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Reviews of the Games

Miraculous 8th Inning Comeback Propels Yanks To 6-4 Win

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Despite going up against arguably the best pitcher in baseball in White Sox ace Chris Sale, it still would’ve been a disappointment had the Yankees lost last night. There’s no need to explain that the team has to go on a 2011 Cardinals-esque run to even have a shot at the playoffs in a few weeks, so any loss against a lesser team is simply unacceptable.

Unfortunately, it looked like the Yanks had accepted their fate in last night’s game, as Sale had gone out and completely dominated the lineup. If it weren’t for yet another defensive miscue by Chicago that allowed Vernon Wells to steal home in the 2nd inning, the 24-year old lefty would’ve been working on a shutout as  he started the 8th inning after allowing just three hits.

After recording an out, Sale surrendered a single to Derek Jeter and a double to Robinson Cano that put runners on second and third. Manager Robin Ventura elected to bring in Nate Jones to face Alfonso Soriano with Chicago’s  4-1 lead still in-tact.

But, it probably shocked no one who was on the field when Soriano poked a single into center field, scoring Jeter and Cano to make it a 4-3 game. Even on nights when he may not have his A-game, Sori just keeps on producing and coming through in the clutch. It’s pretty remarkable.

Anyway, Jones stayed in there to face Alex Rodriguez who singled to center as well, putting runners at the corners. As Joe Girardi went to his bench and pinch-hit Curtis Granderson for Vernon Wells, Ventura did some match-making of his own by bringing in Donnie Veal.

Yet, it was Joe who won this battle of the skippers as Grandy picked up the Yankees’ fifth straight hit of the inning with an RBI single. The game was now tied up at 4, and fans who were watching could swear a DeLorean picked them up and brought them back to 2009. It was that magical of a comeback, and the best part was that it was far from over.

Mark Reynolds struck out, but Ventura again went to the bullpen, bringing in Matt Lindstrom. Although it really didn’t matter who was on the mound, because the momentum had shifted completely. People knew that the Yanks were going to find a way to get it done no matter what.

So when Eduardo Nunez laced a two-run double down the left field line, the Yankees had a 6-4 lead and it was time to “put it on the left side”, as Michael Kay once said. In came Mariano Rivera and in a matter of minutes the ballgame was over, as Mo racked up his 40th save of the season.

While the Yanks may not have gained any ground as the Rays defeated the Angels, they luckily did not lose any. The team was well on its way to a well-deserved loss through the first 7 1/2 innings, but luckily they found a way to claw back in what may turn out to be their best game of the season.

But as is the case during a playoff chase like this, last night’s likely Yankee Classic is exactly that – in the past – and the Yanks have to focus on winning TODAY. It’ll be our former ace CC Sabathia going up against right-hander Erik Johnson, who is making his Major League debut. Game time is 7:05pm, and it’s can’t-miss television, folks. Now is the time to be fully invested in this Yankee team. It’s got talent, it’s got heart, it’s got pride, and it’s got the mentality Mariano Duncan and the 1996 world championship team had – that “We play today, we win today, das it!”

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Yankees vs. Indians game postponed

Tonight’s Yankees vs. Indians game has been postponed due to inclement weather. The Yankees will play one scheduled game tomorrow, but there’s no word on the make-up date. Zach McAllister is due to go for the Indians. The Yankees have not named a starter as of yet. It could be Ivan Nova who was supposed to be tonight’s starter or it could be either Phil Hughes, David Phelps or Adam Warren. Why Phelps and Warren? Hughes has a stomach virus and we’re unsure if he’ll be ready to pitch tomorrow. So let’s use this post as an open thread. Enjoy the rest of your evening and I’ll see you back here tomorrow night.

Andy proves Dandy as Yanks avoid sweep with 4-2 victory over Red Sox

If you made a bet with someone that Andy Pettitte was going to be the first Yankees pitcher to lead the Yankees to victory, then congratulations. You’re correct. If you made a bet with someone that Mariano Rivera would come in the 9th inning and save the game as he’s done time and time again for the Yankees, then congratulations. You’re correct. Now, if you made a bet that a player like Robinson Cano would hit a HR before players like Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli, then you’d be wrong. As a matter of fact, a lot of people didn’t see those HR’s coming. In the end, the Yankees were able to shut the door on the Red Sox and avoid the sweep with a 4-2 victory.

