Including today, 11 of the Yanks next 14 games are at home, the lone exception being a three game set in Fenway next weekend. The wins don’t have to be textbook, they all count the same.

Some stats for you:

  • Since June 14th, Robinson Cano is hitting .350-.373-.534 with a grand total of six strikeouts in 103 at-bats. The Annual Robinson Cano Second Half Surge is officially underway.
  • Hat tip to PeteAbe on this one: Edwar Ramirez hasn’t allowed a hit in his last 9 IP, striking out 14 in the process. Kyle Farnsworth is 1 inning away from his own hidden no-no. Crazy.
  • Since moving to the rotation on June 3rd, Joba Chamberlain‘s 2.64 ERA is the 15th best amongst starters in all of baseball. It’s the 7th best mark in the AL. His 10.20 Kper9 is 4th best in all the land. Could the transition have gone any better?
  • When I post the game thread, the Yanks are 13-7, good for a .650 winning percentage. When Joe posts it, they’re 18-21, or a .492 winning percentage. Ben? 21-17, or a .553 win %. You’ll be seeing less of Joe and more of me in the coming weeks.

1. Jeter, SS
2. Abreu, RF
3. A-Rod, 3B
4. Giambi, DH
5. Cano, 2B
6. Betemit, 1B
7. Cabrera, CF
8. Molina, C
9. Gardner, LF

And on the bump, the grizzled vet, Andy Pettitte. He’ll be opposed by All-Star Justin Duchscherer, the guy with a .213 BABIP. I believe the term is “completely unsustainable.”

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Melky walks off

By in Down on the Farm. · Comments (50) ·

PeteAbe’s got an update on the negotiations with some high profile draft picks. Check it out.

Triple-A Scranton (2-1 win over Lehigh Valley)
Alberto Gonzalez: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K
Eric Duncan: 1 for 5, 1 RBI, 2 K – tied the game up in the top of the 9th after going 0 for 2 with the bases loaded earlier in the game
Matt Carson: 3 for 5, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 SB – drove in the go-ahead run with 2 outs in the top of the 9th
Juan Miranda: 0 for 5, 1 K
Cody Ransom: 0 for 4
Ben Broussard & Jason Lane: both 2 for 4, 1 K
Chris Stewart: 2 for 3 – taken out for a pinch runner (Chris Basak), who eventually scored the tying run
Nick Green: 1 for 4
Brian Bruney: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 0 K – I imagine they’ll want him to work back-to-back days at least once before returning to the big league club
IPK: 7 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HB, 11-8 GB/FB – 56 of 89 pitches were strikes (62.9%)
Scott Strickland: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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Posted by mobile phone:
So that game was pretty ridiculous. Or as John Sterling kept saying on the radio, it was “nutty.” In fact, he just kept saying that over and over and over again.

For the Yanks, this game started off promising. They plated two in the second and had runners on second and third with no one out. But Derek Jeter, Bobby Abreu and Alex Rodriguez struck out thus initiating an offensive malaise that would last until Jose Molina’s clutch two-strike bases-loaded HBP in the 12th to give the Yanks their second win in two games after the break.

For the Yankees, much of this game rested on the top of the lineup. A-Rod went 0 for 5 and left seven runners on base. Jeter didn’t pick up his two hits until the innings of free baseball kicked in. While Robinson Cano continued his hot hitting with four hits, and Melky and Brett Gardner each had a pair of hits, the Yanks left a whopping 21 runners on base. That they won is a testament to good luck, their bullpen and the A’s anemic offense.

On the pitching front, Joba was again stellar as a starter. He threw six innings, allowing a run on six hits and one walk. He also struck out eight and needed just under 16 pitches per inning, a far better mark than he had seen recently.

The bullpen was a little unsettled at first. Jose Veras pitched himself into trouble and couldn’t pitch out of it. Mariano continued to struggle a tad in non-save situations. But the bullpen struck out 10 in six innings of work.

In the end, the Yanks won a game they could have won many times over and did it in the oddest way possible: a hit, two walks and an HBP in the 12th. I’ll take it. A win is a win is a win.

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Sean Gallagher, recently acquired in the Rich Harden deal, toes the rubber for his second start in green and gold today. In his first outing he shut down the team with the best record in baseball, and he’s one of the most unheralded good young pitchers in baseball. Pitchers like this tend to … uh … “frustrate” the Yanks, so it’ll be a nice test for the Little $200M Engine That Could.

Yesterday’s win was a quality one, they got big hits with two outs, Moose battled early then retired the last 13 men he faced, and the bullpen finished the game off with three perfect frames without a ball leaving the infield. If you created a blueprint for a win, that’s how you’d draw it up. Let’s do it again.

1. Jeter, SS
2. Abreu, RF
3. A-Rod, 3B
4. Giambi, DH
5. Posada, C
6. Cano, 2B
7. Betemit, 1B
8. Cabrera, CF
9. Gardner, LF

And on the mound, the Winnebago Wonder, the Corn-Hustler, The Bachelor Wannabe, Joba “more popular than Wilt” Chamberlain.

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Starting the second half off right

By in Uncategorized. · Comments (30) ·

Posted by mobile phone:
So that was a comfoting win, no?

The Yanks, facing a lefty tonight, got off to a quick start early in tonight’s game. New addition Richie Sexson drove in the Yanks’ first run of the second half and against a lefty to boot. Two innings later, Robinson Cano, badly in need of a strong second half, lofted a home run into the night to give the Yanks a lead that would stick.

