Tag Archives: Ohtani

Game 145. Yanks shut down by Brew Crew, 4-1.

Jameson Taillon made one huge mistake, but in giving up homers, a solo HR is one thing, but a 3-run HR is quite another. Taillon’s mistake was in giving up a 3-run HR to Willy Adames, and it was the difference in a 4-1 Yankees loss to Milwaukee on Saturday night.

Adames killed the Yankees with a HR Friday night, and this 3-run HR in the third inning made Adames Milwaukee’s single-season leader for a SS, topping the 29 HOF Robin Yount had in his MVP season of 1982.

The Yankees only run came on a HR by Josh Donaldson (15) in the top of the fourth inning.

The Brewers tacked on another run in the bottom of the fifth. They only got four hits in the game, but that 3-run HR was the killer.

The Yanks only got five hits, striking out 12x. Giancarlo Stanton (.212) struck out all four times he was up. Rookie Oswaldo Cabrera was 0 for 4 with 3 strikeouts. Hopefully the Yanks get Anthony Rizzo back today from the IL

Marwin Gonzalez of the Yanks had to leave the game in the top of the third when catcher Victor Caratini’s return throw to the pitcher struck Gonzalez in the head. Such a freak thing.

With the loss, the Yanks’ lead in the AL East shrunk to 4 1/2 games over Toronto. So today is a big day with Gerrit Cole on the mound. An almost-must win today. Monday is an off day before the Yanks come home to face Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Speaking of Cole, his 228 strikeouts lead the majors. He is 20 behind Ron Guidry’s Yankee season record of 248, set in Guidry’s magical CYA season of 1978.

The Yanks magic # for clinching the AL East remains 13. With the Orioles losing yesterday, the Yanks’ magic # for a playoff spot is 6 (they own the tiebreaker over the Orioles).


Donaldson solo HR (15)

Taillon (L, 13-5) 5 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 2 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR. 4.04
Weissert 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 6.75
Chapman 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 4.55
Marinaccio 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 3 K. 1 HBP 1.88

Note on the MVP debate

Judge WAR (Wins Above Replacement) 9.2. Yanks are in 1st, 87-58. So with a normal player, subtract 9 wins. Yanks then are 78-67, and instead of in 1st place, 2nd seed in AL behind Houston, getting a bye into the ALDS, they are in 3rd place in AL East, and squeak into the playoffs as the #6 seed and have to play in the best-of-3 wild card round.

Ohtani WAR 8.7 (combined hitting and pitching). Angels are 63-82. Tied for 3rd in division, and FAR OUT OF PLAYOFF CONTENTION. Take 9 wins away and they are 54-91, in fourth place in their division, barely above Oakland for the cellar.

Ohtani is a great player. But who has been more valuable? The Angels have been out of it since what, June? There is no pennant race pressure on him.

Meanwhile Judge has been carrying a team on his back regarding winning or losing the AL East, and the higher or lower seed that would entail.

MVP: JUDGE.

UPDATE: Frankie Montas is scheduled for an MRI on his shoulder.

Game 129. Judge hits #50, but Yanks lose, 4-3.

Aaron Judge became the third Yankee (after Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle; A-Rod* also did it, but two of the three times A-Rod* did it were with Texas, and the asterisk is there on purpose) and tenth player in MLB history with multi-50-HR seasons, but the Yanks (78-51) lost to the Angels Monday night, 4-3.

The Yanks’ lead over Tampa Bay is 7. The magic number for clinching the AL East is 28.

Yankees’ starter Frankie Montas gave up 3 HR, one to Shohei Ohtani, who has 4 career HR off of Montas. Ex-Yankee Mike Ford also tagged Montas.

Luis Rengifo started the scoring by hitting a HR off Montas in the bottom of the second.

The Yanks tied it in the third, but the way they did it raises questions. Also, Aaron Boone’s lineup raises questions.

With one out, Isiah Kiner-Falefa walked and Oswaldo Cabrera singled IKF to third. D.J. LeMahieu squeezed IKF home to tie the game. Now in certain circumstances I love the squeeze. Not here. The play took the bat out of Aaron Judge’s hands. He was then intentionally walked. Andrew Benintendi then grounded out to end the inning.

I can see D.J. not wanting to hit into a DP. Understood. But a sac fly gets the run in and then first base is NOT open, and the Angels probably DON’T walk Judge then. But with first base open, the Angels walk a 49 (now 50) HR guy to get to a guy with 4 HR this season. A no-brainer. Your best hitter had the bat taken out of his hands.

