Granderson’s three homers carry Yanks to win

Charleston turns triple play in comeback win
Mailbag: Giants, Catching, Swisher, Jeter

This game had bad news written all over it in the early going, but the Yankees came from behind for the 7-6 win thanks to Curtis Granderson‘s monster effort.

(Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

The Murphy’s Law Inning

The top of the first inning was just amazing. Everything that could go wrong, did. First, Eduardo Nunez threw the ball away on a routine grounder to put men on first and second with one out. Then the Yankees played the shift on the left-handed hitting Ryan Doumit only to see him fist a ground ball right where the shortstop should have been standing. That scored two runs. Then it was Phil Hughes‘ turn to make a mistake, specifically leaving a two-strike cutter up in the zone for Danny Valencia to hook into the left-center field gap for two runs.

The error obviously hurts, but like I said the other day, at some point the pitcher has to pick up his defense. Hughes didn’t do that, and it led to a four-run inning. The shift didn’t help, Nunez didn’t help, and Hughes didn’t help. The Yankees can’t keep playing catch-up game after game, at some point these mistakes have to stop.

Get Some Back

(Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

Just like Wednesday night, the Yankees responded to the four-run top of the first by scoring three in the bottom half. This time they did it with homers, first a solo shot by  Granderson and a two-run job by Mark Teixeira. It was Tex’s first homerun of 2012, Spring Training included. Robinson Cano narrowly missed an opposite field homer as well, his ball died on the warning track. We’ve seen the Yankees score runs in bunches in the first inning only to get little the rest of the way so far this season, but thankfully that didn’t happen in this one.

Two-Out Rally

Nunez helped open the floodgates with his error in the first inning, but he atoned for his mistake by starting a two-out rally in the second. He doubled to left with a full count, then scooted home and tied the game when Derek Jeter sliced a single to right. After getting ahead in the count 3-0 and then 3-1, Granderson clobbered his second homer of the night one batter later. The two-run shot landed in the second deck. Grandy’s fifth homer of the season gave his team a 6-3 lead.

Hughes Settles

After throwing 27 pitches in the first inning, Hughes needed just 58 pitches total to navigate the next four frames. He retired 13 of the next 15 batters he faced following Valencia’s double, settling down and looking more like the guy we saw in Spring Training. Phil’s night ended on a sour note when Doumit hooked a hanging changeup into the second deck in right for a two-run shot, but we saw some positive signs in the second through fifth inning. The Yankees are unlikely to make a rotation change until either Andy Pettitte or Michael Pineda is ready to return, but at least now Hughes can point to something positive and try to build on it. Give him credit for not completely tanking after that first inning.

(Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

The Grandyman Can!

Coming into Thursday’s game, Granderson owned a .208/.321/.458 batting line. He managed to raise that to .283/.377/.679 in five plate appearances. That’s .277 OPS points in one night. Of course, going 5-for-5 with three homers is no ordinary night. You already heard about the first two homers above, but Curtis chipped in another solo shot in the fourth, a line drive into the right field seats that proved to be the difference in the game. He added a line drive single in the sixth and an infield single in the ninth.

Granderson became the first Yankees ever (ever!) to hit three homers as part of a 5-for-5 game. It was the first three-homer game by a Yankee since A-Rod did in Kansas City back in August of 2010, and the first three-homer game in the new Yankee Stadium. He was so good that I’m going to forgive him for getting picked off first base in the ninth inning.

(Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

Leftovers

The bullpen has been the backbone of the team all season, and those guys again carried the load on Thursday. Boone Logan finished off the sixth inning for Hughes despite throwing two innings on Wednesday. Rafael Soriano put two men on base in the seventh, but he got out of the jam with a trio of strikeouts. David Robertson did the usual — put the tying run in scoring position before escaping the jam — and Mariano Rivera slammed the door with a perfect, six-pitch ninth. At 1.83, the Yankees own the best bullpen ERA in baseball.

