Posada, Hughes turn back the clock in win over Rays

The afternoon started with the Yankees honoring Derek Jeter and his 3,000th career hit, and it ended with another Yankees great showing everyone that the gas tank isn’t empty just yet. To the bullet points!

  • You think Jorge Posada‘s got a chip on his shoulder? In his first game in exactly a week, Posada singled in the game’s first two runs in his first at-bat, blooped a single in his second at-bat, and walloped a grand slam in his third at-bat. That was his first homerun since the interleague series against the Brewers at the end of June, and he had three hits this month total before this game. I don’t know if this game will get him more playing time, but it was fun to re-live the glory days, wasn’t it?
  • While Posada was busy partying like it was 2007, Phil Hughes was getting his 2010 first half on. Philbert struck out six walked one, and allowed just four hits in six innings of work, giving up just two runs in what was essentially garbage time. He also got seven ground ball outs compared to five in the air, which was a welcome change. Hughes threw 96 pitches, held his velocity throughout the start, and mixed his pitches were well: 46 fastballs, 25 curveballs, 13 cutters, and 12 changeups. That’s much more like it. Phil has now thrown three straight quality starts, and has allowed two runs or less in five of his six starts since coming off the DL.
  • The Yankees offense was brutally effective as a whole, working deep counts and punishing mistakes. Jeremy Hellickson needed 99 pitches to get 13 outs, and Brandon Gomes needed 21 pitches to get two outs. Brett Gardner, Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira, and Robinson Cano all had two hits, and Posada had the three. The Grandyman whacked his 33rd homer of the season, tying him with Jose Bautista for the MLB lead. Cano’s double was his 30th, making him the first player in franchise history with 30 doubles in each of his first seven seasons. Bananas. Eric Chavez and Russell Martin had one hit each, and although Nick Swisher didn’t pick up a knock, he walked three times. All told, the Yankees put 22 men on base and managed to score nine runs despite being 2-for-11 with RISP.
  • Cory Wade chipped in two scoreless innings (on just 21 pitches), and Hector Noesi actually came out of his burrow to see his shadow and throw a scoreless inning. That means he’ll go another six weeks before pitching, right?
  • The win stretches the lead over Tampa for the wildcard to 8.5 games. Jered Weaver and the Angels took a pounding in Toronto, so the Yankees lead them by eight full games. Here’s the box score, here’s the WPA graph, and here’s the updated standings.

The rubber game will be played Sunday afternoon, at least in theory. The weather report is looking pretty grim, so there’s no guarantee they’ll be able to play. Freddy Garcia was supposed to start, but he’s been scratched with a cut on his finger. A.J. Burnett will go against Jamie Shields instead.

Santana seriously injured in GCL win

Got some bad news folks, Gary Sanchez‘s season is likely over due to a broken finger. He left Thursday’s game in the fifth inning, so maybe he got hit by a foul tip or errant back swing or something. If he is done, he finishes the season with a .364 wOBA and 17 homers in 343 plate appearances, which is pretty damn good for an 18-year-old kid in full season ball.

In other news, here’s video of Bryce Harper’s walk-off homer off Ryan Pope and Double-A Trenton last night (2:05 mark). That is no cheapie my friends. And finally, Josh Romanski was sent from Trenton back down to High-A Tampa as Kei Igawa was activated off the DL.

High-A Tampa (7-2 win over Dunedin)
Alex Rodriguez, DH: 0 for 3, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 K – he was supposed to play third today, but that was changed and not even Joe Girardi knows why … he’s going to do some informal workouts tomorrow, so I guess that means he won’t play in a game
Abe Almonte, CF: 1 for 5, 1 2B, 2 K
Walt Ibarra, SS: 2 for 5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 E (fielding)
Neil Medchill, PH-DH: 0 for 0, 1 RR, 1 BB
Kyle Roller, 1B: 3 for 4, 1 K – 11 for his last 25 (.440)
Kelvin Castro, 3B: 0 for 3, 2 K
DeAngelo Mack, RF & Cody Johnson, LF: both 1 for 4 – Mack tripled, drove in four, and walked … Johnson homered, drove in two, and struck out
Tyson Blaser, C: 0 for 4, 1 R, 1 BB, 3 K
Emerson Landoni, 2B: 2 for 4, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 E (fielding)
Jeff Marquez, RHP: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 1 HB, 8-1 GB/FB – vintage Marquez right there … this start is right out of the 2007 playbook
Dan Burawa, RHP: 2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 3-1 GB/FB
Preston Claiborne, RHP: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1-2 GB/FB

