Results tagged ‘ Blue Jays ’
TORONTO — Greetings from north of the border, where Alex Rodriguez is out of the lineup once again with that nagging thumb but says he’s feeling more encouraged now than he has since first suffering the injury. Hitting coach Kevin Long suggested a new grip, one that has A-Rod separating his hands by about a half an inch so that his left thumb doesn’t make contact with his top hand, and the Yankees’ third baseman felt comfortable with it while taking live BP. Now, he’s thinking real positively about starting on Saturday.
“It’s the best I’ve felt in over a month, since the Mauer groundball, there’s no question,” Rodriguez said after coming off the field with seven rounds of BP under his belt. “It’s a good idea by Kevin, and we’ll just take this for a while and take it from there.”
Here are today’s lineup, with original Blue Jays starter Brett Cecil being scratched with a cut on his left finger.
Derek Jeter, SS
Curtis Granderson, CF
Mark Teixeira, 1B
Robinson Cano, 2B
Nick Swisher, RF
Eric Chavez, 3B
Jorge Posada, DH
Russell Martin, C
Brett Gardner, LF
SP: LH CC Sabathia (19-8, 2.93 ERA)
BLUE JAYS (75-74)
Mike McCoy, SS
Eric Thames, LF
Jose Bautista, RF
Edwin Encarnacion, DH
Adam Lind, 1B
Brett Lawrie, 3B
Colby Rasmus, CF
J.P. Arencibia, C
Kelly Johnson, 2B
SP: RH Dustin McGowan (0-0, 9.00 ERA)
Girardi on Cano, who returned to the lineup after being struck in the foot by a pitch on Wednesday: “That’s one thing I don’t think people talk enough about is Robbie’s toughness. We’ve seen him hit plenty of times where we thought he wouldn’t play the next day or even stay in the game, and he does.”
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — That’s the question I’m pondering from St. Pete, just a few hours before the start of a four-game series against the Rays and just a few hours removed from a very convincing start by Phil Hughes.
Hughes looked awfully close to that 18-game winner from 2010 against the Blue Jays on Sunday, when he notched his first win and first quality start, retired eight of his final nine hitters he faced and registered just 80 pitches through six innings. He could’ve gone longer, but Hughes (pictured left by The Associated Press) went deep enough to make a very important point — he looks like an effective starting pitcher again.
Over the All-Star break, the right-hander worked with pitching coach Larry Rothschild on better aligning his stride towards the plate and adjusting his curveball grip. That grip gave him a much sharper breaking ball he was able to use as a reliable No. 2 pitch to offset his four-seamer (one that consistently sat in the 92- to 93-mph range and got better as the game wore on).
Now, the question: If Hughes truly is back, and he’s the 2010 version again, do the Yankees need Ubaldo Jimenez?
Here’s the thing about Jimenez: Rockies general manager Dan O’Dowd doesn’t really have to move him. It reminds me a lot of the situation with Padres closer Heath Bell in recent years. Jimenez is under club control for a while (signed through 2012 with two additional club options thereafter), he’s awfully affordable (making no more than $8 million through 2014) and his stock is rather low (Jimenez is 5-8 with a 4.08 ERA in 18 starts this year — though he does have a 2.56 ERA since the start of June).
Since the Rockies are 9 1/2 games out of first place and the starting-pitching market is weak, it’s not surprising they would shop him. But considering all the above-mentioned factors, it’s no wonder Colorado seeks the sun and the moon for the services of Ubaldo (pictured right by the AP).
MLB.com colleague Thomas Harding says the Rockies are at least listening to offers for Jimenez, but a deal remains unlikely. Peter Gammons, meanwhile, put the chances of a deal at 10 percent. We all know how quickly things can change as the non-waiver Trade Deadline draws closer, though.
With regards to the Yankees, the names that have surfaced as potential pieces to a deal are the likes of Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, Ivan Nova and Jesus Montero (though SI.com is reporting today that Montero wouldn’t be the centerpiece of the potential trade, since the Rockies don’t view him as a catcher).
