• July 31st vs. The White Sox

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (11)

    It’s still sweet to pound Jose Contreras.

    It’s not everyday that you see eight homers in a single game from the Yankees. In fact, the last time the Yankees had seven homers in a game was on May 30, 1961.

    How is it that the Yankees play so well at home this season and so not so well on the road?

    I have to shift gears here for a minute and talk about what an idiot Steve Phillips of ESPN is when it comes to placing a dollar sign on the muscle.

    I’m driving home tonight from work and listening to Phillips on ESPN Radio in NYC on 1050 AM. He’s talking about Eric Gagne. Phillips said that he considers Melky Cabrera to be a fourth outfielder, at best, on most teams and that he would not let trading Cabrera stand in the way of his team winning a pennant – and that he would have traded Melky, in a minute, for Gagne (and that the Yankees were not smart to decline the Rangers offer of Gagne for Cabrera).

    I thought of that again as Melky made a great catch early in this game and then again when he homered in this contest as well.

    Steve Phillips is clueless. Melky Cabrera adds so much to this Yankees team. How many games is Eric Gagne going to pitch for the Yankees in two months? Maybe 20 times?

    Oh, wait, that’s right – Cabrera is just a fourth outfielder, according to all the experts, like Phillips. Perhaps I should start calling Melky Cabrera “E4O” – for “Experts’ Fourth Outfielder”?

    You know what? As a Yankees fan, I would rather not win a pennant with “E4O” on my team than win a pennant without him and having Eric Gagne instead.

    Lastly, that A-Rod homer will come, really, it will. In fact, it would not shock me to see him get it on the first pitch that John Danks throws to him tomorrow.

    2008 All-Star Game Logo

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (6)

    From mlb.com -

    Major League Baseball, the New York Yankees and the City of New York today unveiled the official logo of the 79th Major League Baseball All-Star Game, which will be played on Tuesday, July 15th, 2008, during the final season at Yankee Stadium. Today’s unveiling took place at an afternoon press conference at Yankee Stadium.

    Those in attendance prior to New York’s game against the Chicago White Sox to discuss 2008 All-Star Summer were the Mayor of New York, the Honorable Michael R. Bloomberg; MLB President & Chief Operating Officer Bob DuPuy; Yankee executives Hal Steinbrenner, Randy Levine and Lonn Trost; past Yankee All-Stars Yogi Berra and Ron Guidry; and veteran Yankee All-Stars Derek Jeter and Hideki Matsui.

    The official logo of the 2008 All-Star Game is traditional and simple in nature, symbolic of the Yankee franchise, and incorporates the club’s signature pinstripes and the architectural element of the famed Yankee Stadium façade. The colors of the 2008 Midsummer Classic will reflect the club’s navy and white.

    ASG2009.jpg

    Pretty boring logo, no? Then again, it’s better than the one from 1977.

    Click here to see all the logos from the past.

    Gagne To Boston?

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (19)

    From Ken Rosenthal -

    The Red Sox are on the verge of winning the Eric Gagne sweepstakes, pending his approval and a review of his medical records, according to major-league sources.

    Gagne must waive his no-trade clause to Boston for the deal to be completed. It is possible the Red Sox will allow him to share the closer’s role with Jonathan Papelbon.

    The Rangers would receive right-hander Kason Gabbard and an additional player or players in the deal, sources say.

    Before reaching agreement with the Red Sox, the Rangers had discussed trading Gagne to the Mets, Yankees and Brewers. He could have been sent to each of those teams without his permission.

    Gagne could reject the deal because of his desire to remain a closer with the Rangers rather than share the role with Papelbon or become his setup man.

    The Red Sox also could attempt to persuade him to waive his no-trade protection by guaranteeing all or part of his remaining $3.65 million in potential bonuses for games finished.

    Co-closers. Good. That always works out so well.

    Now That Scott Proctor Is Gone…

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (20)

    …let’s look at some numbers.

    As you read this, try and remember that I’m a Scott Proctor fan. I love his tough guy attitude – heck, I’m the one who started calling him “Everyday Scottie Proctor” back in April 2006 – and that’s caught on with many Yankees fans since that time. I share this not as a dig on Proctor – more so, it’s just a statement of facts and stats.

    I think Proctor is toast this season.

