Mets rock Sabathia, Yankees fall 8-2 in second game of Subway Series


Source: FanGraphs

Well that was a bummer. The Yankees followed up their convincing win in the Subway Series opener with a clunker on Saturday afternoon, losing 8-2 to the Mets. The four-game winning streak has been snapped, but the Yankees have still won seven of their last nine games. It’s Saturday night, so let’s recap with bullet points:

  • Sad-bathia: Unlike CC Sabathia‘s first two starts, which had quite a bit of good sprinkled around the One Bad Inning™, Saturday’s start was a disaster. Sabathia gave up three homers and nine total hits in five innings, surrendering seven runs. It would have been a lot more without some stellar defense. The four-run fourth inning rally all happened with two outs and against the bottom of the order. Sabathia had nothing to stop the bleeding. He fooled no one.
  • Swing Early: Matt Harvey threw one stressful pitch on Saturday. That was Jacoby Ellsbury‘s double play in the third inning, which simultaneously drove in the Yankees’ first run and killed their best chance for a big inning. The lineup had a clear plan to swing early in the count — Harvey faced 32 batters and 18 of ‘em swing at the first and/or second pitch — and the result was this pitch count by inning for Harvey: 11, 12, 12, 10, 11, 11, 14, 10, 16. The Yankees were overmatched.
  • Leftovers: The bottom three hitters in the Mets’ lineup went 8-for-12 (.667). The top six hitters went 4-for-28 (.142). That is capital-A annoying … Mark Teixeira hit a garbage time solo homer in the seventh. He now has eight homers, four doubles, and three singles in 2015 … Teixeira went 3-for-4 and the rest of the lineup went 2-for-27 (.074) … Esmil Rogers allowed a run in three innings of mop-up work … Jacoby Ellsbury left the game with a hip issue and is day-to-day.

Here are the box score, video highlights, and updated standings. Also, here are our Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages. The Yankees and Mets wrap up the Yankee Stadium portion of the 2015 Subway Series on Sunday night, in the ESPN game. They have another one of those next week too. Nathan Eovaldi and Jon Niese will be on the mound.

DotF: Avelino stays hot in Charleston’s win

Triple-A Scranton (4-1 loss to Pawtucket)

  • CF Slade Heathcott: 0-3, 1 E (fielding)
  • DH Ramon Flores: 1-3, 1 K
  • 2B Rob Refsnyder: 0-3, 1 K, 2 E (fielding, throwing) — that’s seven errors in 14 games after 12 errors in 122 games last year
  • LF Tyler Austin: 0-2, 1 K
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 7 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 11/6 GB/FB — 62 of 99 pitches were strikes … great start, too bad his defense didn’t cooperate

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Saturday Night Open Thread

Here is your open thread for the evening. MLB Network is showing a regional game tonight plus there’s a bunch of NBA and NHL postseason games going on as well. Talk about any of those games or anything else right here.

Game 18: Make It Five

(Mike Stobe/Getty)
(Mike Stobe/Getty)

Last night’s series opening win over the Mets was easily the most satisfying win of the young season. Right? I can’t be the only one who feels that way. Know what would make it even better? Winning this afternoon’s game too. The Yankees have won four straight and seven of their last eight games. OMG they are soooo hot right now.

Like Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda the last two days, CC Sabathia is making his first start of the year on regular season. All of his Spring Training and regular season starts to date have come with an extra day of rest, which was totally by design as the team looks to take it easy on the veteran southpaw and his surgically repaired knee. Here is the Mets’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  2. LF Brett Gardner
  3. DH Alex Rodriguez
  4. 1B Mark Teixeira
  5. C Brian McCann
  6. RF Chris Young
  7. 3B Chase Headley
  8. 2B Stephen Drew
  9. SS Didi Gregorius
    LHP CC Sabathia

It’s a lovely afternoon for baseball in New York. A little on the cool side but the sky is clear and blue. This afternoon’s game is scheduled to begin at 4:05pm ET and you can watch live on WPIX and SNY locally as well as FOX Sports 1 nationally. Enjoy the game.

