Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/31

Here we go again ladies and gentleman as the New York Yankees once again make the trip to Kauffman Stadium to take on the Kansas City Royals in the finale of their three game set. We have had some explosive offensive and some awesome pitching matchups in this series and we should be treated to another tonight as the Yankees send one of their rookie arms in Luis Cessa to the mound to face off with an arm they drafted and brought to the Major Leagues in Ian Kennedy. The game will be played at 8:15 pm ET inside Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

Follow along during this game and every game left this season by liking our page on Facebook and by giving us a follow on Twitter @GreedyStripes. The Yankees head to Baltimore after this game to take on the Baltimore Orioles, a team they are chasing in both the AL East division race and the 2nd Wild Card race, so be sure to check those games out as well this week and into the weekend.

Cessa vs. Kennedy. Let’s get to it. Go Yankees!

Yankees Send Greg Bird, Others to Arizona Fall League

The New York Yankees have announced who they are sending to the Arizona Fall League this season and boy is the roster exciting. New York announced that they will be sending injured 1B Greg Bird (his shoulder must be fine and will be fine for 2017 as long as he passes this test), 3B Miguel Andujar, SS Tyler Wade, SS Gleyber Torres, RHP Brody Koerner and three roster spots listed as TBA.

It is interesting that Tyler Wade is listed as an outfielder on the roster, three pitchers will be added as the TBA's and one of them is expected to be James Kaprielian assuming his health and Torres is going but not Jorge Mateo.

The Arizona Fall League runs from October 11th through November 17th and once again these Yankees prospects will represent the Scottsdale Scorpions. Joining them will be prospects from the Phillies, Mets, Giants and Angels.

Yankees Also Acquire Eric Young Jr. from Milwaukee

Just minutes after posting that the New York Yankees had traded Ben Gamel to the Seattle Mariners for two teenage pitching arms news broke that Brian Cashman also pulled off a deal with the Milwaukee Brewers. The Yankees will send cash considerations to Milwaukee for outfielder Eric Young Jr. Young will presumably get Gamel's now vacated 40 man roster spot and will likely work as the team's pinch running specialist that they love to employ in September.

In a word.... why? Couldn't Gamel steal bases potentially? Ben Gamel stole 19 bases in Triple-A this season and Young stole 23 in Triple-A. It's just cash and the Yankees got two pitching prospects back in return, I still don't get it though. Brian Cashman has made me look bad for doubting him a ton lately so I'm willing to wait and feel this one out.

Yankees Trade Ben Gamel for Two Prospects

The New York Yankees have traded outfielder Ben Gamel to the Seattle Mariners in a deal that will bring two pitching prospects back to the organization. Right-handed pitchers Jio Orozco and Juan De Paula are coming back from Seattle in the deal.

Gamel fell victim to a numbers game here in the Bronx as the Yankees have far too many outfielders, and far too many talented players that need protecting in the Rule 5 Draft this winter, and not enough opportunities for the best hair in the organization to get a true shot. I'm disappointed in losing the Triple-A Player of the Year in 2016 but at the same time I'm happy to see him get a long and a true shot inside Safeco Field. It's bittersweet for me.

In return the Yankees will get a 19-year old power arm in Orozco (Seattle's 20th best prospect at the time of the trade) and an 18-year old recently signed international free agent out of the Dominican Republic. Both come with a ton of projections and talent but both are too far away to really get too excited about just yet. Orozco shows promise with at least three of his pitches but has only reached Rookie Ball while De Paula has spent his tenure with the Mariners organization in the Dominican Summer League.

I hate to see you go Ben but I wish you well in your travels. Stay well.

Yefrey Ramirez Named FSL Pitcher of the Week

Yefrey Ramirez Named FSL Pitcher of the Week

Tampa, Fla. - The Florida State League named Tampa Yankees RHP Yefrey Ramirez Pitcher of the Week today. This honor was for games played August 22 - 28, 2016. This is the second time Ramirez has been named FSL Pitcher of the Week this season, the first time was for games played June 27 - July 3, 2016.
Ramirez was perfect through six (6) innings on Wednesday, August 24th and totaled eight (8) innings pitched allowing only one (1) hit, while striking out eight (8) batters.
He was selected by the Yankees from Arizona in the first round of the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 Draft on 12/10/15.
The Tampa Yankees are the Single-A Advanced Affiliate of the New York Yankees. For more information about the Tampa Yankees call (813) 673-3055 or

