Tagged: hitting

Don’t Ya Know?

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Who would have thought that at any point in the 2010 season, Robinson Cano would have as many home runs as Ryan Howard and Matt Holliday combined, as many steals as Hanley Ramirez, a higher on base percentage than Joe Mauer, a higher slugging percentage than Albert Pujols and the best batting average in the majors?

I mean, I thought he’d be pretty good this year, but this is ridiculous.

The sweet swinging second baseman has always been known for having outstanding potential but never quite reaching it. While the production from Cano has been solid throughout his major league career, he’s always found himself considered less valuable at second base than popular players like Chase Utley, Ian Kinsler, Dustin Pedroia, or even Aaron Hill last season. Cano was always a good hitter and fielder who was just not quite good enough to be considered top tier.

Now, Robby Cano is 27, often considered the prime age for a major league baseball player, and the numbers only back up that well-known theory. Robinson Cano is leading the league in average and OPS+, while putting up other notable numbers like 34 hits, 8 HR and an OPS over 1.000. To add to that, Cano’s been stellar with the glove, committing only one error and showing great range and a great arm to go with that efficiency.

Robby has suddenly entered contention for the MVP award early on, as well as being the favorite to start at 2nd in the 2010 All-Star Game in Los Angeles, California. While it may be a bit early to make statements like that, it would most definitely not be a stretch to think Cano could at least stay very productive for the remainder of the year. Cano typically does not hit very well in April, but he tore it up this month. May has been the most difficult month in Cano’s 5-year major league career, as Cano only hits .269 in the second month of the baseball season with a .296 OBP along with that. Look to see if Cano will hit well this second month; if he cools off significantly, do not be too worried as Cano hits well over .300 in June, July, August and September. If he stays relatively productive, this could be Cano’s year. If he stays as hot as he did in April, Cano is almost certainly the favorite to win AL MVP.

Here are some notable performances that Cano has had in 2010, in order of earliest to latest.

  • April 6, Yankees at Red Sox – Cano goes 2 for 3 with a home run, 2 RBI and a walk, helping the Yankees to their first win of the year against arch-rival Boston.
  • April 10, Yankees at Rays – In a 10-0 rout of Tampa Bay, Cano collects 2 hits in 5 at bats with a home run and 3 runs driven in.
  • April 15, Angels at Yankees – Yankees win a 3-game series against Anaheim as Cano hits 2 home runs in 4 at bats and drives in 3.
  • April 24, Yankees at Angels – Yanks win 7-1 as Robinson Cano goes 4-for-5, scores 3 runs and drives one man in.
  • April 29, Yankees at Orioles – Cano leads the Yankees to a 4-0 victory with a 3-for-4, 2 home run performance as well as a very nice back-hand, off balance throw up the middle defensive play.

Cano, to go with these strong performances, has been consistent in almost every game. With offense like this coming at a premium position like 2nd base, Robby Cano has definitely been highly valuable to the Yankees.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid

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THE BOYS OF SUMMER HAVE RETURNED.

We lost, but it’s okay.


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Look, are we glad the season’s back or not?

I’m a big Yankee fan, so of course I’m upset we blew a lead on Opening Night against our biggest rival, the Red Sox. But it’s all good, it’s all good. We lost a handful of games at the beginning of 2009(against the Orioles, moreover) and we kind of won the World Series then. You see that? There’s always a bright side of things.

I’m too optimistic to wallow in the despair of a loss. I can’t stand pessimism. I really can’t.

Anyway, allow me to break down what happened in that game.

What We Did Right

We hit like the Yankees should. We hit like our mommas told us we should. First of all, a few guys were swinging away early in the count early on against Beckett, which I didn’t like much, but in the 2nd inning we got Beckett to throw a lot more pitches by getting four consecutive hits. Oh, and by the way, the first two of those four hits were back-to-back jacks from Jorge Posada (pesky pole line drive) and Curtis Granderson (just a good ol’ fashioned atom bomb). Posada had 3 hits and 2 RBI. Robbie Cano had two hits, including a double. Jeter had two knocks and drove in a run, and heck, Nick Johnson even walked twice. Our pitching didn’t let Ellsbury get on base (he was 0-for-5) We worked Beckett with hits and deep counts until he was taken out in the middle of the 5th inning. That’s when things got ugly.

