Tagged: Mets

The Yankees will look to win the series against the Mets on Sunday Night Baseball

Mark Teixeira.

Mark Teixeira.

The Yankees lost the middle game of their series against the Mets, 8-2, at Yankee Stadium. They will look to win the Subway Series and have bragging rights until the end of the season when they play the series finale on Sunday Night Baseball.

CC Sabathia took a step back in yesterday’s start after allowing only two earned runs in eight innings to the Tigers on 4/20. During his fourth start of the season, Sabathia allowed seven earned runs and only two strikeouts in his seven innings pitched. He was not able to strikeout batters like he did in his previous starts as he only had two on Saturday after having five, seven and eight in his previous three starts.

The Yankees offense was not able to do much against the Mets ace, Matt Harvey. The Dark Knight limited the Yankees offense that scored six runs off of Mets starter Jacob deGrom on Friday to only two runs in 8.2 innings. Harvey pitched like he did when he was an All-Star during the 2013 season and his dominating start lowered his ERA to a very good 3.04. He is one of the best pitchers in the National League and Alex Rodriguez, who is two homers away from tying Willie Mays for fourth place on the all-time list, was very impressed with Harvey’s performance.

Wow. He’s as good as advertised, no doubt about it,” said A-Rod, who was 0-4 with two strikeouts. “He’s awesome. Give him a lot of credit. He challenged me, threw a 98-mile-an-hour fastball right by me. I tipped my cap to that one. That’s what baseball is all about.’

Mark Teixeira hit his eighth homer of the season and drove in his 18th run when he hit a solo homer in the seventh to make the score 7-2. He had three of the team’s five hits and seems to be on track to have a much higher average then he did last season.

During Sunday night’s game at 8:00 p.m. on ESPN Jonathon Niese will get the start for the Mets and Nathan Eovaldi will take the mound for the Yankees. The Yankees are currently in a three-way tie for first place in the AL East and if they get the win they will be 11-8.

Eovaldi will look to pitch deep into the game while keep his pitches down like he did in his last start. He was helped by getting the Tigers to hit into three double plays. He had his best start of the season as he pitched a season-high seven innings and allowed a season-low one earned run and only one walk. Eovaldi was only able to throw 5.0 and 5.1 innings in his first two starts.

He has allowed eight hits in all three starts this season and will look to keep that number down tonight against the Mets. He was able to have more success in his last start after relying more on his over powering fastball and slider.

Niese only allowed one run in seven innings against the Yankees when he pitched against them during the 2013 season and has a 1.33 ERA in three starts against the Yankees between 2012 and 2014. However, that is a small sample size, and the Yankees offense will look to have success against a successful Mets starter like they did on Friday.

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Seth Meyers Went Behind the Scenes at Yankee Stadium

In this video, late night talk show host Seth Meyers talked to people at Yankee Stadium who do not usually get to tell their story. He interviewed a bat boy, a clubhouse attendant, the organist and a beer vendor.

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On Thursday, the Yankees (9-7) won the series finale against the Detroit Tigers 2-1. They won three of the four games during their series at Comerica Park against the Tigers who previously had the best offense in baseball, and they finished their 10-game road trip to Camden Yards, Tropicana Field and Comerica Park with an impressive 7-3 record.

After struggling on defense during their first nine games of the season, the Yankees have played like they are capable of defensively and have made a number of highlight plays while winning six of their past seven games. During the win over the Tigers last night, Chase Headley made outstanding plays in the seventh and ninth innings to help the team get the win.

After not allowing a run in seven innings in his previous start against the Tampa Bay Rays, Masahiro Tanaka allowed only one run in 6.1 innings pitched against the Tigers. He had six strikeouts and only allowed three hits and was arguably more impressive during this start because Detroit’s lineup is much deeper and more powerful than Tampa Bay’s. Tanaka looked shaky in his first two starts of the season, but he has pitched like the ace he was last season in his last two starts.

It is a positive sign that Tanaka (1), Nathan Eovaldi (1) and CC Sabathia (2) allowed a combined four runs against the Tigers. Those three starters shutdown what is likely the best offense in baseball and proved that the No 1, No. 3 and No. 4 starters can have success any time they take the mound.