Press Release: Chris Gittens, Others SAL Postseason Honorees

RiverDogs First Baseman Chris Gittens, Pitching Coach Justin Pope among SAL Postseason All-Star Honorees
Gittens four shy of the Charleston franchise record for home runs, RiverDogs pitching staff has set franchise record for strikeouts under guidance of Pope

CHARLESTON, SC –With less than two weeks remaining in the regular season, the Charleston RiverDogs have already had one of their most memorable seasons to date. Clinching their first playoff berth in 11 seasons with a 42-27 first half, the RiverDogs are gearing up for the South Atlantic League divisional round beginning on Wednesday, September 7. With postseason baseball almost upon the Lowcountry, RiverDogs first baseman/designated hitter Chris Gittens was named to the SAL Postseason All-Star team as the designated hitter while pitching coach Justin Pope also garnered All-Star accolades as announced by the league office on Tuesday.

Gittens becomes the first postseason all-star player for the RiverDogs since IF Rob Lyerly was Charleston’s lone representative in 2010 and Pope becomes the first RiverDogs coach to be selected to a postseason All-Star team in the Riley Park era. It is just the second time since 1997 that the RiverDogs have had two or more of their members selected to the Postseason All-Star team with three RiverDogs players collecting All-Star honors in 2009 (RHP David Phelps, OF Melky Mesa, IF Corban Joseph).

Gittens, 22, has been the heartbeat in the middle of the RiverDogs’ lineup since Opening Day. The Sherman, TX native is currently hitting .253/.359/.478 with 21 homers that ranks second in the South Atlantic League while driving in a team-high 70 runs. With seven games remaining in the regular season, Gittens is four home runs shy of Charleston’s single-season franchise record and three behind the league leader, Jose Pujols, who has 24 long balls for Lakewood. After making a diving stop on Friday night in Hickory and sustaining a lower body injury, the 6’4”, 250 pound slugger was placed on the 7-day disabled list on Saturday.

“You are always looking for a power first baseman and we certainly have one with Gittens,” said RiverDogs manager Luis Dorante. “He’s had his up and downs but he’s one of those guys that keeps his composure and tries to work through it and shows maturity to get through that. The Yankees are definitely thinking about this kid down the road.”

Gittens’ most impressive game came on the road in West Virginia on June 16 when the native Texan smashed three home runs, one of just two hitters in the league to complete the trifecta, while going 3-for-5 with a career-high six RBI. Along with his eye-popping power, the Yankees’ former 12th round pick in 2014 has shown solid plate discipline, reaching base safely in a league-high 33 straight from April 21-June 2 while drawing 56 walks on the season that ranks fifth in the league.

Pope garners All-Star accolades in his first season as the RiverDogs pitching coach and his seventh in the Yankees organization. The former Yankees minor leaguer has led Charleston to a league best 3.06 ERA with RiverDogs hurlers piling up a franchise record 1,183 strikeouts, already 14 more than the 2011 RiveDogs team still with seven games still remaining. Charleston also leads the league with 15 shutout victories this season, needing just one more to surpass another franchise record accomplished twice (1986 Charleston Rainbows & 1980 Charleston Royals) while also leading the SAL in WHIP (1.17), fewest runs (475) and fewest hits allowed (963).

Along with the success that the Charleston staff has had, Pope has also excelled in moving players up the ladder and maintaining success amongst a record level of turnover. Charleston has seen 36 different pitchers suit up for the RiverDogs this year, the most in the franchise’s history, with 14 different pitchers being called up to High-A Tampa this year. Two players who spent time in Charleston this year have made it up as high as Double-A (RHPs Will Carter and Travis Hissong).

“It’s well deserved,” said Dorante of Pope. “The numbers speak for themselves with the pitching staff that we have that has impressed at this level with guys coming in and going out and it’s not easy to deal with that and Popey has done a tremendous job with that to get guys to fill in, throw strikes and have success. It’s one of the keys to us being in the playoffs.”

Pope comes to the Lowcountry by the way of the Appalachian League where the West Palm Beach, FL native lead the rookie ball Pulaski Yankees to a league best 3.08 staff ERA in 2015. Pope served as the manager of the Short-Season Single-A Staten Island Yankees in the

New York-Penn League from 2012-13 with the Baby Bombers compiling a 64-86 record under his tenure. He previously worked on the Double-A Trenton Thunder staff as the pitching coach in 2011 after beginning his coaching career with Staten Island as the pitching coach in 2010.

