The Farm Report: 8/16/12

Laird went 2-3 with a run scored and a double. Mesa went 2-3 with a run scored, a walk, a homer and three RBIs. Romine went 1-3 with a run scored and a RBI. Justin Thomas pitched five innings and gave up four runs on seven hits and two walks.  He struck out six. Chase Whitley and Ryota Igarashi each pitched two innings of one hit ball.  Whitley struck out one, while Igarashi walked one and struck out two.

Trenton outslugged Reading 14-12:
Adonis Garcia drew a walk and Zoilo Almonte followed with a homer to right. Kevin Mahoney singled to right and stole second. JR Murphy followed with a single to left, plating Mahoney.  A double by Rob Segedin brought home Murphy and the Thunder held a 4-0 lead. Reading got one run in the bottom of the second, but Trenton struck back, as Mahoney followed a single by Addison Maruszak with a homer. Reading scored another run in the fourth and the score was 6-2 in favor of Trenton.… Click here to read the rest

Bullpen falters, Yankees lose, 10-6

The Yankees took the opportunity after winning the first three games of this series to rest Curtis Granderson and Robinson Cano against the lefty Holland. Russell Martin was the designated hitter to give the game a real Spring Training feel. Cano is dealing with a stiff neck and sat out his second straight game. The makeshift lineup seemed no match for Derek Holland during the first five innings. Meanwhile, Ivan Nova looked like Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  At times, Nova seemed dominant and at others like he had no idea where the strike zone was or how to command his pitches.

Nova gave up two quick runs in the first inning. After Elvis Andrus grounded out, Michael Young singled, Josh Hamilton doubled to the wall in left and then Adrian Beltre singled to score both Young and Hamilton. Beltre gave Nova a break by trying for second and was thrown out easily.

Nova then pitched four scoreless innings and three of them were in order.… Click here to read the rest

The Plan For David Adams

David Adams is hitting again. He looked to be on the fast track for the majors until a severe ankle injury ended his 2010 season after just 39 games. A standout hitter and second baseman at UVA, Adams had done nothing but hit since becoming an adult. He was hitting .309/.393/.507 for Double-A Trenton at the time, and had come off a similar batting line between Charleston and Tampa in 2009. The injury knocked him out for more than a full year, and it wasn’t until early this year that he finally returned back to normal.

65 games into his season, Adams is now hitting a very strong .320/.391/.445 and playing decent enough defense at 2nd, where he had played every game of his career above Single-A. Recently however, the Yankees have been playing him at 3rd base, and he now has 12 games there. He probably will not hit well enough to be a major league 3rd baseman. Clearly, they are finally preparing Adams for a future utility role.… Click here to read the rest

David Phelps’ Big Chance

Same expression in every picture of him. And I like that. Courtesy of Getty Images

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod)

I’ve written about David Phelps a pretty fair amount this season.  I can’t help it, I think he’s an underrated pitcher and I’m fascinated by the way his season has gone down.  Phelps’ 2012 campaign has been a continued series of fortunate opportunities created by unexpected circumstances affecting the rest of the pitching staff.  He got a 25-man roster spot out of Spring Training because of Michael Pineda‘s shoulder injury; he got a lot of early chances to show what he could do thanks to some horrific early outings by Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes; he got the chance to start because of Freddy Garcia‘s unfathomably bad start to the season and the Yankees not being able to wait for Andy Pettitte any longer; he’s slowly worked his way up the leverage ladder out of the bullpen as other middle relievers have regressed. … Click here to read the rest

Jeter’s bunt

It was a play that screamed for second guessing and almost led to a triple play. It did lead to a double play, which obviously, Girardi was trying to avoid. Here is how it unfolded: Ichiro Suzuki led off the inning against Mike Adams, the Rangers’ setup guy. Adams was in the game to keep it close and give the Rangers a chance to win it in the ninth. Ichiro pounded an Adams pitch into the dirt for a high chop that Adrian Beltre put in his pocket. It was the second time in a row that Ichiro had beat out an infield single. That brought up Jayson Nix.

It needs to be mentioned here that Mike Adams is one of the easiest pitchers in baseball to steal a base against. The ESPN broadcast of the game pointed it out and the numbers back it up.  For his career, 38 base steal attempts have been successful against Adams in 43 attempts.… Click here to read the rest

What should MLBPA do about drug violators?

As a general rule, I like to just avoid these columns and ride out the storm, but when the specter of The Union gets invoked, my ears perk up because I assume I’m about to read something particularly unrealistic and amusing, and Buster Olney delivers that in this Insider piece on Melky’s suspension. Here’s the nut of the matter:

But if Cabrera had been truly regretful, then he wouldn’t have gone through the appeals process, which, for him, began sometime in the last 10 days of July. He was fully prepared to beat the system, to add tens of millions of dollars to his new contract, and when he was caught, well, that’s when he’d put his hands in the air and surrendered.

There is a parallel violation that could provide some guideline in how the union can (and should) ask for a strengthening of the drug-testing policy. If a player or staff member is caught betting on a baseball game in which he is not involved, a first offense would cost him a one-year ban.Click here to read the rest