Wednesday, May 30, 2007

"I Got It!"

The Yankees finally end their losing skid with a nice 10-5 victory over the Blue Jays featuring a milestone and some controversy.

Johnny Damon, two hits away from 2,000, hit a solo home run in the first, and a base hit in the second, bringing him to the milestone in front of a silent crowd.

The Yankees scored five runs in the first and saw Toronto come back to bring it to a one run, 6-5 score late into the game.

In the ninth inning, with Mariano Rivera already in the game, the Yankees set out for a four-run rally sparked by a little cntroversy.

As Alex Rodriguez was advancing to third base on a routine pop up, he shouted to the third baseman "I got it!". Almost like a rookie move, the fielder stopped dead in his tracks and let the ball fall keeping the rally alive.
Jays third baseman, Howie Clark, called foul and tried to argue his point to the officials. The fans booed in agreement that A-Rod had said something to the effect to cause the miscue, but to no avail, the call stood. A-Rod later went on to score on a Jason Giambi hit, and the Yankees end their losing skid with a much needed victory.

Yankees head into Boston this Friday for a three game series which will not feature Roger Clemens.
He is expected to make his first start on Monday against the White Sox.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 11:08 PM 3 Heckles

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Wake Up!


Dead last in the division, worse than the Devil Rays, straring at a huge uphill climb.
The Yankees can no longer blame injury, they can't blam officiating, they can only blame themselves.

I'll tell you the secret of winning championships.

Reggie Jackson never complained, Thurmon Munson never complained, Billy Martin never complained; instead they had grit. They wanted to win, so in a magical fall of 1978, they came back from 14 down in August, fought their way to the top, and Bucky Dent led them to the World Series in which Reggie became Mr. October.

The two guys on top of this post, they never let any cheap call go by them with out a confrontation. The on the left, stirred up the staff, stood behind his players, argued for them; the one on the right, a catalyst, former captain, the one who cared more about the game than his body. The one thing they both have in common, they are champions.

Stop the whining, stop the pampering, stop the bitching.
You want it, you earn it, you fight for it.


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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 11:36 PM 1 Heckles

Monday, May 28, 2007

Your Chance To Speak

I have posed a question over at Yahoo Asnwers giving you the opportunity to manage the Yankees.
Stop on by and post your answer. The best answer will be posted on this blog.

Click here to answer


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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 10:29 PM 0 Heckles

Sad sad sad

The Yankees started the season in first place, fell to last, climbed back to second, and are staring into the basement again.
Pitching hasn't worked, hitting hasn't worked, fielding hasn't worked.
It is very clear that the Yankees are either setting themselves up for a 1978 repeat, or the most humiliating failure since the 2004 playoffs.
There was a 60/40 chance the Yankees were going to win the division, but at this rate, there is a 30.70 chance they will finish in last place for the first time since 1990.

It's unbelievable how horrible they are playing, losing the series to the Mets, Red Sox, and swept by the Angels.

As of right now, the Yankees do not deserve to make the playoffs. Roger Clemens is not going to do anything, especially since he had no success in the minors.

I'm not giving up now, but I am going to say it's been a great 10 years, good luck in the future Joe Torre and Brian Cashman, your days are numbered.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:04 PM 0 Heckles

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Roger Clemens - 300th Win / 4,000 K's

July 13, 2003
Yankees vs Cardinals


INNING 1
Cardinals batting
Roger Clemens pitching

Miguel Cairo batting: Ball, strike looking, foul, strike out swinging (3,997)
J.D. Drew batting: Strike looking, ball, strike swinging, ball, foul, strike out swinging (3,998)
Albert Pujols: Strike swinging, strike looking, ball, ball, strike out swinging (3,999)

Yankees batting
Jason Simontacchi pitching


Alfonso Soriano batting: foul, ball, strike looking, foul out to third
Derek Jeter batting: strike looking, ball, strike swinging, single to left
Jason Giambi batting: strike looking, ball, ball, foul, fly out to center
Jorge Posada batting: ball, ball, double of wall in right, Jeter scores
Robin Ventura batting: strike swinging, foul, ball, ball, strike out swinging

