Thursday, June 21, 2018

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners 6/21



And just like that we have a getaway afternoon game here in the Bronx between the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners. After this afternoon’s game the Yankees, hopefully anyway, will board a plane and head down to Tampa St. Pete to take on the Tampa Bay Rays. First things first though, we have the finale this afternoon of the three-game set that will pit Luis Severino for the Yankees against James Paxton for the Mariners. The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network. 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, Severino is an ace… and he is my ace and go Yankees!!

Meet a Prospect: Derek Craft



With their 16th round pick, 487th overall, in the 2018 MLB First Year Players Draft the New York Yankees selected Derek Craft, a center a wide receiver a right-handed starting pitcher out of the University of Texas-San Antonio (UTSA). Craft is an imposing figure out on the mound, so let’s meet him. This is Meet a Prospect: The Derek Craft Edition.

Craft stands 6’8” and weighs in at 200 lbs. making him an uncomfortable at-bat for opposing hitters every time that he takes the mound. Craft was dominating as a junior posting a 1.89 ERA in 52.1 innings of work as he split time between the bullpen and the starting rotation. Craft made 24 appearances in 2018, although only three of them came as a starter, and held opposing hitters to a .211 batting average against while striking out 62 in 52 innings of work.

2018 was definitely a breakout season for Craft after struggling for much of his sophomore season so be on the lookout for him as he could potentially fly through the Yankees system. New York may opt to go the Chance Adams route with Craft and convert him into a starter, or the team could simply have another bullpen weapon waiting in the wings for Aaron Boone’s disposal in a couple of seasons.

Craft has signed with the New York Yankees as of the time of this writing so let’s all welcome him not only to the organization, but to the Yankees family as well. You can follow Derek on Twitter by giving @pitchDMC a follow. While you are there go ahead and give us a follow as well, @GreedyStripes. We follow back!


Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners 6/21



Good morning Yankees family. The Seattle Mariners have done the New York Yankees some favors as of late beating up on and slowing down the Boston Red Sox in their previous series, but the Yankees have not shown much gratitude during this three-game series in the Bronx. No mercy from the Bronx Bombers thus far and hopefully there will be no mercy today as well as a pair of aces take the mound in the finale of the set. This afternoon in the Bronx the Yankees will send Luis Severino to the mound to face off with the ace of the staff in Seattle in James Paxton. Let’s get to it here in the Bronx.

Severino was sharp once again in his last start hurling eight shutout innings in a victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday. Severino has not allowed more than three runs in a single game since May 19th and has only given up more than three runs one time all season. Dominating.


Paxton on the other hand had the shortest start of his season come in his last start lasting just 2.1 innings pitched with six hits and six runs, five of them earned, in a loss to the Boston Red Sox. Thanks a lot, James. Paxton has been sharp this season though and was 5-0 with a 1.98 ERA in his previous nine starts before his struggles against the Red Sox.

The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network. 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.


Enjoy the game, put some distance between ourselves and the Red Sox, and go Yankees!!

Hello… Buyers and Sellers



Good morning everyone and welcome back to the blog. Earlier in the week I laid out a plan to go over various things over the next month or so here on the blog, but none more important than the July 31st trade deadline. I want to step outside my horizons some, not too much, and cover not just the Yankees during this hot stove season, but as many of the teams and players that could be making moves and moving as I can. That process started a couple days ago but I feel like before we get too far into it that we have to lay out who the potential buyers will be, who the potential sellers will be, and who won’t probably know what they are doing for a couple more weeks. That seems like a good starting point to me.

BUYERS:

New York Yankees
Boston Red Sox
Cleveland Indians
Houston Astros
Seattle Mariners
Atlanta Braves
Washington Nationals
Philadelphia Phillies
Milwaukee Brewers
Chicago Cubs
St. Louis Cardinals
Arizona Diamondbacks
Los Angeles Dodgers

SELLERS:

Tampa Bay Rays
Baltimore Orioles
Toronto Blue Jays
Chicago White Sox
Kansas City Royals
Texas Rangers
New York Mets
Miami Marlins
Cincinnati Reds
San Diego Padres

TO BE DETERMINED:

Detroit Tigers
Minnesota Twins
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Oakland Athletics
Pittsburgh Pirates
San Francisco Giants
Colorado Rockies

Oh, and baby. I love you and I would buy you a million times over if I could. You are the most beautiful, most kind, most sincere and most awesome person that I know. I love you to the mailbox and back! A million kisses for you this morning.



