Monday, July 22, 2013

Yankees Need More From CC Sabathia

(Looks like a man searching for answers.  Courtesy of the AP)

Stop me if you've heard this one before.  CC Sabathia walks onto a pitching mound, struggles to command his fastball, and gets knocked around for a bunch of hits and runs.  It's been a common theme for CC from his first start this season to last night's stinker and it's starting to become a major problem for the rotation and the team.  His diminished velocity is old news at this point, and whether his command problems are due to natural age-related regression, a change in mechanics, an undisclosed injury, or a combination of the 3 is irrelevant.  What matters is that CC is 21 starts into the season and showing no signs of improving his game as he adjust to life without the plus heater.  In fact, he's gotten worse as the season has gone on.

As The Quads Strain...

(Originally published at IIATMS/TYA)

The Yankees lost an absolute heartbreaker in Boston last night, a game in which their offense surprisingly picked itself up off the mat and climbed back into a game that they probably had no business being in.  If there was a tougher way to send the team off to Texas to possibly watch their postseason lights get turned out, I'd hate to see it.  Look around the locker room after the game and there would have been plenty of worthy candidates for the finger of blame, including the guy in the manager's office, and after a loss like that what is everybody in Yankeeland going to be talking about today?  A couple of old guys with strained quads.

MiL Rehab Roundup: 7/22/13

Another day, another batch of injury updates.  Not even sure if it's fair to call this a "MiL" rehab post since nobody in it is officially participating in any MiL games but whatever.

Derek Jeter- Reportedly stood in the batter's box and tracked pitches against Andy and Phil the other day.  Not exactly strong "baseball-related activities."  No timetable for this return yet.

Alex Rodriguez- Same story.  Official diagnosis is a Grade I quad strain.  All we know at this point is that he's not coming back for the Texas or Tampa series.

Curtis Granderson- Has been taking real BP for at least a few days.  Next step is sim games.

Francisco Cervelli- Has been doing throwing drills for about a week and started taking dry swings with a bat last week.  Still a while away, but no more reported issues with his hand or elbow.

David Phelps- Been throwing bullpen sessions in Tampa without issue.  The plan is for him to make a rehab appearance on Tuesday.

Jayson Nix- Played in a sim game yesterday according to Joe.  Seems like the closest to returning.  Yaaaayyyyyy...

Game 98 Wrap-Up: BOS 8 NYY 7

(Courtesy of the AP)

With the Jeter and A-Rod injury winds howling in Yankeeland, the best thing they could have done was get a win to get out of Boston with a series victory.  They had CC Sabathia on the mound coming off an extended rest over the break, they had the very hittable Ryan Dempster starting for the Sawx, and they had the same lineup that started to get some things going on Saturday out there again.  The talk about what's going on off the field has overtaken the talk about the on-the-field issues over the last few days, which may not be a bad thing for this group.  After last night's results, I think that's probably going to change.

Game Notes:

- It was a quick start for the Yankee offense, thanks to more bad D by the Sawx.  Dempster and Jarrod Saltalamacchia each threw balls away in the top of the 1st that led to 2 runs, but as is usually the case nowadays the rally died in the middle of the batting order.

- CC worked around baserunners in the first 2 innings.  He couldn't work around a Jacoby Ellsbury leadoff double in the 3rd.  Dustin Pedroia singled him in to get Boston on the board and help drive up CC's pitch count.

- His slider was diving off the table, but CC's command of both his fastballs was off and it started to get worse in the 3rd.  He was leaving balls over the plate and up in the zone and it really bit him on a 3-run home run by Mike Napoli to give the Sawx a 4-3 lead.

- While CC continued to get knocked around for 3 more runs through the 5th, the offense disappeared against Dempster.  After needing 50 pitches to get through the first 2 innings, he only needed a handful over 30 to get through the next 3.

- The lineup finally knocked Dempster out in the 6th and pulled within 2 on a bunch of singles.  But for every positive offensive action there is an equal and opposite reaction these days and in the 6th it was a Lyle Overbay first-pitch swinging, inning-ending double play.

- After tying it up in the 7th, the Yankees looked poised to take the game in the late innings.  They left at least one runner on base in each of the final 3 frames, including another Overbay GIDP.

- Bullpen did all they could through 10.  Major props to Shawn Kelley for his work, but it made no sense that he was in before Mo.  It made even less sense that Adam Warren got the ball in the 11th and he gave up the walk-off loser to Napoli.