Showing posts from October, 2017

Is there room for both Todd Frazier and Chase Headley on the 2018 roster?

The 2017 Yankees season was a wild ride that by most accounts exceeded our expectations. It delivered many exciting moments from players all throughout the roster and although the young players were the focus this year, there were veterans on the roster that played key roles and helped drive the Yankees’ postseason run. Even though the core stayed the same, Brian Cashman made a lot of deals this season to transform and improve the Yankees’ roster. One of the key pieces he acquired was third baseman Todd Frazier.

Will Masahiro Tanaka opt-out of his contract?

As the final days of the MLB season approach us, and the offseason creeps up, there are several decisions facing the Yankees. As a team that defied the odds and came within one game of the World Series, they need to make sure that this offseason they secure the assets they need, and don’t mess with the formula that got them as far as it did. A major asset to this team’s winning formula is Masahiro Tanaka.

Five candidates to replace Joe Girardi as the Yankees manager

The Yankees have a huge task in front of them with the letting go of decade long manager Joe Girardi this past Thursday. The Yankees managing job is one of the hardest in sports, and with a team that is ready to win now, the Yankees have to make a very important decision in who they pick to be their next manager. With no clear front-runner for the position, the list of possibilities is a long one. Here are five of the stronger candidates to replace Joe: Rob Thomson and Tony Pena
Thomson, 54, has been with the Yankees since 1990 and has been a part of the major league coaching staff as a third base coach and a bench coach since 2008. Thomson has minimal minor league managing experience and no major league experience, but is widely considered a future manager by many baseball personnel. Thomson is well respected by the current Yankee players and has a reputation for being more analytical than Girardi. His relationship with the front office is said to have been stronger than Girardi’s. Wor…

Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner announced as Rawlings Gold Glove Award finalists

As Yankees fans were reeling from the news that the team and Joe Girardi will be splitting following the 2017 season yesterday, Major League Baseball announced the three finalists for the 2017 Gold Glove Award presented by Rawlings for each position.  Two Yankees outfielders, Aaron Judge in Right Field and Brett Gardner in Left Field (the defending Gold Glove winner in LF) were announced as finalists for the 2017 season.

Breaking: Joe Girardi out as Yankee Manager

As reported by ESPN this morning and now confirmed by the Yankees, Joe Girardi will not return as the manager of the New York Yankees. The former catcher had a 910-710 regular season record with the club, as well as a 28-24 postseason record, and winning a World Series in 2009. The longtime manager had a successful tenure with the club, and this year was no different, 91-71 record and reaching game seven of the ALCS against the Houston Astros.

Take 'em or leave 'em: 2017 Yankees edition

The 2017 New York Yankees were thought of to be a rebuilding club and not much more. While many of the experts picked them to finish in third or fourth in the American League East this season, the Baby Bombers carried a division race all the way until the second to last day of the season, ultimately capturing a Wild Card berth. An exciting postseason run saw the Bombers eliminate the top seeded Cleveland Indians and push the Houston Astros all the way to Game Seven, before ultimately falling short of their 41st American League crown.

With the offseason now upon us, let's play GM to decide the fate of the 2017 New York Yankees. Will Masahiro Tanaka opt out of his deal? Will Joe Girardi and Brian Cashman be given new contracts? Will the Yankees bring back CC Sabathia? How about the logjam of middle infielders and aging DH-types like Starlin Castro, Jacoby Ellsbury and Chase Headley as well as pending free agents Matt Holliday, Michael Pineda, Jaime Garcia and Todd Frazier?

Despite the…

Yankees season ends with bitter 4-0 ALCS Game 7 defeat in Houston

In a series that has featured mostly nail biting, closely contested games, the Yankees took the field at Minute Maid Park for Game 7 of the ALCS facing a tall task. Coming off a tough defeat in Game 6 that saw the Astros offense wake up, it was clear Minute Maid would provide a hostile environment from the first pitch on. The home team had won every game in this series up to this point and the Yankees would have to break the trend if they were going to advance to their first World Series since 2009. The matchup saw Astros right hander Charlie Morton facing off against veteran lefty CC Sabathia. While CC has been the Yankees stopper all season, it would come down to whether the Yankees offense would finally be able to break through on the road. Although this Yankee team has risen to the occasion many times this season, they would come up short this time and falter just a game shy of the World Series.