This Day In New York Yankees History 6/21: Yankees Club the Rays


On this day in 2005 the Yankees had a week of it at the plate in a 20-11 victory over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. The Rays led the Yankees 10-2 at one point in the game before the Rays lost the lead. This would make the second time in Rays franchise history that they led by at least eight runs in a game only to lose by at least nine runs. The Rays gave up 13 runs in the bottom of the second inning which was the second time they have given up at least 13 runs in an inning in the same season, a major league record they did not want to be a part of.


Also on this day in 1967 the Yankees and the Boston Red Sox had a benches clearing brawl to keep the fans entertained. Joe Foy was struck in the helmet and in retaliation the Red Sox pitcher Jim Lonborg hit the Yankees pitcher Thad Tillotson to start the fight in the second inning. No ejections were handed out and Reggie Smith is brushed back in the next inning while Dick Howser leave the games in the fifth inning after being hit in the head with a pitch.


Finally on this day in 1941 the New York Yankees team consecutive streak of hitting a home run in 17 straight games is extended with a seventh inning home run by Phil Rizzuto. The home run would tie the major league record originally set by the Detroit Tigers and would come in a 7-2 loss to that same Tigers team in Yankee Stadium. This was only Rizzuto's second career home run.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Good Hitting or Good Pitching? I’ll Take Both, Please…

Photo Credit: Getty Images (Mike Stobe)
Yankees win again behind German…

The Yankees got off to a good start with their three-game series against the Seattle Mariners last night with a 7-2 win at Yankee Stadium.

Very nice pitching performance by young Domingo German. I wish Sonny Gray could take notes on how to pitch in the Bronx. The veteran could learn a thing or two from the rookie. German could have broken in the first inning when the Mariners had runners at the corners and no outs following a double and an error by Didi Gregorius. Sure, the M’s picked up a run on Mitch Haniger’s fielder’s choice to short but German shook it off and struck out Corey Seager’s brother Kyle to end the threat. From there, German shut down the Mariners, retiring 18 in a row, until Nelson Cruz did what he does best in the seventh inning, a dinger to left. You can’t really blame German for that one. Cruz does it to the best of 'em.

German’s final pitching line was something Sonny Gray can only dream about at Yankee Stadium. Seven very strong innings, two hits, two runs but only one earned, zero walks, and nine strikeouts.  German is pitching like he doesn’t want GM Brian Cashman to make any pitching acquisitions at the trading deadline. While I’d leave German in the rotation, I would still make a trade for a proven veteran starter. Nothing against Jonathan Loaisiga but I’d rather limit the rookies in the rotation for the stretch run to only one (German). 

I liked the tag line used by Mike Axisa of River Ave Blues:  Dominant Domingo and the Dingers. It was a very good description of the game. I can’t wait for the movie.

Photo Credit: NY Post (Charles Wenzelberg)

With German easing the Yankees’ desperation for starting pitching help, I hope it opens the possibility for a trade to acquire a shutdown arm for the bullpen. None better than San Diego’s LHP Brad Hand which would allow the Yankees to dump Chasen Shreve. I think it was Sweeny Murti who said the other day that he’d like for the Yankees to acquire the Padres closer for no other reason than to be able to say “Aloha, Mr Hand!”. Yes, that’s true. Good point. But Hand is also the most highly sought-after reliever now that former Kansas City Royals closer Kelvin Herrera resides in Washington, D.C. and he has drawn attention from many teams including the Boston Red Sox. I really would not want to see Hand go to Boston to help shore up their bullpen deficiencies. The move to acquire him by the Yankees would not be all about keeping him out Boston but rather give us a deadly bullpen that can shut down anyone, anytime, anywhere. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images (Denis Poroy)

If the Yankees make no moves for starting pitching, they should most certainly look to add additional bullpen pieces. I really don’t want to see Shreve as the top lefty come October. He’s too inconsistent for me and a few others on this site.

It was good to see the Yankees offense come to life last night. Marco Gonzales has pitched very well for the Mariners this year and he entered the game with a 7-3 record. I thought well enough of him to add him to my fantasy baseball team a few weeks ago. He killed my team last night with six runs allowed, including three home runs. But hey, it was worth it. I cut him after the game but there’s no way I can be disappointed with his dismal performance.

Photo Credit: Associated Press (Seth Wenig)

The homers were really fun to watch. Giancarlo Stanton’s shot to center in the first inning to tie the game, Miguel Andujar’s two-run homer to left in the bottom of the fifth to give the Yankees their first lead, Aaron Hicks’ two-run blast to left in the fifth after Clint Frazier had singled to increase the Yankees’ lead to 5-1, and the eighth inning ‘tack-on' homer to left by Gleyber Torres off former Yankees reliever Nick Rumbelow. If you saw only the homer and not the batter, you would have sworn that Gleyber’s shot was courtesy of Aaron Judge or Giancarlo Stanton. It was certainly worthy of the words “All Rise” or “a Stantonian blast” if it had been hit by #99 or #27 rather than #25. The ball traveled 446 feet, easily the longest hit of the night. After Torres hit his homer, I saw one Yankees tweet say only 38 more to go to the rookie record. Very funny even if impossible.  Still, I don’t think anyone in their wildest dreams could have forecasted 14 home runs, 35 RBI’s, and a slash line of .291/.346/.566 for Gleyber Torres on June 19th. The guy is such a joy to watch game after game. Sure, he’ll have to continue to make adjustments as pitchers adjust but he’s shown us enough to be confident he will. 

Oh yeah, Aaron Judge had an RBI on single to left in the bottom of the seventh off Rumbelow with the run charged to Gonzales. A single. How pedestrian! Seriously, I love what Aaron Judge means to this team and how he is continually a difference-maker with both bat and glove. 

I was hopeful that Gary Sanchez was breaking out of his slump but he was 0-for-4 with a strikeout, dropping his season batting average back down to .191. 

It was a fun game. The Mariners are a very good club and this series could easily be a preview of October if the M’s continue to play well. They are currently 46-27 and sit just two games behind the World Champions in the AL West. I don’t expect the Yankees to sweep the series but I am hopeful they capture at least one of the next two games before hopping on a plane bound for Tampa, Florida. 

The Boston Red Sox, despite having their ace, Chris Sale, on the mound, lost 6-2 to the Minnesota Twins at Target Field in Minneapolis, MN so the Yankees (48-22) increased their AL East lead to one game. Credit to the third-place Tampa Bay Rays, the Yankees’ next opponent. They used Blake Snell (a pitcher that I’d love to see Brian Cashman acquire) to beat the Astros and Justin Verlander, snapping Houston’s 12-game winning streak.    

Congratulations to Brandon Drury for winning International League Player of the Week honors. The Major League player, who deserves better than Triple A, hit .471 with one home run and 11 RBI’s during the week of June 11th through 17th. He had 16 hits, 25 total bases, and 11 runs scored. In last night’s 7-5 loss by the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders to the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (love that name!), Drury was 0-for-5 with a couple of strikeouts. It doesn’t deter me. I still want Drury back in Pinstripes where he belongs. With Ryan McBroom’s demotion to Double-A, I saw a quote by RailRiders manager Bobby Mitchell that the plan is to play Drury at first periodically. Operation Dump Neil Walker; Promote Brandon Drury is well underway. I liked Mitchell’s quote about Drury earlier this week: “He’s a big leaguer, you know? Just happens to be with us. He can play for a lot of teams, obviously, and even ours if they needed him.” 

