The LoHud Yankees Blog

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

Archive for July, 2010

Cano keeps the Yankees alone in first place07.31.10

For a while, it seemed Robinson Cano was the only Yankees hitter who could solve Matt Garza tonight, but his biggest hit came off all-star closer Rafael Soriano. Cano’s ninth-inning home run gave the Yankees a 5-4 win that kept them in the lead in the American League East. The Rays could have moved into a division tie. Mark Teixeira had tied the game with a two-run home run in the sixth, and Nick Swisher tied it again with a solo homer in the seventh.

Yankees Rays Baseball

Associated Press photo of Jeter and Teixeira

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 256 Comments →

Game 103: Yankees at Rays07.31.10

YANKEES (65-37)
Derek Jeter SS
Lance Berkman DH
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Curtis Granderson CF
Francisco Cervelli C
Brett Gardner LF

RHP Javier Vazquez (9-7, 4.54)
Vazquez vs. Rays

RAYS (64-38)
John Jaso DH
Carl Crawford LF
Evan Longoria 3B
Carlos Pena 1B
Matt Joyce RF
Sean Rodriguez 2B
B.J. Upton CF
Kelly Shoppach C
Jason Bartlett SS

RHP Matt Garza (11-5, 4.06)
Garza vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 7:10 p.m. / YES Network

UMPIRES: HP Scott Barry, 1B Bill Welke, 2B Mike DiMuro, 3B Tim Welke

WEATHER: Same as the weather in your living room.

FROM THE BEGINNING: With Lance Berkman and Austin Kearns on the team, the Yankees now have nine players who were drafted in the first round (Berkman, Kearns, Hughes, Jeter, Moseley, Rodriguez, Swisher, Sabathia and Teixeira). Joba Chamberlain was a supplemental first-round pick.

NO-NO NO PROBLEM: Matt Garza threw a no hitter in his previous start. The last time the Yankees faced a starting pitcher coming off a no-no was 1991 when they won against Wilson Alvarez. They had eight hits off Alvarez and won on a Roberto Kelly walked off single. That’s coming from Elias.

HEARTY AND HUSTLEY: Gritty, gutty Brett Gardner has been named the yankees winner of the MLB Players Alumni Associated Heart and Hustle Award. The award honors a players who “demonstrate passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit and tradition of the game.” An overall winner will be chosen from the 30 individual team award winners.

UPDATE, 7:32 p.m.: Double. Single. Sac fly. Those were the first three batters Javier Vazquez faced, and they were enough for a 1-0 Rays lead in the first inning.

UPDATE, 8:10 p.m.: Brett Gardner clearly thought he could make that catch, instead his dive turned a double into a triple with one out here in the third inning.

Meanwhile, the game is tied because of a sac fly in the second. Sorry for the lack of updates. Just a little too much to write right now.

UPDATE, 8:12 p.m.: RBI single by Crawford brings the run home and gives the Rays a 2-1 lead.

UPDATE, 8:45 p.m.: Garza just sent the side down in order in the fifth. So far, Robinson Cano has two doubles, and that’s it for the Yankees. Garza has absolutely shut them down. Vazquez has pitched well, but the 2-1 lead remains.

UPDATE, 8:55 p.m.: Double. Sac bunt. Sac fly. It’s only one more run, a two-run lead seems massive considering the way Matt Garza is pitching. Rays are up 3-1 heading into the sixth.

UPDATE, 9:00 p.m.: For whatever reason, I like the word clobbered and try to use it only when it absolutely applies. Mark Teixeira just clobbered that ball to right field for a two-run homer that has tied the game at 3. Whatever word you like — crushed, smoked, destroyed — feel free to use it. Teixeira hit that ball very, very hard.

UPDATE, 9:15 p.m.: Not sure whether TV showed this or not, but Javier Vazquez came off the mound positively screaming at himself after giving up a solo home run to Matt Joyce. Obviously things would be a lot different right now if Joyce weren’t with this team. Rays are up 4-3.

UPDATE, 9:25 p.m.: Swisher’s 20th homer of the season has tied the game at 4. Safe to say he was pretty excited about it.

UPDATE, 9:34 p.m.: No chance Vazquez was going to face John Jaso again. Here comes Boone Logan. By the way, the Rays played the song Hey Joe while Girardi walked to the mound. Well done.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Gameday Threadwith 791 Comments →

Pregame notes: Busy day in Tampa07.31.10

A lot going on today, and obviously I have a lot to write, so for now we’ll try to hit on a little bit of everything

Yankees Rays BaseballLance Berkman
Could not possibly have been more engaging during his first Yankees interview. His favorite player growing up was Don Mattingly, and his father’s favorite player was Mickey Mantle. That’s why Berkman’s dad taught him to switch hit. He called Andy Pettitte one of his closest friends, and said the Astros used to kid with Pettitte all the time that it was obvious he wanted to get back to New York.

“I told (general manager) Ed Wade,” Berkman said, “when he was in the process of trading away Brad Lidge, Chris Burke, Chad Qualls and Dan Wheeler (in 2007), guys we had won with that were really good friends of mine, I told him, ‘Trade me – and I want to go to the Yankees.’ That’s what I told him then, and as events happened this year and the Astros looked like they were going to go in another direction, we reviewed a list of teams I would accept a trade to and obviously this one was at the very top.”

