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Wild Card Watch: September 3, 2013

Good morning Yankees fans! I am back with another Wild Card Watch! Yesterday the Yankees were 3.5 games back and needed to gain some ground. Did they? Here’s the results from last night along with the final scores of our Wild Card contending teams:


Wild Card Final Scores (WC Teams are in BOLD):

White Sox 1, Yankees 9: David Huff pitched 5.1 IP of one run ball, Derek Jeter drove in two runs and the Yankees scored a season high 8 runs in the 4th inning as they demolished the White Sox 9-1 to take game one of the three game set. Tonight’s pitching match-up: Chris Sale (10-12, 2.99 ERA) vs. Hiroki Kuroda (11-10, 2.89 ERA)

Rays 2, Angels 11: Erick Aybar had a big night for the Angels, hitting a two-run homer and a two-run triple, Grant Green had his first MLB home run and Garret Richards navigated after a shaky start as the Angels hand the Rays their fifth straight loss with a 11-2 victory. Tonight’s pitching match-up: Matt Moore (14-3, 3.41 ERA) vs. Jason Vargas (8-5, 3.54 ERA).

Orioles 7, Indians 2: Nate McLouth and Matt Weiters both hit two-run HR’s and Bud Norris pitched seven innings of one run ball as the Orioles beat the Indians 7-2. Tonight’s pitching match-up: Chris Tillman (15-4, 3.61 ERA) vs. Ubaldo Jimenez (9-9, 3.95 ERA).

Rangers 2, Athletics 4: Coco Crisp hit the game deciding home run and Yoenis Cespedes HR’d as the A’s win 4-2. The Rangers and Angels are now tied for first in the AL West (which is why the Rangers are in the Wild Card standings. Tonight’s match-up: Martin Perez (8-3, 3.58 ERA) vs. Bartolo Colon (14-5, 2.94 ERA).

Royals 3, Mariners 1: Royals reliever Will Smith tossed 4.1 IP after starter Danny Duffy left the game in the fourth inning and the Royals got to King Felix, scoring three runs including a Mike Moustakas single as the Royals beat the Mariners 3-1. Tonight’s pitching match-up: Erasmo Ramirez (5-1, 5.18 ERA) vs. Bruce Chen (6-2, 2.79 ERA).

Come back tomorrow for another Wild Card Update!

Yankees Offseason Notes: Yankees get $115,065.28 for Postseason

There hasn’t been a lot of Yankees news going around–until today. For the Bronx Bombers, it pays to be in the postseason.

— The New York Yankees are going to get $115,065.28 for playing in the 2012 postseason. That was for making it to the ALCS. The San Francisco Giants get the most money out of the players that played in the postseason since they won the World Series with $337,002.64. That’s the most made in the postseason for a team that won the World Series. The Texas Rangers and the Atlanta Braves also got a piece of some money, the Rangers making $16,999.09 and the Braves making $19,609.04. And for those asking, yes Alex Rodriguez will get a share of that money just for striking out and doing nothing.

In Other News

— The New York Yankees signed catcher Eli Whiteside to  a one year contract, avoiding arbitration. I still don’t get the point of trading for Eli Whiteside when they have Chris Stewart and Francisco Cervelli.

— The Yankees are going after Russell Martin, but Russell Martin has visited other cities for teams that have interest in him. Martin however did say that he is interested in playing for the Yankees next season.

Andy Pettitte is slated to make a decision soon but according to Mark Feinsand of the Daily News, Pettitte has already started training.

In News Around The League

— Here’s the shocker that made me spit my coffee out this morning: The Tampa Bay Rays extended Evan Longoria‘s contract until the year 2022. Ladies and gentlemen, may I introduce to you: Alex Rodriguez 2.0. It will be interesting to see how this contract turns out.

Yankees Off-Day Notes: 25 Man Roster, Sabathia, McGehee, Nix, Jeter, Rangers or Orioles?

Good evening everyone. The Yankees don’t play again tonight but there was baseball to be played since the 2 Wild Card games were on TBS. The Cardinals (controversially) won the NL Wild Card game which sent the Braves packing and the Cardinals to the NLDS. Tonight the Yankees will find out whether they are heading to Baltimore or whether they are heading down to Texas. While we wait for that, here are some notes from today.

