Monday, June 18, 2018

MOVIN' ON UP!

Photo: Getty Images
That Gleyber Torres kid is something else, isn't he? He's so good and it makes it look easy. He's doing his job and making big hits so I know I am not the only one who was saying he deserved to be hitting higher in the order.

I guess Aaron Boone finally decided to make the move and put him higher in the order. At first I really thought he was just trying to protect Torres. He is only 21 and at first maybe it made sense to start him off slow with no pressure. Now we are in the middle of June though and the kid has shown he hasn't been phased by much. He should've been moved up a while ago.

Photo: Getty Images
The Yankees have the best record in baseball. They have a lot of success, but could have even more with a few tweaks. Torres has been a number five hitter stuck in the nine hole for a long time....until now. Nothing against a number nine hitter, they are extremely important and Aaron Boone and I agree that they are basically another lead off hitter. The Yankees are so deep that he has been another Brett Gardner. He's been a table setter. We need those, but Torres is also a guy who drives in runs.

Photo: Getty Images
Torres may be young but his inexperience doesn't show and he has done what the Yankees have asked for since he was called up. If the Yankees would construct their lineup and put guys like Torres and Miguel Andujar in the heart of the order this team becomes even scarier. I think Boone needs to put the guys that are hot in the middle and not stick with the same guys in the same spot when it isn't working. Torres has earned that number five spot and Andujar is more than just a number seven hitter.

On the other hand, Giancarlo Stanton hitting in the three or four hold hasn't paid off like it should. Stanton can be a dangerous hitter as we have seen in the recent series against the Rays. He's had his moments, but he has not been consistent at anything besides striking out. He may be a veteran hitter, but keeping him in a spot he isn't producing in is doing nothing for this team.

Photo: Getty Images
Boone says he wasn't trying to protect Torres, and maybe that's true. The only thing he should protect is keeping the most production in the heart of the order. Torres has stepped up in a big way, maybe the only guy that needs protection right now is Stanton.

I think the Yankees have opportunity for more success here. Torres is the consistent guy that will make things happen. I think Boone recognizes that now, and hopefully he also sees what hasn't been working and continues to make those changes.

Anything is possible with this team....and I love it!




--Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj




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Sunday, June 17, 2018

JOHNNY LASAGNA COULD HAVE WHAT IT TAKES

Source: Twitter

If you haven't heard enough about the Yankee 23-year-old minor league now major league Jonathan Loaisiga, we are going to give you some more things to love about him. Besides stepping into some incredible shoes on a Friday night at Yankee Stadium and not even blinking, the starter likes lasagna and welcomes the nickname 'Johnny Lasagna' that his peers coined back in 2012.  He threw five scoreless innings besting the Tampa Bay Rays 5-0 and turned some collective heads in both baseball and the media.


"I think it confirmed what we thought and a big reason why he's here," Boone said of Loaisiga's poise. "Everyone got a look at the stuff that this kid has and the arm he has and the easy delivery he has, and I felt confident in just the little I got to see him in spring training and watching him on video and talking to people within our organization and I felt like mentally (and) emotionally, he's equipped to handle this," reported NJ.com. And the kid served a whole tray of the Italian favorite in front of thousands of fans on this Father's Day Weekend.


When you think about baseball nicknames across the decades of the National Pastime, names like Yogi, Joltin' Joe and The Mick come to mind.  You may also remember Louisiana Lightning, Donnie Baseball and Goose Gossage.  Scooter, Bucky and Catfish, the nicknames keep coming.  Even Giancarlo Stanton has a couple of names he goes by, including his two middle names Mike and Cruz.  He actually went by Mike Stanton into the start of his major league career.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

 "Stanton's full name is Giancarlo Cruz Michael Stanton, and to add another layer to this already complicated name story, his mother actually calls him Cruz. He has said that he started going by Mike when he was younger because his classmates had difficulty pronouncing Giancarlo," reported Sports Illustrated back in February.  So if guys can't pronounce Loaisiga then why not Lasagna and let's see if both his name and his pitching stays.


