Lunchtime links: Vernon Wells, the upcoming week and a spinning guy?

Good afternoon, Yankee fans.

Overall, it was a successful weekend for the Yankees who took two out of three from the Blue Jays up in Toronto. Yes, yesterday’s game was disappointing but it’s always nice to win a series in a division rival’s home ballpark.

Speaking of that home ballpark, a blog post began circulating yesterday ahead of yesterday’s game, that accused the Yankees of hiring security to kick home fans out of their own stadium if they heckle the players in the Yankees’ bullpen. It spread like wildfire and now has even been mentioned on Hardball Talk.

The author Justin Jackson filed a complaint with the Rogers Centre. I can’t wait to see the outcome.

Can I mention how much I like Vernon Wells? It’s not just because he had a great series against the Blue Jays, it’s because he’s hilarious. Following Saturday’s victory, beat reporters asked him about the reception he was receiving from Jays fans. Naturally, it wasn’t a warm greeting but Wells took in stride by saying, “They’re just calling me by my nickname, ‘Boo,’.”

Oh and then there was his fantastic play in yesterday’s loss followed by a tip of his cap to Blue Jays fans who had been riding him all weekend.…

Read more

Adjusting To Life Without Jeter


The Yankees, their fans, and even Derek Jeter himself have known that his days as the team’s starting shortstop were numbered.  That discussion was surely had with Jeter behind closed doors during his last contract negotiation and is more than likely the reason the final year of his deal became an optional one.  That timeline got sped up some when Jeter suffered his season-ending ankle injury last October and now appears to be speeding up again after last week’s announcement that Jeter had re-injured his ankle, suffering a crack in the area of the original break that will put him on the shelf until at least the All-Star break.  That revelation fell into the “disappointing but not surprising” category for many of us who questioned Jeter’s progress after the initial setback and cortisone shot, and now we, like the Yankees, have to figure out the best way to move forward without The Captain’s familiar #2 anywhere on the lineup card.

The early approach of just riding it out until Jeter came back now gets modified to something a little more permanent.  …

Read more

This week in Yankees baseball – Heading into Week 4


The New York Yankees have won four straight series and that is what Joe Girardi likes. C.C. Sabathia picked up another win. Andy Pettitte won another start. Heck, even Ivan Nova won one of his two starts. Hiroki Kuroda pitched well enough to win his start but that game became a bullpen win after the bullpen blew Kuroda’s. And perhaps we are a greedy and spoiled bunch, but it certainly seemed like the last two series should have been sweeps. The team went ahead, 4-2 on Sunday just to see the bullpen cough up four runs to give the Blue Jays the last game of the series. Back on Thursday, the Yankees were down a run heading into the ninth and Francisco Cervelli smacked a homer to tie the game. But David Phelps–who figured prominently in both losses this week–got roughed up in the twelfth inning. The week could have been better…should have been better. But it could have been worse too.…

Read more

The Farm Report: 4/21/13 De Paula fans ten

It was a good day for Scranton and trenton who both came away with solid victories Sunday afternoon. Things were not so good for Tampa and Charleston, however. Tampa came up short against Brevard County while Charleston lost both games of a doubleheader, despite a fantastic outing by Rafael De Paula.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre beat Syracuse 5-1:
After four innings there was still no score, but Addison Maruszak connected with a single to start the bottom of the fifth and Corban Joseph doubled him in. A sac fly from Zoilo Almonte plated Joseph and the RailRiders had a 2-0 edge. Jerad Head drew a walk to start the sixth and an error by David Adams put two on with one out. Jeff Kobernus singled to left, plating Syracuse’s lone run of the day. Leading 2-1 in the eighth, Scranton added some insurance runs. Austin Romine grounded a single to left and David Adams doubled him in. A single by Thomas Neal plated Romine.…

Read more

Blue Jays hand Yankees a victory that Yankee bullpen hands right back

Josh Johnson and the Blue Jays handed this game to the Yankees in the fifth inning. With the Blue Jays leading 2-1, the Yankees loaded the bases on three hits by Chris Stewart, Robinson Cano and Vernon Wells. Johnson managed to get Travis Haffner out, but after that he completely lost the strike zone. Johnson issued bases loaded walks to Lyle Overbay and Eduardo Nunez, handing the Yankees a 3-2 lead. The Yankees expanded that lead the next inning when Brett Gardner scored Jayson Nix on a sacrifice fly. Suddenly the Yankees were up by two heading into the final innings with a possible sweep on their hands.

