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Sunday morning notes: “I have to believe that’s low to mid 90s at least”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Mar 02, 2014 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

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Michael Pineda’s rookie year in Seattle was Scott Sizemore’s first year in Oakland. Sizemore faced Pineda five times that year — hit a home run, struck out twice, walked once — so he’s seen what Pineda used to be. During this morning’s simulated game, Sizemore saw what Pineda is now.

“It’s been a couple of years since I saw him, but today the ball was popping out of his hand,” Sizemore said. “He has different movement on all of his fastballs, almost. I think it’s just a natural thing for him. Sometimes he cuts it, sometimes it sinks, sometimes it’s a true four-seamer. But as a pitcher that’s what you want. You don’t want two pitches to look the same. Of course, he’s saw tall and lanky with his arm action, as a right-handed hitter it kind of comes out from behind your head so it’s tough to feel comfortable in the box.”

Pineda threw two simulated innings with Sizemore and Zoilo Almonte alternating at-bats. Pitching coach Larry Rothschild called balls and strikes, and determined which balls were hits, from behind the mound. There was no radar gun, but…

“I have to believe that’s low to mid 90s at least,” Sizemore said. “But with the movement, it definitely makes it that much more challenging.”

It’s been two years since Pineda had shoulder surgery, a procedure that at least temporarily derailed his Yankees tenure. Now he’s healthy again, and the Yankees are looking at him as a serious candidate for a rotation spot. Pineda has said he feels strong, and the Yankees have said they’re encouraged by early bullpen and batting practice results. Pineda threw his full mix of sliders and changeups this morning, and he worked his fastball inside, getting one broken bat against Almonte.

“Every time I caught him, I was telling one of the other guys, it looks like he’s turned it up a notch every single time,” young catcher Pete O’Brien said. “It’s going to be fun once he gets into games. … He definitely is getting sharper. It’s fun to catch guys that have that competitive fire in them. He’s not afraid to go in on lefties and on righties. He looks very good.”

Pineda will make his first appearance in a spring training game on Friday, expected to go three innings.

Mark Teixeira· Alfonso Soriano said he’s feeling much better, just still gets dizzy and feels a little weak after experiencing flu-like symptoms at the start of spring training. He expects to do some more batting practice and fielding drills and play in a game soon. Joe Girardi said he expects Soriano to play “early next week.”

· Mark Teixiera is scheduled to make his spring debut either Thursday or Friday. He’s been eased into games because of last year’s wrist surgery.

· Masahiro Tanaka’s next spring training appearance will be Thursday against the Phillies. Girardi said it’s a coincidence that Tanaka will be facing the same team twice in a row. The Yankees did not design it that way in an effort to see how the Phillies adjust after seeing him once.

· With Tanaka starting the big league game on Thursday, CC Sabathia will pitch a simulated game that day.

· When Pineda makes his spring debut on Friday, he will be splitting the game with Hiroki Kuroda. No word on which one will start — Kuroda’s name is listed first, so maybe it’s him — but both will be expected to throw three innings.

· Nik Turley, who was shut down with some arm tightness, is scheduled to resume playing catch tomorrow. He’s considered the tightness a non-issue, and said he was shut down as a precaution. No reason to risk anything in late February or early March.

· Sizemore went through sliding drills yesterday and said he felt fine. He hopes to be ready for games next week. The Yankees have moved slowly with him because he’s coming back from surgery on his ACL. He’s torn it the past two years.

· David Herndon also threw a sim game this morning. He pitched to Francisco Arcia. Like Pineda, he faced Sizemore and Almonte. Broke Sizemore’s bat.

· A few guys moving around to different positions today. Shortstop Brendan Ryan gets his first playing time at second base, and regular infielders Zelous Wheeler and Addison Maruszak are getting time in the outfield corners.

· Tanaka, Sabathia, Dellin Betances, Manny Banuelos and Jose Campos will do early work tomorrow. I’m sure Tanaka, Sabathia and Betances are only throwing bullpens. There’s a chance Banuelos and Campos are doing something more significant, possibly a sim game, but the workout sheet doesn’t say exactly.

Adam Warren· Today’s bullpens:
Adam Warren (to Brian McCann)
Preston Claiborne (to Francisco Cervelli)
Brian Gordon (to Roman Rodriguez)
Chase Whitley (to Jose Gil)

· Today’s batting practice groups (in Tampa)
Group 1: Derek Jeter, Brian Roberts, Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki
Group 2: Francisco Cervelli, Brett Gardner, Brian McCann
Group 3: Zoilo Almonte, Kelly Johnson, Scott Sizemore

· Today’s second string: C Gary Sanchez, 1B Francisco Arcia, 2B Corban Joseph, SS Yangervis Solarte, 3B Jose Pirela, LF Zelous Wheeler, CF Antoan Richardson, RF Addison Maruszak

· Today’s scheduled relievers: Bryan Mitchell, Shane Greene, Bruce Billings, Fred Lewis, Matt Daley (Dan Burawa, Chris Leroux and Mark Montgomery are also making the trip)

Associated Press photos

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186 Responses to “Sunday morning notes: “I have to believe that’s low to mid 90s at least””

  1. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:14 am

    Re-post:

    -As I pointed out yesterday, the Yanks seemingly still have no clue for 1b should Tex go down with an injury. They don’t even seem prepared to try anyone out at 1b. Still a lot of time but it shows a def roster weakness.

    -I’ve been thinking this for the last week or so, why does anyone have any expectations for Scott Sizemore? Was he that great of player before he got hurt? Because he hasn’t played in two years and can’t get on the field now. He said when he first got to camp he was still in rehabbing his second ACL. That doesn’t sound like a solution to anything.