Something even bigger than is nickname is his comparison to another guy whose nickname stuck, 'The Sandman'. "Loaisiga had something else to process while he was meeting with reporters before Saturday's game. That's when he was told that Rays manager Kevin Cash said that he "looks like a young Mariano Rivera" on the mound. "That's a big compliment right there," Loaisiga said. "Mariano was one of the best all-time in this sport. It's humbling for (Cash) to say like that," reported NJ.com.

Source: NJ.com

Why not fill the void of pitching from within?  Why not Lasagna instead of fishing across MLB for something else?  Johnny Lasagna it is and maybe that's all we need.



--Suzie Pinstripes
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof




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Saturday, June 16, 2018

DRURY VS. AUSTIN & THE 'GOOD PLAYER' YANKEE PROBLEM


Since he's finished his rehab, Brandon Drury has been stuck in purgatory in Scranton/Wilkes Barre. Last week BYB Managing Editor Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa posted her piece about Drury being down in the dumps giving her thoughts. Since then, the New York Post says this about Drury and how he may have found a path back to the Bronx...

"Brandon Drury started at first base for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Tuesday night against Rochester, driving in both runs in a 2-0 win and playing errorless ball in the field. It was Drury’s initial start at first this season after appearing in a combined 38 games as the DH or at third for Double-A Trenton and SWB."

Expanding his versatility is most definitely the best way back to the Majors for Drury. If he can add first base to a resume that already includes 2nd and 3rd, it could be most beneficial to him and the Yankees.


Now, look, I can hear you saying "but we have Tyler Austin, what about him?"  I get that. That's Casey's guy... I hear you. The best thing way to answer that question is to send him somewhere where he can get the playing time he deserves.  You heard it here first, I'm going against the BYB grain. Mired in a slump since the return of Greg Bird, Tyler needs to play and get back into the swing of things. He doesn't need to worry about if he's finally going to play or if he will be riding the pine.

While personally, I love Tyler... it is my belief that at this moment the best place for him is Scranton/Wilkes Barre and playing first base for the Railriders. The Yankees at this time have the problem of too many good players. There is only so much playing time to go around. Unfortunately, someone will be on the outside looking in. While it's a good problem for the Yankees to have, it does suck for the players involved.

With the kids the Yankees have and the way they're playing, players like Brandon Drury, Neil Walker, Tyler Austin and Ronald Torreyes are all getting screwed a bit. But hopefully with the trade deadline approaching, things will be worked out. I'm not going to go into who should go and who shouldn't... but I will go out on a limb and say someone will.

Stay tuned...




--Michael Carnesi
BYB Junior Writer
Twitter: @sevn4evr




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Friday, June 15, 2018

YANKS BREAK OUT BIG!

Photo: Getty Images
Just when you thought the game was lost... it was not.  What a game! And this Gleyber Torres kid? Wow.

The Washington Post writes:

(Adam Hunger/Associated Press)
"For a team with some of the biggest stars in baseball, the New York Yankees are getting many of their most critical contributions from a remarkable group of unflappable youngsters. Gleyber Torres hit another three-run homer, fellow rookie Domingo German struck out a career-high 10 for his first major league win and the Yankees edged the Tampa Bay Rays 4-3 in the opener of a four-game series Thursday night... 

Photo: Getty Images
Aaron Hicks also homered off Blake Snell (8-4) as New York beat the blossoming left-hander for the second time this season and ended his four-game winning streak."

The youth moment is doing things in Yankeeland no one dreamed. I mean sure, we wanted to see these guys play, but did you really expect such success?  It's mind boggling and terrific.

Hope they keep going.


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Thursday, June 14, 2018

THE SLUMP GAME


Paul Bereswill/Getty Images
It's a good thing the Yankees lineup is stacked. It's deep and if these guys fired on all cylinders and were all hitting consistently this team would be even scarier. We are scary now, but other teams would fear coming into our house even more. This team is good winning team now, but have they been more lucky than we think?

