Are the Yankees winning with “smoke and mirrors?”

I don’t really know why, but this bit of an aside in George King’s Post story on Hiroki Kuroda’s performance yesterday has really been stuck with me since I read it this morning:

Almost halfway through May, the biggest question is how long the Yankees can win with smoke and mirrors.

Wells, a member of the Angels last year when their horrific start put them in a ditch they couldn’t escape, believes the “It’s Early’’ phrase doesn’t apply.

“I learned last year you never say it’s early, good or bad,’’ he said. “You like to be in this situation, but at the same time the game has a funny way of slapping you across the face at any time. We go out and have the same mentality, continue to get great starting pitching and score enough runs to support these guys.’’

Now, the Yankees haven’t seemed particularly smoke-and-mirrors-ish to me, but then a) I tend to think of last year’s Orioles when I think of a team doing that, so maybe I’m grading too tightly, and b) I admittedly haven’t been able to keep quite as close tabs on the Yankees this year as I’ve been doing for the past three or four seasons, so maybe I’m just not seeing it.…

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The Farm Report: 5/12/13

The Yankees’ farm system didn’t have such a great day yesterday. Thankfully, Charleston saved them from a sweep across the levels.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre lost 7-6 to the Gwinnett Braves

The Railriders had a few chances to win the game in the bottom of the ninth but it was not meant to be:

Oh well. You can’t do much when guys keep striking out swinging.

Trenton Thunder were shutout 4-0 by the New Hampshire Fisher Cats

The teams were scoreless until New Hampshire scored three in the fifth inning which was more than enough to win.…

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This week in Yankees baseball


Last week, I predicted this little-engine-that-could New York Yankees’ team would go 3-3 and figured that was a reasonable expectation. I was way off base as the team finished the week 5-1 with five straight wins after opening the week with a loss. I also noted that Vernon Wells‘ Cinderella story was turning back into a pumpkin. But somebody kept the clock from reaching midnight as Wells again became the carriage that carried the Yankees this week. He hit two homers in the five games with five ribbies and only struck out once all week. Of course, he did not walk all week either, but why quibble. Wells also made a couple of great plays in the outfield.

Lyle Overbay had a very good week with two doubles and a homer for an OPS in the last five games of .929. And my perennial punching bag, Jayson Nix, had a great week and finished the week with an OPS over one.…

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The Yankees’ Wild 2013 Ride Keeps Rolling Along

Nix Overbay vs KC

Today should be fun, huh?  After starting off their “8 in 7″ road trip with a 2-1 series win in Colorado and a 3-game sweep in KC, the surging Yankees will stop off in Cleveland today on their way back home for a doubleheader to make up for last month’s rainouts.  They were 2-4 when they first came to Cleveland 5 weeks ago and used the first 2 games of that series to kickstart their season, winning both by a combined score of 25-7.  Since then the Yanks have gone 19-9, ascended to the top of the division, and silenced nearly all the critics who said they’d be done after suffering their rash of ST injuries, this extended stretch of success being driven by some of the players most expected to flop as full-time injury replacements.  Now they’ll come back to where the season really started, even more injured and worn down than they were last time, and they’ll do it with a 5-game winning streak in their pocket.…

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Kuroda, Cano and Wells combine to beat Royals 4-2

Hiroki KurodaThe Yankees swept the Royals today, winning 4-2 on Mother’s Day. The real star of the game was Hiroki Kuroda. Kuroda didn’t strike a lot of batters out, fanning just one, but he only walked one as well, limiting the Royals to six hits over 7.2 innings. With that kind of control, you don’t need a lot of strike outs. Kuroda was efficient as well, throwing just 98 pitches. He got into some trouble in the eighth inning, and even got into a verbal spat with the home plate umpire, but none of that was enough to undo a solid performance.

The Yankees got their runs off the long ball, remember that thing the Yankees weren’t supposed to have this season. The Bombers were down one to nothing in the third inning when Robinson Cano put a ball into orbit, sending it 406 feet to right center. Chris Stewart was on at the time. The shot gave the Yankees a 2-1 lead.…

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Game Thread: Yankees at Royals, Sunday May 12th

Guess who’s in first place? Not the Toronto Blue Jays. Not Tampa Bay either. None other than your New York Yankees. While it is early in the season yet, this is a good sign. It is also evidence of how fickle the baseball media is. Remember just before the season began when the new look Blue Jays were going to be the jewel of the AL East? Me neither. But it was obvious that the Jays weren’t built to last. What was less obvious was how the Rays would start a bit slowly in the division. That said, it’s tight atop the AL East and at least three, and probably four, of the team’s are going to have winning records. That’s a crowded field.

The Yankees come into today’s game winners of seven of their last ten. Hiroki Kuroda faces off against Ervin Santana. Kuroda has come into form and is once again giving the Yankees quality performances. Santana, meanwhile, is also off to a solid start.…

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Joba vs. Mo: The shush heard ’round the world

I guess the Yankees winning games and being in first place is too boring for some people.

It has been reported that before yesterday’s game, while Mariano Rivera was being interviewed by the beat writers, he got into a little bit of a tiff with Joba Chamberlain.

While Mo was answering questions in the dugout, Joba was signing autographs for fans outside of the dugout and apparently was being so loud that Rivera couldn’t hear the reporters’ questions. He told Joba to keep it down and Joba didn’t appreciate that. It was reported that Joba said, “Don’t shush me.” Then said, “Don’t ever shush me.”

Oh boy.

Now, I get that the beat writers have certain things that they do before games and that they probably wouldn’t have time to do a quick write up of the events that happened before the game. I also get that you don’t get page views with tweets but that you get them with sexy headlines and blog posts which is why everything came out after the game.…

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Game 35: The first place Yankees

In case you didn’t know, the New York Yankees are in first place right now. And while it is true that they are tied for first place with both the Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox, the accomplishment shouldn’t be diminished, especially when sports “experts” were predicting the Yankees to be playing like the Houston Astros this year.

Anyway, here are the lineups:

Gardner CF
Cano 2B
Wells LF
Hafner DH
Ichiro RF
Nix SS
Overbay 1B
Nelson 3B
Stewart C

Pettitte P

Escobar SS
Cain CF
Gordon LF
Butler DH
Hosmer 1B
Perez C
Moustakas 3B
Francoeur RF
Johnson 2B

Shields P

Go Yankees!

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