    -Time for Nuno to keep sticking it to the Prospect Industry like Quintana did.

  2. Giuseppe Franco March 2nd, 2014 at 10:16 am

    Déjà vu here in LoHud. More focus on a pitcher’s velocity.

  3. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:16 am

    blake! you ready for Prime Time?

  4. pkyankfan69 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:18 am

    Glad the game is on YES tomorrow… Will give me something to do on yet another snow day

  5. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 10:18 am

    GF-

    I focus on Pitching.

    Not on throwing.

    ;)

  6. DONNYBROOK March 2nd, 2014 at 10:25 am

    I stay away from the MPH in general, but it’s obvious Girardi is already attempting to short circuit that discussion in regard to CC. This tells me the Yankee Brass figures this is a morphing New CC, and they are holding their breath as to what the final product/results will be. Last season gives them a cold shiver.

  7. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:25 am

    Good notes on Pineda. I think the important thing here is that he’s scheduled to throw three innings in his first outing next Friday. As I pointed out yesterday morning, and the Post this morning, his competition will have lapped him twice before his first game but maybe this means he’s catching up.

    But until we all get to see the gun, we never know the truth. CC better get used to answering velocity questions all season long unless he can add about 4 mph or unless he’s completely lights out.

  8. braeburn March 2nd, 2014 at 10:26 am

    “Déjà vu here in LoHud. More focus on a pitcher’s velocity.”

    Giuseppe Franco

    on the blog, i first remember major discussion about wang’s loss of velocity.

    pineda’s was contentious two years ago .

    i’m not sure what i think about the velocity thing.

    there’s something to be said for jerkface’s position that a healthy pitcher should be able to hit their average velocity fairly soon in spring training.

  9. Chad Jennings March 2nd, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Giuseppe Franco March 2nd, 2014 at 10:16 am e

    Déjà vu here in LoHud. More focus on a pitcher’s velocity.

    I think there’s a focus on velocity with Sabathia and Pineda because of their situations. You don’t see the velocity focus with guys like Kuroda, Nova and Phelps.

    Sabathia is coming of a year when his velocity dipped and his numbers were the worst of his career. There were surely other factors, but I think the velocity matters at least a little bit. So it was certainly worth noting yesterday that he topped out at 88. Could be a non-factor, but I think it was an important thing to have in mind after yesterday’s start.

    Pineda had shoulder surgery, and that recovery involves a lot of regaining arm strength. The velocity notes about him are about that strength. His lack of velocity in 2012 was an indication of something much larger (same with Hughes, the year he was so bad early in the season and had a shoulder issue).

    Velocity is an annoying subject because it’s often blown up into something massive, but in certain situations, it’s not something that we can stay away from. If Pineda really was throwing mid-90s this morning, I think that’s a pretty significant takeaway. Says a lot about his arm strength two years removed from surgery.

  10. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Good morning.
    Late to the party

    A few things I noticed from yesterday’s game.
    Anna has the arm to play short.
    Solarte can play 3rd
    Kuroda was sharp
    Tanaka has a straight fastball, but still has swing and miss complimentary stuff
    CC can be a winner again with pinpoint location
    McCann is not just a pull hitter- nice double to the opposite field.
    Betances looks like he could vie for setup role.

    Now, I still hope the Yankees can trade for Chris Owings, without giving up Sanchez. I want a young position player to compete with Tanaka for rookie of the year honors! :)

  11. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Dan, I don’t think there is any great expectations for Sizemore. Basically, Yankee fans are hoping league average production out of 3b. There is some intrigues if Sizemore can be that, cuz what we got aint much.

  12. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:29 am

    DONNYBROOK March 2nd, 2014 at 10:25 am
    I stay away from the MPH in general, but it’s obvious Girardi is already attempting to short circuit that discussion in regard to CC. This tells me the Yankee Brass figures this is a morphing New CC, and they are holding their breath as to what the final product/results will be. Last season gives them a cold shiver.

    —–

    Yes, I totally agree with this. CC’s and Girardi’s comments suggest to me they were prepared for this and are trying to adjust the narrative. It wouldn’t surprise me if the Yanks specifically chose to pitch CC on Tanaka’s day just to avoid some of this scrutiny.

    You can run, but you can’t hide from the gun.

  13. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 10:30 am

    I think Pineda’s next big challenge will be STAYING healthy.

    Far more daunting with torn labrums.

    Getting healthy is a lot easier by comparison.

    Most face significant DL time afterwards.

    That is why I would consider trading him.

  14. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Cashmoney says:
    March 2, 2014 at 10:16 am
    blake! you ready for Prime Time?

    Oh yea!

  15. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Yankees Spring Training TV schedule from Pinstripe Alley:

    http://www.pinstripealley.com/.....es-network

  16. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:28 am
    Dan, I don’t think there is any great expectations for Sizemore. Basically, Yankee fans are hoping league average production out of 3b. There is some intrigues if Sizemore can be that, cuz what we got aint much

    —-

    Understood. Right now I think the best chance for league average production from 3b is a Johnson/Nunie platoon. And that’s what the Yanks are thinking. Personally, I’m intrigued by Solarte. Until Sizemore can get on the field I don’t know what to think about him.

  17. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 10:34 am

    “That is why I would consider trading him.”

    You’re not getting anything for Pineda though unless he proves he’s healthy and is pitching well…..and if he’s healthy and pitching well they need him…..

  18. braeburn March 2nd, 2014 at 10:36 am

    “If Pineda really was throwing mid-90s this morning, I think that’s a pretty significant takeaway. Says a lot about his arm strength two years removed from surgery.”

    i agree that if pineda is in the mid nineties and can follow up that session with even at 92-93mph next time out ,that’d be huge for him as a pitcher.

    often when a pitcher who has a physical problem airs it out, the underlying problem will emerge. so, at the very least, if pineda is airing it out with a mid nineties velocity with no problem, that says something positive.

  19. ac1 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:38 am

    I think Anna can be a good back up in the IF and I hope that this Solarte guy can become a possible full time option at 2B when Roberts gets hurt….

  20. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:38 am

    Personally, I’m intrigued by Solarte.
    —–
    I had never previously known anything or even heard of him, I saw a few ABs of him Caribbean series and this spring, he looks like he can hit a little. I agree on KJ/Prime Time combo at 3b as the best of mediocre at best choices.

  21. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:39 am

    MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 10:30 am
    I think Pineda’s next big challenge will be STAYING healthy.

    Far more daunting with torn labrums.

    Getting healthy is a lot easier by comparison.

    Most face significant DL time afterwards.

    That is why I would consider trading him

    ——

    This is a good point. Around this time last year, I was saying that I hoped Pineda would use some of his rehab time to work on his mechanics because I think that had a role in his injury and would have an impact on his ability to stay healthy if he recovers sufficiently from his surgery. There have been reports that he has cleaned up his mechanics some. I saw a GIF a week or so ago where he looks a lot different, especially with his landing leg. Much more balanced.

    Just need to see him in a game now.

  22. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:40 am

    I wouldn’t trade Pineda, especially if his fastball has movement.

    If the starting 5 are Kuroda, CC, Tanaka, Nova, and Pineda and healthy, I wonder if one of Warren or Phelps might be included in a deal to get a young major league ready infielder, heir apparent to Jeter at SS?

  23. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:43 am

    MTU, while i respect your optimism, let me reiterate this- this pen is suspect!

  24. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:44 am

    And I would split up Kuroda and Tanaka, to give opposing teams a different look and sandwich CC in between.

  25. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 10:48 am

    “there’s something to be said for jerkface’s position that a healthy pitcher should be able to hit their average velocity fairly soon in spring training.”

    yeah..I can also see both sides of the equation.

    As Chad pointed out, with some pitchers even early results are concerning with others not so much. But even though CC’s early velocity results may be concerning, they are certainly not definitive as to what he’s going to do this year. Hence I can see both sides.

  26. braeburn March 2nd, 2014 at 10:48 am

    one reason why i liked tanaka so much yesterday is hi delivery is pleasing to the eye. it looks like he throws an easy 92-93. he looks like he could pitch for a long time (knock on wood).

    the reason i was forst down on pineda is his delivery was so hard on the eyes.. when he really aired it out he’d sometimes ne facing the second baseman on his follow through with his back totally to home plate. this simply did not look like a long lasting starter to me.

    but at the same time, pineda repeated his delivery and threw strikes so maybe his delvery was just unorthodox. at this point i think the yankees should encourage him to air it out and see if it’s going to blow.

    if it does, they’ll know what they have. if it doesn’t blow and he’s mid nineties, they’ll have something.

    i clearly would not baby pineda. and it doesn’t appear they are.
    we’ll soon see.

  27. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:50 am

    About velocity and ST, I think JF has it right. In your first start you should be hitting your average velocity. That doesn’t mean you should be averaging your average. Or hitting your highs. You should be touching your average. And then you have the rest of ST to build on that. Phelps and Kuroda did that. But CC’s high was 3-4 mph below his average. That’s the problem.

  28. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Kuroda was sitting in the high 80′s ( at least I thought he was) similar to CC. The difference was kuroda’s stuff was mid-season nasty.

    Is Kuroda a high 80′s FB guy?

  29. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 10:54 am

    I pretty sure I saw Kuroda hit 91-92 yesterday.

  30. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:54 am

    Cash-

    Same concerns with the BP

    Another article-what if Thornton doesn’t work out as the lefty?

    http://www.pinstripealley.com/.....iclebottom

    Turley, Rondon injured
    Lewis is terrible
    Nuno is not the answer
    Banuelos- mistake to mess him up and put him in BP, when he should be a lefty in the starting rotation later this season or next.
    Cabral???

  31. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 10:56 am

    Tar

    I too saw Kuroda at 91, Tanaka hit 94 once”

  32. Giuseppe Franco March 2nd, 2014 at 10:56 am

    Chad Jennings March 2nd, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Giuseppe Franco March 2nd, 2014 at 10:16 am e

    Déjà vu here in LoHud. More focus on a pitcher’s velocity.

    I think there’s a focus on velocity with Sabathia and Pineda because of their situations. You don’t see the velocity focus with guys like Kuroda, Nova and Phelps.

    Sabathia is coming of a year when his velocity dipped and his numbers were the worst of his career. There were surely other factors, but I think the velocity matters at least a little bit. So it was certainly worth noting yesterday that he topped out at 88. Could be a non-factor, but I think it was an important thing to have in mind after yesterday’s start.

    Pineda had shoulder surgery, and that recovery involves a lot of regaining arm strength. The velocity notes about him are about that strength. His lack of velocity in 2012 was an indication of something much larger (same with Hughes, the year he was so bad early in the season and had a shoulder issue).

    Velocity is an annoying subject because it’s often blown up into something massive, but in certain situations, it’s not something that we can stay away from. If Pineda really was throwing mid-90s this morning, I think that’s a pretty significant takeaway. Says a lot about his arm strength two years removed from surgery.

    ——-

    I don’t disagree with that argument and my comment wasn’t intended to take a swipe at you personally. You have to cover what your media buddies are covering so I get that.

