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Yankees Road Through September (and maybe the playoffs)?

Robinson Cano and the Yankees have a tough task in September--get into the wild card race anyway they can

Robinson Cano and the Yankees have a tough task in September–get into the wild card race anyway they can

The Yankees have 29 games left this season, and they gained a half game yesterday without playing a game (thanks Angels and Tigers). As the Baltimore Orioles come into town this weekend, the schedule for the Yankees in September will tell them just how much of a playoff contending team they are. Here’s a preview of the September calendar, and where the Yankees could stand at the end of the month.

August 30 – September 1

Baltimore Orioles vs. New York Yankees

The Baltimore Orioles pitching is a bit sketchy, but they can survive sketchy pitching with their lineup. With the power bat of Chris Davis and the ability for the rest of team to scratch out runs, the Yankees are in for the fight of their life this weekend. This series won’t be easy but the Yankees have added Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, and Robinson Cano should he be well enough to play at some point this weekend. The Yankees need to at least take two out of three in this series, which means that CC Sabathia, Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova need to step up and pitch well (Nova has done that this season, the sentence was more for Hughes and Sabathia). Also a word of advice, if the Yankees want a chance to take the series, I’d suggest taking Hughes out of the rotation and put David Huff to start instead. Just because David Huff combined with his last two outings had pitched a full game giving up no runs and one hit. I’d sign up for that instead of home runs and runs from Hughes.

September 2 – September 4

Chicago White Sox vs. New York Yankees

The last time these two teams faced one another, the White Sox swept the Yankees in three games. This time it should be a bit different since we didn’t have any power bats in our lineup at the time (minus Robinson Cano). This White Sox team is a bit different since they gave up a lot of their key players during the season to contending teams, so it should be an easier battle this time around. If all goes according to plan, the best case scenario would be to take two out of three. I’d be greedy saying I want the sweep, but hey…don’t we all?

September 5 – September 8

Boston Red Sox vs. New York Yankees

The Red Sox and Yankees were the highlight of ESPN baseball two weeks ago when the Red Sox woke up the Yankees after an intentionally pitch to Alex Rodriguez hit him in his ribs. This time it’s a four game set at Yankee Stadium and the Red Sox will have to face off against the Yankees once again. The Yankees took two out of three last time due to great pitching and timely hitting. The Yankees need to have the same formula coming into the series. The keys to this series: keep Jacoby Ellsbury off base since he’s the Red Sox version of Brett Gardner and find a way to get David Ortiz out anyway they can. (As of the morning of August 30, Ortiz has been in a slump going 0 for his last 23). This series is crucial. The Yankees need to at least take two out of the four games.

September 9 – September 12

New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles

The Yankees go from one four game series to another four game series, this time traveling to Camden Yards for this four game set vs. the Orioles. Keys to the rest of the Orioles series is simple: Don’t give them anything to hit, especially Chris Davis. One mistake and it could go out to Eutaw street faster than you can say “Mariano Rivera“. Which means I strongly advise Joe Girardi to again not play Phil Hughes. Don’t know how many times I’m going to have to say this.

September 13 – September 15

New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox

After the Orioles series, the Yankees go to Boston and play another series at Fenway. Yep, same old same old Yankees vs. Red Sox. But this has more on the line for the Yankees than it does for the Red Sox. Let’s just say find a way to stop the Red Sox bats, score some runs, take two out of three and get the heck out of there? Sound good? Good.

September 17 – September 19

New York Yankees vs. Toronto Blue Jays

The Yankees go to Canada to play the Toronto Blue Jays in their final showdown this season. The Yankees have owned the Blue Jays this season, minus the most recent series where the Blue Jays took two out of three from the Yankees. Well, the Yankees will be looking for a vengeance. Key to this series: Keep the power hitters at bay, don’t walk Jose Reyes and Rajai Davis–and try to get to the Blue Jays pitching. The Yankees have the discipline to do so and have proved it in the past.

September 20 – September 22

San Francisco Giants vs. New York Yankees

All right, who made this schedule? An interleague game at the end of the year? Anyway, back to the topic at hand: The Giants this year–aren’t very good (and that’s an understatement). The Yankees could have themselves a two out of three series (or maybe a sweep) if the Yankees run into bad pitching, which the Giants have had this season. Well, we don’t know when the Giants will come back to Yankee Stadium so we might as well enjoy this series (that and we could see how starstruck the players get when they run into Mariano Rivera).

