Game 34: The glorious return of Wilson Betemit
The lenses of a heart-breaking loss

Triple-A Scranton (4-0 win over Charlotte)
Brett Gardner, Justin Christian, Jason Lane & Nick Green: all 1 for 4 – Gardner scored a run, drove one in & K’ed … Christian drove in a run & K’ed … Lane doubled & K’ed … Green scored a run
Matt Carson: 1 for 3, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 CS
Greg Porter: 1 for 2, 1 RBI, 1 BB
IPK: 7.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, 1 HB, 5-9 GB/FB – 58 of 89 pitches were strikes (65.2%) … Chad Jennings said in an email that he fell behind 2-0 to only two batters (came back to K the first guy, gave up the lone hit to the other), and gave up only 2 hard hit balls all night – zeroes are nice, but those last two stats do a much better job of telling the story … here’s CJ’s wrap of the game … and to think some called him a failed prospect
Heath Phillips: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 4-1 GB/FB – 14 of 20 pitches were strikes (70%)

Double-A Trenton (5-2 win over Erie)
Ramiro Pena: 0 for 5, 1 K – picked off first
Austin Jackson: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 BB – the doubles will start clearing the fence soon enough
Colin Curtis: 2 for 4, 2 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI – threw a runner out at first from LF after making a nice catch
Edwar Gonzalez & Chris Malec: both 0 for 4 – Gonzalez K’ed once, Russo twice
Cody Ehlers: 0 for 2, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB
Jose Tabata & PJ Pilittere: both 1 for 3, 1 BB – Pilittere doubled in a run
Chris Malec: 2 for 4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K – 6 for his last 10 with 2 homers
Dan McCutchen: 7.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 11-7 GB/FB – if he wanted attention, he picked the wrong night to pitch well
JB Cox: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 2-2 GB/FB

High-A Tampa (5-4 win over Jupiter in 10 innings, walk-off style)
Damon Sublett & Luis Nunez: both 2 for 4, 1 K – Sublett scored a run & drove one in … Nunez drove in two
James Cooper: 0 for 5
Andres Perez: 0 for 3, 2 BB
Seth Fortenberry: 1 for 5, 1 R, 2 K – .223-.350-.301 with a 41-17 K/BB ratio in 29 games
Kyle Anson: 2 for 3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 BB – walk-off single … 12-23 K/BB ratio in 24 games
Kevin Smith & Braedyn Pruitt: both 1 for 4, 1 R – Smith K’ed … Pruitt drove in a run and bumped his season line up to .100-.250-.125
Mike Dunn: 6 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 1 WP, 1 HB, 5-6 GB/FB
Josue Selene: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 3-0 GB/FB – 22 year old finally makes his full-season league debut after signing with the Yanks as an international free agent in 2005
Phil Bartleski: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 K – 25 year old fifth-year senior sign last year

Low-A Charleston (7-4 win over Hickory)
Abe Almonte: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB – .292-.342-.453 … he’s now tied with Jesus Montero for the team lead with 25 RBI
Carmen Angelini: 0 for 4, 1 K
Justin Snyder: 2 for 3, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 BB
Jesus Montero, Brandon Laird & Brain Baisley: all 0 for 3 – Laird committed a throwing error … Baisley drew a walk … Montero scored a run & walked, but it looks like catching full-time is wearing him down a bit, no biggie, that’s what the minors are for, development
Wady Rufino: 1 for 3, 1 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB – .297-.363-.527 … mashin’
Taylor Holiday: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 2B
Lance Pendleton: 4.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 2 HB, 8-3 GB/FB
Craig Heyer: 2.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
Jon Ortiz: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K – 71-11 K/BB ratio in 46.2 career IP

Game 34: The glorious return of Wilson Betemit
The lenses of a heart-breaking loss
  • A.D.

    Redic starts at AA & AAA, McCutchen would be on his 5th day on Sunday vs the Tigers (just a thought).

    Tabata is rising from the ashes…

  • Adam

    I hope Kennedy isn’t afraid to throw strikes at the major league level, because he still (apparently) has the command he was heralded for. He needs to throw more strikes, obviously, and although he doesn’t have awesome stuff, he could succeed by command and outsmarting the hitters. He’s clearly not ready for that yet, but at Scranton he can wipe those guys out with just pure skill. However, can the Yankees afford to give Kennedy the time he needs in the Bigs? I do not know.

