"Now, what is this site about, how Joe Torre ruined pitchers' arms? Is that it?"
-Michael Kay, August 18, 2009

Friday, August 31, 2007

Game 135 notes: Yankees lose 9-1

Phil Hughes (2-3) is doing his best Mike Mussina impression. The highly-touted right-hander gave up four earned runs and seven hits in 4 1-3 innings pitched in the Yankees' 9-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays Friday night.

Hughes has struggled in every start since his August 10 start against Cleveland, when he gave up one run over six innings. His control has been an issue, as he walked four batters tonight.

Chris Britton made his first Major League appearance since June 4 and gave up two runs over 2 2-3 innings.

Carlos Pena hit two home runs tonight for the Devil Rays. Greg Norton also added a home run.

Andy Sonnanstine (4-9) allowed two hits and a run over eight innings. He also struck out five batters.

Some notes from the game:

  • The Yankees only had two hits.
  • Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter were the Yankees that got hits.
  • Pena has five home runs against the Yankees this season.
Seattle lost to the Toronto Blue Jays tonight, so the Yankees remain a game ahead of them in the American League Wild Card standings.

Ian Kennedy makes his Major League debut tomorrow afternoon for the Yankees. He will oppose Edwin Jackson.

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Game preview: Devil Rays at Yankees 8/31/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon DH
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Jorge Posada C
Jason Giambi 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Melky Cabrera CF

Andy Sonnanstine (3-9, 6.38 ERA) vs. Phil Hughes (2-2, 5.35 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: my9
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Joba Chamberlain was suspended for two games. He will not appeal. ... Sonnanstine is 0-1 with a 7.11 ERA against New York. ... Abreu is 1-3 with one home run and three RBIs against Sonnanstine. ... Jeter is 2-4 with a double against Sonnanstine. ... Matsui is 2-3 with one home run and one RBI against Sonnanstine.

My school reinforces the notion that New York leans Yankee

By a 52 - 44 percent margin, New York City baseball fans back the Yankees over the Mets in a Subway Series, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Only Queens residents support the Mets, 55 - 40 percent. The strongest support for the Bombers comes from The Bronx, 66 - 31 percent.

The Yankees are the favorite team of 51 percent of New Yorkers while the Mets claim the hearts of 35 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds. Another 3 percent cheer for the Red Sox. (Source)
Did the people in our polling institute really need to conduct this study? It's pretty obvious that New York is a Yankees town.

Mariners lose

The Mariners have lost, thus giving the Yankees sole position of first place in the American League Wild Card standings.

The Mariners have lost six games in a row and begin a three-game series in Toronto before traveling to the Bronx for three games against the Yankees.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Scott Proctor Update

Since my last Scott Proctor Update, Proctor has pitched five innings, have given up four hits, have given up two earned runs, has walked three batters and has struck out four batters.

Yesterday, he got the victory in a three-inning effort against the Washington Nationals.

He is now 5-5 with a 3.91 ERA on the season.

(AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

The series ahead

The Yankees will begin a three-game series against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays at Yankee Stadium tomorrow night. The pitching matchups are:

Friday, 8/31/07, 7:05 p.m., my9
Andy Sonnanstine - RHP (3-9, 6.38 ERA) vs. Phil Hughes - RHP (2-2, 5.35 ERA)

Saturday, 9/1/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Edwin Jackson - RHP (4-12, 5.51 ERA) vs. Ian Kennedy - RHP (NR)

Sunday, 9/2/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Jason Hammel - RHP (1-4, 7.44 ERA) vs. Andy Pettitte - LHP (12-7, 3.70 ERA)

Game 134 notes: Yankees win 5-0

Break out the brooms. The Yankees, behind Chien-Ming Wang (16-6) and Robinson Cano, defeated the Boston Red Sox by a score of 5-0 to sweep the three-game series.

Wang pitched seven shutout innings, allowed only one single and four walks. Cano hit two solo home runs in the victory.

Derek Jeter went 4-4 and scored a run.

Bobby Abreu was a big part of the three-run eighth inning. He doubled home Jeter to make the score 3-0. He then scored a run, along with Alex Rodriguez, on double steal and errant throw.

Joba Chamberlain was ejected in the ninth inning for throwing Kevin Youkilis on back-to-back pitches. He pitched 1 1-3 innings and allowed a walk and a single.

Curt Schilling (8-6) started for Boston. He gave up six hits and two runs over seven innings. He also walked two, struck out six and gave up two home runs. Hideki Okajima gave up three runs in 2-3 of an inning.

Some notes from the game:

  • Wang had a no-hitter through six innings.
  • Chamberlain failed to strike out a batter in a relief appearance for the first time this season.
  • The Red Sox only had two hits in this game.
  • Red Sox manager Terry Francona was ejected for arguing a reversed call in the seventh inning. Youkilis avoided a Rodriguez tag attempt by running on the grass. When the umpires got together to talk, they reversed the call, prompting Francona to come out and argue.
The Yankees have now won three games in a row following their 16-0 defeat to Detroit and 2-5 road trip. They are 75-59 on the season.

They begin a three-game series at home against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays tomorrow night. Phil Hughes will face Andy Sonnanstine.

Seattle is currently losing to the Cleveland Indians by a score of 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth inning. If Seattle loses, the Yankees will have sole position of first place in the AL Wild Card.

(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Game 133 notes: Yankees win 4-3

The Yankees were able to hang on for the 4-3 victory Wednesday night against the Red Sox. They survived a Kyle Farnsworth eighth-inning meltdown, as he gave up two runs to turn a three-run lead into a one-run lead.

Roger Clemens (6-5) gave up two hits and one run over six innings for the victory.

The Yankees scored three runs in the second inning, all with two outs. Melky Cabrera drove in one run on a single and Johnny Damon drove in two more on a single.

David Ortiz homered in the sixth to make it a 3-1 game. Alex Rodriguez extended the lead to 4-1 with his 44th home run of the season. Kevin Youkilis then homered off of Farnsworth to cut the lead to one.

Mariano Rivera pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his 22nd save of the season.

Josh Beckett (16-6) gave up 13 hits and four runs over 6 2-3 innings.

Some notes from the game:

  • Clemens had a no-hitter through 5 1-3 innings before the Ortiz home run.
  • Cabrera had three hits on the evening. He, Jeter, Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui and Jorge Posada all had at least two hits.
  • The 13 hits were the most Beckett has allowed all season.
  • Manny Ramirez sat out tonight's game and could miss up to 10 days with an oblique injury.
  • Luis Vizcaino pitched a scoreless seventh inning.
With the Yankees' win and a Mariners' loss, the Yankees now have a share of the Wild Card lead. They also improved to a record of 74-59.

Chien-Ming Wang will face Curt Schilling tomorrow afternoon, as the Yankees look for a sweep.

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Mariners get swept

The Seattle Mariners just lost their late afternoon game against the Los Angeles Angels by a score of 8-2. As a result, they were swept by their AL West rivals.

If the Yankees beat the Boston Red Sox tonight, they will have a share of the Wild Card lead.

Game preview: Red Sox at Yankees 8/29/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon LF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui DH
Jorge Posada C
Jason Giambi 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Melky Cabrera CF

Josh Beckett (16-5, 3.21 ERA) vs. Roger Clemens (5-5, 4.34 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Clemens is 8-5 with a 3.85 ERA in 19 career starts against Boston. ... Beckett is 3-2 with a 7.91 ERA in six career starts against New York. ... Giambi is 4-10 with two home runs and six RBIs against Beckett. ... Posada is 4-10 with a double and two RBIs against Beckett. ... Damon is 4-14 with three doubles and two RBIs against Beckett. ... Manny Ramirez is out tonight for Boston.

