Tag Archives: Mitchell

Game 162. Thanks to Arizona, Yanks get WC game at home.


The Yankees ended the season by losing six of their last seven games, ending at 87-75, but will host the wild-card play-in game because Arizona beat Houston 5-3 in the last game of the season.

Ugh. No one likes to “back into” anything.

Michael Pineda was knocked out in the fourth inning today. More discouraging to Yankees’ fans was who replaced him. First Chris Capuano, who was DFA’d FOUR times by the Yanks this year, then Bryan Mitchell, who hasn’t been the same since he was hit in the face by a liner. As someone wrote, the two guys (out of 20 on the expanded roster) with the highest ERAs of anyone with over 8 IP.

The offense disappointed again today, going 1 for 12 with RISP in the 9-4 loss. This isn’t the way you want to enter the playoffs.

Pineda gave up two in the first, but the Yanks did get a run back in the second on an RBI groundout by Ackley, one guy who is hot lately.

But the O’s got 3 in the fourth and the way the Yanks have been playing lately, that was enough. At that point, Yankees’ fans were hoping for Arizona to beat Houston.

Two in the fifth by the Orioles made it 7-1 and ensured that the Yanks would get swept in Baltimore.

The Yanks got one back in the sixth on a Gregorius triple and two in the seventh on a Bird single and Ackley RBI groundout. It made it 7-4 but a two-run HR by Chris Davis (MLB HR leader with 47) made the score 9-4, the final.

The Yanks need to send a BIG gift to Paul Goldschmidt of the Diamondbacks, whose two-run HR won the game for Arizona and gave the home field advantage for the wild card game to the Yankees.

The Yanks finished 87-75, three games better than last year and two games better than in 2013. Mark Teixeira was (according to WAR) their best player this year by an eyelash over Dellin Betances. The problem, of course, is that Teix missed the last 40 games of the year, and will miss all of the postseason, with a broken leg.

Attendance this year was the lowest since 1998.

So the Yanks will face Houston Tuesday night at home, and although I will be rooting hard for the Yanks (winner goes to KC), it isn’t promising. Still, anything could happen in one game.


it’ll be Tanaka (12-7,  3.51) vs. Keuchel (20-8, 2.48). Keuchel beat the Yanks twice this year, pitching a CG six-hit shutout with 12 K on June 25, and pitching seven innings of 3-hit shutout ball on August 25 with 9 K. 16 IP, 0 R, 9 H, 1 walk and 21 K. Ugh. The Yanks can only hope he is off (3 days rest) on Tuesday night.

Tanaka faced Houston once this year, and it wasn’t good. 6 R in 5 IP on June 27.

The Yanks are a lefty-leaning lineup that has been hurting without the switch-hitting Teixeira’s bat from the right side.

Against the lefty Keuchel, you wonder what Girardi will do with the lineup, especially since lefty hitters Ellsbury (ended the year at .257, terrible for a table-setting leadoff hitter making $22MM and who is just .224-6-27 with just 7 SB since coming off the DL July 8). That is certainly NOT setting the table as the leadoff hitter.

McCann is 8 for 58 since Sept. 12. (.138).

Gardner, like Ellsbury, finished under .260. That is NOT setting the table. You wanted both to hit .280-.290 with about 35-40 SB apiece. Instead both finished under .260 with 41 SB—–COMBINED.

Since September 12, Gardner is 12 for 72….  .167.  I don’t mean to discourage, but those are three lefty bats all struggling, and you are facing a lefty pitcher in Keuchel on Tuesday night.

Since Sept 12, Headley is 12 for 71… slightly better than the .167 of Gardner, and Headley is a switch-hitter.  Another struggling.

Does Girardi have the guts to go with Refsnyder at 2B,  Murphy at C and Young in CF or LF, especially since McCann, Ellsbury and Ellsbury have been struggling so badly? Does he play Ackley in LF for the struggling Gardner?

Does he take it one step further and play Ryan at 3B?

With Ellsbury, McCann, Gardner all struggling, could he go with an innovative lineup vs. Keuchel such as…

Young CF
Refsnyder 2B
A-Rod DH
Beltran RF
Bird 1B
Murphy C
Ackley LF
Gregorius SS
Ryan 3B

Tanaka P

and bring off the bench if needed against a righty pitcher Ellsbury, McCann, Headley and Gardner?

