Sunday, August 28, 2016

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles 8/28

Here we go ladies and gentleman as the New York Yankees are set to play host to the Baltimore Orioles in the finale of their three game set this weekend. In the finale the Yankees will send Michael Pineda to the mound looking to harness some of his Big Mike special powers while the Orioles starter Kevin Gausman will look to solve some of his road woes this season. The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network locally and also on MLB TV wherever you are.

Follow along during the game with us by liking our page on Facebook or by giving us a follow on Twitter @GreedyStripes. Big Mike vs. Kevin Gausman. Let's go. Go Yankees!

Should the Yankees Take a Waiver on Desmond Jennings?

I know, I know but hear me out. The Yankees are absolutely stacked at the outfield position right now but talent is talent. Should the Yankees take a waiver on the soon-to-be free agent Desmond Jennings?

Jennings was once thought to be one of the future stars of the league for the Rays but now the 29-year old has succumbed to multiple leg injuries that have seemingly slowed down his development. Jennings has already fought a hamstring injury this season and is set to come off the disabled list with a knee injury when the Tampa Bay Rays are expected to release him.

Jennings was solid from 2011 - 2014 for Tampa Bay hitting .249/.327/.405 with 47 home runs and 86 stolen bases but since then the former Rays center fielder has slumped and slowed considerably. Jennings stopped hitting, stopped hitting for power and stopped stealing bases due to his injuries which caused Tampa to bench him.

So why would the Yankees want him? They have a plethora of outfield options heading into next season and many of them are younger, project higher and are flat out better on paper. In a word, they wouldn't. It depends on the deal though. Would Jennings be willing to sign a minor league deal while still on the Rays dime for the remainder of this season? Maybe. If so, sign him up. Rosters expand next week and he has talent that you don't tend to find on the free agent market these days. Especially on a minor league deal. If not, then you pass.

Jennings will sign with someone. He's still a quality defender in the outfield according to multiple defensive metrics, although not UZR 150, he's still young and he would make a great bounce back or fourth outfielder option for most teams. Unfortunately just not for this team. I have to pass unless it's on a minor league deal.

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles 8/28

The New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles are back at it again in the Bronx this afternoon as these two teams complete their three-game weekend set. The Yankees bats came out in full force behind Luis Cessa last night and I wondered then if they saved some runs for the rest of the weekend. We're going to find out again this afternoon as the Yankees send Michael Pineda to the mound, the Big Mike version hopefully, to square off with Kevin Gausman.

Pineda took a bit of a step back in his last start as he gave up five earned runs in just 5.1 innings pitched against the Seattle Mariners. Pineda was not helped by his bullpen or Anthony Swarzak in specific in the 7-5 loss for New York but despite that Pineda has still racked up 10 losses in what has become a disappointing season.

Gausman has not pitched well on the road this season and thankfully for the Yankees this game comes inside Yankee Stadium. On the road this year Gausman has posted an 0-9 record with a 5.32 ERA on the road while he has gone 5-1 at home inside Oriole Park and Camden Yards.

The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV. The Yankees head to Kansas City after this contest to face off with the hottest team in the American League right now in the Kansas City Royals. Should be fun down the stretch for the players and the fans. Go Yankees!

Weekly Prospects Check In: Nick Solak

All quiet on the Nick Solak front since his drafting in the June Draft this season. We've checked in with him a few times but when the Yankees farm system got an injection of youth and talent at the top and the Yankees second round pick has gone by the wayside a little. That's not meant to be an insult towards Nick nor do I think it's disrespectful, we just went with the "flavor" of the week and now we're circling back. Welcome back to the rotation Nick.

