Born in Dover, Delaware and raised in Danbury, Connecticut, Brad now resides in Wisconsin, where he regularly goes out of his way to remind Brewers fans that their team will never be as good as the Yankees. When he’s not writing for IIATMS, he likes to spend his time incorporating “Seinfeld” quotes into everyday conversation, critiquing WWE storylines, and drinking enough beer to be good at darts.

Author Archives: Brad Vietrogoski

Friday Afternoon Linkapalooza: 4/10/15

A couple of us decided to have an impromptu brat fry in one of the company parking lots for lunch today.  The executive lot to be exact.  Set up shop right in the first 2 parking spots.  Not that we were trying to make a statement or take a stand or anything like that, but there’s something satisfying about knowing you’re wolfing down brats and listening to rock music in the space usually occupied by a luxury sedan.  It’s one of those rare little slices of cube monkey revenge.  And the brats were good.  Now onto the links!

– On Monday, Chris Mitchell of Pinstripe Pundits used actual logic, statistics, and thoughtful analysis to show why Tanaka’s lower velocity shouldn’t be a concern.  What a concept!

– On Tuesday, Nick Peruffo of Minor Matters had new Trenton Thunder manager Al Pedrique’s media day thoughts on a variety of topics (and players) heading into the season.

– On Wednesday, Chad Jennings of LoHud mused on the possibility of Michael Pineda being the sneaky best starter in the Yankee rotation this season.  …

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Game 3 Recap: TOR 6 NYY 3

Sabathia vs TOR 2015

Courtesy of the AP

The Opening week storybook turned the page again tonight, to the CC Sabathia chapter.  Hindered by physical ailments, diminishing velocity, and performance regression over the past few seasons, CC was hoping to come back healthy and better in 2015.  He didn’t pitch all that well in his Spring Training outings, and that was something that both the media and he noticed.  They were quick to spin his problems into doomsday scenarios and he was quick to curse and get upset when he talked to him after starts.  But all that took a backseat to his return to regular season game action tonight.

CC came out dealing in the top of the 1st, striking out Jose Reyes and Jose Bautista in a 1-2-3 inning.  He wasn’t so lucky in the 2nd, putting a few runners on, missing with some key pitches, and getting burned by bad ground ball luck and bad defensive shifting strategy.  It all combined to provide Toronto 4 runs for a comfortable early lead, and the good vibes from CC’s first inning back were quickly extinguished.…

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Quick Hit: Andrew Miller Says Hello

Miller vs TOR

“Huzzah!” Courtesy of the AP

It’s just one game, it’s a super small sample size, yeah yeah yeah.  I get all that.  But when Dellin Betances is scuffling and people are ready to hit the panic button on him, you couldn’t have had a better Yankee debut than Andrew Miller did last night.

10 pitches, 8 strikes, 2 groundouts, a swinging strikeout, 1-2-3, ballgame over, Yankees win.  He was firing some mean looking mid-90s fastballs, he snapped off a few nice sliders, and he looked very much like the pitcher he was last year.  If Joe really is planning to use both he and Betances as co-closers to start the year, Miller definitely made the better first impression in terms of handling the role.

Welcome to New York, Andrew.  Good to have you here.

Hellooo

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Game 2 Recap: NYY 4 TOR 3

Pineda vs TOR 2015

Courtesy of the AP

The 0-1 and all but doomed 2015 Yankees took back to the diamond last night to attempt to get their first win.  They had big right-hander Michael Pineda on the mound and he was looking to get off to the right start after a very strong Spring Training.  I wrote a little about some of those good signs he showed in ST and a few more good signs he could show last night, and while he didn’t show all those signs he was still plenty good enough to win on a cold early April night.

Pineda retired the first 6 he faced in order, then got in trouble in the top of the 3rd on a leadoff infield single and a line drive double by Justin Smoak.  Another GB single/bad throw by Didi Gregorius in the next at-bat gave Toronto their first run and the early lead.  They scored their second and last against Pineda in the 5th on a pair of GB singles and a sac fly by former Yankee Russell Martin.  …

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What To Look For From Pineda Tonight

Yankees Spring Training

Courtesy of Charles Wenzelberg/NY Post

Masahiro Tanaka‘s start wasn’t that great on Monday, and Yankeeland went into near meltdown mode as a result.  After the pesky off-day yesterday, we move from that injury concern storyline to a less serious one tonight in the form of Michael Pineda.  He’ll make his 2015 debut after a very strong spring campaign, one that, even in the context of watered-down ST competition, has built some of the excitement back up that he can be the upper-tier pitcher the team expected him to be when they acquired him.

With Pineda looking and pitching better this spring and with him being further removed from the shoulder surgery, I wanted to touch on a few things worth following in his start tonight.  While it’s equally silly to predict a monster year for him based on 1 start while fretting over Tanaka after 1 start, there are a few factors that could suggest good things to come for a guy who I still think didn’t get enough credit for how good he was last year.  …

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Opening Day Thoughts And Afterthoughts

A-Rod vs TOR 2015

Good grief, what a stud. Courtesy of the AP

For those who didn’t know and were wondering where I’ve been the last few days (probably nobody), I was out in Denver for a long weekend with the girlfriend.  My personal desire was to watch the entirety of yesterday’s game, simply because Opening Day and the idea of baseball really being back is awesome.  But there was no way I was going to get away with that on our last day of vacation, so I went the strategy of “I just want to see A-Rod hit and then we can go” and parlayed that into a little more than half the game.  Not a bad compromise.  That said, keep in mind that this post is being written from the perspective of a guy who only watched the first 5 innings yesterday, although I suppose that was really all anybody needed to see to know how the game turned out.

– It wasn’t a good start for Masahiro Tanaka yesterday, certainly not the performance he or Yankee fans were hoping for on his first Opening Day start.  …

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Spring Training Game 30 Quick Recap: Rays 3 Yanks 0

Sorry, kids.  I’m packing for Colorado so you’re just getting bullet points for this game.

Game Notes:

– It was a good day today for Chase Whitley, who got another start and turned it into an extended audition for the bullpen long man role.  He pitched 4 innings of 1-run ball and struck out 6 without walking a batter. It would be a major upset if he didn’t make the Opening Day roster.

– It was a bad day for 8/9 of the projected starting lineup, as they combined to go 3-20 with 2 walks and 5 K against Tampa Bay pitching.  Not really a big deal, but some runs are always better than no runs.

– It was a really bad day for Brendan Ryan, who suffered a calf strain trying to field a grounder and had to be carried into the dugout.  After the game, Joe said he expected Ryan to start the season on the DL, so there’s that open roster spot again.…

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Does Andrew Bailey Have Time To Steal The Last Bullpen Spot?

(Editor’s note- I wrote this post before the game today and didn’t check to see if Bailey pitched in it.)

With less than a week until the end of Spring Training and the beginning of another 162-game marathon, we’re getting down to the wire on the few remaining roster competitions.  The hottest one in Yankee camp is the battle for the last 2 bullpen spots, and that battle is down to 4 guys: Chase Whitley, Chasen Shreve, Chris Martin, and Andrew Bailey.

Whitley appears to have a spot all but locked up, and he should nail down the David Phelps Memorial long man/emergency 6th starter job with a good outing today.  Shreve has been up and down results-wise but has gotten a lot of work against right-handed hitters and has pitched 2 straight scoreless appearances, and Martin is… tall, I guess?

The wild card of the group is Bailey.  Despite his late start to game action this spring, he’s been pretty impressive.  …

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Spring Training Game 30: Yankees Vs. Rays

The closeness of Opening Day got real this morning with the calendar flipping over to April.  Baseball has been back for a while now, but meaningful baseball being back is even better and we’re oh so close to that happening.

That being the case, it makes sense that the Yankees are rolling out another almost Opening Day lineup.  That “almost” part is Brendan Ryan in at shortstop for Didi Gregorius, who was supposed to return to game action today but is still feeling some pain and swelling in his injured wrist.  That isn’t good news, but Jacoby Ellsbury returning to the regular lineup is.  Here’s the full starting lineup for today:

1) Jacoby Ellsbury- CF
2) Brett Gardner- LF
3) Carlos Beltran- RF
4) Mark Teixeira- 1B
5) Brian McCann- C
6) Chase Headley- 3B
7) Alex Rodriguez- DH
8) Stephen Drew- 2B
9) Brendan Ryan- SS

SP) Chase Whitley

First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 PM local time.  Here’s your game thread for those watching/following on Gamecast.  …

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