Thanks to Peter Abraham for getting the lineup up so early.

Mariners lose

After taking a 5-0 lead in the first inning, the Seattle Mariners lost to the Los Angeles Angels by a score of 10-6.

The Yankees now trail the Mariners by one game in the Wild Card standings.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Kennedy to start on Saturday

According to Peter Abraham, Ian Kennedy is getting the call and will start on Saturday against Tampa Bay.

In case you missed it (and you may well have as the television cameras were long gone), Joe Torre announced just a little while ago that Ian Kennedy would start Saturday against Tampa Bay.

Mike Mussina
will remain on the roster and work on the side. He will not be used out of the bullpen.

Kennedy, 22, is 12-3 with a 1.91 ERA in 26 games in the minors this season. He last pitched on Saturday.
I'm very surprised the Yankees did that, but I do like the move. Mussina wasn't adding anything to the team now and it's time to see what the Yankees have in Kennedy.

Game 132 notes: Yankees win 5-3

After last night's 16-0 debacle against the Detroit Tigers last night, the Yankees behind Andy Pettitte (12-7) rebounded quite nicely Tuesday night. Pettitte battled, giving up three runs in seven innings and throwing 120 pitches in the 5-3 victory.

The Yankees grabbed a 2-0 first-inning lead after a Johnny Damon leadoff single, a Bobby Abreu walk, an Alex Rodriguez hit by pitch, a Hideki Matsui RBI groundout and a Jorge Posada RBI double.

The Red Sox tied the game in the next two innings. Manny Ramirez hit a solo home run in the second inning and David Oritz drove in a run on a sacrifice fly in the third.

The score remained tied at 2 until the bottom of the fifth when Derek Jeter hit a two-out solo home run.

Boston once against tied the score, this time in the seventh inning, on a Jason Varitek solo home run.

The Yankees took the lead for good in the bottom half of the frame. Andy Phillips singled to start the rally. After Wilson Betemit came in to run for him, Melky Cabrera sacrificed him to second. Damon then hooked a ball around the right field foul pole for a two-run shot.

Daisuke Matsuzaka (13-11) took the loss. He gave up five runs and six hits over 6 1-3 innings of work. He threw 110 pitches. Mariano Rivera closed the game for his 21st save of the season.

Some notes from the game:

  • Joba Chamberlain came into the game in the eighth inning to a standing ovation. He walked a batter and gave up a hit but also struck out two batters. In 10 innings as a Major League reliever, he has struck out 17, walked three and allowed only four hits.
  • Jeter's home run was his first since August 1.
  • Ramirez left the game in the seventh inning with spasms in his lower back.
The Yankees have a record of 73-59 with this victory.

Seattle has an early 5-0 lead against the Los Angeles Angels tonight. The Yankees are trailing by 1.5 games in the Wild Card, but that number would increase to two games with a Seattle victory.

Roger Clemens will face Josh Beckett tomorrow night.

(AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

Game preview: Red Sox at Yankees 8/28/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon LF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui DH
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Andy Phillips 1B
Melky Cabrera CF

Daisuke Matsuzaka (13-10, 3.76 ERA) vs. Andy Pettitte (11-7, 3.69 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: my9
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Pettitte is 14-6 with a 3.29 ERA in 27 career appearances against Boston. ... Kevin Youkilis is 5-9 with one home run and two RBIs against Pettitte this season. ... J.D. Drew is 3-6 against Pettitte this season. ... Manny Ramirez is 4-10 against Pettitte this season. ... Matsuzaka is 2-0 with a 6.92 ERA in two starts against New York. ... Jeter is 3-6 with one home run and two RBIs against Matsuzaka. ... Jason Giambi is 3-5 with three RBIs against Matsuzaka this season, but isn't in tonight's starting lineup for whatever reason.

Britton up

Chris Britton has been called up, according to Tyler Kepner of the Times. There's no word yet on who was sent down, but the roster expands on Sept. 1.

River Ave. Blues had the story up first.

Monday, August 27, 2007

The series ahead

The Yankees begin a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium tomorrow night. The pitching matchups are:

Tuesday, 8/28/07, 7:05 p.m., my9
Daisuke Matsuzaka - RHP (13-10, 3.76 ERA) vs. Andy Pettitte - LHP (11-7, 3.69 ERA)

Wednesday, 8/29/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Josh Beckett - RHP (16-5, 3.21 ERA) vs. Roger Clemens - RHP (5-5, 4.34 ERA)

Thursday, 8/30/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Curt Schilling - RHP (8-5, 4.11 ERA) vs. Chien-Ming Wang - RHP (15-6, 3.95 ERA)

Series Preview: Yankees vs. Red Sox

At The Bronx Block, I preview the upcoming Yankees/Red Sox series.

Taking one for the team

Poor Sean Henn

His line tonight: 2.2 IP, 8 H, 9 R, 7 ER, 5 BB, 4 K, 79 pitches for 42 strikes

It's amazing that someone could actually pitch worse than Mike Mussina did tonight.

He has given up 16 earned runs in his last 6 2-3 innings pitched.

Mussina is done

Mike Mussina gave up six runs over three innings tonight. His season ERA now stands at 5.53. He has never finished a season with an ERA over 4.81.

The Yankees can't afford to keep throwing him out there.

Now Edwar Ramirez is in the game and just gave up a solo home run.

They are not a playoff team with Mussina on the mound.

Game preview: Yankees at Tigers 8/27/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon LF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui DH
Jorge Posada C
Jason Giambi 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Melky Cabrera CF

Mike Mussina (8-9, 5.22 ERA) vs. Justin Verlander (13-5, 3.94 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: If Mussina has a bad start, he could lose his spot in the rotation. ... He is 17-6 with a 2.70 ERA in 30 career starts against Detroit. In his last start against them, he gave up six earned runs in five innings, including a grand slam in the first inning. ... Magglio Ordonez is 11-37 with one home run and eight RBIs against Mussina. ... Carlos Guillen hit the grand slam off Mussina. He is 7-32 with one home run and seven RBIs against Mussina. ... Verlander is 1-0 with a 7.84 ERA in two career starts against New York. ... Giambi is 3-6 with one home run against Verlander. ... Abreu is 1-3 with one home run and two RBIs against Verlander. ... Jeter is 2-3 against Verlander.

I am covering today's game at The Bronx Block.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

A look at the standings

I delve into the standings after all of the Sunday games have been completed to track the Yankees' progress over the week that just ended.

Here is an updated look at the American League East standings and the American League Wild Card standings:

AL East

Boston Red Sox
80-51
--
New York Yankees
72-58
7.5
Toronto Blue Jays
65-65
14.5
Baltimore Orioles
58-71
21.0
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
51-7928.5

Wild Card
Seattle Mariners
73-55--
New York Yankees
72-58
2.0
Detroit Tigers
70-60
4.0

Since the last look at the standings, the Yankees went 2-4 and lost 3.5 games in the AL East. The Red Sox went 6-1 over that same period.

In the Wild Card standings, the Yankees lost 1.5 games. The Mariners went 4-3 over that same period.

The Red Sox magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 25 (down 10 from last week).

The Mariners magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 32 (down eight from last week).

Lets go Texas

Because the Yankees can't beat good teams on the road (they lost to Detroit by a score of 5-4 to fall to 2-4 on this road trip through Los Angeles and Detroit), they need to root hard for the last place Texas Rangers tonight as they face the Seattle Mariners.

