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 Morning News And Notes: 9/18/15

Final off-day of the regular season yesterday.  It’s 17 in 17 from tonight on out and there’s going to be some real juice to this weekend Subway Series.  Should be fun to watch.

– The Yankees will send Tanaka, Pineda, and Sabathia to the hill this weekend, with Joe non-committal on pitching Tanaka on normal rest again next Wednesday against the Blue Jays.  Given the state of the rotation and the potential divisional effect of winning that series, it should be a no-brainer.

– Assistant GM Billy Eppler has started his interview rounds for open GM positions.  Via George King, he met with the Mariners in Chicago on Wednesday after talking to the Angels on Monday.  I don’t see any way he comes out of this offseason without a GM job somewhere.  He’s been real close the last few years.  Good for him.

– The 2015 MiL season officially came to an end for the Yankee organization on Tuesday night when SS Staten Island lost the Penn League Championship Series in 2 games.  …

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Game 145 Recap: Yankees 3 Rays 1

Bird HR vs TB

Is it me or is every home run he hits important? Courtesy of the AP

Chris Archer ain’t nothing.  Yankees have faced him twice in the last 10 days and beaten him both times.  If only they could have won a few more games against other pitchers in that timespan.  Archer got outdueled by Luis Severino last night as the Yankees rode their blue chipper’s right arm, Greg Bird’s bat, and the bullpen A-Team to a much needed series victory.

Severino struggled to his spots and keep his fastball out of the middle part of the strike zone his last time out against the Blue Jays.  He didn’t have those same struggles last night and the aggressive Tampa lineup just plain couldn’t keep up with his stuff.  He was working 96-97 with his fastball and low 90s with his slider, and he seemed to make his best pitches when he was on the verge of getting into trouble.  He stranded 2 after a leadoff double and a walk in the bottom of the 2nd, struck out 2 to strand a runner in the 4th, and worked out of a 1-out, runners on second and third jam in the 5th by inducing a weak groundout and a pop out to the catcher.…

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Quick Hit: Now It’s Tanaka Time

The Yankees face the Rays in a very important rubber match tonight.  The Yankees will be sending 21-year-old Luis Severino to the mound to start the game, fresh off his first real bad MLB outing against the Blue Jays over the weekend and with a potential quasi-calf issue.  The Rays will be sending their ace and noted Yankee dominator Chris Archer to the mound.  Advantage Rays.

While the Yanks won’t have that ace advantage tonight, they will have it when Masahiro Tanaka toes the rubber next, most likely on Friday against the Mets.  This would line him up to make a start against the Blue Jays in next week’s crucial final series, and it would require him to make both starts on regular rest.  That’s something the Yankees have gone out of their way to avoid as much as possible this season, but as Mike Axisa clearly and correctly explained this morning at RAB, the time for that arm protection is over.  …

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Game 144 Recap: Rays 6 Yankees 3

Franklin HR vs NYY

Giving up homers to guys hitting under .140, guh. Courtesy of Getty Images

The Yankees went from almost getting no-hit by Erasmo Ramirez on Monday night to just not getting enough hits last night.  That’s progress, depending on how you want to look at the situation, but when that low hits count only lead to 3 runs and you’re working with the C-level pitching squad, you probably aren’t going to win the game.  The Yankees didn’t.

The sad thing was that 2 of the 3 hits the Yanks got off Tampa starter Jake Odorizzi were home runs and both of them gave the team a lead.  Alex Rodriguez embarrassed Odorizzi by crushing a 1-0 fastball the other way for a solo homer in the top of the 1st to make it 1-0 Yanks, and Greg Bird bested Odorizzi in a tough battle to drive in A-Rod with a 2-run bomb to dead center in the 4th to make it 3-2 Yanks.  …

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Quick Hit: Jacoby Ellsbury Stinks

Were it not for Slade Heathcott‘s incredible timing, the big talking point from last night’s 9th inning would have been Jacoby Ellsbury and his potentially back-breaking GIDP.  On the first pitch from Brad Boxberger after Dustin Ackley singled to start the inning, Ellsbury rolled a grounder over to the first baseman to start a double play and clear the bases.  After a night of precious few offensive chances, Ellsbury took what looked like the last good one the Yankees would get and flushed it.