INNING 2
Cardinals batting

Clemens pitching


Jim Edmonds batting: ball, HOME RUN LEFT FIELD, Edmonds scores
Scott Rolen batting: foul, foul, ball, ball, foul, double off left field wall
Edgar Renteria batting: strike looking, foul, ball, ball, ball, STRIKE OUT SWINGING (4,000 CAREER STRIKE OUTS)
Tino Martinez batting: strike looking, strike swinging, strike out swinging
Mike Matheny batting: strike swinging, foul, ball, ball, strike out swinging

Yankees batting
Simontacchi pitching


Hideki Matsui batting: strike looking, ball, strike looking, HOME RUN RIGHT FIELD, Matsui scores
Ruben Sierra batting: strike looking, ball, fly out to center
Raul Mondesi batting: ball, ball, strike looking, ground out short -> first
Juan Rivera batting: foul, strike swinging, ball, ball, ball, ball four
Soriano batting: strike looking, ball, strike swinging, ball, fielder's choice third -> second

INNING 3
Cardinals batting
Clemens pitching


Kerry Robinson batting: strike looking, ball, strike looking, foul, foul, ground out catcher -> first
Cairo batting: base hit to left
Drew batting: ball, ball, strike looking, strike swinging, strike out looking
Pujols batting: ball, ball, ball, ball four
Edmonds batting: strike swinging, fly out to left

Yankees batting
Simontacchi pitching


Jeter batting: ball, strike swinging, ball, fly out to right
Giambi batting: strike looking, strike looking, ball, ball, ground out to first -> pitcher
Posada batting: strike looking, strike looking, strike out looking

INNING 4
Cardinals batting

Clemens pitching


Rolen batting: base hit to left
Renteria batting: foul, base hit to left, Rolen to third
Martinez batting: sac fly to left, Rolen scores, Renteria to second
Matheny batting: strike looking, ball, foul, strike out swinging
Robinson batting: strike looking, ball, foul, ball, ground out second -> first

Yankees batting
Simontacchi pitching

Ventura batting: strike looking, strike looking, strike out looking
Matsui batting: strike looking, ball, ball, foul, ball, foul tip strike out
Sierra batting: strike looking, ball, HOME RUN RIGHT FIELD, Sierra scores
Mondesi batting: fly out to center

INNING 5
Cardinals batting

Clemens pitching


Cairo batting: strike looking, ball, ball, foul, pop out to short
Drew batting: strike looking, strike swinging, ball, ball, ball, ball four
Pujols batting: ball, strike swinging, base hit to left, Drew to second
Edmonds batting: ball, ball, strike looking, strike swinging, strike out swinging
Rolen batting: ball, ball, ball, strike looking, foul, strike out swinging

Yankees batting
Simontacchi pitching


Rivera batting: double to right-center
Soriano batting: pop-bunt out to catcher
Jeter batting: ball, strike looking, foul, foul, ball, ball, fly out to right
Giambi batting: foul, ball, ball, foul, check swing strike out

INNING 6
Cardinals batting

Clemens pitching


Renteria batting: ball, strike looking, strike swinging, fly out to left
Martinez batting: strike looking, ground out second -> first
Matheny batting: strike looking, ball, fly out to right

Yankees batting
Simontocchi pitching

Posada batting: strike looking, ball, ball, ball, ball four
Ventura batting: foul, strike swinging, fielder's choice short -> second, Posada out at second
Matsui batting: foul, ground into double play, second -> short -> first

INNING 7
Cardinals batting
Clemens pitching


Robinson batting: fly out to center
Cairo batting: strike swinging, ball, foul, ball, fly out to center

Chris Hammond replaces Clemens

Drew batting: bunt hit to third
Pujols batting: strike looking, ball, ball, base hit to right, Drew to second
Edmonds batting: strike swinging, ball, ground out second -> first

Yankees batting
Simontacchi pitching


Sierra batting: foul, base hit to right-center
Mondesi batting: strike looking, HOME RUN TO LEFT, Sierra scores, Mondesi scores
Rivera batting: base hit to right

Esteban Yan replaces Simontacchi

Soriano batting: ball, fly out to center
Jeter batting: foul, ball, ball, strike looking, ball, ground out short -> first, Rivera to second
Giambi batting: ball, ball, ball, ball four
Posada batting: ball, strike swinging, ball, strike looking, ball, ground out second -> first