I doubt it. But those four have been killing the Yanks recently. If in the lineup, they have to wake up.

As for today…

Pineda (L, 12-10, 4.37) 3 2/3 IP, 4 R,  6 H, 0 walks and 5 K.
Capuano 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 7.97
Mitchell 1/3 IP, 2 R, 1 H, 2 walks and 0 K. 6.37
Pazos 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walks and 2 K. 0.00 (don’t see how they don’t take him for the postseason roster).
Bailey 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walks and 0 K. 8.31
Pinder 1 IP, 0 r, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 2.93 (Should merit consideration).
Wilson 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 3.10
Miller 1/3 IP, 1 R, 0 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 2.04
Cotham 1/3 1 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K 6.52 

You hope Tanaka can give you 7 strong (preferably scoreless) and then go to Wilson, Betances and Miller. The bullpen has been shaky lately, showing signs of wear. But Tanaka has to have a good game and go deep.

The Yanks have to play littleball, which they haven’t played (or been good at) this year. They can’t expect to bomb Keuchel out. They have to scratch for runs, steal, hit and run, bunt runners over and not go, say 0 for 10 with RISP. They must take advantage of all their opportunities.

And Joe Girardi must go for broke. I’m interested in what lineup he puts out there Tuesday night; if he benches some guys.

I remember Billy Martin benching Reggie Jackson for Game 5 of the 1977 ALCS for Paul Blair because Reggie could not hit Splittorff.

Maybe Girardi channels Martin and benches some guys.

We will see.

One game. Let’s go Yankees.

Game 157. Yanks lose to Boston, 10-4.


Michael Pineda gave up six runs in the top of the first and even though the Yanks scored four in the bottom of the inning, they couldn’t come back as they lost to Boston 10-4 Tuesday night.

The loss means Toronto’s magic # to clinch the AL East title is down to 1. The 86-71 Yankees have a magic number of 2 to get into the wild card game, and 3 to be the top wild-card seed and have that game played at home.

Weather will be a factor over the next couple of days.

The Angels have now taken over the second wild-card spot…by 1/2 game over Houston.

Pineda did stay in the game to give the bullpen a breather, and did settle down after that first inning, but it was too late.

The Yanks got their runs on an RBI groundout by McCann, RBI double by Beltran and a two-run HR (10) by Dustin Ackley.

But after that four-run first, they were quiet the rest of the night.

Stephen Drew is not only not playing because of performance (or lack thereof). He has been having dizzy spells and could be done for the year. He has been undergoing tests to see if they are concussion-related.

Ever since Teix got hurt, the Yanks are having trouble against lefties. They are thinking of giving backup C John Ryan Murphy some time at 1B.

Pineda (L, 12-9, 4.24) 6 IP, 7 R, 7 H, 0 walks and 4 K.
Mitchell 2 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 2 walks and 2 K. 5.83
Martin 1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 5.95

Game 155. Yanks reduce magic number to get into postseason to 3 with 6-1 win.


With a 6-1 win Sunday over the White Sox, the Yanks reduced their magic number to get into the postseason to 3.

They remain 4 behind Toronto with 7 to go for the division. But they maintain a 4 1/2 game lead over Houston for WC #1 and five over the Angels for WC #2.

Luis Severino pitched six shutout innings in the victory.

The Yanks scored in the first on a Brian McCann SF. A HR (9) by Dustin Ackley and a passed ball made it 3-0 in the third.

After a White Sox HR cut it to 3-1 in the top of the seventh, Jacoby Ellsbury’s single made it 4-1 in the bottom of the same frame.

The Yanks tacked two more on in the eighth on a single by Greg Bird and SF by Slade Heathcott.

But it was Severino’s day as once again the 21-year-old rookie was superb.

With their 86th win of the season, the Yanks topped their totals of 2014 and 2013.

Severino (W, 5-3, 2.77) 6 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 1 walk and 2 K
Wilson 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 3.20
Betances 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 1.34
Mitchell 1 Ip, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 5.60.

Game 151. Yanks blanked, 4-0.


Ivan Nova did a decent job filling in for Masahiro Tanaka, who was supposed to start this game but who has a strained hamstring, but the Yankees’ bullpen and offense didn’t do much as the Yanks were blanked by Toronto, 4-0, on Wednesday night.

The loss drops the Yanks 3 1/2 behind Toronto in the AL East with 11 games to go. The Yanks, at 83-68, maintain a four game lead over Houston for WC #1, and a five game lead over the Twins for WC #2. The magic # to make it into the play-in Wild Card game remains at 7.

One problem with the Yanks this year has been that their starters don’t go deep into games. The Yanks for years have waited out other teams’ pitchers and feasted on the middle relievers. That is just what Toronto did to the Yanks last night.

Nova tossed five shutout innings but had to be pulled in the sixth when his pitch count reached 110. Toronto got a run in the sixth, but then a 3-run HR by ex-Yankee Russell Martin in the seventh was the crushing blow. Meanwhile the offense put up nothing.

As for the relievers who gave up the run, it says a lot. In what may be the biggest game of the year, it was James Pazos, Caleb Cotham and Andrew Bailey who came in after Nova. No offense to the three of them, but none of them went north with the club in April.   It was Pazos’ ninth MLB game. It was Cotham’s ninth MLB game as well. For Bailey, it was his only his sixth game since 2013.

Bailey was one strike away from getting out of the inning when he gave up Martin’s HR. The pitch before? Just missed. Ouch.

So three things have hurt them. 1) Starters not going deep enough into games. 2) The fact that with Eovaldi’s injury, Warren has had to go back into the rotation. That would have been a perfect spot for him. 3) No one has stepped up to fill those innings between when a pitcher leaves and the foursome of Shreve, Wilson, Betances and Miller can arrive. Capuano can’t be trusted there, and Girardi couldn’t use Shreve, Wilson, Betances or Miller that early in the game. Also, Shreve, Wilson, Betances and Miller are showing some signs of wearing down, and that goes back to the starters not giving enough length.

And all indications are that Hal will NOT be going after (and breaking the bank for) David Price this offseason.

Those extra three outs a starter can give you are huge. The Yanks need to get those.

Nova (L, 6-9, 4.87) 5 2/3 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 2 walks and 6 K.
Pazos 0 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 0.00
Cotham 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 5.40
Bailey 1 IP, 3 R, 2 H, 1 walk, 2 K.   7.50
Mitchell 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 5.81.

Game 144. Yanks lose, 6-3.


If this offends people, I’m sorry but I need to vent.

The Yanks missed out on a golden opportunity tonight, and I have to question a couple of Joe Girardi moves.

Don’t get me wrong. I like Girardi. I think he is a good manager. But hear me out.

Number 1. I have been advocating for DAYS to bench Ellsbury and play Heathcott in CF instead. Now Heathcott won the game last night with a HR. Ellsbury was 1 for his last 29.

Ever hear of playing the hot hand?

Nope. Joe stuck with Ellsbury, who went 0 for 4, dropping him to .251 (he was .324 when he went on the DL) and 1 for his last 33. Heathcott sat. Joe, don’t you think a minor leaguer can at least go better than 1 for his last 33? 

This…. from the SAME Girardi that credited A-Rod’s resurgence (and A-Rod now has a bone bruise in his knee) on the fact that A-Rod couldn’t play in Atlanta due to the fact that the NL has no DH and that those days off gave A-Rod the rest he needed to rejuvenate himself.

Hey, Joe (sounds like a Jimi Hendrix song here)…. don’t you think the same can help Ellsbury? Really. If a few days off rejuvenated Alex, don’t you think the same can get Ellsbury going?

How about sitting Ellsbury Wednesday night. Thursday is an off day. That is TWO days off. Play the hot hand, Heathcott, instead. If you have some balls, sit Ellsbury Friday as well. Give him three days off. See how he responds.

For God’s sake, it couldn’t hurt.

For goodness sakes, I know Heathcott is a rookie, but even he could probably do better than 1 for 33.

One other thing, Joe. Am I the only one who has noticed that Bryan Mitchell isn’t the same since he took that liner off of his nose? His ERA is over 6.00 now. You trusted him in a game where it was 4-3 Rays and you let the game get away by putting him in there. You have an off day on Thursday. Bringing in Mitchell there was a bad move.

