Back in the day, prior to the mid-1970s renovation of Yankee Stadium, support poles dotted the stadium, and it was possible to find a seat with a view of a pole and not the field. Today, the worst sight lines in the Stadium are found in the Upper Deck down the lines where the Tier juts out too far and blocks the view of the left- or right-field corners. That’s small beans compared with the problems in Fenway. In an amusing piece, Home Run Derby takes a look at some of the worst seats in the house. It sure must be nice to sit right behind the foul pole in Shea Stadium. Literally. (Hat tip to YFSF) · (2) ·
While we’re always a bit a skeptical of unsourced according-to’s around here, Buster Olney has some comforting words on Joba this morning. According to the tireless ESPN scribe as reported both on TV and in this article, a source said that “[Dr. James] Andrews told the Yankees he doesn’t believe Chamberlain’s injury is a long-term problem.” While rotator cuff tendinitis is not good news by a long stretch, as more information hits about Joba’s injury, the more comforted I am that this is not going to lead to long-term DL trip for Chamberlain.
Update 10:26: It seems my optimism may be an isolated feeling. Tyler Kepner is skeptical of these best-case reports, and other beat writers — well aware of the Yanks’ tendency to downplay injuries — are a bit wary as well. · (22) ·
Tonight’s Yankee game was remarkable for one reason: It was utterly unremarkable. The Yanks beat up a pitcher with terrible numbers; their starter held down the fort; the bullpen held the Rangers scoreless; and when all was said and done, the Yanks restored some order to a universe in chaos.
It had been, of course, a rough few days around the Bronx. With Joba’s injury and two losses that could have been wins on everyone’s minds, the Yankees needed a no-nonsense game like this. But it didn’t quite start out as it ended.
Early on, things looked a bit rough for the Yankees. Two innings into the game, Sidney Ponson had already put on five base runners, and only a play at the plate — in which the Yanks lost Ivan Rodriguez and the Rangers David Murphy — prevented Texas from breaking the game open. The collision was a clean play at the plate, but it could cost both teams nonetheless. Pudge is currently listed as day-to-day with a bruised knee. As the Yanks’ injury plagued season continues, he figures to miss a few games at a key stretch of the month but won’t need an MRI quite yet.
In the third, the Yanks quickly restored order though. The Yanks knocked out four hits to plate three runners and would never look back. They would later add runs on a Jason Giambi home run and a Derek Jeter double while Michael Young would homer in the fifth to bring Texas to within two. It would matter very little.
After that rough second inning, Ponson went 6.1 strong, allowing just a shade over one base runner per inning and striking out four. The bullpen would keep the Rangers in check the rest of the way, and Mariano Rivera would record the final three outs — two by the K — to emerge with his 27th save.
At some point, we’ll have to tackle the gaping holes in the rotation. At some point, we’ll have to figure out if Melky Cabrera has finally been permanently demoted to fourth outfielder status. But for tonight, we can revel in a crisp win and a remarkably unremarkable game, just the way it should be on an August evening in Texas.
The Yanks signed 6th round Brett Marshall to an $850,000 bonus, roughly $750,000 over slot. The prep RHP from Texas is arguably the second best prospect the Yanks selected behind top pick Gerrit Cole. (h/t to commentor Joe)
Triple-A Scranton (11-5 loss to Pawtucket)
Matt Carson: 0 for 2, 1 R, 2 BB
Eric Duncan: 1 for 5, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K – SLG by season, 2003-present: .473-.471-.408-.405-.389-.372 … that is an ugly trend
Shelley Duncan: 0 for 5, 1 K
Juan Miranda & Chris Basak: both 2 for 4 – Basak drove in a run
Cody Ransom: 0 for 3, 1 BB, 1 K
Ben Broussard: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K – 1 for his last 11 following an 11 for 32 (.344) stretch
Chris Stewart: 1 for 3, 1 R, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 E (missed catch)
Al Aceves: 4 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 4-1 GB/FB – 44 of 72 pitches were strikes (61.1%)
JB Cox: 1 IP, 0 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 1 K, 1 HB – only 11 of 31 pitches were strikes (35.5%)
Scott Patterson: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 3-1 GB/FB - 26 of 36 pitches were strikes (72.2%) … allowed two runners he inherited from JB to score
Billy Traber: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K
Scott Strickland: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HB - Chad Jennings said he was pulled from the game following a visit to the mound by the trainer
Steven Jackson: 0.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 0 K – allowed all three runners he inherited from Strickland to score
According to Brian Cashman, Joba is hitting the DL with rotator cuff tendinitis. The Yanks’ youngster will sit for the next week in New York before beginning a throwing problem designed to strengthen the sore muscles in his arm. While there is no time table for his return, this diagnosis means Joba will be out for much of the remainder of the season.