    But I do think that because it’s only their first ST game of the season, it’s a bit early to draw any conclusions just yet. Of course, you know that won’t stop the media and fans from doing so anyways.

    Sure, it’s entirely possible, perhaps very probable, that Sabathia’s heater prior to the elbow issue is gone forever. But if that’s the case, he’s going to have to learn how to get hitters out in the same fashion that Mike Mussina, Pettitte, and every other vet has had to do.

    Sabathia is a smart enough pitcher that he’ll do what it takes to adapt. A diminished velocity doesn’t necessarily mean he’s due to fall on his face.

  33. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 10:56 am

    Kuroda is a low 90′s guy

    http://www.fangraphs.com/pitch.....8;pitch=SI

    So unless my take on his velocity from yesterday is wrong (quite possible), he was also not sitting at his average.

  34. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 10:58 am

    Thanks guys….. I thought I saw Kuroda hovering around 88.

  35. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Cabral looks like the best out of that lot, I think he has the potential to be very effective as a loogy.

  36. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 10:59 am

    You can’t really tell this unless you’re standing in the batters box but I would guess Tanaka hides the ball really well…..his motion kinda is straight over the top and has that little hitch…..I bet it looks like it’s coming out behind his head

  37. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 11:01 am

    On CC’s velo, I really like to see what he is got next start.

  38. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:02 am

    Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 10:56 am
    Kuroda is a low 90?s guy

    http://www.fangraphs.com/pitch…..8;pitch=SI

    So unless my take on his velocity from yesterday is wrong (quite possible), he was also not sitting at his average.

    —–

    I believe JF’s point is you don’t need to “sit” at your average in your first ST start. You just need to hit it. There’s still time in ST to build up arm strength. But when don’t come close to hitting it like CC, it’s highly unlikely you will make up that difference during ST and is probably an indication of injury or that your FB is lost for good. I agree with that.

  39. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:05 am

    I also think Kuroda was throwing a two-seamer yesterday which may explain the high 80s readings a bit. He said after his outing that he didn’t have enough time to work in all his pitches.

    Still, if in subsequent ST starts Kuroda is still in the high 80s I’d say that would be a concern for sure.

  40. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Tar

    No he wasn’t. My worry with him, however, is will he reverse the last two seasons when his last 8 games pitched showed a significant difference in ERA, especially last season when it was over 6.0.

    Then you have to believe Pineda will be limited in the number of innings, after pitching 40.2 total innings, 23.1. at AAA last year.

  41. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 11:05 am

    “I believe JF’s point is you don’t need to “sit” at your average in your first ST start. You just need to hit it. There’s still time in ST to build up arm strength. But when don’t come close to hitting it like CC, it’s highly unlikely you will make up that difference during ST and is probably an indication of injury or that your FB is lost for good. I agree with that.”

    I pretty much agree with that… but for me it’s more like a rule of thumb, as opposed to something that is etched in stone. Hence “let’s give CC a little more time before any definitive declarations are made as to his velocity” are reasonable statements.

  42. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 11:07 am

    YT

    Yeah he really tired at the end of the year. Something Joe should try and mitigate this time around.

  43. ac1 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:07 am

    I agree Kuroda and Tanaka should be split up.

    So…. either go Kuroda, CC, Tanaka – 1.2.3 or if they insist on opening with CC, go CC, Kuroda, Nova, Tanaka, Pineda 1.2.3.4. 5.

  44. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:07 am

    If you really want to do things scientifically you don’t just go by Velo readings.

    You do baseline arm strength testing and watch it’s progression or declination as a guide.

    Something the Yankees, and really all clubs, ought to be doing.

    But I digress.

    ;)

    Cash-

    The pen definitely has question marks. I agree.

    Blake-

    I was talking about after Pineda shows his current health.

    The long term prognosis is not really very good.

    So. If you can get something really good for a Pineda while he is healthy it might be worth considering.

    Kind of like what I would like to see done w Heathcott.

    I am certainly not pushing trading Pineda if he is effective. He might very well beat the odds.

    It is a bit of a gamble though.

    Just like it is with Nova’s ability to be consistent.

    ;)

  45. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:08 am

    That was the first I saw Cabral. He doesn’t throw real hard. Looking forward to seeing Lewis. Didn’t he strike out Miggy the other day?

    There’s lots a problem scenarios for the bullpen, the most serious being what if Robertson doesn’t work out? The cascade effect would be huge. The bullpen is a hard nut. Lots of potential problems, lots of potential solutions.

  46. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 11:08 am

    Kuroda always throws a 2 seamer….it’s usually a tick harder than yesterday though…..I’m not really worried about Kuroda. He has a kitchen sink arsenal he can throw at hitters and I think he can have success even if he’s 88-91 or so.

    CC really hasn’t shown he can succeed without his heater…..I think he can figure it out but how long it’ll take? No clue

  47. ac1 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:09 am

    Yeah he really tired at the end of the year. Something Joe should try and mitigate this time around.

    ___

    I think with Phelps, Warren, Nuno, etc. we can do more to spell all out starters this season. Besides Nova, there must be concerns about the workload.

    Every few starts, give CC, Kuroda, Tanaka and Pineda one start off, and just have then throw a sim game in their regular spot…..

  48. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 11:09 am

    I did notice yesterday, with CC, that he was hitting the corners and the ump wasn’t calling some of those pitches, which looked like strikes, strikes.

  49. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 11:09 am

    Dan

    One other thing, I do think that CC’s old 94+ is gone for good. That is really not in play anymore.

    But can he sit low 90′s…that is the question.

  50. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:09 am

    Kuroda is not going to be in the 80′s during the season.

    You can bank on that.

  51. bardos March 2nd, 2014 at 11:10 am

    So far my two favourite guys in ST who I hope go north to the Bronx are: Anna and Solarte.

  52. ac1 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:11 am

    CC really hasn’t shown he can succeed without his heater…..I think he can figure it out but how long it’ll take? No clue
    ___

    CC should be working with Andy Pettitte to learn how to pitch that style and sit 88-90 from the left side.

  53. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:11 am

    I want a vacuum cleaner IF.

    :)

  54. Hankflorida March 2nd, 2014 at 11:11 am

    Lefty Carl Hubbel had a screw ball then went down and away from right handed hitters. Righty Elroy Face had a fork ball that went down and away from left handed hitters. What makes the splitter different from those pitches that Kuroda or Tanaka throw as it has the same down and away from lefty hitters?

  55. Yankee Trader March 2nd, 2014 at 11:12 am

    ac1

    I remember that Pettitte if skipped in the rotation, would pitch an inning out of the pen, to stay on course.

  56. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 11:13 am

    6 man rotation? At least for some of the year? It would seem that this year over any of the recent past that could be pulled off.

  57. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:13 am

    “I pretty much agree with that… but for me it’s more like a rule of thumb, as opposed to something that is etched in stone. Hence “let’s give CC a little more time before any definitive declarations are made as to his velocity” are reasonable statements.”

    —-

    That’s fair. I’m not sure I remember what CC was throwing in his first ST start last year. I don’t think it was high 80s though. I think it was low 90s and we all were saying ‘where’s that mid-90s’ but I could be wrong. Either way, this is a bad trend for a pitcher.

  58. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Braeburn-

    Correct. Tanaka’s mechanics are conducive towards long term durability.

    Classic drop-and-drive type pitcher. Uses his whole body.

    Smooth.

    I remember well your comments about Pineda’s violent delivery.

    Hopefully it has been smoothed out.

    If not, I’d expect more trouble long term.

    He may even wind up in the pen as you suggested.

    But I hope not. He has the potential to be a stud.

  59. ac1 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:16 am

    6 man rotation? At least for some of the year? It would seem that this year over any of the recent past that could be pulled off.

    __

    I wouldn’t go 6 man rotation because we want them on a routine 5 days pitching.
    LIke said above, skip a start completely and have them either throw sim on turn or 1-2 innings out of the pen on that 5th day to stay on point.

    With the extra starters we have, it can all work out.

  60. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:17 am

    “Every time I caught him, I was telling one of the other guys, it looks like he’s turned it up a notch every single time,” young catcher Pete O’Brien said. “It’s going to be fun once he gets into games. … He definitely is getting sharper. It’s fun to catch guys that have that competitive fire in them. He’s not afraid to go in on lefties and on righties. He looks very good.”

    Pineda will make his first appearance in a spring training game on Friday, expected to go three innings.

    *******

    Just great to hear!!!

  61. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Hank-

    Interesting question.

    Let me clear a few things up.

    First, Tanaka’s splitter and Kuroda’s have different actions.

    Kuroda “pronates” his wrist when he throws his giving it not only a downward but a side to side action.

    Tanaka does not. He keeps his wrist straight when he releases the ball.

    As a result his ball mainly just tumbles straight down.

    Another point of difference is that Tanaka actually throws 3 different splits.

    He can add and subtract form it.

    He also commands it so well that he can bury it or drop it in for a called strike.

    IMO, his best split is the “hard” one. Looks much like a Sandy Koufax curveball.

    Looks just like a FB and then just drops of the table at the last moment. Deadly.

    Hope that helps explain things.

    :)

  62. braeburn March 2nd, 2014 at 11:21 am

    “But I hope not. He has the potential to be a stud.”

    mtu-

    if he can throw mid 90′s back to back to back and and not blow a “gasket”, i’d say he for sure has that potential.

    there’s only one way to find out. run him out there and step on the gas.

    better to find out sooner than later one way or the other.

  63. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:21 am

    “Kuroda always throws a 2 seamer….it’s usually a tick harder than yesterday though…..I’m not really worried about Kuroda. He has a kitchen sink arsenal he can throw at hitters and I think he can have success even if he’s 88-91 or so.”

    ——-

    The funny thing about Kuroda, I believe his velocity was fine last year when he was getting kicked around in August and September.

    Velocity is a weird thing. For some pitchers it’s everything. For some others, it means little. Sometimes its a key indicator. Sometimes it’s just noise. But I think for your first spring training start, it’s important but mostly with respect to the existence of a significant deviation. And in the case of injury rehabs, it’s hugely important.

    But if you can get guys out, nobody should really care. Hence Nuno.

  64. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:23 am

    Braeburn-

    I don’t think they will baby Pineda.

    I think the Yankees want to take your advice and find out what they have.

    ;)

  65. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:26 am

    As bad as the Yankees have been injury wise – the Mariners have now been ravaged with injuries to key and very talented prospects:

    Danny Hultzen will miss the entire 2014 season as he recovers from major left shoulder surgery, but the highly-regarded prospect tells Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times that he’s optimistic about his recovery and resuming his pro career.

  66. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:26 am

    And by the way, If they happen to need a lefty out the pen I think Nuno can do an excellent job there.

    Maybe be a left-handed version of Phelps.

    ;)

  67. braeburn March 2nd, 2014 at 11:27 am

    mtu-

    if pineda shows he healthy for the moment , do you trade his potential for a nick franklin or ackley ?seattle needs starting pitching with their injuries out there to a couple of guys.

    is it smart to trade pineda’s upside away before the risk of injury clouds his trade appeal to other teams? definitely a judgement call. personally i’d trade him for franklin right now. dangle that mid nineties he threw in his last session.

    it’d be hard for seattle t refuse. it’d be a tempting offer.

