The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Archive for June, 2010

Game 74: Yankees at Dodgers06.26.10

YANKEES (46-27)
Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Francisco Cervelli C
Brett Gardner LF
A.J. Burnett RHP

RHP A.J. Burnett (6-6, 4.83)
Burnett vs. Dodgers

DODGERS (39-34)
Rafael Furcal SS
Matt Kemp CF
Andre Ethier RF
Manny Ramirez LF
James Loney 1B
Casey Blake 3B
Russell Martin C
Blake Dewitt 2B
Hiroki Kuroda RHP

RHP Hiroki Kuroda (6-5, 3.06)
Kuroda vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 7:10 p.m. / FOX

UMPIRES: HP Jerry Crawford, 1B Chris Guccione, 2B Brian O’Nora, 3B Phil Cuzzi

WEATHER: What do you know? Another beautiful day in L.A.

GOT ANY ADVICE? The Yankees have a total of five career at-bats against Dodgers starter Hiroki Kuroda. All five were by Mark Teixeira, who has a single, a double, a walk, a strikeout and an RBI against him.

BIRTHDAY BOY: As you know, today is Derek Jeter’s 36th birthday. Since 1961, the only players to accumulate more hits than Jeter’s 2,834 before their 36th birthday are Hank Aaron (2,956) and Robin Yount (2,868). That’s according to Elias. Who else would know that? Jeter has hit pretty well on his birthday. He’s never homered, but he’s 13-for-40 with six runs, two doubles, three RBI and six walks in 10 games on June 26. He hasn’t played on his birthday since 2007, when he went 2-for-4 in Baltimore.

HUG IT OUT: The cast of Entourage is here, I guess to throw out the first pitch in anticipation of their season debut. Kevin Connolly – the guy who plays Eric — was shaking hands with a ton of the Yankees as they came off the field after BP.

UPDATE, 7:22 p.m.: Walk, walk, home run. That’s an easy way to take a 3-0 lead. Mark Teixeira went deep and the Yankees are in front before A.J. Burnett even goes to the mound.

UPDATE, 7:45 p.m.: If this is going to be the game when Burnett turns the corner, he’s going to have to do it a little later. That first inning was more of the same, two runs for the Dodgers to cut the lead to 3-2.

UPDATE, 8:10 p.m.: Not a good throw by the kid from Sikeston, Mo. Blake DeWitt threw the ball away trying to turn two, and the Yankees got a run out of it. That makes it 4-2 Yankees.

UPDATE, 8:28 p.m.: My guess is Burnett is facing his final batter. He’s already allowed two runs this inning, now the bases are loaded again, still with no outs. He’ll pitch to Russell Martin, but lefty Boone Logan is getting loose in the bullpen and lefty Blake DeWitt is on deck.

UPDATE, 8:30 p.m.: A double play seems to have bought Burnett more time. It left first base open for an intentional walk to DeWitt. He’ll now face the pitcher Kuroda with two outs and runners at the corners. Dodgers are up, 5-4.

UPDATE, 8:33 p.m.: Chad Moeller has cleared waivers and accepted an assignment to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

UPDATE, 8:56 p.m.: Girardi chose to keep Burnett in the game, letting him hit for himself with runners at the corners and one out in the top of the fourth. Burnett got down a sac bunt, that squandered the chance at a game-tying sac fly, and it did no good for the pitching staff as Burnett stayed in to face two batters without getting an out in the bottom half. Just a bad move all the way around. Boone Logan is in now.

UPDATE, 9:26 p.m.: Good at-bat by Nick Swisher, but it went for nothing when he grounded to first. Logan let two runners score in the bottom of the fourth and it’s now 7-4. This game might not be over in time for tomorrow night’s game to start on time.

UPDATE, 9:50 p.m.: Interesting. With a lefty on the mound, Girardi is pinch hitting Jorge Posada for Curtis Granderson. My guess is Curtis will stay in to play left field, Gardner will slide to center and the new pitcher — probably Park — will bat second in the lineup.