Originally selected as the 28th overall pick by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1st round of the 2001 First-Year Player Draft, Pope accrued a 38-34 record with a 3.34 ERA over eight minor league seasons with the Cardinals (2001-03), Yankees (2003-07), and Phillies (2008) reaching as high as Triple-A. Prior to his professional career, the 6’0” righty attended the University of Central Florida where he was named an All-American after his junior season in 2001. Pope still stands as the Knights’ all-time leader in career wins (32) and strikeouts (335) and was inducted into the University of Central Florida Athletic Hall of Fame in 2013.

The Annual All-Star Team was also highlighted by the selections for Most Outstanding Pitcher, Most Outstanding Major League Prospect and Most Valuable Player. Mitch Keller of the West Virginia Power (Pittsburgh Pirates) was selected as the Most Outstanding Pitcher. Keller has an 8-5 record and an ERA of 2.46 in 23 games. Brendan Rodgers from the Asheville Tourists (Colaorado Rockies) was named the Most Outstanding Major League Prospect. Brian Mundell of the Asheville Tourists was chosen as the Most Valuable Player. Mundell is leading the league in hits (164), extra base hits (72), total bases (265) and runs scored (90) in 129 games, including a SAL and Minor League Baseball record 57 doubles.

Without their All-Star slugger, the RiverDogs wrap up their final homestand of the regular season in a three-game series in a potential SAL Championship preview with the Hagerstown Suns, the Class A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, from August 30-September 1 at The Joe. The RiverDogs will send RHP Daris Vargas (10-6, 2.66) in the opener with Hagerstown starter to be announced. The RiverDogs await their first round playoff opponent with the Rome Braves and Augusta GreenJackets separated by just a half game in the second half standings.

Ticket information for the homestand can be secured by contacting the box office at (843) 577-DOGS (3647) or online at Tickets for Game 2 of the SAL Divisional Series on Friday, September, 9 at 7:05pm are also available. Those that can’t make it to the park can follow every pitch on WTMA 1250 AM and streaming online at

2016 South Atlantic League All-Star Team

Patrick Anderson
Justin Pope
RH Pitcher
Mitch Keller
West Virginia
LH Pitcher
Brian Gonzalez
Relief Pitcher
CJ Robinson
Yermin Mercedes
First Baseman
Brian Mundell
Second Baseman
Josh Tobias
Brendan Rodgers
Third Baseman
Kelvin Gutierrez
Utility Infielder
Ian Sagdal
Yonathan Daza
Tate Matheny
Jose Pujols
Utility Outfielder
Luis Alexander Basabe
Designated Hitter
Chris Gittens

Most Outstanding Pitcher
Mitch Keller
West Virginia
Most Outstanding MLB Prospect
Brendan Rodgers
Most Valuable Player
Brian Mundell

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/31

One last time here inside Kauffman Stadium, let’s go. Today the New York Yankees and the Kansas City Royals finish off their three-game set in what should be another great pitching matchup and another great contest. On the pitching side of things the Yankees are set to send their rookie starter Luis Cessa to the mound as he looks to continue to impress as a starter in the Bronx this season while the Royals will counter with Ian Kennedy. Should be interesting, let’s get to it.

Cessa has made two starts in the Major Leagues in his career and has won both of them after shutting down the Baltimore Orioles and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Cessa did give up a pair of Manny Machado home runs in his last start but for the most part he kept the ball on the ground and had an easy six innings of work en route to a victory.

Kennedy continued to struggle with the long ball in his last start giving up two runs in 5.1 innings of work. Kennedy had five straight quality starts before that last start and a 1.14 ERA in his last six starts though so this may be a tough one for his former club tonight.

The game will be played at 8:15 pm ET inside beautiful Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV. Every time the Yankees look dead in the water this season they bounce right back stronger than ever and I expect nothing less from the boys today. Get it done and get out of town with a victory and let’s keep this thing moving right along. Go Yankees!

You Have to Think the Yankees Playoffs Hopes Died in This Series

The title of this post is pretty self-explanatory, you have to think the Yankees playoffs hopes in 2016 kind of died in this series. Don’t you? I mean I don’t want to start the day out with doom and gloom and all that and I am far from giving up on this team this series but it’s no longer getting late pretty early, it’s late and it’s getting later. Winning series is one thing but with so many teams in front of them in both the AL Wild Card chase and the AL East Division race you get to a point where winning series is no longer enough. At some point you have to start sweeping series and sending a message to the other teams in the race and I think that time is now. Like right now.

