The LoHud Yankees Blog

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

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A.J. and Gio and the ongoing Pujols Watch12.07.11

Albert Pujols remains the biggest story in baseball this morning, but the biggest story in the Yankees universe is the New York Post report that Brian Cashman has shopped A.J. Burnett on the trade market. 

Everyone had to assume that was the case, but George King added the detail that the Yankees are willing to eat $8 million of the $33 million Burnett is owed these next two years. Just my opinion, but that doesn’t seem like an all-out attempt to dump Burnett. I would guess — and this is absolutely nothing but a guess — that it would take twice that much money (eating $16 million or so) to trade him. Based on his past two years, would you take Burnett at two years, $25 million?

Also gaining some buzz is John Harper’s report that the Oakland asking price for Gio Gonzalez was Jesus Montero, Mason Williams and either Manny Banuelos or Dellin Betances. Yikes. Cashman said last night that there are pitching upgrades available, but only at prices that anyone would turn down. Looks like he’s right.

Other reports suggest both Philadelphia and Detroit have checked on Gonzalez.

As it stands, the Yankees are still quiet, and so is this media workroom as everyone waits for big news out of the Pujols camp.

Associated Press photo

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Blogrollwith 453 Comments →

ALDS Game 3: Yankees at Tigers10.03.11

Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Robinson Cano 2B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Mark Teixeira 1B
Nick Swisher RF
Jorge Posada DH
Russell Martin C
Brett Gardner LF

LHP CC Sabathia (19-8, 3.00)
Sabathia vs. Tigers

TIGERS (1-1)
Austin Jackson CF
Ramon Santiago 2B
Delmon Young LF
Miguel Cabrera 1B
Victor Martinez DH
Magglio Ordonez RF
Jhonny Peralta SS
Alex Avila C
Brandon Inge 3B

RHP Justin Verlander (24-5, 2.40)
Verlander vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 8:37., TBS

WEATHER: The rain seems to be following the Yankees across the country. It’s been rainy all day here in Detroit, but it was clear enough that the tarp stayed of the field pregame.

UMPIRES: HP Gerry Davis, 1B Dan Iassogna, 2B Ted Barrett, 3B Bill Welke, LF Tony Randazzo, RF Eric Cooper

LET’S TRY THIS AGAIN: This is the first time a pitcher has started Games 1 and 3 in a postseason series since Kevin Brown in the 1998 NLDS with San Diego. Sabathia and Verlander are the first American League pitchers to do it since Oakland’s Dave Stewart in the 1989 World Series vs. San Francisco. Sabathia is the first Yankee to start Games 1 and 3 since Whitey Ford took the loss in Game 1 of the 1956 World Series before tossing a complete-game win in Game 3 at Yankee Stadium on two-days’ rest.

HOME ON THE ROAD: Sabathia is undefeated in four road postseason starts as a Yankee, going 2-0 with a 4.38 ERA (24.2IP, 12ER).

CHUGGING ALONG: According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Jorge Posada became the second 40-year-old to hit a triple in a postseason game, joining Joe Morgan, who did it with the Phillies in Game 5 of the 1983 World Series vs. Baltimore.

STREAK SNAPPED: The Yankees had their seven-game ALDS winning streak snapped yesterday. It was the longest-ever ALDS winning streak.

UPDATE, 8:46 p.m.: Jeter’s single and Granderson’s triple have sparked a two-run first inning for the Yankees. Verlander is throwing serious heat, but two hits and an RBI ground out are enough for a 2-0 lead.

UPDATE, 8:52 p.m.: Sabathia walks Jackson, but get a double play ball as Russell Martin pumps his fist in foul territory.

UPDATE, 8:58 p.m.: Tight zone, and Sabathia has walked three of the first four batters he’s faced.

UPDATE, 9:02 p.m.: Martinez goes down swinging, and Sabathia is out of the jam. Took him 28 pitches, one more than he threw in two innings on Friday.

UPDATE, 9:06 p.m.: Sabathia made 33 starts this season and walked as many as three in a game — never mind an inning — only 10 times.

