The new Nick Swisher?

Cone also mentioned that Swisher has spent a lot of his batting practices lately taking the ball to left field on outside pitches. Lord knows, that’s a good thing for the Yankees. More on that some time soon. The gist of the two mentions from Cone is that Swisher is much more focused on hitting the ball right now than he is at getting on base, which has been one of his most attractive qualities during his Yankees’ career. Swisher has walked 13.3 percent of his plate appearances historically. This year, that figure is at 8.0 percent. Swisher also has a career on-base percentage of .358, which does not sound all that impressive until you compare it to his career batting average of .252.  But this year, Swisher’s on-base percentage is only .313.

To put Swisher’s current on-base percentage into perspective, his three years with the Yankees have produced on-base percentages of .371, .359 and .374 last season. Again, the different approach seems very noticeable.…

Read more

Thinking about mid-season promotions

INF Corban Joseph (Double-A Trenton):

Joesph isn’t a hot young high-ceiling prospect or anything, but he has emerged as a pretty dangerous hitter at Double-A over the past couple of years. Joseph played his first full year of Double-A ball in 2011, hitting a very solid .277/.353/.415 (.346 wOBA) in 564 plate appearances. He started this year on the disabled list after suffering a shoulder injury in spring training, but he’s back playing now, and he’s absolutely raking. Through his first 61 plate appearances he’s hitting a scorching .373/.475/.549, which translates to a .466 wOBA and a wRC+ of 197! It’s still not clear that the 23 year old Joseph has the power or defensive ability at second base to be a big league regular, but it would appear to be clear that he’s got Double-A pitching down after 733 total plate appearances there, and is definitely ready to move up to Triple-A.

RHRP Mark Montgomery (High-A Tampa):

Montgomery burst on the radar last season when the Yankees promoted him to Charleston after just four appearances for Staten Island.…

Read more

Nova’s Slider Giveth and Taketh Away

When Ivan Nova began his brilliant second half last year, he surprised everyone by adding a new and efficient slider. He increased it’s usage monthly, throwing it 11% in June, 16% in July, 24% in August, and 19% in September. Breaking out a pitch mid-year and showing plus stuff is very unusual, and...

Read more

The last time we went down this road

Now, no one is going to fault you if you’ve scrubbed your brain of these memories, but let’s take a stroll back to a similarly unhappy time in Yankeedom. It was May 10th, and the Yankees were coming home after taking two out of three games from the Rangers in a Mother’s Day weekend series. The highlight of the weekend had been Derek Jeter‘s two home run performance on Sunday, and there was hope that The Captain would soon begin to turn the corner on his lackluster early performance. The Yankees had three games wit the Royals before entertaining the Red Sox over the weekend, and things started as planned with a win in the opening game of the Kansas City.

Then the wheels fell off of everything suddenly and totally. The Yankees lost the final two games of the Kansas City series before being swept by the Red Sox. In the middle of all that, all hell broke loose in the Bronx when the struggling Jorge Posada took himself out of the lineup after Joe Girardi penciled him into the ninth spot in the lineup for a prime time game with Boston.…

Read more

The Farm Report: 5/20/12

With a 4-1 lead, the Thunder kept adding on in the eighth.  Adams and Luke Murton both drew walks, moving over on a wild pitch.  Kevin Mahoney grounded out to first baseman Koby Clemens (Roger’s son, who – as the NH season ticket holder sitting next to me said – hits like his father), allowing Adams to score.  Murton scored on another wild pitch, for a 6-1 edge.  Brewer led off the ninth with a double to left and Mujica singled him in.  Joseph drove a double to right, putting runners on the corners.  Adams hit a sac fly to center, plating Mujica and giving Trenton a healthy 8-1 lead entering New Hampshire’s last at bats.  Shaeffer Hall was pitching a fantastic game and went back out for the ninth and a shot at a complete game.  He got the first out and then gave up a single to John Tolisano.  Hall struck out Van Kirk, but left a ball right in the middle of the plate for Mike McDade who clubbed a massive two-run homer to left.  …

Read more