Monday, May 31, 2010

A Taste Of Their Own Medicine

Looks like the Yankees can make late-game comebacks too.  After getting shut down by former Red Sock Justin Masterson for 6 innings, the Bombers finally came through in the 7th with a 2-out, 2-run Derek Jeter single (he's finally back to finding gaps and holes in the outfield instead of the shortstop's glove), and a 3-run Teix message to left (he's still flailing around at the plate for the most part, but dude still has 34 RBIs). 

Good A.J. outbattled Bad A.J. despite Bad A.J.'s best efforts to blow the game  in the 7th inning, and Joe did the right thing sticking with him through 8 innings to preserve the lead after watching his bullpen yesterday and over the last month.  Mo also looked good for the first time in a while yesterday, striking out 2 of the 3 batters he faced in the 9th and making a great play leaping over a shattered bat to field the game-ending groundout.

If you're a fan, you still don't quite get over the sting of Saturday's loss that never should have happened, but at the end of the day it's still another chance for a series win today and another game off the division lead deficit with Tampa scuffling right now (lost 5 out of last 7).

Happy Memorial Day, everybody.  Enjoy the cookouts and red, white, and blue caps today.

Sunday, May 30, 2010


(Photo courtesy of The AP)

Throw strikes, you fucking fat piece of garbage!!!  6 runs score before you can get one goddamn out!?!?!  If I wanted that crap I would have put Chad Gaudin in earlier!!  FUCK!!!!!!

OK, I'm cool.  Just had to get that off my chest before heading to breakfast today.

What A Nightmare!

Whew!  I just woke up in a cold sweat.  I was having this terrible dream that CC pitched another shitty game and the Yanks still lead 10-4 after 6 innings.  But then it got really bad and D-Rob and Joba just completely imploded in the 7th inning to choke away the entire lead and they ended up losing 13-11 and I woke up screaming.  But it was just a dream so I feel better.  Now I can turn on SportsCenter.

Wait, What the fuck?!...

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Thanks, Cleveland

Well that was a nice way to start off the homestand, eh?  Swish and Cano are jacking HRs into orbit, Hughes is back to striking kids out at a >1/inning clip and giving up less than one baserunner per inning and (GASP!!) he used his curveball a little bit, and C-Grand stepped back into the lineup and looked pretty solid at the plate and in the field.

They may lose LeBron after this summer, but at least Cleveland can take solace in the fact that they will still be able to provide endless amounts of joy for Yankee fans with their shitty baseball team.  Thanks, gentlemen.

** Officially in Baltimore now for the lax tourney.  Consider yourselves lucky if you get one post a day.  The things I do for you people.**

Friday, May 28, 2010

Well At Least This Guy Had A Good Time Last Night

Amen, brother!  Get you some of that pork chop.  There definitely wasn't anything going on in the game that was worth watching so why not get all up in Kim Jones' shit and get some nourishment while you're at it?

And can somebody tell Michael Kay to calm the fuck down??  Really, dude with the "Oh that's disgusting!" line?  It's a goddamn pork chop on a stick.  It wasn't like he was chowing down on a deep-fried moose turd.  Kim obviously wasn't going to eat the thing so why let it go to waste?  I'll tell you one thing, if I'm ever at Target Field and Kim Jones is waving a pork chop on a stick in front of my face, I'm chomping down on that thing faster than you can even think.  Might even take some of Kim's hand with it too.

P.S.- I know I'm probably behind with this observation but again, out in Wisconsin, no YES Network, cut me some slack.  But what's the deal with Kim's new hair?  The darker, longer look?  I'm not feeling it at all.  Give me the shorter blonde look that I know and love.

You Suck

(Photo courtesy of The AP)

That's right, Javy.  I'm talking to you.  How many hard hit balls did you plan on giving up last night?  Even the outs were loud.  Consider yourself lucky that none of those were comebackers to the mound or you might be laying in the ICU this morning.  Throw your buddies Chan Ho and Teix in with you, add a little milk and ice, and it's a full-on smoothie of sucktitude in Yankeeland right now.

15 runs scored in the last 6 games?  What the hell is going on here??  Thank Joe Pesci I'm heading to Baltimore for the weekend to watch some D-1 lacrosse.  Now THOSE GUYS know how to put some points on the board.  Also thank Joe Pesci that the Yanks get their next 6 against the Indians and Orioles and then a series against Houston a bit later.  If that trio of baseball garbage can't get the offense going then I don't know what will.

Welcome back tonight, Curtis.  Hopefully Joe takes my lineup advice and puts you in the 2-spot.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

That's More Like It

(Photo Courtesy of The AP)

Well the team still isn't hitting, but that fact is a lot easier to swallow when you hold one late inning lead, get a clutch hit in the 9th inning of a tie game when you need one, and come away with 2 wins in 1 day.

Jeet hits a big homer in the 6th to restart Tuesday's game and the bullpen holds down the fort to preserve A.J.'s good start and get him a win.  And then in the nightcap Swish makes sure that another fantastic Andy Pettitte outing didn't go to waste with a game-winning solo bomb in the top of the 9th.  Oh, and Mo closed out both games to get into the double digit save column.  Almost forgot he was still on the team.

Momentum, anyone?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Mother Nature Apparently Not An A.J. Burnett Fan

Good A.J. decides to show up last night, dude is fucking dealing, and the damn weather just won't cooperate.  The Yanks already have enough to worry about with their recent lack of pitching and hitting without having to worry about how the weather is going to screw them too.  Now they have to finish one game today, presumably by using their bullpen for 4 innings, and then turn around and play another whole game with a depleted bullpen.

This shit never would have happened in the Metrodome.  Just sayin'...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Where Should C-Grand Bat When He Returns To The Lineup?

With the possibility of Curtis Granderson returning to the lineup this week on the horizon, it is worth asking the question of where should he hit?  By now it should be obvious to everybody that the injuries have caught up to the Yankee lineup.  Guys like Cervelli and Brett Gardner have started to level out and come back to Earth, other guys like Marcus Thames, Randy Winn, Ramiro Pena, Greg Golson, and Kevin Russo should just not be getting everyday Major League at-bats, and the rest of the regulars (Jeter, A-Rod, Teix, Cano, Swish) have for the most part done nothing over the past 2+ weeks.  Considering all of that, where does C-Grand seem to make the most sense?  I personally think that upon his return, the lineup should look something like this:

1) Jeter- SS
2) Granderson- CF
3) Teix- 1B
4) A-Rod- 3B
5) Cano -2B
6) Swisher- RF
7) Thames/Juan Miranda (depending on the opposing pitcher)- DH
8) Cervelli- C
9) Gardner- LF

Between Nick Johnson's rough start and injury and Brett Gardner's recent slump, the Yanks have gotten next to nothing from the 2-hole in the lineup.  Granderson would add some much-needed pop to that spot and could give Jeter a little more protection than he's getting right now from Gardner.  Just like Gardner, Granderson's speed makes him less of a risk to ground into double plays, as does his high K rate.  But unlike Gardner, Granderson's pop allows for more RBI opportunities early in the lineup, both for him and for The Horse and Teix behind him.

The argument could be made for Swish in the 2-hole, but given his new approach at the plate this season and his resulting high contact rate and current career high batting average, I would rather have him in a spot in the middle of the order where he can drive in runs.  I can live with Granderson striking out with Jeter on base and leaving A-Rod and Teix 2 outs to work with to get the run home as opposed to him striking out from the 6-spot with runners on and 2 outs to end an inning.

You platoon Thames and Miranda at the DH spot depending on whether the opposing pitcher is a righty or lefty both to maximize their value as hitters and to guarantee that Thames never sees time in a Major League outfield again.  DH'ing him allows the Yankees to put their strongest hitting lineup out along with their strongest possible defensive lineup to start a game.

