Spring Training Game Thread: Sixth Starter Competition Continues


The competition for the sixth starter’s spot continues today. Well, consider it jockeying for position on the depth chart more than an outright competition. Both Chase Whitley and Esmil Rogers are scheduled to pitch today, and they’re in the extra starter race alongside Adam Warren and Bryan Mitchell, most notably. All of those guys want to put themselves in position to be the first guy thrust into the rotation when a sixth starter is inevitably needed.

The Yankees are making the hour or so trip down to Sarasota to play the Orioles this afternoon. New York has won five of their last six Grapefruit League games, you know. (Woo!) The O’s are playing eight-ninths of their projected Opening Day lineup this afternoon — here’s their lineup card — though starting catcher Matt Wieters is in at DH. He’s coming back from Tommy John surgery.

Today’s reason to watch: Following his last start, Rogers told reporters he spoke to Mariano Rivera about the importance of location, and reportedly he hit his spots very well in his first spring outing. Let’s see if that carries over. Rogers has good stuff but not good command. Even average command would be a big help for him going forward. A healthy dose of young bullpen prospects are scheduled to follow Whitley/Rogers as well. Oh, and Aaron Judge is playing. That’s always fun.

Here is this afternoon’s starting lineup:

  1. SS Didi Gregorius
  2. CF Chris Young
  3. 3B Chase Headley
  4. 1B Mark Teixeira
  5. C John Ryan Murphy
  6. DH Jose Pirela
  7. 2B Stephen Drew
  8. RF Aaron Judge
  9. LF Ramon Flores
    RHP Chase Whitley

Available Position Players: C Gary Sanchez, 1B Kyle Roller, 2B Rob Refsnyder, SS Cole Figueroa, 3B Jonathan Galvez, LF Jake Cave, CF Mason Williams, and RF Slade Heathcott will come off the bench as the second string. C Trent Garrison, C Eddy Rodriguez, and SS Cito Culver drew the short straws and had to make the trip even though they aren’t scheduled to play.

Available Pitchers: LHP Chasen Shreve, RHP Jose Ramirez, LHP Jacob Lindgren, RHP Branden Pinder, and RHP Nick Goody are all listed as scheduled to pitch after Whitley and Rogers. RHP Nick Rumbelow, LHP James Pazos, and RHP Danny Burawa are the extra arms.

The spring of great weather continues — it’s sunny with only a few clouds in Sarasota and the temperature is up in the mid-to-high-80s. This afternoon’s game is set to begin just after 1pm ET, and, if you’re in the Baltimore area, you can watch on MASN. If not, you’re stuck watching on MLB.tv. (There are no MLB.tv blackouts in the Yankees’ market.) The game will be replayed on MLB Network later tonight tomorrow morning. Enjoy.

Open Thread: March 9th Camp Notes

Monday’s 4-3 win over the Rays was the type of game that makes you think the Yankees will win 100 games this year. The big league pitchers all dominated and what looked like the Opening Day lineup strung together some extended rallies and did damage early. Alex Rodriguez (single) and Didi Gregorius (ground out) drove in the first two runs, then Slade Heathcott (single) and Greg Bird (double) drove in the last two. Brian McCann doubled, Jacoby Ellsbury singled, A-Rod singled twice, and both Carlos Beltran and Stephen Drew drew walks.

Michael Pineda looked pretty damn sharp in his two scoreless innings of work, striking out two. Just like last year, basically. One scout had his fastball at 95 mph according to Erik Boland, if you’re wondering. Nathan Eovaldi followed with five strikeouts in three scoreless innings, then David Carpenter and Justin Wilson allowed one base-runner and struck out one batter each in their scoreless innings of work. Diego Moreno allowed all three Tampa runs thanks in part to a Rob Refsnyder error. Here’s the box score, here are the video highlights, and here’s the rest from Spring Training:

  • Masahiro Tanaka headlined the group of pitchers who threw bullpen sessions. He came through just fine and is preparing for his spring debut on Thursday. Chris Capuano and Domingo German also threw bullpen sessions. I wonder if we’ll see German in a game before the end of camp. [Chad Jennings]
  • Top pitching prospect Luis Severino went to the hospital this morning with flu-like symptoms and a very sore throat. He was diagnosed with strep throat and will presumably miss a few days. His arm is fine. [Marly Rivera]
  • Pineda and Esmil Rogers will start the split squad games on Saturday. As a reminder, the rotation through the end of the week is Chase Whitley (Tuesday), Capuano (Wednesday), Tanaka (Thursday), and Adam Warren (Friday). [Jennings]
  • Nothing new on Brendan Ryan. He’s still working his way back from a mid-back sprain is on track to resume light workouts later this week. Infielder Nick Noonan has a minor neck issue and was scratched from tomorrow’s game. [Jennings]
  • And finally, in case you’re wondering how old pal Hiroki Kuroda is doing in Japan, he threw 4.1 perfect innings in his first exhibition game for the Carp over the weekend. Here’s video. Give ‘em hell, #HIROK.

