Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Betances, Kelley Collapse in 8th as Yankees Lose Heartbreaker to Orioles

Michael Pineda threw 5 innings of one-run ball and Francisco Cervelli took Chris Tillman (7 IP, 2 ER) deep for a two-run home run, but due to the late and sudden struggles of the Dellin Betances/Shawn Kelley duo the Yankees found a way to lose to the Orioles tonight, 5-3, in the series finale at Camden Yards.

After Cervelli launched that homer in the top of the third, surprisingly, the Yanks had a comfortable 2-0 lead, one that'd hold for a while thanks largely to the two-hit, four-strikeout performance of the aforementioned Pineda.

Nonetheless, with one out in the eighth frame Betances, who had retired the previous seven batters without issue, surrendered a solo shot to O's Second Basemen Johnathan Schoop, tying the contest in an unexpected way.

Also, Schoop's blast allowed Baltimore to bring the top of their lineup to the plate, an unfortunate happening that, following a hit and a walk off Kelley, eventually set up a go-ahead three-run shot by Adam Jones to pretty much end the competition.

Yes, in the top of the ninth New York scored on a Chase Headley groundout, but since that obviously wasn't enough to even the score the Yankees did fall in the end, the fourth straight game that's happened.

8/13 Yankees Open Game Thread vs. Baltimore Orioles

Welcome to tonight's open thread for the finale of a quick two game set between the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles. This is basically a must win for the Yankees if the team has any aspirations of making the postseason this year or winning the AL East division. The Yankees welcome back Michael Pineda off the disabled list tonight to start for the injured David Phelps. The Orioles will counter with Chris Tillman who has had a strong second half this season and usually gives the Yankees fits when he is on the mound. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network, ESPN and Wednesday Night Baseball, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with WFAN.

Remember to grab a pair of Yankees tickets off the blog while you're here and skip all those annoying fees or shipping costs associated with other sites. Be sure to follow us on Twitter by following @GreedyStripes and Like our page on Facebook by searching for The Greedy Pinstripes.

It's an open thread so feel free to use the comments section to talk about whatever you would like. We like to give our readers free reign (within reason) in the comments section, for better or worse. Enjoy the game Yankees family and enjoy the rest of your evening. Go Yankees!

Nick's Pick's: Yankees VS Orioles 8/13/14

Monday's game was disgusting to say the least. Things looked like they were going really well with a Yankee lead and Capuano pitching his best; then disaster struck. One pitch to Chris Davis later, the Yankees found themselves down and out. Tonight is a new game though, and after the rain postponing last nights game the rest might help provide a plus for this battered Yankees team. 

Michael Pineda is coming back for the Yankees tonight, starting his first game since April 23 and the Yankees have never needed him more than now. Hopefully the Pineda who pitched to a 1.83 ERA in four starts can bring in a win tonight. The Orioles will be countering with Chris Tillman, which is bad news for Yankee hitters. Tillman has been dealing as of late and since the All-Star game Tillman is pitching with a 2.30 ERA. Looking at pick's for tonight's game were hard, mostly because who knows how well Pineda will pitch and if the Yankees will even hit off of Tillman. Hoping for the best, but here we go. 

Top Pitcher: I am going to stick with my huge support for the starters and predict that Pineda comes back strong and gives the Yankees six strong innings while racking up seven strikeouts. He will give up two runs, but by limiting the runners on base I think he will provide enough for a win. 

Top Hitter: This will be tough, as Yankee hitters are struggling but I think we will see Jacoby Ellsbury help tonight. Ellsbury has faced Tilllman enough to know how he pitches and I think he will go 2-5 with a double and two RBI's. That pick rides on a lot of luck and a little fairy dust. 

Clutch Performer: I have went defense before with my clutch performer and tonight look for Francisco Cervelli to provide some amazing defense behind the plate. Pineda needs his catcher to call a great game, and Cervelli knows how much the Yankees need this game and a healthy Pineda. I can see his defense being the difference maker tonight. 

I am a glass half full kind of guy, but at the same time I know it has water in it regardless. Whether you call me a realist or an optimist I have to go with the Yankees. There is no way we can lose tonight, but if we do the world will still turn. The division hangs on every game, and tonight the Yankees will walk away with a crazy 4-3 win. 