Teixeira continued his hot hitting, no doubt inspired by my series of posts examining his offensive decline. He went 2-for-4 with the homer, giving him four straight multi-hit games and 11 hits in his last 29 at-bats (.379). Jeter singled once, both Raul Ibanez and A-Rod each singled twice, Russell Martin drew his usual walk, and Nunez sparked the two-out rally with his double. Nick Swisher drew a walk, leaving Robinson Cano as the only player in the lineup to fail to reach base. The Yankees have scored at least five runs in all but three of their 13 games this season. They’ve scored six or more runs in seven of 13 games. If the starting pitching had been just good instead of terrible, they’d have like nine wins by now.

The Yankees need to stop with the shift, it’s just not happening right now. They don’t have the personnel to pull it off and the pitchers just aren’t able to pitch to specific spots to get the kind of contact they need to make it work. They can worry about looking smart later in the season, just play the usual defense and worry about getting the pitching staff back on track. That first inning ground ball isn’t the first time we’ve seen it blow up in their face this homestand.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings

Now that’s a fun WPA graph. MLB.com has the box score and video, FanGraphs the other stats, and ESPN the updated standings.


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next

The Yankees are headed up to Boston for a three-game weekend series, and tomorrow afternoon they’ll help celebrate the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park by wearing 1912 throwback uniforms. That’s pretty neat. Ivan Nova and Clay Buchholz are your starting pitchers.

email
Charleston turns triple play in comeback win
Mailbag: Giants, Catching, Swisher, Jeter
  • forensic

    3 innings in 2 days for Logan? Can’t wait for the inevitable nail-biting at-bats for Rapada against Gonzalez and Ortiz tomorrow.

    Also wouldn’t expect to see Soriano so it could get interesting if they get the lead toward the later innings.

    • BK2ATL

      I too wonder about our bullpen. So far, they have been overused due to the starters’ inefficiency. With Boston coming up, Phelps, Wade, Rapada and now Eppley are the most rested.

      We may really need a he-man effort out of Nova tomorrow to get us into the 7th or 8th. He’s gotta be aggressive and efficient. They are a patient club.

      I still think we can take 2 of 3 from them.

      • forensic

        I hope you’re right about 2 of 3, but I just can’t bring myself to expect that at this point. I still have some concerns with the offense, though it helps that they miss Lester and Beckett. Unfortunately, it’ll make it all the more frustrating if they don’t do some damage against Doubront and Bard. I also can’t envision Garcia doing much good on Saturday, so that almost eliminates one from my list.

        Hope for the best but expect the worst. It still hurts when they lose, but it can be pleasantly surprising when they win.

        • Havok9120

          Pitching remains the issue. We’re scoring a ton of runs, not in viper lumps but on a regular basis, we simply keep having to stage comebacks from deficits which the average offensive team could neveer expect to overcome.

          That said, even with the bullpen a little light, our team is better than Boston. It simply all depends on the SP which, looked at in the context of what most teams have to deal with, is a good problem to have.

  • jim p

    Grandy took the AL HR lead, now with six.

  • forensic

    I sure do wish Granderson could just make a little more contact. Imagine what kind of damage he could do even if he just got his K’s down to the 110-120 range.

    • BK2ATL

      Dude, give it a rest. He went 5 for 5 with 3 HRs tonight. Just not tonight…

      Let’s let that sink in a bit. No complaining about Grandy for the next week. What a game, what a stat line.

      • forensic

        God forbid I complement him basically saying he’d be a monster if he could make a little more contact in general.

        I guess I need a new list of allowable comments from you on certain nights.

        And no complaining for the next week? What is this, preschool? He has an awesome game so we have to ignore it if he goes 0-fer the next week just so we’re being nice to reinforce him with good feelings?

        • V

          In order to cut down on his strikeouts, he’d likely need to cut down on his swing. Y’know, that all-or-nothing power swing that hammered 40 HRs last year.

          You can’t get without giving. I prefer .260 and 40 HRs to .300 and 20.

          • forensic

            He might have to cut down a bit, but I don’t think too much. Just a little better recognition of the breakers in the dirt would go a very long way.

