Friday, September 4, 2015

Recap: Yankees 5, Rays 2

Luis Severino lasted a career-high 6 1/3 innings and the Yankees cruised past the Rays, 5-2, on Friday night at Yankee Stadium.

Not Bad for a Rookie, or Anyone: Severino yielded just one earned and seven hits en route to his third consecutive win, walking three and striking out five. The confident-looking youngster ran into trouble in the first, second and sixth, but ultimately allowed nothing more than an Evan Longoria solo shot on the evening.

Who Needs Baserunners?: The Yankees put just five men on against the Rays' Jake Odorizzi, but managed to score each one of them. Alex Rodriguez began the outburst with a two-run homer in the second, followed by a Brian McCann solo blast in the fourth and another two-run bomb by Greg Bird in the sixth.

At Least it Wasn't a Hip Issue: Jacoby Ellsbury left the game in the fifth with flu-like symptoms, being replaced by Chris Young in the batting order. Ellsbury may not be available on Saturday, but the Yankees can still be thankful it wasn't anything more serious.

Laboring, But Prevailing: Justin Wilson relieved Severino with a runner on in the seventh, and for a while, didn't appear to have his best stuff. The lefty had to use 10 pitches before Brandon Guyer lined out to the warning track, ending the frame shortly afterwards with a fly ball from Longoria.

The Big 3-0: Andrew Miller recorded the final two outs of the ninth for his 30th save of the season, becoming just the fifth AL closer to reach such a total this year. The other four on that list -- Brad Boxberger, Glen Perkins, Houston Street, and Zach Britton -- have all blown at least two saves, essentially putting Miller in a category of his own.

Next Up: The Yankees and Rays continue this series with a matinee on Saturday, the Yanks sending Nathan Eovaldi (14-2, 4.17 ERA) to the hill versus Tampa Bay's Matt Moore (1-3, 8.78 ERA). First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m. ET, airing live on Fox Sports 1 and WFAN.

BREAKING: Jacoby Ellsbury Exits Game w/ UPSET STOMACH

UPDATE: It's an upset stomach. Exhale.

Jacoby Ellsbury left tonight's game with the Tampa Bay Rays in the top of the 5th inning with an apparent injury. Ellsbury was removed and replaced with Chris Young in the outfield. When news breaks on what is going on we will have it but you have to assume it's the swollen hip that has bothered him for a couple weeks now.

Mark Teixeira to the DL, Nick Rumbelow to the Pen

The New York Yankees have finally placed first baseman Mark Teixeira on the 15 day disabled list with his deep bone bruise in his shin. Teixeira fouled a ball off the shin and has, with the exception of one game started and one pinch hitting appearance against the Houston Astros, been out ever since. New York placed Teixeira on the DL retroactive to August 27th meaning he will be eligible to come off the disabled list on September 10th, although after his last round of tests on his shin he will still be on crutches by then.

The move allows the Yankees to call up Nick Rumbelow before his ten day waiting period expired on September 6th. New York has dropped the ball from day one on this whole situation, he should have been placed on the disabled list immediately rather than playing for two weeks with a short bench. He should have also been placed on the DL on September 1st when rosters expanded to get either Rumbelow or Nick Goody, who is also ineligible to come back until September 6th, in the bullpen.

I expect more out of this organization and they really disappointed me on this one. Thankfully the Yankees team as a whole has picked up the slack left behind with the injury and picked up the organization with a few wins when the whole situation had the ability to bury the season. 

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays 9/4

The New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays are just about ready to kick off their three game set head-to-head this weekend inside Yankee Stadium. Is there any better way to spend a Friday night then downtown in the Bronx watching the Yankees beat up on a division rival? I guess it depends on who you ask but if you ask this guy I’d have to think not. Anyway, the Yankees will send Luis Severino to the mound looking for his fourth straight victory while the Rays counter with their ace Jake Odorizzi. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

To see the Yankees live during this home stand or for the rest of the season you have to click the Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog. We’re playing Game 133 of Game 162 tonight in the Bronx, not including a potential playoff game or two, so you’re running out of time to buy your Yankees tickets. If you can’t make it live then that’s not a problem, simply jump on Twitter and give @GreedyStripes a follow. Michael Kay follows us and mentioned us on air once, which has to count for something…right?