Let's see what he has been up to:

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This Day In New York Yankees History 8/28: Yankees & Red Sox Play Final Game In The Old Yankee Stadium

The New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox have played many historic and meaningful games in the old Yankee Stadium but the two teams played their final game in the House that Ruth Built on this day in 2008. These two teams fought tooth and nail against each other in this stadium for 85 years and it was fitting how the final game ended. The Yankees were losing 2-0 and came from behind thanks to a Jason Giambi seventh inning pinch hit two run home run to tie. Giambi would come up in the ninth inning and would get a walk off single to beat Boston 3-2 to avoid a sweep and keeps their playoff hopes alive.

Also on this day in 2007 the fans at Yankee Stadium were all entertained by a squirrel who stayed on the right field foul pole to watch the Yankees beat the Red Sox 5-3. The squirrel was quickly called a good luck charm and a fan favorite while receiving standing ovations and cheers every time he was shown on the scoreboard screen.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Greedy Pinstripes Saturday Night Open Thread

The New York Yankees game is in the book, the grass is mowed, the honey-do list is done for another Saturday and frankly, I’m whooped. I’m not as young as I was yesterday so tonight I leave you with this open thread for the evening. Talk about whatever you would like just keep it classy and respectable please, all I’ve ever asked.

-         - Do you think the Yankees have a shot at sneaking into the playoffs this season?

-        -   If Donald Trump would shut up long enough to take a breath do you think he would be elected the President of the United States?

-         -  Who did Negan kill in the season 6 finale of the Walking Dead?

-        -  Are you ready for some football?

Talk about all that and more. Have fun and enjoy the rest of your Saturday night. 

Sanchez Makes MLB History, Yanks Spank O's, 13-5

For the second straight game and for the first time since last August, the New York Yankees put up double digit runs on the Baltimore Orioles on their way to their convincing game-two series victory. Getting the start for New York was rookie right-hander Chad Green, who struggled with command all afternoon, and as a result, did not factor into the final decision as he was unable to record the necessary five innings to qualify. Taking the ball and the loss for the Birds was Dylan Bundy, falling to 7-5 while raising his ERA to 3.47 as he got hit early and often by the white-hot Yankee offense on a sun-drenched afternoon in the Bronx.

Chad Green made it tough on himself as he got into some trouble in the top of the first before showing some real moxie to get out of a bases-loaded jam. After striking out Manny Machado to begin the game, Hyun Soo Kim beat the shift with a seeing-eye single, Mark Trumbo walked and Chris Davis was hit by a pitch to load the bases. But, Green righted himself as he worked back-to-back strikeouts of Jonathan Schoop and Pedro Alvarez to escape the first inning threat.

Bundy, too, would work himself into some first inning trouble but would suffer a different fate as the Yankees put the first run of the game on the board. Jacoby Ellsbury and Gary Sanchez worked consecutive one-out walks. Mark Teixeira then plated Ellsbury from second when he ripped a double off the wall in right, giving the Yankees a first inning one run lead. 

The Orioles waited an inning but ended up taking the lead in the top of the third. After Mark Trumbo worked his second walk of the day, Chris Davis unloaded on a Green fastball to the tune of a 420+ foot blast to straight away centerfield that put Baltimore on top 2-1.

Fortunately, the Bonbers wasted no time getting back into the game as they re-took the lead in the bottom of the frame. With two outs, they tied the game with three straight singles by Teixeira, Gregorius, and Castro, with the latter scoring Tex from second and advancing Gregorius to third. During the ensuing McCann at-bat, both Castro and Gregorius attempted to execute a double steel, but Didi was called out at home, seemingly ending the inning. Manager Joe Girardi quickly went to the review phone and then to the umpire to challenge the call on the field. Joe did so successfully as the call was overturned, making the score 3-2 and forcing all of the Orioles defenders to report back to their respective positions. Brian McCann followed the turn of events with a line drive double to left that got passed the outfielder Kim's reach, scoring Castro and extending their lead to two. 

Gary Sanchez's miracle-season continued in the bottom of the fourth as he became the fastest player to hit 11 homeruns in MLB history, launching a solo shot to left in just the 21st game of his career. Every at bat by the superstar in the making Sanchez is absolutely must-see TV, proving it once again this afternoon. 

In the top of the fifth, the Orioles used the longball to get themselves back into the game while chasing young Green from it. Trumbo and Davis went back to back to pull the O's to within one. Green then served up a very deep fly-out that went to the warning track in left off the bat of Jonathan Schoop, forcing Girardi to take the rookie out of the game. Green was pulled for Tommy Layne, leaving with a pretty tough final line of 4.2 innings pitched, allowing four runs on seven hits, while walking two and striking out four. Layne proceeded to get Pedro Alvarez to ground out to second, preventing any further damage. 

The homerun derby continued in the bottom of the fifth as New York really broke the game wide open. Recently off the DL, T.J. McFarland replaced Bundy to start the inning, immediately drilling Gregorius to begin the frame. The next batter Starlin Castro obliterated a McFarland fastball deep into the seats in left, widening the gap back up to three. McCann followed with a walk and scored when Aaron Hicks joined the longball fest, blasting the second no-out, two-run shot of the inning into the seats in right that opened it up to a 9-4 game.

The Pinstriper offensive onslaught continued in the bottom of the sixth as the Yanks scored double digits in the run column for the second straight game. Didi led off with a walk off of O's reliever Michael Givens, advancing to second on Castro's third hit of the afternoon. Brian McCann then recorded his 50th RBI of the season by smacking a single into left that scored Gregorius and extended the Bomber lead to six. The next batter Aaron Hicks followed with an RBI single of his own, a line drive to center that scored Castro and made it a seven-run ballgame. After Givens drilled Ronald Torreyes to load the bases, manager Buck Showalter pulled Givens for Donnie Hart. The first batter Hart faced was Brett Gardner, who managed to squibb an infield single in front of Hart that allowed McCann to score, making the score 12-4 New York.

A combination of Warren, Layne and Clippard held the Orioles scoreless and got the Yankees into the ninth. After Gregorius added another hit and RBI in the bottom of the eighth to make it 13-4, Kirby Yates allowed a leadoff double too Machado, who scored when Kim ripped a single up the middle that glanced off of Castro's glove, leading to a 13-5 score. Yates then proceeded to retire Ryan Flaherty, Steve Pearce and Jonathan Schoop in order to lock down both the win for the game and the series, pulling the Yanks to within 2 1/2 games of the second wild-card spot.

Break out the brooms tomorrow as the boys in pinstripes look to lock down the weekend series sweep of the Birds from Baltimore, with first pitch scheduled for 1:05 PM/EST.  

Comparing Gary Sanchez to Babe Ruth is….

I’m not comparing Gary Sanchez to Babe Ruth by any means but there are a lot of publications and blogs out there that are so I figured why not try and analyze this and see just how true, or baseless, these claims and comparisons really are. That’s kind of what I do I guess. Let’s get to it and see if we can even put into words and numbers these outlandish, or completely accurate, comparisons here on this lovely Saturday night.

In the first 19 games of Gary Sanchez’s career, which does not include this weekend series in the Bronx with the Baltimore Orioles, the Yankees catcher and prospect has put up nine home runs and 16 RBI in just 80 at bats with an impressive slash of .389/.450/.847/1.297. In 28 hits six of them have been doubles to go along with the nine home run power show while scoring 14 runs and taking eight walks. Impressive, yes I know but how did the Sultan of Swat begin his career all those years ago for the Boston Red Sox?

Ruth got a whole 10 at bats in five games in his rookie season of 1914 and recorded 0 home runs and two hits. That's it but that was as a pitcher only. In 1915 he hit a bit more and finished the season with four home runs but all those at bats once again came as a pinch hitter or as a pitcher. It wasn't until the 1918 season that Ruth started playing the field more than pitching and he still only managed 11 home runs in 95 games. Long story short is Ruth never had the immediate impact as a hitter that Sanchez has had, small sample size or not.

Can you compare the two era's and the two players? No, I don't think that's possible. Ruth split time as a pitcher and a hitter for the beginning of his career and did not have to face specialty relievers, guys throwing 100 MPH etc. Sure he likely faced spitballs and other things that Sanchez doesn't which is why you cannot in good conscience compare the two. So please don't. Please?

*All stats courtesy of Baseball Reference.

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles 8/27

Here we go ladies and gentleman with some afternoon baseball here in the Bronx between the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles. You know what could possibly be the best part about these day games after night games lately? It could be the fact that the Yankees have infused so much youth into the team that we are no longer stuck seeing our best hitters and fielders on the bench in the day game because they played the night before. Youth can handle it and youth is here so now we just need Joe Girardi to use them. In the middle game of this three-game weekend set the Yankees will send Chad Green to the mound looking for his third consecutive strong start while the Baltimore Orioles will counter with a young gun of their own in Dylan Bundy. The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network, MLB Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees play host to these same Orioles tomorrow in the Bronx in the finale of the series and if you want to be there, be there for David Ortiz’s final game inside Yankee Stadium or want to see the Yankees live in any game left this season click the Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog. Root on the Yankees and support the blog while saving a little money. Almost sounds too good to be true.

Follow along during the game and all season long with us by either liking our page on Facebook or by giving us a follow on twitter by following @GreedyStripes. Chad Green vs. Dylan Bundy, the future is now. Go Yankees!

August 31st Trade Deadline Looms, Is Anyone Safe

The August 31st trading deadline will be here in just a few short days and while the Yankees cleaned house before the August 1st trade deadline all signs point to this deadline being a quiet one. That could be a good thing or a bad thing depending on how you look at it because in one corner Brian Cashman has done some of his best work while lurking in the shadows and none of us heard any rumors about it before it actually happened. On the other hand there just may not be any interest in what the Yankees have left that they are willing to trade.

The Yankees youth movement is in full swing so the potential list of trade candidates seems to be small. The list is headlined by Brian McCann who has seemingly lost his everyday job to Gary Sanchez and who has also cleared revocable waivers already this month. McCann was linked to the Atlanta Braves before the August 1st trade deadline but Atlanta scoffed at the idea of taking on that salary and giving up good prospects in return but with a month of salary now off the books for McCann, a Matt Kemp deal since that showed Atlanta’s willingness to take on salary and the GM in Atlanta’s recent statements about having to “win games in 2017” due to the new stadium I’m sure these talks are still going on. Atlanta’s farm system is deep, it may be the best in all the land, so I expect a deal to be done either by Wednesday or this winter in the offseason. If New York wants it done sooner rather than later simply agree to eat some of the salary, simple as that.

Other players on the potential list include left fielder Brett Gardner (who reportedly received little to no interest in trades before the August 1st trade deadline), Jacoby Ellsbury (who is owed a ton of money and has not lived up to the contract that included a no-trade clause), CC Sabathia (see my comments on the status of Jacoby Ellsbury), Mark Teixeira (also see my comments on Ellsbury and keep in mind that he announced he was going to retire after the season meaning if the Yankees traded him they may have egg on their face when it is all said and done), Chase Headley (surprisingly a movable contract after such a sluggish start to the season), Tyler Clippard and Adam Warren (two veteran relief pitchers and we all know how interchangeable relief pitching can be).

The Yankees have plenty of talent they could move but the problem is they aren’t likely to move any of it before Wednesday. Clippard and Warren fit in with their “win now” mentality for the 2016 season while only the contracts of Chase Headley and Brett Gardner are moveable without the players consent. Headley and Gardner could be replaced from within and both would likely draw interest from teams but if there was that much interest I feel like they would have been moved before the August 1st trade deadline, wouldn’t you? All signs point to this being a slow and quiet trade deadline for the New York Yankees…. Which is just what “Ninja” Brian Cashman wants us to think.