Friday, July 31, 2015

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Chicago White Sox 7/31

The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox will play three games inside Chicago’s US Cellular Field with the first coming here in just a few minutes. This series will conclude a 10 game road trip for the Yankees where they have dominated in both stops thus far. New York will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound tonight to set the tone for the team this series as Carlos Rodon looks to stop the red hot Yankees and keep the White Sox on the winning side of things. The game will be played at 8:10 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees head home on Tuesday to play host to the Boston Red Sox giving you just three more days to click that Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog and snag a couple tickets to boo David Oritz and Hanley Ramirez live in the Bronx. Until then be sure to jump on Twitter and give @GreedyStripes a follow to root for the Yankees while they are in Chicago this week eating that disgrace that the locals call pizza.

Sabathia is ready and I don’t know if I should clap or simply blind my eyes, we’ll find out soon enough though. Go Yankees!

Garrett Jones Designated For Assignment- Ackley Activated

Luis Severino To Be Promoted, Make Next Start Inside Yankee Stadium

Imagining a Rotation with David Price

The July 31st trade deadline in Major League Baseball is either the most fun time you have ever had as a fan or one of the more frustrating times as a fan. Nobody likes to see their team lose so when your team is either not acquiring pieces that they need or selling off major pieces as the franchise looks to rebuild it can be frustrating. At the same time it can be a great time to be a fan as hopes are high and it almost feels like Opening Day all over again if your team made the moves it needed to make in order to reach the postseason. The Yankees haven’t made many moves yet that make me feel confident about winning a World Series in 2015, not that they needed to do much in my opinion, but a rotation that would have had David Price in it could have be extremely scary for other teams and extremely fun to watch for us, the fans.

The Yankees seem enamored with the fact that CC Sabathia is still a suitable starting pitcher and not a pitcher that finds a bone every once in a while. An acquisition of Price would either, likely to anyway, move Sabathia completely out of the starting rotation and into the bullpen as a long reliever and LOOGY (check his LHP vs. RHB splits) or at least move him out of starting in a five-game or seven-game series in the playoffs. The acquisition of Price would also make Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda, question marks, struggles and all, the best #2 and #3 pitchers in the league in my very humble, yet very bias, opinion.

1.       David Price
2.       Masahiro Tanaka
3.       Michael Pineda (if healthy)
4.       Nathan Eovaldi
5.       CC Sabathia/Ivan Nova

Having Price start twice in a short playoff series and three times in a seven-game series is huge for the Yankees. Having Tanaka, Pineda and the combination of Eovaldi, Sabathia and Nova behind them would make this a team to be reckoned with in October. Even if New York had to give up one of Eovaldi or Nova to acquire Price it may be worth it for the ring, especially if New York sticks to their guns and demanded an extension with Price in order to execute a trade. I guess since Price is now in Toronto the Yankees and their fans may never know. 

The Plan Is Simple, Now Execute It

The New York Yankees went into this season’s July 31st trade deadline with four prospects in mind that they absolutely would not trade. Luis Severino, Aaron Judge, Jorge Mateo and Greg Bird is the list now being called the “untouchable four” and for good reason, they are four of the top Yankees prospects in the entire farm system. The problem for New York is that you have to give something to get something and when you take four of your Top 10, for some Top 5, prospects off the board you’re going to have to watch and see Cole Hamels go to Texas, Johnny Cueto go to Kansas City and David Price head to Toronto. The good news is the Yankees have a plan to remain atop the American League East Division and the plan is simple, now execute it.

The plan is simple, if you’re not going to trade Severino and others then you need to use them. The Yankees have a huge question mark in Ivan Nova right now and the team already lost Michael Pineda at least for a month, if not longer leaving the need for pitching higher than it has been in 2015. Severino is fresh off a start where he struck out 10 batters for the Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, ride the momentum, ride the confidence train and call him up to be the season’s savior for lack of a better term.

The plan is simple, Stephen Drew sucks and Brendan Ryan will suck in a large enough sample size but Robert Refsnyder definitely does not suck. Not yet anyway, he actually looked good in his short debut/showcase but the sample size works in both directions unfortunately. Calling up Refsnyder adds an average-first bat with pop at the bottom of the lineup and breaks up all the left-handed batters that tend to hit consecutively down there.

