Game 6: #TANAK vs Buchholz

I really hate feeling this way so early in the season but tonight is a must win game. Finishing a home stand 1-5 is pretty putrid so let’s not and say we did, okay? Oh, and after this home stand ends, the Yankees will be playing 25 of their next 35 games on the road. Oy.

Here are the lineups:

RED SOX
Betts CF
Pedroia 2B
Ortiz DH
Ramirez LF
Sandoval 3B
Napoli 1B
Victorino RF
Bogaerts SS
Hanigan C

Buchholz P

YANKEES
Ellsbury CF
Gardner LF
Beltran RF
Teixeira 1B
McCann C
Rodriguez DH
Headley 3B
Drew 2B
Gregorius SS

Tanaka P

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Tanaka looks to rebound against the Red Sox

Tanaka vs TOR 2015

Courtesy of the AP

This early in the season, you want to find positives about the Yankees.

Yet this team has made it difficult with its blunders on defense, mistakes on the base paths and the poor hitting thus far. However, even after all that, one of the biggest topics that New York is going to face this year is the effectiveness of Masahiro Tanaka.

The Yankees signed Tanaka for $155 million for seven years. Last season, he suffered a partial tear of the UCL of his right elbow, and after his terrible first start of 2015 many have wondered why Tanaka didn’t just get Tommy John surgery since all the cool kids are doing it.

The Yankees have said that Tanaka is still working back and haven’t sounded the alarms just yet.

“This is not totally shocking,” Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild told reporters. “I think he’s still in the process of building arm strength and everything. His arm strength is not far off.…

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Quick hit: And the hits just keep on not coming

Good morning!

This is what a team-wide .193 batting average looks like in heat map form.

trumedia_baseball_heatmap (8)

The team’s full slash line as of this morning (and after five games) is a horrifyingly awful .193/.280/.342/.623. Their K rate is 21.5% and their walk rate is 8.9.

And here is the team’s fly ball distance grid:

trumedia_baseball_grid (3)

The balls are not going anywhere yet.

The team’s best hitter is Alex Rodriguez who is batting .278/.350/.500/.850 in 20 at bats. The worst hitter is Carlos Beltran who is batting .100/.136/.200/.336 also in 20 at bats.

Is this a blip? Just a bit of an opening week sputter to start the season? Or is it something much more sinister and scary? We’ll check in next week after the Yankees play some games on the road.

[Heat map, grid and numbers courtesy of ESPN Stats and Info]

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Sunday Morning Musings: 4/12/15

Before we get into the musings, I’d like to announce that I’ll be getting off the sidelines and doing my part to help the Yankees turn this season-opening slump around.  No, I won’t be attending the game tonight, but in a way I will be.  Those who remember my AB4AR days may remember some of my drunk Sunday Night Baseball live blogs.  They were a way for me to celebrate the Yankees being on national TV and I’m pretty positive the team has a .400 record or so when I do them, so I’m taking that tradition to Twitter tonight and drunk live tweeting the hell out of this game.

A stagnant offense, an inept defense, a chance to get swept at home by the Yankees’ biggest rivals, Masahiro Tanaka pitching with the ESPN crew there to diagnose his elbow problems, a fridge full of beer, and a fully-charged phone.  What could possibly go wrong?  For those interested in being a part of this most time-honored tradition, feel free to follow me.

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Game 5 Recap: BOS 8 NYY 4

Murphy-Tracy vs BOS

“It’s OK, man. I probably shouldn’t be out here either.” Courtesy of the AP

The Yankees needed a lot of things after last night’s 19-inning marathon.  They needed to start playing better defense, they needed to start hitting more and hitting better situationally on offense, and they needed to do a MUUUUCH better job running the bases.  Basically every key fundamental part of the game they needed to do better.

But first and foremost, they needed to get a good starting pitching performance from Adam Warren to help ease the burden on the burned out bullpen.  That’s pretty much what they got from Warren in his 5.1 innings too.  He was by no means great.  He walked 2 and struck out only 1.  But he got 12 swings and misses, he made big pitches when he had to, and he worked out of most of the trouble he created.  Of the 2 runs he gave up, 1 came in part because of an A-Rod error at first in the top of the 2nd.  …

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Game 5: Kelly vs. Warren

If you stayed up for the entire game last night, what the hell is wrong with you? Just kidding. I did too. We’re all gluttons for punishment, I guess.

Here are your lineups:

RED SOX
Holt CF
Pedroia 2B
Ortiz DH
Napoli 1B
Sandoval 3B
Craig LF
Nava RF
Bogaerts SS
Hanigan C

Kelly P

YANKEES
Gardner LF
Young CF
Beltran DH
A-Rod 1B
Headley 3B
Jones RF
Murphy C
Gregorius SS
Petit 2B

Warren P

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Game 4 Quick Recap: BOS 6 NYY 5 (19 Innings)

Eovaldi vs BOS

We feel ya, Nate. We feel ya. Courtesy of the AP

Is anybody awake out there?  Is anybody alive out there?  If you, I hope you’re reading this.  If not, I get it.  Losing blows, losing in extra innings blows, losing in extra innings when you hit 2 game-tying home runs really blows, and losing when you played 2 games in 1 over the course of almost 7 hours really, REALLY blows.  I don’t even know where to start with this one, since I dozed off sometime around the top of the 8th, so I’ll just hit some bullet points.

Nathan Eovaldi was about as Nathan Eovaldi as he’s been up to this point in his career in 5.1 innings of work.  Lotta fastball heat, not a lot of good secondary pitches, lotta hits and hard contact, and a lone strikeout.  The Sox hitters were comfortable against him and they knocked him around.  That’s a shame.

– The Yanks didn’t get much going against Wade Miley until the 6th, and of course it was Al from Miami who got them on the board with a ribbie single.  …

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Game 4: Eovaldi v. Miley

I am nearly as excited for Nate Eovaldi’s debut with the Yankees as I was for Masahiro Tanaka‘s. Perhaps I am drinking a bit too much of the Larry Rothschild Kool-Aid, but I genuinely believe that they are a match made in heaven, and that Eovaldi will take a big step forward under his watch. Hopefully, it will start tonight.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

Boston Red Sox New York Yankees
Mookie Betts, CF Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B Brett Gardner, LF
David Ortiz, DH Alex Rodriguez, DH
Hanley Ramirez, LF Mark Teixeira, 1B
Pablo Sandoval, 3B Brian McCann, C
Mike Napoli, 1B Chase Headley, 3B
Daniel Nava, LF Chris Young, RF
Xander Bogaerts, SS Stephen Drew, SS
Sandy Leon, C Gregorio Petit, 2B
Wade Miley, SP Nathan Eovaldi, SP

Enjoy the game!

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