I figured I would take this moment to express my thoughts on the passing of legend Robin Williams. Williams was not only my idol, but was an idol to many around the world. His loss has hit me hard, and knowing he is gone is still surreal to me. What he did in his life is something no one can match, and I will forever be grateful that I had the opportunity to watch him everyday. The Yankees know about legends, and Robin Williams was the Babe Ruth of comedy; no one can or will come close to his greatness. Here is a clip with Williams talking about his experience at Yankee Stadium.  

RIP Robin Williams: 1951-2014 "Cricket is basically baseball on valium" 

Catch Up: Tanaka Feels Good, Hal Talks, Leroux DFA

Here's a quick post to get your caught up with today's Yankees news:

Masahiro Tanaka feels absolutely no pain in his right throwing elbow after throwing 10 fastballs today. Tanaka has amped up his rehab from throwing just light tosses on flat ground to real fastballs from 120 feet. This came after Tanaka threw 90 throws from 120 feet earlier in the day. No pain. If all goes well Tanaka will be back in the middle of September.

Hal Steinbrenner talked today and all you need to know is that the team expects and plans to have Alex Rodriguez back in 2015 and the team does not know what they will do with Brian Cashman, a free agent after the 2014 season, as of yet. If they do they are not telling anyway.

Finally Michael Pineda has been activated and Chris Leroux has been designated for assignment to make room right Pineda on the roster. I predicted this was the plan the day he was called up, I love it when a plan comes together.

Stay tuned.

BREAKING: Pineda Will NOT Use Pine Tar Tonight

phot courtesy of

When asked by reporters in New York Michael Pineda answered the question that I think every Yankees fan wanted to know, will he use pine tar. Pineda's answer was a very emphatic "no" followed by a death stare. First person to blame a bad inning on the lack of pine tar loses on Twitter and in life tonight.

8/13 Yankees Game Preview vs. Baltimore Orioles

The New York Yankees are fresh and well rested after the mother nature induced off day yesterday and will play in the finale against the Baltimore Orioles tonight in Camden Yards. The Yankees welcome back Michael Pineda to the mound as he was activated off the disabled list to face off with the Orioles Chris Tillman. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network, ESPN on Wednesday Night Baseball, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman on WFAN.

Pineda has not made a start since April 23rd and has been out with a teres major muscle strain in his right throwing shoulder. Pineda was activated off the DL today and looks to be the savior for the Yankees starting pitching rotation and the man that sends the team into the postseason.

Tillman has had a strong second half for the first place Orioles and is coming off a start in which he pitched 6.2 innings and allowed just two runs against the St. Louis Cardinals. Tillman lowered his ERA to 2.30 while only allowing four hits and taking a shutout into the seventh inning.

You're running out of time to see the Yankees live this season and see Derek Jeter before he rides off into the sunset with a pair of gift baskets in his arms. Get your tickets right here on the blog for when the Yankees return home next week. 

Go Yankees!!

Remember When Joe Girardi Was Good At Bullpen Management?

Any Yankee fan can remember how hard it was to watch this team during Joe Torre's later years as the manager of the Yankees. He consistently used the same group of veteran arms out of the bullpen seemingly every single day and never found a rookie he would even consider trusting unless it was a blowout. Enter Joe Girardi for the 2008 season instilling hope and faith in all Yankees fans that the future was bright, even when the team missed the playoffs.

Girardi relied heavily on young arms that season and in 2009 when the team won the World Series and while he relied on his bullpen heavily he never overused one or two guys. Girardi had Mariano Rivera in his bullpen and brought us David Robertson and still managed to never seemingly have a pitcher in the top 20 or so in innings pitched out of the bullpen. That has all changed in 2014.

Girardi seems to be sipping on the Torre milkshake and has overused some of his relief pitchers this season, namely Dellin Betances. Heading into play last night Dellin had thrown the most innings of any relief pitcher in Major League Baseball this season with 68.2 innings pitched. Adam Warren has thrown the 11th most innings in MLB as a relief pitcher with 58.2 innings pitched in 2014 and David Huff has the third most innings pitched out of the Yankees pen and has thrown the 69th most innings this year with 47.1 innings pitched. David Robertson does not make an appearance on the list until #86 with 44.2 innings pitched.

It's not just his overuse of pitchers that has me scratching my head it's his blatant disregard for using rookie pitchers as well. Mark Melancon was donned as the eventual replacement for Mariano Rivera and was ultimately shipped off in a trade after falling out of favor in New York. He pitched once every two weeks and came into games with obvious rust and command and control issues. This sounds eerily similar to the way Jose Ramirez was handled while in the Yankees bullpen. Ramirez does not have much to complain about though because Girardi flat out refused to use Bryan Mitchell or Shane Greene until it was absolutely necessary.

