Saturday, June 30, 2018

GREG BIRD EXPLODES!

Photo: Getty Images
Just when you thought it was over for Greg Bird, he contributes big and helps demolish the Boston Red Sox.  The Yankees won last night and Birdman was a big part of it. Larry Brooks of the New York Post writes:

Photo: Getty Images
"...the Birdman of The Bronx cracked two home runs to emerge from a lengthy slumber. The first traveled 392 feet to left-center off lefty Eduardo Rodriguez in the fourth inning of the Yankees’ 8-1 rout of the Red Sox in the opener of the three-game weekend confrontation between the two AL East powers. 


Photo: Paul J. Bereswill
The second was more Bird-like, into the lower right stands off righty reliever Justin Haley in the eighth. The second, in fact, was more Yankees-like, representative of the left-handed power into the Stadium’s right-field porch that has historically been as much a franchise trademark as the Pinstripes, themselves."





We needed that. No... HE needed that. Bird has been criticized by many. On the pages of BYB... by fans who just want him to explode.  Yes, the Yankees love Bird but even they were concerned about it.

Will this be the beginning of turning things around for the guy? Let's hope so.  Looking forward to seeing a healthy, strong, active Greg Bird.

Yanks beat the Sox.  Nice work.


20% Off at SteinerSports.com with code YANKEEBLUE2017


Friday, June 29, 2018

BIRD: STILL MY GUY

Photo: Getty Images
My ears were burning. Did someone call me? You rang? I'm getting in a nap....WHAT?!

Oh, a Tex fan...'member those? Me either.

Yes, Greg Bird (Still very young) is having a season of headlines that should be lining a birdcage in some dusty upper east side studio. This particular cage is home to a Parrot named "Pepe" who continues to squawk, "Greg Bird sucks! Greg Bird sucks" while his owner is stuck on the 6 train coming home from a rough day waiting tables in the Village.

Photo: Getty Images
Greg Bird has been lousy...but isn't stealing from the Yankee payroll like his predecessor did. He hasn't made any IDIOTIC remarks like, "Well, I'm a slow starter." He ACTUALLY will beat the shift and go the other way ON PURPOSE...rather than say, "I'm paid to hit the ball out of the park."

Photo: Getty Images
Greg Bird is accountable. He tries to play through injury... sound like somebody else? (COUGH NOT TEX!)

Photo: Getty Images
Tex was NEVER a Yankee. He was a hired gun with one bullet in the chamber. He was injury prone too. He claimed to be a switch hitter. I called him a Which Hitter, as in it doesn't matter WHICH side he swung from it was bad all around.

Look I can't defend Greg and his struggles. He's been lousy. However, I like Greg Bird, and when he's on (see September of last year) he's like a machine built for the Stadium. I'm not giving up on the guy.

The Yankees are playing well and he has time to work it out. People who look to bail on Bird are also the ones calling for the Yankees to ship THE BEST OFFENSIVE CATCH PLAYING in Gary Sanchez. These two are a big part of why the team isn't the same lifeless bunch Tex helmed.

Photo: Getty Images
I am not done rooting for Greg Bird. Hell, we gave that chump who used to wear Gleyber's number a lot of rope to hang his sugar free, heath shake making, knock off Farley Show bombing ass. I say Greg warrants at least a few more months....IT'S JUNE!! Hey, I'm just a ham and egger who never made the omelet. I don't claim to be a "Baseball Expert", I didn't invent the wheel...I'm just rollin' with it. That's how we all are at BYB. Bottom line, my opinion is just that, my opinion. Maybe Greg Bird is the worst player ever to wear the Pinstripes and the heroic blast early in his very, young career were a fluke. I doubt it, but maybe. I've been wrong before and I'll be wrong again. Although I wasn't wrong when I said OVER AND OVER AND OVER that the New York Yankees would be better without Tex. They are.

Yes, he was the 2nd nest goalkeeper in New York when he was a playing 1st base...but he was never a Yankee. Greg Bird just hatched. Give him. a bit longer.

Thanks for dropping me a line on Bleeding Yankee Blue, Jeana. Always nice to say hello.

** Don't worry, Birdie. There are ups and downs in every walk of life. Keep grinding it out. It's a long way to the top....**








--Mike O'Hara
BYB Contributor
Website: mikeohara21.com





 Shop for BYB Gear!

THE CLINT FRAZIER BARGAINING CHIP

Photo: Getty Images
Hoping that one day he can carve out his own niche in the Bronx, both Casey and I have stated that we hope Clint Frazier remains a New York Yankee. Now apparently, according to this piece from the New York Daily News, so does Brian Cashman.

"Hours after Domingo German’s disastrous start on Sunday, Brian Cashman told Bruce Beck on NBC Sports Final: 'I think our starting pitching is good enough, but we want to make it better.'

The Yankees GM, though, would prefer not to part with Clint Frazier to get another impact piece in the rotation.

Photo: Getty Images
'We’re lucky to have him,' Cashman said of Frazier. 'He’s getting better. He’s a toolbox that every year since we’ve gotten him he’s exponentially improved.'” 

All GM's play cat and mouse leading up to the deadline saying things that they hope will drive up the price of certain players. How much of it is true? Only Cashman knows for sure. He says he thinks the pitching is good enough. I would love to know what his definition of good enough is though.

Photo: Getty Images
Personally, as it stands right now I don't believe this pitching staff is good enough to win the World Series. You heard it here first kids.  It might not even be good enough to win the division.  Sure, they've gotten some good starts out of the rookies German and Loaisiga. Yet, for every good start, there has been one that is equally as bad. Plus, Jordan Montgomery is done for the year and Masahiro Tanaka is currently on the shelf.

Photo: Getty Images
CC Sabathia has been good, but you always have to wonder how his knee will hold up throughout the year. And Sonny Gray... oh Sonny. He's been inconsistent at best.

Look, Cashman can say he thinks the pitching staff is good enough all he wants. If you ask me though, it's all smoke and mirrors trying to get all he can out of a player like Clint Frazier.

Photo: Getty Images
I am convinced he will unload Clint. I really hope I'm wrong and the Yankees hold onto him. I love his flair and passion and I see him as something every team needs.

Bottom line, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.




--Michael Carnesi
BYB Junior Writer
Twitter: @sevn4evr




Mike O'Hara's New Website


Thursday, June 28, 2018

HEY O'HARA! BIRD'S NOT THE WORD!

Bird was SUPPOSED to be the word, right? UGH.....no. Just, no.

Photo: Getty Images
I have been trying to stay positive about Greg Bird. I know a lot of people are down on him and have been for awhile now. I have tried to give the benefit of the doubt and wait it out because some guys just need the extra time. I think Bird has had plenty of time.

I've been patient, fans have been patient and Bird says he is capable of more, read that HERE but we have been waiting since 2015 to see it. Bird wants to impress us all. He has the right attitude about it but he just hasn't been able to execute and DO it. As much as I like the attitude I want the results. It's time. Maybe it's time to MOVE ON from Bird.

Photo: Getty Images
I guess this brings me back full circle. If you have been reading us for awhile now, you may remember THIS, THIS and THIS just to name a few.

Photo: Getty Images
Mike O'Hara... if you are out there reading this HOLY COW this is all too familiar, right? For the last couple of years of Mark Teixeira's time as a Yankee we used to pretty frequently discuss Tex. He would talk about how he was done, he wasn't a fan and he was ready for Bird to takeover. I would answer back with my own piece and defend him. At one point, I called myself his lawyer since it sounded like he was putting Tex on trial. It happened a few times and it was always in good fun! The banter was great.

Well Mike... now I am looking at you. Now I am you. It's time to turn back time. I am ready to end this experiment with Greg Bird. Tex is retired, just like you said his game was TIRED but now so is Bird. I will admit that Tex wasn't perfect and he had a ton of faults but he was my guy. He had a lot (A LOT A LOT) of frustrating moments but he also had some big, never forget moments. I mean....how can you forget that walk-off home run in the 11th inning against the Twins back in 09? CLASSIC and eventually it ends with a championship. That's a HUGE moment. Bird doesn't have a moment as epic as THAT.

And what about Tex and his constant "boo-boos" as you once wrote? (It was funny as hell).

Photo: Getty Images
Bird is just as bad. In fact, I call him glass man. The guy can't stay healthy. He has missed sooooo much time. He teased us with a great debut in 2015, missed all of 2016, played in 48 games last year and 27 so far this year. WILL THE REAL GREG BIRD PLEASE STAND UP....PLEASE STAND UP?! He's Tex 2.0 without the experienced resume. How is he an upgrade? He only frustrates me like Tex frustrated you.

And come on, Bird doesn't have the most amazing numbers either. Tex struck out, popped up a ton and hit right into the shift (constantly!) but at least he had some power numbers (Bird has 3 home runs....3!!!).

Photo: Getty Images
Tex got the nickname Teixecutioner once upon a time (OK, a LONG time ago) and Bird well....he was supposed to be "Bird's the word" but he's just glass man. WHOMP WHOMP. Guys who have a .193 BA don't deserve a nickname. In fact, they really don't deserve to be a starter. He should be riding the pine like Jacoby Ellsbury was (and will be if he ever comes back) if not sent packing back down to the minors.

Photo: Getty Images
Maybe Bird needs to embrace Tex's old Gluten free diet? I don't know. The only thing I do know is Bird is just BAD and he hasn't earned his spot. It sucks to see guys down in Triple-A right now who are doing well like Brandon Drury. He may not be the experienced first baseman GLASS MAN is but he's at least producing something unlike Bird. The Yankees shouldn't be rewarding Bird with a starting role right now. He's doing the team no good and certainly not helping my sanity!

Just like O'Hara wanted to see Tex succeed I want to see Bird succeed. He's a great kid and I love the attitude. I just don't love the results. Bird was supposed to be the future, but he hasn't hit or stayed healthy enough to be that future. You have to know when it's time to say "enough's enough" and move on. So if it's not time to move on now.....when do we reach that point?

Okay, O'Hara....you ready for another go-round like we used to? I'm game if you are!



--Jeana Bellezza
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj





Mike O'Hara's New Website

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

SEVY IS LIGHTS OUT IN PHILLY!

Source: Associated Press

Luis Severino is a stud, and quite frankly the most versatile, most athletic and convincingly one of the best pitchers, if not the best pitcher in baseball right now.  Now, Phillies' fans could just be bitter, but when I engaged one in Citizens Bank Park regarding Sevy's powerful performance on the hill, all I got was, "Yea, well he's not Clayton Kershaw (1-4), Justin Verlander (9-3) or Corey Kluber (11-3)." I said, "No one is doing what he is doing right now, despite their record. He's got more punch, more life than any of those guys." Not to mention that Sevy was lights out in Philly as he picked up his 12th win (12-2) in a 6-0 shutout lowering his ERA for the season to 2.08.

 Source: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images North America

As Philly manager Gabe Kapler suggested, Severino was "as dirty as you could possibly be." "A lot of our guys were talking about the life on the fastball and difficult to catch up to," said Kapler of Severino's 100-mph heater. "We knew it was going to be on top of them, but it just had a little extra life today. Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the other pitcher," reported NJ.com.

 Source: Hunter Martin/Getty Images North America

No place I would rather be than at the game last night to see Sevy take down the Phils one by one.  The night was set to be a pitcher's duel but Jake Arrietta just didn't have anything against Aaron Hicks and Didi Gregorius, who each launched a dinger, making my night complete and Arrietta's very short.

 Source: Hunter Martin/Getty Images North America

"Severino easily outpitched Arrieta, the NL Cy Young award winner in 2015 with the Cubs. In five innings, Arrieta allowed six runs (three earned) and five hits. He is 5-6 and looking like a bad $75 million free-agent investment by the Phillies," reported the NY Post.

Source: Jim Rogash/Getty Images North America

With one more game in Philadelphia tonight, the Yankees take a breather on Thursday as the Red Sox roll into town for a three-day stint against the Bombers at home.  The heat is on in the AL East as the Sox and Yankees could both be vying for another arm, potentially the same arm, in their respective rotations.

Source: Mike Stobe/Getty Images North America

"Problem is, he (Red Sox GM) doesn't have much left in the cupboard to swap for an arm, unlike Cashman, who has a well-stocked minor league system. So if the Yankees make a run at Toronto Blue Jays lefty J.A. Happ or Texas Rangers southpaw Cole Hamels, they should have an advantage over the Red Sox," reported NJ.com.  The Yankees will stack their advantage against the Sox with CC Sabathia, Sonny Gray and top off the series with Sevy on Sunday Night Baseball.  Oh it's a great to be a Yankee fan especially when you have Sevy shining at the top of your rotation.




--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof





Mike O'Hara's New Website

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

LOAISIGA LIGHTNING!

Photo: Getty Images
Love this kid. He's a gamer. I also like what I'm seeing from Giancarlo Stanton.

Look, the Yankees are allowed to slump and they have, but it's not like they're trying to lose.  Hell, it could be worse, try being the Mets.