Saturday Links: A-Rod, YES, NYCFC, Nicaragua, Mustaches

Bern baby Bern. (Presswire)
Bern baby Bern. (Presswire)

The Yankees and Mets resume the Subway Series later this afternoon at Yankee Stadium. It’s a 4pm ET start. Blah. Until then, here are some stray links I had lying around to hold you over.

How the Yankees will fight A-Rod‘s home run bonuses

Back in Spring Training we heard the Yankees were “confident” they could get out of paying Alex Rodriguez his home run milestone bonuses. Now that the season is underway and A-Rod is mashing taters, the breaking point is rapidly approaching. He is two shy of tying Willie Mays on the all-time home run list with 660 dingers, so it could happen any game now and trigger the first $6M bonus.

Ken Davidoff and Joel Sherman have the breakdown of exactly how the Yankees plan to get out of the bonuses, which are part of a separate marketing contract, not Rodriguez’s player contract. Here’s the nuts and bolts of their report:

According to two sources familiar with the situation, when Rodriguez goes deep with number 660, the Yankees will have a precise period of time — two weeks, as per one of the sources — to declare this as a marketable milestone. If they were to do this, then Rodriguez would sign over the rights to his image and associated branding for the price of $6 million.

Once the Yankees formalize this decision, then A-Rod has a set period of time — 30 days, according to one source — to file a grievance. Though Rodriguez has shied away from publicly discussing this, every indication is that he will challenge the Yankees’ interpretation of the side deal.

The Yankees will have to prove they utilized good faith in declining to declare A-Rod’s 660th homer a milestone. They’ve gone so far as to not include A-Rod in the “Upcoming Milestones” section of their daily press notes.

I dunno, seems like a lot of work to save $6M. They really can’t slap together some generic AROD660 shirts, call them official, and at least break even? Besides, you know they were hoping he didn’t hit the two homers in Detroit just so they could get the attendance boost on the homestand.

YES Network ratings down 21% so far in 2015

According to Richard Sandomir, YES Network ratings have dropped a staggering 21% so far this season, down to 267,000 viewers per game. Woof. The report is from Thursday, so it doesn’t include the last few games of this little hit streak. YES averaged over 400,000 viewers per game when it first launched and 355,000 as recently as 2012. Viewership fell to 244,000 per game in 2013 and rebounded to 288,000 per game last year thanks to Derek Jeter‘s retirement. There are still 145 games left to play, so there’s plenty of time for ratings to increase, but still. That’s a big drop. I imagine it would have been even worse if a whole bunch of people weren’t tuning in to hate-watch A-Rod.

No stadium deal for NYCFC on the horizon

New York City Football Club, the expansion MLS franchise that is doing the pro sports team version of crashing on the couch at Yankee Stadium this year, is not any closer to securing their own stadium. “We’re recognizing it’s probably going to take longer than we thought,” said MLS commissioner Don Garber to the Associated Press yesterday.

”There hasn’t been too much buzz about playing in Yankee Stadium or a baseball stadium yet,” said Garber, referring to problems with the field. ”That will happen soon, after somebody trips on a divot perhaps and perhaps misses a ground ball, but we hope that doesn’t happen.” Uh, yeah. Me too.

When we first learned NYCFC would call Yankee Stadium home, it was reported they would play their home games in the Bronx for three years (!). They still need to find a stadium location, build the place, and move in. So yeah, NYCFC isn’t going anywhere for a while. They’re 1-4-3 on the season and 1-2-1 at Yankee Stadium, in case you’re wondering. They’re playing like an expansion team.

MLB announces new amateur prospect league in Nicaragua

Earlier this month MLB announced a new amateur prospect league will be launched in Nicaragua this summer to provide scouts with “neutral in-game scouting opportunities of unsigned prospects.” This is baseball’s second amateur prospect league — they launched one in the Dominican Republic back in 2012. The league will run until July 4th, and there will be another “season” starting in September.

The press release says 46 players from Nicaragua have signed with MLB teams since 2010 and right now there are 31 Nicaraguan players under contract in MLB or the minors. Everth Cabrera and Erasmo Ramirez are the only players from Nicaragua in the big leagues at the moment. By far the best player to ever come out of the country is Dennis Martinez. (Vicente Padilla and Marvin Bernard are distant runners-up.) I’m glad MLB is branching out and giving young kids a chance to show their stuff. Hopefully they open more prospect leagues in other Latin American countries soon.