The rookie is ready to continue making Brian Cashman look like a genius while the offense is hoping to remain hot and not have another letdown the game after an offensive explosion. Go Yankees!

Yankees Leaders Through 132 Games


Games Played:
Chase Headley - 127

At Bats:
Chase Headley - 427

Runs Scored:
Brett Gardner - 85

Chase Headley - 131

Carlos Beltran - 31

Home Runs:
Mark Teixeira - 31

Brian McCann - 82

Carlos Beltran - .282

Nathan Eovaldi - 26

Dellin Betances and Justin Wilson - 61 each

Nathan Eovaldi - 14

CC Sabathia - 9

Bullpen: Dellin Betances - 1.30
Rotation: Luis Severino - 2.17


Rotation: Michael Pineda - 127
Bullpen: Dellin Betances - 109

Time to Buy Low on Ian Desmond?

In the two years prior to the 2015 season I already had posts up on the blog thinking about the next season’s free agent class, potential trade partners and hopeful additions coming to the club. Basically to put it plainly I had already given up on the season and I was pulling the whole “there’s always next year” plug. This year is different for me though because I feel like this team is a playoff team and potentially a special kind of team but other beat writers and bloggers are already focusing on the 2016 season despite the team’s success this season. When I got home the other night and opened my web browser I already saw a certain someone, Ken Davidoff, linking a certain team, the New York Yankees, to a certain free agent to be, Ian Desmond. What?

Ian Desmond is the Washington Nationals shortstop that is taking the brunt of the blame for the team’s struggles this season. The Nationals have suffered probably more key injuries than any team in Major League Baseball this season and Desmond, who has been healthy for much of the season, has not done his part to pick up the slack in his teammate’s absence, especially in the first half. While Desmond has been much better, although still a far cry from his breakout seasons in 2013 and 2014, in the second half many are linking him to New York as he sprints towards free agency this winter, should the Yankees bite?

Obviously selling Desmond on New York would be a hard sell because it would come with a position change to second base. The Yankees have Didi Gregorius at shortstop currently and after showing and preaching patience for much of the first two months of the season that has all paid huge dividends for the team. Gregorius has been one of the best Yankees hitters the last two or three months and has showed the ability to play stellar defense in or out of the shadow of the great Derek Jeter. Desmond would have to be willing to move to second base to supplant Stephen Drew and Robert Refsnyder if he came to New York and I just can’t see him doing that.

Desmond is still young enough where he shouldn’t be worried about chasing a ring or a potential championship, he is going to be chasing the money and security of a long-term contract this winter. Desmond plays a premium position well at shortstop that is known for its anemic offensive players, not that there are many Robinson Cano’s in their prime’s at second base either, and moving to a team that is trying to get under the luxury tax threshold in a couple of seasons just doesn’t make sense. If Desmond could hit like he did prior to 2015 and the Yankees could buy low on him with the expectations of him going to second base then sign me up. If not then I think I’ll have to pass. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays 9/4

The New York Yankees are well rested and ready to chase down the Toronto Blue Jays during this final month of September and into October. The Yankees are fresh off a series win in Boston where they missed a sweep by about five feet, that’s how far Didi Gregorius missed a game winning grand slam by, while the Rays are fresh off their manhandling of the Baltimore Orioles. Tonight the Yankees will send Luis Severino to the mound on an extra day of rest to face off against the Rays starter Jake Odorizzi. The game will be played at 7:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Severino heads into the Bronx tonight looking for his third straight victory after shutting down the Atlanta Braves for six innings in his last start. Severino allowed just four hits to Atlanta and has now completed at least six innings in four of his five starts thus far in his Major League career while allowing three runs or less in all five, a trend that will likely continue tonight.

  • Odorizzi has looked sharp since coming off the disabled list for Tampa despite just a 2-2 record and a 4.15 ERA. Odorizzi is making his 11th start since coming off the disabled list and is likely to go at least five innings like he has done in nine of those ten previous starts.

