DotF: Higashioka goes deep in Scranton’s win

Got some notes to pass along:

  • Josh Norris (no subs. req’d) has a really good article on C Donny Sands’ conversion to catcher. Turns out Sands is not catching much in GCL games because he has regular 5am workouts with the team’s catching instructors. “The first time I threw out a guy — we had worked out at five in the morning on footwork, footwork, footwork — and the first time, it just clicked. That’s when I started feeling like, ‘This is starting to pay off,'” he said. Pretty cool.
  • LHP Justus Sheffield was officially added to the High-A Tampa roster following today’s game, the team announced. I’m guessing that means he’s going to make his first start tomorrow. Sheffield was part of the Andrew Miller trade this past weekend.
  • In case you missed it earlier, LHP Jacob Lindgren will have Tommy John surgery on Friday, so we probably won’t see him again until 2018. Also, RHP Conor Mullee is still have issues with his hand and is heading to see a doctor.

Triple-A Scranton (7-0 win over Lehigh Valley)

  • CF Jake Cave: 1-5, 1 RBI, 3 K
  • LF Clint Frazier: 1-5, 1 R, 1 K — gets his first hit in his second game in the organization
  • DH Aaron Judge: 2-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 K — 3-for-8 with two doubles in his two games back from the knee injury
  • 1B Ike Davis: 0-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
  • RF Tyler Austin: 3-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB — I wrote about him earlier today
  • C Kyle Higashioka: 1-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 BB — he’s hit five homers in his last nine Triple-A games
  • LHP Dietrich Enns: 5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 3/5 GB/FB — 49 of 86 pitches were strikes (57%), plus he picked a runner off first … exactly half of his 20 starts this season have been scoreless, which is pretty nuts
  • RHP Kirby Yates: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 2/2 GB/FB — 16 of 21 pitches were strikes (76%)
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 1 IP, zeroes, 1 K, 2/0 GB/FB — eleven pitches, nine strikes
  • RHP Jonathan Holder: 1 IP, zeroes, 2 K — eleven pitches, eight strikes … 74/7 K/BB in 51 innings

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DotF: Frazier and Heller debut, Judge returns in AAA loss

Here are all the damn notes:

  • J.J. Cooper at Baseball America updated their midseason top 100 prospects list. The rankings did not change. They just updated the list to reflect the trade deadline activity. The Yankees and Brewers lead the way with seven top 100 prospects each.
  • In a separate piece, Cooper ranked the top 50 prospects traded from June 30th to August 1st. The Yankees added the No. 2 (Clint Frazier) and No. 3 (Gleyber Torres) prospects. Three of the top seven, six of the top 25, and ten of the top 50 (!) all came to the Yankees in various trades.
  • Josh Norris spoke to RHP James Kaprielian, who is currently working his way back from a flexor strain. Kaprielian won’t pitch in games in the regular season, but it’s possible he will be ready to go in time for Instructional League and/or the Arizona Fall League.
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo was placed on the High-A Tampa DL with a back injury, reports Erik Boland. Sucks. At least it’s not his arm. Matt Kardos says Acevedo received a cortisone shot and will be shut down a few days. Double-A Trenton manager Bobby Mitchell told Kardos that Acevedo was due to join the Thunder soon.
  • The Yankees are sending minor league pitching coordinator Danny Borrell to Low-A Charleston specifically to work with RHP Dillon Tate, reports Brendan Kuty. Turns out farm system head Gary Denbo coached Tate with Team USA in 2014, so there is some familiarity there.
  • Tate and RHP Erik Swanson, who also came over in the Carlos Beltran trade, are scheduled to make their debuts with Low-A Charleston on Friday, the River Dogs announced. Tate and Swanson made their final starts with the Rangers last Thursday and Friday, respectively.

Also, it’s been a while since I last updated the standings, so let’s do that now. The eight domestic affiliates came into today with a combined 322-251 (.562) record, which is pretty awesome.