Since getting hit by that liner, Mitchell has given up 8 R in 4 1/3 IP.

This loss really hurt because the Twins lost and the lowly Braves beat Toronto. The Yanks stay 3 back of the Blue Jays where they could be 2 back. The magic # to get into the wild card game was reduced to 15.

The Yanks went up 1-0 in the first on an A-Rod HR. #32 meant that A-Rod would be the Yanks HR leader this year since it passed Teix and Teix is done for the year. Career HR #686 was hit #3061, passing Craig Biggio on the all-time list.

Warren, making his first start in a while, gave up single runs in the first and second, but considering the rust, did Ok. 2 runs in 4 IP.

Bird hit a 2-run HR in the fourth (6) to put the Yanks up 3-2. A-Rod was on board so his two runs scored left him two shy of 2000 runs scored for his career.

Nick Rumbelow gave up a two-run HR in the sixth and Mitchell the two in the eighth to lose it for the Yanks.

Warren 4 IP, 2 R, 6 H, 0 walks and 4 K. 3.33
Pazos 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 0.00
Rumbelow (L 1-1, 3.95) 1 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 walks and 2 K.
Shreve 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 1 K. 2.40
Pinder 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 walk and 2 K. 2.39
Mitchell 2/3 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 1 walk and 1 K. 6.04
Martin 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 6.00

Games 140 and 141. Yanks division title hopes dim after getting swept in DH by Jays.


The Yanks may have to settle for the wild card after getting swept by the Blue Jays today, 9-5 in 11 innings in Game 1 and 10-7 in Game 2.

The one bright spot was three HR by Brett Gardner today.

One bad spot: Jacoby Ellsbury was 0 for 9 in the doubleheader. He is down to .259. When he went on the DL he was at .324. That shows you how bad he has been since coming back. He hasn’t been setting the table. Maybe Joe Girardi should bench him tomorrow and play Slade Heathcott in CF to give Ellsbury a day off?

The Yanks are now 4 1/2 behind Toronto with just 21 games left. They are 77-64 and as of this writing are still three up for WC #1. But they have lost five in a row and need to start winning again soon. The Yanks are 77-64.

With a Twins loss, the magic number just to get into the wild card game is down to 18.

There were a couple of questionable decisions made today.

Game 1. 

The Yanks got off to a 4-1 lead but Michael Pineda could not hold it.

Gardner homered in the first (14) to put the Yanks up 1-0. Headley homered in the second (11) to make it 2-0.

But Pineda gave up a HR to Bautista in the fourth. 2-1.

A-Rod hit a 2-run HR (31, 685 career) to make it 4-1 in the fourth. But Pineda could not hold that lead, giving up two homers and three runs to make it 4-4.

Toronto got a HR off of Dellin Betances in the eighth. 5-4. I am worried about Betances’ workload and recent outings. He seems to have tired and his outings lately have not been sharp.

The Yanks tied it in the eighth, but here is where they may have lost the game. Ellsbury and Gardner walked, and after an out, there was a WP. Ellsbury moved up but Gardner didn’t. Why not? Because when McCann singled, it tied the game instead of putting the Yanks up. The Yanks loaded the bases with one out when A-Rod walked, but they could not get the run in as Headley popped up and Bird’s sharp grounder was stabbed and Bird was thrown out on a nice play by Toronto’s second baseman. The failure to score that second run was fatal.

It was brutal how the Yanks lost this game in the eleventh. Toronto scored four runs on only one hit. Five walks and a HBP. Sheesh.

Pineda 5 1/3 IP, 4 R, 6 H, 2 walks and 5K. 4.25
Wilson 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 3.12
Betances 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 walks and 2 K. 1.48
Miller 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 4 K. 1.87
Mitchell (L, 0-2, 5.47) 1/3 IP, 3 R, 0 H, 2 walks, 1 HBP, 1 K.
Shreve 1/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 3 walks and 1 K. 2.44
Goody 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 2.45

Game 2.

Ivan Nova had nothing and was knocked out in the second inning when he gave up six runs. I don’t know if it is the adjustment or fatigue from coming back off the Tommy John surgery but in his last seven starts, Nova’s ERA has jumped from 3.10 to 5.11.

