Former ESPN researcher; forever baseball and Yankees fan. Now living in northern Vermont and the color of the front door of our house is Yankee blue. Also write about college football and basketball and the NFL. Bleed Huskies blue (that's UConn, of course).

Author Archives: Katie Sharp

Yankeemetrics: The Final Series

The final hit of The Captain's career. (Photo: Steven Senne/AP)

The final hit of The Captain’s career. (Photo: Steven Senne/AP)

A rare meaningless Red Sox-Yankees game
Following Thursday’s dramatic Yankee Stadium finale, the Yankees rested most of their regulars on Friday night at Fenway Park in the opener of the final series of 2014, but still managed to beat the Red Sox, 3-2.

This was the first time since October 2-4, 1992 that the Yankees and Red Sox played a series with both teams eliminated from playoff contention; that date was also the last time both teams entered a head-to-head series at least 13 games out of first place in the division.

The Yankees started five rookies and all five got at least three at-bats. Since rookie rules were established in 1958, the only other time the Yankees had five rookies get at least three at-bats in a game vs Red Sox was on Sept. 10, 1966, a 5-1 Yankees win at Fenway Park.

Chris Capuano finished his season with a strong outing, allowing just one unearned run on four hits over 6 2/3 innings.…

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Yankeemetrics: Captain Clutch edition

Captain Clutch does it again. (Photo: John Munson/

Captain Clutch does it again. (Photo: John Munson/

We’re leading this one off with The Captain, Derek Jeter

Captain Clutch’s last stand
You could not have scripted a better sendoff for The Captain in his final game at Yankee Stadium. His life really is a Hollywood movie, no joke.

Derek Jeter played his first and only game at Yankee Stadium with the Yankees eliminated from the playoffs on Thursday night, and he made sure that it would be a historic one.

Jeter came to bat in the ninth inning with the score tied and Antoan Richardson on second base, and lined a single to right field that scored Richardson for the game-winning run. It was his seventh career walk-off hit and first since 2007. Since his rookie season in 1995, no other Yankee has more walk-off hits than Jeter.

Four of those seven walk-off hits came in the ninth inning with the score tied. In the last 75 years, the only Yankees with more such hits than Jeter’s four are Mickey Mantle (6) and Graig Nettles (6).…

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Yankeemetrics: Jeter farewell edition

Derek Jeter's career is unmatched in baseball history.

Derek Jeter’s career is unmatched in baseball history.

As Derek Jeter‘s incredible career comes to an end, let’s celebrate the amazing accomplishments of the soon-to-be Hall of Famer with a list of my 10 favorite stats from Jeter’s 20 seasons with the New York Yankees. Special thanks to the Play Index and the Complete Baseball Encyclopedia for many of these notes.

1. Jeter is the only player in major-league baseball history with at least 3,000 hits, 350 stolen bases, 250 homers and 1,300 RBI. Nada, no one else has done it.

2. Jeter and Hank Aaron are the only two players in MLB history with 16-or-more seasons of at least 150 hits, 20 doubles and 10 homers.

3. Arguably Jeter’s most iconic hit was his 3,000th, a home run off David Price on July 9, 2011. The only other player to reach the 3,000-hit milestone with a homer was Wade Boggs on August 7, 1999.

4. He is one of two players all-time with at least 3,460 hits for one franchise and none with any other team, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.…

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Yankeemetrics: Sept. 18-21 (Blue Jays)

Derek Jeter is on fire in his last homestand. (Photo: NY Times)

Derek Jeter is on fire in his last homestand. (Photo: NY Times)

Chasing the hero
The Yankees started Derek Jeter‘s final homestand with a dramatic walk-off win against the Blue Jays on Thursday night.

In the bottom of the ninth inning with the scored knotted at 2-2, Chase Headley hit a groundball to Blue Jays first baseman Adam Lind, who let it go through his legs, allowing Antoan Richardson to score the winning run from third base.

If you remember, the Yankees also lost a game via a walk-off error in Toronto on June 24. Hmmm… This is the first time in at least the last 75 years that the Yankees lost via walk-off error and won via walk-off error against the same team in a season.

Shane Greene held the Blue Jays without a run into the seventh inning, the second time he’s had a scoreless start at home this year. He is the first Yankee rookie with at least two scoreless starts at Yankee Stadium in a season since Orlando Hernandez in 1998.…

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Yankeemetrics: Sept. 15-17 (Rays)

Brandon McCarthy etched his name in the Yankee record books on Wednesday. (Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

Brandon McCarthy etched his name in the Yankee record books on Wednesday. (Photo: USA TODAY Sports)

No runs, no win
A 1-0 loss to the Rays in the series opener on Monday dug the Yankees into an even deeper hole in the playoff race, as they fell to six games out in the wild card standings with 13 games left.

It was the second time in the last two days that the Yankees lost in walk-off fashion after Sunday’s heartbreaking 3-2 loss in Baltimore, the first time they’ve suffered consecutive walk-off losses since Sept. 14 (Mariners) and 16 (Blue Jays, 2011.

The Rays won it on a two-out, bases-loaded single by Ben Zobrist in the bottom of the ninth inning off Shawn Kelley, who became the first Yankee pitcher to allow a two-out, walk-off hit in a 0-0 game since Ryne Duren on July 26, 1959 at Detroit.

The game took three hours and 28 minutes despite the fact that only one run was scored and it lasted only nine innings.…

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The 2014 Yankees and the lack of a superstar

Photo credit: Getty Images

Photo credit: Getty Images

Even in the leanest of lean times, there is one thing that you could always count on with the New York Yankees: an everyday star player who was considered among the elite in the league.

Last year’s team may have been one of the worst in recent memory, but it still had Robinson Cano, who finished fifth in the MVP voting and ranked third in the AL in Wins Above Replacement (7.6).

But that guarantee of stardom is a pipe dream this season.

For the first time in nearly 25 years, the Yankees will not have a player with more than 5.0 WAR, a mark that is considered the threshold for a “Superstar” player. Entering this week Brett Gardner leads the team with 4.4 WAR and its unlikely he’ll be able to add half a win in the final 13 games.

The last non-strike season in which the Yankees did not have a 5-WAR player was 1991, when Steve Sax led the team with 4.1 WAR.…

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Yankeemetrics: Sept. 12-14 (Orioles)

Shane Greene was the only Yankee pitcher that won this weekend. (Photo: Getty Images)

Shane Greene was the only Yankee pitcher that won this weekend. (Photo: Getty Images)

Nightmare on Eutaw Street, Part I
The baseball gods can be cruel sometimes. One day after arguably the Yankees most improbable win of the season, they lost in heartbreaking fashion to the Orioles in the first game of Friday’s doubleheader.

After both teams were scoreless through nine innings, the Yankees struck first in extra innings when Chris Young hit a solo homer in the top of the 11th inning.

He is the first Yankee with a tie-breaking, extra-inning home run in 0-0 game on road since Cecil Fielder on Aug 2, 1996 at Kansas City, and the first to do that in the 11th inning or later since Bernie Allen on July 8, 1972 at Minnesota.

Combined with his walk-off homer on Thursday, Young became the first Yankee to hit go-ahead homers in ninth inning or later on consecutive days since Graig Nettles on April 20-21, 1974 against the Orioles.…

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Yankeemetrics: Sept. 9-11 (Rays)

Chris Young gets a Gatorade bath after his walk-off homer on Thursday. (Photo: Getty Images)

Chris Young gets a Gatorade bath after his walk-off homer on Thursday. (Photo: Getty Images)

Bad Hirok
The Yankees started this series with another heart-breaking defeat on Tuesday, falling 4-3 to the Rays in the series opener. With the loss, the Yankees playoff odds dropped to less than one percent, according to

Hiroki Kuroda entered the game with a 2.36 ERA in his previous four starts but was hit hard, giving up four runs in 3 1/3 innings. He now has a 5.94 career ERA vs the Rays, which is the third-worst by any active pitcher against them (min. 50 IP).

His counterpart on the Rays, Chris Archer, continued his mastery of the Yankees, improving to 5-0 in six career starts against the Bronx Bombers. He is the first pitcher to go undefeated in his first six career starts vs Yankees since Greg Hibbard did so for the White Sox and Mariners from 1990-94.

There were a few offensive highlights for the Yankees in the loss:

Jacoby Ellsbury homered in the fourth inning, giving him 15 homers on the year.…

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Has Teixeira finally learned to beat the shift?

There is no sugar-coating the fact that Mark Teixeira has had a disappointing season, as he’s battled injuries all year while producing career-worst numbers across the board.

His struggles have become even more acute over the past month, with .602 OPS since August 1 that ranks among the worst in the majors. Prior to August his OPS was a respectable .790 –- certainly not MVP-caliber awesome, but also not replacement-level awful.

However, there is perhaps one positive trend that has emerged from this most recent slump by Teixeira: it appears that he may have finally learned how to beat the shift.

[Note: Since the majority of the shifts that Teixeira sees come from when he is batting from the left side and to simplify the analysis here, I’m going to focus on just those at-bats.]

Teixeira’s frustrations with the shift have been well-documented, and have undoubtedly contributed to his rapidly declining batting average since joining the Yankees.

The first four months of this season followed a familiar script as Teixeira routinely pounded the ball into the ground towards the right side, directly into the shifted defense.…

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