Friday, May 9, 2014

Tanaka's two-run outing gives Yankees series-opening win over Brewers

Masahiro Tanaka gave up just 2 earned runs in 6.1 innings and David Robertson followed him with his sixth save of the year tonight as the Yankees won an exciting pitchers duel over the Brewers, 5-3. In this contest, Tanaka dominated through the first four frames, giving up no runs and just one hit, but eventually he began to slow down, giving up two runs on three knocks in the sixth before surrendering another two singles in the seventh. Nothing particularly impressive, but since this outing was still of overall high quality I guess it's tough to complain about it.

Anyway, the Bombers offense was quiet until this one's top of the fourth, when Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann got on base to set up a three-run home run from Yangervis Solarte. Two batters later, the Yanks would tack on another trip around the bases just for good measure, as Brian Roberts doubled in Brett Gardner to make it 4-0.

Besides those guys, Pinstripes First Basemen Mark Teixeira and Reliever Adam Warren also contributed to this victory, collecting an RBI Groundout and tossing 1.2 frames of scoreless relief respectively. Those five outs, interestingly, lowered Warren's 2014 ERA to just 1.29, along with a solid five holds. 

New York Yankees Release Yoshinori Tateyama

According to the International League transactions page the New York Yankees have released 38 year old relief pitcher Yoshinori Tateyama. Tateyama was in the middle of his second season in the Yankees minor league system and sported a 6.08 ERA in 13.1 IP this season. Tateyama did strike out 11.5 batters per nine innings but is now a free agent looking for work.

Yankees Catcher McCann: "I've got to be more productive"

When the Yankees signed Brian McCann to his five-year, $85 million contract last December, it's a safe bet they didn't think he'd struggle as much as he has.

Through 33 games this year, McCann, a career .275 hitter, hasn't done much for his new team, batting just .209 with four home runs and 12 RBI.

Those stats, though coming early in the season, have made some Yankee fans doubt McCann's worth all that salary, as he's not contributing or, unfortunately, making his presence known on the field.

Just ask the man himself. 

"It's a give and take sometimes when you're hitting," McCann told's Bryan Hoch earlier this week. "Basically, I've got to get better. That's the bottom line. I've got to be more productive."

That last line pretty much says it all. To put into perspective just how bad McCann has been so far this year, it's easy to look to his current backup John Ryan Murphy.

In just 23 PAs since being called up April 15, Murphy has already collected a home run and five RBI, while McCann, as I mentioned before, has just four homers and 12 RBI in 115 PAs. When you do the math there, you see that JR is currently on pace to have five homers and 25 RBI by the time he has played as long as #34, meaning that yes, the backup has been better so far this season for the Yankees. And considering that he's getting paid just $502,700, that's definitely not something that should happen.

Game Thread: Yankees @ Brewers 5/9

The New York Yankees are in first place in the American League East division and the Milwaukee Brewers are in first place in the National League Central division and the two teams will face off tonight in Miller Park in Milwaukee. The Yankees will send Masahiro Tanaka to the mound to face off with the Brewers Yovani Gallardo. The game will be played at 8:10 pm ET on MY9, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with WFAN.

Hooray for a game that does not start after 10:00 pm and end in the middle of the night and a double hooray for the weekend. We have some making up to do on Twitter and expect to be active so give us a follow by following @Greedystripes. You can also drop us a line in the comments section of this post, always some good discussion going on here.

Enjoy the game Yankees family and enjoy your Mother's Day weekend.

Peter O'Brien To Trenton, Roller/Pinder To Scranton

It's that time of the year again when the Yankees start moving some of their deserving players up the ranks and the first domino has fallen. Peter O'Brien has been called up to the Double-A Trenton Thunder. To make room on the roster the Yankees sent Kyle Roller to Scranton Wilkes Barre to join the RailRiders. Word is that Branden Pinder has also been called up to Scranton but that is not 100% confirmed yet and no corresponding roster move has been announced if he has. Stay tuned.