Triple-A Scranton (2-1 loss to Lehigh Valley) they’re 67-43 and one game back in the North Division … they have a five-game lead on a postseason spot

  • CF Jake Cave: 0-4, 1 K
  • LF Clint Frazier: 0-4, 3 K — first game since the trade … bust!
  • RF Aaron Judge: 1-3, 1 2B — got picked off second … played six innings as scheduled in his first game back from the knee injury
  • C Gary Sanchez: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 K
  • 1B Tyler Austin: 0-3, 1 K
  • 3B Cito Culver: 1-3 — this isn’t his Triple-A debut … he played eight games here last season
  • LHP Jordan Montgomery: 6.2 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 9/2 GB/FB — 65 of 102 pitches were strikes (64%) … nice Triple-A debut for the team’s 2014 fourth rounder
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 0.2 IP, zeroes, 2 K — nine pitches, six strikes
  • RHP Ben Heller: 0.2 IP, zeroes, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — six pitches, five strikes … first game since coming over in the Andrew Miller trade with Frazier

[Read more…]

DotF: Torrens, Gittens, Alvarez go deep in Charleston’s win

Got a whole bunch of notes to pass along:

  • OF Aaron Judge (knee) will be activated off the Triple-A DL tomorrow and will receive “strong consideration” for a call-up later this year, Brian Cashman told Chad Jennings. Judge has been out nearly four weeks, so he’s going to need some at-bats just to get himself back up to speed. I doubt a promotion is imminent.
  • 1B Greg Bird (shoulder) has resumed throwing, according to Billy Witz. He won’t return during the regular season, but assuming his rehab goes well, Bird is a candidate to go to the Arizona Fall League in October.
  • RHP Dillon Tate, who came over in the Carlos Beltran trade, is going to work out of the Low-A Charleston bullpen, Cashman told Jennings. It’s not a permanent move. There are some things Tate needs to iron out and the Yankees feel the bullpen is the place to do it.
  • OF Mason Williams is out with a quad injury, Cashman told Jennings. He hurt himself in a game the other night. No word on the severity, but Williams missed most of the first half following shoulder surgery, so he needs to get at-bats.
  • LHP Jordan Montgomery has been promoted from Double-A Trenton to Triple-A Scranton, reports Shane Hennigan. Montgomery is replacing the since traded Vicente Campos, who replaced the called up Luis Severino.
  • Baseball America provided scouting reports on the all the players involved in the Andrew Miller and Carlos Beltran trades, so make sure you check that out (Miller, Beltran). They’re free. The pieces are not behind the paywall.
  • And finally, OF Blake Rutherford was named the rookie Appalachian League Offensive Player of the Week while RHP Luis Cedeno was named the Low-A South Atlantic League Pitcher of the Week.

Triple-A Scranton (7-1 loss to Lehigh Valley)

  • CF Jake Cave: 0-4, 2 K
  • 1B Tyler Austin: 1-3, 1 BB, 1 K
  • RF Cesar Puello: 2-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 HBP — got picked off first … he’s had a nice year, but it’s hard to think he’ll be with the Yankees beyond this season … they simply have too many upper level outfielders
  • DH Ike Davis: 0-4, 1 K
  • RHP Brady Lail: 5.1 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 8/2 GB/FB — 52 of 85 pitches were strikes (61%)
  • LHP Chasen Shreve: 0.2 IP, zeroes, 0/1 GB/FB — six pitches, five strikes
  • RHP Conor Mullee: 1 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 1/2 GB/FB — only six of 14 pitches were strikes in his second rehab outing
  • RHP Johnny Barbato: 1 IP, zeroes, 1 K, 2/0 GB/FB — nine of 12 pitches were strikes

[Read more…]

Swept! Yankees drop series finale 5-3 to Rays

Source: FanGraphs

The big stories of the day were the Andrew Miller and Tyler Clippard trades, but the Yankees did play a game Sunday, and they lost. Fourth loss in a row too. The last place Rays completed the sweep Sunday afternoon with a 5-3 win. #TeamSell has some new members: the Yankees. Let’s recap with bullet points because I’ve had a long day.

  • Small Mike: I gotta say, Michael Pineda has been a key member of #TeamSell this season. He’s really committed to the cause. He allowed five runs in six innings around some nasty sliders, so hooray for eight strikeouts? Pineda allowed six hits (four extra base hits) and four walks, and as soon as the Yankees made it a game in top of the sixth, he allowed two runs in the bottom half. Thoughts of a comeback were short-lived.
  • So Long, Carlos: In what could very well be his final game with the Yankees, Carlos Beltran belted a two-run home run in the sixth inning to cut the deficit to 3-2. Pineda gave those two runs right back, but still. Brian McCann singled in a garbage time run in the eighth. The Yankees did put 13 runners on base, but 12 of the 13 were singles or walks. Feel free to mix in an extra-base hit once in a while, dudes. I miss calling you the Bronx Bombers.
  • Sevy The Reliever: Luis Severino looked pretty good in his two innings of work. He struck out a pair and got three other outs on the ground. I know we’re all still scarred from the Joba Rules and whatnot, but I’m cool with Severino working in relief now. I think it’s good for him to experience success in any role in MLB after what happened earlier this year. It wouldn’t be a bad thing to build some confidence, you know?
  • Leftovers: Beltran and Brett Gardner each had two hits. Gardner drew a walk too … Jacoby Ellsbury, McCann, and Chase Headley each had a single and walk … Alex Rodriguez: not good enough to play everyday but good enough to pinch-hit against the hard-throwing closer in the ninth … and finally, the Yankees are back at .500. They’re 52-52.

