Saturday, June 7, 2014

New York Yankees Draft Mariano Rivera In 29th Round

The New York Yankees have drafted Mariano Rivera in the 29th round of the 2014 MLB First Year Players Draft. Does lightning strike twice? We sure hope so. Rivera was the only name that I recognized in rounds 11-40 today but hopefully that changes in a few seasons.

No word on whether Mariano Rivera II will actually sign with the Yankees but it would be awfully cool if he did.

Kendrys Morales Comes Off The Yankees Board

Kendrys Morales has come off the board for the New York Yankees and has signed a major league deal with the Minnesota Twins. The deal is for one season and a prorated $12 million, which equates to roughly $7.5 million if I did the math correctly. While the Yankees would have been better, albeit less versatile, this was more of a want than a need.

The Twins got a huge upgrade at designated hitter but unless they plan on trading him in July I do not understand the signing much. Are they going for it this season? Stay tuned...

Game Thread: Yankees vs. Royals 6/7

The New York Yankees and the Kansas City Royals will play the second of their four game set this weekend tonight at Kauffman Stadium. The Yankees will send David Phelps to the mound to face off with Danny Duffy for the hometown Royals. The game will be played at 7:15 pm ET and can be seen on FOX, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with WFAN.

Follow us on Twitter to talk during the game, follow @GreedyStripes, while we play the dreaded Saturday Fox game. If you don't tweet then you can find us on Facebook or you can drop us a line in our comments section of the site. We have a core group of guys in there that are always hungry to talk Yankees baseball.

Don't forget to get your Yankees tickets for Derek Jeter's final season right here on the blog. Enjoy the game Yankees family and enjoy the rest of your night and weekend.

Royals Danny Duffy w/ Andy Reid's Mustache Meme

Why? I think it would be easier to come up with some reason against it than for me to explain why I posted it. It's funny, it's awesome, because race car, That's why.

Preview: New York Yankees vs. Kansas City Royals 6/7

The New York Yankees and the Kansas City Royals will play the second of a four game set this weekend at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City. The Yankees will send David Phelps to the mound to face off with Danny Duffy for the Royals. The game will be played at 7:15 pm ET and can be seen on FOX, MLB TV, and can be heard on the radio with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman on WFAN.

Phelps may have had the worst start of his season last time out in a makeup game with the Seattle Mariners at home on Monday. Phelps gave up six runs and worked into the sixth inning without recording an out in the inning walking three batters and hitting another. Phelps finally got his ERA under four before this game rocketed it back above the four mark.

Duffy has been the model of inconsistency this season for the Royals. Duffy had an excellent start four starts ago followed up by two sub par starts only to bounce back and shut down the St. Louis Cardinals. Duffy pitched six innings and allowed one hit and one walk to go with 10 fly balls and five strikeouts.

Get your Yankees tickets for this game and every New York Yankees game this season right here on the blog through our friends at Ticket Monster with no fees and free same day shipping with Fed Ex express.

Go Yankees!!

Girardi Has Felt Good About Whitley Ever Since His First Start

Going into Chase Whitley's first career start back on May 15, nobody knew what to expect.

Whitley, who had struggled during Spring Training, was just another prospect, someone the team had to bring up after CC Sabathia got hurt. 

Surprisingly, the rookie ended up tossing a scoreless 4.2 innings that day, making Joe Girardi confident he could help the team win.

“I’ve felt good about him ever since I saw him pitch the first game, that he was going to keep us in the game, just because he throws strikes, he locates, he doesn’t beat himself,” the Pinstripes' Manager told the New York Daily News after Whitley beat the Royals last night. “He does a lot of things right."

To put into perspective how good Whitley has been for the Bombers this season, it's helpful to look at the numbers of his predecessor.  

Sabathia, the team's supposed-to-be ace, was 2-2 with a 4.33 ERA in his five outings before going down, with the team losing his only no-decision.

Whitley, on the other hand, has gone 1-0 with a 2.42 ERA in his first five MLB games, helping the Yanks go 4-1.

I think it's obvious who's better.

