"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice
Tag: freddy garcia

Freddy’s Dead (No Shit Henry)

Freddy Garcia almost made it through two whole innings today and gave up six runs in the process. His ship, it be a-sinkin’. The Yanks never recovered. It was a mostly listless day for the home team. They couldn’t do anything against the rookie Drew Smyly who pitched damn well.

The good news? Well, Dave Phelps was solid in three innings of relief, Nick Swisher hit two solo homers (one from either side of the plate), and Curtis Granderson hit a solo shot himself. But even three runs against that pant load Valverde wasn’t enough. Eric Chavez, pinch-hitting, represented the tying run with Raul Ibanez on second, two outs in the ninth. Got under an 0-2 pitch, a flat slider, a pitch to hit. It went as far as the warning track for the third out.

Sombitch.

Something will be done about Garcia who is currently putting out the fire with gasoline. In the meantime, chalk this one up to a No Shit Henry loss.

Final Score: Tigers 7, Yanks 5.

Nothing to see here.

Go away. Come back tomorrow. We’ll be here.

[Images via Tom MannionAnais the Mermaid;

What’s Poppin’?

According to this piece by David Waldstein in the New York Times, Freddy Garcia would like to pitch for the Yankees but would consider a trade.

And Bobby V got his panties in a bunch last night. I assume they will be bunched for the rest of the season, especially when the Yankees are involved.

Some bad news. According to a tweet by Jack Curry: Joba Chamberlain dislocated right ankle yesterday and had surgery last night. Cashman called it a significant injury.”

[Painting of Fab Five Freddy by Jane Dickson]

Couple Things

Over at River Ave, Larry Koestler looks at the 2012 NY Yankees All-Projection Team.

Here’s more on Freddy Garcia from George King in the Post.

[Picture by Bags]

Ouch

Freddy Garcia was hit in the hand today.

[Picture by Bags]

Observations From Cooperstown: Nix, Nunez, Garcia, and The Mystery Man

The Yankees’ decision to sign journeyman Jayson Nix to a make-good contract might end up as inconsequential, or it might be a harbinger of a larger transaction to come. A utility infielder who can play both the infield and the outfield, Nix looks like he’s part of the Triple-A backup plan, but I wonder if there is more at work here. There have been rumors that the Braves and Yankees are talking about a deal that would send Eduardo Nunez to Atlanta as part of a package for Jair Jurrjens. If the Yankees do trade Nunez, they will need a new utility infielder. Ramiro Pena is clearly not the answer, and the organization has shown no confidence in minor league veteran Jorge Vazquez.

What kind of a player is Nix? He had a miserable 2011, hitting so poorly and striking out so frequently for the Blue Jays that they released him in mid-season. But he does have some power–he hit 26 home runs combined for the White Sox and Indians over the 2009 and 2010 seasons–and can play third base, second base or shortstop, in addition to the outfield corners.

So should the Yankees trade Nunez? He has loads of natural talent, but is very raw, and must find a way to cut down on his throwing errors. He could be a very good utility infielder, ala Randy Velarde or Luis Sojo, but I don’t know if he has enough patience at the plate to be an everyday player. In the meantime, Jurrjens is a very effective right-handed pitcher who has been good in three of his four full seasons. He’s a strike thrower who won’t turn 26 until January, with the one concern being his ability to stay healthy. If the Braves would be willing to part with the native of Curacao in exchange for a package of Nunez, Brandon Laird, and a middling prospect, I’d have to give some serious thought to such a trade…

* * * *

The Yankees’ wise decision to re-sign Freddy “The Chief” Garcia should not be interpreted as a sign that they will not pursue additional starting pitching; rather it’s part of a plan to stockpile as much pitching depth as possible for a long season. The reliable Garcia is an insurance policy, a No. 5 starter under a worst-case scenario, and possibly a long reliever. The Yankees still plan to pursue pitching via both the trade and free agent routes. If they can add someone like Mark Buerhle (free agent) or John Danks (trade), the rotation will look like this:

1) CC Sabathia

2) Ivan Nova

3) Buerhle or Danks or someone else

4) Phil Hughes

5) A.J. Burnett

Under this scenario, Garcia would start the season out of the bullpen and would be available as a long man and spot starter. The Yankees could then give Hector Noesi some more time to develop as a fulltime starter at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre. With Noesi, Dellin Betances and Manny Banuelos at Scranton, the Yankees would have exactly the kind of young pitching depth that Brian Cashman desires as mid-season insurance. But the plan depends on adding a starting pitcher of some pedigree, something that Cashman has not been able to do since signing Sabathia in 2009…

