Manuel dines on (his shoe's) sole, again

I have no idea why Mets manager Jerry Manuel seems to think his post-game news conferences are his own personal “Night at the Improv”. I also have no idea why he chose to say the following, further embarrassing himself and the organization:

After Mets slugger David Wright was hit in the head by a pitch last weekend, causing a concussion, Manuel said Wright was a “different animal” than Church, who missed much of last season with New York following a pair of concussions.

I don’t care if Manuel claims to have meant something else. It’s embarrassing. Let me know how your shoes taste, Jerry.

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Discussion: Who Plays Left Next Year?

The only major roster question that the Yankees have for 2010 is what to do with left field, and by extension, the DH spot. Here is my plan, and I encourage you to chime in with your plans below. Johnny Damon becomes the regular DH. The Yankees inquire on Matt Holliday, but pass if his cost exceeds 3 years 45 million. If so, the Yankees sign Mike Cameron to play LF, with Xavier Nady and Chone Figgins being my backup plan. This is how I would break up the playing time based on that scenario. I did this quickly, so Continue reading Discussion: Who Plays Left Next Year?

MLB's new superhero? The #8 Train!

Adam Dunn is a large man. A very large man. A robust 6’6″, 240 lbs of Bunyan-esque power. Now imagine another OF, as tall, but 45 lbs BIGGER than Adam Dunn. Ladies and gents, meet Kyle Blanks!

Out East here, we don’t get to see much of the West Coast games, which is a shame. Unfortunately, due to the late hour, I missed these back-to-back events involving Blanks:

  1. Two nights ago, Blanks, who was called up from the minors on June 19th, hit a game winning, 3-run home run to topple the Cubs.
  2. Last night, the manchild was at it again, hitting a 2 run INSIDE THE PARK HOME RUN. This guy’s 285 lbs! As the announcers called him, the #8 Train pulled headfirst into the station. As a not-so-svelte Heath Bell tried to whipcream him, he had to jump on Blanks’ back to do so and he looked like a child on his dad’s back.

This boy is big. And he can HIT.

Some scouting stuff:

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The All-Homers Club

The Yankees could potentially have eight of their starting 9 hit 20 or more home runs this season. Four Yankees have already reached or surpassed 20: Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Johnny Damon and Nick Swisher. Matsui has 19, Cano 18, and Jeter and Posada each have 15. Matsui and Cano are almost certain to reach 20, and I’d say Posada probably gets there, too. Does Jeter have five more bombs in him?

Gaudin's Start: Don't Expect A Disaster

In the first game of the current series with Oakland, the Yankees seemingly had a huge advantage in the pitching matchup, as it was Yankee castoff Brett Tomko locking horns with AJ Burnett. However, as John Sterling is wont to say, you just cannot predict baseball, and the Yankees fell to the A’s 3-0. On that note, I would like to point out tonight’s pitching matchup is less disastrous than it seems, despite Chad Gaudin making his first start against Oakland “ace” Brett Anderson. The Yankees selected a perfect location for Gaudin’s first start in pinstripes. Gaudin spent 3 seasons Continue reading Gaudin's Start: Don't Expect A Disaster

Although periodically you can predict that CC Sabathia is going to throw a great game

I was going to talk about how Jeter has nine hits over the last three games, or that the Yankees have left what feels like 800 runners on base while they’ve been on this west coast jaunt, but Cliff Corcoran sums up how I’m feeling nice and succinctly: “Sabathia’s last three starts: 23 2/3 IP, 10 H, 3 R (all solo HRs), 5 BB, 26 K, 3-0, 0.63 WHIP, 1.14 ERA.” I think it’s safe to say he’s pretty good at pitching.

Yanks changing Joba’s schedule between starts

Marc Carig of the New Jersey Star-Ledger has the story: OAKLAND, Calif. – Joba Chamberlain escaped during the All-Star break, returning home to Nebraska and blocking out all talk about baseball. It worked so well for the talented right-hander, who emerged from the hiatus and pitched perhaps his three best consecutive starts of the season. But Chamberlain’s last three starts have yielded in a 6.75 ERA during that span, which is why Yankees manager Joe Girardi ordered the pitcher to relax with his extra time. As part of the Joba Rules, the pitcher will have eight days’ rest heading into Continue reading Yanks changing Joba’s schedule between starts

Game 120: Yankees 7, Athletics 2

CC Sabathia took the mound at the Oakland Football Fie…Coliseum Tuesday night with one mission – to stop the Yankees losing streak at two. After being shut out the night before, the Yankee offense was rolling, with the help of an Oakland defense who seemed hellbent on giving this game to the Bombers. Four errors on Oakland, along with some wild pitches and a passed ball, gave the Yankees the extra edge they needed to take the game 7-2.

Tensions were high right from the start, when Mazzaro went inside on Alex Rodriguez and hit the Yankee third baseman in the elbow. CC protected his teammate by coming inside on Kurt Suzuki, who promptly sent the next pitch deep and put the Athletics on the board first. With two outs in the top of the second, Melky’s bat finally woke up and he drilled a double to the outfield. Jeter put the ball in play and reached safely on an error, scoring Cabrera and tying the game at 1-1. CC came out firing in the bottom of the inning, striking out two before giving up a solo shot to Everidge and then striking out Sweeney to end the inning at 2-1 Athletics. Alex got some revenge for his previous plunking, singling to right center and moving to second on Mazzaro’s wild pitch. Matsui grounded out, but moved Alex to third before Jorge Posada drove him in, tying the game again, on a ground rule double.

The score would hold at two a piece until the top of the sixth, when the Yankees broke it open. Swisher started things with a double and reached third on a passed ball. Melky was then hit by a pitch and landed on his butt as Suzuki was on all fours behind him. It looked reminiscent of the type of prank you see at camp (and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, clearly you did not get in enough trouble as a child). Jeter’s single to left gave the Yankees their first lead of the game, and a looper to left by Damon added another run as Melky crossed the plate. Teixeira was intentionally walked, loading the bases for A-Rod. Alex worked the count and was also walked, scoring Jeter and giving the Yankees the 5-2 edge. Matsui followed with an RBI single and a deep sacrifice fly by Posada scored Teixeira, giving the Yankees the 7-2 lead at the end of the inning.

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Throwing leverage out the window

John Manuel, draft/minor-league guru, in his Draft Winners and Losers column, beautifully and succinctly sums up the Mets and their farm system woes (emphasis mine):

While the cross-town Yankees spend money like nobody’s business in the draft, the Mets toe the line. Sure, they paid top pick Steve Matz an above-slot bonus, as he got $895,000, almost $400,000 more than the recommended slot. That’s a Mets rarity, and with no first-rounder (lost for signing free agent Francisco Rodriguez), Matz basically got a first-round bonus. The Mets failed to sign their fifth- and sixth-rounders, and only had two players Matz and 13th-round pick Zach Dotson, a Georgia prep lefty signed for $500,000 who signed for as much as the Yankees gave their 44th-round pick. No large-revenue team uses its money less in the draft than the Mets.

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