Here is the nightly open thread. This afternoon’s game against the Rays will be replayed on both YES (7pm ET) and MLB Network (12am ET) tonight. The Islanders and Knicks are also playing, and there’s one college basketball game on as well. Talk about those games or anything else right here.

Spring Training Game Thread: Big Mike’s debut


So far this spring all eyes have been on Alex Rodriguez, Masahiro Tanaka, and CC Sabathia for obvious reasons. A-Rod is A-Rod, and the other two are coming off pretty serious injuries. Michael Pineda, this afternoon’s starter, also missed a bunch of time last season due to injury, and he is as important to the 2015 Yankees as any other player on the roster.

Big Mike is making his Grapefruit League debut this afternoon against the Rays, who are making the 90-minute trip up from Port Charlotte. He’s probably only going to throw two innings and 30 pitches or so, but that’s fine. It’s only his first outing. The Rays brought a fairly representative lineup (see it here) and are sending fifth starter candidate Nate Karns to the mound. Karns throws hard, but he had a 5.08 ERA (4.03 FIP) in 145.1 Triple-A innings last year. The young pitching well is starting to dry up in Tampa.

Today’s reason to watch: Big Mike! He was the team’s best pitcher on a rate basis last year. Also, Nathan Eovaldi is scheduled to follow Pineda this afternoon. He’ll probably throw three innings. (This doesn’t mean the Yankees are looking at Eovaldi as a reliever. That’s just how the schedule shook out.) We’ll also get our first look at new relievers David Carpenter and Justin Wilson, who will follow Pineda and Eovaldi. Wilson will be making his spring debut.

Here is the starting lineup for this afternoon’s game, which has a very Opening Day feel to it:

  1. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  2. LF Brett Gardner
  3. RF Carlos Beltran
  4. 1B Mark Teixeira
  5. C Brian McCann
  6. 3B Chase Headley
  7. DH Alex Rodriguez
  8. 2B Stephen Drew
  9. SS Didi Gregorius
    RHP Michael Pineda

Available Position Players: C Austin Romine, 1B Greg Bird, 2B Rob Refsnyder, SS Cito Culver, 3B Cole Figueroa, LF Ramon Flores, CF Slade Heathcott, RF Tyler Austin, and DH Jake Cave are the day’s second string. C Francisco Arcia, C Gary Sanchez, C Eddy Rodriguez, UTIL Jose Pirela, UTIL Jonathan Galvez, 1B Kyle Roller, OF Aaron Judge, and OF Mason Williams are also available off the bench.

Available Pitchers: RHP Nathan Eovaldi, RHP David Carpenter, LHP Justin Wilson, RHP Chris Martin, and RHP Diego Moreno are all scheduled to pitch after Pineda. RHP Nick Rumbelow, RHP Danny Burawa, and RHP Nick Goody are the extra arms.

Another nice day for baseball in Tampa, with just a few clouds and temperatures in the mid-80s. Today’s game is scheduled to begin at 1:05pm ET and you’ll be able to watch live on YES locally and MLB.tv nationally. There is no MLB.tv blackout in the New York market. MLB Network will show the game on a tape delay later tonight. Enjoy the game, folks.

Spring Training Game Thread: Second Time Around


Now that we’re about a week into Spring Training games, the rotation has turned over and we’re getting to see guys for the second time. Adam Warren will make his second start of the spring — I assume he’ll work three innings or 45 pitches, that’s pretty standard for the second spring start — and both Andrew Miller and top pitching prospect Luis Severino will make their second Grapefruit League appearances.