The Yankees won one last night and everything was clicking nicely.  Bryan Hoch writes:

Photo: Getty Images
"Loaisiga carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning of his third big league start and helped the Yankees snap their three-game losing streak with a 4-2 Interleague victory over the Phillies on Monday evening at Citizens Bank Park.

'I've got to credit my teammates,' Loaisiga said through an interpreter. 'Just being around them, seeing the way they pitch, the way they execute one pitch after the other. It gives me a sense of serenity when I go out there and pitch. I just thank God for the opportunity, seeing how they work.'"

Impressive for a young kid.

Photo: Getty Images
Speaking of impressive, Stanton's on fire huh? It's a streak like this that reminds us of why we signed him...

"Stanton is 7-for-8 with two doubles, a homer, four RBIs, two runs and two walks in his last two games." 

Let's hope it sticks. Yanks win. Let's keep going.


20% Off at SteinerSports.com with code YANKEEBLUE2018

Monday, June 25, 2018

SANCHEZ TO THE SHELF & THAT'S NOT THE WORST PART!

Photo: Getty Images
Bad News Sunday....that's what I call it. Seriously, it sucks getting swept by the Rays, watching Domingo German tank in his start and then to make matters worse Gary Sanchez is down and out. This isn't the way I wanted to end my weekend but that really may not be the worst part of it.

If you missed it, Sanchez pulled his groin running to first yesterday. An MRI is scheduled for today sometime and we are all crossing our fingers hoping for the best but preparing for the worst (just in case). I'm sure Brian Cashman has a game plan in the works but either way this is pretty bad.

Photo: Getty Images
Hopefully some of the swelling goes down over night and tomorrow when they do the MRI it's not a bad as it looked. Groin strains are no joke, and the last thing the Yankees need is a bad Grade 2 strain which could mean he's out for more than eight weeks. I don't want to even imagine that right now.

Sanchez may be having a rough season so far, but he is still leading all catchers with 14 home runs and slump or not he has the ability to change a game with one swing. Too bad that didn't happen yesterday, but he's still a powerful bat that can do damage in the lineup, slump or not.

Photo: Getty Images
So now what do the Yankees do? Now that we will have Austin Romine as an every day catcher the Yankees need a backup. Kyle Higashioka is the third catcher on the Yankees 40-man roster so he is the obvious choice for a call-up. Higashioka knows the pitching staff well and he's been with the Yankees since 2008 but he's never been able to land a long term job in the Bronx. He made his major league debut as a defensive replacement in 2017 after Sanchez suffered an injury. He didn't stay up long after he batted 0-for-18 in nine games for the Yankees and was optioned back to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in May when Sanchez returned. Nothing against Higashioka but even a slumping, healthy Sanchez is a stronger option for the Yankees.

Photo: Getty Images
Could the Yankees go out and get another catcher if Sanchez has a worst case scenario injury? Maybe. I've seen a couple names floating around on Twitter including J.T. Realmuto again. I mean, Derek Jeter is still holding onto him even after selling off everyone else. We've been waiting for him to get traded for a long time now. Or maybe, the Yankees go for a reunion with John Ryan Murphy? He's been nothing short of a revelation this season for the Diamondbacks.  They do have a ton of catching depth with Jeff Mathis and Alex Avila all sharing time so they have the ability to move him but considering how good he has been for them it would take some serious magic for Cashman to steal him from the Diamondbacks.

I don't want to think about other replacements right now. I'm hoping for the best case scenario here and instead of chasing after a catcher we continue to look for that starter we need and we see Sanchez sooner rather than later.

We need some good news here.....please. Stay tuned.



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




Shop for BYB Gear!

Sunday, June 24, 2018

WHAT DOES LOSING TO TEAMS LIKE THE RAYS TELL US?

Source: AP / Chris O’Meara

Whatever the outcome of Sunday's game, I am struggling with the losses on both Friday and Saturday.  I know we are not supposed to look back, only ahead, but taking time to reflect on why the Yankees lose games to teams that are not even in contention is necessary because the entire concept is baffling.  What strategies do the Rays or others like them use to beat big powerhouses like the Yankees?

