Looking back at the 2012 Trenton Thunder

It was an exciting season for Trenton, who showed some consistent play across the season despite the coming and going of various players due to injury or promotion. Trenton Manager Tony Franklin picked up a much deserved EL Manager of the Year Award. While it is always disappointing to just fall short of a championship, I would think Thunder fans have a lot to get excited about in the next couple years. They have the opportunity to continue to shine as prospects like Ramon Flores, Tyler Austin and Mason Williams could see time there shortly.

Curtain Calls:
Zoilo Almonte (OF): In 106 games, Almonte hit .277/.322/.487 with 21 homers, 23 doubles, 70 RBIs and fifteen stolen bases. He caused some excitement during Spring Training and has shown some good stuff.

David Adams (2B): Coming back from a nasty injury, Adams got better as the season progressed. He played 86 games and hit .306/.385/.450 with eight homers, 23 doubles and 48 RBIs.… Click here to read the rest

How about that Ichiro!

Ichiro now has a triple slash line with the Yankees of .317/.337/.439 good for an OPS of .776 and an OPS+ of 108. Sure, a seven for eight double-header did much to fatten those numbers. But consider also that his seven hits in those two games are two less than the nine hits Andruw Jones has collected since August 1 and only four less than Raul Ibanez has collected since August 1! Ichiro has now played 53 games for the Yankees (some as a defensive replacement) and has 52 hits. Jones has 45 hits in 90 games. Ibanez has 77 hits in 119 games. And yes, all hits are not created equal. Jones and Ibanez have combined for 28 homers. But Ichiro’s slugging percentage with the Yankees is higher than both of those guys for the season.

Yes, Ichiro only has three walks. He’s never been one to take a walk. But his production has certainly helped and according to Baseball-reference.com has added 0.4 rWAR for his efforts since joining the Yankees.  … Click here to read the rest

Perspective about the Yankees’ offense

Rob’s response basically was scolding my comment (probably rightfully so since it was on the snark side) because the Yankees have the second best offense in baseball. And yes, he is technically correct. Of all thirty major league teams this season, the Yankees are second to only the Texas Rangers in team OPS. And yes, the entire season counts as it is a 162 game season. But it can also be said that a lot of that quality was built in the first half of the season. The second half for the Yankees has shown a much weaker offense and September has been particularly brutal. Let’s look at the numbers:

In the first half, the Yankees’ team triple slash line was .262/.336/.459 good for a .796 OPS. In the second half, that triple slash line looks far less impressive: .258/.328/.431 for an OPS of .758.  In September, those same numbers are .237/.326/.385 for an OPS of .711. The Yankees have struck out at a slightly higher rate in the second half and their runs per game has gone from 4.84 in the first half to 4.73 in the second half.… Click here to read the rest

Analyzing Pettitte’s Return

I always look forward to doubleheaders. As a fan, double baseball means double fun, but you also get to examine a different type of managing. The Yankees won both games yesterday, Ichiro Suzuki came up big with an incredible 7 for 8 day, and best of all, Andy Pettitte returned from the disabled list. It doesn’t get much better than that right now.

In case you missed it, Pettitte opened up game one, and we expected him to throw anywhere from 50 to 75 pitches. Optimistically, I thought that 5.0 solid innings would be a possibility, and that’s exactly what he gave. He wasn’t exactly lights out, giving up 4 hits and 2 walks in his 5.0 IP, but he also didn’t allow a single run. For a guy who was rushed back from his fractured ankle, and hadn’t pitched in a game since June 27th, he looked as if he didn’t skip a beat.

Pettitte’s Raw Pre and Post DL PITCHf/x Numbers
Pitch Count Velo VMvt HMvt
Cutter (Pre)  217 (25.6%)  87.3  11.11  0.19
Cutter (Post)  6 (8%)  87.7  9.90  0.28
Slider (Pre)  208 (24.5%)  80.6  3.61  -3.18
Slider (Post)  17 (22.7%)  81.6  3.82  -3.86
Two-Seam (Pre)  145 (17.1%)  87.9  9.50  7.63
Two-Seam (Post)  20 (26.7%)  88.3  9.14  7.59
Four-Seam (Pre)  117 (13.8%)  87.7  11.80  2.76
Four-Seam (Post)  13 (17.3%)  88.0  10.72  2.71
Curveball (Pre)  99 (11.7%)  73.3  -0.46  -7.33
Curveball (Post)  9 (12%)  74.3  -0.06  -8.49
Changeup (Pre)  63 (7.4%)  79.3  4.59  8.41
Changeup (Post)  10 (13.3%)  79.6  3.71  8.23

Looking at the PITCHf/x numbers, you’ll see just how similar the movement on his pitches matched up to the rest of his 2012 season.… Click here to read the rest

Small ball helps Yankees sweep double-header

David Phelps started the nightcap for the Yankees and pitched very well. For the second time in a row, he pitched to Chris Stewart as his catcher and in those two starts has pitched a total of twelve innings while only allowing two runs. Tonight, he pitched six and a two-thirds innings and allowed only three hits. He also walked three and struck out six. The only run he allowed was in the second inning. With one out, Phelps walked J.P. Arencibia, which is pretty darned hard to do as the Blue Jays’ catcher had only walked fourteen times all season prior to that plate appearances. Phelps then walked Kelly Johnson. Phelps had a chance to escape the inning as he struck out Yan Gomes for the second out, but Adeiny Hechavarria singled to drive in Arencibia.

Phelps would not get into trouble again until the seventh inning. With one out, Derek Jeter made a poor throw to first on a grounder by Arencibia.… Click here to read the rest

Game 148: Ricky Romero’s Evil Twin

Toronto Blue Jays New York Yankees
Rajai Davis, RF Derek Jeter, SS
Colby Rasmus, CF Nick Swisher, RF
Brett Lawrie, 3B Robinson Cano, DH
Adam Lind, DH Alex Rodriguez, 3B
J.P. Arencibia, C Curtis Granderson, CF
Kelly Johnson, 2B Jayson Nix, 2B
Yan Gomes, 1B Casey McGehee, 1B
Adeiny Hechavarria, SS Ichiro Suzuki, LF
Anthony Gose, LF Chris Stewart, C
Ricky Romero, SP David Phelps, SP

The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m., on My9. Let’s go Yankees!… Click here to read the rest

Derek Jeter And The AL MVP

To quote WWE-era Kurt Angle, Jeter could win the Silver Slugger and MVP with a bruised freakin' ankle. Courtesy of the AP

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

At this point it’s getting hard to find a positive adjective that hasn’t already been used to describe Derek Jeter‘s 2012 season.  What he’s done this year has been simply remarkable, and almost unthinkably good given how bad he looked this time 2 years ago.  While the rest of the team’s veteran hitters around him have regressed, and guys still in their primes did the same, Jeter has been very consistent and very productive at an age when he rightfully shouldn’t be, and has flat out carried the offense for stretches.  With the regular season winding down, Jeter in the context of the AL MVP race has become an increasingly popular topic of conversation.  I’m positive he won’t win the award, and he shouldn’t, but it’s definitely worth wondering and asking where Jeter will wind up in the final voting.… Click here to read the rest