CC Sabathia to make Spring debut vs. Blue Jays

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When CC Sabathia takes the hill in this evening’s showdown with the Toronto Blue Jays, all eyes will be on him. Not only to see if Sabathia is healthy, but to see if Sabathia can be an effective starter. Sabathia’s last two seasons were plagued with injury and mediocrity and while the Yankees aren’t expecting much out of CC this time around, they are hoping he eventually find some success. Let’s do what we always do and get some thoughts out of the way before tonight’s contest.

  • First off, I’d like to wish everyone a Happy St. Patrick’s Day. Be safe, have fun and be glad there’s baseball tonight.
  • I didn’t think much about this yesterday (in fact, I barely thought about the Yankees at all) but after looking at the first set of cuts from camp, it’s surprising Greg Bird survived the first round. Not surprising in the sense that Bird hasn’t hit well enough to stay, he has, but because the Yankees are trying to get a closer look at him. He’s still slated to begin the year in Trenton, but it never hurts to have a look. Plus, he’s played so well, he’ll be one of the first players on the mind of the front office when they need to call someone up.
  • Masahiro Tanaka is slated to make his next start tomorrow night against the Atlanta Braves at Disney World! It’s always a fun time at Disney World, and everyone hopes the Disney magic will rub off on him and keep his elbow in place for the entire season.
  • We have about two weeks to go before the regular season begins and like I mentioned yesterday, the fifth starter competition has been really close. Probably one of ..read more
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    What we’ve learned so far in Spring Training

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    Two weeks have gone by in Yankees Spring Training camp, and while nothing has been definitive, there have been some surprises. So let’s round-up the surprising things we’ve learned in Spring Training so far:

    1. Alex Rodriguez has looked good

    Coming into camp, we didn’t know what we were going to expect from Rodriguez. Rodriguez has come into camp looking for forgiveness after being suspended for a steroid scandal, but he also came in ready to play. Rodriguez is hitting .353/.476./588 in eight games, but while we don’t know if Rodriguez is capable of continuing this production, it’s just nice to see him getting off on the right foot.

    2. The competition for the No. 5 spot:

    One of the most exciting storylines during the last two weeks of camp has been the competition for the fifth starter spot in the rotation. While Chris Capuano appeared to be the front runner in the competition, he immediately suffered an injury and changed the dynamic. Now every game seems to have a front runner for the competition whether it’d be Adam Warren, Esmil Rogers, Chase Whitley or even Scott Baker. There’s no clear-cut winner of the competition at this point, which is why this competition is exciting to watch.

    3. So far, so good for Masahiro Tanaka

    True, Masahiro Tanaka only made one start for the Yankees but it was one very good start, and it was promising. There were many concerns about Tanaka and his elbow and there are still concerns on Tanaka and his elbow. But for now, he’s made progress and it has been encouraging.

    4. Yankees have the kids of the ..read more

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    Should the Yankees consider lifting their facial hair policy?

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    Since the days of George Steinbrenner, the Yankees were told to act and look a certain way. They had to present themselves with class and with poise. They had to stay out of trouble off the field and be champions on the field. But most importantly, they had to be clean-shaven and groomed. While many Yankees who come and go follow every guideline, some ex-players express their frustration over the facial hair policy and once they sign to a new team, they rebel.

    Joba Chamberlain, Robinson Cano and David Robertson. What do these three players have in common? It’s simple; they all grew beards after leaving the Yankees.

    Robertson, who signed a four-year deal with the Chicago White Sox, felt the facial hair policy was “ridiculous” and enjoys the freedom of having a beard now that he’s no longer in the Yankees organization.

    “This is nice, not to have to shave every three days,” Robertson recently said in a report from CBS New York. “I think it’s kind of ridiculous, but that was the Yankees’ rule. They wanted to have you clean-shaven. Here you can just let it grow. Obviously, they don’t want me to get it to that point. But I won’t let it get out of control.”

    Now, is Robertson wrong for thinking the facial hair policy is ridiculous? No. It’s his opinion and he’s entitled to it. Just know Robertson isn’t the first player to share his disdain of the “old-school rule”.

    Last season when David Price was with the Tampa Bay Rays, many pondered if he would have stayed with the Yankees long-term if the Bronx Bombers had traded for him. Due to the facial ..read more

    Posted in Editorial, Yankees News | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

    Yankees impressed with Nathan Eovaldi this Spring

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    When Nathan Eovaldi came to camp this Spring, the Yankees had a vague idea of what they were to expect of him. They expected Eovaldi to throw at least 98 MPH, they expected him to have a dazzling fastball and they expected him to work on his breaking pitches. After three starts and a first-hand look, the Yankees have a more detailed design on what to expect from Eovaldi. Eovaldi throws hard, he’s deceptive with his fastball, and his breaking pitches have improved dramatically since his arrival; Eovaldi notched nine strikeouts in first three outings of Spring.

