Video: Yankees introduce Carlos Beltran • 12.20.13
I have a lot more to come from today’s Carlos Beltran press conference — some of it about Beltran, and some about other potential offseason activity — but here is Carlos himself to get things started.
Video by Vincent Z. Mercogliano/The Journal News
Jeter not dwelling on injuries • 09.03.13
Derek Jeter has injured himself three times this year, fracturing his left ankle again and straining his right quad and calf. But he has been back for seven games since his third DL stay and he says he isn’t thinking about hurting those 39-year-old legs again.
“I don’t really have a choice,” Jeter said after the Yankees’ 9-1 win over the White Sox Monday at Yankee Stadium. “We only have 20-something games left. Our job is to try and go out there and win as many games as possible. It’s kind of hard to play the game when you’re thinking about not being injured.”
Joe Girardi was encouraged to see how Jeter ran in this game. In the first inning, he had an RBI single, moved to second on an error and tagged up and sped to third on a fly to right.
“That made me feel pretty good,” Girardi said.
Jeter said he feels fine. The Captain hadn’t been fine at the plate, coming in with no hits in his previous 14 at-bats. But he went 2 for 4. This was just his 12th major-league game in a season he called “kind of unique.”
Associated Press photo.
Yankees postgame: Hughes or Huff? • 09.02.13
Phil Hughes had bad luck in this game. The hour and 53 minute rain delay took him out of the game after just four outs and five batters. The Yankees erupted for a season-high eight runs in a single inning, the fourth. That could have been Hughes’ property. Instead the runs belonged to David Huff.
The lefty picked up the ball for Hughes and earned the 9-1 win over the White Sox. He worked 5 2/3, a career high in relief, and allowed one run, five hits and no walks.
Afterward, Joe Girardi was noncommittal about whether there will be a change from Hughes to Huff for Saturday’s game against the Red Sox.
“I haven’t made any decisions about changing the rotation,” Girardi said.
Huff, who has allowed one run in 15 innings over five outings since coming back from Triple-A, is ready for anything.
“When I first got here, Joe was saying, ‘We’re going to be using you.’ I said, ‘OK,’ ” Huff said. “A few innings, whatever he needs, I’ll make sure I’m ready for it.”
Hiroki Kuroda will get the ball Tuesday night. He has appeared to be wearing down, going 1-4 with a 5.12 ERA over his last five starts.
“We need him to pitch well because he has been a staple in our rotation,” Girardi said. “He’s been struggling a little bit. … He got an extra day off. Maybe that will help him get going again.”
Both Cesar Cabral and J.R. Murphy made their major-league debuts, giving the Yankees a franchise-record 52 players used this season. Cabral pitched a scoreless eighth. And Murphy got a pinch-hit infield single batting for Robinson Cano in the eighth.
“I didn’t know who I was hitting for until they announced it, so that was pretty cool,” Murphy said. “After that, I just wanted to have a good at-bat. I was nervous, so I made sure I took the first pitch instead of swinging at it.”
Brett Gardner doubled twice, so six of his last eight hits have been doubles.
Associated Press photo.
Game 137: Yankees vs. White Sox • 09.02.13
1. Brett Gardner CF
2. Derek Jeter SS
3. Robinson Cano 2B
4. Alfonso Soriano LF
5. Alex Rodriguez 3B
6. Vernon Wells DH
7. Curtis Granderson RF
8. Mark Reynolds 1B
9. Austin Romine C
Phil Hughes RHP
White Sox lineup
1. Alejandro De Aza LF
2. Gordon Beckham 2B
3. Alexei Ramirez SS
4. Adam Dunn 1B
5. Paul Konerko DH
6. Avisail Garcia CF
7. Conor Gillaspie 3B
8. Jordan Danks RF
9. Josh Phegley C
Jose Quintana LHP
Umpires: Mike Everitt HP, Dan Bellino 1B, Bruce Dreckman 2B, Tim Welke 3B
TV/Radio: YES/WCBS 880
Weather: Cloudy, 81 degrees, humid
Fast Finishers: Since Joe Girardi took over in 2008, the Yankees have a .585 regular-season winning percentage (86-61) in September and October, second best in the AL.
Vs. the left: The Yankees are 25-18 vs. lefty starters, including 15-8 at home.
