Posted by mobile phone:
I don’t have too much to say about tonight’s game. I’m out of town this weekend, and once the Sox were up 4-0, I had no desire to hear John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman bemoan another Yankee loss at the hands of the Red Sox.
When I checked the game a short while ago, I was dismayed but not shocked to see a 7-0 final. The Yanks, one night removed from their best offensive outburst of the year, couldn’t put anything together against Jon Lester. Andy Pettitte coudln’t recover from a first-inning Derek Jeter error.
When the dust settled, the Yanks’ pen turned in another fine effort, but it was far too late to impact the game. Another day, another loss from the consistently inconsistent Bombers. I can’t wait for Friday’s marquee Josh Beckett-Darrell Rasner match-up.
Double-A Trenton manager Tony Franklin said that Jose Tabata’s hamstring issue is “fairly severe” according to Mike Ashmore. With just about two months left in the season, it might be best for the Yanks and Tabata just to pack it up, get 100% healthy, and come back to Trenton ready to go next year. Remember, at age 19 the kid should still be in Low-A ball. Hard to call this a setback when you factor that in.
Triple-A Scranton‘s game was suspended due to rain after the second inning. IPK gave up a solo job in two otherwise uneventful innings of work. I’m guessing they’ll finish this one up when Lehigh Valley comes back to town in two weeks. I’ll update the stats then.
Double-A Trenton (4-0 win over Portland)
Ramiro Pena & Chris Malec: both 1 for 4 – Malec doubled, scored a run, drove in another & K’ed
Colin Curtis & Austin Jackson: both 2 for 4 – Curtis drove in a run … Ajax scored one
James Cooper & Edwar Gonzalez: both 2 for 3 – Cooper drew a walk & drove in a run … Edwar doubled & scored a run
PJ Pilittere & Cody Ehlers: both 0 for 4, 1 K
Jason Jones: 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 5-9 GB/FB - he really should still in AAA
Mark Melancon: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 1-3 GB/FB
Never though you’d hear a Yankee fan say that, did you?
Fresh off a heartbreaking three game sweep in an absolutely electric Tropicana Field, the Red Sox limp into town having lost their last five games by a total of six runs. They’re 4-8 in their last twelve, and are just a Chad Qualls meltdown away from being 3-9. The Yanks haven’t been much better, going 5-7 in their last twelve, but they’re just a Mariano Rivera hiccup from being a passable 6-6. Of course everyone is looking up to Rays this season.
Boston has taken three of five against the Yanks this season, winning two of three in the Fens before splitting a two game set in the Bronx. That was back in mid-April. Before David Ortiz hurt his wrist, before Joba moved to the rotation, before Manny put up a .544 OPS in his last 17 games (and physically abused a 60-yr old team official), and before Robbie Cano hit for a .956 OPS in his last 16 contests.
Jon Lester takes to the mound having been rocked for 6 runs in 5 innings his time out, but he money before that, posting a 2.13 ERA in his previous 72 IP. That’s especially impressive considered he’s coming back from, you know, shoulder tightness in June 2004.
Thaaaaa Yankees’ lineup!
1. Johnny Damon, LF
2. Derek Jeter, SS
3. Bobby Abreu, RF
4. Alex Rodriguez, 3B
5. The Power of the ‘Stache, DH
6. Jorge Posada, C
7. Robbie Cano, 2B
8. Wilson Betemit, 1B – .333-.391-.524 since last Wednesday
9. Melky Cabrera, CF – .083 OPS since July 27th
On the mound, he of the 1.00 ERA & 0.96 WHIP since June 6th, Andy Pettitte.
Notes: Matsui’s knee isn’t getting better, and he’ll likely be out until the All-Star Break, at this point you have to assume that whatever the Yanks get out of him the rest of the season is gravy … Derek Jeter’s next homer will be the 200th of his career, this season he’s averaged one homer every 78 at-bats, and it’s been 65 ABs since his last jack … there figures to be lots of comments with the Sox in town, so please review our Commenting Guidelines.
Are you ready to rumble?
For those of you whiling away this July 3 afternoon looking for a Yankee fix, Barry Bloom, MLB.com’s national reporter, totally has you covered. He sat down for a very extensive chat with Hal Steinbrenner this week, and the resulting article is a tour de force on the everything from the new stadium to the state of Yankee economics to their approach to free agents in what may be relatively leaner times for the Yankees. It’s a good, long read for a holiday eve, and it delves extensively into an issue surrounding the new stadium that we’re tackling this weekend. · (13) ·
Just like every other year, the 2008 July 2nd International Free Agent Signing Period was dominated by the Yankees, Red Sox and Mariners, baseball’s international superpowers.
