The LoHud Yankees Blog

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

Archive for May, 2012

Regular lineup for Angels series finale05.30.12

Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Raul Ibanez LF
Nick Swisher RF
Eric Chavez DH
Russell Martin C

RHP Ivan Nova

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 455 Comments →

Cashman to participate in Charleston all-star festivities05.30.12

The Yankees Low-A team in Charleston is hosting the South Atlantic League All-Star Game this season, and the club announced that Brian Cashman will be the keynote speaker for the annual Awards and Hall of Fame Ceremony that will be part of the all-star festivities. With all the young talent on that RiverDogs roster — including Mason Williams — this is a good year for the all-star game to be in Charleston. Here are the details from Charleston…

CHARLESTON, SC – New York Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman has agreed to serve as the keynote speaker when the South Atlantic League hosts its annual Awards and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony as part of the All-Star Game festivities that is coming to Charleston next month and hosted by the RiverDogs.

The awards and induction ceremony is planned for June 19, prior to the SAL’s 53rd Annual All-Star Game, which will be played later in the day at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park. The luncheon is set for 11:45 a.m. at the Marriott on Lockwood Blvd., is open to the public. Tickets are $35 each and may be secured by contacting the RiverDogs Box Office at 843/577-DOGS (3647) or online at

Joining Cashman on the stage will be members of the Hall of Fame Class of 2012 that includes longtime Charleston Mayor Joe Riley, Jr. and RiverDogs co-owner Bill Murray. Also being enshrined is former Asheville Tourists front office executive Carolyn McKee. The 2012 SAL players will also be in attendance.

“It will be an honor for me to serve as the keynote speaker for the South Atlantic League’s All Star & Hall of Fame Luncheon in the beautiful and historic city of Charleston,” said Cashman. “The rich history of the SAL will be on full display as the talents and contributions of the young All Stars and those who will be enshrined in their Hall of Fame are recognized.

“It will be great to be with the fans in Charleston, who continue to support our Single-A affiliate RiverDogs,” he added. “The Yankees organization is very proud of our relationship with the RiverDogs, a group that is known as much for entertaining their fans as they are for developing players.”

For the All-Star Game itself, gates open at 4 p.m. at Riley Park for the beginning of the All-Star festivities, which includes a home run derby. First pitch is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

Associated Press photo of Williams

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 137 Comments →

Yankees struggling with bases loaded05.30.12

Last night, Robinson Cano struck out with the bases loaded. Twice. But he’s hardly the only Yankees hitter who’s struggling when the bases are full this season. There are strictly numbers with the bases loaded…

Robinson Cano
1-for-10 (.100/.182/.400)
One grand slam, six RBI, four strikeouts

Alex Rodriguez
1-for-9 (.111/.111/.111)
No extra-base hits, one RBI, two strikeouts

Curtis Granderson
1-for-7 (.143/.250/.143)
No extra-base hits, four RBI, two strikeouts

Derek Jeter
1-for-7 (.143/.250/.143)
No extra-base hits, three RBI, one strikeout

Raul Ibanez
0-for-6 (.000/.000/.000)
Two RBI, one strikeout

Nick Swisher
2-for-4 (.500/.400/1.500)
One grand slam, one double, eight RBI, no strikeouts

Eric Chavez
0-for-3 (.000/.000/.000)
One RBI, one strikeout

Russell Martin
0-for-3 (.000/.250/.000)
One RBI, one walk

Mark Teixeira
1-for-3 (.333/.500/.667)
One double, three RBI, two strikeouts, one walk

Chris Stewart
1-for-1 (1.000/1.000/1.000)

Andruw Jones
Two RBI, one walk

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 539 Comments →

Pettitte: “I’m going to be able to do this”05.30.12

For Andy Pettitte, the experiment stage has been over for quite some time. He’s no longer proving something. He’s just pitching. Last night, it wasn’t enough that he pitched well for most of the game, Pettitte was focused on the mistakes that cost him.

“After the first game, I felt like I was going to be able to do this,” he said. “Just the things that I wanted to be able to do were there in that game, so as long as I’m healthy, I’m going to be able to do this. That’s a moot point for me, now. Now it’s all about just helping this team win. You gotta keep them off the board and let our guys score first. That’s what I always try to do, and I hate that I wasn’t able to do it.”

That’s Pettitte. He knew he pitched better than the numbers indicated last night, but he was too upset about the home runs to feel particularly good about himself.

“You have to set up your pitches, throw pitches for a purpose to be able to get guys out,” he said. “I hate to sit here and try to tell yall and the world how I like to get hitters out, but it’s pitching. I can do a better job of it right now.”

The fact Pettitte is able to give those sort of answers, four starts into his return, is a good thing for the Yankees. There’s no patting him on the back for doing his best. He’s not a side show. He’s here to help, and questions about whether Pettitte has anything left have been answered.

“I was at least able to go deep,” he said with a kind of sigh. “But I gotta get better, that’s just all there is to it.”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 125 Comments →

Postgame notes: “One of the struggles that we’ve had”05.30.12

Pick which one you want to focus on, the bad luck or the bad at-bats, because the Yankees had a little of both tonight. Nick Swisher probably had the best 1-for-4 I’ve ever seen. Robinson Cano had one of the worst 0-for-5s.

“We just weren’t able to break through,” Joe Girardi said. “A good part of that was their defense. Their defense kept us from scoring runs tonight. We’ve got to keep it going, we’ve just got to find a way to salvage a game tomorrow.”

Part of it was the Angels defense, but part of it was cleanup hitter Cano striking out twice with the bases loaded. Swisher (2-for-4), Mark Teixeira (1-for-3) and Chris Stewart (1-for-1) are the only Yankees hitting better than .143 with the bases loaded this season, and Cano has been particularly bad, going 1-for-10 with a grand slam.

Tonight, Cano had at least one runner on base in four of his five at-bats. With the bases loaded, he struck out looking against Dan Haren in the third inning, then went down swinging against Ernesto Frieri in the ninth.

“You’ve got a guy throwing 95, 96 mph,” Girardi said. “I didn’t see him go out of the zone. … We’re going to have plenty more chances, so let’s see if it irons itself out. We haven’t done very well this year, and we’ve been very good in the past. It’s just kind of what we’ve went through this year, one of the struggles that we’ve had.”

Swisher, on the other hand, hit the ball on the screws four times tonight. His weakest-hit ball might have been the RBI single that drove in the only Yankees run. Otherwise, he nearly homered in the second inning (Mike Trout made a terrific leaping catch at the wall) and he hit sure doubles to the gap in the seventh and eighth only to have speedy Peter Bourjos track them down.

“What are you gonna do, man?” Swisher said. “I felt like it was one of my better games, I felt like I really swung the bat super well. We don’t get nothing to show for it. You get frustrated but what are you gonna do? You come back tomorrow and get ready to bang on somebody tomorrow.”

• The final line is pretty bad — seven innings, nine hits, five runs — but I actually thought Andy Pettitte pitched pretty well tonight. Mistakes to Albert Pujols and Mark Trumbo really cost him. “I felt like I threw the ball well, just made some mistakes,” Pettitte said. “Any time you give up a crooked number, three runs there, it’s going to hurt you, especially when Dan (Haren) was throwing the ball as well as he was.”

• Pettitte was positively disgusted with himself over the pitch that Pujols hit out. “I was trying to go in and just left a ball too much on the plate,” Pettitte said. “I jammed him his first at-bat. I was up in the count. I left a ball inner half. He’s not going to want to get jammed again. It’s just a stupid pitch by me and didn’t get the ball in like I wanted to far enough.”

• Pettitte had the opposite reaction to the pitch that Mike Trout hit for an RBI triple two batters before the Pujols homer. “It was a pretty good pitch, he took it off the ground,” Pettitte said. “For me, too, it’s a learning lesson. I’ve never faced him before, and he’s a free-swinger, that’s for sure. Dead low-ball hitter who handles the ball down there really well. I knew that on the report, but you don’t think he’ll get to that one. Obviously he did.”

• After a lot of talk today and yesterday about Pettitte’s cutter, he said the pitch let him down a little bit tonight. “My cutter wasn’t as sharp tonight as it has been,” Pettitte said. “I was trying to force it a little bit. When you’re out there and you’re throwing it, you’re trying to make the adjustments, you’re trying not to force it. … I was trying to not bury it quite as much as I had been. I was starting the ball where my fastball was starting, so I was just trying to get them up a little bit more with a little more depth.”

• It was a cutter that Trumbo hit for his home run. “Just a horrible pitch,” Pettitte said.

• Swisher did a pretty good job of explaining each of his three hard-hit outs: “First at-bat, two strikes, Haren is throwing nothing but breaking balls and splits,” Swisher said. “He threw me a fastball and I got a hold of that one. Second one, just a first-pitch breaking ball, looking for something away. He hung a breaking ball, felt like I got pretty good wood on it. (Third one), 3-1, Downs, he’s a sinkerballer and he’s going to throw that ball down and away every time. I was looking in there and felt like I put a pretty good swing on it. Bourjos is just throwing it in his back pocket. What are you gonna do? I wish I had a better answer. That’s all I’ve got.”

• Derek Jeter had another two-hit game for an even 70 on the season. He leads the American League in hits and has a hit in 18 of his past 21 games. This was his 20th multi-hit game of the season.

• The Major League leader in hits, by the way, is Melky Cabrera.

Associated Press photos

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Noteswith 40 Comments →

Yankees lose another one in Anaheim05.30.12

Albert Pujols and Mark Trumbo each homered for the Angels tonight, but the Yankees didn’t go deep, and when the Yankees don’t go deep, they don’t win. Tonight’s 5-1 loss in Anaheim was the Yankees second in a row, and they’ll need to win tomorrow night to avoid a three-game sweep against the surging Angels. The Yankees are 0-11 in games when they don’t hit a home run, and they scored their only run on Nick Swisher’s RBI single in the fourth. For the most part, Andy Pettitte delivered another solid start, but those two home runs did the bulk of the damage while the Yankees left 12 runners stranded, including the bases loaded twice, each time with Robinson Cano at the plate. Cano struck out both times.

Associated Press photo

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 540 Comments →

Game 49: Yankees at Angels05.29.12

YANKEES (26-22)
Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Alex Rodriguez DH
Robinson Cano 2B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Raul Ibanez LF
Nick Swisher RF
Eric Chavez 3B
Russell Martin C

LHP Andy Pettitte (2-1, 2.53)
Pettitte vs. Angels

ANGELS (25-25)
Mike Trout LF
Maicer Izturis 3B
Albert Pujols DH
Mark Trumbo 1B
Howie Kendrick 2B
Torii Hunter RF
Erick Aybar SS
Peter Bourjos CF
Bobby Wilson C

RHP Dan Haren (2-5, 3.76)
Haren vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 10:05 p.m., YES Network

WEATHER: No complaints. It’s beautiful out here tonight.

UMPIRES: HP Tim Welke, 1B Laz Diaz, 2B Mike Everitt, 3B Paul Schrieber

Mark Teixeira has gone 12-for-25 (.480) with eight runs, four doubles, four homers, 10 RBI and six walks in his past seven starts. He had not started the previous three games, sitting out to try to get over a cough.

NOT ALWAYS A GOOD SIGN: The Yankees scored three runs in the first inning Monday. It was the 18th time the Yankees had scored in the first inning this season, and they’re 11-7 in those games, losing five of their last eight.

ON THIS DATE: Seventeen years ago today, Derek Jeter made his Major League debut with the Yankees in Seattle, starting at shortstop and going 0-for-5 as the Yankees lost 8-7 in 12 innings at the Kingdome. Jeter would record his first career hit the next night with a fifth-inning single off Tim Belcher.

UPDATE, 10:25 p.m.: Mike Trout might have destroyed his face in the process, but his leaping catch at the wall has ended the top of the second. Both starters looking pretty sharp so far.

UPDATE, 10:50 p.m.: Cano goes down looking to leave the bases loaded. He didn’t like the call, but it ends a big scoring opportunity for the Yankees.

UPDATE, 10:56 p.m.: Mike Trout’s a nice looking player. His RBI triple put the Angels in the lead before Albert Pujols went deep witha  two-run homer to make it a 3-0 game in the bottom of hte third.

UPDATE, 11:06 p.m.: Ibanez double. Swisher single. Just like that, the Yankees are on the board, down 3-1.

UPDATE, 11:34 p.m.: Pettitte’s doing the job again. He needs some runs in a big way.

UPDATE, 11:44 p.m.: The moment Trumbo made contact, Pettitte dropped his head and slapped his glove. The solo homer pushed the Angels lead to 4-1 here in the sixth, but Pettitte left two runners stranded to limit the damage.

UPDATE, 12:14 a.m.: Swisher hit that ball hard, but Bourjos covers a lot of ground out there and he tracked it down to end the eighth with runners left at the corners. Pettitte’s back out for the bottom of the eighth.