Greene was brought into the rotation when the Yankees were essentially out of depth and at their wit's end with the rotation and the righty excelled. Mitchell was up for his third time this season and was finally allowed to pitch in a game, a blow out, and pitched two scoreless innings. How was Mitchell rewarded? He was sent down the next day for a "fresh" arm (fresh meaning veteran in this context) the next day.

Girardi use to manage a bullpen and do it well but lately it seems like the pressure to win and make the playoffs is hurting him much like it did Mr. Torre. At least Torre had a reason to worry, he was working for George Steinbrenner, Girardi doesn't. So if anyone in the Yankees organization is reading this please pass this along to Joe because it doesn't take an arm chair quarterback to see that you're doing it wrong.

Yankees Leaders Heading Into Baltimore Finale

The Yankees head into Baltimore tonight to finish off now a shortened two game series so let's take a look at the Yankees leaders up to this point this season:

Games Played:

Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury have each played in 115 games this season, speed kills. Martin Prado has played in 117 games but obviously the vast majority of those came in Arizona. 

At Bats:

442 at bats for Jacoby Ellsbury

Runs Scored:

Brett Gardner has 74 runs scored to lead the team as the table setter. Must be all those home runs. 


Jacoby Ellsbury has 123 hits 


Jacoby Ellsbury has 24 doubles

Home Runs:

Mark Teixeira has sent 19 Teix Messages to Yankees fans this season


Mark Teixeira and Jacoby Ellsbury lead the team with 52 RBI's. 


Francisco Cervelli leads the team with a .289 batting average, which is encouraging, but the Yankee regular leading the way in average is Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner who are both hitting .278. 


Masahiro Tanaka leads the Yankees pitching staff with 12 wins and has five more then his next closest competition in Hiroki Kuroda. Oh and he has been out a month with an injury.


Hiroki Kuroda has eight losses for the Yankees. Brandon McCarthy has 11 but just one in New York. 


Dellin Betances has an anemic 1.44 ERA out of the pen and the lowest ERA for a starter is Masahiro Tanaka's 2.51 ERA and Michael Pineda's 1.83 ERA for a months worth of games. 


Masahrio Tanaka has a staggering 135 K's followed by Brandon McCarthy's 129 and Dellin Betances 102 K's. 

Thornton Was "Caught Off Guard" When Nationals Claimed Him

Former Yankees Reliever Matt Thornton was surprised that the team let the Nationals claim him, he recently revealed to The New York Post's Dan Martin. 

“Being the Yankees, generally when they’re in contention, they’re moving pieces around, but not looking at money,” Thornton said. “Maybe I overvalued myself. I thought I was an important part of the bullpen and important piece to the team that was trying to fight for a playoff spot.”

Prior to being sent to Washington, as you may already know, the veteran left-hander struggled mightily in games such as July 10's loss to the Indians and July 21's to the Rangers, in which he allowed two earned runs and four inherited runners to score.

Still, overall Thornton was okay during his time in The Bronx, putting together a solid 2.55 ERA in 24 2/3 innings.

Add on the fact #48's more experienced and probably better than any other option the team has and it's understandable for him to get caught off guard by last week's move, even if he wasn't always the most reliable. 

Remember, since Thornton and his two-year/$7 million contract were dealt eight days ago Rich Hill has been brought up from Triple-A, actually doing alright in his first four appearances.

The Cry For Homegrown Talent May Be Ill Advised: 1999

The New York Yankees have two World Series in the 90's with the perfect mix of homegrown talent, free agency, International signings, and trades. Many fans, including myself, have been blowing up Twitter asking for a shake up and to bring up the talent in the farm system but that may not be the best recipe for success. If you don't learn from history you are doomed to repeat it and I'd like to repeat another dynasty so let's see how the Yankees kept this dynasty going in 1999.

The Yankees infield looked a lot like the previous years infield in 1999 with Tino Martinez, Chuck Knoblauch and Scott Brosius joining the homegrown talent of Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada. The designated hitter role went mainly to Chili Davis, Jim Leyritz, and Darryl Strawberry three non homegrown players.

The outfield looked very similar to the 1998 squad as well with Paul O'Neill in right field, Chad Curtis in left, and the homegrown Bernie Williams in center. New York had Ricky Ledee and Shane Spencer on the bench once again and we also were treated with a Tony Tarasco (Baltimore, think Jeffrey Maier) appearance or two before it was all said and done.

The pitching wasn't changed much for the defending champions as Roger Clemens (Blue Jays) joined Orlando Hernandez, David Cone, Hideki Irabu, and the only homegrown talent in Andy Pettitte.

The bullpen once again had mainstays Mike Stanton and Jeff Nelson along with Jason Grimsley (Angels, Indians), Dan Naulty (Twins), and Allen Watson (Angels and others) as the new guys in the pen. The Yankees once again had Mariano Rivera in the pen but got another homegrown talent to join him in Ramiro Mendoza.

Another season, another World Series, and another team, built more around free agency, trades, international signings, etc. and less dependent on homegrown players.

Manny Banuelos Promoted To Triple-A

The New York Yankees are in desperate need of starting pitching, even with the return of Michael Pineda tonight, and they may have a pitcher on the horizon that could help. Manny Banuelos is back for his first season since Tommy John surgery and has been promoted to Triple-A Scranton to pitch with the RailRiders. The 23 year old southpaw has had an up and down season in 2014 but may be ready to finally compete in the Bronx.

Banuelos has a 4.23 ERA this season starting with the Double-A Trenton Thunder and the High A Tampa Yankees and has a 1-3 record. Banuelos has been on a "Joba Rules" esque pitching plan and has seen his innings limit watched closely this season. Manny has gotten better with every start this season and has only allowed more than one run just once in his last four starts. The time may be now for Banuelos.

The Triple-A season has about three weeks left not counting the postseason so Banuelos may be an option for the Yankees when the rosters expand in September. Banuelos would likely be the second of the "Killer B's" in the Yankees bullpen joining Dellin Betances. Stay tuned, the Yankees are finally being aggressive with their prospects and it is definitely a sight for sore eyes.

Yankees To Skip Hiroki Kuroda, Praise Joe Girardi

The New York Yankees and Joe Girardi must have been reading The Greedy Pinstripes yesterday when I made the case that Hiroki Kuroda was hitting his yearly August wall. The Yankees had a little help from mother nature last night and the game was rained out saving the bullpen and allowing the Yankees to skip Kuroda this turn in the rotation.

The Yankees will activate Michael Pineda today for tonight's finale in Baltimore and will pitch Brandon McCarthy on Friday. Shane Greene will go Saturday and Chris Capuano will go on Sunday before Kuroda (probably) pitches again on Tuesday.

Kuroda needs a day and the Yankees can finally afford to give him a day and I truly believe it will work out for everyone involved in the end.

Yankees Lose A Game They Were Winning When It Ended.... Say What?

This has not happened very often in the history of Major League Baseball and it wouldn't happen again after this day in 1978. The Yankees somehow found a way to lose a game that they were winning when the game was called, sounds a lot like the 2014 version of the Yankees. Conveniently the Yankees and the Orioles were playing on this day in 1978 as well.

The Yankees were losing 3-0 heading into the top of the 7th inning in Baltimore when the rains came. The Yankees had scored five runs in the top of the inning and were actually winning the game when the umpires called the game and called the game rained out. The old rules reverted back to the last completed inning to end the game once it's official which had the Yankees trailing by that 3-0 score.

This rule would eventually be changed in 1980 to the rules we know today and in this case would have seen the game suspended. Talk about finding a creative way to lose. You really can't predict baseball Suzyn.

This Day In New York Yankees History 8/13: Mickey Mantle Passes Away

Orlando Hernandez came to the New York Yankees after defecting from his native country of Cuba and had an immediate impact on the Bronx Bombers. Hernandez burst onto the scene in 1998 and set a new Yankees rookie record on this day in 1998 when he struck out his 13th batter of the game. Hernandez broke a 30 year old Yankee rookie record when he struck out Mark McLemore to end the eight inning of a 2-0 victory of the Texas Rangers. Hernandez passed Stan Bahnsen's record of 12 strikeouts as a rookie in his 1968 Rookie of the Year season for the American League.

It is also interesting that Hernandez would only reach the 13 K mark one more time in his career.

Also on this day in 1995 the day turned somber as Mickey Mantle passed away at age 63. Mantle lost his battle with liver cancer and passed away at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas with his wife Merlyn at his side.

The Cleveland Indians were in town on this day in 1995 and their lead off hitter that year was Kenny Lofton. Lofton wore the #7 jersey so the entire pregame at Yankee Stadium the Yankees scoreboard ironically displayed "At Bat: 7."