Tag Archives: Gregorius

Yanks sign LeMahieu, means probably out on Machado.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks most likely are out on Manny Machado after they signed D.J. LeMahieu to a 2 yr., $24MM deal today.

With the acquisition, the Yanks now have Voit, Bird, Torres, LeMahieu, Tulowitzki, Andujar and Wade for the infield, and I would guess that Wade (and perhaps Bird) would be starting the year at AAA.

That is seven infielders, meaning no room for Machado unless someone goes.

LeMahieu is 30, and yet another righty bat on a team needing lefty balance. Oh well, he does go to the opposite field a lot. In 2018, he hit .276-15-62, OPS+ 88. He won the batting title in 2016, when he led the majors with a .348 mark and finished 15th in MVP voting. For his career, his 162 g. average is .298-8-59, OPS+ 92.

His numbers, however, are skewed by playing for Colorado. He is a .330 hitter at Colorado but a .264 hitter on the road.

So I wouldn’t expect his bat to equal what he did for Colorado.

The Yanks, however, didn’t get him for his bat. That would be a bonus.

They got him for his glove. LeMahieu, a 2x All-Star, has won 3 Gold Glove awards. Primarily a second baseman, he can also fill in at the other infield spots.

The Yanks can use him as a utility infielder. Also, if the recently acquired Troy Tulowitzki cannot cut it as the starting SS, the Yanks can slide Gleyber Torres over to SS and start LeMahieu at 2B. Remember that Tulo missed all of 2018 and only played in 66 games in 2017. Tulo, a 5x All-Star, has 2 Gold Gloves of his own.

So an infield that has the defensively challenged Voit and Andujar got defensive stalwarts in Tulowitzki and LeMahieu, even if neither Tulo nor LeMahieu match the offensive numbers they put up in Colorado.

And we don’t know at what point in the season we get Didi and his lefty bat back.

With the firepower the Yanks have offensively, these moves for Tulo and LeMahieu were based on defense first, and anything they give offensively (and it could be a lot) is a bonus.

In making the signing of Zach Britton official today, the Yanks DFA’d Hanser Alberto, and he was immediately claimed by the Orioles.

A.J. Cole, DFA’d just the other day by the Yanks, was claimed by Cleveland.

Aaron Hicks agreed to a $6MM deal for 2019, and Austin Romine to a $1.8MM deal.

For Dellin Betances, $7.25MM.

The Yanks signed a couple of guys to minor league deals. Drew Hutchison and Matt Lipka.

Hutchison, 28, is a RHP who went 2-2, 6.75 for the Phils and Rangers in 2018. For his career, he is 32-23, 5.10, ERA+ 79. His 162 g. average is 12-9, 5.10 (38 games, 30 starts). As a starter for Toronto in 2014 and 2015, he went 11-13 and 13-5 but his ERAs were 4.48 and 5.57. He provides some pitching depth.

Lipka is 26, and an OF/SS who hit .240-4-30 with 21 SB at AA in 2018.

 

 

Advertisements

What will Yanks infield look like in 2019?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The NY Post reports that if Troy Tulowitzki proves himself capable, and even if the Yanks do land Manny Machado, that Tulo would be at SS (and what happens when Didi comes back?) and that Machado would be at 3B (meaning what happens with Andujar?)

Would Andujar move to 1B (meaning what happens to Voit and Bird?) or would he DH (meaning Stanton to LF and Gardner joins Ellsbury as backup outfielders, with Clint Frazier apparently headed to AAA since Frazier missed most of last year with an injury.)

Now I’ve also heard that if Tulo is the SS, and they land Machado and Machado is at 3B, that Andujar could be traded for a starter (Corey Kluber?). But with a rotation currently set as Severino, Paxton, Tanaka, Happ and CC, who would go? And remember, Sonny Gray is still on this team as of now, too.

