Tag Archives: Ellsbury

Game 118. Gray seals it, but Chapman almost unseals it in a 5-4 Yanks’ win.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Pardons to Elton John for the headline.

The Yanks have a problem on their hands. That problem is Aroldis Chapman and a second problem may be Joe Girardi’s stubbornness right now.

Sonny Gray pitched well, six shutout innings before yielding a 2-run HR in the seventh. Still, the Yanks took a 5-2 lead into the ninth, when Chapman gave up a 2-run HR to make things shaky before the Yanks finished off the Mets 5-4.

Chapman is a problem right now. As I wrote a few days ago, the Yanks have three closers. They can go with the hot hand, something Girardi mentioned sarcastically a few days ago in saying “Chapman is my closer. What am I supposed to do, go with the hot hand?”

Yes, Joe, that is exactly what we want you to do. We also want you to leave relievers performing well in for more than one inning. For you almost blew another game tonight. 

The Yanks scored first, getting a run in the third on a Torreyes double, Gardner sac bunt and Hicks single. Good. Nice to see some littleball with the bunt there.

Jacoby Ellsbury hit a 2-run HR (6) in the fourth to make it 3-0.

Gary Sanchez homered in the sixth (21) to make it 4-0. Gray gave up a 2-run HR in the seventh,  but the Yanks made it 5-2 in the eighth on a SF by Sanchez.

Then in came Chapman who almost blew the game. Why not leave Betances throw a second inning. Why not use Warren (Robertson could use the day off). But no, the “he’s my closer” stubbornness mentality almost cost the Yanks a ballgame.

You just knew when Chapman came in tonight that this wasn’t going to go smoothly.

Aaron Judge struck out for the 32nd straight game, tying a MLB record, but he did have a key double and then scored that fifth run.

Gray (W, 7-7, 3.37) 6+ IP, 2 R, 5 H, 2 W, 5 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Kahnle (H, 11) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.30. Threw just 10 pitches. What, he can’t go two?
Betances (H, 17) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.20. Threw 19 pitches. He couldn’t go two?
Chapman (S, 16) 1 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.89. That save rule is a joke.

Happy the Yanks won. Unhappy Girardi is so inflexible with his thinking.

UPDATE: Chapman was pretty down after the game. Not as confident as previously. It could be getting to him. On the final play, he appeared to tweak his hammy a bit.

Cessa went on the DL. Smith back up.

Game 115. Boston blasts Severino, Tanaka to Dl. Montgomery escapes DL. Mets trade another Yanks’ target elsewhere.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

What a bad day for the Yanks.

Masahiro Tanaka joins CC on the 10-day DL. For CC, knee. For Tanaka, shoulder inflammation.

…. Seand the Yanks almost had to put Sunday night’s starter, Jordan Montgomery, on the DL himself. He was hit in the head with a BP line drive while signing autographs before today’s game.

The Yanks fell to 61-54, 4 1/2 back of Boston due to a 10-5 loss Saturday afternoon. Luis Severino got rocked, giving up two 3-run HRs to Boston’s Andrew Benintendi.

The Yanks started well, getting a 2-run HR in the first by Gary Sanchez (19).

But Boston got five in the third, keyed by Benintendi’s first HR.

The Yanks loaded the bases with no one out in the fourth but only got one run. As you readers of mine know, I criticize Girardi for never MAKING THINGS HAPPEN. He doesn’t steal much, doesn’t hit and run, almost never bunts, and never squeezes runs home. He doesn’t play littleball. He doesn’t CREATE RUNS, and this team is having trouble scoring runs lately. It drives me crazy. Bases loaded, no one out and only one run.

Boston got five more in the fifth, keyed by another 3-run HR by Benintendi to go up 10-3.

The Yanks got back-to-back HR by Headley (7) and Ellsbury (5) in the ninth. 10-5 final.

Aaron Judges’ post All-Star game troubles are a problem. He has dropped 40 points of the batting average. .329 to .289,  W.161-5-12 since winning that HR derby. A curse. Some 43 strikeouts or so in 93 at bats. Strikeouts in his last 29 straight games. We have to get him back on track. As I mentioned, so many strikeouts are LOOKING. Pitch recognition? Aaargh. Swing that bat!

He is so strong. Stay WITH the ball and work on going the other way. He is so strong it will go out to RF.

