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

Quick Hit: Big Mike To Make His Return On Wednesday

It had been a source of speculation since his latest MiL rehab start on Friday, but today the Yankees ended that speculation by announcing that Michael Pineda will be activated from the disabled list to start in Wednesday night’s series finale against the Orioles.  Pineda has been rehabbing for the last few weeks and has been on the DL since May 6th.  He has not pitched in a Major League game since April 23rd, the night of his now infamous pine tar start.

Pitch count fully stretched or not, Pineda is an obvious upgrade over Esmil Rogers in the rotation.  At this point in the season, every game is critical and the Yankees need their best pitchers out there on the mound.  If Pineda can be as good as he was in his 4 April starts, he would be a really big help.  Just remember, Big Mike.  Belt buckle, hat brim, glove.  Belt buckle, hat brim, glove.  Keep the head and neck area clean.…

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Prospect Profile: Tyler Webb

Tyler Webb Trenton

Courtesy of the Trenton Thunder Facebook page

When Matt Thornton was claimed and subsequently sent to the Washington Nationals last week, the conversation almost immediately turned from why the Yankees let Thornton go to what young player from the Minors would be his replacement.  The Yanks have a decent stash of lefty relievers, the latest and most high-profile one being this year’s top draft pick Jacob Lindgren.  Lindgren getting moved up to Trenton on the same day Thornton was let go added fuel to the speculative fire that the team was essentially clearing the spot and the lefty specialist role for Lindgren.

In addition to Lindgren and other guys like James Pazos, Pat Venditte, and the recently called up RIch Hill, the name that came up as a potential replacement most often last week was Tyler Webb.  Cashman mentioned him specifically as the closest to earning a call up, and that may have come as a surprise to people who aren’t familiar with Webb’s name or body of work.  …

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Is The Annual Hiroki Kuroda Late-Season Fade Underway?

Hirok vs CLE

Courtesy of Getty Images

Hiroki Kuroda did not look good yesterday.  His command was off, hitters were squaring him up, and he seemed to tire very quickly around the 80-90 pitch mark in the 5th inning, an inning he was unable to complete.  Paired with a similar failure to close an inning in the 7th on Tuesday night against the Tigers, the talk of Hirok slowing down in August as he did last year is quickly picking up.  Is it warranted?  2 starts is hardly enough to say definitively, but there are some SSS numbers worth considering for either side of the argument.

Case For:

The Contact Rates- The split in Hirok’s 2 August starts is 30.6% LD/38.9% GB/30.6% FB.  That’s by far the worst monthly split he’s had all year.  It’s the first time his LD % against has been over 22.0% and the first time his GB rate has dipped below 44.0%.  This isn’t guys sneaking seeing-eye singles through holes in the infield.  …

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Monday Mid-Morning Food For Thought: The One Positive From The Weekend Series

That was a rather sour finish to the homestand.  To go from taking 3 of 4 from the Tigers and outpitching their rotation of studs in the process to dropping 2 of 3 to the Indians and scoring 1 run in the final 18 innings of the series was the highest highs right back to the lowest lows, another example of this team’s maddening inconsistency.  The Yankees lost ground in the postseason races this past weekend and head into Baltimore for a crucial series needing at least a 2-1 series win to seriously stay in AL East title contention.

If there’s one positive thing to take away from the last 2 days, it’s this.  The Yankees are heading into Baltimore tonight with the big guns in their bullpen well rested.  The way the Cleveland series went down gave Joe the option of scaling back the usage of guys like David Robertson, Dellin Betances, and Adam Warren and it was an option he took.  …

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Game 117 Recap: Indians 4 Yankees 1

Kuroda vs CLE

Courtesy of Getty Images

The combination of Mark Teixeira back in the lineup and Corey Kluber back in the dugout should have been cause for confidence in Yankeeland.  After getting shut out on Saturday afternoon, they needed a win today to secure the series in their favor, and with less than 50 games remaining each win becomes even more important in relation to the playoff races.  Once again the bats no-showed, however, and they head back onto the road to face Baltimore losers of 2 of 3.

