Nestor Cortes’ last regular season start could not have gone much better. The best Yankees’ starter this season (sorry, Gerrit Cole) pitched 7 1/3 one-hit, shutout baseball as the Yankees defeated Baltimore 8-0 Saturday afternoon. Cortes was dominating, striking out 12. Cortes ends his season 12-4, with a superb 2.44 ERA. Aaron Judge went 0 for 2, with 2 walks and a HBP as we still wait and see if he can get #62 to set a new AL and Yankees record. He has a couple of things working against him. For one, the weather forecast is not good for Sunday. Should the Yankees be rained out on Sunday, the game, meaningless in the standings, would not be made up. So, Judge has one less game in order to hit #62. The Yankees next four games are on the road in Texas. One game Monday, a doubleheader Tuesday and the regular season finale on Wednesday. There may be a window to play today, but the game may be delayed for a very long time until that window arrives. There appears to be only a one-hour rainless window around 2 pm today, and a window from about 7 to 10 pm. That’s it, and with the Yankees needing to travel to Texas, it does not look good for a game today. Do they really sit in a clubhouse (and make the fans wait) six hours to start the game at 7 PM when they have to travel to Texas for a game tomorrow? For a game that means nothing in the standings, but only for one player. I don’t think so. Also, you can’t hit a HR if every pitch is 2 inches off the ground and 4 inches outside. Since hitting #60, Judge is 7 for 27, with that 61st HR, but SEVENTEEN walks and the HBP. Yesterday, as mentioned above, Judge was 0 for 2, both strikeouts, with a HBP and 2 walks. His batting average is at .313, two points below Luis Arraez of the Twins .315 as Judge also attempts to win the Triple Crown. It appears to be a two-man race for the batting title. Xander Bogaerts of Boston has dropped to .305. The Yanks got on the board quickly yesterday scoring 3 runs in the first inning. Judge was HBP but forced out at second by Anthony Rizzo. Gleyber Torres doubled in Rizzo and went to third on the throw home. Josh Donaldson hit a SF to make it 2-0, then Giancarlo Stanton smashed a 447-ft. HR (29) to make it 3-0. For the badly slumping Stanton, who was hitting .156 since June 1, he needed that badly. Kyle Higashioka homered for the Yanks in the bottom of the second (9) to make it 4-0. In the seventh, Judge walked to lead off the inning, with the pitcher, who appeared to be avoiding Judge, drawing a great deal of derision. The Yanks made him pay for that. Rizzo singled Judge to second. Torres singled in a run to make it 5-0, both runners moving up on the throw. Donaldson singled in both runners to make it 7-0, and he moved up on the throw. Two outs later, Harrison Bader doubled to close out the scoring at 8-0. Rizzo 2 hits Torres 2 hits, 2 RBI Donaldson 2 for 2, walk, 2 RBI. Stanton 2 hits, RBI. Solo HR (29) Bader 2 hits, RBI Higashioka 3 hits, RBI. Solo HR (9) Cortes (W, 12-4) 7 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 W, 12 K. 2.44 Barnes 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 5.64 (Det/NYY) Before the game Jacob Barnes up from SWB. Zack Britton to IL. If there is a game today, Chi Chi Gonzalez is supposed to start. No word as far as a corresponding move to get Gonzalez on the roster. Luis Severino is to go on Monday. Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon will go in Tuesday’s doubleheader, and Domingo German closes out the regular season on Wednesday. The Yanks would then be off for six days, with Game 1 of the ALDS being at Yankee Stadium on October 11. Opponent to be determined. Game 2 would be after another off day on October 13. Then another off day. Game 3, October 15. Games 4 and 5 October 16 and 17 if necessary. The Yankees would only need 3 starters for this series. Most likely Cole, Cortes and Severino. With the off days, the Game 1 starter could come back for Game 4, and the Game 2 starter for Game 5, but the Game 2 starter would be doing so on 3 days’ rest. Severino would probably go Game 3. But who goes in Game 1 and who in Game 2 between Cole and Cortes? I think Cole would be better on his regular rest, so he lines up for 1 and 4. I think Cortes can adapt better to go on three days’ rest, so I’d have him Game 2. Taillon and German for middle relief if needed.