What We Did Wrong

The bullpen surrendered 2 walks, 6 hits and 3 earned runs, 2 of those coming from Chan Ho Park, who did not impress in his first outing with the Yanks. Place your bets on when he’s getting cut(sarcasm).

Sabathia’s start was not much better, as although he had some bright spots, he gave up 5 runs in 5.1 innings. We let Youkilis beat us (3 hits and 2 RBI). We let Pedroia beat us (2 hits and 3 RBI). And how do you give up 2 hits, a ribbie and a walk to the number nine hitter (Marco Scutaro)? Our arms just didn’t go out there and give us the good stuff, and that’s why we sucked.

Next Game

Flamethrowing AJ Burnett gets the start for the Yankees against Jesus–I mean, Jon Lester. Why do I risk blasphemy by calling Lester Jesus? Well, a lot of baseball minds(Tom Verducci being one of them) have Lester winning the Cy Young award this year. He has electric stuff, he came back from cancer, won the clinching World Series game, pitched a no-hitter, takes no crap from nobody and by the way, he’s a lefty. It seems like the only thing he’s missing is the Cy Young at this point.

Do I think he’ll win the Cy Young? No, I don’t. I think Jake Peavy will win it and I have a good argument for that. But is it far-fetched to predict Lester to take home the trophy? It most definitely isn’t. He’s the real deal.

As far as Burnett goes, he’s an enigma, as are 2 of the other Yankee starters (Vasquez and Hughes could do a number of things). We know he has great stuff. We know he’s performed in tough situations in the past. He had a solid postseason. He has freakin’ awesome tattoos, and he was in a rock band. Okay, maybe the last part is a little irrelevant, but still, you see what I’m getting at. It’ll be interesting to see how Burnett starts off his ’10 season against one of the premier pitchers in the MLB.

And it’ll also be interesting to see how Granderson fares against the lefty starter Lester. We know he bites against southpaw hurlers.

You sure know who I’m rooting for.

Around the MLB

Right now, life is good. In fact, if life was any sweeter, I’d have cavities in all my teeth. It’s a bright day outside, I’ve got MLB Network on the big ol TV with round-the-league coverage, and I don’t have school for the entire week. Oh, and pomegranate lemonade. Good stuff.

As for the MLB, we’ve got Barack Hussein Obama(he’s kind of the President) throwing the first pitch in Washington DC in a Nats-Phillies game where Doc Halladay is making his first Phillies start. The Nats lead 1-0. The Mets are leading 2-0, but they’ll blow that in a couple innings. I’ve already called it, so it’s going to happen. Aaron Harang was looking fantastic against St. Louis, striking out two batters, and then Pujols came up. 2-2 count! Here’s the pitch! Down the middle! There it–goes? Yeah, that’s the reigning NL MVP, boys. If you’re not used to it, get with the program.

And these MLB 2k10 commercials are the shizznat. The game sucks(The Show for the win) but they’ve definitely got it going on with the commercials. Nelson Cruz talking about making Andrew Bailey cry with his boomstick. Kendry Morales and Felix Hernandez trash talking in Spanish. There are few things better than trash talk, especially when it’s from Latino people.

Around the World

March Madness. National Championship Game. The incredible story of Butler University against the top-tier long time power and definite favorite Duke University. 9:00 PM EST tonight. I don’t care if you don’t like basketball. Watch it.

Oh, and Donovan McNabb has been traded from the Philadelphia Eagles to the Washington Redskins in an absolute horrible trade for the Eagles. I mean, come on, Philly. How do you trade one of the better QBs in the league to a divisional rival for two low round draft picks? Congrats to Washington for such a steal. Look out for how the draft is impacted by this. Jimmy Clausen was a favorite to go no. 4 to the Redskins, but now that they have a quarterback, they’re a franchise left tackle away from being a serious playoff contender. They can draft Bryan Bulaga there and have their blindside, or they can get Russell Okung if the Lions foolishly pass on him. And Jimmy Clausen could go to the Browns at no. 5, the Bills at no. 9, or heck, everybody else has a quarterback, he could go to the Cardinals late in the first round. Interesting stuff.