September 24 – September 26

Tampa Bay Rays vs. New York Yankees

The final series at Yankee Stadium for the 2013 season is against the Tampa Bay Rays who have the pitching to get them where they need to be if they make the first wild card spot. The keys to this series is simple: Don’t give any of the power hitters (and there are some power hitters) anything good to hit. That includes Evan Longoria, Ben Zobrist, Matt Joyce…you get the picture. It’s also important to stay patient with the pitchers.  You never know when you can get into their bullpen which has had an up and down year.

September 27 – September 29

New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros

The final series of the season takes the Yankees to Texas, but not to face the Rangers. Instead, they will face the Houston Astros. Honestly, if the Yankees can’t sweep the Astros, then we don’t deserve to be contending. The Houston Astros are a minor league team in the Major Leagues, and that’s me putting it as nicely as I can. Depending where the Yankees are in the wild card standings at this point in the season, this series is important. This series could make or break the chances of getting into the playoffs if the race is that close in the end.

Teixeira & Youkilis’ return serves as a sign of urgency for Yankees

YankeesInjuredPlayersBaseball161418--415x415Publicized to incredible heights, Kevin Youkilis and Mark Teixeira were in the Yankees’ lineup last night as they opened up a three-game set with the Red Sox. After being swept by the Mets in a Subway Series where the offense never really posed a threat, re-acquiring [in a sense] two former All-Stars to bolster the middle of the order certainly is the biggest boost the Yanks will get all year.

Up until this week, the team had been excelling with the likes of Lyle Overbay, Vernon Wells, and Travis Hafner, but right now it appears they all are out of gas. The lineup’s struggles do not fall on their shoulders alone, but all three look lost at the plate and are shells of the .300 hitters they were for the month of April. Even Robinson Cano went through a cold streak, as he fell into the habit of trying to make contact with anything near the strike zone, which resulted in pop ups, ground outs, strike outs, and only the occasional bloop single.

Robbie did go 2 for 4 with a home run in Thursday night’s loss to the Mets, so he may be coming out of it. But the fact remains that he alone cannot carry the offense, and though the pitching has been solid the saying holds true that, “you can’t win if you can’t score.”

So unfortunately as we expected, the return of Tex and Youk can not just be a sight for sore eyes. These two sluggers must produce like they have in the past, otherwise the team could find itself battling it out with the Blue Jays in last place by the end of next week.

Maybe I’m over-exaggerating, but the upcoming schedule offers little time for the Yankees to struggle like they just did. As detailed the re-tooled Red Sox are at the top of the division and intend to stay there through the weekend, while next week Terry Francona will look to re-establish himself as a man no one wants to see in the opposing dugout when his Indians come for a visit. After that it’s off to the West Coast to battle it out with the Mariners, Athletics, and Angels – all of them improving and posing a real threat. Anything worse than a .500 record in those games and this joyful, miracle-like season could quickly turn to despair and doubt.

Am I saying Teixeira and Youkilis will decide our fate? Of course not. Robinson Cano needs to start hitting like he’s capable of doing, and Vernon Wells needs to stop hitting as he did with the Angels, as in, poorly. Overall, the Yankees have hit better than predicted, as they’ve scored just enough to win in numerous games. But now they aren’t, and it concerns me greatly.

Perhaps it’s the simple fact that the replacement-level guys such as Overbay, Pronk, and Wells couldn’t carry the team as much as we thought they could when everything was dandy in Yankeeland. Ultimately they were going to break down, and it looks like now is the time. Getting back Teixeira and Youkilis is a huge boost, but if that boost isn’t visible over the next two weeks, to paraphrase a baseball quote to fit this new month – “you can’t win a division in June, but you sure can lose one.”