From the NY Post and Joel Sherman (who also is with the MLB Network):

The Yankees reached an agreement with Tulowitzki with the plan, if healthy, to play him at shortstop even if they end up signing Manny Machado…

Tulowitzki had looked so good in a workout — athletic and lively in the Yankees’ estimation — about half the major league teams were looking to sign him for the low-risk, high-reward possibilities.

That Tulowitzki picked the Yankees without the assurance of 500-plus plate appearances exemplifies just how motivated he is to play for them. Tulowitzki wore No. 2 with the Rockies and Blue Jays as an homage to his idol, Derek Jeter, and — at 34 — decided if not now, when would he ever be a Yankee?

Both ex-Toronto Manager John Gibbons and MLB Network’s Dan O’Dowd said they believe Tulowitzki is healthy now. Their concerns were if he could maintain his health and how quickly and to what level his offense would return. As far as defense, both said they thought it would still be special. Gibbons said Tulowitzki took infield during batting practice while the Blue Jays were in Oakland in the second half and “he looked great. I have no doubt about his defense if he is healthy.

“If he gets to it, you are freaking out. He will make the backhand play as well as anyone I’ve ever seen. His off-balanced throws will be on the money. I can’t say enough good things about him.”

As far as offense, O’Dowd said because Tulowitzki’s power is to right-center, Yankee Stadium plays to his strengths.

“It is as good a move as you can make,” Gibbons said of the Yankees’ signing of Tulowitzki. “You have almost nothing to lose and if he stays healthy, you have one of the best shortstops of all time.”

Stay tuned. What happens with the infield is bound to be interesting.

 

 

Beltran appointed special advisor to GM Cashman

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Ok, let’s put some pieces of a puzzle together. Even though the Yanks say that Manny Machado has some explaining to do about his actions and statements in this year’s postseason, the Yanks are still meeting with him tomorrow. Obviously, with Didi out half the season, the Yanks could go with Machado at SS until Didi returns.

What they then do with Miguel Andujar is anybody’s guess. (Trade for a top-notch pitcher? A top-notch 1B if Voit/Bird don’t cut it? Move Andujar to another position? 1B? LF? But of LF, what of Clint Frazier? You get the drift).

But here is the rub. A-Rod, Machado’s idol, is a special advisor to the Yankees. Machado has made it clear he’d love to play in NY (in the case above, regarding Machado’s offseason, some columnists have suggested that maybe Machado needs to sell himself to the Yankees and not the other way around). #13, A-Rod’s number, hasn’t been retired, and wouldn’t Machado like to follow A-Rod by wearing the number Machado wore in Baltimore? (#8, which Machado wore for the Dodgers, is retired by the Yankees for both Yogi Berra and Bill Dickey).

Now today, the day before the Yanks meet with Machado, the Yanks announce that they have hired Carlos Beltran as an advisor to GM Brian Cashman. It just so happens that Beltran’s former agent happens to be Machado’s current agent. Now Machado’s brother-in-law, Alonso, was just traded from Cleveland to the White Sox, and blood may be thicker than water, but with A-Rod and Beltran both now special advisors in the Yanks’ front office, maybe that water is getting mighty thick.

Me? Here is my guess: that Machado does wind up a Yankee (with Harper going to the Phillies). Which could give a lineup of Gardner, Judge, Machado, Stanton, Hicks, Sanchez, Andujar, Voit/Bird and Torres come opening day.

Should Clint Frazier make the team (I doubt it, unless the Yanks can dump Ellsbury—keeping Ellsbury means AAA for Frazier—no room) maybe against lefties Hicks leads off, everyone below Hicks moves up a notch and Frazier bats ninth.

Just saying.

But an interesting move in Beltran (who by the way, interviewed for the Yanks’ managerial job last year….possible managerial material?) being hired by the Yanks the day before the Machado meeting.

Just trying to read the tea leaves here.

Hal Steinbrenner will probably not be at the meeting with Machado. After all, his mom just passed away.

But I keep thinking of Machado as another A-Rod. All that talent, but all that baggage that may be coming with it.

