Results tagged ‘ Alex Rodriguez ’

A-Rod carrying the Yankees’ lineup

Yankees Rays BaseballComing off last night’s two-homer, four-RBI performance, Alex Rodriguez has been promoted to the No. 3 spot in the Yankees lineup as they play the middle game of a three-game set tonight at Tropicana Field.

Masahiro Tanaka (1-1, 7.00 ERA) is on the mound for New York, with right-hander Jake Odorizzi (2-0, 0.61 ERA) getting the call for Tampa Bay. The game will be televised on Fox Sports 1 and can be heard on WFAN.

Here are the quick hits you need to know:

  • Here’s a great stat that showcases just how good A-Rod’s first 10 games have been: He is batting .344 (11-for-32 AB) with four homers and 11 RBIs. The rest of the Yankees are hitting a combined .209 (67-for-320).
  • Rodriguez’s response: “Let’s see if you can do this for six months. Anyone can do it for 10 games. Let’s just see what happens.”
  • Brett Gardner (right wrist) returns to the lineup to make his first start since Monday. Joe Girardi said that he’ll watch Gardner closely on check-swings and swings and misses, but Gardner would have batted last night if his spot had come up. 
  • Carlos Beltran is out of the lineup with chest congestion, and Joe Girardi isn’t sure if Beltran will be available Sunday either. Apparently there has been a bad cold going around the clubhouse; first-base coach Tony Pena has gotten hit worse than anyone. I’m buying some Emergen-C on my way back to the hotel tonight.
  • Reverse split alert: Because Odorizzi is a rare right-hander who is tougher on left-handed hitters, Didi Gregorius is getting the night off. Gregorio Petit is making the start at second base, with Stephen Drew handling the duties at shortstop. Chris Young takes over in right field.
  • Brian McCann is batting .500 (5-for-10) with two homers lifetime vs. Odorizzi.
  • Chris Capuano was in the clubhouse this afternoon and will throw a 45-pitch bullpen session tomorrow. His target date is probably late May, with Ivan Nova right behind him. Girardi confirmed that the Yankees plan to stretch Capuano and Nova out as starters.
  • The Yankees came into today tied with the Orioles for the most homers in the Majors this season, with 16.
  • A-Rod thought it was hilarious that people on social media keep talking about the white gunk on top of his helmet. It’s just rosin, he says.
  • We hardly knew you, Matt Tracy. He was claimed off waivers by the Miami Marlins this afternoon. In addition, Joel De La Cruz was outrighted off the Major League roster and onto the roster of Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Here are the lineups… first pitch at 7:10 p.m. ET:

Masahiro TanakaYANKEES (4-6)
Jacoby Ellsbury cf
Brett Gardner lf
Alex Rodriguez dh
Mark Teixeira 1b
Brian McCann c
Chris Young rf
Chase Headley 3b
Stephen Drew ss
Gregorio Petit 2b

Masahiro Tanaka rhp

RAYS (6-5)
David DeJesus dh
Stephen Souza Jr. rf
Asdrubal Cabrera ss
Evan Longoria 3b
Desmond Jennings cf
Allan Dykstra 1b
Logan Forsythe 2b
Brandon Guyer lf
Rene Rivera c

Jake Odorizzi rhp

Game 5: Yankees vs. Red Sox

Pirates Yankees BaseballDerek Jeter’s go-to coffee order, whether he was on his way to Yankee Stadium or wandering around Manhattan, was always a venti ‘Red Eye’ from Starbucks. I bring this up not to shill for free java — though, I mean, if you absolutely insist? — but because the coffee consumption here at the ballpark has skyrocketed following last night’s 19-inning epic with the Red Sox.

That one went into the books as the longest home game in Yankees history at six hours and 49 minutes (not including a 16-minute ‘light delay’ in the 12th inning), and the second-longest game in Yankees history. The only one longer was a seven-hour contest on June 24, 1962 against the Tigers in Detroit, which the Yankees won 9-7 in 22 innings — but, of course, they didn’t have a light delay.

“The one thing about the game is, you get used to being tired, because of the schedule that we keep,” Joe Girardi said. “You get in from cities at 4 o’clock in the morning and play the next day. It’s just part of the game. As much as you don’t want to get used to it, you get used to it.”

