Two years ago today on DotF, Roger Clemens struck out six in six shutout innings for Triple-A Scranton.

Mike Ashmore’s Ask The Thunder feature is back, so make sure you take the opportunity to ask your favorite Double-A Trenton player why he’s so awesome.

Triple-A Scranton (5-4 loss to Syracuse)
Reegie Corona, Austin Jackson & Juan Miranda: all 1 for 5 – Ajax drove in a run & K’ed … Miranda doubled, drove in a run & K’ed twice
Todd Linden & Shelley Duncan: both 2 for 4 – Linden doubled, was hit by a pitch, scored a run & K’ed … Shelley drew a walk & K’ed
John Rodriguez: 1 for 3, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 K – threw a runner out at third from LF
Chris Stewart & Eric Duncan: both 2 for 5 – Stewart scored a run & K’ed … E-Dunc doubled, drove a run in & scored another
Doug Bernier: 0 for 2, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K
Casey Fossum: 4.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 6-3 GB./FB – 42 of 69 pitches were strikes (60.9%) … first time he’s allowed more than two runs in a start for SWB
Edwar Ramirez: 1.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 3-0 GB/FB – 15 of 25 pitches were strikes (60%)
Jon Albaladejo: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 4-1 GB/FB – 17 of 28 pitches were strikes (60.7%)

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Categories : Down on the Farm
Comments (79)

It’s inevitable that on off-days we tend to shift the conversation to roster issues and other non-game ideas. Without a game to think about that night, we can take the time to stand back and reflect on how the team is doing, what’s going wrong, and what they can do to right it. Thankfully most thing are going well for the Yankees now. Yet the Joba debate rages on, and it was in full-force today. However, let’s get back to the game for a minute, even though there is none tonight.

Earlier this week Dave Pinto made some suggestions for FOX to improve their baseball coverage. Apparently ratings are down and FOX is looking for ways to change that. Pinto’s solution is an obvious one: talk about the game. We like to hear commentators talk about the player at bat, the pitcher who’s dealing, the current situation. Those are what make baseball interesting. That’s what will get viewers — or at least will turn off fewer of them. Who needs to hear endless prattling about PEDs yet again?

The big game of the week is not a soap box on which to pontificate about the state of the game, or the latest scandal, or anything else. That remains the province of studio shows, newspaper columns, and today, the internet. Talk about the game. Don’t spend an inning talking about steroids, with the pitches incidental to the discussion. Don’t interview a guest while a rally is underway. Leave that to Baseball Tonight and Ken Rosenthal’s columns. I don’t want to hear from the managers, I don’t want a special guest in the booth, I want the game covered. I want to know the pitch, the count, the result of the play.

I couldn’t possibly agree more with Pinto. Yet I realize that not everyone is going to feel the same way. Maybe some people do get their rocks off hearing about the latest scandal. Maybe some people would rather hear Buck and McCarver excoriate Alex Rodriguez for his moral shortcomings.

We’ll use this topic to kick off the open thread for the evening. Of course, it will move to other topics, and I have this feelings that Joba’s role will be one of them. Just call it a hunch. As always, any and all are welcome as you’re willing to speak civilly. So have at it.

Notes: From PeteAbe: Melky will travel with the team to Cleveland but will in all likelihood not play. Posada will be activated tomorrow for sure. No word on who will be removed from the roster, though it’s certainly going to be among Cash, Cervelli, and Berroa. Nady went 2 for 5 with a homer in extended spring training.

Categories : Open Thread
Comments (274)

One theme we harp on a lot is the Yankees’ recent history of laying down against mediocre starters whom they haven’t seen yet. But is it a real trend, or like B-Jobbers are we falling victim to the confirmation bias? Jay at Fack Youk takes a look at a statement by Ken Singleton on last night’s YES broadcast:

In the past two years (since 5/27/07) the Yankees have faced 31 rookie pitchers for the first time. In that span, those pitchers have a combined record 3-18 in those games (after the Yanks beat Derek Holland last night).

But is the frustration limited to just rookie pitchers the team is seeing for the first time? No. It really extends to scrubs that the Yanks should dominate, but for some reason they end up going quietly. This is horribly frustrating. Yet Jay adds some interesting commentary:

When they [beat a mediocre starter], we think nothing of it. But when they don’t it tends to stick in our craw. When something goes according to plan, it’s easy to forget about. You can eat sushi 100 times from the same place and hardly be able to tell each one apart, but if you ever get sick from it, you will remember the exact order for years to come.

That’s some quality reasoning right there, and it’s easy to forget in the heat of the moment. Thankfully, we have minds like Jay to take a step back and see the forest for the trees.

Categories : Offense
Comments (25)

Yesterday afternoon, the never-sanguine Mike Francesa got a little hot under the collar when a caller to the FAN dared to use facts and reality to dispute Francesa’s views on Joba Chamberlain. The video — which you can view here — is quite the tour de force. Francesa proves nothing more than the reality that he can scream louder and belittle people all while not proving his controversial and short-sighted view that Joba Chamberlain belongs in the sacred, more-important-than-any-other-inning, 8th.

Meanwhile, another B-Jobber — the RAB-originated term for fans and analysts who want to put the Yanks’ second best starter in the bullpen — offers up more of the same on the YES Network’s homepage. Jerome Preisler wrote a fact-free piece on why Chamberlain should be relieving. His argument is full of the same old same old. He overvalues a reliever and falls into the confirmation bias trap. Joba looked great as a reliever when he came up, and his success as a very young starter in the AL East notwithstanding, he should be moved back to the pen.

“It is now time to end the debate about Joba Chamberlain, to stop equivocating about his Yankee future to the detriment of the team. Joba should be returned to the bullpen’s eighth-inning setup role and groomed to replace Mariano Rivera as its closer. He is Rivera’s best, and perhaps only, realistic successor,” Preisler writes in one paragraph. You quickly get the point.

Now, everyday, Joe, Mike, and I field e-mails from Yankee fans shocked at this bullpen blasphemy. Take, for instance, yesterday’s missive from Doug, a hardcore Yankee fan from New Jersey:

Anyways, all these Francesa [listeners] call in all day long and agree with him and feed his ego. The only non “B-jobbers” that get on the air are usually ignorant to the game and rightfully get hung up on in a matter of 30 seconds or so. Rarely do they ever have any intelligent contributions. Myself, I am pretty knowledgable but lack the fiery personality it takes to argue with that slob. I am more the passive type to just let someone like that go off on a tangent and let him sound like the prick he is. When I do call, though, I usually cannot get through or get tired of waiting. I think once you disclose that you disagree with the B-jobber mentality, you are put on hold without ever actually having a chance of airtime.

What I ask of you is to make some sort movement towards totally getting the phone lines on WFAN jammed up with those who can make a viable argument for Joba the starter. You just have to have the intellect to get on and be able to argue your points with backup. You guys have the power and the right communication channel to put this jerk in his place for once. He is more pompous and arrogant than ever now that he has his own show and I can’t take it any more. The people of NY, NYC, the tri-state area, YES viewers, and Yankees fans far and wide deserve better than this clown and his stupid self-centered ideas.

I couldn’t agree more with Doug, and I know he’s not alone. Long-time RAB reader Jamal G. is frequently facepalming over Francesa’s rants, and our Twitter followers often sputter at Francesa’s lunacy.

But better than clogging the phones, I have a better idea: Just stop listening. I know sports fans love to get riled up over disagreements; that’s what makes the comments to many of our posts so entertaining and enjoyable. But when someone shows a complete unwillingness to open up to the other side, when someone starts ranting about how callers and listeners are just flat-out wrong if they disagree with him…well, we should all just stop listening.

In the end, Francesa, Preisler and their ilk won’t go away. On the day Joba wins his 100th game as a starter, these guys will still be saying he should be in the bullpen. But the Yankees are immune to the lunacy. They have not wavered in their belief that Joba, always a starter before the Bronx, will remain in the rotation, and those are the voices to which we should be listening.

Categories : Rants
Comments (238)

Via MLBTR, we learn that the Yankees might be considering a run at Mark DeRosa. With the Indians struggling, they could use DeRosa as a bit of trade bait, getting something useful for him before his contract expires after this season. Says Buster Olney: “One of the looming shadows circling below is that of the New York Yankees, who are weighing options and haven’t decided whether to take a shot at the versatile veteran.” So should the Yankees really get involved in talks for a utility infielder?

Make no mistake: DeRosa is a better option than any of the three current ones (Pena, Ransom, Berroa). He can also play the outfield in a pinch, and can do so reasonably well (11.5 UZR/150 in 451.2 innings in 2008). He can also play every position in the infield, and for the most part with competence — though his UZR is a bit down this year at second and third. His .333 OBA and .446 SLG make him an above-average utility player, if not average starter. Given the current state of the Yanks bench, should they make an offer?

Clearly he would represent an upgrade. His versatility would also help out the cases of Xavier Nady and Hideki Matsui, who figure to be DH-only options. It would allow the Yanks some pop off the bench if they needed it, while also covering them better in case of injury. With a 12-man pitching staff, the Yanks have a 5-man bench, one of whom will DH. This looks like a pretty ideal scenario:


Eitther Nady or Matsui DHs, leaving the other to pinch hit. Exactly who he’ll pinch hit for is another matter, since the lineup will be strong one through nine. Perhaps Swisher if he’s mired in a slump (won’t it be strange to see Swish hitting ninth when Melky and Posada are back?). Perhaps Gardner if he starts some games over Swish. In any case, this would also allow Gardner to pinch run, and then DeRosa to take over in the field. In other words, adding DeRosa would add some serious flexibility to the Yanks lineup. Not only is he competent in the field, but he has a major-league bat, which is more than we can say about Berroa, Ransom, and Pena.

Of course, the price tag is the issue. The Indians aren’t just going to give away DeRosa. He’ll likely be in demand by other contenders, so the Yanks will have to pony up a decent prospect. Since his name comes up every time we talk about non-Ajax prospects, would Zack McAllister do the trick? If he would, should the Yanks part with him for 1/2 a year of a utility infielder, even if he deepens the bench? It’s hard to justify that. After all, the Yanks could stick with the all-glove Pena as a replacement when Gardner pinch-runs for an infielder.

Yes, adding Mark DeRosa would be a nice luxury for the Yanks, but it is not at all necessary. If they can get him for a prospect of a lesser caliber than McAllister, they should consider it. However, if the price is Z-Mac or higher, they should probably back off. After all, we’re talking about a half year of a bench player vs. six controlled years of a mid-rotation starter. Which is not to say that is guaranteed for McAllister, but it is to say that dealing B+ prospects for bench players might not be the best idea.

Comments (121)

The series in Texas highlighted three Yankees pitchers who have been the subject of much debate: Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, and Chien-Ming Wang. All three could be part of the starting rotation, but there are only two spots for them. This has led to arguments about what to do with each. Should Joba go to the pen? Should Hughes? What about sending Hughes to AAA to get his innings in? Can Wang be the long man? These questions, and really any question about what to do with these three pitchers, can be answered in the simplest of manners:

Let’s see how this plays out.

Given the current state of the team and the statuses (statii?) of the three pitchers, there is no reason to make a decision right now. The Yankees can move forward as currently scheduled and observe how things play out. Over the next few weeks there will surely be an opportunity for the Yankees to arrange their pitchers in a sane and useful way, both for the 2009 season and the long-term.

There is no better example to illustrate this point than what happened in April with Wang. Who would have thought he’d be that bad? Some people might have been wary of his ability to come back full strength after his Lisfranc injury, but to be that bad? No one really foresaw that, not to that extent.

Pitching surpluses have a way of working themselves out. If the Yankees are lucky enough to have all three pitchers going at peak performance a month from now, then they might have a tough decision to make. Until then they can continue on the current course. Something’s bound to happen, and if it doesn’t the Yankees should be thankful to have to make said weighty decision.

Let’s take a look at each pitcher to examine his advantages and shortcomings. I think this will make it clear that the Yankees have nothing to worry about right now.

Chien-Ming Wang

He’s perhaps the strangest story of 2009. First he was the worst starter in baseball over his first three appearances. Then the Yanks were criticized for placing him on the DL. Finally, just before he was about to pitch another rehab start the Yanks recalled him to pitch out of the bullpen. Such a strange sequence of events for such a solid pitcher over the past two and a half years. This led many to wonder about the future of Chien-Ming. His first appearance after returning didn’t do much to quell those fears.

Last night, though, Wang impressed in his two innings of work. Not only did he keep the sinker low for the most part, but he struck out two and induced ground balls. That’s the Chien-Ming we know and love. Clearly, he’s going to be back in the rotation if he keeps this up. However, it’s the last five words of the preceding sentence are weightier than the first nine. It’s going to take more than one two-inning appearance for Wang to prove he’s ready for full-time action.

The signs last night were encouraging. If you look at Wang’s pitch f/x from this start in April, you can see it’s high and off to the side. Compare that to last night’s data, and you can see that his release point is lower and more over the top. That’s where Wang needs to be. Of course, there are other factors at play here, like pitch f/x consistency from park to park. I think, though, that it was easy to see that Wang used a lower release point last night.

Before moving Wang back into the rotation, the Yankees would do well to get him regular work out of the bullpen first. This is in order to 1) keep both Hughes and Joba in the rotation and 2) to let him work himself back at the major league level. He might not get long outings, or at least I would hope not. Long outings mean the starter failed. But maybe he can go two innings in relief of Pettitte on Friday, and then pitch again in relief of Phil on Sunday or Joba on Monday. The Yanks don’t want to overwork him in the pen, but he could certainly pick up two innings here and two innings there to help him work back into a groove.

Phil Hughes

Phil Hughes’s starts for the Yankees, on the Crap to Lights Out scale: Lights Out, Crap, Crap, Decent, Decent, Lights Out. The potential is clearly there. Now Phil has to figure out how to put it together. Unfortunately, it’s doubtful he’ll be able to do that in the minors. He’ll be able to get in his innings and build himself up to pitch ~200 innings next year, but he won’t be able to take the lumps which all young pitchers must take before blossoming into top-line starters. In other words, the best course of action for the development of Phil Hughes is to keep him in the big league rotation.

The problem is that there are still concerns with him from start to start. As we saw on the Crap to Lights Out scale, Hughes can take three forms. It’s nice to think that he’s turned a corner after his last start, but we all thought that after the Detroit start and he made four non-Lights-Out starts before his next. The in-between results were less than stellar. So it’s no guarantee that Hughes pitches another Lights Out start in his next few outings. At this moment, though, with Wang still working back into shape, it’s best to keep Phil in the rotation and see what he can give you.

What happens, then, if Wang proves he’s ready to re-enter the rotation? If Hughes throws a couple more Crap starts between now and then, the solution is obvious, in that the Yanks return Hughes to AAA to get his innings up in anticipation of a near-future recall. If Hughes is pitching Decent or Lights Out, it might be a tougher decision. It’s a nice problem to have, of course, since it means you have six good starters for five spots. The Yanks can afford to hold off on that decision for at least a week, probable more, which is also a comfort.

Notice how I didn’t answer the question? That’s because despite the niceness of the problem, the solution isn’t easy. Do you send Hughes back to AAA to get innings, despite his ability to help the major league club? Do you send him to the bullpen and work out a plan to get him his innings? The answer to both is dependent on the specific circumstances at the point of the decision. It also has a lot to do with the final pitcher in this equation.

Joba Chamberlain

The lowest common denominator solution in this case is to move Joba to the pen. We’ve seen him in the pen before, so there’s a confirmation bias built into the situation. Furthering the confirmation bias is that we saw him dominate out of the pen. Since he’s not exactly dominating in the starting rotation right now, it’s easy to see why some people would favor this solution. However, it’s the easy solution for a reason: it requires the least amount of thought. Joba’s struggling in the rotation, we’ve seen Joba dominate in the pen, therefore Joba goes to the pen. The actual situation digs a bit deeper than that.

Of the three pitchers discussed in this article, the Yanks hold Joba in the highest esteem. He was a potential top-ten pick who fell in the 2006 draft because of triceps tendonitis and concerns about his weight. The Yanks got a steal, a pitcher with front-line potential in the supplemental first round. It was a high-risk, high-reward pick, and surely the Yankees want to see if they can realize that high reward. The highest of high rewards, of course, is an ace pitcher, and that’s Joba’s potential. It behooves the Yankees to give him every chance to prove he can be that top of the rotation starter.

But what if Joba is struggling while Wang and Hughes are pitching well? Again, that would be a difficult question for the Yankees to answer. Joba’s innings situation is a bit more dire than Hughes’s. The latter pitched almost 150 innings in 2006, so they can afford to push him a bit higher this season. Joba maxed out at 112 innings in 2007 and threw only 100 in 2008. Clearly the Yankees need to build up his innings in order to maximize his value (as a starter). That won’t happen in the bullpen.

While it’s true that Joba could improve the Yanks shaky bullpen, it is far from the only consideration in the matter. First, think of how many games the bullpen has actually blown for the team this year. Then think about having Joba in those situations. Is it really a guarantee that he saves all of those games from the jaws of defeat? Is it a guarantee that he doesn’t blow a different game? Expecting him to have a 0.00 ERA in the bullpen is ridiculous. That’s not to say he can’t be lights out. It is to say that he might represent only a marginal improvement in terms of how the bullpen actually affects the team’s record.

Here’s one argument many B-Jobbers (for the uninitiated, our euphemistic moniker for the Joba-to-the-bullpen crowd) fail to acknowledge. Last year Joba was dominant in the bullpen in April and May. The Yanks then stretched him out to start in June, and he was dominant as a starter. This year Joba has struggled at times in the rotation. So who’s to say he won’t have equivalent struggles in the bullpen? Is he going to miraculously pitch with more efficiency because he’s only going one inning at a time? I don’t think so. Considering his first-inning woes, he might be even worse in limited action out of the pen (please, note the emphasis on “might”). Are the Yankees really better off with Joba pitching 20-pitch innings out of the pen three times a week than they are with keeping him in the rotation? Clearly, I think not.

The next few weeks will be important for the fates of all three pitchers. Maybe they all pitch well and the Yankees have a tough decision to make. Maybe Hughes and Wang pitch well, leaving them with a decision on Joba, which could be even tougher. Maybe either Wang or Hughes struggles and the answer becomes clear. In any case, it’s far better to continue on the current path than make a decision in haste right now. The Yankees are in first place. The offense is rolling. The starters have been pitching better. The bullpen has avoided its April misfortunes.

As I said earlier in the week, there are times when a decision needs to be made, and there are times when patience should win the day. In the case of Chien-Ming Wang specifically, the Yankees can ill-afford to wait around while he doesn’t pitch. But when making a decision among three pitchers for two spots when the team is going well, it’s a time to let patience reign. There’s plenty of season left, and something is bound to happen which will make the decision easy for the Yankees. Best to stay the course now. Let Wang build himself back up in the pen while Hughes and Joba work out their issues in the rotation. As long as the offense keeps rolling it shouldn’t be a huge issue.

Categories : Pitching
Comments (142)

When it comes to ballpark food, I am not particularly impressed with any of it. On most nights, I’ll grab a sandwich — a bigger, better and cheaper sandwich than any I can get at the stadium — and chow down at my seat. If I’m feeling like stadium food, I’ll grab a few hot dogs or a Premio sausage with peppers and onions. After all, I’m at the stadium for the game and not a five-star meal.

But like it or not, baseball stadiums have turned into wannabe food havens. This trend seemingly began in Baltimore when Camden Yards and Boog’s Barbecue ushered in a new era of increased attention to food. Now, around the nation, local cuisine from pierogies in Pittsburgh to cheese steaks in Philadephia and basically whatever you want in Seattle permeate stadiums. There’s just something about cooking for 40,000 people, though, that makes generally reliable meals not that appetizing.

With the two new stadiums in New York City promising everything from fine steakhouse dining to Shake Shack and Blue Smoke offerings, it was only a matter of time before outgoing Times food critic Frank Bruni wrapped his chops around ballpark cuisine. In yesterday’s paper, he unveiled his review, and while the Yankees currently have a better record than the Mets, the Flushing Nine apparently have better food. Bruni writes:

New York is actually playing catch-up, and making a spirited game of it. At Yankee Stadium there are special stations at which all-stars like April Bloomfield (of the Spotted Pig in Manhattan) and Masaharu Morimoto (of Morimoto in Manhattan and Philadelphia) show up occasionally to cook.

At Citi Field there’s an Acela Club under the supervision of Drew Nieporent, one of the restaurateurs behind Nobu. But those dining experiences are available only to fans with premium tickets. I stuck to the (relatively) cheap seats and supped at concessions any fan could approach.

The teams have poured considerable energy into these, too. The Yankees serve not only sushi but also thick steak sandwiches from the butcher Lobel’s of New York. The Mets drafted Mr. Meyer to help with barbecue, soft tacos and more, and they turned to the renowned seafood chef Dave Pasternack to oversee a stand called Catch of the Day. But at the chopping block as on the playing field, it’s easier to devise a game plan than to execute it.

Using an assortment of adjectives restaurateurs would prefer not to see in a Times column, Bruni finds the food an improvement over Shea and old Yankee Stadium offerings but underwhelming nonetheless. At CitiField, Bruni encounters “under-seasoned” pork and “paltry” portions. He finds the Lobel’s steak sandwich at Yankee Stadium to be “overcooked and soggy” and the Johnny Rocket’s burgers “clumpy.” In the end, Shake Shack and Blue Smoke triumph over Brother Jimmy’s and the aforementioned Johnny Rockets.

I haven’t been out to CitiField yet, so I am in no position to judge the food. At Yankee Stadium, I have tried the heralded garlic fries and the Brother Jimmy’s pulled pork. Neither impressed me much. The fries were indeed quite garlicky but also lukewarm and soggy. They were far from crisp or crunchy. The pulled pork wasn’t just under-seasoned; quite simply, it had no taste. It is Brother Jimmy’s in name only.

In the end, the Yankees and Mets and the casual fans of these two teams will be happy with the new and expanded food options. Me? I’ll take a beer, a hot dog and a warm sunny day. I go for the baseball, not the brisket.

Categories : Yankee Stadium
Comments (63)

The Yanks got just what they needed last night. After a night of frustration they pulled it together and decimated the Rangers in the series finale, 9-2. The Yanks have now won 13 of their last 17 games and are now tied with the Red Sox atop the AL East. Just three weeks ago, on the heels of a sweep by the Red Sox and amid a five-game skid, few thought this possible. But the Yanks came alive after leaving the Stadium, and have been on a roll ever since.

While the Yankees offense was impressive, the story of the night is A.J. Burnett. The $82-million man hadn’t recorded the meaningless stat known as a win since April 14, and has struggled a bit recently. He stepped up last night, pitching six solid innings of no-run ball. In typical A.J. fashion he struck out seven and walked four. As we’ve seen in almost all of his starts, efficiency was a bit of a problem. He threw just 70 of his 118 pitches for strikes (59%). Still, it was the kind of showing the Yanks needed out of Burnett tonight.

The offense took advantage of rookie Derek Holland and the Rangers’ bullpen, striking early and then striking hard, scoring eight runs before Burnett’s official exit. With such a lead it seemed like a given that Chien-Ming Wang would get an opportunity to finish the game. Yet, much to my surprise, Jose Veras stood on the mound when YES came back from a commercial. Why? Who knows. He was terrible, though, and David Robertson had to come in to clean up the mess against the middle of the order. He did, which makes me happy even in a blowout.

Wang finally did make an appearance, starting the top of the eighth inning. He looked a bit shaky, but was able to overcome his deficiencies to retire the Rangers in order. Overall he did a better job of keeping the ball low. His sinker sat around 90 to 91 mph, with his 4-seamer hitting 92 on occasion. That might seem low, but check out this start from last April. Seven innings, nine strikeouts, no earned runs, and he was sitting at around the same speed. He did, however, certainly throw a bit harder in 2007.

It’s always nice to see an offensive explosion, especially when it comes from the bottom of the order. In typical RAB fashion, right when we rip on someone he starts to hit. It started with Doug Mientkiewicz in 2007, and has moved through a few players before settling on Kevin Cash, who went 2 for 4 with a run scored an a pair of RBI. Perhaps, then, it’s our long-standing criticism of Melky Cabrera which has lit a fire under him this season. Hey, anything we can do to help.

Also nice was watching Nick Swisher collect a single. WIth Melky out he’s going to continue to get playing time, so he’s going to have to find his own way out of his funk. A hit and a walk tonight help. Plus, that last called strikeout looked a little suspicious. Sure, a slumping guy doesn’t have much room to complain, but I feel for him.

Add homers for Teixeira, his 15th, Cano, his 9th, and a pair for Matsui, his 6th and 7th. Hideki has looked poor at the plate at times in the past few weeks, but just when you start to get frustrated with him he smacks an RBI double one night and socks two dingers the next. Props also go to Jeter, who had three impressive hits in his first three at bats. His average is up to .297.

Also of note: The Yanks were a respectable 3 for 9 with runners in scoring position. Apparently Ken Singleton said the Yanks had 50 hits in the series. He was a bit off. They had 47, which is still remarkable. The offense is simply rolling.

So the Yanks take a positive into the off-day as they head north to face the last-place Cleveland Indians in a four-game set starting Friday. My only question is, what the hell am I going to do tomorrow night?

Categories : Game Stories
Comments (147)

What do you think, is this lead Wang proof?

Categories : Game Threads
Comments (492)

Two years ago today on DotF, Joba Chamberlain was his own setup man by striking out nine and allowing just two hits in eight shutout innings against Vero Beach.

Make sure you scroll down for tonight’s game thread.

Triple-A Scranton
Game 1
(4-1 win over Syracuse) makeup of yesterday’s rain out
Reegie Corona: 1 for 4
Austin Jackson: 2 for 4, 1 3B – 8 for his last 13 (.615)
Todd Linden, Justin Leone & Eric Duncan: all 1 for 3 – Linden drew a walk, scored a run & K’ed … Leone drove in a run & K’ed twice … E-Dunc drove in a run & K’ed
Shelley Duncan & Juan Miranda: both 1 for 4, 1 R – Shelley drove in two with his league leading 16th homer … the guy in second has just 11 homers
John Rodriguez: 0 for 1, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 HBP
George Kontos: 6 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 4-8 GB/FB – 63 of 88 pitches were strikes (71.6%) … 17 baserunners & 1 earned run allowed in his last 17.1 IP
Mark Melancon: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 3-0 GB/FB – 8 of 12 pitches were strikes (66.7%) … with Robertson up, he should get some work now … SWB’s bullpen has more arms than innings

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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