Hiroki Kuroda got the ball today and in short, he was pretty bad.  He couldn’t bury his splitter or put his sinker where he wanted to with regularity and the Indians put 3 hits together for a run on him in the top of the 1st.  A Jason Kipnis double and a pair of sac plays plated a second run in the 3rd, and in the 5th he completely lost a sinker and hit a batter on a 1-2 pitch, loaded the bases with 2 outs, and left after walking in a run.  …

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Game 116 Quick Recap: Indians 3 Yankees 0

ONeill Plaque

“Paul Oh-Neeiill! Clap, clap, clapclapclap!” Courtesy of Getty Images

It was Paul O’Neill Day at The Stadium this afternoon.  Before the game, the Yankees held a ceremony honoring him and unveiled his new plaque out in Monument Park.  Safe to say that was the high point and only Yankee-related highlight on the day.

Corey Kluber has been the unquestioned ace of the Cleveland staff this season and an absolute stud.  When the season ends he’s going to find himself near the top of a lot of Cy Young ballots and he showed why today.  He held the less-than-100% Yankee lineup scoreless over 6 innings and only allowed 4 hits, 1 for extra bases, while striking out 10.  About the only good thing the Yanks did against him was force him from the game after those 6 innings and 109 pitches.

Brandon McCarthy was very good again in his 6th start in pinstripes, pitching into the 7th and striking out 8 while not walking a single batter.  …

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Game 116: McCarthy Goes For 5-0

Last night’s series-opening victory made for the Yankees’ 4th separate winning streak of 3 games or more since the All-Star Break.  They’re an impressive 14-7 since the break, a season best 7 games over .500, and back within half a game of the second Wild Card spot.  They’re sending out their recent best starter in Brandon McCarthy this afternoon against Cleveland’s best starter, Corey Kluber, and they’ll be without Teix and Big Mac in the middle of the batting order.  Here is today’s starting lineup:

1) Brett Gardner- LF
2) Derek Jeter- SS
3) Jacoby Ellsbury- CF
4) Carlos Beltran- DH
5) Chase Headley- 1B
6) Stephen Drew- 2B
7) Martin Prado- 3B
8) Ichiro Suzuki- RF
9) Francisco Cervelli -C

McCarthy is 4-0 in his 5 Yankee starts and the team is 5-0.  Let’s keep that streak rolling today on Paul O’Neill Day, huh?

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McCann Diagnosed With Mild Concussion, Could Head To The DL (UPDATED)

Other than the Carlos Beltran grand slam, the biggest thing to happen in last night’s game was Brian McCann‘s early exit with what the team has called a mild concussion.  He took a foul tip off his mask in the 3rd inning, and according to Chad Jennings, was removed from the game in the 6th after telling Joe he didn’t feel “quite right.”

No decision has been made on whether or not McCann will go on the 7-day concussion DL.  The plan was to have him undergo some tests this morning at The Stadium and then decide.  He’s obviously not in today’s lineup and I’m sure we’ll find out more either before or after the game.  With Teix still feeling the effects of his finger injury, the middle of the lineup will be without 2 of its big bats.

** UPDATE 12:09 PM- Via Bryan Hoch, McCann has been placed on the 7-day concussion DL and the team has called up Austin Romine.  

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Friday Afternoon Linkapalooza: 8/8/14

I’m playing in my buddy’s sister’s charity golf tournament this afternoon.  It’s the one and only time a year I golf.  I’ve played in this thing the last few years, so I’ve got my system down by now.  3 drinks in before first hole, a 12-pack in the cooler for the full round, and I’m usually happy enough to forget that I don’t like golf and hit a few good shots.  Closed out our round last year with an uphill, left-to-right 25-footer.  No big deal.  If you can’t get out to enjoy the nice weather wherever you are on this Friday afternoon, here’s some reading material:

- On Monday, SJK of NoMaas applauded Brett Gardner and his top-tier efforts in keeping the Yankees in the playoff hunt.

- On Wednesday, Jeff Sullivan at FanGraphs investigated Brett Gardner’s hitting approach to see what he’s changed to hit for more power.

- Pat Jordan of Sports On Earth looked at the history and the evolution of the overhand curveball.

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