Game 24 Recap: Orioles 4 Yankees 1

[caption id="attachment_81188" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Severino HS vs BAL Too high. Courtesy of the AP[/caption]

It’s official.  This team has completely come off the rails.  I made a point to stay awake long enough to watch the entire game last night, which was a stupid move on my part.  Everything I saw was indicative of a baseball team that’s not just slumping, but isn’t actually a good baseball team.  Bad takes, bad swings, missed pitch locations, dropped throws, failure to tag up on the basepaths, getting doubled off for ranging too far of a base.  Tons of little mistakes that bad teams make.  There clearly isn’t a shakeup to be made with this bunch, not unless somebody or somebodies get hurt and hit the DL.  But damn, they sure could use it because they are plain awful.

Luis Severino was back on the hill after his 3-inning disaster start in Texas, and while this one wasn’t quite that bad it wasn’t good by any means.  Severino battled his fastball command all night, missing by over a foot at times, and his worst misses got crushed.  He left a 2-strike fastball up to Mark Trumbo in the bottom of the 2nd and watched it get crushed to left field for a game-tying home run.  He did the same thing with a changeup in the 5th and Trumbo hit that one over the left field wall too for a 2-run home run.  Inability to hit spots with his fastball and absolutely zero respect for his offspeed pitches from opposing hitters.  That’s a tough combo to work through as a young big league pitcher.

When he wasn’t serving up gopher balls, Severino was putting on a clinic in how to not field your position.  With 2 on and 2 out in the 3rd, he wasn’t quick enough getting to first base to cover on a ground ball hit to Mark Teixeira and he dropped the toss as he tried to find the base with his foot.  Severino did manage to get Manny Machado to pop out and end the threat, but he wasn’t so lucky in the 4th when he did it again on a Ryan Flaherty grounder and Jonathan Schoop came around to score on the error.

Those 4 runs, earned or not, were all on Severino and they provided plenty of cushion for Baltimore starter Chris Tillman.  The Yankees got to him for a token run in the top of the 2nd on a Brian McCann walk and 2 singles by Carlos Beltran and Didi Gregorius and then basically withered up and died.  They put a runner on base in every inning except the 7th, including leadoff walks in the 4th and 6th, but never got any big hits to capitalize on the opportunities.  The biggest blow was in the 6th, when Mark Teixeira drew the leadoff walk and Brian McCann singled to left to put 2 on with nobody out.  Betran lined out for the first out and McCann got nabbed off first when Starlin Castro hit a soft liner to second base.  Not sure where McCann was going on that one, but it was a pretty brutal baserunning misread considering the situation.

Tillman racked up 9 strikeouts in 7 strong innings and the Baltimore bullpen made sure there would be no comeback.  The losing streak has reached 6.  The Yankees have scored 13 total runs in those 6 games.  7 of them came on Sunday night. Continue reading Game 24 Recap: Orioles 4 Yankees 1

Game 23 Quick Recap: BOS 8 NYY 7

There was heavy rain in the forecast all of last night, and there were questions as to whether the Yanks and Sox would get last night’s series finale in.  A rainout would have been a better outcome for the Bronx Bummers, as they gagged away another one late to drop the series, their 5th straight game, and their record to a lowly 8-15 on the season.

It was all about blown leads for Yankee starter Nathan Eovaldi.  He was given a 3-1 lead in the 3rd after a Jacoby Ellsbury RBI double and a 2-run home run by Alex Rodriguez and he promptly blew it in the bottom half by giving up 3 runs on 4 singles and a walk.  The offense came back with 3 runs in the 5th on a 2-run double by A-Rod and RBI single by Mark Teixeira, and Eovaldi blew that lead in the bottom of the inning by serving up a 2-run homer to Travis Shaw.  For once it wasn’t the offense’s fault.  They gave Eovaldi plenty of run support and he couldn’t make any of it stick.

