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GAME RECAP: WORLD SERIES GAME 2

October 30, 2009 Leave a comment

Burnett & the long ball help even out the series for the Yanks

FINAL SCORE: YANKEES 3 PHILLIES 1 (F9th)

SCORING PLAYS

  • Top of the 2nd: Raul Ibanez hits a 2-out double to left field. Matt Stairs singles on a sharp ground ball to left field, Ibanez scores (NYY 0, PHI 1)
  • Bottom of the 4th: Mark Teixeira homers to right center field (NYY 1, PHI 1)
  • Bottom of the 6th: Hideki Matsui homers on a golf shot to right field (NYY 2, PHI 1)
  • Bottom of the 7th: Jerry Hairston and Melky Cabrera begin the inning with back to back singles. Brett Garner comes in to pinch run for Hairston. Jorge Posada pinch hitting for Molina hits a single to center field. Brett Gardner scores (NYY 3, PHI 1)

STARTING PITCHING (from Yahoo Sports)

  • AJ Burnett: 7 innings, 4 hits allowed, 1 earned run, 2 BB, 9 SO, 1.29 ERA
  • Pedro Martinez: 6 innings, 6 hits allowed, 3 earned runs, 2 BB, 8 SO, 4.50 ERA

KEY PERFORMERS: AJ Burnett pitched a gem through 7 innings of work, Teixeira and Matsui provided the bulk of the offense with 2 homeruns, Mariano closed out the game with a 6 out save.

COMMENTARY: During his pregame conference AJ Burnett talked about not being so careless “just throwing balls over the middle to get strike one”. You have to give it up to AJ because that is exactly what he did, throwing 1st pitch strikes to 21 of the 26 batters he faced. It was a coming out party for Burnett who had yet to record a win, or a loss for that matter, in the postseason. Prior to this start there were a lot of questions about Burnett’s ability to handle the big stage, specially given his rocky start in the close-out game of the ALCS series and the pressure of securing a win after a Sabathia loss. No doubt, AJ answered his critics.

He was dealing throughout the night, ringing up 9 batters and out-pitching Pedro to rack up a win in his first World Series start. The Yankees offense was subdued to start the night until Teixeira hit a long shot to right center field to tie the game at the bottom of the 4th inning and later in the 6th Matsui hit a golf shot to right field to give the team a lead they would not relinquish. Burnett’s 7 innings of solid work also allowed Girardi to set aside the nowhere bridge to Mariano Rivera and get Mo to close out the game with a 6-out save.

AJ’s performance in game 2 of the World Series is another reminder that everyone in this team contributes to its success and you may not now who will provide the next stellar performance of the series.

WORK, WORK, WORK

October 18, 2009 Leave a comment

To characterize this team as a compilation of superstars is to ignore the depth and more importantly the true make-up of these New York Yankees. This is not the same team we have seen in recent years, an odd combination of studded puzzle pieces that never quite fit together. Gone is the concern for individual achievements over team accomplishments, the philosophy that talent alone trumps work and team chemistry. With it’s bloated payroll and impressive lineup I put it to you that in its essence this is truly a blue collar team, a team that works through the errors, the unfortunate bounces, the opportunities lost, work, work, work.

Game 2 of the ALCS is a perfect example: How else do you explain overcoming wild pitches, 3 infield errors, hitting into 3 straight double plays, the middle of the order going 0 for 8. Work, work, work. Alex Rodriguez goes 0 for 5 after charging home plate in game 1, and in the bottom of the 9th with an 0-2 count goes yard for his 3rd game-tying HR of the post-season. Work, work, work. Johnny Damon who hit .083 in the Minnesota series has shown up big time in this series posting a .364 batting average through two games and flashing the leather in key moments tonight. Work, work, work.

These Yankees know anyone can come through in the clutch. The success of the bottom of this lineup in close games have made this team legendary in my eyes, must we recount the number of comeback and walk-off wins? The soul of this team belongs to the likes of Nick Swisher, Melky Cabrera, and Robinson Cano to name a few. This team can overcome squandering a bases loaded opportunity with A-Rod at the plate, only to see Jerry Hairston, Jr (WHO?) get a leadoff single in his first postseason plate appearance and score the winning run. Most people will discount this win to Izturis’ error, but as Captain America put it “you gotta give credit to Jerry for running hard the whole way”.

Everybody works, everybody contributes, everybody runs hard the whole way, this is the 2009 New York Yankees rallying cry. As Mariano Rivera put it when asked what it took to win a game like this tonight, “everything, it took everything, it took everything from everybody”.

About me:

I owe my allegiance to the Yankees to my Father who shared with me his passion for baseball and love for the Pinstripes. In Cuba I was immersed in baseball from a young age, it is after all a right of passage for Cubans and Cuban-Americans both in the Island and in Miami where I reside. I’m fascinated by the unexplored aspects of this game, the hidden rules about behavior on the field and in the locker room, the undefined characteristics of team chemistry, the unequivocal influence of the baseball gods, in short the intricate nature of a sport that in my humble opinion is still America’s game. I hope you enjoy my perspective on things and join in the conversation. Go Yankees!

Yankees Recap: 8/29 Chicago Whitesox AT New York Yankees

August 30, 2009 Leave a comment

Prior to the 2003 season, the Yankees were involved in a big bidding war with the Boston Red Sox for the services of Cuban defector Jose Contreras. The Yankees ultimately won that battle, but in the long run Contreras was a bad signing. The Yankees got a little revenge yesterday, pounding the now Chicago White Sox pitcher en route to a 10-0 Yankees victory.

The game also marked the finest performance this season by Sergio Mitre since his recall by the big club back on July 21. He retired the first 13 White Sox to start the game and allowed just one hit over 6 1/3 innings, before being forced to depart when a line drive off the bat of A.J. Pierzynski struck his right forearm. For now, Mitre will be considered day-to-day after the imprint of the baseball was clearly visible on his arm.

The Yankees offense gave Mitre plenty of support early and often. Consecutive base hits by Nick Swisher, Robinson Cano, and Jerry Hairston Jr. (2 RBI), starting in place of Melky Cabrera, put the Bombers up 2-0 in the 2nd inning. A walk to Jose Molina and a sac bunt by Derek Jeter set things up for Johnny Damon, who delivered both runners with a double for a 4-0 Yankees advantage.

The Yankees continued the onslaught in the 4th with another four-run outburst. Jeter singled to start the frame and Damon reached on an error by Jayson Nix that allowed both runners to move into scoring position. An Alex Rodriguez single and a Hideki Matsui double extended the lead to 6-0 and sent Contreras to the showers. Swisher greeted D.J. Carrasco with an RBI single and Cano brought the final run home with a productive ground out.

Mitre cruised through the first four innings, his slider working as effectively as it ever had, and recording five ground ball outs plus a pair of strikeouts. Rodriguez temporarily kept the perfect game going when he dove to his right to snare Paul Konerko’s grounder and threw out the White Sox 1st baseman to start the 5th inning. But DH Jim Thome ripped a line drive past Mark Teixeira to break up the no-no and perfect game in one swing of the bat.

Mitre walked Brent Lillibridge to open the 7th before Pierzynski’s ball ricocheted off Mitre’s arm and went behind the mound. Before feeling the pain, the Yankees starter tracked the ball down and threw out the White Sox catcher at 1st base for the inning’s first out. Trainer Gene Monahan and manager Joe Girardi quickly came to the mound and immediately got Mitre out of there once they saw the swelling that had begun. The White Sox wouldn’t benefit from Mitre’s removal though, as Chad Gaudin came on and allowed just one walk in 2 2/3 innings while striking out four.

Game Notes

Alex Rodriguez belted his 23rd home run of the season in the 8th inning for the game’s final tally. It was home run #576 for his career, putting him 7 behind Mark McGwire for 8th place on the all-time list.

Derek Jeter had his 7th 3-hit game of the month and his 14th multi-hit game. He’s now 13 hits shy of tying Lou Gehrig’s franchise record.

Joba Chamberlain goes in the series finale this afternoon (1 P.M. ET) as the Yankees go for the series sweep. Girardi would not reveal if Chamberlain was on a pitch count as has been rumored. Freddy Garcia makes his third start of the season for the White Sox.