UPDATE, 9:16 p.m.: Another Sabathia walk. Another double play. Another inning-ending strikeout.

UPDATE, 9:33 p.m.: Sabathia never walked five in a game this season. He just reach that number tonight with his second walk to — of all people — free swinging Austin Jackson.

UPDATE, 9:37 p.m.: Santiago is in this lineup specifically to face Sabathia, and he just singled in a run on a 1-2 pitch. It’s 2-1 in the third.

UPDATE, 9:38  p.m.: Bases loaded for Miguel Cabrera. This may be the at-bat of the game.

UPDATE, 9:40 p.m.: Double play ties the game, but it’s far from the worst-case scenario in that situation. Have to consider that a huge plus for CC and the Yankees.

UPDATE, 9:51 p.m.: Good grief, that’s a heckuva curveball from Verlander. Swisher goes down looking and it’s still 2-2 heading into the bottom of the fourth. Sabathia’s already thrown 63 pitches.

UPDATE, 10:19 p.m.: Santiago does it again, this time an RBI double to put the Tigers in the lead, 3-2 in the bottom of the fifth. This was Leyland’s big move of the series, and it’s paying off big time right now.

UPDATE, 10:40 p.m.: That’s it for Sabathia. He threw 106 pitches through 5.1 innings and here’s Soriano to finish off the sixth. Six walks is the most in a game for Sabathia since April of 2010.

UPDATE, 10:55 p.m.: Martin plunked at 100 mph. The Yankees have a runner at second base for the first time since the first inning.

UPDATE, 11:00 p.m.: Huge double by Gardner, and a huge handclap for him as he settles into second base. A walk, hit batter and now the double — all with two outs — have tied the game in the seventh.

UPDATE, 11:03 p.m.: Seems like every single Yankee gestured or said something to Gardner as they took the field for the bottom of the seventh. He’s given this team new life.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Gameday Thread, Minor League Teamswith 2,387 Comments →

Game 134: Yankees at Red Sox08.31.11

YANKEES (81-52)
Brett Gardner LF
Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Eric Chavez DH
Eduardo Nunez 3B
Francisco Cervelli C

RHP Phil Hughes (4-4, 6.46)
Hughes vs. Red Sox

RED SOX (82-52)
Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Adrian Gonzalez 1B
David Ortiz DH
Jed Lowrie 3B
Carl Crawford LF
Josh Reddick RF
Jason Varitek C
Marco Scutaro SS

RHP Josh Beckett (11-5, 2.43)
Beckett vs. Yankees

TIME/TV: 7:05 p.m., YES Network and ESPN

WEATHER: Beautiful day and night here in Boston.

UMPIRES: HP Brian O’Nora, 1B Alfonso Marquez, 2B Mark Wegner, 3B Ed Rapuano

ARMED AND DANGEROUS: Nick Swisher recorded his ninth outfield assist last night. He’s one away from his career-high of 10 set last season. He’s tied for the fifth-most outfield assists among AL right fielders.

THREE OF A KIND: The Yankees have three different players with at least 95 RBI (Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira and Robinson Cano). In all of baseball, there are only four other players (Adrian Gonzalez, Prince Fielder, Ryan Howard and Matt Kemp) who have at least that many runs batted in.

COMING IN SECOND: The Yankees are 29-14 in the second game of series this season.

UPDATE, 7:20 p.m.: Jeter will say he was bunting for a hit, and to some extent that makes sense — a sacrifice as worst-case scenario — but still, Jeter’s been hot and Gardner has a ton of speed. Not sure I’m on board with the first-inning bunt in that situation. Didn’t work out as Granderson and Teixeira struck out.

UPDATE, 7:35 p.m.: Hughes looked pretty sharp in the bottom of the first. A lot of 94 and a few 95 on the gun. He stranded a runner, and it’s still scoreless.

UPDATE, 7:58 p.m.: Eduardo Nunez has the leadoff double, and Derek Jeter has the two-out RBI single. That’s enough for a 1-0 Yankees lead in the third.