 

Betts (AL) Yelich (NL) win MVP honors. Yanks finish 12, 19, 20 and 22. Final AFL stats for Yanks’ prospects.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Mookie Betts of Boston won the AL MVP quite handily, getting 28 of the 30 first place votes. Mike Trout of the Angels finished as the runnerup for the fourth time (Trout has won the award twice). Trout got one first place vote, and Betts’ teammate, J.D. Martinez, who finished fourth, got the other.

As for Yankees, Aaron Judge finished 12th, Giancarlo Stanton 19th, Didi Gregorius finished in a tie for 20th (he was also 20th last year) and Aaron Hicks finished in a tie for 22nd.

Christian Yelich of Milwaukee won the NL MVP, getting 29 of the 30 first place votes (the only other one going to Jacob DeGrom of the Mets, who finished fifth). Javier Baez of the Cubs was the runnerup.

The Glendale Desert Dogs Arizona Fall League season is over with a 12-18 record. Here is how Yankees’ prospects did:

SS Thairo Estrada .238-0-7
1B Steven Sensley .197-0-9
CF Estevan Florial .178-0-8

SP Jordan Foley 0-2, 9.15
RP Hobie Harris 1-0, 4.20
RP Matt Wivinis 0-1, 1.50
RP Kyle Zurak 0-1, 11.57

 

Dodgers go 1 up, Boston 2 up in LCS’s. Didi has successful surgery; Machado

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Dodgers went up 3 games to 2 over Milwaukee and are one game away from returning to the WS with a 5-2 win yesterday in Game 5 on the NLCS. Clayton Kershaw, who has had postseason trouble in the past, pitched like the ace he usually is.

Boston took a 3 games to 1 lead over defending WS champ Houston in the ALCS, beating them 8-6 Wednesday night. Jackie Bradley, who hit a grand slam in Game 3, hit a 2-run HR in Game 4. Closer Craig Kimbrel has been shaky this postseason, but with the bases loaded and two out in the bottom of the ninth, LF Andrew Benintendi made a diving catch to save the game for Boston. If the ball drops and gets past him, Houston at least ties, and probably wins, the game. Also, fans interfered earlier with a ball that went for an out instead of a HR, and that too, cost Houston. Was the call correct? Who knows, but there is a good article by Joel Sherman in the NY Post today criticizing MLB for continuing to use overweight, 66-yr. old umpires as the OF umps down the line.

Didi Gregorius of the Yankees had successful Tommy John surgery on his right (throwing) elbow. Once again, he’s expected to miss at least half of the 2019 season.

Meanwhile, one possible replacement for Didi, Manny Machado, isn’t helping his free agent cause. As talented as Machado is, his lack of hustle and sometimes dirty play is turning a lot of people off.

In an interview on the Michael Kay show, Yankees’ GM Brian Cashman states that teams have inquired about Gary Sanchez, but that Sanchez is unavailable, even after his disappointing 2018 season.

 

Game 160. Yanks beat Boston, get the wild card game at home, tie for all-time single season HR record.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yankees (99-61) beat Boston 11-6 Friday night to ensure that they will play the wild card game against Oakland next Wednesday night in the Bronx.

They denied Boston a 110 win season, and there are only (I think) five teams in MLB history who have accomplished that. One being the 1927 Yankees, another the 1998 Yankees.

The Yanks hit 4 HR in the game and by doing that, have 264 on the season, tying the 1997 Seattle Mariners for the most in one season by a team. They have two games left to hit one HR to break the record.

Gary Sanchez started the scoring in the the top of the third with his 18th HR of the season. With two out, Aaron Judge walked, and singles by Aaron Hicks and Giancarlo Stanton made it 2-0 Yanks.

The Yanks got six in the fourth inning. With one out, Miguel Andujar doubled. Gary Sanchez walked and Gleyber Torres doubled in two runs to make it 4-0. Andrew McCutchen singled in Torres to make it 5-0. After Aaron Judge singled, Hicks hit a 3-run HR (27) to make it 8-0.

