Results tagged ‘ Blue Jays ’

Game 3: Yankees vs. Blue Jays

Larry Rothschild, CC SabathiaHello from Yankee Stadium, where coats and hats are a must to see the Yankees wrap up this three-game series with the Blue Jays. The Yankees won last night, 4-3, thanks to a fluky eighth-inning rally that started with Chris Young’s pinch-hit, wind-blown double and featured two hit-by-pitches and a Chase Headley grounder that ricocheted off a Toronto glove to push home the go-ahead run.

Tonight will be meaningful for CC Sabathia, who will make his first start since May 10. Sabathia is opposed by left-hander Daniel Norris – he of the ‘I live in a van down by the river‘ fame. With Brett Gardner getting the night off against the southpaw, Alex Rodriguez has been promoted to the No. 2 spot in the Yanks’ batting order.

Someone told Rodriguez of the move as he was making his way to the batting cage, and Rodriguez’s reaction appeared to be one of legitimate surprise: “You’re kidding me!” he exclaimed, rushing to the lineup posted on a clubhouse door to check it out.

“I’ve never been one to care, whether that was Seattle, Texas or even my early days here with Skip (Joe) Torre,” Rodriguez said. “I want to be in the lineup, want to be able to help the team win. I remember Lou (Piniella) led me off one day at the Kingdome and I was like, ‘Wow, that’s the first time I think I ever led off.’ I just love to play baseball. As long as I’m in the lineup, that’s cool.”

Before we get to the quick hits of what you need to know, we launched my public Facebook page this morning at http://www.facebook.com/bryanhochmlb. Check it out!

  • Stephen Drew got the day off as Gregorio Petit drew the start at second base. Didi Gregorius is expected to rest tomorrow vs. Boston, with the Red Sox starting Wade Miley. Brian McCann got tonight off but is expected to play tomorrow.
  • Girardi mentioned that the Yankees have liked what right-hander Chris Martin has been able to do, particularly with the improvement of his slider.
  • The throw down to first base that McCann made in the eighth inning of last night’s game was a “good play,” according to Girardi. It just wasn’t a good throw. The ball scooted into right field and allowed Jose Bautista to trot home with the third Toronto run. “You expect him to throw it 90 feet and hit the guy somewhere in the chest or the knees. I’ve been there. Sometimes it doesn’t happen that way,” Girardi said.
  • As of now, there are no plans to link John Ryan Murphy as Sabathia’s personal catcher.

Here are the lineups:

BLUE JAYS (1-1)
Jose Reyes ss
Russell Martin c
Jose Bautista rf
Edwin Encarnacion dh
Josh Donaldson 3b
Danny Valencia 1b
Kevin Pillar cf
Steve Tolleson lf
Devon Travis 2b

Daniel Norris lhp

YANKEES (1-1)
Jacoby Ellsbury cf
Alex Rodriguez dh
Carlos Beltran rf
Mark Teixeira 1b
Chase Headley 3b
Chris Young lf
John Ryan Murphy c
Gregorio Petit 2b
Didi Gregorius ss

CC Sabathia lhp

Game 2: Yankees vs. Blue Jays

It’s chilly here in the Bronx, where the Yankees and Blue Jays will play the second game of their three-game series tonight at 7:05 p.m. ET. Michael Pineda draws the start against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. Here are the quick hits you need to know…

  • Michael PinedaWe all remember what happened the last couple of times that Pineda pitched in April. I asked Joe Girardi if anyone has felt the need to mention the words, ‘pine tar,’ to Pineda as he prepares to work in these 40-degree conditions. “I’m sure we’ll have a lot of eyes on him tonight. I think he understands — I hope,” Girardi replied.
  • Didi Gregorius (right elbow) said that he was fine and returned to the lineup after being hit by a pitch on Monday.
  • The Yankees are using the same lineup as they did on Opening Day. Alex Rodriguez is 8-for-22 (.364) with a homer lifetime vs. Dickey, but Girardi said he was not tempted to move the batting order around. After shaking up the lineup so often last season, using the same one two games in a row is practically a luxury.
  • Masahiro Tanaka spoke with the Yankees on Wednesday regarding what the organization believes was a miscommunication in an interview last week, when he said his velocity is expected to dip because he is throwing more two-seamers. We’ll have a full story on yankees.com, but to summarize everything in one sentence, the Yanks still believe Tanaka is healthy.
  • Who’s got the ninth inning? TBA. Girardi said he’ll base that decision on matchups.
  • Outfielder Chris Young and infielder Gregorio Petit could see some action tomorrow, when the Yanks face left-hander Daniel Norris. The Yanks still plan on platooning Gregorius against left-handers.

Here are tonight’s lineups:

BLUE JAYS (1-0)
Jose Reyes ss
Russell Martin c
Jose Bautista rf
Edwin Encarnacion dh
Josh Donaldson 3b
Dalton Pompey cf
Kevin Pillar lf
Justin Smoak 1b
Devon Travis 2b

R.A. Dickey rhp

YANKEES (0-1)
Jacoby Ellsbury cf
Brett Gardner lf
Carlos Beltran rf
Mark Teixeira 1b
Brian McCann c
Chase Headley 3b
Alex Rodriguez dh
Stephen Drew 2b
Didi Gregorius ss

Michael Pineda rhp

Opening Day: Yankees vs. Blue Jays

Hello from Opening Day at Yankee Stadium, where you could not ask for more perfect conditions with a season opener on tap — gorgeous sunshine, a little spring chill in the air, and the Yankees ready to slip the pinstripes on and take the field against the Toronto Blue Jays.

