Tagged: Sabathia

Power Propells Pinstripers: Bring Out the Brooms

Jeez’m Lord Mercy I have a lot to talk about today!

How about the Yankees these first three days?

In game one, A.J. Burnett and the Yankees defeated the Tigers by the score of 5-3, thanks to the clutch homer deep into the night off the bat of Mark Teixeira in the bottom of the 7th inning.

On the second game against the Tigers following the All Star break, the Yankees were again victorious, as 7 great innings by big lefty CC Sabathia and a longball into right field from Alex Rodriguez propelled the Bombers to a 2-1 win.

Today was the third game of the series with the Tigers, and the New York Yankees were looking for a sweep. On the mound for the Yankees was struggling young righty Joba Chamberlain. On the mound for Detroit was first time All-Star and flamethrower, Edwin Jackson.

It ended nicely from the standpoint of a Yankee fan.

Today, we had, yet again, a 2-1 victory thanks to sheer power.

Power on the mound, power at the plate. You can always depend on power from the Yankees.

I know you’re thinking, 2-1? I can see power on the mound, but power at the plate?

Well, you’re fairly right. There wasn’t power all around for the Yankee offense on today, July the 19th.

But there was enough power.

We scored both of our runs on solo homers by the 3 and 4 batters in the order, Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez, both of them not cheapies by any stretch of the imagination. Tex’s came on a pitch below the zone, A-Rod’s came on a pitch down and in. And they were both hit extremely well.

So with this offensive contribution by the two main components of the Yanks’ offense, Joba Chamberlain and the Yankee bullpen took the Tigers offense to town.

Joba Chamberlain scuffled with his command at the beginning, but trust me– he bounced back. He pitched like an absolute ace today: he had ace stuff, first and foremost, with a mid-90s fastball, a sharp, devastating slide piece, a hard curve and a very strong change-up. But he had command of that ace stuff, too. Although he hit a batter and walked 3 guys, that does Joba no justice. As he went deeper into his outing, he was sharp as a needle. He threw pitches in tough locations, and when you have the velocity and break that he had on his pitches, it’s practically illegal.

Joba Chamberlain, your stuff is in violation.

If he can do this consistently when he goes out there, I will love him forever.

And ever.

Now on the mound tomorrow, we got the Yanks’ worst starter. It’s the veteran left hander Andy Pettitte.

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Andy Pettitte has some nice outings, and occasionally a great outing, but he hasn’t been that good. His ERA is 4.80, which is not very pretty, and he’s coming off a bad start. Granted, Andy Pettitte has been known to come alive during the 2nd half, but it was actually kind of the opposite in 2008, as he wore down as the season went on and his final numbers were not very impressive. He’s going to be facing rookie right hander David Hernandez.

Now, you guys know what the deal is with Andy Pettitte, ’cause you’re mainly Yanks fans, so I don’t really need to tell you anything. I do have to let you know what we’ll be up against in Hernandez, the starter for Baltimore.

So here’s the deal on him.

I looked at his first MLB outing, where he went 5.2 innings and gave up 1 run, striking out 3. Here’s the deal on his stuff: it’s very good. And I mean, it’s good.

I can’t tell you if Hernandez has a tough breaking ball, I know he has a fastball that gets up there as hard as 95 or 96 miles per hour. and it has tough, late life and movement on it. I know that he has a slider and a change to compliment his fastball, I can’t say whether either of those are particularly tough pitches. Hernandez had 79 strikeouts in 57.1 innings in AAA Norfolk, so he was a tough cookie down there. Up here, he’s 2-2 with a 3.94 ERA. He’s inconsistent with his outings, sometimes he’s pretty good and sometimes he’s pretty bad, usually not either extreme. Although his SO numbers down in the farm system were really solid, his career high for K’s in a ballgame is 4 in the Major Leagues, and he tends to be… too hittable, I guess, for MLB batters. In 32 innings pitched, hitters have collected 38 hits off him. He doesn’t walk many batters from what I can tell from his minor league numbers and his MLB sample combined.

In other words, it could be a nice day or a tough day. We’ll see if the Yanks can get some runs off him, enough for Pettitte anyways.

