Appreciating the amazing David Robertson

Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees

Replacing a legend is never easy… just ask Tino Martinez or whoever plays shortstop for the Yankees next season. Heck, even Mickey Mantle was booed when he took over for Joe DiMaggio in center field in 1951.

During spring training, David Robertson admitted that he was not replacing Mariano Rivera: “You can’t replace legends. Somebody like Mo, you may never see again the game of baseball… But he’s gone now. Someone has got to take over that role… It’s just that I will never be Mo. I hope people can understand that.”

Robertson is correct in that he’ll never be Mo, but he is doing his best impersonation of him this season.

And yet the biggest storyline here might be that there is no story. Robertson is dominating the ninth inning and somehow has flown under the radar as one of best closers this season.

Let’s take a few minutes now to appreciate the underrated awesomeness of D-Rob in 2014.…

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This Just In: The Yankees Still Stink

Cervelli vs TEX

I feel ya, Frankie. I really do. Courtesy of the AP

Hey, remember that shine I tried to put on the team yesterday with the posts about Ellsbury and how well the backup rotation has been doing?  Yeah, forget about all that.  I mean, don’t completely forget about them because I think they were expertly written, but forget about the idea that any of that means anything because the Yankees are terrible.  They’re a terrible baseball team.  They reminded folks like me of that last night, putting on an all-around poor display of the most basic baseball skills and completely reversing all the good they did by sweeping the Reds with a retch-inducing 4-2 loss to the Texas Rangers.

Or should I say a collection of Quad-A organizational depth and guys I’ve legitimately never heard of wearing Rangers jerseys.  Be honest with me, who really knew who Miles Mikolas, Jake Smolinski, or Rougned Odor were before last night?  …

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Game 98 – Lats, bats and those Rangers cats

When you looked at a schedule for the coming season way back in March, you might have circled this series against the Texas Rangers at Yankee Stadium III. You (nor I) never would have guessed the Rangers would have the worst record in the American League when they arrived in the Bronx. The Rangers have given up more earned runs as a pitching staff than any other American League team. This is like the Rick Helling Rangers much more than any of their teams in recent seasons.

Take tonight for example. The Rangers are starting Miles Mikolas who sounds more like a Tolkien elf than a big league pitcher. Mikolas has made three starts and has given up 24 hits in 14+ innings. He has great control, but has been getting cuffed around so far. But as the Yankees have shown this year, beware of mediocre pitchers!

The Yankees have their own question mark on the mound in Shane Greene.…

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Quick Hit: Teix Out 3-4 Days With A Lat Strain (UPDATED)

It’s been a while since Teix missed a game due to health issues, so I guess he was due.  He’s out of tonight’s lineup and figures to be out for at least this next series against the Rangers with what’s being called a “mild” lat strain.

Injuries have been a constant theme to Teix’s 2014 season, but so far he’s managed to come back from each one and not miss a beat.  Hopefully that continues 3-4 days from now, as he’s still the team’s biggest (and at times only) power threat.

** UPDATE 5:41 PM- Some more details on the injury.  It’s been officially diagnosed as a Grade I strain of Teix’s left lat.  He actually received a platelet-rich plasma injection today, which the team is hoping will eliminate the need for a DL stint.  

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Patchwork Rotation Holding Together Pretty Well

We probably would have talked about this already had the All Star-break not happened right in the middle of it, but have people noticed how well the Yankee rotation has been pitching?  I came across a tweet earlier this morning pointing it out to me and I actually did a double take at my desk.  If you were as blind to it as I was, here’s how the last 8 Yankee starts have gone:

  • 7/9, McCarthy- 6.2 IP, 9 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
  • 7/10, Phelps- 6 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K
  • 7/11, Kuroda- 7 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
  • 7/12, Greene- 7.1 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 9 K
  • 7/13, Whitley- 3.2 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
  • 7/18, Phelps- 6.1 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 7 K
  • 7/19, McCarthy- 6 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 K
  • 7/20, Kuroda- 6.2 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 6 K

