Jump to content
Blue Purple Red Orange Gold Green Teal Chocolate Charcoal
Blue Purple Red Orange Gold Green Teal Chocolate Charcoal
Yankee4Life

Yankee News For Yankee Fans

Recommended Posts

I am going to try to update this thread over the course of the season with Yankee news that catches my eye about these overrated SOB's. Feel free to pick a player off the Opening Day roster and scream at him for the entire season. For myself, I had Robinson Cano last year. This year I have Alfonso Soriano. Who else?

Masahiro Tanaka continues to impress with Yankees as he baffles Braves 'A' lineup

In his 41/ 3 innings and 74 pitches, Tanaka was touched for three hits and one freak run, striking out six while throwing no more than a half dozen pitches in the 90-92 mph range.

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, March 16, 2014, 11:19 PM

braves-yankees-spring-baseball.jpg
Masahiro Tanaka mixes in a series splitters, sliders and changeups as he keeps the Braves off-balanced in 4 1/3 innings.

TAMPA – In his gradual indoctrination to major league hitters, Masahiro Tanaka had the ante raised just a tad Sunday when he was asked to pitch through a lineup more than one time and Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez obliged by bringing his “A” team to Steinbrenner Field.

If the Braves were expecting velocity, however, it wasn’t much in the offing. What they got was a varied dose of splitters, sliders and occasional changeups, all of which resulted in the kind of day that left them repeatedly saying: “I’d like to see that pitch again.” In his 41/ 3 innings and 74 pitches, Tanaka was touched for three hits and one freak run, striking out six while throwing no more than a half dozen pitches in the 90-92 mph range. According to his batterymate, Brian McCann, who knows a thing about the Braves’ hitters, it was all by design.

“We’re not gonna tip our hand this early in the spring,” said McCann. “He’s trying to execute certain pitches.”

Which, for the most part, he did.

After B.J. Upton lined a single up the middle with one out in the first and then stole second, Tanaka struck out both Freddy Freeman swinging and Justin Upton looking at an 87-mph splitter. In the third inning, he faced his first bit of trouble when Tyler Greene beat out a one-out bunt single and Jason Heyward drew a walk. Tanaka’s response was to strike out B.J. Upton and rookie Ernesto Mejia, who had replaced Freeman when the Braves’ newly-minted $135 million first baseman suffered a bruised thumb gloving a line drive by the Yankees’ Ramon Flores in the second.

“He probably threw a few more pitches than he wanted to,” said Yankees’ acting manager Robbie Thompson of Tanaka, “but his secondary stuff is so good. When he got in trouble in the third, after the bunt and the walk, and gets those two punch-outs…he really battled.”

The only run the Braves were able to muster off Tanaka came in the fourth when, with two out, he walked Dan Uggla, and Tommy LaStella, a 25-year-old rookie second baseman from Closter, N.J., hit a looping fly ball to left field that got caught up in the wind and kept drifting and drifting before bouncing off the top of the wall for a double.

LaStella, a .327 career minor league hitter who hit .343 in 81 games at Double-A Mississippi last year, was the only non-regular in the Braves’ lineup. In all probability he’ll start the season at Triple-A, but if Uggla continues to struggle at the plate as he did last year (.179), the Jersey kid could be seeing The Show in the near future.

“(Tanaka) throws a lot of pitches and he throws them all for strikes,” said LaStella. “He did a good job of keeping us off balance with all his off-speed stuff.”

“He’s got good stuff, no doubt,” echoed B.J. Upton, “very good off-speed stuff — it was hard to get a good gauge. He has the same arm action so it’s hard to pick up the spin on it. He located and made you swing at his pitches. He also had a good guy handling him behind the plate.”

That, of course, was in reference to McCann, who was the Braves’ catcher and an acknowledged clubhouse leader the last eight seasons before signing on as a free agent with the Yankees during the winter. It was the first time the Braves had seen McCann this spring and, for them, that was a bigger deal than seeing the Yankees’ $155 million Japanese pitching prodigy.

Before the game, I noted to Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez how rare it was to see a team bring most of its regulars to a spring training road game. Was it because Tanaka was pitching?

