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Freddy Garcia has been horible. I mean horible, for now he will be in the bullpen. i would think that if he gets into another game it will be strictly as the mop up guy. In my opinion that is still a really big if. David phelps will start in his place on Thursday against the Royals. Phelps has been great and I think the Yankees will discover that he deserves to be in the rotation. If he pitches like i think he will he should at least earn a second start. If he can impress enough he will at the very least put some preasure on Phil Hughes to pitch better to remain in the rotation. One of these guys will be relinquishing thier spot to Andy Pettite in a couple of weeks and I personally am voting for Phelps. Hughes was dominate in the bullpen a couple of years ago and i think having Hughes, Robertson and Rivera at the end of your bullpen will make every team worry if they dont have the lead by the seventh inning.
On a pitching staff that is near the bottom of the American League in quality starts CC Sabathia just keeps getting better. I thought his last outing in Texas was good, I really think he battled and pitched out of a lot of tough spots. This start against the Tigers was even better. He was dominate. CC went eight innings allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and struck out 8. He never seemed to lose control and just went about his business like a true ace. Then David Robertson came in and pitched a perfect ninth inning showing why he may well be the next closer for the bombers. It only took Robertson 14 pitches (12 strikes) to produce two strikeouts and one broken bat and nail down the 6-2 Victory.
The Yankees bats continued to roll to the tune of six runs on eleven hits. Every starter got a hit with the exception of Teixeira. Granderson contributed another Home Run and Jeter continued his hot hitting going two for three, with two walks and a run scored, pushing his batting average back up to .396. Andruw Jones also contributed with a Home Run after being inserted into the game to pitch run for Nick Swisher who has suffered a mild strain to his Hamstring that will likely keep him off the field for a few days. With Brett Gardner set to come of the DL on Thursday it will be unlikely that the Yankees will call anyone up unless Swisher goes on the DL. Right now it appears they will just take it day by day.
With two RBI’s today Alex Rodriguez (1904) passed Willie Mays for the number ten spot on the all time RBI list. Next up is Eddy Murray at 1917. This very well may be a season full of milestones for Alex as it is likely that he will be in the number four spot on the list by the end of the season, currently held by Barry Bonds, and is only 393 away from Hank Aarons 2297.
Next up for the Yankees is the Orioles who have been on a role since being swept by the Yankees at the beginning of the season. Kudora 1-3 will take the mound against Jason Hammel who is 3-0 so far this season. He seems to be pitching a bit over his head as the Orioles seem to be playing a bit better than they really are. Kudora pitched well last outing but was outdueled by a tough Yu Darvish. If he can repeat that performance I like the Yankees to continue to roll with their winning ways and hopefully show that the rotation is as good as it looks on paper.
As predicted Garcia was removed from the rotation and the Yankees called up DJ Mitchell as an extra arm due to the number of innings that Phelps has thrown. David Phelps will likely take Garcia’s spot in the rotation and will battle with Hughes for who gets to stay once Pettite is ready for his return to the big leagues. Both pitchers will claim that they aren’t thinking about that, they will say that they just have to go out there and do their job and make quality pitches. All that is true but you and I know that they are people and they are pitching to stay in the Rotation. It still wont surprise me if Garcia is Designated for assignment upon Andy’s return. This is the stuff that makes baseball so great. Stay tuned and Ill keep you up to speed and make sure to tell all your friends to follow us on Twitter at Yankeesmagazine
What do you do with Freddy Garcia? He has been absolutely horrible. Today was no exception as Freddy lasted only an inning and two thirds giving up six runs on five hits and walked two. Garcias ERA is now 12.51. Even though Girardi wouldn’t say it Garcia’s days in the Yankees rotation have to be over. It would not surprise me if his reign in pinstripes is done as well. At least it should be. Designating Garcia for assignment will open a roster spot for Pettite when he is ready. The Yankees can insert David Phelps into the Rotation for a spot start. Phelps has been fabulous with an ERA of 3.57 Phelps has struck out 14 batters in 17 innings and has only allowed 12 hits. Because of days off the Yankees can easily go with a four man rotation after that until Pettite is ready.
If Phelps can impress he can put pressure on Hughes to start pitching better in order to hold his spot in the Rotation. Beyond Phelps there are a few other guys pitching for the Empire state Yankees (Formerly Scranton) that would love to get a spot start. DJ Mitchell is 2-1 with an ERA of 3.13 and has struck out 21 batters in 23 innings has been the best in the minors, so far, but Bettances just picked up his first win and has 18 strikeouts.
If Garcia gets to start his next time around Ill become a Nationals fan.
The MRI on Michael Pineda shows that he has a torn Labrum. He will have surgery soon and much of the media is going to beat this to death. This will be my only post on the matter. I feel that you as readers will hear enough about it on every media source, in every article for the next few days you will consider naming your next child Labrum, so I will keep it brief.
