What role for Phil?

Phil Hughes has really turned his season around since that disastrous April. We’ve covered that fairly extensively here at IIATMS over the past few weeks or so, so I don’t think we need to rehash that today. Instead, I’m interested in posing the following question: what should Hughes’ postseason role with the Yankees be?

I said yesterday that I’d prefer to see Hughes serve a bullpen role once the tournament gets here. That’s not meant as a knock on his performance or my faith in his ability to turn in a good postseason start, it’s merely a distribution of resources issue. I’d say it’s not in doubt that C.C. Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, and Andy Pettitte will be the Yankees’ top three starters in the playoffs, and given the fact that there are no reliable non-specialist middle relievers in the bullpen after Rafael Soriano, David Robertson, and Joba Chamberlain, I think giving Joe Girardi an additional relief weapon would provide more value than a fourth postseason starter, all else being equal.

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How biased is YES?

So this is kind of fun: The Wall Street Journal ran an informal survey to study the amount of bias/homerism in all 30 teams’ television broadcasts, and YES comes out at the very bottom of the list. It’s not really scientific, and the majority of the list is so close that everything from roughly 7th to 20th seems more or less interchangeable, but the results are pretty clear at the top and bottom. The White Sox broadcast team of Hawk Harrelson and Steve Stone got credited for more biased statement than the other 29 teams combined, while the YES broadcast team of Michael Kay, Ken Singleton, and Paul O’Neill joins the crews of the Blue Jays, Red Sox, Mets, and Vin Scully in logging not a single biased statement according to the compiler.

Obviously there’s a high degree of subjectivity here, but the results certainly track what I would have guessed they would have looked like before hand. I know a lot of people act as though YES is America’s Pravda or something, but for the life of me I’ve never been able to seen what all of the fuss is about. Once you factor out the innate level of bias that stems from the fact that networks broadcasting baseball games are business partners of the team in question with an obvious vested interest in enticing people to watch those games, I don’t see much bias t all in the average YES broadcast, and there’s certainly a lot less than is routinely showed in the broadcasts of other teams’ games, more or less without regard to the ownership status of the network. When someone goes on at length about how horrible the bias at YES is, all they’re really doing is telling me that they don’t spend a lot of time watching MLB TV. Continue reading How biased is YES?

Nick Swisher’s Hitting Mechanics

After a prolonged September slump, Nick Swisher is one of the hottest hitters on the team. From August 27th to September 16th, the right fielder hit just .127/.244/.211. After a scheduled day off and a rain suspended game, Swisher has since picked things up with a .385/.484/.731 tripleslash. He’s got 4 homeruns over his last 6 games, and he’s driving runners in. Ichiro Suzuki‘s hot streak has helped this team get runners on base, but Swisher’s homeruns have become even more important . The bat has come alive at the right time, which leaves me wondering whether it’s just luck Continue reading Nick Swisher’s Hitting Mechanics

Yanks blow it in the seventh, lose, 5-4

The New York Yankees were nine outs away from taking a commanding three game lead in the loss column in their quest for the American League East title with just eight games to play. Instead, they allowed the Twins to score four runs in that seventh inning and failed to mount a comeback and finished the day the same two games up in the loss column from where they began. Phil Hughes took the loss in a game that for six innings seemed like a walk in the park. Instead, his record falls to 16-13.  The Twins starter, Esmerling Vasquez, entered the day with an ERA over six and no quality starts in his resume. He allowed only two runs on seven hits in six innings of work but did not figure in the decision.

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Yanks Blow An Opportunity to Extend East Lead, Drop One To The Twins

The Yankees missed a golden opportunity to gain an even bigger lead over the Baltimore Orioles tonight. The O’s dropped a game to the Blue Jays while the Yankees and Twins were still in progress at Target Field. In fact, the Yankees were leading the game when the Orioles lost so it seemed like they’d finish the night with a two and half game lead in the AL East. Nope. After Russell Martin hit a solo shot to put the Yankees up in the top of the seventh inning, Phil Hughes who had been pitching a pretty solid game, came Continue reading Yanks Blow An Opportunity to Extend East Lead, Drop One To The Twins

Game 154: 8 Is The Magic Number

I love this matchup. Phil Hughes in Target Field. Don’t think you could find a better ballpark for him. With the way the bullpen has been used lately, a long outing from Hughes could give a lot of guys a much needed rest. Here’s the lineup. Derek Jeter SS Ichiro Suzuki RF Alex Rodriguez 3B Robinson Cano DH Nick Swisher 1B Curtis Granderson CF Russell Martin C Raul Ibanez LF Jayson Nix 2B Go Yankees

Game 154 – No letup

The New York Yankees are set to play the second game of the series with the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. The pitching match up will be Phil Hughes and Esmerling Vasquez and the Yankees have two new roster additions with David Aardsma and Brett Gardner joining the team today. Steve Pearce and Justin Thomas are no longer with the team and were removed from the roster to make room for the new additions. Now all the Yankees need back is Mark Teixeira.

The Lineups:

New York Yankees:

  1. Derek Jeter – SS
  2. Ichiro Suzuki – RF
  3. Alex Rodriguez – 3B
  4. Robinson Cano – 2B
  5. Nick Swisher – 1B
  6. Curtis Granderson – CF
  7. Russell Martin – C
  8. Raul Ibanez – LF
  9. Jayson Nix – 2B

Phil Hughes – SP

Minnesota Twins:

  1. Denard Span – CF
  2. Ben Revere – RF
  3. Joe Mauer – C
  4. Justin Morneau – 1B
  5. Ryan Doumit – DH
  6. Chris Parmelee – RF
  7. Trevor Plouffe – 3B
  8. Jamey Carroll – 2B
  9. Pedro Florimon – SS

Esmerling Vasquez – SP

Vasquez has yielded more walks than strikeouts this season, so look for the Yankees to be patient and make him throw strikes. The Cano DH thing is not an exciting wrinkle. He brings more to the field than Nix and Nix removes a bat like Chavez from the lineup. The Twins’ three through seven in the lineup will be Phil Hughes’ biggest challenge. They are all powerful hitters.

The game starts at 8:10 and can be seen locally on MY9. Continue reading Game 154 – No letup

Flashback: Phil Rizzuto

Phil ‘The Scooter’ Rizzuto would have been 95 today, so I thought it would be fun to look back at some of his numbers and if you have any Scooter memories, you can leave them in the comments. Though to be honest, if you’re old enough to have seen him play, I’m impressed that you know how to use the Internet. His career slash line: .273/.351/.355/.706 His OPS+: 93 Rizzuto won the MVP Award in 1950. He batted .324/.418/.439/.857 and had an OPS+ of 122. He had a career high of seven home runs – yes, seven – and collected Continue reading Flashback: Phil Rizzuto