Meh

This one doesn’t even deserve a snappy title. Staked to a 2-0 lead on a Marcus Thames two-run bomb off David Price in the second, CC Sabathia clearly didn’t have his best stuff, laboring through 5 1/3 innings, his shortest outing since lasting only five on May 23 against the Mets. Sabathia was ultimately tagged for seven earned runs, though four of those came around to score after CC had left the game for Joba Chamberlain.

Javier Vazquez came on an inning later and showed why he won’t be pitching any meaningful innings in October even if he makes the postseason roster, walking Ben Zobrist to lead the second off and in a feat so comically absurd it defies words, somehow managed to hit three batters in a row.

Price wasn’t quite as lights-out as he was last week but he didn’t need to be, as he tossed six innings of three run ball. After the Rays added two more in the seventh off Javy to make it 10-3, Joe Girardi literally surrendered, subbing Juan Miranda, Eduardo Nunez, Colin Curtis and Ramiro Pena in for the top of the eighth and also moving Thames to left field.… Click here to read the rest

“Their Lineup Doesn’t Scare Me”

Batting              AB R  H RBI BB SO   BA   OPS
John Jaso  DH         2 2  1   0  3  0 .267  .760
Ben Zobrist  CF       3 0  1   1  2  0 .246  .717
B.J. Upton  CF        0 0  0   0  0  0 .234  .740
Carl Crawford  LF     5 1  2   2  0  0 .306  .850
Evan Longoria  3B     4 2  2   2  0  0 .294  .878
Dan Johnson  1B       4 1  1   1  0  1 .227  .867
Carlos Pena  1B       0 0  0   0  1  0 .201  .745
Matthew Joyce  RF     5 0  1   0  0  2 .233  .826
Jason Bartlett  SS    5 0  1   0  0  2 .250  .667
Reid Brignac  2B      4 1  2   1  1  0 .269  .724
Dioner Navarro  C     5 0  1   0  0  2 .200  .545

How many times have you heard a Yankee fan say this about the Tampa Bay Rays? I think we’ve all looked up and down that lineup, seen those weak batting averages and unimpressive peripherals at some point and thought to ourselves ‘How do they do it?’.… Click here to read the rest

"Their Lineup Doesn't Scare Me"

Batting              AB R  H RBI BB SO   BA   OPS
John Jaso  DH         2 2  1   0  3  0 .267  .760
Ben Zobrist  CF       3 0  1   1  2  0 .246  .717
B.J. Upton  CF        0 0  0   0  0  0 .234  .740
Carl Crawford  LF     5 1  2   2  0  0 .306  .850
Evan Longoria  3B     4 2  2   2  0  0 .294  .878
Dan Johnson  1B       4 1  1   1  0  1 .227  .867
Carlos Pena  1B       0 0  0   0  1  0 .201  .745
Matthew Joyce  RF     5 0  1   0  0  2 .233  .826
Jason Bartlett  SS    5 0  1   0  0  2 .250  .667
Reid Brignac  2B      4 1  2   1  1  0 .269  .724
Dioner Navarro  C     5 0  1   0  0  2 .200  .545

How many times have you heard a Yankee fan say this about the Tampa Bay Rays? I think we’ve all looked up and down that lineup, seen those weak batting averages and unimpressive peripherals at some point and thought to ourselves ‘How do they do it?’.… Click here to read the rest

Believe

It is sad.   Bautista smacked number 50, and he should have been praised to the stars.  Instead, the press saw yesterday as a good day to ask Bautista whether he used steroids or other PEDs to fuel his 2010 performance.  Bautista said he did not.

Can we end the story there?  No.  There are too many who doubt whether Bautista is telling the truth.  See here for example, and here, and here.  No one exactly comes out and says, this guy is juicing.  No.  Instead, the doubters say that they have a right to doubt.  Gene Wojciechowski at ESPN put it like this:

“Jose Bautista might be doing it naturally.  But some of the sluggers who came before make it difficult to believe in him wholeheartedly.”

That’s sad.  I am a fan of Gene’s writing, and I’m sorry it’s difficult for Gene to believe wholeheartedly.  I suppose people have a right to believe anything they want to believe, and not to believe the things they don’t want to believe. … Click here to read the rest

Game 153: Rays 10, Yankees 3

Greg Golson, getting a rare start in left field, started the bottom of the fifth with a double to left.  A single by Derek Jeter moved Golson to third and he scored on Nick Swisher’s single to right.  Mark Teixeira struck out for the first out of the inning and Alex Rodriguez walked to load the bases.  Cano popped out and Thames struck out to end the inning with the Yankees in front 3-1.

