K. It was his first MLB game since 9/26/41. He had enlisted in the Navy the day after the Pearl Harbor attack.  

Feller threw three no-hitters, one on Opening Day (I earlier said 1946, it was 1940 (sorry), and the only Opening Day no-no in major league history to date), and twelve one-hitters.

In postseason play, he went 0-2, 5.02 in the 1948 WS. His non-pickoff of Phil Masi is still considered a controversial call. Most thought Masi was picked off by Feller in Game 1 of the 1948 Series. He wasn’t (he was on second) and he scored moments later. Feller lost that game to Johnny Sain 1-0. The Indians did win that series, which was Feller’s only WS win and the Indians last to date. Feller didn’t pitch in the 1954 Series that the Indians were swept in, despite going 13-3 that year.

For his career, 266-162, 3.25 ERA. ERA+ 122. 2581 K. WWII probably stole some 980 K from him. If so, then he could have wound up with say, 361 wins and 3500 K. As a hitter Feller hit .151 with 8 HR.

He won the triple crown of pitching in 1940 (K, W, ERA) when he was just 21. He was elected to the HOF in 1962.

If you read that he was the oldest living HOFer, don’t believe it. Bobby Doerr is still alive and he is the oldest HOFer. Doerr was born seven months before Feller.

Feller’s #19 is retired by the Indians.

One of the all-time greats.

A little history. In 1992 the Yanks were after Greg Maddux, but he spurned a 5-year $34MM offer from the Yanks to go to the Braves for $28MM. The Yanks got Jimmy Key to shore up the rotation instead. In game 6 of the 1996 WS, Maddux loses to the Yanks (he won Game 2) and the Yanks wrap up the Series. Who does he lose to? Jimmy Key. (Maddux also lost to the Yanks in the 1999 WS. He did pitch well in all three games he faced them. The 3-2 loss in game 6, 1996. In the 1999 game, 2 of the 4 runs he gave up were unearned).

Yankees news on LoHud:

SWB coaching staff remains Miley, Wynegar, Aldred. Frank Menechino joins as infield coach. Tony Franklin (underrated mgr.) back at AA Trenton.    

They also report that Don Zimmer, 79, had a pacemaker installed. Get well, Zim.   

  

NL CYA to Halladay; some Yankees news.

The Phillies’ Roy Halladay joins Gaylord Perry, Randy Johnson, Roger Clemens and Pedro Martinez as those who have won the CYA in both leagues.

The vote was unanimous.

Halladay went 21-10, 2.44. He shared or had the outright MLB lead in wins, CG, shutouts, and IP, and led the NL in hits given up (due to IP of course), batters faced, least walks/9 IP and K to BB ratio. He threw a perfect game as well.

The postseason doesn’t count in the voting, but Halladay threw a no-hitter in the NLDS there as well, and just missed another perfecto by just one walk.  A superb year, capped by his second CYA. Halladay won while with Toronto in 2003.

Recently I listed a list of lefty relievers that the Yanks could target. My #1 choice was Scott Downs, but he is a Type A free agent and the Yanks would have to give up a draft pick should they sign him. With the Yankees targeting Lee, giving up too many picks would hurt. Therefore the Yankees could be looking at my #2 choice, Pedro Feliciano from the Mets, who has led the majors in games pitched in each of the past three seasons. Feliciano will be 35 next August and went 3-6, 3.30 in 92 games for the Mets this year. For his career, Feliciano is 22-19, 3.31. Feliciano is not a type-A free agent.

MLB Trade Rumors states that Marcus Thames might be Japan bound:

  • Meanwhile the Softbank Hawks are working on signing Marcus Thames, according to a Sponichi report passed along by NPB Tracker’s Patrick Newman on Twitter.  Thames, 34 in March, was productive in a part-time role for the Yankees this year.
  • I could see Thames leaving, especially since DH is going to Posada. I wonder about backup OF. I’m not a big Melky fan, but he switch-hits, can PR (lose some weight, Melky) and plays all three OF positions. Decent insurance, and knows NY since he was there before. Popular, too. Just needs someone to stay on and kick his ass, and you wonder about his influence on buddy Robbie Cano. I wonder if the Yanks would take him back or if there were other reasons Melky was traded away, ones which were OFF the field issues?