Another series, another series victory. That has to be the mindset for the Yankees going into every single remaining series this season. New York cannot control what the Toronto Blue Jays do, what the team’s facing Toronto will do or what the team chasing them in the Wild Card will do they just have to take care of their own business and everything will work out. If New York continues to win they will make the playoffs, bottom line. That mission continues tonight in the Bronx inside Yankee Stadium against these pesky Rays. Go Yankees!

Has Girardi Lost Confidence in Justin Wilson?

The recipe for much of the 2015 season has been simple for the New York Yankees, get the starting pitcher through five innings and hand the ball off to Chasen Shreve, Justin Wilson, Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller for the 6th inning through the 9th inning. For much of the season this game plan has worked with miraculous success but recently it seems like there may be a rift in the clubhouse or a wrinkle in the plan. If I didn’t know any better I’d say that Joe Girardi has lost confidence in his 7th inning man, Wilson.

What made me think of the notion was the fact that Wilson was removed after just eight pitches in Tuesday night’s victory over the Boston Red Sox. Wilson looked sharp recording the first two outs with ease before giving up a hit to Jackie Bradley Jr. that forced him out of the game and Dellin Betances into the contest. The same happened when the Yankees were in Atlanta in the game that Luis Severino started. Wilson was not given the reigns to the full inning, although granted he did not pitch well at all in that 7th inning, in what is looking more and more like a trend and less and less like a coincidence.

Looking at the last month or so of sample size we can see that Wilson was given less than an inning of work in four consecutive outings and saw less than a full inning nine different times since the beginning of August. The number of days in between Wilson's outings have increased as well with two instances where the lefty had four days of rest, one outing was three days after his last and two more were two days separated from his previous outing. Earlier in the season Girardi was using Wilson, Shreve, Betances and Miller every day or every other day. 

It's too early to tell if Wilson has fallen out of the Circle of Trust or if the Yankees manager is simply trying to give him more rest for the stretch run but the pattern is beginning to show. Maybe I'm looking too much into this but when I find myself second guessing myself I usually end up regretting it... because I'm usually right.

Playoff Teams Beat the Teams You’re Supposed to Beat

It sounds simple enough but there is nothing truer in Major League Baseball than this, the teams that make the postseason every single year generally beat the team’s that they’re supposed to beat. When I say the team’s they are supposed to beat I mean the inferior teams, the rebuilding teams and the teams with worse records than they have. New York’s biggest issue this season has been bringing their best baseball to the diamond against the good teams of the league while the team lays down against the weaker teams in the division. Does New York beat the teams they are supposed to beat enough to make the playoffs in 2015?

Here is the Yankees record against the teams they have faced this season with .500 or below records or non-playoff teams if the season ended today:

Tampa Bay Rays:8-5
Boston Red Sox: 10-5
Baltimore Orioles:8-5
Detroit Tigers: 5-2
Chicago White Sox: 2-1
Seattle Mariners: 5-1
Oakland Athletics: 3-4
Cleveland Indians: 2-5

As you can see, and we’re limiting this to just the American League since the series with the Atlanta Braves, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Washington Nationals and Miami Marlins represent a pretty small sample size. New York has surprisingly done well overall against these teams and better than I would have expected without looking at the stats. If beating the teams you're supposed to beat means making the postseason then you better start pre-ordering your Yankees postseason tickets now.

Weekly Check In: Robert Refsnyder

With September call ups in full effect and Refsnyder now spending his 4th day this month in the Major Leagues I thought it would be a good time to give the Yankees second base prospect one last check of his minor league numbers. Maybe next week we can bring you his Major League numbers, New York does face some left-handed pitching in the next week or so.


RiverDogs Unveil Refreshed Logos, New Uniforms for 2016 Season

Crisp, clean, modern take on classic logo, addition of Holy City heritage highlight changes for 20th season of RiverDogs baseball

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Charleston RiverDogs unveiled a revived logo, new uniforms and new alternate jerseys that will be utilized during the 2016 season during a press conference on Wednesday afternoon at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park.

The RiverDogs’ rejuvenated identity, brought to life by Studio Simon, a Louisville, Ky. company, is a fresh, modern take on the classic RiverDogs logo, which has been consistently noted as one of the best logos in all of Minor League Baseball.

