Monday, April 30, 2018

I'LL TAKE A PASSIONATE CC SABATHIA ALL DAY LONG!

Not sure if many saw this.  I did. I loved it.

(Mark J. Terrill/AP)
CC Sabathia getting angry at umpire Angel Hernandez after a botched call.  How do we as Yankee fans not like this? Passion always wins with me. You go Big Dog!

Larry Brown Sports writes:

"CC Sabathia had some words for umpire Angel Hernandez after a missed strike call in the third inning of the New York Yankees’ 2-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Sunday night.

Sabathia thought a 1-2 pitch to Justin Upton should have been called a strike. After Upton grounded out to end the inning, Sabathia cursed at Hernandez. "

Photo: AP
Look, I know CC and he probably feels bad that the F word was even being reported. But passion is passion and when you're on the field, everything goes among men.  This was justified in my eyes. Both teams appeared annoyed by Hernandez all night.

Yanks won this one. And now, a new day... here we go.


Sunday, April 29, 2018

A TEAM WITHOUT DIDI IS NOT A TEAM WORTH HAVING

Source: Yankees Magazine

You have heard it stated multiple times lately.  And in case you haven't heard it, NJ.com reminded us again on Saturday what is evidently true.  "Brian Cashman got Didi Gregorius for Shane Greene. Think about that for a minute. One of the best offensive players in the sport (1.245 OPS heading into play on Friday) at a premium position for an expendable relief arm. Cashman’s career will likely end with a plaque in Cooperstown. The trade for Gregorius to replace Derek Jeter will be talked about as one of the many reasons why," reports Joe Giglio.  With a curtain call more than 3,000 miles away from home in Friday night's win against the Anaheim Angels, Didi Gregorius is quickly making the following statement true as well:  A team without Didi is not a team worth having.


Source: FRANK FRANKLIN II/AP

Think about the guys around MLB who are essential to their teams' success.  Who comes to mind? Perhaps, Houston would say a team without Jose Altuve is not a team they wish to field.  Noah Syndergaard might be that guy at the NY Mets, Bryce Harper fits the bill in Washington and Kris Bryant out in Chicago.  Then there is Robinson Cano in Seattle and perhaps Mike Trout from the Angels.  These are the franchise players and swiftly, Didi Gregorius is becoming one of those guys you just can't live without and you build your team around for maximum success.

Source: Victor Decolongon/Getty Images North America

As the NY Daily News stated at the end of the 2017 season, "He endured a brutal first month, getting booed and posting a .499 OPS. But Gregorius has found comfort ever since, evolving as a hitter and a fielder. These days he hits in the cleanup spot, capable of hitting lefties while being lethal with the bases loaded. His first All-Star appearance may come next."  Didi has earned his spot as a middle infielder, with a rifle-like arm, a powerfully contagious disposition and a competitive spirit similar to the guy he replaced a few years ago.

Source: Mike Stobe/Getty Images North America

Skipper Aaron Boone has said it over and over again in his pre-game and post-game press conferences.  Didi is a guy you are glad plays for you.  We aren't the only ones noticing. His teammates need him and others across the league are envious of the necessity of having a guy like Gregorius on their team as well.

Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America

"He's the best teammate -- one of the best I've ever had," (Austin) Romine says emphatically. "Same guy every day; works hard. When he does well, he doesn't want any of the attention; he defers it to other teammates … He's artistic, he's fluent in languages, he's cultured. He's a very unique and awesome human being to know. It's fun to be able to be around him, talk to him and call him a friend,"reports MLB.com.

Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America

From his colorful tweets after Yankee wins to his club house persona to his stellar performance on the field and his off the field presence with fans in the Bronx and across ballparks in the MLB, Didi Gregorius is the face to a franchise that needed a face lift and luckily got it.  "It's clear that Gregorius is perfectly suited to be a breakthrough ambassador for the Yankees -- and the sport as a whole. "He's capable of reaching people that his other teammates aren't," (Brett) Gardner says as reported by MLB.com.

Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America

Fans have been asking me to write something about Didi's unique role on this growing Yankee team and I could not have done it justice unless I dug deeper.  Didi is truly an ambassador for baseball, which is filled with diversity, an international presence, and a new breed of hard-working individuals willing to go the extra mile.  He encourages fans and players alike to love baseball like he does, and appreciate it as the ultimate experience, a day trip like no other.  He reaches fans on Twitter like no social media guru could and he is tugging at the hearts of fans across the nation who come to ballparks just to see him play.  His smile and his heart make it worth sitting through nine innings, knowing that he can lift a team bruised by tough losses with a confidence-building presence that can carry a team through the good times and bad.  A team without Didi or someone like him, is just not worth having.  Glad to have him as a New York Yankee, today, tomorrow and for many years to come.



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof






Be Read. Get Known.

MY MINI-CRUSH ON NANCY NEWMAN

Brains, looks and just really great news items and coverage. She's the full package. Who doesn't love Nancy Newman and all she does?


I always tune in for Nancy Newman. If you don't you should.

I got to know Nancy a few years ago when BYB did an interview with her here. Read EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: NANCY NEWMAN. Every once in a while we chat. Usually just to check in, sometimes it's just to say Happy Holidays or something.



Truth be told, it's been a while and so I thought I'd surprise her this morning, but I was recently watching her Twitter and just so impressed with her career and her gig at the YES Network now.  She does some really great stuff.



And you know what I love? The evolution of YES in general. Throughout the YES Network's history, they did something great.  Sure we have the staples in the booth like Kay, Singleton, Lorenz and Flaherty, O'Neill, but their studio is always tops, and in their 2018 promo, EVERYONE is represented!  This shows the value of all of these folks and Nancy is huge part of that.

So this is my Sunday morning message! Hey Nancy! We love you at Bleeding Yankee Blue. We love all you guys!  Keep up the great work!

And big shoutout to my man, Jack Curry! I didn't forget you pal!



Shop BYB


Saturday, April 28, 2018

WINNING IS CONTAGIOUS

Didi Gregorius does it again. Can't say enough about this guy and all he's offering to this Yankee team this season.

Photo: AP
With the Yankees on the West coast, sometimes things change.  Many times it's a reset and consistency of winning doesn't always translate because of an away game, new location, time change... whatever.  Not last night though.  Last night the Yankees stayed consistent.  We also learned something significant. Winning? It's contagious for this young Yankee team.

Our guy Bryan Hoch writes this...

Photo: Getty Images
"The roars flowed in cascading waves toward the visiting dugout, making Angel Stadium sound like a West Coast version of The Bronx, and Didi Gregorius was unsure how -- or whether -- he should respond. Aaron Judge pushed his teammate to the top step, where a curtain call was accepted some 3,000 miles from the Yankees' home.

Photo: AP
'It was a little weird for me, but there's a lot of [Yankees] fans here,' Gregorius said, having delivered the deciding homer in the Yankees' wild 4-3, 10-inning victory over the Angels on Friday evening. 'I didn't expect that, to be honest. Judge said, 'Give the fans what they want.'

The Yankees have won a season-high seven straight contests, and a crucial part of that run has been Gregorius, who is providing the Yankees with more than they could have imagined. Friday's extra-inning blast off Blake Parker was Gregorius' fifth homer in six games and his 10th on the season, giving him a share of the big league lead alongside the Halos' Mike Trout."

Gotta love this kid.  Everything is Didi right now.  Love it!

Yanks win again.  Keep Grinding!


Mike O'Hara's New Website


TORRES & THE TOE

I love Ronald Torreyes.

Photo: Getty Images
As I stated in a piece I wrote last August, titled simply THE TOE, he is the type of player that every team needs. He knows his place, he does what is asked and never complains. And if he's not needed that game, no problem... "I'm here if you need me", and usually at some point, the Yankees need him. He even goes above and beyond to help others. The Toe is a class act. This piece in NJ.com has this nugget.  We love stuff like this at BYB...

Photo: Getty Images
"All week, Gleyber Torres has been at Ronald Torreyes' hip. When Torres, the Yankees' top prospect, was called up for his debut Monday, Torres spent much of his time between innings resting against the dugout fence, chatting with Torreyes, the beloved utility man...

'He calls me, I call him,' Torres said recently. 'Not just about baseball, but about family and everything. He's my friend.'"


Photo: USA Today Sports
But that bond is significant, because it's about getting new players up to speed, working with them, never putting yourself first, but about getting all the Yankee players up to speed... because ultimately its about winning together.  

