Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Kuroda Removed From Game In 2nd Inning

Hiroki Kuroda has been removed from the 2nd inning of his first start of the season against the Boston Red Sox. He took a come backer off his pitching fingers and tried to stay in the game but two HBP's later and a walk and the Yankees removed him from the game. Just what we needed is ANOTHER injury.

Yanks drop second straight game to Sox in 7-4 loss

On Monday, the Yankees offense (besides Cervelli) was absent. Tonight, the Yankees hit two home runs but it wasn't enough to overcome the Red Sox, as the Yanks dropped their second straight game at Yankee Stadium by the score of 7-4.

Hiroki Kuroda was forced to leave the game in the second inning after a line drive hit him in his middle finger. The results came back as a finger contusion but the Yankees were going to send him to get x-rays just to make sure that's all it was. Cody Eppley came in afterwards, allowing four runs, who was then relieved by Adam Warren who only gave up one run. Shawn Kelley was the only Yankee pitcher who didn't give up a run to the Red Sox.

The Yankees had two home runs during tonight's game, one by Travis Hafner and one by Vernon Wells, both of those accounting for the four runs the Yankees scored; Hafner a solo shot. Wells a three-run shot.

Tomorrow the Yankees will send Andy Pettitte on the mound in order to break the losing streak, as they fear that they'll be behind 0-3 to start the season.

Update: Hiroki Kuroda's X-Ray's came back negative and he's day-to-day. However, Joe Girardi says it's too early to tell whether Kuroda will make his next start or not.

Boston Red Sox vs. New York Yankees 4/3

The Yankees and the Red Sox took yesterday off and will play their second game of the season tonight at Yankees Stadium. The Yankees will send Hiroki Kuroda to the mound to get the Yankees their first win of the season and he will be facing off with Clay Buchholz. The game will be televised at 7:05 pm ET on YES and on ESPN 2.

1. Brett Gardner CF
2. Ichiro Suzuki RF
3. Robinson Cano 2B
4. Kevin Youkilis 3B
5. Travis Hafner DH
6. Vernon Wells LF
7. Lyle Overbay 1B
8. Eduardo Nunez SS
9. Chris Stewart C

Clay Rapada Released

Clay Rapada has been released by the Yankees, a sign that he cleared waivers. Rapada was Designated For Assignment on Sunday. Although the Yankees had to make a move like that in order to make room on the 40-man roster, Rapada's shoulder bursitis as well as the Yankees' depth at a left-handed specialist, made Clay expendable.

No word on whether or not the Yankees are interested in re-signing Rapada to a minor league deal.

Should The Yankees Target Brian McCann?

The Atlanta Braves have been without their All Star catcher Brian McCann for the entire 2013 season to date due to him having reconstructive shoulder surgery last October . Brian has been down with the Rome Braves rehabbing the injury and could be back as early as next week which could create quite the problem, albeit a good problem, behind the dish in Atlanta. The Atlanta Braves have had the catching duo of Evan Gattis and Gerald Laird behind the dish all season long and have had better than expected results from the combo which could make the decision all the more difficult for manager Fredi Gonzalez when the team gets McCann back healthy.

Brian McCann is a left handed batting catcher that will not turn 30 until the 2014 season who has a power stroke that could be tailored for the new Yankees Stadium. Brian would also be a rental player for the Yankees as he is only signed through the 2013 season before he walks for free agency, i'm presuming anyway. Brian has played in no less than 121 games in his eight seasons with the Braves, not counting his partial rookie campaign of course where he only got into 59 games, and the 121 game campaign was last season when he fought that shoulder injury all season long. McCann has a career triple slash of .279/.351/.475 and has been part of six National League All Star Games from 2006-2011. With the Yankees without Francisco Cervelli for the next six weeks, at least, after fracturing his hand and requiring surgery the Yankees may want to strike while the iron is hot with McCann because his counterparts are making it almost impossible not to trade McCann at this point. Brian is also making $12 million this season on a Braves team that is probably stretched to the limit on payroll this season so all the cards seems to be falling in the wrong places for McCann in a Braves uniform.

Evan Gattis is a right handed hitting rookie catcher that the Braves called up when they learned that they would start the season without McCann and he has not disappointed. In 20 games this season Gattis has a .236/.291/.556 triple slash with 6 HR's and 14 RBI's. Gattis stayed above or around the .300 mark at all the upper levels in the Braves system and consistently showed 20 home run power so this kid seems like the real deal behind the plate and may ultimately push Brian McCann, the hometown boy, out of town come the July 31st trade deadline or sooner. Gattis has already accumulated a 0.7 WAR in an 1/8 of a season so at this rate he would be nearly a six win player according to WAR by seasons end, something Brian McCann has yet to do coming as close as 5.5 WAR in 2008. With the Braves having so much money wrapped up in their infield Gattis' attractive league minimum salary of $490 K will definitely factor into the decision for the Braves as well as if the on the field play was not enough and could be the determining factor in whether or not Gattis stays up with the big league club or heads down to AAA for McCann.

Gerald Laird signed a two year contract worth $3 million to be the back up catcher for the Atlanta Braves replacing David Ross in the role before the 2012 season. Gerald, in limited playing time of only nine games and 33 at bats so far in 2013, has put up a triple slash of .333/.419/.407 with nine hits and five RBI's on the season without a home run. Laird is known for his defense behind the plate as well as game calling and I cannot see a way where the Braves would let him go, trade him, or send him down just months after signing him to a two year deal. The Yankees may make moves like that, see Kei Igawa, but the Braves just do not operate like that and honestly probably cannot operate like that. I cannot see a way where Laird is not the back up catcher, barring injury, for the rest of the 2012 season thus leaving no other options for the Braves and Brian McCann.

All the stars seem to aligning that the Braves have to and will trade Brian McCann sometime this summer before he hits free agency, assuming he comes back healthy. I have yet to hear rumors of this, but when do you when it comes to Frank Wren and the Braves, and would like to be proactive about this and get talking with Brian Cashman and Wren to get a deal done. The Braves needs seem to center around their pitching with the likes of Brandon Beachy, Cristhian Martinez, and Jonny Venters already on the disabled list or maybe some infield or outfield depth that can win now or in the very near future so I am not sure how well the Yankees stack up in a trade. We could offer an Adam Warren or a minor league reliever not named Mark Montgomery or a David Adams in a trade but would it be enough? The Braves don't necessarily HAVE to trade McCann while Gattis has plenty of options left and it is not exactly a salary dump type trade but I think the Yankees and Braves have a good history of rapes trades and I think they can get this done. I am not saying that I am for this or against this move because I have all the confidence in the world in Francisco Cervelli, plus I cannot see McCann being a $12 million back up not even on the Yankees, but this just seems like a move that the Yankees would and will make come July. If you want to look on the bright side though McCann could be the latest edition to the Yankees Wives & Girlfriends section of the site, I'm just saying...

Ty Hensley To Miss 2-3 Months W/ Hip Surgery

This is getting a little ridiculous but Yankees first round pick in the 2012 draft Ty Hensley will miss 2-3 months with a hip surgery. The same doctor, Dr. Bryan Kelly, who did Alex Rodriguez's surgery will perform Ty's surgery that will require them to fix a bone impingement in his right hip. Why is it that any Yankees prospect with any sort of upside falls victim to the injury bug? Getting a little ridiculous at this point.

Game 2 Lineup: Red Sox vs. Yankees

Lineup vs. Red Sox:

Brett Gardner CF
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Robinson Cano 2B
Kevin Youkilis 3B
Travis Hafner DH
Vernon Wells LF
Lyle Overbay 1B
Eduardo Nunez SS
Chris Stewart C

Hiroki Kuroda P

Some Notes: -- The Yankees have unconditionally released Clay Rapada. I'm still confused as to why the Yankees let Rapada go. He could have been extra insurance to the Yanks.

Yankees Start Season w/ Record High $230M Payroll

The Yankees once again start the baseball season with the highest payroll in all of baseball coming in right around $230.4 million. The Dodgers are the only other team with a $200M+ payroll as they sit at $214.8 million. The Houston Astros have the lowest payroll in baseball sitting at $27.3 million which is less than the $29 million that Alex Rodriguez is set to make this season. That's a lot of Yankees tickets needing to be sold to pay this kind of payroll.

Here is the Yankees list of payroll obligations per player from the Associated Press

Alex Rodriguez $29,000,000
Vernon Wells 24,642,857
CC Sabathia 24,285,714
Mark Teixeira 23,125,000
Derek Jeter 16,729,365
Robinson Cano 15,000,000
Curtis Granderson 15,000,000
Hiroki Kuroda 15,000,000
Andy Pettitte 12,000,000
Kevin Youkilis 12,000,000
Mariano Rivera 10,000,000
Phil Hughes 7,150,000
Ichiro Suzuki 6,500,000
Boone Logan 3,150,000
David Robertson 3,100,000
Brett Gardner 2,850,000
Travis Hafner 2,000,000
Joba Chamberlain 1,875,000
Brennan Boesch 1,500,000
Ben Francisco 1,200,000
Shawn Kelley 935,000
Jayson Nix 900,000
Lyle Overbay 850,000
Ivan Nova 575,600
Eduardo Nunez 533,300
Michael Pineda 528,475
Francisco Cervelli 515,350
Chris Stewart 515,100
David Phelps 512,425
Cody Eppley 510,350
Adam Warren 490,525
Cesar Cabral 490,000

This Day In Yankees History 4/3

This Day In Yankees History... April 3rd

On this day way back in 2009 the Yankees and the Mets both debuted their new stadiums on the same day. The Yankees hosted the Cubs at the new Yankees Stadium and the Mets hosted the Red Sox at Citi Field. Both teams would win their debuts in these exhibition games and the Yankees would bring home a World Series ring in the same season.

Morning Bits: Cano, C.C. , Jeter

mug3Good morning.  Game two of the season is later tonight.    Let's start of with some links...

-- Jon Heyman of CBS Sports asks did hiring Yankee fan Jay-Z tell the team where Cano wants to be?

-- Anthony McCarron of The New York Daily news writes that the Yankees are not concerned with C.C.'s velocity as they know the fastball will return.

-- Andrew Marchand of ESPN NY writes that Jeter is a long way from coming back.