Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Chicago White Sox 4/19

Ladies and gentleman it is game time one last time between the New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox as a part of this three game set. The Yankees will also say goodbye to Yankee Stadium for the time being after this contest and will travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Pittsburgh Pirates so a win would be all that much sweeter on the plane tomorrow with the off day. Let’s get it. The man donned with that task of bringing home a victory tonight is the Yankees ace Masahiro Tanaka while the Chicago White Sox will counter with Dylan Covey. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on WPIX Channel 11 and MLB TV. You can also follow along during the game on the radio by tuning into WFAN.

Interact with us and follow along on Twitter by giving @GreedyStripes a follow as we continue to try and put the social aspect back into social media. Enjoy the game and as always, Go Yankees!

MLB Umps May Begin Explaining Replay Decisions/Calls

You know how after every penalty in the NFL the referee’s go on the loudspeaker in the stadium and announce what the penalty was and who the penalty was on? Well that may begin happening in Major League Baseball as well, sort of. Instead of penalties the MLB umps may soon be announcing video review decisions with explanations if they and Major League Baseball executives get their way.

Currently MLB and the umpires are expected to discuss a plan where the crew chief wears a headset and microphone to explain replay rulings, although nothing has been agreed upon nor set in stone at the time of this writing.

Early discussions and indications seem to point towards the umpires wearing headsets during the All-Star Game in Miami during a dry run while they continue to do so during the second half of the MLB season and into the postseason.

I haven’t fully made up my mind on how I feel about this yet which leads me to believe that it’s one of those changes that don’t really affect the integrity of the game. Eventually I come to terms with and accept those so I don’t see why I wouldn’t with this new rule either. Stay tuned.

USA Today’s Weekly MLB Power Rankings

Another week of Major League Baseball and another set of MLB Power Rankings courtesy of the USA Today. To see the complete list and to give those guys a few views for all their hard work head over to the USA Today Sports and check it out for yourselves while we recap the Yankees-related and pertinent information here.

The Top Five teams according to the rankings are the Chicago Cubs, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Houston Astros, the Baltimore Orioles and the Washington Nationals while the list is rounded out with the five worst teams being the Seattle Mariners, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Oakland Athletics, the Atlanta Braves and the San Diego Padres.

The New York Yankees rose five spots from last week, a perfect week will do that to a club though I guess, all the way to the #11 spot while the Boston Red Sox were #6, the Tampa Bay Rays were 19th and the Toronto Blue Jays were 25th overall.

Lots of movement and small sample sizes this time of the year so nothing to see here just yet. Carry on. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Chicago White Sox 4/19

The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox will finish off their three-game set tonight in the Bronx while the Yankees also end their first home stand of the year tonight as well. Yankee Stadium has been good to the Yankees, or maybe it’s been the other way around all along, this week and during this home stand so I think both parties deserve a victory before the off day tomorrow. Let’s make that happen. The New York Yankees will send Masahiro Tanaka to the mound looking to build on a much better start last time out, Happy Tanaka Day by the way Yankees family, while the White Sox will counter with Dylan Covey.

Masahiro Tanaka picked up his first win of the season last time out after pitching 6.1 innings. Tanaka did give up a first inning home run but Starlin Castro picked up his starter with a two-run home run of his own to tie the game helping the Japanese-born righty to settle down. Tanaka has been pitching with some newfound arm strength and velocity and is trying to work through that along with some new mechanics to account for it, expect a much better Tanaka in the Bronx.

Dylan Covey was selected in the Rule 5 Draft this winter and added to the 40 man roster as a part of the White Sox starting rotation. Covey made his MLB debut last time out against the Minnesota Twins pitching into the sixth inning after settling down.

The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on television on WPIX Channel 11, MLB TV and can also be heard on the radio with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman on WFAN. This will mark the first time the Yankees have been on WPIX this season and this game will also mark the end the final game of this incredible home stand. Let’s go out with a win. Go Yankees!!!

To Trade A Gardner Is To Believe In Tomorrow…

Credit:  Presswire

Prior to the season, I was saying the Yankees should move veteran outfielder Brett Gardner.   Now, fourteen games into the 2017 season, I am more convinced than ever he should be moved.  Granted, it is not his fault that he turns 34 on August 24th (I personally blame his parents) but he does not fit into the long-term view for the new and improved New York Yankees. 