Song of the Day is Linkin Park – Given Up.

Stay positive, Yankee fans!

-EJ the Kid From New York

 

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A Good Ol’ Fashioned Whoopin’.

As Bob Dylan so eloquently put it in Like A Rolling Stone:

“How does it feel?”

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It was a terrific game, wasn’t it?

Cano came through with the bases fulla Yankees and broke out of his RISP slump, CC Sabathia dominated the Twins, and everything else was perfect, too. I have no regrets about this 10-2 ballgame.

Tonight’s ballgame looks like it’ll be equally fun, considering we’re facing Glen Perkins, a soft tossing lefty who has always struggled against the Bombers, and we’ve got the red hot AJ Burnett on the mound. In his last outing, he won against the Blue Jays, going 7 innings and K’ing 7 while only giving up two runs.

In the previous outing, he destroyed the Mets, allowing only 1 hit on no runs and striking out 10 hitters in seven innings of work. Needless to say, he got the victory in that ballgame, too.

So look for a win in that game, and hopefully Boston will be able to lose a game. That way, we will be in a tie for first place with the Sox, which would be pure awesomeness in a bucket.

By the way, before I go, allow me to discuss the decision by the Yankees to make Alfredo Aceves the starting pitcher who will replace Chien-Ming Wang while he’s trying to recover from his most recent disabled list stint.

There are two sides to this decision. First off, you could be against it because Alfredo Aceves has been so unbelievably great out of the ‘pen, and you don’t want to take a good, effective arm out of the bullpen, and I think I’m on that side. You know, we have such good chemistry and effectiveness in that bullpen that it’s a little dangerous to mess with it. Plus, we have starting pitchers in the minor leagues: Sergio Mitre, George Kontos(although he’s on the 7 day DL), Ivan Nova… On the other hand, people in favor of this say that Aceves was great in his starts last year and that this way, we could bring Albaladejo back into the bullpen and have Aceves, who was a longman in the pen anyway, start games. I hear that. I’m not saying this isn’t going to work, and I’m not saying that I mind the Yankees making this move, I just would prefer the former argument.

Song of the Day is Away by Breaking Benjamin.

That’s it for today.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ, the Kid From New York

 

 

 

Sucesivamente: Dominicans Go Deep, Yanks Win Again

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The Yankees are once again victors, as thanks to homers by my fellow Dominicans Melky Cabrera and Alex Rodriguez, and one by the gringo Johnny Damon, too, we beat the Mariners 4-2. Andy Pettitte, the veteran lefty, pitched 7 strong innings, holdng the Mariners to only those two runs and picking up his 8th win of the year.

 
Mo Rivera got another save.

But there’s also a very startling statistic which I heard after the game. The Yankees have not trailed in a ballgame since the 6th inning of last Wednesday, in Atlanta. Then Joe G got ejected, Cervelli served one, and the rest be history, yo.

And we’re only 2.5 games out of first place, though the chances of us catching up to them Red Sox are pretty slim. There Julia, does that satisfy you?

Jeez.

 
My Song of the Day today is known for being Evan Longoria of the Tampa Bay Rays’ entrance music. The song is called Down and Out by Tantric.

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CC Sabathia, the ace of the Yanks, is up against Jason Vargas of the Seattle Mariners, who’s having a pretty good season statistically. I wouldn’t underestimate the abilities of Vargas, but clearly the matchup favors Sabathia, who, even though he’s not been his usual overpowering self, is coming off a terrific performance in the Subway Series and has much, much more ability than Jason Vargas does. That’s pretty clear.

 

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And what a pleasure it is to have Sabathia out there pitching for you. You look at his last 10 ballgames, and aside from his start against the Marlins down in Miami where he got taken out for some minor(from what we know now) biceps injury in the 2nd inning, he hasn’t pitched any less than 7 innings. He’s a fantastic help to this ballclub and this bullpen that has been so good recently partially because of good performances by our starting pitchers.

It’s looking to be a really nice year in the Bronx.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

Despite AJ’s Efforts, Marlins Beat Yankees

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The Yankees unfortunately lost 2-1 to Florida yesterday thanks to an inability to hit off of Marlins ace Josh Johnson and a sloppy error in left by Johnny Damon. It was a great game, but a frustrating one.

