Daily Archives: April 22, 2012

Rotation has been glaring weakness thus far

Freddy has stunk up the joint

The Yanks are off to a solid start at 9-6 but they still have much to be concerned about.  Their offense continues to be a bit streaky but they still lead MLB averaging 6.0 runs per game. Mariano blew the Save on Opening Day but the bullpen has been lights out otherwise, leading all of baseball with a 2.14 ERA.  Defense you ask? The Yanks have a MLB-low 4 errors through 15 games for a league best .993 Fielding %.

So with a League-best Offense, Bullpen & Defense, why is the team only 9-6? Well, the starting pitching has not done the job.  They have the 2nd worst ERA in all of baseball – even worse than the brutal Red Sox staff.   The Yankee starters have a combined ERA of 5.84, allowing Hits and Baserunners more than any staff in baseball. They’ve allowed a WHIP of 1.59, allowing 107 Hits in 81.2 IP.  The starting rotation was the main focus of the offseason and was supposed to be a team strength.  Obviously, it’s too early to draw any conclusions as we are not even 10% into the long season yet.  However, let’s take a look at where each starter is after 3 turns through the rotation.

CC Sabathia

1-0 5.59 ERA – 1.34 WHIP – 19.1 ip – 10.3 k/9 – 2.8 bb/9 – 9.3 h/9 – 1.4 HR/9 – .716 OPS against

CC has had trouble with his Fastball command in the early going which has led to more hits and runs.  However, all of his supporting numbers are strong – his Strikeout & BB rates are fine which point towards a 3.02 xFIP which is exactly the same as 2011.  His last start vs MIN was his best as he pitched into the 8th inning and got his 1st win.  Stuff-wise, his Velocity is down.  CC has always been a slow starter and takes a while for his velocity to build to his peak levels.  However, he is a little bit lower than where he usually starts averaging a mere 91.5 MPH.  I’m not concerned but it is something to keep an eye on to see if it climbs to his standard 93-95. So overall, I’d say CC is fine and just off to his annual slow start.

Hiroki Kuroda

1-2 5.00 ERA – 1.61 WHIP – 18.0 ip – 6.0 k/9 – 3.0 bb/9 – 11.5 h/9 – 1.5 HR/9 – .876 OPS against

Kuroda has been an enigma with 1 absolute gem and 2 terrible outings. Obviously the real Kuroda will fall somewhere in between. Thus far, he’s been getting hit much harder than usual but it looks like he has enough stuff to be successful in the tougher AL lineups.  I imagine it will take him a while to find out what works best for him.  As a veteran pitcher with multiple pitches, I believe Kuroda will eventually find the right mix to be a successful mid-rotation starter for the team,

Phil Hughes

1-2 6.75 ERA – 1.88 WHIP – 13.1 ip – 10.1 k/9 – 4.1 bb/9 – 12.8 h/9 – 2.7 HR/9 – 1.012 OPS against

Hughes has shown a better Fastball than all of last year but continues to throw too many pitches as he just can’t seem to put batters away without max effort.  He doesn’t have a pitch to get easy outs and it’s led to him averaging 21.5 pitchers per inning.  Phil needs to conserve pitches so he can go deeper into games otherwise he won’t last as a starter. None of his secondary pitches have been successful as he tends to leave them all up and in the hitting zone. His FB is hard to hit when he commands it and moves it around but without a good secondary pitch he may be best served in the pen where he can let loose for 1 or 2 IP.

Ivan Nova

3-0 3.79 ERA – 1.42 WHIP – 19 ip – 9.5 k/9 –  0.9 bb/9 – 11.8 h/9 – 1.9 HR/9 – .987 OPS against

Nova has won all 3 of his starts and 15 in a row dating back to last yr.  He has also gotten great run support in each of his 3 outings which helps.  With the exception of Nova’s sterling Walk rates, his supporting numbers are not too far different from Hughes’. Nova has allowed a lot of hits but he gets away with it by getting double plays and Strikeouts when he needs to and  by limiting walks.  He usually limits HRs too but this yr has been an exception so far. Nova does a fine job of pitching deep into games and has 4 solid pitches to go through a lineup multiple times. He’s a strong #3 starter.