Lastly, you bump Frankie and Gardy back down in the order, where they thrived to start the season.  These guys have proven themselves as capable everyday Major League players, but still not quite capable of being consistent in high-impact situations (run producer in the 6- or 7-spot for Cervelli; table setter in the 2-spot for Gardner).  By moving them back down, the Yankees would take some of the pressure off of them and allow them to get back to doing what they did best at the start of the year.  Plus, having Gardner at the end of the lineup allows the Yanks to re-establish that cyclical pattern to their lineup that they started the year with and put Gardner in the position to help create runs with the top of the order coming up behind him.

That's just what I think makes the most sense, but what do I know?  I just have a marketing degree.  Obviously Granderson isn't going to be plugged back in and expected to start raking immediately.  There is going to be a period of adjustment as he gets used to playing every day again.  But I will still take a recovering, rehabbing Curtis Granderson over a 100% Randy Winn or Ramiro Pena (no offense, guys) any day of the week.

Yankees Gain Half A Game In The Standings!!!

That's what I'm talking about, baby!!  You know the slump is over when the Yanks are chopping their deficit in the division to pieces without even playing a game!

I don't even know why Minnesota is bothering to show up tonight.  The Bronx Bombers are BACK!!!!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Is Phil Hughes Falling Into A Dangerous Pattern?

Saturday night was Phil Hughes' second consecutive start in which he threw a lot of pitches (117) for a lot of strikes (88) without getting a lot of outs (5 2/3 IP).  The Mets, like the Red Sox earlier in the week, fouled off an incredible number of pitches (42) to drive up Phil's pitch count, work to give themselves something good to hit, and eventually knock him out of the game.  Yesterday, Matt from The Yankee U had some interesting comments on Phil's approach against the Mets:

"The most trouble Hughes saw was against the Mets’ 3-4-5 hitters. These hitters, Jason Bay, Ike Davis, and David Wright, saw just 7 non fastballs (6 curves, 1 change) in their nine combined at bats. The most concerning part of this was the third at bat against Wright, seen here. While the result, a strikeout, was very good, the fact that Hughes and Cervelli had the same approach against Wright as they did in the previous two at bats (RBI singles), is unsettling. Either they weren’t recognizing that Wright was catching up to the fastball/cutter or Hughes was just being too stubborn and shaking off any of Cervelli’s calls for non-fastballs/cutters.

... As the season progresses, I hope Phil realizes that he can’t just keep going to the fastball and cutter to put guys away easily. His curveball has very good bite to it and I hate to see it go unused. As for the changeup, well, I’m actually kind of angry about that. All spring training, we were told that Phil Hughes had improved his change up and that was the reason he won the fifth starter’s job over Joba Chamberlain. This was a lie. Hughes has thrown 13 changeups all season, including last night when he threw just one." (courtesy of TYU)

In praising Hughes recently, I commented on how his approach on the mound this season seemed to be one of the biggest keys to his success.  He was learning to recognize what was working and what wasn't on the mound and use those pitches to his advantage to attack and get hitters out.  Over the course of his early starts, Phil was pounding away with the fastball and the cutter, getting ahead in the count, and then pitching to contact to get outs or throwing the curve sparingly as his strikeout pitch.

Judging by the results of his last 2 outings, however, it seems like teams have started to catch on to Hughes' approach and are taking a more aggressive stance against him, fouling off his offerings knowing he is going to stay away from his off-speed stuff and come right back with the heat or the cutter.  And this is the other, much more dangerous side, to the coin that is Phil Hughes' approach.  It's one thing to pitch to your strengths and try to dictate the way you want a game to go.  It's another to pitch to your strengths so much that your approach becomes monotonous and teams pick up on it to the point that they change their approach accordingly and then THEY start to dictate where the game goes.

This is all part of the maturation process that Hughes is still going through and will continue to adapt as the season moves forward.  Hughes has had great success early on with his 2 strongest pitches, but to be a complete pitcher and top-line starter he needs to throw more curveballs and work his changeup into his repertoire more often.  I agree with Matt that Hughes' curveball is already solid and needs to be thrown more and also that all the raving that was done about his changeup in Spring Training means nothing if he is never going to incorporate it into game situations.

Phil has already made great strides this season towards becoming a top-line starter, but he is by no means a complete pitcher yet.  He needs to work with his catchers and Dave Eiland to work more off-speed stuff into his approach and keep hitters honest so he can still get max value out of his fastball and cutter.  I'm sure this is something that Hughes, Eiland, and Joe are already aware of and it will be interesting to see how much Phil changes his approach during his next couple outings.

(All this being said, Hughes is still 5-1 with a 2.72 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, and 49 Ks in 49.2 IP this season.  Pretty damn good for a kid who's younger than I am pitching at the Major League level.)

Holy Piss!

(Photo courtesy of The AP)

Well a shitty week got even shittier with another sloppy loss last night.  CC was plain awful and once again the Yanks decided to wait until the 9th inning to start hitting the ball.  If you're keeping score at home, this team has gone 5-10 since shellacking the Red Sox on that Saturday afternoon 2 weeks ago.

With as well as the club started, you had to expect the Yankees would come back to Earth and things would start to average out, especially with the sudden rash of injuries, and that has generally been the case.  CC and Phil Hughes have been bad the last 2 times through the lineup, and A.J. Burnett looks lost out there, even with Cervelli catching him.  The bullpen has been a constant merry-go-round of who's unavailable and who's ineffective, with Mo leading the charge over the past week.  And the Robinson Canos and Nick Swishers of the world have stopped mashing the way they were in April.  Mark Teixeira made a brief cameo earlier this month but now he is nowhere to be found.

But these last couple weeks have been about more than just injuries and the law of averages.  The Yankees just haven't been playing good baseball.  Absolutely no hitting from anybody in the top 6 of the order, no clutch hits with RISP, starters either not being able to locate the simplest of fastballs or not being able to put hitters away once they get ahead in the count, bad errors all around the field, and a glaring lack of energy and no sense of urgency coming from the team until the 9th inning when it's almost like everybody finally realizes they're losing the game.

Right now this team looks tired and worn down.  The injuries have definitely caught up to them, evidenced by their lack of pop and production coming from everybody not named Francisco Cervelli right now, but that's part of the game that you have to deal with and people need to step up in those situations.  And by people, I mean Jeter, A-Rod, Teix, Cano, the veterans, the heart of the order.  Being top 3 in all the major offensive categories in the AL is nice and all, but that doesn't mean anything when you aren't getting your hits and runs when it counts.  Even Joe is starting to get frustrated with the lack of production coming from this team right now, and you usually couldn't get a rise out of the guy if you jammed a cattle prod up his ass.

This off day comes at the perfect time.  Everybody needs a day to rest, re-focus, re-energize, and get their collective shit together.  I know it ain't Jeet's style, but with Jorge out of the lineup and on the shelf, he needs to step up and fill that vocal leader void in the clubhouse.  A little 10-15-minute "players only" meeting to get everybody back together and get some good vibes going seems like a good idea right now.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


Yeah, I know. I've been MIA the last couple days. I've been busy saving my company and dominating lacrosse tournaments, deal with it.

What'd I miss? Did the Mets get spanked all the way to their side of town yet? I heard some rumor that the Yanks actually split the first 2 games of the series and Javy Vazquez pitched incredible while Phil looked shaky again yesterday but that all sounds like bullshit to me.

At least I made it back in time for CC tonight. Hammer, don't hurt 'em!!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Yogurt! I Hate Yogurt!


Nothing like a little "Spaceballs" humor to distract us Yankee fans from the recent 4-8 swing.  Good thing the Triple-A Mets are next on the schedule.  The bottom of their order makes Cervelli-Thames-Winn-Pena look like Murderer's Row.

