The Farm Report, 07/23/11

Double-A Trenton lost to Bowie, 6-4
Damon Sublett was 3-for-4 with a double, Rob Lyerly homered, and Ray Kruml doubled. Dellin Betances had a rough start: 3.2 IP, 4 H, 4 R/ER, 3 BB, 2 K, and two homers allowed. He also left the game in the fourth with the trainer after covering home plate, though it was extremely hot in Trenton and it may have been heat-related. Chase Whitley walked two, struck out three, and gave up two hits and a run in two innings, and Ryan Flannery walked four and struck out two while giving up a hit and a run in 1.1 innings.

High-A Tampa beat Bradenton, 6-5.
Eric Chavez, still doing a rehab stint, homered and walked, and Cody Johnson doubled twice. Kelvin Castro had the deciding triple. Sean Black gave up three hits, four walks, and five runs in 3.1 innings and the relief pitchers likely walked too many guys, but kept Bradenton off the board to allow for the late win.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees strand 11, fall to the A’s 4-3

This was a frustrating loss. Just one day after the Yankee bats exploded for 17 runs, the Bomber offense fell silent, unable to come up with big hits with runners in scoring position. Rich Harden took a vacation from the DL to pitch 5.1 innings of two run ball, which isn’t good, but A.J. Burnett was no better, giving up three runs in 5.2 innings of work.

Derek Jeter had a strong day, going three for four with a double. Robinson Cano also looked good with the lumber, going two for five with a two-bagger of his own. To the extent there was an offensive highlight for the Yankees, it came off Nick Swisher‘s bat. Swisher hit a booming homer to right field that bounced off the front wall of the upper deck. While the Yankees had nine hits on the day, the team only had those three extra base hits.

The Yankees were in it right to the end.… Click here to read the rest

The ballad of Kei Igawa

Bill Pennington had a great story in today’s New York Times about the forgotten $46 million dollar man, Kei Igawa, who has been toiling away in Scranton over the past few years.  The absolute failure of his major league career did not sour Igawa on American baseball, Pennington writes, and he has continued to work hard in Scranton despite being surpassed by many younger and more successful pitchers.  According to the article, Igawa still lives in Manhattan, and commutes to Trenton or Scranton daily for games.  Pennington paints Igawa as somewhat of a tragic figure, not a guy who has failed because of lack of effort or entitlement:

The five-year saga is a story of a giant mistake of a contract and an overmatched pitcher, a huge organization digging in and a quiet, somewhat mysterious Japanese pitcher with a sense of honor and a durable love of the game. The Yankees made it pretty clear Igawa would never pitch again in the Bronx, but they were determined that he pitch somewhere for his $4-million-a-year salary.

Click here to read the rest

Game 98-Hot for pitching

If you had any doubt the Yanks need to acquire a starter, Phil Hughes should have answered them for you last night. Staked to a 14-2 lead, he was unable to last the required 5 innings to pick up the win. We can’t have much confidence in Hughes, we don’t know if Colon’s stem cell repaired shoulder will hold up, we don’t like Garcia facing the better lineups, and AJ….is who he is. The Yanks have one pitcher they can count on right now, and teams like that usually don’t go very far in October. But enough of me bitching. Burnett’s on the bump this afternoon, and I hope the Little Rock, AK product likes hot and humid weather, because he’s going to get plenty of it today.

Here’s your lineup, courtesy of LoHud:

1. Gardner LF
2. Jeter SS
3. Granderson CF
4. Teixeira 1B
5. Cano DH
6. Swisher RF
7. Martin C
8. Nunez 2B
9. Laird 3B

Brandon Laird gets his first big league start, after pinch hitting for DJ last night.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees pummel A’s, 17 – 7

Well, that happened. On the one hand, the tired Yankee bats exploded for 17 runs, with Mark Teixeira‘s grand slam serving as the highlight. On the other hand, Phil Hughes sucked. Franchise allowed seven runs and nine hits in just 4.1 innings of work. At this rate, the Yankees are having second thoughts about trading Ivan Nova.

There’s no way to sugar coat Hughes’ performance. Allowing seven runs to any team — never mind the offensively challenged A’s — is bad. The only reason the Yankees won is because they lit Trevor Cahill up to the tune of ten runs in two plus innings of work. Rich Harden takes on A.J. Burnett in today’s game, which could turn into another blow out quickly.… Click here to read the rest

Jesus Montero’s Declining Stock

 

Following up on Larry’s piece on prospect hugging, I wanted to insert another reality check about a prominent member of the Yankee farm system. For years, we’ve heard about Jesus Montero’s “can’t miss bat” from respected sources like Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus. Scouts and talent evaluators all agreed (or did at one point) that whatever his shortcomings may be defensively, whether he sticks at Catcher or not, the dude can flat out rake. When trade proposals would be floated among Yankee fans online, a common argument against trading him would be “you don’t give up an elite bat for (insert pitcher here)”. It always struck me as foolhardy to assume anyone will be “an elite bat” at the MLB level, and the Yankee willingness to deal Montero raised an eyebrow for me. Jack Z (who has extensive expertise in player development) passing on him in favor of Justin Smoak raised that eyebrow further. Teams always know their players better than anyone else, and while no knowledge is perfect odds are they see something everyone else is missing or has yet to reveal itself.… Click here to read the rest

Jesus Montero's Declining Stock

 

Following up on Larry’s piece on prospect hugging, I wanted to insert another reality check about a prominent member of the Yankee farm system. For years, we’ve heard about Jesus Montero’s “can’t miss bat” from respected sources like Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus. Scouts and talent evaluators all agreed (or did at one point) that whatever his shortcomings may be defensively, whether he sticks at Catcher or not, the dude can flat out rake. When trade proposals would be floated among Yankee fans online, a common argument against trading him would be “you don’t give up an elite bat for (insert pitcher here)”. It always struck me as foolhardy to assume anyone will be “an elite bat” at the MLB level, and the Yankee willingness to deal Montero raised an eyebrow for me. Jack Z (who has extensive expertise in player development) passing on him in favor of Justin Smoak raised that eyebrow further. Teams always know their players better than anyone else, and while no knowledge is perfect odds are they see something everyone else is missing or has yet to reveal itself.… Click here to read the rest

The Farm Report, 07/22/11

Double-A Trenton lost to Bowie, 4-1
Manny Banuelos had a rather lackluster outing, going five innings and giving up six hits and four runs, three earned, with four walks and three strikeouts. Rob Lyerly was 2-for-4 with a double, and Ray Kruml, Corban Joseph, and Melky Mesa all collected hits as well; Joseph’s was a double. Pat Venditte gave up a hit, a walk, and struck out four in three innings.

High-A Tampa lost to Bradenton, 6-5
Continuing his rehab, Eric Chavez went 1-for-4 with a double. Ronnier Mustelier also doubled, and Abe Almonte was 2-for-5 with a stolen base. Mikey O’Brien gave up five hits and two runs over five innings, striking out six and walking just one. Francisco Gil blew the save and gave up the walk-off, with six hits and four runs in just 1.1 innings.

Low-A Charleston lost to Lexington, 5-4
Mike Ferraro was 3-for-3 with a double and Jose Toussen was 2-for-4 with a triple. Nathan Forer gave up seven hits, three runs, and struck out two in five innings.… Click here to read the rest