    MLBTR also states these issues:

  • Yankees GM Brian Cashman ruled out Leo Mazzone but not Rick Peterson for the team’s new pitching coach, reports Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger.
  •  

    • Bartolo Colon announced he was attempting a comeback to Yoel Adames of ESPN Deportes in late October while pitching for the champion Dominican team in the Pan-American Games qualifier. He said at the time that he “maintains conversations” with the Yankees, Rockies, Cardinals, and Tigers, though other teams approached him following his complete game victory over Nicaragua on October 10. The 37-year-old right-hander was solid in three of his four appearances in Puerto Rico, the only exception being a 2.3-inning, six-run drubbing by Team USA that Colon chalked up to inadequate rest.

     

    No surprise in the pitching coach department. My choice, Scott Aldred, is due for an interview soon.

    As for Colon, I have no interest in him. He’ll be 38 next May, and was out of the majors in 2010. Since winning the CYA in 2005 (and I still think Mo, the runnerup that year, should have gotten it), Colon has gone 14-21, 5.18 (2006-2009). ERA+ 89. WHIP over 1.5. Ugh.  

     

    Long back, and some prospects to watch in 2011

    Kevin Long is back as the hitting coach, signed to a 3-year deal (will all the coaches be getting that to match Girardi’s deal?). It presumably is more than his previous $1.2 M, 3-year deal.

    Interesting. Maybe the Yanks still target Crawford, but LoHud reports that:

    Brett Gardner won the Bill James Fielding Bible Award for left field. Gardner was picked as the best defensive left fielder in the game, not just the American League, giving him one more triumph of his breakout season as an everyday player.

    With that 399 to LCF, I’ve always advocated a LF who also can be a CF, or who has the speed to cover that gap.

    Some prospects to watch for in 2011, age in 2011 on opening day (and where they may start out at):

    Jesus Montero (21.) C. Traded for a major talent, AAA or Majors? 2010 Numbers:   AAA .289-21-75. Bat good but can he catch?

    Austin Romine (22). C. AAA. Longshot majors?  AA .268-10-69. 41 AB in AFL (Arizona Fall League) so far. .244-0-7. If Montero goes back to AAA, then what to do with Romine? Would the Yanks platoon the two at AAA? I can’t see that, and Romine is AAA ready (some scouts think MLB ready). You can’t have one prospect slowing up the other, which is what you probably would get if both Montero and Romine are at AAA.

    Brandon Laird (23) 1B/3B/OF?  AAA.  combined AA/AAA .281-25-102. In AFL to learn corner OF. Played 1B/3B. Corner OF would help. Righty bat can fill OF role if he can adjust. Can play vs. lefties while Gardner or Granderson sits. Probably start at AAA to get more OF corner reps, but a 2011 callup? 52 AB in the AFL so far. .288-3-10.

    Manny Banuelos LHP. (20) AA. Combined 0-4, 2.51 last year, came off injury. 3 levels. 85 K in 64 2/3 IP. 0-2, 4.85 in AFL right now.

    Adam Warren. (23). RHP. AAA or AA. 11-7, 2.59 between High A and AA in 2009. 126 K in 135 1/3.

    Dellin Betances RHP (23). AA. 8-1, 2.11 between High A and AA (only 3 games). 108 K in 85 1/3.

    Eduardo Nunez. SS/3B. (23) Majors. He’ll battle Pena for the backup infielder spot. If not majors, then AAA. If he hits in spring training… Would love to see him make it, and play 30 games each at SS and 3B giving Jeter and A-Rod days off. Pena has the glove and some speed, but if Nunez hits, his bat and his speed are better than Pena’s and hopefully Nunez’  glove isn’t that far behind. MLB .280-1-7 with 5 steals. Just 50 AB. AAA: .289-4-50 with 23 SB in 118 G.

    Greg Golson. (25) OF. AAA. .263-10-40, 17 SB.  I don’t see room for him on the MLB roster unless he really hits in S.T. I see him going back to AAA. The Yanks will probably bring in a veteran (would they bring Melky back as a backup OF? He switch-hits, plays all 3 OF Positions, has NY experience, was DFA’d by Atlanta, and was popular in NY. Melky will still be just 26 on opening day 2011. .255-4-42, 7 SB for ATL in 2010. He (in my mind) isn’t a starter, but wouldn’t make a bad backup, def. replacement, 4th OF type. The Yanks may want someone with more pop, however, and could you have Melky and Thames both on the team? If not, no Melky).

    I may have missed someone. If so, I’ll comment on him in a future post. Yes, I know that I did NOT mention Juan Miranda. Frankly, the Yanks have to decide what to do with him. He’ll be 28 in April 2011, too old to be a prospect, and that is why I didn’t list him. .219-3-10 in 64 AB with the Yanks this past season. .285-15-43 in AAA. The SWB/NY yo-yo, wearing out I-80. The Yanks should probably do him a favor and deal him. Fill a need. I don’t see him getting playing time in NY.

    Colin Curtis will be 26 on opening day 2011. Same with Kevin Russo. I don’t see either playing a major part. Good to watch out for, maybe a callup. Both probably back at AAA.       

    Oh. I should mention that it’s 39 degrees where I am right now (7 pm) in Eastern PA. 39. Imagine game 5 at if it were at the Stadium tonight. The low tonight is expected to be about 28 or 29. Yup. 28 or 29. Baseball in November. Yuk. … and Buddy Boy Selig wants to add 2 more wild-card teams in 2012. I don’t know how he is going to work that one out. I am opposed to it. Hey Bud? It’s cold here. The Fall Classic should be OVER by November 1st.      

    Update: Re: Melky. Maybe getting rid of him was good for Cano (his buddy gone, not hitting those nightspots with him… better concentration). So no Melky = better Cano?

    Update II: I knew I’d forget someone.

    Hector Noesi. 24. AAA. 14-7, 3.20 at 3 levels (Mostly AA) in 2010. RHP. 153 K in 160 1/3.

    Melky Mesa. 24. AA. OF. .260-19-74 with 31 SB at High A. 129 strikeouts. Power, speed, but 24 and AA bound, still only a .236 minor league hitter. Late bloomer?  

    Update III: 11/5/10.

    It’s coming out that Montero may be given every shot at the 2011 starting job, with Cervelli as backup and Posada being mostly a DH. If Romine is ready mid-season, he might even come up, replacing Cervelli. Things are getting interesting.

    Also, I didn’t mention

    David Phelps, above.  (24), I project AAA to start 2011. 10-2, 2.50 combined AA/AAA in 2010. RHP. 141 K in 158 2/3.    

    Hmm.

    AAA Phelps, Warren, Noesi 

    AA    Banuelos, Betances, Brackman 

    That’s a nice five pitchers at the AA/AAA level. I will list Brackman here, and didn’t above, because Brackman’s numbers weren’t as good. He is still a prospect, but at 25 and AA is not only a prospect but a project. 10-11, 3.90 in 2010 (High A/AA). 126 K in 140 2/3. 5-4, 5.10 at High A, but things started to kick in at AA. 5-7, 3.01. He had an awful 2009 (coming off surgery) when he went 2-12, 5.91. Very, very much a project.  

    But some very interesting pitching at AA/AAA and you wonder if Aldred, who I’ve touted for the Yanks’ pitching coach, may be more valuable where he is—at SWB.     

    I see J. R. Murphy, who was only 19 this year. I didn’t list him, only because he is yet another catching prospect. If Sanchez starts 2011 at low A Charleston, Murphy could move up to High A. At low A last year, Murphy hit .255-7-54 in 83 games. Not bad, but Murphy, 20 next May, seems to be overshadowed by Montero, Romine and Sanchez.  

    Home Opener today. Andy gets #230 in 7-5 Yankees win, fueled by El Capitan.

    Whitey and Yogi hand out the rings, Bernie throws out the first ball and Pettitte on the mound vs. Ervin Santana. I’ll be at work until 2, so will miss the start, then have some errands to do.

    BTW, a nice piece from the SWB scorecard I received from a friend. Last year, Scott Aldred, SWB’s pitching coach, coached AAA SWB to the best ERA in the International League. The previous two years, while coaching the AA Trenton Thunder, they had the best ERA in the Eastern League.  

     

    In the 6th as I get home from work and a few errands. Yanks up 3-0. Nick Johnson HR’d in the first and Jeter in the 3rd. Jeter had another RBI in the 4th with an infield single. Andy looks great.

    Jeter HR #225, twenty less than Jorge.

    2 run bases loaded single for A-Rod in the 6th. 5-0.  

    Andy out after 6 superb innings, 0 R, 5 H, 3 walks and 6 K. Looking for career win #230.   

    Park in.   

    Posada doubles in the 7th. The double passes Mickey Mantle on the all-time list and Sterling shows some ignorance.

    Yes, John, it is something that Posada passed the Mick in doubles. Let’s remember something though. The 536 to 245 HR difference. When the Mick got a hold of one, lots of times it wasn’t off the wall…it was OVER it. Even in the Old Stadium with its cavernous dimensions.

