A native and resident of the Mean Streets of Southwestern Connecticut, Matt is a narcissistic, misanthropic 20something English teacher who lives by a simple creed: Yankees Only.

Author Archives: Matt Imbrogno

Crossing the Queensboro Bridge: On the Idea of Masahiro Tanaka

“Anything can happen now that we’ve slid over this bridge,” I thought; “anything at all…”
Even Gatsby could happen, without any particular wonder.”

Here we see narrator Nick Carraway and title character Jay Gatsby crossing the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan. In the pages prior, Gatsby “cleared up” some misconceptions and rumors about himself and Nick comes away with an idea of Gatsby. The idea, not the man, is the possibility Nick speaks of.

Now that we’ve crossed the bridge of his acquisition, it’s clear that anything is possible when it comes to Masahiro Tanaka.

The idea of Tanaka is invariably familiar to us as Yankee fans. He is the big-ticket “free agent” that has been long coveted by the Bronx faithful. Like countless others before him, we’ve wanted him. Badly. For the last year, his name had hung over the baseball season, spoken in a “low, thrilling voice” that had us counting down the days until he was posted and had us axiously passing time, waiting for hi to sign.…

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Yanks agree to sign Matt Thornton


Instant analysis to come.

Lefty reliever Matt Thornton will join the Yankees, pending a physical, to fill the LOOGY vacancy left by Boone Logan and his departure to the Rockies on a three year, $16.5M pact. Thornton debuted with the Mariners in 2004 (19 G, 32.2 IP) and became...

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Going All In

To describe Wednesday’s walk-off loss to the White Sox, I’ll borrow from Luke Skywalker’s description of his home planet of Tatooine: “If there’s a bright center of the universe, you’re on the planet farthest from it.” Andy McCullough called the loss the nadir of the season, and it’s hard to disagree. That...

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Despite seeing fewer pitches, Yanks still hitting

As they entered last night’s game, the Yankees were no worse than second in any of the slash categories (second in BA/OBP) and paced the AL in SLG (.467) and OPS (.806). Regardless of the Yankees’ poor performance against left handed pitching, the overall production has been there, even if it’s looked a bit different at times. The lineup hasn’t been full strength. Francisco Cervelli (!) has hit well. Vernon Wells apparently isn’t dead. Travis Hafter isn’t injured. There is one more somewhat strange thing, though, and that’s that the Yankees are seemingly seeing fewer pitches per plate appearance thus far.

Going into last night, they were seeing 3.75 P/PA, below the league average of 3.89. Last year, they saw 3.89 P/PA, above the average of 3.84. In 2011 and 2010, they were also better than the average. This is nothing new–the Yankees have always prided themselves on seeing lots of pitches and working counts. Now, it seems that they’re jumping on pitches earlier in the count.…

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Pre-Game Evening Link Dump

Evening, all. Hope your work days weren’t too torturous. Anyway, here are a few links to help you along in your commute.

Starting with the not-so-great, there’s the news you probably already know: Jeter is going to miss more time than expected. Sigh.

Speaking of Derek Jeter, though, here’s something cool from Twitter yesterday. Baseball HOF president Jeff Idleson posted a pre-draft scouting report the Rockies did on Jeter:

Mark Feinsand talked to CC Sabathia about his velocity after last night’s game. Feinsand noted that despite CC’s diminished velocity to start 2013, the pitcher remains confident:

“I’m hoping some more velocity comes back,” Sabathia said. “If not, we’ll work with this.”

He’s also accepted the reality of pitching:

“It’s reality,” Sabathia said. “I’m not going to lose sleep over it.

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Expanding on the vs. Lefties Lineup Issue

Baseball is hardly the first thing on my mind as I write this, and I doubt it’s the first thing on your mind as you read it. But, hopefully, this post can serve as a little bit of distraction from the horrific news coming out of Boston. If you’re reading from Boston, we sincerely hope that you and your loved ones are safe. Please know that our thoughts, prayers, hearts, and minds are with you and your city.

Yesterday morning, Brad posted an article about the lineup against left-handed pitching in light of the Yankees so-so offensive performance against Baltimore’s Wei-Yin Chen. To expand on his point, overall, the Yankees have hit very weakly against lefty pitchers in the early going; their line sits at just .214/.296/.274/.570 (!). As Brad pointed out, the injury to Eduardo Nunez has made things against lefties less-than-ideal, and that’s without mentioning the missing bats of Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, and Alex Rodriguez who all eat lefties for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.…

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What Nova Can Work On

As you probably know by now–thanks to last night’s canceled game thread–the Yankees will be skipping Ivan Nova‘s turn in the rotation, opting to go with Phil Hughes tomorrow; Nova will work out of the bullpen in between starts.

Nova struggled in his first start. Though he struck out five batters, he didn’t finish five innings, tossing just 4. in Detroit on the fifth. He also gave up four runs (all earned) and allowed seven baserunners (five hits, two walks). Something else of note, though, happened in that game and Mike explained it the other day: Nova was throwing a sinker at the Tigers’ batters. If we head over to BrooksBaseball and check out Nova’s player card, we can see that he threw the sinker 15% of the time, his third most used pitch behind his fastball (46%) and his curveball (25%). It would seem that goal number one would be for Nova to use that sinker when he’s brought in for a relief outing.…

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