Yanks fall flat on Opening Day in 8-2 loss to Red Sox

Looking back at the game, the second inning is where the Yankees fell flat. CC Sabathia made some costly pitches which resulted in the Red Sox scoring four runs off of the Yankees ace. The three run ninth inning by Joba Chamberlain didn’t make matters any easier. In the end, the Yankees looked as flat as Sabathia’s fastball in the fourth inning. The offense was barely existent, minus the two run single by Francisco Cervelli in the fourth. To put it in perspective, the Yankees as a team looked sluggish. So sluggish that by the time the ninth inning rolled around, no one was in their seats.

The Yankees had one chance to score some more runs in the seventh when Cervelli and Brett Gardner got on base with back to back walks, but Eduardo Nunez, Robinson Cano and Kevin Youkilis struck out to end the inning, and any chance of the Yankees coming back in the game.

The Yankees pitching wasn’t as sharp either. David Phelps was able to tightrope out of danger in the sixth inning due to a base-running blunder by Jacoby Ellsbury, but the seventh was where everything fell apart. Phelps gave up a run with the assistance of Boone Logan, Chamberlain gave up three in the ninth. Now it’s back to the drawing board for the Yankees, as they prepare to take on the Red Sox again on Wednesday night.

Some Notes:

Mark Teixeira went to visit the doctor today and got the OK to take off the brace on his wrist–but he has to wear it when he works out.

Derek Jeter had some treatment done in Tampa today and played catch in the OF. Although Jeter could come off the DL on Saturday, I doubt he would since the Yanks want him to play a full nine innings before he returns.

Curtis Granderson had X-Rays on his forearm and told reporters in Tampa that his arm is feeling better. He’s allowed to shag fly balls but he can’t throw them back in the infield.

Phil Hughes pitched in an extended Spring Training game today, and went seven innings. Hughes will next pitch for Scranton Wilkes-Barre in five days, meaning he’s on track to return on April 11. Girardi left open the option that Hughes could return by Saturday but David Phelps is still in line to make that start.

Series Preview: Red Sox vs. Yankees | 4/1/13 – 4/4/13

Pitching Matchup:

Monday, 4/1/13, 1:05 p.m.

Yankees: CC Sabathia (2012: 15-6, 3.38 ERA)
Red Sox: Jon Lester (2012: 9-14, 4.82 ERA)

Tuesday, 4/2/13


Wednesday, 4/3/13, 7:05 p.m. 

Yankees: Hiroki Kuroda (2012: 16-11, 3.32 ERA)
Red Sox: Clay Buchholz (2012: 11-8, 4.56 ERA)

Thursday, 4/4/13, 7:05 p.m.

Yankees: Andy Pettitte (2012: 5-4, 2.87 ERA)
Red Sox: Ryan Dempster (2012: 12-8, 3.38 ERA)

Accept it: Kevin Youkilis is a Yankee


Not even one full day into his first day at spring training, the few sentences said by Yankees third baseman Kevin Youkilis sent fans and the media into a frenzy. Likely a few hours after he was sized for his pinstripes, Youk was telling reporters he’d always be a Boston Red Sox.

He’s learned now, but that’s a big no-no and certainly not something that will go unnoticed in the big New York spotlight. Of course, his allegiance to Boston spread all over the back pages of newspapers was not the only quote he gave, but it was the only one people cared about.

Already on Yankees fan’s bad side, Kevin Youkilis said he will always remember the first nine seasons of his baseball career, which just so happened to take place with the Bombers’ biggest rival. Two World Series rings, three All Star appearances, a Gold Glove and Hank Aaron Award, and he is being ridiculed for saying he enjoyed what he accomplished there? Are fans truly clinging to any little thing he says that sounds the slightest anti-Yankee? That is truly pathetic.

Now, there’s not a fiber in my body that tells me a clean-shaven Kevin Youkilis wearing our beloved Yankee pinstripes is right. This is not a plea of defense nor show of love to the  guy who batted .235 last season and yet received $12 million, from an apparently penny-pinching Yankees front office. But it’s just me accepting it.

Many people have brought up the argument that players like Sparky Lyle, Wade Boggs, Roger Clemens, and Johnny Damon all started out as hated rivals in Beantown, and ended up becoming fan favorites [and more importantly, World Series champions] in the Bronx. Did any fan really expect those four “idiots” to put on the pinstripes, play with Yankee pride and partake in some of the greatest moments the team has ever had? I don’t think so.

I’ll give you a moment to reminisce about Sparky’s 1977 Cy Young season. Or Boggs riding the horse after ’96. Don’t forget Clemens’ postseason dominance either. Or Damon’s double-steal.

That is not my number one point, but it largely contributes to the idea that fans need to just wait and see what happens this season. The fact is, no one knows what Kevin Youkilis will do for the Yankees this year. I don’t expect anything outstanding, but I don’t expect anything horrible either.

Yankees fans have been considered vulgar, ignorant, downright stupid and clueless in the past. They have also been known as classy, every now and then, for cheering for whoever is wearing the pinstripes. I’m not a fan of A-Rod and a number of guys on the team. But I still support them and cheer for them. Why? Because they’re Yankees. And Kevin Youkilis is now one too.

So forget what he was, as he is now a player for our favorite team. Forgive and forget. Give him a chance. All those statements and more apply. The fact is, you don’t know anything until you know everything. Who knows what these upcoming 162 games have in store for Youk. Only time will tell. Not me or you.

Yankees Offseason Notes: Yankees want Ricky Nolasco??

It seemed that all everyone could talk about today was the aftermath of the Blue Jays and Marlins trade. Even MLB Network dedicated almost an entire show strictly on the trade. However, as exciting as this trade was there is still speculation and signings today. The speculations come from the Yankees. The signings? Not so much.

— A source says that the Yankees are interested in Marlins pitcher Ricky Nolasco. Nolasco has 1 year and $11.5 Million left on his Marlins contract. The Marlins confirmed that Ricky Nolasco will be the next to leave the team. If I’m the Yankees, I wouldn’t trade for Nolasco. He had one good year–and is getting paid $11 Million.

— The Yankees can put their checkbooks away: Torii Hunter is no longer a free agent. Hunter signed a two year deal with the Detroit Tigers today pending a physical which means the Yankees are now in the hunt for a right fielder since Nick Swisher leaving is all but done.

— And a tweet that I stumbled upon that I found hilarious by none other than CBS Sports writer Jon Heyman:

Bobby V the un-deserving scapegoat in Bo-Sox disaster

As everyone knows, [and in case you didn’t, you knew it was coming] Bobby Valentine is no longer the Red Sox manager. The team dismissed the 62-year old skipper after just one year at the helm, not even 24 hours after the Red Sox’ 93rd loss in their final game of the season.

From what the players and fans have said throughout this traumatic year for the Sox, you’d think Valentine’s firing was a huge step in moving forward and rebuilding a seemingly reborn franchise. Following 86 years of losing that ended in 2004, the Red Sox have won more World Series (2) than any team this century, and have appeared in the playoffs a total of 6 of the last 10 Octobers.

No, a dynasty to challenge their rival Yankees never happened, but right now, Boston has had the upper-hand in the first twelve years of the century where it counts most – the World Series.

Yet here we are, for the second straight year discussing the dismissal of the Red Sox manager and the dis-array the team lies in. Last time, it was well-respected and celebrated Terry Francona after a historic September collapse, that still left the Bo-Sox with a 90-72 record in 2011. Now, in 2012 it’s Bobby V, who miraculously survived all 162 games after the Red Sox’ worst season since he was fifteen – in 1965.

As the final result shows, Bobby V and the Red Sox fell well short of a “perfect match”, as some had predicted when he was hired by new GM Ben Cherington not even a calendar year ago. Tears streamed down his face as he first buttoned up the Red Sox jersey over his suit the day he was introduced to the Boston media.

Valentine was supposed to represent a change in the attitude of the defeated and disrespectful bunch of goons Fenway Park’s cramped dugout housed. People knew Bobby V was not a player’s manager, but at the same time was not as big a dictator as some perceived. So as spring training beckoned, it was hard to say that Boston couldn’t rebound this year and make the playoffs under the rule of Mr. Valentine.

Then came something so shocking to the Red Sox, that they immediately crumbled in Florida before they even played a game home in Boston – discipline.

I’m not trying to disrespect what Terry Francona did in his seven years as Red Sox skipper, but clearly he kept a very long leash on all of his players. Maybe it was because of how long he knew them, but then again, maybe that’s just who he is as a manager.