Adding Severino and Refsnyder to an already talented team that is in first place makes the team not only the favorites in the American League East but maybe in the whole American League. It’s a simple plan, we just need Brian Cashman to sign off on it and then execute it. That or pull off a big trade a la Ninja Cashman in this final hour and a half before the deadline. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Chicago White Sox 7/31

The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox begin a three game set this weekend at US Cellular Field with both teams playing extremely well since the All-Star break. The Yankees will see more than one familiar face this series with former members of the team Jose Quintana, David Robertson and Melky Cabrera all wearing White Sox pinstripes in 2015. Tonight the Yankees will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound to face off against Carlos Rodon for the Sox. The game will be played at 8:10 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Eovaldi has been exponentially better in his last 10 or 11 starts in New York and has been especially good in his last seven starts. In his last seven starts Eovaldi is 5-0 with a 2.83 ERA and has held the opposing teams offense to just a .245 BAA with a .560 OPS. 

  • Rodon is coming into this start fresh off a great start against the St. Louis Cardinals last time out. Rodon didn’t allow a run in 6.2 IP against the best team, record wise, in Major League Baseball while striking out nine batters. This marks the first time in Rodon’s rookie campaign that he has faced the Yankees.

With the White Sox recent hot streak in the second half of the season the team’s GM Rick Hahn was convinced enough to not sell at the trading deadline. That left players like Jeff Samardzija off the trade block and out of the Yankees organization, let’s hope the team brings Chicago back down to Earth in this series and let’s hope they make them regret not taking our prospects for “The Shark.” Go Yankees!

Every Significant Trade from the Brian Cashman Era

It is the day many Yankees fans have been waiting for, July 31, 2015. The day that the non-waiver trading deadline comes and goes and we as a fan base either praise Yankees GM Brian Cashman or call for his head. With Cashman’s checklist dwindling down to nothing after missing out on Johnny Cueto, Cole Hamels, David Price and others already off the board and Michael Pineda and Ivan Nova both possibly hurting the screams for Cashman’s head are growing louder and louder. Are they justified? See for yourself:

§  March 212001 traded Wily Mo Pena to the Cincinnati Reds for Drew Henson and Michael Coleman

§  December 72001 traded David Justice to the New York Mets for Robin Ventura

§  July 12002 traded Scott Wiggins to the Toronto Blue Jays for Raul Mondesi

§  July 52002 in a 3 team trade sent Ted LillyJason Arnold and John-Ford Griffin to the Oakland Athletics for Jeff Weaver from the Detroit Tigers

§  June 62003 traded Marcus Thames to the Detroit Tigers for Ruben Sierra

§  August 62003 traded Armando Benitez to the Seattle Mariners for Jeff Nelson

§  May 152004 traded Brian Myrow to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Tanyon Sturtze

§  December 32004 traded Felix Heredia to the New York Mets for Mike Stanton

§  July 22005 traded Paul Quantrill to the San Diego Padres for Darrell May and Tim Redding

§  July 282005 traded Ramon Ramirez and Eduardo Sierra to the Colorado Rockies for Shawn Chacon

§  August 272005 traded Justin Berg to the Chicago Cubs for Matt Lawton

§  November 162005 traded Ben Julianel to the Florida Marlins for Ron Villone

§  December 82005 traded Tony Womack to the Cincinnati Reds for Benjamin Himes and Kevin Howard

§  July 262006 traded Hector Made to the Philadelphia Phillies for Sal Fasano

§  July 312006 traded Shawn Chacon to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Craig Wilson

§  July 302008 traded Kyle Farnsworth to the Detroit Tigers for Ivan Rodriguez

§  July 302008 traded LaTroy Hawkins to the Houston Astros for Matt Cusick

§  February 42009 traded Chase Wright to the Milwaukee Brewers for Eric Fryer

§  May 162009 traded Eric Hacker to PIT N for Romulo Sanchez

§  June 302009 traded Casey Erickson and Eric Fryer to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Eric Hinske

