Tag Archives: Ruth

Game 150. Yanks Magic #4 after 5-4 win. Judge still stuck on 60.

The Yankees (92-58) magic number for clinching the AL East and a bye into the ALDS is now 4 after a 5-4 win over Boston coupled with a Toronto loss to Tampa Bay. The Yankees have an 8 1/2 game lead with 12 games to go. It doesn’t seem too long ago we were worried about that lead getting under 3.

Aaron Judge was 1 for 4 with a single, so we are still awaiting HR #61. He still leads in batting average, .315 to .314 for Xander Bogaerts and .312 for Luis Arraez so as of now he still leads in all Triple Crown categories.

Gerrit Cole got 8 strikeouts to up his season total to 244. He is 4 behind the Yankees’ single season record of 248, set by Ron Guidry in 1978. He should have two starts left and should break that record in one of those starts. Cole, however, still had gopher ball problems last night, which we will get to shortly.

Tommy Pham homered off of Cole in the top of the first to give Boston a quick 1-0 lead.

In the bottom of the third, Aaron Hicks homered (8) to tie the game. Yankee fans (and baseball fans?) joked it was the wrong Aaron who homered.

The Yanks scored three times in the fifth to go up 4-1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) led off with a single, and Marwin Gonzalez walked. Hicks singled IKF home, Gonzalez going to second. Two outs later, Gleyber Torres doubled in both runners. Torres went to third on the play on an error but was stranded.

One thing Yankees fans have noticed about Gerrit Cole this year. Besides the high number of gopher balls he has given up, it seems like Cole can’t pitch through a little adversity. If the pregame ceremony goes a little long, it affects him. If there is a rain delay or an error behind him, he immediately gives up a big hit afterward. If an umps ball/strike call goes against him, you know a big hit is coming against him. Last night, in the top of the sixth, a 1-2 pitch with two on was called a ball. Awful call by the ump. The next pitch was immediately hit for a game-tying 3-run HR. I have to question the pitch selection since all the pitches in the at bat were fastballs, and Alex Verdugo finally timed one that was also placed in the wrong spot. But once Cole didn’t get the call, he folded. It just seems like every time something doesn’t go his way, he isn’t pitching through it. Just an observation.

Cole did strike out the next hitter to end the inning and knew with his pitch count that he was done for the night, so he let that ump have it with a curse word as he left the mound. He was ejected, as was manager Aaron Boone, who came out to protect his player.

Now, yes, Cole had a right to be pissed off, but he needs to pitch through that. Also, yes, umpires are human, and we all make mistakes, but MLB has to hold umpires more accountable for bad calls. There are too many awful calls that umpires get away with (think Angel Hernandez, although he didn’t make that bad call last night). Whatever happened to responsibility and accountability?

So, the game was now tied at 4.

In the bottom of the eighth, newly acquired (well, not so new, since we had to wait for him to get off the IL after the trade) Harrison Bader was a sparkplug again. With two out, Bader pinch hit for Oswaldo Cabrera and walked. He stole second and went to third on an error, then scored when Jose Trevino singled. This held up as the deciding run in the 5-4 Yankees win.

Torres 2 RBI
HIcks 2 hits, 2 RBI Solo HR (8)

Cole 6 IP, 4 R, 5 H, 2 W, 8 K. Gave up 2 HR 3.49 4 K behind Guidry’s record of 248 in 1978.
Marinaccio 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K. 2.20
Loaisiga (W, 2-3) 2 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 2 K. 4.43

Non-Yankee related but what a feat. Albert Pujols, retiring after the season, hit 2 HR for St. Louis against the Dodgers in LA last night. The second was HR #700 of his career, joining Barry Bonds*, Henry Aaron and Babe Ruth as the only players to hit 700 HR in their careers. Pujols joins Aaron as the only player with 3000 or more hits AND 700 or more HR in their career. Congrats!

One other note. Tampa Bay, Toronto and Seattle are neck and neck and neck for the 4-5-6 seedings in the AL playoff race. Just so you know, Tampa Bay wins all tiebreakers. Seattle has the tiebreaker over Toronto. Toronto loses all tiebreakers. Based on head-to-head record.







Game 147. What a night! 60! Fabulous Comeback! Triple Crown?

With all apologies to the Dells, Oh, What a Night!

Before the game, the Yankees placed Frankie Montas on the 15-day IL, retroactive to 9/17. Since he’d come off it right at the end of the season, I think it is safe to say that he would NOT start a postseason game.