Bobby Valentine immediately tried to send a message that playtime was over and that it was time to start working hard towards returning to the playoffs. Yet amazingly, the Red Sox players completely tuned him out. Was he doing anything wrong? No. He was simply trying to assert himself and the changes that would happen under him, like every new manager should do.

But the players were so conceded and so used to being pampered by Francona for all those years that they just said “no”, and “that’s not how we do things” to nearly everything Bobby V brought to the table. Imagine a group of middle school children and how they act when a substitute teacher is in for the day. Now imagine a few of them with goatees, beards, and fried chicken. And viola! You have the 2012 Boston Red Sox.

The worst part of it all is somehow, someway, the Boston media too were in favor of the players and twisted Bobby Valentine’s actions into evil plots to make the players’ lives hell. If Mike Aviles did not cover his position properly, let it slide. If Kevin Youkilis is struggling, let it slide. If Dustin Pedroia hates you, let it slide.

Valentine didn’t let things slide, rightfully like a skipper should, and somehow he ended up being (to fans) the source of the Red Sox’ problems throughout the 2012 campaign.

Look here – the definition of a baseball manager is “someone in charge of training a team”. Spot the key phrase? In charge. That’s not what a baseball player is, and yet, that’s how the Red Sox carried themselves. They were the managers, and Valentine was the managed.

30 years ago, this would not have happened. Managers were specifically brought in because of spitefulness or disciplinary reasons, in an effort to focus the team more on winning than anything else that came with playing professional baseball. Now a days, it seems that a manager needs to “relate to the players” and needs to be lenient with them in order to be a good coach. And that is simply false. Had Bobby Valentine managed in the 60’s or 70’s, I’m sure he would have found more success and fame except for just one N.L. Wild Card and Pennant with the Mets in 2000.

Simply put – Bobby V is your classic old-school manager who the Red Sox dis-respected and mis-treated horribly. They didn’t want to accept change and didn’t want to man up to their childish actions, and therefore it showed on the field. With the team that was assembled this year, not many other managers could have done a significantly better job.

So before you go out and hang this embarrassment of a season for Boston on Bobby Valentine’s shoulders, it was the players themselves who started and deliberately continued a dramatic string of events that unjustly cost a great baseball mind another shot at managing.

May the Curse of Bobby V begin…and never end.

Morning Bits: Game Time!, Robinson Cano, Orioles = Red Sox???

Good morning everyone and a happy Sunday to you all!! Tonight CC Sabathia takes the hill in Game 1 of the 2012 ALDS vs. the Baltimore Orioles. Jason Hammel will pitch for the Orioles. First pitch is at 6:15pm! Stay tuned to the blog today where I will post the postseason 25 man roster and the lineup for Game 1. Until then, here are the morning bits!

— Welcome to October! On paper tonight the Yankees have the advantage vs. Jason Hammel but let’s see how this all plays out.

— In 2009, Alex Rodriguez was the Yankees lead man in the postseason. Not this year. This year it’s the best 2nd baseman in the gameRobinson Cano!

— According to Mike Lupica of the Daily News, the Orioles are the Yankees new Red Sox. If you mean annoying to the point where they won’t go away kind of like the pre-2011 & 2012 Red Sox then he’s exactly right.

Yankees Postseason Notes: Who makes the roster, Rangers or Orioles and Bobby Valentine?

Good evening everyone. There’s no baseball at all tonight so we’re going to post some tidbits and notes that have been stirring around from Yankee Land. Here are some evening notes.

— The Yankees have yet to make the postseason roster but there are 3 definite players aside from the other starters for the roster: David Phelps, Eduardo Nunez and Brett Gardner (Brian Cashman confirmed Gardner today).

— The Yankees might either face the Orioles or Rangers on Sunday so the question is–who would you rather face?

Andruw Jones might get a roster spot for the postseason. I don’t think he should be on the roster considering he had a pretty bad 2012 regular season and there are hitters that could be of assistance on the bench. Players such as Chris Dickerson perhaps?

— A lot of writers believe that Andy Pettitte should start Game 2 of the play-offs instead of Hiroki Kuroda. Here I would have to agree. Kuroda has a better home record than an away record and since the Yankees are on the road to begin the play-offs, it would make the most sense to have  CC Sabathia and Pettitte for Games 1 & 2 and Kuroda and Hughes for Game 3 & 4. Sabathia would pitch Game 5 if it came down to that.

