Saturday, April 16, 2016

Checking in on the BYB Hub

Depending on what uniform you were wearing and what team you were rooting for you were treated to a hell of a game this afternoon between the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners. When you see games like today, if you’re anything like me, you want to read as many different opinions and articles as you can about it and that’s why a place like the BYB Hub was created by the owner, and my friend, of Bleeding Yankee Blue, Mr. Robert Casey.

A little background on the hub if this is the first time you’re reading about it. Robert Casey approached me and many others about setting up the hub as a place for new and growing blogs to get the free exposure and readership that was never given to the current big dogs in the Yankees blogosphere. While much of the discussion here is centered on the Yankees there is some variety, and we’re seeing more and more variety every month added to the blog, including an Oakland Athletics blog, a Boston Red Sox blog and even a blog showcasing MLB players with Dutch heritages. It truly has something for everyone including the very lovely Lisa Varga who doubles as a model, actress and Yankees fan all in one cute little blonde bundle.

So check out the BYB Hub by heading to and get multiple views, articles and opinions all in one convenient little hub. There is sure to be something for everyone and if you’re an aspiring writer who wants to be showcased on the Hub then contact me and I can work with Mr. Casey to get you signed up.

Thanks for all the support!

Yankees Fall to M's Again, 3-2

     It was another beautiful afternoon in the Bronx, as the Mariners and Yankees faced off in game two of their three-game set. This matchup was made a little extra special by the fact that we were seeing two former Cy Young Award winners face off against one another, in Felix Hernandez and C.C. Sabathia.  Once again, the Yankees bats remained silent, again leaving over a dozen runners on base in route to their fourth consecutive loss.  Carlos Beltran was the only Yankee to produce, with four hits, including two doubles, two RBI and a solo home run.
    Sabathia looked strong through his first four innings of work. He was constantly leaving guys off-balance, guessing and putting the ball in the exact location where he wanted it. It wasn't until the fifth inning, which is shaping up to be a bad inning nightly for the pinstriper's when the big lefty gave up a bomb to centerfielder Leonys Martin, and a pair of RBI shots to Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz. The four Yankee pitchers to follow C.C., Barbado, Shreve, Betances and Miller, were as good as it gets following the rough fifth, and outing capitulated by both Betances and Miller striking out the side in the eighth and ninth innings. The Yankees even attempted to make some noise of a comeback in the ninth, only to leave two more runners on base to end the game. This is starting to be a trend that does not bode well for a successful 2016 campaign.
     The Bronx Bombers are not lacking in the baserunner department, as they collected 10 hits and drew six walks. It's the ability to hit when there are runners on base and in scoring position. Carlos Beltran's RBI double in the third inning could not even fall under the category of a hit with a runner in scoring position, as Teixeira was on first base when he came around to score.
     It seems as though there needs to be a major wake up call issued in the Yankees clubhouse. Let's hope it comes before the last of the three-game set tomorrow, starting at 1:05 PM.

Ken Whitten & the Yankees Mentor

Ken Whitten is a name that not many outside of the New York Yankees organization may know, I know I didn’t know the name before writing this post, but it is a name that deserves a bit of recognition from the fans. You see Whitten already has the admiration of the team and the organization, many think of him as a mentor in fact, but he like so many don’t get the recognition and attention they deserve most of the time and we here at The Greedy Pinstripes are here to reverse that wrong anytime we physically can.

Let’s start at the beginning, some 40-years ago Whitten had dreams of being a professional baseball player and had dreams of pitching in the big leagues. That door closed while Whitten was pitching for the Eastern Illinois University baseball team but the door was opened once again each spring when Whitten attended spring training camp with the New York Yankees. Whitten was a preacher at a church less than 30 minutes away and was able to forge relationships with players, namely Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera, Joe Girardi, Reggie Jackson, Lou Piniella and Angels slugger Albert Pujols to name a few, which granted him access to the players in spring camps.

Whitten now leads Bible studies with the MLB Yankees and two of his co-workers at Idlewild Church also chaplains for the Tampa Yankees. The Yankees honored Whitten after 25 years with the church by making him into a bobble head in a Yankees uniform and a Bible under his arm, the ultimate treat for a man of God and for a man of baseball, namely the Yankees.

Sometimes even Major League ballplayers need a little spirituality and Whitten is the man leading many MLB players and Yankees players specifically in the right direction. A day after honoring Jackie Robinson for all he did during his playing career and all he did for the league both as a player and as an ambassador for the game I guess I wanted to honor Whitten and others like him in a similar way. 

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners 4/16

For some odd reason, maybe it’s history, a gut feeling or maybe it’s just what the stats on Baseball Reference are telling me, I have a feeling this is going to be an agonizing two or three hours here in the Bronx. This afternoon the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners face off head-to-head for the second time in their three-game weekend series with CC Sabathia taking the mound for the Bombers and King Felix, Felix Hernandez toeing the rubber for the M’s. The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network, MLB Network and of course MLB TV.

Get your Yankees tickets for tomorrow afternoon’s game or any game at home or away this season by clicking the Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog. With our partnership through Ticket Monster you can support the blog while supporting the home team with a little bit of money left in your pocket for one of those two-foot-long cheesesteaks. If you can’t make it live then jump on Twitter and live tweet the game with us by giving @GreedyStripes a follow, we’re around for all 162 games plus the postseason every single year and 2016 will be no different.