The tear to the Labrum did not include the rotator cuff, which is good news. Typically this is a surgery that has a high success rate of full recovery. Some pretty big name pitchers have had this procedure and were just fine the next season. Al Liter, Brandon Webb and Curt Shilling all recovered with flying colors and I Imagine a young guy like Pineda will be back next season with that 99 MPH fastball back to full force.
Andy Pettite threw 81 pitches for AA Trenton tonight and went into the sixth inning. He feels that his arm strength still isn’t quite there yet though. I would imagine two more starts in the minors will have him ready for the home stand against Tampa. With Hughes and Garcia stinking up the joint and Pineda on the shelf this season, Pettite has become a necessity not a luxury. Lets assume for a minute that Pettite takes Hughes spot in the rotation and Garcia continues to suck. Who will the Yankees turn to as their fifth starter? Will it be Phelps? perhaps Betences or Benualos will be brought up from triple A.
I know that I talk a lot about Jeter later but can you blame me? He is leading the league in Hits and is batting .425 as of the sixth inning of tonight’s game against the Rangers. I know it’s two early to be mentioning such things but the record for the most hits in a season is 262 set by Ichiro in 2004. The reason I mention this is that if Jeter continues his current pace he will finish with around 300 hits. Breaking this record would not only be awesome but he would be the oldest player to break 200 hits in MLB history.
Yu Darvish laid out a dazzling performance as he shut out the Yankees for 8+ innings. With ten strike outs he made the usually potent Yankees offence look silly.
Its no secret that the Yankees struggle against pitchers the first time they see them. As good as Darvish looked I noticed as well as the guys on the MLB network that he was tipping his pitches. He holds his hands at a different height for his fastball, slider and change. This is something that I’m certain will be brought to his attention and he will have to make the adjustment or he will start to get shelled Jeter had a hit to extend his streak to 14 straight games. Jeter is batting .416 with 3 HR and 13 RBI’s Jeter is off to the best start of his career and seems to be running the bases like he did when he was 25 years old. Every year people say how Jeter is diminishing and question how much longer he will be able to play short stop and every year he shows them that they are wrong.
The results of Michael Pineda’s MRI have not been released yet and he has already requested a second opinion. Kind of odd if you ask me but we will have to wait until we hear more before I render a clear opinion on the matter. Overshadowed by Darvish being great was the fact that Kudora was really really good giving up two runs over 6.2 innings. These two teams will meet again tomorrow night when Scott Feldman will be making a spot start for the Rangers, due to a double header this weekend , and Phil Hughes will attempt to build off his win last time out and try and pitch a little deeper than 5.2 innings. Side note: Jeter rakes against Feldman, just sayin.
The Yankees ripped through Baltimore and Won two out of three against the Angels and although they are off to a rough start against the Twins with last nights 7-3 loss one thing that hasnt been lost in the shuffle is how hot Jeter has been right out of the gate. Jeter is batting .378 with 3 HR and 7 RBI’s in 10 games. He has 17 hits in 45 at bats with a .404 OBP. So yes folks the old man you all say is slipping is one of the hottest hitters in the game. The 3 HR is what impresses me, can you imagine if Jeter has regained his power stroke of old and hits 25 to 30 of them this year.
Tonight will be the story of two struggling aces as CC Sabathia matches up against Fransisco Liriano. Both have had their struggles this year but the way the Yankees have been starting to swing the bat I will be surprised if tonight is not the night that Sabathia picks up his first win. Not to be overshadowed by Jeters hot bat is the fact that Swisher is leading the AL in RBI’s with 11 and Arod is showing signs of a return to his once dominant self as he has had a hit in 4 out of the last 5 games and although his batting average is still only .250 he looks healthy in the field and is swinging the bat with a renewed vigor. This can be said of many of the Yankees that have been classified as old or over the hill have a little extra in the tank this early in the season. Heck I swear I saw Tex steal a base the other day. He also has two muti hit games in a row.
The Twins are not a good team especially against the Yankees. I would be surprised if they won tonight. However we cannot discount them having Mourneau and Mauer in their line-up. Having the two of them healthy will be huge for them if they can stay that way. Not that long ago the twins were a great team, but those days are in the rear view mirror friends. Bold prediction Yankees 8 Twins 3 and Jeter 2 for 5 with 2 RBI’s.
I usually don’t write about non Yankee things nor do I tend to write about the stupid drama that surrounds the game. Every year I write one article about how bad ESPN is and every year one person is such a big baby that I have to open my mouth and piss a bunch of people off.
I am a fan of baseball. I may not like the Red Sox, being a Yankees fan, but I respect all aspects of the game and its traditions. The Red Sox are about to celebrate 100 years in Fenway park, which is a huge deal, and Terry Francona will not participate because “ the wounds are to fresh”
Last season while manager of the Red Sox, the Globe printed an article that shed him in a bad light. It blamed his divorce as reason for his losing control of the club and accused him of having a problem with pain medication.