The 6-6 tie lasted until the bottom of the 7th, when Ivan Nova sandwiched 2 outs around a Shaw base hit and exited for Dellin Betances.  Betances has been scuffling lately with some poorly placed curveballs, but it was the heater that failed him last night.  Christian Vazquez was sitting fastball on the first pitch and Dellin threw one right down the pipe.  Vazquez hit it for the go-ahead 2-run shot, giving him his first home run of the season and the Red Sox the sweep of the series.  The Yankees scratched a run across on a double and a wild pitch in the 8th, but it wasn’t enough to complete the comeback.  5 losses in a row, 9 of the last 12, and 13 of the last 17.  Truly pathetic stuff. Continue reading Game 23 Quick Recap: BOS 8 NYY 7

Game 21 Quick Recap: BOS 4 NYY 2

I didn’t catch a second of this game and I’m really glad about that.  Feels like I’ve already said that 2 or 3 times this season.  That can’t be a good thing.  Whatever, the Yankees aren’t a good thing either.  They stink.

Masahiro Tanaka was a beast for the first 6 innings, holding the Red Sox lineup to 3 hits and no runs.  He tired in the 7th, put a few runners on, and Joe left him in the game one batter too long.  Jackie Bradley Jr. hit a 2-out, 2-run double off the Green Monster to tie the game at 2 and end Tanaka’s night.

Dellin Betances was ready to enter in the 7th and Joe didn’t go to him.  He came out in a tie game in the 8th and served up his second straight home run to a left-handed batter, David Ortiz to be specific, to put the Yankees behind 4-2 and take the loss.  From a 2-0 lead with 2 outs in the 7th to a 4-2 deficit in a handful of batters.  Those are the type of games the Yankees expect to win, but the bullpen formula failed this time.

– The offense was non-existent again.  A-Rod hit a solo home run early, Starlin Castro went 2-3 with a triple, and Brett Gardner had 2 hits and a ribbie single.  The rest of the team went 1-18.

Chase Headley Watch: 0-3 at the plate and made his second error of the season in the field.  He’s hitting .140/.265/.140.

– The Yankees have scored 74 runs in 21 games.  They’ve been held to 2 or less in 11 of those 21 games.  It’s pathetic.  It really is. Continue reading Game 21 Quick Recap: BOS 4 NYY 2

Game 19 Recap: Rangers 10 Yankees 1

[caption id="attachment_81129" align="aligncenter" width="388"]Teix K vs TEX Mark Teixeira sings his at-bat music during last night’s game. Courtesy of the AP[/caption]

This one wasn’t good for the old run differential.  Facing possible thunderstorms and tornado delays in the forecast, the Yankee instead fell victim to the Ranger bats.  They beat up a scuffling Luis Severino pretty bad early and cruised out to a big lead that the Yankee offense was incapable of even denting.

So yeah, Severino.  He looked pretty good through the first 2 innings.  I thought he was settling in after a quick 2nd.  But it unraveled for him pretty quickly with 2 outs in the bottom of the 3rd.  The key play might have actually been a non-play.  After Nomar Mazara singled and Adrian Beltre doubled to put runners on second and third, Joe Girardi called for an intentional walk of Prince Fielder to load the bases and face Ian Desmond.  Severino did that and then unintentionally walked Desmond to force in a run.  From there he proceeded to allow 4 more runs on 3 singles and a wild pitch in what ended up being a 43-pitch inning.  Severino did not come out for the 4th.

That job went to Ivan Nova, and he proceeded to seal the win for the Rangers with 4 innings of 3-run ball.  He didn’t walk anybody, but he suffered from the same lack of command inside the strike zone that has hampered Severino and Michael Pineda in this first month of the season.  Nova did allow Joe to save most of the rest of the ‘pen from having to work in this one, but by the time he was out of the game it was 9-1 Rangers.

That 1 run came in the top of the 7th when the Yankees were able to string a walk and 2 singles together off of a tiring A.J. Griffin.  That left them with 2 on and nobody out and they did not score another run in the inning, so at least the anomaly of the Yankees being an even remotely competent offensive baseball team didn’t last long.  They made Griffin look real good over the first 6 innings, hitting a lot of lazy fly balls and infield pop ups for easy outs.  The one positive contributor was Ronald Torreyes, who had exactly 100% of the team’s hits through 6 innings.  The rest of the lineup hardly did anything.

