Saturday, October 13, 2012

Yet Another Derek Jeter Milestone

Derek Jeter it seems like every other day is doing something newsworthy with his bat passing this legend, or that legend, or putting up monster numbers that defy the odds and his age. Tonight was no different for Derek Jeter as he got his 200th career post season base hit in the 2nd inning off of Tigers pitcher Doug Fister. That is insane when you think about it but he has about a full seasons worth of games too in the post season so there is always that. Derek Jeter IS the post season!

Phil Hughes To Pitch Game 3 Against Verlander

In my post not published just an hour ago I showed how and why I thought it would be a better idea to start Hiroki Kuroda on three days rest for Game 2 (check) and how we should bring CC Sabathia back on three days rest to pitch Game 3 (X) against Justin Verlander and line him up for a Game 7 start on semi normal rest. One out of two is not bad I guess, especially in baseball, but I think this decision will be the one that makes or breaks the Yankees. Joe Girardi announced that Phil Hughes will start Game 3 in Comerica against Verlander and we will save CC for Game 4 on regular rest, still lining him up for a Game 7 start but on three days rest. Not the way I would have done it and not exactly the way Joe Girardi would have done it circa 2009 but what is done is done. I just hope it does not come back to bite us.

ALCS Game 1 : Tigers @ Yankees


The Yankees rode the big man all the way to the ALCS last night with a complete game victory over the Baltimore Orioles in the ALDS clincher. The Yankees will stay home and start the ALCS tonight against the Detroit Verlanders in what is a rematch of last years AL Division series that the Tigers won. The Yankees will send veteran and all time winningest post season pitcher Andy Pettitte to the mound looking to set the tone early in the series. The Tigers will counter with Doug Fister who is in the midst of yet another second half surge. The game will be televised at 8:07 pm ET on TBS.


Derek Jeter SS
Ichiro Sukuki LF
Robinson Cano 2B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Raul Ibanez DH
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Nick Swisher RF
Curtis Granderson CF
Russell Martin C

Go Yankees!


Kuroda Named Game 2 Starter

Hiroki Kuroda has unofficially been named tomorrow nights Game 2 starter in Yankees Stadium for the ALCS. This will be the first time that #HIROK will be going on three days rest in his career and comes after him setting a career high in innings pitched this season. I think this is a great idea because you potentially have him pitching twice, both at home, in the seven game series instead of just once. Girardi expects to announce this decision officially at the press conference before the game.

Game 2 Starter

The Yankees face a pretty tough predicament since their division series wen't five games with the Baltimore Orioles and Bud Selig and co. botched the scheduling while rushing the second wild card. They will not have a night off in between clinching the division series and starting the championship series so the ALCS will start tonight at Yankees Stadium in the Bronx. The problem with this is that the Yankees used us their ace CC Sabathia just to get here so now they are not quite sure of who their second starter is going to be.

The Yankees could bring Hiroki Kuroda back on three days rest, something he has never done in his career, after he pitched well in 105 pitches and 8.1 IP against the Orioles in game 3. He has thrown a career high in innings this season with 219.1 IP but he also has had the best season of his career to date (in the United States anyway). He either showed some signs of it catching up with him in September or he just ran into some bad luck as he was not nearly as sharp or effective as he was in the beginning of the season. Nonetheless though he pitched well in game 3 against Baltimore if you take away two solo home runs and gave his team every chance to win the game. Also you have to consider that if you wait till his normal rest day to pitch him, which would be game 4, you only get to use your second best pitcher (arguably) once in the series which is never ideal.

David Phelps could make a spot start in Game 2 after his 27 pitch appearance out of the bullpen on Thursday. This is not the most ideal situation being that he is a rookie and all but he is a better option then Ivan Nova, Freddy Garcia, or anyone else we could imagine throwing out there. Also, to note, he would be facing off against Anibal Sanchez so on paper at least you would not think you would have to throw your best starter out there to have a shot at a win. David Phelps could keep is close enough to win in my opinion but I do not know if my heart could take it.