The Nationals made the two-hour bus trip over from Melbourne and didn’t bring many regulars, predictably. In fact, they sent the minimum four big leaguers, and two of them (Kevin Frandsen and Jose Lobaton) are bench players. Impending free agents and possible future Yankees Ian Desmond and Doug Fister are the other two. The Yankees drafted Fister once upon a time (sixth round, 2005) and he’s super tall (6-foot-8 and 210 lbs.), so maybe the team will have interest in him as a free agent after the season.

Today’s reason to watch: Alex Rodriguez is playing his first game at third base — first since September 2013! — so we’ll get to see how (im)mobile he is at the hot corner. With no clear cut backup for Chase Headley, A-Rod‘s ability to play third on occasion is not insignificant. Also, Dellin Betances is making his Grapefruit League debut. And Severino will pitch too.

Here is this afternoon’s starting lineup:

  1. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  2. LF Brett Gardner
  3. DH Carlos Beltran
  4. C Brian McCann
  5. 3B Alex Rodriguez
  6. 1B Garrett Jones
  7. RF Chris Young
  8. 2B Jose Pirela
  9. SS Nick Noonan
    RHP Adam Warren

Available Pitchers: LHP Andrew Miller, RHP Dellin Betances, RHP Luis Severino, RHP Wilking Rodriguez, LHP James Pazos, and RHP Jared Burton are all scheduled to pitch, apparently. RHP Diego Moreno, RHP Nick Goody, LHP Chasen Shreve, and RHP Chris Martin are the extra arms.

Available Position Players: C Gary Sanchez, 1B Kyle Roller, 2B Cole Figueroa, SS Cito Culver, 3B Jonathan Galvez, LF Ben Gamel, CF Mason Williams, and RF Aaron Judge will be the second string off the bench. C Francisco Arcia, C Kyle Higashioka, C Trent Garrison, 1B Greg Bird, 2B Rob Refsnyder, OF Jake Cave, OF Ramon Flores, and OF Tyler Austin are all on the bench as well.

It’s a little cloudy in Tampa this afternoon but there’s no rain in the forecast. Temperatures in the mid-70s and not that much humidity by Florida standards. This afternoon’s game will begin shortly after 1pm ET and you can watch live on YES and MLB.tv (no blackouts). MLB Network will show the game on a tape delay later tonight (8pm ET). Enjoy.

Spring Training Game Thread: A-Rod Returns


It has been almost a year and a half since Alex Rodriguez last played in any sort of baseball game. Today, after sitting out all of last year with his suspension, A-Rod returns to the field and will make his Grapefruit League debut. It is only Spring Training, but Alex admitted yesterday he was nervous, and how could he not be? This is an awkward situation for everyone, including A-Rod.

Needless to say, way too much will be made of Rodriguez’s performance today. At least if he does poorly. If he goes 0-for-3, it’s because he’s washed up and can’t help the Yankees. But if he goes 3-for-3 with a homer, well it’s only Spring Training so who cares. Doesn’t mean anything. Feel free to build your own narrative around his performance. That’s what everyone else will do.

Today’s reason to watch: Aside from A-Rod, we’ll also get our first look at newcomers Didi Gregorius and Nathan Eovaldi. Eovaldi is scheduled to throw two innings and 30 pitches or so. He and pitching coach Larry Rothschild have been working on elevating his fastball in strikeout situations, so I want to see if he does that today. Andrew Miller will also make his spring debut this afternoon.

Here is the starting lineup for this afternoon’s spring home opener at George M. Steinbrenner Field:

  1. SS Didi Gregorius
  2. DH Alex Rodriguez
  3. C Brian McCann
  4. 1B Mark Teixeira
  5. 3B Chase Headley
  6. 2B Stephen Drew
  7. RF Tyler Austin
  8. LF Ramon Flores
  9. CF Mason Williams
    RHP Nathan Eovaldi

Available Position Players: C Gary Sanchez, 1B Francisco Arcia, 2B Nick Noonan, SS Cito Culver, 3B Cole Figueroa, LF Jake Cave, CF Slade Heathcott, and RF Aaron Judge are all scheduled to come off the bench. C Eddy Rodriguez, C Trent Garrison, C Kyle Higashioka, 1B Greg Bird, 1B Kyle Roller, UTIL Jose Pirela, UTIL Jonathan Galvez, and 2B Rob Refsnyder are all available as well.

Available Pitchers: LHP Andrew Miller, RHP Kyle Davies, RHP Danny Burawa, RHP Wilking Rodriguez, LHP James Pazos, and LHP Tyler Webb are all scheduled to pitch. RHP Nick Rumbelow, RHP Jose Ramirez, and RHP Scott Baker are the extra arms.

