Tag Archives: Girardi

Game 19. Youth is served. Judge & Severino lead Yanks to 3-1 win.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Luis Severino pitched seven shutout innings, and Aaron Judge hit a 2-run HR (7) to lead the Yanks to a 3-1 win over Boston up in Fenway tonight. The win improves the Yanks’ record to 12-7.

Judge’s 2-run HR came in the second inning, after Castro reached on an error, and later in the game he made a nice play going into the stands to catch a foul ball.

Meanwhile, Severino is pitching like we thought he would last year after going 5-3, 2.89 in 11 starts at the end of 2015. Instead, he had the dreaded “sophomore jinx.”

In the sixth, Judge walked, went to second on a WP and scored on a single off the Green Monster by Greg Bird. Boy, does Bird need that.

Severino went 7 scoreless innings, and Betances dominated the 8th.

Then Girardi pissed me off.

I absolutely HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE (have I said it enough?) when a manager takes out a setup guy who just kicked butt just so they can bring in a closer just because he is the closer.

For after Betances dominated the eighth, Chapman almost blew the game in the ninth.

If a guy is doing well, why are you making a change just for the sake of making a change?

Leave the guy doing well in the game for crying out loud? Is that such a difficult concept?

More managers blow games by doing this, and SHOULD BE FIRED FOR DOING SO, than win games.

Severino (W, 2-1, 3.00) 7 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 2 walks, 6 K.
Betances (H, 4) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 1.29
Chapman (S, 5) 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 2 W, 2 K. 1.23.

Next time Joe, save Chapman for another day. If Betances is kicking ass, leave him the hell in there.

Oh yeah, nice to see the Yanks play Boston w/out that big guy on Boston beating us up.

Game 18. Nova gets revenge, Montgomery shows grit in Yanks’ 2-1 loss.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I have a lot to say about this game, which the Yankees lost 2-1 to drop them to 11-7.

First off, in only 3 major league starts, I am impressed with Jordan Montgomery, who has a 3.78 ERA after 3 starts. That is good for the rookie. Keep it up. I see a lot of Andy Pettitte-like qualities in him.

In the first inning, he had the bases loaded and no one out and minimized the damage. Just one run.

He went 6 IP, 2 R without his best stuff. Impressive.

But the Yanks only run came on a HR by Jacoby Ellsbury (2) in the seventh as ex-Yankee Ivan Nova got the win and a bit of revenge.

My biggest gripe comes with poor baseball by the Yankees in the ninth inning.

With one out, Judge singled and Holliday walked. Torreyes hit what should have been a game-ending DP ball but the Pirates made an error that loaded the bases with one out.

Down 2-1. One out. A walk ties the game. Take a strike.

Instead, Aaron Hicks didn’t even take a strike or make the pitcher throw strikes. He swung at all three pitches and struck out.

Pete Kozma was forced to bat b/c the Yanks used up all their bench players. Kozma, who most likely will be released in a week when Didi Gregorius comes off the DL, is a good field, no hit player. He swung on a 2-0 pitch and grounded out to end the game. What is Kozma doing swinging at 2-0 instead of taking a strike and hoping for two more balls to force in the winning run?

I place some blame on Girardi. He should have given Kozma a take sign on 2-0. No way do you swing. Take a strike, maybe he will walk in the tying run.

Sometimes games are simply lost, and sometimes you lose because you aren’t playing heads-up baseball. Today, I feel the Yanks lost because they were not playing heads up baseball.

Would the pitcher have walked in a run? We’ll never know. But the Yanks didn’t give themselves a chance to find out.

As mentioned, I am impressed with Montgomery despite the loss.

But the Yanks need Bird to start hitting. He is at .104.

Also, Brett Gardner has to get it going. He is at .182. I know he was shopped around in the offseason, and I still feel he is trade bait if Frazier/Fowler or another OF gets it going in the minors.

But not only is Gardner at .182, but after 18 games, he has ZERO RBI. I know he is the leadoff hitter, but still, ZERO RBI.

Lastly, Kyle Higashioka needs to get his first MLB hit soon. He’s called good ballgames but hopefully he does not start pressing trying to get that first hit.

Hopefully he and Bird pick it up. This week in Boston would be a nice time to do so.