Tanaka pitched on normal rest for the first time this season and when he was interviewed after the game he said that there was no difference for him throwing on four days rest instead of five. He now has a 2.85 ERA in day games between last season and this season.

Also, during the series against the Tigers, Chris Young continued to prove that he could be a superior option to Carlos Beltran going forward. Young went 1-4 Thursday night, but during the series he was 7-13 (.538) with three run scored, two doubles, a homer and an RBI. He has an outstanding .357 average this season with four homers, nine RBIs, eight runs scored and five doubles.

Beltran has a .184 average with zero homers, so there is not comparison as to who has been more valuable this season. Beltran might still turn it around, but he appears to at 37 years old not have much left and Young is performing like he did in 2010 when he hit 27 homers with 91 RBIs and was an All-Star.

Both Yankees runs were scored by Jacoby Ellsbury, who used his speed to his advantage. In the sixth inning, Ellsbury walked, stole second, advanced to third on a ground out and then he was able to score after causing Anibal Sanchez to balk. In the eighth inning, Ellsbury doubled to center, Brett Gardner sacrificed him to third and then he was able to score the winning run on Brian McCann’s ground out to first.

Dellin Betances looked like the dominating set-up man that he was last year for his fifth straight appearance as he picked up his fourth win and pitched a perfect eighth inning recording two strikeouts. Andrew Miller recorded his sixth save in as many chances and has proven to be an excellent offseason signing. He got the heart of the Tigers order, Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez, out on only eight pitches.

Miller’s fastball and slider combo helped him strikeout Cabrera and J.D. Martinez. Either the Yankees or Kansas City Royals likely have the best bullpen in the American League.

The Yankees are pitching well and playing well defensively and getting timely hitting offensively going into their Subway Series against the Mets, who at 13-3 have the best record in baseball. The Mets have won their last 11 games and this will be the first time in Subway Series history that the Yankees and Mets are both in first place heading into the series.

It is going to be awesome,” said Alex Rodriguez, who sat out his first game of the season on Thursday. “The stadium should be rocking. Our fans are ready and their fans are ready, too. It is fun for the players and even more fun for the fans.”

The Mets scored four runs off of CC Sabathia at Tradition Field

CC Sabathia talking to Larry Rothschild during spring training in 2014.

CC Sabathia talking to Larry Rothschild during spring training in 2014.

The Mets beat the Yankees, 6-0, on Sunday afternoon at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie. The Mets hit four homers and the Yankees only had three hits. This was CC Sabathia‘s line against the Mets: 2.2 IP, 4 ER, 5 hits, 3 homers, 4 Ks

CC Sabathia allowed an inside the park home run to Juan Lagares to lead off the game. Jose Pirela, who was playing center field, crashed into the wall in center trying to make the catch and ended up having to go to the hospital as a result of a concussion.

Also, in the first inning, Mets first baseman hit a deep homer to right off of Sabathia, which proves that he isn’t all the way back. However his velocity was there again as he threw a 94 mph fastball in the first, he struck out David Wright on a 93 mph inside fastball and struck out Michael Cuddyer on a 92 mph fastball in the first.

In the second inning, Sabathia bounced back from his rocky first inning. He struck out Wilmer Flores on a high outside fastball and then struck out Ruben Tejada on another high outside fastball. Matt Reynolds grounded out to Didi Gregorius to end the inning. However, in the third inning, David Wright hit his second homer of the spring, and Sabathia would allow one more run.

The positive sign that Sabathia can take away from this appearance was that his fastball was consistently between 92 and 94 mph in the first two innings. This helped him record four strikeouts and makes his change, which was 86 mph, much more effective. However, the negative sign is that he allowed four earned runs after allowing two in his first start. This gives him an 11.57 ERA in 4.2 innings.

It will be important for Sabathia to limit the opposition to one earned run or less in his next start so that he will be able to finish spring training and go into the regular season with confidence. He needs to locate his pitches and not allow one run to lead to three or four. It also didn’t help that his fastball reverted down to the upper 80s in the third inning. However, Sabathia still seems confident going forward.

“I said to Larry (Rothschild) that I felt a lot better than I did last spring,” Sabathia said of the Yankees’ pitching coach. “I would rather get my (butt) kicked like I did today than give up no runs and felt like I did last year.”

Chasen Shreve, who will likely begin the season with Triple-A Scranton, allowed three hits and two runs in the eighth inning. Shreve now has a 5.87 ERA in 7.2 innings after having a 0.73 ERA in 12.1 innings pitched (15 games) with the Atlanta Braves last season. Shreve will be an asset in the Yankees bullpen this season, but he needs some more experience at Triple-A.

Matt Harvey got the start for the Mets and limited the Yankees offense to only two hits in 5.2 innings. The only highlight by the Yankees offense while the Mets ace was pitching was when Mark Teixeira led off the top of the second with a single and then stole second as Duda wasn’t holding him on. Teixeira only has seven steals in his previous four seasons.

Scott Baker, who is still a possibility to be the fifth starter, pitched 4.1 innings scoreless while recording two strikeouts and only allowing one hit. Baker, who in 2011 had a very good 3.14 ERA in 23 games (21 starts) in the last of his seven seasons with the Minnesota Twins, has a 4.32 ERA in 8.1 innings pitched so far. He is known as a pitcher who pounds the strike zone and limits his walks, and he he has done that in spring training as he has seven strikeouts and zero walks.

Either Adam Warren or Esmil Rogers will likely be the No. 5 starter, but this appearance by Baker should keep him in the consideration. Baker can be relied on to keep the team in the game while not allowing many free passes to the opposition. If Baker is not chosen to be the No. 5 starter, he will be valuable insurance pitcher in Triple-A in case a starter struggles or has an injury.

The Yankees will play the Washington Nationals at Space Coast Stadium at 1:05 p.m. on Monday afternoon.

The Yankees added reliever Gonzalez Germen in their first trade with the Mets in 10 years

Gonzalez Germen pitching for the Mets in 2013.

Gonzalez Germen pitching for the Mets in 2013.

On Friday, in addition to the significant Martin Prado and David Phelps for Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Jones and Domingo German trade with the Marlins, the Yankees made their first trade with their crosstown rival Mets in a decade.

The Mets traded relief pitcher Gonzalez Germen, who was designated for assignment last week by the Mets, to the Yankees for cash considerations. Germen, who is a 27-year-old right hander from the Dominican Republic, appeared in 25 games for the Mets in 2014 and posted a 4.75 ERA in 30.1 innings. His stats were much better at AAA-Las Vegas as his 2.38 ERA helped him record six saves and a 3-1 record in 22.2 innings (18 appearances). In the 2013 season, Germen appeared in 29 games and recorded an ERA of 3.93 in 34.1 innings. In 64.2 innings he has a 4.31 ERA, one save, 64 strikeouts, 30 walks and a 1.42 WHIP.

To make room on the 40-man roster for Germen the Yankees designated Preston Claiborne for assignment. This means that he will need to be returned to the 40-man roster within 10 days or be placed on waivers, traded, released or moved from the 40-man into the minor leagues.

The move to DFA Claiborne is somewhat surprising because his 3.79 ERA in two seasons was a good bit lower than Germen’s. Claiborne had a 3.00 ERA in 21 innings (but a very high 1.62 WHIP based on recording 24 hits and 10 walks) in 2014 and a 4.11 in 50.1 innings in 2013. The trade is basically a wash since neither Germen will not have a major impact on the Yankees and Claiborne, the player who was designated for assignment, would not have either.

Claiborne did have stretches where he pitched well for the Yankees, but he was not consistent enough during his two seasons. The Yankees like strikeout pitchers in the bullpen, and Germen has a solid 8.9 strikeouts per nine innings, which is much better than Claiborne’s 7.3.

The last time that the Yankees and Mets made a trade was in 2004, when the Yankees traded lefty reliever Mike Stanton to the Mets for Felix Heredia.

Chris Young was worth bringing back as the fourth outfielder

Chris Young playing for the Yankees last season.

Chris Young playing for the Yankees last season.

On Sunday, the Yankees signed the 31-year-old outfielder Chris Young to a one-year contract that is worth $2.5 million. He will be able to make $3,825,000 more in performance bonuses based on plate appearances. He will earn $200,000 for 275 at-bats, $300,000 for 300 at-bats, $350,000 for 350 at-bats, 375,000 each for 375 and 400 and $475,000 for 450 plate appearances.

