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

Pregame notes: “That’s the guy that we had before”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on May 03, 2014 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Aceves (old)

One after another — Brett Gardner, then CC Sabathia, then Derek Jeter — long-time Yankees came into the clubhouse this morning, saw Alfredo Aceves and went to his locker for a laugh and a hug. Guys who have been here for a few years certainly remember him, and when I told one long-time Yankees player this spring that the team had signed Aceves to a minor league deal, the player immediately said that it was just a matter of time before Aceves would be on the big league roster.

It took a month, but here he is.

“I was a Yankee (in the past),” Aceves said. “And when I heard that they wanted to sign me again, I was pretty excited and happy.”

After opening the season with three pitchers who could be considered long relievers, the Yankees have since gone through a series of long men. The latest turn of the revolving door as sent out Chris Leroux — he was designated for assignment after last night’s let down — and brought in Aceves, who was working as a starter in Triple-A but will be a bullpen option tonight. Manager Joe Girardi said that “right now” Aceves is strictly a reliever.

“I want him to be a guy that we can use in a lot of different areas,” Girardi said. “Obviously today he’s our long man, just in case we need something. But (he is) a guy we could use for two innings, three innings, an inning; use in a lot of different ways. That’s the guy that we had before, and that’s what we want.”

Aceves said most of what he’d been working on in Triple-A had to do with his fastball, when to throw it and where to locate it. He had a 1.98 ERA through 13.2 innings with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. It’s worth noting, though, that Aceves struggled his past two years in the big leagues. Pitching in a variety of roles with the Red Sox, Aceves had a combined 5.21 ERA with a 1.45 WHIP the past two seasons. He had a 4.25 ERA in eight Triple-A starts last season.

“It’s a guy that is extremely competitive,” Girardi said. “And sometimes the competitiveness can get the best of him a little bit. But it’s a guy that I really believe knows how to pitch (and) that can help a club. He was very successful here when we had him, and then he took on some different roles in different places and has bounced around a little bit. He took on a closer role, which he never had before, and at times he struggled with that a little bit, but he still had a substantial amount of saves over there. The big thing for me for him is that he continues to pitch the way he’s capable of. He has the ability to mix pitches and have different weapons to get different people out.”

Derek Jeter• Girardi said that, had last night’s game not gone so late into the night, Derek Jeter might have played today’s game. “Once we got into that really long game and the quick turn around, I changed my mind,” Girardi said. As it is, Jeter will sit and Yangervis Solarte will make his first major-league start at shortstop.

• There was no checking with guys before putting the lineup together. Girardi said he basically knew what he was going to do when last night’s game ended. Not particularly surprising that he’s sitting the veterans Jeter and Carlos Beltran, while also sitting John Ryan Murphy, who caught most of last night’s game.

• Shawn Kelley and Adam Warren are unavailable tonight. Girardi said he’d have to check with the other relievers to know for sure who he can and can’t use.

• With a short bullpen, this would be a good time for Masahiro Tanaka to pitch deep into a game. Of course, that hasn’t been much of a problem so far this season. “It’s important because we’ll be without some guys today in our bullpen,” Girardi said. “We just need him to go out and do it. The one thing I don’t want him to think is that he has to go out there and pitch nine innings and get away from what he does trying to have quick innings. He just needs to get people out, and then we’ll take care of the rest.”

• Girardi said he’s not afraid to go 110 pitches with Tanaka, but he wouldn’t go much beyond that. He’s not expecting to let Tanaka throw 130 pitches today.

• Not a lot of sleep for Aceves last night. He said he was asleep around 1 a.m. when he got the call that he was being called up for today’s game. He had to leave at 4 a.m. to catch a flight from Virginia to New York. “I’m excited to be back,” he said. “I was excited to be here.”

• After a bad loss last night, the Yankees could really use a bounce back game this afternoon. “I feel pretty good about this group,” Girardi said. “I think we’ve responded already to some adversity.”

Associated Press photos





21 Responses to “Pregame notes: “That’s the guy that we had before””

  1. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    Not crazy about having him back, for a variety of reasons, but if he can help the Yankees, we need him to be here.

  2. Madrugador May 3rd, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    Banuelos now in Trenton and still pitching 3 innings a game.

    Is this what we should expect when Nova comes back from his surgery?

    Going to have to ask a professional about the appropriate rehab for TJ surgery.

  3. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    “Every time I read someone bring up McCann and struggling….. I think of all the grief Randy got for not liking his signing. And for the record I was very much in favor of the McCann signing.”

    Tar, in fairness, I believe the reason Randy gave for not liking the McCann signing was because he felt McCann was a redneck. I don’t think it had anything to do with McCann’s abilities. (Not sure if he ever mentioned his abilities because things went quickly off track after that.)

  4. J. Alfred Prufrock May 3rd, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Randy did not want youngsters like Murphy and Sanchez blocked.

    Randy actually has sound baseball logic behind his positions.

  5. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 12:38 pm


    Unknown has a habit of poking fun at people who question umpires ruling, etc. Unknown also greatly enjoys needling people. While her in-game baseball observations may be money, it’s usually buried under a lot of mocking yee-hahing.

    I don’t find failing to consider different possibilities, even outliers, terribly sophisticated, but I also haven’t made it a habit of tracking everything Unknown says, nor mocking Unknown’s postings.

  6. J. Alfred Prufrock May 3rd, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    Thanks, pat for posting that link on Alex
    Rodriguez, who has donated
    Million dollars to Boys & Girls
    Club and who is working hard to get back to the pinstripes for the 2015 season :)
    He looks great – and I’m sure, with Jete retiring, the Levine Machine, though not understanding the game of
    Baseball, has an inklIng what Alex can do for attendance.

