Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Game Thread: 2018 MLB All-Star Game

And just like that it is game time here inside Nationals Park between the American League All-Stars and the National League All-Stars. Congratulations to all players, managers, and coaches involved with a special bit of congratulations to the players representing the New York Yankees; Gleyber Torres, Luis Severino, Aroldis Chapman and Aaron Judge.

Enjoy the game and get out healthy. Go American League and go Yankees!!

Imaging a Healthy Yankees Lineup w/ Manny Machado

The longer this goes on the more and more I find it likely that the New York Yankees will acquire All-Star starting shortstop Manny Machado from the Baltimore Orioles. The All-Star Game is tonight, but other than that baseball will shift its entire focus to the hot stove before games resume at the end of the week. Let’s take this time to have some fun and just play around with a hypothetical lineup or two. Let’s take a moment to assume that New York proves me wrong and does in fact acquire Machado from the Orioles, what would a healthy Yankees lineup with the right-hander in it look like? Scary, that’s what it would look like, but in a good way for the Yanks.

Brett Gardner – LF
Aaron Judge – RF
Manny Machado – 3B (deal with it)
Didi Gregorius – SS
Giancarlo Stanton – DH
Gary Sanchez – C
Aaron Hicks – CF
Greg Bird – 1B
Gleyber Torres – 2B

If Machado wants a ring and wants a trade to the Yankees he is going to have to accept the third base position, hence the “deal with it” comment above. If he doesn’t, enjoy Philadelphia. This lineup doesn’t really have a hole in it from top to bottom, the ultimate “Get Greedy” lineup. I know the Yankees don’t need Machado, but damn it would look good if they had him. What are your thoughts?

Yankees Statistical Leaders Through the First Half

The Yankees Offense

At Bats:

Giancarlo Stanton – 371


Giancarlo Stanton – 94


Giancarlo Stanton – 103


Miguel Andujar - 27

Home Runs:

Aaron Judge - 25


Aaron Judge - 60

Batting Average:

Gleyber Torres - .294
Miguel Andujar - .279
Giancarlo Stanton - .278
Aaron Judge - .276

The Yankees Pitching


Luis Severino – 14


Sonny Gray – 7


Starters:  Luis Severino - 2.31 ERA
Bullpen:  Aroldis Chapman - 1.35 ERA


Starters: Luis Severino – 144 K’s
Bullpen: Dellin Betances – 72 K’s


Aroldis Chapman – 26


Luis Severino – 1

All stats courtesy of Baseball Reference

Another Day of “Trading Manny” Speculation…

Machado prepares to say goodbye to his O’s uniform…

It’s the All-Star Break and Manny Machado is still a Baltimore Oriole. A few more days anyway. If you believe the reports, the Philadelphia Phillies would seem to be the frontrunner, closely followed by the Los Angeles Dodgers and Milwaukee Brewers. I’ve seen one (most likely fictitious) report that has the Phillies sending third baseman Maikel Franco, shortstop J.P. Crawford, and top pitching prospect Adonis Medina to Baltimore. If that’s the level of talent on the table for Manny, I don’t see why the Yankees can’t beat it. I don’t think they will, but any way you look at it, Manny would make any team’s offense and defense better. For the Yankees, it only works if he is willing to move back to third base, but I’d gladly take the legitimate superstar over the young rookie at third (with no offense to Miguel Andujar who has done a fine job).

It is exciting to think about Manny Machado as a Yankee. The images of him wearing Pinstripes have been tremendous and then there was yesterday’s Instagram pic posted by Aroldis Chapman showing Manny sitting among Chappy, Luis Severino and Gleyber Torres. 

I continue to believe that the Orioles will not trade with the Yankees (even though we routinely seem give them quality arms with guys like Richard Bleier and Yefry Ramirez). But for all the excitement about Machado, it will be a letdown if the July trading deadline passes and we end up with only a pedestrian rental like J.A. Happ or Cole Hamels. 

If he does not come to the Bronx, I’d like to see Machado end up with the Dodgers. Play him at short this year to free up Chris Taylor to roam positions again. The Dodgers would have a great chance to re-sign Manny if he likes LA. He can hang out with LeBron. Next year, if they are successful in signing him, the Dodgers could move him to third when Corey Seager returns, push Justin Turner to first base, play Max Muncy at second, and keep Cody Bellinger in the outfield.  I certainly feel the Dodgers would have a much better chance at signing Manny to a long-term deal than either the Phillies or the Brewers. I’d still rather see Manny with the Yankees, but having him on the Dodgers would be a nice consolation prize (for me anyway). Sorry, it’s not about you, it’s all about me. Kidding…

The Boston Red Sox may hold a 4 ½ game advantage on the Yankees, but the Yankees have the farm system to make significantly greater moves than the Red Sox can make. Boston has the much weaker farm system and as baseball’s top spender, they are maxed out on salary unless they want to encroach into the highest tax penalty category. If we do nothing, it will be a lost opportunity.  Same if we come away with an arm that has difficulty keeping runners off home plate. We already have one of those with Sonny Gray.  We don’t need to add to our collection. 