It's easy not to dwell on the slumps when your team has a 43-20 record and filled with some exciting young talent, but it's becoming more noticeable. I heard ESPN say that our best defense was our offense because they keep us in games. Sure, our bullpen has been great especially lately but there are even more thrilling come from behind hits than saves.

Photo: Getty Images
As bad as ESPN spins things sometimes we have to feel good about owning the best record in the majors entering Wednesday's game. Mother Nature hasn't made that any easier thanks to all of her rain outs. The Yankees have always thrived off of the home run ball, especially at home. The Yankees now have 107 long balls thanks to home runs from Greg Bird and Gleyber Torres last night. The Yankees have the most number of home runs hit per game in the majors and are on pace to break the single-season record of 264 set by the Mariners back in 1997.

That sounds good, so what's not to like?

I am hoping Didi Gregorius is heating up again. He dominated in April and then crashed and burned in May. Now in the middle of June it looks like he is turning the corner but is that because Aaron Boone gave him a few days off? It wasn't an instant payoff so hopefully whatever it was hopefully June continues to go in the right direction for him.

Photo: Getty Images
I still have hopes for Greg Bird but it's hard to get excited when the guy is hitting .176 and supposed to be a middle of the order kind of guy. Even a temporary drop in the order doesn't change a lot. It's just hard not to miss Wonderboy Tyler Austin even more. Maybe last night's home run starts a hot streak for him.

Photo: Getty Images
And you can't avoid Giancarlo Stanton when you talk about slumps or how about how awkward or uncomfortable the guy looks. He looks lost and is taking weird swings at breaking balls again. His batting average is a weak .240 and seriously, only 15 home runs when your home is Yankee stadium and you hit 59 last year? It makes no sense.

Photo: Getty Images
And what about Gary Sanchez? The Yankees had an off day and then Boone benched him on Tuesday and Wednesday. Hopefully he three day break will help the .190BA. At first Boone said he wasn't worried about his mindset at first. He made it sound like he was just "banged up" and ''the one thing he never loses is confidence'' but now ''he’s fine, he’s good to play'' Boone said here. ''Overall, he’s banged up and maybe that’s leaking in a little bit. … But I feel like where he’s at physically, he’s more than capable of raking like we’re used to seeing.'' 

Sanchez says he isn't worried. Boone isn't worried. Should the Yankees be worried?

Right now the overall depth of the Yankee offense is compensating for individual slumps, so far. There's still a lot of baseball left to play but can they continue to succeed like this? Do they really think this could be the winning formula for the postseason?

Slumps suck, but it's part of the game....and the Yankees are still finding ways to win.



--Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj 





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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

1500 STRIKEOUTS IS KIND OF A BIG DEAL

Photo: Getty Images
Huge props to CC Sabathia, one of my favorite Yankee pitchers of all time.  Last night CC notched his 1500th strikeout. It's pretty amazing. Another major milestone for a Yankee.  The New York Post writes:

"There was a fair amount of nostalgia surrounding CC Sabathia’s outing Tuesday, as he picked up his 1,500th strikeout with the Yankees when he fanned Washington’s Michael A. Taylor in the fourth inning. But for the Yankees and the veteran left-hander, the focus remains on what Sabathia can do for the Yankees now — and not just what he’s done in the past."

Photo: Getty Images
And that last line is pretty significant because it's true. As I have stated for a while here, The Yankees and CC could be really smart about this and go year to year with 1 year deals until he thinks he needs to retire.  CC loves NY. NY loves CC and the combination is perfect.  No long term deals will come out of this relationship moving forward, but what can happen is that he could sign with the Yanks for a few more years, be the #5 guy and eventually... walk into the sunset.  Sounds good to me, I wonder if CC would ever consider it. I wonder if the Yankees would.

Anyway, congrats you big lug. Love you in pinstripes!


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