Monday, July 23, 2012

BREAKING NEWS: Yankees Trade For Ichiro

Via Jack Curry, the Yankees have acquired outfielder Ichiro Suzuki from the Seattle Mariners for MiL pitchers D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar.  There are also reports out that Seattle picked up a significant amount of the money that is still owed to Ichiro.

This move is obviously in reaction to the Brett Gardner "out for the year" news, but could also be a sign that things are more serious with Nick Swisher's hip flexor injury than they appear.  More details to come on this story as they become available.

** UPDATE- 5:49 PM- No word on a roster move, but Chad Jennings is reporting that Ichiro will be on the Yankees' active roster for tonight's game. **

** UPDATE- 5:55PM- Multiple Yankee beat writers reporting that Dewayne Wise has been DFA'd to clear a 25-man roster spot for Ichiro. **

** UPDATE- 6:06PM- According to Curry, the Yankees are only on the hook for $2.25 million of what's owed to Ichiro this season.  He was on a 5 year/$90 million deal, so you do the math.  This is shaping up to be a good deal for the Yankees. **

** UPDATE- 6:37PM- During his press conference, Ichiro said he asked the Mariners for a trade a couple weeks ago, was excited to play for a contender, and didn't want to be in the way of younger players with the Mariners being in rebuild mode.  He also confirmed that he would not wear jersey # 51 (not a surprise), and Joe stated that the Yankees plan to play Ichiro primarily in left field. **

** UPDATE- 7:09PM- Ichiro in the Yankee starting lineup tonight, playing right field and batting 8th.  There you go. **

Don't Sleep On C-Dick

While the Yankees continue to be connected to every outfielder who could conceivably be considered available right now, and go through the process of considering the variables associated with each, there's an in-house outfield option flying under the radar right now.  With the way he's been performing of late, he probably deserves at least a blip or two on the radar.

I'm talking about AB4AR favorite Chris Dickerson, AKA C. Diddy, AKA C-Dick.  He missed a lot of time early in the season with injuries, but since coming back he has posted a .281/.377/.451 slash line in 183 PA for Triple-A Empire State, good for a .380 wOBA.  He's been on a quiet tear in the last week too, with 11 H (3 2B, 3 3B, 1 HR), 10 R scored, and 6 BB in 37 PA.

Granted his production has been against lesser competition, and C-Dick has never shown a real ability to replicate his MiL success in the Majors, but he possesses a similar skill set to Gardner (takes walks, speed on the basepaths, plays above-average outfield defense) and could conceivably replicate what Gardner brings to the table if used properly.  The Yankees also wouldn't have to give up anything to add him to the 25-man roster, something that can't be said for the Shanes Victorino or Justins Upton of the world.

Just sayin'...

** UPDATE- 10:47PM- Just kiddin'... **

A Little Oak-Town Perspective

(Sad Yankees are sad.  Courtesy of The AP)

The sweep at the hands of the Oakland A's this past weekend sucked, no doubt about it.  Any time another team does something to the Yankees that they haven't done in 40 years it stings, but before everybody starts buying into the MSM's attempts to stir some shit up and raise the panic level to DEFCON 2, let's just take a step back and look at everything that went down.

Game 95 Wrap-Up: OAK 5 NYY 4

(#staytucked.  Courtesy of The AP)

Yesterday's loss was a bad one, no other way to say it.  The Yankees had a 4-0 lead in the 4th inning, appeared to have former teammate Bartolo Colon's number, had their ace on the mound, and still managed to lose their 4th straight 1-run game to Oakland.  The offense went completely to sleep after the 4th inning, scoring 0 runs for the rest of the game, Colon started to get things together long enough to give his team a chance to come back, the ace started giving up runs, and the bullpen completed the collapse by blowing the save in the 9th and giving up the winning run in the 12th.  It had already been a tough series for the Yankees, but yesterday's loss made it even worse.

Game Notes:

- After the teams traded scoreless frames through 2, the Yankees struck with a barrage of 4 straight singles to start the top of the 3rd, the last one an RBI knock for Mark Teixeira.  An Alex Rodriguez 2-run double with 1 out gave the Yankees an early 3-0 lead.

- That lead was extended on Curtis Granderson's solo homer in the top of the 4th inning and the Yankees looked like they were off and running.  They were jumping all over Colon's 2-seamer and it looked like only a matter of time before he completely caved.

- The A's finally got on the board in the bottom of the 5th, thanks to a pair of solo homers by Brandon Inge and Kurt Suzuki.  CC had been leaving some offspeed pitches a little higher in the zone than he wanted and it finally caught up to him, although there's no excuse for giving up a HR to Suzuki.

- After CC put a couple more runners on in the 6th, Jayson Nix's inability to smoothly turn 2 led to another Oakland run.  Nix was starting for Derek Jeter at short and bobbled the transfer before getting the ball to Robinson Cano for the throw.  4-3 Yanks.

- Despite the lack of offense after 4, the Yankees were still in position to win in the bottom of the 9th, but just as Sabathia had done, Rafael Soriano left a slider up just enough and Seth Smith hit it for a game-tying home run.

- The offense had 2 runners on in the 10th and 12th innings and could not bring anybody in.  After putting up 4 runs on 7 hits and 1 walk through 4 innings, the Yankee lineup mustered just 4 hits and 2 walks in 8 scoreless innings from then on.

- David Phelps came in for the 10th, got 2 strikeouts to start the 11th, and then was inexplicably removed for Clay Rapada to face Smith.  Going lefty-lefty for 1 batter in extra innings is a questionable move, regardless of what Smith had done earlier, and Phelps deserved to stay out there longer.

- The matchup game would come back to haunt the Yanks in the bottom of the 12th, when Joe went to Cody Eppley to replace Rapada and immediately watched Eppley repeat his Friday night performance, giving up 2 hits and the game-winning one to lefty-hitting Coco Crisp to finish up the sweep.