Adam Warren will make his first start of the year this afternoon after winning the Yanks’ fifth starter competition in Spring Training. Joe Kelly has been activated from the disabled list and will start for Boston. Alex Rodriguez is making his first career appearance at first base. Here’s what else you need to know from the Yankees’ clubhouse, where I spotted quite a few cans of Red Bull being passed around:

  • Thanks for the 3 1/3 innings of scoreless relief, Chasen Shreve, but he loses the numbers game and is rewarded with an option to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. “It stinks,” was how Girardi put it, but that’s baseball. The Yankees have signed left-hander Matt Tracy to a big league contract and added him to the active roster.
  • The Yankees weren’t planning to take on-field batting practice anyway today, so the official report time for players was set at 11:30 a.m. Most of the guys got here with time to spare, but there were quite a few bleary eyes in the clubhouse.
  • Alex RodriguezGirardi’s original plan was to give A-Rod today off, but 19 innings of ball changed that. Rodriguez played 11 of those innings, going 2-for-5 as the designated hitter before exiting for a pinch-runner, but he was on his feet a lot less than guys like Mark Teixeira.
  • Warren was sent home in the sixth or seventh inning last night to get his rest. The Yanks also started sending their relievers home after they were out of the game. As it is, Girardi said he doesn’t expect to be able to use Esmil Rogers today and will have to check with David Carpenter.
  • I spoke to Garrett Jones, who would’ve been the Yanks’ next pitcher if the game had gone any further. He said that he hasn’t pitched since 1999, when he was a high school senior, but he was gearing up to face David Ortiz in the 19th inning. Asked for his pitching scouting report, Jones laughed and said, “Straight fastball and a dirty changeup. I might have mixed in a curve to Big Papi.”
  • Brian McCann’s right knee is a little sore after getting clipped with a foul tip last night, but Girardi doesn’t anticipate it being a problem. Catchers are tough, man.

The caffeine is kicking in. Let’s do this. Here are the lineups:

RED SOX (3-1)
Brock Holt cf
Dustin Pedroia 2b
David Ortiz dh
Mike Napoli 1b
Pablo Sandoval 3b
Allen Craig rf
Daniel Nava lf
Xander Bogaerts ss
Ryan Hanigan c

Joe Kelly rhp

YANKEES (1-3)
Brett Gardner lf
Chris Young cf
Carlos Beltran dh
Alex Rodriguez 1b
Chase Headley 3b
Garrett Jones rf
John Ryan Murphy c
Didi Gregorius ss
Gregorio Petit 2b

Adam Warren rhp

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

A-Rod projected to hit 12 homers this season

Would you be happy with 12 homers from Alex Rodriguez this season?

Would you be happy with 12 homers from Alex Rodriguez this season?

It’s that time again: MLB.com’s 2015 Fantasy Projections are ready for the season, and they provide a fun flash-forward for what might be on the back of next year’s baseball cards.

There are no guarantees, of course, but here’s what the number-crunchers are seeing in their crystal balls for the Yankees’ key players. My eyes were immediately drawn to the stat line for Alex Rodriguez, where they’ve given him 12 homers. That’d account for the six necessary to catch Willie Mays (660) and then some, but it falls well below the over-under line of 19 1/2 for A-Rod homers that has been floating around on social media.

I think you’d probably take these lines for McCann, Ellsbury and Beltran in their respective second seasons wearing pinstripes. You definitely accept that kind of year from Drew; it’s a lot closer to where he was in 2013 with Boston. They’ve apparently put Adam Warren back in the bullpen and the Yankees are giving random starts to an awful lot of starting pitchers (but such is life in the Bronx).