(Photo courtesy of the AP)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Yankees Situation Reaches Threat Level Blue

We can now officially call this the first rough patch of the season for the Yankees.  The alert level has been raised to code blue, and here's why (as if you needed an explanation):

- The rotation is starting to come back to Earth, especially with Bad A.J. looking like he's ready to settle in for the rest of the month.

- The lineup is in complete shambles due to injuries (C-Grand, Johnson, and now Posada out for a month with a broken foot) and ineffectiveness (Jeter slumping, bottom of the order that includes Cervelli 6th, Thames 7th, Winn 8th, and Pena 9th).  Jorge's injury is an absolute killer, far more than losing Johnson.  His bat and his leadership are going to be greatly missed and it's up to the other veterans still in the lineup to step their game up in his absence.

- The bullpen continues to be a mess both with how it is handled by Joe and how the guys coming out of it perform once they're called upon.  How Boone Logan is still on the 25-man roster is beyond me.

The only saving grace is that the Yanks are still 25-15 and can afford to try to ride this out before even thinking of hitting the panic button.  Andy The Stopper is on the mound tonight and if they can salvage a split against Tampa they can look to build a little momentum against the team formerly known as the New York Mets this weekend.

Interleague play couldn't come at a better time if you're a Yankee fan right now. 

** Site will be a little slow again over the next 2 days.  GD company workshops.  **

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Linkapalooza Nugget For The Day

While the rest of us bitch and moan and wonder what the Yankees are going to do about their awful bullpen and bare bones bench, Bill Schedler at The Bronx View put together an excellent piece on being a true Yankee fan and what that means to him.

I will take a bit of umbrage with Bill's over-the-top desire to use the "we" term when talking about the Yankees, but that primarily comes from me having to talk to so many fugazi Yankee, Met, and Red Sox fans throughout my life who could barely name 5 players on the current roster yet continued to talk about how "we ahh going to fackin' kill you guys this yee-ah" like they were going to be batting leadoff that night.  But in Bill's case, his devotion and loyalty to a team (especially the Yankees) gives him a free pass to throw "we" around in my book.

Everything else in this post was spot on, from Bill's take on what the game of baseball used to be and used to mean to those who played to where it is and what it stands for now ($$$$$), to his logic explaining how fans, true fans, are just as much a part of the team as players are because they are the one constant in any professional sports team, to his points about what makes Yankee fans in particular such a great fanbase.

If you have 10 minutes today, give this post a read through and take a minute to consider your own fan-dom.

(And then you can get back to worrying about who's available out of the 'pen tonight and complaining about how much Randy Winn sucks)


(Photo used courtesy of LoHud)

Did anybody even WANT to win last night's game???  There was bad starting pitching (Boston), bad relief pitching (Yankees), bad baserunning (Boston), and bad fielding (both).  In the end it was the double trouble combo of Marcus "Stonehands" Thames and the suddenly human Mo that cost the Yankees what could have, would have, and should have been an ugly win, wasting a solid CC outing in the process.  Joba also looked like a pile of shit in the 8th inning and Papelbon almost coughed it up again in the bottom of the 9th.  I was almost ready to call the thing a tie.

Joe really wasn't kidding when he said the bullpen is a mess right now.  The Yanks are either stuck with guys who can't work because they threw too many pitches in their last outing or guys who just flat out can't get 3 outs to save themselves.  That's also now been 2 straight outings where their best 2 have looked more like Clark Kents than Supermen and judging by their pitch counts last night, I would say they are also both unavailable tonight against the Rays.

And to really sting your ass if you're a Yankee fan, if the bullpen wasn't in such shambles, the Yankees wouldn't have had to option Greg Golson down to make room in the 'pen for Mark Melancon last night, Golson would have been in right field in the bottom of the 9th instead of Thames, and he probably wouldn't have dropped the easiest pop up in the history of pop ups.

 When you're talking about Greg Golson being the key factor to a win, you know it's tough times.  Somebody rub some Icy Hot on Nick Swisher's (or Steve Swisher's) biceps and get him back out there, STAT!!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Can Somebody Throw Some Cold Water On Andrew Marchand?

The March must have been a little excited after the Yanks win last night, and I can't really blame him.  I myself christened my new luxurious leather armchair with its first ever Yankee-related freakout as soon as the ball left A-Rod's bat in the 9th, complete with TV clicker toss, multiple fist pumps, and a hot lap around the apartment living room.  But Andrew might be reading a little TOO much into last night's win:

"A-Rod did it again on Monday night, slamming a game-tying two-run ninth inning shot off Jonathan Papelbohn.

Then Marcus Thames finished off Papelbohn with his own two-run shot and the question is: Did the Yankees just finish off the Red Sox?" (courtesy of ESPN NY's 
Yankee blog)

Andy, Andy, Andy.  Take it easy, buddy.  To quote The Wolf from Pulp Fiction, "let's not start sucking each other's dicks just yet."  It was the 38th game of the season.  We're not even a quarter of the way home and you're already going to bury the Sawx?  Let's not forget that this is the same team that flat out owned the Yankees from the 2004 ALCS through the summer of last year.  Sure they are a lot older, creakier, weaker, and shittier than they were back then, but you still can't write them off just yet, especially when the Yanks are riddled with injuries and bullpen issues and the Rays haven't come back to Earth yet.

Don't get me wrong, nobody loves calling out the Sawx for sucking at baseball and fucking up constantly and rubbing it in their face when they lose to the Yankees more than me.  But it was just one game and there is still plenty more baseball to be played.  So put your pants back on, Andrew, let go of the bottle of Jergens, and sit back down at your computer and do a little reporting.

Yanks-Sox Game 38 Thoughts And Afterthoughts

(Photo courtesy of The AP)

Happy times...

(Photo courtesy of NY Daily News)

Happier times...

(Photo courtesy of The AP)

Happiest times!

- It was right around this time last season that the Yankees started their run of magical walk-off wins.  Last night's couldn't have been much better so we'll see how what this does for a team that is still incredibly beat up and depth-deprived moving forward.

- Tough start for Phil Hughes last night, but a quick look at the numbers shows that he really wasn't awful.  He threw 104 pitches through 5 innings, which is hardly efficient.  But that high number can be attributed to the Red Sox fighting off a lot of good pitches last night and making Hughes work until they got something to hit.

Hughes threw first-pitch strikes to 16 of the 22 batters he faced and 71 of his 104 pitches were thrown for strikes, so he wasn't wild or missing spots badly.  His strike breakdown shows the true story: 20 looking, 5 swinging, 28 fouled off, and 18 in play.  The Red Sox just hacked away at most of Hughes' stuff and wore him down, which is what good hitters will do.  Shit, it's what the Yankees do to pretty much everybody they face.  Hughes gave up 6 hits and just 1 walk, so his command was there.  He just threw a couple bad cutters and Boston made him pay.

What I liked was after the game Hughes seemed to know exactly what happened.  He credited Boston for battling and fouling pitches off and acknowledged that he wasn't able to put guys away with the cutter after getting ahead in the count.  He wasn't lost or clueless out there last night; he knew what was going on and was in control, he just got beat by a couple of good swings.  Even after his first bad outing of the year, Hughes is still 5-0 with a 2.25 ERA.  So anybody who's thinking of picking his start apart last night can just calm the F down right now.

- If you really want to throw some blame around, how about Dave Eiland?  Kid is looking good through 4 innings and then gives up consecutive hits to Scutaro and Pedroia after 2 long battles.  How about coming out to talk to him before Drew steps up, Dave???  Reassure him, ask him how he feels, tell him not to worry about it, ANYTHING!!  Just get your ass out of the dugout and do your goddamn job.

- Girardi won't be winning any Coach of the Game awards either for his bullpen management last night.  Boone Logan in the 6th?  Yuck.  Chan Ho Park for a second inning in his first game back?  Are you kidding me?  I know he was holding Joba out and they're trying to set up Javy to start on Friday, but you can't let Park come back out in the 8th.  He looked good in the 7th, he did his job, let that be it.  The difference between Park in the 7th and 8th was like night and day and that's an awful job by Joe leaving him out there, regardless of whether or not it was against righty hitters.

- Speaking of Javy, how's that for a little morale boost?  Enter in the 9th, strike out the only batter you face, and then pick up a win for the efforts.  Kind of balances out the sting of losing the tough decision in Detroit last week.

- Jorge Posada can keep getting banged up all he wants if Cervelli is going to keep doing what he's doing at the plate.  Dude has 15 RBIs in just 60 at-bats on the season.

- Good luck with the surgery today, Nick.  See you in August, maybe.  Thanks for nothing.

- Here's another name to add to the Yankee injury list, via the NY Post:

"Steve Swisher's left biceps strain is still preventing him from batting left-handed."

Well shit!  It's bad enough that Nick Swisher is out of the lineup, now the Yankees are missing his brother, Steve, too??  Any more tragedies like this and they are going to be forced to go out and get a lefty bat for the bench.  Godspeed, Steve Swisher.  Get healthy soon.

- Don't look now, but The Horse has 31 RBIs and Teix has 30.  Now that these guys are heating up, imagine what they could do if Jeter could stop grounding out to short and actually get on base!

- After a win like last night's you really want to come out and keep the momentum going.  And what better way to do that than by facing the human batting cage pitching machine, Josh Beckett?  I'm almost salivating at the thought of how many hits and run the Yanks can put up tonight against him.  And CC is due for a dominating start so a combination of the 2 and a crushing 11-2 victory tonight would be great to get with Tampa coming into town tomorrow.

Monday, May 17, 2010


How do ya like them apples?!?!?!

First The Fucking Horse goes yard to tie it up and then Marcus Thames makes Papelbon pay for daring to cross Dark Helmet and a great game that turned into a horseshit game ends up being a great game again all in 4 hours.

Yep, just Yanks-Sox baseball.  What else is new?

Nothing is better than watching Jonathan Papelbon blow saves.  Except watching him blow saves to the Yankees.  Seriously, nice location on those fastballs, bro.  Gardner slapped your shit into left, Teix almost parked one, The A-Horse demolished one, and Thames' was a no doubter as soon as it left the bat.  What a fucking toolbox.  Have fun watching this videotape over and over again you piece of trash.


This Guy Is Ready For Yanks-Sox Tonight

Are you?

I mean sure he's a complete freakshow and probably has no clue what the hell is going on in whatever game it was in which he was cheering/spazzing out this wildly.  But at least he's wearing a legit Red Sox jersey, not those green and pink abortions that everybody else in Fraud Sox Nation tries to pull off.

I'm just kidding.  This guy is a complete jackass.  Yelling and screaming wildly like it's Game 7 while his team continues to stumble its way to an 83-79 season.  Good luck with that, bro.

Fuck that guy, fuck the Red Sox, and fuck the rest of their lamesauce fanbase.  Give me the bleacher creatures doing the Yankee roll call and Freddy Sez the frying pan guy all day.

Is Larry Brooks Kidding?

Here's a beauty from Larry's "end of the world" take on the Yankees' loss yesterday:

"Instead of going into these next seven games against the Red Sox, Rays and Mets as an all-powerful 25-12 behemoth able to leap tall buildings and all obstacles with a single bound, they're a 24-13 second-place team that needs more help from its marquee players than its been getting." (courtesy of The NY Post)

Larry, you've got to be kidding me, right?  25-12 makes the Yankees a behemoth and 24-13 makes them nothing?  You forget, dear Larry, that even if the Yankees would have won yesterday and ended the week at 25-12, THEY STILL WOULD HAVE BEEN IN SECOND PLACE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Yesterday's loss did nothing more to change the Yankees than any of the other 13 they have this season.  It was a shitty loss, but it was a freak loss that more than likely won't happen again this season.  If you're looking for a team to fold its sails and wither and die because they lost a tough game at home, go cover the fucking Mets.

In your attempt to spread doom and gloom throughout Yankeeland, you actually proved just how strong the Yankees are.  They have been ravaged by injuries in the last month, are piecing together lineups day by day, are juggling their rotation to keep Javy Vazquez away from anything even remotely resembling a pressure situation and heaping more responsibility on their 23-year-old 5th starter who is working on an innings limit this year, they didn't get much from Teix and The Horse in April, they haven't gotten anything from Jeter and Cano in May, and yet they are still 24-13 and in second place in what is the strongest division in baseball.

In other words, THEY'RE FINE!!!!  Teix and A-Rod are coming around, Jorge is mashing since getting back into the lineup, and Jeter and Cano are going to start hitting again eventually.  When all these marquee guys do start to come together and produce, the Yankees are going to steam right by the Rays and start pulling away with the division.

But I'm sure when that time comes, Larry will have something  else to complain about, like maybe how the Yankees ONLY have 3 guys in the top 10 RBI leaders, or ONLY have 8 All-Stars, or are ONLY a team 25 games over .500 instead of being 26 over if they wouldn't have lost to the Twins on May 16.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


What the fuck just happened???

The Yanks get 5 innings of 1-run ball from Mitre, D-Rob manages to keep the ball in the yard for 2 innings and then in the 8th Joba and Mo completely shit the bed to cough up a 3-1 lead and transform it into a 6-3 deficit?  Is that even real life?  1 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 5 ER, and a grand slam given up by Mo; was that really him and Joba out there or Paul Quantrill and Jose Veras in disguise?

You hate to lose a game like that, especially when you get a good start from your 6th starter and the majority of your offensive production came from Randy Winn and Ramiro Pena today.  But if it takes an act of the darkest black magic that causes Joba and Mo to bomb that badly to allow the Twins to finally win a game against the Yanks, then I guess that's not so bad.  At least Minny has a little something to hang their hat on on the flight home.

P.S.- The top of the order striking out to end the game after Winn and Pena get on base to lead off the bottom of the 9th is like getting kicked in the balls.

** Updated stats coming later tonight.  I have a Brewers game to go to.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know it's lame, but they're box seats and it gives me an opportunity to wear all my Yankee World Series gear out to another ballpark again.  I'm jumping at that chance 25 hours a day, 8 days a week.**

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Nick Johnson's Wrist Might Need Surgery? Who Saw THAT Coming???

If you had May 15 in your "Nick Johnson's First Wrist-Related DL Trip of the Season" office pool then congratulations on your winnings.  Read it and weep, via The New York Times. 

3 weeks if the cortisone shot works?  4-6 if he ends up needing surgery (he will end up needing surgery)?  First of all, what kind of crazy internet porn is Johnson wanking it to that he has such a problematic wrist as a result?  Second of all, what is his wrist made of, plastic coffee stirrers and paper mache?

Early in the season or not early in the season, I'm going to pencil this signing in under "Bad Move" for Cash.  Now we get to enjoy the "Juan Miranda Show" for the next 2 months.

Oh My Goodness Gracious!!! Andy Pettitte Is BACK!!!

Doesn't quite have the same ring as Big Suze's original Rawjah Clemens freak out, but it was still good to see Andy back out on the hill today and back out there dominating as he was before the injury.  Nothing a little extra rest and a few HGH shots can't fix, huh?  (I keed, I keed)

So far this weekend has gone exactly as I predicted.  It's always good to know that no matter how difficult a road trip or schedule may be, the Yankees always have the Twins to fall back on when they need to right the ship and start knocking teams around again.