— The Yankees won’t release the 25 man roster until tomorrow but the Yankees did reveal that Casey McGehee did not make the postseason roster. He reportedly took it hard.

— Joe Girardi confirmed that CC Sabathia would pitch Game 1 of the ALDS but he didn’t say who he was going to pitch in Game 2.

Jayson Nix says that he feels he’s well enough to make the postseason roster but he’s not sure whether he will make the roster.

— I wrote an article for Yahoo! about why I believe Derek Jeter is a Fall Classic legend by becoming “Mr. November” in 2001.

— While watching tonight’s Orioles and Rangers game, who would you rather see play the Yankees in the ALDS: The Orioles or the Rangers?

Bats fall silent as Rangers blank Yanks 2-0

Hiroki Kuroda went on the mound and gave the Yankees 6.2 strong innings of 2 run ball, but unfortunately Yu Darvish was better. Darvish blanked the Yanks 2-0 as the Yankees dropped the second game of the three game set.

ANYTHING YU CAN DO, YANKS CAN’T DO BETTER: Hiroki Kuroda had a good outing and did exactly what the Yankees wanted, but in the end Yu Darvish was what would decide the game. Darvish struck out 10 Yankees on a night where runs were a premium. Well the only thing we can really take away from the game was that Kuroda gave a good outing but Yanks couldn’t cash in. Hmm…this sounds oddly familiar to A.J Burnett last year where he would pitch well but Yanks couldn’t cash in. Oh well.

JETER HITS 14 IN A ROW: Derek Jeter extended his hit streak to 14 games tonight, giving Jeter one of his best April’s of his career. Jeter is batting .416 in the month of April and is giving pitchers a hard time in getting him out. Hey Jeet, can you keep this up for like…the whole year? We like it.

IBANEZ ENDS THE GAME…DP STYLE: Raul Ibanez had a chance to continue the inning…but of course he made things easier for Joe Nathan and the Texas Rangers. Nathan threw one pitch, and that was all that was needed to end the game as Ibanez bounced into a DP. That may be how they end games in Philly, but we don’t end games like that in New York, Raul.

PINEDA GETS SECOND OPINION: Michael Pineda will get a second opinion on his shoulder after getting an MRI today. Pineda’s agent spoke with reporters and said that the reason that they are getting a second opinion is not because of the MRI results. Pineda will meet with the New York Mets team doctor and get further evaluated before the press gets the prognosis & diagnosis.

WHAT’S NEXT: The final ball game in the Ballpark in Arlington comes near and Phil Hughes will get the mound. Hughesy needs to give the Yankees some depth (and not give Texas a lot of runs). First pitch is at 8:05pm.

Series Preview: Yankees at Rangers | 4/23/12-4/25/12

Pitching Matchups

Monday, 4/23/12, 7:05pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: C.C. Sabathia, LHP
Last Start: 7.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, 7 K, 1 BB
On the Season: 1-0, 5.59 ERA / 3.59 FIP / 3.02 xFIP, 10.24 K/9, 2.79 BB/9 in 19.1 IP

Pitching for the Rangers: Derek Holland, LHP
Last Start: 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 7 K, 3 BB, 1 HR
On the Season: 2-0, 3.10 ERA / 3.13 FIP / 3.43 xFIP, 8.85 K/9, 2.66 BB/9 in 20.1 IP

Tuesday, 4/24/12, 8:05pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: Hiroki Kuroda, RHP
Last Start: 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 10 H, 4 K, 0 BB, 2 HR
On the Season: 1-2, 5.00 ERA / 4.78 FIP / 4.13 xFIP, 6.00 K/9, 3.00 BB/9 in 18.0 IP

Pitching for the Rangers: Yu Darvish, RHP
Last Start: 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 5 K, 5 BB, 0 HR
On the Season: 2-0, 3.57 ERA / 3.90 FIP / 5.18 xFIP, 7.13 K/9, 6.62 BB/9 in 17.2 IP

Wednesday, 4/25/12, 8:05pm ET

Pitching for the Yankees: Phil Hughes, RHP
Last Start: 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 6 H, 4 K, 2 BB, 1 HR
On the Season: 1-2, 6.75 ERA / 5.94 FIP / 4.63 xFIP, 10.13 K/9, 4.04 BB/9 in 13.1 IP

Pitching for the Rangers: Scott Feldman, RHP
On the Season: 0-0, 0.00 ERA / 2.94 FIP / 4.65 xFIP, 0.00 K/9, 0.00 BB/9 in 2.1 IP
This will be Feldman’s first start of the season. He has made two scoreless relief appearances to this point.

NYY Offense

Who’s Hot

Derek Jeter – 11 for 27 with 2 HR, 6 RBI and 2 BB in the last 7 days

Curtis Granderson – 10 for 25 with 4 HR, 5 RBI and 4 BB in the last 7 days

Mark Teixeira – 9 for 23 with 1 double, 3 HR and 9 RBI in the last 7 days

Who’s Not

Russell Martin – 3 for 17 with 1 double, 1 HR, 3 RBI and 5 K in the last 7 days

Andruw Jones – 2 for 11 with 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB and 5 K in the last 7 days

TEX Offense

Who’s Hot (basically the entire Texas lineup, but for length purposes, I’ll include the top 3 of their hitters):

Josh Hamilton – 12 for 26 with 3 HR, 11 RBI, and 4 BB in the last 7 days

Mike Napoli – 11 for 25 with 1 double, 5 HR, 10 RBI, and 2 BB in the last 7 days

Michael Young – 9 for 21 with 1 HR, 3 RBI, and 3 BB in the last 7 days

Who’s Not

Mitch Moreland – 2 for 12 with 2 RBI, 2 BB, and 4 K in the last 7 days

Enjoy the series!

Morning Bits: Rotation, Mason Williams, Empire State Yankees, Pettitte, Mariano

Good morning all.  After a rained soaked weekend the Yankees will now start a series with the red hot bats of the Texas Rangers.  This should be a great series.

Let’s start the week off with some morning links….

Chad Jennings of Lohud writes that the Yankees struggling rotation faces tough spin vs. Rangers, Tigers.

The Times Tribune has the story of The Empire State Yankees come back to beat Norfolk.

Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York writes don’t mess with Texas.

Keith Law of ESPN says Mason Williams has moved passed Banuelos as the Yankees top prospect.

Buster Olney sat down with Mariano Rivera for the Sunday conversation.

Mike Bauman of writes that Andy Pettitte is a necessity, not a luxury for the Yankees.

— The yankees expect Brett Gardner back after the 15 days on the DL writes Jason Mastrodonato of


Staff Predictions for the 2012 MLB Season

The MLB season starts tomorrow (not including those ridiculous Japan games) and the Yankees Fans Unite staff has made their predictions on the standings and awards for the 2012 MLB season. The awards will be posted tomorrow. We did the AL only since that’s what we focus on most with the Yankees.

AL East: Well let’s get this out of the way early since I know everybody is wondering. It is almost unanimous among the staff that the Yankees will win the AL East. Myself, Matt S, Mike D, Brian, Fish and Delia all have the Yankees taking the division. Mike P stands alone in taking the Rays. Mike P’s reasoning is that he thinks the Rays have the best rotation in MLB, enough hitting to support them, and they have great prospects to help them once August rolls around. Everybody who picked the Yankees likes the balance of their team among the offense, starting rotation, and bullpen and think they are no worse than their 97 win team from a year ago.

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Previewing the 2012 Rangers | Interview Series

Over the course of the next month or two, we will be previewing the Yankees’ competition in the American League. To do this, I will interview one blog for each team in the league.

So far in the AL West we have taken a look at the Oakland Athletics. Now we head southeast all the way to the Texas Rangers. I had the pleasure of interviewing Jean-Luc Tilly of Nolan Writin’….

1) For the second year in a row, the Rangers made it to the World Series, but lost. How degrading is such a turn of events for the Rangers?