        • BK2ATL

          You’re complaining about someone who just went 5 for 5 with 3 HRs and just about won the game for the Yanks, only a few hours after all of that occurred. Don’t see anything basically wrong in that?

          The lack of contact thing could be said about a lot of Yanks on any night. You would think congratulating Granderson, rather than complaining, would at least be in order for Granderson tonight from Yanks’ fan.

          I don’t know, forgive me for enjoying to see a historic night by a Yankee, without feeling the need to complain about him.

          • forensic

            Not that it matters, but I already said stuff about him in the game thread while it was happening.

            And, I don’t see what I said as complaining, it’s more of a hypothetical about how he could be even better if he put 50 more balls in play. Saying a good thing can get better is not complaining, it’s just something to consider. Why settle for one thing if it’s possible it could even be better? Why not think about how crazy that would be?

            And since we’re on it, the lack of contact thing is taken to a new level with him vs. the rest of the team. There’s a reason he has the record for single-season strikeouts for the franchise.

            • BK2ATL

              Tonight is a night where Cano didn’t make any positive contact. Yet, the focus is on more contact from Granderson….Interesting.

              Maybe Granderson did strike out a lot last year, but I’d rather look at the positive side of things. The 40 HRs, 119 RBIs, 136 runs, 25 SBs, .364 OBP and 4th place in AL MVP voting.

              Maybe we don’t get one (the positive), without the other (strikeouts). He acknowledged after the game that he and Kevin Long were working on timing prior to the game. I’d say this is a great start towards that.

              If he hits .280 this year with similar power numbers, even better. But I’m not gonna gloss over what he already brings to the offense, and play the wonder game.

              • forensic

                Not much in the recap was about Cano, so why stick to him (I did already get on his proclivity for the DP in the game thread). Granderson is the story of the night and I was hypothesizing about what it would be like if he made more consistent contact thereby possibly making him even better than his is already.

                I’m not glossing over what he already brings, he contributes a lot, but it’s like he doesn’t have any warts in his game (like basically every player ever) and I don’t see the need to ignore those things and only look at him through pinstriped glasses (with polarizing lens that erase any bad things about a player).

          • Havok9120

            The fact that he had a good night tonight doesn’t save him from critisim. He has holes in his game. That said, the holes which exist now are better than the holes that would probably exist if he drastically changed his approach, which is what forensic is asking for.

            To forensic: its all well and good to say that “it shouldn’t have to big an impact,” but that does seem a tad flippant. I mean, how is a major shift (and not pulling the trigger when your eye and instinct says you should IS a huge change to make) something that we can reasonably expect to not negatively impact his performance? He’s managed to become a prolific power hitter by swinging at all those pitches, and that is often the difference between hitting a mistake into the gap or stands and letting it glide in for a ball. Either result is positive, but one is clearly superior, even if it means a lower OBP/BA. At least, I’ll take the power and scoring over the higher BA.

        • rek4gehrig

          It’s how you said it i.e. stating the negative first. Compliment him first and then throw in your suggestions for improval.

    • Plank

      If he changed his swing or approach to get more contact, he would probably lose power.

      • forensic

        As I said above, I don’t think he’d have to cut down too much. Better pitch recognition would go a long way, as also evidenced by how many times he’s had a check swing on a poor pitch in a hitters count.

        Of course, it’s all easier said than done. Really, I’m just dreaming of ideals.

        • Plank

          Agreed, but saying a player would benefit from better pitch recognition is a step less vague than saying a player would benefit from being better at baseball.

          • Chen Meng Wang

            I don’t know why but this just reminded me of skits making fun of John Madden. Not that either you or forensic are acting this way but as I read your comment I almost heard Madden in my head “to beat another team, you’re going to have to play physical football, and this can be done by being more physical than the other team, and playing better football.”

            • Pat D

              “If they don’t move the ball down the field, they’re not gonna score!”

              • Plank

                It is what it is.

          • forensic

            I disagree when it’s really one main part of the recognition. The breaking balls in the dirt that he swings over.