Another Verlander gem stifles Bombers to force game seven

For the first time this postseason the Yankees finally held a series lead and looked to capitalize on it, to punch their ticket back to the World Series for the first time since 2009. The Yanks sent out young ace Luis Severino to face Justin Verlander and the Houston Astros in a decisive game six. The last time the Bombers face Verlander, the righty threw an immaculate 121 pitch outing in a 2-1 Yankees loss to Houston. After an early pitching battle, the Astros lineup roughed up Sevy in the fifth to grab a 3-0 lead. The Yanks would squander too many opportunities and lose 7-1, forcing a game seven tomorrow.

Three keys to beating Justin Verlander in game six of the ALCS

The Yankees’ game plan for tomorrow night in Houston is simple: get to Justin Verlander early, get into the overworked and underperforming Houston bullpen early, and hope Luis Severino is at his best.  If all goes according to plan, much easier said than done I must add, then the Yankees will have booked their ticket to the Fall Classic for the first time in eight years.

Yankees one win away from World Series after 5-0 win on back of stellar Tanaka start

Fresh off a dramatic come from behind win last night in game four, the Yankees looked to take a 3-2 series lead on Wednesday evening. The Bombers sent Masahiro Tanaka to the hill, who was the massive hero the team needed tonight with Dallas Keuchel on the mound for Houston. With some serious offensive contributions from a large portion of the lineup, Tanaka was stellar as the Yankees shutout the Astros in a 5-0 win.

Things I've heard throughout this season


Yankees stun the Astros with six unanswered runs in the seventh and eighth inning to tie the ALCS at two games

Absolutely stunning. After being dominated by Lance McCullers and being down four runs going into the seventh inning, the Yankees pulled off one of their most improbable comebacks in their rich postseason history. Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez combined for five RBIs in the team’s final two at-bats, and Aroldis Chapman shut the door.

Frazier and Judge's home runs back up CC Sabathia's superb outing in Yankees game three win over Houston

The Yankees were put in a familiar spot down 2-0 in the series, and looking for a huge win at home to get right back into it.  It was C.C Sabathia on the hill for the Yankees in game three, facing off against Charlie Morton, both of which had surprising breakout seasons.  Sabathia was brilliant in the 8-1 win, throwing six shutout innings. The bats finally came to life in the series putting up eight runs, after only two runs combined through first two games.

Yankees’ bats stay cold in 2-1 walk-off loss to Houston in game two of the ALCS

After getting dominated by Dallas Keuchel in game one, it was the same story in game two as Justin Verlander silenced the Yankees’ bats, and another solid Yankee pitching performance went wasted. Neither team hit the ball well in this contest, but the Astros got to Chapman in the ninth as Carlos Correa hit a walk-off double to score Jose Altuve from first base.

Keuchel dominates Yanks again, Astros take Game 1

The Yankees have found themselves in the ALCS a year or two ahead of schedule, and with all the momentum in the world after erasing a 2-0 deficit in the ALDS to defeat the defending A.L champion Cleveland Indians behind some strong pitching and big time performances. This brought the Yanks to Houston, where it was a pitchers duel Friday night, as both Dallas Keuchel and Masahiro Tanaka brought their A games, yet it was Keuchel who continued his utter dominance against the Yankees, throwing seven shutout innings and making hitters look foolish all night, as the Yankees lost Game 1 2-1.

ALCS Preview: New York Yankees vs Houston Astros

Rebuilding isn’t supposed to go like this. Rebuilding teams aren’t supposed to make it to the ALCS in what was supposed to be a rebuilding year. Yet, here the “rebuilding” Yankees are, one year removed from missing the playoffs, in the American League Championship Series for the first time since 2012 where they were swept by the Detroit Tigers. Hoping for a much different outcome this time, the Yankees will have to go through the Houston Astros who are making their first appearance here since 2005. After taking down the reigning AL champion Indians, the Yankees must now take down this Astros team who also won over 100 games and who made somewhat light work of a very solid Boston Red Sox team behind many hot bats, including the hot bat of AL MVP hopeful Jose Altuve. The Astros also beat the Yankees in five of the seven times they played this season, so winning this series will be no easy task, but with an insane amount of momentum and nothing to lose, the Yankees have a legitimate shot…