The Yankees had a great opportunity to send such a message in this series against one of the hottest teams in the American League but the team came out flat on Friday with Michael Pineda on the mound. Losing hurts but losing to one of the teams in front of you head-to-head hurts even more. It’s almost like losing two games, at least that’s how it feels, and with the season officially switching from a marathon to a spring tomorrow the Yankees need to start sweeping almost everyone. In a game where failing seven times out of ten attempts and in a game where losing 62 times a season is considered great and monumental I just can’t see the mathematics of it all working out.

Again, I’m far from giving up on the team and I couldn’t care less about mathematics. I’m just venting because I’m a fan, I’m passionate and I’m just a little discouraged right now is all. A few wins and I’ll be right back, I just wish those wins could have come against this Royals team in the way of a three-game sweep. Win today and worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. That’s all you can do.

This is not a dagger in the heart of the Yankees this season, maybe we can use this as a rallying call. Here’s a call to arms. Bring us your young, your youthful, you’re talented that don’t know they are supposed to be nervous and cautious to make a mistake in a pennant race and a playoff chase. Bring us your prospects, your key players and bring us to the Promised Land once again in 2016. Please?

Weekly Prospects Check In: Justus Sheffield

The Yankees trade with the Cleveland Indians for Andrew Miller will take years to sort out a true “winner” but right now you have to think this deal is looking good for both clubs. The Yankees got a key reliever that has already made his MLB debut in Ben Heller, a new top prospect in Clint Frazier and today’s weekly check in showcase LHP Justus Sheffield. Heller has toiled around in the majors while Frazier has struggled a bit to transition to his new team but there has been no such struggles with Sheffield. This guy is dominating down in Tampa with the Tampa Yankees.

Sheffield has all the talent and the makings of being something special and I can’t wait to see how he grows in the organization. Here is what Sheffield has been up to this week and what he has been up to this season with Cleveland and with the Yankees: 


This Day In New York Yankees History 8/31: Indians 22 Yankees 0

The New York Yankees have had a very storied history including a ton of blowouts on both sides of the ball but none bigger than the whooping the Cleveland Indians put on the New York Yankees on this day in 2004. This actually tied the largest shutout margin in the history of Major League Baseball, but set the record in Yankees history, when the Indians beat the Yankees 22-0 in Yankee Stadium. The Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Chicago Cubs by the same margin way back in 1975 at Wrigley Field to set the original record.

Also on this day in Yankees getting clobbered history Omar Vizquel had six hits in that same 2004 game. Vizquel would become the first player in the 81 year history of Yankee Stadium to get six hits in one game.

Finally on this day in 1997 Don Mattingly Day was held at Yankee Stadium where his #23 jersey was retired in Monument Park. Mattingly was the Yankees captain from 1991 to 1995 and becomes the first Yankee to have his uniform number retired without reaching the World Series.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/30

Here we go ladies and gentleman as the New York Yankees once again make the trip to Kansas City and Kauffman Stadium for the middle game of their three game set. In the contest the Yankees and Royals will send their respective aces to the mound both looking for not only a victory but for a leg up on the other in the AL Wild Card chase as well. The Yankees will send Masahiro Tanaka to the mound looking to help the club leapfrog one of the many teams in front of them while the Royals counter with Edinson Volquez who is donned with the task of keeping the defending World Series Champions in the playoff hunt and discussion this season. The game will be played at 8:15 pm ET inside Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

Follow along during this game and every game during the stretch by either liking our page on Facebook, following our Twitter account @GreedyStripes or by leaving a comment on the game threads on the blog. If you choose to go the commenting route I just have one request and one rule. Don’t be a douche. That pretty much covers it all, well it should anyway. No one cares where you are in life or what you’ve done or haven’t done, all we care about is your passion and respect not only for the team but for the fellow passionate fans here as well. Thanks in advance.

Happy Tanaka Day ladies and gentleman. Go Yankees!

USA Today’s Weekly MLB Power Rankings

Another week of baseball down and another week closer to the August 31st trade deadline, which comes and goes tomorrow in case you don’t have a calendar handy, and another week closer to the playoffs. Whether the New York Yankees will be there in October remains to be seen but the team is doing everything they have to do in order to get there, but will it be enough? The Yankees are winning series, almost every series in fact, but at some point they have to start making up ground on the 900 (slight exaggeration) teams in front of them in the AL Wild Card chase and they do that by sweeping teams. Well that and by rising a bit in these rankings.

The Yankees despite have another great week of baseball rose just one spot in the rankings to the #16 position. I know I’ve said this a couple weeks in a row now but I think the crew over there is being cautious with this team and the first time they go on a three or four game losing streak they will drop them like they are hot in the rankings. Oh well, only way to prevent that is to keep winning I guess. The Yankees best bet to make the postseason may be to leapfrog the teams ahead of them in the division and win and to do that they would have to hunt down the #4 ranked Toronto Blue Jays, the #6 ranked Boston Red Sox and the #9 ranked Baltimore Orioles while holding off the #23 ranked Tampa Bay Rays.

The biggest rise of the week went to the Oakland Athletics who rose four spots to the #22 position while the biggest fall went to the Miami Marlins who are streaking in the wrong direction at the worst possible time. Miami slid five spots this week down to the #17 position in the rankings. Ouch.

The Top Five teams according to the rankings are the Chicago Cubs, the Washington Nationals, the Texas Rangers, the Toronto Blue Jays and the Cleveland Indians in order while the five teams that nobody wants to be in the league right now are the #26 Cincinnati Reds, the #27 San Diego Padres, the #28 Arizona Diamondbacks, the #29 Minnesota Twins and the #30 Atlanta Braves.

It will be interesting to see how tomorrow trade deadline affects the playoff chases and these rankings. Stay tuned for that and stay tuned to see if the Yankees continue to stockpile talent for their minor league teams and their future. 

The Yankees Fell for one of Those “Refinance Now” Commercials

Please overlook the tiny bit of sarcasm that I put in the title of the blog post as I couldn’t help it, that’s just how I am here lately. That was the first thought that popped into my head when I read that the New York Yankees were looking to refinance the $1 billion of debt they have racked up from building the new Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Hal Steinbrenner is looking for new and inventive ways to make more money for himself each and every day, isn’t he?

Truth be told the Yankees could save around $10 million annually from the loans they took out to build the $1.2 billion stadium in the Bronx that opened in 2009 which could go a long way if it was invested back into the team. The problem is, and of course I’m speculating here, it won’t. It will go straight back into the Steinbrenner family bank account never to be heard from again.

According to reports the Yankees are breaking even right now with the stadium payments (which will rise from $73 million annually to $76 million in 2018), YES Network dues and Legends Hospitality and its workings. The Yankees almost need this to work if they don’t want to operate in the red but since the Yankees used taxpayer dollars to build the stadium it may be easier said than done. Since the Yankees are tax-exempt and has 40-year bonds issued to help fund the stadium by the city of New York the team now has to kiss a little butt.

The team has already announced a willingness to give back 2,000 of the 9,000 parking spots it received from the Bronx Parking Development Co. now that the Yankees are officially losing money on their parking garages. Trust me, if there is a way for Hal to squeeze a penny out of this situation he will. Have no fear, we’ll be back to running in the green in no time. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/30

The New York Yankees and the Kansas City Royals continue their three-game set tonight inside Kauffman Stadium with the middle game of the series. We all watched Big Mike Michael Pineda and Dillon Gee go at it last night with the waterfall in the background in Kansas City and tonight we watch as the Yankees send their ace and stopper Masahiro Tanaka to the mound to face off with the Royals starter and ace Edinson Volquez. This one should be fun as well as both teams are pitching and hitting extremely well. Hopefully the Yankees play Kansas City tough tonight, that’s all you can ask for.

Tanaka has been everything he has ever been advertised as and more lately for the Yankees as he comes into tonight’s start on a great four start stretch. Tanaka has thrown two consecutive scoreless outings, a combined 14.2 innings, and has been dominant in his other two starts as well. Tanaka looks to keep the good times rolling tonight inside Kauffman Stadium.

Volquez was sharp in his last start as well against the Miami Marlins where the Royals ace gave up just three hits and two runs, although neither of the runs were earned. Volquez had struggled since mid-June before that start and could be finally turning the corner at the right time for Kansas City.

The game will be played at 8:15 pm ET inside Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV. In the battle of the aces who will come out on top? Will it be the red hot Royals behind Edinson Volquez or will be it the Yankees with their Japanese import on the mound? Stay tuned and find out. Go Yankees!

The Curious Case of the Pulaski Yankees Tweet Decoded

I don’t know if you saw it over the weekend, because many people including myself did not, but the Pulaski Yankees put out a puzzling tweet that almost begged to be decoded. I’d link it if the post were still up but around 30 minutes later the Pulaski Yankees had taken the tweet down. Like I said, I did not see it personally and have only read about it so I am basically paraphrasing what the tweet said here when I say that Pulaski said “RE: Blake Rutherford the Pulaski Yankees do not have a comment on Blake Rutherford, please contact the Yankees minor league complex in Tampa.” Something close to that anyway. The tweet was gone thirty minutes later and now we know why.

It was announced on Sunday that Rutherford would miss the remainder of the regular season due to a hamstring injury. This came on the heels of him just coming back from a knee injury. Did one cause or lead to the other? Who knows but Rutherford seems to be out until at least when the Instructional League’s start this fall/winter. At the time of the injury Rutherford was posting a .351 batting average with three home runs and 12 RBI for the Pulaski Yankees. It sucks to lose a top guy so here’s to hoping this isn’t a big or recurring issue for Rutherford.

In other Yankees top prospects with hamstring problem news New York has also lost their top prospect, Clint Frazier, to a hamstring injury. Frazier was added to the MiLB 7-day DL over the weekend as well after straining his right hamstring. At the time of the injury Frazier was hitting just .229 with seven extra-base hits and six RBI in 24 games since joining the Yankees organization on July 31st.

Get well soon boys. 

Weekly Prospects Check In: Gleyber Torres

Gleyber Torres, what can I say that I haven’t already said a million times before? This kid is talented and he’s overflowing with skills and the Yankees are lucky to have him in their organization. The Cubs paid a pretty penny for a rental closer but when you haven’t won a World Series in about 100 years I guess you tend to get desperate. Their loss, our gain is the way I look at it. I loved having Aroldis Chapman here but I think I’ll like having Torres here more, just a hunch.

We’re glad to have you Gleyber. What else can I say? Keep up the fantastic work: 


This Day In New York Yankees History 8/30: A Rod Hits 40 Home Runs

The New York Yankees are also well known as the Bronx Bombers but in their long storied history they have only had two right handed batters that have ever hit 40 home runs in a single season, Joe DiMaggio and Alex Rodriguez. Rodriguez joined DiMaggio, who hit 46 home runs in 1937, on this day in 2005.

Also on this day in 1961 a computer named Casey was used to predict the chances that Yankees outfielder Roger Maris would surpass Babe Ruth's single season home run record of 60 within 154 games. The IBM 1481 predicted that Maris had a 55% chance of hitting 61 home runs in 154 games to establish the new mark for home runs but ultimately Maris hit his 61st home run in the Yankees 161st game of the season.

Finally on this day in 1939 the Yankees Atley Donald throws a recorded 94.7 MPH pitch to establish a new record for the fastest fastball in Major League Baseball history. Donald would also win 12 straight games that year to set an AL record for most consecutive victories by a rookie starting pitcher.

Pineda, Bullpen Rocked For Eight In Royals 8-5 Game One Win

 In front of a sold out crowd in Kauffman Stadium, the New York Yankees fell to four games over .500 in their game one loss to the defending World Champion Kansas City Royals. Taking the ball and the loss for New York was Michael Pineda, who fell to 6-11 with another vintage Jekyll and Hyde performance tonight. And it wasn't just Pineda who under-performed tonight, the Yankee offense made Royals starter Dillon Gee look like a Cy Young contender, improving to 6-7 with his dominant start in game one of the three-game set.

The Royals jumped on Pineda really early as they opened the scoring in the bottom of the first. Jarrod Dyson led off the frame with an infield single, advancing to second on a wild pitch during the next at bat. With one out, Lorenzo Cain ripped a single into center that plated Dyson to make it a 1-0 game. Cain stole second and scored when Kendrys Morales smacked a single to left to extend the first inning lead to two. Salvador Perez followed with another single, advancing Morales to second base. Alex Gordon then ripped the fifth single of the inning to score Morales and put New York in a very early 3-0 hole. The first inning outburst was even more so frustrating considering Pineda would go on to retire the next 15 straight Royals over the following five frames.

The Bomber bats were silenced by Gee through the first three frames but managed to get one of those runs back in the top of the fourth. Didi Gregorius smoked a two-out double into right and then the next batter Starlin Castro unloaded on a Gee fastball and just missed a homerun by a matter of a few feet. Castro thought it was gone and had to bust it around first to make it an RBI double that pulled the Yankees to within two. That ended up being the one and only run Dillon Gee surrendered in his six strong innings of work.

In the bottom of the seventh, Morales hit a single up the middle to break the string of 15 straight batters retired by Pineda.  Salvador Perez followed with a single of his own that ended Big Mike's night as he was pulled for lefty Tommy Lanyne, who immediately got Gordon to ground out to first. With two outs, Layne was pulled for rookie righty Blane Parker, who proceeded to serve up a three run blast to Escobar that broke the game open to 6-1. Because Pineda was responsible for the two runners on base, his final line ended up at six innings pitched, allowing five runs on seven hits while tallying no walks and eight strikeouts. Parker then allowed a sharp single to rookie Raul Mondesi, advancing to second on a Dyson ground out and scoring on a Chestlor Cuthbert single that made it 7-1 Royals. Parker was pulled for the fourth reliever in the inning Kirby Yates, who allowed yet another RBI single to Eric Hosmer, ballooning their lead to seven.