If I am managing this team I am starting Kuroda on three days rest and seeing where it gets me. You live and die by pitching and defense in the playoffs and into the World Series so I am going to live and die by Kuroda twice at home, if necessary, then once against Max Scherzer in Comerica. We have rode Kuroda and relied on him all season so to stop now or alter that would not be a wise decision. With Kuroda in game 2 penciled in I do not see how you cannot bring CC back on three days rest for game 3 against Verlander in Comerica. That slides Phil Hughes into the 4th game against Scherzer in Comerica, which its bigger outfield should help Hughes' home run problem. Andy Pettitte comes back for game 5, Kuroda for 6, and CC in game 7 makes me type this whole thing out again when we are lining up our rotation for the World Series.

American League Championship Series Schedule

Game 1 @ Yankees Stadium
8:07 pm ET on TBS


Game 2 @ Yankees Stadium
4:07 pm ET on TBS


Game 3 @ Comerica Park
8:07 pm ET on TBS


Game 4 @ Comerica Park
8:07 pm ET on TBS


Game 5 if necessary @ Comerica Park
4:07 pm ET on TBS


Game 6 if necessary @ Yankees Stadium
8:05 pm ET on TBS


Game 7 if necessary @ Yankees Stadium
8:15 pm ET on TBS

World Series Magic Number

8 more Yankees wins for #28

Nunez Out, Nix In

By now I'm sure you've read that the Yankees have removed Eduardo Nunez from the roster for the AL Championship Series, and placed Cody Eppley on it.

Get out!

The first thing this tells me is that the team feels good about the health of Derek Jeter, who was hit in the foot by his own foul ball in Game 3. Jeter was the DH in Game 4, before returning to his rightful spot at shortstop in Game 5. There's no way the Yankees would have gone into the ALCS with only one middle infielder on the bench, if they didn't think Jeter was 100%. Then again, it would take the entire cast of The Expendables to keep Derek down.

Speaking of injuries, it also tells me that perhaps Joba Chamberlain isn't "fine", as he said after Game 5. It could have nothing to do with bringing Eppley onto the roster, but Girardi may be playing things safe by having Cody around just in case Joba goes out and his elbow explodes after throwing a pitch. Knowing what Joba's gone through, though, I tend to believe that he'll be fine if called upon tonight to pitch.

Although it would be nice to have a second middle infielder on the bench in case the worst happens, and both Robinson Cano and Derek Jeter need to be removed from a game, that's hardly a great reason to keep Nunez around. Eddie has hit .286/.289/.429 over his last 38 plate appearances, and when you add that to his issues on defense, I don't think we're really going to miss him.

"Not to mention that I'm a bad-ass."

But was it necessary to add somebody to the bullpen? In my opinion... yes and no. I know, not a great answer, but bear with me.

With Joba Chamberlain, David Phelps, and Derek Lowe, I think the bullpen had enough righties to get by. But when you look at the extreme splits that Clay Rapada and Boone Logan have, you can't argue against having another right-hander in the bullpen against a righty-heavy Detroit lineup (Prince Fielder is the only lefty I'm concerned about, although Andy Dirks does have a .322 batting average this season). Left-handed batters hit .168/.257/.236 in Rapada's career, while righties hit .342/.459/.613. Meanwhile Logan has given up a line of .246/.317/.379 to lefties, and .302/.387/.477 to righties. So there's no way I'd trust Clay or Boone against a right-handed bat, be that Miguel Cabrera or even Omar Infante.

"You talking trash about me?"

When it comes down to it, if the Yankees needed to play either Eduardo Nunez or Cody Eppley, then chances are we aren't winning that game.

As a reminder, here is the Yankees roster for the ALCS...

CC Sabathia
Andy Pettitte
Hiroki Kuroda
Phil Hughes
Rafael Soriano
Dave Robertson
Boone Logan
Joba Chamberlain
Clay Rapada
Cody Eppley
David Phelps
Derek Lowe

Russell Martin
Chris Stewart

Mark Teixeira
Robinson Cano
Derek Jeter
Alex Rodriguez
Eric Chavez
Jayson Nix

Curtis Granderson
Nick Swisher
Ichiro Suzuki
Raul Ibanez
Brett Gardner