Lets make the assumption that none of this is true and he was falsely portrayed. The Red Sox still had a collapse that cost them the playoffs and was the reason that he was not offered a new contract. Regardless of what he thinks of the Boston media the Red Sox ownership, he was still a huge part of the teams success and brought them a championship which no other manager had been able to do since 1918.
The Red Sox have invited all of the living former managers to participate in this celebration and I’m certain that all of them love the Fans of Boston enough to participate. Oh, except Francona who decided that the wounds were to fresh and he wasn’t ready to swallow his pride so as not to ruin an event that was 100 years in the making.
Grow up Terry! I never liked the Red Sox but I used to respect you. Up until the point where you decided to disappoint a million+ Fans that simply want to say thank you for being a part of a great organization.
The last two games the Yankees have been looking more like the Yankees of old with some good pitching timely hitting and a little bit of luck. Monday night the Yankees picked up their first victory behind a gritty pitching performance behind Ivan Nova. Nova struggled this spring and I personally was a little worried he was going to go out there and fall flat on his face. My fears were unjustified when he went out there and pitched seven innings of two run ball striking out seven along the way. He wasnt great giving up ten hits, but they were scattered and the Yankee offence gave all the help he needed in this 6-2 victory.
Last night was a bit of a different story as the starting pitching was less than spectacular. Freddy Garcia tied a Yankee record throwing five wild pitches and only lasted 4 innings giving up 4 runs three of them earned. This would be all that the birds would get as the Yankees bull pen went into shut down mode only allowing 2 hits giving the Yankees a opurtunity to rally and after the Orioles intentionally walked Granderson in the twelfth Ibanez earned his stripes with a ground rule double that turned out to be the game winner. Mariano Rivera came in and nailed it down in the bottom of the twelfth for his first save of the season as the Yankees 5-4 win improved their record to 2-3.
Tonight CC Sabathia will try to forget about a somewhat shaky opening day as he will hopefully put the bombers in position for their first sweep of the season as well. Sabathia is 16-2 against the Orioles with an ERA of 2.74 and Robinson Cano has a .456 bating average in his last 32 appearances at Camden yards with 10 HR. All good signs for the Yankees. Like I said before, they are going to be fine.
It is absurd to listen to reporters even comment on the fact that the Yankees are 0-3 and just got swept by the Tampa Rays. The Yankees are healthy and have often been beat up by the Rays as they have in recent years ” had the Yankees number” The Yankees squandered some opportunities, it happens, let’s go to Baltimore. They are just shaking off some rust or getting warmed up, you can call it whatever you like. Bottom line is that they will be fine and those of you who think otherwise are just dumb. That being said we can readdress this situation when the Yankees start out 2-12, then you can worry a bit.
For now we are off to Baltimore where Ivan Nova will be facing Brian Matusz, who had an ERA over 10 last season and a record of 1-9. How many big league teams do you think that will make you a member of the starting rotation with. The Orioles are a bad team that is 3-0 Matusz was once thought to be a rising star with the birds but was horrible last year and the Yankees seem to have his number with Cano Jeter and Tex hitting a combines .415 off him with 10 extra base hits. In fact the only players with under a .300 average against him are Granderson .273 with 2 HR and 6 RBI and Gardner who has no hits against him in ten trys.
The Yankees will start Garcia on Tuesday and then back to Sabathia on Wednesday. Although unlikely, coming out of this series 3-3 would shut everyone up I think the Yankees will be 2-4 by Wednesday close of business. Thursday will be a day off and then we have the Yankees home opener on Friday vs the Angels ending on Sunday with the ESPN game of the week. So crack out your red white and blue kids and lets play some baseball.
Ok we all figured when Pineda went to the DL they would be carrying one of the young guys in the bull pen as the long man and inserting Garcia into the rotation. David Phelps had an outstanding spring and I’m happy he will get a chance to break camp with the Yankees even if its for an abbreviated stay.
They Big surprise in my mind was the Yankees trading Kontos to the Giants for Chris Stewart as the back-up catcher. This means that Cervelli will start the season in AAA and obviously is disappointed.
Clay Rapada will be with the team as the second lefty out of the pen. A job that was probably going to Cesar Cabrel before he fractured his elbow. Don’t be to surprised if you see him in pinstripes before the season is over.
So for now the roster is set. Jeter will get an early day off on Saturday in favor or Nunez. Part of a season long plan to get Jeter and A rod some DH time against lefties.
For me one of the disappointments was designating Maxwell for assignment. I get that there isn’t a spot for him but some part of me would rather see him on the roster than Ibanez, who until late in the spring has looked slow with the bat. Lets just hope that’s a little rust he needs to shake off because of his age. I’m sure someone will claim him, but if not I look forward to seeing him play on the empire state Yankees whom I will be covering a lot this year with all of their home games being on the road and me living so close to Rochester and Syracuse.