Streaking: The White Sox own a six-game winning streak against the Yankees, with all the wins in Chicago, including a three-game sweep last month. The White Sox are 56-79 and last in the Central, but they have won 10 of 15 and 16 of 26 even after just getting swept over three games in Boston.
Mr. No-Decision: Jose Quintana is 7-4 with a 3.66 ERA and 16 no-decisions, a major-league high and a franchise record. He beat the Yankees Aug. 5, allowing a run and eight hits over 6 2/3.
Claiborne up: The Yankees called up Preston Claiborne from Single-A Tampa before the game for stint No. 4 this year.
Update 1:12: Hughes gets off to a good start, 10 pitches, three balls in the air, three outs.
Update, 1:18: Gardner leads off with ground-rule double to center and Jeter brings him around with a single to left, snapping 0-for-14 slide. 1-0.
Update, 1:30: One out, one on in the top of the second, and now we have a rain delay.
Update, 1:42: I’m sure Hughes is hoping this will pass quickly. He has an excellent track record against the White Sox, 1.38 ERA in 10 games, including six starts, 3-2 record. At Yankee Stadium, he’s 2-0 with a 1.27 ERA against them over five games, including three starts.
Update, 2:05: Still raining, sorry.
Update, 3:04: Lefty warming up in bullpen. I assume it’s Huff, but it’s hard to see from here. The delay has been 1:34 so far. The game will restart around 3:25, according to the announcement we just heard.
Update, 3:05: Grounds crew out for the tarp.
Update, 3:06: It is Huff warming.
Update, 3:08: Rain was unlucky break for Hughes. No chance to snap his career-high winless streak. It will extend to 10 starts unless there’s still a rainout later.
Update, 3:18: Robin Ventura will apparently switch from the lefty Quintana to the righty Dylan Axelrod. Huff takes the mound now. The lefty is 1-0 with a 0.87 ERA in five relief outings since coming up from Triple-A. Sorry, that actually includes one outing in his previous stint here. He had four scoreless outings since the call-up. And he sets down the two batters he faces in the second.
Update, 3:30: Hughes threw 20 pitches, 14 for strikes, allowed no runs, one hit, faced five batters. It’s raining again, by the way.
Update, 3:34: Outside of drilling Reynolds, Axelrod was in charge in the second.
Update, 3:43: Huff gives up a leadoff double to Danks in the third, then strands him at third with two outs.
Update, 3:52: Jeter flies out to the fence in right and Cano singles hard to center, top moments from the last of the third. Still 1-0 Yankees.
Update, 3:59: Huff looking good again, retired eight of nine so far, 1-0 heading for the home fourth.
Update, 4:00: I’ve been away for a few weeks on vacation. Don’t hear boos during A-Rod intros today unlike when I was last here last month.
Update, 4:02: A-Rod hears more cheers after slicing leadoff double to right.
Update, 4:08: Bases loaded, no outs for the Yankees. Reynolds up.
Update, 4:14: Reynolds RBI infield single, Romine two-run single, 4-0.
Update, 4:17: Gardner RBI double, 5-0.
Update, 4:20: Jeter RBI infield hit, ties Eddie Collins for ninth on all-time list at 3,313. It’s 6-0. Still no outs with five runs in.
Update, 4:23: Yankees messing up my scorecard. A-Rod up for second time this inning after Soriano RBI double.
Update, 4:26: A-Rod walks after a dropped foul pop, bases loaded again. Ventura finally pulls Axelrod. Jake Petricka comes on.
Update, 4:32: It’s 9-0, inning still not over.
Update, 4:34: The inning is over. Eight runs scored, six earned.
Update, 4:40: A single off Huff, but that was it in the fifth.
Update, 4:47: Yankees go 1-2-3 in the fifth after sending 13 men up in the fourth.
Update, 4:55: A single off Huff, but that was it in the sixth. 4 2/3, no runs, three hits. Want him to replace Hughes?
Update, 5:01: Yankees go down 1-2-3 again, 9-0 after six.
Update, 5:06: The shutout just flew out to the second deck in left. Konerko solo shot off Huff, 9-1.
Update, 5:08: Cano just turned a sensational catch-and-throw double play to end the inning.
Update, 5:10: David Purcey on for the White Sox.
Update, 5:20: The Yankees are keeping the game moving now. Leadoff walk, then 1-2-3. It’s 9-1 after seven. Cesar Cabral will replace Huff for his major-league debut. Reynolds moves from first to third to replace A-Rod. Lyle Overbay comes on to play first. Huff allowed one run and five hits over 5 2/3 excellent innings.