• It does not sound likely, but Joe Girardi said he could play Berkman in the outfield if necessary.
• Berkman isn’t necessarily locked into the No. 2 spot in the order. “We’ll just have to look at that as time goes on,” Girardi said.
• Berkman’s split against left-handed pitchers are not good. “He’s guy that we don’t necessarily need to play every day,” Girardi said.

Austin Kearns
Seems very quiet, but like he said last night in Toronto, Kearns also seems excited to play whatever role is presented to him. “It’s the best chance you have to win, obviously, coming here,” he said. “That’s what it’s all about. I’m happy to be a part of it.”

• Kearns is seen primarily as a left fielder.
• “He’s going to play against a lot of left-handers,” Girardi said. “And he’ll probably play against some right handers, as well.”
• Brian Cashman said he started this process specifically looking for a right-handed hitter who can play the outfield. The Yankees love what Thames has done, but want to keep him out of the field.

Kerry Wood
“Kerry still has terrific stuff,” Cashman said. “We analyzed his abilities with what we currently possessed and we felt we would be upgrading if we were able to acquire him. Where he’s actually going to fit in, Joe Girardi does a tremendous job of figuring out who slots in where best. Joe will get a feel for all his personnel as we move forward here for the stretch drive and eventually we’ll slot these guys out with the way they perform.”

• Wood is trying to get here from Toronto, but Girardi said the flights might not work out to get him here in time for tomorrow’s game.
• As Cashman said in the quote above, the Yankees see Wood as another option for the late innings, not necessarily an immediate eighth-inning guy.
• “Joba had nothing to do with this,” Cashman said. “I just wanted Joe to have as many options as he could possibly have.”
• Girardi played with Wood in Chicago. “I don’t know if it makes me feel younger, or if it’s just me being old now,” Girardi said. “It is (weird) because there is a relationship there. I know his family. My wife knows his wife. There is a relationship there. It’s kind of neat.”

Various notes
• Having Berkman and Kearns, Girardi said, makes it more likely some guys will get full days off instead of DH days. That seems especially true for Jorge Posada. “He’s battling his knee problem a little bit,” Girardi said. “Maybe this will help him where he doesn’t feel it. There might be days where I decide to DH Jorge.”

• Cashman on the utility infield market: “We looked into it, but we obviously pushed for what we thought we could push for. What we felt was something that wouldn’t fit our criteria, we either weren’t excited enough about or we were weren’t able to meet the prices that were presented to us.”

• Kearns has known CC Sabathia since they were in high school: “Me and him were at a showcase when we were 18,” Kearns said. “I got to see him hit in the home run derby. I used to always tell guys in Cincinnati, when we’d play Cleveland in interleague, don’t just throw cookies up there because the big fella can swing the bat.”

• Chan Ho Park said he was sad to be leaving, and there were a lot of hugs in the clubhouse. Whatever the outside perception, the Yankees seemed to always like the guy. “If this is done for my career, I think it was the best decision I had in the offseason to play for the Yankees,” Park said. “I’m happy to have a good experience with the Yankees before I finished with them.”

• These moves don’t necessarily make it more likely that Girardi will use his bench during games. “I think you have to be careful there,” he said. “We’re not going to pinch hit a lot, probably not going to pinch run a lot. The guys that are in there probably going to play most of the game.”

Associated Press photo of Berkman

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 63 Comments →

Park designated for assignment07.31.10

To make room on the roster…

Chan Ho Park designated for assignment.

Alfredo Aceves moved to the 60-day disabled list.

Colin Curtis and Juan Miranda optioned to Triple-A.

Aceves has been out more than 60 days, so that move really has no impact other than opening a spot on the 40-man roster.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 513 Comments →

Berkman hitting second07.31.10

Derek Jeter SS
Lance Berkman DH
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Curtis Granderson CF
Francisco Cervelli C
Brett Gardner LF

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 476 Comments →

Yankees trade for Kerry Wood07.31.10

The Yankees just made their trade for Kerry Wood official.

They will send a player to be named or cash to the Indians. Cleveland is also paying part of Wood’s salary.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 30 Comments →

Berkman: Whatever they want me to do, I’ll do it07.31.10

Lance Berkman said Andy Pettite was a huge part of his decision to waive his no-trade to come to the Yankees.

He’s not sure how often he’ll play, but he said it’s his understanding that he might bat second initially.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 32 Comments →

Curtis and Miranda optioned07.31.10

Colin Curtis and Juan Miranda are packing their bags. They’ve been optioned.

By the way, “packing their bags” is not a figure of speech. Curtis and Miranda have lockers next to one another in the Tampa clubhouse and they were literally packing their bags when the reporters walked in.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 324 Comments →

Olney: Yankees close to getting Kerry Wood07.31.10

The Yankees might have found their bullpen upgrade.

Buster Olney is reporting that the Yankees are closing in on Kerry Wood. I have to assume Wood would enter the mix for the eighth inning. Not many details on the deal other than the fact Olney says they’re “closing in” on the trade.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 78 Comments →

Berkman has arrived07.31.10

Lance Berkman has arrived in Tampa. He’s scheduled to meet with the media at 4 p.m. Still no word on a lineup, but it seems safe to say it will not be the one Harold Reynolds just predicted on MLB Network.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 84 Comments →

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