*This post was written by Drew Sarver of My Pinstripes*

Previewing the Yankees Roster Part I

August 26, 2009 9 comments

Every month we will preview the Yankees 2010 Roster based on our opinions of who the Yankees will sign.

Here are the Yankees Free Agents for next year:

C-Jose Molina
1b-None
2b-None
3b-None
SS-Jerry Hairston Jr.
LF-Johnny Damon
CF-None
RF-Eric Hinske, Xavier Nady
DH-Hideki Matsui
SP-Andy Pettite

RP-None

CP-None

So here is what I project will happen with those players:

Jose Molina-No contract offered

Jerry Hairston Jr.-No contract offered

Johnny Damon-Offered Arbitration, accepted

Eric Hinske-No contract offered

Xavier Nady-No contract offered

Hideki Matsui-No contract offered

Andy Pettite-Re-Signed to a 1 Year Deal

So here is how the roster would look

C-Jorge Posada, Francisco Cervelli
1b-Mark Texeira
2b-Robinson Cano
3b-Alex Rodriguez, Ramiro Pena
SS-Derek Jeter,
Lf-Jason Bay (signed to a 5 year $85 Million deal in offseason)
Cf-Melky Cabrera, Brett Gardner
Rf-Nick Swisher, Shelley Duncan
DH-Johnny Damon

SP-CC Sabathia
SP-A.J. Burnett
SP-Joba Chamberlain
SP-Andy Pettite/Jarrod Washburn if Pettite retires
SP-Phil Hughes
Security Starters (in case of injury) Ian Kennedy, Alfredo Aceves, Josh Towers

Long Relief-Alfredo Aceves

Middle Relief- Dave Robertson, Phil Coke, Zach Kroenke

Set-Up- Damaso Marte, Danys Baez (signed to a 2 year deal, the Yankees have been wanting him for a long time)

Closer-Mariano Rivera

So, in my opinion, the Yankees will get younger this offseason, with the bench especially getting younger.

Alex Rodriguez Pulled from Line-Up

August 14, 2009 Leave a comment

The title tells it all basically. Alex Rodriguez was pulled from the line-up today with back spasms. Rodriguez will be replaced in the line-up by Jerry Hairston Jr.

Trade Deadline Deals, Roster Moves

July 31, 2009 Leave a comment

Here are the biggest trades that occurred today on trade deadline day:

-Tigers acquired Jarrod Washburn for Luke French and a minor-league pitcher

-Redsox acquired Victor Martinez for Justin Masterson, and two minor-league pitchers

-Redsox acquired Casey Kotchman for Adam LaRoche

-Twins acquired Orlando Cabrera for a minor-leaguer

-Reds acquired Scott Rolen for Edwin Encarnacion and a few minor-leaguers.

-Brewers acquired Claudio Vargas for Vinny Rotino

-Rockies acquired Joe Beimel for two minor-leaguers

-Marlins acquired Nick Johnson for a minor-leaguer

FROM YESTERDAY:

Late last night, the Dodgers acquired George Sherrill for two minor-leaguers.

YANKEES MOVES:

Saved this for last, but the Yankees made a few moves today, only one trade.

-Yankees acquired Jerry Hairston Jr. for minor-league catcher Chase Weems

-Yankees called up Shelley Duncan.

-Yankees will have two more moves to make to free up room for Duncan and Hairston Jr.

The Yankees did add to their infield/outfield depth with Hairston and the call-up of Duncan, which is always good. Duncan plays 1b/lf/rf, while Hairston plays 2b/3b/ss/lf/cf/rf.

I would expect the Yankees to DFA Cody Ransom and option out one of Mark Melancon or Jon Albaladejo. Also, they will probably transfer Xavier Nady to the 60 day DL.

ONE LAST PIECE OF NEWS:

Shocking news out of Chicago. The Whitesox have traded for Jake Peavy….again….pending his approval. The trade has Clayton Richard, Adam Russell, Aaron Poreda, and Dexter Carter for Peavy. Richard is scheduled to start tonight against the Yankees. I’d expect Peavy to approve it if they made the deal again. When the original deal was made, the Padres had a better record than the Whitesox.

MY ANALYSIS

My immediate analysis is that the Redsox came away as the big winners of the trade deadline. The Yankees also did well, filling a utility need, but they did not acquire the starting pitcher they needed.