            • Havok9120

              You’re asking him to have a better eye as if its something he has concious control over on a daily basis. If he can’t pick up a given pitcher, the choice becomes “do I swing on things I can’t nail down or do I hold up for a better pitch?”

              Sure, you’re only asking him to change a single part of his game, but its a huge part and one that has more to talent than skill.

    • RetroRob

      And Jeter strikes out a 100 times a year, an unforgivable sin in years past for a lead-off hitter. If only he would strike out just 30 times a year, yet maintain all his hitting process and rate stats. Just imagine. Imagine.

      • forensic

        What does years past have to do with anything? In today’s game Jeter’s K’s aren’t absurd. Granderson’s 170ish K’s are really high even now.

        It really is amazing how defensive people get, like I said something about their mother or something.

        • Havok9120

          They think you’re being unrealistic. The game is played by humans, not stat sheets. Sure, it would be better if he could make improvements that wouldn’t affect the rest of his game, but how many people can do that on a part of the game that has so much to do with a subjective response rather than an objective reality?

  • BK2ATL

    I think you’re right about the shift, esp. this part “the pitchers just aren’t able to pitch to specific spots to get the kind of contact they need to make it work.”

    Pitching location just hasn’t been there consistently so far.

    • forensic

      I’m torn. I agree the pitchers aren’t good enough, at least right now, to put the ball in the area they want, but it’s so tempting to shift when you see things like Doumit’s Teixeira-style spray chart against righties.

      • BK2ATL

        Dude, they tried it with Hughes….

        Let’s keep practicing it and maybe break it out in late May or June when CC, Kuroda, Pineda and Nova are more dialed in.

        Hughes, I can’t put in that same class. I really want him to put it together, but I’m now left wondering if it’s meant to be. He’s being given every opportunity to keep his spot, but so far, it’s a shaky experience when he’s out there. Just no confidence in his ability to put batters away. That out pitch has been his issue for a few years now. He’s not the one you use the shift behind. He’s more apt to miss the spot towards the shift than the others.

        • forensic

          I know, I said I agree with you on that part. Of course, if it was me making the decisions this would be a non-issue because Hughes wouldn’t even have a Yankees uniform at this point, but that’s another can of worms.

          • BK2ATL

            No, we’re definitely in agreement.

            Just still don’t believe they tried the shift behind Hughes. Smfh.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    Yeah it’s an odd feeling but despite giving up six runs to the fucking Twins I feel that I was too hard on Hughes.

    • YanksFanInBeantown

      The Twinkies aren’t really that bad at hitting when they have Morneau and Mauer in their lineup.

      Of course…they’ll still always be the Yankees’ bitches

      • Havok9120

        That first sentence is the key. The Twins are only jokes if Mornneau and Mauer are gimped and underperforming. When they aren’t they remain two of the best hitters in baseball.

  • Oliver

    Phil Hughes started the game in KC when A-Rod went off. So he’s started the last two games when a Yankee has hit 3 home runs.

    • forensic

      Wow, that’s pretty weird. He does seem to have a knack in general of getting some pretty crazy run support, even compared to other pitchers with this offense when it’s going good.

      • Havok9120

        He and Nova (especially) seem to have been he biggest beneficiaries of run support during their dominant periods. Compare that to Pettitte, who couldn’t beg, borrow, or steal 5 runs in a game in 2009/2010, at least anecdotaly.

  • pistol pete

    Don’t worry about Cano. I feel like his mini slump is like money in the bank because he’ll end up at 300 20 and 100. I’m really worried about Hughes. He just doesn’t have it, needs to be in the pen. Hurry up Andy.

    • forensic

      It might just be me, but it seems like 20 and 100 would be a bit disappointing at this point in his career, especially as a 3-4 hitter.

      • Havok9120

        Eh, counting stats have their problems, as we all know. His HR total being that low wouldn’t be too bad if it was ofset by other things, and it probably will be.

        That said, you’re correct that, given his style of play, .300/20/100 can be considered a bad season given that he has no entered his prime.