Montgomery (L, 1-1, 3.78) 6 IP, 2 R,  7 H, 2 walks, 5 K.
Mitchell 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 walks, 2 K. 1.04.

Game 10. Yanks edge Cards 4-3 to win 5th in a row.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks beat St. Louis 4-3 for their fifth win in a row to go to 6-4 on the season. There were a couple of scares on the way.

The Cards got a  2-run HR by Matt Carpenter in the first and you wondered what was wrong with Tanaka. He got the win tonight but he still is not vintage Tanaka.

Starlin Castro tied it in the bottom of the first with a 2-run HR of his own (2).

The next inning, Austin Romine HR’d (1) to make it 3-2.

A double by Chase Headley, combined with an error, made it 4-2 Yanks in the fifth.

In the seventh, I felt that Girardi pulled Tanaka one batter too late, after he gave up a double that made it 4-3, runners on 2nd and 3rd, one out. In came Tyler Clippard.

He got a shallow Fly to CF that was too short for the runner to score. The next batter hit a deep drive to RF that I was scared was a 3-run HR but Aaron Judge ran it down on the warning track.

In the 9th, Aroldis Chapman, with 2 outs, gave up a walk and double. Fortunately, with the double (that was hit one strike away from ending the game), the runner on first had to be held at third. He then got the last out with the tying run on third, the go-ahead run on second.

Whew.

I don’t know if there will be a minor league report since I have to get to bed and I work tomorrow.

Castro 2 for 4, HR, 2 RBI.

Ellsbury 2 H.  Romine 2 Hits, HR. Chase Headley 2 H.

Tanaka 6 1/3 IP (W, 1-1, 8,36) 3 R, 5 H, 2 walks, 5 K. Gave UP 1 HR.
Clippard (H, 3) 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 0 K. 1.80
Betances (H, 2) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walks, 3 K. 2.08
Chapman (S, 3) 1 Ip, 0 R, 1 H, 1 Walks, 1 K. 0.00

Game 9. Hicks and Severino lead Yanks to 3-2 win. Kaprielian needs TJ surgery.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

After the game, manager Joe Girardi stated that Luis Severino is young, but has great upside.

Tonight we saw what that upside could be.

Severino, who came up late in 2015 and who was 5-3, 2.89 in 11 starts that year but who went 0-8, 8.50 starting last year (sophomore jinx), pitched a beauty.

He gave length, kept the team in the game, got the win, and struck out 11 in his 7 innings of pitching.

But if not for Aaron Hicks, he may have lost the game. Hicks hit two HR, one from each side of the plate, to account for all the Yankees’ runs in the 3-2 win that upped the Yanks’ record to 5-4.

Hicks HR’d in the first from the left side of the plate (1) to put the Yanks up 1-0.

Severino gave up a run in the second, and a solo HR in the fifth.

In the bottom of the fifth, I got a little pissed off at Hicks. Up to this point, the Yanks had squandered some scoring opportunities and were losing 2-1. Ellsbury led off the bottom of the fifth by drawing a walk. Hicks swung at the first pitch and GIDP.

That was bad baseball. Down a run, and with Ellsbury drawing a leadoff walk, you can either bunt him over or at the very least, take a pitch or two to give Ellsbury a chance to steal second.

Hicks (playing because Gardner is day to day after that baseline collision on Wednesday) made up for this gaffe by hitting a 2-run HR (2) in the seventh from the right side of the plate to put the Yanks up 3-2. They held on for the final score despite a scare in the eighth.

Betances relieved Severino and immediately gave up a walk and single to put runners on the corners with no one out. Two strikeouts and a come-backer later and he was out of it.

Severino (1-0, 4.50) 7 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 1 walk, 11 K. Gave up HR.
Betances (H, 1) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk, 2 K. 2.70
Chapman (S, 2 ) 1 Ip, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 2 K. 0.00

So Yankees’ pitchers combined for 15 K in the game.

Greg Bird came back to the lineup but continued to struggle, going 0 for 4. He is 1 for 20 (.050). Hopefully he snaps out of it soon.

Austin Romine had 2 hits.

Top pitching prospect James Kaprielian will need to undergo TJ surgery which will knock him out until mid-2018. He missed most of 2016. Ouch.

In NFL news, Pittsburgh Steelers’ owner Dan Rooney died at age 84.

Game 5. Yanks blow another lead, lose game. Sanchez hurt.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Ouch. Ouch and Ouch.

For the second straight game, the Yanks blew a lead and lost by one run.

Even worse, two of the three rookies they are trying to build around are hurt, and the main one will be out a while.

Greg Bird got x-rays before the game on his sore ankle. It came up negative. A CT scan may still be done, but he was given Saturday off and will most likely get Sunday off too. He is day to day.

Gary Sanchez hurt his biceps in the middle of the game and had to come out immediately. He is now on the 10 Day DL. Kyle Higashioka will be coming up, but Austin Romine will now be the catcher. It’s the right arm, his throwing arm, so this could be more than 10 days.

Aaron Judge got the day off because he was slumping and because you do need to keep Aaron Hicks fresh and get him playing time.

The Yanks had a 4-1 lead after 4 1/2 only to lose 5-4. The bullpen let them down again.

Ronald Torreyes drove in 2 in the second to put the Yanks up 2-0. The Orioles got a run back in the fourth.

In the top of the fifth, the Yanks scored one run on a balk and another on an RBI single by Starlin Castro.

Up 4-1 with Tanaka on the mound, the Yanks couldn’t hold it.

The O’s got two in the fifth and two in the seventh to win.

With one out and two out in the ninth, Chris Carter’s drive was caught on the warning track to end it.

Matt Holliday got his 2000th hit in this game.

The Yanks fall to 1-4, but worrisome is the situation on Sanchez and Bird.

Also, the Yanks haven’t had a starter go more than 5 innings yet this year, and it’s not like Tanaka to walk 4 and hit 2 in 5 innings of work.

Tanaka 5 IP, 3 R, 6 hits, 4 walks, 2 HBP, 5 K.   11.74
Warren (H, 1) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1 K. 0.00
Layne 0 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 0 K. 3.86  Faced one batter, gave up a double.
Betances (BS, 1; L, 0-1) 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 walks, 0 K. 6.75
Holder 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks, 1 K. 0.00

I do question some of Girardi’s bullpen decisions. Why remove Warren when he is doing well? Why use Layne only for one batter (LOOGY)? Iif he got his man (he didn’t today) then leave him in there.

Too many moves. As the saying goes, too many cooks spoil the soup.

If a guy is doing well, leave him in there. The hell with this lefty/lefty, righty/righty crap.

Go by what you see and feel.

Sanchez’ loss hurts. Him. Bird day to day. Didi out all month.

Ouch.

S.T. Game 35. Yanks lose final spring training game, 8-5. Ex-SS Amaro dies.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks and Braves opened up the Braves’ new stadium (saw some of it on MLB, looked really nice) with the Braves winning 8-5 thanks to a Baltimore chop base hit, an error and a bloop 3-run double.

A little bad luck.

The Yanks finish spring training at 25-9-1. Now the regular season starts Sunday and the games count.

Greg Bird got the first HR in the place (albeit, an exhibition game) with a 2-run blow in the third inning.

Michael Pineda was, well, Michael Pineda. So much promise but that one big mistake. So often last year he gave up the big hit with two out, and in the third, with two out, he gave up a 3-run HR to Freddie Freeman. You really wonder if it’s a concentration issue. It’s something he has to correct.

Dustin Fowler doubled in two in the top of the sixth to put the Yanks up 4-3, but then Atlanta got five runs, all unearned, in the bottom half of the inning as manager Girardi sent in bullpen guys to just get them work. For example, Aroldis Chapman faced just one batter, and he struck him out. Tommy Layne faced one batter, and he got him out. Then the roof fell in between Betances, Holder, the error by 3B Miguel Andujar and the bloop 3-run double that fell between four fielders.

Chris Carter homered in the seventh for the final score of 8-5.

Gary Sanchez was 2 for 2, hitting a double that just missed going out. Greg Bird was also 2 for 2, with that 2-run HR mentioned earlier. Sanchez hit .373 for the spring, Bird .451.  They’ll cool off, obviously, but it shows how much potential these two youngsters have.

Some guys that had rough springs that you hope heat up are Gardner, Headley and Carter.