Wait, no it wasn’t. In a surprising turn of events, the fiscally challenged A’s and Padres dominated the market, dropping nearly $10M combined on some of the very best players available. Oakland, as you already know, landed the top prize in Michel Inoa, while the Pads used their brand spankin’ new, $8.5M state-of-the-art Dominican academy to land five of the ten best ranked players, including three of the top six. Paul DePodesta is giddy, and rightfully so. (By the way, how awesome is that DePo blog? I wish the Yanks had something like that set up)
The Yanks, always a major factor on the international scene, have had five signings confirmed: shortstops Giancarlo Arias & Anderson Felix (both from the Dominican Republic), outfielders Yeico (15 minutes could save you 15% on your international free agents … okay, that was lame) Calderon (DR) & Ramon Flores (Venezuela), and catcher Jackson Valera (VZ). Saber Scouting says these players were “fringe seven figure talents” who apparently agreed to below market deals between $500,000 and $900,000.
It’s hard to blame the Yanks for focusing on hitters because they are generally safer bets than pitchers (especially when they’re that young), plus they have a nice track record of developing position players from the international scene, especially recently (Alfonso Soriano, Robbie Cano, Juan Rivera & Dioner Navarro come to mind). Flores appears to be the best prospect of the lot, ranking the 12th best Latino Prospect by ESPN. Here’s what they had to say about him:
Flores is a fast runner and an excellent defensive outfielder. This left-handed hitter has good mechanics at the plate, great control of the bat and power to the alleys. He can easily add 25 pounds to his frame (6-0, 160) and gain more power in the process.
Baseball America backs up that report and said he was likely to receive a bonus upwards of $800,000 (subscriber only). He was born in 1992. I feel ridiculously old.
The top overall prospect from the 2006 International Signing Period was Jesus Montero, and we all know what he’s up too. The best player the Yanks signed last year was outfielder Kelvin DeLeon, who is having himself an excellent season in the Dominican Summer League. The best pitcher they signed last year was Arodys “don’t call me Luis” Vizcaino, who has been brilliant with the Rookie level GCL Yanks (sample size warnings obviously apply). Hopefully all of these players continue to develop and be successful.
Here’s a good one for you that slipped under the radar: Over a week ago, Parks Department Commissioner Adrian Benepe announced that the city would tear down Yankee Stadium once the Yankees vacate the city-owed facility. The footprint of the stadium will be converted into parkland.
Bill Egbert of the Daily News broke this story on June 23, but not too many people picked up on it last week. Egbert reported on the doom of the House that Ruth Built:
Hardcore Yankees fans may wail and rend their jerseys at the prospect of any trace of one of the last great ballparks from baseball’s golden age disappearing, but Benepe said that after the stadium’s massive renovation in the 1970s, very little of the original structure remained.
“The steel inside is historic,” he said, “and some of the brick, but not much else.” The rest, including the stadium’s iconic facade, dates back only to the Age of Disco.
While the details have yet to be worked out, Benepe said that some parts of the old stadium will be sold off to collectors, with the proceeds shared between the Yankees organization and the city’s General Fund. “Everything that’s sellable will be sold,” Benepe said. “The city’s Economic Development Corporation will be overseeing that.”
This is, of course, the aspect of the new stadium that I hate the most. Condemn the current Yankee Stadium to this fate, and you are condemning baseball history. Sure, the Stadium was renovated to death in the 1970s. Sure, it looks different than it did when Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford played for the Bombers. But the history is there, and even the physical structure is there too.
Take a stroll around Yankee Stadium, and you will see the outside of a stadium still in place since 1923. The windows are boarded up; the entrances are modernized. But the structure’s shell is still the same, and the city doesn’t seem too well to to keep even a part of the stadium up for the sake of history.
Over the last fifty years, New York City has done a fabulous job tearing down its history. We’ve lost Ebbets Field and the Polo Grounds. We’ve destroyed the Beaux Arts Penn Station to make way for the monstrosity that is Madison Square Garden. And soon, we’ll sentence Yankee Stadium to a similar fate.
