Game 100: Back on Track

(Elsa/Getty)
(Elsa/Getty)

It looks like the Yankees are finally starting to right ship. They played terrible baseball for a good month there, but they’ve now won six of their last eight games and are a healthy 8-5 in the second half. The bullpen is much improved and the offense is providing enough runs. My guess is the Yankees will be an even better team after Monday’s non-waiver trade deadline.

Anyway, the Rays are in town for a really important four-game series this weekend. They’re a game and a half back of the Yankees in the standings, so they’re a direct competitor for the AL East title and a wildcard spot. This weekend is a good chance to create some distance with Tampa. Burying them would be preferable, but one game at a time. Here is the Rays’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. DH Clint Frazier
  3. RF Aaron Judge
  4. C Gary Sanchez
  5. SS Didi Gregorius
  6. 1B Chase Headley
  7. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  8. 3B Todd Frazier
  9. 2B Tyler Wade
    LHP CC Sabathia

Now, the bad news: there’s rain in the forecast tonight. It’s supposed to start right around first pitch and continue until the wee hours of the morning. A delay or an outright postponement is a very real possibility. Hope for the best. Tonight’s game is scheduled to begin a little after 7pm ET and you’ll be able to watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy the game.

Injury Updates: Aaron Hicks (oblique) and Tyler Austin (hamstring) are tentatively scheduled to begin minor league rehab assignments once this homestand ends next week … Starlin Castro (hamstring) is in wait-and-see mode. They’re going to reevaluate him in a few days and determine whether he can resume baseball activities.

Game 99: Stay Hot

(Jim McIsaac/Getty)
(Jim McIsaac/Getty)

The Yankees have won four of their last five games and they’re starting to snap out of their month long funk. Hooray for that. You know what’s crazy too? As terrible as the Yankees played during those few weeks, they’re still only one game back of the Red Sox in the AL East. They’re actually a game up in the loss column. The division is right there for the taking.

Anyway, the Yankees will have their best starting pitcher on the mound this afternoon as they look to wrap up a quick little two-game sweep against the rebuilding Reds. The Rays are coming to town for a pretty important four-game series this weekend. It would be cool to pick up another win and create some more distance in the standings. Here is the Reds’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. RF Clint Frazier
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. DH Matt Holliday
  5. SS Didi Gregorius
  6. 1B Chase Headley
  7. 3B Todd Frazier
  8. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  9. 2B Ronald Torreyes
    RHP Luis Severino

Just a perfect day for baseball in New York. The sun is out, there are only a few puffy clouds in the sky, and the temperatures are in the mid-70s. Couldn’t ask for a better day. This afternoon’s game will begin a little after 1pm ET, and you’ll be able to watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy.

Game 98: Back Home, Finally

(Presswire)
(Presswire)

For the first time in 16 days, the Yankees are back home at Yankee Stadium. The All-Star break and a long eleven-game, ten-day road trip through three time zones kept them away from home for a while. Good to have baseball back in the Bronx. I’ve missed it. The Yankees will be here for the next nine days.

The Reds are in town for a quick little two-game interleague series, and while I know any team can beat any other team on any given night in this league, this feels like the kind of series the Yankees really should dominate. The Reds have lost 28 of their 40 last games and like 75% of the roster could be traded at any moment. Drop the hammer. Here is the Reds’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. RF Clint Frazier
  3. RF Aaron Judge
  4. DH Matt Holliday
  5. SS Didi Gregorius
  6. 1B Chase Headley
  7. 3B Todd Frazier
  8. 2B Tyler Wade
  9. C Austin Romine
    LHP Jordan Montgomery

It is cool and cloudy in New York this evening, though there’s no rain in the forecast, and that’s all that matters. Tonight’s game will begin a little after 7pm ET and you can watch on WPIX. Enjoy the game.

Injury Updates: Aaron Hicks (oblique) will hit in the cage for the first time tomorrow. There is no firm date for him to begin a minor league rehab assignment … Tyler Austin (hamstring) has started running and will start swinging a bat soon.

Rotation Update: Caleb Smith will remain in the rotation, Joe Girardi said. His next start is scheduled for Saturday against the Rays. The Yankees are said to be looking for another starter in advance of the trade deadline, though even if they swing a deal, Smith may still need to make that start because whoever they get might not be lined up.

Game 97: End of the Road Trip

(Lindsey Wasson/Getty)
(Lindsey Wasson/Getty)

This eleven-game, ten-day road trip through three times zones finally comes to an end this afternoon. The Yankees have a chance to close it out with a series win too. They haven’t won a series in more than a month now. Since massacring the Orioles that weekend at Yankee Stadium. It’s been far, far too long.