Andy Pettitte pitched 8 innings of one run baseball before handing it over to his longtime teammate and friend Mariano Rivera to shut the door on the Red Sox. Rivera did give up a run, but that is easily overlooked because:

a) The Yankees won

b) It’s his final season

c) He’s Mariano Rivera.

The Yankees offense was supplied with a two run single by Lyle Overbay in the second, which plated both Travis Hafner and Eduardo Nunez. Brett Gardner followed with a solo home-run in the third and Francisco Cervelli hit his own in the seventh after the Red Sox scored their run off Pettitte to bring the lead back to three runs for the moment.

Positives:

– Brett Gardner went 2-for-3 tonight with a home run, a walk and a great defensive catch. Eduardo Nunez went 2-for-3 tonight while flashing the leather. Francisco Cervelli was 1-for-2 with a HR and a walk.  Andy Pettitte pitched 8 innings of one-run ball. Mariano Rivera received career save #609.

Negatives:

– Robinson Cano went 0-for-3 and now he’s batting .091. It’s a small sample size but that’s his average for the Red Sox series. Ichiro Suzuki went 0-for-3 and his average is .111. Again, it’s a small sample size.

What’s Next: 

The Yankees are going to fly off to Detroit to play the Tigers in a 1 p.m. match-up. Honestly, who made the schedule. Anyway, tomorrow’s pitching match-up is Ivan Nova vs. Doug Fister.

Yanks drop second straight game to Sox in 7-4 loss

On Monday, the Yankees offense (besides Cervelli) was absent. Tonight, the Yankees hit two home runs but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Red Sox, as the Yanks dropped their second straight game at Yankee Stadium by the score of 7-4.

Hiroki Kuroda was forced to leave the game in the second inning after a line drive hit him in his middle finger. The results came back as a finger contusion but the Yankees were going to send him to get x-rays just to make sure that’s all it was. Cody Eppley came in afterwards, allowing four runs, who was then relieved by Adam Warren who only gave up one run. Shawn Kelley was the only Yankee pitcher who didn’t give up a run to the Red Sox.

The Yankees had two home runs during tonight’s game, one by Travis Hafner and one by Vernon Wells, both of those accounting for the four runs the Yankees scored; Hafner a solo shot. Wells a three-run shot.

Tomorrow the Yankees will send Andy Pettitte on the mound in order to break the losing streak, as they fear that they’ll be behind 0-3 to start the season.

Update: Hiroki Kuroda’s X-Ray’s came back negative and he’s day-to-day. However, Joe Girardi says it’s too early to tell whether Kuroda will make his next start or not.

Yanks fall flat on Opening Day in 8-2 loss to Red Sox

Looking back at the game, the second inning is where the Yankees fell flat. CC Sabathia made some costly pitches which resulted in the Red Sox scoring four runs off of the Yankees ace. The three run ninth inning by Joba Chamberlain didn’t make matters any easier. In the end, the Yankees looked as flat as Sabathia’s fastball in the fourth inning. The offense was barely existent, minus the two run single by Francisco Cervelli in the fourth. To put it in perspective, the Yankees as a team looked sluggish. So sluggish that by the time the ninth inning rolled around, no one was in their seats.

The Yankees had one chance to score some more runs in the seventh when Cervelli and Brett Gardner got on base with back to back walks, but Eduardo Nunez, Robinson Cano and Kevin Youkilis struck out to end the inning, and any chance of the Yankees coming back in the game.

The Yankees pitching wasn’t as sharp either. David Phelps was able to tightrope out of danger in the sixth inning due to a base-running blunder by Jacoby Ellsbury, but the seventh was where everything fell apart. Phelps gave up a run with the assistance of Boone Logan, Chamberlain gave up three in the ninth. Now it’s back to the drawing board for the Yankees, as they prepare to take on the Red Sox again on Wednesday night.

Some Notes:

Mark Teixeira went to visit the doctor today and got the OK to take off the brace on his wrist–but he has to wear it when he works out.

Derek Jeter had some treatment done in Tampa today and played catch in the OF. Although Jeter could come off the DL on Saturday, I doubt he would since the Yanks want him to play a full nine innings before he returns.

Curtis Granderson had X-Rays on his forearm and told reporters in Tampa that his arm is feeling better. He’s allowed to shag fly balls but he can’t throw them back in the infield.

Phil Hughes pitched in an extended Spring Training game today, and went seven innings. Hughes will next pitch for Scranton Wilkes-Barre in five days, meaning he’s on track to return on April 11. Girardi left open the option that Hughes could return by Saturday but David Phelps is still in line to make that start.

Gardner continues to swing hot bat as Yanks fall to Braves 2-0

The Yankees were unable to push any runs across the board, falling to the Braves 2-0. Now, I won’t say that a lot of things went wrong because other than the fact that the Yankees bats weren’t hitting, some of the Yankees looked really good. Here were some of the players that stuck out to me during the game.

Brett GardnerI seem to write about Gardner every time he plays, and there’s a good reason to. Gardner swung a hot bat from day one, and now currently has a seven game hit streak to begin the Spring Training season. To me it feels like last season, Gardner saved all his hits in a jar, kind of like a kid saving pennies on a rainy day. And just like a kid spending the pennies, he’s using the hits in Spring Training as if to make up for last season. Let’s just hope he saves some of those hits for the regular season.

David Phelps: Although he got the loss (Bad Yankees offense! Bad!), David Phelps pitched incredible, giving up just one run on two hits through four innings. Although he’s competing for a rotation spot, it would’t be the worst thing in the world to see Phelps in the bullpen. Like I said before, I don’t see Phelps going down to the minors if he continues to pitch this way. The minors are not an option.

Francisco RondonMark Montgomery didn’t have his stuff tonight, and it was evident that the Yankees were in a big jam when Joe Girardi came to get him in the 7th inning after the bases were loaded. When Girardi brought in Francisco Rondon, he automatically was able to get out of the jam without giving up a run.  I know everyone rants and raves about Mark Montgomery, but Rondon has been like David Robertson 2.o this Spring, getting out of jams when needed. If he does get cut from Major League camp, I expect him to be one of the last cuts since he’s doing so well so far.

WHAT’S NEXT

Robinson Cano will be at GMS Field tomorrow…in the visitors clubhouse. Team Dominican Republic on the road to the World Baseball Classic will take a pit stop and play against the Yankees in a 1:05 p.m. afternoon game. Hiroki Kuroda will get the start for the Yankees and if you’re going to watch the game…don’t cry when you see Robbie in a different uniform. He’ll be back in about two weeks.

Yanks edge Red Sox 5-2 with three run outburst in 6th

The Yankees hadn’t exactly played their best baseball to start off Spring Training, but they racked up another win against the Boston Red Sox, giving fans a small preview of their Opening Day match-up. The Yankees remained silent until the 6th inning where all nine hitters batted around, pushing three runs across with the aid of a Corban Joseph single, an error that allowed Bobby Wilson to reach first, a Brett Gardner walk, an RBI single for Eduardo Nunez, a fielder’s choice from Jayson Nix and an error that allowed Juan Rivera to reach first.

The Yankees pushed two more runs across in the eighth inning after an RBI double by JR Murphy plated Jose Pirella and in the ninth inning on a homer by Thomas Neal. Before the three run outburst in the 6th inning, the only hit going into the 6th was the lead-off single by Brett Gardner in the 1st. Gardner has now hit  safely in every game he’s played in Spring Training thus far.

Notes:

– After the game, Joe Girardi confirmed that once Curtis Granderson comes back, Granderson will be the CF and Gardner will move to LF.

What’s Next:

The Yankees have an off-day tomorrow, meaning that there will be no news at all. No one will be at the ballpark except for a few players to get treatment but other than that, no one will be there. On Tuesday, the Yankees will host the Atlanta Braves in the first night game of the Spring Training season. That game will be on YES Network and coverage will start at 7:00 p.m with play-by-play at 7:05 p.m.

Cervelli has good game, but Yanks fall to Phillies 10-5

The more we chant “It’s Just Spring Training”, the more frustrated we become. Why? Because the Yankees last (and only) win came one week ago, tomorrow. Now, the fans don’t like to see the Yankees lose, but the Yankees are playing sloppy baseball. That’s what summed up today’s 10-5 loss against the Phillies. Sloppy.

There was more bad than good that came out of the game, a game that was plagued with four errors. Now, let’s try to look at the bright side, because that’s all that we can do at this point.

Francisco CervelliFrancisco Cervelli is seemingly pulling himself away from the catchers competition, going 2-for-2 with a walk, and throwing out yet another runner. Chris Stewart hasn’t played since the second inning of yesterday’s game, where he was ejected for allegedly pointing at the umpire after the umpire warned him not to point, so it gives Cervelli an edge so far this Spring.