* * * *

Over at The Hardball Times, I’ve been writing a series of baseball card mysteries where I ask readers to assist me in identifying players on cards. One of the cards has proved particularly vexing: the 2001 Topps Golden Moments card featuring Bucky Dent’s historic home run against Mike Torrez. I’ve been able to identify most everyone on the card. There’s Dent himself (wearing No. 20), who’s being trailed by Chris Chambliss. The welcome wagon of congratulation includes Yankee trainer Gene Monahan, backup catcher Cliff Johnson and manager Bob Lemon (all in jackets). Behind Lemon is Jay Johnstone, the veteran backup outfielder. Behind Monahan is Willie Randolph, who was injured and unavailable to play in the tiebreaker game against the Red Sox.

That leaves one mystery man. Who is the player to the right of Randolph, the one right next to the gold Topps logo? Among our readers suggestions have been backup outfielder Gary Thomasson, first baseman/DH Jim Spencer, and backup catcher Mike Heath. Still others claim that this player has no number on the back of the uniform, which leaves open the possibility that it is not actually a player, or not a player who was eligible for that game against the Red Sox. Could it be a ballboy or a batboy?

Who in the world is it? At this point, I really have no idea. Perhaps someone at the Banter knows.

Bruce Markusen writes “Cooperstown Confidential” for The Hardball Times.

The Return of Fab Five Freddy

Sources say

Magic Number Shmagic Number

Freddy Garcia

Freddy Garcia suffered his first loss since July 15th. (Photo Credit / Darren Calabrese - Canadian Press)

Author’s Note / Excuse: Apologies for the delayed post. If you need further proof that the NFL, not Major League Baseball, is the National Pastime, try getting online between 1 and 4 p.m. on a Sunday to access photos from a baseball game to include in a recap. The requisite sites were performing at speeds not seen since 1997.

Threads in this space, elsewhere in the Blogosphere, the Twitterverse, Facebook — basically anywhere you search for Yankees information — have featured criticism of Joe Girardi for managing passively over the past week and a half. That judgment was typically reserved for his bullpen maneuvering, specifically in the one-run losses in Baltimore, Anaheim and Seattle, and then again in the series opener at Rogers Centre Friday night. Not as prevalent in those threads was that the “A” lineup, while physically present on the field, was doing little to help the winning cause.

Then on Sunday, with the Yankees’ magic number to clinch a playoff spot at five, the starting lineup looked more like one you’d see in mid-March than mid-September. Girardi has stated publicly that he’s been looking for places to give the regulars some rest. The counter, “Win the games, win the division, secure the playoff spot and then rest people.” And so it was that the only regulars in the starting lineup were Brett Gardner, Nick Swisher, A-Rod and J Martin.

The result was a feeble, fundamentally unsound 3-0 defeat that left the Yankees 4-6 on this season-long 10-game, four-city road trip. Brandon Morrow dominated the Yankees, striking out seven and walking only one. The Yankees had five hits, only two of which left the infield. Like in the early going Saturday, they ran themselves out of potential scoring opportunities. In the first inning, with Eduardo Nuñez Nuñez on second and Robinson Canó on first, Canó was thrown out on the tail end of a double steal. Later, in the top of the sixth, Nuñez, who Michael Kay and John Flaherty lauded on the YES telecast during his first at-bat, once again incited fans’ ire by inexplicably trying to turn a single into a double. Nuñez hit a clean single to rightfield. Nuñez tried to catch Jose Bautista napping, but it didn’t work. Bautista fired behind the runner to first base, where Edwin Encarnación fired to second to catch Nuñez by a mile. Inning over, potential rally over. Nuñez’s one-out double in the ninth inning marked the only other time in the game the Yankees had a runner in scoring position.

Meanwhile, Freddy Garcia surrendered three runs on five hits and three walks in 4 2/3 innings, and he made a throwing error that contributed to one of the three runs. In short, Garcia did little to pitch himself into consideration for either five-man rotation over the final two weeks of the regular season, or the playoff rotation.

Other things we learned …

* The Ghost of Raul Valdes, who pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the seventh, may have shown that he could be the Yankees’ LOOGY over the next two weeks and into the postseason.