Preview: New York Yankees @ Milwaukee Brewers 5/9

The New York Yankees are traveling to Bud Selig's house to take on the first place Milwaukee Brewers. The Yankees are fresh off of taking two out of three games from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and the Brewers have the best record in baseball so this series should be fun. The pitching matchup will be fun as well with Masahiro Tanaka heading to the mound for the Yankees and Yovani Gallardo heading to the mound for the home team Brewers. The game will be played at 8:10 pm ET on MY9, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with WFAN.

Tanaka has easily been the Yankees most consistent starting pitcher this season and looks to keep the ball, and his perfect record, going tonight in Milwaukee. In Tanaka's last start he allowed three runs and eight hits in seven innings in a victory against the Tampa Bay Rays. Tanaka is holding batters to a .098 batting average (9-92) this season when he has two strikes on a batter. Tanaka can chalk most of that up to his devastating splitter.

Gallardo is coming off a tough start against the Cincinnati Reds last time out resulting in his first loss of the season. Gallardo allowed nine hits and four runs in the game while only striking out one batter. Let's hope the Yankees see that Gallardo and not the Gallardo that has dominated the National League this season. For what it's worth Gallardo has a career 5-5 record with a 3.30 ERA in 15 career interleague games.

Go Yankees!!

I've Got Til 5! - April Surprises

Last week I went over the top five disappointing players through April. CC Sabathia followed up that article with a horrible start on Sunday, Brian Roberts had a really good game Friday night and was the hero a few nights ago, Brian McCann had a good game (including a home run) Friday, Hiroki Kuroda threw a gem last night, and Ivan Nova... well Ivan won't get a chance to redeem himself for a while.

But what about those that have surprised us? I mean... what about those that have surprised us in a good way? While there aren't as many overachievers as underachievers, I was able to fill out a Top 5...

1. Masahiro Tanaka

I'm sure there were many people skeptical of Tanaka. It's hard not to be after we went through the disaster that is Kei Igawa. Although, to be fair, the Yankees did a little more homework on Tanaka than they did Igawa. And like a student that studies hard and then aces the test, the Yankees seem to have done well this time.

Last month Tanaka started five games, and won three of them while losing none. His ERA that month was 2.27, opposing hitters could only manage a batting line of .205/.245/.386, and his K/BB ratio was 46/6. I don't expect Masahiro to go 24-0 with a 1.27 ERA like he did in Japan last season, but seeing that he's only 25 years old, I think the Yankees did really well this time.

2. Mark Teixeira

Between 2010 and 2013 Teixeira hit .249/.345/.479. His 25 home runs a season were nice, but Mark was hardly the guy the Yankees thought they'd signed for $180 million. Of course, I'm leaving out his fine 2009 season, in which he hit .292/.383/.565 and helped lead the Yankees to a World Series title. But it's 2014, and we're not going to let him off the hook because of what he did nearly five years ago. 

Well, Mark is hitting pretty well so far. I'm going to cheat a little bit and use his five April games, which help bring his triple-slash to .271/.403/.542. That includes five home runs, and a walk rate that is quite a bit higher than his career average. I don't think this is going to continue, but I'd like to think his days of struggling to hit .250 are in the past.

3. Ichiro Suzuki

If you expect Ichiro to continue to hit .357/.386/.405 you're nuts. Not only is he 40 years old, but Suzuki could only manage to hit .273/.302/.368 between Seattle and New York in the previous two years. Don't get me wrong, I do believe he has value, but there's no way I would put him in the lineup over Brett Gardner, Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, and Alfonso Soriano on a regular basis. 

But Ichiro can still run, can still play defense (despite a couple of plays recently), so he'll make a very nice 5th outfielder. 

4. Michael Pineda

We have yet to see what Pineda can give the Yankees post-Pine Tar, but if it's anything like what we've seen so far then perhaps Yankees fans will forget the name "Jesus Montero". 

Pineda's ERA through his first four starts was a minuscule 1.83, while opposing hitters could only muster a batting line of .233/.263/.384. Should we expect a sub-2.00 ERA from here on out? No way. But assuming his use of pine tar was simply to get a better grip on the ball, and not being used to throw un-Godly breaking stuff, then it wouldn't surprise me at all to see Pineda as one of the starters on the postseason roster.