Brett Gardner hit a 3-run HR (15) in the fifth to cut it to 6-3. A Didi Gregorius double in the sixth cut it to 6-4 but with runners on second and third and one out the Yanks couldn’t get the hit to tie the game. Young PH and popped up and the slumping Ellsbury lined out.

The Blue Jays immediately responded with four in the top of the seventh. Here is something else I find questionable. Girardi let Chris Capuano start the seventh inning. Granted he had pitched three scoreless innings prior to the seventh, but…. it’s Capuano. He was DFA’d FOUR times by the Yanks in the last month, cleared waivers all FOUR times, was optioned down to AAA, well, you get the point. A fourth inning for Capuano in the biggest series of the year? Sorry, I don’t get it. Sure enough, the game got away. Four Toronto runs to make it 10-4.

Brett Gardner’s SECOND three-run HR of the game (16) and third of the doubleheader cut the lead to 10-7 in the bottom of the eighth but that was all she wrote. Gardner drove in six of the Yanks’ seven runs in the game.

Nova (L, 6-8, 5.11) 1 2/3 IP, 6 R, 7 H, 1 walk and 1 K.
Rumbelow 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 0 K. 2.84
Capuano 3 2/3 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 1 walk and 3 K. 7.91
Pinder 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 walks and 3 K. 2.45
Pazos 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 walks and 0 K. 0.00

Boston’s David Ortiz joined the 500 HR club today.

Game 138. Yanks miss chance to gain ground, lose 5-3.


When you see the team you are trying to gain ground on getting spanked, you have to capitalize on the opportunity. Tonight the Yanks didn’t, as they lost 5-3 to the Orioles.

They did it in many ways. Defensively, Stephen Drew botched one play that led to a run in the first. His two-0ut, two-run error later in the fifth also hurt. The offense got only four hits all game. The player who drove in all three Yankees’ runs and had two of the four hits seemed to take a bad route to a ball in the 9th. The bullpen couldn’t hold Baltimore.

Brett Gardner pinch-hit but didn’t start because of the shoulder issue. Meanwhile, Jacoby Ellsbury is down to .267. The Yanks need the table setters.

Baltimore got a run in the first. Maybe if Drew can start the 4-6-3 DP instead of having to settle for a 4-3 out (with the runner moving up), the O’s don’t score.

Beltran tied the game with an opposite-field homer in the bottom of the first. HR #15 was #388 of Beltran’s career.

Beltran put the Yanks up 3-1 in the third with a two-run single. After that, it was all downhill.

With two out and two on in the fifth, CC hit a batter to load the bases and Warren came in. He got a ground ball to Headley, who lollypopped a throw to second. Yes, the throw should have had a little more zip, but Drew has to catch the ball. He didn’t and two runs scored on what should have been an inning-ending groundout. Tie game.

In the eighth, Warren gave up a HR to Steve Pearce to put the O’s up 4-3. The O’s added an insurance run in the 9th on a double by Chris Davis. I don’t know if Beltran could have got it, but in looking at the video, it did appear as if he got a bad read and took a bad route to the ball.

As mentioned, the Yanks got just four hits in the game, two by Beltran. Jacoby Ellsbury, as mentioned above, is down to .267 and Brett Gardner has missed a few games with a bum shoulder. It would be beneficial if both could play, get hot and set the table.

So now the Yanks start a big four-game series vs. Toronto tomorrow night 1 1/2 games behind the Blue Jays for the AL East lead. Since Toronto was spanked by Boston tonight, it would have been nice to win this one to cut that lead to 1/2 game. It wasn’t to be.

The Yanks are 77-61, 1 1/2 back. As for the WC, they still have a  3 1/2 game lead for WC#1 as of this writing, and a 6 game lead for WC#2. The magic # to make the playoffs, even as the second wild card, is 19.

Sabathia 4 2/3 IP, 3 R, 1 ER, 4 H, 3 walks and 5 K. 5.16
Warren (L, 6-6, 3.29) 2 2/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 walk and 1 K.
Rumbelow 2/3 IP, 1 R, 0 H, 1 walks and 1 K. 3.18
Pazos 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 Walks and 0 K. 0.00
Mitchell 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 walk and 1 K. 4.44.