I know, for me, it will be a sad day when the wrecking ball meets the Yankee Stadium wall. A part of my life will die along with the stadium. I just hope New York knows what it’s doing before that ball come crashing through the façade hanging high above River Ave.
It’s no secret that the Yankees and Red Sox play marathon baseball games each time they meet. With FOX and ESPN fighting to broadcast every possible game they can, longer commercial breaks and drawn-out production add time to games between two teams very adept at wearing down starting pitchers and bullpens. Today, Ed Prices takes a look at that long-game phenomenon in The Star-Ledger. While the Commissioner’s Office has put some measures into place to cut down on the time of games overall, the Yankees, it seems, are not up to snuff. The Red Sox are. Of course. · (9) ·
In his first start for the Yankees, last Friday evening in Shea Stadium, Sidney Ponson was good if you didn’t look too closely. He threw six scoreless innings and emerged the victor in a game the Yankees won 9-0. But those were six rather dicey scoreless innings.
Through the first four innings of the Mets game, Ponson had put nine runners on base. He also struck out four and saw his defense turn a double play behind him. As I noted last week, Ponson was flirting with danger all night; the Mets just couldn’t bite.
Tonight, danger flirted back with Ponson in a big way. This time, Ponson managed to put 12 runners on base through four batters into the sixth inning. The Rangers, however, would not go down as easily as the Mets did. While the Yankee offense turned three double plays behind Ponson, eventually the Rangers broke through with a few runs in the third followed by a pair of two-run home runs in the sixth to chase Sir Sidney.
When that dust settled, Ponson’s tally on the evening was more in line with what we would have expected last week. He allowed 7 runs — all earned — on 9 hits and 3 walks. He struck out just one, and his ERA with the Yanks is now 5.77. He’s allowed 21 base runners in 11 innings.
In the end, Ponson’s pitching didn’t matter. The Yankees, as the narrative will have it tomorrow, responded to Hank’s threat and scored a season-high 18 runs on 16 hits, 7 walks and a few well-timed Rangers errors. They were aided by Ron Washington’s inexplicable decision to allow Warner Madrigal make his Major League debut in a one-run game against face Bobby Abreu, Alex Rodriguez and Jason Giambi.
When the dust settled, this game tonight was half of just what the doctor ordered. The Yanks hit .390 as a team tonight with six extra-base hits. But on the other side of the ball, it doesn’t appear as though Sidney Ponson will be the answer to the gaping hole in the Yankee rotation. I’m sure he’ll get one more start against the red-hot Rays on Monday, but the only thing we can count on with Ponson is base runners. The Rays will have lots and lots of base runners.
Sorry folks, just don’t have it in me to do the whole shebang tonight. Some quick notes:
- Enter: The Venditte Guidelines. Dumb name, but necessary rules.
- CF Austin Jackson, RHP Jason Jones, 3B Chris Malec & C PJ Pilittere were named to the Double-A Eastern League All-Star team. Jose Tabata has a bum hammy.
- OF Justin Christian was named to the Triple-A International League All-Star Team. Brett Gardner would have made the team if he wasn’t busy taking Melky’s job.
- Jeff Karstens made a push to replace Sidney Ponson in the rotation, giving up only 5 hits and 2 runs in 7 clean innings, outpitching the recently demoted Brett Myers.
- The aforemented Chris Malec doubled twice while Ajax tripled. Chase Wright sucked.
- Jesus Montero had 2 hits, but the rest of Charleston’s disappeared. Carmen Angelini made another error, and Wilkins DeLaRosa continued the conversion to start with 5+ innings of 2 hit ball.
- Mike Lyon walked off with a solo shot.
Many teams have rocked Luis Mendoza this year. The Yankees have, in theory, a powerhouse offense. So can we please just knock this guy around? I don’t think it’s asking too much.
MLB.com has a a piece on Talib Kweli, a life-long Yankees fan. Says the emcee: “I collected every baseball card, I had season tickets to Yankee Stadium, but baseball is a great metaphor for life.” I loved his stuff with Mos Def in Black Star.
To keep the game thread filled with randomness, here’s evidence that Joe Buck should no longer be calling baseball games:
Couple of notes from Chad Jennings. Chris Stewart has cleared waivers, of course, and is back with Scranton. Alan Horne is on the DL with what’s being called a tired arm. It doesn’t sound serious. But Shelley Duncan’s shoulder injury does. He could miss the rest of the season.
And on the mound, number forty-seven, Sir Sidney Ponson