By the way, like Tanaka, Michael is only 25 years old. You gotta like what the future could hold for Yankees pitchers.

5. Yangervis Solarte

While those other four guys are surely a surprise, those stories are nothing compared to the emergence of Never Nervous Yangervis. Solarte was an afterthought at best, but he went on to hit .303 /.404/.461 in April, and help a poor Yankee infield. 

For those that believe he's going to fall off a cliff, I'd like to point out that Solarte has 7 hits in 22 May at bats (including 2 walks and 2 sacrifice flies). I'm still skeptical of his future, but he wouldn't be the first MLB player to come out of nowhere and be a solid MLB player.

And isn't it nice how he's helped us all forget about that one guy? You know... the guy who makes way too much money for what he contributes nowadays? Alex something-or-other? 

ESPN: The Ultimate Pedroia vs. Cano Debate

If Robinson Cano were still a Yankee would this map be so red? Obviously this is on the heels of Mariano Rivera releasing a book, The Closer, that stated if he had one game to win that he would pick Dustin Pedroia over Cano. Yankees fans have lost their minds since this comment was made public and I don't understand why.

Keeping Tabs On The Derek Jeter Farewell Tour Gifts

Opening Series In Houston (4/2/14)

Wednesday night in Anaheim (5/7/14)

Predicting Masahiro Tanaka's Game Tonight In A GIF

I have a feeling this is how Masahiro Tanaka's game is going to go tonight, the story told in a gif. The above is his first pitch of his Major League career where he gave up a home run to Toronto's Melky Cabrera. Tanaka is home run prone no matter what anyone says, not that he cannot be great at the same time.

Tanaka will settle down and totally dominate on the mound and the Yankees will win the game 5-2. The 24-0 repeat is still alive and Tanaka will go to 5-0. Stay optimistic Yankees family, the sky is not falling.

Oh crap, Tanaka has to bat tonight doesn't he?

Trenton Thunder Game Recap 5/8

Press Release - May 8, 2014
Segedin's Big Night Leads Thunder To 5-3 Win

Rob Segedin became the first Thunder player to record four hits in a game, in the Thunder’s 5-3 victory over the Reading Fightin’ Phils on Thursday night at ARM & HAMMER Park in front of 4,751 fans.

Segedin’s fifth home run of the season got the Thunder offense started in the first inning. His two-run shot off Reading starter Perci Garner gave the home team an early lead.

The Thunder’s designated hitter was in the middle of the offensive attack again in the fourth inning with an RBI single to score Ben Gamel. Gary Sanchez followed Segedin with an RBI double to take a 5-1 advantage for The Thunder. Sanchez finished 2-for-4 with a run batted in and a walk.

Reading rallied in the seventh inning for a pair of runs against Thunder starter Graham Stoneburner. Aaron Altherr, Brock Stassi and Tommy Joseph each doubled to bring the visitors within a 5-3 deficit before Stoneburner was removed from the game. Tyler Webb entered and retired each of the next three batters to protect the lead.

Stoneburner earned his second victory of the season throwing a season-high six innings. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits and two walks, he struck out three.

Rob Refsnyder, Dan Fiorito and Ali Castillo each had a pair of hits in the game as the Thunder had 13 total in the win.

Pat Venditte threw a scoreless ninth inning for his first save of the season. The switch-pitcher has now been unscored upon in ten of his 12 appearances this season.

The Thunder continue their seven-game homestand tomorrow at 7:05 p.m. Join the Thunder as we celebrate 20 years of baseball on Friday night! The first 2,000 fans age 14 and up will receive a Tony Clark bobblehead doll presented by Capital Health. LHP Manny Banuelos (0-0, 3.00) will start for the Thunder, the Fightin’ Phils will counter with LHP Jesse Biddle (3-3, 3.43). Listen live on 91.3 WTSR beginning at 6:45 p.m.

Being posted with permission from the Trenton Thunder. 