§  July 312009 traded Chase Weems to the Cincinnati Reds for Jerry Hairston

§  January 262010 traded Mitch Hilligoss to the Texas Rangers for Greg Golson

§  July 312010 traded Mark Melancon and Jimmy Paredes to the Houston Astros for Lance Berkman

§  July 312010 traded Matt Cusick and Andrew Shive to the Cleveland Indians for Kerry Wood

§  July 312012 traded Chad Qualls to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Casey McGehee

§  July 262013 traded Corey Black to the Chicago Cubs for Alfonso Soriano

§  July 312014 traded Kelly Johnson to the Boston Red Sox for Stephen Drew

Oh and Cashman acquired Dustin Ackley from the Seattle Mariners yesterday, not exactly notable though. 

As you can see with any GM who has been with the team since the 1998 season you will have some trades you won and some trades that you lost. Some are significant losses and some are significant wins but overall I don’t think Cashman has been terrible. When you consider what Cashman worked under and who Cashman worked under for most of those seasons you could understand a few knee jerk reactions and such and overall he’s been okay. I’m not anointing him GM of the Century by any means and I’m not exactly planning a Brian Cashman Day in Monument Park but I’m not punching the guy in the face if I see him out on the street either….. 

Tick, Tock. Tick, Tock. Brian Cashman is on the Clock

The 2015 July 31st non-waiver trading deadline is a mere nine hours away and the Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman is officially on the clock. Cashman has balked at trades involving Jorge Mateo for Craig Kimbrel and his $28 million in salary and has balked at any trades involving Luis Severino and Greg Bird leading New York to miss out on Cole Hamels, David Price, Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist. New York has missed out on Mat Latos, Tyler Clippard and a slew of other pieces in what has been an extremely exciting and extremely busy trade deadline. Is it finally the Yankees time to shine?

Cashman has nine more hours to stand pat, move on players like Mike Leake or James Shields or shock the world with another “Ninja Cashman” special. The rumor mill is awfully quiet right now surrounding the Yankees and that’s usually an indicator that Cashman and the team from the Bronx are ready to pounce and ready to strike.

The Mets are trying to steal the Yankees thunder and steal the National League East Division, nine more hours until we see if Cashman let them do at least one of them. Stay tuned, it’s going to be a great and exciting news filled day. 

Weekly Check In: Robert Refsnyder

Today is the day that every Robert Refsnyder fan, friend, family member of supporter is dreading, the July 31st trade deadline day. Refsnyder, as we all know, is not one of Brian Cashman’s “untouchable” four prospects and could have his Fenway Park debut as a showcase in a potential trade. Despite the fact that Refsnyder is light years ahead of both Brendan Ryan and Stephen Drew offensively and more then held his own defensively in his short stay Mr. Refsnyder may be on the block today.

Let’s ignore the fact that Refsnyder had an error in his debut series, he made his Major League debut inside of Fenway Park in a Yankees vs. Red Sox game that actually, at the time, meant something. Not everyone is Derek Jeter and has icicles running through their veins, Refsnyder had some nerves and they showed. He’s human after all. Refsnyder settled down, got comfortable and looked more than adequate (not perfect, mind you) at the position for the remainder of his time there. Something should be said about that and not about his one error, I’m just saying.

So today is the day that Refsnyder either gets a shot on the big league club with the Yankees or gets a shot with the big league club somewhere else after a trade. Either way I think we finally see a resolution to the Robert Refsnyder situation after today, even if it takes a week or so to finalize it. If Refsnyder is leaving, and I may cry if he does so prepare yourselves for that, this is all of what he left on the field with the Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders this season.


This Day in New York Yankees History 7/31: July 31st Trade Deadline Special 2015

Remember above when I said the only notable trade that happened in the last 20 seasons was the Fielder trade? You see why here as just minutes before the trading deadline ended in 2004 the Yankees shipped their struggling pitcher Jose Contreras (8-5 5.64 ERA) for the White Sox struggling starter Esteban Loaiza (9-5 4.86 ERA). Both pitchers were 32 years old and having down seasons based on their past performances and neither player really performed for their new teams this season.