Now, if Hughes is right, then the Yankees would have an in-house rotation of CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Hughes at the top, with the final spots going to any two between Bartolo Colon, Freddy Garcia and Nova.
Would they still need Jimenez to make a return trip to the playoffs? And would it be worth it to give up what the Rockies would want in return?
Curious to hear your thoughts.
Some links from the series finale in Toronto …
* Efficient Hughes looks strong in first win
* Yankees Notebook, on Gardner, Dickerson, Teixeira and A-Rod
* Yankees intend to push Rays down standings
TORONTO — This should be interesting.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi chose Sunday as the day he’d shake up his lineup and give a few more guys a break from the field surface here at Rogers Centre. So, what we have is quite the afternoon delight — Eduardo Nunez fielding grounders at shortstop, Jorge Posada catching his throws at first base, and an all-turf field surrounding them.
Derek Jeter has the day off, Mark Teixeira is in as the designated hitter and Ramiro Pena gets his fifth start of the season at third base. But all our eyes will be on Phil Hughes, who makes his second start since returning from the disabled list.
Pregame, the Yankees switched outfielders, with lefty hitter Chris Dickerson returning and right-handed hitter Greg Golson being sent down to the Minor Leagues with the Yankees facing more righties in the coming days.
Still no Jose Bautista (ankle) for the Jays.
Here are your lineups …
Pitching: RH Hughes (0-2, 10.57 ERA)
Pitching: RH Carlos Villanueva (5-1, 2.99 ERA)
From the Game Notes …
* The Yankees are 34-18 (a .654 winning percentage) since May 17, marking the second-best record in the Majors over that stretch. Only the Red Sox (35-16) have a better mark since then.
* New York is a Major League-best 27-5 in day games this season. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the only team to win at least 27 of their first 32 day games in a season was the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1955.
* Nunez has driven in 16 runs this season, eight of which have tied the game or given the Yankees the lead.
And here are some links from yesterday …
* CC stifles Blue Jays for 14th win
* Yankees Notebook, with stuff on Soriano, defense, Jeter and (of course) signs
* Hughes out to build on modest return
* Yankees reportedly one of many teams interested in Ubaldo
* Alfonso Soriano to the Yankees?
TORONTO — Joe Girardi didn’t expect his bullpen to log so many innings so quickly into the second half. But two games removed from the All-Star break, the Yankees’ skipper already finds himself needing a long, bullpen-saving start from ace CC Sabathia. The Yankees’ relief corps logged 7 1/3 innings on Thursday, then three more on Friday. In that span, five different relievers were used, with Sergio Mitre going twice. Because of that, Mitre won’t be available today, and there’s a good chance neither will Hector Noesi, who’s two days removed from pitching 3 1/3 frames.
“It happens during the course of the season and you just have to prepare for it,” Girardi said. “You need some distance out of your ace today, and that’s the bottom line. And I think we’re covered. But if something were to happen to CC in the first inning, then it’d be a little tough today.”
Lucky for Joe, Sabathia is one of the best second-half pitchers in baseball.
Or perhaps the best.
In terms of second-half performance from 2006-10, Sabathia leads all Major League starters who qualify in ERA (2.64), wins (41) and strikeouts (490). For his career, the burly left-hander has a 3.67 first-half ERA and a 3.31 second-half ERA. Now, he’ll be looking to get the Yankees back on track after they dropped back-to-back games, and look to snap the Blue Jays’ five-game winning streak.
A lot of the talk pregame, once again, centered on signs. Russell Martin claimed the Blue Jays were picking up his signs on Thursday. Then last night, Girardi opted to go with multiple signs even with nobody on base, which led to a lot of mound trips and some confusion that may have taken Freddy Garcia out of rhythm (though nobody really used that as an excuse). Pregame today, Girardi vaguely addressed the issue of teams taking other measures besides their own baserunners to pick up signs, saying: “Sometimes we have inclinations that things might be happening in certain ballparks. We’re aware of it, and we try to protect our signs.” Blue Jays skipper John Farrell then denied that any of that is going on at Rogers Centre.
More on that soon.
For now, here are the lineups, with Jose Bautista still out for the Blue Jays and day-to-day with a sore ankle. It’s looking like he won’t play on Sunday, either. Curtis Granderson has the day off from the turf, and Martin gets a blow behind the plate with the quick turnaround …
Pitching: LH Sabathia (13-4, 2.72 ERA)
Pitching: LH Ricky Romero (7-8, 3.09 ERA)
Some links from last night …
* Garcia bested on night to forget for Yanks
* Yankees Notebook, with stuff on Nunez’s learning curve, Jeter’s popularity and Colon’s health
* Martin blames himself if Blue Jays knew signs
TORONTO — Well, that answers that.
Joe Girardi got the expected response when he spoke to Bartolo Colon — that he’s perfectly healthy — and didn’t see any signs that the veteran righty was hurt or when he looked at and compared tape frame-by-frame. Girardi said Colon’s stuff was actually pretty good on Thursday night — though he admitted his velocity may have been down a tad — and said the 38-year-old will make his next scheduled start, which is Tuesday against the Rays.
Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista is out of the lineup today, likely won’t play tomorrow and could miss the rest of the series after twisting his ankle sliding into third base in the fourth inning on Thursday night.
Here are your lineups …
Pitching: RH Freddy Garcia (7-6, 3.13 ERA)
Pitching: RH Brandon Morrow (5-4, 4.60 ERA)
TORONTO — Today, Joe Girardi will call Bartolo Colon into his office to ask him if his strained left hamstring is healthy enough for him to pitch and, most importantly, be effective. And Colon, in typical Colon fashion, will likely tell him he’s perfectly healthy and it’s just a mental block he has to overcome.
But is that entirely true?
He did hurl six shutout innings against the Mets in his first start back from the disabled list. But he was hit around against the Rays after that, then couldn’t get through a nightmarish first inning against the Blue Jays last night. Girardi says the Yankees simply didn’t play good defense behind Colon (which is true, considering Brett Gardner‘s bad read on an eventual double and Eduardo Nunez‘s error on an inning-ending chopper). Russell Martin says the Blue Jays were stealing signs from the get-go (which, if true, would definitely give opposing hitters a big advantage). And Colon (pictured left by The Associated Press) says he’s pitching scared with his left leg; meaning he’s not landing firm enough in order to get enough life on his pitches.
That’s a whole lot of explanations (some would call them excuses), but the reality is quite simple: Colon hasn’t been as good lately as he was throughout the year. And when you consider he’s 38, only made 19 big league starts from 2008-10 and (let’s face it) isn’t in top-tier physical condition, it’s concerning, even if the sample size is quite small.
The Yankees at least know they have options if they decide Colon can’t start for them, with Ivan Nova in Triple-A and having the experience of pitching in the big leagues this year. (Nova gave up three runs in seven innings for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre last night, by the way.)
The question is: Should the Yankees give Colon another shot and allow him to make his next turn in the rotation? Or do you recall up Nova and put Colon in the ‘pen?
We may know more about Colon’s situation pregame, and we’ll definitely have some lineups then.
For now, here are some links from last night you might’ve missed …
* Colon, Yankees endure tough night in Toronto
* Martin accuses Blue Jays of sign stealing
* Yanks ink lefty Romero to Minors deal
* Yankees Notebook, on Jeter’s reaction to All-Star Game criticism, Colon’s surgery documents, Golson’s call-up, Soriano’s future and the record Jeter and Posada now share
TORONTO – Welcome, one and all, to the fake grass of Rogers Centre, where the Yankees begin the season’s second half. I, Alden Gonzalez, will be with the club for this eight-game road trip while Bryan Hoch gets some time off.
Today, I was greeted with the signing of lefty reliever J.C. Romero, the call-up of outfielder Greg Golson, the decision to have setup man Rafael Soriano throw one more BP session before going on a rehab assignment, and the confusion of Derek Jeter over criticism for skipping the All-Star Game.