Before the trade deadline, the Yanks were talking to the Mets about Neil Walker. They didn’t like his medicals, so a trade didn’t happen. He was dealt to the Brewers. So a third Yankees trade target from the Mets goes elsewhere. It really looks like the Mets have a thing about trading anyone to the Yankees, even if the Yanks give them a better deal (inferiority complex?). Whatever, I hope the Yanks kick the Mets’ ass this coming week as a result.

Severino (L, 9-5, 3.32) 4 1/3 IP, 10 R, 8 ER, 8 H, 2 W, 4 K. Gave up 2 HR.
Gallegos 2 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 4 K. 5.79
Mitchell 2 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 0 W, 0 K. 3.33

I guess we can rule OUT Mitchell for Monday against the Mets (taking Tanaka’s turn).



Game 112. Yanks beat Toronto 11-5 behind Cooper, Todd Frazier.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Unfortunately, the Red Sox aren’t losing (they have won 8 in a row) so the Yanks could not make up ground, but the Yanks did win, so they continue to maintain or increase the advantage they have for the top wild card spot. There is a big series at home against Boston this weekend.

With tonight’s 11-5 win over Toronto, the Yanks record improves to 60-52. Fifty games left. Four back of Boston.

Before the game, Clint Frazier was a late scratch with an oblique problem. He has been slumping badly lately. Aaron Hicks was expected back Friday. That may be bumped up with this problem.

The Yanks struck first, scoring twice in the second on back to back HR by Gary Sanchez (18) and Todd Frazier (19).

Tanaka gave a run right back. 2-1 Yanks after two.

Didi Gregorius homered (18) in the third to make it 3-1 Yanks. Toronto scored in the bottom half of the frame off a stuggling Tanaka to make it 3-2.

In the fifth, with one out, Judge walked. Gregorius doubled Judge to third. After Sanchez struck out for the second out, Todd Frazier doubled in two runs. Ellsbury doubled in Frazier. 6-2 Yanks.

Jose Bautista homered off Tanaka in the bottom of the fifth, and chased him. 6-3.

Toronto got two in the fifth before the Yanks’ bullpen was able to slam the door. 6-5.

The Yanks put the game away in the last two innings. In the eighth, Garrett Cooper’s third hit of the night put runners on 2nd and 3rd with one out. Ronald Torreyes singled in two runs.

In the ninth, with the bases loaded and no one out, a ground out by Ellsbury drove in a run. Cooper singled (his fourth hit) in two more.  11-5.

Gregorius (.311) 3 hits, HR, RBI.
Sanchez 2 hits, HR, RBI.
Todd Frazier 3 hits, HR, 3 RBI.
Ellsbury 2 RBI.
Cooper 4 hits, 2 RBI.
Torreyes 2 hits, 2 RBI.

Tanaka 4 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 H, 5 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR. 4.92. Uncharacteristically wild.
Green (W, 2-0, 2.06) 1 1/3 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 0 W, 3 K.
Kahnle (H, 10) 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 2.38
Robertson (H, 2) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.44
Betances (H, 16) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.36
Warren 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 1.89

With Tanaka not going the requisite five innings, it falls to the official scorer. Personally, I would not have given the W to Green (2 runs in 1 1/3?) but probably to Robertson instead. Too many official scorers are lazy, however, and go “by the book.”


Game 110. Ellsbury & Judge support Severino’s gem. Yanks win 8-1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Boston’s Chris Sale is probably the front-runner for the AL CYA right now, but consideration must be given to Luis Severino.

Severino gave up a HR in the first inning, but only one more hit after that in dominating the Cleveland Indians today in the Yanks’ 8-1 win.

The win puts the Yanks at 59-51, and keeps them 3 back of Boston. They still hold the top wild card spot.

Down 1-0, the Yanks broke through in the sixth. Gardner singled and Clint Frazier doubled. After an out, Judge was intentionally walked. Chase Headley hit a SF to tie the game. Todd Frazier walked and Jacoby Ellsbury cleared the bases with a 3-run triple. Ronald Torreyes singled in Ellsbury to make it 5-1.

Aaron Judge hit a 3-run HR (35) in the seventh to make it 8-1.

Didi Gregorius 3 hits.
Judge struck out 3x, but did have that 3-run HR.
Ellsbury 2 hits, 3 RBI.
Torreyes 2 hits, rbi.

Matt Holliday was put on the DL. Garrett Cooper brought up. Jordan “the general” Montgomery was sent down to SWB. Not because he did anything wrong, but with six starters for five spots, and an innings limit approaching…

Severino (W, 9-4, 2.91) 6 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 W, 9 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Kahnle    1/3 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.42
Warren 1 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 0 W. 0 K. 1.93
Shreve 1 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.73

Game 106. Long miserable day of delays ends in a 2-0 Yankees’ loss.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The game started late because of a rain delay. It ended late because of a mid-game rain delay. At the end of a long day, the Yankees lost to Detroit 2-0 to fall 1 game behind Boston (whose game was rained out) in the AL East. The loss dropped the Yanks to 57-49.

Masahiro Tanaka pitched well, but got no run support as the Yanks blew a couple of scoring chances.

Tanaka gave up a run in the first and another in the fourth. The run in the fourth was unearned due to an error by Jacoby Ellsbury.

God forbid Joe Girardi ever call for a squeeze bunt. For example, in the sixth, down 2-0 and men on 2nd and 3rd, no out, Girardi can’t call on Didi to lay a squeeze down. Judge was on third and what catcher wants to see THAT big guy barrelling down the line on him? I know Didi has been hot with some HR lately. But Girardi never even SHOWS squeeze to even put the thought of it in other teams’ heads. It is one of the biggest criticisms I have of Girardi. He doesn’t play little ball when you need to play little ball.

Think outside the box (or binder) once in a while, Joe.

The Yankees’ hitters have been in a slump recently. Now you have to adjust and play little ball.

The Yanks were 0 for 9 with RISP today. They had their chances. They blew them.

Ellsbury had 2 hits, but made that big error.

In the eighth, Dellin Betances had the “immaculate inning.” 3 up, 3 down, all strikeouts on 9 pitches.

Tanaka (L, 8-10, 4.93) 6 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 6 H, 1 w, 7 K.
Kahnle 1 Ip, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.28
Betances 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 4 K. 2.48

Nice to see Tanaka get that ERA under 5.00 finally, but other than that ….

The Yanks head to Cleveland. Home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The bats have been slumping. Time to have those bats Rock and Roll.

Game 100. Gardner’s late heroics win game for Yankees, 6-5 in 11.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

So as soon as I get into work yesterday, I develop a migraine (I get one a year, one every two years, maybe) and there is nothing you can do about them. Went home and just tried to rest until it wore off. It completely disables you.

At the end of last night, it was the Tampa Bay Rays who had the migraine, losing a game they should have won, 6-5 to the New York Yankees. The win puts the Yanks at 54-46, just 1/2 game behind Boston in the AL East. They still hold the top wild card slot.

The Yanks struck first with two runs in the second. With one out, Chase Headley singled and scored on a double by Jacoby Ellsbury, who owns Chris Archer. Todd Frazier then singled Ellsbury home.

Gary Sanchez made it 3-0 in the third with his 15th HR of the season.

Evan Longoria, who owns CC Sabathia, cut the Yanks lead to 3-1 in the fourth with a HR.

They Rays then chased CC in the fifth, scoring three runs to take a 4-3 lead. Chad Green gave up a HR in the sixth to Corey Dickerson and the Rays were up 5-3.

The Yanks blew a couple of scoring opportunities throughout the game, including a bases loaded/one out chance in the sixth where they got no runs, and you really wonder if Tyler Wade, who has been doing well at AAA, is ready for the majors yet. He is now 4 for 37 in the bigs. Last night he was 0 for 5, struck out 3x and left 7 men on base.

In the eighth, Didi Gregorius and Headley singled, with Headley’s single moving Didi to third, from where he scored on an RBI forceout by PH Matt Holliday.  5-4 Rays.

In the ninth, Brett Gardner led off the inning with a triple, but Clint Frazier and Aaron Judge couldn’t get him in. Down to their last out, Gary Sanchez hit a ground ball that appeared to be the final out of the game. But with the Rays’ infield in a shift, and playing a bit out of their usual positions, they were confused as to who would field the grounder and no one got it. Sanchez’ single tied the game and as a result, eventually blew the game for the Rays.

In the bottom of the 11th, Brett Gardner led off the inning with his 18th home run of the season to end the game, giving the Yanks a 6-5 win. The HR set a career season high for him. In the celebration at home plate, Aaron Judge was hit by a helmet and a tooth was either chipped or lost.

Sabathia wasn’t too happy about being pulled, but…

Sabathia 4 1/3 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 1 W, 3 K. Gave up 1 HR, 3.66
Green 1 2/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR. 1.71
Kahnle 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.23
Betances 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.75
Warren 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. 1.93
Chapman (W, 3-1, 3.14) 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 4 K.

Gardner 2 hits, triple, game winning HR.
Sanchez 2 hits, 2 RBI, HR.
Gregorius 2 hits,
Headley 3 hits. Still not showing any power, but has raised average to .271.
Todd Frazier 2 hits, RBI.

Game 97. Didi goes deep twice in Yanks’ 6-4 win. Clint Frazier with the big hit.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Brett Gardner matched his career high in HR and Didi Gregorius homered twice in the Yanks’ 6-4 win over Seattle on Sunday. It was the first time the Yanks took a series in about six weeks.

Despite their heroics, the big blow came off the bat of Clint Frazier, whose 2-run double provided the winning runs.

There are two things I hate about modern baseball. One, you have read about recently on this blog. That is managers who pull pitchers for no good reason (and Girardi did it again today) because the next inning is “not their inning”, never mind that they threw few pitches the inning before and blew people away.

The second thing I hate pertains to Frazier. When Aaron Hicks comes off the DL, the Yanks will have too many outfielders. You would have Judge (who obviously isn’t going anywhere since he’s a legit MVP candidate), Gardner, Hicks, Ellsbury and Frazier. Only a few have options. And $$$$$$$$ speaks. So even though Ellsbury is the worst of the five, and has been benched for Frazier lately, he makes $21MM a year and has that $$$$$ through 2020 with a buyout of $5MM for 2021. Ellsbury also has a no-trade clause in his contract. So guess who would have to be sent down? Frazier. Even though he has been a spark plug for this team and has been great.

How great? Only one other Yankees rookie has had as many extra base hits in his first 15 games than Frazier. It’s some guy that was once married to Marilyn Monroe. Some guy that had his #5 retired. Some Hall of Famer.

So the money talks, at the expense of the team. 

With outfielders like Frazier, and Dustin Fowler (hopefully he recovers from that gruesome injury), Billy McKinney, Jake Cave, and even Estevan Florial at Low A, and even after trading Blake Rutherford, there are a lot of OF options between now and 2020. But between now and 2020, the Yanks owe Ellsbury over $65MM.

This is a big problem. How do make room for the improving Hicks & for Clint Frazier? The Red Sox just ate $90MM of Pablo Sandoval’s salary just to get rid of him (he signed a minor league deal to go back to the Giants). What do the Yanks do with a bad contract in Ellsbury’s, when they have better kids like Frazier about to take over? How much $$ can they eat? Can they even trade Ellsbury or do they have to release him and eat $$ as they are doing with A-Rod?

A big problem. Now to the game. The win puts the Yanks at 51-46, 2 1/2 back of Boston and all alone in 2nd place in the AL East with the #1 wild card spot.

Brett Gardner led off the game with a HR. #17 ties his career high for most HR in a season. They made it 2-0 in the second on HR #13 by Didi Gregorius.

It became 3-0 in the fourth when Didi hit his second HR of the game. #14.

Luis Cessa was scratched for Caleb Smith. Smith was pitching in his second MLB game and it was his first MLB start. He pitched three scoreless innings but the wheels came off in the fourth when he gave up four runs and was knocked out.

Sonny Gray? Yu Darvish? We’ll see if the Yanks can make a deal. It won’t come cheap but the Yanks do need to add another starting pitcher. We’ll see if they do so and at what cost.

The Yanks got 3 in the sixth to win the game 6-4. With one out, Headley and Todd Frazier walked. Ronald Torreyes singled to load the bases and Gardner singled to tie the game at four.

Clint Frazier then doubled in two runs to put the Yanks up 6-4, the final score.

Once again, Joe Girardi drove me nuts by doing his by the book game. He pulled Betances after one good inning and did the same for Robertson. Meanwhile, Aroldis Chapman ran into trouble in the ninth.

Here is a novel concept, Girardi, (and I hope you can read this). If someone is doing well,


Take that book/binder and stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.

Sanchez is struggling, down to .265. Same w/Holliday, down to .238.

Gardner 2 hits, HR, 2 RBI. Frazier 2 RBI.
Didi 2 HR, 2 RBI.

Smith 3 2/3 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 1 W, 2 K. 8.10
Green (W, 1-0, 1.56) 2 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 3 K.
Betances (H, 12) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.62
Robertson (H,1) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.72
Chapman (S, 11) 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.51.

As I mentioned, I didn’t like pulling Betances or Robertson for no good reason other than they pitched “their inning”. Leave them in if they are doing well. Meanwhile, Chapman struggled in the ninth.

BTW, isn’t it time to give a big shout out to Chad Green for a tremendous job he’s done this year? If the Yanks CANNOT get Sonny Gray or Yu Darvish, how about stretching Green out and starting him?