Game 51: Something’s cooking

With 19 of their next 28 games coming against teams with losing records, don’t you get the sense that this team is about to go on a major roll? Something good is cooking in Yankee land, and I’m not talking out the BBQ’s in everyone’s back yard today.

The Yanks face a lefty starter for the upteenth time this season, with Garrett Olsen taking the hill for the O’s in Camden. This is the same Garrett Olsen that the Yanks bludgeoned last week, and Girardi was kind enough to fill out the same lineup responsible for that massacre.

My stupid lineup trick worked yesterday, so let’s keep it going.

1. J-Dam, LF
2. D-Jet, SS
3. B-Ab, RF
4. Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez, 3B
5. H-Mat, DH
6. S-Dunc, 1B
7. R-Can, 2B
8. C-Moel, C
9. M-Cab, CF

And on the bump, the molten hot D-Ras.

Notes: Wilson Betemit is back with the team, the Former Attorney General was optioned back to Triple-A Scranton to make room on the roster. There’s nothing wrong with the move, Alberto was rotting away on the bench for the most part, and he should be getting regular at-bats, something he’ll be able to do in SWB.

Game 50: The Quest for .500, Part too many to count

Is it really the 50th game of the season already? Wow.

Nothing quite like a visit from the ol’ Seattle Nine to jump start a scuffling offense, eh? The 25 run the Yanks have scored in the first two games of the series equals their offensive output over the previous 10 games combined.

On the pitching side, Chien-Ming Wang is looking for his first win since he manhandled these same Mariners 23 days ago. With Kyle Farnsworth throwing 25 pitches yesterday combined with Joba being unavailable, looks like Rock ‘n Rohlendorf and Edwar serve as your bridge to the Sandman today.

The lineup that’ll face the 367th southpaw the Yanks have seen this season:

1. J-Dam, LF
2. D-Jet, SS
3. B-Ab, RF
4. Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez, 3B
5. J-Giam, DH
6. S-Dunc, 1B
7. R-Can, 2B
8. J-Mol, C
9. M-Cab, CF

Game 49: Joba the almost-starter

Short game thread today because I’m working to restore our posts (but not our comments) from the last two days. We’ll be back up too full strength soon.

The big news of the day is of course the pitching plan for the day. Joba Chamberlain will be throwing 45 pitches in relief of Mike Mussina this afternoon. For Mussina, he’s looking to recover from the shortest outing of his career, and instead of facing Felix Hernandez, he’ll go against Carlos Silva. The Yanks are 3-1 with A-Rod back in the lineup.

Damon LF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
Rodriguez 3B
Matsui DH
Giambi 1B
Cano 2B
Molina C
Cabrera CF

Mussina P

Game 47: Let’s make it two in a row

Nothing would be sweeter, right? Well, a solid start by IPK would add some icing, for sure. Hopefully, he can take those positives from last time out and turn them into a win this time. Otherwise, it will be tough to take similar positives from another losing effort.

A couple of notes. Wilson Betemit will start rehabbing tomorrow. He’s eligible to come off the DL tomorrow. Does this spell the bitter end of Morgan Ensberg?

Some rookie facts, courtesy of Mike. IPK will no longer be a rookie once he records the second out of the third inning tonight. Joba is 5.2 innings away, which he should get to rather quickly. The next closest from there is Ohlendorf, who needs 16.1 innings. Edwar needs 19, and Veras needs 23. Speaking of Edwar, he’s looked decent in limited time, right? With Joba stretching out, maybe we’ll actually see him used a bit more.

On the offensive side, Shelley needs just 14 at bats to shed his rookie status, and Alberto needs 75. I would be terribly saddened to see him sent down once Betemit comes back.

And now the lineup:

1. Johnny Damon, LF
2. Derek Jeter, SS
3. Hideki Matsui, DH
4. Alex Rodriguez, 3B
5. Jason Giambi, 1B
6. Shelley Duncan, RF
7. Robinson Cano, 2B
8. Jose Molina, C
9. Melky Cabrera, CF

Game 46: We will win, dammit

So Derek Jeter. He’s a fighter, huh? Just one day removed from taking a 93-mph fastball on the wrist, the Yankee Captain is back in the lineup. That’s either insane or gutsy; I can’t decide.

Meanwhile, the Yanks’ hottest hitter — Jason Giambi and his thong are hitting .275/.444/.575 in May — have the night off. With a lefty on the mound, Giambi and his May OPS+ of 145 will give way to Shelley Duncan. With Abreu, Matsui, Cano and Damon all still in the lineup, I’m not quite sure what taking out Giambi does to improve the team.

Otherwise, the Yanks should just go out and win tonight. Play fast; play loose. A win would do wonders for everyone. Darrell Rasner, very well rested, takes the mound. He last pitched 11 days ago. Hopefully, that’s not a problem.

Game time’s at 7:05.

Damon LF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
Rodriguez 3B
Matsui DH
Duncan 1B
Cano 2B
Moeller C
Cabrera CF

Rasner P

Game 45: Making up for lost time

So A-Rod owes us something like five homers and a few more doubles, right? You know, to make up for the time on the DL. Clearly I’m kidding, though it would be nice to see him kickstart the offense.

Still no word on the roster move for his activation. Or did I just miss it? I have to believe it’s Britton at this point.

Anyway, it’s raining, and I’m hoping they can get it in tonight. We could sure use a freakin’ win.

1. Johnny Damon, LF
2. Derek Jeter, SS
3. Bobby Abreu, RF
4. Alex Rodriguez, 3B
5. Hideki Matsui, DH
6. Jason Giambi, 1B
7. Robinson Cano, 2B
8. Melky Cabrera, CF
9. Jose Molina, C

P. Mike Mussina

Game 44: The last A-Rod-less day

It’s cloudy and cool in New York. While this afternoon’s rain storms have let up for a bit, showers are supposed to return this evening, but the House that Ruth Built will host a baseball game tonight as the New York teams wrap up round two of the six-round Subway Series. (Shameless plug alert.)

For the Yankees, today is thankfully the last day of the A-Rod Disabled List stint. If his value to the team isn’t apparent after this terrible stretch of baseball, then you haven’t been paying much attention. Right now, I’d have to believe that Morgan Ensberg may be witnessing his last game in a Yankee uniform. His stint in New York was a good idea; it just hasn’t panned out, and Alberto Gonzalez is a much better fit for this team going forward than Ensberg is.

The Yanks, oh so terrible against lefties, face yet another southpaw tonight as Oliver Perez takes the mound of the Mets. As a team, the Yanks have never really hit Perez, and on the season, they are hitting .232/.303/.333 against lefties. As Ed Price relates, the Yanks are 1-6 vs. lefty starters since A-Rod hit the DL. Chien-Ming Wang better bring his A game to the Bronx tonight.

Game time is 8:05, and we’re stuck with the All Star broadcasting team of Joe Morgan and Jon Miller.

Damon LF
Abreu RF
Jeter SS
Matsui DH
Giambi 1B
Cano 2B
Cabrera CF
Gonzalez 3B
Molina C

Wang P

Game Notes: A-Rod went 5 for 15 in an extended spring training game today. One of those hits was a grand slam, and for some reason, I’m reminded of one of the best Bugs Bunny cartoons.