Spring Training Games 4 and 5: Two games for the price of one!

I consumed one cup of coffee this morning and was still confused about the whole concept of a day-night split-squad event which is what the Yankees have today. Look, it’s Spring Training for all of us.

The first game is against the Phillies in Clearwater at 1:05 p.m. and the second is at home tonight against the Pirates at 7:05 p.m. The afternoon game against Philly will be televised but not until 9 p.m. on MLB Network.

Here’s the lineup for the first game:

Gregorius SS
Headley 3B
Drew 2B
Teixeira 1B
Bird DH
Sanchez C
Flores LF
Judge RF
Heathcott CF

Mitchell RHP

As for the second game, Carlos Beltran is scheduled to make his debut in right field, Alex Rodriguez will be DHing again and Chris Capuano is scheduled to start. Feel free to discuss that happenings in that game, if you have the means to watch or listen to it, in this thread as well.

Enjoy!

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IIATMS Top Moment #19: Jason Giambi’s Walk-Off Grand Slam

All but one of the moments that were ranked in this list fall under three categories: postseason heroics, perfect games, or historic moments in Yankee history. Jason Giambi‘s 14th inning home run against the Minnesota Twins in an otherwise unremarkable May game is the exception.

The Yankees had signed Jason Giambi to one of the largest average annual values in MLB history. After watching the dynasty team start to age and whither, the Giambi signing signaled the beginning of the Evil Empire phase for the New York Yankees–a big enough move to inspire Billy Beane to attempt the radical transformation of the post-Giambi A’s depicted in Moneyball. Giambi replaced a beloved player with his fair share of clutch postseason moments in Tino Martinez. Going into the game, Giambi was off to a slow (for him) start, and people were starting to question if he could handle the pressure of playing in New York.

But really, we don’t need all that off-field drama to make this an amazing baseball moment.…

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Imagining The Worst Case Scenario With The Rotation

Whitley vs TOR 2014

If Whitley is back in the rotation, you know it’s all gone wrong. Courtesy of the AP

Yesterday I laid out the rosiest, happiest, best possible best case scenario for the 2015 starting rotation, a starting rotation that we all know is pretty high risk and potentially high reward.  As some commenters were sharp enough to point out, the worst case scenario is the one that has a higher probability of happening and that fact was not lost on me when I wrote up the first post.  I always intended to do the worst case scenario too, even though it’s not something I particularly enjoy writing about.  So if everybody promises to stay calm and help each other through this, we can make our way through this hypothetical worst case scenario together.  Fair enough?  Alright, here we go.

If the best case scenario for Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda involves them staying healthy above all else, then of course the worst case scenario involves them both getting hurt.  …

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Spring Training Game 3 Quick Recap: NYY 2 PIT 1

It was a change of Pennsylvania opponent for the Yankees in their third game of the young Spring Training season this afternoon, and that change brought them their first win of 2015.  Not much to this one really.  Here are the important things:

– Starter Esmil Rogers threw 2 scoreless innings, giving up 1 hit and striking 1 out.  I know a lot of people aren’t high on him, but I could see the Yankees trying to use him in an Alfredo Aceves/Cory Wade-type of role as an emergency starter/low-leverage longman.  If they start the season with him in that spot and he doesn’t deliver in 10-15 innings, cut him.

Chase Whitley followed Rogers with 2 shutout innings of his own, but the standout pitching performance of the day belonged to righty relief prospect Nick Rumbelow.  He struck out the side in the 8th inning, showing off the stuff that brought him from A-ball to SWB last year.…

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Why Garrett Jones could become your favorite Yankee

That short right porch looks really enticing. (Photo: Kim Klement, USA TODAY Sports)

That short right porch looks really enticing.(Photo: Kim Klement, USA TODAY Sports)

One of the more under-the-radar moves by the Yankees this winter was the acquisition of Garrett Jones, who came over in the trade with the Marlins for Nathan Eovaldi. Jones is likely to be used as a platoon bat (81 percent of his career plate appearances have come against right-handed pitching), but he still could end up being one of the more valuable Yankees even in his role as backup first baseman/outfielder.

It’s no secret that the Yankees have been starved for power over the last two seasons. Since 2013, they rank 11th in the AL in homers and second-to-last in slugging percentage; only the Royals have hit fewer extra-base hits.

Garrett Jones has a chance to really help the Yankees reverse that trend in 2015.

In fact, there might not be a more perfect fit for Yankee Stadium than the left-handed Jones, who’s potential as an above-average power bat is largely untapped after spending his entire career in pitcher-friendly parks.…

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Imagining The Best Case Scenario With The Rotation

Tanaka ST 2015 BP

The key to any best case scenario… Courtesy of the AP

The big names in the projected starting rotation aren’t scheduled to make their 2015 spring debuts yet, but we got our first look at one of the members when Nathan Eovaldi made his first ST start yesterday.  He’s one of multiple best case/worst case unknowns in the rotation, and where he and the rest of his rotation mates fall on that case scale could determine whether the Yankees end up having one of the best or worst rotations in baseball this season.

I’ve been pondering how those best case/worst case scenarios might play out for a while now.  It feels like this season more than the last few is one in which the potential for the rotation leans mostly towards the extremes with not much room for a middle ground performance.  Without getting too detailed or statistically-supported in this exercise, I’d like to ramble for a bit on what I’ve been pondering and try to paint a picture of what the best case scenario for the rotation would look like this season.  …

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Thursday Morning News And Notes: 3/5/14

Quick round of ST news bits that we haven’t touched on yet:

– All continues to be well for Masahiro Tanaka this spring.  He threw another trouble-free bullpen session yesterday and the word on the street is that he will make his ST debut a week from today.  Nothing official from the team there yet, but keep your eyes and ears peeled.

– The team confirmed that Carlos Beltran will indeed make his 2015 debut tomorrow and he will do so in right field.  Guess that elbow is feeling OK.

Brendan Ryan is saying he feels good working his way back from a back strain, but the team had him take a day off yesterday after he told them he felt sore.  Something’s not adding up there.

– More early starter announcements, courtesy of Chad Jennings: Bryan Mitchell and Chris Capuano get the split-squad games tomorrow, Scott Baker will go Saturday.  Reminder that Esmil Rogers is the scheduled starter today.…

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Spring Training Game 2 Recap: PHI 3 NYY 1

Alex Rodriguez

Just one of the boys. Courtesy of the AP

Yesterday was the official opener, but today was the real big day thanks to the return of Alex Rodriguez to game action.  Joe had him in the starting lineup hitting second and DH’ing, and all in all the day went about as well as you could have hoped if you’re pro-A-Rod.  He got a hit, looked alright swinging the bat and running the bases, got noticeably more cheers than boos from the crowd, and didn’t hurt himself.  He was the clear and obvious focal point of the day, and also one of the few highlights in a mostly nothing game from the Yankee side.

– The other major highlight was Nathan Eovaldi‘s first start as a New York Yankee.  Like Adam Warren, he was on a 2-inning/30-pitch limit and he finished the full 2 innings.  Unlike Warren, he got hit a little bit and gave up 1 earned run.  Eovaldi also showed his trademark plus fastball velocity and a nice split-change that got him his only strikeout of the day on a swing and miss.…

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Spring Training Game 2: He’s baaaack!

pitching-machines

It’s finally here. The moment we’ve all been waiting for. It’s our first chance to see Nathan Eovaldi pitch for the Yankees!

Today is the Spring home opener at Steinbrenner Field and it will be shown live on the YES Network with pregame coverage starting right now! (12:30pm)

Aside from seeing Eovaldi in action for the first time, there’s another person, who will be experiencing his first live baseball game since 2013. You know who I’m referring to. But just in case you can’t watch the game, Mike Francesa is going to have Sweeny Murti on his show this afternoon and he will be breaking down this person’s at bats. Because it’s not a media circus.

I digress.

You guys, I’m just really excited to see baseball again. And I don’t care that it’s only Spring Training and that the game results don’t count. Watching baseball means that warm weather is that much closer. I honestly didn’t realize how much I missed the Yankees until I saw them arrive in Tampa last week.…

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