Harrison Bader came off the IL and made his Yankees debut with 3 RBI. We will get to the game recap soon.

Ryan Weber chose free agency after being DFA’d. We’ll see what happens there.

Now to the game. Aaron Judge hit his 60th HR, tying the # Babe Ruth hit in 1927 (and in 147 games too!). He is now one behind Roger Maris’ Yankees and AL record of 61 (we know about the MLB and NL Steroid-aided records*).

Judge’s HR also put him at .316, and he now leads the AL in batting average as well as HR and RBI (and a whole lot of other categories). As of now, he’d win the Triple Crown, a feat done only once since 1967. Two Yankees have won the Triple Crown—Lou Gehrig in 1934 and Mickey Mantle in 1956.

Not only that, the Yankees, down 8-4 heading into the bottom of the ninth, scored five runs to win the game 9-8 over Pittsburgh, capped off by an “ultimate slam” — a walk off grand slam with your team down by 3—by Giancarlo Stanton.

Nestor Cortes was “Nasty Nestor” again, but the Yankees’ bullpen was horrendous. Judge and Stanton’s HR, as well as Bader’s great Yankees debut, saved them.

With the win, the Yankees (89-58) kept their 5 1/2 game lead over Toronto. The magic # for clinching the division is 10. The magic # for a playoff berth is now 2 (since the Yankees own the tiebreaker over Baltimore).

The Pirates scored first, on a SF in the top of the fourth inning. Oswaldo Cabrera, making his first start in LF, caught the ball at the top of the wall. It just missed being a grand slam.

In the bottom of the fifth, Cabrera reached on a 3-base error, and was driven in on a single by Bader. Bader moved up on a groundout and scored on a single by Jose Trevino. 2-1 Yanks.

Ron Marinaccio put a couple runners on in the top of the sixth, and both scored when Lou Trivino replaced Marinaccio only to give up a 2-run double. 3-2, Pirates.

The Yanks came back in the bottom of the sixth to take a 4-3 lead. Josh Donaldson led off the inning with a single. After Stanton struck out, Cabrera walked. A wild pitch moved the runners up, then Bader singled them both in. Nice Yankees’ debut for Bader, who the Yankees traded Jordan Montgomery for, but who the Yanks had to wait on, due to Bader being on the IL with plantar fasciitis.

Trivino gave up a HR to Brian Reynolds in the top of the seventh that tied the game.

In the top of the eighth, the bullpen imploded further. With one out, a walk, error by Anthony Rizzo, and single off of Jonathan Loaisiga made it 5-4. Clay Holmes, who has been awful since July 9, came in and gave up a 3-run HR to made it 8-4. I don’t know what is wrong with Holmes, but the Yankees need to straighten him out. At this time, it seemed like the only reason to keep watching or listening was to see what Judge would do in his last at bat.

And in the bottom of the ninth, Judge didn’t disappoint, hitting #60 to make it 8-5 Yankees. The historic homer seemed to spark the team, who didn’t want the homer to go to waste in a loss. Rizzo followed with a double. Gleyber Torres walked. Donaldson singled to load the bases. Then Stanton, struggling mightily since June 1, hit HR #27, a walk off grand slam to win the game.

It was the fourth time in Yankees’ history that the Yankees were down by three runs and a batter hit a walk off grand slam (ultimate slam) to win the game. Babe Ruth did it in 1925, then a long wait for the second one, Jason Giambi in 2002. Donaldson did it last month, and now Stanton last night.

Judge Solo HR (60) .316-60-128 leads AL in all three categories. Can he win the Triple Crown?
Torres 2 hits
Donaldson 2 hits
Stanton 4 RBI walk off grand slam (27)
Bader 2 hits, 3 RBI
Trevino 2 hits, RBI

Cortes 5 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 2 W, 4 K. 2.67
Marinaccio (H, 6) 2/3 IP, 2 R, 1 H, 1 W, 0 K. 2.31
Trivino (BS, 3) 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR. 4.84 (A’s/NYY)
Loaisiga 1 1/3 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 H, 2 W, 1 K. 4.64
Holmes 2/3 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. Gave up 1 HR. 2.67
Chapman (W, 3-3) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 4.41







Game 146. Judge at 59 HR after Yanks win slugfest, 12-8. Triple Crown within reach.

Aaron Judge is at 59.