This is, by and large, the best-case scenario. The Yanks don’t see any need for Joba to go under the knife, and they believe that rest coupled with a throwing program could be enough to bring the righty back to the mound before too long. However, there are a few warning signs, As Tyler Kepner notes, tendinitis could be symptomatic of a more serious injury as was the case when Jorge Posada faced a rotator cuff diagnosis in May. Coupled with yesterday’s quotes from Harlan Chamberlain, I’m optimistic but cautiously so concerning Joba. We may not see him again this year, but it seems as though things are far from dire. · (17) ·
1. Damon. CF – oh yeah, Melky’s totally being benched
2. Jeter, SS
3. Abreu, RF
4. A-Rod, DH
5. Giambi, 1B
6. Nady, LF
7. Cano, 2B
8. Pudge, C
9. Betemit, 3B
And on the mound, Sidney “will pitch for food” Ponson.
Notes: Sorry the site hasn’t been updated as much as usual lately; Ben’s on vacation, Joe’s in the middle of moving, and I’m rather swamped at work. It’ll be back to normal soon … all signs point to Ian Kennedy starting on Friday, and by Friday I mean Saturday … Chien-Ming Wang will remain on crutches for the foreseeable future … the Yanks had scouts attend Freddy Garcia’s so-so audition … Chad Moeller cleared waivers and was assigned to Triple-A Scranton … Joba’s been placed on the DL, but that’s all we know so far; no news is good news, right?
The Yankees are clamoring for more tax-free bonds for the team’s new stadium, and club officials are predicting no great increase in revenues when the team moves across 161st St. next year. But according to a recent report in Crain’s, the Yanks stand to make a killing from the new stadium.
Aaron Elstein reports:
The team’s revenues – already the highest in the sport, at an estimated $327 million last year – are poised to double almost immediately. This quantum leap will be driven by factors ranging from higher prices for tickets and hot dogs to increased revenue from the YES Network for game telecasts. There will also be new revenue sources, such as leasing out the new stadium for concerts.
The ballpark promises to once again give the Yankees a decided financial edge over the world champion Boston Red Sox, after their archrival passed them on the field last year and narrowed the monetary deficit by expanding seating in cramped Fenway Park and sharply raising ticket prices.
“The new Yankee Stadium will change the economics of baseball,” says Robert Boland, a sports agent and a professor at [NYU].
Elstein goes on to explain why the Yanks are disputing this revenue claim. The Yanks, looking to cover escalating construction costs, want more tax breaks from New York. If the city knows just what a cash cow the Stadium will be, city reps will cry foul over any additional tax-exempt bonds.
Interestingly, the article also notes that some of the revenue projections are simply underestimated. The Yanks are claiming over $200 million in seat revenues for 2009, but that figure is based on an estimated attendance of 3.4 million. There’s no way the Yanks, in their first season in their new digs, suffer through an attendance drop of over one million. In fact, if all 81 home games aren’t sold out next year, I would be shocked. With concession prices on the rise, the team’s revenue will easily surpass their own estimated figures and approach $400 million or more per year.
Now, for baseball, this bad news. The Yanks are basically building their own version of the Mint at the corner of River Ave. and 161st. They could easily supprot a payroll above $225 million, and invested wisely, the money could create a powerhouse team for years. I can’t imagine Bud Selig or John Henry being too keen on those figures.
For the team, though, we can more clearly see why officials have long wanted a new stadium. It’s all about the money. Forget out-of-date facilities and less than state-of-the-art amenities. The Yanks are going to reach stratospheric profit levels. And as long as taxpayers aren’t footing the construction bills, I won’t complain.