Young hit a combined .222 with 11 homers and 38 RBIs last season with the Mets and Yankees. However, in 23 games after being signed by the Yankees to a minor league contract on August 27, Young hit .282, with three homers, eight doubles and 10 RBIs. The eight doubles were only four fewer than he hit in 88 games with the Mets. His month with the Yankees included hitting a homer in three straight games and stealing home.

He is a career .234 hitter with 155 homers, 486 RBIs and 130 steals. In 2010, when he was an NL All-Star while playing in his fourth of seven seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks, he hit .257 with 27 homers, 91 RBIs, 28 steals and 33 doubles. The Houston native will be the team’s fourth outfielder and was worth bringing back because if he can play the way he did in September he will give the Yankees a player off of the bench that the didn’t have in 2014.

In 2014, Ichiro Suzuki was the number four outfielder (and sometimes starter) and wasn’t able to supply the power numbers that Young will be able to. Ichiro’s .340 slugging percentage last season was the lowest among any Yankee outfielder with at least 300 plate appearances since Bill Robinson had a .281 slugging percentage in 1967. Ichiro had a solid .284 average last season, but only had one homer, 13 doubles and 22 RBIs. Young had eight doubles in only 23 games.

General Manager Brian Cashman had help from his analytical department in signing Chris Young and the signing was able to finalize the outfield for the 2015 season. He will be the fourth outfielder behind Carlos Beltran, Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury.

(Analysts) Steve Martone and Mike Fishman pushed for me to sign Chris,” Cashman said. “They felt, from an analytical standpoint, his year wasn’t as bad as it played out, that there was a potential bounce-back situation with it. We signed him up on what we think is a fair-market value, fourth-outfielder type contract. We wanted a right-handed bat with power, which doesn’t exist much in the game anymore, it seems like. He fit that category.”

Young can play all three outfield positions, has a career .990 fielding percentage and when he is on he has a solid combo of speed and power. He adjusted well to his move from Queens to the Bronx and should be able to fill in if an injury happens. The Yankees just need him to play like he did in September and not like he did the previous five months.

He also allows the Yankees to get younger because he is 31 and has played eight MLB seasons while Ichiro is 41 and has played 14 MLB seasons after coming over from Japan.

The Yankees shutout the Mets as Chase Whitley pitched well in his major-league debut

Chase Whitley

Chase Whitley

In Derek Jeter’s final Subway Series game, the Yankees beat the New York Mets 1-0 at Citi Field on Thursday night as Chase Whitley pitched 4.2 shutout innings innings in his major-league debut. He walked two, gave up two hits and recorded four strikeouts while helping the Yankees split the season series with the Mets.

Joe Girardi could not have asked for much more from Whitley, who replaced Carlos Beltran on the active roster, and part of the reason he took him out when he did is because he knew he had Dellin Betances available to throw two innings. In seven games and six starts this season for Triple-A Scranton Whitley had a very good 2.39 ERA.

“To be in Scranton and then all of a sudden be here is unbelievable,” Whitley said after the game. Girardi was very satisfied and with how the rookie from Alabama stepped up in his first Subway Series. “I was impressed with what he did,” Girardi said. “To be able to control his emotions in a series like this is pretty impressive.”

David Robertson got his first save of more than one inning of the season, but Betances’s performance is the one that truly stands out. In the bottom of the sixth, Betances impressively struck out the three most powerful hitters in the Mets lineup – Daniel Murphy, David Wright and Curtis Granderson. He now has a remarkable 39 strikeouts and only nine walks in 22.1 innings pitched.

Girardi on Dellin Betances: “He has got a gift. He has got a very good fastball and a very good curveball.”

Catcher Brian McCann was impressed by the dominating reliever who went to high school in Brooklyn. “He is getting more confidence every time out,” McCann said. “He is starting to execute more now than he was earlier in the season.”

The Yankees were able to score the only run of the game in the seventh as Alfonso Soriano hit a clutch two-out double to deep center to drive in McCann. Soriano was the only Yankee with two hits and now has two multi-hit games in his last five. Whitley was even able to single to right in his first career at-bat.