Thanks, Minnesota.  The team needed that before their 2-and-2 against Bahston and Tampa next week.  Have fun getting your asses dominated by Sergio Mitre tomorrow.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A Day Of Reckoning May Be Coming

Who dareth speak foul of The Almighty?

First be the sinner Jayson Stark, he of ESPN:

"It isn't every year that the International League has two catching prospects as hyped as Jesus Montero (Yankees) and Carlos Santana (Indians). But a scout covering that league says there's "no comparison" between those two....

Montero... "just got benched for laziness, basically [i.e., not running out a ground ball]. And from what I've seen, the [Austin] Romine kid in Double-A is going to pass right by him, and Montero is going to end up as pretty much a right-hand-hitting DH. He's got talent. But his swing is really long, and he has no discipline. So the Yankees are going to have two frontline catchers. But they're Romine and [Francisco] Cervelli."

And second to preach at the altar of Satan be Joel Sherman, a Yankee wolf in sheep's clothing:

"The true sin is that he was removed from a recent game and benched for not hustling and sulking. This came at a time when the Yankees had a couple of injuries that have begun to negatively impact their offense, including to DH Nick Johnson. Would the Yanks have summoned Montero if he were hitting well? Possibly not. They were determined in spring to get him 100 games as a catcher this year in the minors....

However, the Yanks are not going to call up a young player acting like a baby, and so Montero might have hurt himself now and into the near future.

In spring training, I sat in an office at the Yankees’ minor league complex and spoke with Montero. During that interview, Montero told me that Jorge Posada is “my daddy.’ That was his way of saying that while he was in major league spring training he followed Posada around like a puppy dog and hoped to emulate him.

If that were the case, then he learned very little. You could criticize Posada for being a bad baserunner or a stone-handed catcher. But his sincerity of effort has never been in question for one second of his Yankee career. Posada cares about being a professional and being a Yankee, and so he plays with passion.

And if Montero needs to see how far fervor can go then just look at what Francisco Cervelli is doing with the Yankees. He is creating a career with expected defense, unexpected offense and boundless enthusiasm. Cervelli is honoring the legacy of Posada. Not Montero."

Nay, Joel.  The true sin beeth thou daring to talk ill of such a great and mighty Lord of the Pinstripes.  Consider thyself lucky if thou dost not take ill or feel the icy hand of death upon thyself tonight in one's bed.  The Almighty needeth not run out every play at first base.  And dare risk possible injury to the legs that will surely carry the future middle of the Yankee order??  How dare thy even suggesteth such a thing!  The Almighty will be the ventricles of the heart of the lineup; the very lungs that shall breathe life into the team of the future.  And he will runneth as hard as he damn well please.  If thou don't like it, thou can sucketh upon a dick.

Seriously, though.  Who cares about this?  Kid is fucking 20 years old and experiencing his first tough times as a professional baseball player, maybe even as a baseball player period.  Leave him alone and let him learn from his mistakes.

Nobody fucks with the Jesus!!

The Green, Green Grass Of Home

In honor of the Yanks returning to The Stadium tonight after what seems like another 45-game road trip, here's a quick batch of "home"-themed YouTube selections to set the mood.

And of course, it wouldn't be complete without a little Frankie...

Ahh, doesn't that feel better? Now let's hope we all get Good A.J. tonight and not bad A.J.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mmmmmm, Linkapalooza Nuggets (Nom, Nom, Nom!!)

- Vizzini at No Maas throws some more praise at Brett Gardner for his fantastic start to the season.  Gardner's ability to keep producing at a respectable level will be an interesting subplot to watch as the season continues, as it could have a major effect on the Yanks' decision to go after Carl Crawford.

- Benny Kabak at RAB discusses the current revolving door that is the DH spot in the lineup.  While I agree with him that the Yanks should stop messing around with off-days and rest by using the DH spot, I don't think Juan Miranda is the answer.  If the guy was that good, he would be a regular by now.  Cervelli has earned his spot in the lineup; keep him behind the plate and Jorge at DH to keep him healthy.

- iYankees take a look at Teix's UZR so far this season.  If you're too lazy to click and read for yourself, it's currently 14.4.  So at least there's that while his batting average still sits at .198.

- Darren Everson of the Wall Street Journal takes a very interesting look at whether or not A-Rod will still reach the all-time HR record.  I still think it's a little early to be questioning something that long term, but given The Horse's slow power start, it is a point worth making.

- Moshe Mandel at TYU poses a great question that makes me wish I had somebody out here in Wisconsin to discuss it with: Would the Yanks have traded for Javy if they knew Phil would be this good? 

Perfectly valid question given how incredible Phil has been and how awful Javy has been before yesterday's start.   But at the end of the day, the age factor with Pettitte and innings limit factor with Hughes combined with Javy being a notorious innings eater makes me think he was going to end up in pinstripes regardless of how good or bad Hughes pitched.  So I'm siding with Moshe on this one.

- Graham Stoneburner is decent, I guess.

It's good that Teix and A-Rod seem to be coming around.  It's better that Jorge is back in the lineup and Andy will be back on the mound this weekend.  And it's best that this latest road trip is over and the Yanks can come back home to face their favorite whipping boys, the Twins, before a pair of 2-game series against the Sox and Rays next week.


(Photo courtesy of The AP)

6-0 and a second shutout in as many days?  Talk about a downer heading into the weekend.

Yanks played like a team that just wanted to get on the bus and go home today, which sucks.  CC pitched his worst game of the year, which also sucks.  But with as many bumps, bruises, sprains, strains, and pulls as this team has right now, maybe a playing off-day like they played today was for the best.

I mean, when you're rolling out a starting outfield of Greg Golson, Brett Gardner, and Randy Winn against Justin Verlander, you're not exactly set up for success (no offense, Brett.  You know I love ya).

Is Phil Hughes The Best Pitcher In The American League?

(Photo courtesy of Reuters)

It's a legit question to ask after last night. Having missed all of his previous starts this season, I was looking forward to finally getting to watch Phil work last night on ESPN and he didn't disappoint. Watching Hughes pitch last night, you would have never guessed that this was the same guy who had been so hot and cold over the last couple years that the whispers about whether or not he would ever live up to the hype were growing to a dull murmur.

Ever since his shift to the bullpen last year, and even despite his massive struggles in last years playoffs (of which I was one of the loudest critics), Hughes hasn't just been a different pitcher on the mound, he's been a different person. Everything about how he handles himself on the mound oozes confidence and maturity. He is cool, calm, and consistent in his approach, something that had always been missing from his starts in years past. And the nervous posture and darting eyes that would creep into focus when Hughes started putting runners on base are nowhere to be seen this season. Instead he just licks his fingers, gets the ball back, steps back on the hill, and attacks the next hitter.

His numbers this year more than speak for themselves and they stand up against anybody's in baseball right now. After last night he is 5-0 with a 1.38 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, and 9.0 K/9.  In his 39 innings pitched, he has allowed just 22 hits to the tune of a .165 BAA and a .446 opponents OPS.  He is flat out dominating hitters and after being a bit wild in his first 3 starts, he has made adjustments to cut down on his walks and has walked only 3 batters over 21 IP in his last 3 outings.

But more important than the numbers is the approach. Hughes has finally learned how to pitch smart and at no time was that more evident than last night. From batter to batter and inning to inning Hughes threw the right pitches in the right locations to get the batter to do what HE wanted him to do. He pitched to contact early in the game, getting ahead in the count and forcing Detroit to have to swing with 2 strikes, then just going after them and trusting his defense behind him. But when the time called for it, like the end of the 5th and 6th inning, Hughes changed his approach, getting ahead with the fastball to set up his killer off-speed stuff and go for the strikeout. His poise and command of the situation on the mound this year is absolutely insane. He isn't to afraid to throw any pitch at any time and has learned to recognize trends within a game and stick with what's working, even if his catcher wants to call something different. Hughes is pitching the way that you would expect veterans like A.J. Burnett and Javy Vazquez to pitch, and he's still just 23!!