  7. luis May 3rd, 2014 at 12:40 pm


    Randy does have a lot of baseball logic… I don’t think McCann necessarily blocks Sanchez..But he clearly is blocking Murphy

    About your post of previous thread…I never got the chance to watch Murphy in the minors..But now I can relate to what Randy expressed about him when he saw him.

    About your post on previous thread… Yes, they appear to be so focused on C defense that probably Sanchez won’t make it with us…

  8. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    “Randy did not want youngsters like Murphy and Sanchez blocked.

    Randy actually has sound baseball logic behind his positions.”

    How was obtaining McCann blocking Murphy and Sanchez? Neither was ready to take over the first-line position.

    I’m not saying Randy didn’t have sound baseball logic behind his positions. I said that all I remember about McCann in particular was Randy not liking what Randy perceived to be his redneck tendencies. If he said more about his actual playing, I sincerely don’t remember.

  9. Cashmoney May 3rd, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Banuelos now in Trenton and still pitching 3 innings a game.
    I was not aware of that fact. but I can tell you this , if he is limited to 3 innings in every of his start for the season that would be truly asinine.

    Dif type of injury, but it did not look like it helped Pineda.

  10. luis May 3rd, 2014 at 12:48 pm


    If you have watched the games that Murphy has played…He is ready as of right now..He is a better hitter than McCann, without the power probably..Still, give me 9 hitters with great plate discipline and situational approach and I’ll pick them over 9 HR hitters with no situational awareness..Not saying that McCann doesn’t, he does, but he tends to get too pull happy (hence the shift)…As of right now, Murphy is blocked for all practical porposes

    But in the larger context..We could have gone with a homegrown tandem and saved the money to address more pressing needs, like the IF for instance…

  11. J. Alfred Prufrock May 3rd, 2014 at 12:50 pm


    Since you have seen Betances beyond these relief appearances, you understand what a ware this is.

    Having watched all of his 2013
    Starts available
    Through archives and his relief appearances, I have little doubt that he would be fine in a starters role.

    As you know,’I
    Did not like the shortened stride,
    But what was initially mechanical and
    Robotic and seemed to
    Deprive him of downward action – resulting in flyballs and line drives highly uncommon to him – has become with time more
    Natural and herbs motion is
    Fluid and the follow through actually has restored
    The downhill
    Lost for awhile
    When the front leg
    Diminished. You can see that now happening because
    The way the motion finishes. No one has
    Given me
    Argument here why that
    DeveloPment for over a year now
    Can’t work for him as a starter!

  12. BIG AL May 3rd, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Everyone has talked about needing another big bat, while I suggest we need a good hitter w/RISP in the 2 hole.

    I can’t say how much I love Jeter, but so far this season he’s hurting the team more than helping batting #2.

  13. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    luis, but as of Opening Day, and as off last off season, I’m betting that the Yankees didn’t consider Murphy ready. I could be wrong.

    I think the Yankees are pretty much in a damned if they do, damned if they don’t position because unless they really start tearing up the field, they are going to be open to criticism. I know that McCann was considered to be a great signing by all the talking heads.

    I’m not sure he won’t turn the corner. And actually, I was just saying that I thought Randy’s criticism was about McCann’s personality. He may have thought it blocked the kids.

    You know the more I think about it, the more the jury remains out for me with respect to teams in general and what they are all going to be about, because I have to believe there’s a blow back effect to the entire steroids debacle and the new penalties, etc. Nobody can tell me that there aren’t at least some players who got some fast religion. I will continue to wonder what the ramifications are and will continue to be in terms of players abilities, breaking down, etc.

    I think we have some heavily unchartered territory that may deserve a looksee. That’s why maybe for the first time ever, or the first time in a long time, I see the entire season as an “anybody’s” crapshoot.

  14. austinmac May 3rd, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    I like McCann and am glad we have him.

  15. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    luis, I definitely think Murphy has looked great. I don’t know if he’s ready to take over the primary job or if he could go a whole season at the primary spot.

    I’m interested to know your view (and anybody else’s) on the potential blow back effect of players no longer using PEDS. I really appreciate the thought processes. I have already discarded any views that are unequivocal, one way or the other, because there is nobody who can know unequivocally whether or not that is going to factor into the way teams look now and going forward.



  16. trisha - true pinstriped blue May 3rd, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    “I like McCann and am glad we have him.”

    I also.

  17. luis May 3rd, 2014 at 1:07 pm


    Yes..I was against the shorter stride as well, mainly because I thought he wouldn’t be able to finish his pitches..But as you say, he looks comfortable..Also, his mechanics look sound… We have a saying down here “Cria fama y acuestate a dormir”..A liberal translation would be “Make a name for yourself and then go to sleep” ..Meaning that once you have a certain reputation, it is very hard to change it..Most of the comments from those opposing Betances being stretched out are based on that “reputation”..Not on any recent facts other than the FO sending him to the pen.

  18. Yankees_Fan May 3rd, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    “I feel pretty good about this group,” Girardi said. “I think we’ve responded already to some adversity.”


    You alone, Mr. G. With a decimated rotation, a hideous infield, a punchless offense with no comeback ability, the Jeter debacle, a taxed bullpen and no help from the minors, this team is in for a long season.

    So many moves would have to be done to fix this team. Many of them are not being considered, so its “pray and hope they win” instead of feeling “comfortable they have the team to get wins”.

  19. austinmac May 3rd, 2014 at 1:45 pm


    Do you think there is any chance the Yankees will put Betances in the rotation? Even one percent? I don’t. It would suggest an earlier wrong decision. Not happening.

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