This one was a stinker for sure, but the Yankees can still take the series with a win tonight.  CC Sabathia will get the start against Martin Perez and Joe will have his bullpen horses ready at the end if CC can do enough to bridge them a lead. Continue reading Game 19 Recap: Rangers 10 Yankees 1

Game 18 Recap: Yankees 3 Rangers 1

[caption id="attachment_81113" align="aligncenter" width="525"]Eovaldi vs TEX 16 The nastiest of Nates. Courtesy of the AP[/caption]

It’s always nice to win a low-scoring game for a change.  The short-handed offense wasn’t clicking on all cylinders as usual, but it didn’t matter because the pitching was fantastic last night.  Nathan Eovaldi tossed 7 scoreless innings to hold the Rangers at bay and handed a lead over to the Yankees’ dominant late-inning pair.  That’s always a recipe for success and the it was again last night as the Yankees picked up a much needed win to open the 3-gamer in Texas.

Eovaldi came out of the gate hot last night, facing the minimum number of batters through 3 innings.  A runner did reach on an error to lead off the bottom of the 2nd, but error culprit Didi Gregorius made up for it by starting a 6-4-3 double play to erase the baserunner on the very next pitch.  Eovaldi actually didn’t allow a hit until the 7th inning, mixing pitches well, moving his fastball around, and throwing a ton of offspeed pitches for strikes.  This was arguably the best Eovaldi has looked as an all-around pitcher in his career.

The lineup sans A-Rod and Big Mac didn’t give Eovaldi a lot of support but even a couple runs were plenty with the way he was pitching.  Those couple of runs came in the top of the 3rd on a Jacoby Ellsbury solo home run and a Mark Teixeira RBI double, and they were critical at the time because the Yanks had just gone scoreless in a bases loaded, 1 out situation in the 2nd inning.  They didn’t generate much in the way of meaningful opportunities after those 2 innings, but a Starlin Castro solo shot to lead off the 6th provided an important insurance run.

Joe let Eovaldi come out to start the 8th inning, which I believe gave him the new deepest start of the year for the Yankee rotation.  He walked the leadoff batter and that was all for him.  Dellin Betances came on and got another double play grounder to erase the walk, but then hung a curveball to somebody named Brett Nicholas and watched it go for Nicholas’ first career MLB home run.  That ruined Dellin’s hope for a scoreless season, but he didn’t allow any further damage and Andrew Miller made quick work of the heart of the Ranger order in the 9th.  Ballgame over, Yankees win. Continue reading Game 18 Recap: Yankees 3 Rangers 1

Game 17 Recap: Rays 8 Yankees 1

[caption id="attachment_81106" align="aligncenter" width="525"]Pineda vs TB 16 Whomp, whomp. Courtesy of the AP[/caption]

Things were looking a little brighter in Yankeeland heading into yeterday’s series finale against the Rays.  They had taken the first 2 games of the series, the second in dramatic walk-off fashion on Saturday, and were in a position to complete the sweep before heading back out on the road.  That brightness lasted all of 5 pitches, as Michael Pineda imploded in the top of the 1st inning and put the no-show offense in a hole way too big to climb out of.

But boy, those first 5 pitches were something.  Pineda struck out leadoff hitter Logan Forsythe on 3 pitches and induced a quick ground ball out from Logan Morrison.  He had an 0-2 count on Evan Longoria to get out of the inning quickly, but Longoria fought back to even the count and then doubled to deep center on a 2-2 meatball fastball.  From there it unraveled quickly.  Corey Dickerson hit a 2-run homer on the next pitch to get Tampa on the board, then Steve Pearce singled, Brad Miller doubled, and Steven Souza hit another 2-run dinger to make it 5-0.  It took only 9 pitches for all that damage to be done and the boo birds were justifiably out at the Stadium.

The offense didn’t muster up much of a fight against Drew Smyly.  The only run they scored came in the bottom of the 4th after Brett Gardner took a pitch off the batting helmet to get on base and came around to score on Alex Rodriguez‘s 2-out double into the left field corner.  He missed hitting a home run by about half a foot.  The Yanks had 2 on and no outs in the 5th and didn’t plate a run, and they wasted 2 on and 1 out in the 6th.  That was all she wrote for the offense.