For the third place Yankees, tonight’s win was exactly what the doctor ordered. After a rough end to the first half, they beat a fellow Wild Card conpetitor and scored six runs against a southpaw. The Red Sox lost badly in Anaheim, and the Yanks now find themselves 5.5 games behind Boston with many, many games left to play.

Meanwhile, the story of tonight was once again the washed-up and ineffective Mike Mussina. Moose, shooting for that long-elusive 20-win season, nailed down his AL-leading 12th win tonight. While he pitched his way into trouble in the first and an early 1-0 deficit, he gutted it out for six innings, allowing nine hits but no walks for the eighth time this season. His ERA now sits at a nifty 3.49, and he keeps giving the Yanks what they need: innings and wins.

With a stellar pitching matchup later today – Duchschere vs. Chamberlain – Friday night’s game was a good one to win, and win it they did.

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Triple-A Scranton (6-4 win over Lehigh Valley)
Alberto Gonzalez: 1 for 5 – picked off first
Chris Basak: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K
Matt Carson: 0 for 1, 1 R, 1 K, 2 HBP – ejected after arguing with the ump following the K
Juan Miranda: 1 for 3, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB - 15 for his last 31
Cody Ransom: 0 for 2, 2 BB
Ben Broussard: 0 for 4, 1 K
Jason Lane: 2 for 4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI
Chris Stewart: 2 for 4, 1 RBI, 1 K – picked off first
Ross Ohlendorf: 4.1 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 WP, 5-2 GB/FB – 58 of 91 pitches were strikes (63.7%) … why is he throwing 91 pitches? I thought he was just going to start to work on a split finger?
Chris Britton: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 4-1 GB/FB
JB Cox: 1 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 2-0 GB/FB – 21 baserunners & 10 runs allowed in his last 9.1 IP
Steven Jackson: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
Scott Strickland: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 Er, 0 BB, 2 K

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Ah the ’96 season. Easily my favorite of the Championship years. Who could forget Doc and Jimmy, Zim and Big Cecil, the rookie sensation and the rookie dud, the new manager coming in and the old icon leaving, and of course, the winning. Goodness, did that team win. They won on the first day of season, they won on the last day of the season, and they won 101 times in between. That team wasn’t expected to win, but they did anyway.

Fast forward to 2008, and most consider this Yankees’ team dead in the water. The six game deficit is too big, the offense is too anemic, the rotation is too thin, and the bullpen is too flaky. No one expects them to win, but let’s do it anyway.

1. Jeter, SS
2. Abreu, RF
3. A-Rod, 3B
4. Posada, DH
5. Dick Lock Sexy, 1B
6. Cano, 2B
7. Melky, CF
8. Hava Molina, C
9. Gardner, LF

And on the mound, the man with a 2.74 ERA in his last 52 IP, Mikey Moose.

Notes: Billy Traber was shipped to AAA & Phil Hughes was retroactively placed on the 60-day DL to clear 25 & 40-man roster spots for DLS … Oaktown’s throwing a southpaw, so obviously Jason Giambi would be more useless than Jose Molina tonight, or maybe he’s just nursing a hangover … the game is on MY9 tonight, not YES …

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Manny-gate, Part 17

By in News. Tags: · Comments (115) ·

On July 6th with the Red Sox and Yanks locked in a game that would eventually be decided by a Brett Gardner infield single, Manny Ramirez came up to pinch hit in the top of the 9th. With the winning run on base, Ramirez had the unenviable task of facing Mariano Rivera. Manny took three pitches, all for strikes, and walked back to the dugout.

At the time, we were in awe of Mariano. He is having a season for the history books, and that strike out of Ramirez was indicative of his success. But what if Manny helped him along a bit? In a post on the Extra Bases blog today, Boston Globe writer Steve Silva writes about a conflict between Manny and the Red Sox. Apparently, Bob Lobel, the former sports director of the Boston-based WBZ, while reporting on the six-figure fine Ramirez received for shoving Jack McCormick, had some choice words to say this morning. Silva reports:

[Lobel] went on to allege that there was a perception that in a pinch-hit at bat at Yankee Stadium on July 6 — more than a week after the incident with McCormick — Ramirez took three straight called strikes to send a message to the Sox.

“The thing that most people are forgetting and haven’t talked about is the strikeout in Yankee Stadium,” Lobel said. “The bat on the shoulder for the three pitches from Mariano Rivera. That was a big [expletive] to the Red Sox after the fine. I’m just telling you … there are things in the front office that are perceived … I’m saying that there is a strong feeling that that [three-pitch strikeout] was the message to the Red Sox and it’s a strong feeling that that’s unacceptable … there’s a feeling that he didn’t give it his all, let’s put it that way … I’m just saying the front office has not forgotten that moment. It’s akin to Nomar sitting on the bench. It’s the same thing. It’s an at bat that resonated very strongly in the front office.”

For us, this shouldn’t take away from the accomplishments of Mariano Rivera. If the Red Sox want to make “Manny being Manny” excuses, let them. Mo is Mo every time he pitches this year.

But from a player personnel perspective, this could get interesting. In 2004, Theo Epstein drew the ire of Boston sports fans by trading away the popular Nomar Garciaparra. While I doubt he would do the same with Manny Ramirez this year, the Sox and Manny have a contract to negotiate, and incidents such as this one and another involving the Front Office won’t endear Manny to the Sox.

So here’s something to muse: With the Yanks’ outfield in a state of flux and Manny seemingly on the outs with the Red Sox ownership, how would you feel about Manny in pinstripes for a season or two? The temptation will be very, very strong among the Steinbrenner family if Manny hits free agency in November.

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