No right-handed batter in American League history has hit more in a season. Judge trails only lefty swinging hitters Babe Ruth (60 in 1927) and Roger Maris (61 in 1961) for most HR in a season by an American League player.

We know all about the 154 vs. 162 game season controversy, as well as the steroid-aided MLB and NL records.

Not only is Judge at 59 HR, but with a 4-hit performance yesterday that included 2 HR, he is now hitting .316, which is only one point short of the AL leader, meaning a Triple Crown is within reach. Only one man, Miguel Cabrera in 2012, has won the Triple Crown since 1967. Two Yankees have won it, Lou Gehrig in 1934 and Mickey Mantle in 1956.

With their 12-8 slugfest win Sunday, the Yankees (88-58) have a 5 1/2 game lead with 16 games to go. Their magic # for clinching the division is 11. Their magic # for a playoff spot is 5 (since they own the tiebreaker over Baltimore).

Gerrit Cole stuck out 8 batters to give him 236 for the season, 12 behind Ron Guidry’s Yankees record of 248 set in 1978, but Cole, despite getting the win, was victimized once again by the gopher ball.

Kolten Wong hit a 3-run HR off of Cole in the bottom of the first. Brewers 3-0.

Oswaldo Cabrera got a run back for the Yankees in the top of the second with his second HR of the season. 3-1.

In the bottom of the second, Tyrone Taylor homered off Cole and it was 4-1, Brewers. Things didn’t look good.

Judge and Anthony Rizzo hit back-to-back HRs in the top of the third to cut Milwaukee’s lead to 4-3. For Judge, #58. It was #31 for Rizzo, who just returned off of the IL. (Estevan Florial was sent down).

The Yanks got 4 runs in the top of the fifth to take a 7-4 lead. Judge led off with a walk. Rizzo singled Judge to second. A flyout by Gleyber Torres moved both runners up. Josh Donaldson walked to load the bases. An error on a fielder’s choice by Giancarlo Stanton tied the game. Bases still loaded. An infield single by Cabrera put the Yanks up 5-4. After a lineout with no advance, Kyle Higashioka singled in two runs to make it 7-4.

In the top of the seventh, the Yanks scored three times to increase their lead to 10-4. Cabrera doubled to lead off the inning, and two groundouts moved him around. 8-4. Aaron Hicks then hit his seventh HR. 9-4. Judge made it back-to-back HR by creaming #59, a 443-ft. blast. 10-4.

The extra runs proved necessary. Rowdy Tellez hit a 2-run HR for the Brewers in the bottom of the eighth to cut the Yanks’ lead to 10-6. They then stranded two.

Judge got a 2-run double in the top of the ninth to make it 12-6. Michael Kay mentioned something in the lines of that Judge was the only guy in baseball that can hit a 2-run double and you are disappointed.

Those two runs were necessary, too. Each of Milwaukee’s first three hitters in the bottom of the ninth singled off of Wandy Peralta. Clay Holmes then relieved Peralta and gave up a ground rule double that made the score 12-8. Holmes then got an out before a walk reloaded the bases, bring the tying run to the plate. A strikeout and groundout ended the game.

Judge 4 hits, 4 RBI. 2 solo HR (59) .316-59-127. One point short of batting average lead.
Rizzo 3 hits, RBI. Solo HR (31). First game off the IL.
Cabrera 3 hits, 2 RBI. Solo HR (2)
Higashioka 3 RBI.
Hicks 2 hits, RBI. Solo HR (7).

Cole (W, 12-7) 5 IP, 4 R, 4 H, 3 W, 8 K. Gave up 2 HR. 3.41 236 K, 12 behind Guidry’s 248 in 1978.
Schmidt (H, 2) 2 1/3 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR. 2.82
Loaisiga 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 4.35
Peralta 0 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.72
Holmes 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 1 K. 2.55

The Yanks are off today.


Games 136 & 137. Despite depleted lineups, Yanks sweep Twins. Judge hits #55, IKF, Peraza, Cole star.

Sorry, my original draft got erased and I had to re-write a lot. UGH.

A load of baseball yesterday, and at first it didn’t look good. Due to injuries, the Yankees’ lineups looked worse than a spring training lineup. In the first game of the DH yesterday, the Yanks (83-54) started three rookies, plus another guy who, although he had MLB experience and wasn’t a rookie, hadn’t played in the majors all season.