The Yankees are growing mustaches, for some reason

And finally, you may have noticed during last night’s game that several Yankees are growing — or attempting to grow, anyway — mustaches. Apparently it is part of some kind of team unity thing. Marly Rivera says Mark Teixeira, Chase Headley, Esmil Rogers, Dellin Betances, Garrett Jones, and Stephen Drew are among those growing mustaches, and during the game last night it looked like Jacoby Ellsbury is trying to get in on the act as well. This is either going to be very good or very bad. Maybe a little of both.

DotF: Slade Heathcott has another big game, Jorge Mateo steals another base

According to Matt Eddy, RHP Domingo Acevedo was both placed on the 7-day DL and activated off the DL this past week. Hopefully it happened in that order! Also, Donnie Collins says LHP Matt Tracy will jump into the Triple-A Scranton rotation on Sunday. He was re-claimed off waivers from the Marlins the other day.

Triple-A Scranton (6-2 loss to Pawtucket)

  • CF Slade Heathcott: 2-3, 1 3B, 2 RBI, 1 BB — 8-for-11 (73%) in his last three games
  • LF Ramon Flores: 2-3, 1 BB — missed just one game after being hit by a pitch
  • 2B Rob Refsnyder: 0-4, 1 K — stuck in an 0-for-12 (.000) slump
  • RF Tyler Austin: 0-4, 1 K
  • C Austin Romine: 0-3, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K
  • RHP Kyle Davies: 3 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 3/3 GB/FB — 48 of 79 pitches were strikes (61%) … that’s not going to help his case if he wants to get a call-up for sixth starter duty
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 3/1 GB/FB — 28 of 45 pitches were strikes (62%)
  • RHP Branden Pinder: 3 IP, zeroes, 1 K, 4/2 GB/FB — 26 of 42 pitches were strikes (62%)

[Read more…]

Teixeira homers twice, Yankees beat Mets 6-1 in Subway Series opener


Source: FanGraphs

The streak lives on. No, not the Mets’ eleven-game winning streak. That sucker’s over. The Yankees extended their winning streak to four games with a 6-1 humbling of a Mets team that seemed to be getting a little too big for their britches less than three weeks into the season. The Bombers have won seven of their last eight games overall. It’s Friday night, so let’s recap with bullet points:

  • Large Michael: I think that was the best Michael Pineda has looked as a Yankee. He had it all working. Cutters, sharp sliders, a filthy changeup he apparently woke up with one morning in Spring Training … it was all going. Pineda carved the Mets up for 7.2 innings, allowing just one garbage time run (infield single, wild pitch, advance on a fly ball, sac fly) on five hits. He struck out seven, walked no one, and recorded 17 of 23 outs on the infield. Seventy-eight of his 100 pitches were strikes. Seventy-eight! Only five of 28 hitters saw a first pitch ball. Brilliance.
  • deBombed: It started right in the very first inning. Brett Gardner ripped a single to center and Mark Teixeira skied a high home run into the second deck in right field for quick 2-0 lead. It was just inside the foul pole. Two innings later, Jacoby Ellsbury blasted a cheap Yankee Stadium solo homer and Teixeira followed with another two-run homer a few batters later. It was basically identical to first homer. The Yankees were up 5-0 just 13 batters into the game. Jacob deGrom didn’t know what hit him. (They were homers. Too many of ‘em.)
  • Leftovers: The sixth run scored on two singles, a walk, and a Stephen Drew sac fly. The Yankees loaded the bases with no outs in the seventh but didn’t score. Blah … Chasen Shreve recorded the final four outs without making it interesting … the top five hitters in the lineup went a combined 9-for-20 (.450), the bottom four went 2-for-14 (.143) … for only the second time this year, a Yankee threw 100+ pitches in a start and Pineda threw 100 on the nose. (Nathan Eovaldi threw 101 in Baltimore.)

Here are the box score, video highlights, updated standings, and Announcer Standings. The Yankees and Mets will continue the Subway Series on Saturday afternoon. That’ll be CC Sabathia against Matt Harvey. Fun fact: Sabathia was starting his seventh year as a big leaguer when he was Harvey’s age.