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Yankees Mailbag Post-Season Edition: 9/30/11

Hello there Yankees fans! And welcome to a special edition of Yankees Mailbag where you send in your questions and I answered them. Before we begin, let me recap what has happened since the last Yankees Mailbag. Yankees clinched the AL East, have the best record in the American League and get home-field advantage in the ALDS and the ALCS if they make it that far. Also the Rays had clinched the AL Wildcard while the Red Sox were eliminated and went home. Now that we got that covered let’s answer some questions!

Our first set of questions come from @PrimoBledBlue. He asked a couple of great questions and I will address them all here. His first question was:

Q: Which team would the Yankees be suitable facing in the postseason: Rangers or the Tigers?

A: Since the schedule was set and stone they will be facing the Tigers, but I was hoping that the Yankees would face the Rangers instead since they are 7-2 in the season series vs. the Rangers and the best part would have been no Cliff Lee. But the Yankees have to take what they can get and play the Tigers and hopefully they can send the Tigers home.

His second question was:

Q: For the ALDS, Should the Yankees have a 4 man starting rotation, which 4 would you select? (CC, Nova, Colon, Hughes…IMO)

A:  Well, for the 4 man rotation it would be difficult, since Colon hasn’t performed well, but if I was to choose the rotation for the 4 man, it would be CC, Nova, Garcia, Burnett. I would give Burnett the 4th spot in the rotation because he has pitched better as of late, and is not struggling like Bartolo Colon is. I would use Phil Hughes in the bullpen due to his back, and I feel that he can produce better in the bullpen than in the r0tation during the play-offs.

His third question was:

Q: Would you rather have Montero DH in the play-offs or Posada? Or both?

A:  I would choose both of them to DH during the play-offs. Montero would go vs. left handers and Posada would go vs. right handers. And it would be wrong not to give Jorge a spot on the roster, just saying. As you know by now, it has been announced that Posada will be the DH against Detroit’s right handers in the ALDS.

His 4th question was:

Q: Which team would you prefer making the AL Wildcard: The Red Sox, The Rays or the Angels

A: I wanted the Rays to win the AL Wildcard and I’m glad that they did make the Wildcard. I’m going to leave my dislike for the Red Sox out of this and just say that the Red Sox didn’t deserve to go to the play-offs. For crying out loud they only won 7 games out of the whole month of September. The Angels tried to mount a comeback vs. the Rays but the Rangers helped put a halt in that. But the Rays deserved to go, it would just be a shame if it came back to bite us.

His final question was

Q: Do you think A.J Burnett deserves a postseason start? Why or why not?

A: Burnett should be able to get a postseason start in my opinion. Burnett has pitched better than Phil Hughes and Bartolo Colon towards the end of the year and he had that very impressive outing last time around. (plus that one batter relief outing he had really impressed). So Burnett should get a start in the postseason. However, we now know that A.J. will be in the bullpen at least for the ALDS.

Our next question comes from these followers @Southyank, @Nick_Eustaquio, & @mannyberrios. They all asked the same question so I figured I would nip this one in the bud here. Here was the question.

Q: Who’s the #3 starter?

A: The #3 starter is Freddy Garcia. Colon hasn’t pitched well towards the end of the year, Burnett pitched to a batter yesterday so the pitcher would be Freddy Garcia. He has been the most consistent besides Nova (CC hasn’t been very consistent in September). Burnett would probably pitch in relief or if the Yankees needed an emergency starter, that is where Burnett would come in.

Our next question comes from @ehom87. He asked:

Q: Will Valdes be the 2nd lefty in the bullpen on the postseason roster?

A:  Unfortunately Valdes wasn’t picked to be on the postseason roster for the ALDS series. The Yankees are going to have him go to Tampa so he can work on throwing and if the Yankees play the Rangers in the ALCS then Valdes will come back, but as of right now Valdes didn’t make the cut.

The next question comes from @tazc23. She asked 3 questions so I am going to answer them. Her first question was:

Q: How did the Yankees feel about Betances’s first pitching outing? I know it was short.

A: The Yankees figured that Betances was nervous, which was why he had a 27.00 ERA going into Game 162 vs. the Rays. But Girardi liked his pitches. He just feels that Betances could work on it a bit more which is what the off-season and Spring Training is for.

Her second question was:

Q: In A.J’s last outing vs. the Red Sox did he approach the game differently, or was it because the Red Sox were playing bad?

A: Burnett did approach the game differently. He felt that the game v.s the Red Sox was a tryout for him to make the postseason roster, and Burnett did pitch outstanding. Burnett pitched well against the Red Sox when they were in Fenway in late August, but Burnett had a no-decision. I think the Red Sox slumping had something to do with it, but Burnett looked extremely sharp, and his breaking ball was working for him.

Her final question was this:

Q: What did Seattle do to A-Rod for his initiation? 

A:  Unfortunately I searched for hours on this but found nothing. Apparently some things pre-Yankees you will never find out about.

Our final question comes from @Baseballblahs. His question was:

Q: Does A-Rod’s health questions change the roster at all?

A:  It might, since there is no time-able on A-Rod’s return. After working with Kevin Long before the Rays game he had hit another setback which could ultimately decide what happens to him and the Yankees from here on out. I wouldn’t expect a dramatic roster change, but A-Rod might not be in the games like we all want him to be.

That’s all the questions I got for this Yankees Mailbag! If you have any questions, just send them to my Twitter @dfiregirl4 and I will make sure to answer them in the next Yankees Mailbag.

Morning Bits: Mets Block Yankees, Cano & Tex flip flop, Postseason, Joba

Today is the last day of the regular season.  Teams to keep a close eye on tonight are Tampa and Boston who are still both tied for the wild card.  Also last night Atlanta lost and the Cardinals won so now they are tied as well.   Enjoy the exciting last day of the season everyone.

and here are your morning links

* Yankees were blocked by the Mets from putting their AAA team in Newark for one season while their stadium got redone.  If you hated the Mets before now you will really hate them for this.

* With only a couple days left in the season Girardi has flipped flopped Cano and Teixeira in the batting order.  Looking forward to hearing what all you think of this move.

* The Yankees are very eager for the postseason to start.

* Joba helps build a walking track in his home state.

AL East Wild Card

Tampa Bay 90 71 .559 46-34 44-37 699 607 +92 Won 4 6-4
Boston 90 71 .559 45-36 45-35 872 733 +139 Won 1 3-7

NL East Wild Card

St. Louis 89 72 .553 45-36 44-36 754 692 +62 Won 1 7-3
Atlanta 89 72 .553 47-33 42-39 638 601 +37 Lost 4 3-7

BREAKING: Yankees Clinch A Play-Off Spot

BREAKING: Yankees Clinch A Play-Off Spot

The 2011 New York Yankees have clinched a play-off spot in the 2011 Post Season following a dramatic 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Yankees scored 3 in the 8th with an Eduardo Nunez HR, single & SB by Brett Gardner, a 4 pitch walk to Derek Jeter and a two run double from Robinson Cano to give the Yankees a 4-2 lead.

This will be the Yankees 16th postseason appearance in the last 17 seasons. The Yankees can clinch the AL East tonight if they win in the nightcap of the DH & if the Boston Red Sox lose.

Congratulations on your appearance in the 2011 Postseason Yankees!