But the Eagles are idiots today.

What You Need to Look At

John Sterling is an odd man.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/blog/big_league_stew/post/Granderson-goes-yard-in-first-at-bat-inspires-o?urn=mlb,232016

Song of the Day

Oh yes, it’s back. The Song of the Day is All The Right Moves by OneRepublic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aI87yRroj4I

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Vampire from New York

 

Ice Cream Time; Yankees Lose, 10-5

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Really? Is this our top starter of the future? Is this our solid #3?

Don’t look it to me.

Alan Horne and Jeffrey Marquez look like great replacements. If only they weren’t injured.

Let’s get to Who’s Next?. This game needs no explanation. The pitching simply failed to show up to the ballpark, while the hitting was good, but it wasn’t enough.

Treat yourself to some ice cream the next time this happens, because ice cream is the picker-upper of the world. I’m sure the optimism will return, along with the wins.

Who’s Next?

So with Ian Kennedy once again stinking up the place, let’s try and look for some possible replacement starters down in the minors. Here we’ll take three minor league prospects who could possibly be the next guy to make an impact in the big leagues.

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#1: Chase Wright

Oh, c’mon! Don’t turn away!

Wright had some success in the major leagues last year. He did become the 2nd pitcher ever to give up 4 consecutive home runs and he never actually dominated, but hey! We’re giving Kennedy and Igawa a bunch of new chances, why can’t we let him have a 2nd chance? He dominated AA with a 2.96 ERA in 94.1 innings, and now he’s dominating AAA. His 1.46 in 2 starts (12.1 innings) along with only 4 walks and 8 Ks show that maybe he can turn this around. Kennedy may have dominated the minors, too, but Kennedy pitched at the beginning of the year and sucked, too. So let’s see Chase Wright try and make a comeback instead of Kennedy!

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#2: Jason Jones

Jason Jones is quite a generic name, but soon we’ll be talking about him in the bigs. He served as one of the best pitchers in AA (along with Wright) with his 3.03 ERA in 124 innings. Now he’s getting his shot in AAA, and he’s pitching well as well. Though he’s 0-1, his 2.38 ERA in 2 starts (11.1) along with only 1 WALK and 11 strikeouts really show to be impressive. He’s always been a good control pitcher; he throws a ton of strikes with a cutter, a sinker, a curve and a slide-piece. He really gets plenty of movement with all his pitches, so in a way he’s dominating although he doesn’t throw harder than 92 usually. This is a guy with great strikeout-to-walk ratio, and that always signifies a good pitcher. You must be thinking now, “WHY ARE WE WASTING OUR TIME WITH IAN KENNEDY?!” There’s really nothing to behold about Kennedy, his control is bad, he doesn’t have good stuff, and he isn’t a smart pitcher. Jason Jones should be up in a jiff.

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#3: PJ Pilittere

I’m sure a lot of Yankee minor league fans are familiar with PJ Pilittere. PJ’s the everyday catcher for the Trenton Thunder, and he’s quite old for AA at 27. He was invited to spring training this year, and he caught a little bit. He hits for a solid, but not special average (.291). He doesn’t hit for much power (.358 slugging pct), and like many other catchers, he doesn’t run all that well. But it’s shown that he has the ability to handle a pitching staff. Year in and year out, the Trenton pitching staff is dominating, and it can’t be just because of the talented pitchers. He doesn’t have the talent of Jesus Montero or Austin Romine, but he is a pretty solid catcher, and he could be the instant replacement of Molina or Pudge go down.

Final Thoughts

Alright, it’s time for everybody’s favorite segment, the Bold Statement of the Day! Here I say something that is bold and arguable about the New York Yankees, and the readers can leave comments about what they think about it. Here’s today’s Bold Statement;

 

 

Justin Christian is going to get a big hit in today’s big game on FOX.