Also on this day in 2001 the Yankees lost out on relief pitcher Ugueth Urbina to the Boston Red Sox. Boston got Urbina for two minor league pitchers in Tomo Ohka and Rich Rundles after the Yankees had a deal in place for the closer that fell through earlier in the season. Urbina failed his physical, the Yankees backed out of the deal, and the rest is history for the former Expos' closer.

Can you believe the only other notable trade for the New York Yankees in the past twenty years or so has been the Cecil Fielder trade that happened in 1996? The Yankees have made moves, marginal more than anything, but Cecil was the deal that stuck out. On this day in 1996 the Yankees sent Ruben Sierra and prospect Matt Drews for Fielder in the first trade in Major League history that included two players that have hit more than 220 home runs are traded for each other.

Get ready because we're a mere 16 hours away from the trading deadline coming to a close.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Texas Rangers 7/30

The New York Yankees and the Texas Rangers will finish off their four game series tonight in Texas before New York takes off to Chicago for a three game set. New York has had a stranglehold on the Rangers this series and look for the total annihilation tonight in Texas. New York will send CC Sabathia to the mound looking to put yet another game between them and the rest of the American League East Division while the Rangers will counter with Yovani Gallardo. The game will be played at 8:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees will fly to Chicago to face off with the Chicago White Sox after this series before an off day on Monday. After that the team returns home and returns to the Eastern Time zone for the remainder of the 2015 season. Click the Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog to have your tickets in hand for when the team returns home to play host to the Boston Red Sox. Until then head over to Twitter and give @GreedyStripes a follow to interact with us during each and every Yankees game this season.

Sabathia is ready to throw dirt on the Rangers coffin and I’m ready to see if the Yankees offense can put up more runs in a game than the New York football Giants again. Go Yankees!

July 30th MLB Trade Deadline catch up Post

The trade rumors and all the wheeling and dealings have been flying around like crazy so let’s get caught up a bit before we head into the final day of the frenzy.

  • The Yankees tried to acquire Dustin Ackley from the Seattle Mariners in a trade that would have sent OF Ramon Flores and Ben Gamel to Seattle. Seattle wanted more and the deal, hopefully, fell through.

  • The Yankees came back and acquired Ackley anyway fpr Ramon Flores and Jose Ramirez.

  • The St. Louis Cardinals have acquired first baseman Brandon Moss from the Cleveland Indians for a prospect.

  • The Toronto Blue Jays sent LHP Daniel Norris and two prospects to the Detroit Tigers for LHP David Price in a deal that is sure to shake up the American League East Division race. 

Michael Pineda Added to 15 day DL

Michael Pineda has been added to the 15 day disabled list with what the Yankees are calling a Grade 1 forearm strain. Masahiro Tanaka had a similar injury earlier this season and however minor the Yankees made it out to be he still missed a little over a month worth of games with the injury. If Pineda was lucky enough to miss just a month we would not see him back on the mound until the calendar is ready to turn over to September.

Also a big thank you goes out to Mike Franceser (yes I spelled it wrong on purpose) who blew up the New York radio waves with “Ivan Nova is hurt and Michael Pineda has a very serious elbow injury” news scaring an entire state and fan base with your nonsense. 

BREAKING: Yankees Acquire Dustin Ackley

The New York Yankees have made a trade with the Seattle Mariners that will bring second baseman Dustin Ackley to New York in exchange for RHP Jose Ramirez and OF Ramon Flores. More details to come as they are released.

What if Ivan Nova Can’t Make His Next Start?

Ivan Nova left his last start against the Texas Rangers after just 75 pitches with what is being described as a bout of “tired arm.” Nova and the Yankees were quick to point out that many pitchers that have had Tommy John surgery have had similar issues with tired arm in their first season removed from the ulnar collateral ligament surgery, and Nova was making just his sixth start since coming off the disabled list with the injury, and both parties expect Nova to make his next scheduled start against the Chicago White Sox on Saturday. What if he can’t?