INNING 8
Cardinals batting

Antonio Osuna replaces Hammond


Rolen batting: strike looking, ball, strike swinging, foul, line out to short
Renteria batting: fly out to right
Martinez batting: foul, strike swinging, ball, ball, ground out second -> first

Yankees batting
Steve Kline replaces Yan pitching

Sierra batting: ball, pop out to left-center
Mondesi batting: strike looking, ball, line out to third
Rivera batting: ball, force out short -> third

INNING 9
Cardinals batting
Mariano Rivera replaces Osuna

Orlando Palmeiro batting: strike looking, ball, ball, foul, strike out looking
Robinson batting: strike looking, ground out pitcher -> first
Cairo batting: strike looking, ground out to first

FINAL
Yankees 5
Cardinals 2

ROGER CLEMENS BECOMES THE 21st PLAYER TO REACH 300 WINS

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 8:00 PM 0 Heckles

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

What the Yankees Need

I could have talked about the Subway Series, I could talk about the Red Sox series, I could even talk about the recent drama with Jason Giambi and his steroid admittance, but there is one story even more pressing that needs to be discussed.

The Yankees are having a poor season, we all know that and Red Sox fans are rejoicing. I have went through every scenarios already trying to figure out how the Yankees can improve. Nothing worked. Only one thing remains.

Fight.

Not brawl, but fight to win. Slide hard, break up double plays, run like hell on every ground ball, take chances on the base paths, knock down the catcher.
In 1978, the Yankees had a very gritty team which led them to a World Championship title.
Lou Pineilla was a fierce outfielder and had a great bat.
Thurmon Munson cared about no one when he was running. He even got in to a famous brawl with Sox catcher Carlton Fisk.
Reggie Jackson gave the Yankees the right about on controversy to keep them rolling as the self proclaimed "straw that stirs the drink".
Billy Martin, the on-and-off manager of the Yankees always stood up for his players to umpires and the boss George Steinbrenner himself resulting in numerous firings and suspensions.

Where are these guys now? Where are the hard sliders, the knock-down pitchers, the fiery managers?

The Yankees need them now more than ever.

Nowadays players are too scared to throw chin music, spike fielders, and charge through the catcher.
Paul O'Neill was the last grit player for the Yankees. He always played hard and provided the right amount of determination to win. His helmet throwing, water cooler bashing antics may have seemed immature, but it worked. With him, the Yankees won four World Series titles.

Yes, the Yankees have clutch with Jeter, Rodriguez, and Posada working in that department, but where are the ones who will still play hard when down by ten in the ninth?

Joe DiMaggio was once asked, "Why do you play hard everyday?" To which he replied, "Because there is one person who has not seen me play."

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 4:39 PM 0 Heckles

Monday, May 21, 2007

The Shame

I lost a bet. I lost a bet against a Mets fan. Now I have to disgrace my blog.
The conditions of the bet were that if the Mets won the series against the Yankees, I would have to mention that the Mets are great, and vice versa.
So here goes.

The Mets are a great baseball teams and have shown that they are in fact better than the Yankees. The Mets are so good that they are New Yorks team.
The Yankees have no chance against the Mets. The Mets are the Yankees daddy.

Ok, enough.
We have decided to keep the same bet when the Mets visit Yankee Stadium in June.

Oh the shame....

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 5:28 PM 5 Heckles

Friday, May 18, 2007

61,808 Honor Lou Gehrig

The Baltimore News-Post
Sports
Wednesday Evening, July 5, 1939

'Iron Man' Is Overcome By Emotion
by Sid Feder

NEW YORK, July 5-(A. P.)
The husky figure climbed slowly up the old wooden stairs back of the Yankees' dugout, shoulders bent, right leg limping and throat torn by sobs.

This was Lou Gehrig leaving the most dramatic moment of his life. Back of him, 61,808 fans piled on Yankee Stadium's tiered sides, cheered till the rafter shook, and out on the field a big, round-faced, flat-nosed fellow stood as tears rolled down his face.

He was Babe Ruth the one-and-only, who had just voiced for everyone who knows three strikes are out their feeling about Lou.

"C'MON KID"

He had gone over, put one of those big arms around Gehrig's shoulders and patted Lu once or twice, trying to get him stifle the emotion which had broken him up right out there on the bal field.