“The idea behind our rebranding effort was to create an updated and contemporary look for the Charleston RiverDogs’ 20th season and beyond,” said General Manager Dave Echols. “The logos have the classic look everyone is accustomed to, but have been designed by the great folks at Studio Simon to include a progressive touch, giving it a great look I know our fans will like.”

Charleston’s new uniforms feature the standard home white jerseys with “RiverDogs” across the chest and classic gray road jerseys with “Charleston” embroidered across the front. One new feature of the road grays is a patch of Charlie biting a broken bat in a crescent moon on the left sleeve.

The home and road caps feature a familiar sight as lovable mascot Charlie T. RiverDog returns in trademark style, biting a broken bat. A tri-colored batting practice hat has also been added to the mix, and it features a navy back, white crown with a floppy-eared Charlie head, and a yellow bill.

A new addition to the 2016 wardrobe is an alternate pinstriped “Holy City” jersey, which pays tribute to the City of Charleston’s nickname “The Holy City.” The jersey tops will be paired with pinstriped pants for all Sunday home games that create a remarkable resemblance to the team’s parent club, the 27-time World Series Champion New York Yankees.

“Charleston is very rich in history and tradition,” said RiverDogs Co-Owner Peter Freund, who helped lead the redesigning process. “We knew it was time to incorporate the many facets of what makes Charleston great into the RiverDogs brand as we embark on our 20th season as a franchise. The elements we’ve introduced are sure to take us another 20 years.”

For the first time in franchise history, the RiverDogs have created an alternate game hat that will be worn on “Holy City Sundays.” The all navy cap will feature the debut of an interlocking HC logo with a halo above the H.

In addition to the jerseys and caps, there is an updated primary logo with iconic wrought iron accents native to the Charleston area. Secondary logos have also been modernized and all will be rolled out to the public starting at the RiverDogs’ final home game on September 2.

“The Charleston RiverDogs have created one of the most recognized brands in all of Minor League Baseball and their classic logo is a big part of that,” noted Dan Simon, head of Studio Simon. “With that in mind, we created a fresh logo using Charlie and the classic color scheme that RiverDogs fans have grown to love over the last 19 seasons.”

Studio Simon is a brand identity firm offering an unprecedented confluence of full-service branding capabilities, proven success and award-winning creativity. As one of the leaders in sports brand identity development, Studio Simon has teamed with more than 100 professional, collegiate and amateur sports teams, leagues and businesses on the development of complete brand identity systems and numerous other projects to help build and support those brands.

The RiverDogs have unleashed the 2016 schedule. The new home jerseys will be on display Opening Night, Thursday, April 7, as the RiverDogs welcome the Columbia Fireflies to Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park for the first time ever. Sunday, April 10, will see the first “Holy City Sunday” uniforms and the debut of the new Holy City jerseys, while August 14 in Augusta will be the first time Charleston’s road grays will be worn.

This Day in New York Yankees History 9/4: ‘98 Yankees Quickest to 100 Victories

The 1998 New York Yankees squad was deemed by many as the greatest team ever assembled in this great sport of Major League Baseball. On this day in 1998 the Yankees entered the record books when they became the quickest team ever to reach the 100 win plateau. The Yankees 11-6 victory over the Chicago White Sox bested the 1906 Chicago Cubs and 1954 Cleveland Indians by five days. Although the Cubs in 1906 started the season 100-32 which was far better than the Yankees record.

Also on this day in 1993 Jim Abbott, the Yankees starting pitcher that was born with only one hand, throws a no hitter to beat the California Angels by the score of 4-0. Abbott was the first Yankees pitcher to throw a no hitter in the decade even though he was born without a right hand. Indians leadoff hitter Kenny Lofton was loudly booed by the Yankee Stadium crowd for fouling off a bunt attempt in his last at bat.

Also on this day in 1991 Major League Baseball votes to eliminate the distinction between the number of games played in a league's schedule when it comes to the all-time single season home run mark. The vote takes away the asterisk that kept Roger Maris from the top spot and bumped Babe Ruth to the second hole with 60 home runs in a season.

Finally on this day in 1906 the New York Highlanders, formerly the Baltimore Orioles and soon to be the New York Yankees, beat the Boston Americans 1-0 to finally earn a day off. The Highlanders completed a grueling five consecutive double headers in six days trip and swept them all going 10-0 during the streak.