With 32 games remaining, the AL East seems to be out of reach. The Yankees are 7.5 games behind Boston and the two teams only play each other six more times.

The Wild Card is still attainable. The Yankees are 2.5 games behind Seattle pending tonight's game. Jarrod Washburn is matched up against Vincente Padilla.

With three games against Seattle next week, the Yankees need to stay as close to Seattle as possible.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Four-hour rain delay

Cool

Villone put on the disabled list

This explains why Brian Bruney was called up.

From Ed Price:

Brian Bruney is back from Triple-A and Ron Villone is on the disabled list with a "mild lower back strain." (Source)
I still think Chris Britton should've gotten the call.

Mussina's in trouble

Mike Mussina will be pitching for his job Monday night in Detroit, according to Joe Torre and Brian Cashman.

I wrote about this situation for The Bronx Block.

Bruney's back

From Peter Abraham:

Just confirmed that right-handed reliever Brian Bruney will rejoin the team for the Tigers series.

Bruney was optioned to Class AAA Scranton on Aug. 7. He appeared in four games there, none since Sunday. His line in those games: 6 5 4 4 2 5.

Bruney was 2-1 with a 3.40 ERA in 50 appearances for the Yankees. It was uncertain as of last night whose spot in the bullpen Bruney would be taking. My guess would be Sean Henn or Ron Villone. (Source)

I still don't understand why Chris Britton hasn't been given a legitimate shot with the big club yet. It's not like he was terrible with the Yankees this season: one earned run and two strikeouts in five innings. He also has 57 strikeouts and only eight walks in 56 innings for AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre with an ERA of 2.41 in 36 games.

As for who will be sent down for Bruney, my guess is Henn simply because he has options.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Scoreboard update

Boston's game in Chicago was rained out. With the Yankees not playing, they remain five games behind Boston in the AL East race.

Seattle has defeated Texas by a score of 9-4. They now lead the Yankees by an even two games in the Wild Card.

The Yankees return to action tomorrow night at 7 in Detroit.

Trenton Thunder changes their logo

The Yankees' AA Minor League affiliate, the Trenton Thunder, has changed its logo.

The new primary logo features an animated cloud holding a lightning bolt and incorporates the navy blue found in the New York Yankees color scheme. The new alternate logo is an animated lightning bolt holding a bat to form a ‘T”.


The new primary logo will be worn on the home and road team caps starting next season. The alternate logo will be used on the team’s batting practice caps. (Source)

You can tell this is a slow news day.

Out of town games

With tonight's day off, the Yankees are able to sit back and watch the teams in front of them play. Whether they choose to do this is a different story.

The Boston Red Sox play at the Chicago White Sox at 8:11 p.m. to determine which color of socks is superior. Josh Beckett (15-5, 3.15 ERA) will face John Danks (6-11, 5.30 ERA). The Yankees trail Boston by five games in the AL East.

The Seattle Mariners play at the Texas Rangers at 8:35 p.m. The Rangers, mind you, scored 39 runs in yesterday's doubleheader against Baltimore. Jeff Weaver (5-10, 5.57 ERA) will face Kameron Loe (6-9, 5.56 ERA). The Yankees trail Seattle by 1.5 games in the Wild Card.

I'll be back later with the final results if I remember/care enough to do so.

Scott Proctor Update

It's been a while since I updated you, my loyal readers, on Scott Proctor's activities in Los Angeles.

He has appeared in 12 games, pitching 14 1-3 innings. He has a record of 2-0, has allowed 10 hits, has given up seven earned runs, has struck out eight and has walked five. He has also given up three home runs. This equates to an ERA of 4.40. Overall, he is 4-5 with an ERA of 3.93, combining his time in New York and Los Angeles.

I miss you, Scottie.

Wilson Betemit, the player the Yankees got for Proctor, is batting .243 with three home runs and 15 RBIs in 37 at-bats. He has also struck out 16 times while walking only three times, however. He has been a spark off the bench and has played very nicely in the field.

The Yankees may be fairing a little better in this trade than the Dodgers are.

(AP Photo/Tom Gannam)

The series ahead

The Yankees begin a four-game series against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park tomorrow night. The pitching matchups are:

Friday, 8/24/07, 7:05 p.m., my9
Roger Clemens - RHP (5-5, 3.92 ERA) vs. Andrew Miller - LHP (5-4, 4.42 ERA)

Saturday, 8/25/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Chien-Ming Wang - RHP (14-6, 4.10 ERA) vs. Jeremy Bonderman - RHP (10-6, 4.65 ERA)

Sunday, 8/26/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Phil Hughes - RHP (2-1, 4.96 ERA) vs. Jair Jurrjens - RHP (1-1, 3.29 ERA)

Monday, 8/27/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Mike Mussina - RHP (8-9, 5.22 ERA) vs. Justin Verlander - RHP (13-5, 3.94 ERA)

Sorry, Mariano

Here is what I wrote on August 11:

Since Mariano Rivera's implosion against the Boston Red Sox on April 27, he is 1-1 with 18 saves in 42 innings pitched. He has struck out 43 batters, walked only two and has given up only six earned runs. His ERA went from 12.15 on that date to 2.77 where it stands today. He also has not blown a save since (knock on wood). (Source)
Since that day, Rivera has pitched in six games. He's won one game, lost another, saved two and blew one. I have to feel somewhat responsible. I guess me writing "knock on wood" and not actually doing any physical knocking myself may be to blame.

He has allowed 14 hits and six earned runs in 6 1-3 innings. His ERA has jumped from 2.77 to 3.44. Since becoming closer in 1997, the highest ERA Rivera has had in a season was 2.85 way back in 2000. In fact, Rivera has not had an ERA above 2.00 since 2002 when he had multiple stints on the disabled list. I understand ERA is a bad stat for relievers (especially closers), but a streak like that is pretty significant.

No, I don't think anything is wrong with Rivera. No, I don't think Joba Chamberlain should replace him as closer. Rivera usually has stretches in the middle of the season where he struggles a bit and then proceeds to turn it on towards the end of the season. Until he proves otherwise, I feel that this recent stretch of awful pitching is just that: an awful stretch.

Glad he's on our side

Joba Chamberlain is absolutely filthy.

In a ho-hum outing last night against Los Angeles, Chamberlain struck out the side and threw a 100 mph fastball to Vladimir Guerrero that he fouled straight back.

Eight innings into his Major League career, he has struck out 14 batters, walked only two and has given up three hits.

The Yankees have a day off today, so Chamberlain is ready to go if needed Friday night in Detroit.

I'm glad he's a Yankee, because pumping your fist in a 7-1 game does tend to annoy me.

68-33

Andy Pettitte deserves to smile after yesterday's effort. He is 68-33 in starts following a Yankee loss. In last night's case, the Yankees had lost two games in a row to a team that was 42-17 at home. With both Seattle and Boston losing, the Yankees had to have this game before embarking on a four-game series in Detroit.

Pettitte knew this. In seven innings, he allowed five hits and only one run on a solo home run. He also struck out five batters and walked one. He decided to show up after Mike Mussina's awful start the previous night.

On the season, Pettitte is 11-7 with a 3.69 ERA. He has never been totally dominant this season, but for the most part he has been consistent.

Considering the circumstances, this was arguably the Yankees' biggest game of the season to date.

The Yankees are 71-56 and sit five games behind Boston and 1.5 games behind Seattle with 35 games remaining in 2007.

