Yanks unable to climb out of early hole, fall to Mets

Source: FanGraphs

The ten-game winning streak has been followed by a three-game losing streak, both the longest such streaks of the season for the Yankees. Let’s recap…

  • Early Hole: Andy Pettitte has been pretty awesome since coming out of retirement, but the game was effectively over before he recorded his third out on Friday. He allowed five first inning runs — three on a homer by Ike Davis that Nick Swisher nearly brought back — with two outs, his first five-run first inning in eleven years. He did settle down and fire five scoreless after that, but sheesh, five runs in the first is as close to guaranteed loss as it gets.
  • Bombs Away: The Yankees have a way of making even the biggest ballparks look small, and they didn’t need any help from the new CitiField dimensions to get back into the game. Alex Rodriguez launched a homer into the apple in dead center, Andruw Jones parked one in the second deck in left field, and Robinson Cano cleared both bullpens with a two-run shot to right. Just like that, a 5-0 game became a 6-4 game.
  • Almost: Frank Francisco tried to give away that two-run lead in the ninth, but the Yankees were unable to make him pay for his poultry-based comments. Curtis Granderson took strike three on a fastball right down the middle with men on first and second and I have no friggin’ idea what he was thinking. Was he sitting splitter? I can’t imagine he was, that’s a pitch you adjust too. Anyway, Mark Teixeira followed that up with a fly ball and the game was over. If only Andres Torres didn’t make that diving catch on Russell Martin‘s rocket to open the inning. Alas.
  • Leftovers: I know he went on to throw two more scoreless innings, but I don’t like Pettitte being allowed to hit leading off the fifth. You’re down five and need to generate offense, so get a pinch-hitter in there … the My9 broadcast said Andruw has now homered in 42 different ballparks, the most of any active player … everyone in the starting lineup had a hit — including Pettitte — except for Martin, who had the one taken away in the ninth … Swisher had an interesting night defensively, though I’ll never get on a player for not robbing a homer. That’s on the pitcher.

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs the advances stats, and ESPN the updated standings. Game two of the weekend set is a dreaded Saturday night game and will feature Ivan Nova against Chris Young. Check out RAB Tickets if you’re going to head out to Flushing.

Dugas keeps hitting in Staten Island loss

Notes? Notes…

  • The Yankees have signed RHP Jon Meloan out of an independent league and assigned him to Double-A Trenton. The 27-year-old was the other guy in the Carlos Santana-Casey Blake trade and he has 13 games of big league experience to his credit. I remember Baseball America describing him as a fitness nut whose body was wound too tight/lacked flexibility in their Prospect Handbook. [Mike Ashmore]
  • OF Cody Johnson has been placed on the DL with “left hamstring tightness.” He pulled up lame legging out an infield single the other night. C Jeff Farnham was activated off the phantom DL to take his roster spot. [Ashmore]
  • RHP Craig Heyer (arm) and LHP Josh Romanski (blister) each threw 25-pitch simulated games today. IF Walt Ibarra (finger) started throwing today after getting checked out by a doctor. [Ashmore]
  • C Gary Sanchez did not play tonight after leaving yesterday’s game following a collision at the plate, but he’s expected to return to the lineup sometime this weekend. Phew. [Josh Norris]

Triple-A Empire State (4-2 loss to Indianapolis)
RF Kevin Russo & CF Chris Dickerson: both 1-3, 1 R, 1 SB — Russo drove in a run, walked, and struck out … Dickerson committed a throwing error
2B Corban Joseph, 1B Russell Branyan, C Frankie Cervelli, 3B Brandon Laird & SS Ramiro Pena: all 0-3 — CoJo walked and whiffed … Branyan walked and struck out twice … Cervelli struck out once, Laird twice
LF Ronnie Mustelier: 1-4, 1 RBI, 1 K — broke up the no-hitter in the sixth
RHP Ramon Ortiz: 7 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 7 K, 8/4 GB/FB — 73 of 107 pitches were strikes (68.2%)
LHP Justin Thomas: 0.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K — 16 of 30 pitches were strikes (53.3%)
RHP Ryota Igarashi: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP — six of 11 pitches were strikes

[Read more…]

Game 69: Chickens

“[I] can’t wait to face those chickens.”

Apparently Frank Francisco thinks the Yankees complain a little too much. The Mets closer referred to the Bombers as a bunch of chickens in an exclusive interview with the NY Post yesterday, adding just a little ripple to the latest edition of the Subway Series. This is the same Frankie Frank who once broke a woman’s nose by throwing a chair, which apparently qualifies him to be the arbiter of all things chicken-related.

Anyway, the Yankees laughed off the remark prior to today’s game, just as you’d expect. They have more important things on their plate than the comments of a second-rate closer on a second-rate team. New York’s favorite ballclub has lost two straight after winning ten in a row, and tonight they would like to get back in the win column. Here’s the lineup…

SS Derek Jeter
CF Curtis Granderson
1B Mark Teixeira
3B Alex Rodriguez
2B Robinson Cano
RF Nick Swisher
LF Andruw Jones
Russell Martin
LHP Andy Pettitte

Tonight’s game is scheduled to start a little after 7pm ET and can be seen on both My9 and WPIX locally as well as MLB Network nationally. The weather forecast isn’t great but it looks like most of the heavy stuff won’t arrive until later tonight, like 11pm or so. Enjoy the game.

Update: … and we’re in a rain delay. No official word on a start time yet, but apparently 7:45pm is the target.

Update Part Two: Now they’re saying first pitch is scheduled for 8pm. This one might not last a full nine innings.

2012 Draft: Yankees sign third rounder Nathan Mikolas

Via K. Levine-Flandrup, the Yankees have signed third rounder Nathan Mikolas for $400k. Slot money for the 124th overall pick was $378k, so he managed to get an extra $22k. Good for him. Jeff Zampanti says they also gave him another $132k for future college costs, though that does not count against the draft pool.

Mikolas, a high schooler from Wisconsin, is a bat-first prospect with a smooth left-handed swing and power potential. He has a track record of hitting quality pitching with wood bats in showcase events. There’s a chance he could play left field long-term, but first base is more likely. Here’s some video. Mikolas is expected to join the Rookie Level GCL Yankees next week according to Zampanti. You can see all of New York’s draft picks at Baseball America and the latest draft pool info on our Draft Pool page.

Injury News: Joba, Aardsma, Romine, Feliciano

Got a quartet of injury updates courtesy of Erik Boland and various NY Post reporters

  • Joba Chamberlain (ankle, elbow) will throw live batting practice on Monday, his first time facing hitters as part of his rehab. Brian Cashman wouldn’t put an exact date on it, but he expects that the right-hander ““will help us” this season. In other news, Joba got rear-ended on the way to the Tampa complex yesterday but is fine.
  • David Aardsma (elbow) will appear in his second minor league rehab game tomorrow, and Cashman confirmed that if “everything goes all right, in 31, 32 days, he’ll join us.” Aardsma’s 30-day rehab clock started earlier this week, putting him on target for a return shortly after the All-Star break.
  • Austin Romine (back) has been playing catch and hitting off a tee in Tampa. “Assuming there are no setbacks,” he will play this year according to Cashman. A few weeks ago we heard that a July return was in the cards.
  • Pedro Feliciano (shoulder) will throw off a half-mound today and a full mound on Tuesday. He expects to pitch this season but I wouldn’t count on it. Maybe he gets healthy in time to serve as a third lefty reliever during the expanded rosters in September, but anything they get out of him is gravy.

The RAB Radio Show: June 22nd, 2012

The Yanks went on quite a run, winning 10 straight before dropping the last two to the Braves. Still, they’ve played markedly better in the past month. Here’s what was happening in the last week.

  • Braves and Nats series. Even though they lost two of three to the Braves, things are still looking good.
  • The pitching in general has been phenomenal this month. Mike and I talk about what has gone into this incredible run.
  • RISP. We can’t avoid it. At one point it was frustrating. Now it’s just absurd.
  • Reader questions. I like these. Keep sending ’em in.
  • The Mets series ahead. Why R.A. Dickey is confounding everyone.

Podcast run time 48:46

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Intro music: “Die Hard” courtesy of reader Alex Kresovich. Thanks to Tyler Wilkinson for the graphic.

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