Gorgeous weather in Tampa this afternoon. Nice and sunny with temperatures in the mid-80s. Perfect for some spring baseball. This afternoon’s game will begin just after 1pm ET and there are all sorts of ways to watch: YES locally and both MLB Network and MLB.tv nationally. The game will not air on MLB Network in the New York market, however. You’re stuck with YES or MLB.tv in market. Enjoy the game.

Spring Training Game Thread: Baseball Returns!


After five long months of offseason, Yankees baseball returns this afternoon. The team begins Grapefruit League play today with a quick trip over the causeway to Clearwater to play the Phillies. Yeah, I know it’s only Spring Training, but it’s baseball. And baseball is way better than no baseball in my book.

As always, the regulars in the starting lineup will not play the entire game. This is only the first of 34 spring games, remember. Starter Adam Warren is scheduled for two innings — or 30 pitches, based on previous springs — and the starting position players will get two or three at-bats before heading home.

Today’s reason to watch: Both Luis Severino and Jacob Lindgren are scheduled to pitch. Probably just one inning each, but they are the team’s top pitching prospect overall and top bullpen prospect, respectively. I’m certain we’ll see Lindgren in MLB this summer. Severino … maybe. Also, the new pace of play rules are in effect, so this will be our first look at them.

Here is the lineup that will start this afternoon’s Grapefruit League opener:

  1. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  2. LF Brett Gardner
  3. RF Chris Young
  4. 1B Garrett Jones
  5. 2B Jose Pirela
  6. C Austin Romine
  7. DH Kyle Roller
  8. 3B Jonathan Galvez
  9. SS Nick Noonan
    RHP Adam Warren

Available Position Players: C John Ryan Murphy, 1B Greg Bird, 2B Rob Refsnyder, SS Cito Culver, 3B Cole Figueroa, LF Slade Heathcott, CF Jake Cave, RF Aaron Judge, and DH Mason Williams will come off the bench. C Kyle Higashioka, C Francisco Arcia, and 1B/OF Tyler Austin are also available if needed.

Available Pitchers: RHP Luis Severino, LHP Jacob Lindgren, RHP Branden Pinder, RHP Nick Goody, and RHP Diego Moreno are all scheduled to pitch. RHP Danny Burawa, RHP Kyle Davies, LHP Chasen Shreve, and LHP Tyler Webb are the extra arms.

It’s a perfect day for baseball in Clearwater. Temperatures in the upper-70s and low-80s, not many clouds in the sky, and no threat of rain. And humid as hell. That’s Florida for you.

This afternoon’s game is available on MLB.tv only — well, it’s also on CSN if you’re in the Philadelphia market — and traditionally there have been no MLB.tv blackouts in Spring Training, so you should be able to watch today’s game online. I can’t make any promises, they may have changed their policy this year, but hopefully that’s not the case. Yep, no blackouts. Enjoy the game, folks.

Game 162: –30–

:-( (Jim Rogash/Getty)
(Jim Rogash/Getty)

So this is it. The final game of the season. The last six months have mostly sucked but there were plenty of awesome moments mixed in, none better than Derek Jeter‘s walk-off single in his Yankee Stadium farewell three days ago. That was just amazing. All-time great moment I’ll remember forever.

The Yankees wrap up the 2014 regular season this afternoon before heading into what I am sure will be an eventful offseason. Eventful good or eventful bad? That’s the question. I really have no idea what’s in store this winter. We can worry about all of that starting tomorrow. For now, just enjoy the last few innings of Yankees baseball until the spring. Here is the Red Sox lineup and here is the Yankees lineup:

  1. RF Ichiro Suzuki
  2. DH Derek Jeter
  3. CF Brett Gardner
  4. 1B Mark Teixeira
  5. 3B Chase Headley
  6. SS Stephen Drew
  7. C Frankie Cervelli
  8. LF Chris Young
  9. 2B Jose Pirela
    RHP Michael Pineda

Another nice and sunny day in Boston. The weather has been pretty awesome this weekend. This afternoon’s game will begin at 1:35pm ET, but the Red Sox are having a pre-game ceremony for Jeter that is scheduled to begin around 1pm ET. You’ll be able to watch on YES locally and both TBS and MLB.tv nationally. MLB.tv is free for the weekend. Enjoy the game, folks.