    • kingshaffy

      If they can afford to roll out Giambi and Betemit every day, they can afford to have a little patience with their top pitching prospects.

      The question is, can they afford to have Kei “it is high, it is far, it is gone” Igawa in the rotation?

    • chris

      the yanks can and should afford to let him lean on the MLB level or he will never learn.

      let this season be a wash and let the kids play. unless they are willing to not field the best team possible for 1 month
      (while joba is stretching out in the minors) – they will have to let it be a retooling season – alla 2006 red sox who didnt make the playoffs, but used that season to retool their team

  • http://breakingballs.riveraveblues.com Tommy

    Great photo.


    Montero should be playing first base.

    • A.D.

      The Yanks do seem to have a lot of catching prospects, and very few 1B, i think if Monetero could make a difference at 1st this year they probably would move him, but they’ll develop him

    • http://www.mvn.com/milb-yankees Ashish Skaria

      Although that’s where I see JM ending up when it’s all said and done, the Yankees have the exhaust the option of him playing at catcher, especially with Romine hurt.

    • http://www.myspace.com/j_panama Jamal G.

      No sense in moving him from Catcher unless he proves to be a butcher at the position. He would me immensely valuable to the organization if he is able be just a below average defender at backstop with his bat potential. Although his bat has the potential to play anywhere, it’s value would decrease quite a bit if moved to 1B.

    • dan

      LETMONTEROWORK(at catcher)

      If he can hit like this at catcher with passable defense, he’s much more valuable. Might as well LETHIMWORK.

  • dan

    So much for me thinking Pruitt was legit.

  • http://yankeesetc.blogspot.com/ Travis G.

    what would be nice is if Montero is able to play both catcher and 1b. he could be play 1b 4-5 days a week, then catch the others. imagine a bat like his as the 2nd/3rd string C.

    btw, C is the most valuable defensive position, so if i had to have a butcher in the field (not that he is), i would prefer he be at 1b and not at C (assuming a plus defensive C is already on the team).

  • McCaff

    YES! IPK will be ok. He is young and has good stuff, just needs the confidence and experience, and i think the AAA starts will do him right. I’m excited to see how he returns, and how hes recieved by the fans(atleast the uneducated ones who just know he hasn’t pitched well and will boo him for just that). IPK is AOK, while Joba continues to throw curve balls when he should just throw heat and sliders. It seems as if they are prepping him to start, by throwing different pitches and such. However, i’d rather see him blow heat by a guy consistantly instead of making him look foolish occasionally with a breaking ball. DON’T TAKE THIS AS ME KNOCKING JOBA!. He’s done amazing for us this year, and will continue to do so, just upset with his pitching selection.

    • http://www.myspace.com/j_panama Jamal G.

      I’m so happy to see his influx of Curveballs this year. It’s one thing to work on those pitches in side sessions but to use them in-game is a whole other beast. I’d like to believe that was a plan stipulated by the Yankees to make Joba Chamberlain use his plus hammer and I hope to see a couple Changeups.

      • yankeemonkey

        Joba’s changeup is faster than Moose’s fastball, isn’t it?

        • Chip

          When he’s in his “you won’t even see this pitch”-mode, then yes it is. Usually it hangs right about where Moose’s fastball is. I don’t know why people are upset about his curves. His only two strikes against Sizemore were curveballs

  • yankeemonkey

    I had no problem with him throwing curves, they looked very good. It was his other pitches that gave him trouble tonight.

    • dan

      And the pitch to Delucci wasn’t even a strike.

  • Tom R.

    I wouldn’t be too hard on Sublett and Pruitt at this point. They are making a big jump going from Staten Island to Tampa. It’s tough to compare them to someone like Justin Snyder, where as if their spots in the organization were reversed so too might be their stats.

    I feel the same way about Angelini and Romine in Charleston. Anyone going from high school to full season ball in one year is likely in for a tough season. The majority of that league (especially early) is either players who signed out of college last year or who have multiple years under their belt.

  • Micky7 Old Ranger

    Montero is a good catcher, Strong arm and a good hitter. Draw back is his age and his size 6’4ish 220/230# and 19 years old. If he doesn’t keep growing, he may be in AAA sometime in 2010/2011. They will take it slow with him. 27/08.