It seems like Hughes has been around forever, but he is at an age where most young pitchers are still dealing with growing pains and trying to master their stuff at the Major League level. Hughes has gone through the growing pains and the injuries, and he's learned along the way, and this year he has put it all together. He has established himself as not only one of the best young pitchers in baseball, but one of the best pitchers in baseball period and maybe, just maybe, the best pitcher on the Yankees.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Javy Vazquez Can't Catch A Break

Poor guy.  He goes 7, gives up just 2 ER on 5 hits and strikes outs 7 today.  He should be having a party thrown for himself right now, complete with a Fudgy The Whale cake and pin the tail on the donkey.  Instead he watches Rick Porcello shut the offense down and he gets tagged with the L.

Looks like all the injuries to the offense are starting to catch up...

P.S.- I know nothing is updated on the site right now.  I'll catch up tonight after Game 2.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

It Must Be Great To Be An Indians Fan

"Pain I say!!!  Headtatoe!!  Oh God, we stink!!"

I know this is a bit old, but how fucking awesome is Bruce Drennan?  Fucking guy just calling it like it is.  No bullshitting, no excuses, just flat out calling it like he sees it and not even thinking about considering pulling a punch.  It's videos like this that remind me how great it is to be a Yankee fan.  So they've lost 2 in a row and have more injuries than the train wreck at the beginning of "Unbreakable."  They still aren't the Indians and they still don't have good old Bruce throwing them to wolves for how awful they're playing.

Oh no, instead the Yankees have the luxury of having their balls licked and taints waxed by the likes of Michael "See Ya!!!" Kay and the dynamic duo of Johnny Catchphrase and Big Suze.  So if there is anybody freaking out out there over the current Yankee situation, just sit back and watch this video, count to 10, and realize that it's going to be OK.

Good times.  Good fucking times.

Damon Hits HR In Tigers Win, Who Cares?

Yeah, good for Johnny Damon. The guy can still play.  That doesn't change the fact that he was insane to think he was worth Derek Jeter money this off-season, money which he didn't end up getting, by the way.  So I don't give a shit that he played well and helped beat the Yanks last night.

I'm not going to start sucking his dick over his great numbers or pull my hair out over a close lose in which the Yanks had plenty of chances to win when they are still sitting on a 110-win pace for the season right now.  I'm especially not going to do that when I know they almost pulled out another victory playing with half a deck of starters and their 6th starting pitcher out of a rotation of 5.  Put the Yankee regulars out there and Andy on the hill and we aren't even talking about Damon today.  Fact.

** Side note - site is going to be a little sparse in the next couple days.  Work is taking over my life until Thursday.  Try to keep it together until then. **

Monday, May 10, 2010

Bad A.J. Resurfaces, Yanks Still Win Series In Boston

It was only a matter of time before bad A.J. reared his ugly head and last night was that time. He couldn't locate the fastball or the curve and had already been living on the edge before blowing up for good in the 3rd inning. And now cue the sounds of all the NY sports writers firing up their laptops to point out how awful A.J. has been in Boston since joining the Yankees and horrible it was that they got crushed last night in the series finale.

The reality of the situation is the Yankees still dominated Boston to the tune of 24-6 in the first 2 games of the series and they leave Boston with another series win in hand. With the number of injuries they came into Fenway with and the couple more they added over the weekend (Johnson, Aceves, maybe Cano), I think they will take that series win, bad A.J. outing or no bad A.J. outing.

So A.J. sucked yesterday, big deal. Anybody who actually expected him to keep up the pace he had set all year long and not have any of these "bad A.J." outings just doesn't know A.J. and doesn't know baseball. He's still 4-1 with a 3.40 ERA on the season and the Yankees are still 21-9. So enjoy the victory, Boston, and enjoy being back at .500. The Bombers have bigger fish to fry, like that punk Johnny Damon and the Tigers starting today.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Nick Johnson To The DL

15-day DL with a sore wrist?  Can somebody get this guy some Flintstones vitamins or something?

Given the way the team is playing right now, I would let Johnson rot on the bench even when he's back off the DL.  Stick Jorge at DH to maximize his offensive value and keep him healthy and let Dark Helmet Cervelli continue to tear shit up behind the plate.

Done and done.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Francisco Cervelli Is The Man Up In This Piece

He runs shit here!  You just live here!

3-4 with a walk and 5 RBIs tonight.  5 RBIs!!!  This guy is insane.  For the season to date he's now hitting .429 with a 1.000 OPS and 12 RBIs in just 42 at-bats.  He has a 2B, a 3B, and 5 BBs to just 3 Ks while providing Gold Glove caliber defense behind the plate.

Sure he looks like a jackass with that gigantic, Dark Helmet batting monstrosity, but dude is just straight up knocking dicks in the dirt left and right right now.  He is a bad, bad man, and King Kong ain't got shit on him.

And if you were keeping score at home, Teix had 3 HRs and 5 ribbies today and Nick Swisher drove in 3 more.  Just throught I would mention that in case anybody missed it.

Fear The Parachute Pants

CC takes the hill tonight and judging by this picture from last night...

... I'd say somebody in the heart of the Boston order better be ready to hit the deck today.

And everybody can spare me the "none of the HBPs were intentional.  Why would he do that with the bases loaded?" crap.  Every single one of those plunk jobs and brush backs were intentional by Beckett.  He had nothing in the 6th inning, he knew he had nothing, and he wanted out of the game ASAP.  In his mind, what better way to do that than continue to plunk Yankees and hopefully hurt one in the process?  I mean, knocking Cano out of the game was the only positive contribution he made for his team last night.

So be aware in the box today Justin, Kev, Sloppi, and Victor.  I wouldn't be worried about taking one the other way or trying to find gaps today as much as I'd be worried about getting the fuck out of the way.

(Photo used courtesy of LoHud)

Friday, May 7, 2010

Fuck Josh Beckett

Seriously, fuck that guy.  What a piece of fucking garbage.

It's one thing to come up and in on a guy.  It's one thing to plunk the hottest hitter on your arch rival's team.  It's a completely different thing to continue to buzz people's towers and hit batters after you start getting shellacked by the bottom of that arch rival's order.

Just completely classless.  Shame on the umpire for not tossing Beckett after the Jeter HBP.  It was obvious at that point that the Yanks weren't going to retaliate and Beckett was looking for a way out, so just give it to him.  And speaking of retaliation, how does Dustin Pedroia not take one in the ear after Cano gets drilled?  Fuck taking the high road.  As awesome as he was tonight, Hughes should have stepped up and protected his teammates.  The ump hadn't issued a warning and the Yanks had their opportunity to even the score and they didn't take it.  Hopefully CC takes matters into his own hands tomorrow.

I'm not a religious man by any means.  But I am going to be saying my prayers to God, Allah, Yahweh, Shiva, and everybody else tonight that Cano is OK.

Oh by the way, the Yankees won 10-3 tonight and completely dominated the Red Sox in every facet of the game.  Yawn!

Yanks-Sox Hook 'Em Up Again This Weekend

Now that the Dallas Braden nonsense has been beaten to death by everybody, we can focus on what's really important this weekend, namely the impending Yanks-Sox series.

Sure it's still early, but given where both teams are at you can't say as a fan that you wouldn't like to see the Yanks kick Boston further down the stairs by taking at least 2 out of 3 at Fenway.

And to make it even better, the Yanks have their best 3 going over the weekend; CC matches up with Clay Buchholz on Saturday afternoon, A.J. goes up against Jon Lester on Sunday night, and it all kicks off tonight with Phil "The Artist Formerly Known As Phillip" Hughes

opposing Josh "The Bag Fat Bag of Shit Who Used to Be a Major League Ace" Beckett.