Probably the only moves that would be more meaningful to me than Manny Machado would be a frontline starter like Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Blake Snell, or Madison Bumgarner. Unfortunately, I think the chances of landing one of those guys is about as good as Peter Angelos warming up to the Yankees. 

So, this leaves me with the opinion that I am going be disappointed come July 31st. Whether it will be a lot or just a little, I don’t know but I sense that disappointment is headed my way. If there was ever a time for GM Brian Cashman to deliver one of his golden stealth moves, now is the time. 

The Yankees have played 95 games so there are only 67 games left. I am excited about the impending returns of both Gary Sanchez and Gleyber Torres which provide immediate upgrades, especially if El Gary can start hitting like we know he can. He has homered the last couple of games for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders so hopefully his timing is coming around quickly. 

The next couple of weeks will be very crucial for the Yankees as they attempt to chase down the Red Sox. They don’t have to be in first place by August 1st but they need to make the necessary moves now to ensure that they are properly positioned for the impending sprint to the finish line.  Don’t let us down, Cash. This is your time.

Congratulations to Bryce Harper for the hometown Home Run Derby championship over Kyle Schwarber at Nationals Park last evening, but I must admit that I didn’t watch. There was just no drama or intrigue for me with this year’s participants.  I admire Rhys Hoskins and I think Mad Max Muncy is a great story but something was missing without Pinstripes.  I don’t blame Aaron Judge for passing on it, but without any Yankees, there was simply no motivation for me to watch.  I don’t really expect Harper to sign with the Yankees in the off-season so I didn’t have the urge to watch him take swings. Maybe if Manny Machado had been a participant, it would have carried a little more significance. Or even the great Mike Trout. Oh well, next year. 

It’s been great to see the pics of Gleyber Torres at the All-Star Game festivities. I’ve missed that guy. I look forward to having his energy back in the Yankees lineup very soon. 

Don’t look now, but LHP Nestor Cortes, who spent spring training with the Orioles, is a man on fire. In yesterday’s 5-0 win by the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders over the Toledo Mud Hens, Cortes (4-3, 3.11 ERA) threw a one-hitter over six innings while striking out ten. Over his last 38 1/3 innings, Cortes has only allowed three earned runs. This is how I wish Chance Adams was pitching but sadly it is not. 

Here’s another shameless plug for Kurt Sutter’s new TV show Mayans MC which makes its premiere on Tuesday, September 4th. The first season (set in a post-Jax Teller/Sons of Anarchy world) will feature ten episodes and tells the story of young Ezekiel “EZ” Reyes, played by JD Pardo. Reyes is fresh out of prison and a prospect in the Santo Padre charter of the Mayans MC, located on the Cali/Mexi border. According to the storyline, EZ must carve out his new identity in a town where he was once the golden boy with the American Dream in his grasp. The show also stars Clayton Cardenas, Edward James Olmos, Sarah Bolger, Michael Irby, Carla Baratta, Antonio Jaramillo, Raoul Max Trujillo, Richard Cabral and Danny Pino. Sons of Anarchy star Emilio Rivera returns as Marcus Alvarez, El Padrino of the Mayans MC.  I am looking forward to the ride.

We are still a few days away from the next Yankees game (Friday night at Yankee Stadium against the cross-town Mets) but at least we’ll get to see Luis Severino and Aaron Judge in action tonight (and maybe some shots of Aroldis Chapman and Gleyber Torres as spectators). 

As always, Go Yankees!

Game Preview: 2018 MLB All Star Game

Tonight inside Nationals Park, home of the Washington Nationals, the 2018 MLB All-Star Game will take place between the American League and the National League. With nothing but bragging rights and a few extra dollars added to the paycheck for the winner on the line tonight I don’t expect the same flare and drama that we have seen in years past, and I am totally okay with that. Here are the complete rosters for both squads, let’s get to it, weather permitting, here in Washington!

