Thursday, August 13, 2015

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Cleveland Indians 8/13

The New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians will finish off their three game set tonight inside Progressive Field with another great pitching matchup. Frankly, I won’t miss the likes of Jose Ramirez and Michael Brantley because those guys flat out kill the Yankees for whatever reason, but I digress. New York will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound tonight to face off against Trevor Bauer for Cleveland. The game will be played at 7:10 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees head to Toronto for a game tomorrow night and who could blame the team if they weren’t looking ahead just a bit. If the team doesn’t get a win tonight in Cleveland though the team may be looking ahead of Toronto for the rest of the season while the team fights for a Wild Card playoff spot and not a division title. Hopefully they keep that in mind tonight and get the victory the team needs. To root for that victory from afar head on over to Twitter and give @GreedyStripes a follow. We’re around for each and every Yankees game this season, all 162 and beyond.

Jacoby Ellsbury is ready to set the table and Mark Teixeira is ready to send some messages to the fans so let’s get to it. Go Yankees!

Michael Pineda Is Officially Being Rushed

Michael Pineda is officially being rushed back to the starting rotation by the New York Yankees. It was originally thought that Pineda would not be back until sometime in September but that plan has changed just as fast as the Yankees lead in the American League East evaporated to the Toronto Blue Jays. Pineda is set to throw around 45 pitches in a rehab start this weekend and could be forced into the rotation four or five days after that. That escalated fast.

Twitter Poll: Yankees Rushing Pineda?

Michael Pineda was placed on the 15 day disabled list back on July 30th with a forearm strain and was expected to miss at least a month with the injury. Just a week later with the Yankees lead in the American League East Division all but evaporated the team’s stance on Pineda’s forearm strain and the amount of time he may be out has seemingly changed. Pineda is already throwing off a mound and has even thrown a bullpen session with the possibility of a rehab assignment start as soon as this weekend or next week. Doesn’t it seem a little odd that the Yankees, who are notorious for babying their pitchers, would change their tune so quickly and doesn’t it seem like the team is rushing Pineda back for a playoff run? What say you? Enter a Twitter Poll!

I may be a fool but I trust the team of Yankees doctors and decision makers. I know the team is seemingly going all out to make the postseason in 2015 but I truly don’t believe they would make one playoff trip worth more than the career of Pineda. If he’s throwing 100% pain-free and issue free then I have no issue bringing him back at the end of August rather than the beginning of September, two weeks won’t make or break Pineda if he’s pain free. It could make or break the Yankees though…

To be involved in our next Twitter Poll head over to the app and give us a follow @GreedyStripes. Be on the lookout for our next Twitter Poll question, we will not use your responses without telling you first!

Greg Bird is the Word!

Quick little post from my phone while I'm at work, shhhh. The New York Yankees have selected the contract of Greg Bird from Triple-A and will plug him into the lineup tonight against Cleveland. 

To clear a 40 man roster spot Diego Moreno was added to the 60 day DL. To make room on the 25 man roster the Yankees sent Nick Goody back to Triple-A Scranton. 

More when I'm not mobile. 

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.

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Cleveland Indians 8/13

The New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians will finish their three game set this week at Progressive Field tonight with the Yankees desperately needing a win. The Toronto Blue Jays are right there at the top with the Yankees and while a sweep of the Indians would have been nice that didn’t go according to plan unfortunately. The Yankees will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound tonight looking to put some space between them and both the Baltimore Orioles and the Toronto Blue Jays while the Indians counter with Trevor Bauer. The game will be played at 7:10 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Eovaldi heads into the start looking for his 12th win of the season after taking a no-decision in his last start against the Toronto Blue Jays. Eovaldi is facing the Cleveland Indians for just the second time in his career tonight after throwing seven innings of one-run ball in his first start against the Indians, taking the loss.

  • Bauer heads into this start after having a rough time last time out when he surrendered three home runs in a surprising victory. Bauer has now allowed 14 home runs in his last nine starts and has a 5.27 ERA, a great sign for the Yankees going forward tonight.

The Yankees start an absolutely huge series with the Toronto Blue Jays tomorrow and all throughout the weekend so it’s imperative that the team heads into that series with a victory. The team needs a hot streak, they need an offense explosion and they definitely need a win tonight in Cleveland. Eovaldi has received a ton of run support this season and has given the Yankees a ton a wins so I feel good about saying that I feel confident about tonight. Go Yankees!

