Our pals, the Three Amigos, are doing some fine work over at PB.
Here’s Cliff on Derek Jeter
Goldie on Eduardo Nunez and Jesus Montero and
Jay on Fab Five Freddy and the incredible Curtis Granderson.
Class is in session.
Goldman on Nuñez (and bunting!): right on.
Cliff on Jeter: my money is on SSS. It strains credibility that Jeter is really a much, much better hitter in the first inning.
JJ on Freddy: interesting, but to me the lesson is that he has been lucky -- a few pitchers really can do a lot better with RISP (Pettitte was one), but I'd expect his RISP performance to fall back into line with his overall performance... which means he won't be very good. Okay as a 4th or 5th starter.
And Jay on Curtis: it's really amazing how Granderson improved so much against lefties. Do we credit Long? It's hard to fathom. I love it!
 I miss Cliff on the Banter. I have found Goldman an enormous bore the last couple of years.
 Is it possible that Jeter super-prepares for the starting pitcher. giving him an edge, but he is not able to adjust as the game goes on?
Also, this is not the first time we have seen this out of Jeter. Look at his splits in 2009: he was crazy good leading of the game (.962 OPS) and leading off an inning (.985)...much better than his overall numbers (.874). I don't have the time to look at other seasons. Maybe this is just a Jeter thing?
 Holy cow! Jeter's career splits:
Leading off game: .929
Leading off inning: .910
Wow, that's weird.
Okay, I guess it isn't just a SSS thing. I wouldn't hazard a guess as to why he's so much better leading off, though.
  Focus, maybe? Something like how Giambi's numbers were much better when he played the field as opposed to when he DH'd?
What's the OPS breakdown in OBP and SLG, monkeypants? Is it that high because he's walking a ton (which I doubt), getting a lot of extra base hits (which I also doubt), or because as the leadoff hitter, he sees a tremendous number of early count fastballs and he hits those very well for a high average (which is what I suspect)?
First batter of game: 355/.408/.521/.929
Leading off inning: .338/.394/.516/.910
So, his OBP is not too much higher than his career ave, but his BA and more so his SLG are a good bit higher. Without digging too deeply, it looks like his leadoff numbers are buoyed by more hits and more XBH rather than more walks.
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