In the sixth, manager Aaron Boone made a mistake. With two out and men on second and third, Yankees’ starter J.A. Happ walked Xander Bogaerts to load the bases. Up came Steve Pearce, who has killed the Yanks this year.

Not only that, but Pearce had 5 career HR off of Happ.

Make that six. Grand slam. 8-4 Yanks. Boone never should have let Happ pitch to Pearce there.

The Yanks came right back with two in the seventh. With two out, Luke Voit homered (14, and his 13th as a Yankee) to make it 9-4. Didi Gregorius, playing for the first time since injuring his wrist, singled. Andujar walked and Sanchez reached on an error, Didi scoring. 10-4.

Didi looked good tonight in his first game back from the injury. Very encouraging. That cortisone shot to help him recover from torn cartillage in his right wrist seems to be helping.

In the top of the eighth, Aaron Judge homered (27). It was his first HR since coming off the DL from the broken wrist, and that HR not only made it 11-4, but also was #264 of the season, enabling the Yanks to tie the 1997 Seattle Mariners for the all-time single season record.

Of course, there was no DH before 1973, so the 1961 Yankees, who hit 240, didn’t have that luxury (also, Death Valley at the old Stadium killed a lot of potential HR balls).

Things then got sloppy. Boston scored a run in the bottom of the eighth and left the bases loaded.

In the bottom of the ninth, Didi made an error, Boston scored another run to make it 11-6, and they once again left the bases loaded.

Judge 2 hits, HR
Hicks 2 hits, HR, 3 RBI
Stanton 2 hits, RBI
Voit HR
Sanchez 2 hits, HR
Torres 2 RBI

Happ (W, 17-6, 3.65, Tor/NYY) 6 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 2 W, 7 K. Gave up grand slam. (7-0 as NYY)
Green 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K.   2.50
Betances 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 W, 1 K.   2.70
Britton 1 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 H, 3 W, 0 K.    3.10 (Balt/NYY)

Game 158. Yanks’ comeback falls short. Lead over A’s 1 1/2.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks (97-61) opened and closed the game strong offensively, but didn’t do anything in between as a furious ninth inning comeback came up just short in a 8-7 loss to Tampa Bay Wednesday night.

The A’s won, so the Yanks’ magic # over the A’s to clinch home field for the wild card game next Wednesday remains at 2. The Yanks lead the A’s by 1 1/2 games.

Neil Walker hit his 11th HR of the season, a 3-run shot, to give the Yanks a 3-0 lead in the top of the first.

But Masahiro Tanaka had nothing, giving 3 right back to the Rays in the bottom of the first.

In the third, Tanaka gave up a HR, 4-3 Rays. If this was an audition for starting the wild card game, Tanaka didn’t help himself.

The Yanks loaded the bases in the fifth with one out, but Giancarlo Stanton GIDP.

In the bottom of the eighth, David Robertson came in and had nothing, giving up 4 runs, and yes, Gary Sanchez committed another passed ball. 8-3 Rays.

The Yanks scored four in the top of the ninth. Sanchez walked and with one out, Brett Gardner singled. Andrew McCutchen singled to load the bases. Aaron Judge singled in a run. Luke Voit singled in two runs. Giancarlo Stanton singled in a run. But Tyler Wade flied out and Miguel Andujar popped up to end the game.

Injury report: Didi Gregorius has been cleared to play. He didn’t Wednesday, but the cortisone shot in the wrist is helping. Aaron Hicks didn’t play because of the turf and a tight hamstring. Gleyber Torres didn’t start (tight hip/groin) but did come into the game later.

McCutchen 2 hits
Judge 2 hits, RBI
Voit 3 hits, 2 RBI
Walker 3-run HR

Tanaka (L, 12-6, 3.75) 4 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 6 H, 1 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Holder 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K.  2.88
Green 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K.   2.53
Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.   2.49
Robertson 1/3 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 3 H, 1 W, 1 K.   3.26
Sheffield 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K.  0.00

Sheffield made a costly error on a pickoff attempt that enabled the final run to score.