Freddy Garcia

0-1 9.75 ERA – 1.92 WHIP – 12ip – 6.0 k/9 – 2.3 bb/9 – 15.0 h/9 – 1.5 HR/9 – 1.094 OPS against

Garcia has been downright awful.  All of his rates are in line with last year but he has gotten hit much harder.  36% of his batted balls have been hit for line drives as he has left a lot of Splitters and Curveballs up and in the middle of the plate.  One has to think that Garcia can adjust and pitch better but can the Yankees afford to keep throwing him out there to get beat up and eat up the bullpen?

Help on the Way?

Andy Pettitte is only a few weeks away as he’s scheduled to throw 80-85 pitches in Double A Trenton this week. Michael Pineda had a setback and is nowhere near returning.  David Phelps has been excellent in long relief for the Yanks while DJ Mitchell and Adam Warren are ready and able in AAA.  Right now, I would make no immediate moves.  Obviously Hughes and Garcia are on the hot seat but no move needs to be made just yet. When Andy is ready I’d make my moves. If Hughes cannot show improvement, Andy & Phelps go in the rotation with Hughes to the pen.  If Garcia is still struggling, I’d like to send him to AAA but he’d likely request his release.

Minor Night Cap: Empire Yankees hit 7 Doubles, Tampa’s Nik Turley has 7K’s, Charleston walk off win

Empire State Yankees W 6-5

PTF Romine (DL)

Colin Curtis – 1BB, .228

Jayson Nix – 2R, 2H (2 Doubles), 1BB, 1K, .500

Dewayne Wise – 1R, 2H (Double), 1RBI, .439

Steve Pearce – 1R, 2H (2 Doubles), 1RBI, 2BB, 1K, .361

Jack Cust – 1R, 2H (Double, Solo Homer),  3RBI, 1BB, 1K, .322

Brandon Laird – 1H, 1BB, .218

Kevin Russo – 1BB, 1K, .260

Craig Tatum – 1K, .158

Ramiro Pena – 1R, 2H (Double), .245
PTF Dellin Betances – 4.1IP, 3H, 5R, 2ER, 6BB, 3K, 8.83era

Nelson Figueroa – 2.2IP, 2H, 2BB 0.00era

Chase Whitely (W, 2-1) – 1.0IP, 0H, 2BB, 3.52era

Kevin Whelan (S,4) – 1.0IP, 1H, 1K, 2.25era

Tampa Yankees W 6-4

PTF J.R. Murphy (DNP)

Eduardo Sosa – 2H, 1RBI, 1K, .258

Kelvin Castro – 1R, 1H, 2BB, .241

Ramon Flores – oH, .196

Rob Segedin – 2R, 1H (2 Run Homer), 2RBI, 1BB, .295

Kyle Roller – 1R, 1H (Solo Homer), 2RBI, 2BB, 1K, .213

Shane Brown – 1BB, .250

Jose Mojica – oH, 1RBI, .298

Hector Rabago – 1K, .118

Jose Toussen – 2R, 1H (triple), 1BB, .208

PTF Nik Turley (W, 2-0) – 5.1IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 4BB, 7K, 1.93era

Joel De La Cruz – 1.2IP, 1H, 2K, 0.00era

Mark Montgomery (S, 3) – 3H, 1R, 1Er, 1BB, 2K, 3.24era

Charleston River Dogs W 4-3

PTF Dante Bichette Jr. – oH, .294

Anderson Feliz – 1H, 1BB, 1K, .289

Benjamin Gamel – 1H, 1RBI, 2K, .233

Tyler Austin – 1R, 1H (solo homer), 1RBI, 1K, .393

Gary Sanchez – 1R, 1H, 1BB, .356

Casey Stevenson – 1R, 2H (Double), 1BB, .529

Cito Culver – 1R, 1H, .175

Kelvin De Leon – 1H, 2K, .194

Francisco Arcia – 1H, 2RBI, .286

PTF Bryan Mitchell (DNP)