"C'mon, Kid," the Babe whispered through his tears. "C'mon Kid, buck up now. We're all with you."

That was what everyone had been trying to say to Gehrig for an hour during all that ceremony which marked "Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day" at the Stadium yesterday. The fans had been trying to; so had his teammates-those of the current Yanks and those of the '27 World Champions-and so had the baseball writers. But there was no one who could-or should-have said it like the Bam.

OLD-TIMERS GATHER

All around them were players of the current club and those of the past generation of world beaters. They had gathered, these old-timers, from the four corners of the country to do honor of old Lou, the iron horse, who has been put back in the roundhouse by a little germ. "beanballs" couldn't do it, nor broken bones, nor illness through the 14 years during which he chalked up sports' most amazing endurance record of 2,130 straight games in action. But this little "bug," a form of infantile paralysis, may have put a "period" on the hoss' playing career for keeps.

So the club, thanks to President Ed Barrow, put on the show for Lou yesterday before the biggest crowd of the year. And old timers unanimously agreed there has never been such a heartfelt scene on the diamond.

For Lou, a sentimental sort of fellow anyway, it was too much. Even before before the speechmaking and presentation of the gifts on the field, he was overcome in the clubhouse.
"There hasn't been a day since I came up that I wasn't anxious to get in uniform an dout on the field," he said. "But today I wish I was anywhere but in this situation."

VOICE BREAKS

Afterwards, on the field, he stood surrounded by gifts from the club, his teammates, the baseball writers, the Old Timers' Association of Denver, the Stadium employees and the New York Giants, and said a few words into the loudspeaker system. Several times his voice broke and a sob escaped as he announced, "Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth."
He waved an arm at the old teammates, fellows like Ruth and Tony Lazerri and Herb Pennock, Earl Combs, Wally Shang, Benny Bengough, Bob Shawkey, Bob Meusal, Mark Koenig, Joe Dugan, George Pipgras, and the rest.

"Just look," he went on, "wouldn't you consider it a privilege to associate yourself with such fine looking men as are standing on this ball field. Or with men like Col. Jacob Ruppert (late president of the club) or Miller Huggins (manager who died in the 20s)."

Then he stumbled, his eyes blinded by tears, back to the clubhouse. There, still the same shy retiring Gehrig, he turned to a friend and asked. "Did by speech sound silly. Did it?"


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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 6:22 PM 1 Heckles

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Friday Flashback Preview

We here at BronxBloggers are going to introduce a new feature called Flashback Friday.
We have come across a compilation of old newspaper clipping from baseball dating back to the 1800s.
Every Friday we will post a historic clipping from teh archives and it will be posted word by word with all grammatical and spelling mistakes.
Of course we will give the proper credits to the respective newspapers in which these clipping wil lbe taken from.
We are also partnered with My Opinion of Baseball and will introduce the same feature there as well. But instead of Yankees clippings, I will have clippings from all teams.

The first clipping we will present is entitled:
"61,808 Honor Lou Gehrig"

Stay tuned tomorrow

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:26 PM 0 Heckles

Monday, May 14, 2007

The Perfect Line-Up

Many managers have different ways of setting up their line ups before a game. Most of them follow the hitter-hitter-RBI-power method for the first four slots, but there is an even better way.

Joe Torre, read carefully...

The Lead-off Hitter:
Derek Jeter
The lead-off hitter should not be the batter with the highest batting average, but instead the batter with the highest on-base percentage.
Lead-off hitters should specialize in taking pitchers deep into a count so the other hitters have more chances to see what the pitcher is throwing and also to get a feel of his release point. The lead-off hitters job is also of course to get on base.
Most people will send up a singles hitter to the plate, but what a manager really should do is send p a batter who has a high walk ratio as well a good hitter. Base running is a huge plus, although the next hitter should make the running easier.
The lead-off hitter should rake in around 170 hits with 100 bases on balls and a few hit by pitches wouldn't hurt either.

The Second Hitter:
Robinson Cano
This spot should be reserved for the high average hitter who can get on base while successfully hitting the ball enabling the lead-off hitter to possibly advance to third for an easy set up to score the first run. The second should not be a power hitter, as the line up will call for them in a different slot.

