Open Thread: 3/18 Camp Notes


The Yankees walloped the Red Sox 8-1 this afternoon in a game that included a seven-minute bee delay in the third inning. A swarm of bees took over left field. Joe Girardi made a Tommy Boy joke during an on-air interview and everyone had a nice laugh at Mark Teixeira‘s expense. It was pretty great. Here’s the video.

Anyway, Michael Pineda was clearly the story the day, holding an admittedly weak Red Sox lineup to four hits in 4.1 scoreless innings before reaching his pitch limit. He struck out five and walked no one, giving him 14 strikeouts and one walk in nine Grapefruit League innings. Forty-five of his 60 pitches were strikes and he was anywhere from 88-94 mph on the YES gun with a filthy slider. Most importantly, everything was free and easy. Pineda wasn’t laboring or overthrowing. Looked very natural, unlike two springs ago.

Brett Gardner (3-for-4), Alfonso Soriano (2-for-4 with a monster homer), Frankie Cervelli (2-for-3 with a triple), and Brian Roberts (2-for-3 with a stolen base) all had pretty great days at the plate. Teixeira went 1-for-2 with two walks while Derek Jeter and Carlos Beltran both went 1-for-4. Beltran doubled. David Robertson struck out two of three batters faced and Shawn Kelley chucked a perfect inning. Pretty solid game all around. Here is the box score, here are the video highlights, and here is the rest from Tampa.

  • The Yankees announced their largest round of roster cuts so far: C/1B Francisco Arcia, OF Tyler Austin, RHP Bruce Billings, RHP Robert Coello, RHP Brian Gordon, IF Corban Joseph, RHP Mark Montgomery, C Peter O’Brien, UTIL Jose Pirela, RHP Chase Whitley, and OF Mason Williams were reassigned to minor league camp while OF Ramon Flores was optioned to Triple-A Scranton. Whitley will be stretched out as a starter, which makes sense given Scranton’s rotation needs following the Nik Turley and Jose Ramirez injuries. There are still 46 players in big league camp by my unofficial count. [Chad Jennings]
  • Jacoby Ellsbury went through a fairly normal workout today but still felt “something” in his calf. He will not play until Friday at the earliest. Austin (wrist), Brendan Ryan (oblique), and Scott Sizemore (calf) all took batting practice and figure to return to game action in the coming days. David Phelps, CC Sabathia, and Masahiro Tanaka threw their usual between-starts bullpen sessions. [Jack Curry, Jennings]
  • Andrew Bailey, who is working his way back from surgery to repair a tore shoulder capsule, is currently making 50 throws from 90 feet on flat ground as part of his rehab. He hopes to stretch it out to 120 feet next week. Bailey is unlikely to return to a big league mound until August or September, according to the team. [Jorge Castillo]
  • Tanaka’s next start will be Saturday on the road against the Twins. He will be on one extra day of rest. Hiroki Kuroda will stay behind in Tampa and pitch in a minor league game on normal rest that day. [Bryan Hoch]

Here is your open thread for the night. This afternoon’s game will be replayed on YES tonight (7pm ET) and on MLB Network early tomorrow (7am ET). MLBN will air the Cubs and Rangers live later tonight and all three local hockey clubs are in action as well. Talk about anything and everything here.


  1. TWTR says:

    I’m really encouraged by Pineda to this point.

    • jjyank says:

      Likewise. I’m been cautiously optimistic about Pineda for awhile now, and his spring so far has really made my stance a pretty easy one to take.

      If Pineda can pitch like a legit mid-rotation arm, that’s a huge boost.

    • bconde says:

      You guys are missing the boat on O’Brien. He will be in the bigs before any of the Yankees so called prospects. They did not give him a fair shot in AZ nor camp. Proven hitter with power. Mark my comments, will be in AAA by end of summer.

  2. vicki says:

    jonny gomes will have nightmares about that slider for some time to come.

    • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks) says:

      Imagine facing the Yanks when 4th and 5th starters (Tanaka and hopefully Pineda) are going with those two sliders?

    • Alkaline says:

      I just saw video of it now for the first time. I was listening to the game on the radio, but did not do it justice. I’ve been cautiously optimistic and liked when I saw him at AAA last year, but now I’m much more encouraged.