Reviewing the impact of the White Sox-Yankees July trade

As the Yankees completed an incredible comeback from a 2-0 deficit against MLB’s best team, the Cleveland Indians, on Tuesday night, one of the major keys was a trade the Yanks made back in July. By acquiring Tommy Kahnle, David Robertson, and Todd Frazier, the Yanks added to their stacked bullpen and gave themselves depth at first and third base. Well, fast forward a few months later and all three guys played a crucial role in the ALDS.

How should the Yankees bullpen shape up for the ALCS?

Well, here we are, the Yankees have beat the odds and made it to the ALCS. I’ll spare the stories of how this team should not have even been here, but I will share one of the reasons why they are: the bullpen. The Yankees bullpen has become one of if not the best bullpen in all of baseball. While they had a pretty good start, with Dellin Betances, Adam Warren and Aroldis Chapman, they quickly became great with the midseason acquisitions of Tommy Kahnle, David Robertson and the emergence of one Chad Green.

Position by position breakdown of the Yankees vs. Astros ALCS

The Yankees are set to face a solid Houston Astros team in the ALCS. One of these teams will advance to the World Series, while the other will go home empty handed. While the Astros are extremely talented, the once again underdog Yankees hold their own in this position by position breakdown of the two teams. Slash lines are as follows: AVG/OBP/SLG, WAR. Here is the breakdown:

OPINION: The Yankees proved me wrong this ALDS...and I'm happy to admit it

As I watched Todd Frazier showcase some heads up base running skills by coming around to score from first base on Brett Gardner's ninth inning single it finally hit me. The Yankees were going to defeat the mighty Cleveland Indians and advance to the ALCS for the first time since 2012. The same New York Yankees who hit rock bottom after an absolutely crushing game two defeat in the same ballpark had somehow managed to string together an improbable comeback, winning three straight elimination games. As an eternal pessimist and current law student, I thought the Yankees fate was sealed once Joe Girardi had the managing blunder of a lifetime. Needless to say, I'm ecstatic to see that the Bombers have proven me wrong.

Photo Credit: J. Conrad Williams, Jr.

BBB Twitter Reacts: Favorite Yankees ALDS Moment

Wow. In a season where playoff contention was extremely unlikely, the Yankees are moving on to play for the American League pennant. While the first two games produced a few astronomical lows, the remaining games of the series were filled with excitement and historical moments.

Does Matt Holliday have a role on the ALCS roster?

After Wednesday night’s exhilarating ALDS Game 5 victory over the Cleveland Indians, the Yankees are heading to the ALCS. The series against the Indians gave us many reasons to be hopeful about this current run but there are still some concerns that need to be addressed and some questions that need to be answered. One of the key points that need addressing heading into this series is the Designated Hitter position and how the Yankees can improve their productivity from it.

The Astros are built on hitting, and that is why the Yankees can beat them

Remember when the Indians were the best team in the AL and were supposed to steamroll the Yankees in the ALDS? Good times. The Yankees silenced EVERYONE last night and became the tenth team in history to come back and win a five game series after being down 0-2. Up next? The Houston Astros, who beat Chris Sale twice in the ALDS against the Red Sox, and ultimately closed it out in four games. They will be tough. However, they are a much different team than the Indians…and that might be what gives the Yankees an edge for the ALCS.

Brett Gardner has earned the right to wear pinstripes for the rest of his career

Two years in a row, I have written a Yankees offseason checklist. And two years in a row, I’ve said that the second highest priority should be finding a club to trade Brett Gardner to. This is not anything against Gardy as his personality and performance has been vital to much of the Yankees success, particularly of late. I’ve always appreciated his leadership, his hustle, and his heart on the field. But with a crowded outfield, I always felt like he was going to become the odd man out. However, I was wrong, and I now think the Yankees need to find a way to allow Brett Gardner to finish his career in pinstripes.

Let's give Aaron Judge a break

Yeah, yeah. I know. 16 strikeouts. Three balls put in play. He had a .052 batting average. However, the Yankees don’t face the Astros on Friday, if Aaron Judge didn't play in this series.

Doubling down on the skipper

I wrote an article early in the year that fans should take it easy on Joe Girardi, and after his mistakes in the Cleveland series, I still believe this. I stated in my original piece that for the past few years Joe had managed subpar teams way above their talent levels, and this year is no different. I also said how he handled the tricky situations of fixing Aaron Judge, Aroldis Chapman, and Gary Sanchez, and how he manages the Aaron Hicks and Greg Bird return from injuries will shape how management will view the maligned Joe Girardi. Since then, Judge had his best month of his career in September, Chapman has been near perfect since regaining his closer job, and Sanchez was incredible in August and has shown significant improvement behind the plate in the Cleveland series. As for the injuries, Bird has become the arguably the best hitter in the postseason for the Yankees, and Hicks was able to regain his starting spot and was more than serviceable in the playoffs.

Win or lose in the 2017 ALCS, this run is the start of something great

By now you've heard the story hundreds of times. The Yankees were not supposed to be this good, this fast. By all accounts, they might contend for a Wild Card spot this season, but that was as far as the experts were willing to go. Many even had the Yankees finishing third or fourth in the AL East this season.  With a roster full of inexperienced kids and a pitching staff mired with question marks, the Yankees were still thought to be a few years off. "The Yankees are gonna be a .500 team."
"It's a rebuilding year."
"There's no way they overcome a 2-0 deficit."

WE'RE STILL HERE. — New York Yankees (@Yankees) October 12, 2017

“Suzyn, you can't predict baseball.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Improbable 2-0 series comeback fueled by Didi’s pair of bombs and shutdown pitching send Yankees to ALCS

The Yankees limped their way back to New York after a gut-wrenching game two loss, facing a seemingly insurmountable 2-0 hole to the probably the best and hottest team in baseball. It was almost a foregone conclusion that the season was over for the Bombers, but after two great wins at home, the Yanks headed back to Cleveland to face AL Cy Young favorite Corey Kluber and the Indians again. The Yankees were able to shut down the Indians to just two runs, while Didi Gregorius and Brett Gardner were able to provide five runs to send New York back to the ALCS for the first time since 2012.

ALDS Game Five has many implications for the Yankees for the 2018 season and beyond

Entering 2017, the Yankees were thought of by many to be in rebuilding mode. Still, Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman insisted that the team would rebuild and compete simultaneously. The team did just that, going 91-71, taking the first Wild Card spot winning the one-game playoff over a clearly inferior Minnesota Twins team. The reward for winning that game was a five game series with the mighty Cleveland Indians. The Yankees have held their own against a team many have claimed is the team to beat in the 2017 playoffs. Deadlocked at two games apiece, the Yankees have a decisive game five in Cleveland against likely 2017 Cy Young Corey Kluber. While the odds may not be in their favor to advance, the Yankees have had plenty of chances, most notably the game two blowup that would have the Bombers in the ALCS already. If the Yankees are to fall tonight, there will be plenty of questions to address this offseason.

BBB Twitter Reacts: Bold predictions for game five of the ALDS

Here at the BBB we consider our Twitter our "holy grail." Most of our article views and website interactions come from posting our articles on Twitter, and our readers and followers from Twitter are the foundation of the Bronx Bomber Ball. Being able to interact with Yankee fans across the world is one of our missions with our blog, which makes Twitter such an asset.

Matt Holliday should be the Yankees game five DH

Going into the playoffs, there wasn’t a clear designated hitter for the Yankees. The lineup was set for the most part but the DH spot was up for grabs. So far, Joe Girardi has tried a combination of Jacoby Ellsbury and Chase Headley. However, both haven’t produced to expectations. Headley has gone 0-10 dating back to the beginning of the ALDS and Ellsbury has gone 0-8 dating back to the wild card game. The Cleveland Indians have dominated both hitters this series. There needs to be a change if the Yankees want to keep their postseason alive in 2017. There are a few options on the bench, but the Yankees should turn to the veteran Matt Holliday in game five. 
Photo Credit: Elsa/Getty Images