— In other news that has nothing to do with the Yankees but the Red Sox fired Bobby Valentine after 1 year with the Red Sox. Honestly, the Red Sox never should have fired Terry Francona to bring in Bobby Valentine. Francona won 2 championships and had one bad year. Bobby Valentine came in and made everything worse.

Morning Bits: Tied in the East, Playoffs, Tex coming back.

Good Morning.  We have 3 days to go in the regular season.  The Yankees and B’more are still tied.   The O’s will be up against the Rays while the Yankees have the Red Sox.   On the mound tonight is Sabathia vs. Buchholz.

Enjoy the day now for some links…

Andrew Marchand writes that C.C. needs to pitch like a number one tonight.

Wallace Matthews has the reaction from yesterday’s crazy game.

Bryan Hoch has a bunch of Yankee tidbits including Tex will start tonight and Nunez having a bigger role without Nix.

Hoch also has the updated path to the postseason.

Red Sox and Dodgers truly wheeling and dealing

The dust has finally settled after a crazy past few days in Major League Baseball. If the non-waiver trade deadline wasn’t shocking enough, the waiver trade deadline was even more frantic and surprising.

In a blink of an eye, the Red Sox traded away three core players and over 270 million dollars worth of contracts to the Los Angeles Dodgers. And then some.

L.A. acquired slugging first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, (the centerpiece of the deal), injured left fielder Carl Crawford, struggling 32-year old righty Josh Beckett. and utility infielder Nick Punto. Meanwhile, Boston receives first baseman James Loney and four prospects.

At first glance with little knowledge of what’s gone on this year, it seems like the most lop-sided trade in baseball history. But, as in football, “upon further review”, this deal is as equal as it can get.

The Dodgers, now 69-58 after a win over Miami in Gonzalez’s debut (1-5, 3-R HR), are two games back of the San Francisco Giants in the N.L. West. Prior to this deal, the team had already made numerous moves to improve the club, compared to where it stood on Opening Day.

Outfielder Shane Victorino, shortstop Hanley Ramirez, reliever Randy Choate, closer Brandon League, and starter Joe Blanton are the biggest names that most recently donned Dodger Blue, and all of them have fit in nicely since their respective trades prior to the July 31st [non-waiver] trade deadline.

Now in bringing in A-Gone, Crawford, and Beckett, the Dodgers have added a grand total of 94.75 million dollars to the team’s payroll [for this year alone] since starting to wheel and deal back in July. And I didn’t even bring up the home-grown superstars of Matt Kemp (making 10 million this year, jumping to 21 million annually in 2013) and Clayton Kershaw (making 7 million in 2012, jumping to 11 million next season, and then demanding a big payday afterwards). Clearly, the Dodgers are digging deep into the pockets of Magic Johnson to make all this happen.

Don’t worry, I didn’t forget the Red Sox.

Boston officially waves the white flag in making this deal, as they traded their ace, best hitter, and well, Carl Crawford, all in one deal.

It’s been a season of disappointment and bitterness for the Red Sox and their fans, as they are in fourth place in the AL East with a record of 60-67. Uttering the name Bobby Valentine on Yawkey Way is almost as bad as saying “Dent”, “Boone”, or “Buckner”. Seriously. The fans hate him, and so do the players, which is probably a reason why they’ve played so poorly all year long. If you don’t like your manager, it’s unlikely you’ll play hard or well for him.

The Red Sox to me are like a teenage girl following a sudden break-up. “This wasn’t how it was supposed to end.” I can hear Ben Cherington cry out to John Henry.

But in all seriousness, the team’s prior hopes and dreams of championships are crushed, and so Boston finally accepted it’s time to start looking towards the future and planning for 2013 and beyond, which is the smart thing to do.

The players that are coming to Boston aren’t really anything special. James Loney is only coming over to play first base for the remainder of this season, as he’s been a very inconsistent hitter for the past couple seasons now. And the prospects have all had their share of struggles and should be Major League ready by now, yet they’re not.