The Third Hitter:
Alex Rodriguez
This is where you clean up hitter should be. Pure RBI in this position and nothing else. If by chance that both hitters before this one reaches base, runs could score. This hitter has already seen what the pitcher throws and is already prepared on what to expect. One swing of the bat could send runners across. This batter needs to have a low double play ratio.

The Fourth Hitter:
Jorge Posada
This hitter is pure power and needs to be a threat in the line up. His main job is run manufacturing and setting himself up for a great night. With a power hitter in this position, he protects the third hitter from intentional walks. The fourth hitter should have a low two-out ratio.

The Fifth Hitter:
Hideki Matsui
This hitter is a specialized hitter who combines both extra-base hits and on-base percentage. A combination of the first three hitters. One who can get into scoring position easy while driving in runs. This batter needs not to be a speedy runner, but one who has the power to hit doubles.

The Sixth and Seventh Hitters:
Bobby Abreu, Jason Giambi
These hitters are to be placed almost like the second and third hitter. The sixth one is to have a high on-base percentage and the seventh hitter should rank third or fourth in the team in RBI.

The Eighth Hitter:
Doug Mientkiewicz
For National League line-ups, this is a prime position for the pitcher. It doe snot matter if he is the third out or the first out, either way, the fast players will bat next.
For American League line-ups, you weakest hitter should bat here.

The Ninth Hitter:
Johnny Damon
Speed, speed, speed. The faster the player, the better he fits this role. This hitter should be a decent hitter who can steal bases often. The ninth position is not one to be ridiculed at or demeaning, but one of strategy.


I don't mean to toot my own horn, but I have used this line up while coaching little league and I sport a 19-2-1 record with an undefeated 2006 while claiming the city title.
Toot!

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 8:37 PM 3 Heckles

Interview: Josh Drabek

Sorry this came so late, Josh had replied to my questionnaire earlier this week, but I was involed with moving to a new apartment and have been away for a few days.

BronxBlogger: Before the game, what was running through your head?
Josh Drabek: The usual pregame stuff. Trying to study their hitters warming up, getting my pitches ready in the pen, trying to psych myself up and get pumped for the game. Nothing ouit of the ordinary for me.

BB: As the game progressed and you had struck our the first few batters, did anything seem suspicious to you?
JB: I knew I had struck out everyone so far, and I was really thinking on the rest of the game. Each batter is a new battle and each time I won.

BB: It's in the seventh inning, you have struck out every batter, did you feel any pressure?
JB: Yes. I have never pitched like this before striking out every batter. I began to think, can I strike out the side for three more innings?

BB: Game over, perfect game, 27 strike outs, what was going through your head?
JB: I stood on the mound in disbelief. Once I saw my teammates swarm me, then it kicked in. I was ecstatic, jumping up and down still not fully comprehending on the accomplishment that I had achieved.

BB: When did the feeling sink in?
JB: Ask me in a few days. I'm still surprised on what I did and I found out the next day in the papers that I had set a new strike out record. Mayor Randy Choles gave me the key to the city Sunday afternoon and I was on the news. The feeling is still sinking in, but this is something that will never be forgotten.

BB: How will you bring this accomplishment to your next start?
JB: I'll try to pick up where I left off.


Josh Drabek's next start was another great one striking out eleven in eight innings, however, lack of defense sent Hennequi their second loss in a 1-0 shut out by George Washington High School.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 6:54 PM 1 Heckles

Friday, May 11, 2007

Roger Maris on Steroids?

I recently went out and purchased the new McFarlane Cooperstown Collection Roger Maris figurine and I have to say, it is very anatomically incorrect:

Let's analyze a real life photo of Maris:


As you can tell, Maris' arms are no larger than the average person's arms. No bulging biceps, no ripping veins, nothing out of the ordinary.

Now let's analyze the McFarlane figurine:

In nearly the same pose as above, you can defiantly see a difference in muscle mass. Maris has a wider torso and his arms suddenly blew up to He-Man like proportions. The actual figure has bulging veins and the arms are larger on Maris than the Jason Giambi figurine.
Steroids were not around in 1961, yet his arms seem abnormally large.

If we were to compare Maris to He-Man, you will see that there is not much difference in the arm mass.



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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 10:35 PM 1 Heckles

Cory Lidle Estate Sued


An architect has sued the estate of late New York Yankees pitcher Cory Lidle, claiming his home was destroyed and he was emotionally injured when the ballplayer's small airplane crashed into his apartment building.