Well there you have it! Justin Christian has had a bunch of RBI hits in the big leagues and a bunch of big stolen bases, I don’t even know if he’s going to play today, but I call that he’s going to get a big hit.

So thanks for reading, guys! Leave your comments below.

Stay positive, Yankee fans!

-EJ/Kid From New York

 

Cano Keeps It Up, Yanks Take Series, Make it 8 Straight

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Cano Keeps It Up, Yanks Take Series, Make it 8 Straight

Well, I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again;

Life is good in Yankeeland.

Everything is going well; the starting pitching is great, the bullpen is awesome, the offense is on fire, the defense is sparkling. Nothing is stopping the Yankees. We’re unstoppable.

Led by Robinson Cano, the offense has come up with clutch hits (or hit by pitches, I’m lookin’ at you, Jose). The offense has been able to bury teams, something they weren’t doing earlier. They’ve given the team big leads, and with this superb pitching, we’ve been able to depress opposing teams’ fans. A-Rod’s come up big at times, Abreu’s come up big at times. But none, I repeat, none, have gone nearly as big as a young man by the name of Robinson Jose Cano.

Cano, in the 8 games since the All-Star Break(all of which the Yankees have won), Cano has a hit in each. Sounds good, right? You don’t know the half of it. 7 of those eight games were multi-hit games. Now your eyes are wide open, and you’re in disbelief. Now let’s go even further; in those eight games, he’s driven in 10 runs. There’s no possible way he’s not Player of the Week. In fact, I’ll go as far as to say that if Cano isn’t Player of the Week, it’s because MLB hates the Yankees. There’s simply nobody else that can come nearly as close to Cano’s redhotness. It’s pretty much impossible. He’s just destroyed opposing pitching.

Speaking of pitching, let’s talk about tonight’s pitcher.

Houdini of Aruba

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There’s a lot of nicknames to call Sidney Ponson. Sid the Kid… El Sid… Sid the Great. I call him Houdini. He doesn’t dominate. He doesn’t embarass hitters. He doesn’t have phenomenal stuff. But he has a low-90s sinker and he’s a scrappy, work-hard pitcher. He doesn’t have the benefit of great stuff like a C.C. Sabathia or a Josh Beckett. But he works hard. He gets himself into bad jams, and he works out of them, somehow. That’s why Ponson is Houdini.

Ponson has pitched 4 games for the Yankees. He hasn’t dominated, he hasn’t gone farther than the 6th inning, and he’s given up at least 5 hits. But he’s pitched well in 3 of those games, against the Mets and Rays, two big games. He hasn’t struck out more than 4 hitters. But he’s won 2 games, and he’s pitched pretty well. He’s gotten out of his own pickles; bases-loaded, no outs twice in the Mets game and he got out of it. If Sidney Ponson can do what he’s done before; 6 innings, 2 or 3 runs, 7 hits, 4 Ks, and pass it to the bullpen, we’ll have the Red Sox swept. The offense, the bullpen, the defense, they’re all too good right now.

Final Thoughts

Okay, it’s a short blog post, but it’s still a good one, so hah. Here’s everybody’s favorite segment, the beloved Bold Statement of the Day! Yaaaaaay! Okay, so after tons of thinking, here it is…

 

 

Xavier Nady will go on a tear in the very near future.

 

It’s quite a bold one. It’s quite a difficult thing to predict hot streaks, but I just feel like he’s right there, and that he’s ready to drive some balls. He’s only played one day, but… that’s what I feel.

Thanks for reading my blog post, guys. It’s time to say what I usually say;

Stay positive, Yankees fans!

-EJ/Kid From New York 

Rollin’

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I’m baaaack!

And I’ve got lots to talk about.

Since my departure, the New York Yankees have been pretty much awesome. Even without Wang’s injury, the pitching staff has been rolling for the most part. Andy Pettite, ever since the horrific start against the Royals, has been dominating. A-Rod has been hitting home runs, Damon has been hitting like crazy, Posada’s been pretty consistent, Matsui has been good. And then there’s our bullpen. 