You can find that all on Yankees.com soon, if not now. But here are your lineups, with Nick Swisher making his return (remember, the Yankees play eight straight games on artificial turf, so it’ll be interesting to see how Joe Girardi juggles the off days) …
Pitching: RH Bartolo Colon (6-4, 3.20 ERA)
Pitching: LH Jo-Jo Reyes (4-7, 4.57 ERA)
- Hello from Dunedin, where the Yankees and Blue Jays are meeting for the second time this spring. It’s in the mid-70′s without a cloud in the sky, a perfect sunny Florida day, and the flags are lightly blowing in from right-center field while the Spin Doctors’ “Two Princes” plays on the left-center field speakers.
- Slow morning at Yankees camp, but Joe Girardi did have a couple of small tidbits. Lefties Pedro Feliciano and Boone Logan are both being slowed by aches – Feliciano has a little dead arm soreness near his left triceps, and Logan had back spasms after throwing a scoreless inning last night vs. Tampa Bay. Feliciano will throw a bullpen tomorrow; Logan might be out for four or five days.
- Joba Chamberlain is scheduled to throw a bullpen tomorrow.&n
- Girardi promises he’ll have the regular season order of A.J. Burnett and Phil Hughes in the Yankees rotation tomorrow. They’ve gone through camp with Hughes following CC Sabathia.
- Girardi seems to love the idea of having Eric Chavez on the bench. “I think there’s some upside there,” he said. “You watch him swing the bat – I saw him hit a double over the left fielder’s head, he has pull power. We know that he can play defense. He’s an interesting guy to have, for sure.”
- Alex Rodriguez has homered in three straight games, driven in a run in five straight and hit in all 11 of his spring contests. He’s not on today’s trip, though. Last night’s homer outdid Jorge Vazquez for the longest Steinbrenner Field blast of the spring – they don’t offer tape measure distances, but it cleared the center-field batters eye with plenty of room to spare.
- Sergio Mitre returns to action today in relief. They have A.J. Burnett slated for 75-80 pitches.
- There are 13 days until Opening Day.
The blog has been a little quiet of late. Let’s spruce it up with this morning’s pop off the MLB.com Hot Stove report…
A.J. Burnett and Roy Halladay struck up a sincere friendship during
their time together with the Blue Jays, and not surprisingly, Burnett
would enjoy seeing it continue in Yankees pinstripes.
told the New York Daily News in Tuesday’s editions that he would like
to see Halladay be traded to a contending team, preferably the Yankees,
with whom Burnett won his first World Series title this year after
signing a five-year, $82.5 million deal.
“I think it’s time for
him to get a fresh start,” Burnett told the newspaper. “He’s paid his
dues there, been the face of the organization, done everything they’ve
asked him to do and more. At this point in his career, I think he just
wants to win.”
Burnett added that he believes Halladay would be able to handle the increased attention New York brings.
don’t think he would let anything distract him,” Burnett said. “He’s
not really the type of person that gets intimidated easily. It doesn’t
matter where he pitches; he’s going to be the same. None of the stuff
that goes on here would faze him at all.”
More Joba talk today at the Stadium, where Joe Girardi revealed that Chamberlain will be making his next start Wednesday in Oakland. From there, who knows? Chamberlain will presumably pitch on regular rest at times this season, and on extended rest at other times. He’s already exceeded his professional career high by nine innings, and will end this season — and, presumably, postseason — in dangerous territory no matter how much the Yankees rest him.
Speaking of rest, Mark Teixeira has an off-day in the finale against the Blue Jays. Expect A-Rod and Derek Jeter to get similar treatment over the next few days.
As we talked about yesterday, you can follow along with me during today’s game on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo. Bryan Hoch will be back Thursday, live from Seattle.
BLUE JAYS (54-58)
Pitching: Ricky Romero (10-5, 3.66)
Derek Jeter SS
Johnny Damon LF
Hideki Matsui DH
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher 1B
Eric Hinske RF
Melky Cabrera CF
Pitching: A.J. Burnett (10-5, 3.67)