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Game preview: Yankees at Angels 8/22/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon LF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui DH
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Wilson Betemit 1B
Melky Cabrera CF

Andy Pettitte (10-7, 3.80 ERA) vs. John Lackey (15-7, 3.32 ERA)

Time: 10:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: The Angels are 42-17 at home. ... Pettitte is 11-6 with a 4.15 ERA in 21 career starts against Los Angeles. Pettitte also has a great record coming off a Yankee loss in his career. I'm not sure what the exact record is, but I know it's very good. ... Garrett Anderson is 26-69 with three home runs and 10 RBIs against Pettitte. Last night, Anderson had two home runs. Gary Matthews Jr. is 5-13 with three doubles and two RBIs against Pettitte. ... Lackey is 4-6 with a 4.90 ERA in 12 career starts against New York. ... Rodriguez is only 8-41 against Lackey, but he has three home runs and five RBIs. ... Damon is 11-37 with three RBIs against Lackey. ... Jeter is 10-32 with one home run, three RBIs and six doubles against Lackey. ... Jason Giambi should be in tonight's lineup. He is 12-30 with two home runs and six RBIs against Lackey.

36 games remaining

With 36 games remaining, the Yankees are six games behind Boston in the AL East and 2.5 games behind Seattle in the Wild Card.

All is not lost, however.

The Yankees have six games remaining with Boston. The three home games will be played August 28-30 and the three road games will be played September 14-16. They also have three home games remaining against Seattle in September (3-5).

I have been overtly negative this season, and I'm still not totally convinced that the Yankees can make the playoffs, but anything can happen when they play the teams directly in front of them in the standings.

The Yankees had nice series against Cleveland and Detroit, but they are still struggling to beat Los Angeles. After tonight's final game against Los Angeles, they travel to Detroit for four games before returning home for Boston. The reason the Yankees are 14 games above .500 is because of the stretch of 28 games against teams under .500. It is time to beat good teams in the American League to prove that the Yankees are not just bullies.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Thanks for showing up, Moose

Mike Mussina's line vs. the Los Angeles Angels tonight: 1.2 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 1 K

The Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle must've been tough.

Oh, by the way, Boston and Seattle both won tonight.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Game preview: Yankees at Angels 8/20/07

I am covering today's game at The Bronx Block.

The matchup is Phil Hughes (2-1, 4.44 ERA) vs. Dustin Moseley (4-2, 4.84 ERA)

Time: 10:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Sunday, August 19, 2007

A look at the standings

I delve into the standings after all of the Sunday games have been completed to track the Yankees' progress over the week that just ended.

Here is an updated look at the American League East standings and the American League Wild Card standings:

AL East

Boston Red Sox
74-50
--
New York Yankees
70-54
4.0
Toronto Blue Jays
63-60
10.5
Baltimore Orioles
57-65
16.0
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
47-76
26.5

Wild Card
Seattle Mariners
69-52
--
New York Yankees
70-54
0.5
Detroit Tigers
67-57
3.5
Toronto Blue Jays
63-60
7.0
Minnesota Twins
62-618.0

Since the last look at the standings, the Yankees have gone 4-3 and did not gain or lose any games in the AL East. The Red Sox went 4-3 over that same period.

In the wild-card standings, the Yankees lost a half-game. The Mariners went 4-2 over that same period.

The Red Sox magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 35 (down seven from last week).

The Mariners magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 40.

The series ahead

The Yankees will begin a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium tomorrow night. The pitching matchups are:

Monday, 8/20/07, 10:05 p.m., YES
Phil Hughes - RHP (2-1, 4.44 ERA) vs. Dustin Moseley - RHP (4-2, 4.84 ERA)

Tuesday, 8/21/07, 10:05 p.m., YES
Mike Mussina - RHP (8-8, 4.76 ERA) vs. Kelvim Escobar - RHP (13-6, 2.68 ERA)

Wednesday, 8/22/07, 10:05 p.m., YES
Andy Pettitte - LHP (10-7, 3.80 ERA) vs. John Lackey - RHP (15-7, 3.32 ERA)

Game preview: Tigers at Yankees 8/19/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon LF
Melky Cabrera CF
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui DH
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Wilson Betemit SS
Andy Phillips 1B

Jeremy Bonderman (10-5, 4.65 ERA) vs. Chien-Ming Wang (13-6, 4.09 ERA)

Time: 1:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Wang is 3-0 with a 2.52 ERA in four career starts against Detroit. ... Carlos Guillen is 3-10 with an RBI and a walk against Wang. ... Brandon Inge is 4-12 against Wang. ... Curtis Granderson is 2-5 with a double and two walks against Wang. ... Bonderman is 2-4 with a 5.06 ERA in seven career starts (eight appearances) against New York. ... Damon is 10-25 with three RBIs and two doubles against Bonderman. ... Rodriguez is 7-22 with two home runs and five RBIs against Bonderman. ... Matsui is 7-15 with three home runs and four RBIs against Bonderman. ... Derek Jeter has decent numbers against Bonderman (5-22, two home runs and six RBIs) but is not in the starting lineup.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Game preview: Tigers at Yankees 8/18/07

Yankees lineup

Melky Cabrera CF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Jorge Posada C
Jason Giambi DH
Robinson Cano 2B
Andy Phillips 1B

Chad Durbin (7-5, 4.68 ERA) vs. Roger Clemens (4-5, 4.00 ERA)

Time: 3:55 p.m.
TV: FOX
Radio: WCBS-AM 800

Pregame concerns: Clemens is 25-11 with a 3.97 ERA in 46 career games against Detroit. ... Gary Sheffield is 8-15 with two RBIs against Clemens. ... Ivan Rodriguez is 10-46 with three home runs and nine RBIs against Clemens. ... In one career start against New York, Durbin is 0-0 with a 4.50 ERA. He gave up three runs in six innings, while striking out five and walking three. ... Giambi is 5-11 with two home runs and four RBIs against Durbin. ... No other current Yankees have much experience against Durbin.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

R.I.P., Phil Rizzuto

Hall of Famer Phil Rizzuto has died at the age of 89. The PA SportsTicker article can be found here.

Peter Abraham is reporting that the Yankees will wear Rizzuto's No. 10 on the left sleeve of their uniforms for the rest of the season.

This is obviously very sad news for the Yankees. He has been a fixture around the team for many, many years. He will most certainly be missed.

Chamberlain for Rolaids Relief Man of the Year

Tonight, Joba Chamberlain returned after a two-day hiatus because he pitched two innings on Friday.

His line: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 14 pitches for nine strikes, 1 fist-pump

Overall: 3 G, 5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 K, 3 holds

The crowd was chanting "Jo-ba, Jo-ba" throughout his inning and his excitement was contagious. After striking out Aubrey Huff to end his inning of work, he pumped his fist and screamed something along the lines of "YEAH, BABY!" We definitely have something here, folks.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Game preview: Orioles at Yankees 8/13/07

I will be covering today's game at The Bronx Block.

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon DH
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Wilson Betemit 1B
Melky Cabrera CF

The matchup is Jeremy Guthrie (7-4, 3.22 ERA) vs. Chien-Ming Wang (13-6, 3.94 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A look at the standings

I delve into the standings after all of the Sunday games have been completed to track the Yankees' progress over the week that just ended.

Here is an updated look at the American League East standings and the American League Wild Card standings:

AL East

Boston Red Sox
70-47
--
New York Yankees
66-51
4.0
Toronto Blue Jays59-57
10.5
Baltimore Orioles
54-62
15.5
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
45-71
24.5

Wild Card
Seattle Mariners
65-50
--
New York Yankees
66-51
--
Cleveland Indians
65-53
1.5
Toronto Blue Jays
59-576.5
Minnesota Twins
58-598.0

Since the last look at the standings, the Yankees have gone 5-1 and gained 3.0 games in the AL East. The Red Sox went 2-4 over that same period.