Update, 5:30: Cabral allows a single and strikes out two. The Yankees have now used 51 players this season, tying the franchise record.
Update, 5:36: J.R. Murphy bats for Cano, major-league debut.
Update, 5:39: Murphy is credited with a single on a hard-hit ball that third baseman Conor Gillaspie fielded but couldn’t hold. Murphy, by the way, was the franchise record setter, 52nd player used.
Update, 5:47: Warren will try to close it out.
Update, 5:55: Yankees win 9-1.
If the bad Phil shows again, Joe Girardi could take a chance on David Huff going forward. But Girardi has stuck by Hughes, especially with limited alternatives.
“You look at what he’s done in the past,” Girardi said. “He’s struggled this year at times. There’s no doubt about it. You can talk about replacing him, but two of the guys that we would’ve possibly replaced him with are injured, Phelps and Pineda. So he’s got to get it done. And we expect him to get it done.”
Hughes hasn’t gotten it done. He has no wins to show for his last nine starts, going 0-6 with a 5.64 ERA, the longest winless stretch of his career. He last won a game on July 2. He has dropped 11 of his last 13 decisions since May 15. There have been 18 starts over that stretch, and his ERA has been 5.12. The Yankees are 5-13 in those starts. Overall the free agent-to-be is 4-13 with a 4.91 ERA across 25 starts.
“You want to see him have some quicker innings and get some early outs and where he doesn’t get long counts and they foul a lot of pitches off,” Girardi said.
Phelps is just playing catch these days and isn’t close to returning from his second forearm strain, according to Girardi.
With the September call-ups, Girardi has a few more arms available. So will he have a quicker hook with the starters?
“Yeah, probably,” Girardi said. “But you can’t be too quick because you wear your bullpen out and then you’ve got a lot of days in a row.”
The Yankees had a tough setback Sunday, blowing a 3-0 seven-inning lead to Baltimore and falling 7-3. But Girardi has seen their bounce-back ability.
“I think because you have guys that have played for so long, they understand it’s part of the game, that you can’t really have a carryover effect; you just have to move on,” Girardi said.
Associated Press photo
The Yankees seemed more encouraged than unhappy after this 8-4 loss ended their four-game winning streak and prevented them from sweeping four from the Angels. The Yankees should have done more with 15 hits and three walks, but the lineup is at least more formidable now with Curtis Granderson, Alex Rodriguez and especially Alfonso Soriano.
Those three weren’t around when the Yankees dropped two of three at Fenway last month. They will start another three-game series there Friday night.
“I think it’s a different club,” Joe Girardi said. “The way we’re swinging the bats, it’s a much different club.”
The Yankees were nine back of the Red Sox heading into Thursday night’s play.
“We’re the team that’s chasing them now,” Granderson said. “So it’s going to be a very big three-game series, not the fact that’s it’s a Boston and Yankees series, but the fact that we can gain a lot of ground. It’s very important for us. We have to also be cautious that they can also create a lot of ground, too.”
They have another power-hitting bat on the way, according to Jon Heyman at CBSSports.com and some others Thursday night. The word from them is the Yankees have agreed to terms with Mark Reynolds. The righty batter, of course, is known for homering and striking out. But he can back up at third and platoon with Lyle Overbay at first. When the Indians designated Reynolds last week, he was at .215 with 15 homers, 48 RBI and 123 strikeouts. He has been cold in the homer department, none since June 28. He batted .098 in July. Your thoughts?
The Yankees delivered 46 hits in these last three games. They batted .366 and scored 31 runs in the four games.
Soriano had four singles and an RBI in this game and went 10 for 14 and drove in 14 in the last three. That was a major-league high for RBI in one series this season. The last Yankee with at least 14 RBI in a series of any length was named Joe DiMaggio, who knocked in 14 in a six-game series vs. the Indians in 1938.
“The last three games, I’ve been hitting the ball good and seeing the ball good,” Soriano said.
Phil Hughes finally showed some improvement after failing to get through five in his previous three starts. He allowed three runs and six hits over six, but he fell to 4-12.
“It was obviously better,” Hughes said. “It would’ve been hard to pitch much worse than I had been.”
Girardi said that until he hears more about it from MLB, he didn’t want to comment on the new manager’s challenge rules for replay that will go into effect next season if the owners, players association and umpires approve.