The Yanks put Josh Donaldson on the paternity list. Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) played 3B. IKF had won a GG at 3B for Texas in 2020. Bard DFA’d, Deivi Garcia up. Miguel Andujar up as 29th man for the doubleheader. Rizzo to IL, Ron Guzman up.

But at the end of the day, the Yankees had won both games off of their perennial whipping boys, the Twins, by scores of 5-4 (in 12 innings) and 7-1.

With the wins, the Yanks are 5 up on the Rays in the AL East. The magic # for winning the division is 22, and the magic # for a playoff berth is 15. The wins ensured the Yankees a winning season. They haven’t had a losing season since 1992.

Game 1: Domingo German had a rough start but settled in. A double, strikeout, and HR, and Minnesota was up 2-0 just three batters into the game. With two out in the fourth, three straight singles made it 3-0 Twins and with the weakened Yankees’ lineup, it didn’t appear good.

The Yanks got a run in the bottom of the fourth of Aaron Judge’s 55th HR of the season. The home run meant that Judge now has hit more HR in a season than any other righty hitter in Yankees’ history. Only Ruth (60 in 1927) and Maris (61 in ’61) have hit more. Judge was walked 5x yesterday, 3x intentionally. Another reason to hate the ghost runner. If Judge is the first guy up, even with the ghost runner on second, first base is open, and Judge is walked to set up a DP. You take the bat out of the hands of the most dangerous hitter in baseball.

Gleyber Torres tied the game with a 2-run HR in the sixth. (19).

Both teams wasted chances. Oswaldo Cabrera, an infielder brought up to the Yanks a few weeks ago, got his fifth OF assist of the season in the top of the tenth. Ron Guzman, up for Rizzo, struck out 4x and then with the bases loaded and no out in extra innings, hit into a 3-2-3 DP.

The Twins got a run in the top of the 12th off of Ron Marinaccio, but with the bases loaded and one out, Greg Weissert avoided further damage.

In the bottom of the 12th, Marwin Gonzalez was the ghost runner and IKF singled to tie the game. With one out, IKF stole second. Jose Trevino singled, IKF was held up and Trevino took second on the throw. With two out, Cabrera singled to win the game.

Judge solo HR (55)
Torres 2-run HR (19)
Kiner-Falefa (IKF) 2 hits, RBI
Peraza 3 hits FIRST 3 HITS OF MLB CAREER.

German 6 IP, 3 R, 7 H, 1 W, 6 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.27
Peralta 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.58
Loaisiga 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 4.66
Holmes 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. 2.29
Marinaccio 1 1/3 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 2 W, 3 K. 1.73
Weissert (W, 3-0) 2/3 I, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 0 K. 7.36

Game 2: With the long game in game 1, and several bullpen members used, the Yanks needed length from Gerrit Cole. He went 6 2/3 IP, striking out 14.

Cole leads MLB with 218 strikeouts and is 30 away from Ron Guidry’s Yankee team single season record of 248, set in 1978. Cole has four, maybe five starts left in the season.

Cole gave up a HR to his ex-teammate, Carolos Correa, in the top of the third.

IKF hit a grand slam, just his third HR of the season, in the bottom of the fourth. He didn’t get his first HR until mid-August.

In the bottom of the eighth, Aaron Hicks hit a bases-loaded double for three runs to make it 7-1.

Hicks 3 RBI
Kiner-Falefa 4 RBI. Grand Slam. (3)
Florial 2 hits.

Cole (W, 11-7) 6 2/3 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 2 W, 14 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.20
Luetge (S, 2) 2 1/3 Ip, 0 R, 3 H, 0W, 3 K. 2.55

Nestor Cortes returns to the rotation tonight to face ex-Yankee Sonny Gray.










Game 135. Judge (#54) gets unexpected HR help in Yanks’ 5-2 win.

The schedule gave the Yanks some help. When in trouble, play the Twins. The Yankees seem to own the Twins for the last 20 years.

Aaron Judge hit his 54th HR, tying Alex Rodriguez (2007) for the most in one season by a Yankees’ right-handed batter. It seems like Judge has been doing it all by himself lately, but in yesterday’s 5-2 win over the Twins, he had help from unexpected sources.

The win put the Yankees at 81-54, guaranteeing them a non-losing season. The last time the Yankees had a losing season was 30 years ago, in 1992. The lead remains 5, and the magic # for clinching the AL East
is 24. It is 18 to just reach the playoffs.

