Yankees come together as a team after brawl with Tigers to lose 2-1 to Mariners


Source: FanGraphs

Well, if nothing else, maybe this will put an end to the ridiculous notion that Thursday’s brawls with the Tigers would spark the Yankees and get them to rally together. They lost Thursday’s game after the brawls and they lost Friday’s game too. The final score was 2-1. The Yankees looked completely helpless against the Mariners.

I alternated between watching Friday’s game on my phone and listening to the radio, plus I missed big chunks of it, so I can’t do a full recap. Instead, here are some notes and observations.

1. These baserunners are made for stranding. This game was lost when the Yankees left the bases loaded three times. Three freaking times. They did it in the third (Aaron Hicks and Gary Sanchez flew out), in the fourth (Todd Frazier struck out), and in the eighth (Frazier struck out). The Yankees went 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position and it was a total team effort. Eight of the nine players in the lineup had an at-bat with runners in scoring position. Only Didi Gregorius did not. A medium deep fly ball scores a run in the third and fourth innings, when the Yankees had a man on third and less than two outs, and they couldn’t do it. Impressively terrible showing by the offense.

2. You don’t need 50 seconds to ask for that replay. How in the world does that Gregorius slide at third base not get challenged in the eighth inning? Didi made a terrible baserunning play. He broke from second base on a ground ball hit in front of him. It looked like he was thrown out at third, but replays showed he managed to avoid the tag with a fantastic slide. And yet, no challenge was made. Joe Girardi said after the game it took too long (50 seconds, to be exact) to get the thumbs up from replay guy Brett Weber, which is why the play was not challenged.

That is complete and total crap. Eighth inning of a tie game, and you’re talking about a bang-bang play that would’ve put the go-ahead run at third base with one out. That’s an insta-challenge. I’ve been harping on these for a while. On plays that important and that just close, just challenge it. Who cares about the team’s challenge success rate? Have them look at it. The difference of that play:

  • Successful challenge (runners on the corners, one out): 77.1% win probability
  • No challenge (runner on first, two outs): 57.8% win probability

The Yankees did end up needing their challenge in the 11th inning to overturn the egregiously bad out call on Brett Gardner‘s stolen base, though the game could’ve been over long before that. Maybe the Yankees waste that opportunity anyway given how poorly they performed with men in scoring position. Probably would have. But man, letting that play go unchallenged is awful. Just awful. A bang-bang play in which the go-ahead run was thrown out at third base in the eighth inning is one of these situations where waiting even 30 seconds for the replay guy to chime in should not happen. Use those challenges. You don’t get bonus points for a high success rate.

3. Chapman is a disaster. An unmitigated disaster. After allowing one home run to a left-handed batter in his first six-plus seasons as a big leaguer, Aroldis Chapman has now done it twice in the last month. This time Yonder Alonso turned around a 100 mph fastball like he knew it was coming for the game-winning home run. And he probably did know it was coming because Chapman throws fastball after fastball after fastball. Thirteen fastballs and one slider Friday. Fourteen pitches and zero swings and misses. Chapman was booed off the mound, which is funny, because Hal Steinbrenner said one of the reasons the Yankees signed him was how pumped up fans were when he entered the games last year. Sound logic.

4. Sabathia is still a boss. On the bright side, CC Sabathia is still the man. Seven innings of one run ball. Five hits, one walk, six strikeouts. Only 94 pitches too. Sabathia allowed a solo homer to Mike Zunino and that’s it. The big man passed Mike Mussina for sole possession of 19th place on the all-time strikeout list Friday night. Awesome. Sabathia is forever cool with me. Damn shame the Yankees wasted this outing.

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Here are the box score, video highlights, and updated standings. The Yankees and Mariners will continue this series Saturday afternoon. That’s a regular 1pm ET start. Hooray for baseball on Saturday afternoons. Sonny Gray and Yovani Gallardo are the scheduled starting pitchers.

Minor League Update: I don’t have time for a full DotF tonight and I won’t all weekend, so here’s the box scores and here’s the short version: 3B Miguel Andujar had a single and a walk, LF Billy McKinney had a single and a double, RHP Domingo German struck out eight in 6.1 innings of one-run ball, LHP Stephen Tarpley allowed his first run of the season, SS Kyle Holder had four hits, RHP Freicer Perez allowed one hit and one run in six innings, RHP Trevor Stephan struck out six in 2.2 innings, and LHP Justus Sheffield tossed two scoreless innings in his first rehab game back from the oblique injury.

DotF: Castro and Bird hit back-to-back homers in AAA win

RHP Jonathan Holder has been activated off the Triple-A Scranton disabled list, the team announced. That’s good. Always like to have healthy MLB options stashed in Triple-A. D.J. Eberle says Holder was out with a lower back injury. Those are no fun. At least it wasn’t his arm.

Triple-A Scranton (8-3 win over Rochester)

  • CF Mason Williams: 2-5, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K
  • 2B Starlin Castro: 2-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 K — played seven innings in the field, as scheduled … he still hasn’t played a full nine innings at second base, though the Yankees could’ve been taking it easy on him today in anticipation of activating him tomorrow
  • 1B Greg Bird: 1-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 1 K — he and Castro hit back-to-back homers against former big leaguer Chris Heston … here’s video of the back-to-back jacks
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 1-5, 1 R, 1 K
  • LF Jake Cave: 2-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 BB
  • LHP Jordan Montgomery: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 4/0 GB/FB — 31 of 47 pitches were strikes (66%) … the short start was by design to control his workload … it is in no way a coincidence he is lined up with Jaime Garcia … my guess is Montgomery will make one more short Triple-A start in five days, then rejoin the rotation once rosters expand on September 1st
  • RHP Jonathan Holder: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K — 14 of 25 pitches were strikes (56%)

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DotF: Crawford homers, Tate dominates in Trenton’s win

Good news: LHP Justus Sheffield is on his way to Tampa, according to his Twitter feed. That suggests his oblique strain rehab is going well and he’s getting closer to pitching in games. The minor league season ends in two weeks, so getting back in time for the Double-A postseason might be tough.

Triple-A Scranton Game One (5-4 loss to Rochester) completion of yesterday’s game, which was suspended due to rain with one out in the top of the fourth

  • CF Jake Cave: 3-5, 1 R, , 1 2B, 2 K — he went 3-for-3 in the game yesterday and 0-for-2 today
  • 2B Starlin Castro: 2-5, 1 R, 1 K — here’s video of yesterday’s single
  • DH Greg Bird: 0-1, 1 RBI — he played in the game yesterday, but not the completion today
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 1-4, 1 BB, 1 K
  • RF Billy McKinney: 1-4, 1 RBI, 1 E (fielding)
  • RHP Brady Lail: 3 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 3/3 GB/FB — 42 of 69 pitches were strikes (61%) … he started the game yesterday
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 3.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/4 GB/FB — 49 of 72 pitches were strikes (68%)
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 2/0 GB/FB — 14 of 22 pitches were strikes (64%)

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DotF: Ford homers, Mesa dominates in Trenton’s win

Triple-A Scranton‘s game was suspended due to rain with one out in the top of the fourth. It’ll be completed tomorrow. Here’s the box score. I’m not quite sure what that means for 2B Starlin Castro‘s and 1B Greg Bird‘s rehab. Castro played the field tonight and Bird was the DH. I imagine they’ll resume those positions in the completion tomorrow, then Castro will DH and Bird will play first base in the second game of the doubleheader. We’ll see.

Double-A Trenton (8-0 win over Portland)

  • SS Thairo Estrada: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
  • CF Rashad Crawford: 2-5, 1 R, 2 K — threw a runner out at second
  • 2B Nick Solak: 2-4, 1 R, 1 BB — 16-for-47 (.340) in his last 12 games
  • DH Mike Ford: 2-3, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 HBP — leads the system in homers (20) and walks (84)
  • 1B Ryan McBroom: 0-5, 1 K
  • RHP Jose Mesa Jr.: 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 K, 6/2 GB/FB — 53 of 80 pitches were strikes (66%) … in six starts this year: 0.36 ERA, 0.72 WHIP, 4.25 K/BB … in 21 relief appearances: 3.12 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, 3.11 K/BB
  • RHP Colten Brewer: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K — 12 of 15 pitches were strikes

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DotF: Bird stays hot on rehab assignment in Scranton’s win

Two quick notes to pass along before we get to the games and a standings update:

  • 1B Brandon Wagner made an appearance in today’s Monday Morning Ten Pack (subs. req’d). “Because (his swing) is so quick and efficient, he can wait until balls are deep in the zone before he makes a decision. It’s fun to watch … His swing is in good shape and he should hit as he continues to move up the minor-league ladder. The real question is whether he’ll be able to move off first or hit for enough power to stick at the cold corner,” said the write-up.
  • RHP Juan De Paula was named the Short Season NY-Penn League Pitcher of the Week. He came over in the Ben Gamel trade last year. De Paula allowed one hit and one walk in seven scoreless innings in last week’s start. He struck out seven. So far this year the 19-year-old De Paula has a 3.06 ERA (3.24 FIP) in 47 innings with Staten Island.