Robertson, Adam Warren and Betances pitched out of the bullpen and they all struck out two or more batters. Betances got his second win of the season after striking out six and not allowing a hit or a walk. After Eric Young Jr. grounded out to third, Betances struck out the next six batters that he faced.

Girardi likes the ability that his bullpen has to record strikeouts. “We have some power at the back end, and when you have that you are going to get strikeouts, and those are very important,” Girardi said.

Pitching coach Larry Rothschild and Girardi have rightfully been showing more and more confidence in Betances, who was switched to pitching in relief last season, and he rewarded them tonight. In his two appearances before Thursday’s game, he combined to pitch 2.2 innings, allow one hit and strike out three. It seems that he is beyond his control issues that hurt him earlier in his career.

“I am just trying to make pitches,” Betances said after the game. “If I can get ahead I know I can try and put some guys away. Today is one of those days that I was able to do that. I am just happy we got the win. I grew up watching the Subway Series.” Betances added that Whitley is a good friend of his and is happy he pitched well.

Before the game,  the Mets honored Jeter with a No. 2 mosaic designed using subway tiles and donated $22,222.22 to his Turn 2 Foundation.

The Yankees (21-19), who are now a half-game behind the Baltimore Orioles in the closely contested Al East, will try for their third consecutive shutout when they start a three-game interleague series at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday at 7:05 p.m.

Tanaka’s first complete game with the Yankees helped end the four-game losing streak

Tanaka speaking at his press conference.

Tanaka speaking at his press conference.

Masahiro Tanaka’s first complete game while pitching with the Yankees helped them beat the New York Mets 4-0 on Wednesday night and end their four-game losing streak. Tanaka, who is basically the only reliable starter in the Yankees rotation right now as a result of 60 percent of the Opening Day rotation being on the disabled list, allowed four hits, eight strikeouts and did not walk a single batter.

Tanaka now has a remarkable 66 strikeouts to only seven walks on the season. That is an outstanding 9.43 strikeout to walk ratio, which also happens to be the best ratio for a pitchers first eight games in MLB history. Tanaka improved to 6-0 on the season, and after going 24-0 last season in Japan, he has not lost a regular season game since August of 2012.

After Wednesday’s dominating start, Tanaka is tied for third in the American League with his 2.17 ERA, is tied for second in the AL with six wins, is tied for second with 66 strikeouts and he has the best WHIP in the AL. This is even more impressive because he has only made eight starts against Major League hitters, which proves that he has been able to adjust without any issues.

“I felt pretty good overall,” Tanaka said. “I think I was able to get strikes early on and get batters out early on the count, which led me to go nine innings today. I just go up there and basically try to win every single game, that is basically what I am doing. I have good days and bad days, but overall, I think today was my best day.”

Brian McCann, who caught Tanaka’s complete game gem, was not surprised at all. “I am not surprised at anything that he is able to do,” McCann said. He is a competitor, competes on a daily basis and like I said he has been doing that since day one in spring training. He threw a complete game. He has had the stuff to do this pretty much every time out.”

The Yankees had balanced offensive production off of Rafeal Montero, Carlos Torres and Jose Valverde. Brett Gardner and Brian Roberts led the team with two hits and Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Yangervis Solarte and Roberts all drove in a run.

Solarte, the rookie who had previously played eight seasons in the minors in the Minnesota Twins and Texas Rangers organizations, has been hitting so well recently that he deserves to move up a spot in the lineup. He has hit surprisingly well all season, but in his last eight games has been on a tear. Going back to the game on May 6, Solarte has 14 hits in 29 at-bats (.483), nine runs scored, three homers, and nine RBIs.

He has come out of nowhere to lead the league in average and only be behind Shin-Soo Choo and Jose Bautista in on-base percentage in the middle of May.

The Yankees will have Chase Whitley make his Major League debut on Thursday at Citi Field. He will be starting as a result of CC Sabathia’s stint on the disabled list. Whitley, who has pitched with the Yankees Triple-A affiliate in Scranton since 2012, has a 2.39 ERA and 32 strikeouts in six starts this season for the Rail Riders.

With a win the Yankees will split the season series with the Mets since they lost both games that they played at Yankee Stadium earlier this week.