The Rays kept playing long ball to make sure there wouldn’t be even a hint of a threat of a comeback.  Pearce went solo in the 3rd to make it 6-0, Souza went deep again in the 5th to make it 7-1 and give Pineda 4 HR allowed for the day.  And just for good measure, Forsythe hit one off Nick Goody in the 8th.

You want to keep looking at the positives and point to the series victory, but yesterday was a disappointing way to end that series and a bad note on which to hit the road.  Bats need to wake up in Texas. Continue reading Game 17 Recap: Rays 8 Yankees 1

Game 15 Quick Recap: NYY 6 TB 3

Hey, a win! I didn’t see a single pitch of this one and I’m taking safety training classes in the office on a Saturday morning.  We’re doing bullet points:

CC Sabathia walked the tightrope in every one of his 4.2 innings, and somehow he managed to escape it with only 3 runs against him.  When he’s not on his game, you have no choice but to take that from him.

– Very nice job backing CC up by Ivan Nova, who tossed 2.1 perfect innings to bridge the gap to the back end of the bullpen and gave the offense a chance to come back.

– That comeback was sparked by a Jacoby Ellsbury steal of home in the bottom of the 5th to tie the game at 3.  It was an incredibly ballsy play on his part, stealing home in a full count with 2 outs, and he pulled it off.  This after the diving catch the other night and he went 2-3 with a double and 2 RBI in relief of Aaron Hicks.  More, please.

– Hicks left the game after injuring his shoulder diving to make a catch.  Doesn’t sound serious, but he might get a day or 2 off.

Brian McCann was the other big offensive star.  He went 2-3 with a 2-run homer, 2 R scored, and 3 RBI.  Mark Teixeira also had 3 hits and scored 2 runs.

– 6 up, 6 down for Millances.  5 strikeouts. Continue reading Game 15 Quick Recap: NYY 6 TB 3

Game 14 Quick Recap: OAK 7 NYY 3

Let’s see, how does this go again… ?

Garbage Fire

There we go.  Nailed it.  A+ recap.

Game Notes:

– Severino was good enough to win.  6 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K.  Best start of the year for him.

– Not a banner day for the bullpen B-team.  3 IP, 3 H, 3 BB, 5 ER.  On the plus side, one day closer to Chapman returning.

– Really rough go for Chasen Shreve, who gave up 2 home runs on the first 2 pitches he threw.  Gotta shake that one off.

– Jacoby Ellsbury went 3-5 and made a tremendous diving catch in the right-center field gap in the 1st inning to save a run.

– Solid game for Aaron Hicks too.  He drove in the first Yankee run with a bloop single and took a walk in 3 plate appearances, and he also made a great leaping catch into the left field foul line wall and threw another runner out on the basepaths.  Not hard to see the skills that drew Cashman to him.  Just need him to start hitting. Continue reading Game 14 Quick Recap: OAK 7 NYY 3

Game 13 Quick Recap: OAK 5 NYY 2

Early runs, no big hits with RISP, pitcher stung by one bad inning.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

Nathan Eovaldi was the victim of the one bad inning and the lack of offensive support last night.  His body of work wasn’t bad (6 IP, 3 ER, 7 K), but he gave up 3 runs on 2 doubles, 2 singles, and a sac fly by the first 5 batters of the 4th inning and that was all it took to set him up for the loss.

The offense didn’t get completely shut out.  Didi Gregorius staked the Yankees to an early lead with a solo home run in the bottom of the 2nd.  But they didn’t score again until the bottom of the 8th and that was on another solo shot by Carlos Beltran.  In between it was a whole lot of nothing.

That home run would have meant a realistic chance at a tie or walk-off win in the 9th had it not been for Branden Pinder in the top half of the inning.  He loaded the bases on 11 pitches (2 singles, walk) and Khris Davis cashed in with a 2-run single up the middle.  4-run lead heading into the final 2 innings might as well be a 4,000 run lead against this pathetic Yankee offense.

I haven’t been watching a lot of the recent games because I’ve been participating in Milwaukee Beer Week, but it sounds like that’s been for the best.  Not a lot of fun to be had watching this team right now. Continue reading Game 13 Quick Recap: OAK 5 NYY 2