Joe Girardi let out some game-long frustration in the bottom of the eighth as the Yankees tried  to claw their way back into the ball game. Unhappy with several called strike three calls on his batters and missed strike calls for his pitchers, a low strike call during Gregorius's at bat sent the manager over the edge and was sent to the showers as a result of his pent-up frustration laden demonstrative outburst.

As Rob Thompson took over as acting manager, the Yankees put together a small rally to inch themselves back into the game. Ellsbury reached on a catcher's interference, Hicks walked and Sanchez was hit by a pitch to load the bases. In the afore mentioned Gregorius at bat, The shortstop lined a double to right that scored Ellsbury and Hicks to make it a five run game. Castro followed with a sac fly that scored Sanchez to pull the Yanks to within slam reach at 8-4. After McCann made the second out of the inning, Chase Headley beat out a throw from the second baseman Mondesi to score Gregorius, making it even more interesting at 8-5. After a walk to pinch-hitter Brett Gardner that brought the tying run to the plate, Kansas City called on Kelvin Herrera to record the final four outs of the game, beginning by getting pinch-hitter Mark Teixeira out on a ground ball to second to end the threat.

Unfortunately, the Yanks late inning efforts were too little too late as Herrera gave up two ninth inning singles but close the door on the Royals game one win. This is the first game of a very important road trip that involves two teams, Kansas City and Baltimore, who are above New York in the race for the Wild Card. If they have any hopes of playing baseball in October, tonight's performance needs to be quickly forgotten, as they turn around to play game two tomorrow night, with first pitch scheduled for 8:15 PM/EST.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/29

Here we go ladies and gentleman as the New York Yankees make the trip to Kauffman Stadium tonight to take on the defending World Series Champion Kansas City Royals. In the first of the set this week the Yankees will send Michael Pineda looking to harness some of those "Big Mike" magical powers while the Royals will counter with Dillon Gee. The game will be played at 8:10 pm ET inside Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

Follow along during the game and for the remainder of the 2016 season by either liking our page on Facebook or by giving @GreedyStripes a follow on Twitter. Pineda vs. Gee. Let's go boys! Go Yankees!

ICYMI: The Yankees & The 2017 Rule 5 Draft

EDIT: After being handed the smack down in the comments section and delving a little deeper into some stats and research I found that both Gio Gallegos and Dietrich Enns have done far better than I originally thought. I still don't think they are protected because of the 40 man crunch that is going on in the Bronx right now but I cannot say anymore that they are 100% locks to not be protected either. Hat tip to Jeff Levin from the comments sections for the heads up and the correction.

The New York Yankees youth movement is in full effect and with the excitement of seeing the likes of Tyler Austin, Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge and others comes the tough decisions that come along with stockpiling talent down in the minor leagues. The toughest decision of all tends to always come down to who should you protect and who should you leave unprotected from the Rule 5 Draft every winter. The Yankees have quite a few notable prospects that could be up for grabs this winter so here is who they are and who I think the Yankees will and should protect. If you disagree or if I miss anyone please leave it below in the comments section.

The list of Rule 5 Draft eligible players this winter include Miguel Andujar, Jorge Mateo, Jake Cave, Kyle Higashioka, Dietrich Enns, Gio Gallegos, Brady Lail, Tyler Webb, Dante Bichette Jr., Rashad Crawford, Cale Coshow, Cito Culver, Ty Hensley, Mark Montgomery and Luis Torrens. It’s also worth mentioning that both Higashioka and Culver are set to become minor league free agents at the end of the season as well so the Yankees are at risk of losing them all together if they are not Rule 5 protected. So who gets protected and who doesn’t?

You have to think that both Andujar and Mateo are givens to be protected. I highly doubt either are technically MLB ready but they are also loaded with talents and I could see a team sacrificing their development for a year to keep them on the bench as a pinch hitter, pinch runner or defensive replacement just to keep them within their organization. Those are the easy ones. The list of players I don’t believe will be protected due to being at low risk of being taken are Bichette, Crawford, Coshow, Culver, Hensley and Montgomery. Those also seems close to being locks for me. Now for the hard part, the players stuck in the middle.