Posted in In-Season Moves, Players, Regular Season
Tagged Bader, Barnes, Britton, Cole, Cortes, Donaldson, German, Gonzalez, Higashioka, Judge, Rizzo, Severino, Stanton, Taillon, Torres
Aaron Judge will have to wait for HR #62, going 1 for 2 with a pair of walks in the Yankees’ (96-60) 2-1 loss to Baltimore Friday night. Judge is at .314, about 7/10th of a point behind Minnesota’s Luis Arraez (.315) as Judge also goes for a Triple Crown. A couple of mistakes, lack of control, no run support and a lot of rust hurt the Yanks in the loss. In the first inning, Baltimore scored on a walk, a SB, a throwing error on Jose Trevino on the SB that allowed Cedric Mullins of Baltimore to go to third, and an RBI single. I thought Gleyber Torres should have caught or at least knocked down Trevino’s throw, but it is what it is. The Yanks only got four hits in the game, struck out 13x, and their only run came on a HR by Oswaldo Cabrera (5) in the bottom of the fifth. No way does Cabrera not make the postseason roster. Even if D.J. LeMahieu, Andrew Benintendi or Matt Carpenter do get over their injuries and make it. As for someone else, I’ll get to that in a bit. Domingo German was the tough luck loser in this game, having pitched well, but getting no run support save for Cabrera’s HR. In the top of the sixth, German walked the first two hitters before getting a groundout that moved the runners up. He was then relieved by Zack Britton. Britton is just coming off of TJ surgery and it is said that control is the last thing to return. Britton walked a batter before throwing a WP that enabled the deciding run in the game to score. He was then removed with a tired arm. Nice try in coming back and hoping to make the postseason roster. It is obvious that Britton isn’t ready yet. It will be interesting to see if Matt Carpenter, now taking batting practice, can get a couple of games in before the postseason, and if he can make the postseason roster, because if Giancarlo Stanton wasn’t Giancarlo Stanton, and making over $30MM a year, then based on performance alone, Stanton should NOT be on the postseason roster. Stanton is hitting .140 since coming off the IL, and .156 since June 1. If the Yanks had guts (and it would be a highly controversial move), if Carpenter is ok, they put Carpenter on the postseason roster and DH him and leave Stanton off of it. It won’t happen, though. But the Yanks are racing against the clock to get Stanton straightened out. I fear Stanton will kill the Yanks in the playoffs. He’s been THAT awful. Gallo-like awful. If Stanton is on the postseason roster, as expected, then PLEASE Aaron Boone, drop him in the lineup. To Seventh. Maybe even Eighth like Joe Torre did with A-Rod in 2006. You can’t just keep putting him 4 or 5. But then, Boone had Gallo hitting cleanup in last year’s wildcard game loss at Boston. Sigh. Don’t make the same mistake, Boonie. LeMahieu came off the IL for the game. Locastro taken off the roster. LeMahieu went 0 for 3 and we will see if D.J. is good enough to be on the postseason roster or not. Soon, we see about Benintendi, too. Feelings be damned. If someone isn’t ready or deserves to be on the postseason roster, then leave him off. You can’t mess around come playoff time. Today’s game may be delayed or postponed. The weather forecast calls for rain in NYC. Cabrera 2 hits, solo HR (5) German (L, 2-4) 5 1/3 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 3 W, 6 K. 3.31 Tough loss. Britton 0 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K. 1 WP. 13.50 Rusty. Not ready. Go home and heal up more. Marinaccio 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 W, 3 K. 2.09 Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 4.11 Effross 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.59 (Cubs/NYY) Boone also revealed postgame that right-handed reliever Clay Holmes received a cortisone injection for inflammation in his right rotator cuff and likely won’t pitch again until the American League Division Series starts Oct. 11. We will have to see how he is. Meanwhile, Wandy Peralta should be off the IL by then, and Miguel Castro and Albert Abreu have finished rehab. The Yanks will have a LOT of interesting decisions to make regarding the postseason roster.
Posted in In-Season Moves, Managers and Coaches, Mike's Musings, Players, Postseason, Regular Season
Tagged Abreu, Benintendi, Boone, Britton, Cabrera, Carpenter, Castro, Chapman, Effross, German, Holmes, Judge, LeMahieu, Locastro, Marinaccio, Peralta, Stanton
The Yankees (83-58) reduced their magic # for winning the AL East to 3 with a 7-5 win over Boston on Saturday. While they hit 3 HR, none were by Aaron Judge, who is stuck on 60 as he tries to tie and surpass Roger Maris’ AL and Yankee record of 61. Judge went 0 for 3 with a walk and fell one point behind Boston’s Xander Bogaerts in the batting race, .315 to .314. Luis Arraez of the Twins is at .313. Since Judge is way ahead in HR and RBI, he also could be a Triple Crown winner as well. The Yanks got on the board first when Gleyber Torres homered (24) in the bottom of the first inning. 1-0, Yankees. Domingo German had a shaky second inning though, giving up 2 HR and 3 runs as Boston took a 3-1 lead. The Yanks got a run back in the bottom of the second. With one out, Oswaldo Cabrera and Harrison Bader both walked. Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) singled in Cabrera, Bader out at third. The Yanks went up 4-3 in the bottom of the fourth on a two-run HR by Cabrera (4). Now this will be interesting in the offseason. Andrew Benintendi is a free agent, and currently on the IL with a broken hand. Do the Yankees try to sign Benintendi or do they feel confident in having the 23-year-old rookie Cabrera as their starting LF in 2023? In the fifth inning, the Yanks upped their lead to 5-3. Kyle Higashioka led off with a single and Judge walked. A flyout moved Higashioka to third. One out later, Josh Donaldson’s infield single brought home Higashioka. 