Thursday, April 23, 2015

Subway Series

The Yankees and Mets get ready for a three game set in the Bronx. The Yankees took three out of four in Detroit and swept Tampa Bay the previous series. The Mets are baseballs hottest team and have one eleven straight. This weekend both teams will have some momentum however the Mets have their aces lined up for Friday and Saturday.

What do the Mets have going for them ?

The Mets have one eleven straight and have been arguably baseballs best team. The Mets have Jacob deGrom and Matt Harvey on the mound in the first two games. Obviously the Mets feel like they should win the series with their aces on the hill. deGrom has a tuff matchup as he is opposed by Michael Pineda. Despite losing David Wright and Travis d'Arnaud the Mets have looked okay offensively. Daniel Murphy looked like he finally has started to swing the bat well.

What do the Yankees have going for them ?

Michael Pineda is on the hill in game one and the Yankees have been hot as well. The Yankees have had great play from Alex Rodriguez despite him slumping against Detroit. The Yankees bullpen has looked lights out , Andrew Miller picked up another save. Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner have done very good at the top of the lineup. Chris Young the former Met has also looked great in the early going.

What to watch with the Mets and Yankees

Of course Matt Harvey pitching against the Yankees in the stadium will be story. Everyone should be really excited for that game. Alex Rodriguez comes into the series two homers shy of Willie Mays.

By Peter Vitella

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Alex Rodriguez and Andrew Miller have Been the Brightest Spots

As the baseball season is in full swing the Yankees have not gotten off to their best start at all. Carlos Beltran , Brian McCann , and Masahiro Tanaka have all gotten off to slow starts.

Alex Rodriguez is back from his suspension and at first some fans and people covering the game were speculating him being terrible. Rodriguez has proved the doubters wrong early and most importantly has a large majority of the Yankee fans behind him. When the season started Rodriguez received the largest ovation and even a role call from the bleacher creatures as the DH. Rodriguez has played mostly DH despite making a start at both first and third. Rodriguez looked a little nervous at first but played a smooth game at third. Rodriguez is currently batting 344 , 4 homers , and 11 RBI. All team highs. Rodriguez has been one of the most productive hitters in baseball. Rodriguez has been the Yankees best offensive player for a good part of his Yankee career. He is doing it again in his age 39 season. The odds of Rodriguez continuing on this pace is not likely but the odds of Rodriguez having a good season look good right now. On Friday night Rodriguez had two home runs and added a game winning single in Tropicana field.

When the Yankees signed Andrew Miller they expected big things. They have not been disappointed. Miller has not been formally named the closer but has gotten the save chances so far. Miller has picked up three saves and pitched five innings. He is yet to give up a run. He has been simply dominant. The Yankees bullpen as a whole has been excellent. Dellin Bettances is yet to give a run either.

By Peter Vitella

Friday, April 10, 2015

Some of the Best Yankee Red Sox Games (2003-2015)

Since it's the first Yankee-Red Sox battle of the season lets count down some of the best Yankee -Sox games in recent memory.

Yankees vs Red Sox , April 21st 2012 , Fenway Park - It was the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park. Many legendary Red Sox players where back to take in the ceremony. The ceremony was excellent. That didn't stop the Yankees from taking the game. The Yanks took the game 6-2. Ivan Nova shut the Sox down and Alex Rodriguez , Russell Martin , and Nick Swisher all hit homers. Eric Chavez hit two.

Yankees vs Red Sox , April 22nd 2012 , Fenway Park - The Red Sox jumped out to a nine nothing lead but that didn't stop the Yankees. Down by nine the rallied back. The Yankees had back to back seven run innings. Swisher had a grand slam and Mark Teixeira homered from both sides of the plate. The Yankees won the game  15-9.

Yankees vs Red Sox , August 19th , 2013 - Ryan Dempster was on the mound and after missing in three times he drilled Alex Rodriguez in the back. Rodriguez later hit a monster home run to dead center field. He even did a home run celebration similar to David Ortiz's. Later in the game Brett Gardner responded with a big hit and you could see just how fired up he was. The Yankees rallied back again this time winning 9-6.

Red Sox vs Yankees , August 9th , 2009 - The Yankees and the Red Sox battled scoreless for 15 innings. Aj Burnett and Josh Beckett both threw shutout ball and neither team could score. Derek Jeter led off the 15th inning with a single and the Alex Rodriguez blasted a two run homer to win the ball game.

Red Sox vs Yankees , July 1st , 2004 - It was another classic extra inning win for the Yankees. In the top of the 12th inning Derek Jeter chased down a pop up into left field. After he made the catch his momentum put him into the stands. Jeter came out full of blood and had to leave the game. John Flaherty hit a game winning base hit.

Red Sox vs Yankees , October 27th , 2003 - Of course this is the game when Aaron Boone hit his walk off home run. Jason Giambi had two solo homer runs early. The Yankees where down 5-2 in the eight Inning. Derek Jeter had a double but it was Jorge Posada with the bloop single that tied it up. Aaron Boone hit the historic homer in the 11th.

By Peter Vitella

Breaking Down the First Yankee Series of the Season

Blue Jays win the series 2-1
Game 1 - Jays 6 , Yanks 1
Game 2 - Jays 3 , Yanks 4
Game 3 - Jays 6 , Yanks 3

Well in the first series of the year the Yankees had some let downs in every facet of the game. In game one they mustered just three hits and their opening day starter didn't last five innings. The Yankees also had a costly error from Chase Headley. In game two Michael Pineda was sharp and the Yankees rallied back with a lucky eight inning. Andrew Miller got the save for the Yankees. In game three the Yankees bats went quiet again. CC Sabathia had one bad inning where he gave up four runs that cost him the game. Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira both homered. The Yankees had some unlucky innings but didn't pitch in the big spots and didn't hit in the big spots.