Stephane Sparta says in court papers that after Lidle's Cirrus SR-20 aircraft crashed on Oct. 11, 2006, into the Upper East Side Manhattan building where he lives, he was forced to abandon his 41st-floor apartment.

Sparta's court papers say parts of the airplane wreckage "exploded" into his living room, "setting the contents on fire and otherwise destroying the apartment and the property therein."

Sparta's court papers say, "The crash, the explosion, and the resulting fire and smoke caused by the aircrash of Oct. 11, 2006, caused plaintiff extreme terror and fear for his life."

Sparta suffered "extensive mental anguish, emotional distress and fear of physical harm," according to the lawsuit, the third filed against the Lidle estate as a result of the crash.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:09 PM 3 Heckles

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Roger = World Series...Right?

Wrong!

Adding Roger Clemens to the staff does absolutely nothing. Yankees fans may rejoice that one of the greatest pitchers of all time is back with the Yankees, but Roger is 44 going on 45 this year, and with a $29 million contract, he passes A-Rod as the highest paid player in the game. It has been calculated that Clemens will earn $102 a second. That is not a typo.

Brian Cashman has went against everything he has said from the start of the season.
We will not call up Philip Hughes this season; oops too late, now he is on the disabled list.
We will not sign high priced veteran players; oops too late, we spent $24 mil on Clemens.

So, instead of investing in the farm system, they have decided to rent players for the year proving to the baseball world that the Yankees have very deep pockets and are taking advantage of the less fortunate teams.

What the Yankees need is not an eleventh starter, but a bullpen.
The current starters have put in quality starts, many of them lost in a flurry of bullpen failures including three from Rivera and two from Vizcaino.

The bullpen needs a lot of work since Rivera is not, well, Rivera, and both Vizcaino and Farnsworth are not as consistent as the Yankees needs them to be.

Roger Clemens will work his way through the minor leagues and is expected to possibly face the Red Sox in June for his first start this season.

Is $102 a second worth it?


UPDATE
I sent an interview questionnaire to Hennoqui's athletic program about the Josh Drabek game and should it should be returned by the end of the week.
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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:37 PM 5 Heckles

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Now Pitching for the Yankees: Roger Clemens


Roger Clemens is a Yankee.

With those five words, displayed on the video screen at Yankee Stadium in a surprise announcement during the seventh-inning stretch on Sunday, the 44-year-old right-hander ended all the speculation and confirmed his return to the Bronx.

Public-address announcer Bob Sheppard instructed the crowd to draw its attention to the owner's box and the video screen, where Clemens, holding a microphone, drew a loud ovation from the crowd at the game between the Mariners and Yankees.

"It's a privilege to be back," Clemens said. "I'll be talking to you all soon."

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman was not immediately available for comment, but further official announcements are expected shortly.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 2:43 PM 6 Heckles

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Local Legend Fans 27

In one of the most dominating pitching performances by any player in any league, a local high school star threw a 27-strike out perfect game.

Josh Drabek of Hennoqui High School struck out a national record 27 batters en route to a 3-0 victory over Medford Bay High this past Friday.

Drabek, a sophomore, used a variety or pitches varying from a 90+ MPH fast ball to a wicked 47 MPH knuckleball.
What makes his pitches even more potent is that Drabek can throw both over hand and submarine keeping batter virtually clueless on the type of pitch thrown.

This is Drabek's first year on his varsity team and was on the freshman team last year posting a 7-2 record with 59 strike outs and a 1.86 ERA. This year he is at an undefeated 7-0 with 84 strike outs and a dental floss thin 1.54 ERA.

The Hennoqui Pioneers (11-1) has qualified for the regionals tournament coming in late May.
Drabek has already talked to scouts from the Yankees, Mets, and Orioles, but nothing significant has arose from that.

Josh lives in the next town over from where I am located and I will try to get an exclusive interview with him about his perfect game and what he was talking about with the scouts.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:43 PM 1 Heckles

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Game That Shold Have Been

The following takes place between the seventh and ninth inning...