    A couple of walks and El Capitan comes up with the bases loaded. He GIDP to finish the inning. A funny story about today is making the rounds. An hour before the ceremony, Girardi and Jeter presented the Boss with his ring. The Boss took off his 2000 ring and slipped on 2009. Jeter, raised in Michigan, then asked the Boss to remove his Ohio St. ring.

    Kendry Morales’ HR in the 8th off Park breaks up the shutout.

    The Yanks rebound with two in the bottom of the 8th. Johnson leadoff double, walk, double by Posada (again) for one, single by Granderson for another.

    Robertson in to finish it off. 7-1 Yanks.   

    Robbie having trouble. Best to have it when up six. Bases loaded and no out. He gets a K, but gives up a grand slam to Abreu.

    7-5. Now it’s a save situation. Mo?  

    Winn in for defense in RF, btw. Nothing he could do on Abreu’s but watch, however.

    It is Mo. 2 up, 2 down. A K and a popup of Godzilla.

    Save #529 for Mo, win #230 for Andy. HR #225 for Derek, who tied Vada Pinson on the all-time hit list with 2757. Next up? Ken Griffey, Jr. with 2767 (and above that, Andre Dawson’s 2774). Once Jeter passes Junior, Jeter will be the ACTIVE hit leader.

     

    Aldred promoted to AAA pitching coach, Wang & Yanks avoid arbitration

    Pete Abraham reports that Andy Phillips has signed with Pittsburgh. He also provides a link to an interesting Sweeney Murti idea. I kind of like Sweeney’s idea, not only Plan A but Plan B also.

    But Abraham also reports on another thing. The staffs of AAA SWB and AA Trenton for 2009. As long-time readers of this blog may know, I’ve advocated Scott Aldred for a while as the real coaching star of the organization. It is he who has helped develop the young pitching in the organization and who has gotten the best out of Joba, Hughes, Kennedy, Horne, Edwar, Jason Jones, Marquez and others. He has done it at Charleston and Trenton. Now, in what may be an indication of the Yanks’ plans regarding Hughes, Kennedy and Aceves, and maybe even Horne and a few others, Aldred will be at AAA SWB (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre) for 2009. I love this move. Give the kids time and with the best pitching coach in the organization (which isn’t a knock on Dave Eiland). He has had results. He’ll be right there at AAA with the kids who are thisclose to helping and the ones “on call” in case of injuries. Now if he does anything with Igawa, then we will know for sure that Aldred is a miracle worker.

    From the link above: In 2008, Aldred’s Trenton Thunder pitching staff led the Eastern League in ERA (3.13) for the second consecutive year on route to the league title. In his debut season as a coach in 2006, he guided the Single-A Charleston pitching staff to the second-best ERA in the South Atlantic League (3.20).

    You can see why I am excited about this move. Congratulations to Aldred on a much deserved promotion. You can see by the figures above the fruits of his work. Now it’s time for guys like Hughes to ripen.

    Update: Tim the Wizard (see comments) beat me to the punch by a minute or so, but the Yanks and Chien Ming Wang avoid arbitration. The two sides agreed to a one-year deal for 2009 for $5M.

    AFL/Hawaii.

    With the postseason underway, I’ll be more interested in major league action. I will keep some tabs on the Arizona Fall League and the Hawaiian League though. The interest will probably be greater at the end of the month once a good number of games are played and you get a better feel of who is doing what. Also instead of three postseason MLB games a day, there is just one, so you have more time to monitor the AFL and HWL.

    Opening day for the Arizona Fall League is October 7th.

    The Peoria Javelinas (the PJ’s?) have Phil Hughes, Jeff Marquez, Humberto Sanchez, Kevin Whelan, Juan Miranda, Kevin Russo and Austin Jackson playing for them. One thing I love, especially regarding the pitchers, is that the pitching coach is Trenton’s Scott Aldred. Regular blog readers know what I think of the job Aldred has done the past couple years at Trenton.

    How much do you remember about the Yankees? Do you remember an OF named Henry Cotto (Yanks 1985-1987)? Cotto is batting coach for the team. Cotto also had to go on the DL with a punctured eardrum once. He was cleaning out his ear canal with a cotton swab (Q-Tip? Copyright?) and went too deep. Guess no one told him that you can’t go through the brain and get to the other side. Some DL explanations are out of this world. Henry was a good defensive outfielder, but had only an average stick (.261, OPS+ 84). His best year was the .305-6-23-16 he had as a backup OF for Seattle in 1991. A good baserunner, he had three years of 20 or more steals. I was just a little surprised when I saw his name as batting coach. Once I did, the ear story came back to me.