      Realistically, how many innings are we looking at from him?

      • vicki says:

        all the projection systems have him at fewer than 100 big league innings, steamer being the most bullish at 96 (pecota the most conservative – naturally – at 47.2). of course they did all their valuations before seeing the flesh-and-blood who showed up in tampa this spring.

        • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

          They’re now projecting 1,000 innings.

          • I'm One says:

            Michael Pineda is now projected to pitch every inning of every regular season game for the Yankees this year and next. Post season as well, with the Yankees sweeping all the post season games and winning the WS 2 years in a row. The Yankees will no longer need Masahiro Tanaka and will trade him for Mike Trout.

          • OB/GYN Kenobi says:

            I thought that was for Sizemore.

            • I'm One says:

              Michael Pineda is the son of Sott Siemore & Mariano Rivera. Therefore, he can do all the things lited above. (Gotta have that Sizemore lineage.)

  3. Jorge Steinbrenner says:

    Please hold up, Michael Pineda’s shoulder. PLEASE HOLD UP.

    He looks great. He looks like what we thought we were getting. I will also wince before every pitch he throws for the next few months.

  4. dkidd says:

    over/under total number of games ellsbury plays the next 7 seasons


    • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

      He’ll be fine. Calf tightness happens. I am pretty positive he’d be out there if the games actually mattered.

    • Tom says:

      850 is probably not a crazy # (a little over 120 per). He’d need to get close to 150per, which I don’t see him doing, to get near over 1000.

      I think between guys like Jeter, Cano, Mo and others (until recently of course), folks tend to forget how hard it is to play 140-150 games year in year out, or pitch out of the bullpen without injury,

      There are only 15 CF’rs who have played in more than 850 games in the last 7 years and many of them like Hamilton, Beltran, Ross are no longer CF’rs. There are only 2 CF’s who have played in more than 1000 games over the last 7 years – Hunter and Rios (and both have moved off that position).

      I imagine Ellsbury will move to LF at some point toward the end of the deal, but if he can get to ~900 games, I think that’s a real good outcome. I don’t know why someone chose to view the 850 # as some sort of knock on him.

      • vicki says:

        it wasn’t a knock. man set an over/under.

        • Tom says:

          My last sentence was referring to the response to the the initial comment as if that # was a (over)reaction to the calf injury.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

            While dkidd could rightfully say it was totally unrelated, my initial read was that the questions wouldn’t have come up unless there was a bit of overreacting over the calf tightness.

            Of course, now watch his calf fall off.

      • dkidd says:

        that’s some good info

        didn’t realize how few players are truly durable. yet another way those dynasty teams screwed with my expectations

    • forensic says:

      Under, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was well under.

    • OB/GYN Kenobi says:

      Over. (And from me, that’s saying a lot).

      But not by playing around 120 each year. I think he’ll be surprisingly durable for most of the contract (call it 140-145 games including some DH duty) but will suffer one pretty serious injury along the way that causes him to miss a bunch of time one year.

  5. Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks) says:

    Any chance the Yanks will pick up a 2B or 3B the way they picked up Overbay at the end of Spring Training last year…the odd man out of a Spring competition on another team? Anyone know if a 2B or 3B competitions exist right now and who that player might be?

    • dkidd says:

      espinosa v rendon for nationals second base is all i can come up with

      have a gut feeling cashman will roll the dice that roberts/johnson can get them to the trade deadline when teams like the phillies/brewers/white sox might be more ready to deal

    • Fin says:

      Its possible but I don’t see it happening. They have Nunez, Anna, Ryan and Sizemore for the infield so it doesn’t seem like they need more of those type players. I think they will keep what they have barring a trade for an upgrade somewhere.

      • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks) says:

        They have numbers but the quality isn’t great. Of course, I’d only recommend if it were an upgrade but doesn’t sound like the opportunities are plentiful.

  6. Farewell Mo says:

    I wonder if Pineda can pitch his way into the rotation or if the Yankees prefer to stretch him out in the minors?

    I also wonder if there’s an advantage as far as service time to bring keep him in the minors until say late May like most teams do with their young prospects to delay the clock starting.

    • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks) says:

      General consensus on your first point is he has a limited number of pitches in that right arm in 2014 so don’t waste them in the Minors.

      I inquired last week about your second point (service time) and Mike said he’d have to be in the minors until August.

      • Farewell Mo says:

        There you go so with that information, I’d have to think he’s the front runner for the 5th spot in the rotation right now.


        • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

          You have to think that, at this point, the team’s as starry-eyed with his potential as we are. You’re not getting that from BGDP. Phelps won’t be too far away either if fortunes change.

          I’ll be very curious to follow Banuelos’s adjustment in the coming months. Can’t wait to see him get his feel back, and I also hope to God that whatever TJS bug is out there avoids the Bronx.

      • qwerty says:

        I think he has a limited number of pitches just in general, not just in 2014.

        • Cool Lester Smooth says:

          Yeah, just look at the guys who’ve had the same surgery at that age:

          Roger Clemens
          Anibal Sanchez
          Jose Valverde

          It’s not like they sustained or even improved on their previous success after returning.

          • qwerty says:

            Yes, let’s look at the exceptions to the rule, instead of the rule itself. You make perfect sense. I had predicted that Pineda wouldn’t be long for surgery right after the trade.

            • Steve (different one) says:

              These aren’t the “exceptions to the rule”. The list of players who had the same type of surgery as Pineda is quite short.

              Basically there are 3 comps (Clemens isn’t one) and 2 have returned successfully.

              There are different types of shoulder surgeries, and Pineda had the “less bad” type, as his rotation cuff was not damaged.

              This had been discussed ad nauseum for 2 years now.

              Here is the article :


              This is not to say that the “rule” is that pitchers often return from this surgery. Basically there is no rule, since this specific injury is very uncommon.

            • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

              What was that about a broken clock?

  7. Jimmy says:

    Where we’re the real Red So , anyway?

  8. mustang says:

    ONLY one spring training game, but I haven’t seen a Yankees starter with that nasty of a slider since Ron Guidry.

    I told a friend a while back the key for this year and years to come is Pineda, Nova, and Tanaka. Line them up however you want, but if those 3 live up to our hopes everything else will fall into place.

    • Jarrod says:

      I’m with you. It’s only spring training, the big boys from the Sox weren’t there, he’s coming off a tough injury – I don’t care – I’m pumped! He looks awesome!

      Of the 3 of them I think Nova is the key, if he is consistently good we will be deadly.

      • mustang says:

        Agree on Nova he is the least skilled of the 3 this year we should find out what he really is, but if he is second half of 2013 Nova deadly is right.

        The Holy Grail to good young starting pitching can be reaching through other way then just development believe it or not.

        • Jarrod says:

          Agree 100% that Nova is the least skilled but that’s why I think he is the most important. I think Tanaka will be good (hopefully great but definitely good) and barring injury Pineda is already proven at the big league level.

          Nova has been way too inconsistent and needs to sort that out. I guess for me it’s a case of only being as strong as your weakest link and all that..

    • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

      High praise.

  9. Jarrod says:

    I’m way beyond cautiously optimistic at this point – I can’t help it.

    I think he is legit and provided the shoulder stays intact I think he will be great this year and for years to come.

  10. Wheels says:

    Mike Carp on Pineda today:

    “He was just completely dominant. He had that presence to go out there and attack hitters. That’s what happened today. He looked like he was having fun doing what he does. And that’s definitely a big, hulking presence on the mound. He’s a force to be reckoned with and hopefully he’s going to provide them with some depth. Hopefully we don’t have to face him a lot this year.”

  11. Fuck being cautiously optimistic. I’m pumped to see Pineda in the regular season.

  12. Fin says:

    I’m not saying I think the 5th starter competition was rigged, but I do think it was all about Pineda. If Pineda looked like he was physically ready to pitch in MLB baseball, he was gona get the spot, not matter what the other guys did. I think he certainly looks ready to pitch in MLB and the job is his.

  13. forensic says:

    He did look really good today, but I still can’t help but take into account most of the competition and the time of year. I’m hopeful that it continues like this, but it’s hard for me to be overly optimistic or to have high expectations given what’s happened the last two years (and given his innings limit even if he does stay healthy).