Associated Press photo.
Game 120: Yankees vs. Angels • 08.15.13
1. Brett Gardner CF
2. Alfonso Soriano LF
3. Robinson Cano 2B
4. Alex Rodriguez 3B
5. Vernon Wells RF
6. Curtis Granderson DH
7. Eduardo Nunez SS
8. Lyle Overbay 1B
9. Austin Romine C
Phil Hughes RHP
1. J.B. Shuck LF
2. Kole Calhoun RF
3. Mike Trout CF
4. Josh Hamilton DH
5. Erick Aybar SS
6. Mark Trumbo 1B
7. Hank Conger C
8. Chris Nelson 3B
9. Grant Green 2B
C.J. Wilson LHP
Umpires: Tony Randazzo HP, Brian Gorman 1B, David Rackley 2B, Larry Vanover 3B
TV/Radio: YES/WCBS 880
Weather: Mostly sunny, comfortable, 75 degrees
Sweeping up? The Yankees will try for their first four-game sweep against the Angels since July 21-24, 1994, in Anaheim.
Sori soaring: What’s the over-under on Alfonso Soriano’s RBI total today?
Update, 1:17: Hughes gives up an RBI single to Hamilton, 1-0 after a half inning. Hughes came in 2-9 with a 5.29 ERA in his previous 15 starts. Not exactly a strong contract push.
Update, 1:25: 1-2-3 first for Wilson with a twist. Soriano singled off the left-field wall, out trying for two.
Update, 2:01: Hughes one run, three hits allowed in three innings.
Update, 2:11: Gardner triples, Angels pull in infield in the third inning and Soriano takes advantage, ground single into left-center, 14 RBI in three games. 1-1.
Update, 2:21: Bases loaded, one out, and Wells plays rally killer, 5-4-3 double play.
Update, 2:30: Sac fly for Conger, 2-1 Angels in the fourth.
Update, 2:35: Hughes gives up the usual, a homer, this one to ex-Yankee Chris Nelson, 3-1.
Update, 2:36: If the umps, players association and owners approve an replay expansion play, managers will have three replay challenges per game, one over the first six innings. Not a big fan of that system to be honest.
Update, 2:48: Gardner strands two, 3-1 after four.
Update, 2:58: Hughes gets through five for the first time since July 23 when he went 5 2/3. So far, three runs, six hits for the Angels.
Update, 3:05: Cano doubles with one out, but the Yankees again can’t take advantage, infield outs for A-Rod and Wells.
Update, 3:11: First 1-2-3 inning for Hughes.
Update, 3:19: Wilson pitching a 10-hitter through six, yet the Yankees only have one run.
Update, 3:22: Hughes is done, three runs, six hits allowed, plus one walk, one hit batter. He fanned five, 73 of his 104 pitches went for strikes. Kelley in the seventh.
Update, 3:25: Quick 1-2-3 inning for him.
Update, 3:38: Scioscia finally pulls Wilson, two outs, one on in the seventh. YES had him at 124 pitches, scoreboard had him at 123. A lot in this day and age. Jepsen comes on.
Update, 3:47: Bloop double by Trout to start the eighth. Logan replaces Kelley.
Update, 4:03: Chris Nelson must be enjoying this. First career grand slam, off Logan. First career multihomer game, 7-1. Joba in to mop up.
Update, 4:10: Mopping not going well. Double, then RBI single for Shuck, 8-1. Chamberlain finally ends inning with K.
Update, 4:45: Scioscia on his third pitcher in the last of the ninth, Cano’s RBI single just made it 8-2. Two runs, 14 hits for the Yankees.
Update, 4:53: Wells two-run double, 8-4.
Update, 4:57: Yankees lose 8-4.
Yankees pregame: Huff up, Betances down • 08.15.13
Lefty David Huff is back and righty Dellin Betances trades places with him, heading back to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Huff said he felt bad for Betances, who was charged with four runs, five hits and a walk in two-thirds of an inning in Tuesday night’s 14-7 win over the Angels, his lone outing.
“I was really looking forward to being in the bullpen with him,” Huff said. “We’ve been together for as long as I’ve been here. So it kind of sucks. But he’ll be back up here. I know he will. He’s got good stuff. But as far as me, everything I’ve been working on, we’ll see if it works. We’ll see if it pays off.”