In the wild-card standings, the Yankees gained a half-game to take a share of the lead with the Seattle Mariners. In six weeks, the Yankees made up nine games in the wild-card standings.

The Red Sox magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 42 (down three from last week).

And then it was four

The Red Sox just blew it. Leading 3-1 over the Baltimore Orioles in the eighth inning, Eric Gagne gave up a two-run home run to Miguel Tejada to tie the game.

In the bottom of the 10th inning, Kyle Snyder gave up two straight singles before getting Tejada to pop out. Then, on a 2-2 count, he gave up a three-run walk off home run to Kevin Millar to win the game.

With six games remaining against the Yankees this season, the Red Sox lead in the AL East is now down to four games. Who would've thought that on July 1? I certainly didn't.

The series ahead

The Yankees begin a three-game series against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium tomorrow. The pitching matchups are:

Monday, 8/13/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Jeremy Guthrie - RHP (7-4, 3.22 ERA) vs. Chien-Ming Wang - RHP (13-6, 3.94 ERA)

Tuesday, 8/14/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Daniel Cabrera - RHP (8-12, 5.14 ERA) vs. Jeff Karstens - RHP (0-2, 10.13 ERA)

Wednesday, 8/15/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Erik Bedard - LHP (12-4, 3.11 ERA) vs. Phil Hughes - RHP (2-1, 4.64 ERA)

Game 117 notes: Yankees win 5-3

The Yankees starters seem to love pitching to Jose Molina. Jorge Posada sat out for the third game in a row with a neck injury and Andy Pettitte (9-7) gave up two earned runs over 7 1-3 innings, as the Yankees swept the Cleveland Indians in this series and for the season Sunday afternoon.

Jason Giambi and Melky Cabrera added home runs and the Yankees recorded 12 hits.

Luis Vizcaino relieved Pettitte and gave up an inherited run. Mariano Rivera then made things a little hairy after getting the final out in the eighth inning. He gave up three straight hits, which scored one run, before retiring the next three batters in order for his 19th save of the season.

Jake Westbrook (3-7) started for Cleveland. He gave up four earned runs over seven innings. He also gave up nine hits, including the two home runs.

Some notes from the game:

  • Cabrera went 2-5 to extend his hitting streak to 17 games.
  • Giambi homered for the second consecutive game. He now has nine home runs on the season.
  • Pitching coach Ron Guidry was ejected for arguing balls and strikes.
  • Robinson Cano went 3-4, raising his batting average to .315. His numbers since July are absurd.
  • The Indians only walked three times this series.
The Yankees improved to 66-51 on the season. They open up a three-game series against Baltimore at home tomorrow night.

Chien-Ming Wang will face Jeremy Guthrie in the opener.

With Seattle winning behind Jeff Weaver's complete game shutout, the Yankees remain in a tie for the wild-card lead.

(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

Game preview: Yankees at Indians 8/12/07

Yankees lineup

Melky Cabrera CF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Jason Giambi DH
Robinson Cano 2B
Andy Phillips 1B
Jose Molina C

Andy Pettitte (8-7, 4.00 ERA) vs. Jake Westbrook (3-6, 5.00 ERA)

Time: 1:05 p.m.
TV:
YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Pettitte is 5-7 with a 4.66 ERA in 15 career starts against Cleveland. He is 4-3 with a 3.91 ERA in eight career starts at Jacobs Field. ... Westbrook is 2-3 with a 5.31 ERA in six career starts (nine total appearances) against New York. ... Jeter is 8-21 against Westbrook. ... Giambi is 4-11 with one home run, four RBIs and five walks against Westbrook. ... Rodriguez is 8-21 against Westbrook with one home run and four RBIs. ... Matusi is 4-9 with three doubles against Westbrook.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Game 116 notes: Yankees win 11-2

Mike Mussina was dealing and Alex Rodriguez hit two more home runs. It was another ho-hum game for the New York Yankees Saturday night, as they beat the Cleveland Indians by a score of 11-2.

Mussina (8-7) gave up two earned runs over 7 2-3 innings, the most he's pitched all season. He also struck out six batters and didn't walk any. Out of his 89 pitches, only 20 went for balls.

Rodriguez's two home runs give him 39 on the season and his four RBIs leave him at 114 (he had 121 all of last season. It is August 11, by the way).

Paul Byrd (10-5) started for the Indians and did not last long. He gave up seven earned runs in two innings. He had a relatively easy first inning but fell apart in the second inning when the Indians gave him a 1-0 lead.

Some notes from the game:

  • The victory was Mussina's 100th as a New York Yankee.
  • All of the Yankees' starters had at least one hit. Jason Giambi came off the bench and hit a pinch-hit solo home run.
  • The first five Yankees hitters (Johnny Damon, Derek Jeter, Bobby Abreu, Rodriguez and Hideki Matsui) went 11-27 with two home runs and eight RBIs. All had at least two hits as well.
  • Jose Molina went 4-5. This was his first four-hit game of his career.
  • Melky Cabrera went 1-4. He now has a 16-game hitting streak.
  • Luis Vizcaino pitched 1-3 of an inning. He hadn't pitched since August 6.
The Yankees are now 65-51. They remain five games behind Boston in the AL East. They also remain tied with Seattle for the wild-card lead, as Seattle hung on to beat Chicago tonight.

Tomorrow, Andy Pettitte will face Jake Westbrook, as the Yankees look to sweep Cleveland for the season.

(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

Welcome back, Jason Giambi

Jason Giambi, taking time from signing autographs, hit a pinch-hit solo home run tonight. He now has eight on the season.

Game preview: Yankees at Indians 8/11/07

Yankees lineup

Johnny Damon DH
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Robinson Cano 2B
Melky Cabrera CF
Andy Phillips 1B
Jose Molina C

Mike Mussina (7-7, 4.66 ERA) vs. Paul Byrd (10-4, 4.13 ERA)

Time: 7:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Mussina is 10-9 with a 4.90 ERA in 24 career starts against Cleveland. He is 3-3 with a 6.35 ERA in nine career starts at Jacobs Field. ... Byrd is 1-3 with a 3.28 ERA in seven career starts against New York. ... Cabrera is 3-5 with one home run and five RBIs against Byrd. Cabrera is also in the middle of a 15-game hitting streak. ... Jeter is 10-25 with three RBIs against Byrd.

Some interesting stats

The Yankees don't play until 7:00 tonight, so to keep myself occupied, I've been playing with the Baseball-Reference Play Index (and what a great tool it is). As a result, I have come up with some nice stats for you all to enjoy.

Since July 1, Robinson Cano is batting .400 with a .456 OBP. He is 56 for 140 with 10 home runs and 35 RBIs. He has also walked 13 times (he walked 18 times all of last season).

Since May 30, Melky Cabrera is batting .347 with a .390 OBP. He is 85 for 245 with five home runs and 35 RBIs.

Since July 1, Bobby Abreu is batting .364 with a .408 OBP. He is 48 for 132 with seven home runs and 41 RBIs (mind you, he has 11 and 76 for the season).

Since July 1, Hideki Matsui is batting .331 with a .387 OBP. He is 48 for 145 with 15 home runs and 35 RBIs (he only had eight home runs for the seson before that date).