“No, no,” Gonzalez protested. “We have an off day Tuesday and I wanted to give our regulars a lot of at-bats two games in a row. I didn’t even know Tanaka was pitching until (Saturday). I was curious to see him, but the guy I really wanted to see over there was this ‘McCain’ guy they picked up over the winter. I hear he’s a pretty good catcher.”

Still, Gonzalez was like everyone else around the Grapefruit League circuit, curious to see this 25-year-old righthander who generated a wild bidding war last January after compiling a 24-0 record and 1.27 ERA while pitching the Rakuten Golden Eagles to the Japanese league championship. What he came away with more than anything else Sunday was Tanaka’s poise.

“I was impressed with his ability to make his pitches when he got into jams,” Gonzalez said.

“There was life in all his breaking pitches. But this guy has pitched in some big games on some big stages. It’s not like he just came down from Oneonta.”

The way it’s looking for the Yankees, more like from Heaven.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Soriano hits homers, and then we fall in love with him again.

Nuñez is my pick, and I really expect Roberts, Jeter and Tex to break down at some point during the season. Ellsbury is a strong candidate for this list as well, but like I said, Nuñez is going to be as bad as ever.

I'll be following this thread :good:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Soriano hits homers, and then we fall in love with him again.

That isn't the case with me. I've hated him for years now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yankees mold Kelly Johnson into their starting third baseman

Johnson, expected to play the hot corner most of the time as the Yankees seek to replace the suspended Alex Rodriguez, is a rookie of sorts at the position, having played only 16 games there in his career.

yankees-spring-training.jpg

Kelly Johnson must adapt to a new team as well as a new position this spring training.

BRADENTON, Fla. — Early in the morning several times a week, before much of the other activity at Yankee camp begins, Kelly Johnson and Mick Kelleher head out to a back field to continue the behind-the-scenes work of building a new pinstriped third baseman. Kelleher brings his primary tool — a fungo bat.

Johnson, expected to play the hot corner most of the time as the Yankees seek to replace the suspended Alex Rodriguez, is a rookie of sorts at the position, having played only 16 games there in his career. Still, the former second baseman has impressed both Kelleher, the first-base coach who also serves as the club’s infield instructor, and Joe Girardi with his spring play so far.

“I think he’s going to do a good job,” Girardi said Monday before the Yankees’ game against the Pirates was rained out. “I’ve liked what he’s done. I don’t really have a lot of concerns about it.”

That’s comforting for a club with abundant infield questions, including whether the other three infielders — Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira and Brian Roberts — can stay healthy coming off injury-marred seasons.

Johnson’s progress hasn’t come easily. As Kelleher notes, third is a demanding position, perhaps intimidating, even for someone who has played as much infield as Johnson. The 32-year-old Johnson has played 809 of his 960 games in the majors at second. All of his third-base experience came last year.

“It’s a tough transition,” said Kelleher, a big-league infielder from 1972-82 for five teams. “Third is a reactionary position where you don’t know so much the location, the pitch that’s coming. You have that advantage playing in the middle — you get to see the catcher set up, see the signs, can cheat on your ready position, see the bat come through the zone.

“Plus, the angles. There are a lot of angles you have to take because the ball gets on you so fast. There’s a lot of stuff that happens really quickly. If you think you can get in front of all these balls hit a little to your left or right, you can’t. It’s not like shortstop or second base when the ball is on the ground a lot longer and you have time to range around and set up on it.”

Kelleher calls third base “more of a one-handed position. A ‘pick’ position. You’re moving and picking, you’re dancing with your feet, moving left, moving right. That’s where the practice comes in and until you get all that stuff down, it can be kind of uncomfortable.”

One of the other major adjustments for Johnson is the long throw from third to first, a toss so potentially daunting Kelleher jokes that when one walks to third and looks over to first base the immediate response is “Maaaaaaan, where is (first base)?”

“That’s a huge part of making the transition and he’s done that very well.”

Kelleher knows Johnson is still an unfinished third baseman, noting, “We’ve been playing what, two weeks, two and a half weeks?”

But the coach beamed Monday as he talked about how Johnson flawlessly handled a short-hop on a hard-hit ball in Sunday’s game. “You’ve got to use these,” Kelleher said, holding up his hands. “That’s why it’s great to have great hands.”

For now, at least, the Yankees think third base is in good hands with Johnson.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Impressive Michael Pineda bids for Yankees starting rotation

Pineda has pitched three times this spring, tossing nine shutout innings. He has allowed eight hits and walked only one batter, striking out 14 as he looks to reestablish himself.

479401745.jpg

Michael Pineda’s perfect spring seems to have thrust him into the lead for the final rotation spot.

TAMPA — Joe Girardi says he won’t decide on a No. 5 starter for at least another week. Michael Pineda might be making the decision an easy one.

Pineda threw 4 1/3 scoreless innings against the Red Sox on Tuesday, giving up four hits and striking out five without issuing a walk. He threw 45 of his 60 pitches for strikes, his fastball clocking in between 91-94 mph for most of the day.

“This is the guy who we’ve been expecting to see the last couple of years,” Mark Teixeira said. “Now that he’s back in spring training it’s real exciting to see him healthy and pitching well.

“If he’s healthy, if he’s the guy we traded for a couple of years ago, he’s a top of the rotation starter, and those guys don’t come around easily.”

Pineda has pitched three times this spring, tossing nine shutout innings. He has allowed eight hits and walked only one batter, striking out 14 as he looks to reestablish himself (he was an All-Star in 2011 with Seattle).

“I threw the ball great, threw the ball down in the zone,” Pineda said. “I threw a lot of strikes. That makes me happy. I feel better and better. My pitches are a little better and I’m feeling more comfortable on the mound.”

As Girardi said, “It doesn’t look like a guy that’s coming back from a serious injury.”

Pineda’s perfect spring seems to have thrust him into the lead for the final rotation spot, though David Phelps (2.63 ERA in 132/3 innings) and Adam Warren (2.08 ERA in 82/3 innings) have also pitched well.

The Yankees would love to see Pineda bounce back from his 2012 shoulder surgery and be another solid starter to supplement the quartet of CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Masahiro Tanaka and Ivan Nova.

“We’ve got to figure out what’s best for our team as a whole,” Girardi said. “I think he’s getting stronger when he goes out. I think his command was better today — a lot better than the other day. Another good step for him.”

Pineda isn’t spending much time worrying if he could be a No. 5 starter, major league reliever or Triple-A starter. Asked if he believes he has shown enough to win the job, Pineda declined to speculate.

“I don’t know, because I don’t have the control for the situation,” Pineda said. “The only thing I have control is to be ready and pitch a good game every five days.”

Red Sox left fielder Mike Carp has seen Pineda at his best, playing with him in Seattle. Carp had one of Boston’s four hits Tuesday, but he also went down swinging in his other at-bat.

“He looked good; maybe not quite the same he was in Seattle, but he’s getting there,” Carp said. “He’s an imposing figure on the mound. I was curious to see what he would look like and he looked good.”

Boston manager John Farrell was impressed.

“That was quality stuff,” Farrell said. “There was late action on the split and sinker. Recognizing he’s come through a lot physically. I’m sure if he regains close to his previous status it’ll certainly be a boost for that rotation.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Various Spring Training Photos

Dean Anna, Infielder
Dean%20Anna,%20Infielder.jpg

Dellin Betances, Pitcher
Dellin%20Betances,%20Pitcher.jpg

Derek Jeter
Derek%20Jeter%20ST.jpg

Eduardo Nunez
Eduardo%20Nunez%20ST.jpg

Francisco Cervelli
Francisco%20Cervelli.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The thrill and ‘pressure’ of being Derek Jeter’s backup

jeter.jpg?w=720&h=480&crop=1

Brendan Ryan (left) will be backup for Yankees captain Derek Jeter (right), who is retiring after this season.

TAMPA — “It’s a slippery thing,” Brendan Ryan said Monday morning at Steinbrenner Field, and he wasn’t referring to the rain that ultimately canceled the Yankees’ Grapefruit League game down in Bradenton.

No, Ryan and I were discussing his role this season: Backup for Derek Jeter — and possible in-game defensive replacement — during the captain’s farewell/comeback campaign. It could get hairy. It could be boring. No matter where it lands, the Yankees’ selection of an accomplished veteran for this spot probably will turn out to be a good call.

“I relate to the fans a lot. I still pinch myself,” said Ryan, who turns 32 on March 26. “Here I am: I’m insurance to THE Derek Jeter. That’s pretty special. It’s something I’ll tell my kids about. Whether there’s a tremendous amount of glory or not, I think the experience will be super, super special. Something I’ll never forget.”

