Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Daily Dozen - July 18, 2014

(Twelve Takeaways from Tonight's Game - July 18th, 2014)

1. Derek Jeter's quest to pass Carl Yastrzemski may be completed this weekend.  Jeter started tonight's game with 3,408 hits...just 9 behind Yaz for 7th on the all-time list.  With his 2 hits, he sits at 3,410.  Who is next after the Captain passes the great Red Sox player?  Honus Wagner of course with 3,430.  It is unlikely that he will pass Tris Speaker at 3,515 unless he absolutely goes on a tear ending somewhere around .330 for the year.  That's 116 hits in just 67 games.  He has 94 hits right now.  Jeter also passed Omar Vizquel tonight with his 2,610th start at Shortstop making him the all-time leader in that category.  Not bad for a 40-year old!
This never gets old!

2. Mike Leake hasn't been pitching very well as of late for the visiting Reds.  He has given up 39 hits over the last 18 innings coming into tonight's game.  He wasn't as bad tonight giving up 8 hits over 7 innings with 2 walks, but those 4 earned runs sure hurt him!

3. Brayan Pena....really!?!  Come on...the backup catcher who is filling in for the injured Joey Votto at first hit TWO home runs tonight.  This was his first multi-homer game in his career.  How does that short porch look there Brayan?  Guy doesn't even know how to spell his own first name...just saying.
"Well this is awkward..."

4. Someone on the Yankees actually beat the shift! Well...sort of...Carlos Beltran had a check swing double right after the 2-run blast by Ellsbury.  Unfortunately it didn't end up in a run, but it sure would be nice if the guys would start placing the ball a little bit more when the shift is employed just to keep guys honest.  I really don't like the shift, but the only way to get rid of it is to have better situational hitting.

5. I got to listen to the first portion of the game on WKRP in Cincinnati.  Okay, it was really AM 700 WLW, but I digress.  The color commentating on that station is done by Jeff Brantley.  He sounds like JBL of the WWE.  Interestingly enough, they call him Cowboy.  They should call him Captain Obvious based on his commentary...

6. David Phelps is becoming a reliable starter.  He isn't overpowering by any means, but he can give the Yankees 6 to 7 innings every outing and he battles.  His only real blemishes in a commanding win were against the slugger known as Brayan Pena.  But anytime you can hand the ball over to Betances in the 7th is a positive thing.  Remember how Joba used to be Betances? Scary...
"Hey guys...remember me?  Hopefully the Yankees don't screw up Betances' arm too..."

7. The Yankees still have 40 games to play at home out of 67.  It's really too bad that the entire rotation is out for season-ending surgery (I know...I'm exaggerating a bit).  It does bode well for the Bronx Bombers (Ellsbury got them their name back for tonight) as they fight to make a playoff push in Jeter's Last Stand.

8. Think that New York has it bad?  At one point last week, the Reds had 4 guys get injured including Joey Votto, Billy Hamilton (back tonight), Brandon Phillips, and Homer Bailey.  Those injuries will effect the Reds more than what the Yankees are dealing with as they fight in tough NL Central that includes the world-beaters known as the Milwaukee Brewers, the perennial contenders in St. Louis, and the upstart Pittsburgh Pirates.  The Yankees have a weak AL East to contend with of which the majority of games are against and over the last season and a half have had to deal with injury after painful injury.

9. Todd Frazier returned "home" tonight.  He promptly went 0 for 4 with 2 strikeouts.  Welcome Home Todd!

10. Paul O'Neill did the color commentary for the YES Network tonight.  I wonder who he was rooting for?  Anyone remember when he booted (literally booted) a ball to the infield that was hit to him in right field when he played for the Reds?...the guy is just classic and you can get an O'Neill bobble head on July 27th at the Stadium.
He would kick Brantley's ass...

11. Brian McCann continues to rake.  He had another sweet double, his 11th, in the first inning with an RBI.  He ended up 1 for 4 on the night with a strikeout, but I expect him to come up big once again tomorrow.

12. The C.C. Sabathia news really has me bummed out.  The season-ending surgery will take place on C.C.'s knee and he will join Nova and I suspect Tanaka on the long-term DL.  Who knows if we'll ever see the Sabathia of his first 3 years with the Yankees again.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)