Tag Archives: Johnson

Yanks re-sign Drew, and HOF gets 4 new members.

The Yankees re-signed Stephen Drew to a one-year, $5MM contract, and I must admit, I am perplexed and not too happy about the deal.

Ok, does Drew play SS or 2B? Where does Didi Gregorious play? What about the youngsters, Jose Pirela and Rob Refsnyder, each of whom hit .300+ at AAA last year while Drew (32 in March) hit .162-7-26 between Boston and the Yanks last year? That’s an OPS+ of 51, 49% below league average. I don’t understand the move—-unless it is to package Gregorious, or Refsnyder or Pirela along with the one to two of the surplus of lefty relievers (and maybe someone like Gary Sanchez or Austin Romine?) to say, the Phils for Cole Hamels, or, if they can sign him to a contract extension right away, Johnny Cueto of the Reds (who is a free agent after 2015)?

As of now, I don’t like the move. Drew’s 162 g. ave. is .256-15-70, OPS+ 95 (100 is average). He is a lefty hitter who may (along with Gregorious) have pop for the porch but was flat out awful in 2014.

After the signing of Gregorious, I just don’t get this move. I’d rather give Refsnyder and Pirela a chance at 2B. I don’t like it.

Meanwhile, the Hall of Fame will have 4 new members. The BBWAA elected Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio to the Hall today. Mike Piazza got about 70%, and 75% is needed for induction.

Very brief thumbnails about the new Hall-of-Famers.

Johnson: I wonder about the cap, but I think (sorry, Seattle) that it’ll be Arizona. 5X CYA (4 with AZ, and another year a runner-up w/AZ) 10x All-Star. 303-166. 4875 K (2nd all-time and most by a lefty). 3x 20-game winner. 162 g. ave. 17-9, 3.29, ERA+ 135. 7-9, 3.50 in the postseason. 2001 WS Co-MVP, when he won 3 games in that WS. Twice in the top 10 for MVP. Too bad he was past his prime and only mediocre in his two seasons as a Yankee. (One decent enough year, ERA+ 112, 17-8, 3.79, but the other bad, 17-11, 5.00, ERA+ 90). Won CYA in each league.

Pedro:  His ERA+ is the best of any starter, ever. 2x  20-game winner. Like Johnson, won the CYA in each league. 219-100. 2.93 career ERA, ERA+ 154. 8X All-Star. 3x CYA. 2x top 5 for MVP, inc. runnerup in 1999. 6-4, 3.46 postseason. Definitely a Boston hat. Ave. 162 g. season, 17-8, 2.93.  Over 3000K.

Smoltz: Braves. 213-155. 154 saves. Only pitcher ever with over 200 wins and over 150 saves. Started as a starter, arm problems forced him to close, then went back into the rotation.  Led league in wins 2x (one-time 20 g. winner w/24). Led MLB with 55 saves in 2002. 162 g. ave. 12-9, 9 saves, 3.33, ERA+ 125. This is hurt by the four years he spent closing. 8x All-Star. 1996 CYA. Over 3000 K. 8th in MVP voting in 2002.  Great postseason pitcher, 15-4, 2.67, 4 saves in the postseason.

Biggio: Whole career w/Astros. 7x All-Star. Twice top-5 for MVP. 3060 hits.  Versatile. Mostly 2B, but also C, CF, LF. 162 g. average .281-17-67, 24 SB. Over 400 SB. OPS+ 112.  4 x GG. 40 postseason games, .234-2-11.

Game 107. Yanks lose 3-2.

The Yanks are off today, but we’ll see if there is any action as the trade deadline nears. Today at 4 p.m. is the deadline.

IMHO, they really could use a bat. A righty-hitting OF with some pop, who would mostly play RF, to me, is a must.

Last night (Wed.), the Yanks lost to Texas, 3-2. They only got four hits in the whole game.

Brett Gardner continued his amazing power surge by leading off the game with a HR (14) for the second night in a row. He has four HR in the last three games.

Hiroki Kuroda had a bad first inning. Although he didn’t give up any runs the rest of the way, the three he gave up in the first inning doomed him.

Kuroda went 7, 3 R, 9 H, 1 walk and 4 K. He falls to 7-7, 3.98.

David Huff pitched the eighth. 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 walks, 0 K. Overall ERA 3.95.

Jacoby Ellsbury hit a HR in the third (9) to cut it to 3-2, but other than the two solo HRs, the only other hits the Yanks got all night were two hits by Beltran.

The Yanks fall to 55-52, and are now 5 1/2 back of Baltimore in the AL East. Third place. They are now 3 games behind Toronto for the second wild-card spot.

I don’t know if the Yanks will make a deal. Some OF names discussed have been Marlon Byrd (36, .270-20-60 for PHI, his HR and RBI would lead the Yanks, OPS+ 120) and Josh Willingham (35, .223-11-31, OPS+ 124 for MIN in 59 games). Compare those Righty-hitting outfielders with Ichiro (40, .269-1-14, OPS+ 80, and only 8 of Ichiro’s 63 hits are for extra bases. In his last 36 games, Ichiro is hitting .214). If they do get a Righty-power bat to play RF, he could take Almonte’s spot.

I still don’t know why Jose Pirela and/or Robert Refsnyder haven’t been promoted. Maybe some youth can inject some energy (and some much needed more production) into the lineup. Some comparisons.

Roberts 36 .237-5-21 OPS .659 OPS+ 85
Kelly Johnson (on 15-day DL) 32 .219-6-22 OPS .677 OPS+ 89

Refsnyder 23, 2B/RF, total AA/AAA .323-13-50 OPS .919
Pirela 24, has played 1B/2B/SS/LF and RF this year. All AAA. .309-8-43 OPS .784

Of course, replacing Roberts/Johnson with Refsnyder/Pirela at 2B/UT may mean eating $$$. But Roberts/Johnson a) aren’t producing much and b) aren’t your future.

Note that Zellous Wheeler isn’t affected by the moves.

Maybe the Yanks can catch lightning in a bottle if they do pick up a Byrd or Willingham and combine that with Roberts/Johnson being replaced by Refsnyder/Pirela. Maybe not.

But the Yanks came thisclose to being swept in Texas. They are losing so many close games because of the offense. It couldn’t hurt to try what I am suggesting, could it?

Just my opinion.

Game 100. Yanks win rain-shortened game, 2-1.

On July 13, the Yanks lost a rain-shortened game 3-1 in 4 1/2 innings down in Baltimore.

Mother Nature decided to even up the score as the Yanks won a rain-shortened game Wednesday night, 2-1 in 4 1/2 innings.

David Phelps went five innings for the win. He goes to 5-4 and has quietly lowered his ERA to 3.77.

1 R, 5 H, 0 walks and 3 k.

After Texas got a run in the top of the third on a couple of singles and a DP ball, the Yanks came back with two in the bottom of the third. Cervelli doubled, went to third on a groundout and scored on a balk. Gardner then homered, his 10th of the season. Can you believe Gardner is tied for second on the team in HR?

In the bottom of the fifth, the rains came so hard and fast that the grounds crew had trouble putting the tarp on. Even after the rain subsided, the field was a mess and the game was called.

The Yanks improve to 52-48, three behind the Orioles in the AL East. They are just 1/2 back of the final wild card spot. Before the game, the Yanks put Kelly Johnson on the DL due to a groin strain, called up P Chris LeRoux and DFA’d P Bruce Billings.

Games 95-98. Yanks sweep Reds, lose opener to Texas.

First off, I’m sorry I haven’t been on in a few days. I switched my home phone to something that would save me $30 a month. What they didn’t tell me was I’d lose my DSL access and I’ve been struggling the past few days to get that restored.

Without that, I had no internet access.

So a brief recap of the Yanks since the All-Star break.

They swept the Reds three straight.

Friday the Yanks beat the Reds, 4-3. Phelps w, 4-4, 3.87. Robertson S, 2.67. Betances pitched, era to 1.42.

Ellsbury HR #7. McCann rbi, Beltran 2 hits, rbi.

Saturday a 7-1 win. McCarthy was great. 4-10, 4.63, but that is combined AZ/NYY. Gardner 3 RBI, Kelly Johnson 2 h, 2 rbi.

Sunday the Yanks got a gift. Kuroda was great, ND. Betances blew a 2-1 lead when he gave up a HR. But in the bottom of the 9th, Ellsbury (who saved a run with a sliding catch) got a hit. He was 4 for 4 in the game. He stole 2nd and went to third on a WP. McCann hit a popup that should have been caught but fell & Ellsbury scored the winning run. This put the Yanks at 50-47 and three back.

Tonight (Monday) the Yanks lost 4-2. Sometimes, when you try to squeeze another out of your starter, you don’t get it and such was the case tonight. Ellsbury had a HR (8) but the Yanks didn’t hit a pitcher they should have. They made five errors, three by starter Shane Greene.

Greene is now 2-1, 2.79. 5 2/3 tonight, 4 R, 5 H, 1 walk and 5 K. He entered the sixth with a 2-1 lead.

Thornton couldn’t save him. 2 batters, 2 hits.

Jeter is now at 3412 hits, 7 behind Yaz and 18 behind Wagner on the all-time hits list. He’ll be honored at the Stadium on Sunday, Sept. 7th.

Teix is out a few days with a strained lat.

The Yanks went into Monday night’s game 3 back in the AL East and 1 1/2 back of the final wild card spot.

I’m sorry for no details, but when you are trying to catch up on four games…

Game 92. Yanks fall to .500 with 3-2 loss in 10.