The Yankees struck first in this game. Judge doubled with one out in the first, and one out later, Josh Donaldson hit one off the wall in left to drive in Judge. Donaldson, however, watched his ball, thinking it was a HR, and didn’t bust out of the batters’ box. He was thrown out at second. This is something manager Aaron Boone has to rip into Donaldson about. It doesn’t matter that Donaldson is a 36, soon-to-be 37-year-old seasoned veteran and a former MVP. Had Donaldson been out at second before Judge crossed the plate, the run DOES NOT COUNT. There is no excuse for that, especially for a team scuffling as the Yankees are right now. Donaldson was called out for it by Michael Kay on the TV broadcast. Rightfully so.

In the bottom of the third, Marwin Gonzalez, who had not had a hit in almost two months, and who was 0 for his last 29, homered (4) to put the Yankees up 2-0.

But the game was tied up in the top of the fifth by ex-Yankee Gary Sanchez, who hit a 473-foot bomb.

In the bottom of the sixth, Gleyber Torres led off with a single and Judge followed with his HR. Only Ruth (59 in 1921, 60 in 1927) and Maris (61 in 1961) have now hit more in one season for the Yankees than Judge. 4-2 Yankees.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa homered in the seventh to make the score 5-2. For IKF, it was just his second HR this season. The other came August 13 in Fenway Park.

Don’t be surprised if today’s game is rained out. The weather forecast calls for rain all day long. Any break from the rain will be for a minimal amount of time. The rain is much needed.

Judge leads MLB in R, HR, RBI, SA, OPS, OPS+ (204) and total bases (330). In addition, he leads the AL in walks (80) and OBP. That is leading the majors in 7 categories and the AL in two more. MVP. No discussion. M-V-P!

Judge 2 hits, 2 RBI. 2-run HR (54) .302-54-117 and 15/17 in SB (and tied for team lead in SB!)
Yet ANOTHER Outfield assist for Oswaldo Cabrera
Kiner-Falefa 2 hits, RBI. Solo HR (2)
Gonzalez solo HR (4)

Taillon 5 IP, 2 R, 6 H, 2 W, 3 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.95
Weissert (W, 2-0) 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 W, 2 K. 8.10
Peralta (H, 9) 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.63
Holmes (S, 19) 1 IP 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 2.38






Game 134. Yanks hold on for 2-1 win. Judge (Who else? 53rd HR) leads way. Benintendi needs surgery.

The Yankees (80-54) got one heck of a scare, and perhaps a break, in the bottom of the ninth, but they held on to defeat Tampa Bay, 2-1, on Sunday afternoon.

Of course, they were led by Aaron Judge, who factored into both runs the Yanks scored.

Judge hit the second pitch of the game for his 53rd HR of the season. The 450 ft. blast set a new season high for him, passing the 52 he had in his ROY season of 2017. It also was his 115th RBI of the year, also passing his 2017 total of 114.

Judge had three of the Yankees’ six hits in the game.

In the top of the seventh, Judge doubled, and on a ball hit to short, went to third. Usually, you do NOT do that. But Judge beat the throw to third. It’s a risky play, but with the Yanks’ offense in a funk, he decided that he needed to be aggressive. It probably won the game for the Yankees. Judge then scored on a SF by Oswaldo Cabrera. The way the inning played out, if Judge did not go to third on that play, he would not have been driven in. It turned out to be the deciding run.

Meanwhile, four Yankees’ pitchers combined to shut Tampa Bay out into the ninth. Then Clay Holmes came in and things got hairy. He gave up a leadoff double. A liner to right moved the runner to third. A single made it 2-1. A liner to CF (nice range by defensive replacement Estevan Florial) for out #2. Then a double, but the potential tying run was held up at third. Then Holmes went to 3-2 on Yandy Diaz. Holmes got a called strike three call on a pitch Diaz and the Rays thought was low. Watching on TV, I thought the Yanks caught a break, for I thought it was ball four myself. Makes up for all those low strikes called on Judge.

So, the Yanks lead over Tampa Bay is five, and it’s six over Toronto. The Yanks’ magic number to clinch the AL East is 25. 28 games to go.

But some other Yankees’ related news:

Andrew Benintendi needs surgery to repair a broken hamate bone in his right wrist. He had problems with it before and it was removed, but either not all of it was removed or some bone grew back. The hook detached from this bone. This was the injury from the other night. At least it was caught early, due to advances in medical technology. In 1965, this was misdiagnosed for Roger Maris, and even though Maris eventually had surgery, he was never the same again and lost power in that hand.