National League Starters                                                              American League Starters

Wilson Contreras – C – CHC                                                         Wilson Ramos – C - TB   
Freddie Freeman – 1B – ATL                                                        Jose Abreu – 1B - CHW
Javier Baez – 2B – CHC                                                                   Jose Altuve – 2B - HOU
Brandon Crawford – SS – SFG                                                      Manny Machado – SS - BAL
Nolan Arenado – 3B – COL                                                            Jose Ramirez – 3B - CLE
Nick Markakis – RF – ATL                                                               Aaron Judge – RF – NYY
Matt Kemp – LF – LAD                                                                    Mookie Betts – LF - BOS
Bryce Harper – CF – WAS                                                              Mike Trout – CF – LAA
DH – TBA                                                                                             J.D. Martinez – DH - BOS

National League Reserves                                                            American League Reserves

Buster Posey – C – SFG                                                                  Salvador Perez – C - KC
J.T. Realmuto – C – MIA                                                                 Mitch Moreland – 1B - BOS
Joey Votto – 1B – CIN                                                                     Gleyber Torres – 2B - NYY
Paul Goldschmidt – 1B – ARI                                                        Francisco Lindor – SS - CLE
Scooter Gennett – 2B – CIN                                                         Alex Bregman – 3B- HOU
Ozzie Albies – 2B – ATL                                                                  Michael Brantley – OF - CLE
Trevor Story – SS – COL                                                                  George Springer – OF - HOU
Eugenio Suarez – 3B – CIN                                                            Mitch Haniger – OF - SEA
Lorenzo Cain – OF – MIL                                                                Shin-Soo Choo – DH - TEX
Christian Yelich – OF – MIL                                                           Nelson Cruz – DH - SEA
Charlie Blackmon – OF – COL                                                       Jedd Lowrie – 2B - OAK
Yadier Molina – C – STL                                                                  Jean Segura – SS - SEA
Jesus Aguilar – 1B – MIL                                                                Yan Gomes – C - CLE

National League Pitchers                                                             American League Pitchers

Max Scherzer – SP – WAS                                                             Justin Verlander – SP - HOU
Jacob deGrom – SP – NYM                                                           Corey Kluber – SP - CLE
Jon Lester – SP – CHC                                                                      Chris Sale – SP - BOS
Aaron Nola – SP – PHI                                                                     Luis Severino – SP - NYY
Patrick Corbin – SP – ARI                                                               Gerrit Cole – SP - HOU
Mike Foltynewicz – SP – ATL                                                        Jose Berrios – SP - MIN
Miles Mikolas – SP – STL                                                                JA Happ – SP - TOR
Josh Hader – RP – MIL                                                                    Trevor Bauer – SP - CLE
Kenley Jansen – RP – LAD                                                              Edwin Diaz – RP - SEA
Sean Doolittle – RP – WAS                                                            Aroldis Chapman – RP – NYY
Brad Hand – RP – SD                                                                       Joe Jimenez – RP - DET
Felipe Vazquez – RP – PIT                                                             Craig Kimbrel – RP - BOS
Zack Greinke – SP – ARI                                                                 Blake Treinen – RP - OAK
Jeremy Jeffress – RP – MIL                                                            Charlie Morton – SP - HOU
Ross Stripling – RP – LAD                                                               Blake Snell – SP - TB

Both leagues will employ the designated hitter, even in the National League park, enjoy the game.

Hello… All-Star Break

Good morning everyone and welcome to the All-Star Break. Last night we watched the American League and the National League go head-to-head in the 2018 Home Run Derby, and tonight we watch as these two league’s face off in the 2018 MLB All-Star Game. With nothing but bragging rights and a few thousand dollars at stake let’s see how the game unfolds tonight inside Washington’s Nationals Park. Enjoy the game!

And to you my baby, I love you and you are an absolute All-Star in my books. You always have been, and you always will be.

This Day in New York Yankees History 7/17: The Streak Snapped at 56 & The Bronx is Burning

Reggie Jackson and Billy Martin was the epitome of the Bronx is Burning era and on this day in 1978 the feud only got worse as Jackson was suspended for five games by the New York Yankees. In a Yankees loss the future Hall of Fame outfielder was told to swing away by Martin and instead struck out while attempting to bunt.

And finally on this day in 1941 Joe DiMaggio's record streak of hitting in 56 straight games ended as the Indians third baseman Ken Keltner robbed DiMaggio more than once. DiMaggio batted .408 during the streak and would start another 17 game streak after this game hitting in 73 of his last 74 games.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Gearing Up for the Final Hot Stove Push

The 2018 trading deadline for Major League Baseball is just around the corner and the hot stove season is in full swing. Will the New York Yankees land a top starter like Jacob deGrom or Noah Syndergaard? Or will the team have to settle for a second-tier pitcher like Cole Hamels or Nathan Eovaldi? Will the team call up Justus Sheffield on August 1st like they did with Luis Severino back in 2015? Or will the team even still have Sheffield on their roster in order to trade him by then? There are many sites out there that are covering the trade deadline and everything around Major League Baseball but if you're looking specifically for how the odds change before and after the trade deadline for the Yankees, there are sites that offer resources like that and some of these sites have apps, which is pretty convenient when you're on the go.