    Opening day for the Hawaiian Winter League was 9/27. Hawaiian Winter Baseball is where I first saw statistics and got high on Joba two years ago. The numbers he put up and the K/walk ratio really made me take notice. It was then that I told YFCR to watch this guy, and Joba soon skyrocketed. The Waikiki Beach Boys lost their first four games, but won yesterday. Jeremy Bleich, Andrew Brackman (coming off TJ surgery), Austin Romine, and Damon Sublett are on that team.

    It’s just five games so far, but:

    Bleich, one start, 2 2/3, 2 R, took the loss.
    Brackman, one start, 2 1/3, 7 R, 6 ER, took the loss.
    Romine 2 for 7, 1 RBI
    Sublett 3 for 6, 2 doubles, 4 RBI.

    We’ll check back in a couple of weeks.

    Just one thing. The Waikiki Beach Boys. I can just hear a pitcher sing about his ERA, “She’s real fine my 4.09…my FOUR–OH—NINE”….

    The pitching staff of the Waikiki Beach Boys?

    Pinstripe Prospects: The Minor League Report.

    AAA: It has been a very cool day in Eastern PA. VERY COOL. Sweater-like afternoon, and definitely a jacket-type night. SWB is home tonight, and the field is at Montage Mountain (Moosic, PA). With the cool evening and weather issues, Jeff Karstens has been scratched for this evening. He will go tomorrow night. There is no use having a guy who is making his first rehab start do it in less than ideal conditions.

    On another blog, I see some state how Brett Gardner is not ready and will only be a pinch-runner. They say he doesn’t walk enough (huh???) and strikes out too much for a leadoff hitter. Let me throw some facts at you.

    As I write this, Brett Gardner is 2 for 2 with a walk. .292. Do you know how many Yankees are hitting over .292 right now? Jeter and Matsui. Posada if you want to include him, but he’s been out for a while. That is it. The people write that Gardner doesn’t draw enough walks for a leadoff hitter….are you kidding me? This was his 25th walk—more than any Yankee. He got his 14th SB. That equals the total of the whole Yankees team. He is now hitting 3rd (!) for SWB. He got his 6th triple of the year. 6th! That equals the whole Yankees team. Believe it or not, but he has 21 RBI as I write this. Giambi and Jeter have 21 RBI. Only Abreu has more. He isn’t ready? What do you want? Give me a break.

    He has struck out 30 times. But look at Lou Brock. The HOFer Brock had nine seasons where he struck out over 100 times. Nine. Check his 1967 season for walk to strikeout ratio. Regarding Gardner, once again, I’ll say…give me a break. If the Yanks could find a taker for Damon, I’d move Gardner to left, bat him leadoff, and continue a youth movement by going from a 34 year old to a 24 year old. Damon is at .250, granted with an OPS+ of 113. Last year he hit .270, but with an OPS+ of 97 and was at .242 at the end of July. Hmm. … and don’t start me up on Damon’s arm.

    Gardner did strike out in his last two times up as SWB lost 5-3. Still, he is at .288 and see his stats above and how they relate. Aging, overpriced stars with multi-year deals are 1) tough to trade and 2) retard the development of players like Gardner. Karstens was scratched and Heath Phillips (2-2, 6.75) started, giving up 4 in 3 IP. Karstens will go tomorrow. Scott Strickland went 3 scoreless. Besides Gardner, Justin Christian and Eric Duncan had 2 hits each.

    AA: Trenton is off. Click the link for their stats. When you check the pitching stats, maybe you will agree with me that the real coaching star in the organization could very well be Trenton’s pitching coach, Scott Aldred. Trenton’s staff last year was superb, and Aldred is getting results again.

    A (Advanced): Tampa lost 6-5. Ryan Pope 5 R, 3 ER in 6 IP (4-3, 2.42). Kevin Whelan gave up a run in 2 IP. Cooper 3 hits, HR, 2 RBI. Calzado 2 hits, HR. Sublett 3 hits.

    A: Charleston lost 9-3. Jason Stephens (1-1, 1.72) 3 R in 6 1/3. Wilkins De La Rosa 5 R, 1 ER in 2 1/3. Brandon Laird 2 hits.