I would argue that this turn of events is, if anything, demoralizing rather than degrading. The Rangers still won a championship both years, just not THE championship. There is still a fair amount of pride there, although mixed with a certain feeling of frustration, especially for those involved in some of the more crucial plays. The Rangers have attempted to address that by basically overhauling the less successful portion of their postseason bullpen, by moving Feliz to the rotation, not resigning Darren Oliver, acquiring Darvish to add Ogando or possibly Harrison to the bullpen which moves Mark Lowe out of high-leverage situations, and trading Koji Uehara to the Athletics or some other interested party. I think the fact that they failed to reach the ultimate goal will serve as a source of motivation rather than despondency, especially for some of the younger players who are eager to make their mark on a championship team.

2) What are your thoughts of the Rangers’ offseason, which has mainly included the signing of Yu Darvish? Have the team’s needs appropriately been addressed?

Going into the offseason, I identified 3 areas of need for the Rangers: frontline SP and revamped bullpen, and, where fiscally responsible, a 1B or CF upgrade. I’ve discussed the revamped bullpen in question 1, so I won’t go into that much, save to say that I think acquiring Joe Nathan (2 yr/$14 mil) was a terrific move when you look at the preposterous Heath Bell (3/30) and Papelbon (4/50) contracts, and an underwhelming move when compared to the Madson (1/8.5) contract. The problem there was that the Rangers had identified Nathan early on as “their guy” and went ahead and got him rather than risk losing him (he was receiving several other offers, some reported to be higher). Unfortunately, that prevented them from playing the waiting game with Madson and his agent Scott Boras. A “proven closer” (Nathan has several seasons of closing experience, Madson has half a season) is something manager Ron Washington has consistently identified as crucial to a team’s success, so I understand the impulse to secure your candidate of choice, but a better deal could probably have been had.

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Previewing The Yankees 2012 Season: April


Spring Training will come and go before we know it and once Spring Training is over, that is when the Yankees have to focus on their Chase for 28. In April 2012, the Yankees will face 7 teams and all of them will be pretty tough to beat (well, except for a selected few), but the Yankees will have to face them nonetheless to get one step closer to the playoffs.

April 6, 2012 – April 8, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Tampa Bay Rays 2011 Record: 91-71
Stadium: Tropicana Field

Preview: If we have learned anything in the 2011 season about the Tampa Bay Rays, it’s that they don’t give up so easily. Sure, like the Yankees they were a first round knockout from the play-offs but the Rays had overcome the odds while digging the Boston Red Sox into a hole. In the 2012 season, the Rays have made slight changes to their lineup. There is no Johnny Damon and Carlos Pena has decided to re-join them. The Rays pitching rotation is a bit threatening as well with David Price, James Shields, Wade Davis, Jeff Niemann & ROY winner Jeremy Hellickson but the Yankees bats have been able to rock around this rotation a few times before. I would expect close games between these two teams and since the Yankees have Michael Pineda & Hiroki Kuroda, I would expect the Yankees to win the series in 2 games.

April 9, 2012 – April 11, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Baltimore Orioles 2011 Record: 69-93
Stadium: Camden Yards

Preview: So the 2011 record says it all that the Baltimore Orioles aren’t exactly going to be a playoff contending team anytime soon, but they do hit the Yankees when they have to. The Yankees could defeat the Orioles in all 3 games since the Yankees have more bat power and the starting pitching has improved dramatically, but the Baltimore Orioles might not make it so easy. The Orioles after all signed FA Wilson Betemit and they do have the young catcher Matt Weiters (who makes everything impossible for the Yankees). At the end of the day, pitching is what counts. The Orioles pitching is notoriously know for giving up a lot of runs to the Yankees. This is one of the series that I am looking foreward to. It should be interesting…as long as the Orioles don’t intentionally hit anyone.

April 12, 2012: OFF DAY

April 13, 2012 – April 15, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Los Angeles Angels 2011 Record: 86-76
Stadium: Yankee Stadium

Preview: In this series, the Angels have the upper hand after making a huge splash during the Winter Meetings in December, inking Albert Pujols & C.J Wilson. The Angels offense had gotten more potent with Albert Pujols and the Angels have seriously become contenders. Taking what the Yankees have and what the Angels have, I would say that the Angels will win this series in 2 games for 2 obvious reasons. One is the Yankees RARELY play well vs. the Angels & two is the new additions to the team. I believe most people would go to the home opener series to see Albert Pujols & C.J Wilson in an Angels uniform.