Which leads us to the lineup. Boone needs to stop changing the lineup every day and stick with something. And he needs to protect Judge. Put Giancarlo Stanton behind him. Now I understand when Stanton was on the IL that other than Rizzo, the only choices were Josh Donaldson or Gleyber Torres, both struggling, and that for a while, Rizzo was out with back issues. But you need someone behind Judge that the pitchers fear. Roger Maris in 1961 had Mantle behind him. It’s why Maris DID NOT GET ONE INTENTIONAL WALK ALL YEAR LONG IN 1961. Granted Stanton is still getting his bearings after coming off the IL, but he inspires more fear than Benintendi does. I’d have had a lineup of DJ, Benintendi, Judge, Stanton, Rizzo, Torres (Donaldson didn’t start last night). Donaldson 6 if Torres isn’t starting. Cabrera 7th. The kid is handling himself well. See below. He almost saved the game for the Yankees. Then Trevino or Higgy eighth, with IKF ninth. And LEAVE IT THAT WAY.

The Yanks went up 2-1 in the top of the fourth when Anthony Rizzo homered (29).

But in the bottom of the fourth, Ex-Yankee Mike Ford homered to tie the game.

In the top of the fifth, IKF doubled. Two outs later, Judge was intentionally walked again (see previous paragraph) to face Benintendi, who flied out. Now I don’t know what Stanton would have done, and this isn’t a knock on Benintendi, but you need a 24 HR Stanton or a 29 HR Rizzo protecting Judge, not a 4 HR Benintendi. The bat gets taken out of your best hitter’s hands again. Twice in a game that you lost 4-3 your best hitter didn’t get a chance to swing the bat.

In the bottom of the fifth, Ohtani, who seems to own Montas, hit a 2-run HR to put the Angels up 4-3. It was, as mentioned above, the fourth career HR Ohtani has hit off of Montas. The mistake here, as pointed out on MLB network’s broadcast, was that it was the fourth straight splitter thrown in the same location. To Ohtani’s credit, he adjusted. Montas needed to mix things up a little better there to keep Ohtani off balance.

In the eighth, Judge finally got to swing the bat again, and that is when he hit HR #50 to cut the Angels’ lead to 4-3.

The Yanks had a runner on in the ninth with two out. Rookie Oswaldo Cabrera got a good swing on one, but the ball was caught on the warning track by Mike Trout for the final out. The pinch-runner was Tim Locastro, called up when Marwin Gonzalez was put on paternity leave.

The purpose of this blog is not only to report, but also to provide objective analysis. I would do certain things to the lineup and leave it alone rather than to change it daily to suit the analytics people. But having the bat taken out of Judge’s hands twice helped contribute to a loss. You want your best hitter at least having a chance.

I do get a bit upset with people pushing the Ohtani MVP narrative. Yes, he’s great. But the second word is VALUABLE. Not special, which Ohtani, by being a great pitcher and hitter, is. Not Player of the Year or decade. VALUABLE. With Ohtani, the Angels are still only a fourth-place team at 56-73. Without him they are what, fourth? Last? But take away Judge from the Yankees. Are the Yankees (78-51, 7 game lead) still in first place? I don’t think so. Judge leads all of MLB in R, HR, RBI, Slugging average, OPS, OPS+ (199), and total bases. That is seven categories. And he leads the AL in walks. Without him the Yanks are not in first place. With Ohtani, the Angels are still in fourth. Enough said.

Clay Holmes came off the IL. Luke Bard sent down.



Judge solo HR (50)
Rizzo Solo HR (29)

Montas (L, 4-11) 6 IP, 4 R, 8 H, 0 W, 6 K. 1 WP. 1 HBP. Gave up 3 HR. 3.94 (Combined A’s/NYY Stats)
Holmes 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.34
Luetge 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.53










S.T. Game 6. 3 HRS, and good pitching from youngsters lead Yanks to 7-1 win.

D.J. LeMahieu, Gleyber Torres and Giancarlo Stanton homered, and the Yankees (2-3-1 in Spring Training) got good outings from young pitchers Deivi Garcia and Luis Gil in beating Baltimore 7-1 Wednesday night.

For Garcia, that was especially good after an atrocious 2021 season. Remember though, that Garcia won’t be 23 until May. Gil turns 24 in June.

Joey Gallo was 2 for 3. Beside his HR, Stanton had another hit, as did Torres. LeMahieu’s HR was a solo shot, Torres’ and Stanton’s were both 2-run HRs.