Once again I get fucked tonight by living in the midwest where there is no YES network. Piss.

P.S.- Here's tonight's lineup:

1) Derek Jeter SS
2) Nick Johnson DH
3) Mark Teixeira 1B
4) Alex Rodriguez 3B
5) Robinson Cano 2B
6) Nick Swisher RF
7) Brett Gardner CF
8) Francisco Cervelli C
9) Randy Winn LF

RHP Phil Hughes

(Still no sign of Jorge in the lineup and no update on his condition.  I smell a DL stint coming... )

P.P.S.- How the hell does Jon Lester have a 3.93 ERA??? Every time I see his stat line run by on the ESPN scroll it usually reads something like "5IP, 7H, 3BB, 5ER, 2K."

Dallas Braden Is A Salty Mother F

Dallas Braden is still talking about A-Rod.  Talk about riding a guy's dick, huh?

"There are things that are going to have to happen," Braden told CSN Bay Area. "Out of respect to my teammates, out of respect to the game. I think he's probably garnered a new respect for the unwritten rules and the people who hold them close to their game. But I think you're right, we don't do much talking in the 209."

Braden said he was particularly peeved that A-Rod dismissed his actions and words because Braden hasn't done much as a major leaguer yet.

"There's two ways that I can comment on that, and I'll give you both of them. One, I was always told if you give a fool enough rope, he'll hang himself, and with those comments, he had all the rope he needed. No. 2, I didn't know there was a criteria in order to compete against A-Rod."

"He's an individualistic player. He plays for the name on the back of the jersey, not the front. I don't know if he's noticed, but he doesn't have a name on the back over there so he should play for the name on the front." (used courtesy of the ESPN Yankee blog)

Oh shit, son!!! Dallas Braden be straight killin' this! Bringin' that ill shit from the 209, mothaFUCKAAAA!!!!

Alex Rodriguez best watch his mothafuckin' back in the streets, ya heard? Cuz my boy D-Bra will straight up toss that cat. Things are going to be happenin' and shit! Joggin' across mounds and shit? Playa you better chiggity-check yo self before you wriggity-wreck yo self, B!

Listen, Dallas. First of all, your first name makes you sound like a stripper. Second of all, if you don't do much talking in the 209 then why the fuck are you still running your mouth about The Horse running across the mound. That's right, THE mound. Not YOUR mound.

So throw all the mud you want, buddy. Sticks and stones may break A-Rod's bones, but shit talking by sub-.500 career pitchers will never hurt him. Take some of your advice and check the name on the back of your jersey. You're Dallas Braden.

He's Alex Fucking Rodriguez.

And he's going to jog across whatever mound he wants and probably bang some blonde Hollywood actress on the way. Deal with it.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

ESPN Just Can't Get Off The Red Sox Bandwagon

(Bags O' D)

Interesting little tidbit I saw in the Post today:

"Joba Chamberlain, Alex Rodriguez and Nick Swisher were cited as baseball's top three overrated players, according to a poll of major league players."

I almost crapped myself when I read that this morning. Literally (not literally). These 3 guys are the most overrated players in baseball? Not Ellsbury, the leadoff hitter/incredible outfielder who can't get on base or make a play at the wall? Not K-Rod, the closer who can't work more than 1 inning without risking his arm falling off and who has a higher career WHIP than you would like to see from a "shutdown" closer? Not even Jonny Papelbon, who's ERA and WHIP has gone up every year he's been in the league and who can't even close out the fucking Orioles?

I mean sure Joba is a shitty starting pitcher, we already knew that. But a 2.92 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 13 Ks in 12.1 IP to go along with 2 saves in 2 chances and 5 holds sounds pretty fucking solid to me. Swishy is hitting .295/.380/.457 with 5 HRs and 17 RBIs right now and plays a pretty damn good right field. And even though it seems like he's hardly done anything this year, The A-Horse is still on pace to drive in 102 runs this season and is playing Gold Glove defense at 3rd. But then I stopped and re-read the second sentence in the article and suddenly it all became clear.

"The poll, conducted by ESPN the Magazine during spring training, also found that 67 percent of the players feel home-run king Barry Bonds deserves enshrinement in baseball's Hall of Fame." (used courtesy of Reuters)

Really, ESPN?? That's what you've resorted to with the Yankees continuing to stomp on people's dicks while the Red Sox toil away at or below .500? Creating false player polls to try to keep your Yankee smear campaign alive as long as you can?

Please. Just stop. It's getting downright embarrassing now. I'm sorry that you don't have Peter Gammons to slurp Terry Francona's ball sweat anymore and that his replacement, Nomar, is boring and never says anything insightful. Just admit you were stupid to dump to the Yankees back in '04 for the flavor of the month, put your Jeter jerseys back on, and crawl back to the Dark Side with your tails between your legs. Just don't expect to be welcomed with open arms.

Andy's Elbow Not Feeling So Hot

(Photo courtesy of Anthony Causi, NY Post)

After leaving yesterday's win early and getting an MRI on what we now know was a balky elbow, Andy Pettitte is going to miss his next start with inflammation in said elbow.

That by itself is not a huge surprise. Being the elder statesman of the rotation, we all knew that Pettitte carried a big injury risk with him this season. If the guy is going to miss a start here or there, I can live with that.

The problem with this situation is the uncertainty and ambiguity associated with the amount of time Pettitte is going to miss. The team saying that Pettitte is going to miss his next scheduled start "at the very least" and George King writing things like "Don't look for Pettitte on Tuesday. Beyond that is anybody's guess..." in The Post are disconcerting because they suggest that the team and doctors don't know exactly what is wrong with Pettitte despite the MRI yesterday.

I'm sure the injury and recovery time isn't as black and white as I'd like it to be, but with an older player like Pettitte, you don't want to take the "wait and see" or "give it a try" approach. All that is going to lead to is continued arm problems and skipped starts and DL stints for him for the remainder of the year. I would rather see the Yanks err on the side of caution, skip him for a few starts until the elbow feels completely fine, and then let him get back on a mound and throw a session to see how it feels. Now sense in risking the long-term goals of the season for a team that's 19-8. I'll live with Sergio Mitre for a few starts if it means Andy is going to be healthier for the rest of the year and good to go for the postseason.

Or the Yanks could take the John Harper approach and trade him to Boston for Josh Beckett straight up. A change of scenery would certainly help heal Andy's elbow and help Beckett remember how to pitch instead of being a glorified BP pitcher.

P.S.- The Core Four is down to the One Gun right now (Jeter). Fucking SI cover jinx.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

AB4AR's Mini-Linkapalooza Chunks (Javy Vazquez Sucks Edition)

So here it is.  The first batch of links from the first half of the week.  As expected, most of this stuff is related to Javy Vazquez and his complete inability to pitch effectively or even be a man on the mound.

- Steve S. from TYU was the first to hop on the "what the hell should the Yanks do with Vazquez?" train, and like Nostrodamus, he predicted Vazquez would be skipped for a start.

- He followed it up with the perfect post about why Vazquez being skipped was the right move to make from every conceivable angle.  We've already touched on this yesterday, but when you can skip your weakest link against your biggest rival, set up arguably your 3 best pitchers right now in his place, keep everybody on regular to extra rest, and give your weak link a chance to fix his problems, you can't argue with that decision.

- But damn if somebody isn't going to try, and that was my buddy, Lenny from LenNY's Yankees.  His post on Monday argued against skipping Vazquez.  Lenny, Lenny, Lenny.  Usually I'm picking up whatever you're putting down but I just couldn't get on board with this decision. 

Just because it's early in the season and just because the Red Sox are playing like shit doesn't mean you sacrifice winning.  Why even give the Sox a chance to break out against Vazquez when you don't have to?  Limit the damage to the team and to Vazquez and keep the victory train rolling, baby!