Meet A Prospect: Jacob Lindgren

The New York Yankees drafted Mississippi State's relief pitcher Jacob Lindgren with their first pick, 55th overall in the second round, on Thursday in the MLB First Year Players Draft. Allow me to introduce you to Mr. Lindgren as we welcome him to the family, the Yankees family.

Lindgren was a starting pitcher in his Sophomore season at Mississippi State and posted a modest 4-3 record with a 4.18 ERA in 14 starts before converting to the bullpen for his Junior season. Lindgren appeared in 24 games this season and posted a 0.81 ERA with a 16.29 K/9 ratio while allowing just 23 hits, 22 of them singles, and striking out an even 100 batters.

Lindgren struggles with command and has some questionable mechanics on a smaller frame but still strikes out plenty of batters with a hard slider and a 93-94 MPH fastball. Lindgren hides the ball well but struggles with consistency and release points at times making him a project, but a fast mover nonetheless.

The Yankees do not have a shutdown left handed relief pitcher in the system currently unless they plan on using either Manny Banuelos or Jeremy Bleich out of the pen. Lindgren is going to be a site for sore eyes in the Yankees bullpen sooner rather than later.

On the 20-80 scale that scouts use Lindgren has a 60 fastball, 65 slider, 45 command, and compares to BJ Ryan. It would not surprise me one but to see Lindgren up this September with the big league club.

Position: LHP
DOB: 03/12/1993 (Age: 21)
Height/Weight: 5'11", 205 pounds
Bats/Throws: R/L
School: Mississippi State (Junior)

A Changing Of The Guard

About a week ago I had a conversation with a reader on Twitter. The conversation started off talking about David Robertson, Shawn Kelly, Dellin Betances, and the closer role. However, things changed and we started discussing changes that should be made in the front office and coaching staff.

"Yeah, I'm going to be talking about you, Brian."

Since I'm sure you all care what I think about the bullpen situation for next year, I basically said that it wouldn't kill the team to let David Robertson go in the offseason, as I can see Dellin Betances taking over the closer's role. However, losing an arm as good as D-Rob's will definitely hurt the bullpen. Just look at how much weaker the bullpen is without Rivera, even though Robertson has stepped into the closer spot and done well.

Remember... no matter what role a player fills you can't go from two good pitchers to one and not get worse.

As I was saying, the conversation turned to the front office and coaching staff. The reader suggested getting rid of Kevin Long, and I can't say that thinking is wrong. I'm not the biggest Kevin Long fan in the World, but you can't deny that he's helped hitters before (see Curtis Granderson). But, for a while now, I've had a problem with the Yankees approach at the plate. Instead of doing things like trying to move a runner into scoring position by hitting the ball to one side or the other, Yankee hitters tend to always try to come up with the big hit. Nobody wants to be a role player, even for just one at bat. When all we need is a fly ball so a runner can tag up and score from third base, a Yankee hitter will try and do too much and pop out, or strike out while taking a big swing. I doubt that's all on Kevin, but he's surely a part of the problem there.

Before the conversation ended I brought up the idea that the Yankees seem to be in a transitional period. While things are changing, other things are staying the same. So while you see the team do the right thing and hold back from giving out another huge contract to a player on the wrong side of 30 years old (Cano), they go and give a different player on the wrong side of 30 a seven year deal.

The reader brought up Kevin Towers as a possible replacement for Brian Cashman, but I shot that down right away. Not because I know Towers, his contract with the Diamondbacks, or whether he likes Arizona or not, but because I think it's time for the Yankees to embrace a change. It's time for this team to get away from their old ways, and realize that the game has changed, and so should they. That means a young, new, General Manager. Not somebody that's familiar with the way the Yankees did business in the past, and will let that interfere with what's best for them now.