Jose Campos 6.0IP, 8H, 2R, 2ER, 1BB, 5K, 1.23era

Daniel Mahoney – 1.0IP, 2H, 1R, oER, 1BB, 3K, 4.91era

Fred Lewis – 1.oIP, 1H, 1K, 8.10era

Mariel Checo – 1.0IP, 1BB, 1K, 2.84era

4/22/12 Yankees vs. Red Sox game postponed

4/22/12 Yankees vs. Red Sox game postponed

By Delia E.

Tonight’s Yankees vs. Red Sox game has been postponed due to inclement weather in Boston. The game will be rescheduled with the date TBA. Yankees will leave for Texas with an extra day’s rest while the Red Sox will go to Minnesota and play the Twins. Have a good evening everyone.

Week 2 Yankees Player of the Week

The Yankees had another solid week going 5-2. It was disappointing to only split with Minnesota, but the Yankees made up for it with a great first 2 games in Boston. This included an incredible come from behind win from down 9-0. There were some amazing individual game performances mostly by the hitters. It is another close race again with a lot of good candidates. The nominations for this week are Mark Teixeira, Derek Jeter, Ivan Nova, and Curtis Granderson.

The case for Teixeira – Teixeira was the main catalyst for the big comeback in Boston yesterday. His solo HR seemed worthless at the time but ended up being the start of a rally. His 3 run HR was key as it brought the Yankees to within 9-8.  He also had multiple hit games in 4 straight games during the week. He finished the week batting .407 with 3 HR, and 10 RBI. Teixeira has avoided his dreaded slow April start so far.

The case for Jeter – Jeter followed up his week 1 player of the week nomination with another stellar week. Jeter hit .406 with 3 HR, and 9 RBI for the week. Jeter lead off yet another game with a HR Monday vs the Twins and tried to bring the Yankees back in the 9th on Wednesday vs Minnesota with a HR. The power surge for Jeter this season has been highly surprising. Just when you thought Jeter was cooling off at the end of the week ,when he went 2 for 10 on Thursday and Friday, he went 3-4 yesterday. Jeter continued to look the like the Jeter of old for yet another week.

The case for Nova – This week was mostly about the hitting but Ivan Nova continued his great success this week. Nova collected 2 wins on the week Sunday vs Los Angeles and Friday vs Boston. On Friday he faced a very tough task of facing a good lineup, who needed a win desperately, and on an historic day for them. Nova showed his mental toughness yet again by ruining  Fenway’s Park’s 100th anniversary.  On a day where the wind seemed to be blowing the ball out like crazy Nova was not fazed. He went 6 innings, gave up only 2 earned runs, and struck out 5 batters. 2 HR’s hurt him against the Angels, but he till struck out 8, and went 6 innings giving up 4  earned runs.

The case for Granderson – Granderson’s case mostly rests on his historic game  Thursday against the Twins. Granderson homer in his first 3 AB’s becoming the first to do so in the new Yankee Stadium. He finished the game 5-5, with 3 HR, and 4 RBI. He was solid the rest of the week by recording a hit in every game except on Wednesday, but was not spectacular.  Granderson finished the week batting .379, with 4 HR, and 6 RBI.    

The winner: The week 2 winner for Yankees player of the week goes to Mark Teixeira. After the first week of the season Teixeira looked like he was going to have yet another slow April. However, his spectacular week has brought his average up to a solid .288 for the season. He seems to have closed his stance up from last year and it has resulted in less fly balls. Teixeira’s role in the biggest win of the week put him over the top in my eyes. He finished 3 for 6, with 2 HR, and 6 RBI. It was probably not quite as good as Granderson’s 3 HR game, but he had more RBI in the game than Granderson, and his 3 run homer to get the Yankees within 9-8 was huge. He also had a better overall week than Granderson. Jeter was also right in there for 1st place as well putting up very similar numbers as Teixeira did. Nova had two solid starts , but this week was mostly about the hitters.