The Yankees will need a starter for next Tuesday’s day/night doubleheader against the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium. Huff, a 28-year-old former Indian, was 1-6 with a 3.84 ERA over 13 outings with the RailRiders, 12 of them starts.
“He’s a guy who can give us more distance, another lefty in the bullpen,” Joe Girardi said. “He’s a guy that’s been starting down there. Moving forward, we have a split doubleheader coming up. so there’s a lot of things (he can do). You’ve got a couple of lefties coming up, it’s a chance to use him, too.”
To make room on the 40-man roster, David Phelps (another forearm strain) was transferred to the 60-day DL.
“He’s not going to pick up a ball for a while again like he did before,” Phelps said. “I think the last day he pitched was July 4. September 4 is not probably realistic anyway for him to come back, so it was a pretty easy move. I think he can pitch in September.”
Phil Hughes is overdue for a decent start. He brings a 4-11 record and a 4.99 ERA into today’s series finale.
“Location,” Girardi said about the key. “It’s simple. Location. That’s what pitching is about, location and changing speeds.”
Derek Jeter worked out with the team today and is next bound for Tampa. He’s eligible to be activated from the DL Sunday in Boston. Will he?
“I wouldn’t think so,” Girardi said. “We’ll go day by day and see where he’s at. I’m not sure (about the following series). He really hasn’t run, running the bases. It’s just day by day and hopefully sooner than later.”
A-Rod and life for those on the marquee • 08.10.13
“I often wonder how guys like Michael Jordan and some of the greatest football players and some of the greatest hockey players — their life has to be so much different, because what I might consider being able to go out and do every day and just trying to be normal, I don’t necessarily think it’s that way for them.
“I lived close to Michael Jordan when we were in Chicago. His yard was fenced. He had his own movie theater in his house because it was easier for him to watch it there. The time he handed out candy on Halloween through the fence, the line was a mile long. It’s never happened to me. I don’t get that many people in five years.
“I think their lives are different because of who they are and what they’ve done in their careers. So for me to try to imagine what a superstar would go through, I can’t.”
A-Rod is still a marquee name, but he’s no longer a superstar. He didn’t look good in the Yankees’ 10-inning, 4-3 win over the Tigers last night at Yankee Stadium, going 0 for 4 with three strikeouts, leaving him at 3 for 15 in four games.
He’s going to have to tune out some of the sounds like he heard during this game, the loud boos from the home crowd that were competing with the cheers, the boos that came as a result of the PED allegations for which MLB suspended him 211 games, pending his appeal.
“Alex has had to deal with stuff before,” Girardi said. “He’s been booed before. He knows what he has to do, and I expect him to do it.”
This morning, ESPNNewYork.com reported that the Yankees informed Rodriguez in writing before the game that they intend to discipline him for getting a second opinion on his quad issue last month without their authorization. A-Rod stood up the media after the game. Here’s a link to my story about what went on last night. Also, Curtis Granderson has literally had a couple of unlucky breaks this season, but he did contribute to the winning rally. Here’s a link to my story on his year and the struggles in his latest comeback.
Associated Press photo
Yankees postgame: So Alex, your thoughts? • 08.10.13
We were all waiting around A-Rod’s locker for a comment about the reception he got here tonight during the 4-3 win in 10 over the Tigers. But we were finally told by media relations director Jason Zillo that Rodriguez had left.
Joe Girardi did speak about the boos and the cheers for his lightning rod at third.
“It was probably 50-50, maybe a little more cheers,” Girardi said. “It’s something he has to be able to put out of his mind and be a player for us.”
Rodriguez wasn’t a very effective player for them in this game. He went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts. He’s now 3 for 15 since his return.
Mariano Rivera hasn’t been effective the last two games, blowing back-to-back saves for the first time since April 2011. Miguel Cabrera got him for a two-run homer to tie it at 3-3 in the ninth.
“You’re talking about one of the great hitters,” Rivera said.
The Yankees won it on Brett Gardner’s two-out walk-off single. That stopped their four-game losing streak and the Tigers’ 12-game winning streak. It also saved the Yankees from falling to .500. They’re up to 58-56.
“We haven’t been playing good baseball for a couple of months,” Gardner said. “Sometime you have to keep winning or you’ll be out of it.”
Robinson Cano had two RBI on a double. He had driven in two runs in his previous 15 games combined.
The pitching matchup later today will be Phil Hughes and Anibal Sanchez.
Associated Press photo.