UPDATE, 9:51 p.m.: Posada flied out, stranding the runners at first and second. Gardner is moving to center, Curtis to left, Park pitching. And the crowd is booing as Park’s introduced.

UPDATE, 10:35 p.m.: The Dodgers are going to closer Jonathan Broxton for four outs, calling on him to face Jeter with runners at first and second and two outs in the eighth. The Yankees bullpen has not been able to keep this thing close and it’s now a 9-4 Dodgers lead.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Gameday Threadwith 837 Comments →

Pregame notes: Watching the other game06.26.10

WCup US Ghana Reax  SoccerAnother short set of pregame notes today, partially because things have been a little more hectic than usual during this series, and partially because there’s simply not a lot to make note of before tonight’s game.

Some of the early focus wasn’t on a baseball game at all. The Yankees were all gathered around the clubhouse television watch the U.S. soccer game.

“I don’t know why I’m cheering,” Joba Chamberlain said. “I’ve got Ghana in the pool.”

When the U.S. tied the game on a penalty kick, Joe Girardi tried to play a joke from his office.

“My TV was like two seconds ahead of the TV they had,” Girardi said. “I yelled, ‘He missed it!’ but no one reacted. I guess I didn’t yell loud enough.”

Girardi said he’s been watching the World Cup, but not especially closely. “The buzzing kind of drives me crazy,” he said. The Dodgers were taking batting practice when Ghana won the game in overtime (is it called overtime in soccer?).

• Both Alfredo Aceves and Sergio Mitre played long toss in Tampa today. Both will throw off a full mound on Monday. Although the Yankees want to get Mitre stretched out a little bit, Girardi said it’s still likely that Mitre will be ready to return before Aceves. Both will need a rehab assignment.

• Marcus Thames is still with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre team. “He’s running the bases today,” Girardi said. “But he’s not ready to play in games yet.”

• Girardi said he wasn’t sure how he would have handled Edwin Jackson’s no-hitter yesterday. Throwing 149 pitches might have been too much for Girardi to allow. “You start to get nervous around 130,” he said.

• Jorge Posada took a foul ball off his foot yesterday, but Girardi said that’s not why Posada is out of the lineup today. “He wasn’t limping so I wasn’t worried,” Girardi said.

DODGERS
Rafael Furcal SS
Matt Kemp CF
Andre Ethier RF
Manny Ramirez LF
James Loney 1B
Casey Blake 3B
Russell Martin C
Blake Dewitt 2B
Hiroki Kuroda RHP

Associated Press photo of U.S. soccer fans

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Noteswith 27 Comments →

Cervelli starts second game in L.A.06.26.10

Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Gunderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Francisco Cervelli C
Brett Gardner LF
A.J. Burnett RHP

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 230 Comments →

Sabathia, Rodriguez and Teixeira turning a corner06.26.10

Yankees Dodgers Baseball

To different extents and in different ways, CC Sabathia, Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira have been better the past few weeks than they were earlier this month.

• Sabathia has won five straight starts, and he’s worked through the seventh inning in each one of them. Before this streak, the Yankees had lost four straight Sabathia starts, and he hadn’t won since May 3. “CC is CC,” Mariano Rivera said. “I expect that from CC. It’s not like when I see that I’m like, wow, he did good. I expect that. I get concerned when he doesn’t do it because I know he is capable to do that.”

• Rodriguez has homered in two of the past three games, raising his season total to 10. He’s still not on pace for a huge home run total, but earlier this week Rodriguez was on pace for roughly 18. Now he’s on pace for more than 22. “It goes back to the Mets,” he said. “I had a couple of good swings in that series that I felt good about. I’ve been doing a lot of work with Kevin Long every day, and little by little I’m getting a little better.”