Here are the box score, video highlights, and updated standings. New York’s postseason odds are down to 2.6%, according to FanGraphs. The Yankees are going home to New York to begin a road series with the Mets. The four-game home-and-home Subway Series starts Monday night with the first of two at Citi Field. CC Sabathia and Logan Verrett are the scheduled starters.

Minor League Update: No DotF tonight, everyone. I’ve been busy all weekend and I just don’t have it in me right now. Here are the box scores and here’s the short version: Dustin Fowler and Billy McKinney hit homers, Chance Adams struck out nine in 5.2 scoreless innings, Gleyber Torres drew two walks, Drew Bridges had four hits, Kolton Mahoney threw a Maddux (complete game shutout with fewer than 100 pitches), and Blake Rutherford had two doubles and a walk. He is: good.

Yankees break out for three runs, lose 6-3 to Rays anyway

Source: FanGraphs
You know, the Rays were supposed to be the easy part of the schedule. Do you think other teams see the Yankees as the soft part of their schedule? They have to, right? The Yankees scored a big win for #TeamSell with a 6-3 loss to Tampa Bay on Saturday night. New York has lost three straight to fall to five games back of the second wildcard spot. It’ll be 5.5 games back if the BoSox beat the lowly Angels tonight.

I, thankfully, did not see much of tonight’s game. A couple at-bats here and there. That’s about it. Sure doesn’t look like I missed much. There are better ways to spend a Saturday night than watching these Yankees, that’s for sure. I have some quick thoughts on the game.

1. Eovaldi’s Dingers. Two more homers allowed for Nathan Eovaldi, who has now allowed 21 dingers in 116.2 innings this year after allowing ten dingers in 154.1 innings last year. He allowed two homers Saturday night — a first inning solo shot (Brad Miller) and a third inning two-run shot (Curt Casali) — and finished with three runs allowed in six innings. Not a disaster start, but anything less than excellence usually means a loss for a Yankees starter. Eovaldi’s homer issue is really troubling. He was never this homer prone before. Not even close.

2. Behind Early, Again. Miller’s homer was the fourth first inning homer the Yankees have allowed in the last six games. It’s incredible. They’re behind early every game, it seems. Also, the Yankees have not scored first since last Sunday, the final game of the Giants series. This team isn’t good enough to play from behind all the time. They got away with two in Houston earlier this week, but not these last three games.

3. The A-Rod Absurdity. This Alex Rodriguez stuff is beyond ridiculous. Alex hasn’t hit at all this year so he’s been benched, and that’s smart. Bad players shouldn’t play. And yet, when Joe Girardi deems A-Rod worthy of a start, he bats him cleanup. Not good enough to play regularly but good enough to hit fourth when he does play. How silly. Alex went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts Saturday night and I’m guessing he looked awful in all four at-bats. The Yankees should release A-Rod because he’s a sunk cost and doesn’t deserve a roster spot, and yet I weirdly find myself hoping they keep him because this is truly hilarious. The Yankees are so dysfunctional right now.

4. Bullpen Mismanagement. Down one in the seventh? Bring in Anthony Swarzak! Down three in the eighth? Bring in Adam Warren! Also, in the Astros series Swarzak pitched with the Yankees up four and Warren pitched with the Yankees down three. That is completely and totally backwards. I figured Swarzak would find himself in the Circle of Trustâ„¢ with that escape job against the Orioles a week ago, but it’s wholly undeserved. Yes, Warren stunk with the Cubs this year. But it’s literally Anthony Swarzak. When it comes to on-field stuff, the manager’s job is putting his players and his team in the best possible position to succeed. The A-Rod situation and Swarzak/Warren stuff is the opposite of that. They were set up for failure.

* * *

Here are the box score, video highlights, and updated standings. Check out our Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages as well. The Yankees will try to avoid getting swept by the last place Rays on Sunday afternoon. Michael Pineda and rookie lefty Blake Snell are the scheduled starters. It will be nothing short of negligence if the Yankees don’t continue selling before the deadline. We have 103 games worth of evidence telling us they just aren’t very good.

Minor League Update: Sorry folks, I don’t have time for a full DotF tonight. Might not tomorrow either. Here are the box scores and here’s the short version: Ben Gamel had three hits, Tyler Austin homered, Blake Rutherford had two hits, Dermis Garcia hit a ball off the light tower, and Jorge Mateo had a single. Three of the eight affiliates were rained out.

DotF: Fowler extends hitting streak in Trenton’s win

High-A Tampa manager Pat Osborn spoke to Randy Miller about a whole bunch of his players, so check that out. Buried within the feature are a few injury updates. Here they are as well as the rest of the day’s notes:

  • LHP Ian Clarkin is done for the season with “a little meniscus issue that he’s getting repaired,” according to Osborn. I assume the “getting repaired” thing means surgery. Sucks. The good news is Clarkin’s arm is healthy. He was still able to throw 98 innings after missing all of last season with an elbow injury.
  • LHP Jacob Lindgren is currently throwing off a mound, which indicates he might actually pitch in games again at some point this season. He threw seven innings with High-A Tampa in April before getting shut down with some sort of elbow problem. Lindgren has surgery to remove a bone spur last year, remember.
  • This year Yankees’ farmhands will play for the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League, the league announced (PDF link). Last year they were on the Surprise Saguaros. Scottsdale will have have Angels, Phillies, Mets, and Giants prospects as well. The AzFL rosters are usually announced in late-August. Someone should really send me a mailbag question about who the Yankees might send this year, wink wink nudge nudge.
  • Both OF Dustin Fowler (No. 9) and OF Blake Rutherford (No. 18) made this week’s Prospect Hot Sheet, so make sure check that out. Rutherford’s hitting .370/.430/.617 (182 wRC+) in his first 22 pro games. That’ll do, kid.

Triple-A Scranton (1-0 loss to Pawtucket)

  • CF Mason Williams: 0-4
  • DH Ben Gamel: 1-4, 1 K
  • 1B Tyler Austin: 1-3, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 K — 23-for-59 (.390) with six doubles, five homers, 15 walks, and 14 strikeouts in his last 18 games
  • RF Jake Cave: 0-3, 2 K
  • LHP Dietrich Enns: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 5/3 GB/FB — 53 of 89 pitches were strikes (60%) … tenth time in 19 starts he’s allowed one earned run or less
  • RHP Conor Mullee: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 2/0 GB/FB — all seven pitches were strikes … this starts his 20-day rehab assignment clock … he’s currently on the MLB DL with a hand/nerve issue
  • RHP Jonathan Holder: 1 IP, zeroes, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — ten of 14 pitches were strikes (71%) … 72/7 K/BB in 50 innings at three levels this year

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DotF: Torres and Amburgey lead the way in Tampa’s win

The notes:

  • High-A Tampa manager Pat Osborn told Randy Miller that RHP James Kaprielian (elbow) has resumed throwing. The Yankees are taking is slow, and, unsurprisingly, it’s unlikely Kaprielian will pitch in another game this season. “He’s playing catch. He’s not off a mound,” said Osborn. “I talked to him the other day. He said he’s doing all right. He’s in his throwing program. As far as his time table and when he’s gonna be back on the mound, I don’t know.”
  • OF Billy McKinney, who was part of the Aroldis Chapman trade, has reported to Double-A Trenton. OF Lane Adams was released to clear a roster spot, the team announced.

Triple-A Scranton had a scheduled off-day.

Double-A Trenton (6-1 win over Altoona)

  • DH Tyler Wade: 0-4, 4 K — zoinks
  • CF Dustin Fowler: 1-3, 1 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI — his last 15 hits: five doubles, three triples, two homers, five singles
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 0-4, 1 K
  • C Kyle Higashioka: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI — got picked off second … 20 doubles are a new career high … he’s already doubled his previous career high homer total too
  • RF Billy McKinney: 0-3, 1 BB — first game since the trade … he went from a last place team in the Cubs system to a team that is 25 games over .500 and heading to the postseason, so that must be cool
  • SS Cito Culver: 2-4, 2 R, 1 3B, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 E (throwing) — back-to-back games with a jack
  • 2B Abi Avelino: 1-4, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K, 1 E (missed catch) — not a bad Double-A debut
  • LHP Jordan Montgomery: 6.1 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 3 WP, 5/6 GB/FB — 61 of 98 pitches were strikes (62%) … up to 102.1 innings this season … he threw 134.1 innings last year and 119 the year before
  • RHP Matt Wotherspoon: 2.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 2 HB, 2/2 GB/FB — 31 of 47 pitches were strikes (66%)

[Read more…]