Photo: Getty Images
Since his acquisition from the Chicago Cubs, we've all heard the hype surrounding Gleyber Torres. In fact, I got to watch as he won MVP in the Arizona Fall League. The kid is damn good and I believe he is where he is going to be for a long, long time. Yet, no matter how good he is, we all know New York is not the easiest place to make it. That's why I love what Torreyes is doing. Helping him with the comfort of being in the Bigs on a team like the New York Yankees.

Photo: Getty Images
Folks, this is a great time to have Ronald Torreyes as his friend. Torres should suck up every morsel of time he has with Torreyes. All these players should.  And for the Toe, well, we tip our cap here at BYB.

Nice piece, Kuty.




--Michael Carnesi
BYB Junior Writer
Twitter: @sevn4evr






Shop BYB

Friday, April 27, 2018

THURSDAY AFTERNOON WALK-OFF!

If you can believe it... the Yanks just keep winning.

Source: Mike Stobe/Getty Images North America
Somehow, some way, they figure it out and win a ball game.  That's confidence of a group of young players.  That's them understanding what each is capable of, playing to their strengths, supporting each other and taking care of business.  Plus, as my 15 year old says, "They have the Twins's number. They always have."  There's some truth to that I think, but talk about a moment yesterday.  Wow.

Danny Knobler of MLB.com writes:

Source: Mike Stobe/Getty Images North America
"The Yankees always knew they had a chance. Get a couple guys on, get a pitch they could handle, and eight innings where the offense couldn't get going would be largely forgotten. Just like that.

It didn't matter that the Yankees had no hits in the first five innings Thursday afternoon at Yankee Stadium, or that they still had just three hits entering the ninth. All that mattered was that Gary Sanchez came to the plate against Twins closer Fernando Rodney and rocketed a three-run walk-off home run into the left-field seats, giving the Yanks a 4-3 win and extending a six-game winning streak.


Source: Mike Stobe/Getty Images North America
'If we can get traffic on the bases, we're always one swing away from our guys,' Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. "

Great line by Boone, and true.  Yanks had an opportunity and delivered.

What happens next? I can't wait to see.

Yanks win. 6th straight.


Shop for BYB Gear!

Thursday, April 26, 2018

THE DIDI-WONDERBOY SHOW

Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America
A lot can be said about the Yankees.  But this tweet sums it up best:
The truth is, they have found a rhythm that works.

Photo: Getty Images
Didi Gregorius is comfortable in the Bronx. That has been established.  We love Derek Jeter, but it's clear this kid has figured out the media, the pressure and has blossomed before our eyes.

Last night he did something wonderful... he made Yankee fans believe again.  Our boy Bryan Hoch has that:

Photo: Getty Images
"Gregorius reached base five times and became the first Yankees shortstop to homer in four consecutive games, launching a third-inning solo shot off Twins starter Lance Lynn that marked Gregorius' team-leading ninth of the season. "

And then comes Wonderboy, Tyler Austin, a kid I've admired for a while now ever since the day we interviewed him on BYB. (Read EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: TYLER AUSTIN... WONDERBOY)

He wants that first base job, a job that is the unspoken position of Greg Bird's.  But for Austin, this is about showing what he's got and doing it as hard as he can. You gotta admire that.  He's gonna make the Yankees decision to replace Austin difficult. In the end, while I like Bird, I'm pulling for Wonderboy. He's earning this role.

Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America
Last night he was on fire.  Ken Davidoff of the New York Post writes:

"Austin earned the game’s first star by excelling on both sides of play. If this marked his last game before he starts serving a suspension for his role in an April 11 bench-clearing brawl against the Red Sox in Boston, then he left ’em wanting more.

“He’s a great hitter. I saw that in the minor leagues for years,” Aaron Judge said. “He’s a major league player, and he’s showing it.”...

Photo: Getty Images
...Austin’s three-run homer against Minnesota starter Lance Lynn broke a 2-2 tie, and he added a seventh-inning double for hits and giggles. And in the top of the seventh, when the Twins actually made it interesting by scoring a run and loading the bases, Austin chased down a Robbie Grossman pop well into foul territory and caught it sliding."

Love these guys. Root for them. And root for the Yankees hard right now.  They are rolling. 5 in a row.

Here we go!

Be Read. Get Known.


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

THE BATS ARE HOT & I LIKE IT!

Source: Kathy Willens/Associated Press

Finally, the Yankee bats thawed from the cold early beginnings of spring to ignite an all out hit fest in the Bronx.  During the first game against Minnesota, Giancarlo Stanton raised his batting average into the 200s, which is great considering that it was a pitifully ugly start for the National League MVP.  Guys like Miguel Andujar, Tyler Austin, Didi Gregorius and the consistently productive Brett Gardner have jumpstarted this Yankee team and I like it.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

The chatter had been quiet on my Twitter feed up until the recent home stand and rightfully so.  We were struggling.  We were not playing well offensively or defensively, but with some shifts in the batting order and the addition of phenom Gleyber Torres, who not only got his first hit in the first game against the Twins but in the second game picked up his first RBI, the team is back on track.  Yankee baseball is fun to watch again.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

The Yankees needed a confidence boost and the Twins have done that for them.  As I said to my son this week, sometimes you need to play weaker teams just to work out the kinks and find your center.  Although the Twins had a good start this season, they are not the Yankees or an AL East team for that matter.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

As the NY Times reported on Tuesday, "It took them 21 games, but the Yankees finally put together a three-game winning streak." And with Tuesday's win, a four-game winning streak.  And as the Times predicts, "It is still early, of course, with about 87 percent of the season still to be played, but the win streak is the first indication that this rebuilt, retooled and significantly younger Yankees team might be equipped to challenge, or exceed, the unexpected success of the 2017 version, which came within one win of going to the World Series."  I like the sound of that.  I like it a lot.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

So the bats are hot and the Yankees are back.  They finish off the Twins at home on Thursday and then head out to the West Coast for three games against the Angels and four against the World Series Champion Houston Astros.  Stay on track, Yankees...stay hot!



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof







YANKEES MAKE SIGNIFICANT TRADE

You may not know the guy, but trust the move... it's a good one.

Source: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images North America
The New York Post has the story:

"David Hale threw two scoreless innings Monday night in his Yankees debut and then was replaced on the roster by right-hander A.J. Cole. Cole was designated for assignment by the Nationals on Friday and dealt to the Yankees for cash considerations on Monday."

Source: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images North America
If you need to know anything about Cole, it's this...  He's a tough righty pitcher, crafty. 4 years in the major leagues. He's only 26.  And there's more... as Yanks Go Yard writes:

"... he boasts a four-pitch arsenal which consists of a 93-mph fastball, 83-mph slider, 80-mph changeup and 79-mph curveball.

The Yankees must believe that the 2015 No. 52 overall prospect, can potentially thrive in the bullpen thanks to his career 8.3 K/9."

There you have it.

Holla.


Mike O'Hara's New Website

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

JACE PETERSON WAS JUST CLAIMED

Well that didn't take too long, huh? Jace Peterson is gone, folks.

Photo: Getty Images
ESPN has this nugget. He was claimed by the Orioles...

"The Orioles have claimed utility infielder Jace Peterson after he was placed on waivers by the New York Yankees.

Peterson, a left-handed hitter, is expected to report Wednesday. He provides depth to an infield that is without injured second baseman Jonathan Schoop and could potentially lose Tim Beckham, who left Monday's game against Cleveland with a groin injury."

It seems like the O's needed someone quick. That worked out well for them.

Anyway... carry on...

THAT WALKER - WADE MESS

Photo: Getty Images
Man oh man, Neil Walker and Tyler Wade didn't work out too well.

Look, I don't know about you, but I like Gleyber Torres at second base right now. I like Tyler Austin at first. 

Yes, we have Tyler Wade, now at Triple A... and Neil Walker, but both are struggling. I have a hunch there will eventually be great things coming from the Torres-Gregorius-Andujar infield.

Look, there have been many reasons why players are struggling this year, discussed here on BYB and all over the net. Many excuses have been made with one of the main ones being..."it's early" and "it's cold out there".   The fact is though, excuses can only carry you so far. The fans and media might be able to accept these reasonings for a game or two, but every team and player on the East Coast are dealing with the same conditions.

Photo: Getty Images
Besides the well-documented struggles of Giancarlo Stanton, the Yankees are dealing with the struggles of Neil Walker.  He's just not good. Plus, Boone saw something he loved in Wade and that's why he made the team, but that experiment is over for now. Torres is up in the Bigs.  Here's a great piece from the New York Post expressing the Walker concern. Pressure is building and he soon might be out of a job.

Photo: Greg Bird
"Aaron Boone may not need to rely on a makeshift infield much longer. Greg Bird 'had a really good day' in his recovery from foot surgery and was running on the field Thursday. Brandon Drury, who has been out with blurred vision caused by migraines, was back taking batting practice and doing defensive work."


Photo: Getty Images
So the question becomes... how much longer do they wait for guys like Drury and Bird?  How much more playing time will Tyler Austin get at first base instead of Walker? How many more games do we see Torres at second now? Will Wade every come back to the Bigs this season? Will Walker get less playing time? Will Walker get cut? Is Ronald Torreyes better than all of them right now?

Photo: Getty Images
A ton of questions. At this very second, Tyler Wade is in Triple A trying to figure out what happened and why he was replaced with his teammate in Torre.  Neil Walker? My gut tells me he will no doubt fade off into the sunset like Chris Carter did last year.

Stay tuned for this one.



--Michael Carnesi
BYB Junior Writer
Twitter: @sevn4evr

Monday, April 23, 2018

THAT MONSTER THAT IS ANDUJAR

Photo Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke
Great story in NJ.com about Miguel Andujar and after yesterday's 4-4 game for him, and a Yankee win in which Miguel was a huge part of, we needed to share some of it...

"What Miguel Andujar is doing now is just about what Yankees international scouts envisioned when they first zeroed in on the Dominican Republic native when he was 15 years old.

"He had bad intentions when he stepped in the batters box," Yankees international scouting director Donny Rowland said recently in a phone interview. "He wanted to hurt something."

Photo: Getty Images
After a rough start taking over for the injured Brandon Drury (severe migraines) at third base, Andujar has helped carry the Yankees' offense the last two weeks.

With his 4-for-4 (two doubles) showcase in Sunday's 5-1 win over the Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium, Andujar (23 years, 51 days old) became the youngest Yankee to have four or more hits in a game since Melkey Cabrera (21 years, 292 days old) in 2006."

It's Melky, not Melkey, but all good, we get it.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America
I love to see when these young players start to get a rhythm.  Sometimes that energy rubs off.  With Gleyber Torres up yesterday, there will be a lot of learning in that infield, but with guys like Didi Gregoirus to help out, there is no question the hits will start coming.

Yankee fans, we are in a very important time in our lives with this team.  A well rounded, solid group of young men all finally given an opportunity to shine. Sure, kinks will needed to be worked out, but let it happen.  It's a good place to be.

Good piece by Kuty of NJ.com here and I wish this team the best of luck. It's about to get real fun.


Be Read. Get Known.


Sunday, April 22, 2018

GLEYBER TORRES COMES TO THE BRONX

Source: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Finally, Gleyber Torres' day has come.  Today, the Triple-A Phenom will officially join the NY Yankees major league team during their current home stand in the Bronx.  As Jack Curry tweeted after yesterday's 9-1 win against the Toronto Blue Jays, "Gleyber Torres will be promoted and will join the Yankees on Sunday. So the Gleyber Era will begin." 

Source: WFAN

Torres was pulled from second base in the sixth inning last night, signifying his official call-up ceremony with his current teammates at his side. Perhaps Torres can help add some much needed consistency into the Yankee lineup in lieu of the erratic ups and downs the team is now experiencing.

Source: Todd Hiller

"Entering Saturday’s game, he (Torres) was hitting .370 with a home run and 11 RBIs in 13 games. He had played eight of those at third, adding diversity to his game. He has two errors on the year but said wherever he plays, he feels he’s both athletic and prepared enough to thrive," reported the NY Post.

 Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

Torres will join the red hot Miguel Andujar who skipper Aaron Boone believes has that "little bit of swagger" this team needs.  "He's getting better and better at laying off some pitches that they want him to chase and I think it's a result of him getting a little more comfortable and him being a really talented hitter," said Boone as reported by NJ.com.  Andujar talked about his recent adjustments, crediting his coaches for their guidance and mentoring.  “There’s been a lot of communication between me and the hitting coaches. They told me I was a little too anxious, so I’m going out there a little more relaxed. That’s what I feel. I just feel more relaxed. That’s helping me a lot right now," as tweeted by Bryan Hoch.



The potential dynamic duo of Torres and Andujar and their chemistry could be just the antidote to this very slow start by this Yankee team, a team with a long road ahead, which includes a lot of twists and turns, significant to finding success.





--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof