Yanks beat O’s but four leave game with injuries

Some wins don’t really feel like wins because someone gets hurt, and this game kinda has that feel. The Yankees potentially lost four players in Monday night’s win over the Orioles, though technically one of those players was injured a few days ago and we just didn’t know about it.

Puffy face power! (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Teixeira Contributes

It’s been a rough start to the season for Mark Teixeira offensively, but he has consistently provided stellar glovework at first base throughout his Yankees tenure. On Monday night, he finally contributed something with the stick. His tie-breaking, two-run homer off former teammate Luis Ayala in the seventh inning turned a 5-5 game into a 7-5 game, a lead the Yankees would never relinquish. The homer came in a two-strike count and after Teixeira fouled off a tough two-strike slider to stay alive.

The blast cleared the tall wall in right and frankly, it was unexpected. Tex has been pretty awful this season — .231/.286/.403 even after his 2-for-4 effort in this game — and it’s easy to expect a weak pop-up or a strikeout on offspeed stuff whenever he comes to the plate. Ayala missed his spot and left a pitch right in the happy zone, and Teixeira did exactly what he was supposed to do. Hopefully these two hits — the second was a booming double off the right field wall — plus Sunday’s dinky little infield single get him going, but we’ve said that a few times already this season.

Eutaw, Not Utah

There aren’t many people who can hit a baseball further than Curtis Granderson, which is impressive considering how damn skinny the guy is. Granderson clubbed a go-ahead solo shot onto Eutaw Street in the fifth inning, his 12th dinger of the season. Ten of those 12 homers have come at home in Yankee Stadium, the other two in Camden Yards. Curtis has hit homers in old two parks this season, but I’m sure that will change soon enough.

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Nova’s Problems Continue

Ivan Nova been hit very hard this year, coming into this game with a .325/.376/.618 batting line against and he did nothing to improve it. The Orioles tagged him for five runs on seven hits and three walks in 5.1 innings, including two doubles, one triple, and one homer. Nova’s now allowed 20 doubles, three triples, and nine homers on the season, nine more extra base hits than any single batter has recorded in 2012 — Josh Hamilton leads baseball with 23 multiple base knocks. That’s a problem and that’s what happens when you leave pitches up in the zone. They get hit hard.

Another problem is that Ivan left the game with an injury, specifically a contusion and sprain of his right ankle and foot. He got hit by a comebacker in the third inning and appeared to aggravate things fielding a ball in the sixth before being removed. X-rays were negative, but obviously this is a concern. David Phelps could easily step into the rotation if need be, but I’d rather see Nova out there working on whatever needs to be worked on to stop giving up all these extra-base hits.

Bumps and Bruises

What a rough night. In addition to losing Nova, the Yankees also lost Clay Rapada (viral infection), Raul Ibanez (hit-by-pitch in elbow), and David Robertson (ribcage). It was obvious something was up with Robertson not only when Rafael Soriano came in to close, but also when Boone Logan and Cory Wade split eighth inning duties. There’s no definitive timetable for any of these guys, so keep your fingers crossed.

Leftovers

(Rob Carr/Getty Images)

The bullpen is losing pieces to injury left and right, but how about Logan? He struck out all three batters he faced on Monday and has now struck out five consecutive batters and nine of the last 12 he’s faced. That’s pretty awesome. Phelps allowed three singles (two infield singles) in his inning of work, and there’s a chance he could see some more leveraged relief work given Robertson’s injury. That’s if he isn’t needed in the rotation to replace Nova. Sigh. Those three hits were the only hits the bullpen allowed in 3.2 innings, so big ups to them.

Derek Jeter‘s stuck in his first slump of the season, going 1-for-5 and hitting into two rally-killing double plays in this game. After grounding into one double play in the first 33 games of the season, the Cap’n has now bounced into four twin killings in the last two games. It was bound to happen at some point; you really didn’t think he’d hit .400+ all season, did you?

Robinson Cano‘s resurgence continued with a 2-for-5 night, including a hot shot double to the opposite field. He also turned a sweet defensive play on a ground ball single up the middle. Alex Rodriguez‘s hot hitting continued with a three-single night, raising his season line to .292/.391/.431. The power isn’t there anymore, but he’s doing everything else. Nick Swisher reached base three times, including a two-run double into the gap that tied the game at two in the fourth inning. Russell Martin drew a pair of walks and Eric Chavez both singled and drove in an insurance run with a sacrifice fly.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs the advanced stats, and ESPN the updated standings.


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next

Game two of this quick two-game set will be played Tuesday night … or maybe not because the forecast again looks pretty crummy. If they do play, it’ll be CC Sabathia against Wei-Yin Chen. Given the loss of Robertson, a fifth straight start of eight innings out of Sabathia would be very appreciated.