    Back on June 26th, I wrote:

    Scott Proctor, from June 21st to June 23rd, threw 86 pitches (combined) in the three games where he appeared. That’s like a full game for a starter. So, what does Torre do in this game? He brings in Proctor – to pitch the 9th of a tie game – on “two days rest.” Would you have a starter come back on two-days rest after throwing 86 pitches? No. Scott Proctor should have never appeared in this game – or any game – until he had at least three or four days rest.

    And, worse, during the ninth, you could see that Proctor gassed. He was red in the face, sweating, etc. Once he allowed the first two batters to reach, he should have been lifted.

    What’s happened since that time? From June 26, 2007 to July 27, 2007, here are Proctor’s stats:

    14 Games, 13.3 IP, 18 H, 10 BB, 4 HR
    Opponents BA/OBA/SLG – .321 /.433/.589

    Yes, since Torre cooked Scottie from June 21st to June 26th, Proctor has been a batting practice pitcher. Before June 21st, Proctor pitched in 35 games this season and allowed an Opponents BA/OBA/SLG of .215/.310/.338 in 35.67 IP.

    Joe Torre roasted Scott over three days in June this year, then let him cool two days, and then went on to microwaved him again on the sixth day (to make sure he was well done). Now, you can stick a fork in Proctor.

    This is why Everyday Scottie leaving now will probably not be an issue for the Yankees this season. Torre made him useless.

    Take care Scott. And, best of luck next season – when you start to get some feeling back in your arm.

    Wilson Betemit – Possible Sleeper?

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (18)

    Since we keep hearing about Scott Proctor for Wilson Betemit, I decided to look more into Betemit – beyond what I’ve done so far.

    This is what I’ve found: As a switch-hitter, he’s a joke batting right-handed. But, against RHP, he’s got some interesting stats.

    In the last three seasons, to date, Wilson Betemit has 682 PA vs. RHP. And, in those 682 PA, he has 66 XBH and 77 BB. That’s not too shabby.

    So, when Dan Graziano and Ed Price of the Star-Ledger write:

    The Yankees view Betemit as a utility player they can use at first base this year and, if Alex Rodriguez leaves, at third base in 2008.

    I can see where this just might not be the worst trade in the world – even with my appreciation of what Scott Proctor brings to the table.

    Update, July 31, 2007, 12:35 pm ET: ESPN.com is now reporting that Proctor for Betemit is a done deal:

    The Dodgers and Yankees have agreed in principle on a trade that would send reliever Scott Proctor to the Dodgers for infielder Wilson Betemit, sources told ESPN The Magazine’s Buster Olney.

    The Dodgers, who have a 5.61 bullpen ERA since the All-Star break, have been in on a number of trade discussions involving relievers but zeroed in on Proctor over the last 24 hours.

    The Yankees view Betemit as another first-base/DH/bench option for this year, and a potential third-base replacement for Alex Rodriguez next year.

    Betemit is batting .231 with 10 home runs and 26 RBIs this season off the Dodgers’ bench. Proctor is 2-5 with a 3.81 ERA, and his 54 1/3 innings out of the Yankees’ bullpen are tied for fourth-most among AL relievers.

    Looking For Yankee Stadium Stories

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments Off

    As Brain from Depressed Fan and Alex Belth from Bronx Banter were kind enough to remind some folks today, I’m still looking for your Yankee Stadium stories. (Thanks Brian and Alex!)

    If you have a “Yankee Stadium” story, and you’re willing to share it for a project that I’m looking into, please send me an e-mail to author [at] baseballsamegame [dot] com

    And, if you know of anyone else who has a good Stadium tale, please do pass this request along to them. Thanks.

    Eric Gagne

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (4)

    Since there are rumors out there that the Yankees are interested in picking up Eric Gagne, I thought it was time to offer some opinion on him.

    Eric Gagne is now 31-years old. From 1999 to 2001, Gagne was a failed starting pitching prospect for the Dodgers. In 2002, he was moved to the bullpen and he became a star. From 2002 to 2004, he was unhittable. Due do the increased speed on his fastball, and some change to his appearance, rumors of Gagne using PEDs began to surface. In 2005, Gagne blows out his elbow after 14 games and needs Tommy John Surgery. When he tires to come back in 2006, he hurts his back and ends up pitching just 2 games last year.