David RobertsonD-Rob came into another tight jam, relieving Hiroki Kuroda who only went 1.2 IP and allowing 4 runs (1 earned). In five pitches, Robertson got out of the jam and stopped the game from further damage at that point. I said it once and I’ll say it again: D-Rob is in midseason form.

Hiroki Kuroda: Now, some people will argue that Kuroda had a bad outing, but when you watched the game, the numbers don’t translate to how he actually pitched. He actually got the ground-balls when he needed them, unfortunately, the infielders were unable to field the ball and their positions, allowing three unearned runs to score. Was Kuroda sharp? No. But did he look decent for his first time on the mound? Yes.

Melky MesaIf the Yankees are looking for someone to take Curtis Granderson‘s spot for the next 4-6 weeks, then I strongly suggest Melky Mesa. He played the entire game, and hit another home run. He hit one yesterday vs. the Astors as well, making his total 2 HR’s and 4 RBI’s in the last two days. His bat’s on fire, and just in time too. He’s planning on going to the World Baseball Classic.

What’s Next:

– The Yankees will try again to get their second win of the Spring tomorrow against the Detroit Tigers, who are coming from Lakeland to Tampa. Robinson Cano and Mark Teixeira are both slated to play their last game with the Yankees before heading off to their separate teams for the World Baseball Classic. That game will be at 1:05 p.m. on YES Network.

Yanks drop both split squad games vs. Blue Jays, Astros

Ir seems to me that things aren’t turning out the way the Yankees planned during Spring Training. However, we have to remember a couple of things before we get crazy about the standings (which we shouldn’t be doing).

1. The Yankees Major League starting pitchers haven’t even been in a game so far.

2. The Yankees hitters have only went about 5-6 innings before getting taken out.

3. It’s Spring Training. Almost everyone’s rusty.

However, it would be nice to see the Yankees win a game or two. Let’s break down the good (and bad) that came out of each game. That seems like an easier way to recap the split-squad games.

Blue Jays vs. Yankees

Gardner & Ichiro are locked in: If the season started today, Brett Gardner and Ichiro Suzuki wouldn’t mind. At all. Both of them as of right now are easily the best hitters on the team, with both of their batting averages over .500. Gardner went 1-for-3 today, now successfully hitting in four-straight games. Ichiro also had a 1-for-3 day, extending his hitting streak. It’s nice to know that out of the gate the two speedsters are ready for the 2013 season. Now if everyone else behind them can catch up, that would be great.

Clay Rapada is unstoppable (and undefeated): Clay Rapada had the quickest 1-2-3 inning, that if you went to the kitchen to get a glass of water and come back, the inning would be over due to his sheer brilliance on the mound. There’s also an interesting fact that YES gave about Rapada: He’s been in 148 games and his overall record is 8-0 in the Majors. That means that Clay Rapada has never lost a game in his Major League career. Never. Ever. Just judging by today’s game, I would already have a nice roster spot for Mr. Rapada. He looked in mid-season form.

Chris Stewart ejected: Chris Stewart only had one at-bat. And that one-at bat would be the last at-bat that he would have on the day. He hit into a bang-bang play at first base. YES instant replay showed Stewart’s foot touched the bag before the ball went into the first baseman’s glove. However, Marty Foster called him out. Stewart said something and then was ejected from the game, making him the first ejection of the Spring. Just so you know, Spring Training ejections don’t happen very often, so that must mean Marty Foster in in mid-season form.

David Phelps pitches strong: David Phelps had another strong outing, going 3 innings, giving up 2 hits, 1 walk and 1 strikeout. Phelps’ future with the Yankees could be either one of two things at this point: he could either be in the rotation, taking the 5th spot from Ivan Nova, or he could be in the bullpen, helping out in later innings. I don’t see him going back to the minor leagues, at all.

Yankees vs. Astros:

Melky Mesa has great game: The young CF looks to be in the front running of who could take Curtis Granderson‘s job for the next 4-6 weeks after the big day he had at the plate. The young CF went 2-for-3 with 3 RBI’s on the day. I wonder what John Sterling’s HR call would be for the young OF if he ever had a chance to play on the big league club–and if he homered.

Nunez helmet won’t stay on: Another day, another chance to see Eduardo Nunez‘s helmet fall off his head. Just as I had hoped that Nunez would be able to keep the helmet on while running down the first baseline, it came off when he hit a lead-off single in the first inning. Maybe someone should add a chin strap or get him a helmet like Francisco Cervelli‘s. That way it can’t come off.