I think Masahiro Tanaka’s numbers of 14-10 and a 3.02 ERA might be a bit conservative assuming a full season of health. And poor Brendan Ryan can’t crack the Mendoza line even in a preseason simulation. But don’t take my word for it, look for yourself:

C: Brian McCann, .251, 66 R, 25 HR, 78 RBI, 1 SB
1B: Mark Teixeira, .227, 60 R, 22 HR, 66 RBI, 1 SB
2B: Stephen Drew, .240, 50 R, 10 HR, 50 RBI, 2 SB
3B: Chase Headley, .269, 74 R, 19 HR, 71 RBI, 10 SB
SS: Didi Gregorius, .247, 54 R, 11 HR, 48 RBI, 5 SB
LF: Brett Gardner, .266, 86 R, 13 HR, 57 RBI, 21 SB
CF: Jacoby Ellsbury, .281, 84 R, 15 HR, 70 RBI, 37 SB
RF: Carlos Beltran, .268, 65 R, 22 HR, 70 RBI, 3 SB
DH: Alex Rodriguez, .251, 47 R, 12 HR, 51 RBI, 1 SB

OF: Chris Young, .232, 34 R, 11 HR, 33 RBI, 9 SB
1B: Garrett Jones, .256, 38 R, 12 HR, 43 RBI, 1 SB
2B: Rob Refsnyder, .247, 24 R, 3 HR, 19 RBI, 2 SB
SS: Brendan Ryan, .193, 11 R, 1 HR, 8 RBI, 2 SB

SP: Masahiro Tanaka, 14-10, 3.02 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 170 K
SP: Michael Pineda, 10-9, 3.38 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 144 K
SP: CC Sabathia, 10-11, 4.08 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 145 K
SP: Nathan Eovaldi, 11-11, 3.92 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 150 K
SP: Ivan Nova, 6-7, 4.00 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 85 K
SP: Chris Capuano, 6-8, 4.17 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 89 K
SP: Chase Whitley, 2-3, 3.95 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 57 K
SP: Scott Baker, 4-5, 4.80 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 50 K

RP: Dellin Betances, 25 SV, 2.13 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 104 K
RP: Andrew Miller, 15 SV, 2.49 ERA, 0.95 ERA, 90 K
RP: David Carpenter, 0 SV, 3.48 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 64 K
RP: Adam Warren, 0 SV, 3.41 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 89 K

Agree? Disagree? Hit the box below with your commentary.

Empty-handed at Winter Meetings, Yankees ready to deal

Brian CashmanWith a backpack slung over his shoulder, Brian Cashman stood on the sidewalk in front of the Manchester Grand Hyatt and didn’t mince words in recapping his uneventful stay by the surf in San Diego.

“I didn’t do anything,” Cashman said. “We threw a lot of ideas a lot of different ways, but we’ve got a long way between now and Opening Day. We’ll keep our conversations that still are ongoing alive, and just wait and see.”

The Yanks tried to join the frenzy at a wild Winter Meetings, but their experience will be remembered more for who they lost. It was a week in which the Yankees watched David Robertson take a four-year, $46 million deal from the White Sox, then learned that Brandon McCarthy had scored a four-year, $48 million pact from the Dodgers.

In both cases, the Yankees declined to extend a proposal, other than the qualifying offer that Robertson turned down last month. In Robertson’s case, they decided that they’d rather have the package of Andrew Miller on a four-year, $36 million deal and a compensatory Draft pick, giving them a few extra dollars to spend. As for McCarthy, Cashman said that he “figured the market would take him at a level that we couldn’t play on.”

Thus, the Yankees’ needs are exactly what they were five days ago. Here’s a handy recap of how we covered the team’s business at the Winter Meetings:

Andrew MillerDay 1: Miller joined the beat reporters on a conference call and said that he feels capable of handling the closer’s role, though that opportunity did not come up in his talks with the Yankees and he plans to accept any role that manager Joe Girardi hands to him. Now tracking the Yanks’ Hot Stove moves as an interested observer, Miller said he feels that New York’s bullpen already looks formidable on paper.

“I think I can get three outs at any point in the game, wherever that may be,” Miller said. “Whatever it is, it’s fine with me. I want to win. I want to shake hands and high-five at the end of the game more than anything. If I have to get two outs in the sixth, there’s value in that.”

Cashman and the Yankees contingent arrived just before noon and sequestered in their suite for conversations with teams and agents. Sometime during the day, Cashman met with agent Scott Leventhal and told him that the Yankees would not bid on Robertson. Word of Robertson’s agreement with the White Sox then moved through the hotel lobby around midnight.

Joe GirardiDay 2: Girardi checked in at the Winter Meetings and said that even with the loss of Robertson, he believes that his club won’t have trouble holding late leads next season.

“We feel that our bullpen is going to be very strong again,” Girardi said. “We feel like we have a number of great arms. I’m not really worried about that because of the arms we have down there, and I feel like we’ll have a very good bullpen.”

With Miller and Dellin Betances potentially in line to jump into the closer’s role, Girardi also mentioned Justin Thomas, Adam Warren and Shawn Kelley as options to help out in a closer-by-committee situation. The Yanks would prefer to have a set closer by Opening Day. Cashman revealed that he publicly kept the Yankees in Robertson’s mix following the Miller signing to help him maximize his free agent value.

During the week, Cashman confirmed that he spoke to several teams about trades that hit dead ends. Among them — the A’s for Jeff Samardzija, the Dodgers for Dee Gordon, the Tigers for Rick Porcello and the D-backs for Wade Miley. In Porcello’s case, Cashman says that he obviously didn’t have a player like Yoenis Cespedes to offer; in Gordon’s case, the Dodgers were already moving forward in talks with the Marlins.

“I just said, if you see any fits, let me know,” Cashman said.

Prior to last week’s Didi Gregorius trade, the Yanks had also talked to the Phillies about Jimmy Rollins. One minor note from this day – earlier reports that the Yankees hired Marcus Thames as an assistant hitting coach are said to be false, according to Cashman. In fact, Thames was never interviewed. The search to replace Kevin Long and Mick Kelleher is taking a back seat to pursuing trades and free agents.

Scott BorasDay 3: Following the news of Jon Lester choosing the Cubs over the Red Sox, Scott Boras took his annual place as the center of attention at the Winter Meetings (hey, I’m in this photo!) and attempted to dangle Max Scherzer in front of the Yankees’ eyes.

“I can’t predict what the Yankees are going to do,” Boras said, “but I can tell you that a guy like Max fits into their starting rotation to develop a World Series-caliber set that is similar to what they’ve had in the past when they won.”

Cashman replied: “Good, that means he likes the four we’ve got!” Yankees people still state that they do not plan on issuing another nine-figure pitching contract; industry people are saying they aren’t so sure about that.

By this point, the Yanks had checked in with free agent closers Sergio Romo and Jason Grilli. There was also an Alex Rodriguez update – A-Rod was seen in Miami by strength and conditioning coordinator Matt Krause, who issued a positive report. Rodriguez is heavier than his listed playing weight of 225 pounds, but Cashman said there has been progress.

On the third base front, the Yankees continued to talk to Chase Headley. The switch-hitter is reported to have a four-year, $65 million offer in hand from an undisclosed team, and if that is true, the Yankees are unlikely to match it. Cashman said the Yanks are ready to roll with Martin Prado at third base if it comes to that, giving Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela a crack at the second base job. They could also go after the likes of Asdrubal Cabrera or Jed Lowrie. Boras mentioned that Stephen Drew is willing to sign as a second baseman.

Cashman also reaches out to Hiroki Kuroda’s agent, Steve Hilliard, who tells the Yankees that Kuroda has not reached any decisions about 2015. Kuroda is said to be once again entertaining thoughts of retirement, though Cashman has said that he expects Kuroda to pitch next season.

News of McCarthy’s deal with the Dodgers breaks late in the evening. Cashman soon confirms that the Yankees didn’t make him an offer. I file a fun story about Eric Chavez’s new front office/coaching gig.

The Yanks’ only pickup of the meetings? The reported Minor League signing of infielder Nick Noonan, a move that has not been announced by the club.

Day 4: The quiet Winter Meetings conclude with the Yankees idle in the Rule 5 Draft, opting to keep their three vacant 40-man roster spots clear for future trades and free agent signings. They also do not lose any players. Rumors briefly connect the Yanks to free agent Ervin Santana, who signed a four-year deal with the Twins.

The Yanks’ adjoining suites on the 29th floor are vacated; the room service bill is likely substantial. In wrapping up the meetings, assistant GM Billy Eppler said that the Yankees’ attitude has been one of patience rather than frustration.

“You always want to walk out of here with something to show for it, but when you make headway in certain arenas, it makes you feel like you’ve been able to drill down on some things that hopefully will present themselves in the coming days,” Eppler said.

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