Game 102: White Sox, Yankees 2

Andy Pettitte

Don’t blame it on Andy. The pitching last night was great, Andy Pettitte who started went 6.1 and allowed 2 runs, 1 earned. Hughes then came in to toss 2 innings. But, Hughes scoreless innings streak ended as he gave up a run last night making a 2-2 game, a 3-2 game in favor of the White Sox. Hughes would eventually go down for the loss.

On the offensive side, Johnny Damon knocked in the first run of the game for the Yanks in the 6th inning by hitting a single (turned into a double on a bad throw) to drive in Jose Molina who doubled earlier in the inning. The second Yankee run came off the bat of Nick Swisher who hit a solo home run in the 9th to tie the game up at 2, in which looked to be a clutch homer to put the momentum in the Yanks hand, but it didn’t turn out that way.

Notes:

Pete Abe wonders if the Yankees are stretching out Hughes, here is Hughes’ line since July 23rd:

July 23: 2.0 innings, 28 pitches
July 24: off
July 25: off
July 26: 1.1 innings, 39 pitches
July 27: off
July 28: off
July 29: off
July 30: 2.0 innings, 35 pitches

As much as I would like the Yankees to be stretching out Hughes, I don’t think that is the case here. But, if Hughes comes out in a few days and throws 3 innings or 45 pitches (which ever one happens to come first) I will get suspicious.

5th starter options

Right now the Yankees rotation is AJ Burnett, CC Sabathia, Joba Chamberlain, Andy Pettitte, and Sergio Mitre. But, with the news that Chien-Ming Wang will not be returning this year, and the likelihood that Joba Chamberlain will go back to the bullpen once he reaches his innings limit, the Yankees could use an upgrade in the rotation. Here are a few options:

Phil Hughes

HughesThe Yankees could always put Hughes back into the rotation, taking Sergio Mitre’s spot. The argument against this is that Hughes has become too valuable to the bullpen. Well, why not trade for a reliever so there will be someone to make up for Hughes not being in the bullpen. The Yankees could try to make a trade for a guy who could fill the role that Hughes is in now, then when (if) Joba goes back to the pen, he becomes the 8th inning guy, and whoever the Yankees got in a trade takes a step back to the 7th inning guy. Some of the possible candidates to trade for are:

  • Scott Downs – Downs is currently the Blue Jay’s closer, has recorded 9 saves in 12 opportunities this year, sports a 3.18 ERA, and is a lefty. Not bad, certainly a good option.
  • Chad Qualls – Qualls is currently the Diamondback’s closer, and has recorded 18 saves in 22 opportunities this year, while putting up a 3.46 ERA. Another solid option, he has 34 strike outs and just 5 walks in 41.2 innings.
  • Heath Bell – Bell is currently the closer  for the Padres and is having a terrific season. He is 25 for 26 in save opportunities, and sports a 2.01 ERA. Would seem to be a very good option, he probably won’t be cheap, but I won’t be worrying about the price of relievers because they are pretty much always lower than the price of starters.
  • John Grabow – Grabow is currently with the Pirates (a team the Yankees seem to love trading with), and 3.57 ERA, and he is a lefty.
  • Brandon Morrow – Morrow is currently with the Mariners AAA affiliate. They are trying to get him straightened out as a starter, but it could just be that he is better suited as a reliever. Last year he spent 40 out of 45 games in the bullpen and put up a 3.34 ERA. He also saved 10 games in 12 opportunities in 2008. This year he has bounced around from reliever to starter, so I’d rather not use the stats, but I’ll mention that he has a 5.28 ERA this year. I’d consider him a high risk, very high reward option.

Roy Halladay

I can’t leave him out, can I? Of course if the Yankees acquired Halladay he wouldn’t be their fifth starter, he would just push everybody back a spot. I don’t think I need to give a scouting report on Halladay, do I? There are many fans out there that want the Yankees to get Halladay, but the price is extremely high, and I personally would make Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, and Jesus Montero untouchable in trade talks. So, Halladay to the Yankees is unlikely.

Cliff Lee

His case is similar to Halladay’s, obviously Halladay is a better pitcher, but Lee is no scrub, he did win the Cy Young award last year. Cliff Lee also would not come cheap, and like Halladay, probably can’t be had without giving up at least one of Hughes and Joba (if not both).

Jarrod Washburn

Washburn is a very interesting option. He is having a career year with Seattle putting up a 2.64 ERA. He would come cheaper than Cliff Lee or Roy Halladay, but the Yankees couldn’t get him for nothing. Earlier the rumor was that the Mariners wanted Melky Cabrera and Brett Gardner for Washburn, that has probably changed now that Gardner is on the DL. Also, one has to wonder if Washburn would be able to put up the same numbers with the Yankees that he is putting up with the Mariners. In Seattle he is pitching in a pitchers park, and he is a fly ball pitcher with an outfield trio (Left field – Griffey/Langerhans, Center field – Gutierrez, Right field – Ichiro) that is incredible defensively.

Ian Snell

Snell is currently with the Pirates AAA affiliate after asking to be sent down because of the negativity with the media (could be a problem in New York). He has dominated AAA in his 32.1 innings there, allowing only 2 earned runs while striking out 43. I have mixed feelings about acquiring Snell though. If he can be had cheap then why not, but even if he could, would you want a guy who was flustered by Pittsburgh’s media to be pitching in New York? I not too sure I would.

Update: Never mind. Ian Snell has been traded to Seattle along with Jack Wilson in exchange for Jeff Clement, Ronny Cedeno, and three others.

Bronson Arroyo

I don’t think Arroyo could help the Yankees at all. At this point in his career he is only an innings eater. With the Reds this year he has a 5.17 ERA, I can’t imagine that would get better in the AL East. I don’t want to sound close-minded (which I am not), but thankfully the rumor has been shot down by Pete Abe, and Jon Heyman.

Chien-Ming Wang’s nightmare

Last night the Yankees released the news that Chien-Ming Wang will undergo season ending surgery. The surgery will be preformed today to repair a “capsule tear” in his right shoulder. The surgery will be preformed by Dr. James Andrews who also preformed shoulder surgery on Wang back in 2001. It’s never good for a pitcher to need shoulder surgery, especially for the 2nd time.

It has been a really tough 13 or so months for Wang, who suffered a sprained lisfranc ligament in his right foot in June of last year, and it all went downhill from there. Wang ended up resting for the rest of 2008, with the expectation that he would be fully ready for the 2009 season. He came into spring training of 2009, had nothing reportedly wrong with his foot or anything else, and began the season as the Yankees number 2 starter.

But, from his first start of the year, Wang did not look right. After seeing a string of horrendous starts, the Yankees placed Wang on the 15 day DL with weakness of his hips (we will never know for sure whether he really had weakness in his hips, or if the Yankees just wanted to get him straightened out in rehab). Anyway, Wang was rehabbing down in Tampa, and then Joba Chamberlain had to leave a start early after being hit in the knee by a come backer, and the Yankees panicked and recalled Chien-Ming Wang. Joba turned out to be fine, and since there was no room in the rotation for Wang, he sat to rot in the bullpen. Eventually, Wang was re-inserted into the rotation, as Phil Hughes was placed in the bullpen. Wang, who was then in the rotation, looked better than early 2009 Wang, but still was not vintage Chien-Ming Wang. And we know the story of how he was removed from a game earlier this month with discomfort in his shoulder. The Yankees first plan was to have him rehab, and possibly come back mid August, but we know that didn’t happen.

At the moment, the Yankees are not sure how much time Wang will miss (or they will not say), but it looks very possible that he could miss a large chunk of the 2010 season to go along with the remainder of the 2009 season. Chien-Ming Wang is up for arbitration at the end of this season, will the Yankees offer him arbitration? Is there a chance they non-tender him, and hope to sign him to a minor league contract? Who knows?

Wang

Wang to have season ending surgery

According to Pete Abe, Chien-Ming Wang will have season ending surgery. The surgery will be tomorrow morning. I’m sure there will be more to come on this topic, but I am done posting about for the night. I feel really bad for Chien-Ming, he has been working so hard since he hurt his foot, and nothing has gone his way. I wish Wang a successful surgery, and a fast recovery.