        I feel that we’re (the fans) begininning to make the same mistake with Cano as we did with Hughes last year and now this year: these guys aren’t 23 year olds overperforming for their age because of raw talent and therefore exceptions should be made in every instance. Hughes and, especially, Cano are getting to the point where they should be having years which reflect their prime, not their breaking in-stage. We need to expect them to perform at their peak, not at a level that showcases their potential.

  • Johnny

    Man, everybody’s stealing my bit now. I knew I should have tried to make some bank off it while I had the chance.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/new-yo.....or-girardi

    http://nomaas.org/2012/04/now-.....the-brain/

    http://www.pinstripealley.com/.....oe-girardi

    Oh well.

    • Plank

      You invented sports writers criticizing the manager of the sports team they write about that is off to a worse than expected start?

      • forensic

        LOL, I was going to ask something similar but couldn’t figure out a good way to phrase it. Thanks for taking care of that, much better than anything I’d come up with.

      • Johnny

        I love how you take everything seriously. I’d love to see you on April 1st on the internet. Your eyes must be as wide as saucers.

        • Plank

          I take people seriously because I have respect for this site and the people on it. Sorry if you feel I shouldn’t take you at your word, I’ll be sure not to from now on.

          Sorry I missed all those clues that showed how you were joking when you wrote what you did.

          • Johnny

            All I meant by that is that I can’t—and I don’t think anybody can be expected to—end each ironic or sarcastic or light-hearted post with “/sarcasm” or with a smilie or with “LOL” or anything like that. Nor can I wrote all such posts in all caps or with screwed up language to indicate that it’s not meant to be taken seriously. We all have left comments that aren’t meant to be taken seriously here before.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              Hate to break it to ya, but it wasn’t good sarcasm either.

  • Pat D

    I’d just like to say again, as always, that Fenway Park is an ugly piece of shit that doesn’t have half as much “history” or significant moments as Yankee Stadium.

    If only the events of The Dark Knight had been real and instead of blowing up some hospital The Joker blew up Fenway instead. Or that Bane, in the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises did to Fenway what he does to whatever they’re calling Heinz Field.

    • forensic

      Come on now, don’t hold back, tell us how you really feel.

      • Pat D

        No, that would be too frightening and terrifying.

        You don’t want to see my dark moods manifest themselves.

    • Plank

      I love Fenway park. When you say Yankee Stadium, do you mean the one built in the 1920s, the 1970s, or 2009?

      • Pat D

        The one that stood in the same location from 1923-2008.

        • Plank

          I’ve never heard anyone refer to the rebuilt stadium in the 70s as the same stadium. It was different in looks, feel, dimensions, everything. The only thing that was the same was part of the foundation.

          • Pat D

            Either version was better than Fenway.

            Maybe I’m being too much of a hater, but what great historical moments happened at Fenway? They only clinched 3 of their WS victories there. They didn’t finish the 2004 ALCS there. Yea, there was the Fisk HR in the ’75 Series, but it was all for naught (just like the Tino, Jeter, Brosius and Boone HR’s in 2001 and 2003 ultimately were).

            So much more of greater significance has happened at any iteration of Yankee Stadium, and there have been more great Yankees than great Red Sox, too.

            • Plank

              If that’s the definition of a better stadium, I suppose the Yankees have had more historical moments in their stadiums over the years.

              I always loved games at Fenway better than YS. It had the feel of a minor league park. The 70s version of the stadium (the only one I went to) had the feel of a big municipal stadium. At Fenway, everyone is close to the action and they shut down that street next to the stadium and you can walk around there whenever you want.

              • Pat D

                Yea, people always tell me I need to go to Fenway and my first reaction is “Why should I go pay a lot of money to sit in a place that when I see it on TV makes me feel physically ill?”

                I’m not joking, looking at Fenway with all the puke green color and just its overall ugliness really does unsettle my stomach.

                • Rick in Boston

                  It also might be the most uncomfortable stadium in baseball. I’m an average sized guy and I have trouble sitting there for long stretches of time. My buddy who is 6’4 has to have an aisle seat.

