Thursday, May 26, 2016

Do the Cubs and Yankees Matchup in a Trade?

The New York Yankees have clawed from the basement and the cellar of the American League East and while the team is still far behind the Boston Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles in the division a playoff spot is not completely out of the question. Now if the Yankees played in the National League Central where the Chicago Cubs rule the land right now that may be a different story which got me to thinking would the Cubs and Yankees make good trade partners? Both if the Yankees fall out of playoff contention or if they stay in it you would have to think either way the answer is yes. Right?

If the Yankees fall out of contention they have a lot that they could offer to a team stockpiled with talent and prospects. The Chicago Cubs are the same team that was ready to put Kyle Schwarber in left field despite defensive concerns simply to get his bat into the lineup, you don’t think Chicago would take a rental of Carlos Beltran (assuming he accepts and waives his no trade clause) if the price was right? You don’t think Chicago would jump at the opportunity to acquire one or both of Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller? I sue do.

If the Yankees continue to compete can they hook up in a trade as well? I don’t see why not but it obviously becomes far less likely. The Yankees still have a ton of outfield depth, Mason Williams should be back to join a stable of outfielders including, but not limited to, Slade Heathcott, Ben Gamel, Jake Cave and others, and they should be better equipped in the bullpen depth department as well. In this case the deals would be smaller and likely only involve Cubs prospects but a trade could be struck nonetheless in my opinion.

I don’t pretend to be a Cubs expert nor do I know a whole lot about their system and their needs and strengths but I believe a deal could be struck between these two teams at some point. They already have a working partnership and have made trades in the recent past so why not? We just have to wait and see how the cookie crumbles before we define what kind of trade this will be for the New York Yankees because it looks like either way the Cubs are going for it in 2016.

Happ Bests Sabathia, Leads Jays to Series Win, 3-1

     On an absolutely beautiful afternoon in the Bronx, the Yankees and Blue Jays squared off in the rubber game of the three-game series. New York sent the big left-hander C.C. Sabathia and his 3.41 ERA to the mound in hopes of building off of what was a quality outing in his hometown Oakland. Trono countered with a lefty of their own, J.A. Happ, whom they re-acquired this past winter. Ever since Happ was traded from Seattle to Pittsburgh at the trade deadline last season, he has pitched extremely well, with an impressive 2.64 ERA and a 12-4 record over that span. Both lefties were impressive all afternoon long, with Happ besting Sabathia in an extremely quick and well pitched game.
     The game started off in rather ominous fashion as the first five outs were recorded via the fly out, with the first two outs nearly leaving the ballpark against Sabathia. But, it was the sixth fly ball in a row that did clear the fence and into the Yankee bullpen, coming off the bat of Starlin Castro, giving the Yankees a one run lead. Sabathia found himself in some trouble in the top of the third, where Devan Travis reached base with two outs on an error by the shortstop Gregorius. Jose Bautista then advanced Travis to third when he hit a single into centerfield. Josh Donaldson followed up by drawing a walk against Sabathia, loading the bases for the Blue Jays. On a 1-0 count, Edwin Encarnacion lined a hanging cutter into left field that scored both Travis and Bautista, pushing Toronto to a 2-1 lead. Because of the error, both runs were recorded as unearned for Sabathia.
     As previously referenced, both starters were absolutely phenomenal today. If Didi didn't make that error in the third inning, C. C. Would be pitching a shut out into the eighth inning. But, as it happened, the big man left with a final line of seven innings pitched, only allowing two hits, walking one and striking out seven. As for Happ, he cruised through seven innings of work, allowing only three hits, just the one earned run while walking three with five punch outs.
    After Delin Betances and Gavin Floyd worked scoreless eighth innings, Toronto would add an insurance run in the top of the ninth against the Yankee closer Aroldis Chapman. Even though it was not a safe situation, or even a lead for that matter, Chatman had not pitch since the last game in Oakland on Sunday and Girardi wanted to get some work in for the left-handed fireballer. And it would be three well-placed singles off of Chapman, with the final single off the bat of Travis, that scored Justin Smoak and extended the Blue Jays lead to 3-1. The Yankees were unable to score in the bottom of the ninth off to Roanoke closer Osuna, locking down the series victory for Toronto.
     The Yankees embark on yet another 10 game road trip tomorrow, beginning with their first game of three against Tampa Bay, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM ET.