April 16, 2012 – April 19, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Minnesota Twins 2011 Record: 63-99
Stadium: Yankee Stadium

Preview: The 2011 Twins were plagued with injuries, which is what caused their spiraling downfall. During the offseason the Twins lost Michael Cuddyer to the Colorado Rockies and Jim Thome has gone to the Phillies. Since this series is a 4 game series, I see the Yankees and the Twins splitting it 2 games a piece. (Oh, come on. The Yankees can’t win every series.) In the long run the Twins would have to stay healthy if they hope to make it to the ALDS. But for now, this ca be the 2010 ALDS rematch and the outcome can be the same.

April 20, 2012 – April 22, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Boston Red Sox 2011 Record: 90-72
Stadium: Fenway Park

Preview: We all remember what happened to the Red Sox last September where they had that horrific collapse, made Terry Francona the scapegoat and hired a former Mets manager to attempt to take them to the World Series. Well, things for the Red Sox had gone bad to worse. Jonathan Papelbon is a Philadelphia Phillie, Marco Scutaro packed his bags (via trade) and headed to Colorado and the Red Sox are rumored to make their set-up man Daniel Bard into a starter? During the offseason, (and I’m not sure this is possible) the Red Sox were more quiet than the Yankees. In this series, I can see the Yankees taking 2 out of 3 here but I wouldn’t expect any flashy leather in left field due to the Green Monster (which really limits Yankees OF Brett Gardner‘s fielding abilities). The Red Sox might make it to the playoffs this year…if they don’t have a horrific collapse to start the season and to end it. (Oh wait, that happened already; 2011.)

April 23, 2012 – April 25, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Texas Rangers 2011 Record: 96-66
Stadium: The Ballpark In Arlington

Preview: The Texas Rangers lost starter C.J Wilson to the L.A Angels, but they did get something in return; Yu Darvish. This is one of the series that I look forward to since it would be interesting to see Darvish pitch in a MLB environment. The only issue with Darvish is that the Yankees hitters have never faced him and it could be tough to pick up his pitches when he’s pitchig well. If Darvish is pitching in the series, I would say the Yankees would take 2 out of 3, but it won’t be easy with Josh Hamilton, Michael Young and Nelson Cruz in the way. The Rangers have the players and staff to go to the World Series…they just need to win a World Series.

April 26, 2012: OFF DAY

April 27, 2012 – April 29, 2012:

New York Yankees 2011 Record: 97-65
Detroit Tigers 2011 Record: 95-67
Stadium: Yankee Stadium

Preview: To round off April, the Yankees are faced in a 2011 ALDS re-match with the Detroit Tigers. There are just a few changes to the Tigers. Since Victor Martinez is out or the whole year after injuring his knee, the Tigers decided to act fast and get a hitter that could help them go above and beyond. The hitter is Prince Fielder. The Yankees have seen Fielder before when he was with the Brewers last year during interleague, but Fielder could find a way to mash the Yankees since he will be in the American League for the next 9 years. To end April, I would say that the Tigers will take 2 out of 3 with Prince Fielder, Miguel Cabrera and CY Young & AL MVP winner Justin Verlander leading the pack. The Tigers are only going to get more dangerous. When Victor Martinez comes back, he’ll bat in between Cabrera & Fielder. Now that’s a deadly combination.

Yankees Bid for Darvish Revealed

Yankees Bid for Darvish Revealed

By Delia E.

According to reports from, the Yankees had bid $15M for Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish. Darvish has since went to the Texas Rangers who bid over $50M. It’s the highest bid since the Red Sox bid around $50M for Daisuke Matsuzaka.