And look, this is one of those losses that I won’t blame the Yankees completely for, even though if Damon hadn’t dropped a somewhat routine fly ball the game would have been tied and we might’ve even won. But let’s face it, Josh Johnson is a dominant starting pitcher and he showed that once again last night. Coming into the ballgame, I knew it would’ve been very difficult for the Yanks to get anything off of Johnson, and I was exactly right. He was locating fastballs with very good velocity and throwing solid breaking balls. His location, his eceonomy. He was nearly unhittable, and we were lucky to get one run off him.

This Yankees team is very frustrating though. They show you promise, they look like they’re about to come back and use that Yankee magic to win again, and then they completely blow their chances. That error by JD was absolutely devastating, and I don’t think any Yankee fan or baseball fan who was able to see that game will argue with me on that. Damon put us in a position where we not only had to score one run against the overpowering Josh Johnson, but we had to score two. That seemed impossible.

I just wanted the Bombers to get Johnson out of the game. When they took him out, that was our best shot, even though the Marlins’ bullpen has been really good this season. I was relieved.

Unfortunately we were unable to capitalize on the exit of Johnson, as a game ending double play by Robinson Cano (sounds familiar) just killed all hopes of beating this damn under .500 team.

So, of course, that loss was completely frustrating but I guess understandable.

By the way, I’d like it for JD to sit today’s game. Put Melky in left and Gardner in center, because Gardy’s ready to go after that collision. I can understand not letting Gardner play so quickly after the accident(even though he pinch ran yesterday), but Johnny’s clearly being set back by eye problems. He’s not hitting well at all, first of all, and now that drop? Jeez man. Gardner really should play today.

We’re facing the tall sinker-baller Chris Volstad today. Volstad is one of my favorite pitchers, and he can really dominate at times, but you can see the numbers aren’t very dazzling.

4-7, 4.75 ERA.

But the numbers are really skewed by his performance so far this month, which is definitely encouraging for the Yanks. In June, Chris Volstad(who is now no. 41 rather than 71, as it was in that picture) is 0-3 with a 9 ERA. Now, those numbers are a little misleading: his first loss was a cheap one, as he had a quality start(2 runs in 6 innings) but the Marlins weren’t able to score against San Fran. In his second start, he was much worse, giving up 6 runs in 5.2 innings with 10 base knocks allowed. His third start was the one where he blew up, surrendering an ugly 8 runs on 9 hits and 2 walks in 3.2 innings. So he’s coming off a terrible start against Boston.

But Volstad is a very good pitcher, don’t be fooled by those numbers. He has a hard sinker that is his main out pitch, so he uses his height to his advantage with that pitch. That sinker could tear apart this Yankees lineup, clearly, since we have a couple hitters who are very prone to a double play (Posada, Jeter, Cano, Swisher, sometimes Alex).

So don’t think that the Yankees automatically are going to beat up Volstad, because when you combine the double play-prone Yankees and their inconsistency regarding hitting pitchers they’ve never seen before, and you have a potentially un-promising mix.

CC Sabathia #52 of the New York Yankees pitches against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium May 19, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** CC Sabathia

But don’t worry too much, because we have our ace, CC Sabathia on the mound, and he has a 3.35 Earned Run Average on the road, much better than his home ERA. Sabathia has pitched well of late, so hopefully he can tear through this Marlins lineup and we can give him some run support.

Song of the Day is Just Like You by Three Days Grace.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

Welcome Back Alex!

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Who didn’t see this coming? Honestly?

I mean, as soon as I found out A-Rod would come back on Friday, I literally thought to myself, “Watch him hit a home run in his first at bat.”

Welp, it turns out it wasn’t just his first at bat, it was his first pitch back from the disabled list that traveled into the left field stands for a 3-run jimmy jack. How fitting!