UPDATE, 12:23 a.m.: Eppley is supposed to get ground balls, and he’s done that, but Cano was shading toward second and Kendrick got an RBI single through the right side of the infield. It’s now 5-1 Angels.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Gameday Threadwith 825 Comments →

Pregame notes: “I like what he’s doing now”05.29.12

There’s been a lot written and said about Andy Pettitte looking like his old self this season, but that might not be entirely accurate. He’s been successful — that hasn’t changed — but his strikeout rate is up, and he’s been allowing fewer base runners than we’re used to seeing.

It’s not a bad thing, obviously, but it’s not exactly the method of success that Pettitte made so familiar.

“I like what he’s doing now, let’s just keep him there,” Joe Girardi said. “I’m sure he’s going to have games when he does that (more base runners, fewer strikeouts). That’s vintage Andy as well. He’s just had a great slider. Hopefully he can keep that the whole year, but I’m sure you’re going to see a little bit of both.”

The slider Girardi talked about is the same pitch that Pettitte has always called a cutter, but Girardi said it’s been more slider-ish this season. And that’s leading to some of the high strikeout totals, especially the past two games.

“He still calls it his cutter,” Girardi said. “His cutter used to be smaller years and years ago, but it’s gotten bigger over the years, and I think he’s done that on purpose.”

“Right now I feel really good with all my pitches. As far as that sense, the pitching standpoint of it, as far as getting control of what you want to do, so far those are all there.”

• While Girardi was doing his usual pregame interview in the dugout, Nick Swisher walked by and Girardi yelled to ask whether Swisher felt alright following last night’s collision. “I feel awesome,” Swisher said with his usual laugh. Both Swisher and Curtis Granderson seemed fine last night, and they’re both back in the lineup tonight.

• For the second straight day down in Tampa, Brett Gardner took dry swings today. He’ll progress to tee and toss tomorrow, continuing his rehab from a strained elbow.

• Rehabbing from a strained oblique, Dave Robertson played catch for 50 throws today. Girardi said he’s still not sure when Robertson will get on a mound, but he should have a date by tomorrow.

• Claimed off waivers today, reliever Ryota Igarashi has already reported to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. “I don’t know a lot about him, but we expect him to be a reliever that can possibly contribute here for us,” Girardi said. “I don’t think they would have signed him if they didn’t think he could contribute.” He might have said the same thing about Cory Wade last season, or Clay Rapada this winter, or Cody Eppley this spring.

• Girardi said he’s never really considered benching Russell Martin this season. In fact, he said he would probably stick with Martin all season even if his production stayed the exact same. “We know that Russell is able to catch at a very high level back there,” Girardi said. “We’ve seen the balls he’s able to block and all the things he’s able to do behind home plate. As a catcher, to me, the most important job is defense – and he’s able to do that. He’s also been able to walk and get on base, which has helped. I know that .177 is not going to be there the whole year, so it’s easy to put him back there.”

• If it weren’t clear already, Girardi said today that Boone Logan is more of a setup man than a left-handed specialist right now. “Logan is going to have to get some outs later in the game for us, and it’s going to be some left- and right-handers,” Girardi said. “Before, you could bring him in a lot earlier.”

• Here’s Pettitte on the way he’ll approach Albert Pujols: “He’s a great hitter. I guess probably, you’ve got one of those guys in every lineup, so you really can’t think of it much more than that. He’s a guy that’s going to hurt you if you make a mistake. Whether he’s slumping or not, I would treat him the exact same way. You just know he’s a great hitter. Make pitches. Try to make pitches to him and try not to let him hurt you too much. The situation dictates how you’ll pitch to him at some point sometimes. But other that, a good pitch is a good pitch, and hopefully it’s good enough to get him out if he’s up there in a big spot.”

• Russell Branyan has been activated from the Triple-A disabled list and assigned to High-A Tampa.

Associated Press photos

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Noteswith 54 Comments →

Rodriguez at DH05.29.12

Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Alex Rodriguez DH
Robinson Cano 2B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Raul Ibanez LF
Nick Swisher RF
Eric Chavez 3B
Russell Martin C

LHP Andy Pettitte

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

Oswalt’s heading back to Texas05.29.12

The Rangers have reportedly agreed to a deal with free agent pitcher Roy Oswalt. The longtime Astros starter will likely follow the Andy Pettitte route, making a handful of minor league appearances before officially joining the Texas staff.

I never got the sense the Yankees were particularly interested in Oswalt — not this winter, and not this season when the rotation grew a little more thin than expected — but I know he was occasionally a popular topic of discussion around here.

In other non-Yankees news: The Rays have called up Hideki Matsui.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Miscwith 119 Comments →

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