CC & Jeter give Yanks much-needed win in KC

Source: FanGraphs

The Yankees scored six runs on Friday night, the same number of runs they scored in their previous four games combined. It seems like their plan is to win every game by 4+ runs so they don’t have to worry about finding a replacement closer for Mariano Rivera, which is something I can get behind. Let’s recap…

  • Two Outs: Bruce Chen had a man on first with two outs in the seventh and the bottom of the order due up, but he never got the final out. Eduardo Nunez tripled into the right field corner to plate Robinson Cano, then Chris Stewart pixie-dusted an RBI single to left to score Nunez. With Chen on the ropes, Derek Jeter launched a two-run homer to left that effectively put the game away. Two-out rallies are my fave.
  • Beast Mode: CC Sabathia has now gone exactly eight innings in each of this last three starts. He only struck out five Royals on Friday, though he held them to two runs and at one point retired a dozen in a row. The only thing that annoyed me is that he gave up three extra-base hits to left-handed batters, which isn’t something he should be doing. Sabathia only threw 108 pitches and other than a little trouble in the first and eighth, it was a stress-free start.
  • Future Closer: It wasn’t a save situation, but David Robertson struck out the side in order in the ninth inning. He’s now struck out the last eight batters he’s faced and ten of the last eleven. That’s pretty cool. Rafael Soriano was warming with men on base in the eighth before Sabathia escaped the jam. Does that tell us anything about who gets what role? I dunno.
  • Leftovers: Mark Teixeira hit a two-run homer in the first, his seventh career dinger off Chen … Cano had a legit line drive single to right (not another ground ball with eyes) and a fly out to the warning track, which I hope is a sign he’s getting himself together … everyone in the starting lineup had at least one hit except for Jayson Nix, plus Jeter and Tex had two knocks apiece … the recently recalled Dewayne Wise pinch-hit for Nix late and doubled to left, plus it was neat to have a defensively competent outfielder on the field in the late innings … it’s nitpicking now, but how awful was that hit-and-run sending the runners in the fourth? The lead-runner (Tex) is arguably the slowest guy on the team and the hitter (Cano) swings at everything and wasn’t going to take ball four if his life depended on it. Ran themselves right out of an inning. has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs the nerd score, and ESPN the updated standings. Hopefully the bats are starting to come alive and the Yankees can build off this win. They’re due for a six or seven game winning streak. Game three of this four-game set is a dreaded Saturday night game. Those should be outlawed. Hiroki Kuroda gets the ball against Felipe Paulino, who is coming off the DL to make his first start of the season.

Williams returns to lineup in Charleston win

Got a bunch of injury updates and roster moves, so…

Triple-A Empire State (3-0 loss to Rochester)
2B Kevin Russo: 2-3, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 SB — has reached base 21 times in his last ten games
SS Doug Bernier & RF Colin Curtis: both 1-3, 1 BB, 1 K — Curtis stole a base and threw a runner out at first
1B Steve Pearce, DH Jack Cust, 3B Brandon Laird & C Frankie Cervelli: all 0-4, 1 K — Pearce and Cust drew walks
LF Cole Garner: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 K
CF Ray Kruml: 2-4, 2 K, 1 SB
RHP Ramon Ortiz: 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1 WP, 1 HB, 7/2 GB/FB — 60 of 92 pitches were strikes (65.3%)
RHP Chase Whitley: 2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 2/1 GB/FB — 21 of 34 pitches were strikes (61.8%)
RHP Kevin Whelan: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 0/1 GB/FB — 13 pitches, seven strikes … I wonder if we’ll see him at some point this summer following Mariano Rivera‘s injury, he’s pitching well enough for a call-up

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Game 26: Win it for Mo

(Chuck Solomon/SI)

Mariano Rivera is down but not out. The Yankees will be without their all-world closer for the remainder of the season but can look forward to having him back in 2013. That’s better than nothing. Now it’s up to the rest of the team to rally around their fallen closer and start a long stretch of dominance. Here’s the starting nine…

SS Derek Jeter
CF Curtis Granderson
1B Mark Teixeira
DH Alex Rodriguez
2B Robinson Cano
RF Andruw Jones
LF Jayson Nix
3B Eduardo Nunez
C  Chris Stewart

LHP CC Sabathia

Tonight’s game starts a little after 8pm ET and can be seen on YES. Enjoy.

Brett Gardner Update: Gardner took some hacks the batting cage today and will hit on the field tomorrow. Hopefully that goes well and he can head out on a rehab assignment and get back in the lineup early next week.

Update: Yankees recall Wise and Eppley, option Mitchell

Via Pete Caldera, the Yankees are going to recall outfielder Dewayne Wise from Triple-A. He’s on his way to Kansas City and may even already be there. I assume Mariano Rivera was placed on the 15-day DL to clear a roster spot for Wise while either Michael Pineda or Cesar Cabral was transferred to the 60-day DL to open a 40-man roster.

Wise, 34, posted a .459 wOBA in 19 Triple-A games but hitting his not his forte. He’s a defensive stud capable of manning all three outfield spots with aplomb. Nick Swisher took batting practice on the field today according to Erik Boland, but perhaps the Wise move indicates that Swisher’s hamstring is still giving him a problem. He got hurt last Sunday and the Yankees have been playing with a short bench ever since.

Update (4:39pm): Via Boland, right-hander Cody Eppley has been recalled as well. That makes me think Swisher might be headed to the DL.

Update (5:41pm): The Yankees announced that right-hander D.J. Mitchell was optioned back to Triple-A, so Swisher avoids the DL. Pineda was transferred to the 60-day DL to clear a 40-man spot for Wise. Just to quickly recap: Wise and Eppley up, Mitchell down, and Mo to the DL.

Mariano: “I’m coming back”

Finally, some good news for a change. After tearing his right ACL shagging fly balls prior to last night’s game, Mariano Rivera showed up to the park today and told reporters that he will indeed return to the Yankees in 2013. The circumstances are unfortunate, but this is the best news the team has gotten in quite some time.

The RAB Radio Show: May 4th, 2012

There is plenty to talk about this week, but of course we’re starting off with the loss of Mariano Rivera. Mike and I try to stay as positive as possible.

Then we have the issues of the team, which take up a bit more room. There’s sorting out the bullpen and rotation, and then the lineup. Oh the lineup. The guys are going to come around and hit, but now more than ever the Yankees need timing on their side.

Podcast run time 40:49

Here’s how you can listen to podcast:


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

Injury might not have altered Mo’s plans

Remember earlier this spring, when Mariano Rivera said he knew what the future held, but wasn’t revealing it? Those sure sounded like the words of a man who planned to retire after the season. But according to Reggie Jackson, that might not have been the case. He told Bob Nightengale of USA Today that Mariano was actually planning to pitch in 2013, reserving his decision only so he could ensure he remained at the top of his game. That is, the greatest of all time might have a few more rounds left in him, injury or not. Obviously he has a few obstacles to clear first — “We have to face this first,” he said last night — but we could see Rivera take the mound in the ninth inning a few more times before he decides to hang ’em up.