* The Yankees’ bullpen, in the last two games, pitched 9 1/3 innings of shutout ball. The group allowed just two hits and walked four — three by Scott Proctor — in that span.

* The Rays are white-hot. They beat up the Red Sox again and are surging toward a September comeback to rival the 2007 Colorado Rockies. The Yankees have a six-game edge over the Rays in the loss column, which may seem cushy with only 10 games left, but this week’s series at Yankee Stadium cannot be taken lightly. Depending on Monday’s result against the Minnesota Twins, sweeping the Rays would clinch that coveted playoff spot for the Yankees, leaving next weekend’s series against the Red Sox open for clinching the division.

This week features the games the regulars get paid the big money to play. Let’s see how the manager and the team respond.

Magic kit

 

Up Jump the Boogie

Fab Five Freddy, right, with Grandmaster Flash

Over at The Yankee Analysts, Moshe Mandel makes the case for Freddy Garcia.

What’s in a Name?

Over at The Yankee Analysts, Mike Jaggers-Radolf plays Name That Pitcher.

[Photo Credit: N.Y. Daily News]

RISP Averse

The Mets hospital ward team came into Yankee Stadium Friday night missing starting third baseman David Wright, center fielder Angel Pagan, first baseman Ike Davis and staff ace Johan Santana. Since the beginning of the 2010 season, the anticipated heart of the lineup (Beltran, Wright and Jason Bay) have been active at the same time for a total of 27 games. Their starting infield tonight: Daniel Murphy (1B), Ruben Tejada (2B), Jose Reyes (SS) and Justin Turner (3B). Not quite the ’77 Dodgers. Despite this, and a 5-13 start to the season, new manager Terry Collins had them at 21-22, five games behind the first place Phillies.

R.A. Dickey, the Mets knuckleballing starter, had been cuffed around for most of the early season (1-5, 5.08 ERA).  The Yanks countered with Freddy Garcia, who was probably salivating over the depleted opposition, given the way the Red Sox treated him in his last start (5 IP, 6 H, 2 BB, 2 HR, 5 ER).

Unfortunately for Garcia, Dickey had an ally on this night, namely the Yankees continued inability to get a clutch hit.  Going into the evening, the Bombers were 9th in the AL in batting average with 2 out and runners in scoring position (.219).  The worst offender, Nick Swisher, finally got his first hit in 20 tries Thursday night in Baltimore.  He couldn’t offer a repeat performance.

Alex Rodriguez doubled to right-center to start the bottom of the 2nd.  Robbie Cano struck out and Russell Martin grounded out.  Jorge Posada worked a walk and Swisher was plunked on the knee by a 68-mph flutterball to load the bases.  Alas, Brett Gardner hit a two hopper to Turner for a force at third to end the threat.

Mark Teixeira cracked his 11th homer of 2011 with two out in the third for the game’s first run . . . a wall-scraper that landed in the first row of the right field seats just over Beltran’s outstretched glove.  The Mets got the run back in the fourth on a two-out double by DH Fernando Martinez and a double down the right field line by Turner (one of his three hits on the night).

The Yanks had chances to retake the lead over the next two innings.  Swisher came up with two outs and Martin on second in the fourth and struck out.   Gardner and Derek Jeter reached safely to start the fifth, but Curtis Granderson flew to right, Teixeira was caught looking and Rodriguez grounded to short.

The Mets reclaimed the lead in their half of the sixth on a leadoff homer by Daniel Murphy inside the right field foul pole.  Garcia subsequently walked Beltran and two outs later Turner dunked a ground rule double in front of a diving Swisher (fortunate for the Yanks as Beltran would have scored had the ball stayed in play).  Garcia wiggled out of trouble by getting Josh Thole to bounce out to Teixeira.   Dickey survived another runner in scoring position jam in the bottom of the inning, as Russell Martin’s one-out double went for naught with strikeouts of Posada and Swisher.  And that was the last threat (and baserunner) the Yanks would muster, as three Met relievers combined to strike out five of the last nine Yankee batters.

In all, the Yanks went 1-10 with runners in scoring position, and wasted a good bounceback effort by Garcia (with solid relief from David Robertson and Joba Chamberlain, each of whom allowed one single and struck out two in their respective inning of work).

Final: Mets 2, Yanks 1.

Just Writing my Name and Graffiti on the Wall

Fab Five Freddy G is on the hill for the Yanks tonight. I have a bad feeling about this one, but I’ve been known to be wrong, uh, often. Let’s hope that’s the case and…

Let’s Go Yank-ees!

Brrrrrr Stick 'Em

It’s cold, gray and windy out there today. A soup is good food afternoon if there ever was one. Bundle up, settle in and let’s hope the Yanks give us reason to cheer.

Fab Five Freddy takes the hill.

Let’s Go Yank-ees!

Tonka Tough

Dig what I came across in Midtown yesterday…

Although this is a 2009 vintage I officially nominate this vehicle as the 2011 Bronx Banter Scoretruck. Can I get a witness?

Fresh direct from the Lo Hud Yankees oven comes news that Rafael Soriano is sorry that he split without talking to reporters last night.

Here’s tonight’s line-up:

1. Gardner LF
2. Granderson CF
3. Teixeira 1B
4. Rodriguez DH
5. Cano 2B
6. Swisher RF
7. Chavez 3B
8. Nunez SS
9. Molina C
Garcia P

Forget the chumps–or that Chump, in particular–here comes Fab Five Freddy and

Let’s go Yan-Kees!

Yankees Roundup

One week til opening day, kids.

First of all: My dream last night involved Luis Castillo as a malevolent Warwick-Davis style Leprechaun. Should I be concerned? I think probably so.

The big news today is actually not quite news yet, but it does seem likely: reading the tea leaves, it looks as though the Yankees are going to go with Ivan Nova and Freddy Garcia as their fourth and fifth starters, with Colon possibly in the bullpen as a long reliever. While I’m annoyed because all those Colon jokes I had ready are less relevant now, if this is the way the team goes, I think it makes sense. Colon had a much better spring, but we’ve all seen over the years that spring training stats mean very little – and if you look back over the much-larger sample size of a few years, Garcia is clearly the safer, more reliable bet. From Girardi’s comments in that NY Post article, it sounds like he was the strong favorite before spring training even started. Keep in mind that nothing is official yet. But it’s almost like Colon didn’t have a clear… oh, never mind.

Meanwhile, via Hardball Talk, Buck Showalter got a bit catty towards the Yankees and Red Sox in an interview with Men’s Journal, which I presume is one of those “let’s fire up the team” efforts (although: Men’s Journal? Is that really the place?). I have to say, however, that his criticism of Derek Jeter, while uncalled for, was not inaccurate:

“The first time we went to Yankee Stadium, I screamed at Derek Jeter from the dugout. Our guys are thinking, ‘Wow, he’s screaming at Jeter.’ Well, he’s always jumping back from balls just off the plate. I know how many calls that team gets – and yes, he [ticks] me off.”

Well, yeah… Jeter TOTALLY does do that. It doesn’t bother me at all – he’s trying to get the call and get on base and more power to him. But, yes, I think we’ve all seen a ball cross over the inner corner of the plate as Jeter leaps back as though it were about to nail him in the hip. I can see where if you were an opposing pitcher or manager, this particular move from Captain Intangibles might drive you a little nuts. Personally I appreciate the effort.

Finally, Don Zimmer is extremely old. You knew that. I however did not know that now, in his 63rd consecutive year in professional baseball, Zim is likely just a year away from tying Connie Mack for what is – so far as anyone can figure -  the longer straight baseball career ever. Like so many other managers and coaches, Zimmer left the Yankees on bad terms thanks to clashes with George Steinbrenner, but I’ll always have fond memories of him perched next to Torre during all those World Series wins. What’s particularly nifty is that fans from seven different decades have their own fond memories of him.

Remember the helmet? That’s the first thing I always think of when I think of Don Zimmer.

Fab Five Freddy?

Will Freddy Garcia make the Yankees’ rotation? Here’s our man Cliff over at PB:

For a while I was worried that Nova might get optioned to Triple-A because he’s the one candidate who can be safely stashed in the minors (Mitre is out of options and both Colon and Garcia can void their deals if they don’t make the 25-man roster), but after Mitre’s poor and, perhaps more importantly and tellingly, brief outing on Tuesday, the only remaining role for him seemed to be the long-relief job. However, if that job is Colon’s, Mitre is out and Nova is, rightfully, in.

Again, I might be reading a bit to much into this, but I’m willing to believe we have our answer on the Yankees rotation battle: Nova and Garia in the rotation, Colon in the bullpen, and Mitre off the roster. We’ll know for sure within a week’s time.

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver