Let’s get the ball rolling with some thoughts from last night’s game. Even though the Yankees won the series and are 10-2 against the O’s this year, we can’t help but have a sour taste in our mouths after the Yankees dropped a game they could’ve won. A.J. Burnett was okay and his stuff seemed real good last night, but the Yankees just couldn’t get that key run–or those key runs–across the plate. It’s frustrating, but we have to live with it. It’s just baseball.
A-Rod leaving the game before batting hurts, but better safe than sorry.
The Cervelli-Russo-Pena thing was rather frustrating. If Girardi knew he was not going to use Cervelli as a third baseman, why not just pinch hit with Russo? Obviously, neither player is all that much with a bat in his hands, but at least using Russo would’ve saved a bench player just in case.
On to other stuff, some Yankees, some not…
Stephen Strasburg was just nuts the other night. His fastball was electric and his breaking stuff was other worldly. He’s not going to pitch like that all the time, and he’ll take his lumps at some point, but he clearly looked like he belonged on Tuesday night.
The Yankees have two players leading at their positions in All Star voting, and those two players make sense. Robinson Cano leads all AL 2B with a ridiculous .441 wOBA. The next closest? Ty Wiggington at .381. Derek Jeter (.345) trails only Alex Gonzalez (.346) for AL SS, but most of Gonzalez’s mark comes from his crazy power surge this year (.240 IsoP) despite his sub .300 OBP. Mark Teixeira (.322) is waaaay too close in votes to Justin Morneau and his .483 wOBA. If Morneau doesn’t start the game at first, the voters will have failed massively.
Happy belated birthday to the massively underrated Ken Singleton. He’s a fine announcer and was a fantastic ballplayer who’s very overlooked by history. He definitely did the whole OBP thing before it was en vogue. I guess that’s what playing for an Earl Weaver team will do.
Johan Santana’s average FB velocity yesterday was only 87.95 MPH and his top speed was just 90.1 MPH. That’s not a good sign, especially considering the downward trend in his FB velocity since 2007 (91.8, 91.0, 90.6, 89.4). The drop in velocity has coincided with a drop in K/9 (9.66, 7.91, 7.88, 6.55) and an increase in BB/9 (2.14, 2.42, 2.48, 2.76).
The Yankees take on the Astros this weekend and will get a look at a potential trade target in Lance Berkman. At the end of the day, I don’t think they’ll make a trade for a rental DH in the persons of Lance Berkman, Paul Konerko, et al. The price will likely be too high and if the price isn’t too high, chances are it’s for a player who doesn’t represent a huge upgrade over what they currently have at DH. Like everyone else, I expect the Yankees to once again make a pebble sized splash at the trade deadline and acquire a bench bat (a la Hinske in ’09) or glove (a la Hairston in ’09).