Photo Credit: Todd Hiller

As for Chance Adams (the loser in the game), he is stepping dangerously into “Chance Adams Sucks!” Territory. Once considered the top pitching prospect in the organization, Adams gave up six runs in four innings (four earned) yesterday.  He walked four batters while striking out only one. Control continues to be his Achilles Heel. Suffice it to say that I don’t think we’ll be seeing Mr Adams (2-3, 5.21 ERA) in the Bronx anytime soon.

It’s Wednesday and an awesome day for Lasagna! It will be Old versus Young today as 32-year-old “King” Felix Hernandez takes on rookie 23-year-old Jonathan Loaisiga who was phenomenal in his debut appearance. When I looked up Hernandez, I was thinking he was older than he really is.  He seems to have aged prematurely and is certainly not the ace he once was. This season, he is 6-6 with 5.44 ERA and an unsightly 1.38 WHIP. For all the years the Yankees were linked to him in trade rumors, I am glad it was a trade never consummated.  Let’s get a win and take this series.

Go Yankees!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners 6/19


And just like that it is game time here in the Bronx between the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners. In the opener of the three-game set this week in the Bronx the Yankees will send Domingo German to the mound to face off with Marco Gonzalez for the Mariners. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network. 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 on WFAN with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman.

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, no mercy for the Mariners, and go Yankees!!

Meet a Prospect: Nick Ernst



With their 15th round pick, 457th overall, in the 2018 MLB First Year Players Draft the New York Yankees selected Nick Ernst, a right-handed starting pitcher out of Miami University in Ohio. It will be a while before we see Ernst on the mound at any of the Yankees affiliates as this season the right-hander tore his UCL, resulting in Tommy John surgery, but let’s meet him regardless. This is Meet a Prospect: The Nick Ernst Edition.

Now I know what you’re thinking, the Yankees drafted yet another college experienced right-handed starting pitcher for their upper levels of their farm system. Yes and no. As I alluded to earlier Ernst tore his UCL and has already undergone Tommy John surgery to repair the ligament, a surgery that will force him to miss the 2018 season and likely most of the 2019 season. When healthy Ernst is not the type of pitcher the Yankees have drafted recently in previous drafts. Ernst is a huge frame standing 6’3” and weighing in at 195 lbs. but that is where the similarities begin and end. Ernst is not a guy throwing in the high 90 MPH range and he is not going to be a pitcher that strikes out nearly 10 batters per nine innings either. Instead Ernst sits around 92 MPH with the ability to touch 94 MPH with a devastating slider that he uses as his out pitch. 


Here is what CollegeBaseballCentral.com had to say about Ernst: 

 “MOST TEAMS WOULD STRUGGLE AFTER LOSING THEIR FRIDAY NIGHT STARTER TWO WEEKS INTO THE SEASON. NOT ONLY DOES THAT MEAN YOU’VE LOST WHAT IS TYPICALLY THE BEST STARTING PITCHER ON THE ROSTER, BUT IT ALSO MEANS THAT EVERYONE ELSE ON THE STAFF HAS TO SLIDE DOWN A SPOT, WHICH HURTS YOUR DEPTH.

MIAMI (25-15, 11-7) WAS IN THAT POSITION AFTER THE SECOND WEEKEND OF THE SEASON, WHEN NICK ERNST WENT DOWN WITH A TORN UCL. THAT WAS AFTER, MIND YOU, ERNST BEGAN HIS SEASON BY THROWING SIX INNINGS AGAINST ARIZONA STATE, GIVING UP JUST FOUR HITS AND ONE RUN WITH NO WALKS AND SIX STRIKEOUTS IN A 4-2 WIN THAT GAVE THE REDHAWKS THEIR FIRST OPENING DAY WIN SINCE 2007.”

“NICK ERNST LOOKED LIKE HE WAS ON HIS WAY TO A BREAKOUT JUNIOR SEASON AS HE SHUT DOWN ARIZONA STATE IN MIAMI’S SEASON OPENER, BUT HE LEFT HIS NEXT START WITH AN ELBOW INJURY THAT REQUIRED TOMMY JOHN SURGERY. ERNST COULD HEAD BACK TO THE REDHAWKS FOR HIS SENIOR SEASON, BUT HE COULD STILL BE DRAFTED BY A TEAM INTRIGUED BY HIS 90-94 MPH FASTBALL AND PROMISING SLIDER.”