Triple-A Scranton (4-3 win over Rochester) they are 70-47 and have a 6.5 game lead in the North Division … their magic number to clinch a postseason spot is four, and their magic number to clinch the division is seven

  • LF Jake Cave: 1-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 3 K, 1 E (throwing)
  • 2B Starlin Castro: 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI — played seven innings at second base as scheduled
  • 1B Greg Bird: 2-3, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 BB — he played the entire game as scheduled … here’s video of the single and double (the double probably should’ve been caught) … pretty much a vintage Greg Bird minor league game right there … he’s now 8-for-17 (.471) with two doubles and two homers in five rehab games
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 2-4, 1 BB, 1 E (throwing) — 12-for-27 (.444) during his seven-game hitting streak
  • RF Billy McKinney: 3-5, 1 RBI, 1 K — had been in a 3-for-21 (.143) rut
  • CF Mason Williams: 0-4, 1 BB
  • RHP Chance Adams: 5.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 WP, 4/5 GB/FB — 61 of 101 pitches were strikes (60%) … he’s up to 138.2 innings this year after throwing 127.1 innings last year
  • RHP J.P. Feyereisen: 0.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K — half of his 22 pitches were strikes
  • RHP Nick Rumbelow: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K — eleven of 18 pitches were strikes (61%)

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DotF: Andujar’s big game leads Scranton to a win

Two quick notes to pass along:

  • C Kyle Higashioka is on the disabled list with a shoulder problem, not a recurrence of his recent back injury, according to Conor Foley. He said his shoulder feels weak. No idea how long he’ll be sidelined, but with September call-ups right around the corner, you can bet Higashioka hopes to be back soon.
  • SS Tyler Wade, who has nine plate appearances in the last 19 days, lost his rookie eligibility through service time today. He dropped off MLB.com’s top 30 Yankees prospects list and RHP Trevor Stephan has jumped on.

Triple-A Scranton (3-0 win over Durham)

  • RF Jake Cave: 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI
  • DH Starlin Castro: 1-4, 1 K — here’s video of the single he and Greg Bird, who had a scheduled off-day today, are traveling with the RailRiders for their road trip and will continue their rehab assignments this week, according to Conor Foley
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 3-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K — eight homers in 45 Triple-A games now
  • LF Billy McKinney: 0-4, 2 K
  • CF Mason Williams: 1-3, 1 R
  • RHP Domingo German: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 9 K, 4/5 GB/FB — 64 of 102 pitches were strikes (63%) … 69/19 K/BB in 65 Triple-A innings this year
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 0/1 GB/FB — 24 of 36 pitches were strikes (67%)

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DotF: Bird stays hot on rehab assignment in Scranton’s loss

C Kyle Higashioka is back on the Triple-A Scranton disabled list, reports Conor Foley. Not sure if the back issue flared up again, or if this is something new. I wonder what the Yankees will do about a third catcher in September if Higashioka doesn’t get healthy in time. I guess C Eddy Rodriguez by default?

Triple-A Scranton (8-4 loss to Durham)

  • LF Jake Cave: 0-4, 2 K
  • 2B Starlin Castro: 1-3, 1 R, 1 K, 1 E (throwing) — played five innings in the field as scheduled … here’s video of the single
  • DH Greg Bird: 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K — here’s video of the double … 6-for-14 (.429) in four rehab games so far
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 1-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 HBP, 1 SB
  • RF Billy McKinney: 0-3
  • LHP Joe Mantiply: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 4/0 GB/FB — 28 of 40 pitches were strikes (70%) … made the spot start because Caleb Smith is in the big leagues
  • RHP Nick Rumbelow: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 2 WP, 4/0 GB/FB — 26 of 36 pitches were strikes (72%) … only the second outing in which he’s allowed a run this year … 19 of his 21 appearances have been scoreless
  • RHP Ben Heller: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K — 14 of 21 pitches were strikes

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