 Source: Mitchell Layton/Getty Images North America

I think Newsday hit it on the head when they wrote, "The Yankees have been so good and so efficient since mid-April that nights like Friday end up as a shock more than anything else. Through six innings, they had been held in check to the tune of two hits and no runs. The Rays, meanwhile, had accumulated 10 hits. But it was only a two-run deficit, and the kind of late-inning rally characteristic of the 2018 Yankees seemed inevitable."  Yet, just because it appears the Yankees have all the tools in the shed to progress toward a win in a game like Friday's, doesn't mean it happened.  Losing 2-1 to the third place, 16-game back Rays is just unconscionable and even more irritating especially when the Boston Red Sox bashed 20 hits against Seattle in their 14-10 win.  Then coming back and beating the Bombers 4-0 is salt in the wound.

 Source: Mike Carlson/Getty Images North America

So the question is why did we lose?  Brett Gardner does not think it was Rays pitching.  “They beat us today,” Brett Gardner said, downplaying the impact of the Rays’ bullpen strategy, one they’ve used a lot this season, including once last week in the Bronx. “I don’t think it had anything to do with the order of the pitchers being used,” reported Newsday.

Source: Mike Carlson/Getty Images North America

Yet as we all saw, the Rays worked a backward design of their pitching structure to beat the Yankees, holding them to one run on only four hits over 8 innings on Friday. "The Rays are using relievers to start various games and it worked against the Yankees, who went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left nine runners on against six bullpen members," reported the NY Post.  Could the Rays be onto something that the Yankees might need to try?

Source: Mitchell Layton/Getty Images North America

What if we started the game with Aroldis Chapman, followed by Dellin Betances, David Robertson, Jonathan Holder and then handed the ball to Domingo German or Sonny Gray?  Would we win some games that we lose because we don't have the sustainable starting pitching we need?  Did the Rays' strategy quiet the hot Yankee bats enough for the Yankees to take notice why?

Source: Mike Carlson/Getty Images North America

Gardner went onto say this about this innovative pitching strategy designed by the Rays. “It’s a little backwards, but it is what it is,’’ Gardner said of the unique strategy after going 2-for-5 in his first game since last Saturday due to a right knee issue. “It’s our job to get on base and score runs. We came up short tonight,’’reported the NY Post.

Source: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images North America

What if we perceived failure as feedback and this feedback led to more wins? Is Larry Rothschild and Aaron Boone out of the box thinkers to mirror a similar strategy when they are short on starters?  It will be interesting to watch over the next few weeks as the July 31st trade deadline approaches.  You need three good starters for the post-season folks.  Do we have three?  Can we turn our bullpen over on its side for the other games?

Keep watching...




--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof






Mike O'Hara's New Website

Saturday, June 23, 2018

TIME ALMOST UP FOR WALKER & PATIENCE THINNING FOR BIRD

Source: Al Bello/Getty Images North America

With the Yankees back to back losses to the Rays, the spotlight turns towards players who have not been producing.  Arguably you could say that Neil Walker just hasn't gotten enough playing time, and that may be, but if he had been productive in the playing time he has had, wouldn't the Yankees consider platooning him with Greg Bird?  And speaking of Greg Bird, why is he still playing first base?  He has been nothing more than a rally killer at the plate, batting an abysmal .193.  Why keep guys in the lineup or on the roster if they are simply not pulling their weight?

Source: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images North America

According to CBS Sports, "The Yankees have acknowledged that (Brandon) Drury deserves to be in the majors, but there's currently no room for the infielder with Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres both mashing for the big club. He'll get some reps at first base moving forward in an attempt to provide him with another path to the majors."  So if Drury, the International League Player of the Week batting .471, can in fact play first base, he could dismantle both Bird and Walker in one swoop, perhaps also making way for beloved utility player, Ronald Torreyes.

Source: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images North America

Torryes was sent back down to Scranton-Wilkes Barre when Brett Gardner had some knee inflammation and needed to take a few games off.  Skipper Aaron Boone called on Clint Frazier to replace Gardner, making Toe the odd man out again.  "The best guess is that Torreyes spends 10 days in Triple-A and then replaces Frazier. By rule that is the quickest the Yankees can bring Torreyes back without another player going on the DL," reports NJ.com.

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America

Playing everyday is something you earn by producing. Sure, players hit the wall and have slumps intermittently throughout the 162-game schedule, but what is happening with Bird is just unacceptable and the Yankees should not be rewarding him with a starting role or even a roster spot if he is not going to produce.  Bring back Drury, bring back Torreyes and send Bird and Walker to the minors. These losses to the Rays are unnecessary and could come back and bite us later on. If Walker and Bird stay as is for one more week, I will lose my mind!




--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof





Shop for BYB Gear!