Yankees will be hard pressed to improve lineup with trades

For most teams this dynamic might present a problem, though, forcing a bench player into the lineup more often than you’d like to see, but the Yankees have gotten extremely fortunate with the production they’ve gotten out of Eric Chavez this season. Chavez has always been known for his defensive abilities at the hot corner, but this year he’s backing that up with well above average production as a platoon hitter, batting .302/.359/.550 with 8 home runs in 142 plate appearances against right handed hitters. What’s particularly nice about that is that, thanks to Brett Gardner‘s season long stint on the disabled list, Chavez has been forced into a de facto platoon at the DH spot when he’s not playing third.

What this dynamic does do, however, is complicate the Yankees’ reported interest in the trade market for outfielders quite a bit. Because right now the Yankees are essentially platooning Chavez and Raul Ibanez against right-handed pitchers, and those two have a wRC+ of 141 and 108, respectively, against opposite hand pitchers.… Click here to read the rest

Big Improvement In Sabathia’s Velocity And Movement Following DL Stint

The 2012 season has been a mixed bag for Yankee ace CC Sabathia. Before his most recent DL stint, the left hander posted a hard-earned 3.45 ERA. Not to say he hasn’t been successful, but Sabathia just hasn’t been the flat out dominant force that we’re used to seeing. Last month, I called the rotation on Sabathia’s pitches sluggish, and the results included slower pitches with less movement. In his last start of June, Sabathia struggled retiring the Mets, going 5.2 innings, and giving up 5 runs on 9 hits, with only 3 strikeouts. After that start, the Yankees placed the starter on the disabled list, and it took 23 days for Sabathia to recover from a strained groin.

Last night’s first post-DL start was perhaps one of his best performances of the year. Against a tough Blue Jays offense, CC went 6.0 innings (limited by the pitch count), giving up only 4 hits, 1 walk, no runs, and earning 6 strikeouts.… Click here to read the rest

The Big Man Returns And He Doesn’t Miss A Beat

CC's Back and Looking Good

Tonight the big story for the Yankees – no pun intended – was the return of CC Sabathia to the rotation. In his first start since June 24 against the Mets, Sabathia lasted six innings, gave up only four hits, struck out six and only walked one batter. Oh, and he held the Blue Jays scoreless in those six innings. Not a bad day at the office for the big man.

Sabathia looked sharp all night and he was taken out following a single by Adam Lind in the top of the seventh inning. He threw 87 pitches, 66 for strikes.

Thanks to a big three-run home run by Andruw Jones off of Blue Jays starter Brett Cecil in the second inning, the Yankees had a lead they’d never relinquish. It was Jones’s 432nd career HR which breaks a tie with Cal Ripken, Jr. to take sole possession of 41st on all-time list. That early three-run lead extended the Yankees’ streak to 41 games of three or more runs.… Click here to read the rest

The Farm Report: 7/17/12

Trenton beat Binghamton 5-4:
The Mets drew first blood, as doubles by Juan Centeno and Resse Havens in the third plated the first run of the day.  Trenton finally got on the board in the sixth.  Addison Maruszack, David Adams and Zoilo Almonte hit consecutively singles, bring Maruszak home for a Thunder run and a tie game.  Trenton took the lead in the seventh, as JR Murphy knocked a homer to left.  Yadil Mujica hit a ground-rule double and Jose Pirela doubled him in for a 3-1 lead.  The Mets were not going away easily, however.  They answered with three runs in the bottom of the inning, retaking the lead.  Luke Murton homered with two outs in the eighth, once again knotting up the score.  Rob Segedin started the ninth with a double but was out at third on a fielder’s choice hit by Mujica.  Pirela singled, putting runners on the corners and Mujica scored on a balk, giving the Thunder  5-4 victory.… Click here to read the rest

Game Thread: The Return of the King

CC Sabathia returns to the mound as the Yanks host the Jays in game two of their series.

TORONTO:

1. Rajai Davis (R) LF
2. Colby Rasmus (L) CF
3. Brett Lawrie (R) 3B
4. Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
5. Adam Lind (L) DH
6. Yunel Escobar (R) SS
7. Ben Francisco (R) RF
8. Kelly Johnson (L) 2B
9. Jeff Mathis (R) C

P: Brett Cecil

NEW YORK:

1. Derek Jeter (R) SS
2. Curtis Granderson (L) CF
3. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
4. Alex Rodriguez (R) DH
5. Robinson Cano (L) 2B
6. Nick Swisher (S) RF
7. Andruw Jones (R) LF
8. Jayson Nix (R) 3B
9. Chris Stewart (R) C

P: CC Sabathia… Click here to read the rest

Yankees – A tough offense to dominate

Game score is a statistic for starting pitchers. At the start of each game, the starter begins with a score of 50. The number of outs and innings pitched beyond the fourth inning and strikeouts add to the score. Walks, unearned runs, earned runs and hits take away from the score. The average game score for a starting pitcher in the majors in 2012 is 51. If a pitcher compiles a game score of 70 or higher, that pitcher has had a dominant outing. So if an offense has been dominated a lot by starters, there would be a lot of 70 or higher scores. The fewer the 70 or higher starts against an offense, then that is an offense that is hard to dominate.

The Yankees have been the most difficult offense to dominate in baseball this season. There have only been four occasions all season where the Yankees were dominated by a starting pitcher.  Believe it or not, the Royals are second with five.… Click here to read the rest