    This season, Gagne got off to a slow start due to a hip injury. Since then, he’s been good. From June 1st, through yesterday, he’s pitched in 22 games and batters have gone .212/.272/.294 (BA/OBA/SLG) against him. But, his K-Rate this season is way down from his 2002-2004 levels. In fact, his K-Rate this season is closer to where it was when he was a failed starting pitcher propsect.

    Given his age, injury history, and the whispers about his past potential PED use, in some ways, Gagne is the Jason Giambi of relief pitchers. And, Yankees fans have learned that you cannot count on Jason Giambi. Therefore, they should be concerned about having to count on Eric Gagne – and also be concerned about how much the Yankees would give up to get him, if that turns out to be the case.

    Tyler Clippard Going?

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (10)

    It sounds like, from some rumors, that Tyler Clippard could be a trading chip for the Yankees today.

    If true, will this be the same as when the Yankees traded Brandon Claussen? Or, will it be like the time the Yankees traded Jake Westbrook? What about Jim Deshaies? Tim Lollar? Gene Nelson? Doug Drabek? Bob Tewksbury? Scott McGregor? Ted Lilly?

    It’s impossible to tell if Clippard has a sure-fire major league career ahead of him. You can never tell with young pitchers.

    Back in the early 1990′s, the O’s had a pitcher in their farm system named Jimmy Haynes. He did great at A-ball, Double-A, and Triple-A. Haynes was picked to be the “next Mike Mussina” by many – he was “can’t miss.”

    Guess what? He missed. He missed really bad.

    It happens all the time with pitching prospects. Still, I’m bothered that the Yankees are willing to let Tyler Clippard go – if the rumors are true. Sure, he’s a wacky kid from Florida and he’s not someone who will “Wow!” you with his delivery and stuff. But, he seems to have a feel for pitching. And, that makes him somewhat like guys along the lines of Tewksbury and McGregor.

    Both of those guys went on to win 100+ ballgames in the major leagues. And, each of them had an outstanding year on their resume: Tewksbury in 1992 and McGregor in 1980 and 1983.

    If Clippard’s going to do that too, I’d rather see him do it in a Yankees uniform.

    Padres Have Interest In Igawa?

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (4)

    From the San Diego Union-Tribune -

    The Yankees recently demoted left-handed pitcher Kei Igawa, for whom the Padres bid $10 million last offseason. The Padres view Igawa as a potential “buy-low” acquisition, but the Yankees aren’t making him readily available.

    This is all about Cashman wanting to save face on the $26 million posting fee that he paid on Igawa. His contract has 4 years left on it – for $4 million per year. That’s very cheap and there has to be some team willing to roll the dice on that now.

    There’s no reason why Cashman can’t move Igawa – other than the fact it’s a white flag move on the acquisition of the player and then Cashman has to admit that the $26 million was money thrown out the window. But, as long as the Yankees keep Igawa, Cashman can dodge the bullet, to an extent, on the question of the wasted posting fee – by claiming that they still expect Igawa to help the team in the future.

    Fess up Brian. Admit your mistake here and get rid of Igawa while you still have a chance to save $16 million on the rest of his contract.

    Moving Farnsworth

    Posted by on July 31st, 2007 · Comments (1)

    We’ve heard that the Tigers and Rockies have an interest in picking up Kyle Farnsworth. And, according to my estimations, the Phillies, Brewers and Dodgers should have an interest in him as well.

    There’s really no reason for Brian Cashman not to make a deal with any of these five teams – considering how much the Yankees reportedly want Kyle off the team. It will be interesting to see if Cashman makes a move with Farnsworth today.

    If it were my call, I’d bite the bullet on the money and send him to Colorado. Let him have fun pitching up there for a while.

    THT Beamer: The Rise Of Philip Hughes

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (11)

    John Beamer raves on Phil Hughes:

    Hughes’ ace-like projections are based solely off of one pitch: an uber-strong fastball, typically a four-seamer but also with some two-seam stuff mixed in. It tops out at 96 mph and regularly sits in the 91-95 mph zone. Combine that with plus command and you have a top-draw strike out pitch. Let’s define plus command. Simply put, he can place the ball exactly where he wants when he wants while hurling 95 mph gas. This command and power combination will sit at the cornerstone of Hughes’ success or failure for years to come. If he becomes a Hall-of-Fame caliber pitcher it will be because of this, likewise if he sinks to obscurity. He launches the fastball around 60-70% of the time.