Sabathia struggled in the top of the sixth.  Crawford led off with a single to short and moved to third on Evan Longoria’s double to right.  Zobrist struck out for the first out of the inning, but Rocco Baldelli, who had already made his presence known when he made a nice grab on a well-hit ball by Teixeira, tapped a ball back to CC, allowing Crawford to score.  A single to center by Willy Aybar scored Longoria, putting runners on first and third with one out.  Sabathia walked Kelly Shoppach to load the bases and then walked Sean Rodriguez to give the Rays a 4-3 lead as Girardi called for Joba Chamberlain from the bullpen.… Click here to read the rest

Looking Ahead to the Playoffs: The ALDS Rotation

Last year, the Yankees opted to play the ALDS schedule that contained an extra day off between the first two games, which would have allowed the game 1 and game 2 starters to pitch games 4 and 5 on full rest. This year, one of the two National League series will play that schedule, meaning the Yankees will play the “normal” schedule that only has the traditional travel days. However, the effect of this would be somewhat limited, as the game 2 starter could still pitch game 5 on normal rest, since both off days come after game 2. Only if the Yankees decided to have Sabathia pitch games 1 and 4 would anyone have to take the mound of 3 days rest.

In my opinion the choice is an obvious one; Sabathia should start game 1, Pettite game 2, Hughes game 3, and then Sabathia and Pettitte should close out the series if necessary. There’s no reason Sabathia can’t pitch at least once on 3 days rest, and with a full 4 days rest Pettitte would be the obvious choice for game 2.… Click here to read the rest

Comparing Derek Jeter to other shortstops via WAR

As the title suggests, today’s WAR lens focuses in on shortstops from around the league. This of course includes our very own, El Capitán. Before you read the rest of this post please understand the following:

1) WAR is not the be-all end-all to sabermetrics by any means, and yes, it isn’t perfect.

2) WAR attempts to incorporate both offense and defense. Consider oWAR for the exclusion of defensive value.

3) WAR is designed to represent the number of wins a player adds to the team above what a replacement player (AAA/AAAA) might contribute.

4) WAR value translation: 8-plus is an MVP-caliber performance; 5-plus is an All-Star-caliber performance; 2-plus is starter-level; 0 to 2 would be a reserve; and below zero is Replacement Level.

5) The objective of this exercise is to provide a brief synopysis of how each Yankee player is valued relative to other similarly positioned players around the league in comparison to a replacement level player (your typical AAA guy).… Click here to read the rest

Joe Strauss: Lazy Writer

It’s worth pointing out that the N.L. Cy Young race was so close last year that a lot of different votes could have swung the outcome to either Wainwright or Carpenter, but I guess having a different opinion regarding the best pitcher in the National League last year than Strauss makes you worthy of his derision. One wonders if the fact that Strauss works in St. Louis doesn’t play into his estimation at all, but whatever.

What really gets me, again, however is how totally ignorant Strauss is. Not just about newly developed statistics, but about the arguments guys like me use. Notice, for example, the way Strauss uses the term “peripherals.” I’ve honestly never heard anyone refer to wins or other “traditional numbers” as peripherals; they’re generally rate stats. When people talk about peripheral numbers, they’re talking about things like K/9, BB/9, HR/9, HR/FB, etc. And far from using the term pejoratively, the sabermetrically inclined crowd generally considers these numbers pretty important.… Click here to read the rest

American League Postseason Preview: The Offense

Throughout the week we’ve taken a look at the bullpens of the prospective American League postseason teams along with the pitchers who will be under consideration to make starts. Today we shine the spotlight on the offensive units of the Yankees, Twins, Rays and Rangers.

Unlike the starting pitchers analysis I’m not going to break the hitters down individually just yet because we don’t know who’s going to be on the 25-man rosters (or whether game-changing players like Justin Morneau and/or Josh Hamilton will be playing), plus I’ll be doing that for the actual American League Division Series preview. If you enjoy Yankeeist’s regular Series Previews, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Once the postseason comes I tend to go even more overboard with statistics than I usually do.

Here are each team’s overall offensive numbers to date, sorted by wOBA, with AL ranks in parentheses (yellow highlights indicate a league-leading stat):

Unsurprisingly, the Yankees are probably the strongest overall offensive team of the four contenders, leading this particular field in SLG, ISO, BB/K, OBP, wOBA and fWAR, and leading the entire league in the latter four categories, although it’s not as if any of the other offenses are weak.… Click here to read the rest