Also with 2 hits was Isiah Kiner-Falefa.

Garcia 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.
Gil (W) 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K.
Green (H) 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W 1 K.
Peralta 1 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K.
Holmes 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H. 0 W, 0 K
Luetge 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K.
Greene 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.

Minor league manager (Low A Tampa) Rachel Balkovic will be out of action for a while after taking a ball to her face while minor leaguers were taking batting practice.

The man on second rule to begin extra innings (I hate that rule) stays for this year, then gets scrapped. Rosters will be at 28 until May 2, with unlimited pitchers (due to the short spring training caused by the lockout). Rosters then go to 26 with no more than 13 pitchers.

Then there is the “Ohtani rule”. If say, Ohtani pitches AND is listed as the DH, and he gets knocked out of the game as far as pitching, he can remain as the DH.



Judge 4th, Cole 15th, in AL MVP voting.

The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, who as a hitter had 46 HR, 100 RBI, led the majors with 8 triples and besides that, went 9-2, 3.18 as a PITCHER, was the unanimous choice as the AL MVP.

The Yankees’ Aaron Judge finished fourth in the voting, and Gerrit Cole, who finished runner-up in the Cy Young award voting, finished in a tie for 15th in the MVP voting.

Game 131. Yanks lose 3rd straight, edged by Angels, 8-7

The Yanks got edged by the Angels last night, 8-7, and it was their third straight loss.

Meanwhile, Tampa Bay has won 8 in a row, and the Yankees are now 7 back with 31 to go. You never give up, but it looks increasingly likely that the Yanks will have to concentrate on getting the home field for the wild card game. They are two up on Boston for the top wild card spot. Oakland is 2 behind Boston for the second wild card spot, Seattle and Toronto both 4 1/2 behind Boston.

The Yanks struck first last night, getting two runs in the top of the first inning. Back-to-back doubles by D.J. LeMahieu and Anthony Rizzo plated one run. Aaron Judge singled Rizzo to third, and Rizzo scored when Giancarlo Stanton GIDP.

I was a bit concerned about Corey Kluber coming off the IL to start this game for the Yankees. In his rehab starts, I don’t believe he pitched over 3 2/3 innings, and while he may have felt fine, the results didn’t look good. I know he is working on things, seeing if physically fine, and the results don’t matter as much, but there were a few things I didn’t like. Kluber surprised me with three great innings last night then ….

he ran out of gas in the fourth. After a strikeout, three straight singles plated a run. An out that moved the runners up to second and third. A walk to load the bases. Then, a grand slam. Angels up 5-2. The grand slam came on the first pitch after a mound visit. That doesn’t make the pitching coach look good.

The Yanks tied the game with three runs in the top of the fifth. The top four hitters in the lineup did all the damage for the Yanks last night. The inning started at the bottom, when Brett Gardner drew a one-out walk. He went to second on a balk, and after an out, LeMahieu singled to make it 5-3. Rizzo singled and both runners took an extra base on an error on the play. Men on second and third. A Judge single made it 5-4, Rizzo holding up at third. Stanton’s single tied the game.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Angels’ amazing Shohei Ohtani homered to put the Angels up 6-5. The homer, off ex-teammate Andrew Heaney, was Ohtani’s 42nd of the season, leading the majors. He is also 8-1 with an ERA of 3.00 as a pitcher. What a talent.

The Angels got another run off of Heaney in the bottom of the sixth to go up 7-5.

In the top of the seventh, Rizzo led off with a walk, and one out later, Stanton hit a 2-run HR (25) to tie the game.

The Angels scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the eighth. Wandy Peralta started the inning and gave up a single. Clay Holmes relieved Peralta, and got two groundouts, each moving the runner up. A single brought in what turned out to be the winning run, batter (ex-Met Juan Lagares) out trying to stretch it into a double.

LeMahieu 2 hits, RBI
Rizzo 2 hits, RBI
Judge 2 hits, RBI
Stanton 2 hits, 3 RBI, 2-run HR (25)

Kluber 4 IP, 5 R, 5 H, 2 W, 6 K. Gave up grand slam. 3.61
Heaney 2 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR. 5.53 (Combined LAA/NYY ERA)
Peralta (L, 4-3) 1+ IP, 1 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 3.76
Holmes 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 4.22 (Combined Pit/NYY)



AL wins All-Star Game. Minor League Report. Minor League Promotions.