• Teixeira has a seven-game hitting streak. In the 16 games since that ugly series in Toronto earlier this month — when he struck out five times in one game and set off numerous calls for him to be dropped in the order — Teixeira has hit .305 with four home runs, three doubles and 11 RBI. That’s more or less in line with his career numbers, a little better even.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 148 Comments →

Jeter: “I wasn’t even looking over there”06.26.10

Yankkes Dodgers BaseballWhether you liked it or not, it was inevitable that last night’s game would be all about the reunion of Joe Torre and the Yankees. There were a hundred story angles — and an off day when there was little else to write about — and every angle was covered a hundred ways. At some point, though, last night’s game was about baseball.

“Pretty much the novelty wore out,” Derek Jeter said. “I wasn’t even looking over there.”

For the most part, that’s the way it will be today and Sunday (except for the obvious Andy Pettitte stories in the finale). Joe Girardi said last night’s game began feeling like any other game as soon as batting practice ended.

The only exception was the exchanging of lineup cards. Girardi rarely goes to the plate to swap lineups, but he went last night, a decision orchestrated by Torre.

“He made a funny comment that I don’t care to share,” Girardi said. “But it got a chuckle out of me.”

From that moment on, it was about the game. It was about CC Sabathia and Alex Rodriguez and Mariano Rivera, with Torre being little more than a background character.

“You have to think about the game,” Jorge Posada said. “Try to think about how you’re going to get the guys out. I didn’t want to look over there.”

Associated Press photo of Girardi and Torre exchanging lineup cards.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 80 Comments →

Happy Birthday Derek Jeter06.26.10

Yankees Diamondbacks Baseball

Two days ago, I completely forgot to post about Phil Hughes birthday. To be fair, though, I don’t think he remembered my birthday back in December.

This morning, though, it’s hard to overlook Derek Jeter, who turns 36 today.

“I’m not going to look at him as 36,” Joe Girardi said. “I’m going to look at him as still a kid because we expect him to play almost every day. It’s hard to believe he’s 36 years old. I look at Andy and he’s 38 and Mo’s 40 and I think Posada’s 38, it blows me away because when I first saw them they were just kids. They were babies in the baseball world. Now they’re like I felt when I was playing.”

Associated Press photo of Jeter with Joba Chamberlain

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 85 Comments →

Postgame notes: It’s really nothing new06.26.10

Yankees Dodgers BaseballMariano Rivera said it never crossed his mind that his old manager was in the other dugout. He simply jogged out of the Yankees bullpen and did what he seems to always do, what he once did for Joe Torre and now does for Joe Girardi.

“(Torre) got to enjoy Mariano for 12 years,” Girardi said. “To see him come in, it was probably really strange for him thinking, he used to be on my side.”

What caught Rivera’s eye was the guy in the batter’s box: Manny Ramirez.

“It always happens,” Rivera said. “It never gets old. That’s the way it is. When you’re up there, you’re always going to face the best, and those are the moments you have to show up and do what you have to do.”

Rivera struck out the side. Ramirez, Matt Kemp and James Loney. What must Torre have thought when Rivera climbed that mound?

“Probably like ‘Oh no.’” Derek Jeter said. “He’s seen Mo have so much success. It’s really nothing new.”

Here’s Rivera speaking briefly after the game.

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Yankees Dodgers Baseball• CC Sabathia has now won five straight starts, and he’s gone at least seven innings in each of them. “I feel a lot better,” he said. “I feel like the fastball command has been slowly getting better. My breaking stuff has been definitely carrying me through some tough situations.”

• Tonight he mixed his fastball to both sides of the plate and he threw a lot of great breaking balls, but it was the changeup that made the difference. “He threw strikes with all his pitches,” Jorge Posada said. “We mixed in some breaking balls in there, but the changeup was the key today. We threw some fastballs in to righties, fastballs in to lefties, but the changeup was outstanding.”

