Monday, July 14, 2014

2014 MLB Home Run Derby Open Thread

Jose Bautista - American League

Brian Dozier - Minnesota Twins
Adam Jones - Baltimore Orioles
Yoenis Cespedes - Oakland Athletics
Josh Donaldson - Oakland Athletics

Troy Tulowitzki - National League

Yasiel Puig - Los Angeles Dodgers
Todd Frazier - Cincinnati Reds
Giancarlo Stanton - Miami Marlins
Justin Morneau - Colorado Rockies

Alfonso Soriano Released

Well there wen't any chance of Alfonso Soriano clearing waivers, accepting a Triple-A assignment, and coming back bigger and better for the second half in a great story they would soon make a movie about. The Yankees have released Soriano after he cleared waivers. Whether this was his decision or the Yankees remains unreported, stay tuned.


Must see. I don't even feel like I need to say anything, this video speaks for itself. Well done Jordan.

All Star Game Rosters & Starting Pitchers Announced

American League

Derek Jeter
Mike Trout
Robinson Cano
Miguel Cabrera
Jose Bautista
Nelson Cruz
Adam Jones
Josh Donaldson
Salvador Perez

P. Felix Hernandez

National League

Andrew McCutchen
Yasiel Puig
Troy Tulowitzki
Paul Goldschmidt
Giancarlo Stanton
Aramis Ramirez
Chase Utley
Jonathan Lucroy
Carlos Gomez

P. Adam Wainwright

LHP Miguel Sulbaran Named FSL Pitcher of the Week

Tampa, Fla.
 - The Florida State League named Tampa Yankees LHP Miguel Sulbaran Pitcher of the Week today. This honor was for games played July 7 - July 13, 2014.  
           Sulbaran pitched on July 9th and had a quality start throwing seven innings with eight K's. He didn't allow a run and only gave up three hits for an ERA of 0.00. Sulbaran joined the Tampa Yankees roster on May 21st.
          This is the fourth year of professional baseball for the lefty from Edo, Zulia, Venezuela. He was acquired by the Yankees organization from the Minnesota Twins in a trade on April 7th, 2014.

MLB The Show 14: Home Run Derby Preview

Here is a little preview of what the 2014 Home Run Derby may look like using MLB The Show 14.

Girardi Doesn't Appear Ready to Give Up on Season

When the Yankees spent $503 million this offseason on some of the biggest names in baseball, it was expected by most of their fans that they'd at least be holding a wild card spot come the 2014 All Star Break. 

However, due to a never ending list of injuries as well as a complete lack of production from Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran that presumption has been ripped apart, something that's caused some to see the year as lost.

Despite that, team Manager Joe Girardi is attempting to keep his head up, telling The Star Ledger's Kevin Manahan after last night's loss to the Orioles that the Yanks are still in it in spite of everything that's happened to them.

"With everything we have had go wrong, we are still in it," Girardi said. "That's the big thing. We have to take advantage of that when we get back to work on Friday."

As of now, the 47-47 Bombers are just 3 1/2 games behind the Mariners for the second wild card, making #28's statement completely true.

Still, considering that their current rotation contains two rookies, a struggling veteran, and a youngster who has never started consistently in his career you have to wonder how in it they actually are, as things just don't seem to be looking up for them going into the annual week off.

Maw Random Gawbij.

I thought I was decently accurate on those lineup predictions for Tuesday: just switch Jeter and Trout and Adam Jones and Josh Donaldson and I would've had the AL right. For the NL, I was really surprised McCutchen's leading off. Yadier getting hurt changes that whole batting order; Goldschmidt's a good hitter, but not with more raw power than Stanton--he was born to hit cleanup. He's got a long career ahead of him anyway.

I can't wait to watch him tonight in the Derby.

What a great way to end the first half--a rain-shortened loss to the Orioles. Totally representative of the lousy .500 first half. This is a team on pace for 81 wins. BUT--there's a glimmer of hope. This next homestand will determine where the Yankees are going. They'll play the Reds without Brandon Phillips and Joey Votto (though guys like Mesoraco and Todd Frazier are having great seasons,) the worst team in baseball, the Texas Rangers, who have NO pitching outside of Darvish, and the only AL East team that absolutely cannot win in NY, the Toronto Blue Jays. If the Yanks fold and die in the week and a half following the All-Star break, I'm considering it a lost season, ESPECIALLY since the Orioles go to the west coast (A's, Angels, M's.) If they can't pick up a few games and/or the division lead, see ya!

I loved the whole LeBron saga; both fanbases are happy--Clevelanders are obviously overjoyed and Miami fans can go back to being beach bums with Heat hats and Canes jerseys on. He handled it with 1000% more class this time around--can't believe it's been four years and one presidential election since "The Decision."

My favorite broadcaster in baseball? Duane Kuiper of the Giants. I listened to his calls of both grand slams by Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner yesterday and they sent chills down my spine. "ITTT ISSS OUTTAAAAA HEREEEE!" By the way, they're the first starting pitcher-catcher duo in MLB HISTORY to hit grannies in the same game.

Apparently there's this movie "Lucy" coming out where Scarlett Johansson is part of an experiment to use 100% of her brain. She's all psychic and stuff...which just sounds totally awesome.

Ugh, Friends is on TBS...excuse me while I throw up.

Neil Dwyer @neildwyer1993

2014 Gillette Home Run Derby Predictions

The American League and the National League send their best home run hitters to the big stage tonight as we will all be entertained by watching the 2014 Home Run Derby. The American League will send Jose Bautista, Josh Donaldson, Brian Dozier, Adam Jones, and defending champion Yoenis Cespedes to the plate. The National League will send Troy Tulowitzki, Yasiel Puig, Todd Frazier, Giancarlo Stanton, and Justin Morneau to the plate for the NL. 

The National League seemingly has all the muscle and all the big named with Stanton, Puig, and Tulo while the AL still has Cespedes who we all know can put on a show. Dozier has the hometown aspect going for him which should help him muscle out a few that he normally wouldn't and Todd Frazier, Adam Jones, and Morneau are pretty underrated in my opinion. Then there's Josh Donaldson...

Donaldson has already hit the 20 home run mark with a .454 slugging percentage to go with it. Plus it's just a gut feeling. My final is Justin Morneau and Josh Donaldson and the Oakland Athletics third basemen will take it home for the American League. 

History of the Yankees in the Home Run Derby

Here is a brief history of the New York Yankees and their success and failures, I'm looking at you Robinson Cano and so is all of Kansas City, in the Home Run Derby. Just as a reminder, not that any of you probably need it, the Home Run Derby will be on ESPN tonight and no members of the Yankees will be part of the festivities unfortunately.

Robinson Cano was a member of the 2013 Home Run Derby and hit four home runs for the lowest output of any All Star that season. This was a year removed from Cano being shutout in Kansas City in 2012 and booed off the field after not picking home town player Billy Butler for the derby. Cano did win the derby in 2011 though hitting a total of 32 home runs and edging Adrian Gonzalez of the Boston Red Sox.

Nick Swisher wore the pinstripes in the derby in 2010 and only managed to hit four home runs for a first round exit. You have to go all the way back to 2003 and Jason Giambi to see another Yankee in the derby and the Giambino would make the second round and hit 23 home runs but fall just short of the finals. Giambi did win it in 2002 though with 24 home runs beating out the Cubs Sammy Sosa.

Tino Martinez would win the derby in 1997 with a total of 16 home runs. Larry Walker actually hit 19 but only hit one in the finals to go down to Martinez. Martinez was the first member of the New York Yankees to ever hit in the Derby in it's almost 30 years of existence.

Reminder: The Home Run Derby Got Face Lift This Season

It has been 10 seasons since the MLB Home Run Derby has changed but this year it will, hopefully for the better. Instead of eight batters participating we will have the field expanded to 10 and they will be separated into two brackets by league. Batters will only have seven outs to work with instead of 10, which I don't agree with in case you were wondering.

The new rules will create more head to head matchups and less free for all type scenarios. The player with the most home runs in the first round will get a bye for Round 2. That puts a ton of incentive on getting the most home runs and really allows players to sit back and relax if they have no shot at making it in first place but know they are advancing. For example Yoenis Cespedes hit 17 home runs in the first round last year and would have the second round to rest. The rest of the field knew they weren't going to match that so after they hit 7-8 they could take their feet off the throttle a little.

It remains to be seen whether more players, less outs, second round byes, and head to head matchups will improve something I already thought was great but I am open minded and excited about the new rules.

Off Day Walk Up Music Recommendation: All Star Game Edition

The only member to start the 85th Major League Baseball Game is Derek Jeter so as we rest and prepare for tomorrow's game let's use this off day, like we always do, to take a listen to some Yankees walk up music. Jeter walks up to Derek Jeter at bat songs from when he was on the Jimmy Fallon show. Enjoy the off day, we all need it including the fans and the players.

This Day In New York Yankees History 7/14 Jeter & Posada Are Teammates A Long Time

We have all heard the stories about the Core Four and how Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Derek Jeter, and Jorge Posada were teammates coming through the system and were teammates for a long time as members of the New York Yankees. On this day in 2011 the latter two, Jeter and Posada, appeared in their 1,660th regular season game as teammates, the most two players have been together in franchise history. Jeter and Posada entered the game as pinch hitters in the Yankees 16-7 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays passing Lou Gehrig and Tony Lazzeri who held the previous team mark in 1937.

Also on this day in 1934 the Yankees got a little creative to keep Lou Gehrig's consecutive games streak going in a game against the Detroit Tigers. The Yankees listed Gehrig as their leadoff batter and shortstop and after Gehrig singled in the top of the first he was replaced defensively at short. The streak continued, Gehrig rested his lumbago injury, and the Yankees lose the game 12-11.