For the season, Gardner is batting .205 with no home runs or RBI’s.  He has stolen five bags but all things considered, his production is replaceable.  The Yankees need to find room to consistently start fourth outfielder Aaron Hicks.  Hicks, 27, has shown he can be a productive hitter when he regularly knows that he’ll be in the lineup.  For the season, Hicks has much better numbers than Gardner (outside of the total stolen bases).  Hicks has received 15 less at-bats than Gardner but only has two less hits.  Hicks has three home runs on the year, with eight RBI’s.  His two stolen base attempts ended in failure but regardless, Hicks has been the better player.  Even though he hasn’t put up the numbers for AAA Scranton/Wilkes Barre-Barre this month, I think Mason Williams, 25, is a very capable fourth outfielder.

I would love to unload center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury but with his contract, he’s not going anywhere.  We’re four years into his 7-year, $153 million contract and at this point, there’s nothing he can do for redemption (at least not in my eyes).  He is what he is, and he’ll never be more, and he’ll never be that dude who tore up the league for the Boston Red Sox in 2011.  That was his Brady Anderson year.  Chained to Ellsbury for the foreseeable future, it means that Hicks would need to play either left or right.  Aaron Judge is the awakening Giant in right so he’s not going anywhere.  That only leaves left field.  It makes the most sense to move Gardner and begin the outfield youth movement with full intensity.  Gardner’s been a good Yankee so slap him on the back, give him a watch, and send him on his way. 

I suppose the opposing point of view is that Ellsbury will be hurt at some point and it will be necessary to slide Gardner to center, creating a left field opening.  At some point this season, the Yankees need to begin placing higher value in Dustin Fowler as the center fielder of the future unless they plan to discard Fowler (a mistake in my opinion) to make way for Jorge Mateo.  I wish Mateo was closer to the Majors so that he could force a competition but at this point, Fowler will be ready much sooner.  Since Mateo is still learning the position, he is much further behind Fowler than just levels in the Minor Leagues. 

I wouldn’t want to over-expose Matt Holliday but he could still play left occasionally in a pinch.  As former Yankee Lee Mazzilli once said (regrettably), “Left field is a position for idiots”.  Not trying to demean the position, but there are others in the organization that can play the position as back up for Hicks, Ellsbury, and Judge.  There always seems to be fourth outfielders readily available as free agents or ones that could easily (and cheaply) be had.  I am not worried about the outfield depth.  As we move deeper and deeper into the season, guys like Clint Frazier move closer to potential callups.  

It’s time to move Gardy.  Maybe not this exact minute but no later than July if not sooner.   

Now that I’ve ripped Gardner for the day, he will probably go on a hitting tear.

Why is it that the best Yankees beat writers always move on?  I remember loving the work of Peter Abraham on the LoHud Yankees Blog, and these days he is a Red Sox beat writer for the Boston Globe.  I get it, he’s a Boston guy so it was an opportunity to go home.  Then, I loved reading Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News and listening to his podcasts.  Now, he is a writer for writing about, Egads!, other teams.  Or Marc Carig of The Star Ledger moving from the Yankees to the Mets.  Next, you’ll probably tell me that Brendan Kuty or Bryan Hoch have found other things they’d like to do.  Sorry, just my rant about losing Feinsand.  I enjoyed his time as the Yankees beat writer for the Daily News.

The win streak ends at eight.  Bummer.  Usually, when a starting pitcher goes eight innings and only allows three hits and strikes out ten, the end result is a win.  But on a night when the other team’s starter was a wee bit better and the Yankee bats were quiet, Luis Severino took the loss as the Yankees fell to the Chicago White Sox, 4-1.  The Yankees had a chance at the end with the winning run at the plate, but Aaron Judge grounded into a force out to end the game.  A grand slam would have been so cool at that moment.  

The Yanks still have the chance to take the series when the teams meet for the third and final time this evening.

Tuesday evening turned out to be a double loss as top prospect Gleyber Torres was scratched from the lineup for AA Trenton Thunder due to biceps tendonitis.  He will undergo a MRI to determine the extent of the injury.  Hopefully, the news will be favorable.  

James Kaprielian underwent successful Tommy John surgery on Tuesday, so now the long road to recovery begins.  

Have a great Wednesday!  I think it’s time to start a new winning streak!

I Know It’s Still Early But….

I know it’s still early, literally and figuratively but good morning nonetheless, but what the New York Yankees have done thus far this season is nothing short of impressive regardless. The Yankees have been without Gary Sanchez for much of this run and have been without their starting shortstop Didi Gregorius for the entire season to date yet the team continues to battle, continues to put in the work and they flat out continue to win. Now while I am well aware of the fact that a division and pennant cannot be won in the month of April I am also keen to the fact that the division can be lost in this month, see 2016 as a great example of this, so I am excited to see what I am seeing. I am especially excited to see this since I pretty much predicted it before the season started when basically no one else did here in the Yankees blogosphere, I guess because it wasn’t the popular pick.

Honestly, and I am once again beating my own drum but I don’t mind it too much, I think the Yankees could be for real this season. Are they going to run away with the division? Not likely, but maybe, but I do think they will absolutely compete until the finals days of the season for one of the two Wild Cards. Again, I know that’s not saying much as teams with 80-something wins are in it until the end of the season but one must remember that this team wasn’t exactly built to win now. Sure they added Matt Holliday and Aroldis Chapman but they also traded away half their team last season and Brian McCann this winter all for prospects. This team was built to draw some fans to the yard and win some games that they probably shouldn’t have with that bullpen but I don’t think many, aside from myself, thought this team would be as successful as they have been. The best part is that the team actually has room to improve as well in 2017.

As I stated above the Yankees are doing this all without their best hitter in Gary Sanchez and a great hitter and defensive wizard in Didi Gregorius on the team. You would have to think that Ronald Torreyes’ bat would slow down sooner rather than later and when it does Didi will be there to step right in and pick up the slack. You also have to keep in mind that neither Austin Romine nor Kyle Higashioka are adding much to the team offensively meaning the middle of the Yankees order can and will produce more when Sanchez returns. That should scare American League pitching as New York is already beating up on pitchers on the regular right now.

Speaking of pitching the New York Yankees are also on this great run without much help from their best pitcher and ace Masahiro Tanaka. Tanaka will be better, history suggests that and his stat line shows you that he almost has to get better. Once he gets better the rest of the starting rotation can stabilize and improve and the Yankees can keep moving forward. Imagine what the Yankees record would look like had Tanaka been pitching like the Tanaka of old in his starts this season. They’d be in first place and beginning to run away with things already. Tanaka has seemingly found arm strength and velocity that he hasn’t had in recent years suggesting his elbow is healthier than it has ever been but has left him with a bit of an adjustment period. He will figure it out and he will be back to winning 15-20 games this season with an incredible offense and defense behind him.

Aaron Judge is on pace to hit 50 home runs this season and Aaron Hicks isn’t far behind him as he is on pace to hit around 30 this season as well. Will both Aaron’s reach those numbers? Not likely but I think the Yankees would be happy with around half that production from both men so that’s exciting when thinking about the state of the Yankees outfield.

New York has also been absolutely terrible with runners in scoring position this season. So many #RISPFails thus far and that has to improve. When it does, mixed in with the fact that almost every player on the team can hit a home run at any given time once Sanchez and Didi are back in the fold, this offense has the ability to really put up some gaudy numbers. Mix that with a pitching staff and bullpen that have been absolutely dominant aside from Tanaka and this Yankees teams has all the parts to be something special. And if they are missing a part to make the team special they have a loaded farm system that they can utilize to go get what they need to be special.

The Yankees are the underdogs of Major League Baseball in 2017 but I have a feeling if they keep playing the way they have thus far that they won’t be for long. They may be shocking you guys but I can’t say that they are shocking me, I had them doing this all along.

Go Yankees! Keep it up.

So it Seems Today is Going to Be a Good Day

The very best day with the very best occurrences and the very best distractions. Today is going to be a good day. Work has me stressed to the gills but today I took the day off from work for me, to get the things done that I feel are important to me and to do the things I need to get done. Everyone needs days like this every once in a while. Phone is turned off so don’t bother calling. I’m going to do me today.

Hope everyone has a great day and I hope you get everything you need to get done and then some. Enjoy the day because life’s too short not to. 


This Day In New York Yankees History 4/19: Gossage Hurt in Fight w/ Teammate

On this day in 1979 Goose Gossage sprained a ligament in his thumb while fighting with teammate Cliff Johnson. The closer would be out until mid July and Johnson was traded to the Indians for Don Hood due to the brawl in the clubhouse.

Also on this day in 1960 Roger Maris made his New York Yankees debut going 4-5 while batting leadoff on Opening Day. Maris racked up 11 bases, including two home runs and a double, and saw the Yankees win 8-4 over the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Also on this day in 1949 Babe Ruth joined Lou Gehrig and Miller Huggins in receiving a center field monument from the Yankees after their deaths. Ruth died eight months prior before joining Monument Park in Yankee Stadium.

Also on this day in 1948 Yankees pitcher Allie Reynolds refused to leave second base after hitting his first and only home run of his career. Allie thought the Washington Senators were trying to trick him as he did not see the ball clear the left field fence. Obviously Reynolds, in front of President Truman, eventually was convinced enough to run the bases.

Finally on this day in 1939 Joe DiMaggio learned the news that he was engaged and planned to marry that summer to actress Dorthy Arnold. DiMaggio quickly shot down the rumors saying that no ceremony would take place during the baseball season and the two wed in November of that year.