I didn’t get to watch this game and this at bat because I was at a dance as I stated in my blog yesterday, and I’m upset over that obviously. But it was a great game, I’m glad that that happened rather than another Yankee loss. Also, CC Sabathia, how about that? Complete game shutout for the big man, his second complete game of the year, he threw one on the road against the Tigers and lost, so this was his first real complete game. 4 hits, 8 strikeouts, 1 walk. The southpaw was on, and hopefully we can get some of that from our other starting pitchers.

And again, I have to turn it over to a comment I got from Julia on my last blog arguing over Dustin Pedroia and his MVP status. Let’s find out what she had to say as I proved her wrong on Pedroia being chosen as Most Valuable Player of the American League over Joe Mauer.

“EJ – the baseball powers to be have spoken. And a second baseman who can stop the ball from going into the outfield, take away hits, turn doubles into singles – I’ll take it. Those actions that can’t have a number assigned to them also matter when looking at a person who is an overall MVP. And face it – we Boston fans have a place in our hearts for the “little guy” – just look at Dom DiMaggio. It’s a new year – and anything can happen!”

Julia, Julia…

Look, I get that turning doubles into singles and taking away hits(even though he didn’t really take away that many hits, his range was average), stopping balls from going into the outfield(again, average range) is valuable. I get the value of those intangibles, it’s not like I’m trying to shut down the little things.

But honestly, do you think if Ian Kinsler and Dustin Pedroia switched places, and Pedroia was on the Rangers and Kinsler was on the Red Sox, that Pedroia would still have won MVP? Do you think that just having Dustin Pedroia would make a difference than having Ian Kinsler would give the Rangers more success, and that the Red Sox would have had less success all of a sudden? Of course not. You guys had a terrific team last year and it wasn’t Dustin Pedroia who was the main cog.

The fact of the matter is that you guys put too much value over things that, yes, are valuable, but definitely not quite as valuable as you think. Last year, I think a lot of people would have rather had Joe Mauer on their team over Dustin Pedroia, and that’s what value is. Value is not who did more underrated things(and don’t tell me what Dustin Pedroia did last year was underrated). It is about who is more valuable. And the person who you would rather have is more valuable. That’s just all there is to it in my opinion.

So, Julia, you take Dustin Pedroia who does whatever intangibles you think he does and hits pretty well, and I will take Ian Kinsler or Joe Mauer, who I can prove is better and more valuable, and we’ll see what happens.

Also, on a funny note, if Ian Kinsler was on the Red Sox and Pedroia was on the Rangers last year, Ian Kinsler probably would’ve been in the top 5 voting for MVP because he was a Red Sox and he had all these intangibles and he’s so underrated. Ai ai ai.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

Not the Most Fun Game…

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…but I’ll tell you what, we’re still in April, and so there should not be any cause for concern. I know a guy online who said he’s lost all hope in the phrase “Go Yankees”. All of it. Why? Because we’re frigging 5-5. This guy is not an idiot, he’s a pretty good guy, but he’s ridiculously naive baseball-wise. Before, his screen name was “CC Sucks”. He then changed it to “Chien-ming sucks” which is stupid, especially since nobody calls him Chien-Ming except Flash Flaherty.

Again, it’s no big deal. We’re not going to be .500 for the whole year, it’s only April. We’ll get things going eventually. Do not lose hope. I highly question your intelligence if you’ve already given up on the Yankees. We’ve proven time and time again that you can not count us out and you can not give up on us. We’ll prove you wrong.

In other news, Yankees have called up Juanito Miranda for insurance(his name is Juan, I like calling him Juanito… just kidding, I really don’t, I’m just bored).

Now what kind of insurance would we need from Juan Miranda? Welp, it says in the article that the Yankees, still somewhat concerned about the health of Hideki Matsui and Mark Teixeira, made this move prior to today’s game. Now I don’t know if he’ll be in the lineup, I doubt that. However, it should be interesting to see what Miranda could do.

Miranda, once considered by me to be the Yankees’ future first baseman, earned International League Player of the Week in the first minor league week of the season. He was redhot down at AAA, hitting .361 with three big flies and three RBI.

Can Joba get the Joba done? He did well in his first start against the Royals. We’ll see if the hard throwing right hander, who definitely should be in the rotation, can take down a Cleveland Indians lineup that beat up the bullpen yesterday.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York