Around The League

Around The League

By Delia E.
  •  The Houston Astros were given permission to interview Tampa Bay Rays general manager Andrew Friedman as the Astros front office goes into a new transition. Ed Wade who was the Astros GM was fired on Sunday Night in the first of changes. Friedman has been known to take the Tampa Bay Rays to the playoffs three out of four years even though they have one of the lowest payrolls in baseball.
  • The Kansas City Royals have signed former Los Angeles Dodgers closer Jonathan Broxton on a 1 year, $4 million deal. Broxton will set up for Royals closer Joakim Soria in the 2012 season. Broxton was recruited to the team by Royals LF, Jeff Francoeur who went on a hunting trip with him and Kansas City manager Ned Yost.
  • C.J Wilson was in Florida talking to the officials of the Florida Marlins. Wilson had already met with the Los Angeles Angels while the Rangers have stated that they were still interested in C.J Wilson.
  • The Chicago Cubs have signed Astros bullpen coach Jamie Quirk as their new bench coach for the 2012 season. Quirk is a former MLB player, playing 18 years in the major leagues mostly as a catcher with a career .240  AVG.
  • The Chicago Cubs have also reached out and spoke to the representatives of Albert Pujols. Pujols has already gotten an offer from the Miami Marlins and the Cardinals have experienced interest to bring him back. There is also speculation that the Cubs are interested in former Milwaukee Brewer 1st baseman, Prince Fielder.
  • The San Francisco Giants have extended the contracts of GM Brian Sabean and manager Bruce Bochy. Both contracts have been extended to the 2013 season with an option for the 2014 season. This move was expected this winter.
  • Greg Maddux has said that he will not return as the Cubs special assistant to the Chicago Cubs due to taking an offer with the Rangers in a similar capacity. Maddux would help the Rangers young pitchers in development as a part of his job description.
  • The Red Sox have narrowed their list down to two candidates for the managerial job: Bobby Valentine & Gene Lamont. Both candidates have experience with managing teams. Valentine has managed both the Texas Rangers & New York Mets while Gene Lamont has managed the Chicago White Sox & the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Game 6 of World Series Postponed

Game 6 of World Series Postponed

by Delia E.

Tonight’s Game 6 of the 2011 World Series between the Texas Rangers & the St. Louis Cardinals has been postponed due to inclement weather in St. Louis. The game will be played tomorrow October 27 at 8:05pm. The Texas Rangers have a 3-2 lead over the St. Louis Cardinals.

Thank you and have a good night.

World Series Game 5 (Open Thread)

The series is now tied at 2 games a piece. The Cardinals’ bats went silent last night.   I would find it hard to believe that they could go silent two games in a row.  We might be seeing a soon-to-be Yankee pitching tonight. Enjoy the game everyone.

St. Louis at Texas 8:05 PM FOX Chris Carpenter vs. CJ Wilson

Hunt for Sabathia

Hunt for Sabathia

by Matt S.

A source told ESPN New York that the Rangers are preparing to make a strong bid for CC Sabathia if he opts out of his contract with the Yankees this winter.

“I hear they’re going to throw a boatload of money at him,” said the source. “But I think he’ll stay with the Yankees. He’s talked so much about how much he loves New York, and besides, the Yankees can’t afford to lose him from that pitching staff.” Sabathia’s agent, Scott Boras, is surely pleased with this development. But all signs point to the big lefty remaining in pinstripes. The Yankees should be able to fend off a bid from the Rangers.

Series Preview: NYY vs. TEX ~ 6/14/11-6/16/11


Tuesday, 6/14/11, 7:05PM EST:

Alexi Ogando (7-0, 2.10) vs. C.C. Sabathia (7-4, 3.15)

Ogando’s Last 3 starts: 2-0, 2.91, 17 K, in 21.2 IP

Sabathia’s Last 3 starts: 2-1, 3.09, 13 K, in 23.1 IP

Wednesday, 6/15/11, 7:05PM EST:

Derek Holland (5-1, 4.41) vs. Ivan Nova (5-4, 4.30)

Holland’s Last 3 starts: 0-3, 8.61, 19 K in 23.0 IP

Nova’s Last 3 starts: 1-1, 4.32,  9 K, in 16.2 IP

Thursday, 6/16/11, 1:05PM EST:

C.J. Wilson (7-3, 3.09) vs. TBA

Wilson’s Last 3 starts: 2-0, 2.53, 18 K, in 21.1 IP