On the bump this afternoon is left-hander Caleb Smith, who will be making his first big league start. The Yankees opted to start Smith over Luis Cessa this afternoon for whatever reason. With an off-day tomorrow and a chance to a) win a damn series, and b) clinch a winning road trip, I imagine it’ll be all hands on deck out of the bullpen. Here is the Mariners’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. LF Clint Frazier
  3. RF Aaron Judge
  4. C Gary Sanchez
  5. DH Matt Holliday
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. 1B Chase Headley
  8. 3B Todd Frazier
  9. 2B Tyler Wade
    LHP Caleb Smith

You’re not going to believe this, but it’s cool and cloudy in Seattle today. Today’s series finale will begin at 4:10pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy the game.

Roster Move: Ji-Man Choi has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Triple-A, the team announced. I figured that would happen. Choi will remain with the Yankees as a non-40-man roster player.

Game 96: Make it Three in a Row

(Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
(Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)

The Yankees have won the last two games in convincing fashion, with strong performances from the starting pitching, the bullpen, and the lineup (for the most part, at least). A win tonight would give them their first three-game winning streak since they won six in a row from June 7 through 12, and their first series victory since that same stretch (they swept the Orioles). They’ll look to do so with a reasonable approximation of their ‘A’ lineup, and the maddeningly inconsistent Masahiro Tanaka on the mound.

I say “reasonable approximation,” because Starlin Castro is back on the disabled list, meaning we’ll be treated to more Ronald Torreyes. Tyler Wade has been recalled to take his spot on the roster for the time being.

If you care about such things, it might be worth noting that Tanaka has dominated the Mariners in five starts, pitching to the following line – 37 IP, 26 H, 4 BB, 38 H, 1.95 ERA. Here’s the lineup that he’ll face tonight; the Yankees will counter with this:

  1. Brett Gardner, CF
  2. Clint Frazier, LF
  3. Aaron Judge, RF
  4. Matt Holliday, DH
  5. Gary Sanchez, C
  6. Didi Gregorius, SS
  7. Todd Frazier, 3B
  8. Garrett Cooper, 1B
  9. Ronald Torreyes, 2B

Tonight’s game is slated to start at 9:10 PM EST, and it’ll be broadcast on YES.

Game 95: CC’s Birthday

(Adam Glanzman/Getty)
(Adam Glanzman/Getty)

The Yankees opened this four-game series with the Mariners with a nice win last night. Luis Severino outpitched Felix Hernandez and the offense put just enough runs on the board. The Yankees are 4-4 so far on this eleven-game road trip, so they still need two more wins to clinch a winning trip. That would also clinch their first series win in more than a month. Remember series wins?

Anyway, CC Sabathia will be on the mound tonight, and today is his 37th birthday. Happy birthday, big guy. It really snuck up, huh? Seems like just yesterday the Yankees were trying to sign 28-year-old Sabathia as a free agent. Sabathia pitched very well last time out and he’s been pretty darn good all season. I’m so glad he’s reinvented himself late in his career. Those three bad years from 2013-15 were no fun. Here is the Mariners’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. C Gary Sanchez
  3. RF Aaron Judge
  4. DH Matt Holliday
  5. 2B Starlin Castro
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. 3B Todd Frazier
  8. 1B Chase Headley
  9. LF Clint Frazier
    LHP CC Sabathia

It is cool and cloudy again in Seattle tonight. I’m not sure whether the Safeco Field roof is open. Tonight’s game will begin at 10:10pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy the game.

Game 94: Back West

(Presswire)
(Presswire)

The Yankees are out on the West Coast for the first time since the start of this ridiculous collapse. They haven’t won a series since arriving in Anaheim in the middle of last month. The Yankees are 11-22 in the start of their last West Coast trip. Good grief. The season when south the last time the Yankees were in the Pacific Time Zone and hopefully things straight out this trip.

Anyway, for the first time in what feels like forever, the Yankees are playing their regular lineup tonight. Well, Clint Frazier isn’t playing, but eight out of nine ain’t bad. Better than what the Yankees have been trotting out there the last few days. You knew Joe Girardi was going to spend a week resting guys after the 16-inning game and doubleheader on back-to-back days. Please just win, dudes. Here is the Mariners’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. C Gary Sanchez
  3. RF Aaron Judge
  4. DH Matt Holliday
  5. 2B Starlin Castro
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. 3B Todd Frazier
  8. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  9. 1B Chase Headley
    RHP Luis Severino

It is cool and cloudy in Seattle tonight. I’m not sure whether the Safeco Field roof will be open. Doesn’t really matter. Tonight’s series opener will begin at 10:10pm ET. You can watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy the game.

Roster Update: Girardi said Frazier will be the regular third baseman from here on out with Headley moving over to first. Given Headley’s inability to hit southpaws this season, I assume he’ll platoon with Garrett Cooper.