Tuesday, May 19, 2015

BREAKING: Jacoby Ellsbury Leaves Game w/ Leg Injury

Jacoby Ellsbury has left the game between the New York Yankees and the Washington Nationals with a potential lower leg injury. Ellsbury was seen noticeably wincing after a swing in the 4th inning although he did stay in the game to take a walk and later run the bases to score a run. Ellsbury did not look healthy running the bases and was taken out of the gate in the next half inning. Great.

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Washington Nationals 5/19

The New York Yankees and the Washington Nationals start a mini two-game interleague play series tonight at RFK Stadium with the Yankees pitchers hitting for the first time in 2015. On the mound and in the batter’s box for the Yankees will be Nathan Eovaldi who will be facing off with Gio Gonzalez for the Nationals. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees have two games in Washington followed by an off day and travel day before the team finally returns home to the Bronx to play host to the Texas Rangers inside Yankee Stadium. Get your Yankees tickets here on the blog by clicking the Yankees Tickets link in the header to get your tickets now and guarantee your spot for the weekend series. If you can’t make it out to Yankee Stadium then that’s no problem just be sure to join us in the comments section or on Twitter (@GreedyStripes) to keep the conversation going almost every single night.

I can’t tell if that’s Eovaldi with the bat in his hand or if that’s Jacoby Ellsbury stepping up to the plate but either way it is game time so I will let Nathan take it from here. Go Yankees!

Masahiro Tanaka Scheduled For Rehab Start On Thursday

It's been confirmed that Masahiro Tanaka will indeed have his first rehab start this Thursday night. He will throw around 45 pitches for the Scranton RailRiders, who will face the Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays).

While Tanaka may only need one rehab start before returning to the Yankees, I have a feeling he'll start one more time in the minors. If the Yankees are going to be careful with anybody, it's Masahiro.

USA Today’s Weekly MLB Power Rankings

It’s that time again as we take a look at the power rankings for Major League Baseball that USA Today releases weekly on their site. Last week the Yankees were riding high off another great weeks’ worth of games and came in at a season high #6 position. That position, like many this week, are expected to change so let’s stop speculating and jump right into it.

First and foremost we always start with the biggest rise of the week and that honor this week goes to the Chicago White Sox who rose nine spots all the way to the #15 position on the list. The biggest fall this week goes to a fellow American League East team the Toronto Blue Jays who fell 10 spots all the way to the #21 spot after a terrible week. Speaking of terrible weeks the Yankees week was far from ideal as the team fell to the #7 spot this week one position down from their ranking last week.

Finishing out the AL East division is the Tampa Bay Rays who came in 10th, the Boston Red Sox who came in 17th and the Baltimore Orioles who finished the week off in the 19th position. The Top five positions in the rankings went to none other than the St. Louis Cardinals, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Detroit Tigers, the Kansas City Royals and the Houston Astros in that order. The bottom five positions went to the Cleveland Indians, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Oakland Athletics, the Colorado Rockies and the Milwaukee Brewers in order.

We are starting to see some of the early season pretenders start to fall and the slow starters start to rise as teams can no longer hide behind the small sample size. If New York can stay in the top 10 all season long that would be ideal if you ask me.

The 2013 Yankees, the 2014 Team in New York, the 2015 Edition and Déjà vu

When the Yankees woke up this morning they were in a familiar place this early in the season, first place. The Yankees have reached first place in each of the last two seasons before the injury bug, the Father Time bug and the general sample size bug struck the team and left them out of the playoffs. If you asked me this a week ago my answer would be 100% different but if you’re asking me today I may have to admit that I see more than a few differences between the 2013 Yankees, the 2014 Yankees and this year’s edition of the New York Yankees.

Each of the team started rather slow before making early run before the calendar turned to June including a stop in first place. Each team also reached first place right around the time the injury bug began to hit the team. Already the team has lost Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Capuano, Ivan Nova, Chase Whitley, Brendan Ryan, Gregorio Petit, Jose Pirela and others for various lengths of time due to various injuries and we’re barely halfway through May. Whether Tanaka’s elbow holds up or Michael Pineda’s shoulder is healthy or CC Sabathia’s rubber band that is holding his knee together will hold up all season long remains to be seen but if these players cannot stay healthy all season long the Yankees will not go far, bottom line.

Father time also began to creep up to the Yankees aging players as the likes of Carlos Beltran continue to struggle like Alfonso Soriano in 2014 and Vernon Wells before him. Players like Brian McCann continue to hit far less then what their baseball cards show while the shift continues to eat up Mark Teixeira for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Instead of Robinson Cano in 2013 the team dealt with Brian Roberts struggling in 2014 and Stephen Drew from July 31st, 2014 to present who is starting a campaign to change the Mendoza Line of .200 to the Drew Line at .165.

The common denominator here, besides the fact that the team is aging, struggling to hit with runners in scoring position and susceptible to injury is the fact that the team almost exclusively refuses to rely on prospects in any major position or situation. The team could have had nine young options at second base this offseason and still would have signed Drew while Capuano continues to block the ways of Bryan Mitchell, Luis Severino and others. If the team does not learn from their past they are doomed to repeat it in their future and their future may include another missed postseason in 2015. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Washington Nationals 5/19

The New York Yankees are fresh off their first off day in nearly three weeks and a series loss at the hands of the Kansas City Royals as the team limps into Washington for this contest. This contest marks the first time that the Yankees will send their starting pitchers to the plate in an Interleague game this season but the good news for the Yankees is that pitcher will be Nathan Eovaldi. Opposing Eovaldi for the hometown Nationals is Gio Gonzalez. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Eovaldi is a former Miami Marlins pitcher and NL East competitor so taking at bats and facing the Washington Nationals offense should be no problem for the big right hander tonight. Eovaldi is coming off a start in which he allowed four runs in 7.1 IP against the Tampa Bay Rays in a loss that seemed to be in the bag for New York.

  • Gonzalez is coming off a start in which he allowed five runs on nine hits in five innings and will face off against the Yankees for the seventh time in his career. Gonzalez owns a career 1-5 record with a 6.75 ERA against them in his career, a great sign for the Bronx Bombers.

The Yankees only play two games in Washington before another off day on Thursday night so I may be a little cranky on Thursday. When I get Yankee deprived for too long I tend to get a bit ill, can you blame me though? Anyway let’s at least get a series split here and let’s go home, shall we? Go Yankees!

New York Yankees Leaders Through 39 Games

The New York Yankees are fresh off an off day that followed by 17 games in 17 straight days before facing off with the Washington Nationals tonight in the Nation’s Capital. The Yankees season has been one that can be described as one of ups and downs thus far with a few bright spots and as many disappointments. Let’s take a look at the Yankees leaders in key categories through the team’s first 39 games of the season.

Games Played:
Chase Headley - 38

At Bats:
Jacoby Ellsbury - 147

Runs Scored:
Jacoby Ellsbury - 28

Jacoby Ellsbury - 48

Carlos Beltran - 11

Home Runs:
Mark Teixeira - 11

Mark Teixeira - 28

Jacoby Ellsbury - .327


CC Sabathia - 8

Dellin Betances - 19

Michael Pineda - 5

CC Sabathia - 5

Andrew Miller & Dellin Betances – 0.00

Masahiro Tanaka – 3.22

Michael Pineda – 55

Dellin Betances - 32

TGP Daily Poll: Nathan Eovaldi the Batter

Nathan Eovaldi has seen the Washington Nationals plenty of time in his career with the Miami Marlins in the NL East and has seen his fair share of at bats. Eovaldi knows how to handle an at bat and will reach base at least one time on Tuesday.

Vote in our prediction poll on Knoda.com

Weekly Check In: Aaron Judge

The New York Yankees still have one of the most prominent hitters in all the minor leagues hitting bombs with their Double-A affiliate the Trenton Thunder. The Yankees lack a true power bat that truly scares away the opposing pitchers and teams in the Bronx leaving many to wonder why the team won’t call up Aaron Judge. Whether the team truly believes that Carlos Beltran can turn things around or not remains to be seen but either way the longer Beltran is expected to not only play right field but hit in the middle of the lineup the longer this season is going to be for fans of the Yankees.

When Judge steps up to the plate for his next game he will be looking to improve on this stat line:


This Day in New York Yankees History 5/19: Orioles and Yankees Brawl over Crack Jack’s?

On this day in 2004 the Yankees spokesman Jason Zillo announced that Cracker Jack, baseball's most famous snack for over 100 years, will not be sold at Yankee Stadium anymore. Instead the Yankees will sell Crunch 'n Munch, a change that the Yankee Stadium fans rejected, because it "tastes better." Long story short that didn't last long and you shouldn't mess with baseball history, especially Cracker Jacks.

Also on this day in 1998 the Orioles Armando Benitez nails the Yankees Tino Martinez between the shoulder blades with a pitch and starts a brawl between the two clubs. This came after Benitez gave up a three run home run to Bernie Williams in that eight inning. Graeme Lloyd raced onto the field from the Yankees bullpen and punched Benitez in the face and Alan Mills bloodied Darryl Strawberry's face after he ended up in the Baltimore dugout going after Benitez.

Finally on this day in 1929 a 17 year old college sophomore and a 60 year old truck driver are trampled to death with another 75 fans injured when a violent storm causes the overcapacity bleacher crowd to run for cover at Yankee Stadium. The stampede happened in "Ruthville" and the game would be called with the Yankees ahead of the Red Sox 3-0 at the end of four and a half innings, an official game.