    • Fin says:

      I agree and think the best idea would be to start him in the pen, allowing him to build up his arm strength and then move him into the rotation allowing him to complete the season. Will suck if he is great and the Yankees run into a Stausberg situation.

      I just don’t seem them doing that. I think they are gona start him, hope for the best case scenario, which is a Strausburg outcome.

      • Dalek Jeter says:

        If Pineda wins the 5th starter role(I hope he does, and if he has an innings cap(he probably will), and if they run into a “Strausburg situation” (which I guess you mean they make the playoffs but he’s at his innings limit) then we can assume the other 4 starters had at least decent years and we just run with a 4 man rotation in the playoffs. I hate this saying but, lets cross that bridge when we come to it.

        • Fin says:

          That is exactly what I meant, and exactly what I think the Yankees are going to do.

        • Chip Rodriguez says:

          Agreed. If you hit that stage, you’ve got a few options:

          a) Prepare in advance (if it looks as if the Yankees are contending for October) by working a trade before end of July for another fifth starter type guy.
          b) Call up Nuno or turn Phelps/Warren into a starter in September, then go to the four man rotation in October
          c) Best case scenario: Pineda shut down by end of August due to innings limit. Rosters expand, Banuelos replaces him in the rotation.

      • forensic says:

        I actually wouldn’t want them to start him in the pen, because I’m not sure I have faith in them then successfully stretching him out during the season.

        I say just start him and let him go until he reaches a rational innings limit. If you’re lucky enough and he stays healthy and effective enough to reach it, then so be it and you just move on and look toward next year. If he gets hurt for a shortish time, then maybe that takes care of the innings limit for you and he’s still available the rest of the year (if he’s effective).

        I don’t understand the people who said they should’ve sat Strasburg for the first month of the season instead of the end. Then what happens if you do that and he gets hurt in May or June again? All you’ve done at that point is exasperate the problem, and it’s not like it’s far-fetched given his injuries up till that point.

        • TWTR says:

          He has to start, be it in the majors or the minors, and at this point, it’s a near certainty, barring am extreme reversal in performance/stuff, that he will be the nominal 5th starter.

          During the course of the season, he can miss multiple starts, if necessary, to keep his IP down, but really, aggregate IP tells you less than the stress of the innings pitched.

        • OB/GYN Kenobi says:


      • Cool Lester Smooth says:

        Actually, the absolute perfect scenario is that he is great and the Yankees run into a Strasburg situation.

        Like, I can’t imagine a better outcome.

  14. 461deep says:

    Pineda looked solid today. Should do fine as a #5 if he stays healthy.
    Nice fastball & terrific slider as mentioned by many here. He also has imposing size which is an added benefit. Entire team looked Good today. Red Sox lack luster today.
    KEEP FRANKIEE KEEP FRANKIE. Elsbury should be okay if he does not
    injure his calf more seriously

  15. Tim says:

    What is the difference between being assigned to Minor league camp and AAA Scranton??

    • OB/GYN Kenobi says:

      Camp is like purgatory until they figure out which team to assign you to. I think.

    • forensic says:

      If you’re on the 40-man roster, then you’re have to be optioned down which uses one of your three option years. If you’re not on the 40-man, then you just get reassigned. In the end, they basically mean the same thing, you just have to call them different things for procedural reasons.

  16. Dalek Jeter says:

    Am I the only one who thinks the Indians are insane for not jumping all over the extension Masterson has offered to sign with them? I mean here’s a guy who has pitched at his worst as a number four and at best a number 1. He has been worth at worst 1.9 fWAR since 2009 and he’s willing to sign an extension for his ages 30-33/34 season for 40-60 million. How do you not jump at that chance?

    • Cool Lester Smooth says:

      He’s never pitched like a No. 1, and he’s never pitched like a 3 in consecutive years.

      No way I lock myself into Masterson for that much for that long.

  17. SevenAces says:

    I can totally understand that Pineda was pitching against a weak lineup, but you can’t discount the fact that Pineda made them look like grade school kids swinging their wiffle bats. There is striking out and then there is utterly overpowered.

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