    “95 mph gas”?

    I watched both of Hughes’ big league starts this year and his fastball was usually in the 89-92 MPH range. I have no idea what Beamer is talking about here. It will be interesting to check out the gun in Phil’s next start for the Yankees – which should be soon now.

    Brett Gardner’s ETA?

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (7)

    Sweeny Murti on Brett Gardner -

    Watch out for Brett Gardner, a lefty-hitting centerfielder with a good on-base percentage. Still only 23 years old, he has a little bit of Lenny Dykstra in him, even some mannerisms. Some scouts have told me they like him and some Yankee brass think he could play in the majors within a year or two. What’s that mean for Johnny Damon? I don’t know about next year, but at least in 2009 my guess is he’ll be playing somewhere else.

    This time last year, I was thinking 2009 too.

    Bosox To Get Dye?

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (6)

    Via The Dumplog who quotes the Globe:

    …a major league source said a short time ago that chances were “pretty good” that the Red Sox would complete a deal with the Chicago White Sox for outfielder Jermaine Dye.

    In exchange for Dye, the White Sox would get Wily Mo Pena and a minor league pitching prospect (not Clay Buchholz or Jon Lester).

    It will be interesting to see where the Sox fit Dye into the line-up. Is J.D. Drew that bad? Give the Sox credit if this is a move to sit Drew. I’m not sure the Yankees were ever willing to do that with Abreu or Damon this year.

    Blog Reader Survey Project

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (5)

    Please take my Blog Reader Survey.

    I’ll share the results when enough readers take the poll to see some decent results.

    Sherman: Farns A Brown/Pavano Hybrid

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (13)

    Joel Sherman unloads on Kyle Farnsworth -

    Whether out of desperation or simply having too much money to burn, the Yankees have brought in players in recent years such as Kevin Brown, Kyle Farnsworth, Randy Johnson, Raul Mondesi, Carl Pavano, Gary Sheffield and Jeff Weaver, who all had long rap sheets on character issues. And, lo and behold, they all had character issues with the Yankees.

    The days of the Yankees believing they could bring any malcontent in and that malcontent would be converted into pinstripe obedience by the peer pressure of professionals in the room is gone. The inmates are not exactly running the asylum in the Bronx. But this is not the same emotional brew that existed during the championship years when vocal clubhouse sergeants such as David Cone, Chili Davis and Tino Martinez would assure that the moaners and complainers would be cowed. Derek Jeter is a pro, but he is not a get-in-your-face captain.

    To this end, the Yankees need to get rid of Farnsworth by Tuesday’s trade deadline and if it means accepting inferior prospects and/or eating a piece of his contract, so be it. It seems the Yankees were the only organization in the majors that believed Farnsworth could handle being a Yankee. He can’t. He is a cross between Pavano and Brown, fragile physically with the personality of a lawn mower.

    Gotta love a guy who let’s it fly like Joel is doing here. Notice the message under the message here – about the poor acquistion performance of Cashman and the lack of leadership in the Yankees clubhouse.

    Physicist: 2003 Marlins Worst Team To Win Ring In 30 Years

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (1)

    From USA Today -

    Amid a bleak season for New York Yankees fans, science offers some solace — the wrong team, the Florida Marlins, beat them in 2003′s World Series, finds a study.

    You may wonder, along with Yankee owner George Steinbrenner, how this injustice could occur?

    “The world of sports provides an ideal laboratory for modeling competition because game data are accurate, abundant, and accessible,” answers the study in the journal Physical Review E. “Even after a long series of competitions, the best team does not always finish first.”

    Tournaments and one-game series are particularly likely to produce Cinderella winners, for the same reason. “Of course, lots of people like to see these kinds of winners, that’s why we have March Madness,” Ben-Naim says, referring to the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s championship basketball tournament.

    But to ensure that the best Major League Baseball team wins, a longer World Series, say 11 games, would be mathematically appropriate. “The same is true for other competitions in arts, science and politics,” write the study authors.

    “In real life, we have to compete all the time, rank people, rank proposals and other things,” Ben-Naim says. The study suggests a more efficient approach in such cases would be to throw out the worst competitors immediately and “spend all your energy evaluating only the few obviously best ones.”