(I do agree with the point about bullpen sessions not meaning anything though.  I don't care what Vazquez does in the 'pen if he's going to continue to shit the bed on the mound.)

- In the midst of all the Vazquez hysteria, Joe Paw at RAB took a minute to remind us all that none of the Yankees' other offseason 5th starter options are doing much better.  Sheets and Piniero have fallen back to Earth after good starts and Justin Duchsherer's hip is hurt again, so at least Javy isn't alone in his ineffectiveness.  And when you've got 4 aces making up the rest of your staff, you'll live with one bad seed.

- Best post of the week so far has to be Steve at TYU's look back at the Johan trade that wasn't for the Yankees in 2007 and how that's working out for the Yankees now.  I remember being steadfastly against trading Hughes and the rest of the farm for Johan back in the day, even when he was hands down the most dominant pitcher in baseball.  The Yankees made a wise move in holding onto Hughes and company and now they're reaping the early benefits this year while Mets fans watch Johan walk 47-year-old fossils and hand out home runs like he's a free sample person at Sam's Club.

So there you have it.  Javy sucks, Phil rules, and it's all there for you to read about.  Have fun killing time at work tomorrow with this.  You're welcome.

Is This John Harper's Blunt?

There have been a lot of theories about what should be done with Javy Vazquez over the last week and a half, but this one today from John Harper really takes the cake. See below:

"PHILADELPHIA - There's a perfect solution to the Javy Vazquez problem in the Bronx: trade him to the Mets and everyone comes away happy.

Think about it. For the Mets there's just no getting around the obvious - they're going to need another starter to parlay their hot couple of weeks into serious contention this season. They can't live with the inconsistencies of both John Maine and Oliver Perez over the long haul.

And while Vazquez is a mess mentally trying to overcome his issues pitching with the Yankees, put him back in the National League and he'd likely go right back to being a dependable starter, if not the Cy Young contender he was last year.

For the Yankees, meanwhile, they could wash their hands of what is developing into a major problem. And the way Phil Hughes is pitching, as well as their Big Three, they could plug Sergio Mitre - who has looked very good in relief - into the rotation and be just fine." (courtesy of NY Daily News)

And that's not even the whole story! If you're really into reading garbage, you can find the whole piece here. But there's more than enough in these first four paragraphs to make this the leading candidate for "Worst NY Sports Piece of The Year."

First of all, how does trading Javy to the Mets make everyone happy? How does it make anyone happy? The Yankees would end up shrinking their pitching depth by having to plug somebody into the 5-hole for Vazquez, and the Mets would be adding an expensive, incredibly ineffective pitcher to a staff already filled with more question marks than the Riddler's outfit.

And sure John Maine and Oliver Perez have been inconsistent this year, but they have still been better than Javy. Maybe I'm thinking too simply in my logic here, but I would rather deal with inconsistency than consistently awful. At least with inconsistency the Mets stand a fighting chance with Perez and Maine on the mound. With Vazquez out there, they might as well call the game in the top of the 1st.

"... put him [Vazquez] back in the National League and he'd likely go right back to being a dependable starter."


/starts choking on water

/spits water all over computer screen

/keeps laughing

Sure, John. A trip back to National League will cure all Javy's ills. His velocity will come back, his command will come back, and his confidence will snap right back into place like that. Nevermind the fact that he would still be playing IN THE SAME FUCKING STATE WITH A FANBASE JUST AS BLOODTHIRSTY AND UNFORGIVING AS THAT OF THE YANKEES!!!! Mets fans read the same papers Yankee fans do; they know what the deal is with Vazquez. They would absolutely eat him alive. A couple more shitty outings in Citi Field and you'd find Vazquez swinging from a water pipe in the clubhouse with his uniform belt around his neck before you saw him being a "dependable starter" again.

And I'm not even going to get into the fact that there is nothing the Mets have in their farm system that the Yankees want or need, there is no way the Mets would take on Vazquez's $11.5 mil salary with the way he's pitching right now, or that saying Sergio Mitre has been "very good" in the bullpen is a stretch.

The plain fact of the matter is this is a short-sighted, idiotic piece of sports writing that captures everything that is wrong with New York sports fans. Javy Vazquez fucking sucks right now, that's a fact. The Yankees know he sucks and they are trying to find a way for him to un-suck. It is still way too early in the season to be talking about dumping this guy, especially when the team he plays for is 18-8 and ESPECIALLY when you're talking about trading him to your cross-town rival without even giving consideration to what the Yankees would get back or how the money would be worked out.

Put the bong down, John. And then slowly step away from the keyboard.

** More opinion and insight on Javy Vazquez in the first mini-linkapalooza tonight.  I promise it will be better than John Harper's nonsense. **

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cervelli & Ramiro Pena Carry The Team (As Usual)

(Photo courtesy of The AP)

And life in bizarro Yankee world continues...

In case anybody missed it tonight, the Yanks were led by Francisco Cervelli (3-3 w/ 2 runs scored, a 3B, a bunt 1B, and a fantastic falling-into-the-dugout catch), Brett Gardner (1-3, 2 runs scored, 1 BB, 1 SB), and Ramiro Pena (2 RBIs) offensively while A.J. Burnett put together yet another cool, calm, consistent, dominating performance, striking out 8 and allowing 0 ER over 7 1/3 IP, to improve to 4-0 and lower his ERA to 1.99 on the season.

Oh, and Joba closed out his second game in a row.  Yawn.

Jorge who?  Alex what?  Mariano why?  And you can cancel the search party for Teix while you're at it.  The rest of the guys have it on lock right now.

Start spreading the fucking news...

P.S.- The Opening Day 6-9 of the lineup: Jorge, C-Grand, Swish, Gardy. 

Tonight's 6-9: Thames, Gardy, Frankie, Pena.  And those 4 only combined for 5 of the team's 8 hits, 2 of the 3 RBIs, and all 4 runs scored tonight.  No big deal.

Javy Vazquez, I Banish Thee

(Photo courtesy of the NY Times & Javy Vazquez's Terrible Pitching)

So by now everybody knows that Javy is getting skipped over this weekend in Boston. You certainly can't argue with the logic in this decision. At this point, it's beyond trying to go out and improve on things and fix mechanics. The plain fact of the matter is the guy doesn't give the team any chance to win. He has zero confidence in himself, evidenced by how timidly he pitches, inspires zero confidence in his team, and serves only to overwork an already banged up bullpen. If the Yankees wanted that when they first made the trade back in December they would have just stuck with Chien-Ming Wang.

Steve S. at TYU touched on the subject today and pretty much hit the nail on the head from every angle. While I personally believe that Vazquez more than likely would shit his pants under the spotlight in Fenway, there are many more important, legitimate factors that make the decision to skip a good one (lineups, ballpark style, etc.).  And hey, giving an extra day's rest to your oldest pitcher (Andy), and your one starter who's on an innings limit this year (Hughes) by pitching Javy on Monday against Detroit aren't bad ideas either.

The one thing that does stick out in all of this are these "higher intensity" bullpen sessions before his next start. What the fuck does that even mean? Are there going to be hecklers throwing things and hissing at Javy while he pitches? Is there going to be a ring of fire around the mound? What's the story? What's going to make these sessions so intense?

Everybody knows that how you pitch in the 'pen has no indication of how you're going to pitch on the actual mound in an actual game against actual hitters. The sessions can be as intense as the Yankees can possibly make it, but until Vazquez can go out on the mound in a game and pitch with confidence and movement and velocity, nothing else matters. Period. Getting the guy away from a potentially high-leverage situation (Friday night at Fenway) where he would almost assuredly fail is a good move. Thinking you're going to cure him of his ailments by making him throw a little more in the bullpen is not.