Our bullpen, which was thought to be one of the worst at the beginning of the season, has stepped up and completely turned things around, particularly a young Dominican right-hander by the name of Jose Veras. Jose Veras, considered a lifetime minor leaguer, has stepped up and become one of the real go-to guys in this bullpen. My dad and I saw him in September last year, and we were impressed with his good stuff. He remembered him for the next year, and he’s really been incredible.

But it really puzzles me; how can anyone overlook a guy with a 95 MPH fastball and good, slow breaking stuff? That was the case with Veras. He’s always had good stuff. You could make a case that people didn’t pay much attention to Veras because of his control, but there are plenty of guys with great stuff and bad control that get alot more attention, such as Oliver Perez or Derrick Turnbow.

It’s probably because of usage and age; Jose Veras is a 28-year-old rookie (young but old), who had very little major league experience and was never considered a really dominating, top-of-the-line prospect.

But that’s enough of Jose Veras. Let’s take a look at the minor leagues and try to find some talent that could be called up to the big club anytime soon.

Down To The Minors

David Robertson–  Robertson has been absolutely dominant so far in the minor leagues. With a low-to-mid-90s heater and a nasty slider, David Robertson may be the closest thing to a Joba Chamberlain that the Yankees have in the minors right now. In a combined 48.1 innings, Robertson has an outstanding 1.49 ERA and an unreal 69 strikeouts, along with a .150 batting average against him. If the Yankees, for any reason, have to worry about that aforementioned bullpen, look for Robertson to be the first one called up to the bigs.

Alan Horne– Yankee fans may no longer have to worry about Igawa coming in if a starter goes down. Alan Horne has been a prized prospect in the Yankees’ minor league system, and for good reason. Coupling decent control with a mid-90s fastball and an outstanding curveball, Horne has been regarded as a dominating-type starting pitcher. So far in AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, he’s 2-1 with a 3.70 ERA and 22 Ks in 24.1 innings. He’s missed quite a bit of time on the DL with and elbow problem, but he’s looked sharp so far off the DL and could be in one of the spot starts for the injured Wang.

Brett Gardner– Should the Yankees have to worry about their outfield for any reason, Brett Gardner will be up in a jiffy. Gardner projects as an excellent leadoff hitter. Gardner is batting .292 with 29 RBIs and 29 stolen bases. His on-base-percentage is an excellent .408, and he’s also a great defender. He covers plenty of ground in the outfield and has a very good arm. I watched this guy on the YES Network in spring training and I’ve been high on him ever since. Watch out for this guy, he’s a possible future star.

Final Thoughts

Look for the Yanks to keep rollin’ on. Though they lost the series to the Reds, they have the talent, as they always do, to perform up to a level where they seem unbeatable.

Sincerely,

EJ/Kid From New York

Post Number One… nothing else to say

Welcome to a somewhat generic New York Yankees blog! My name is EJ (no relation to studio cast member of Baseballchannel.tv), I also go by Kid From New York. Call me whatever you want. As long as it’s suitable or nice and everything…

I am a big Yankees fan, but really I take a big interest in all of baseball. I take interest in every team, and I generally like all of them except the Red Sox, but that’s another story for another time.

I love playing video games. I normally play MLB 08 The Show on my awesome PS3, but I also play Cal Ripken’s Real Baseball and City of Heroes. You probably don’t know what I’m talking about. “Yeah, whatever,” you think to yourself.

I’m also pretty nice at doing graphics and pictures with special effects and stuff. I use an awesome free program (Gimp 2.0) and combine it with MS Paint to create nice visual effects with pictures. It’s cool because I find that there aren’t alot of people who do some special FX like I do when it’s really simple and easy to do. Heck, I’m a preteen and I’m able to do some pretty nice pictures.

Here’s my picture right now for the blog. I call this blog The Squad, I hope you like reading it, I’ll have sections like “Who Did Giambi Eat This Week?” and I’ll put up some pictures when I feel like it. Again, here’s the team picture for my blog, hope you readers read again some time.

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-EJ/Kid From New York