The obvious choice would be to call up Bryan Mitchell and option down whoever is holding the “revolving door” roster spot currently held by Diego Moreno. Mitchell pitched last weekend and could be held back or have his start pushed back if New York can see in time that Nova won’t be able to make the start.

The last thing the Yankees want to do after Tuesday night’s debacle is to let Chris Capuano start another game for the team. Capuano had no command of any of his pitches and he was simply throwing Little League fastballs and changeups up there to the Texas hitters. New York also can’t afford too many “bullpen games” with their bullpen already inching towards and over the “over-worked” line as it is. Obviously this is all dependent on him clearing waivers, accepting a minor league assignment and making his way back to the 40 man roster.

If Nova misses even one start this is going to severely change the Yankees starting rotation going forward. Masahiro Tanaka has not made a start on just four days rest since returning from the DL with a strained right forearm and would have to under these circumstances while others who benefit from the extra rest including Michael Pineda and CC Sabathia would have to once again change their habits, and we all know how much pitchers are creatures of habit, to accommodate Mr. Nova.

The Yankees could survive a missed start or two or even a disabled list stint for Nova if they need be but anything more than that could be disastrous for New York and their World Series aspirations. Nova says he will make his next start and so do the Yankees so I’m taking them at their word, I just hope they have a Plan B in place in case he can’t. 

The Purge 3: Hall of Fame Voters

We’ve all seen the Purge and Purge 2: Anarchy movies, imagine that type of plot just with Hall of Fame voters instead of everyday people. For one day and one day only all voting for future Hall of Fame players is allowed for a select few owners, writers and men and women who cover this great game of baseball. These Hall of Fame voters have made a bit of a mockery, in my opinion anyway, of the Hall of Fame voting over the past few seasons and for much of the steroid era and that may change starting in 2016.

The Baseball Writers Association of America just inducted four members into Cooperstown this past weekend including Craig Biggio, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz but that may change for better or worse going forward. Under the old rules you had lifetime voting rights no matter how far removed you were from covering the game but a purge is going on with the Hall of Fame voters. Under the new rules you are no longer allowed to vote if you have not actively covered the game in the last 10 years, a breath of fresh air for the more progressive fans of the game.

This by no means will eliminate the “character clause” that is keeping many steroid users, suspected steroid users and players out of the Hall but it is a definite step in the right direction. In 2016 I don’t expect the likes of Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro and others to make the game but it may help those borderline cases in Jeff Bagwell and Mike Piazza finally make the Hall despite their undeserved “ties” to the steroid era in general. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Texas Rangers 7/30

The New York Yankees and the Texas Rangers will play in the finale of their four game series this week inside the great state of Texas with the Yankees going for the jugular. New York has pitched well this series outside of Chris Capuano’s start, if you want to call it that, and have slugged their way to a football score or two in the series. Tonight the Yankees will send Michael Pineda to the mound looking to keep this hot streak and this streak of dominance alive as the Rangers counter with Yovani Gallardo, if he isn’t traded before game time. The contest will be played at 8:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Pineda is Big Mike no more after losing each of his last two outing against the Seattle Mariners and the Minnesota Twins. At one point Pineda was thought to be the ace of the staff after striking out 16 Baltimore Orioles hitters on Mother’s Day but after allowing nine runs on 14 hits in just 11.2 innings many are left rethinking that philosophy.

  • Gallardo has not looked great in his last four starts for Texas making it less and less likely that the team trades him before his start tonight. Gallardo has a 0-3 record with a 6.52 ERA in his last four starts and has allowed five runs in four innings in his last two starts combined. Gallardo is 4-4 this season with a 2.43 ERA at home in nine starts and has also posted a 1-1 record with a 4.63 ERA in two career starts against the New York Yankees.

The Yankees will head to Chicago to face off with former Yankees faces in David Robertson and Melky Cabrera after this series while the Texas Rangers unfortunately go on to play someone else. New York has today and until 4:00 pm ET tomorrow to make deals to add to their team before the non-waiver trade deadline passes so it should be an interesting 28 hours or so in Yankee-land. I can’t wait for that and I can’t wait for this game. Go Yankees!