Open Thread: Six in a row and ready for more

(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Don’t cry, Dallas. Maybe one day you’ll be good enough to pitch on CC’s mound.

Seriously though, how awesome was the big guy today? It looked like Sabathia was throwing a low intensity bullpen session most of the afternoon; he could probably start again on Saturday. Six wins in a row and the magic number for a playoff spot is down to 21, which a chance to drop to 20 tonight if the Red Sox fall to the Orioles.

Here’s your open thread for the night. The Mets are going to get their asses kicked in Atlanta again, plus the Tigers and Twins will be on the MLB Network (depending on where you live). There are also various college football games going on as well. Chat about whatever you want; just don’t be a dick.

Aceves scratched from tonight’s rehab appearance

Update (7:50pm): Yep, he’s back in New York to see the doc about his back. Not good.

6:19pm: Via Mike Ashmore, Al Aceves has been scratched form his rehab outing with Double-A Trenton tonight and has instead returned to New York. It’s possible that he’s going to have his back re-examined, which is what’s had him on the shelf basically all season. Aceves’ rehab schedule hasn’t been going very well – 11.2 IP, 14 H, 9 R, 8 ER, 6 BB, 11 K with various minor league affiliates – so this news isn’t terribly surprising. Like I’ve been saying, whatever the Yanks get out of Aceves this season is a bonus, and it’s entirely possible he contributes nothing the rest of the way.

Injury Updates: A-Rod, Andy

As the Yankees wrapped up a four-game sweep of the A’s today, they seemed to be firing on all cylinders, and yet, the team is still missing a few key pieces. First to return will be A-Rod, now officially Cameron Diaz’s boyfriend. The Yankees’ third baseman, recovering from a calf injury, will be activated on Sunday when his 15-day stint on the DL is up. He doesn’t think, however, that he’ll be at full strength and would rather take a few extra days’ rest than push it too early. “I’m taking a very precautionary approach and we want to be conservative and we want to make sure we are as close to 100 percent as possible,” he said. “I’m trying to come out of the box 100 percent, which was a big challenge last time.” Rodriguez has participated in baseball drills but has yet to test the calf in a game situation. Getting him back lengthens the lineup and bench tremendously.

Meanwhile, Andy Pettitte, working his way back from a bad groin strain, threw 55 pitches prior to yesterday’s game and reportedly felt no pain today. He’s still on pace to throw a simulated game on Saturday and will make at least one and perhaps two rehab starts, if the Minor League schedule allows it. As long as he suffers no further setbacks, he should be back by mid-September with enough time left to build up arm strength before the playoffs. A healthy Pettitte will be a major part of a deep October run.

Oppenheimer a candidate for Diamondbacks GM opening

Via Ken Rosenthal, Yankees director of amateur scouting Damon Oppenheimer is one of at least six candidates that the Diamondbacks plan to speak with about their vacant general manager position. Formal interview requests have not yet been made, however.

Oppenheimer was mentioned as a candidate for the job as soon as ex-GM Josh Byrnes was fired, and he is routinely considered one of the best GM prospects in the game. Along with director of pro scouting Billy Eppler, who was considered for the Padres GM job last year, the Yankees have a pair of future GM’s in their front office, and really it’s only a matter of time before both guys move on to bigger and better things.

Swisher leaves game with stiff left knee

Update (2:17pm:) He left the game with stiffness in his left knee, according to the team. No word on the severity, but let’s all hope for the old day-to-day.

1:59 pm: Swisher left the game with what appeared to be a left knee injury, but the extent is unknown. That’s the knee he fouled the ball off in Toronto last week. Hopefully it’s nothing serious.

1:28pm: Nick Swisher left this afternoon’s game for an unknown reason following his first inning at-bat. He grounded out to the shortstop, and as far as we he didn’t pull up lame or anything. There was no other obvious injury or anything like that. We’ll keep you updated.

Game 134: Get off our mound

When the Yankees visited the Athletics earlier this season, Alex Rodriguez sparked a little mini-controversy when he casually jogged across the pitcher’s mound on his way back to first base following a foul ball. No one would have even noticed Alex’s mishap if not for A’s starter Dallas Braden, who opened his yap and told him to get off his mound, referring to an old school rule that hasn’t been enforced in a lifetime. Braden then added fuel to the fire by running his mouth a few weeks later, saying something about taking care of business the way they do in the 209, and then there was the perfect game that extended his 15 minutes of fame just a little longer.

Unfortunately for Mr. Braden, he isn’t in Oakland or the 209 anymore, he’s in the Bronx, and he’s on CC Sabathia‘s mound. He’s going to face the Yanks this afternoon for the first time since yelling at A-Rod, and even though Alex is on the shelf, there’s going to be 40,000+ strong in the stands making sure that Braden understands he’s not welcome here. The best payback is a win, exactly what the Yanks have been doing against Braden all week. Can they make it six in a row?

Here’s the lineup that’ll back CC…

Jeter, SS
Swisher, RF
Teixiera, 1B
Cano, 2B
Thames, DH
Posada, C
Kearns, LF
Nunez, 3B
Gardner, LF

And on the bump, it’s CC Sabathia.

Get away day today, with first pitch coming a little after 1pm ET. It’ll be on YES for those watching at home and not heckling Braden from the Stadium. Enjoy.

(Big thanks to T-Dubs for the graphic)

Boras and A-Rod divorce

It seems like an odd time to do so, but Craig Calcaterra of Hardball Talk reports that Alex Rodriguez has fired longtime agent Scott Boras. It actually happened a month ago. Jay Reisinger, who has acted as both A-Rod‘s and Andy Pettitte‘s counsel in dealing with PED matters, will take over as A-Rod’s full-time representative. I’m not sure how much this changes things, since Alex likely will never negotiate a player contract again. But as Calcaterra notes, Reisinger is “the point of contact between A-Rod, the union, the league and the Yankees.  That has made him the defacto agent.”