This week we have another very close race with 4 really good candidates. Please vote for who you think should be player of the week and give your reasoning in the comments section.

Morning Bits: Garcia, Pettitte, Valentine, All-Star Game

Good morning and a Happy Sunday to you all! Tonight (if they play) is an ESPN game at 8:05pm with CC Sabathia on the mound. Here are your morning links!

— After coming off another horrible start, what will the Yankees do with Freddy Garcia? Here’s a suggestion: Let David Phelps get a crack at the starting rotation for the time being.

— Andy Pettitte will pitch for Double A-Trenton on Wednesday. He’s slated to throw 80-85 pitches. Good. Hurry back Andy…soon.

— Two games vs. the Yankees and Bobby Valentine looks to be the face of failure for the Red Sox. Well, when your at a game and the Red Sox are chanting “We Want Tito” and the Red Sox players don’t like you then you are pretty much being set up for failure.

— Voting has commenced for the 2012 All-Star game, so vote for your favorite Yankees players to make it to Kansas City on July 10!

Teixeira, Swisher, Yanks stun Red Sox with 15-9 victory after being down 9-0 in 6th

The way that the game looked going into the 6th inning was absolutely brutal. The Boston Red Sox had a 9-0 lead and Felix Doubront was dealing. Then, Mark Teixeira had a homer which made the game 9-1 and from there–the Yankees banded together and rallied to stun the Red Sox and Bobby Valentine with a 15-9 win.

GARCIA STRUGGLES ONCE AGAIN: Even though the game ended well for the Yankees, the game didn’t start well for them at all as Freddy Garcia gave up 5 runs and didn’t fool a single Red Sox batter. That forced Girardi to once again go to the bullpen early in Garcia’s starts, this time turning to Clay Rapada. Honestly, I don’t see Garcia being in the rotation much longer after that fiasco that he pulled.

PHELPS PITCHES WELL–AGAIN: David Phelps once again pitched well for the Yankees although he gave up 3 runs. What impressed me the most about Phelps was that he looked unfazed while facing the Boston Red Sox and he was able to not let the lead the Red Sox had at the time get out of control. If Phelps started the game, the Yankees would have probably won 15-3 instead of 15-9. Oh well.

THE RALLY: It all started in the 6th inning when Mark Teixeira hit a solo HR to give the Yankees their first run of the ball game. The Yankees got to the shaky Red Sox bullpen and scored 7 runs in the 7th and 7 runs in the 8th. Mark Teixeira and Nick Swisher were the main hitters for the Yankees. Teixeira had a 2 run double, a 3 run homer and a solo homer all in the 7th and 8th innings. Nick Swisher had a Grand Slam and a 2 run double. After Doubront, the Red Sox used 6 pitchers (Padilla, Albers, Morales, Aceves, Thomas & Tazawa). Alfredo Aceves received the loss while Rafael Soriano for the Yankees received the win.

WHAT’S NEXT: According to Weather.com it is slated to rain heavily in Boston tomorrow night, so it might be hard to get the game in. If the Yankees get the game in then it will be CC Sabathia on the mound facing former Red Sox set-up man Daniel Bard as a starter. The game will be televised on ESPN if  the game happens. If the game is rained out then it will be an off-day where the Yankees can rest the bullpen and their starters.

FORMER YANKEES ALERT: A.J Burnett made his Pittsburgh Pirates debut and pitched–like the Pirates ace starter. He went 7 innings with no runs, 3 hits and 7 strikeouts. He ended his night only throwing 71 pitches. It’s a shame that Burnett isn’t with the Yankees anymore–or its a shame that he didn’t pitch that way when he was on the Yankees. I guess some guys can’t handle the New York pressure.