    Tough luck for the Marlins in that case. Statistics indicate they were the worst team in 30 years to win a World Series, say the authors.

    Well, it’s not like no one helped the Marlins win that World Series. Sometimes you just have to let the other team hand it to you. No one said that you have to be a good team too.

    Chacon: Torre Excels At Giving The Fredo Treatment

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (8)

    From Mike Geffner -

    Shawn Chacon isn’t remotely the loose cannon that Gary Sheffield is. Nor does he possess even a hint of Sheffield’s off-the-chart paranoia that senses enemies all around him and people dissing him at every turn.

    But you can now count the 29-year-old Pirates pitcher, punted from the Bronx at the trade deadline last season, among Sheffield’s growing camp of former Yankees who felt Joe Torre mistreated him.

    “When I heard what Sheff said, I chuckled, (thinking to myself), ‘That sounds familiar,’” Chacon told Rundown in an exclusive interview this week. “I mean, I have all the respect for Joe in the world and it didn’t ring true as far as the race thing was concerned, but I can definitely understand where Sheff is coming from, that Joe tried to make an example of him, used him to get a point across to the team.”

    “There was a situation between Joe and myself,” he said.

    The never-before-revealed “situation” was Torre undressing Chacon in the post-game clubhouse to the point where the pitcher felt like he was all but down to his underwear.

    Here’s what happened, according to Chacon: “I had a big lead (9-2) and got pulled out of the game with one out and a couple of guys on in the fifth inning. I was pretty disappointed obviously, pretty pissed off. (Joe) took my actions as showing him up out there on the field, and (after the game was over and the Yankees lost 11-9 in a total blowup) he decided he wanted to call me out on it in front of the whole team. I didn’t take well to that.”

    He stood up to Torre and gave it right back to him, fire and all.

    Chacon claimed that he apologized to Torre the next day. He also told his manager that he misinterpreted the pitcher’s actions on the mound during the hook — he swore that he meant no disrespect — and after it was all said and done he simply wished the whole thing had been settled privately, between just the two of them.

    Torre’s reaction, said Chacon, was downright chilly.

    “I knew my days were numbered after that,” he said.

    Well, it’s been a month since Farnsworth pitched his fit and Torre ripped him good. Since then, Farnworth has pitched ten times in 28 games. Sounds like Kyle and Shawn can compare some notes on life with the Great Communicator.

    So, the question is: Why is Farnsworth still around? Maybe it’s just a matter of hours now for Kyle…

    Torre & Damon On Canseco’s A-Rod Comments

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (5)

    From the Daily News -

    Jose Canseco may have some “other stuff” on Alex Rodriguez that he plans to use in his next book, but Joe Torre and Johnny Damon had some stuff of their own to offer yesterday when informed of Canseco’s latest comments.

    Canseco, whose book, “Juiced,” detailed his use of steroids with Mark McGwire, Juan Gonzalez, Rafael Palmeiro, Pudge Rodriguez and others, wouldn’t say specifically whether his A-Rod info involved steroids or not, simply telling a Boston radio station on Friday, “Wait and see.”

    Following yesterday’s game, Torre was disappointed to hear of Canseco’s comments and expressed concern about how much an impact they might have on A-Rod when the book is published.

    “You worry about anything like that, because unfortunately, when people see it in print, they add credence to it. That’s the sad part about it,” Torre said. “It’s a shame, because when you play this game, you’d like to believe you play with some kind of respect. Obviously, Jose needs the money.”

    Damon, who has played with A-Rod for the past two seasons but never shared a clubhouse with Canseco, rushed to the third baseman’s defense when informed of Canseco’s words.

    “I just hope he thinks about not ruining someone’s life, marriage, or whatever he plans on doing,” Damon said. “If that’s what Jose Canseco wants to be remembered for, so be it.

    “To me, Alex is a great teammate who will always respect the game, play the game right and work hard. He loves the game, so hopefully nothing that can ruin a family or something comes out. … Hopefully (Canseco will) think twice about it.”

    Something tells me that this is not going to go away too soon.

    SOTD: Possible Story Behind Yanks Road Record Vs. LH Starters

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (2)

    Click here to see the theory. And, I stress, it’s just a theory – and darn close to just being an excuse.

    E-Stein Speaks

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (4)

    From Trend Magazine with a hat tip to BTF:

    (Steinbrenner, reportedly in ill health, would not agree to be interviewed in person. He answered questions via e-mail.)

    (On his biggest realization about managing a business): How hard it was and how volatile I would let myself become when I became frustrated.

    (On his biggest realizations about managing a team): The two greatest were the extent to which I would go in order to win and the sheer scope of my loathing to lose.

    (On dealing with the New York media): You’re talking to the wrong person. You must know my past relationship with the media. However, as of late I’ve learned that “silence” is a very powerful word.

    (On how he feels about the Tampa Bay Devil Rays): The who?

    (On his contributions to the Boston Red Sox’s Jimmy Fund): We’re opponents in baseball; we’re allies in helping children. I have a lot of respect for what they’re doing with the Jimmy Fund, and I wouldn’t dream of not supporting such a worthy cause.

    (On the portrayal of him on ‘Seinfeld’): I loved it. They weren’t too far from the truth. You must laugh at yourself, and believe me, I do.

    “Reportedly in ill health.” Maybe next spring training Big Stein will pull an A-Rod on Day One and come clean on the relationship between him and his health?

    O.K., seriously, it’s sad to see that George can’t do face-to-face interviews these days. It’s getting clear that he’s getting closer and closer to being done as the man in charge. I think Yankees fans are going to miss him, in the end.

    Joba Moved To Pen For ‘Look See’

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (9)

    From Newsday -

    The Yankees may or may not be able to bolster their bullpen with a trade for the Rangers’ Eric Gagne before tomorrow’s 4 p.m. non-waiver trade deadline. Either way, they have moved a step closer to filling a bullpen spot with Joba Chamberlain, as they plan to try the 21-year-old righthander in relief for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

    “He’s going to pitch an inning out of the bullpen [tonight],” senior vice president of baseball operations Mark Newman said last night. “We’re just going to try it and see what it looks like.”

    If the Yankees like what they see from Chamberlain, they could be less inclined to trade for Gagne. Either way, they likely need someone to fill a hole in front of Mariano Rivera.

    Ryan Bradley. First-rounder signed in 1997. In 1998, he was rushed from Single-A, to Double-A, to Triple-A, and then to the majors to work in the Yankees pen. After five games in the majors, he was toast. Four years later, at the age of 26, he was out of baseball.

    That was all under Cashman’s watch. I guess he learned nothing from it – as they’re doing it again here with Chamberlain.

    July 29th @ The Orioles

    Posted by on July 30th, 2007 · Comments (9)

    I totally missed this game. We went to see the Simpsons movie (it was just O.K. – and we’re fans of the show) and we then went out for an early dinner (where my Chicken Penne Alla Vodka was excellent, if that matters). But, from the highlights that I’ve seen – and by the accounts that I’ve read – this one doesn’t seem to have been a clean and impressive win.

    The Yankees had guys picked off base, guys thrown out at the plate, guys failing with men on base, guys failing out of the pen, and got a somewhat struggling but gutty start from Wang. (Although, if you pay attention, you’ll know that Wang on the road is rarely lights-out.)

    O.K., on the bright side, Damon got some hits and made a nice play in the field. Matsui continues to drive in runners. And, Melky’s batting average is nearly .300 for the season with another big day from him. Cano is also knocking on the door of that mark.

    And, the Yankees are returning home – where they play well, as compared to how poorly they play on the road this year (24-29). Also, the Indians lost – so, New York is now just 4 back in the loss column of the Wildcard.

    The Wildcard is still right there for the taking. It’s just up to the Yankees to play like champions and put the race to bed. For those who did see this game, you tell me, did this team look like that type of squad – one that is capable of grabbing the Wildcard and nailing it down in the next month or so? Me, I’m still not seeing that – even with the win here.

    I wish that I felt different here. But, the three full games before this one, plus all the other slides following winning runs this season, have left me with a “I’m not falling for it again” attitude. I need to see it now, before I can believe it.

    A-Rod & Camden Yards

    Posted by on July 29th, 2007 · Comments (9)

    Here are Alex Rodriguez’ stats from his last 20 games at Camden Yards:

    A-RodCamden.jpg

    This may just be me, but, I don’t think he likes hitting there too much.

    SOTD: The A-Rod Tater Spread

    Posted by on July 29th, 2007 · Comments (0)

    It’s nice to see that A-Rod is an E.O.E. when it comes to his yardwork.