Jeter, who took Monday off along with the other veterans who made the Yankees’ trip to Panama, has enjoyed a healthy spring, and that’s paramount after playing in just 17 games last year due to the fractured left ankle he suffered in October 2012. What to make of his .133/.212/.167 slash line in 33 plate appearances? Eh. Not much, although you know many folks would be throwing a party right now if those numbers read more like .300/.350/.450.

What’s indisputable is Jeter turns 40 in June, is coming off the most serious injury of his career and displayed limited defensive range prior to that injury. Hence the Yankees re-signed Ryan — whom they acquired from Seattle last September — to a two-year, $5 million contract over the offseason.

“He was signed to be available to come off the bench,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said of Ryan on Monday. Added Cashman: “We wanted to give Joe [manager Girardi] some choices.”

Will Girardi choose to insert Ryan as a defensive replacement for Jeter late in games the Yankees are leading? “We haven’t talked about it,” Cashman said. The common-sense conjecture is Girardi, understanding Jeter’s profound pride, will begin the season playing Jeter full games and start the defensive superior and offensively inferior Ryan a couple of times per week — and resort to the defensive-replacement idea only by necessity. Ryan also can play second base and third base.

Ryan recalled the came in as a ninth-inning defensive replacement (for Munenori Kawasaki) to help preserve a Mariners combined no-hitter against the Dodgers on June 8, 2012. He understands what it would mean to relieve Jeter late in a game the Yankees are leading.

“It’s not the most enviable position, but it’s nothing I’ll complain about,” said Ryan, who took batting practice Monday and should return to game action this week after being sidelined with a back injury. “There’s definitely a little bit more pressure put in there, but that makes it more fun, too. At the same time, I don’t imagine Jete would be too excited about those situations. Maybe if it’s a need-be.

“It’s a slippery thing. I don’t want to say too much. I have and still do look up to Jete big time. He was basically my favorite player growing up in grade school and high school and stuff. I wanted to look the way he looked taking groundballs and stuff. It’s cool to see how he carries himself and how he’ll treat [uniform] number 104 the same way he treats [Mark] Teixeira. He’s the ultimate example-setter, and I’m going to try to take it all in this year. It’ll be fun to be part of his last hurrah. Hopefully we send him off on a good note.”

The Los Angeles native came up through the Cardinals’ system and served as the starting shortstop for the St. Louis club that won the 2009 National League Central title. Then he went to the Mariners in a December 2010 trade, and he couldn’t hit enough to keep a starting job despite his excellent defense; of active players who have spent at least half their time at shortstop, he ranks second in defensive WAR (as per Baseball-Reference.com) with 14.4. Only the Pirates’ Clint Barmes stands higher, at 16.

So he has been through some baseball battles and appears capable of handling what’s coming. And very happy to be part of it.

“Here, I feel like I’m finally a part of my own peer group. Whether the salaries are the same or not, there’s a lot of us that are the same age,” Ryan said. “We’ve been playing against each other a lot. We’ve been picking each other’s brains on the organization they’ve played with and some of the guys they’ve played with and all of that.”

This whole Yankees 2014 campaign, expensive and out for redemption, is a high-wire act. Ryan doesn’t mind being a safety net.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yankees' Brian McCann knows good, bad Ivan Nova

14522698-mmmain.jpg

Ivan Nova #47 of the New York Yankees pitches during the 2nd inning of a spring training game against the Washington Nationals on March 3, 2014 at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Florida.

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Brian McCann has been the Yankees' catcher for a little more than a month, but he already knows nice Ivan Nova and naughty Nova.

How?

Well, the Yankees sent McCann four clips of each starter — two good, two bad — to study in the offseason. McCann's takeaway: location, location, location.

"That's pitching," he said. "If you don't locate your pitches, you're not going to be successful. You've got to have fastball command and when you're behind in the count you've got to be able to throw for strikes. The more times you keep the hitter out of a predictable count, a fastball, the better you're going to be."

Nova was good Nova Wednesday, throwing about 80 pitches over 6 1/3 scoreless innings as the Yankees dropped the Braves, 7-zip, at Champion Stadium.