After seven weeks of watching games that did not count in the standings, it’s great to be able to say that this one will. Masahiro Tanaka makes his first career Opening Day start against Toronto right-hander Drew Hutchison. The Yanks will take the field at 1:08 p.m., and Joe Torre is here to throw the ceremonial first pitch.

Here are the lineups for today’s game, the beginning of the 113th season in Yankees franchise history, as well as this journey which will bounce us around the country for 162 games over the next six months:

BLUE JAYS (0-0)
Jose Reyes SS
Russell Martin C
Jose Bautista RF
Edwin Encarnacion 1B
Josh Donaldson 3B
Dioner Navarro DH
Dalton Pompey CF
Kevin Pillar LF
Devon Travis 2B

Drew Hutchison RHP

YANKEES (0-0)
Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Brett Gardner LF
Carlos Beltran RF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Brian McCann C
Chase Headley 3B
Alex Rodriguez DH
Stephen Drew 2B
Didi Gregorius SS

Masahiro Tanaka RHP

Kuroda: It’s “pretty frustrating” right now

Hiroki Kuroda, of Japan,, Larry Rothschild, Chris StewartIN TWO PARAGRAPHS: Uh-oh. The Yankees shouldn’t be losing two of three games to the Blue Jays if they’re serious about making a real run at a playoff spot, but let’s focus tonight on Hiroki Kuroda, who suddenly is starting to look like he’s cooked as the innings pile up. This is three rough ones in a row, as Kuroda was pounded for seven runs (five earned) and nine hits in five innings. He has allowed 15 earned runs in his last 16 2/3 innings (8.10 ERA).

No, Chris Stewart’s two-run throwing error didn’t help, but obviously that wasn’t the only problem tonight. Edwin Encarnacion’s homer to left field was a bomb, and Kuroda left a pitch up that Brett Lawrie pounded for a two-run double. The final was 7-2, and it never really felt that close — I mean, Joba Chamberlain was warming up in the third inning with the Yanks down by seven. That’s about all you need to know.

MANAGER’S TAKE: “He’s struggling a little bit right now, but I mean, I looked up and [Felix] Hernandez in Seattle gave up I think nine runs today. These guys can’t be perfect. We need him to turn it around and I believe he will the next start.” – Joe Girardi

QUOTES…

“As a starter, I think you take all of your 30-something starts as important as any starts. Especially after July, where you feel like you want to be better at your pitches. At the same time, I feel like you take it one game at a time. Every start is important, but to not have my stuff at this stage of the season is pretty frustrating.” – Kuroda

“It’s a big blow, especially the way Hiro’s been throwing. He hasn’t been really catching the breaks, and for me to do something like that and add on to the misery, it sucks. Hopefully it’s the last one of the year. Hopefully I can keep my head on straight, we can keep things rolling, brush off some wins, and get back to where we need to be.” -Stewart

“We’ve got to win games, that’s the bottom line. We’re playing the teams that we’re chasing for the most part. There are a couple teams, but we need to play well. We don’t have much room for error. Every game we play is important.” – Derek Jeter

NOTES…

This was the Blue Jays’ first series win vs. the Yankees. … New York is now 19-19 since the All-Star break. … Kuroda has allowed at least nine hits and five runs in three straight starts. … Eduardo Nunez (right knee) said that he’ll have an MRI on Thursday in New York. He’s concerned about the chances of having to go back on the disabled list. … Jeter had his first double of the year. It was career hit No. 3,311, placing him two behind Eddie Collins (3,313) for ninth place on the all-time list.

ON DECK

The Yankees have an off-day Thursday, and then it’s back to Yankee Stadium for a big Wild Card race showdown with the Baltimore Orioles. CC Sabathia (11-11, 4.81) gets the ball for the opener of a three-game series as the Birds will throw right-hander Miguel Gonzalez (8-6, 3.77). First pitch is scheduled for 7:07 p.m. ET on YES and MLB Network.

Quick hits: All fun and games ’til Nuney’s still hurt

greetings-from-torontoHere are the early notes as the Yankees (70-62) and Blue Jays (59-74) prepare to meet here at Rogers Centre. Hiroki Kuroda and Todd Redmond are matching up for the 7:07 p.m. ET start:

There was a wheelchair waiting at Eduardo Nunez‘s locker this afternoon, as the Yankees were still giggling about his display in the eighth inning last night, crumpling to the artificial turf with a right knee injury. Nunez stayed in the game but left for a pinch-runner the next inning, and afterward, Joe Girardi was among those laughing about … shall we say … Nuney’s flair for the dramatic.

After the wheelchair was a big hit, three Yankees scampered out to the turf with athletic tape to create a body outline of where Nunez hit the field last night. This was all shaping up as a fun pregame note until Nunez was unable to get through batting practice. Scratched from the starting lineup, Nunez will be replaced at second base tonight by Mark Reynolds, who is making his first big league start at the position.

Reynolds did play the ninth inning there last night, marking his third big league inning there, and he’s standing at second base trying to get a cram session in as I write this blog post.

Robinson Cano, as expected, is not in the Yankees’ lineup. His hand is still swollen after being hit by that pitch last night. They’ll shoot for Friday against the Orioles.

Injury updates on some Yankees you might have forgotten about: Zoilo Almonte and Travis Hafner are progressing to tee-and-toss. They’re both expected to rejoin the team after rosters expand Sept. 1. Also, Michael Pineda has moved up to side sessions and David Phelps is about to start throwing again. There’s still a shot of them helping the Yanks out of the bullpen this year. Girardi didn’t have much info about Vidal Nuno and didn’t seem to feel like he was an option to help in September.

My Beat The Streak pick tonight: Alex Rodriguez, who has homered in back-to-back games. He has never faced  Redmond; none of the Yankees have. Streak is at one after Derek Jeter went 2-for-5 last night.

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