  • Brandon

    Chad Jennings released some interesting quotes from Nardi.. Mike A. he hints the return of Garcia, Sanchez and possible promotions from AA SP. BTW he loves McAllister I don’t blame him any 20 yr. old kid w/ a 0.92 ERA and a GO/AO 65-21 …

  • Brandon

    hey can some people give Charleston’s Wady Rufino and Abraham Almonte so love, I mean both hit 3 run shots today.

  • Rich

    “…and to think some called him a failed prospect.”

    It was mindboggling.

  • chris

    eventually montero should be moved. if he is really a stud hittter (which he has a long way to go to prove he is) then you need his bat in the line-up every day. that position takes a lot out of players.

    look at jorge’s stats through his career comparing april may and june to july auust and september. there have been many yeas where he carried the team early and late in the year couldn’t hit his weight. puting montero at catcher will also limit the games he will play – 130 as opposed to 162. Having a great hitting catcher like Jorge is nice but not necessary. Besides, when he came up i don’t think that anyone thought he would be as good a hitter as he is. defensively i always have considered him to be very good other than his plate blocking.

    as for Joba – Delucci had to be guessing fastball to turn that pitch around. that is going to happen with major league hitters every so often- if they guess fastball and location they could hit a 110 MPH fastball (if that were possible). at least what joba has goin for him is that freakish slider that has such sick movement and that he can control. that pitch, not his fastball, will be his go to pitch in his career – not that he shouldnt use that 99MPH fastball – thats a pretty decent pitch too.

    • kanst

      I disagree completely. Lets say you have a guy who can hit .300 with 30-35 homers a year and he can play a decent catcher. That would make him the best offensive catcher in baseball and only an above average first baseman. YOu play guys at the hardest defensive position they can manage because their bat will be more above average that way. Id rather have 130 games of way above average catcher then 155 games of good first baseman

  • chris

    i missed the game last night and only saw the highlights. did he brus anyone back in that inning. he should do that once or twice every appearance. we saw with clemens the psycological affect of knocking a guy down — see mike piazza’s stats against clemens and compare the numbes from pre-head hunting (2000) to post headhunting.

  • Relaunch

    Kennedy doing well in the minors, yawn.

  • chris

    that sounds like an excellent fantasy baseball argument. i am going to stick with having one of my best hitters play everyday and not get worn down.

    had piazza not caught his entire career he may have had 2 or 3 more great years ahead of him which could have made a big difference to the mets late in his career

    • Jon

      So would rather have the combination of an above average first baseman and an average catcher over a combination of the best hitting catcher in the league and an above average first baseman(It’s the Yankees at the point he’s up here we could have one of the best 1B in the league at the time)?

      Yea, I’d go with the latter…

    • Yankee1010

      Luckily, Cashman would never think like this.

      Do you think Posada should have played 1B his entire career so that he would play a few more games? Please tell me you realize how valuable someone is if they can mash and play catcher.

  • EdB

    Had Piazza played anywhere else he would not have been anywhere near as interesting as he was in his prime. Coupled with the fact he might actually have been worse at 1st base then he was behind the plate, I’d say his value lay in being one of the best hitting catchers of all time.

    On an entirely different note-Is Abe Almonte for real? He’s looking like he can really handle himself at the plate.

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Abe’s legit. Still learning CF, but he’s a stud.

  • Bo

    Why would anyone move Montero from Catcher?

    have you seen him catch games? Work staffs? What are you basing a move on? Hitting numbers from one month???


    I think we’ve all seen how valueable a good hitting catcher is right???

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      It doesn’t matter if the guy can hit like Montero or not. You keep them at catcher until they prove they can’t handle it. Above-average catchers are such an advantage, it’s not even funny. We’re really been spoiled with Jorge.

      Interesting side note, coming in yesterday’s game the two leading hitters in the AL were Victor Martinez and Joe Mauer. That’s ridic.

  • chris

    how many times in his career was posada a top hitter until mid-season when his body let him down. Also, aside from his plate blocking ability he is a very good catcher defensively and i do not think the yankees had any idea he would hit the way he does.

    not specifically speaking about montero – if i have a guy with all star caliber potential, i don’t keep him at catche unless he is awesome defensively. again i am speaking hypothetically, but by you agument ARod would seve the team bette as a catcher. would you want arod only playing in 130 games? i am speaking about star hitters and for me, i want a star hitter in the lineup every single day not 3 out of 4 games