Labor Day Open Thread

For the first time since 2005, the Yankees have an off-day on Labor Day. That is kinda weird. Not bad though. It’ll be nice to spend the holiday doing something else besides focusing on baseball. We’ll post any breaking news or whatnot, plus we will have the final DotF of the season later tonight, but otherwise use this thread to talk about whatever throughout the rest of the day. Enjoy the holiday, folks.

Injury Updates: Tanaka, Ellsbury, Phelps, Beltran

(Tom Szczerbowski/Getty)
(Tom Szczerbowski/Getty)

The Yankees are off today, and when they regroup at Yankee Stadium for the series opener against the Red Sox tomorrow, there figures to be a bunch of extra players in the clubhouse thanks to expanded rosters. Here are a bunch of injury updates in the meantime, courtesy of Wally Matthews, Ken Rosenthal, George King, and Brendan Kuty.

  • Masahiro Tanaka (elbow, arm) returned to New York specifically to work with a physical therapist at the Yankee Stadium training facilities, which are a million times better than what was available at Rogers Centre. He worked out Saturday and was scheduled to repeat the work out yesterday and today. Tanaka will visit team doctor Dr. Ahmad today, and if everything checks out, he will throw a bullpen session Thursday. “He played catch and did his weight workout. He felt like he needed to catch up a little bit and strengthen himself up a little bit. It’s a good sign he (played catch),” said Girardi. “We need to find out (if he’ll need surgery). We are taking the normal steps that people take in this type of injury. We are either going to know by the end of September or not.’’
  • Following yesterday’s game, Jacoby Ellsbury (ankle) inadvertently revealed he was going to have an MRI last night once the team arrived in New York. Sounds like that was the plan even before he pinch-hit. The MRI results haven’t been announced. “It’s still sore, but over the last couple days, they’re real happy with the progress that I’ve made,” said Ellsbury. “We’ve got the off-day, but I’ll get the MRI (and) have our doctors look at it. Hopefully it’s a good MRI.”
  • David Phelps (elbow) has continued his throwing program as he works his way back from inflammation, but he has yet to throw off a mound. “He is playing catch, I am not sure what day he will do a bullpen,’’ said Joe Girardi over the weekend. The Yankees have already announced Phelps will return as a reliever.
  • Carlos Beltran (elbow) acknowledged feeling some pain during his throw to the plate in yesterday’s game. He said it was expected and it’s just something they have to manage until he has the bone spur removed in the offseason.

Fan Confidence Poll: September 1st, 2014

Record Last Week: 3-4 (29 RS, 22 RA)
Season Record: 70-65 (535 RS, 562 RA, 64-71 pythag. record) 9.0 GB in ALE, 3.5 GB of WC
Opponents This Week: Mon. OFF, vs. Red Sox (three games, Tues. to Thurs.), vs. Royals (three games, Fri. to Sun.)

Top stories from last week:

Please take a second to answer the poll below and give us an idea of how confident you are in the team. You can view the interactive Fan Confidence Graph anytime via the nav bar above, or by clicking here. Thanks in advance for voting.

Given the team's current roster construction, farm system, management, etc., how confident are you in the Yankees' overall future?

DotF: GCL Yanks force Game Three in GCL Finals

Just as a heads up, tomorrow will be the final DotF of the season since none of the full season affiliates nor Short Season Staten Island made the postseason. The Arizona Fall League begins in early-October.

Triple-A Scranton‘s game was suspended due to rain in the top of the eighth inning. They’ll finish it tomorrow. Here’s the box score if you can’t wait that long.

Double-A Trenton (4-2 loss to Reading)

  • RF Jake Cave: 1-4, 1 BB, 1 K
  • LF Ben Gamel: 1-5, 2 K — had been in a 4-for-37 (.108) slump
  • C Gary Sanchez: 1-3, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 E (throwing)
  • DH Greg Bird: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K
  • CF Mason Williams: 3-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB — great game, but a little too late to turn his season around
  • RHP Jaron Long: 6.1 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 10/0 GB/FB — 66 of 100 pitches were strikes … finishes the year with a 2.18 ERA and a 122/22 K/BB in 144.1 innings, third most in the system behind RHP Zach Nuding (153) and LHP Matt Tracy (149) … not bad at all for an undrafted free agent
  • LHP James Pazos: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 2/3 GB/FB — 22 of 35 pitches were strikes (63%) … finishes the year with a 75/25 K/BB in 67 innings

[Read more…]

Sunday Night Open Thread

Here’s your open thread for the rest of the night. The ESPN Sunday Night Game is the Indians at the Royals (T.J. House vs. Danny Duffy), which, uh, I guess is a good matchup to hide on a holiday weekend. I know Kansas City is contending, but geez. Anyway, talk about that game, this afternoon’s loss, or anything else right here.