    “You can’t expect much more,” Girardi told the media following Eovaldi’s four inning start against the Philadelphia Phillies. “We’re really excited to have him in camp with us as one of our starters. We think he can do a really good job for us.”

    Eovaldi has only given up one run in his three outings and while many predict he’ll be a No. 4 or No. 5 starter to begin the season, the front office believes Eovaldi will be a top-flight starter, especially with the stuff he has. Eovaldi demonstrated his swing-and-miss pitches, notching two strikeouts in the first inning of his most recent start; one of them on a curveball and another on an elevated fastball. Eovaldi has been pleased with the progress he’s made over the last few weeks, and he only hopes to climb up the ladder as he goes further into the Spring.

    “I take pride in trying to get better. You don’t want to stay the same,” Eovaldi said. “Being able to elevate the ball is one thing I struggled with last year. I’d throw it way too high. I’m able to get the ball up in the zone and ..read more

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    Yankees reassign 10 players to minor league camp

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    No player wants to be summoned to Joe Girardi‘s office, only to be told that they’ve been cut from big league camp and have to start preparing for their 2015 season across the street. But that’s what happened to 10 minor-league players before Monday’s off-day; seven of the players were cut before this afternoon’s contest against the Philles and three were cut after. Here’s a quick rundown of the players that didn’t survive the first round of cuts.

    — RHP Luis Severino — INF Aaron Judge — C Trent Garrison — C Juan Graterol — RHP Nick Goody — RHP Diego Moreno — LHP James Pazos — LHP Tyler Webb — INF Cito Culver — OF Jake Cave

    Posted in Yankees News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

    Headley homers in 3-2 win over Phillies

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    The day before the team’s first off-day, Chase Headley went out with a literal bang, sending the Yankees to a 3-2 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Florida.

    The Yankees scored their first run in the bottom of the first on a Brian McCann SAC Fly, plating Jacoby Ellsbury. Chase Headley hit his first home-run of the Spring in the bottom of the seventh and later in the inning Slade Heathcott hit an RBI single, scoring Greg Bird.

    Nathan Eovaldi started the game for the Yankees, pitching four scoreless innings. Chase Whitley pitched two scoreless innings, David Carpenter gave up two runs on two hits in one inning of work, Justin Wilson pitched a scoreless eighth and Wilking Rodriguez pitched a scoreless ninth.

    What’s Next?

    — The Yankees are off tomorrow, but they’ll be back on Tuesday as CC Sabathia makes his Spring debut against the Toronto Blue Jays. The Blue Jays have yet to announce a starter. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. and the game will air on the YES ..read more

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    Yankees play final game before off-day vs. Phillies

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    Tomorrow’s the first off-day of the Spring, but today there’s still baseball to be played. The Yankees stay at George M. Steinbrenner Field as the Phillies come in from Clearwater to play a one-game showdown. It seems the Yankees and the Phillies play against each other a lot in the spring, but that’s what happens when you’re literally 20 minutes away from each others ballparks. Here’s a few quick random thoughts.

  • There was honestly no doubt Michael Pineda was going to be great in his Spring outing yesterday. Either his stuff is already in midseason form or the hitters are still rusty. Either way, Pineda’s looked great and is one of the “must-watches” in the rotation.
  • I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Alex Rodriguez has looked surprisingly good this Spring. I’m still unsure if this will last into the regular season but I don’t think fans will complain if Rodriguez continues to be productive.
  • The Yankees have cut seven players from the Spring Training roster and have transferred them to minor league camp: Trent Garrison, Nick Goody, Luis Severino, Justin Graterol, James Pazos, Diego Moreno and Tyler Webb. Severino, the top pitching prospect in the organization, had impressive stuff but he wasn’t going to make the Major League roster out of Spring Training.
  • Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury started their own throwing program to improve their arm strength after being advised by Hideki Matsui to do so. Well, it seems to be working ..read more
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    Report: Yankees release INF Mat Gamel

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    Less than a week after signing a minor league deal, Mat Gamel is once again a free agent.

    According to MLBTradeRumors, the Yankees have released Gamel after signing him for infield depth. Gamel, 30, was attempting to make a comeback after missing the last two seasons with ACL tears. He spent most of his Major League career with the Milwaukee Brewers, getting 269 plate appearances from 2008 – 2012.

    Well, while the Mat Gamel experiment didn’t work, at least the Yankees still have his brother Ben Gamel in their minor league system.

    Posted in Transactions, Yankees News | Tagged , , | 5 Comments