What to expect from David Carpenter

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Yesterday, we looked at what possible impact Chris Capuano could have to the Yankees rotation as a back end starter. Today, we’ll discuss what we could expect from David Carpenter and what he could work on to have an effective 2015 campaign.

When pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in three weeks, there will be a new face–and a new David–in the back of the Yankees bullpen named David Carpenter. Carpenter spent the last two years with the Atlanta Braves before he was traded on New Years Day and while the Bronx Bombers see promise, ‘consistency’ isn’t Carpenter’s middle name. Carpenter’s numbers from the past two seasons have been Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde like, one season outstandingly superb and the other quite sub par.

— in 2013, he went 4-1 with a 1.78 ERA and a 0.990 WHIP in 65.2 innings with the Atlanta Braves.

— In 2013, he went 6-4 with a 3.53 ERA and a 1.262 WHIP in 61.0 innings with the Atlanta Braves.

The Yankees obviously saw potential when they swapped Manny Banuelos for Carpenter and Chasen Shreve, and there was good reason. Carpenter doesn’t give up a lot of home runs as  reliever; he gave up five home runs each in 2013 and 2014 and he’s also a strikeout pitcher, notching 141 K’s in his last two seasons.

But what could Carpenter improve on as he tries to make a first impression in the Yankees bullpen?

For one thing, Carpenter has to cut down on the walks. 20 walks in 65.2 innings an 16 walks in 61.0 innings is average and while it’s not a terrible number, in the American League East it’s notoriously dangerous to issue walks to power-hitting opposing batters.

Carpenter also has to ..read more

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Nathan Eovaldi aims to bounce back from rough 2014 season

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After being acquired on December 19th in a trade with the Miami Marlins, Nathan Eovaldi is full of emotions, but the main emotion he’s feeling is excitement to have the opportunity to pitch in the American League East.

“I’m real excited to be in that division,” Eovaldi said to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com. “The Yankees, they either love you or hate you, so I’m looking forward to it. I’ve been throwing really well this offseason, and hopefully I’ll be able to repeat last year and have some more wins and a better ERA while keeping the innings up there.”

Eovaldi has shown massive potential, but his numbers weren’t able to translate; he went 6-14 with a 4.37 ERA in 33 starts. Eovaldi believes working with Brian McCann and Larry Rothschild could help him reach his full potential, as well as help him fulfill some goals he didn’t achieve last season.

“My goal was to try and get as many innings as I could and cut down on my amount of walks [43],” Eovaldi said. “I was able to achieve both of those goals, but my ERA was a lot higher. I didn’t have as many wins as I would have liked, but I was able to get more strikeouts than I’ve accomplished before. The main goal was just to stay healthy throughout, and I was able to make all my starts without any issues.”

Eovaldi said he spoke to Rothschild earlier this offseason and expressed interest in fixing his changeup and getting his slider in the strike zone. He’s aiming to move away from the fastball-slider combination and hopes his changeup can become an effective pitch during the course of the season.

“It’s pretty much ..read more

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Hot Stove Rumor: Marlins offer Ichiro Suzuki one-year, $2 Million contract

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All offseason, while the big name free agents came off the board and found new homes, Ichiro Suzuki continued to patiently wait for someone–anyone–to offer him a deal. Well, one team has finally shown interest in Ichiro, but of course it’s not the Yankees.

According to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, the Miami Marlins have offered Ichiro a one-year, $2 Million contract to be their fourth outfielder for the 2015 season. Ichiro is entertained by the idea of playing in Miami, but he’s waiting to see if another opportunity will arise elsewhere. Ichiro is expected to make his decision soon.

Ichiro had a productive year for the Yankees last season, hitting .284/.324/.340 in 143 games. Ichiro was originally a fourth outfielder coming into camp last year, but with the injuries to Carlos Beltran, Ichiro earned himself more playing time.

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What to expect from Chris Capuano

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Yesterday, we glimpsed at what impact Dellin Betances could make to the ball club in 2015. Today, we shift focus to Chris Capuano, a pitcher who didn’t start the 2014 season with the Yankees but made an impact to the rotation when it was bombarded with injuries. So, with his 2014 season behind him, what can we expect from Chris Capuano?

Chris Capuano’s 2014 season didn’t start off the way he hoped: he was a failed reliever in the Boston Red Sox bullpen (4.55 ERA, 1.547 WHIP in 28 games), which ultimately led to Capuano being cut from the team. In a surprising turn of events, Capuano found a team that was interested in him–the Yankees. But the Yankees weren’t interested in having Capuano as a reliever, they wanted him to be in the starting rotation.

The Yankees suffered multiple blows earlier in the year, losing CC Sabathia to knee surgery, losing Ivan Nova to Tommy John surgery and losing Masahiro Tanaka to a small tear in his elbow. The Yankees tried their best to fill the holes, acquiring Brandon McCarthy from the Arizona Diamondbacks, while relying on Hiroki Kuroda, Michael Pineda and Shane Greene to keep the rotation afloat. The Yankees signed Capuano due to him being a veteran presence, and while he wasn’t lights out, Capuano did a decent job by keeping the Yankees in the game every fifth day pitching to a 4.25 ERA and 1.310 ERA in 12 games as a starter.

While many believed Chris Capuano would stay on ..read more

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Alex Rodriguez reportedly working out with Barry Bonds

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According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Alex Rodriguez has been working out at a California training facility with ex-MLB player Barry Bonds. Rodriguez posted pictures on Instagram of him in the batting cages at the facility, where observers saw Bonds and Rodriguez working together.

Bonds has gained a reputation of tutoring players after his playing days, working with players such as Pablo Sandoval, Brandon Crawford and Michael Morse.

The story of Rodriguez and Bonds working together is getting more attention due to both players using steroids in the past, but this more of a non-issue than a legitimate problem. As long as Rodriguez is on the field and is productive, that’s all the Yankees–and the fans–care about.

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Hot Stove Rumor: Johan Santana’s comeback shut down with shoulder problems

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Johan Santana‘s latest attempt in returning to Major League Baseball hit a snag when he ended up being shut down with a shoulder problem.

Hardball Talk is reporting while there was no structural damage on Santana’s shoulder, the Venezuelan League has shut him down for the remainder of the playoffs. After pitching a few days ago, Santana had struggled to return to game action for his next start which was scheduled to be tomorrow night.

The Yankees, Toronto Blue Jays and the San Diego Padres were among the half dozen teams interested in Santana before Santana suffered the shoulder injury.

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What to expect from Dellin Betances

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Everyday until the end of February, we’re going to analyze each player on the 40-man roster, discussing what they did last season (majors or minors), and what we can expect from them during the 2015 season. The 40-man roster is subject to change, but we’ll start with the players that are a lock to make the 25-man roster and then we’ll go from there. 

Today, we’ll begin with a player who didn’t have any minor league options when he entered Spring Training last season, vying for a job. Not only did he land a job, he dominated in the pen and is now being considered or the closer role. So what can we expect from Dellin Betances?

Before the 2014 season, Dellin Betances was a failed starter. He was one of the proclaimed ‘Killer B’s’ the Yankees highly touted but his numbers didn’t live up to the hype. In fact, he was literally one foot out the door when he came into Spring Training last year since he ran out of minor league options. But, Betances wasn’t coming into camp as a starter; the Yankees wanted  him to audition as a reliever. Not only did Betances excel in that role during Spring Training, but he made the team as a member of the Yankees bullpen.

While Betances impressed out of the bullpen during the Spring, there were still question marks on whether he could continue his dominant performance all season long. Betances silenced the critics and put up All-Star numbers in his rookie season, pitching to a 1.40 ERA and a 0.778 WHIP in 70 games. Betances quickly became the set-up man and was part of the 1-2 punch with David Robertson, who took over the closer role for the ..read more

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Hot Stove Rumor: Yankees among half dozen teams interested in Johan Santana

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As Johan Santana continues his comeback to the Major Leagues, the Yankees continue to gain interest, but the Yankees aren’t the only team that are vying for Santana’s services.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports is reporting the Yankees are among a half dozen teams that are considering Santana, as he plans to start Thursday night’s game for the Navegantes del Magallanes in the Venezuelan League. Heyman didn’t go into detail the other six teams that are interested in Santana, but he did say the Toronto Blue Jays and the San Diego Padres were among those who were intrigued.

Santana hasn’t seen playing time in the Majors since 2012, going 6-9 with a 4.85 ERA with the New York Mets. The Yankees most likely view Santana as a low-risk, high reward option and Santana could provide depth to the back-end of the Yankees rotation if he could find a way to stay healthy.

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