                  • Pat D

                    Yea, that would be an issue for me. I’m 6’4″ and overweight, so…doesn’t sound like a fun experience for me.

              • Havok9120

                While that all may make it a decent field, it doesn’t make it a more important monument to baseball (or the nation), which is what so many sports writers and fans treat it like. That place is a monument to futility in terms of baseball achievement and, before the national media made the Sox their adopted children in the last decade, Fenway was a backwater of a stadium in terms of national consciousness.

            • I’m sexy and I Cano it

              This. Yankee Stadium (at least the old one) > Fenway Park.

              The Cathedral of Baseball > “America’s most beloved ballpark”

            • MannyGeee

              Bucky Dent happened at Fenway. A rod clobbered Papelbon multiple times in Fenway. And manny Ramirez cut off Johnny Damon’s throw at Fenway and made the Not Top 10 on ESPN… Oh and manny would take a piss inside the Green Monster.

              See, plenty of history!

              But in all honesty, I love seeing Yankees Sox at Fenway. Outside of the Sox Fans being Sox Fans and the Sweet Caroline intermission, it’s a pretty good time.

  • Jesse

    So, Hughes struggles–for the most part–against the Rays, Angels, and Twins and his next start is against the Rangers in Arlington next. I know YCPB, but I’m not feeling very confident though I am a Phil Hughes fan.

    • Jesse

      Bleh, that was poorly written. Whatever.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        No more underage drinking for you, Jesse.

        (I kid.)

    • I’m sexy and I Cano it

      Right now I wouldn’t feel confident in Roy Halladay if he had to pitch against the Rangers in Arlington.

      • Will

        And I wouldn’t feel confident in Hughes if he was pitching to a Little League team in Citi Field before they moved in the fences.

      • MannyGeee

        Hell, Jesus Christ our savior wouldn’t make it through the 5th in Arlington right now.

    • Havok9120

      Nor should you. At best, he’s going to be a “good” starting pitcher. More likely, he’ll be decent in that role against teams with skilled hitters. That, at least, is the case he’s been making over the last several years.

      That said, a “good” starter is valuable to most teams. Just not to us.

    • Bavarian Yankee

      maybe that’ll be his last start of his career. I have literally no hope that he’ll turn it around, he just doesn’t have the repertoire and command that a starter needs. Pineda and Pettitte can’t join the rotation soon enough.

      The way he’s pitching now is just not good enough to be in the rotation of a contender. I even wonder if the Yanks will tender him a contract after the season, he’s getting expensive for a middle reliever.

  • LarryM.,Fl.

    I watched the game last night and it was the first time that I observed Hughes pitch. He was throwing well with respect to his arm strength. But what I find disturbing is the secondary pitches. He started to throw the breaking stuff to setup the fastball which he blew by a few dead fastball hitters. This is a positive. Then at times the secondary pitches were so hum drum that the batters just stayed away boosting his pitch count.

    Hughes needs to improve the secondary pitches or at least throw them with more confidence. Thus a better breaking pitch performance. Its like a golfer confidence in the selection iron (pitch), the yardage (speed of the pitch), location = (location). He will improve and provide the Yankees with a true number 3 capable of beating all teams.

    • MannyGeee

      His control was shit, even when he was cruising in the 2nd-5th. The cutter was getting away from him and his fastball was erratic.

      It’s not a stuff thing, and sometimes was control is there in spades. I still think its a confidence thing. It’s all mental, shoulda kept AJ…

      • MannyGeee

        And before Plank jumps on my shit… No, I am not serious about AJ. The rest of the post still stands

        • Plank

          I resemble that remark.

      • LarryM.,Fl.

        I’ll agree that his location was off but more inclined to go with the confidence to throw his secondary pitches which are poor for a pitcher with his abilities and expectations of the organization.

  • Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan

    Remember last year when we all used to complain how the Yankees would hit a solo homerun in the bottom of the 1st to take the early lead, then never score again? Maybe giving up 4 runs in the top of the 1st is how you counteract that.

    lolz jk bro

  • DF

    Mike (and others), I don’t think you’re understanding how the shift works. The spray charts show where hitters hit the ball against all pitches thrown to them, not just ones in locations where you expect the ball to be pulled. You’re assuming that Doumit only pulls balls inside, but that’s unlikely. More likely, he pulls everything, no matter where you throw it.

    So the shift should be employed regardless of how the pitcher pitches to the batter. Sure, if you shift to the pull side and then the pitcher tosses a bunch of stuff on the outer half, you’re helping the batter defeat the shift by giving him pitches he can more easily slap the other way. But the assumption is that he can’t/won’t. And looking at a hitter like Tex, that seems to be exactly right.

    I think you’re just (understandably) reacting out of frustration. But the shift is a good idea the Yankees shouldn’t give up on.

  • bpdelia

    Gotta vehemently disagree on the shift. For an analytic site I find the comment dissapointing.

    So because, the shift backfired a couple of times on one early series they should scrap it? SSS is constantly harped on here.

    The yankees should continue shifting. Personell has nothing to do with it. These shifts are designed based on huge samples against all types of pitchers. You dont scrap a sound theory because phil hughes cant hit his spots in april.

    • gc

      Agreed. Looking back at the replay, the pitch he threw was on the inner half of the plate and was busting in on the batter. He fought it off and got a hit. Tip your cap, and the results were not good, but the process, I believe was correct.

  • Bonnie Parker

    3 good things came out of last night’s ballgame-

    1. We won and split the series.
    2. The Nunez experiment is over. Don’t expect him to be playing in the field as much going forward. He’s a liability. Chavez will be getting the majority of backup time at 3B from now on.
    3. The Hughes experiment is over. In 2 weeks, Andy will be getting one rotation spot and soon after Pineda will be getting the other. Hughes and Garcia are OUT. One of them will be traded.

    • JohnC

      Bonnie:

      1) Correct. Very obvious

      2) Wrong. Nunez will be getting alot of playing time going forward as the Yanks still see him as a big part of their future, especially with an eye on getting to the 189 mill payroll number by 2014. He got better defensively last year as the year went on, and I think he will do so again, though I wish they would try him in the outfield.

      3) Wrong! The Hughes experiment is FAR FROM OVER! He did show a little improvement last night after the first inning. Yanks are not about to give up on an arm like his, and Pettite won’t be ready for at least another 3 weeks, so he will get a few more starts at least. Pineda is further away. He hasn’t even thrown to hitters yet

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Agreed. Nunez is going to continue to be out on the field. Even though I wasn’t particularly encouraged by Hughes last night, in the team’s eyes, I’m sure he gave them enough to not have to consider other options they clearly don’t want to entertain as they await P&P.

  • JohnC

    Is there any doubt that Yanks need to find a way to keep Granderson and Cano, not just Cano?

    • Plank

      The Mid-Market Yankees can’t just go signing all their players who hit free agency. That’s only for big market teams like the Twins and Marlins.

    • Bonnie Parker

      They will keep those players. All this talk about getting under $190 million is nonsense. The Yankees spend. Steinbrenners spend, it’s in their blood. They will re-sign both players and pick up another elite pitcher. We won’t have to pay Hughes. We can dump Swisher in the offseason. Mo comes off the books. We’ll get those players re-signed.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    While I understand the reasoning as to why some of his start last night would be seen as a positive, there wasn’t much particularly encouraging to me from my beloved Phil Phuckin Hughes. At the end of the day, error or no error, the guy at the plate is still your responsibility, and he couldn’t limit the damage. Yes, he showed more prolonged signs of avoiding mistakes in the middle innings, but it continues to be flashes (I really did almost write “phlashes” there) of what we wish he could be combined with with too many pitches thrown and, therefore, too many mistake pitches thrown. I root for him. I root for him every time. It is still going to take a mountain of a turnaround for him to remain a longterm rotation option for this team. Sad.

    Great win, though. That shouldn’t be lost in anything we say.

  • rek4gehrig

    Yeah I agree. Enough with this silly shift. We are not Joe Madden