Cave was left unprotected last year and was taken by the Cincinnati Reds only to be handed back after spring training and with the absolute log jam in the Yankees outfield right now (barring an offseason trade) I can see him being left unprotected once again this offseason, and taken once again this offseason. Dietrich Enns, Gio Gallegos and Brady Lail remind me a lot of Rookie Davis who was protected last year and then traded. They aren’t blowing competitors away and knocking on the door in Triple-A but they are some of the best pitching prospects the Yankees have so any of the three could be protected, or maybe they won’t. I believe the toughest decision though will come down to the two Yankees catchers Luis Torrens and Kyle Higashioka.

Higashioka seems to be a late bloomer and has become a legitimate prospect for the Yankees while Torrens remains one of, if not the, top Yankees catching prospect in all of the farm affiliates. The problem with Torrens is that he is a good two or three years away from the Major Leagues. The talent is there, see what I said above about Andujar and Mateo, so he could be protected but I just can’t see it. I would personally protect Torrens and try to work out something on the side with Higashioka, see Mason Williams and Slade Heathcott for recent examples of this type of “release” then re-sign tactic the Yankees have employed to circumvent the 40 man roster, if at all possible. If not I think Higashioka will be protected and Torrens will be left out there for anyone to snatch up.

Most Popular Article of the Week: Alex Rodriguez to Work w/ Gleyber Torres & Jorge Mateo

When the New York Yankees and Alex Rodriguez announced that his final game would be played in the Bronx against the Tampa Bay Rays many wondered what the future would hold for the Yankees former 3B and DH. The team announced they would immediately sign Alex to a front office contract to serve as an advisor for the club but many wondered if that was just an empty promise and an empty job title just to get him off the roster. Now we are learning that Hal Steinbrenner has big plans for the man that will retire with 696 home runs, to work with the Yankees two top shortstop prospects Gleyber Torres and Jorge Mateo specifically.

Many of you should remember that when Alex flew through the Seattle Mariners system he was a shortstop prospect, a position he not only played but played exceptionally well until a trade to the New York Yankees pushed him to third base. Many of you should also remember that Alex is an absolute student of the game and has drawn rave reviews from anyone and everyone you talk to about his knowledge and understanding of this game. Who better than Alex, or maybe Derek Jeter, to teach and work with the Yankees two top studs at the position down in the minor leagues?

Alex is a Miami, Florida resident and currently both players are occupying the middle infield for the Yankees High-A affiliate, the Tampa Yankees, which makes things easier on the now retired slugger.

One last thing you should remember before we go. Remember when Didi Gregorius was acquired and was struggling at the shortstop position for the Yankees? Remember the “Daily Dammit Didi” tweets on Twitter? It was Alex Rodriguez that worked with Gregorius in the infield and boom, six months later Gregorius was being robbed of a Gold Glove at the shortstop position. It’s not a coincidence. If he can do that for Didi imagine what he can do to help mold and shape young guys like Torres and Mateo. The sky is the absolute limit right now for both and I couldn’t be more excited about it.

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Kansas City Royals 8/29

The New York Yankees have a lot of teams ahead of them if they want to make the playoffs this season either as a Wild Card or as a division winner and one of those teams in the mix is the team the Yankees will square off with tonight in the Kansas City Royals. The Royals are one of the hottest teams in baseball right now so hopefully the Yankees young bats and youthful talent that doesn't know any better or know to be nervous in the middle of a playoff push can cool them down. If not it may be season over for the Yankees, their playoff lives are unfortunately that delicate at this point. In the start tonight the Yankees will send Michael Pineda, who was pushed back a day and supposed to start yesterday, to the mound to square off with Dillon Gee for the Royals.

Pineda took a bit of a step back in his last start as he gave up five earned runs in just 5.1 innings pitched against the Seattle Mariners. Pineda was not helped by his bullpen or Anthony Swarzak in specific in the 7-5 loss for New York but despite that Pineda has still racked up 10 losses in what has become a disappointing season.
Gee looks to start a string of good starts tonight after struggling a bit in his last start against the Miami Marlins. Gee pitched well enough to win in most cases giving up three runs in just 5.1 innings pitched but the game resulted in a loss for Kansas City, something they cannot afford too many more of if they want to make the postseason in 2016.

The game will be played at 8:15 pm ET inside Kauffman Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV. The Yankees have for whatever reason played the Royals tough over the last few years whether Kansas City was down or well on their way to their first World Series in 20-years and I expect nothing less from the boys tonight in the contest. Go Yankees!