Saturday, May 26, 2018

Game Thread: New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 5/26

And just like that it is game time here in the Bronx between the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The best part about it all? It is a nationally televised game on FOX for the entire country to see. In the start tonight Sonny Gray will take the mound for the New York Yankees while the Angels will counter with TBA, but it doesn't matter anyway. The game will be played at 7:15 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on FOX. You can also follow along with the game on MLB TV, with the MLB At-Bat app, and by tuning into the Yankees radio broadcast on WFAN with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman.

Follow us on Twitter, @GreedyStripes, and “Like” us on Facebook, The Greedy Pinstripes, to keep up with us and the team all season long. Enjoy the game, Sonny skies ahead we hope, and go Yankees!!

ARTICLE REVISIT: Twitter Poll: Which Current Yankee Would You Like to See Punch Jose Bautista in the Face?

So there I was sitting there watching the Yankees game on Tuesday night, the night that Nathan Eovaldi held the Toronto Blue Jays to just two hits in a contest New York had to win, when I got a random tweet on Twitter. The tweet is above from Franks Yanks asking me which member of the current Yankees roster I'd like to see punch Jose Bautista in the face. I graciously answered like I do every mention on Twitter and quickly informed him that I would be stealing his idea while giving him all the credit. This sounded like a Twitter Poll to me!
Brett Gardner:

Brian McCann:

Alex Rodriguez:

Bryce Harper????
CC Sabathia:

Michael Pineda:
Dellin Betances:
And by the way... my answer was.....

To be involved in our next Twitter poll, which we haven't done nearly enough this season and for that I apologize, head over to the app and give @GreedyStripes a follow. Then simply wait for us to tweet out a Twitter Poll tweet where we won't use your responses without letting you know they are going on the blog first.

The 2018 MLB Draft, Luke Heimlich, and the Morality Behind Drafting Him

In a little under two weeks Major League Baseball will host their annual MLB First Year Players Draft from New York. The event can be seen live on MLB Network for the first few rounds of the draft while the entire event is over the course of a few days. Every team sees their future and their potential on these days as all 30 teams look to draft the next big thing. While evaluating a player a lot of things come into play before a team decides to draft a player. Ability is usually at the top of that list, closely followed by signability I’d say, but another huge factor that a lot of people seem to forget about is character. Character will play a huge role not only when drafted and while the player is in the Minor Leagues, but also when that player gets to the Major League level. Character is huge for the team drafting a player, especially a team with a huge market like the market in New York, which is why Oregon State pitcher Luke Heimlich may have trouble finding a home next month in the draft.  

If you don’t know the name Heimlich is a senior left-handed flamethrower from the Oregon State University baseball program who has had his bout with legal troubles in recent years. Heimlich was convicted for sexual assault for molesting his niece when she was just 6-years old, and he was 15. Heimlich, now 22-years old and the star pitcher on the top ranked team in the country, was placed on probation for the crime after pleading guilty and has served his time, completed his community service, etc. that came associated with the conviction. Heimlich states he only plead guilty as a way to spare his niece and family the pain and trauma of a trial but did admit to having “sexual contact” with the child. I don’t see the distinction, but it isn’t my place to judge. 

Heimlich was a Top-50 projected draft pick last season but went undrafted after his criminal history was revealed. Now Heimlich could be a Top 10, or even a top pick in the 2018 Draft, but will history repeat itself once again for the lefty? Heimlich, at the time of this writing, is sporting a 13-1 record with 129 strikeouts this season before his final regular-season start at home happened with the UCLA Bruins. Are there 30 teams that would once again pass on his talent in order to send a message due to his character?  

That would be nothing but speculations, although I can give my opinion on it. Everyone loves a good redemption story and to the best of everyone’s knowledge there hasn’t been a recurrence of the crime. The crime is heinous and disgusting, but not to sound insensitive the crime happened almost eight years ago when the lefty was 15-years old. It doesn’t excuse him from the crimes, and not to defend him but he did his time in the eyes of the law, but if he is sitting there in the first round when the New York Yankees pick comes to the podium… I’m sorry but if I am in that war room, I am taking him. It may not be the popular opinion, but it is my opinion. You draft for talent, and you work out the rest later in my opinion.  

This is bound to be a hot topic, so I am curious… what say you? 

Now Playing: The Gleyber Torres Story...

Photo Credit: Associated Press (Frank Franklin II)
Gleybering their way to Victory…

Last night’s game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim can be summed up in two words: 

Gleyber Torres

Photo Credit: Twitter (sirdidig18)
Okay, credit to Luis Severino for bending but not breaking and to the bullpen for getting the game into the capable hands of closer Aroldis Chapman for the 2-1 win. But seriously, the Man of the Hour continues to be the 21-year-old rookie.

Shohei Ohtani may be the odds-on favorite for AL Rookie of the Year but on this night, Torres was the man among boys. His run-scoring single and solo home run provided all the offense the Yankees would need to take the first game of the three-game series with the Angels. Mike Trout was able to rip one off Severino but at least there was no one on base at the time and the rest of the Angels were unable to find their way home. Homeless Angels…so sad. Um, not really.

With no offense to Giancarlo Stanton, Torres has been the most significant addition for the 2018 Yankees. I am sure that Stanton will eventually go on one of his monster tears but clearly Torres is more valuable to his position (second base) than Stanton is to the outfield or DH. If Didi Gregorius was the Player of the Month for April, Torres, for now, can take Dave Winfield’s famed title of Mr May. I don’t mean that as a slight since as the canvas has yet to be painted for the months of June through October in the historic young career of the latest Yankees superstar. He is the youngest player to hit home runs in four consecutive games and he’s just getting started. Remember back when we were projecting Tyler Wade as our second baseman?  Me neither. 

Okay, honorable mention for the game goes to Aaron Judge. His throw from right field, at 100.5 mph, to nail Kole Calhoun at the plate in the top of the 3rd inning which stifled an Angels threat was the stuff of legends.

Photo Credit: New York Post (Charles Wenzelberg)
Congratulations to the Yankees for the win and to Aaron Boone for one of his best managerial jobs to date.

Unfortunately, the Boston Red Sox used the long ball to maintain their one game lead over the Yankees (32-15) in the AL East. The Sox (35-16) hit four home runs to turn back the NL East leading Atlanta Braves, 6-2, including homers by league leaders Mookie Betts (17) and J.D. Martinez (16). The homer Trout hit off Sevy was also his 16th so the trio sit atop the leaderboard in AL homers.  

You can’t mention Boston without bringing up the topic of Hanley Ramirez. When it was announced yesterday that Boston had designated Hanley for assignment, it caught the Baseball World by surprise. My Red Sox friends were shocked. Granted, there was no way the Red Sox were going to exercise the 2019 option on Han-Ram’s contract ($22 million). The contract option would have vested if Ramirez had reached 1,050 plate appearances between last year and the current season (he stood at 748, which included 195 PAs this season). The Sox needed to open a spot for the activation of 2B Dustin Pedroia off the DL but it had been speculated that the under-utilized Blake Swihart would be traded to make room. Regardless of the reasons for his dismissal, I won’t miss Ramirez in the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry. Even when he wasn’t hitting, he always managed, it seemed, to blast a massive home run against the Yankees in clutch moments. I can’t really see another team willing to pick up Hanley’s contract in full so it’s probable that he’ll be released. I guess he can get together with the unemployed Chase Headley to talk about the good old days. I am sure that we have not heard the last of Ramirez but at least it won’t be part of Baseball’s Greatest Rivalry.

Photo Credit: Icon Sportswire (Kevin Sousa)
Yesterday was also an active day for transactions with the Yankees. After reliever Ryan Bollinger was returned to Double A-Trenton, RHP Tommy Kahnle was activated off the DL.  Catcher Erik Kratz, who spent the season at Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, was dealt to the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers designated their backup catcher (Jeff Bandy) to make room for Kratz. I am glad to see the 37-year-old get the Major League opportunity that eluded him with the Yankees. To take his place at Triple A, the Yankees signed 33-year-old Wilkin Castillo (he turns 34 next week) out of the independent leagues. Castillo had spent time with the RailRiders (and Thunder) last year.  

RailRiders first baseman Adam Lind was given his walking papers for the second time by the Yankees. There was no chance Lind was going to see the light of day at Yankee Stadium so he’ll presumably get a chance to find an organization with a clearer path to a Major League job. His departure also clears the way for the potential demotion of Tyler Austin to Triple A. The Yankees need to make room for Greg Bird who will be activated today and while no word has been made about the corresponding roster move, I continue to believe it will be Austin over one of the arms in the bullpen. Could be wrong but unfortunately Austin makes the most sense since he still has options available.  

Former Yankees starter Nathan Eovaldi is expected to make his regular season debut for the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday. It’s been a long, difficult road for the hard-throwing Eovaldi since undergoing his second Tommy John surgery. I wish him the best of luck with the Rays, except for when he faces his old teammates again. But if he wants to beat Boston, Toronto, and Baltimore, that’s fine with me.

Today is Sonny Gray Day. His last start was one of the best in his short Pinstriped career. Can he keep it going or will he revert to Sonny Gray Sucks! status? I truly hope he’s turned the corner and can re-establish himself as one of the best young arms in the American League. Gray will be facing Angels starter Jaime Barria (3-1, 2.13 ERA) who, frankly, I have never heard of. Unknown rookie starters always concern me with the Yankees as they seem to struggle against those guys. But then again, we have Gleyber Torres. Life is good.

Go Yankees!

Update:  So Ronald Torreyes is the odd man out as he'll head to Scranton, PA to make room for Greg Bird.  I am surprised but then again I am not. His skills are redundant with the presence of the more experienced Neil Walker who is pushed out of first base by Bird and Tyler Austin.  Shortstop is a bit thin so perhaps Torreyes demotion to Triple A is short-lived although Gleyber Torres can step in if needed but given he's the starting second baseman, there needs to be a better long-term answer.  

Old Timers Day 2018 Official Roster Reveal

This may be a day or two late and a dollar or three short, story of my life, but here is the official roster for the Yankees annual Old-Timer’s Game inside Yankee Stadium. The Yankees 72nd annual Old-Timer’s Day will be held on June 17, inside Yankee Stadium and there will be a couple first timer’s attending the game.

(*first-time Old-Timer)

Jesse Barfield
Ron Blomberg
Brian Boehringer
*Aaron Boone
Jim Bouton
Scott Bradley
Dr. Bobby Brown
Homer Bush
David Cone
Johnny Damon
Ron Davis
Bucky Dent
Al Downing
Brian Doyle
Mariano Duncan
John Flaherty
Whitey Ford

*Jason Giambi
Ron Guidry
Charlie Hayes
Arlene Howard (widow)
Helen Hunter (widow)
Reggie Jackson
*Dion James
Jay Johnstone
Scott Kamieniecki
Don Larsen
Graeme Lloyd
Hector Lopez
Jill Martin (widow)
Lee Mazzilli
Ramiro Mendoza
Gene Monahan (trainer)
Diana Munson (widow)
Kay Murcer (widow)
Jeff Nelson
Paul O'Neill
*Andy Pettitte
Lou Piniella
Willie Randolph
Bobby Richardson
Mickey Rivers
*Nick Swisher
Frank Tepedino
Marcus Thames
Roy White

Fans are asked to be in their seats by 11:30 am ET for introductions with the game to follow. Gates open at 10:00 am ET before the Yankees play host to the Tampa Bay Rays at 2:05 pm ET. Enjoy the game, old-timer’s.

Game Preview: New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 5/26

Good morning everyone and welcome back to the Bronx as Yankee Stadium and the New York Yankees play host to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for the middle game of their three-game set. In the opener we watched a pair of aces take the mound last night for each respective team and tonight we will see another great pair of arms as the Yankees send Sonny Gray to face off with TBD at the time of this writing. Should be another good one here in the Bronx, so let’s get to it.

Gray has his best start of the season last time out against the Kansas City Royals allowing just one run on four hits in eight innings of work. Sonny has made three quality starts in his last four trips to the mound and owns a 3.60 ERA and .221 batting average against over that span.


The game will be played at 7:15 pm ET inside Yankee Stadium and can be seen on FOX. You can also follow along with the game on MLB TV, with the MLB At-Bat app, and by tuning into the Yankees radio broadcast on WFAN with John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman.

Enjoy the game, send them back to Disney World crying, and go Yankees!!

Hello… Memorial Day Weekend

What is Memorial Day? Memorial Day to some means the day off paid, barbecues and hang outs with friends, but to others it means so much more. To some it means the one day that their families and their serviceman and women get the recognition and respect that they so much deserve. This Memorial Day hits home for me especially because one of my very best friends has recently joined the Navy. This is his second Memorial Day away from home, but thankfully he got to come home. It won't always be like this, but I am grateful that it was this year.

So shake a veteran's hand and thank them for everything that they and their family do. Unless you've lived through it you will never truly understand. So, a big thank you to the veterans that are reading this and their families, and a very big thank you to our very own patrick (always with a little p) Walsh and Ken Reed (and anyone else that frequents the site that I was unaware served or that slipped my mind). I appreciate you, have the utmost respect for you and love you all.

Enjoy the day, and enjoy the long weekend, but just remember why we have it. Thank you.

And baby, four more days… and by the time the Memorial Day weekend is over, it will be one more day. How exciting!! I love you with all my heart and all my soul. Always have, and I always will.

This Day In New York Yankees History 5/26: DJ2K

On this day in 2006 Derek Jeter becomes only the eight player in New York Yankees history to collect at least 2,000 hits in his career. The little dribbler that became an infield single off Kansas City's Scott Elarton would put Jeter into the record books. The other seven Yankees to reach the milestone are Yogi Berra, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Don Mattingly, Babe Ruth, and Bernie Williams.

Also on this day in 2000 a fan at Yankee Stadium falls from the upper deck and remained motionless for five minutes on the screen behind home plate. The 24 year old man suddenly sits up and raises both his arms high and is immediately arrested.