Let’s get this one going and let’s take the crown from the many they call the King. This is our court and our kingdom, someone needs some reminding. Go Yankees!

What If Alex Rodriguez Keeps Not Hitting?

Has Father Time caught up to the Yankees 40-year old designated hitter and what will New York do if Alex Rodriguez continues not to hit in the middle of the lineup? These are questions that many fans are asking after two weeks of the 2016 MLB regular season but none of them have been doling out many answers unfortunately. Have no fear, and keep in mind small sample sizes and the fact that I know no more than you, for I am here to attempt to answer a few of those for you this morning.

First and foremost one must remember, and I know I’ve said this a million times already this season but it needs to be beaten into some people’s head unfortunately, that two weeks is a terrible sample size to judge a player on. Some players still have eye popping numbers that are sure to come back down to Earth while the exact opposite is true for some of the struggling players that came out of the gate looking sluggish and behind. Of course you have the players that start slow and never recover and you also have players who start hot and stay hot, see Nolan Arenado’s stats in September of this year for proof of this, but for the most part you generally don’t worry after two weeks. Well unless you’re 40-years old and a player that will turn 41-years old later this summer.

It is extremely possible that Father Time has caught up to Alex Rodriguez and that he will be a former shell of himself and half the man he was, statistically speaking, in 2015. The Yankees lineup looks a whole lot thinner with some combination of Brian McCann, Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran hitting in the middle of it than it does with a healthy and 30+ home run producing Alex Rodriguez in the middle. If New York had to though they could weather the storm if Starlin Castro keeps up his torrid pace. Having Castro hit in the 5th or 6th hole and dropping Alex to the 7th-9th hole is possible, although I would venture to guess Joe Girardi would give Alex every opportunity to snap out of this funk.

I’m not down on Alex. I won’t be down on Alex after two or three months let alone two or three weeks so don’t mistake this post as that. I love to play devil’s advocate and I love to look at both sides of an equation when I write on this blog. Maybe that’s why a lot of you come here, I’m not sure. I look at what I think would happen if Alex were to hit 30 home runs again in 2016 and the next week I look at what I think would happen if he hit three all season long. It’s what I do and I hope you enjoy because I enjoy putting the content out for you guys. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners 4/16

Why does it seem that even if the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners played in a one-game series that Felix Hernandez would take the mound for that one game? It’s not done on purpose, the Mariners manager doesn’t adjust his pitching staff just for the man they call King Felix to face the Yankees it just seems like the Baseball Gods want to see New York and King Felix go head-to-head and they get their wish once again this afternoon in the Bronx. The Seattle Mariners will send Hernandez to the mound in the Bronx to face off with the Yankees starter CC Sabathia.

Sabathia was the first Yankee to finish six innings in a start and the fifth Yankees pitcher to start a game for the team. While the Yankees rotation has been a bit better the second time around Sabathia will still look to anchor the rotation and give New York some innings while saving some wear and tear on the bullpen. Believe it or not it was Sabathia, not Masahiro Tanaka or Michael Pineda, who led the team in innings pitched in 2015. Sabathia just has to make sure those are meaningful and effective innings if he can.

Hernandez is still the Mariners ace heading into the 2016 season and is still a bona fide Yankees killer on the mound, whether his starts come in the Bronx or inside of Safeco Field. Hernandez is 9-6 career against the Yankees with a 3.18 ERA in 19 starts and has a 5-1 record with a 1.38 ERA in eight starts at the new Yankee Stadium where the game goes down later this afternoon. Not a good set of stats if you’re a Yankees fan but there is a reason you play the games, anything can happen. Make it happen.

The game will be played at 1:05 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on the YES Network locally and MLB Network if you’re out of the market. Of course the game can also be seen from anywhere on any device with MLB TV.

Tough times are head Yankees family but we have to keep on cheering. Go Yankees!

Weekly Check In: Ronald Torreyes

Keeping with the trend of new faces to the Yankees organization in our weekly check in’s we head to the Yankees bench to check in with the man that beat out Robert Refsnyder for the final bench spot with the club. His name is Ronald Torreyes and after having dealt with 15 different transactions from the 2015 season and calendar year he may have finally found his niche in New York.

Torreyes like most bench pieces this early in the season hasn’t played all that much but it seems like manager Joe Girardi is willing to use him against left-handed pitching. Between the sample size of spring training and the first two weeks of the season Torreyes seems like he can hold his own with the bat and far exceeds the defense of Robert Refsnyder in the infield.

As much as this hurts me to say it looks like the Yankees knew what they were doing when they sent Refsnyder, my favorite prospect so I am a bit bias, down and kept Torreyes on the bench. It’s still early but, for now anyway, I was wrong and I’m willing to eat the crow that comes along with it.

Keep it up Ronald, as long as it benefits the team I am 100% okay with looking like an idiot. 

2016 23 3 9 3 6 1 0 2 0 0 1 .667 .667 1.000 1.667 370

This Day in New York Yankees History 4/16: Sweet Caroline & the Evil Empire

On this day in 2013 the Yankee Stadium fans and the New York Yankees players sang Neil Diamond's Sweet Caroline to pay tribute to the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing. Sweet Caroline is the anthem for the Boston Red Sox which makes it significant. Prior to the game with the Arizona Diamondbacks the Yankees displayed their logo alongside the Red Sox logo with the words "United We Stand" on an outside video board.

Evil Empire huh?