    Let’s Bounce Bruney Too

    Posted by on July 29th, 2007 · Comments (14)

    From the Post -

    If the Yankees make a trade before Tuesday afternoon’s deadline it’s highly likely that Kyle Farnsworth and or Scott Proctor will be in it. And even if they aren’t moved, neophyte Joba Chamberlain is a solid bet to be added to the bullpen mix as early as Tuesday.

    If Joba Chamberlain is going to be the replacement for Farnsworth or Proctor, I wouldn’t stop there. I would replace Brian Bruney with Jeff Karstens as well.

    Since May 30th, Bruney has pitched in 22 games throwing 16.3 IP. In those 16+ innings, he’s allowed 36 (!) baserunners. Batters against him in those 22 games have the following BA/OBA/SLG marks: .328/.450/.492 – yes, an Opponent On-Base Average of almost 50%.

    Last night’s game should have been the final straw for him. Even in the YES post-game, Torre said (about Brian): Sure, he throws hard, but, he has to throw strikes.

    Bruney was good in April and May of this season. But, for the last two months, he’s been brutal. It’s time to get him down to Triple-A to work out his problems there.

    July 28th @ The Orioles

    Posted by on July 28th, 2007 · Comments (10)

    The story of this game is the same as the story for this season in Yankeeland: Too little, too late.

    I think it’s time to face it, and admit it, that this Yankees’ team is a “C.T.” – as in “Contender Tease.” They excel at scratching at the door, making it look like they want to come in – but, when it’s time to come in the house, they shy away like a cat sensing water and flee back into the yard.

    It’s just about time to start saying “Wait ’til next year!” (again).

    Yanks: Help Wanted

    Posted by on July 28th, 2007 · Comments (2)

    And, it’s not in the bullpen. From the Official Site – with a hat tip to Tom Tango:

    New York Yankees Job Opportunities

    Computer Programmer
    The New York Yankees organization is accepting applications for a full-time computer programmer in their Baseball Operations department.

    Computer Programming/Statistical Analysis Intern
    The New York Yankees organization is accepting applications for a computer programming intern in their Baseball Operations department.

    I liked this “must answer” question from the job descriptions:

    Have you ever written code to interact with the the RETROSHEET and LAHMAN databases?

    Well, now we know where the Yankees get their data. Someone should just buy Cashman a copy of the Complete Baseball Encyclopedia and a subscription to Baseball-Reference.com’s Play Index for Christmas or his birthday, whichever comes first. Then he wouldn’t have to make these hires and Big Stein would have two less mouths to carry on the company’s dental insurance plan.

    Go West Kei Igawa?

    Posted by on July 28th, 2007 · Comments (8)

    From The Seattle Times -

    Kenji Johjima and Ichiro both expressed pleasant surprise in the clubhouse after overhearing a TV report about the Mariners’ rumored trade interest in Yankees pitcher Kei Igawa, who is also Japanese.

    Make it happen Cashman. Make it happen.

    Clippard: I’ll Get Back To Form

    Posted by on July 28th, 2007 · Comments (0)

    From the Trenton Times -

    Rated the seventh-best Yankees prospect by Baseball America, Clippard was 3-2 with a 2.72 ERA in eight games before heading to the majors, where he went 3-1 with a 6.33 ERA, earning the win in his major-league debut on national television at Shea Stadium.

    “It’s just a matter of finding consistency with my fastball,” said Clippard, who was 1-2 with a 6.07 ERA in his return to Triple-A.

    “I am a little unorthodox as far as my mechanics go, so if I get a little out of whack, it gets magnified more than other guys. A lot of it is a learning process — on the mental side of things as well. I am going to get this thing ironed out and get back to form.”

    Don’t count this kid out yet. Sure, there’s Hughes, Chamberlain, Kennedy, Marquez, Horne and Brett Smith. And, there’s guys like Brackman and Betances who will get some ink. But, sometimes it’s the guys like Clippard or Karstens who sneak in there and become 15-game winners on the big league level too.

    Looking For Yankee Fan Discussion Forums

    Posted by on July 28th, 2007 · Comments Off

    If you know of any popular and mature on-line discussion forums for Yankees fans, and you’re willing to share the URL for a project that I’m looking into, please send me an e-mail to author [at] baseballsamegame [dot] com. Thanks.

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