Cervelli’s strong day behind the plate: Speaking of the young catcher, Cervelli had a great day behind the plate, throwing out two runners who were attempting to steal. Offensively, he went 0-for-3. Maybe it didn’t help that Chris Stewart was ejected because judging by what happened today, it looks like Cervelli took the lead in the catching competition.

Marshall has a good start: Another Brett on the Yankees ball-club had a great day as well, and his name is Brett Marshall. Through three innings, he struck out three and only allowed one hit. Now that is some impressive numbers from the young starter, who is one of the few players actually impressing this Spring Training.

WHAT’S NEXT:

– The Phillies will take the drive from Clearwater to Tampa in order to play the Yankees at GMS Field tomorrow. Robinson Cano is expected to be in the lineup tomorrow and Saturday before leaving on Sunday for the World Baseball Classic. The game will be at 1:05 p.m. on the YES Network.

‘Gardy’s Party’ continues but Yanks fall 10-7 vs. Orioles

We’re five games into Spring Training, and after winning the first game, the Yankees lost four in a row, including today’s debacle in which the Yankees have five errors on the day. Now, we’re going to recap this game like one gigantic sandwich (thank you Family Guy for the idea). We’re going to start off with something good, say what the Yankees did wrong and end with something good.

Something Good:

Brett GardnerIt’s only been five games of Spring Training but Brett Gardner looked in top shape. As a matter of fact, he’s one of the best hitters in Spring Training up to this point. Gardner went 1-for-2 with a walk, but the hit he had was a big one at the time. The Yankees were down 7-1 in the second. The bases were loaded, there were two out and Gardner came to the plate. Yankees fans were expecting a RISP fail, but Gardner delivered a three-run triple, giving the Yankees some life, and closing the gap at that point in the game. I don’t know what Gardner did differently during the offseason, but he better keep it up.

Something bad:

Robinson CanoRobbie Cano has looked absolutely, positively lost. After hitting a HR in his first game of the Spring, Cano seems to be swinging at almost anything. Cano was 0-for-3, bringing his average down to .167. Now, we all know that Spring Training means nothing, but Robbie looked just as lost during the playoffs last season. So technically since October 3 of last season, he’s looked lost. We’re not going to worry just yet, but this is beginning to look frightening.

Yanks had five errors: Yes, this game was absolutely horrendous with the five errors in the game today. Now, we know it’s a Spring Training game, but that was just really, really bad. Let’s hope we never see something like that again. And I can almost bet you, this game won’t be a Yankees Classic.

Nik TurleyNik Turley might of had nerves, which might of explained how he let eight of the nine batters in the lineup step to the plate in the first inning, allowing five runs before recording the first out of the game–who happened to be the eighth batter in the lineup. The Yankees had seen enough, took Turley out of the game and called in Cody Eppley who did a decent job, although he allowed two runs the inning after.

Something good:

Mark MontgomeryThe pitcher who could possibly be dubbed the “next David Robertson” certainly impressed after pitching a scoreless inning for the team. His breaking ball was pretty nasty and although he gave up a walk (he’s human), he was able to easily get out of the walk. It was simply, magical.

WHAT’S NEXT: 

The Yankees play a Split Squad tomorrow, where most of the starters will stay at GMS Field and a handful of players will go on a road-trip  The Yankees play both the Toronto Blue Jays and the Houston Astros and both games will be televised  The Yankees/Blue Jays game will be on YES Network and the Houston Astros/Yankees game will be on Astro’s television. Both games will be at 1:o5 p.m.

Teixeira, Ichiro, Murphy provide offense as Yanks fall to Phillies 4-3

Spring Training is Spring Training so the Yankees losing three in a row shouldn’t be that alarming, especially since the Yankees placed all their minor leaguers in during the 6th inning. However, if you’re a fan, you’d like to see more than one win come from the Yankees so the Yankees are going to have to try and go back to the drawing board to figure out what they have to do to win tomorrow. But instead of talking about how the Yankees lost, let’s take a look at some positives from today’s game.

Mark TeixeiraTeixeira provided the Yankees with an early lead in the ball game, hitting an RBI double that scored Ichiro Suzuki. Teixeira was 1-for-3 on the day, but we’ll take the RBI.

Ichiro SuzukiIt looks as if Ichiro and Brett Gardner are having their own little competition. After Gardner had a three-hit day yesterday, Ichiro answered back with a three-hit day of his own. He also showed hustle and was a thrill to watch as he ran around the bases. Typical Ichiro.