The great Albert Pujols, retiring after this season, hit his 695th career HR yesterday, placing him 1 behind Alex Rodriguez for fourth place on the all-time HR list. Barry Bonds had 762* (asterisk intended), Henry Aaron had 755, Babe Ruth 714 and Rodriguez 696*. We will see if Pujols catches Alex and if he can even get #700 before he retires.

Game recap.

Judge 3 hits, Solo HR (53)

Montas (W, 5-11) 5 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 7 K. 1 WP. 3.79 (combined A’s/NYY stats)
Trivino (H, 3) 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 4.76 (Combined A’s/NYY stat)
Marinaccio (H, 5) 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 0 K. 1.80
Loaisiga (H, 9) 1 2/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 2 K. 4.79
Holmes (S, 18) 1 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.42

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










Game 32. 10-4, Good buddy! Yankees win 17th of last 19 games behind 4 HR.

The Yankees (24-8) won for the 17th time in their last 19 games, beating the Chicago White Sox 10-4 Friday night.

The Yankees hit 4 HR in the game, and Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton did it again, and became the third pair of Yankees teammates to each have 10 or more HR in the team’s first 32 games of a season, following Ruth and Gehrig in 1930 and Mantle and Berra in 1956.

Before the game, Luis Gil sent back down, Clarke Schmidt brought up.

Stanton got the ball rolling with a 2-run HR in the first inning (10).

Yankees’ starter Gerrit Cole got out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the bottom of the first. In the top of the second, the Yanks scored three runs, and with Cole on the mound, you knew that was the ballgame. With one out, Isiah Kiner-Falefa singled, and Jose Trevino then singled IKF to third. Aaron Hicks doubled in IKF and Trevino scored on a groundout by D.J. LeMahieu. After Judge walked, Josh Donaldson doubled in Hicks to make the score 5-0.

Judge hit a solo HR, his MLB leading 12th, in the top of the fourth to make the score 6-0.

Chicago got a run in the bottom of the fourth when Cole balked home a run.

Joey Gallo homered in the top of the fourth (4) to put the Yanks up 7-1.

Cole gave up a 2-run HR in the bottom of the sixth and the White Sox had cut the score to 7-3.

In the top of the ninth, with one out, Judge singled and Donaldson hit a 2-run HR (4), to make it 9-3. Stanton and Gleyber Torres followed with singles, then Joey Gallo loaded the bases with another single. IKF hit a SF to make it 10-3.

Chicago got a run off of Michael King in the bottom of the ninth. Final score, 10-4.

Judge 2 hits, solo HR (12) Leads MLB in HR
Donaldson 2 hits, 3 RBI. 2-run HR (4)
Stanton 2 hits, 2 RBI. 2-run HR (10)
Torres 2 hits
Gallo 2 hits, solo HR (4)
Kiner-Falefa (IKF) 2 hits, RBI

Cole (W, 3-0) 6 1/3 IP, 3 R, 6 H, 1 W, 9 K. 1 WP. 1 balk. Gave up 1 HR. 2.95
King 2 2/3 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 2 K. 1.59

With the win, the Yankees have a 4 1/2 game lead over Tampa Bay in the AL East, and are 7 1/2 up on third place Toronto. They have the best record in baseball.



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.




Legendary Hall-of-Famer “Hammerin'” Hank Aaron dies at the age of 86.

Curt Simmons was once quoted as saying, “Trying to sneak a fastball past Hank Aaron is like trying to sneak a sunrise past a rooster.”

“Hammerin’ ” Henry Aaron, one of the greatest players to ever play the game of baseball, died yesterday at the age of 86.

At the time of his death, Aaron was the all-time leader in RBI and total bases. He was second in HR (755) and third in hits (3771).

Aaron played for the Milwaukee Braves, 1954-1965, Atlanta Braves 1966-1974, and Milwaukee Brewers, 1975-1976.

He was a 25x All-Star (from 1958-1962 there were TWO all-star games a year), won the 1957 NL MVP Award, was on one WS Champ (1957 Braves), another NL Champ (1958 Braves) and an NL West Champ (1969 Braves). He won 3 Gold Gloves and 2 batting titles.

Aaron led the league in runs scored 3x, in hits 2x, in doubles 4x, in HR 4x, in RBI 4x, in SA 4x, OPS 3x, OPS+ 3x, total bases 8x, and SF once.