Since Mariano Rivera's implosion against the Boston Red Sox on April 27, he is 1-1 with 18 saves in 42 innings pitched. He has struck out 43 batters, walked only two and has given up only six earned runs. His ERA went from 12.15 on that date to 2.77 where it stands today. He also has not blown a save since (knock on wood).

Since May 28, Luis Vizcaino has been on fire. He is 6-1 in 34 games with a minuscule 1.31 ERA. He has given up only five earned runs in 34 1-3 innings and has struck out 33 batters while walking 15. Opponents are batting .176 off of him. Hopefully he isn't burned out by the time the playoffs (PLAYOFFS!?!? Yes, the Yankees are now serious playoff contenders) roll around.

The Nation is in turmoil

(BDD Photo Illustration)

The future is now

In tonight's 6-1 victory over the Cleveland Indians, Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain lived up to their respective hype.

Hughes' line: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 1 HRA, 95 pitches for 66 strikes

Chamberlain's line: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 21 pitches for 14 strikes

Oh, by the way, Boston's lead over the Yankees is now down to five games in the AL East and the Yankees also have a share of the wild-card lead.

(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The series ahead

The Yankees begin a three-game series against the Cleveland Indians at Jacobs Field tomorrow night. The pitching matchups are:

Friday, 8/10/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Phil Hughes - RHP (1-1, 5.87 ERA) vs. Fausto Carmona - RHP (13-6, 3.17 ERA)

Saturday, 8/11/07, 7:05 p.m., YES
Mike Mussina - RHP (7-7, 4.66 ERA) vs. Paul Byrd - RHP (10-4, 4.13 ERA)

Sunday, 8/12/07, 1:05 p.m., YES
Andy Pettitte - LHP (8-7, 4.00 ERA) vs. Jake Westbrook - RHP (3-6, 5.00 ERA)

Clemens and Torre suspended

From Yankees.com:

After both Toronto and New York were issued warnings by home-plate umpire Angel Hernandez on Tuesday, Roger Clemens hit Toronto's Alex Rios in the back with a 1-0 pitch to lead off the seventh inning. As a result, Watson handed Clemens an undisclosed fine and suspended the 45-year-old pitcher for five games.

Clemens is scheduled to begin serving his suspension on Friday, when the Yankees begin a three-game series in Cleveland. If Clemens, who was immediately ejected after plunking Rios, decides to appeal the suspension, it will be postponed until the appeal process is complete.

Yankees manager Joe Torre, who was automatically ejected after Clemens intentionally hit Rios, was fined and suspended for one game by Watson. Torre is also scheduled to serve his suspension on Friday against the Indians.

For Toronto, pitcher Josh Towers, outfielder Matt Stairs and third-base coach Brian Butterfield were all fined by Watson for their roles in Tuesday's altercation. Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, first-base coach Tony Pena and third-base coach Larry Bowa also received fines. (Source)
The suspension was justified, but it was nice to see Clemens stick up for Alex Rodriguez the other night.

Josh Towers' actions, however, were not justified. After Jesse Litsch threw behind Rodriguez the night before, Towers decided that that was not enough, so he hit Rodriguez. Because of that, the Yankees now lost Clemens for five games and all Towers gets is a fine.

Scott Proctor Update

Last night, Scott Proctor pitched two innings in the Dodgers' 1-0 loss to Cincinnati. He gave up one hit and didn't strike out or walk any batters.

This afternoon, Proctor pitched another two innings and was awarded the victory in the Dodgers' 5-4 win in extra innings. He gave up one hit and struck out two batters.

In 7 2-3 innings pitched as a Dodgers, he has given up one earned run and has struck out five batters. He also walked three batters and has given up three hits.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The 28.75 games

The Yankees open up the second half of the season with 28.75 games (the 0.75 being the victory in the completion of the suspended game) against teams under .500 as of the All-Star break.

At SPA, I will track the Yankees' progress over these 28.75 games.

Game 1 - July 12: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 2 - July 13: Loss (4-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 3 - July 14: Win (6-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 4 - July 15: Win (7-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 5 - July 16: Win (6-4) vs. Toronto
Game 6 - July 17: Win (3-2) vs. Toronto
Game 7 - July 18: Win (6-1) vs. Toronto
Game 8 - July 19: Loss (2-3) vs. Toronto
Game 9 - July 20: Loss (4-14) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 10 - July 21: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 11 - July 21: Win (17-5) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 12 - July 22: Win (21-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 13 - July 23: Win (9-2) vs. Kansas City
Game 14 - July 24: Win (9-4) vs. Kansas City
Game 15 - July 25: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 16 - July 26: Loss (0-7) vs. Kansas City
Game 16.75 - July 27: Win (8-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 17.75 - July 27: Loss (2-4) vs. Baltimore
Game 18.75 - July 28: Loss (5-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 19.75 - July 29: Win (10-6) vs. Baltimore
Game 20.75 - July 31: Win (16-3) vs. Chicago
Game 21.75 - August 1: Win (8-1) vs. Chicago
Game 22.75 - August 2: Loss (9-13) vs. Chicago
Game 23.75 - August 3: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 24.75 - August 4: Win (16-8) vs. Kansas City
Game 25.75 - August 5: Win (8-5) vs. Kansas City
Game 26.75 - August 6: Win (5-4) vs. Toronto
Game 27.75 - August 7: Win (9-2) vs. Toronto
Game 28.75 - August 8: Loss (4-15) vs. Toronto

The Yankees are 21-8 (63-51 overall) in this crucial stretch of the season.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Breaking news: Bonds hits 756

Barry Bonds has just hit No. 756, and they're playing the theme to "The Natural." How ironic.

I really wish this wasn't happening in San Francisco. This is absolutely disgusting to watch.

The 28.75 games

The Yankees open up the second half of the season with 28.75 games (the 0.75 being the victory in the completion of the suspended game) against teams under .500 as of the All-Star break.

At SPA, I will track the Yankees' progress over these 28.75 games.

Game 1 - July 12: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 2 - July 13: Loss (4-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 3 - July 14: Win (6-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 4 - July 15: Win (7-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 5 - July 16: Win (6-4) vs. Toronto
Game 6 - July 17: Win (3-2) vs. Toronto
Game 7 - July 18: Win (6-1) vs. Toronto
Game 8 - July 19: Loss (2-3) vs. Toronto
Game 9 - July 20: Loss (4-14) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 10 - July 21: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 11 - July 21: Win (17-5) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 12 - July 22: Win (21-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 13 - July 23: Win (9-2) vs. Kansas City
Game 14 - July 24: Win (9-4) vs. Kansas City
Game 15 - July 25: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 16 - July 26: Loss (0-7) vs. Kansas City
Game 16.75 - July 27: Win (8-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 17.75 - July 27: Loss (2-4) vs. Baltimore
Game 18.75 - July 28: Loss (5-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 19.75 - July 29: Win (10-6) vs. Baltimore
Game 20.75 - July 31: Win (16-3) vs. Chicago
Game 21.75 - August 1: Win (8-1) vs. Chicago
Game 22.75 - August 2: Loss (9-13) vs. Chicago
Game 23.75 - August 3: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 24.75 - August 4: Win (16-8) vs. Kansas City
Game 25.75 - August 5: Win (8-5) vs. Kansas City
Game 26.75 - August 6: Win (5-4) vs. Toronto
Game 27.75 - August 7: Win (9-2) vs. Toronto

The Yankees are 21-7 (63-50 overall) in this crucial stretch of the season.

Hola fanaticos de los Yankees

Today, we are launching El Brazo de Scott Proctor to appease the growing Latino community of the United States.

