Saturday, March 29, 2014

Saturday Afternoon Food For Thought: ST Starter Results

CC Sabathia- 5 G, 21.0 IP, 13 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 16 K
Hiroki Kuroda- 4 G, 11.1 IP, 15 H, 6 ER, 1 BB, 12 K
Ivan Nova- 5 G, 19.2 IP, 21 H, 8 ER, 2 BB, 21 K
Masahiro Tanaka- 5 G, 21.0 IP, 15 H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 26 K
Michael Pineda- 4 G, 15.0 IP, 14 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 16 K

Total- 88.0 IP, 78.0 IP, 24 ER, 10 BB, 91 K

We all know by now that Spring Training stats don't mean anything.  That said, it's hard to look at what the Yankee rotation has done this spring and not be impressed.  They've been great.  All of them.  The only really shaky-looking numbers are Kuroda's and all 6 of his ER came in 1 bad start.  He's been money every other time and very sharp in MiL outings.

The true test starts in a few days, but the Yankee rotation has passed the ST mid-term with almost straight A's.  CC looks healthy, sharp, and much more comfortable than he did last year.  Nova's more calm and confident.  Tanaka and Pineda have each looked overwhelming at times.  Based on what they've done this spring, this is the most excited I've ever been about a Yankee rotation heading into the start of the season.  Ever.

Teix Still Not Sold On His Wrist Strength

(Courtesy of the AP)

It's been a slow and steady process for Mark Teixeira as he's worked his way back into playing shape from last year's wrist injury.  From basic strengthening exercises to dry swings to batting cage work to full BP to playing in actual ST games, one would hardly call this a "normal" Spring Training for Teix and all along he's said the most important thing is making sure his wrist feels good all the time, no matter how he's swinging.  According to what he told Kevin Kernan of The Post on Thursday, he's still not 100% confident that the wrist is completely healed:

“I’m not trusting that the wrist is healthy.

I’m just trying to protect it.  Taking your ‘A’ swing, taking that swing that is 100 percent and I need to trust that I can do that and not feel pain. I need to finish my swing instead of protecting my wrist. Last year, to protect my wrist, I didn’t finish my swing."

Teix is batting a meager .086/.289/.114 in 35 PA this spring, with 10 BB and 11 K.  His only XBH is a double he hit as a right-handed batter a few weeks ago, so obviously the numbers fit somebody who's admittedly not swinging normally and holding back.

Spring Training News And Notes: 3/28/14

The Yanks checked another game off the ST schedule last night with a 3-0 win over the Marlins.  Hiroki Kuroda and Masahiro Tanaka combined for the 6-hit shutout.

- Kuroda was great in his 3 innings (3 H, 4 K), but the story was Tanaka.  He followed up with a 6-inning relief appearance in which he allowed only 3 hits of his own, didn't walk a batter, and struck out 10.  Shutdown city, population Ma-kun.

- The big news of the day was roster announcements.  Joe announced Dellin Betances and Vidal Nuno as the winners of the final 2 bullpen spots before the game and Dean Anna as part of the bench after.

- Only 1 spot remains open and it's down to Eduardo Nunez and Yangervis Solarte.  Deadline to set rosters is 3 PM tomorrow.

- Jacoby Ellsbury went 2-5 and played center field in another MiL game.  He said he feels fine and Joe said he'll play in Sunday's Major League game as a final tuneup.

- Top prospects Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, Jose Campos, and Greg Bird will all be held back in ExST before starting their respective MiL seasons.