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Garcia will miss Sunday’s start

Joe Girardi announced during his postgame press conference that Freddy Garcia will miss tomorrow’s start because of a cut on his finger. A.J. Burnett will start instead, and will be followed by Ivan Nova, Bartolo Colon, and CC Sabathia in Kansas City. Garcia tried to throw his splitter off flat ground today and couldn’t, though they’re hopefully he’ll just miss one start. Girardi called it a kitchen accident. Either way, it gives Garcia some extra rest and keeps Phil Hughes in the rotation for at least one more turn. Win win? Win win.

Saturday Night Open Thread

Jorge turned back the clock today, eh? (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

Well that was a fun afternoon, wasn’t it? Vintage performance by the offense, with a ton of deep counts and lots of extra base hit. Phil Hughes was pretty good as well. Can’t wait to see his stuff play up out of the bullpen next week. /wrists

Anyway, the weather’s nice, so it’s a great night to head out and do whatever the kids do these days. Maybe grab some dinner, catch a movie, hang out with friends, all sorts of stuff. In the meantime, use this thread to talk about whatever your heart desires. Have at it.

HEAD EXPLODES: YANKEES SIGN SCOTT PROCTOR

The Yankees have signed Scott Proctor to a minor league contract, so says Mark Feinsand. No, seriously. At least Joe Torre’s not around to run him into the ground again.

Proctor was released by the Braves earlier this week, mostly because he was terrible. His 6.04 FIP was so bad that he racked up 0.8 wins below replacement level in 29.1 IP with Atlanta. Check out these peripherals: 5.52 K/9, 5.83 BB/9, 1.53 HR/9, 28.4% ground balls. He hasn’t been effective since the Yankees traded him away in 2007, mostly due to Torre-induced injury. Anyway, Proctor is going to Triple-A and will report there sometime early next week.

Game 118: Jorge’s Return

It's baseball. Smile. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

It’s been exactly a week since Jorge Posada last played a game for the Yankees, but he’s back in there today at his usual position, the one that doesn’t require him to take the field. Hip hip.Here’s the rest of the lineup…

Brett Gardner, LF
Derek Jeter, SS
Curtis Granderson, CF
Mark Teixeira, 1B
Robinson Cano, 2B
Nick Swisher, RF
Eric Chavez, 3B
Jorge Posada, DH
Russell Martin, C

Phil Hughes, SP

There’s a special pregame ceremony on the field for Jeter’s 3,000th career hit at 3:45pm ET, and you’ll be able to watch live on MLB.com. I don’t think it’ll be on YES since there’s no pregame show today, and Mo knows FOX won’t show it. The game itself will start a little after 4pm ET and can be seen on (yep) FOX. Enjoy.

2011 Draft: Yankees will not sign 36th rounder Ryan Thompson

Via Kevin Gray, the Yankees will not sign 36th round pick Ryan Thompson, with the right-hander saying “we were pretty far apart.” Thompson, a draft-eligible sophomore out of Franklin Pierce, was not a 36th round talent. The former UConn Huskie throws his sinker in the 89-92 mph range and backs it up with a slider and a changeup. He has a starter’s build and some projection left (6-foot-3, 190 lbs.), and he held his velocity deep into games. Thompson was expected to go somewhere in the 5th-8th round range and I was a fan, seems like a guy that could take some big steps forward with pro instruction (like a David Phelps). Alas, the price was was apparently not right.