But for the Red Sox, it really doesn’t matter who they got for what they gave. The point is they are free from a couple of high-priced, long term deals, one that was very misguided (wink wink, Carl Crawford). And Beckett was making 15 million bucks per year as well, and simply had to go. Taking this much money off the books allows the Red Sox to spend freely on any of the big free agents this coming winter, and also a chance to reconstruct the clubhouse and create a happy and friendly environment in Boston, which let’s face it, will be the total opposite as long as Bobby V is manager.

It will be very interesting to see what the Bo-Sox do this offseason. As I said, they can spend the money they got immediately and maybe try to get back in contention next year. Or they could hold off, let their prospects get a chance to prove themselves and wait and see.

If nothing else, one thing is definitely for sure – Bobby V is gone following the season.

Hurrah Red Sox fans!

Morning Bits: Blockbuster Trade, Lowe, Chamberlain, Aceves

Good morning everyone and happy Sunday to you all. The Yankees unfortunately couldn’t back up Kuroda but they have a chance to gain a half game on the Rays who are off…on a Sunday…no fair. Anyway, here are your morning links.

— As we all know, the Red Sox and Dodgers pulled off the ultimate blockbuster trade yesterday. Now the question is, could you picture the Yankees doing the same thing? And do the remaining Yankees/Red Sox series mean anything?

— Speaking of the blockbuster trade, Derek Lowe (who was a former Red Sox with the 2004 Championship team) had a unique perspective on why the Red Sox and Dodgers did what they did.

–This was the sign that Chad Jennings of LoHud Yankees found on his window of his hotel room–and it has something to do with Joba Chamberlain and midges.

— Major League Baseball suspended former Yankee Alfredo Aceves for three games for “conduct dertrimental to the team”. Apparently, he didn’t like the idea that Andrew Bailey was going to save a game instead of him.




Morning Bits: Nova looks for answers, Story on Yankee Prospect Bichette Jr. & more

Good morning all.  Three out of 4 ain’t bad.  Especially against a team like Texas.   The bullpen really had a rough go at it yesterday afternoon.   Joba didn’t look good at all.  Today the Red Sox come into town which is always a good series no matter what the records of both teams are.  On the mound tonight is Morales vs Hughes.  Game time is set for 7:05PM EST.

Enjoy the weekend.

Now for some links….

Matt Ehalt of ESPN NY writes that Nova is looking for answers after Yank’s loss.

Bill Ballew of has a nice write up of Yankee prospect Dante Bichette Jr.

Roger Rubin of The Daily News writes that Boston visits Yankees with improbable dream to earn AL wild card spot.

Mike Vander Woude has the recap of SWB Yanks (AAA) three run 7th inning to win last 5-4.

Morning Bits: Yankees, Angels, Pedroia, Ichiro, Chamberlain

Good morning everyone and a happy Saturday to you all! Yankees play at 4pm and it’s a FOX game. CC Sabathia will go on the hill for the Yankees. Here are your morning links!

— Now that the Angels have acquired Zack Grenike, if the Yankees faced the Angels again–who would win?

— After the Yankees defeated the Red Sox 10-3 in last night’s game, Dustin Pedroia bashed the Red Sox organization now that the Sox are 11.5 games behind the Yankees.

— Anthony McCarron of the Daily News says to catch Ichiro Suzuki play this summer at Yankee Stadium while you can before he heads off to Cooperstown as a future Hall of Famer.

—  Joba Chamberlain is just days away from returning to the Yankees, which is good because the Yankees could use all the bullpen help they could get.




Series Preview: Yankees vs. Red Sox | 7/27/12-7/29/12

Pitching Matchups

Friday, 7/27/12, 7:05pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: Phil Hughes, RHP
Last Start: 7.2 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 6 K, 2 BB, 2 HR
On the Season: 9-8, 4.09 ERA / 4.59 FIP / 4.27 xFIP, 8.03 K/9, 2.20 BB/9 in 114.1 IP

Pitching for the Red Sox: Aaron Cook, RHP
Last Start: 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 2 HR
On the Season: 2-3, 3.50 ERA / 4.59 FIP / 4.58 xFIP, 0.75 K/9, 0.75 BB/9 in 36.0 IP

Saturday, 7/28/12, 4:05pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: C.C. Sabathia, LHP
Last Start: 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 H, 6 K, 1 BB, 2 HR On the Season: 10-3, 3.30 ERA / 3.26 FIP / 3.30 xFIP, 8.78 K/9, 2.33 BB/9 in 120.0 IP

Pitching for the Red Sox: Jon Lester, LHP
Last Start: 4.0 IP, 11 ER, 9 H, 2 K, 5 BB, 4 HR
On the Season: 5-8, 5.46 ERA / 4.18 FIP / 3.80 xFIP, 7.48 K/9, 2.84 BB/9 in 120.1 IP

Sunday, 7/29/12, 8:00pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: Hiroki Kuroda, RHP
Last Start: 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 9 K, 1 BB, 0 HR
On the Season: 10-7, 3.34 ERA / 3.88 FIP / 3.75 xFIP, 7.17 K/9, 2.37 BB/9 in 129.1 IP

Pitching for the Red Sox: Felix Doubront, LHP
Last Start: 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 H, 6 K, 3 BB, 1 HR
On the Season: 10-5, 4.54 ERA / 4.31 FIP / 3.82 xFIP, 8.83 K/9, 3.45 BB/9 in 107.0 IP

NYY Offense

Who’s Hot

— Mark Teixeira – 9 for 26 with 2 doubles, 4 RBI, 2 BB in the last 7 days

— Derek Jeter – 8 for 25 with 1 HR, 1 RBI in the last 7 days

— Robinson Cano – 9 for 30 with 1 double, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB in the last 7 days

Who’s Not

— Andruw Jones – 1 for 15 with 1 RBI, 10 K in the last 7 days

— Chris Stewart – 1 for 9 with 1 BB, 1 K in the last 7 days

— Eric Chavez – 2 for 17 with 3 BB, 4 K in the last 7 days

— Raul Ibanez – 4 for 24 with 2 RBI, 1 BB, 7 K in the last 7 days

BOS Offense

Who’s Hot:

— Will Middlebrooks – 8 for 23 with 1 double, 1 HR, 1 RBI in the last 7 days

— Jarrod Saltalamacchia – 4 for 13 with 1 double, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 1 BB in the last 7 days

Who’s Not

— Carl Crawford – 2 for 22 with 8 K in the last 7 days

— Ryan Sweeney – 1 for 9 with 1 double, 1 BB in the last 7 days

— Cody Ross – 5 for 26 with 1 double, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 BB, 5 K in the last 7 days

Enjoy the series everyone!

Yankees and Red Sox split double header

In Game 1 the Yankees had control of the board. In Game 2, the Red Sox had complete control of the board. In the end, the Yankees won game 1, 6-1 and the Red Sox won game 2, 9-4.

GAME 1:  On Friday night’s game, the Yankees scored all 10 of their runs without hitting a HR. In the afternoon game of the Day-Night DH, all of their runs happened via the HR ball. In the first game Andruw Jones hit 2 HR’s, Jayson Nix hit 1 homer (his actually left the stadium) and Nick Swisher hit a 3 run homer which summed up the Yankees 6 runs. Freddy Garcia was also very effective for the Yankees as he had pitched into the 7th inning with only giving up 1 run. It seems that ever since the Yankees banished Garcia into the bullpen, he became a completely different pitcher. Derek Jeter also had a 3 hit day and we saw Robinson Cano extend his hitting streak to 13 games. We also saw his RBI streak disappear snapping his RBI streak to 9 games.

GAME 2: The Yankees once again got off to a fast start in the 2nd game when Mark Teixeira hit a 3 run homer which plated Derek Jeter and Curtis Granderson. Andruw Jones hit a HR in the 7th which gives him 3 HR’s throughout the entire day. Phil Hughes (who was scheduled to show up at 5pm at Fenway Park) gave up 3 earned runs (5 in total to the Red Sox) after a wild 6th inning kicked him out of the game in favor of Boone Logan. Joe Girardi decided to lift Boone Logan in favor of Cory Wade and let’s just say that he was horrible (again). Wade gave up 4 earned runs on 3 hits which is why he’s going back to Scranton.

Tomorrow the Yankees send out Ivan Nova to the hill in hopes to get the series win. Jon Lester goes for the Red Sox.