Pineda 5 IP, 3 R, 6 H, 1 walk, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Chapman (H) 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1 K.
Layne (H) 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 0 K.
Betances (L) 0 IP, 2 R (both unearned), 2 H, 0 walks, 0 K.
Holder (BS) 1/3 IP, 3 R (all unearned), 1 H, 2 walks, 0 K.
Mitchell 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1 K.
Shreve 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 1 K.
Heller 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 0 K.

Ruben Amaro, the main SS on the 1967 Yankees team, died yesterday at the age of 81. Your typical good field/no hit SS of the 1960s, he was also on the 1964 Phillies team that “Pholded” at the end of the season. He was with the Cardinals in 1958, the Phils from 1960-1965, the Yankees from 1966-1968, and finished his major league career with the Angels in 1969.

A .234 career hitter with eight major league home runs and an OPS+ of 71, his best year was in 1964 for the Phillies, when he hit .264-4-34, all career highs, OPS+ 84, and won a Gold Glove. He also finished 21st in MVP voting. He had 299 at bats in 129 games. Primarily a SS, Amaro played all infield positions and even one game in LF in his career.

His Yankees’ tenure consisted of 191 games, 130 of which were in 1967 when he was the team’s primary SS, hitting .223-1-17, OPS+ 70, in a career high 417 at bats.

After his playing career ended he worked for the Phillies for many years, and expressed his desire to be buried in his Phillies uniform.

His son, Ruben Amaro, Jr., became a major league player himself, later served as the Phillies’ GM, and is now the first base coach for the Red Sox.

 

Random thoughts as we head to Opening Day.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I don’t mind the Sanchez 2 Bird 3 lineup. Girardi wants to be certain that both get up in the first inning where if they weren’t 2-3 one of them wouldn’t get up in the first in the event of a 1-2-3 inning. Also more at bats for when the lineup turns over.  Basically it’s subbing Bird in the first inning for Ellsbury (as well as splitting lefty/righty hitters).

I do wonder about Ellsbury fifth, and also have to wonder how temporary that would be and how much lower Ellsbury goes down in the lineup.

For don’t you think that when Didi Gregorius is back, that HE will be hitting fifth, not Ellsbury, and that Ellsbury would then be hitting, say, eighth? Especially since Didi had 20 HR last year and was showing power again in the WBC and in spring training before his injury?

Gardner-Sanchez-Bird-Holliday-Didi-Castro-Headley-Ellsbury-Judge/Hicks when Didi gets healthy?

More random thoughts. It depends on how long Tyler Austin takes to heal, but if Chris Carter continues to be a whiff machine, should he be looking over his shoulder when Austin finally is ready to play?

The coaching staff wanted to bring Gleyber Torres north, even though he has never played above AA. Says a lot. The front office wants him to get more experience in the minors, at least in AA before coming up to the majors. Could be bypass AAA altogether? It just shows how fast he is coming.

I also think Gardner and Ellsbury should be looking over their shoulders. Gardner would be the easiest one to move because of Ellsbury’s prohibitive salary. But with both starting to hit the age of 33 and showing some decline, and with some promising outfielders coming (Fowler, Rutherford, Frazier, McKinney, Mason Williams), I wouldn’t be surprised to see one moved.

In fact, Gardner hasn’t had too good of a spring training. If the Yanks wanted to play their best outfield based on spring training results, the argument wouldn’t be over RF (Hicks or Judge) but CENTER field (Gardner or Ellsbury). They would have Hicks in LF and Judge in RF, for both have done better than Gardner or Ellsbury this spring. Just saying.

Jon Niese re-signed with the Yanks after being released the other day. He’ll stay in Tampa in extended spring training to build up more arm strength. A surgery late last year has him behind.

The next two days are huge in filling out the rotation. Jordan Montgomery starts today vs. Toronto and Luis Severino starts tomorrow vs. the Phillies. It will be very interesting to see how they do and if their performances make them or break them as far as being in the rotation. The Yanks won’t need a fifth starter until April 16.

Pete Kozma (good field/can’t hit water if he fell out of a boat) may make the team with Didi out, then get DFA’d when Didi is ready.  I’d like to see Tyler Wade there instead of Kozma, though.

UPDATE: Wade and Kyle Higashioka were sent down to minor league camp last night.

We’ll see what happens. A lot of decisions on the 25 man roster have to be made in the next few days. The season starts Sunday.