To translate posts into Spanish, use Google Language Tools.

Chamberlain in Toronto

Joba Chamberlain made his debut in the Yankees' 9-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays. I wasn't around to watch tonight's rather eventful game, so here is the recap from the AP. I won't even bother trying to write a fake recap.

His line: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 33 pitches for 19 strikes

He struck out the first batter he faced in the Major Leagues as well. Not bad for a first appearance.

(AP Photo/Frank Gunn, CP)

Bunch of moves today

As just heard on WFAN, Joba Chamberlain and Jason Giambi have been activated.

Miguel Cairo has been designated for assignment and Brian Bruney has been optioned to AAA Scranton/Wilkes Barre.

With Wilson Betemit now here, Cairo became obsolete. Bruney's control issues contributed to his demotion.

Chamberlain only pitched four innings in relief, so it'll be interesting to see how he continues to make the transition.

Monday, August 6, 2007

The 28.75 games

The Yankees open up the second half of the season with 28.75 games (the 0.75 being the victory in the completion of the suspended game) against teams under .500 as of the All-Star break.

At SPA, I will track the Yankees' progress over these 28.75 games.

Game 1 - July 12: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 2 - July 13: Loss (4-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 3 - July 14: Win (6-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 4 - July 15: Win (7-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 5 - July 16: Win (6-4) vs. Toronto
Game 6 - July 17: Win (3-2) vs. Toronto
Game 7 - July 18: Win (6-1) vs. Toronto
Game 8 - July 19: Loss (2-3) vs. Toronto
Game 9 - July 20: Loss (4-14) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 10 - July 21: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 11 - July 21: Win (17-5) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 12 - July 22: Win (21-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 13 - July 23: Win (9-2) vs. Kansas City
Game 14 - July 24: Win (9-4) vs. Kansas City
Game 15 - July 25: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 16 - July 26: Loss (0-7) vs. Kansas City
Game 16.75 - July 27: Win (8-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 17.75 - July 27: Loss (2-4) vs. Baltimore
Game 18.75 - July 28: Loss (5-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 19.75 - July 29: Win (10-6) vs. Baltimore
Game 20.75 - July 31: Win (16-3) vs. Chicago
Game 21.75 - August 1: Win (8-1) vs. Chicago
Game 22.75 - August 2: Loss (9-13) vs. Chicago
Game 23.75 - August 3: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 24.75 - August 4: Win (16-8) vs. Kansas City
Game 25.75 - August 5: Win (8-5) vs. Kansas City
Game 26.75 - August 6: Win (5-4) vs. Toronto

The Yankees are 20-7 (62-50 overall) in this crucial stretch of the season.

Game 112 notes: Yankees win 5-4

The Yankees came back from a two-run deficit to beat the Toronto Blue Jays by a score of 5-4 Monday afternoon.

Trailing 3-1 in the sixth inning, Bobby Abreu led off with a walk and then moved to second on an Alex Rodriguez single. Hideki Matsui singled in Abreu. The big blow then came on a Robinson Cano two-run double that gave the Yankees the lead. For good measure, Melky Cabrera drove in another run on a single to top off the four run inning.

Andy Pettitte (8-7) gave up three earned runs and six hits over 5 2-3 innings. He also struck out seven batters.

Luis Vizcaino gave up one run on a home run in two innings of work. I wonder if his absurd amount of work recently will come back to haunt him.

Scott Downs (1-2) received the loss in the relief. He gave up two runs in an inning of work.

Mariano Rivera struck out the side in the ninth inning to get the save, his 18th of the season.

Some notes from the game:

  • Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 12 games. He went 3-4 with a triple and an RBI.
  • Jim Brower made his Yankee debut. He went 1-3 of an inning and gave up a hit.
  • Cano's two RBIs give him 65 on the season.
  • Johnny Damon went 2-5 batting leadoff and playing left field.
The Yankees now stand at a record of 62-50.

Roger Clemens will face Josh Towers tomorrow night.

The Sterling Shake

Check out this hilarious video of John Sterling from YouTube:

Brower to get the call

From Newsday:

The Yankees are continuing to remake their bullpen. Mike Myers will be designated for assignment today and veteran righthander Jim Brower (pictured) will be recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Myers, the lefthanded specialist who threw one inning of relief and allowed one run and two hits in yesterday's 8-5 win over the Royals, has been woefully ineffective in his main role. Lefthanded batters hit .301 against him. Overall he was 3-0 with a 2.66 ERA in 55 appearances.

Brower, 34, is 4-1 with a 1.65 ERA and 20 saves for Scranton. (Source)
I thought for sure Joba Chamberlain would get the call. I guess they want him to get more relief experience under his belt first.

MiLB.com Photo

The series ahead

The Yankees begin a three-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre this afternoon. The pitching matchups are:

Monday, 8/6/07, 1:07 p.m., YES
Andy Pettitte - LHP (7-7, 3.97 ERA) vs. Jesse Litsch - RHP (4-4, 3.47 ERA)

Tuesday, 8/7/07, 7:07 p.m., YES
Roger Clemens - RHP (3-5, 4.23 ERA) vs. Josh Towers - RHP (5-8, 5.17 ERA)

Wednesday, 8/8/07, 7:07 p.m., YES
Chien-Ming Wang - RHP (13-5, 3.49 ERA) vs. Roy Halladay - RHP (12-5, 4.13 ERA)

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Breaking news: Glavine wins No. 300

Tom Glavine has just become the 23rd pitcher to win 300 games in the Mets' 8-3 victory over the Chicago Cubs.

This may be the last time we will see a moment like this for quite some time.

Congratulations, Mr. Glavine.

Are the Yankees in for a rude awakening?

For my latest post at The Bronx Block, I take a look at what's in store for the Yankees starting next week and how it will most likely decide whether the Yankees are a playoff-caliber team or not.

A look at the standings

I delve into the standings after all of the Sunday games have been completed to track the Yankees' progress over the week that just ended.

Here is an updated look at the American League East standings and the American League Wild Card standings:

AL East

Boston Red Sox
68-43
--
New York Yankees
61-50
7.0
Toronto Blue Jays
56-54
11.5
Baltimore Orioles
52-58
15.5
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
42-68
25.5

Wild Card
Detroit Tigers
61-49
--
Seattle Mariners
60-49
0.5
New York Yankees
61-50
0.5
Minnesota Twins
57-53
4.0
Toronto Blue Jays
56-54
5.0

Since the last look at the standings, the Yankees have gone 5-1 and gained 1.0 games in the AL East. The Red Sox went 4-2 over that same period.

In the Wild Card standings, the Yankees gained 3.5 games. The Detroit Tigers have fallen out of first place in the AL Central, as the Cleveland Indians have taken a half-game lead over them. On Sunday, July 1, the Yankees were trailing the Tigers by nine games. Five weeks later, that lead has been trimmed by 8.5 games.

The Red Sox magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 45 (down five from last week).

The Tigers magic number to eliminate the Yankees is 52 (down two from last week).

Giambi in Scranton

Jason Giambi made his final rehab start tonight for AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Playing first base, he went 0-3 with a walk and a strikeout. He also committed a throwing error.

In nine Minor League games this season, he is 5-22 with one home run, one RBI, nine walks and seven strikeouts.

He will be in Toronto with the team tomorrow but may not be activated until Tuesday.

Myers DFA

From Peter Abraham:

The Journal News is reporting that the Yankees have decided to designate LHP Mike Myers for assignment.