Update: Robertson unavailable due to sore ribcage, tests tomorrow

11:42pm: Robertson will in fact go for tests tomorrow. Good, let’s see exactly what’s going on and deal with it.

11:12pm: Following tonight’s game, Joe Girardi confirmed that David Robertson was unavailable due to a sore ribcage and said he may be sent for tests tomorrow. Robertson first felt it after Friday’s game and it’s lingered, so there is some concern. Hopefully it’s not an oblique issue (though that seems inevitable), that could take some time to heal. What a terrible night on the injury front.

Warren strong in Empire State loss

Got some notes…

  • Slade Heathcott played in his first Extended Spring Training game this afternoon. He’s scheduled to re-join High-A Tampa early next month following his latest left shoulder injury.
  • Shane Greene has been sent to Extended Spring Training from High-A Tampa. He got annihilated last time out and his Twitter feed makes it sound like the demotion is performance (not injury or discipline) related, which is kinda weird. Super-sleeper Matt Tracy is taking his place on the roster though, and that’s fun. Adam Miller was sent from Triple-A to Double-A.
  • Both Manny Banuelos and Angelo Gumbs made this week’s Ten Pack. You need a Baseball Prospectus subscription to read the entire thing, but both the Banuelos and Gumbs capsules are above the paywall. In other words, you don’t need a subscription for those two so check it out.
  • Gumbs and Steve Pearce were named the Offensive Players of the Week for the Low-A South Atlantic League and Triple-A International League, respectively. Gumbs stole 11 bases in 12 tries last week.
  • Jim Callis wrote about Cody Johnson briefly in this week’s Ask BA. He’s arguably the club’s best left-handed power prospect, but Johnson has struggled to make contact since turning pro and led the minors with 195 strikeouts last season.

Triple-A Scranton (1-0 loss to Durham)
SS Eduardo Nunez: 1-5, 1 CS — first game since being sent down … he led off the ninth with a single before getting thrown out trying to steal second
LF Kevin Russo, DH Jack Cust & 2B Ramiro Pena: all 0-3 — Russo walked twice, stole a base, and struck out once … Cust walked twice and struck out thrice … Pena walked once
1B Steve Pearce & RF Cole Garner: both 0-4, 2 K — Pearce got hit by a pitch
RF Ronnie Mustelier: 1-4, 2 K, 1 SB — 11 hits in ten games since the promotion
3B Brandon Laird: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 E (throwing) — had been in a 2-for-27 rut (7.4%)
C Frankie Cervelli: 1-2, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 PB
RHP Adam Warren: 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, 10/4 GB/FB — 62 of 97 pitches were strikes (63.9%) … his best start of the season, good to see him get off the schneid
RHP Cody Eppley: 1 IP, zeroes, 2 K, 2/0 GB/FB — 11 of 17 pitches were strikes (64.7%)
RHP Manny Delcarmen: 1 IP, zeroes, 3 K — 11 of 16 pitches were strikes (68.8%) … I wonder if he could pitch his way onto the big league roster, not that I want to see it happen

[Read more…]

Update: Clay Rapada leaves game with viral infection

10:09pm: The Yankees say Rapada has a viral infection, which sounds pretty open-ended. If he needs to go on the DL, the recently claimed Justin Thomas could easily take his spot as the second lefty. Just get Rapada away from the rest of the team, please.

9:41pm: Clay Rapada was helped to the clubhouse for an unknown reason in the sixth inning of tonight’s game. He faced two batters and was removed for matchup purposes, then was shown being helped out of the dugout. Very odd. Stay tuned for updates.

Update: Nova leaves game with contusion and sprain of the right foot and ankle

10:07pm: Nova has a contusion and sprain of his right foot and ankle, the team announced. X-rays were negative, but it’s unclear how long he’ll be out. If he needed to spend time on the DL, David Phelps could step right back into the rotation without a hitch.

9:30pm: Ivan Nova left tonight’s game with an apparent ankle/foot injury after fielding a ball in the sixth inning. He’d been hit by a comebacker in the right ankle/foot a few innings earlier but remained in the game. Stay tuned for updates.

Game 35: Raining In B’more

One of two things will happen tonight, and I’m not talking about the Yankees either winning or losing. Tonight’s game will either be rained out or played in sloppy conditions and possibly through a series of delays. It’s been raining on and off all day in Baltimore and the heaviest stuff is supposed to come later tonight, and I don’t mean midnight or early tomorrow morning. I’m talking eight or nine o’clock. As of right now, the game is scheduled to start at 7:15pm ET. We’ll see. Here’s the lineup…

SS Derek Jeter
CF Curtis Granderson
DH Alex Rodriguez
2B Robinson Cano
1B Mark Teixeira
RF Nick Swisher
LF Raul Ibanez
3B Eric Chavez
Russell Martin

RHP Ivan Nova

If they do end up playing tonight, you can watch on YES. Enjoy.