David RobertsonDavid Robertson made his Spring debut today and proved that he still had it, pitching a scoreless inning although he gave up a walk. I would say Robertson is in mid-season form if he can have constant 1-2-3 innings.

Joba ChamberlainJoba Chamberlain (along with his unpopular mustache) made his Spring debut as well, also working a scoreless inning although he gave up the first hit for the Phillies to Ryan Howard. Still, it was a good outing. He also made sure to ruffle some feathers when he said that he believes he could be a starter again.

J.R Murphy: J.R Murphy came into the game during the 7th inning, but he made a lasting impression during the end of the game when he hit a towering 2-run HR to give the Yankees at the time a 3-1 lead. He then doubled in the 9th while the Yankees were trailing 4-3 yet he just missed his second HR of the game.

HONORABLE MENTION

Eduardo NunezNunez went 0-for-3 today, I know–but at first he gave some fans a warm and hearty laugh when his helmet fell off after showing some hustle to first base. The warm and hearty laughter soon turned into annoyance after his helmet fell off another two times, making us wonder if Nunez might want to consider getting a new helmet size.

WHAT’S NEXT: 

– Tomorrow the Yankees will play the Baltimore Orioles at GMS Field at 1:05 p.m. only on YES Network.

Gardner gets work in while Yanks fall to Orioles 5-1

The travel roster for today’s Yankees/Orioles game seemed a bit off. Only one locked in Opening Day starter made the trip while the rest of the travel roster included non-roster invitees, minor leaguers and players off the 40-man roster. The Orioles played a lot of their regulars, overpowering the young minor leaguers while the Yankees dropped their second straight Spring Training game 5-1 in Sarasota.

There wasn’t much offense for the Yankees but today’s game seemed more about getting work in for  Brett Gardner. The Yankees had seven hits. Gardner had three of them. Jayson Nix, who is expected to make the team in a bench role had two hits. Not a lot of offense for the Yankees today but one of the hits that Brett Gardner did cause a bit of concern.

While Yankees fans and staff enjoy Gardner’s grittiness, Gardner dove into first base to confirm a lead-off infield single. The single was good. The issue? Gardner dove into first base one day after Curtis Granderson broke his forearm. Gardner quickly erased his small error, perfecting a bunt single and hitting a line drive into left center field.

The lone run for the Yankees came in the 9th inning after young Corban Joseph prolonged the inning with a single, then stealing second which was a risky move since there were two outs in the inning.

What’s Next:

– The Yankees will play the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater, tomorrow at 1:05pm. Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, Ichiro Suzuki, Kevin Youkilis, Joba Chamberlain and David Robertson are expected to make the 20 minute bus trip. The game will air on MLB.TV and I was also told it would air on MLB Network.

Granderson fractures forearm as Yanks fall to Blue Jays 2-0

I guess the odds weren’t in Curtis Granderson‘s favor. In the second Spring Training game of the season, the Yankees were faced with a gigantic blow when Granderson was hit by a pitch in his first at-bat of the Spring. After watching enough baseball, I knew the outcome wasn’t going to be pretty. Granderson’s original diagnosis was a bruised forearm, but as a precaution they sent the outfielder to get some x-rays.

The final diagnosis was a fractured forearm, putting Granderson and the Yankees in a bind for the next ten weeks–and giving Brett Gardner the CF position by default. The Yankees had already lost 100 home runs and now the Yankees could lose 43 more this season. Granderson however, told YES Network during the telecast that he was planning on conditioning the lower half of his body while his forearm heals, just so he could be up to speed and return as quickly as possible. Granderson did say this to the media, showing optimism during what seemed to be a dark road ahead.

“It’s just a little bump in the road. It’s definitely not the end of everything.”

Other In Game Notes:

Adam Warren pitched two scoreless innings, which easily erased his start with the Yankees back in 2012. Warren most likely won’t get a spot on the roster as soon as Spring Training ends, but if a pitcher goes down, he could be one of the first they call to help.

– Brett Gardner, Ichiro Suzuki, Robinson Cano, Mark Teixeira and Travis Hafner each had one hit in this game (Cano was robbed of two hits by his buddy Melky Cabrera).

Kevin Youkilis had no hits today, but in all three at-bats he hit the ball very hard, his first at-bat coming close to hitting a Grand Slam.