MLB Trade Rumors is the best in the business for all your hot stove rumors, whisperings, trade proposals, etc. and they even have a forum and an active comments section to discuss every potential move and rumor. Twitter is also a great tool to use as many of the reporters that break the news when a deal has been made are on there tweeting all day long, just look for the blue check and while you’re there give us, @GreedyStripes, a follow.

If I were a betting man I would say that the Yankees get a starter not named deGrom, Syndergaard, Chris Archer or Madison Bumgarner and instead either go with what they have already on the team and in the minor league system, or the team acquires a pitcher like Nathan Eovaldi that is a true rental.

The July 31st trade deadline is looming, stay tuned to see who the Yankees pick up en route to their 28th World Series championship.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Weird Win is a Win, I'll Take It...

Photo Credit: AP (Ron Schwane)
Yankees survive Tribe on odd play and stellar bullpen…

If it takes a little league homer to beat the Cleveland Indians, so be it. A day after a Yankees rally fell short by one run against the Tribe, I had no issue with the deciding run in yesterday’s tilt being decided on Austin Romine’s lead-off double in the seventh inning that resulted in a run thanks to a couple of errors. Romine’s hit to the gap in the right center was bobbled by Brandon Guyer for the first error as Romine slid safely into third. The relay throw ended up bouncing past Jose Ramirez at third and Mike Clevinger back up the play into the dugout and the umpiring crew awarded Romine home plate for the go-ahead and eventual winning run.   

Photo Credit: Getty Images (David Maxwell)

For two teams with great hitters and defenders, it was an odd way for a game to be decided. The win allowed the Yankees to go up two games to one in the current series, putting them in position to take the series today before most of the players head for their homes and families for a few days of rest and relaxation.  

It wasn’t the greatest outing for CC Sabathia, giving up four runs on four hits over 5 2/3 innings against his original team but credit him for keeping it close. Didi Gregorius had staked CC to an early lead with his three-run homer in the first inning. It was Didi’s 17th home run of the year.  

The Indians chipped away at the Yankees’ lead, tying the game at four in the bottom of the sixth when Brandon Guyer, who entered the game with a .162 batting average, hit a two-out infield single to third to score runners at second and third. Miguel Andujar's wide throw pulled Greg Bird off the bag at first to allow Guyer to reach base safely and Bird’s subsequent throw home glanced off the glove of Austin Romine, allowing the second and tying run to score. The hit chased Sabathia, but David Robertson came in to restore order. He walked the first batter he faced but then struck out Yan Gomes to end the inning.  

D-Rob pitched a clean seventh inning and Dellin Betances did the same in the eighth.  

The ninth inning was filled with a bit of drama. It started when Brandon Guyer led off the bottom of the inning with a pop up in foul territory. Austin Romine went back for the ball and Miguel Andujar came charging in and neither player came up with the ball, with an error charged on Andujar. It looked like it should have been Romine’s ball but the ball drifted toward Andjuar who couldn't get out of the way.

Photo Credit: NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

It didn’t matter when Guyer grounded out to short, but then Aroldis Chapman walked Cleveland’s top prospect Francisco Mejia, who represented the tying run. Mejia had just been recalled earlier in the day to make his 2018 MLB season debut.  After striking out Yan Gomes, it set up a rematch of the 2016 World Series with Chapman facing Rajai Davis. As the announcing crew reminded us again and again, Davis had homered off Chapman to tie that game, the seventh and deciding game, although the Chicago Cubs eventually won it and the series with Chappy picking up the win. There would be no Davis home run this time around. His fly out to right field ended the game, giving the save to Chapman, his 26th of the season, and the win to David Robertson (7-3). With seven wins, D-Rob has as many wins as Masahiro Tanaka and more than any other Yankees pitcher not named Luis Severino.  

Greg Bird continued his recent hot hitting with a sixth inning solo blast off Indians starter Mike Clevinger that had briefly given the Yankees and Sabathia a two-run cushion. It was Bird’s eighth home run of the year.  

The game also featured the ejection of Manager Aaron Boone who showed some fire in the top of the sixth inning. After Giancarlo took a called third strike on a ball that hit his hands as he swung, Boone argued that the ball should have been ruled foul but to no avail. The umps were right but it was fun to see Boone fired up. It was Boonie’s second ejection of the season. 