The Positives
Masahiro Tanaka looked great in his first two innings before letting the wheels fall off. Brett Gardner homered. Michael Pineda looked like the Pineda from last season when he was healthy. The Jays didn't do much against Pineda. Pineda pitched six innings allowing two runs and striking out six. Chris Martin then came on and threw another scoreless inning, Dellin Betances gave up an unearned run but I thought he looked much better than in the spring. Andrew Miller looked great in his first save chance. In game three CC Sabathia took a loss but really had just the one bad inning.  Sabathia had eight strike outs and you have to be encouraged by that. Alex Rodriguez has hit the ball well since his return. Rodriguez just missed a home run in game two and then blasted one in the series finale. JR Murphy had two doubles in his first start. Jacoby Ellsbury hit the ball extremely well in games two and three.

The Negatives
Masahiro Tanaka didn't fair well in his first start. Even though he started off good he allowed one bad inning to completely ruin his night. You have to wonder how Tanaka will hold up this season. The bats have not looked good. Stephen Drew has looked like an automatic out. The Yankees had just three hits in game one. The team has just looked flat. Of course some people will not be encouraged by the start of Sabathia. The Yankees lineup needs improvement and so does the pitching staff.

The Yankees host the Boston Red Sox in their second home series of the season.

By Peter Vitella

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Alex Rodriguez Welcomed Back

It was a beautiful day in the Bronx on Monday and the crowd was electric when Alex Rodriguez stepped on the field. During pre game announcements Alex Rodriguez received the biggest ovation and the most cheers. There was a few fans who booed Rodriguez but for the most part those boos were drowned out by the loud ovation. When Rodriguez came to the plate he received more loud cheers. In the fifth inning the crowd erupted when he singled to right center field. The bleacher creatures even included Rodriguez in the role call despite him being the DH. I was in the ballpark yesterday and after the third inning the stadium was dead besides when Rodriguez came to bat and on Brett Gardner's home run. Rodriguez said the Opening Day was possibly his most special. His mom was in the ball park. He said the Yankee fans didn't owe him anything , he appreciated it though. However the ovation had to feel great for Rodriguez. Rodriguez had three good at bats and had one of just three hits for the club. He walked , singled , and drove a line drive to right center that was caught.

By Peter Vitella 

Friday, April 3, 2015

The Most Intriguing Bunch of Yankees

This season the Yankees look a little different then in years past. Obviously Derek Jeter is gone and a new era has begun. The Yankees still have plenty of familiar faces on the team. The Yankees also have many new faces. This year the Yankees need some of their veteran players to bounce back. The Yankees need Carlos Beltran , Alex Rodriguez , Mark Teixeira , and CC Sabathia to bounce back.

Prediction - Yankees , 88-74 , first in the AL East
The AL East is wide open this year and if the Yankees can remain healthy I believe they have the best pitching staff in the league. Michael Pineda showed what he can do when healthy and I think he will lead the Yankees in wins , era and whip. I also expect the veteran hitters to bounce back somewhat and some of the new additions will contribute.

Key Players - Mashahiro Tanaka is a true ace and one of baseballs best. The Yankees need him to hold up through out the season. If he goes down or can't pitch because of the elbow the season may be a wash. Michael Pineda can easily be a Cy Young Award Candidate if he remains healthy. I think this year he is headed in the right direction. Nathan Eovaldi has one of the best fastballs in the bigs and had a solid year last year. He hit a ruff patch towards the end. This can be his year. Carlos Beltran was a force in the Cardinals lineup two years ago and must prove he still can hit in the middle of a lineup. Brian McCann is the Yankees backstop and we may see him step up as one of the team leaders. He has to be better than last year. Finally Alex Rodriguez had a really good spring and the Yankees expect him to be the primary DH. He may get some time at third and first base also.

Longest Tenured Player - No more Jeter so who can it be ? You guessed it , it's A-Rod. Rodriguez has been a member of the Yankees since 2004. He has won two MVP awards and was a major part of the 2009 title run. His Yankee career can be described as the good , the bad , the ugly , and the great. Joe Girardi and the Yankees appear to be impressed with him and have put the suspension behind them. If healthy Rodriguez can pass Willie Mays on the home run list and reach 3,000 hits.
Projected Stats - 265 , 21 HR , 76 RBI
Yankee Stats - 291, 309 HR , 1404 H , 910 R , 145 SB , 979 RBI

Who is the Yankees Star - Jacoby Ellsbury is one of baseballs best outfielders. Ellsbury had some ups and downs In his first year with the team. He should be even better in year two as he will be more comfortable and the lineup should be better.
Projected Stats - 286 , 18 HR , 78 RBI , 102 R , 35 SB

1. M. Tanaka
2. M. Pineda
3. C. Sabathia
4. N. Eovaldi
5. A. Warren
* I. Nova - DL (May-June return)

C. Capuano
E. Rogers
C. Martin
C. Shreve
J. Wilson
A. Bailey
D. Carpenter
A. Miller
D. Bettances

G. Jones
C. Young
J. Murphy
B. Ryan

1. B. Gardner LF
2. J. Ellsbury CF
3. C. Beltran RF
4. B. McCann C
5. A. Rodriguez DH
6. M. Teixeira 1B
7. C. Headley 3B
8. D. Gregorius SS
9. S. Drew 2B


The Yankees need big play from a lot of veterans. They need a lot of good to happen to be successful but I think this is a stronger club then people see. Nathan Eovaldi is ready to break out. The Yankees will see some veterans bounce back and play much better. This is a team that can be good or bad but I think they will end up being good.

By Peter Vitella