  68. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:28 am

    The Mariners have sent scouts to watch young Rays pitchers, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. The two clubs recently came close on a trade that would’ve sent Nick Franklin to Tampa, though Topkin believes that the M’s can find a better fit elsewhere for the young infielder.

  69. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Tom,
    You got those St. Louis on the pit yet? I’m doin sole Huli Huli chicken today in honor of the warm weather

  70. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Mariners’ players demand a right handed bat in the lineup – like Morales:

    Robinson Cano and at least one other M’s player expressed the opinion that Santana would be a great fit, while Cano would also like to see the switch-hitting Morales brought back. “I’m not going to lie. We need an extra bat, especially a right-handed bat,” Cano said. “We have many left-handed hitters. We need at least one more righty. You don’t want to face a lefty pitcher with a lineup of seven left-handed hitters.”

  71. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:30 am

    Stones-

    Iwakuma with a damaged finger.

    Walker w shoulder fatigue/tendonitis

    Hultzen.

    guess other teams have guys who get injuries.

    ;)

  72. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 11:30 am

    I wish we could get Owings or Franklin……I actually like Owings a little better…..think he has more upside and had a better chance to stick at SS……but they need a 2B too and is love to have either

  73. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:31 am

    Bad job Rangers and Feliz – apparently the Yanks are not the only ones with minor league starters turned relievers and back and forth:

    Neftali Feliz and Joakim Soria are competing for the Rangers’ closer job, but the former hasn’t impressed early in camp, according to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. “Feliz was not sharp in his intrasquad game and I’m told his mechanics are still kind of out of whack,” Grant notes.

  74. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:32 am

    MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:30 am
    Stones-

    Iwakuma with a damaged finger.

    Walker w shoulder fatigue/tendonitis

    Hultzen.

    guess other teams have guys who get injuries.

    *****

    I know – crazy :)

  75. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:34 am

    And look at the track record in Toronto.

    :shock:

  76. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:38 am

    MTU -

    D’backs want catching and pitching

    Mariners was want pitching.

    Ervin Santana is still out there.

    If the D’backs asked for Nova and catching prospect and you could then sign Santana – what would you expect back from Arizona?

    Same goes with the Mariners – if they asked for Nova and you could then sign Santana – what would you expect back from Seattle?

  77. Captain Clutch March 2nd, 2014 at 11:38 am

    @NYPost_Mets
    Jhonny Peralta: “The Mets talked to me, but the offer they made was not really good.” … Mets offered 2 yrs. He got 4 with STL.

    @NYPost_Mets
    Peralta says NYY offered 3 years and chance to play 3B, so if he went to New York it would have been for Yankees.

  78. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Good morning!

    C.’s velo on 4-seamer was sitting 92.4 or 92.5 and topping 94-95 in his 2013 Sept. starts. And sinker 91-92, touching @92-3+. I am not too worried about ST if he has velo up to those numbers at the end of a season. He has plenty of fastball if he is locating.

    Mason Williams was really good in June and July at Tampa before he was moved up. .782 OPS both months, and remember he was coming off shoulder surgery in the offseason which qualifies his earlier lower numbers at Tampa. When he went up to Trenton, he only had 72 AB’s and his BABIP was a very low .189; he was self-admittedly being overly aggressive with a very atypical 24% K’s, so definitely not Mason’s game. That pretty much sums up the Mason AB’s I saw at Trenton. However, when he is at his best, Mason is being far more selective, showing good plate coverage and is getting the bat on the ball A LOT. That is the player I expect to see at Trenton this season.

    As for Mason’s weight, when he was drafted he was around 150 lbs, but had added about 15 pounds at beginning of 2012. By end of left season, he was heavier and is now @195. That bodes well for the added strength and pop we saw flashes of last season. But like I posted the other day, you don’t want him to bulk up too much because so much of his game is speed and fluidity both on the base paths and in the OF. I think if he stays healthy Mason will have a big year.

    Tanaka. Love the go-after it attitude. Bet the fielders will appreciate that he works fast, especially in the dog days of August. Splitty is God-given. He’ll be great fun to watch as long as he is locating that FB, which he seemed to do pretty well even in his first ST outing. Kid shows moxy and cool. Agree with luis that the breaking balls need to be better. Moreso the CB; I know the slider is good. But I think he is only throwing that CB 4% as per YES broadcast. I am guessing the Wed game vs. O’s or Thursday game vs. Sox will be his first NYS start, depending on how many days they will give him between first and second start. The Stadium should be rockin’!

    braeburn, you might like this link about the Rays and their “boldness”/creative mindset. I do enjoy their unorthodox approach. http://www.tampabay.com/sports.....ve/2168076

    Also for braeburn, Cano has been working with the young Mariner hitters on staying inside the ball, and taking a big leadership role. I think those younger Mariner players will greatly benefit from Cano’s influence. I agree that they will be fun to watch and my usual routine is and will continue to be to watch their games (late night) after the Yankee games end.

    Are we on mlb-tv today?

  79. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:39 am

    @NYPost_Mets
    Peralta says NYY offered 3 years and chance to play 3B, so if he went to New York it would have been for Yankees.

    *****

    Shucks, too bad , I could go with Peralta at 3b and Johnson at 2b for the upcoming season

  80. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Braeburn-

    definitely needs to be considered.

    Got the same type of issue w Nova.

    Will the real Nova please stand up.

    They are gambling on him being consistent.

    His value is very high right now.

    People should not get too attached to guys.