• It seemed clear that Sabathia hit Vincente Padilla on purpose, but when he pointed to first base, it looked like he was apologizing or in some way trying to smooth it over. Apparently not. “I’m a grown man,” Sabathia said. “If someone has something to say, say it to me. I was just standing up there. I was just waiting. He was looking at me.”

• Alex Rodriguez’s home run was his second in the past three days and the 593rd of his career. “Power is something that I never worry about,” Rodriguez said. “I do like hitting my first-inning double, that was good contact. The power is going to be there… Right-center for me has always been a big key. It was a good way to start the game.”

• Andrew Brackman’s Double-A debut: 5 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K. Not an overwhelming line, but consider that on this very same date last year, Brackman lasted only 3.1 innings in Low-A. His line: 6 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 3 K. He’s come a long way.

Get all the Brackman quotes, photos and video you could possibly want over at Mike Ashmore’s blog.

• Apparently Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully referred to Curtis Granderson as Curtis Gunderson during his first at-bat. Scully is so respected, the New York writers immediately checked their media guides to make sure we had in fact been spelling and pronouncing it correctly.

Associated Press photos of Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano celebrating, and Sabathia pitching.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Notes, Podcastwith 43 Comments →

Yankees win the opener in L.A.06.26.10

All the build up centered on Joe Torre and the Core Four, but it was Alex Rodriguez and CC Sabathia who stole the show tonight in Los Angeles. Derek Jeter had two hits, Jorge Posada had an RBI and Mariano Rivera struck out the side for his 17th save, but it was Sabathia who dominated the Dodgers through eight innings and it was Rodriguez who hit his second home run in three games to give the Yankees the lead in a 2-1 win.

Yankees Dodgers Baseball

Associated Press photo of Rodriguez’s home run.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 182 Comments →

Game 73: Yankees at Dodgers06.25.10

YANKEES (45-27)
Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Jorge Posada C
Nick Swisher RF
Brett Gardner LF
CC Sabathia LHP

LHP CC Sabathia (8-3, 3.68)
Sabathia vs. Dodgers

DODGERS (39-33)

Rafael Furcal SS
Russell Martin C
Andre Ethier RF
Manny Ramirez LF
Matt Kemp CF
James Loney 1B
Casey Blake 3B
Jamey Carroll 2B
Vicente Padilla RHP

RHP Vicente Padilla (1-1, 6.67)
Padilla vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 10:10 p.m. / YES Network

UMPIRES: HP Phil Cuzzi, 1B Jerry Crawford, 2B Chris Guccione, 3B Brian O’Nora

WEATHER: I know this is shocking information, but the weather is really nice in Los Angeles. Temperatures in the 70s

MANNY BEING MANNY: In their careers, the Dodgers have actually hit pretty well against CC Sabathia. As a team — this roster, not all-time — they have a .337 batting average and a .594 slugging percentage against him. A lot of that damage has been done by Manny Ramirez, who is a career .571/.609/1.286 slash line against Sabathia.

NOT THE BEST OF FRIENDS: There are two players who Vicente Padilla has hit with a pitch three times in his career: Andruw Jones and Mark Teixeira. As you might remember, Padilla drilled Teixeira in his final two plate appearances the last time these two faced each other.

ONLY IN HOLLYWOOD: Tonight’s National Anthem is being performed by Flea and Josh Klinghoffer of Red Hot Chili Peppers. I’ve liked the band from afar for a while, but never got especially into them. I know mostly their radio stuff. I did always really like the way John Frusciante played. Don’t know much about this new guy except that he toured with them as a second guitarist for a while. I’m sure he can play.

UPDATE, 10:10 p.m.: I loved the anthem. It might not have been the most respectful version ever performed — Flea’s green hair was on display for part of it — but it was mostly traditional in terms of the notes themselves. They were just played through a haze of feedback. Also, Pau Gasol threw out the first pitch, then walked to his seat behind the Yankees dugout like a conquering hero. Everyone in the stadium seemed to want a high five.