General manager Brian Cashman has yet to return a telephone call seeking comment. But several team sources said the 38-year-old Myers will be taken off the roster before Monday’s game against Toronto.

It is unclear at this point who would replace him in the bullpen.

Myers is 3-0 with a 2.66 ERA. But left-handers are 24 of 77 (.312) with eight extra-base hits and only 18 strikeouts against him. (Source)

Myers had one job and couldn't do it. That's why he's gone. Also, I feel that the Yankees are preparing for the return of Jason Giambi and the call-up of Joba Chamberlain.

Scott Proctor Update 8/5/07

Scott Proctor made his third appearance for the Los Angeles Dodgers tonight, as he faced the Arizona Diamondbacks.

In two innings (the eighth and ninth innings), he struck out two batters and walked one. He threw 33 pitches for 23 strikes.

He walked Chris Young to lead off the eighth inning. He promptly stole second but only advanced as far as third base.

In the ninth inning, he retired the side in order, including striking out the final two batters, Mark Reynolds and Justin Upton.

The 28.75 games

The Yankees open up the second half of the season with 28.75 games (the 0.75 being the victory in the completion of the suspended game) against teams under .500 as of the All-Star break.

At SPA, I will track the Yankees' progress over these 28.75 games.

Game 1 - July 12: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 2 - July 13: Loss (4-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 3 - July 14: Win (6-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 4 - July 15: Win (7-6) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 5 - July 16: Win (6-4) vs. Toronto
Game 6 - July 17: Win (3-2) vs. Toronto
Game 7 - July 18: Win (6-1) vs. Toronto
Game 8 - July 19: Loss (2-3) vs. Toronto
Game 9 - July 20: Loss (4-14) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 10 - July 21: Win (7-3) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 11 - July 21: Win (17-5) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 12 - July 22: Win (21-4) vs. Tampa Bay
Game 13 - July 23: Win (9-2) vs. Kansas City
Game 14 - July 24: Win (9-4) vs. Kansas City
Game 15 - July 25: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 16 - July 26: Loss (0-7) vs. Kansas City
Game 16.75 - July 27: Win (8-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 17.75 - July 27: Loss (2-4) vs. Baltimore
Game 18.75 - July 28: Loss (5-7) vs. Baltimore
Game 19.75 - July 29: Win (10-6) vs. Baltimore
Game 20.75 - July 31: Win (16-3) vs. Chicago
Game 21.75 - August 1: Win (8-1) vs. Chicago
Game 22.75 - August 2: Loss (9-13) vs. Chicago
Game 23.75 - August 3: Win (7-1) vs. Kansas City
Game 24.75 - August 4: Win (16-8) vs. Kansas City
Game 25.75 - August 5: Win (8-5) vs. Kansas City

The Yankees are 19-7 (61-50 overall) in this crucial stretch of the season.

Game 111 notes: Yankees win 8-5

The hot-hitting Yankees scored eight more runs Sunday afternoon to sweep the Kansas City Royals. They only had eight hits, however.

Hideki Matsui and Melky Cabrera each hit a home run and Mike Mussina (7-7) surrendered only two runs in six innings in the Yankees' victory.

Bobby Abreu added three hits and two RBIs of his own.

Gil Meche (7-9) gave up six earned runs in four innings. This is the second time he lost to the Yankees since July 25.

Brian Bruney and Mike Myers combined to give up three runs out of the bullpen, showing that the Yankees are desperate for Joba Chamberlain. There is no excuse for making an 8-2 ballgame become a save situation. Speaking of which, Mariano Rivera recorded his 17th save of the season.

Some notes from the game:

  • Alex Rodriguez was the designated hitter and Wilson Betemit played third base.
  • Betemit collected another hit, as he went 1-4. As a Yankee, he is 5-10 with one home run and six RBIs.
  • Johnny Damon sat out.
  • Rivera saved his first game since July 18.
  • The Yankees' four runs in the second inning all came with two outs.
  • Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 11 games when he singled in the second inning.
  • Matsui's home run was the 100th of his career. I wonder how much that ball will go for on eBay.
The Yankees are now 61-50 on the season.

Andy Pettitte will face Jesse Litsch tomorrow afternoon, as the Yankees travel to Toronto for three games.

30 million dollar smile


(AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

Game preview: Royals at Yankees 8/5/07

Yankees lineup

Melky Cabrera CF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez DH
Hideki Matsui LF
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Wilson Betemit 3B
Andy Phillips 1B

Gil Meche (7-8, 3.70 ERA) vs. Mike Mussina (6-7, 4.75 ERA)

Time: 1:05 p.m.
TV: YES
Radio: WCBS-AM 880

Pregame concerns: Mussina is 16-7 with a 2.98 ERA in 32 career starts against Kansas City. In his last start against them on July 25, he gave up one earned run over 5 2-3 innings. ... Meche is 3-3 with a 4.18 ERA in 10 career starts against New York. In his last start against them on July 25, he gave up five earned runs over 7 1-3 innings. ... Rodriguez is 10-24 with four home runs and eight RBIs against Meche. ... Posada is 5-13 with an RBI against Meche. ... Jeter is 8-25 with three RBIs against Meche. ... Cabrera has homered against Meche in five career at-bats. ... Cano is batting .482 over his last 21 games.

Giambi's awkward position

From Joel Sherman:

Torre decided to bow at the altar of big bats, big contracts and big egos late last season by shoehorning Hideki Matsui and Gary Sheffield into the lineup after lengthy injuries. He messed with the positive mojo his club had developed playing without those stars and certainly spit on defense by benching Melky Cabrera to play Matsui in left while actually finding a more incompetent first baseman than Jason Giambi by auditioning Sheffield during vital games.

He must avoid repeating that mistake. Through a couple of trades (for Jose Molina and Wilson Betemit) and a magical promotion (Shelley Duncan), the Yanks have eliminated a season-long depth problem. The choices should get even deeper this week when Giambi returns. But is that good news or bad? (Source)
Since Giambi went on the disabled list on May 30, the Yankees are 36-21. Cabrera has gotten consistent playing time in center field and Andy Phillips has come into his own at first base. Betemit also made his first start there yesterday and has produced in his first two starts as a Yankee.

Johnny Damon has been the regular designated hitter and has struggled all season, but he can't be benched because of his contract.

To answer Sherman's question, Giambi's return is bad news. This has an eerie similarity to last year's situation with Sheffield, as Joe Torre had to fit him into the lineup because of his salary and ego.

If Cabrera's playing time is cut for Giambi, Torre should be fired on the spot. He has proven to be too valuable to the team to sit for someone else.

Q&A with Chamberlain

Steve Serby of the New York Post sat down with Joba Chamberlain.

Q: One hitter you look forward to facing?

A: David Ortiz. He always comes up with big hits and is a tough out.

Q: How would you describe your mound temperament?

A: Very focused, very competitive, fierce, not ever giving in.

Q: Fierce in what way?

A: Lower my hat, get the ball, go to work.

Q: Would you say you’re fearless?

A: Yeah.

Q: What’s it like hitting 100 mph on the radar gun?

A: It feels good. I’d rather throw it hard and have an idea where it’s going.

Q: What’s it like when you feel dominant out there?

A: A feeling you can’t describe. To know somebody 60 feet, six inches away wants to hit the ball as hard as he can right back at you. Maybe I got something you can’t hit.

Q: Switching to the bullpen?

A: Any way I can help is something I’m willing to try. It’s been fun my last couple of outings. (Source)

He seems to have a good head on his shoulders. I can't wait to see him pitch, which could be as early as Monday given his success in the bullpen.