That breaks down to a 1.99 ERA, 3.06 FIP, less than 1 hit per inning, 8.34 K/9, and 1.99 BB/9 in 49.2 innings pitched.  …

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Yankeemetrics: July 18-20 (Reds)

Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury helped the Yankees sweep the Reds. (Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images)

Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury each had big hits this weekend. (Photo: Getty Images)

$500 million offseason delivers
The Yankees opened their 10-game homestand with a 4-3 win against the Reds. The Yankees entered this game 5-7 all-time in the regular season against the Reds, the only team they have a losing record against.

Jacoby Ellsbury sparked the team with two RBI, two hits – including the game-winning homer in the fifth inning – and a stolen base. He is the second Yankee in franchise history to hit a home run and steal a base against the Reds, joining Alfonso Soriano in 2003.

The stolen base was his 25th of the season, giving him 25 steals and 102 hits in his first 92 games with the Yankees. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he is the fastest player to reach 25 steals and 100 hits in his Yankee career since Steve Sax did so in 1989 in his first 83 games in pinstripes.…

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Announcement: Some administrative changes

Good morning, IIATMS readers! We have a couple of things happening on the site that we wanted to tell you about.

Fchanges-road-signirst up, Michael Eder is stepping down from the co-Editor-in-Chief position. Michael will be heading off to law school this Fall like a good baseball blogger (we have a few lawyer/bloggers here already and there seems to be a large number of them on the internet) and we’d like to thank him for the fantastic content he provided – especially those extremely detailed pitch F/X posts with gifs, etc. as well as the Happy Tanaka Day banner that we post for TANAK’s starts – and I’d like to thank him for the help he gave me throughout our partnership. We’d also like to wish him well at school even though we know he will kick ass.

And while I am bummed we’re losing Michael, I am thrilled to be gaining Brad Vietrogoski as a partner. Brad will be stepping into the role of my new co-Editor-in-Chief!…

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Ellsbury Starting To Cook In The 3-Spot

Ellsbury vs CIN

Courtesy of Getty Images

Just when it looked like the Yankees were going to fall back into their regular pattern of offensive futility yesterday, the big money guys stepped up and delivered a win.  Jacoby Ellsbury singled to lead off the bottom of the 9th, promptly stole second base off Cincy closer Aroldis Chapman then moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored the walk-off run on Brian McCann‘s clutch RBI single.  It only took almost 100 games, but the Yanks finally got a big win thanks to their 2 biggest free agent hitter acquisitions and ended the series on the right side of a sweep.

That’s the high level story today, the one that’s more fun for the media to write and more fun for the fans to read.  The truth is that McCann’s game-winning hit was really more the byproduct of good BIP luck and poor Reds defense than anything he did to hit the ball.  Had somebody caught the ball, who knows if Ellsbury would have been driven in with 2 outs.  …

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Game 97 Quick Recap: NYY 3 CIN 2

McCann Walk-Off vs CIN

Courtesy of Getty Images

Well that was about as awesome a second half-opening series as the Yankees could have hoped for.  3 games, 3 wins, and today’s coming in walk-off fashion.  I’ll take it.

Hiroki Kuroda was very good this afternoon.  The only run he gave up in 6.2 innings of work was an unearned one and he used his slider and splitter to generate 6 outs via the strikeout and another 7 via the groundball.  Vintage Kuroda.

The 2 runs he got in support came in the bottom of the 5th on RBI singles by Derek Jeter and Jacoby Ellsbury.  Say what you want about Jeter, I know I’ve been overly critical this season, but he’s been swinging a decent bat for the better part of the last month.  Ellsbury has also been better in the 3-hole in the last few weeks than he was earlier.

Dellin Betances was nearly the goat when Todd Frazier touched him up for a game-tying solo home run in the top of the 8th.  …

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