UPDATE, 10:29 p.m.: Ramirez really owns Sabathia. Two-out single scores Furcal and gives the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. Here’s our first Yankees Suck chant of the night.

UPDATE, 10:32 p.m.: Rodriguez’s first at-bat, the Dodgers had Robinson Cano’s picture on the big screen. Conspiracy!

By the way, Rodriguez doubled to right.

UPDATE, 10:44 p.m.: Brett Gardner struck out to end the second inning, but not before Jorge Posada tied the game with an RBI single to right. We’re even at 1.

UPDATE, 11:10 p.m.: Yankees had a chance here in the third inning. Jeter got to third with one out, but Granderson flied out, Teixeira walked and Rodriguez struck out to leave him stranded. Still tied.

UPDATE, 11:28 p.m.: Gardner just struck out swinging for the second time in two at-bats. That hasn’t happened to him very often this season. Still tied after three and a half.

UPDATE, 11:35 p.m.: The Yankees need to score some runs — obviously — but Sabathia looks awfully good so far.

UPDATE, 11:47 p.m.: Sabathia had every reason to plunk Padilla there, but he actually seemed to apologize when Padilla got to first base. Both teams have been warned. By the way, Padilla stared down Sabathia. For the record, I don’t think Sabathia was too worried.

UPDATE, 11:52 p.m.: Another home run for Rodriguez, his second in three games, has put the Yankees in the lead 2-1.

UPDATE, 12:18 a.m.: I don’t think I’ve ever seen Brett Gardner get in an umpire’s face like that. He was positive he was safe. The replay showed a very, very close play. When I saw it live, I thought he was safe, but it was about as close as a play can get.

UPDATE, 12:40 a.m.: Some things never change with Ramirez. That’s an E-7, and it had E-7 written all over it from the time the ball left the bat.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Gameday Threadwith 720 Comments →

Pregame notes: Old friends06.25.10

photo-1I’m going to have to make these quick today. A lot of work to do here at Dodger Stadium.

As you can see from the picture on the right, there was quite the scene when Derek Jeter and Joe Torre said hello to one another before the game. A massive crowd gathered for that hand shake, and there was a similar scene for Torre and Joe Girardi.

I didn’t see any sort of embrace between Torre and Alex Rodriguez.

• Rodriguez is back in the lineup and Girardi still plans to play him all three days here in Los Angeles. “My hope is that we’ll have him all three,” Girardi said. “We had him four days in a row and he got a day off (Thursday) and we have a day off Monday unless we get rained out here, which I wouldn’t bet on.”

• Jorge Posada is also back in the lineup and will almost certainly be back in there only one of the next two days, probably on Sunday. “I’m leaning toward probably two games,” Girardi said. “We’ll just go day-by-day with him.”

• Girardi said CC Sabathia asked Wednesday if he could take batting practice and Girardi said sure. He also acknowledged that he probably couldn’t have stopped Sabathia if he wanted to. The big man wants to hit!

• Girardi is optimistic about A.J. Burnett’s start tomorrow. So is Burnett. “We had a great bullpen session the other day,” Girardi said. “There were discussions that took place. I’ve always said it’s one thing there (in the bullpen) and it’s another thing here (on the mound). I know he’s going to turn it around. I can’t tell you an exact date, but I believe he’s going to have a good day (today) just from what I saw and the discussions that we’ve had. He’s going to get it right. We’ll just see when it is.”

• Curtis Granderson is batting second because Girardi didn’t want lefties Granderson and Brett Gardner hitting back-to-back against a bullpen that has lefties. Arizona had zero left-handers in its bullpen, so it didn’t matter down in Phoenix.

DODGERS
Rafael Furcal SS
Russell Martin C
Andre Ethier RF
Manny Ramirez LF
Matt Kemp CF
James Loney 1B
Casey Blake 3B
Jamey Carroll 2B
Vicente Padilla RHP

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Noteswith 99 Comments →

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