Nick has already signed with the team since the draft so welcome to the Yankees organization, and welcome to the Yankees family as well. You can follow Nick on Twitter by following @NickyE123.

Everyone Wants Hamels, But Bring Me Tyson Ross Instead



The New York Yankees will be in the market for a starting pitcher before the July 31st trade deadline comes and goes here in 2018. Now let me preface by saying that this does not necessarily mean the team will acquire a starter, only that they will be in the discussions for many of the top available starters this trading deadline. One thing Brian Cashman, the Yankees GM, has shown though is an unwillingness to “lose” a trade and trade away top talent just because. Cashman won’t make a deal just for the sake of making a deal, and that includes any deal that could potentially bring a starter like Cole Hamels to the Bronx. Hamels is the name I have seen thrown around the most when discussing who could potentially be on the radar for the Yankees this winter, but he isn’t the top arm on my radar. While everyone wants Hamels to be donning pinstripes on August 1st I’d much rather have Tyson Ross of the San Diego Padres personally, but maybe that’s just me.

Ross is set to reach free agency for the first time in his career after the 2018 season meaning that the right-hander is a true rental for any team that could potentially acquire him. Where Ross is especially attractive to the Yankees where Hamels may not be is in the financial department. Ross is making just $1.7 million this season, which any team who acquires him would be on the hook for roughly half that with a pro-rated salary, while Hamels comes attached to not only a $23 million base salary for the 2018 season (pro-rated to about $12 million for whichever team acquires him) but the lefty also comes with a $20 million option for the 2019 season as well with a $6 million buyout. 

Ross is 31-years old and has undoubtedly benefited from pitching in one of the biggest and most spacious ballparks in all of Major League Baseball. I truly believe if the Yankees were to acquire Ross that they would not be acquiring the ace that the San Diego Padres may be selling him as, but I also truly think that Ross could be better than CC Sabathia, Sonny Gray, Domingo German and Jonathan Loaisiga.

I am not an expert on the farm system of the San Diego Padres, but the team seems to be in full rebuild mode meaning they may simply take the best available package rather than a package heavily weighted towards a certain position or pitching. The Yankees have plenty to offer in terms of prospects and I truly believe that the team could acquire Ross for a reasonable price, maybe a package of Chance Adams and Tyler Wade for example. Ross would be the better fit in my opinion for the Yankees this season while also giving the team a sneak peak of his abilities before he hits the free agent market next season.

Meet a Prospect: Matt Pita



With their 12th round pick, 367th overall, in the 2018 MLB First Year Players Draft the New York Yankees selected Matt Pita, an outfielder from the Virginia Military Institute. Imagine that, the Yankees drafted someone, and it wasn’t an experienced college starting pitcher. Let’s meet the man that “defied the odds.” This is Meet a Prospect: The Matt Pita Edition.

Pits stands just 5’10’ and weighs in at 175 lbs. which immediately, based on size, garners comparisons to the Yankees current left fielder Brett Gardner. Gardner is left-handed while Pita is right-handed, but both can swing the bat well, which was never more evident than during Pita’s three years at VMI. At VMI the outfielder slashed .359/.428/.639 including a .389/.459/.721 here in 2018.


Pita, now 21-years old, is beginning to develop power which translated to 41 extra-base hits in 2018. Here is what the VMI athletics page had to say about Pita prior to the draft:

“18 OF HIS 55 HITS WENT FOR EXTRA BASES…FINISHED FIFTH IN THE SOCON (BIG SOUTHERN CONFERENCE) IN BATTING AVERAGE AND EIGHTH IN SLUGGING PERCENTAGE (.583)…CLOSED OUT THE YEAR ON A 10-GAME HITTING STREAK, EIGHT OF WHICH WERE MULTI-HIT GAMES.”

Matt has already signed with the Yankees so congratulations to him and to his family. Welcome to the organization and welcome to the Yankees family. You can follow Matt on twitter by giving @Matt_Pita a follow.