It wasn’t meant to be. Ivan Nova walked Adam Lind to start the bottom of the sixth inning. That brought up J.P. Arencibia who doubled, putting runners on second and third with no outs. That was the end of Nova’s day. The Yankees handed things over to Boone Logan who gave up a single to Colby Rasmus, the only batter he faced.…

Read more

The Farm Report: 4/20/13 Wang returns!

wangRRChien-Ming Wang made his first out of the season, leading the RailRiders to victory as they went on to split their doubleheader against Syracuse. Trenton and Tampa both had good days, while Charleston gave up an early, big lead to Hickory.

Scranton beat Syracuse 5-3 in Game 1:
Chien-Ming Wang made his first start, since returning to the Yankees’ system. He gave up a single in the first, but Bobby Wilson gunned down Jeff Kobernus trying to steal and Wang retired the next batter to end the inning. Corban Joseph started the RailRiders’ offense with a lead off homer. With two outs, Dan Johnson drew a walk and Luke Murton, Thomas Neal and Wilson each followed with a single, plating two more runs. Wilson tried to get to second base on a throw to home, but was tagged out to end the inning. In the third, Johnson once again drew a free pass with two outs, moving to second on a single by Murton.…

Read more

Game Thread: Yankees at Blue Jays, Sunday April 21

The Yankees and the Blue Jays have gone in opposite directions so far this year. Coming into the season the Yankees were projected to struggle due to injuries and austerity, while the new look Jays were supposed to thrive. So far the Yankees are off to a strong start, while the Blue Jays are currently in dead last. But the baseball season can change from one game to the next. Today the Yankees put Ivan Nova on the mound while the Jays counter with one of their new players, Josh Johnson. Once upon a time Johnson was a rising Ace with Florida. He was also made of glass. This season he’s off to a poor start (so you know he’ll give the Jays eight strong innings). Nova, meanwhile, has also struggled. My gut says this will turn out to be a pitcher’s duel, but if I’m wrong it could be a 10-8 ball game. Use this as your game thread. Enjoy!…

Read more

Joba Chamberlain as Lenny Pike

Joba Chamberlain has been a personal favorite ever since his sizzling debut in 2007. There is just something about the guy that makes me root for him. But in the entire time he has been with the Yankees, it has always been at the back of my mind that he reminds me of somebody. For years, I could not put my finger on who it was. The round face, the straight-billed cap, his sometimes blank looking expression all hearkened back to someone from my past. I gave up a long time ago of figuring out who it was.

And then Jonathan Winters died recently. Winters had been a guy that has made me laugh for decades on end. To celebrate Winters’ life, I took a stroll on YouTube to see if I could watch some video of Winters in action. And then it struck me. When Winters played Lenny Pike in It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World, his performance was the highlight of a movie I enjoyed as a boy seeing in a drive-in movie theater.…

Read more

Kuroda is great, DRob isn’t but Yanks still win in extra innings

The Yankees were only four outs away from a shutout when the Jays tied the game in the bottom of the eighth.

The crowd of over 46,000 in Rogers Centre erupted as if it were a playoff game but those three runs were all the Blue Jays would be able to get against Yankees’ pitching. And luckily for the Yankees, they took advantage of a big Toronto error in the 11th and scored two runs to put them ahead for good to pick up their tenth win of the season.

Hiroki Kuroda was the star of the game. He nearly matched his previous start, the complete game shutout last Sunday against Baltimore, by shutting the Jays down for the majority of the game. He gave up only three hits, one walk, struck out seven and only surrendered one earned run. That only happened because David Robertson suffered his first bad outing of 2013. He came in to relieve Kuroda and gave up two hits, walked two, struck out two and gave up two runs in two-thirds of an inning.…

Read more