Live Game Updates: Blue Jays at Yankees - 5/26

4:18 p.m., End 1st: Yankees take a 1-0 in the first on Starlin Castro's opposite-field solo shot. Castro is now hitting .400 (6-for-15) in his career against Blue Jays lefty J.A. Happ.

4:51 p.m., Mid 3rd: Blue Jays take a 2-1 lead on a two-run single by Edwin Encarnacion in the third. 

5:06 p.m, End 4th: Yankees' bats swinging wet newspapers so far against Happ. They go down in order again in the fourth as Toronto retains its lead.

5:58 p.m., End 7th: It's still 2-1 Toronto. Yankees' offense really struggling.

6:44 p.m., End 9th: That's your ballgame. Blue Jays win 3-1. 

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Toronto Blue Jays 5/26

The New York Yankees and the Toronto Blue Jays are set to finish off their three game series this week in the Bronx with a pretty rare start time. This afternoon the game will begin at 4:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium which is a change of pace for both teams. The pitchers who will need to adjust to the early, or late depending on how you look at it, start time will be CC Sabathia for the Yankees and JA Happ for the Blue Jays. Well I’ll have to adjust to it as well since I don’t get off work for another 30 minutes and then I have to drive home thus missing a big chunk of this contest unfortunately. Damn you MLB schedule makers!

The Yankees head south to Tampa Bay to take on the Tampa Bay Rays for the next three games before heading to visit our neighbors from the north in Toronto to begin another week of fun for the Yankees. This gives you plenty of time to click the Yankees tickets link at the top of the blog and plenty of time to snag a pair of seats for when the team returns home to the Bronx. Until then head over to Twitter and give @GreedyStripes a follow to interact with us during the game and the entire season and you may even find yourself in a Twitter Poll or two like we had this morning.

Don’t let Happ hit you in the hand/arm with a pitch, get out alive and get out of the Bronx with another big series win. Go Yankees!

Meet a Prospect: Layne Somsen

The New York Yankees made a move recently this week that did not get a lot of headline or news time. The team claimed right-handed relief pitcher Layne Somsen off waivers from the Cincinnati Reds as the Reds tried to slip their Triple-A pitcher through waivers to clear a spot on their 40 man roster. Brian Cashman was paying attention and claimed the 27-year old pitcher with the intent of placing him with the Scranton/Wilkes Barre RailRiders. Somsen has minor league options left, which obviously intrigues the Yankees very much these days, and now joins the Scranton Shuttle and the organization. Let’s meet him. This is Meet a Prospect: The Layne Somsen Edition.

Layne R. Somsen was born on June 5, 1989 and began his amateur baseball career in South Dakota with the South Dakota State University Baseball team. While at SDU Somsen earned the Summit League Pitcher of the Year award during his senior season in 2013 which caught the eye of the Cincinnati Reds who came calling in the 22nd round of the 2013 MLB Draft. Somsen signed quickly and immediately began his professional career with the franchise getting all the way to Triple-A by the end of the 2015 season.

After a strong 2015 season Somsen was sent to the Arizona Fall League to pitch for the Peoria Javelinas which prepared him for the 2016 season. Somsen was added to the 40 man roster and was called up on April 25, 2016 when Jay Bruce was placed on the paternity list although Somsen never appeared in a game nor made his MLB debut. Somesen was recalled on May 9th of this year and made his MLB debut on May 14th before Cincinnati tried to sneak him off their 40 man roster and back to Triple-A in recent weeks.