Yankees acquire Chaz Roe from Marlins for cash considerations

The Yankees have acquired right-handed reliever Chaz Roe from the Marlins for cash considerations, the team announced. Chris Cotillo says Roe will likely join the big league team when rosters expand tomorrow. The Yankees will have to clear a 40-man roster spot to accommodate him but that shouldn’t be much of a problem.

Roe, 27, has a 3.66 ERA (3.73 FIP) with very good strikeout (10.13 K/9 and 27.5 K%) and walk (2.95 BB/9 and 8.0 BB%) rates in 64 Triple-A relief innings this year, all with the Marlins. He has 22.1 big league innings to his credit, all with the Diamondbacks last season (4.03 ERA and 4.39 FIP). The Yankees are facing a pretty big 40-man roster crunch after the season, and between this and the Josh Outman pickup, it appears their September call-ups will be a bunch of guys they can cut in the offseason rather than prospects who are not yet Rule 5 Draft eligible and would only further clog the 40-man. Eh, whatever.

Yankees drop another winnable game, lose series finale 4-3 to Blue Jays

Source: FanGraphs

Remember when the Yankees won five straight games a week ago? They’ve followed that up by losing two of three to a wildcard competitor in the Tigers and two of three to a struggling Blue Jays team that played themselves out of the race this month. The Yankees have had a knack for following up winning streaks with a bunch of losses this year, and they did it again this week. Let’s recap Sunday’s 4-3 loss:

  • Three Runs: Four pitches into the game, the Yankees had more hits (two) and runs (one) than they did Saturday. Brett Gardner lined J.A. Happ’s second pitch over the right field wall for a leadoff homer — his fifth leadoff homer this year, sixth of his career — and Derek Jeter grounded his fourth pitch back up the middle for a single. A leadoff single (Martin Prado) and two two-out singles (Chase Headley and Frankie Cervelli) created the team’s second run in the fourth inning, then Gardner created the third run with a triple. The errant throw from the outfield sailed into the dugout, allowing him to score. The Yankees had was appeared to be a comfortable-ish 3-0 lead.
  • Four Batters: Brandon McCarthy was cruising along for the first five innings of the game, then it all fell apart in the span of four batters from the sixth through seventh innings. McCarthy held the Blue Jays to two singles and walk before Melky Cabrera, Jose Bautista, and Edwin Encarnacion all launched no-doubt solo homers to tie the game at three. An Adam Lind fly out was sandwiched between the Bautista and Encarnacion homers. It’s very easy to second guess the decision to let McCarthy start the seventh, but he made basically two bad pitches — the Melky homer wasn’t even a bad pitch, he figuratively hit the glove — all afternoon and his pitch count was at like 80. Going to Dellin Betances for multiple innings was obvious only in hindsight.
  • Game Over: McCarthy walked the next batter after the Encarnacion homer, ending his afternoon. Pinch-runner Steve Tolleson then stole second and scored on Munenori Kawasaki’s (really?!) single to right off Betances, giving Toronto the 4-3 lead. The Yankees actually had runners in scoring position in the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth innings, but went a combined 0-for-5 with a strikeout and did not hit a ball out of the infield in those situations. The game ended on Jeter’s soft line drive to second with pinch-runner Ichiro SuzukiJacoby Ellsbury pinch-doubled with one out — standing at third.
  • Leftovers: Gardner was a single shy of the cycle when he grounded out to first in the ninth. A single likely would have tied the game with Ichiro at second … McCarthy allowed three homers in the span of four batters after allowing three homers in his first 64 innings as a Yankee … Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran went a combined 0-for-8 with five strikeouts as the four-five hitters … Gardner (three), Prado, Headley, and Cervelli (two each) all had multiple hits … Betances struck out four in his two innings, giving him 120 on the year. Only 1996 Mariano Rivera (130) and 1978 Goose Gossage (122) have more among full-time relievers in franchise history, and both of those guys threw more than 100 innings. Dellin’s at 80. has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs some other stats, and ESPN the updated standings. The Orioles are beating the snot out of the Twins, so the Yankees will be nine games back in the division in short order. Depending on the outcome of the day’s other games, the Yankees will be either 3.5 (Tigers and Royals lose) or 4.5 (Tigers and/or Royals win) games back of the second wildcard spot. FanGraphs has New York’s postseason odds at a generous 9.6%. The Yankees are off on Monday and will open a three-game series against the Red Sox on Tuesday. Shane Greene and Joe Kelly is the scheduled pitching matchup for the opener. Head over to RAB Tickets if you want to catch the game. There are only 17 regular season home games left in the season.