Hiroki Kuroda pitched a good game, but once again got little run support as the Yanks lost 3-2 in 10 innings in Baltimore Friday night to fall to .500.

The Yanks got a run in the second on Brian Roberts’ fifth HR of the year, and another in the third on Kelly Johnson’s sixth HR of the season, but that was all.

Kuroda gave up two runs in the fourth on a HBP, single, WP that enabled a run to score, another WP to move a runner to third, and a SF. Ouch.

He went 7, 2 R, 3 H, 0 walks and 2 K. Except for those wild pitches and HBP (he did hit another batter in the fourth, but no damage with that one), he was great. 4.10.

Betances once again proved why he is an All-Star. 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 3 K. 1.46.

Adam Warren gave up a leadoff double and a one-out single in the bottom of the 10th to lose the game. (L, 1-5, 2.79). 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 walks, 1 K.

The loss knocks the Yanks down to .500, 46-46. They are now five games behind the Orioles in the AL East. Third place. They are 3 1/2 out of the final wild card spot.

Earlier in the day, the Yanks DFA’d Jim Miller, who had a bad outing Thursday night, and called up Matt Daley. They also acquired Jeff Francis from the A’s for cash considerations and a player to be named later.

Francis, a 33-year-old lefty, was 0-2, 5.89 in 10 games this year for Cincinnati and Oakland. One start out of those ten games. The long-time Rockie is 70-80, 4.95 in his MLB career with an ERA+ of 94. His best years were in 2005-2007 when he was 44-32, 4.65 and helped Colorado to their only WS appearance in 2007. Since then he is 23-46, 5.22 for various teams.

Game 78. Yanks blank Bosox 6-0.

The Yanks hit 3 HR tonight, inc. back-to-back HR by Johnson & Gardner, in beating Boston 6-0.

Vidal Nuno turned out (surprisingly?) his best outing of the year. He, along with a few relievers, tossed a combined 3-hit shutout.

The Yanks jumped out right away in the first when with one out Jeter singled, Ellsbury doubled and Teix hit a SF.

In the fourth, Johnson and Gardner hit back-to-back HR (Johnson’s a 2-run HR) to make it 4-0. For Johnson, HR #5 and for Gardner, HR #7.

Nuno went 5 2/3, (W, 2-4, 5.42). 0 R, 2 H, 2 walks and 5 K.

Betances 1 1/3, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 2 K. 1.39.

Warren 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 2.79.

Thornton the 9th, 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and a 1K. 2.70.

Brian McCann did provide an extra cushion in the 8th with a 2-run HR (9).

Derek Jeter’s two hits put him at 3390 career.

Game 71. Yanks sweep Toronto with 6-4 win. Close to 1 1/2.

The Yanks swept the Blue Jays tonight, closing the sweep with a 6-4 win. The win put the Yanks at 38-33 and closed the gap to 1 1/2.

Toronto has now lost 16 in a row at Yankee Stadium.

David Phelps (W, 3-4, 4.13) pitched a strong 7 innings, and his only mistake was a 2-run HR he gave up to Melky.

7 IP, 2 R, 6 H, 2 walks and 7 k.

Shawn Kelley made things tight, giving up a 2-run dinger to Juan Encarnacion. 2/3 IP, 2 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 4.58. He’s been shaky since his return from the DL.

Matt Thonton 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 3.21.

Adam Warren the save, his second. 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks, 0 K. 2.04.

The Yanks got off to a quick lead, scoring in the first on a double by Gardner, a single by Jeter (2 hits tonight take him to 3385) and a SF by Ellsbury.

Ellsbury (20) and Roberts (6) each stole two bases tonight.

Kelly Johnson had a SF in the second to make it 2-0, but couldn’t tack on as Jeter struck out with the bases loaded. In the third, Phelps gave up Melky’s game-tying HR.

The Yanks got it back in the bottom of the third on a SF by Beltran. At this point, it appeared the Yanks were getting sac flies (which was good) but not getting that big blow to break the game open. They were 3 for 14 with RISP and left 11 on. The margin of victory could have been bigger. For a while, you wondered if they were doing enough. Turns out, they were.

Beltran got a ground-rule double in the fifth to make it 4-2. Roberts 2 SB in the sixth led to an RBI groundout by Jeter to make it 5-2.

In the seventh, Solarte walked with the bases-loaded to force in a run. 6-2. Then Kelley gave up the 2-run HR in the 8th for the final score of 6-4.

A great sweep by the Yanks to cut the margin from 4 1/2 to 1 1/2 on Toronto. Now to separate themselves from Baltimore this weekend by winning two of the three or sweeping the series.

Beltran had 2 rbi. Jeter, Ellsbury & Teixeira, 2-3-4 in the lineup, each had two hits. As mentioned above, both Ellsbury and Roberts stole two bases.