UPDATE, 8:22 p.m.: Boston got a couple of runs in the third, with Jed Lowrie’s RBI single sneaking just inside the line to give the Red Sox a 2-1 lead.

UPDATE, 8:50 p.m.: Beckett has really owned the Yankees this season, and now he’s through five innings with the Red Sox still leading 2-1. Derek Jeter’s two-out single was left stranded in the fifth.

UPDATE, 9:00 p.m.: Two-out, two-run homer by David Ortiz in the fifth has the Red Sox in front 4-1. Seems like Hughes has pitched pretty well thought most of this game, but he’s made some mistakes that really, really cost him.

UPDATE, 9:09 p.m.: RBI double by Cano has pulled the Yankees within 4-2. Still no outs in the sixth, and getting Cano around to score would cut the lead to one.

UPDATE, 9:13 p.m.: Chavez doubles, Reddick makes an error, and just like that it’s a 4-4 game with the go-ahead run at third base with no outs.

UPDATE, 9:15 p.m.: Sac fly, and the Yankees are in front 5-4. This game just turned around in a hurry.

UPDATE, 9:34 p.m.: Hughes is finished. He seemed to fool Varitek with a curveball, but the Red Sox catcher got just enough of it to send a double along the third-base line. The game’s tied at 5, and now Boone Logan is coming in to deal with Jacoby Ellsbury.

UPDATE, 10:00 p.m.: Logan did his job after Ellsbury — he retired Gonzalez and Ortiz — but Ellsbury’s two-run homer stands as the difference heading into the eighth. Two more chances for the Yankees against a tough back to the Red Sox bullpen.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Blogrollwith 923 Comments →

Minor league rosters coming together04.05.11

For the most part, minor league rosters aren’t finalized until the last minute. The Yankees four full-season teams get started on Thursday, so we might not have official minor league rosters until then.

But the groups are starting to come together.

According to Donnie Collins, the Triple-A rotation is set with David Phelps, Hector Noesi, Adam Warren, D.J. Mitchell and Andrew Brackman. In that order.  That’s pretty much as expected. I went into spring training thinking Warren might go back to Trenton — only because he didn’t have a lot of starts there last year — but it seemed pretty clear within a few days of camp that he was going to Scranton.

The rest of the early Scranton roster is similarly predictable. Donnie’s latest list has 27 players assigned to Triple-A, and that will be trimmed to 24 before the opener.

Muuch like Scranton, Josh Norris reports that the Double-A rotation has been set with Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, Graham Stoneburner, Shaeffer Hall and Steve Garrison, not necessarily in that order. Enjoy that group, Trenton. They might not be there long.

Norris also has a rough Double-A roster that will have to be tweaked before the opener. Brad Suttle is not listed, but that seems to be nothing more than a typo. Mark Newman confirmed this morning that Suttle is definitely still with the organization, and unless Suttle is hurt, Double-A is the most logical place for him.

It seems contrary to what you might expect, but Tampa is always the last roster to go public. There’s no one who really covers that team — that I know of, anyway — so the information is slow to arrive.

The team released an official roster, one that includes Gary Sanchez, Slade Heathcott, J.R. Murphy, Ramon Flores, Anderson Feliz and Tommy Kahnle.

The most notable players left off the Charleston roster are from last year’s draft. Third-round pick Rob Segedin is the highest pick from last year’s draft on the Charleston roster. Newman confirmed that first-round pick Cito Culver will open in extended spring, and it looks like Angelo Gumbs and Mason Williams will be in extended as well. The Yankees took a similar approach with Heathcott last season.

Baseball America  has the end-of-camp cuts: RHP Ryan Acosta, RHP Philip Bartleski, RHP Bryant Cotton, RHP Joel Marte, RHP Ben Watkins, LHP Sam Elam, LHP Trenton Lare, C Kyle Perkins, 1B Nick Ebert, 2B Ronnie Belliard, 2B Justin Snyder, OF Isaiah Brown

Newman said this morning that no one else has been released since minor league camp broke on Sunday.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Minor League Teamswith 221 Comments →

Building a bullpen01.13.10

Kiko Calero had a 1.95 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP through 67 appearances last season. Chad Bradford missed much of the year with injuries, but was healthy for the final month and a half and has only twice in the past 10 years finished with an ERA in the 4.00s. Jose Valverde had a 2.33 ERA last season and led the National League in saves the previous two seasons.

All three are still free agents. So are Octavio Dotel, Kevin Gregg and D.J. Carrasco. Same with lefties Ron Mahay and Jamie Walker, who were not so long ago multi-year, multi-million-dollar pitchers.

The Yankees seem to have interest in absolutely none of them, and that’s probably a good thing. In the unpredictable world of relief pitchers, every team seems a bit hesitant to dish out big money and long term contracts, and the Yankees have not needed to do either in recent years. They’ve filled a spot here and there, but the Yankees have largely built their bullpen from within. They developed Dave Robertson, did a great job scouting Alfredo Aceves and found success in temporarily converting Triple-A starters to late-inning relievers.

When the Yankees have run into bullpen trouble — Ron Villone’s 5.04 ERA in 2006, Kyle Farnsworth’s 4.80 in 2007, LaTroy Hawkins’ 5.71 in 2008 and Damaso Marte’s 9.45 in 2009 — it’s generally come from players brought in from the outside.

There is occasionally a desire to be proactive rather than patient, but in the bullpen, cheap youth seems to trump expensive experience. That’s been the Yankees model these past few years, and it’s been working.

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Blogrollwith 168 Comments →

Game 128: Yankees at Tigers08.24.07

Here is the lineup:

Johnny Damon DH
Melky Cabrera CF
Derek Jeter SS
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Jorge Posada C
Hideki Matsui LF
Robinson Cano 2B
Andy Phillips 1B
Shelley Duncan RF
Roger Clemens RHP (5-5, 3.92)

Pregame chatter: Yanks are facing LHP Andrew Miller (5-4, 4.42). … Ron Villone is not on the lineup card, so presumably he has been DFA’d. … Cano lost a hit when the official scorer in Anaheim reviewed Wednesday’s game and determined that when he reached in the fourth inning it should have been an error on John Lackey. Frankly, it’s the right call. But it’s lame to change it a day later. … A-Rod has 17 steals, two more than he has last season.

UPDATE, 5:55 p.m.: Turns out Villone went on the disabled list with a “mild lower back strain.” In a stunning coincidence, that’s an injury that doesn’t necessarily show up on x-rays or MRIs.

UPDATE, 6:14 p.m.: Tarp on the field. Based on what the grounds crew guys were saying, there’s a storm coming. I would doubt we’re starting on time. I’ll keep you posted.

UPDATE, 6:19 p.m.: What do John McDonald, Curtis Thigpen, Trot Nixon, Josh Barfield, Grady Sizemore, Kenny Lofton, Miguel Tejada, Aubrey Huff, Pudge Rodriguez, Magglio Ordonez, Carlos Guillen, Jeff Mathis, Orlando Cabrera and Vladimir Guerrero have in common?

Yep, all K’d by Joba.

UPDATE, 6:37 p.m.: They just warned the fans here to head to cover and the sky is darkening quickly.
UPDATE, 6:52 p.m.: A storm cloud of biblical proportions has settled over Comerica Park. We’re expecting locusts or frogs at this point. This is what you get when you don’t call up Chris Britton.

UPDATE, 7:50 p.m.: It’s still raining. I’m now plotting how long it would take to get to the casino if the game is called.

UPDATE, 8:06 p.m.: Here is Joe Torre’s pregame interview session:

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Yes, it’s still raining.

UPDATE, 8:39 p.m.: The rain has stopped and the grounds crew is preparing to pull the tarp. And the casino managers breathe a sigh of relief as i won’t be cleaning them out until later on.

I’ll let you know when they announce a start time.

UPDATE, 9:28 p.m.: This is odd. They pulled the tarp, cleaned up the field and now the tarp is back down.

UPDATE, 10:28 p.m.: First pitch is now scheduled for … 11 p.m.

UPDATE, 10:29 p.m.: Yes, I’m serious.

UPDATE, 11:04 p.m.: I feel like I did back in the day when I covered the Connecticut American Legion Tournament at Palmer Field in Middletown. Long day, final game close to midnight. Nobody in the stands.

But, what the heck, I’d be only be splitting aces and eights down the street and cursing when the dealer drew five cards and dropped a 5 on her 16. Might as well watch some baseball.

UPDATE, 11:08 p.m.: First pitch at 11:06 p.m. The rain delay was 4 hours and 1 minute.

UPDATE, 11:20 p.m.: Forgot to mention this before. But A-Rod had an authentic Detroit Pistons jersey – with his name and No. 3 on the back – and shorts hanging in his locker. It was a gift from Joe Dumars.

UPDATE, 12:35 a.m.: I’ve been answering e-mails and getting a few posts ready for the weekend, so sorry for the lack of updates.

Pudge Rodriguez just walked for the sixth time this season, the first since July 5. Clemens is not pitching well at all. But the Yankees are putting guys on base against Miller.

UPDATE, 1:03 a.m.: Curtis Granderson has 21 triples, the most in the majors since Lance Johnson had 21 for the Mets in 1996. It’s the most for a Tiger since Ty Cobb had 24 in 1917. I suspect Tyrus and Curtis would not be best of friends.

UPDATE, 1:16 a.m.: Jorge Posada has 77 RBI. Only four other catchers over the age of 35 have had that many RBI in a season. The others: Pudge Fisk (twice), Elston Howard, Al Todd and Gabby Hartnett.

UPDATE, 1:49 a.m.: Joba Chamberlain is clearly slipping as he struck out only one hitter. According to the gun here, which is fast, he hit 101.

Chamberlain now has a “shutout” as he’s thrown nine scoreless innings.

His line: 9 3 0 0 2 15 112 pitches/75 strikes.

UPDATE, 2:08 a.m.: They just announced – and I’m totally serious – that the postgame fireworks show was canceled because of soggy conditions and city of Detroit noise ordnances. Oh, and it’s also 2:08 a.m.

UPDATE, 2:11 a.m.: You have to hand it to Krazy Kyle, he has his mojo back. His last six appearances: 6 1 0 0 2 6. He took care of the Tigers on nine pitches there.

UPDATE, 2:31 a.m.: I’ve seen plenty of people as mad as Jorge Posada was at 2:28 a.m. But never at a baseball game.

The way Mo has pitched lately, it’s hard to blame Torre for bringing in the Viz.

UPDATE, 2:51 a.m.: The Yankees have put the leadoff runner in three straight innings and not scored.

Meanwhile this game has officially become stupid. It’s nearly 3 a.m. Is anybody still reading?

UPDATE, 3:07 a.m.: I hereby declare this blog free of criticism of Andy Phillips. He saved their collective butts there.


Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Blogroll, Miscwith 1,972 Comments →

Game 127: Yankees at Angels08.22.07

Here is the lineup:

No. 18 Johnny David Damon LF
No. 2 Derek Sanderson Jeter SS
No. 53 Bob Kelly Abreu RF
No. 13 Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez 3B
No. 55 Hideki Matsui DH
No. 20 Jorge Rafael Posada C
No. 24 Robinson Jose Cano 2B
No. 14 Wilson Betemit 1B
No. 28 Melky Cabrera CF
No. 46 Andrew Eugene Pettitte LHP (10-7, 3.80)

Pregame chatter: The Yankees are facing RHP John Lackey (15-7, 3.32). He allowed seven runs on 11 hits in four innings against the Red Sox on Friday. … The Yankees have dropped 9 of their last 12 games here at Angel Stadium.

Word is that Gary Sheffield’s shoulder is bothering him again and he could miss the series this weekend.

UPDATE, 10:36 p.m.: Gary Sheffield said today he would not play in the Yankees-Tigers series. He felt something pop in his shoulder while lifting weights on Tuesday.

UPDATE, 10:39 p.m.: Joe Torre met with Mike Mussina today for seven minutes. Mussina will start against the Tigers on Monday. But there seem to be no guarantees beyond that.”

“We’ll see Monday,â€? Torre said. “We chatted. His arm feels so good and that’s what frustrating for him. We need for him to do more than he did (Tuesday) night. It’s a letdown for him and for us.”

Torre was asked what would happen if Mussina pitched poorly again.

“We’re going to talk,â€? he said. “No question.â€?

Said Mussina: “I have to get it turned around. Going into September I can’t be throwing the ball like this. (Monday) is important but I think every start is important. I understand that at this time of the year in the situation we’re in that every game is important. Obviously I need to contribute more.�

UPDATE, 11:02 p.m.: Here is Joe Torre’s pre-game press conference:

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UPDATE, 11:10 p.m.: Vladimir Guerrero is the scariest hitter I have ever seen. I was covering the Class AA Norwich Navigators (a Yankees team then) in 1996 when he was playing for Harrisburg in the Montreal chain. One night, a pitcher bounced a curveball and Guerrero hit it off the hop so hard that it bounced over the right-field fence for a ground-rule double.

I could barely believe my eyes and asked catcher Mike Figga after the game if that’s what happened.

“(Bleep) yes,” he said. “Can you believe that?”

The Yankees that season ordered the fences at the stadium moved in because not enough of their players were hitting homers. But Guerero hit a few out every series it seemed.

I remember going over to ask him about it once. He laughed when I told him the fences were getting moved in. “No problem for me,” he said.

(Bleep) yes.

UPDATE, 11:21 p.m.: The Red Sox are 14-12 in games started by Daisuke Matsuzaka. The Yankees are 7-5 in games when Kei Igawa pitched. I’m just saying.

UPDATE, 12:19 p.m.: Tremendous job by Andy Pettitte on a night they really needed it. Joba Chamberlain is warming up now. Pettitte’s line: 7 5 1 1 2 6. If he wins, he would be 5-0 in his last five starts with a 2.06 ERA.

UPDATE, 12:27 p.m.: Damn, are they going to have to pay Jorge Posada a lot of money. 3 for 3 tonight with a walk and two RBI. That’s 75 RBI for a catcher.

UPDATE, 12:49 p.m.: Good for you, those who stayed up late to see that. Man, that was cool.

The sequence to Vlad Guerrero:
88 slider
100 fastball
86 slider that just vanished.

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Blogroll, Podcastwith 779 Comments →

Wrapping up a big night in the Bronx07.31.07

The last time the Yankees hit eight homers in a game they were by Joe DiMaggio (2), Babe Dahlgren (2), Bill Dickey, George Selkirk, Joe Gordon and Tommy Henrich.

Joe Torre met with Kyle Farnsworth before the game to talk about his comments and actions on Sunday. Farnsworth refused to speak to the media before the game. “Don’t even come over, I have nothing to say to anybody,” he said.

After the game, Farnsworth just shook his head when asked for a comment.

On the other side of the accountability scale we have Alex Rodriguez. After going 0 for 5 and getting taken out of the game in the eighth inning, few would have been surprised had he showered and left., But he stuck around to talk.

“That was a home run derby. It was pretty cool,” he said. “There were lots of pictures taken today; they took pictures of the wrong guy.”

Rodriguez said he felt left out of the homer parade and joked that he kept changing his seat in the dugout trying to change his luck.

But he did hit the ball hard several times. “Especially to (Jermaine) Dye, the last one, the center field one, the ball to the track in center,” he said. “Anytime I go up the middle or the other way it’s a good sign.”

Class move by Alex to stick around.

Said Jorge Posada: “He’ll hit two tomorrow.”

For a change, here is some audio from Johnny Damon:

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Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Blogroll, Podcastwith 230 Comments →

Game 99: Yankees at Royals07.23.07

Here are the lineups:

Damon CF
Cabrera RF
Jeter SS
Rodriguez 3B
Matsui LF
Posada C
Cano 2B
Phillips 1B
Duncan DH
Clemens RHP (2-4, 3.88)

DeJesus CF
Grudzielanek 2B
Teahen RF
Butler DH
Gload 1B
Gordon 3B
Brown LF
Buck C
Pena SS
Perez LHP (5-8, 5.84)

Pregame chatter: Bobby Abreu (3 of 27 against Perez) is sitting so Duncan can play. … Carrie Proctor had a baby today, a boy who was named Cooper. Scott Proctor will be away from the team until Wednesday. … With the Cardinals having a day off, Dave Duncan and Chris Duncan will be at the game. … Joe Torre said Jose Molina would likely start on Thursday.

UPDATE, 7:55 p.m.: Phil Hughes was scratched from his start (it’s raining in Scranton) and will start tomorow, weather permitting.

UPDATE, 7:57 p.m.: Tomorrow is the 24th anniversary of the George Brett pine tar incident and the Royals are giving away t-shirts with pine tar stains. The PR people gave us all one. Pretty cool.brett.jpg

UPDATE, 9:05 p.m.: Tony Pena had dinner last night and lunch today with his son, K.C. shortstop Tony Pena Jr. This was the first time he had been able to see his boy play in person. “He’s my son; I’m his Dad. But when we go between those two white lines, I want to beat him,� he said. “Obviously I want him to do well and lose the game. I don’t want him to beat us. It’s tough for me.�

Pena is one of those guys who makes covering baseball fun. He always has something good to say. His kid just broke up Roger’s perfect game. So Tony is getting what he wants.

UPDATE, 9:46 p,m.: Here is some audio from Shelley Duncan. He is pretty psyched, his parents and brother are at the game.

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UPDATE, 10:42 p.m.: He’s the Viz and nobody beats him. Now it’s Mo to get them to within 5.5 games of Cleveland.

By the way, Johnny Damon is 6 of 12 with four doubles and seven RBI since Shelley Duncan came to town.

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Blogroll, Miscwith 282 Comments →

Game 87: Yankees at Devil Rays07.12.07

Here are the lineups:

Damon DH
Cabrera CF
Jeter SS
Rodriguez 3B
Matsui LF
Posada C
Abreu RF
Cano 2B
Phillips 1B
Pettitte LHP (4-6, 4.25)

Iwamura 3B
Crawford LF
Harris SS
Pena 1B
Young CF
Wigginton DH
Gomes RF
Navarro C
Wilson 2B
Shields RHP (7-4, 3.82)

Pregame chatter: To sum this up quickly A-Rod said he is not interested in negotiating during the season. Rivera and Posada said they didn’t care if the Yankees wanted to talk to him or not. … Yanks reported to the Trop for an early afternoon workout. … The completion of the suspended game on July 27 will start at 7 p.m.

UPDATE, 7:08 p.m.: Here is what A-Rod said: “Like I’ve said all year, I think it’s something we need to do at the end of the year. I think it would be selfish on my part to talk about my contract status when our team desperately needs wins. My goal is to win as many games as we can, focus on my teammates and play at a real high level in the second half.”

UPDATE, 7:24 p.m.: Before you bury A-Rod, know that the original stories about the Yankees wanted to negotiate were “way overblown” according to a team official I spoke with today. I was told there is no chance the Yankees would negotiate with Rodriguez and not Posada and Rivera. It sounds like the Yankees just wanted it known they were interested in an extension. From both a team and personal standpoint, Alex is doing the right thing by waiting.

UPDATE, 8:33 p.m.: Joe Torre mentioned before the game that the Yankees won’t be sticking with 13 pitchers for long. He said Cashman is looking outside the organization (Shea Hillenbrand) and is that doesn’t happen, they would promote somebody from within.

Meanwhile, in my favorite note of the day, I asked Chien-Ming Wang what he did during the break. He went to see “Transformers.”

UPDATE, 8:51 p.m.: Here is Joe Torre audio for you if you’re interested:

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UPDATE, 9:05 p.m.: Heck of a catch by the Melkman. It really is a good question, whether he is your everyday center fielder moving forward. I think you have to seriously consider it, given how the money saved can improve other areas of the team.

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Blogroll, Miscwith 651 Comments →

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