    We need to build a Team.

    All options should be considered when trying to do the best job of that.

    Right now we have an almost an entire IF to reconstruct.

    A really big job considering our lack of talent.

  81. tomingeorgia March 2nd, 2014 at 11:43 am

    blake,
    Going on in about half an hour. It’s a gorgeous day!

  82. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 11:43 am

    @NYPost_Mets
    Peralta says NYY offered 3 years and chance to play 3B, so if he went to New York it would have been for Yankees.

    Interesting

  83. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:44 am

    From Olney this morning:

    This is the time of spring training when a player can redefine himself with a first impression, good or bad. You could be Jesus Montero walking into the Seattle Mariners’ camp 40 pounds overweight, or maybe Masahiro Tanaka, cutting up the strike zone with seven different pitches in his first outing. (Tanaka was the real deal, writes Bob Klapisch.)

    Those first impressions aren’t always lasting, but they can be meaningful, and help a player lose or win a job, and alter perceptions and decisions.

    New York Yankees: Last year, catcher Gary Sanchez arrived in spring training at less than his best physical condition. This year, he came to Tampa in outstanding condition. He is likely headed to Double-A Trenton this year.

  84. Revenge of Stoneburner March 2nd, 2014 at 11:45 am

    Shortstop battle motivates Arizona Diamondbacks’ Chris Owings

    http://www.azcentral.com/sport.....ck_check=1

  85. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:46 am

    Stones-

    If I am willing to move Nova by backfilling him w a guy like Santana my #1 target is Castro.

    Nova for Castro seems like a good deal for both sides.

    Failing that, I’m after the next best guy who might be Owings.

    I give the Snakes one of our Catchers for Owings. Or make a package.

    If that doesn’t work our next best option might be Franklin.

    FWIS he is the easiest of the lot to obtain because he really has no place to play.

    I do not surrender Nova for him. Something less. A package of some sort.

    That is my current take.

  86. blake March 2nd, 2014 at 11:46 am

    They made drew an offer too early in the offseason…..Hal has cut off the spending it looks like

  87. Melkmanisinhotlanta March 2nd, 2014 at 11:50 am

    A pity with CC. At least he has a guaranteed contract. Geez imagine if he worked with out that safety net? Must be nice to have that.

  88. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 11:51 am

    “Got the same type of issue w Nova.

    Will the real Nova please stand up.”

    Good morning, MTU. While I get the comparison you are attempting, I don’t think they are quite comparable in that Nova is healthy (hopefully), has more MLB reps with more success (Pineda is much more a work in progress), and Nova also has a better repertoire of pitches to draw on, whereas Pineda has less value right now and is pretty much reliant on his FB velocity to be a viable SP. Yeah, his has a devastating slider and the changeup is hopefully evolving, but he doesn’t have the tools to draw on without the velo that Nova does. As for Seattle taking Pineda back, hmmm. Why did they trade Pineda in the first place? Again, if Pineda can sustain the velo, he has big upside, but I still think Nova is more of a given than Pineda, and hopefully Nova builds on his second half. I do think Nova’s health too impacted his season. We’ll see…

  89. Melkmanisinhotlanta March 2nd, 2014 at 11:51 am

    Cano is going to rue the day he took money over legend. Dummy.

  90. Hankflorida March 2nd, 2014 at 11:56 am

    But if you can get guys out, nobody should really care. Hence Nuno.

    Bigdan, you hit the nail on the head about velocity as changing speeds can be more effective to keep the batters off stride. Nuno pitches like the old crafty lefthanders who the Yankees always had on their championship teams starting in my day with Marius Russo,, Eddie Lopat and Whitey Ford. I think that Nuno will stay in the pen as CC will end up being our crafty lefthander which is fine if you younger bloggers think Jimmy Key and Andy Pettitte.

  91. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 11:57 am

    If CC was sitting 92.5 in September last year, then based on his performance yesterday he has even more ground to cover. That puts his high yesterday a full 4 mph off his average. Not good.

    As to Mason Williams, while .782 is a nice OPS in the FSL, it’s not a great number if you are cherry picking months. A typical .800 OPS season will show the high months over .900. For the season he was .676. The year before in a SSS at Tampa he was .724. Maybe it was his shoulder, or maybe he was just out of shape. Or maybe he’s just not very good. Either way, Trenton is a tough park in a tough hitter’s league. This will be a very difficult challenge for him.

  92. Captain Clutch March 2nd, 2014 at 11:58 am

    It would be interesting to know when the Yanks offered Peralta the contract. I would assume it was go after Peralta and if he says no then try to sign Beltran. I doubt they would have signed him also. It seems like Hal said he would go over $189m for Tankaka but that’s it.

  93. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    I don’t see Mason having a big year. I don’t see the bat speed and wrist action…but let’s wait and see.

  94. bigdan22 March 2nd, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Hankflorida March 2nd, 2014 at 11:56 am
    But if you can get guys out, nobody should really care. Hence Nuno.

    Bigdan, you hit the nail on the head about velocity as changing speeds can be more effective to keep the batters off stride. Nuno pitches like the old crafty lefthanders who the Yankees always had on their championship teams starting in my day with Marius Russo,, Eddie Lopat and Whitey Ford. I think that Nuno will stay in the pen as CC will end up being our crafty lefthander which is fine if you younger bloggers think Jimmy Key and Andy Pettitte.

    Wasn’t Lefty Gomez of that ilk too? And of course Tommy John.

    I love the crafty lefties in a NY uniform. Bill James in the old Abstract talked about how under appreciated they were because they don’t throw hard. But as James said, they generally keep the ball down, get lots of double plays and cut off the running game. I think they age pretty well too. I’m rooting for Nuno to get the 5 spot.