But not the whole time.

Nova was missing high on his first handful of pitches, manager Joe Girardi said. But the 25-year-old righty adjusted, took a breath, and started hitting the zone low, Girardi said.

That's when good Nova showed up, McCann said.

"He had some really good action on his slider," he said. "His four-seamer today kind of made it sink that much better. He was putting it where he wanted it. He was getting into lefties with his four-seamer and once he established it, it made his two-seamer that much better."

Nova has been more good than bad this spring. The expected No. 3 starter, Nova is 2-1 with a 3.66 ERA and 21 strikeouts while allowing 18 hits and two walks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Various Spring Training Photos

John Ryan Murphy, Catcher
John%20Ryan%20Murphy,%20Catcher.jpg

Jose Ramirez
Jose%20Ramirez.jpg

Kelly Johnson
Kelly%20Johnson.jpg

Kevin Long, Hitting Coach.
Kevin%20Long,%20Hitting%20Coach.jpg

Larry Rothschild, Pitching Coach.
Larry%20Rothschild,%20Pitching%20Coach.j

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No wonder Kevin Long looks so happy, Chris Stewart is gone.

Edited by sabugo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Will Mark Teixeira's surgically repaired wrist hold up all season?

image.JPG
Mark Teixeira makes a sliding catch of a flyout by Atlanta Braves second baseman Dan Uggla in the second inning of a spring training game in Tampa, Fla

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Mark Teixeira was on all the morning news shows Wednesday.

It wasn't because of the two-run single he hit in the Yankees' 8-1 victory over the Red Sox on Tuesday. It was for holding up two bottles of honey from the dugout as a joke during a seven-minute bee delay in the third inning.

The Yankees are much more focused on Teixeira's wrist bone than his funny bone as he returns from a lost season due to a serious tendon sheath injury.

But "Good Morning America" and its morning-show ilk couldn't resist video of bees swarming leftfield at Steinbrenner Field and a star player inexplicably shaking bottles of honey at the grounds crew.

"What I thought was," Teixeira later explained, "if you could just do a line of honey out to the parking lot, the bees would maybe follow it, and then just leave us alone."

As to how he happened to have two bottles of honey, Teixeira said: "I'm a big peanut butter and honey guy. Love it. So I always know where the honey is."

So now you know that about Mark Teixeira. What you don't know is if his surgically repaired right wrist will hold up all season after the injury limited the Yankees first baseman to 15 games in 2013.

So far, so good, Teixeira said. The results haven't been there -- he's batting .188 with a double and three RBIs in 16 at-bats -- but the absence of pain has Teixeira feeling positive.

"I feel really good," Teixeira said. "I feel really good about my wrist. I feel like it's getting stronger and it'll continue to get stronger all year. And that's the exciting part. It's not like this is a good as it's going to get. It'll keep getting stronger all year."

At least that's the hope. Teixeira first injured the wrist last March in batting practice for the World Baseball Classic. He returned without surgery in late May, but that didn't work out. He had season-ending surgery on July 2.

"What I've been most pleased with is you look at this whole spring training, there's never been a point where he was scheduled to work that he had to say, 'You know, I could use a day,' '' manager Joe Girardi said. "And that's really encouraging to me. Everything that he has been scheduled to do, he has done."

In 2012, Teixeira hit .251 with 24 home runs and 84 RBIs. Including this season, when he will make $22.5 million, the 33-year-old is signed for $67.5 million through 2016.

After adding Carlos Beltran, Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury, the Yankees don't need Teixeira to be an MVP candidate. But they have zero other options at first base if he is unable to play because of injury.

Kelly Johnson, the starting third baseman, is the backup first baseman. Girardi seems to have abandoned an early-spring thought of having Alfonso Soriano work out at first.

So it's Teixeira or bust.

"He's important to our club," Girardi said. "What he does on a daily basis. He's so important."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Various Spring Training Photos

Mark Teixeira
Mark%20Teixeira%20ST.jpg

Masahiro Tanaka
Masahiro%20Tanaka.jpg

Matt Thornton
Matt%20Thornton.jpg

Michael Pineda
Michael%20Pineda%20ST.jpg

Mick Kelleher, First Base Coach.
Mick%20Kelleher,%20First%20Base%20Coach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...