Side Note:

Earlier in the post I said that I knew enough about baseball to know Granderson was going to miss some time. Here’s how I knew. Gardner: 2011. Alex Rodriguez: 2012. Both of them were hit by a pitch in the hand area. Gardner missed a few games and needed surgery after the season. Alex Rodriguez missed a lot of the 2012 season with a broken hand. Just know, when you get hit in the hand and you’ve seen as much baseball as possible–you know when it’s serious.

Phelps looks sharp as Yanks clobber Braves 8-3 in Spring opener

David Phelps knew how vital this start could be in the factoring decision on whether or not he would get the fifth rotation spot. So far, so good for the young pitcher who is entering his sophomore season in the majors with the Yankees and is desperately trying to win a roster spot, whether it be in the rotation or in the bullpen.

Yesterday, Joe Girardi said he expected Phelps to go two innings or throw 37 pitches. Phelps made it through his two innings, not allowing a single run. Phelps’s final line was 2 innings, no runs, three hits, no strike outs and no walks.

The Yankees bats were quiet for the first two innings but a third inning where the Braves committed two errors, a pass ball and a wild pitch opened the door for them when Zolio Almonte hit a two run homer, bringing home Melky Mesa. Eduardo Nunez also reached on an error and Robinson Cano reached on poor fielding, putting on a four spot in the third. Cano homered in the fifth inning, extending the Yankees lead while Austin Romine hit a two run single with the bases loaded and two outs in the seventh.

The Yankees displayed both Francisco Cervelli and Austin Romine in the game, Cervelli throwing out a runner in the second and Austin showing off his bat in the seventh.

Major League Players Look

– Robinson Cano went 1 for 3 with a HR and an RBI.

Mark Teixeira went 0 for 3, grounded into a double play and has an RBI on a fielders choice.

Back at Yankees camp:

Derek Jeter ran on the field back in Tampa, showing progress on trying to make it back to the Yankees by Opening Day.

What’s Next?

The Yankees will take on the Toronto Blue Jays tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m, the first televised Yankees game by YES. Players such as Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson, Ichiro Suzuki and Kevin Youkilis are expected to be in the lineup. Adam Warren is slated to start the game.

MiL Week in Review: Playoff Edition

This week marked the beginning of the playoffs for both the SWB traveling circus and the Trenton Thunder. Scranton took on the Pawtucket Red sox, while Trenton entered a five game set against the Reading Phillies. Both teams won their respective divisions and look to advance into the Championship series’ this week.

SWB Yankees vs. Pawtucket Red Sox

Game 1: Scranton takes the 7-4 loss.

John Maine got the start in game one for the Yankees and was not exactly impressive. He got knocked out of the 5th inning after allowing five runs on seven hits. He walked a pair but did manage to strike out three. Not what you want to see from the veteran AAA’er. Kelvin Perez was equally unimpressive giving up two runs in the lone inning he pitched. The highlight of the pitching was Chase Whitley who tossed 2.1 innings of two hit ball. On the offensive side Corban Joseph and recently promoted Luke Murton combined for three hits, two runs, a HR and 2 RBI’s. Kevin Russo added a solo shot of his own but it wasn’t enough to overcome the shoddy pitching.

Game 2: 3-2 loss, Paw-sox take a 2-0 lead.

Another veteran placeholder took the hill for Scranton for game 2; Ramon Ortiz threw 6.1 innings of  six hit ball allowing three runs (two earned) while walking two and striking out three. Juan Cedeno and Preston Claiborne pitched 1.2 innings of scoreless ball in relief. Luke Murton, Ramiro Pena and Cole Garner each had a pair of hits but fell short once again.

Game 3: SWB staves off elimination, win 4-3

Mike O’Connor took the bump for the third game, allowing two runs on three hits over six innings. He walked one and struck out five. Manny Delcarmen allowed one run over 1.1IP, while Igarishi pitched 1.2 innings of one hit ball. Ronnier Mustelier and Gus Molina both drove in a run, but it was Melky Mesa who came away the hero as he hit a two run walk-off HR off of Pedro Beato to keep the season alive.

Game 4: SWB gets eliminated, get spanked 7-1

Vidal Nuno took the bump in game four and couldn’t make it out of the second inning. He got worked over, giving up seven runs on seven hits, walking two and striking out just a single batter. Perez, Meloan and Rondon came in and shut down the Pawsox for the remainder of the game allowing just two hits but the deficit was rather large and the offense sleepy.  Corban Joseph was the only source of offense, which was a solo shot, his only hit. Ramiro Pena was the only other hit for Scranton. To add insult to injury, it was former SWB Yankee Nelson Figeuroa that handed his former team their lunch. Oops.