If you haven’t been playing close enough attention, Ellsbury has been doing a lot of that lately.  He’s slumping about as badly as anybody on the team has at any point this season, and it climaxed with that GIDP in the 9th.  Ellsbury wakes up this morning with a .254/.315/.354 batting line that is, quite simply, pathetic.  That .660 OPS is almost 30 points below Didi Gregorius‘ season line and a mere 3 ahead of everyone’s favorite Twitter punching bag Stephen Drew.  …

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Game 143 Recap: Yankees 4 Rays 1

Heathcott HR vs TB

So many good faces in this picture. Courtesy of Getty Images

Best win of the season last night?  If not, top 3 at the absolute worst.  Things weren’t looking good for the Yankees heading into the late innings, but then Slade Heathcott bopped a 3-run home run in the top of the 9th to rip the game away from the Rays and hopefully breathe new life into the Yankees’ final 20-game stretch run.

The Yankees had faced Tampa starter Erasmo Ramirez twice before last night’s game and both times he held them at bay, allowing only 1 run in 11 innings pitched.  He bested that and the some last night, twirling 7.2 scoreless, 1-hit innings and holding the Yankee lineup without a hit until that final 8th inning.  He did walk 2 batters, but only 1 of them reached second base and was then double off to end the inning.  Ramirez retired 21 of the first 23 batters he faced going into the 8th and gave up his first hit of the game to Carlos Beltran to lead off that inning.  …

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Game 142 Quick Recap: NYY 5 TOR 0

You might have noticed that I didn’t bother writing a recap for either of yesterday’s games.  That’s mostly because I thought Stacey’s visual recap spoke louder than any of my written words could, and a little bit because I just didn’t feel like it.  I’ll write one today because they won though, and I don’t feel the slightest bit bad about it.

The story of this afternoon’s game was Masahiro Tanaka.  He was top notch in his last start against earlier in the week and he repeated that level of excellence today against the Jays.  Tanaka worked around hits in each of the first 3 innings, then sat the Toronto lineup in order from the 4th through the 6th.  Toronto finally got another hit on a Chris Colabello double in the 7th, but Tanaka snuffed that out before it could become anything.  He got a lot of ground ball outs, he struck out 7 and he didn’t walk anybody.  It was another ace-caliber performance from the no-doubt ace of the staff.…

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Game 139 Quick Recap: TOR 11 NYY 5

Luis Severino wasn’t going to pitch lights out forever.  Every pitcher has a bad start every now and then and Severino had a bad one last night.  Unfortunately for him, and the Yankees, that bad game came against the best offense in baseball and the Yanks got pounded by the Jays in the first game of their 4-game series.

For all intents and purposes, the game was over after the top of the 1st.  Severino couldn’t command his fastball and Toronto went double, homer, strikeout, double, single, homer in the first 6 batters to grab a 5-0 lead.  A pair of walks and a ribbie single by Russell Martin in the top of the 3rd ended Severino’s day and put the game on the arms of the bottom of the Yankee bullpen.

Toronto kept right on scoring against those guys.  They got 2 runs in 1.2 innings against Chris Martin, another run in 2 innings against Andrew Bailey.  Joe changed it up with Chasen Shreve after the offense pulled them back within 4 in the 7th and Toronto bashed him around for their final 2 runs.  …

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Friday Afternoon Linkapalooza: 9/11/15

Long week, busy week.  Probably had to work harder at my real job this week than I ever have since I started this job.  And I really don’t even think I’m doing the job all that well, although I have all but mastered the art of talking too much to make up for the fact that I have no clue what I’m doing/talking about.  Sometimes it takes a massive effort just to reach the ground floor of satisfactory.  Now I know what Stephen Drew’s 2015 season feels like.  Onto the links.

– On Tuesday, el duque of It Is High… used Nathan Eovaldi’s elbow injury as a way to reignite the discussion on shortening the MLB season.

– On Wednesday, Mike Axisa of RAB discussed CC Sabathia becoming a much more important piece of the Yankee puzzle down the stretch, for better or for worse.

– Greg Corcoran of Bronx Baseball Daily recapped the season for the newly formed Pulaski Yankees.

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