Somsen was pitching to a 1.89 ERA at Triple-A Louisville at the time of the claim despite not appearing on any top prospects lists for the organization this winter. Now Somsen will take that effectiveness with him to the RailRiders and maybe, quite possibly, eventually all the way to the Bronx. Welcome to the organization and the team Layne but more importantly welcome to the family. Make us all proud!

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Toronto Blue Jays 5/26

We had our fun now it’s time to get back to work and talk about the finale of the three-game set between the New York Yankees and the Toronto Blue Jays. Pitching has been the key for both teams, for better or for worse, in this series and that will likely be the case once again this afternoon in the Bronx. In the pitching matchup today the Yankees will send CC Sabathia to the mound who is making just his second start since coming off the disabled list while the Blue Jays will counter with JA Happ, a pitcher that strikes fear in Yankees left-handed hitters for all the wrong reasons. Injuries.

Sabathia pitched extremely well in his first start off the disabled list last week holding the Oakland Athletics to just one run on three hits in six innings of work. Sabathia looked good and his strained groin muscle looked completely healed in the start which is a great sign for New York going forward.

JA Happ was originally scheduled to pitch on Friday but will be bumped up a turn to make the start today allowing Aaron Sanchez an extra day of rest. Happ has been known to hurt left-handed hitting Yankees batters, Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson are recent examples of this, so I’d be happy just getting everyone out healthy and alive this afternoon in the Bronx.

The game will be played at 4:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV. The Yankees presumably enjoyed their stay in the Bronx these three games but it’s back out on the road after this contest as the team takes the trip to Tampa Bay for the next three games. It’s a getaway game of sorts but it’s not a game the Yankees should look past. This team needs all the help, and the wins, that they can get at this point. Go Yankees!

Twitter Poll: Which Current Yankee Would You Like to See Punch Jose Bautista in the Face?

So there I was sitting there watching the Yankees game on Tuesday night, the night that Nathan Eovaldi held the Toronto Blue Jays to just two hits in a contest New York had to win, when I got a random tweet on Twitter. The tweet is above from Franks Yanks asking me which member of the current Yankees roster I'd like to see punch Jose Bautista in the face. I graciously answered like I do every mention on Twitter and quickly informed him that I would be stealing his idea while giving him all the credit. This sounded like a Twitter Poll to me!
Brett Gardner:

Brian McCann:

Alex Rodriguez:

Bryce Harper????
CC Sabathia:

Michael Pineda:
Dellin Betances:
And by the way... my answer was.....

To be involved in our next Twitter poll, which we haven't done nearly enough this season and for that I apologize, head over to the app and give @GreedyStripes a follow. Then simply wait for us to tweet out a Twitter Poll tweet where we won't use your responses without letting you know they are going on the blog first.

Weekly Check In: Aaron Judge

The New York Yankees are deep in the outfield department but one man stands above the rest of the Yankees current options and prospects, literally and figuratively, and his name is Aaron Judge. Even people living under rocks can steal others wifi signals these days and have surely heard of him as he’s now made two trips to Yankees spring training camp and is also enjoying a second trip to Scranton/Wilkes Barre with the RailRiders.

Judge is currently blocked by an army of outfielders currently on the Yankees 40 man roster, a 40 man roster that he himself is not a part of, but his time will come. It will come very, very soon. Just be patient and keep mashing those fastballs. 


This Day In New York Yankees History 5/26: DJ2K

On this day in 2006 Derek Jeter becomes only the eight player in New York Yankees history to collect at least 2,000 hits in his career. The little dribbler that became an infield single off Kansas City's Scott Elarton would put Jeter into the record books. The other seven Yankees to reach the milestone are Yogi Berra, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Don Mattingly, Babe Ruth, and Bernie Williams.

Also on this day in 2000 a fan at Yankee Stadium falls from the upper deck and remained motionless for five minutes on the screen behind home plate. The 24 year old man suddenly sits up and raises both his arms high and is immediately arrested.