In his 1957 MVP season, he hit .322-44-132, leading MLB in HR and RBI. OPS+ 166. It’s amazing he only won the one MVP award, and Aaron felt he was robbed of a couple. But his contemporaries in the NL were Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Ernie Banks, and Roberto Clemente, not to mention Sandy Koufax.

Aaron was often overlooked as the great star he was, not only by the aforementioned Mays in his own league, but by Mickey Mantle in the other league.

Aaron did rack up 13 top-10 finishes in the MVP voting, and even finished third at the age of 37 in 1971. He finished top-5 eight times.

Aaron hit 44 HR at the age of 35, 47 at the age of 37, and 40 at the age of 39. On April 8, 1974, Aaron passed Babe Ruth for the all-time HR lead when he hit #715 off of Al Downing of the Dodgers. His record stood until Barry Bonds passed him in 2007. Unlike Bonds, Aaron’s mark wasn’t stained by steroid rumors.

Aaron’s mark was stained by prejudice. As he approached Ruth’s record, Aaron was subject to much hate mail and death threats, simply because he was a black man.

He started his career in the Negro Leagues, and even in 1953, played in the minors, age 19, for Jacksonville, a heavily segregated city. He had to overcome racial hatred.

Aaron hit 20 or more HR every season from 1955-1974.

11x he topped 100 RBI in a season.

In the postseason, Aaron went

1957 WS 11 for 28, 3 HR, 7 RBI. .393. WS MVP was teammate Lew Burdette who won 3 games.
1958 WS 9 for 27, 0 HR, 2 RBI. .333 Braves blew a 3 games to one lead against the Yankees.
1969 NLCS 5 for 14, 3 HR, 7 RBI. .357 Braves swept by the Mets.

One thing to know about that 1969 NLCS. Aaron played with a bad hand, and still hit a HR in each one of those three games.

He wasn’t only a hitter. He did win three Gold Gloves. He played primarily RF in his career (and is rated on baseball reference.com as the 2nd greatest RF ever, behind only Babe Ruth) but also played many games in LF, CF and 1B. He even played 43 games at 2B.

He hit .305 for his career. Only Pete Rose and Ty Cobb had more MLB hits than Aaron (Ichiro would count if you count Japan and MLB). He even stole 240 bases. In 1963 he had 44 HR and 31 SB.

His 162 game average was .305-37-113, 12 SB, OPS+ 155. (100 is normal, so he was 55% better than average hitter of his time).

He was so good, that a year like 1964 (.328-24-95, with 22 SB, OPS+ 153) looks like an off year when you look at his stats.

Aaron would have turned 87 on February 5, just two weeks away.

He was elected to the Hall of Fame in his first year on the ballot, 1982. He got 406 out of 415 votes. 97.8%. I would love to know the nine voters who kept him off their ballots. They should be, or should have been, ashamed of themselves.

When Reggie Jackson joined the Yankees, he chose #44 because he wanted to keep a #44 circling the bases, in honor of Aaron, who retired after the 1976 season.

Aaron was class. A great in every way.

Speaking of the Hall of Fame, this year’s voting results will be announced in three days. It is looking like the BBWAA will not vote ANYONE in.

According to one tracker, (and you need 75% to make it in), with almost 41% of the vote known, Curt Schilling has 75.3%, which would barely get him in. But when the anonymous votes are counted, players usually drop. Last year, even Derek Jeter. The tracking had Jeter unanimous throughout, but when the final tally came in, one idiot left Jeter off his or her ballot. If Schilling drops, he does not make it.

Others are Barry Bonds, 72.8%
Roger Clemens 72.2%. When the anonymous votes come in, they usually drop 5-10%
Scott Rolen 65.4%
Todd Helton 53.1%
Billy Wagner 47.5%
Gary Sheffield 46.3%
Andruw Jones 41.4%
Omar Vizquel 38.9%
Manny Ramirez 33.3%
Jeff Kent 29.6%
Sammy Sosa 21.6%
Andy Pettitte 17.3% keeping him on the ballot for next year
Bobby Abreu 13%
Mark Buehrle 8%

Dropping off the ballot because they did not get 5% would be

Torii Hunter 4.9%
Tim Hudson 4.3%
Aramis Ramirez 0.6%

and so far, with no votes at all: Shane Victorino, A.J. Burnett, Barry Zito, Nick Swisher, Dan Haren, Michael Cuddyer and LaTroy Hawkins.