5-3, Yankees. After a year away because of Tommy John surgery, Zack Britton returned to the mound but was ineffective, as Boston cut the Yanks lead to 5-4 in the sixth when Britton walked in a run. Lou Trivino came in with the bases loaded and one out and made sure that was all the Red Sox got. But Boston tied it up in the seventh off of Trivino and Lucas Luetge, who with two out, couldn’t slam the door before Boston tied the game. Anthony Rizzo hit a 2-run HR (32) in the bottom of the seventh that wound up deciding the game. 7-5 Yankees. Rizzo 2-run HR (32) Torres 2 hits, solo HR (24) Cabrera 2-run HR (4) German 5 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 1 W, 5 K. Gave up 2 HR. 3.30 One rough inning. Britton (H, 1) 1/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 3 W, 1 K. 27.00 First appearance of season. Trivino (H, 4) 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 4.86 (A’s/NYY ERA) Luetge (W, 4-4; BS, 1) 2/3 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.78 Schmidt (H, 3) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 3.40 Effross (S, 3) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 2.70 (Cubs/NYY ERA)
Posted in Players, Regular Season
Tagged Benintendi, Britton, Cabrera, Donaldson, Effross, German, Judge, Kiner-Falefa, Luetge, Rizzo, Schmidt, Torres, Trivino
It was a disappointing game in many ways as the Yankees (87-67) blew a 5-0 lead and lost to the Milwaukee Brewers 7-6 on Friday night. Before the game, Aroldis Chapman came off the IL, and Ryan Weber was DFA’d. The Yanks will have many more moves next week as several others come off the IL. With the loss the Yanks’ magic # to clinch the AL East remains at 13. Since Baltimore lost, the Yankees’ magic # to secure a playoff berth is 7 (since the Yankees own the tiebreaker against the Orioles). It looked great early on for the Yankees. They scored three runs in the top of the first. Aaron Judge led off the game with a single, and one out later, Gleyber Torres doubled, Judge going to third. A SF by Josh Donaldson plated Judge. Oswaldo Cabrera walked, then Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) singled in one run and Marwin Gonzalez singled in another. 3-0. They had runners on second and third after a WP but couldn’t add on further. Later in the game, Gonzalez had to leave due to illness, and Cabrera had to move to first, which he never played before. Also, catcher Jose Trevino had to leave after taking a foul ball off his knee. He was replaced by Kyle Higashioka. The Yanks added two runs in the top of the second, when Aaron Hicks led off with a single, then Judge singled. A walk to Giancarlo Stanton loaded the bases. Torres flied out, no advance, but a run scored when Donaldson hit into a force at second. An error on the play allowed Judge to score as well. 5-0. But Yankees’ starter Frankie Montas, who struggled in the first inning, gave up a 3-run HR in the bottom of the second. 5-3. The trade for Montas has been a disappointment. He is 1-3, 6.35 as a Yankee in 8 starts (5-12, 4.05 overall). With Sonny Gray before, and now Montas, the joke going around is that the Yankees should stop trading for Oakland pitchers. Anyway, I cringe every time I hear talk about whether Montas is the Game 2 or 3 playoff starter for the Yankees. From what I’ve seen, HE SHOULD NOT BE ON THE PLAYOFF ROSTER! I’d prefer Cole, Cortes, Severino (off the IL next week), Taillon and even German over Montas right now. That is 5 guys when you probably only need 4 and maybe, depending on the playoff schedule and off days, 3. Yes, that is right. In my pecking order, once Severino comes back, Montas is #6 … and depending on how you like Clarke Schmidt, maybe even #7. To the top of the third, and Aaron Hicks made the same mistake he made a few days ago. He has to realize who bats behind him. With two outs, he doubled. NORMALLY, you would be happy with the double. You go to second base. NOT IN THIS CASE. Hicks should have just stopped at first. For by going to second, he took the bat out of the hands of the most dangerous hitter in baseball, Judge. Judge, of course, was intentionally walked. Stanton made out. Hicks has to learn to stop at first on such occurrences, or Stanton (hitting .215) needs to step it up. Aaron Boone and the coaches also should realize this and talk to Hicks about it. Willie Mays would sometimes stop at first in those situations so as to NOT take the bat out of the hands of Willie McCovey. Mays had baseball smarts. Hicks? Not so. Maybe move Torres to 2 behind Judge? After all, he’s hot lately. Stanton isn’t. To the fourth, and the Yanks stranded two more runners. Meanwhile, the Brewers tied the game in the bottom of the fourth off of Montas and Lucas Luetge. Given a 5-0 lead, Montas couldn’t get out of the fourth inning and Boone had to use most of his bullpen for the rest of the game. Unacceptable. The Yanks stranded two more runners in the sixth. In the bottom of the eighth, Milwaukee took the lead. On one play, Gleyber Torres couldn’t come up with a ball hit up the middle. A tough break there. But on another, IKF made an error with two out allowing a run to score. The internet has been on his defense lately. Could Oswald Peraza have made that play? Who knows. But IKF has to make that. Instead, 6-5, Brew Crew. Donaldson tied the game in the top of the ninth with his 14th HR of the season, a ball that hit the foul pole. Cabrera followed with a double but was left stranded. The home plate umpire made an absolutely horrendous called third strike call on Miguel Andujar with Cabrera on third and one out. MLB needs to do more than to give umps a slap on the wrist on these egregious errors. They need to suspend or fire umps. We have seen so many bad calls and nothing happens to the umps. Boone was tossed arguing the call. Yeah, the manager and/or player pays for the umps f-up. Clay Holmes came on for the bottom of the ninth and blew the game. This has to be very concerning for the Yankees. You need a reliable closer going into the postseason. In 2009, EVERY closer blew a postseason game except for one. Mariano Rivera. The Yankees won the World Series, their last one to date. Since July 9, Holmes ERA is 6.86. He has lost 4 games and has 3 blown saves. He has walked 13 in 19 2/3 innings. He has to right the ship and quickly or the Yanks will have to find another closer for the postseason. The loss is one thing. But the 2 for 11 w/RISP, 11 left on base, and the struggles of Montas and Holmes are another. That is what made this loss so disappointing. Oh yeah, one more thing at the bottom. Judge 2 hits. Torres 2 hits Donaldson 3 RBI. Solo HR (14) Cabrera 2 for 2, 3 walks. Hicks 2 hits. Montas 3 1/3 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 4 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR. 4.05 (Oak/NYY ERA) Luetge 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.75 Weissert 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 7.56 SEE BELOW German 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 3.12 Peralta 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.40 SEE BELOW Trivino 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 3 K. 4.69 SEE BELOW Loaisiga 1 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 W, 0 K. 4.43 Holmes (L, 6-4) 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 W, 1 K. 2.59. One more thing here. (I told you above, didn’t I?) Check the pitching line above. Weissert faced one batter. Stuck him out. Peralta faced one batter. Struck him out. Trivino faced three batters, struck them all out. WHY DIDN’T THEY STAY IN THE GAME LONGER, BOONE? Don’t mess with success!
Posted in Ex-Players, In-Season Moves, Managers and Coaches, Mike's Musings, Players, Regular Season
Tagged Boone, Cabrera, Chapman, Donaldson, German, Gray, Hicks, Holmes, Judge, Kiner-Falefa, Loaisiga, Luetge, Mays, McCovey, Montas, Peralta, Rivera, Stanton, Torres, Trivino, Weber, Weissert
As Yogi said, “it ain’t over ’til it’s over.” The 1964 Phillies blew a 6 1/2 game lead with 12 games left in the season. The 2004 Yankees blew a 3-0 lead in a best-of-7 series. The 2007 Mets blew a 7-game lead with 17 games left. You don’t count your chickens until they are hatched. But with yesterday’s 10-4 win over Tampa Bay, coupled with the 10-3 win on Saturday, the Yankees (85-56) opened up a 5 1/2 game lead with 21 games to go. Had the Rays swept the Yankees this weekend instead of only winning the first game, the lead would have been down to 1 1/2 games and the pressure really would have been on after having once had a 15 1/2 game lead. There are other things finally turning in the Yankees’ favor after almost two months of things going sour. For one, the Rays have some 15 of their 24 remaining games against Toronto and Houston, making it that much more difficult to catch the Yankees for the division title. Toronto sits 6 back of the Yankees, and just 1/2 game behind Tampa Bay. Seattle is in a virtual tie with Tampa Bay. So those three teams are jockeying for 4-5-6 playoff position. You will see that the Yankees have magic numbers of 18 for the division and 11 for a playoff spot. Actually, it is one less number for each because the Yankees own the tiebreakers. Another thing in the Yankees’ favor is that the cavalry is on its way. Four Yankees started rehab assignments with AA Somerset yesterday (see other post). Yes, rust may be a factor, but hopefully they come back healthy and refreshed. Lastly, something you will see in the game recap. The bats of Giancarlo Stanton and Gleyber Torres seem to be waking up after long slumbers. This is extremely important. It means that teams just can’t pitch around Aaron Judge. He needs protection. Stanton and Torres hitting provides that protection. Then the Yankees’ offense can go. As they did on Saturday, the Yankees jumped out early and big. Judge led off the bottom of the first with a single, and Stanton walked. Torres followed with a 3-run HR, #20 on the season, and the Yanks were up 3-0. Domingo German started the game for the Yankees on short rest because of the rainout and subsequent doubleheader against the Twins a few days ago. He only pitched the first inning as the Yankees went with a bullpen game, using eight pitchers. Tampa Bay got a run in the top of the second, but the Yanks blew the game open by responding with seven runs in the bottom of that inning. Isiah Kiner-Falefa led off the inning with a walk, Kyle Higashioka walked, and Marwin Gonzalez singled to load the bases. Judge hit a SF to make it 4-1, and Stanton followed with a 3-run HR (26) to make it 7-1. Torres followed with another HR (21) to make it 8-1. Josh Donaldson then walked, and Oswaldo Cabrera hit his first MLB HR to give the Yankees a 10-1 lead. Cabrera also got another OF assist. When will teams learn not to run on him? The Rays scored two in the sixth and another in the ninth. Final score 10-4. Ben Rortvedt, who didn’t get into a game, was sent back to AAA after the game as Jose Trevino will be returning from paternity leave. Stanton 3 RBI. 3-run HR (26) Torres 2 hits, 4 RBI. 3-run HR and Solo HR (21) 4th Yankee with 20 or more HR Cabrera 2 RBI. 2-run HR (1) First MLB HR. German 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 3.21 Luetge 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.63 Weissert (H, 1) 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 7.88 Peralta (W, 3-4) 2 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.44 Trivino 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 W, 0 K. 4.82 (A’s/NYY ERA) Marinaccio 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 1.93 Schmidt 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 4 K. 2.70 Holmes 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 1 WP 2.41 Albert Pujols hit HR #697 yesterday, passing Alex Rodriguez for fourth place on the all-time list.
Posted in Awards, Ex-Players, In-Season Moves, Players, Regular Season
Tagged a-rod, Cabrera, German, Holmes, Luetge, Marinaccio, Peralta, Pujols, Rortvedt, Schmidt, Stanton, Torres, Trevino, Trivino, Weissert
Sorry, my original draft got erased and I had to re-write a lot. UGH. A load of baseball yesterday, and at first it didn’t look good. Due to injuries, the Yankees’ lineups looked worse than a spring training lineup. In the first game of the DH yesterday, the Yanks (83-54) started three rookies, plus another guy who, although he had MLB experience and wasn’t a rookie, hadn’t played in the majors all season. The Yanks put Josh Donaldson on the paternity list. Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) played 3B. IKF had won a GG at 3B for Texas in 2020. Bard DFA’d, Deivi Garcia up. Miguel Andujar up as 29th man for the doubleheader. Rizzo to IL, Ron Guzman up. But at the end of the day, the Yankees had won both games off of their perennial whipping boys, the Twins, by scores of 5-4 (in 12 innings) and 7-1. With the wins, the Yanks are 5 up on the Rays in the AL East. The magic # for winning the division is 22, and the magic # for a playoff berth is 15. The wins ensured the Yankees a winning season. They haven’t had a losing season since 1992. Game 1: Domingo German had a rough start but settled in. A double, strikeout, and HR, and Minnesota was up 2-0 just three batters into the game. With two out in the fourth, three straight singles made it 3-0 Twins and with the weakened Yankees’ lineup, it didn’t appear good. The Yanks got a run in the bottom of the fourth of Aaron Judge’s 55th HR of the season. The home run meant that Judge now has hit more HR in a season than any other righty hitter in Yankees’ history. Only Ruth (60 in 1927) and Maris (61 in ’61) have hit more. Judge was walked 5x yesterday, 3x intentionally. Another reason to hate the ghost runner. If Judge is the first guy up, even with the ghost runner on second, first base is open, and Judge is walked to set up a DP. You take the bat out of the hands of the most dangerous hitter in baseball. Gleyber Torres tied the game with a 2-run HR in the sixth. (19). Both teams wasted chances. Oswaldo Cabrera, an infielder brought up to the Yanks a few weeks ago, got his fifth OF assist of the season in the top of the tenth. Ron Guzman, up for Rizzo, struck out 4x and then with the bases loaded and no out in extra innings, hit into a 3-2-3 DP. The Twins got a run in the top of the 12th off of Ron Marinaccio, but with the bases loaded and one out, Greg Weissert avoided further damage. In the bottom of the 12th, Marwin Gonzalez was the ghost runner and IKF singled to tie the game. With one out, IKF stole second. Jose Trevino singled, IKF was held up and Trevino took second on the throw. With two out, Cabrera singled to win the game. Judge solo HR (55) Torres 2-run HR (19) Kiner-Falefa (IKF) 2 hits, RBI Peraza 3 hits FIRST 3 HITS OF MLB CAREER. German 6 IP, 3 R, 7 H, 1 W, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.27 Peralta 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.58 Loaisiga 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 4.66 Holmes 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.29 Marinaccio 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 2 W, 3 K. 1.73 Weissert (W, 3-0) 2/3 I, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 7.36 Game 2: With the long game in game 1, and several bullpen members used, the Yanks needed length from Gerrit Cole. He went 6 2/3 IP, striking out 14. Cole leads MLB with 218 strikeouts and is 30 away from Ron Guidry’s Yankee team single season record of 248, set in 1978. Cole has four, maybe five starts left in the season. Cole gave up a HR to his ex-teammate, Carolos Correa, in the top of the third. IKF hit a grand slam, just his third HR of the season, in the bottom of the fourth. He didn’t get his first HR until mid-August. In the bottom of the eighth, Aaron Hicks hit a bases-loaded double for three runs to make it 7-1. Hicks 3 RBI Kiner-Falefa 4 RBI. Grand Slam. (3) Florial 2 hits. Cole (W, 11-7) 6 2/3 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 2 W, 14 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.20 Luetge (S, 2) 2 1/3 Ip, 0 R, 3 H, 0W, 3 K. 2.55 Nestor Cortes returns to the rotation tonight to face ex-Yankee Sonny Gray.
Posted in Awards, Ex-Players, In-Season Moves, Players, Regular Season
Tagged Andujar, Bard, Cabrera, Cole, Cortes, Donaldson, Florial, Garcia, German, Guidry, Guzman, Hicks, Holmes, Judge, Kiner-Falefa, Loaisiga, Luetge, Marinaccio, Maris, Peralta, Peraza, Rizzo, Ruth, Torres, Weissert
You don’t know what to write anymore. A 15 1/2 game lead is now down to 5. Tom Petty’s song “Free Fallin'” keeps playing in your head. From 61-23 to 79-53. 18-30 in their last 48 games, and as much as you want it to stop, it isn’t. Anthony Rizzo had an epidural for his back. He’s out for this whole Tampa Bay series. During the game, an embarrassing 9-0 loss, Andrew Benintendi hurt his wrist, saying he “felt something pop.” X-rays were negative, but an MRI is forthcoming. Don’t be surprised if he is out a while, maybe for the season. Meanwhile you can’t win if you can’t score, and the Yankees’ offense right now looks like I’ve been transported back to the Horace Clarke/Gene Michael/Jake Gibbs days. Ugly. The Yankees got just five hits last night. It’s hard to pitch when you have no margin for error. For six innings, Domingo German was really good. The Rays got a run in the fourth because Josh Donaldson made two errors on back-to-back plays. The Rays would have had another run except that Oswaldo Cabrera (who replaced the injured Benintendi) threw out a runner at the plate. It stayed 1-0 into the seventh. In the seventh, German made his only mistake, giving up a 2-run HR. 3-0, and you knew it was over then. The way this offense has collapsed, you knew they were not coming back. Then the Rays got six runs in the eighth off of Greg Weissert and Anthony Banda (you are forgiven for saying “Who?”). Who’d have thought, on September 2, in the middle of a pennant race, that Weissert and Banda would be on the mound for you. That says a lot of where the Yanks are right now. Then the ultimate ignominy last night. Marwin Gonzalez on the mound to get the last out in the eighth. Embarrassing. And I’m trying to be nice about it. Let’s face it. No matter what happens from here on in, heads should roll. Hal Steinbrenner has been far too quiet. Show a little anger at what is happening Hal! Instead, he’s been too busy buying an Italian soccer team. Yankees’ fans on the Internet made themselves known yesterday. If you went on websites, blogs, Twitter, etc. they were all wondering why rookies Oswaldo Cabrera and Oswald Peraza were not in the lineup. Bring them up only to sit? Keep guys like Hicks in the lineup? Yankees Universe was NOT happy when that lineup came out. For the sake of integrity for this blog, some numbers that Michael Kay alluded to on last night’s broadcast. You can’t ignore this. We have been seeing this every day. LeMahieu (toe problem) 10 for 69 since Aug. 8. . 145. NO extra base hits. Stanton by month: April .269; May .301; June .176, July .156, August .130. 0 for 3 last night, 3 strikeouts. Since June 1, Stanton is hitting .159. That is Gallo-like bad. Achilles problem. Torres .186 since July 13. 6 walks. 50 strikeouts. Hicks starting with 2nd game of a DH on July 21. . 155, NO extra base hits. Donaldson has pretty much been in the .220s all year. Higashioka is at .191. Even Rizzo, despite 30 HR, is only at .225. Marwin Gonzalez doesn’t play much. But he’s 0 for his last 29. If a team hits, you can carry someone like Isiah Kiner-Falefa. This team is hitting .239. That makes IKF’s lack of power stand out more despite his .261 batting average. Those numbers are one reason the fans were upset at the lineup last night. Granted Cabrera went 0 for 3, and Peraza, in his MLB debut, struck out, but give the kids a chance. They can’t do much worse than what has been going on. I don’t know. Whatever the hitting coaches are telling these guys, it isn’t working, or some guys are stubborn and aren’t listening. Maybe some guys are hurt more than what is being let on. One last thing before the recap. The MVP thing. When was the last time Ohtani played a meaningful game? One that had pennant race implications for his team? The Angels were out of the race by the end of June. Take Ohtani off the Angels and they are still a crappy fourth place team. Since the All-Star Game, Aaron Judge is hitting .321 with 18 HR. Of course, other teams are and have been pitching around him based on what the rest of the lineup has NOT been doing. While the ship is sinking, the one lifeboat in the Yankees lineup has been Judge. The award is for the most VALUABLE player. Not Player of the Year, Decade or Century. Ohtani is great. Granted. But look at the numbers. Who right now is more VALUABLE? Ok, enough. Recap. The Yanks were shut out on five hits. They struck out 13x. German (L, 2-3) 6 2/3 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 6 H, 2 W, 1 K. 3.12 Weissert 1 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K. 10.13 Banda 0 IP, 3 R, 2 H, 3 W, 0 K. 1 HBP. 6.75 Marwin Gonzalez 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 0.00 POSITION PLAYER.
Posted in Mike's Musings, Players, Regular Season, The Owner
Tagged Banda, Benintendi, Cabrera, German, Gonzalez, Peraza, Rizzo, Steinbrenner, Weissert
Before the game, the Yankees’ depleted bullpen took another hit, and in one of the strangest ways possible. Aroldis Chapman had to go on the IL
due to an infected wound from a recent tattoo he got. Sheesh. He joins King, Green, Castro, Abreu, Effross and Holmes on the IL. (Did I miss anyone?) Holmes should be coming off of it soon. As for Schmidt, he has to start today because of Cortes being on the IL. Way to trade pitching depth at the trade deadline, Cashman. No corresponding move yet. I’d guess maybe Ryan Weber again? The Yanks’ (78-49) offense was practically non-existent in this game, wasting an excellent outing by Domingo German. German pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings but received no support. The only hit the Yankees had in the 3-2, 11-inning loss to Oakland came on a double by Oswaldo Cabrera in the top of the sixth inning. The scoreless duel went into extra innings and to that (Ugh) ghost runner on second base. In the top of the tenth, Kyle Higashioka was the ghost runner. Andrew Benintendi tried to bunt him to third, but Higashioka was thrown out. Benintendi stole second while Aaron Judge struck out. Josh Donaldson was intentionally walked to set up a DP but Anthony Rizzo was HBP to load the bases. A WP and error on the play scored two runs. The Yanks couldn’t do anything after that, much as they didn’t do anything all game long. Two gift runs. But the Yanks would eventually lose by gifting one back. But in the bottom of the tenth, the A’s started with their ghost runner, and Ron Marinaccio (see above about the depleted bullpen) got the first out but then gave up a game-tying 2-run HR to Stephen Vogt. He then got a groundout, and on a strikeout, the pitch got away for a WP and the batter reached. A single followed, but Lou Trivino came in to get a strikeout and send the game into the eleventh. The Yanks did nothing in the top of the eleventh. In the bottom half, a walk put runners on first and second with no one out. Trivino got a fly out, then a ground ball appeared to be an inning-ending DP. The Yanks got the force at second, but D.J. LeMahieu threw the ball away in going to first trying for the DP and the winning run scored. The Yanks challenged the slide into second, but the call stood. 3-2 A’s. 11 innings. The Yanks only managed one hit. German 7 2/3 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 0W, 5 K. 1 HBP. 3.19 Loaisiga 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 5.52 Marinaccio 1 1/3 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR. 1.93 Trivino (L, 2-8) 1 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 5.14 (Combined stats A’s/NYY)
Catching up on moves before the game recap. Albert Abreu to the IL. The Yanks brought up Luke Bard, who was at AAA after the Yanks recently plucked him off of the waiver wire. Bard, a RHP, is 4-4, 4.50 in his career, mostly for the Angels. Also going on the IL is Scott Effross, who the Yanks just recently got off of the Cubs at the trade deadline. Clarke Schmidt was brought back up. Giancarlo Stanton is expected to come off the IL on Thursday. He will strictly DH at first. You never know. That is why you play the games. For example, in the mid-1960s, when the Mets were really, really terrible, a young pre-closer Tug McGraw outdueled future HOF Sandy Koufax. Who’d have thought? Last night, if you bet on the game, you’d probably take future HOF Max Scherzer over Domingo German, especially with the way the Yanks have played in August (6-14). But German outpitched Scherzer, and the Yanks (75-48) beat the Mets 4-2. The Yankees’ magic # for winning the AL East is now 33. Had Scherzer won, he would have gotten career win #200 before his 100th loss. Not too many pitchers have done that (Whitey Ford is one who did). Instead, he is 199-100 for his career. The Yanks struck early, getting a run in the bottom of the first inning. Andrew Benintendi, who is heating up, was HBP. One out later, Anthony Rizzo singled Benintendi to third. Benintendi just got in ahead of the tag when D.J. LeMahieu hit a SF. 1-0. After going over a week without a HR, Aaron Judge finally got HR #47, touching Scherzer in the bottom of the third inning. 2-0. In the bottom of the fifth, Isiah Kiner-Falefa doubled, went to third on a sac bunt by Marwin Gonzalez, and scored on a double by Benintendi. 3-0, Yankees. German was cruising until the Yanks messed up in the top of the seventh. With one out, a popup to short RF was dropped when there was miscommunication between 2B Oswaldo Cabrera and RF Gonzalez as to who would catch the ball. Because of the collision, Cabrera dropped it for an error. Two pitches later, German made his only mistake, giving up a 2-run HR to Daniel Vogelbach. 3-2. The Yanks came right back in the bottom of the seventh, getting an insurance run. With one out, Kiner-Falefa singled with one out and went to second on a throwing error by Mets’ SS Francisco Lindor. One out later, Benintendi singled to make it 4-2, which wound up as the final score. Benintendi 2 hits, 2 RBI Judge 2 hits, solo HR (47) Kiner-Falefa 2 hits. German (W, 2-2) 6 1/3 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 H, 0 W, 3 K. 1 HBP. Gave up 1 HR. 3.89 Marinaccio (H, 4) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 1.72 Loaisiga (S, 1) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 5.76
Posted in In-Season Moves, Players, Regular Season
Tagged Abreu, Bard, Benintendi, Effross, German, Judge, Kiner-Falefa, Loaisiga, Marinaccio, Schmidt, Stanton
The difference between an 8-game lead and a 10-game lead is two games. Psychologically, it can be much bigger than that. Especially when you had a 15-game lead that could be cut in half. Especially when you have lost 11 for your last 13 games. Especially when you look as terrible as the Yankees (73-45) have looked lately. If the Yankees get back on track and start playing better baseball, last night’s 8-7 win may be looked at as the defining moment of their season, for there was nothing indicating that a miracle win was going to happen. But Josh Donaldson’s walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the 10th gave the Yankees a much-needed victory. Before the game, the Yankees sent Miguel Andujar and Tim Locastro down to AAA and brought up Estevan Florial (who made a nice shoestring catch in this game) and Oswaldo Cabrera. They also put Clay Holmes on the injured list and brought back Ron Marinaccio. The Yanks fell behind 4-0, and with the team only scoring 9 runs in their last 7 games, it felt like 400-0. A walk and a one-out double gave Tampa Bay a run in the third inning. With one out in the fifth, Yankees’ starter Domingo German gave up a double, single and 2-run double to make it 3-0. Lucas Luetge gave up a HR in the top of the sixth, and it was 4-0 Rays. The way the Yanks have played lately, it didn’t look good. Gleyber Torres hit a 2-run HR (17) in the bottom of the sixth to cut Tampa Bay’s lead to 4-2. But in the seventh, he made a mistake that I thought would be fatal. In the seventh, shortly after a one-hour rain delay, Jose Trevino led off with a single. D.J. LeMahieu PH for Florial and singled. After Isiah Kiner-Falefa lined out, Andrew Benintendi walked to load the bases. The Rays then made a pitching change and Aaron Judge walked on four pitches to force in a run. 4-3. Then Torres did something that makes you mad. Right after seeing a guy walk on four pitches, did Torres take a strike? Make the pitcher throw strikes? No. He swung at the first pitch and GIDP. Inexcusable. The previous guy walked on four pitches. You have to make that pitcher PROVE he can throw strikes. At that point, I thought Torres may have blown the game for the Yankees. But Anthony Rizzo tied the game in the bottom of the eighth with his 28th HR of the year and the game eventually went into extra innings. In the top of the tenth, Tampa Bay started with that ghost runner I hate. After Scott Effross got an out, he was replaced by Aroldis Chapman, and the Chapman that came in was bad, wild Chapman. Two walks loaded the bases as Chapman was all over the place. He recovered with a strikeout, then got an 0-2 count on the next hitter. One strike away from getting out of the inning, Chapman gave up a bases-clearing double and the Rays were up 7-4. The way the Yanks were playing lately, losing 11 of 13, you figured game over. But no. Aaron Judge was the ghost runner for the Yankees in the bottom of the tenth. Torres singled Judge to third. Rizzo walked to load the bases. Donaldson then hit a grand slam (12) to win the game, 8-7. Going into the game, Donaldson was hitting something like .167 at Yankee Stadium and .266 on the road. Who’d have thought? It’s the biggest win the Yanks have had all year so far. They needed that win BADLY. Torres 2 hits, 2-run HR (17) Rizzo solo HR (28) Donaldson GW, Walk-off Grand Slam (12) Trevino 3 hits German 4 2/3 IP, 3 R, 5 H, 1 W, 6 K. 1 HBP 4.45 Luetge 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR. 2.88 Trivino 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 5.73 (combined A’s/NYY ERA) Marinaccio 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K 1.91 Effros 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.81 (Combined Cubs/NYY ERA) Chapman (W, 2-3) 2/3 IP, 2 R, 1 H, 2 W, 1 K. 4.45 Ex-Yankee Dellin Betances announced his retirement yesterday. Betances pitched for the Yankees (2011-2019) and Mets (2020-2021). A 4x All-Star, he finished 3rd in ROY voting in 2014 and 14th in CYA voting in 2015. He was injured in 2019 and only pitched in one game that season. In that game he struck out both batters he faced but tore his Achilles and was never the same after that. He retires with a 21-23 record, 36 saves, and an excellent ERA of 2.53 (ERA+ 165). From 2014-2018 Betances went 21-22 for the Yankees with an ERA of 2.22, ERA+ 188, as one of, if not the best, setup guys in MLB. Best wishes to him.
Posted in Ex-Players, In-Season Moves, Players, Regular Season
Tagged Andujar, Betances, Cabrera, Chapman, Donaldson, Effross, Florial, German, Holmes, Locastro, Luetge, Marinaccio, Rizzo, Torres, Trevino, Trivino