The AL won the All-Star Game, 5-2 last night. Toronto’s Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., who hit a 468 ft. HR, was named MVP of the game, the youngest All-Star Game MVP ever. It was the 8th win in a row for the AL. The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, who pitched and hit, got the win. Guerrero and his father are the third father/son combo to each HR in an all-star game.

Aaron Judge went 0 for 2 with a walk and scored a run. The other All-Star Yankees, Gerrit Cole and Aroldis Chapman, did not play.

In the minor leagues, the Yankees promoted a lot of players. I’ll name a few but probably won’t name them all.

AAA: Pitcher Glenn Otto was promoted up to here. SWB (38-20) won 5-2. LF Greg Allen 2 hits, RBI. C Rob Brantly 2 RBI.

AA: Somerset (39-21) won 3-2. CF Brandon Lockridge prmoted to here, and he hit a solo HR. LHP Ken Waldichuk with another great game. 6 1/3 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 3 W, 11 K. 3-0, 3.08 at AA. For the season, A/AA 5-0, 1.42 (12 starts). In his minor league career, 22 starts, he is 5-2, 2.19. SS Oswald Peraza 2 hits. RF Michael Beltre 2 hits.

High A: SS Anthony Volpe, and OF’s Pat DeMarco and Jake Sanford promoted to here from Low A. RF Sanford had 2 hits. Hudson Valley (40-20) won 9-4. 2B Ezequiel Duran 2 hits, 2 RBI. 3B James Nelson 2 hits, 2 RBI, a 2-run HR. 1B Chad Bell 2 hits, RBI. CF Pablo Olivares 2 hits. Starter Josh Maciejewski 5 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 W, 7 K, 1 HBP.

Low A: Promoted to here from the Florida Complex League: Top prospect CF Jasson Dominguez, as well as Ryder Green and LF Aldenis Sanchez. Tampa (41-18) won 6-2. Dominguez 2 hits, 2 RBI, double. He was 4 for 20 in the FCL, all singles, so this was his first extra-base hit. He’s only 18. Sanchez had 2 hits, RBI. 3B Andres Chaparro solo HR.

Game 79. Yanks outslug Angels, Ohtani, 11-5.

The Yankees (41-38, 4th in AL East, 7 1/2 out) set a season high in runs scored, 11, in banging out 11 hits, including 3 HR, and drawing 9 walks in defeating the L.A. Angels, 11-5 on Tuesday night.

The 11 runs were a nice surprise for a team that has scored 3 or less runs in over half its games this season. The Yanks needed to score to keep up with Angels’ star Shohei Ohtani, who hit 2 more HR to lead the majors with 28. Ohtani, doing things not seen since Babe Ruth over 100 years ago, is the Angels’ starting pitcher tonight.

With the win, the Yanks snapped a four-game losing streak.

Gary Sanchez started things off with a solo HR in the first inning (14).

Yankees’ starter Jameson Taillon gave up a 2-run HR to Jose Iglesias in the top of the second, as the Angels took a 2-1 lead. Taillon got the win, but didn’t really pitch well, giving up 5 runs (3 HR, two to Ohtani) in 5 1/3 IP. He needed the run support.

The Yanks came back with four runs in the bottom of the second and weren’t headed off the rest of the game. With one out, Gio Urshela walked and Miguel Andujar singled Urshela to third. Brett Gardner hit a SF tying up the game, and Andujar moved up on the SF as well. D.J. LeMahieu singled in Andujar to make it 3-2, then Aaron Judge homered (18) to make it 5-2.

Ohtani hit the first of his two homers in the top of the third to make it 5-3.

The Yanks broke the game open with five runs in the bottom of the fourth. Andujar led off the inning with a HR (6). Gardner walked. Two outs later, Sanchez doubled in Gardner to make it 7-3. Giancarlo Stanton walked, then Luke Voit doubled in a run to make it 8-3. Gleyber Torres, in the midst of a terrible slump, singled in Stanton and Voit to make it 10-3.

Ohtani hit his second HR of the game, a 2-run shot, in the top of the fifth to cut the Yanks’ lead to 10-5.

The final run of the game came in the bottom of the sixth. With two outs, Torres singled, and Urshela singled. Torres stole third on what was supposed to be a double steal, but Urshela slipped and had to stay at first. Andujar doubled in Torres.

Before the game, Darren O’Day was activated off of rehab. Brooks Kriske was sent down. The Yankees did not activate Justin Wilson yet off of rehab, and why should they? Both Nestor Cortes, Jr. and Albert Abreu are doing well (see below).

Judge 2-run HR (18)
Sanchez 2 hits, 2 RBI, solo HR (14)
Torres 2 hits, 2 RBI
Andujar 3 hits, 2 RBI, solo HR (6)

Taillon (W, 3-4) 5 1/3 IP, 5 R, 9 H, 1 W, 4 K. Gave up 3 HR. 1 WP. 5.43
Cortes 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 3 K. 1.02
Abreu 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K. 1 HBP. 2.13

UPDATE: The Yanks have sent Abreu back and will be activating Wilson today. I don’t know about that move. Hopefully Wilson (no options as opposed to Abreu) does better than the 6.08 ERA he had earlier. Abreu at 2.13 has been far better.

Game 78. Yanks lose 4th in a row, 5-3.

The YES network had a lot of statistics yesterday. For example, the Yankees have scored 3 or less runs in 41 of their 78 games this year. That is more than half. Last night, they scored 3.

About 2/3 of the homers they hit are solo HR. The homers aren’t coming with men on base. Last night the Yanks hit two homers. Yup. Both solo shots.

Yankees’ starter Michael King entered last night with a 14.40 ERA in the first inning. In his previous five starts, he had given up 8 first-inning runs. Make that now a 15.00 ERA and 10 runs in six starts. He put the Yanks into a 2-0 hole right away. The second batter, the incredible Shohei Ohtani, hit a HR off of him, #26 of the season for Ohtani. Ohtani is the scheduled starting PITCHER on Thursday against the Yankees, as he continues to do things not seen since Babe Ruth over 100 years ago. King doesn’t see anything wrong with his pre-game routine. The YES analysts see it differently. The YES analysts (which include some ex-major league players) say the jury is out whether King could be a starter in his MLB career. So far, my answer would be no. The first inning blues for one thing. For another, he doesn’t give you any length as a starter. He doesn’t go more than five innings (last night 4 1/3). Until King can fix those two issues, he can’t be an effective starter. Of course, King is only starting now because Corey Kluber is on the IL.

The Yanks lost their fourth straight game last night, 5-3 to Ohtani and the Angels. The loss drops the Yanks perilously close to .500, at 40-38. They are in 4th place in their 5-team division, the AL East, and are now 7 1/2 games out of first place. The season is slipping away. They better wake up. Call Sr. Mary Elephant to scream at them. Or, as Peggy Lee would sing, “Is That All There Is”? Very disappointing.

A couple of more stats YES gave out before more of a game recap. Going into last night’s game, the Yanks were 29th out of 30 teams with a .216 batting average with runners in scoring position. The Yanks went 0 for 4 w/RISP last night.

And lastly, two more things the YES analysts discussed. Both are instances of bad decision-making. Adam Ottavino had a good 2019 year with the Yankees (1.90 ERA) but a bad postseason that year. That bad postseason carried over to a bad 2020 (5.89 ERA). The Yankees traded him and a minor leaguer to, of all places, Boston for unknown compensation. It looks like just cash. Basically a salary dump. Didn’t even get a player for him. He’s rebounded to a 2.81 ERA for Boston this year. More damning is that Ottavino’s slider, when on, is devastating to righty batters. What do the Yankees have? A lineup full of righty batters. So the Yankees gave away to their arch-rival, a guy who, when on, has just what it takes to shut the Yankees down—which is exactly what Ottavino did to his former team this past weekend.

Another guy that shut the Yankees down this past weekend was Garrett Whitlock. If a player is in the minors for three years and not placed on the 40-man roster, he is subjected to the Rule 5 draft. Another team can claim him for $50,000. That player must stay with that team or be first offered back to the original team for $25,000. Well, the Yankees did not protect Whitlock. Whitlock was snapped up by—-you guessed it—-Boston, and helped beat the Yankees this past weekend. Whitlock, a rookie, is 3-1, 1.42 for Boston so far this season. Who did the Yankees protect instead of Whitlock? Well, Nick Nelson for one (0-2, 9.75 for the Yanks in 8 games this year) and Brooks Kriske (0-0, 12.60 in five games for the Yanks so far this year). Oops.

I know. As Yankees’ fans, those points that YES brought up are depressing. But give YES credit for going deep into things and in explaining some reasons for the Yankees underachieving so far this season.

Ok, to last night’s game. I already mentioned that King gave up 2 runs in the first inning, the first on a HR by Ohtani. So the Yanks are down 2-0 before they even came to bat.

The Yanks did get one run back in the bottom of the first. D.J. LeMahieu singled, Aaron Judge doubled D.J. to third, and Gary Sanchez scored D.J. with a SF. 2-1. But the Yanks couldn’t bring Judge in as well.

The Yanks did tie the game up in the second when Gio Urshela homered (10).

LeMahieu made an error in the fifth, which led to the Angels getting an unearned run to take the lead, 3-2.

Lucas Luetge gave up a HR to ex-Met Juan Lagares in the sixth and the Angels went up 4-2.

Giancarlo Stanton hit his 14th HR of the season in the bottom of the sixth to cut the Angels’ lead to 4-3, but the Yanks would score no more. Meanwhile the Halos got an insurance run in the eighth off of Chad Green. 5-3, the final score.

Stanton solo HR (14)
Urshela 2 hits, solo HR (10)

The Yanks only got six hits in the game. Now, many Yanks are struggling, but one in particular? What’s happened to Gleyber Torres? 2018, .271, 24 HR, All-Star, 3rd in ROY voting. 2019, .278, 38 HR, All-Star, 17th in MVP voting.
Since then, 2020 and 2021 combined, 110 games: .240-6-39. Which all coincides with his move to SS. You wonder.

King (L, 0-4) 4 1/3 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 6 H, 2 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR. 4.06
Luetge 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR. 2.52
Green 2 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 0 W, 3 K. 2.48
Cortes 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 1.13

Darren O’Day and Justin Wilson can both come off the IL today. Brooks Kriske is sure to be sent back. It’ll be interesting to see if Abreu or Cortes goes back. Both have done well.

P.S. Back to work next week as I complete my recovery from two major (and one life-saving) surgeries. So future reports won’t be as in depth.




Managers of the Year selected today. … and what is or isn’t a rookie?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Awards week continues as the Managers of the Year will be named tonight.

With last night’s win of the AL ROY by Shohei Ohtani, it once again begs the question of when a Japanese player comes to the U.S. and MLB, what is and what isn’t a rookie?

Ohtani won because of his two-way play, not only hitting .285-22-61, 10 SB, OPS+ 152 in 104 games, but also going 4-2, 3.31, ERA+ 126 in 10 starts before his elbow blew out. That was enough to beat out the Yankees’ Miguel Andujar, who hit .297-27-92, OPS+ 126, but who had defensive liabilities.

The vote wasn’t as close as maybe it should have been. 25 first place votes to 5. (The Yankees’ Gleyber Torres finished third, but received no first place votes).

Because of his two-way status, I really feel that as long as Ohtani didn’t fall flat on his face, and he didn’t, that the novelty of being the first true two-way player since Babe Ruth almost 100 years ago would win him the award, and it did.

Ohtani had spent five years in the “Japanese major leagues” though. Other Japanese players have won the Rookie of the Year Award after coming over to the U.S., notably Ichiro Suzuki, who won both the AL ROY and AL MVP in 2001.

But what about 2003, when Hideki Matsui was denied the award in part because people felt he wasn’t a “rookie”, because he had spent 10 years in the “Japanese majors”?

The inconsistency of the BBWAA is still astonishing.

Of course, in a couple of months, some members will prove their ignorance in how they voted in the HOF voting.

 

Andujar, Torres finish 2-3 in ROY. Ohtani wins. NL goes to Acuna.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Shohei Ohtani’s two-way performance earned him the AL ROY award as he got 25 of the 30 first place votes to win the AL ROY with 137 points.

Yankees’ 3b Miguel Andujar got the other 5 first place votes and had 89 points.

Yankees’ 2B Gleyber Torres finished 3rd with 25 points.

AL Rookie of the Year Voting, 1st-2nd-3rd placed votes, total points

 

 

Shohei Ohtani, LAA 25 4 137
Miguel Andujar, NYY 5 20 4 89
Gleyber Torres, NYY 3 16 25
Joey Wendle, TB 3 8 17
Daniel Palka, CWS 1 1
Ryan Yarbrough, TB 1 1

The NL Rookie of the Year was Ronald Acuna of the Braves.

NL Rookie of the Year Voting 1st-2nd-3rd place votes and total points.
Ronald Acuna Jr., ATL 27 3 144
Juan Soto, WSH 2 26 1 89
Walker Buehler, LAD 1 1 20 28
Brian Anderson, MIA 4 4
Jack Flaherty, STL 2 2
Harrison Bader, STL 1 1
Yoshihisa Hirano, ARI 1 1
Jeff McNeil, NYM 1 1