When Joe Girardi Was Good At Bullpen Management

"Five run lead, two outs in the 9th? Bring me Andrew Miller"

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 while still managing to never seemingly have a pitcher in the top 20 or so in innings pitched out of the bullpen. That has all changed since the 2014 season.

Girardi seems to be sipping on the Torre milkshake and has overused some of his relief pitchers this season, namely Dellin Betances and Justin Wilson.Heading into last night's game both Betances and Wilson have pitched in over 50 games each while the likes of Chasen Shreve and Andrew Miller not far behind them. Girardi has also gone to the likes of Esmil Rogers and Chris Capuano time and time again while the dynamic duo were with the team earlier in the season. Well, before Brian Cashman got Girardi out of his own way by designating them both for assignment.

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. Ramirez is gone, Greene is gone and now Mitchell has been delegated to long relief in the bullpen. The rest of the revolving door, Diego Moreno, Branden Pinder, etc. have not been used for the most part unless the game was well out of hand one way or the other.

Severino 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 is just two starts. Mitchell is called up and left to rot in the bullpen as Adam Warren gets used as a long man even though Mitchell was donned the long man by the same man making the in-game decisions, Girardi. Girardi or his binder.

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. You're wearing out the arms of Betances, Wilson, Shreve and Miller and that won't work for anyone in the long term. Trust what you have, whether they have been there before or not.

Yankees September Call Up Predictions

I woke up this morning in a prospects kind of mood for some odd reason. Maybe it’s because I’m getting frustrated watching the likes of Stephen Drew and Brendan Ryan struggle offensively while far superior hitters waste away in the minor leagues. Or maybe it’s just because I get more excited about the future for Aaron Judge in Yankees pinstripes with every home run that he hits. Either way we are a shade over two weeks away from the calendar changing from August to September which means we’re a month away from potential September call ups. I know it’s early, and I’m likely to revise this before September rolls around at least once or twice, but I figured I’d take a shot at predicting the September call ups for the New York Yankees in this 2015 season. 


Aaron Judge
Slade Heathcott


Robert Refsnyder
Jose Pirela
Cole Figueroa


Gary Sanchez


Branden Pinder
Nick Rumbelow
Caleb Cotham
Nick Goody
Jacob Lindgren (assuming health)
Chris Martin
Diego Moreno (assuming health)

As you can see I didn’t go out on a limb much at all with many of these picks. The Yankees have shown in years past that they are plain ole’ unwilling to add a man to the 40 man roster simply to be a September call up. That is the main reason guys like Greg Bird are not on the list and why a plethora of middle relief pitchers are. I added Judge because I could see him as the only Yankees prospect to not be on the 40 man roster now but added for September. His bat is looking better and better each day in Scranton while the Yankees need for offense in the Bronx increases as well.

The pitching side of things is a mess, two or three of the guys on the list could be in the majors by tomorrow or even by the time this post comes out. The revolving door in the Yankees bullpen has been difficult to keep up with this season but this is as it stands at the time of this writing. Did I snub or miss anyone? Disagree with the list? Leave a comment in the comments section. 

Weekly Check In: Jose Pirela

As you all probably know by now we like to leave the Thursday Weekly Check In post wide open rather than tying ourselves down to one particular player. We may check in on new prospects who are emerging in the system, prospects you may never heard of before or prospects that are knocking on the door to Yankee Stadium with ferocity. Today we look at Pirela who is knocking on the Yankees door and on the borderline of beating it down right now, he’s hitting that well and he’s that hot ever since his demotion back to Scranton/Wilkes Barre.

What has been keeping the drum banging down for both Pirela and tomorrow’s check in, Robert Refsnyder, was the fact that both Stephen Drew and Brendan Ryan came out of the gates after the July 31st trading deadline firing on all cylinders. They were both hitting the ball, defending well and helping the team have a potent bottom of the batting order. That was then, this is now. The time is drawing ever closer to make the move for either Refsnyder or Pirela with Pirela likely ahead of the RailRiders second baseman on the depth chart.

Will Pirela make it back to the Bronx before September? If he keeps hitting like this the Yankees may not be able to ignore him for much longer…


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

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."