Game 100: Yankees at Rays

Last night the Yankees won, what’s new? As a Yankee blogger, when the Yankees are winning and everything is well in the Yankees Universe, there is less to blog about. But I don’t mind at all, I hope things stay this way, and of course the Yankees do as well, and they look to get another W into the win column as they send out the following lineup via PeteAbe to face Scott Kazmir who seemingly never makes it into the 6th inning:

SS Derek Jeter

LF Johnny Damon

1B Mark Teixeira

3B Alex Rodriguez

DH Hideki Matsui

C Jorge Posada

2B Robinson Cano – who had 2 walks last night, both on 4 straight pitches. Who are you, and what have you done with Robinson Cano?

RF Nick Swisher

CF Melky Cabrera

And on the mound, Carsten Charles Sabathia

Please, don’t do it Mr. Cashman

Yesterday, rumors where flying around that the Yankees were set to acquire Bronson Arroyo who is now with the Reds. First, Jeff Fletcher of AOL Fanhouse reported that the Yankees and Reds were seriously discussing a trade, Fletcher even said that the deal “will get done.” Also, Bronson Arroyo was scheduled to pitch tomorrow (now today) and the Reds starter was switched to TBA. Then Mark Sheldon tweeted that the TBA was just an error, and that Arroyo was going to pitch for the Reds on his previously scheduled day. Then Pete Abe tweeted that the rumor was shot down by the Yanks. Finally, Jon Heyman tweeted that Arroyo as a Yankee was “not realistic at this point.” Yankee fans rested peacefully after hearing the rumor shot down. I personally don’t understand how Bronson Arroyo could be better than Sergio Mitre, who happens to be a lot cheaper (and younger).

Just waiting…

According to PeteAbe, Chien-Ming Wang is currently waiting to see Dr. James Andrews. I hope he gets good news, but it’s generally never good news when a baseball player sees Dr. Andrews.

Game 99: Yankees at Rays

Tonight the Yankees begin a 3 game series against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Even though the Yankees are in first place, and the Rays are in 3rd, Tampa Bay is far from out of the race. The Yankees need to go in and make the Rays feel like that can’t compete against the big boys (New York and Boston), that means the Yankees should be thinking at least 2 out of 3. Tonight the following Yankees lineup via PeteAbe will have to face James Shields:

SS Derek Jeter

LF Johnny Damon

1B Mark Teixeira

3B Alex Rodriguez

DH Hideki Matsui

C Jorge Posada

2B Robinson Cano

RF Nick Swisher

CF Melky Cabrera

And on the mound, Allan James Burnett

Just to remember a great week, that I hope continues to live on.

Just to remember a great week, that I hope continues to live on.

No moves yet…

As of now the Yankees have not called up an outfielder, and it doesn’t look like it will happen today because all the likely candidates for a call up are playing or played today…that includes Austin Jackson, Ramiro Pena, Shelley Duncan, and John Rodriguez.

Ian Snell?

According to MLBTR,  the Yankees are scouting Ian Snell who is currently with the Pirates AAA affiliate after asking to be sent down because their was “too much negativity” in Pittsburgh with the media about his performance. He has dominated AAA in his 32.1 innings there, allowing only 2 earned runs while striking out 43. I have mixed feelings about acquiring Snell though. If he can be had cheap then why not, but even if he could, would you want a guy who was flustered by Pittsburgh’s media to be pitching in New York? I not too sure I would.

Game 98: Athletics at Yankees

After having their 8 game winning streak snapped yesterday afternoon by a strong pitching performance by Gio Gonzalez, the Yankees look to go out today and start a new streak. They will have to do it against Oakland’s young left hander, Dallas Braden, who carries a 3.40 ERA coming into this game. The Yankees will send out the following lineup via PeteAbe to oppose Braden:

SS Derek Jeter

LF Johnny Damon

1B Mark Teixeira

C Jorge Posada

DH Hideki Matsui

RF Nick Swisher

2B Robinson Cano

CF Melky Cabrera

3B Cody Ransom – you have to see the picture and caption that noMass.org made for Cody

And on the mound, Sergio Mitre

Gardner has a broken left thumb

According to PeteAbe, Brett Gardner broke his left thumb yesterday while sliding into 2nd base, and is going on the 15 day DL. Amazingly, he played the rest of the game, and even hit an RBI triple. Gardner will be in a cast for 2 weeks then he will rehab. Jonathan Albaladejo has been recalled to take Gardner’s roster spot, but the move is only temporary as the Yankees will need another outfielder. PeteAbe says the early candidates are Austin Jackson, Shelly Duncan, John Rodriguez, and Ramiro Pena (who has been playing some center field for Scranton). However, if the Yankees want someone who can play center field, the choices are narrowed down to Austin Jackson and Ramiro Pena (and he has only been playing center for a short amount of time). We will just have to wait and see.

“Never in a million years”

If you are a follower of baseball, you probably know that Roy Halladay is on the trading block. You also probably know that he is coveted by several teams, and he has a high asking price. There are many Yankee fans who say they would be willing to do anything it takes to acquire Halladay, well consider this…Jon Heyman tweeted that the Jays suggested to the Yankees that it would take Joba, Hughes, and 2 others to get Halladay. I can’t imagine any right minded Yankee fan would want to make that trade.

161st Street is back!

Later today, I will have my first game post since going to Norway. I am very excited to be back! I hope you guys all enjoyed the Yankees 8 game winning streak, and of course the first game they lose since the All Star break was the first game I got to watch since the All Star break (maybe I should go back to Norway for the Yankees sake).

I enjoyed my stay in Norway, and I realized how beautiful a country it really is, but I am happy to be home.

I enjoyed my stay in Norway, and I realized how beautiful a country it really is, but I am happy to be home.

161st Street hits the DL

Dear kind readers,

This Monday (July 13th), I will be leaving for Norway, for family reasons (plus my family also wants to vacation there, and they want me with them). I expect to return on Thursday the 23rd. During this period of time, I will not have Internet access so I will not be able to make any updates to the blog. I will also not be able to watch Yankee games while I am there. I’m very sorry that I will have no coverage of the following games/events:

July 12th: Yankees at Angels (I’ll probably be packing)

July 13th: The Home Run Derby

July 14th: The All Star Game

July 15th: Scheduled off day

July 16th: Scheduled off day

July 17th: Tigers at Yankees

July 18th: Tigers at Yankees

July 19th: Tigers at Yankees (plus the Old Timers game)

July 20th: Orioles at Yankees

July 21st: Orioles at Yankees

July 22nd: Orioles at Yankees

July 23rd: Athletics at Yankees

July 24th: Athletics at Yankees

July 25th: Athletics at Yankees

I am very sorry that I will not have any posts during the aforementioned period of time, but there are plenty of other great Yankee blogs for you guys to read for full coverage of the Yankees. To name a few:

Friday Nite Yanks run by our friend Tom.

River Ave Blues run by Mike Axisa, Benjamin Kabak, and Joseph Pawlikowski.

The LoHud Yankees Blog run by Peter Abraham.

Yakkin’ About The Yankees run by frequent commentator, Riz (he may be away right now)

Keeping up with the Jones run by Kimberly Jones

On July 26th, 161st Street will be back in business. Expect full regular coverage of the Yankees, like I usually have on my blog!

Once again, I apologize that I won’t be blogging for a while, but one thing I know is that when I do get back to New York I will be chomping at the bit, recharged, and ready to blog about my favorite team, the New York Yankees. I wish the Yankees the best of luck while I’m away, and hopefully I’m not completely disconnected from them while I’m gone. Let’s go Yankees!

- Chris Arroyo

Game 87: Yankees at Angels

Last night (or early this morning), the Yankees lost to the Angels. Joba was a mess, Bruney was a mess, and Jeter made an error that really cost the Yankees. Anyway, today the Yankees look to get back on the winning track as they send out the following lineup via PeteAbe to face Jered Weaver (the younger brother of infamous ex-Yankee, Jeff Weaver):

SS Derek Jeter

LF Johnny Damon

1B Mark Teixeira

3B Alex Rodriguez

DH Hideki Matsui

C Jorge Posada

2B Robinson Cano

RF Eric Hinske

CF Brett Gardner

And on the mound, Andy Pettitte

The Stare

The Stare

The question that keeps on coming up: What’s wrong with Joba?

I honestly don’t, I don’t think anyone does, but Benjamin Kabak of River Ave Blues has an interesting post up about Joba. Go check it out. Also Tyler Kepner talked to Dave Eiland about Joba, it’s worth a read.

Not many stories today, but there is one…

Angel Berroa, remember him? Well, the Mets signed him…I find this rather funny.