Quick Hit: Remembering The Braden Perfect Game

On this day in 2010 Oakland Athletics pitcher Dallas Braden threw a perfect game "for the 209" which was the 19th perfect game in major league history.  The Athletics beat the Rays 4-0 in Oakland on Mother's Day with his grandmother, who raised him after his mother died from melanoma during his Senior year in High School, was in attendance. This was just weeks removed from Braden and Alex Rodriguez getting into it and Braden becoming infamous for his "get off my mound" comments. Braden is now out of the game, well Rodriguez is too but for an entirely different set of circumstances, but will always have this day in major league history.

Charleston Riverdogs Game Recap 5/8

Severino Collects Elusive First Win at Rome
Yankees pitching prospect continues string of solid starts as RiverDogs even series

ROME, GA - Luis Severino's quest for his first win of the season ended on Thursday afternoon as the Dominican right-hander tossed a quality start and the Charleston RiverDogs closed out a 6-2 victory over the Rome Braves at State Mutual Stadium in South Atlantic League action.
Charleston's record is now 17-15 while Rome slips to 10-23. This three-game series is now tied at one win each with the rubber game set for Friday evening.
Severino retired the first seven batters that he faced and recorded five shutout innings to open his quality start. He scattered a pair of singles in the third and fourth before retiring the side with a fly out, strikeout, and groundout in the fifth.
As Severino kept Rome off the scoreboard, Charleston built a lead behind its starter. Mike Ford started the second inning with a leadoff single. After a fly out, singles by Michael O'Neill and Tyler Wade loaded the bases for Kale Sumner. A walk to Sumner scored Ford and put the RiverDogs in front at 1-0.
Charleston added to its lead in the fourth inning, increasing the advantage 3-0. With Wade on second base and Sumner on first, John Murphy singled to drive in Wade and chase Rome's Chuck Buchanan out of the contest. Colby Holmes replaced Buchanan but immediately allowed a run-scoring single to Abiatal Avelino that scored Sumner for a three-run edge.
Rome finally touched Severino for a pair of runs in the sixth. A leadoff single by Connor Oliver was quickly followed by a Blake Brown double. Jacob Schrader scored Oliver on a groundout to cut Charleston's lead to two. Later in the inning with two outs and Brown at third, Victor Reyes legged out an infield single that allowed Brown to score and close the gap to 3-2.
In the final innings, the RiverDogs protected their lead and gained a 6-2 advantage. Charleston loaded the bases with one out in the eighth for Aaron Judge, who hit a sacrifice fly to center field that brought in Sumner. During the ninth, Avelino and Brandon Thomas drew back-to-back bases-loaded walks for a pair of insurance runs and a four-run lead.
On the mound, Cesar Vargas pitched two perfect innings of relief behind Severino and Stefan Lopez quickly retired the side in the ninth inning to lock down a series-evening triumph.
Severino has an even 1-1 record over seven starts after earning the victory. In each of his last four starts, Severino has pitched at least five innings and allowed two earned runs or less. Buchanan was tagged with the loss and falls to 1-3 this season.
COMING UP: The finale in this three-game RiverDogs road trip will be played at 7pm on Friday evening. Charleston LHP Ian Clarkin (1-0, 0.00) is scheduled to pitch against Rome RHP Carlos Salazar (1-3, 10.38 ERA). A seven-game RiverDogs homestand begins on Saturday, May 10 with a "Tony the Peanut Man" Singing Bobblehead Giveaway, courtesy of WCSC Channel 5, and another Social Media Saturday. Tickets may be purchased at the Riley Park Box Office, (843) 577-DOGS (3647) or on-line at If fans cannot make it to the ballpark, they are encouraged to tune in to all the action this year both home and away worldwide on and locally on 1250 WTMA, the new radio home for RiverDogs baseball.

Being posted with permission from the Charleston Riverdogs. The original post can be seen HERE

This Day In New York Yankees History 5/9

On this day in 1999 Mike Stanton started his first Major League game after pitching in 552 relief appearances. Gary Lavelle had the record for most appearances without starting a game before Stanton shut out Seattle for four innings giving up two hits in a Yankee's 6-1 victory at Yankee Stadium.

On this day in 2002 Mariano Rivera notched his 225th save as a member of the New York Yankees setting a new franchise record. The previous record of 224 saves was set by Dave Righetti. The Yankees would win the game 3-1 in Tampa over the Rays.