Photo Credit: AP (Ron Schwane)

There was some good defensive play by second baseman Tyler Wade in the game (can we DFA Neil Walker already?) although he was unable to make a difficult play in the bottom of the sixth that led to the first baserunner who would eventually score on Brandon Guyer’s two-run single.  

The Yankees (62-32) remained 3 1/2 games behind the Boston Red Sox in the AL East. The Toronto Blue Jays took the Red Sox into extra innings before losing the game in the 10th on a walk-off grand slam home run by Xander Bogaerts.  

With the Manny Machado rumors subsiding, it appears most likely that he’ll be traded to a National League team which, all things considered, is probably for the best. The rumors involving the Philadelphia Phillies seem the most fervent at the moment, but the Los Angeles Dodgers and Milwaukee Brewers remain in the chase. It does seem odd to me that some teams would be willing to part with top prospects for a player they may have no chance to re-sign in the off-season. But then again, if you think you have a chance for the World Series, it might be worth it if you feel that Machado is the difference-maker. I am sure the Dodgers would hate to see Machado end up in Philly. My biggest fear is Machado being traded to the Red Sox so I am anxious for the O’s to send their star shortstop to the NL as soon as possible. Given how much Orioles owner Peter Angelos hates the Yankees, I could see him sending Machado to Boston just to spite the Yankees even if the return for their team was less.  

We may soon see Joe Girardi back in a dugout. The St Louis Cardinals surprisingly fired their manager, Mike Matheny, yesterday. Matheny was expected to be dismissed in the off-season but apparently the Cardinals organization became impatient (an uncharacteristic trait for them) as Matheny seemingly lost control of his clubhouse. Joe Girardi has emerged as a favorite to replace Matheny. The Cardinals are currently 47-46 and 7 1/2 games behind the Chicago Cubs in the NL Central and six games behind the second-place Milwaukee Brewers. they are just four games out in the Wild Card hunt. The last time the Cardinals fired a manager during the season was Joe Torre in 1995. I’ve seen the names of Jose Oquendo, Carlos Beltran, and even Jason Giambi mentioned, but Girardi would seem to make the most sense for a team trying to rebound from first half turbulence. Mike Shildt, the Cardinals bench coach, has been named interim manager. Girardi has some connection to the team as he finished his playing career in 2003 with the Cards.  

While I realize the sexy names like Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Madison Bumgarner, and Blake Snell are beyond reach for the Yankees, the most likely names that are available just plain scare me (not in a good way). Michael Fulmer, a name that has been connected to the Yankees for months, has been awful this year. I’ve tried to rationalize his performance by the fact that he plays for a bad team, but he was hit hard by the Houston Astros yesterday.  He failed to complete five innings, giving up ten hits and seven runs, as his season record fell to 3-9. There’s no way that I’d want to see the Yankees give up Clint Frazier and/or other top prospects for Fulmer despite his youth, potential and cost-controlled status. Cole Hamels and J.A. Happ have been awful. TGP’s Daniel Burch cites Zack Wheeler as a possibility but that one doesn’t excite me. Tyler Skaggs and Andrew Heaney of the Los Angeles Angels are the most recent names mentioned. There is a very real possibility that the Yankees are unable to find a match for a top starter or two. Other teams are willing to overpay but the Yankees are not. I have mixed feelings. On one hand, I want to see Frazier, Justus Sheffield and Estevan Florial thrive as Yankees, but on the other hand, something needs to give if the Yankees intend to catch the Red Sox in the second half. Boston shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.  

Hopefully the Yankees can win today to send us into the All-Star Break on a positive note. Masahiro Tanaka (7-2, 4.68 ERA) makes the start against Trevor Bauer (8-6, 2.23 ERA). It should be a good game and a great day for a victory.  

Go Yankees!

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Cleveland Indians 7/14

And just like that it is game time here n the Bronx between the New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians. In the third game of this four-game weekend set the Yankees will send CC Sabathia out to face off with the team that drafted him while the Indians will counter with Mike Clevinger. The game will be played at 7:15 pm ET inside Progressive Field in Cleveland and can be seen on FOX. You can also follow along with the game on MLB TV, with the MLB At-Bat app and by tuning into the Yankees radio broadcast with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman on WFAN.

Follow us on Twitter, @GreedyStripes, and “Like” us on Facebook, The Greedy Pinstripes, to keep up with us and the team all season long. Enjoy the game, end the Machado Watch, and go Yankees!!