You may have read a quote from the head coach and technical director of the United States Men's National Team, Jurgen Klinsmann. No, not the one about the United States not being able to win the World Cup this year, but this...
“This always happens in America. Kobe Bryant, for example — why does he get a two-year contract extension for $50 million? Because of what he is going to do in the next two years for the Lakers? Of course not. Of course not. He gets it because of what he has done before. It makes no sense. Why do you pay for what has already happened?”
For starters, I partially agree with Jurgen. It doesn't make sense for a guy to get paid for what he did in the past. The company I work for is not going to pay me for what I did last year, they are going to pay me for what they think I can do for them now. In that respect, neither Kobe Bryant nor Derek Jeter should have been paid what they were in 2014. However, this is the way things have been done for a long time, and changing that could negatively affect a team's ability to sign stars in the future. For example, if Brett Gardner didn't think the Yankees would be there for him in 2020 when his contract was up, but he still had something left, perhaps Brett wouldn't have signed that extension and would have opted for free agency after this season.

I don't know how somebody thinks, but I can at least see why a team would feel obligated to make their stars happy.

But there's more to Klinsmann's quote than money. If you look past the money thing, you'll see that Coach Klinsmann is really talking about doing what's best for a team now.

Now, I'm not going to pretend that I'm an expert on the game of soccer. I love the sport, but you're not going to see me start a blog writing about the game or those in it. However, I do know that Landon Donovan is 32 years old, and while that may be fairly young for a baseball player, 32 is a fairly old for a soccer player. Landon started playing in Major League Soccer at the age of 19. The German team, which is one of the favorites to win the World Cup this year, has an average age under 26.

Therefore, would Landon have been the best for the Men's National Team in this World Cup? I think the best answer to that question is "maybe", and in the end I'm going to side with Jurgen Klinsmann, a man that's had a great soccer career as both a player and coach.

So how does this affect the Yankees? Well, it's time for them to do what's best for the team now, and stop thinking about the past. I'm not saying they should throw Old Timer's Day out the window... NOT AT ALL. But when it comes to trying to win, they have to stop pandering to aging stars and the old way of building the team. Just like a restaurant that has to update their menu once in a while, it's time for the Yankees to sit down and do what's best for business in the present.

That means it's time for the Yankees to move on from Brian Cashman and the "old guard". I appreciate and respect everything they've done for the Yankees. Without them, who knows what would have happened in 2009 and in other successful seasons? But teams like the Oakland Athletics are showing us that enough's enough... it's time for a change.

"I think this guy may be a wrestling fan."

Can't Predict Baseball: 16 Innings, 0 Strike Outs

On this day in 1936 the New York Yankees and the Indians had a pretty uncommon anomaly happen in their 16 inning game. The Yankees would beat the Indians on this day 5-4 in extra innings at Yankee Stadium. What made this game special was that no pitcher in the game recorded a single strikeout in the game.

You can't predict baseball...

Quick Hit: Shawn Kelley Rehab Assignment In Trenton

Thunder fans can catch a pair of Major League pitchers in action this weekend as Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Stolmy Pimentel takes the mound tonight for the visiting Altoona Curve and New York Yankees reliever Shawn Kelley is expected to pitch for Trenton on Saturday night.

Pimentel, a 24-year-old right-hander, made his MLB debut for Pittsburgh last year and is 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA in six games for the Pirates this season. He was placed on the Disabled List on May 3 with shoulder inflammation.
Kelley, has appeared in 193 Major League games and has a career record of 15-13 with a 3.75 ERA. He appeared in 57 games for the Yankees in 2013 (fourth most among NYY pitchers) and pitched in 16 games this year before sustaining a

This Day In New York Yankees History 6/7

On this day in 2007 the New York Yankees would beat the Chicago White Sox 10-3 for Joe Torre's 2,000th victory as a manager. Torre won 257 games with the Braves, 286 games with the Mets, 351 games with the Cardinals, and 1,106 with the Yankees. Torre would also become the first manager to reach 2,000 wins and have 2,000 hits as a player.

On this day in 2008 Johnny Damon went off at the plate going 6-6 including a walk off single in a 12-11 Yankees comeback victory. Damon lit up his old team in the Kansas City Royals and became the first Yankee and the second player in Major League history to collect six hits at Yankee Stadium.