  95. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    After 2 years, I really don’t want hear any more assessments on Pineda. Get on a mound, get in a live game with MLB hitters and let’s see.

  96. Tar March 2nd, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    “After 2 years, I really don’t want hear any more assessments on Pineda. Get on a mound, get in a live game with MLB hitters and let’s see.”

    Yep…and I really hope what we see is exciting.

    Pineda, Tanaka, Nova and Manny would be an awesome young staff if they all pitch up to expectations.

  97. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    bigdan, it isn’t cherry picking when a player is coming off shoulder surgery. As he got into his zone he was close to a 800 OPS, and do not forget he is a CF who gives you plus plus D; he doesn’t need to produce corner pop numbers. As for Trenton, he is just getting his feet wet. And as for the Trenton park; yes, it is a tough park but it isn’t like it will suppress Mason’s stats the way it would/will Austin’s because while Mason has some pop, Arm and Hammer will more suppress homeruns. Mason hits to all fields and can turn those gappers into doubles and triples. He is a burner. So, I expect him to succeed. Cashmoney, Mason has very good bat speed.

  98. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    YF-

    I know the analogy is not exact.

    Just saying that the Yankees are taking risks w both for various reasons.

    Nova has a more complete repertoire. No argument there.

    Nova’s issue is consistency.

    Pineda’s will likely be more one of health.

    We’ll see how it all plays out.

  99. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    As for C. and velo, I think he will again be in that 92+ range sitting, which is plenty of FB when you consider how many pitches he has. Just needs the location.

  100. Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    YF, it’s just an impression I got from a dozen at bats or so. Let’s see, as you undoubtedly have followed minor leaguer more so than I do.

  101. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    MTU, agree Nova needs to be more consistent. Again, I wonder if the hamstring/injuries weren’t contributing to his inconsistencies last year. I am hoping to see the elite Nova, the mentally tough Nova who doesn’t linger on the previous pitch. I think that is the pitcher we’ll see and I don’t want to trade that pitcher/such upside. Just stay healthy. This staff is going to be a blast to watch.

  102. Hankflorida March 2nd, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    Wasn’t Lefty Gomez of that ilk too? And of course Tommy John.

    Bigdan, Gomez and John were in that mold of crafty lefthanders with Russo, Lopat, Ford, Key and Pettitte, but if you have both CC as your change of speed southpaw, I would prefer Nuno as your bullpen guy. The old CC could work well with Pettitte as their style of pitching was different just like Pineda could fit in following Nova in the rotation.

  103. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    YF-

    Yes it will.

    Potential to be one of the best in baseball.

    A joy for people like you and I.

    Love the chance to watch 3 young guys in action.

    :)

  104. Giuseppe Franco March 2nd, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    Cashmoney March 2nd, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    After 2 years, I really don’t want hear any more assessments on Pineda. Get on a mound, get in a live game with MLB hitters and let’s see.

    —-

    That pretty much sums up my position regarding Pineda as well.

  105. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    YF-

    IMO Nova should use his 4-seam more sparsely.

    I don’t think he will ever command it well.

    His 2 best pitches are his curve ad 2-seamer.

    If he uses them in combination while keeping hitters honest w the heater I think he will do well.

  106. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    GF/Cash-

    Don’t worry. I think that is the Yankees position too.

    ;)

  107. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Cashmoney, Mason is only 22 and just beginning AA essentially. So, still a work in progress, adjusting, overmatched and therefore likely overly aggressive. I haven’t seen all his AB’s but that was the case as he moved up in class to Trenton. I fully expect him to make the transition; he has that kind of ability.

  108. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    MTU, I agree and he threw the 4-seamer 13% less in 2013 and has thrown it markedly less every year. The curve was great last year and especially in second half/his K pitch. He knows he is best when he is getting GB’s. 8% more in 2013 as compared to 2012.

  109. Jackson March 2nd, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    “He’s not afraid to go in on lefties and on righties.”

    That should be the mentality of every pitcher, not sure why it’s being said. Maybe just a case of a young catcher.

  110. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    YF-

    Sounds good. Thanks for the breakdown.

    That’s the right trend.

    I really like his 2-seamer too.

    Slider can be worked in sparingly.

  111. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    YF-

    Too bad about J-Ram.

    :(

  112. yankeefeminista March 2nd, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    MTU, I just looked it up. In 2013, Nova threw FB 36.9 % Sinker 23.4 %, CB 35.2 % Other…

    MTU, hoping for the best on JRam. Got to run to an appt. Have a blessed day!

  113. MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    YF-

    You too.

    I got to go also. The Mops are calling.

    :)

  114. bbb51 March 2nd, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    · With Tanaka starting the big league game on Thursday, CC Sabathia will pitch a simulated game that day.

    Aha! They are trying to hide CC’s velocity! ;)

  115. sjb23 March 2nd, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    MTU March 2nd, 2014 at 11:42 am

    “…our next best option might be Franklin. FWIS he is the easiest of the lot to obtain because he really has no place to play. I do not surrender Nova for him. Something less. A package of some sort.”
    ****************************
    MTU:

    I think a package of Phelps, a choice of Cervelli/Romine/Nunez/Almonte (pick two) and a pitching prospect like Turley or Whitely – someone at that level – should be an attractive package for Franklin, and it fills a couple of holes for the Mariners. Some might think this is giving up too much for Franklin, but I’d rather overhelm them to where they won’t refuse, and these players don’t seem to have a future with the Yankees. Phelps is the most valuable of this bunch, but you have to give up value to obtain value, IMO. What do you think?

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