All in all it was a good year for the Scranton yankees. The team-without-a-home spent the entire season on the road and still managed to come in first. Getting knocked out in four games stinks, but hey, considering the team was pilfered by the big club I give them a round of applause.

Trenton Thunder vs. Reading Phillies

Game 1: Trenton drops the first game 4-2

Brett Marshall took the bump in game one and was a little shaky. He surrendered three homers in his second straight start and ended the night with a line of 7IP, 6H, 4ER, 1BB, 4K’s. Mark Montgomery came in to hold down the eighth and threw a hitless inning allowing a walk while striking out two. Ramon Flores provided the only offense with a two run shot. This was his second game in AA and his second game with a HR. He’s not the most “toolsy” player but he really made a showing this year and has shown some pretty excellent plate discipline.

Game 2: Trenton ties the series with a 4-1 win.

David Aardsma allowed a first inning run on a walk and a pair of singles, but that was the only run the Phils would score. Shaeffer Hall, Stoneburner, Hyde, Pinder and Pope proceeded to 2-hit Reading for the next eight innings. Bravo. Addison Maruszak hit a HR and scored two on two hits. Rob Segedin broke the tie in the ninth with a bases clearing triple.

Game 3: Trenton rolls, win 3-1

Mikey O’Brien took the ball in game 3 and gave the Thunder five innings of one run ball on two hits. He walked a pair and struck out four. Tom Kahnle went two innings and allowed two hits, Lee Hyde a one hit inning, and Mark Montgomery closed it out with a scoreless inning walking one and striking out two. Zoilo Almonte went 2-4 with a double and 2 RBI’s, and David Adams (1-4 on the night) singled in the go ahead run in the 8th inning.

Game 4: Thunder WIN! 5-4

Nik Turley made his second career AA start and went five innings allowing three runs on six hits. He walked three, struck out two and picked a runner off first. Graham Stoneburner was a little shaky giving up two quick hits but was bailed out by Branden Pinder. Aardsma allowed a run on two hits in a lone inning, Montgomery came in to shut down the eighth while Ryan Pope closed it out. He looked to be in a bit of trouble as he had two on with one out and the HR king Darin Ruf at the plate. A double play sealed the deal and sent the Phillies packing. Both JR Murphy and Addison Maruszak went deep, combining for three hits and four RBI’s. Tyler Austin got in the action going 1-4 and scoring a run.

The Thunder move on to face the Akron Aeros, and will kick off the series on Tuesday evening. Go Thunder!

Teixeira and Chavez go back-to-back as Yankees split series with 4-3 victory over Tigers

After it looked like the Yankees and Tigers weren’t going to play the game due to rain, the rain stayed away and let the Yankees and Tigers play the whole game but there was more than enough drama as the Yankees scratched out a 4-3 victory over the Tigers to even the series at 2.

After a delay of game, the Yankees quickly got two runs in the 2nd inning against Doug Fister after Raul Ibanez tripled to knock in a run, followed by Ichiro Suzuki getting his own RBI. The Yankees game was very emotional when in the 5th inning the Tigers tacked on three runs. The third run never should have scored. Andy Dirks hit a fly ball to left field that umpire Tim Welke called foul, but when the ball hit the ground and rolled away, Welke changed his call to a fair ball, which allowed the third run to score. Joe Girardi immediately came out of the dugout to argue the call and after the umpires felt Girardi was questioning them, they ejected him for his third ejection of the season (all three of his ejections this season came against the Tigers).

The Yankees scored the third and fourth runs in the 8th inning after Mark Teixeira and Eric Chavez hit back-to-back homers to give the Yankees the 4-3 lead. However, the Yankees tight roped their way to the victory after they called upon David Phelps to get two of the three outs in the 8th inning and asked Rafael Soriano to get a four out save. Soriano got into trouble in the 9th inning after Alex Avila doubled and Omar Infante singled to give the Tigers first and third with no one out. However, Soriano was able to induce popups from Ramon Santiago and Quintin Berry and for the final out was able to get Andy Dirks to sky out to Curtis Granderson.

The Yankees now head to Canada where they will face the Blue Jays in a three game set. First pitch tomorrow night is at 7:05pm.

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