“And Hughes appears to have hurt his leg on that pitch as we take a look at the replay.
Yes, it looks like he grabbed the back of his knee and here comes Guidry and Torre to see what is going on, so we will be back after a few short moments and hope for the best. You are listening to the Yankees in Dallas and Philip Hughes is pitching a gem.

“Welcome back to the game, while we took the break, Hughes threw a couple precautionary pitched and seems alright and have left him in the game and we continue what has started.

“Teixeira steps in on a oh-two count and takes a ball low and outside.

“Two-one with the pitch on the way, ground bail to Jeter, fields, and he is out.

“Next batter is Victor Diaz who struck out and grounded out earlier in the game, drives the first pitch he sees to Cano who throws him out, and we are down to the final six outs. Phil Hughes on his way to history.

“Frank Francisco is in replacing Mahay and he will have to face the meat of the line-up one last time.

“Giambi digs in looking at ball one.
“Ball two just high.
“Oh-two taken for strike one as he let's one by.
“Fly ball to center field, Lofton is there to make the catch.

“You know for the fans here and those watching on TV, you want the Yankees to have quick innings and see how far Hughes can take his game. Almost builds up suspense.

“Hughes, a rookie, and in his second game of his career, is embarking on one of the greatest feats a pitcher can endure.

“Rodriguez, still getting a mix of cheers and boos from the crowd, steps in.
“Taking ball one...
“...Fransisco deals, strike swinging. A-Rod has slowed down since the last series against the Red Sox, if you can call it that. He still gets on base, but the home runs and RBIs have stopped and he will take ball two...The two-one, swung on for a base hit to left field.

"Up next is Matsui who is having a great day producing three runs and scoring one.
“Fransisco deals and another first pitch ball...strike swinging to even the count.
“Matsui lifts one to center, but Lofton is there for the second out.

“Posada will come up to the plate.

“If you take a look over at the dugout, you can see Hughes sitting alone with his jacket partially on and either an ice pack or heat pack on his leg from what appeared to be some sort of hamstring pull.

“Posada takes ball one...
“But during the break, he threw a couple pitches, felt fine, and Torre left him in.
“Ball two on Posada...

Now the question is, do you take Hughes out as a precautionary move, or keep him in and see what he can do?

“Posada fouled one to the left side, one-two the count...
“If I were Torre, leave him in, but when he does give up a hit, then call in the replacements.

“Posada hits a fly to Diaz, and we will have our answer in just a few moments. The score is Yankees nine, Rangers nothing.

“Welcome back to the game and for those of you tuning in from the Mavericks-Warriors game, let me tell you, you are going to witness history. Phil Hughes, the Yankees pitching prospect, and in just his second game, is pitching what would be the best game he may ever have in his career.

“Hank Blalock steps in and the crowd starts rising to their feet.
“Blalock...takes the first one looking...
“Blalock drives one in deep right, Abreu is back, Abreu, he makes the catch! He had to run far and hard for that one, but still managed to get the first out the the crowd cheers in approval.

“Kinsler is up now and you can feel the excitement. Yankees fans and Rangers fans, all cheering for history in the making and Kinsler will take ball one.
“So, one out in the eighth inning, Hughes approaching a level of greatness throws ball two.
“Kinsler smacks a hard one to Cano, who dives for the one hopper, and on his knees throws it to first for the second out!

“Wow! It seems as the defense has also reached a new level in preserving history.

“Two out, bottom of the eighth, and here comes Jerry Hairston Jr who is pinch hitting for Wilkerson.
"Wilkerson, who has been sitting on the bench the entire game may have caught on Hughes pitches, but from his angle and the batters angle, things can be different and he will take ball one.

“Yankees have some action in the pen, Luis Vizcaino warming up, so we will see if Torre keeps Hughes to finish the game.

“Junior grounds a weak one to A-Rod who fields it bare-handed and throws to first. Three outs down, three left to go! Phil Hughes, making history!

“Welcome back to the game, Yankees dominating from all sides of the game, hitting, fielding, and one lone pitcher pitching in the greatest game of his life.
“Hairston will remain in the game and play left field, C.J. Wilson is the new pitcher who will face Robinson Cano.

“Cano will take the first pitch inside.

“I just got this bit of trivia, if Hughes can finish the game in the manner he is going, he will be the fastest to the start of a career to do what he is doing. Many rookies have accomplished the no-hitter, including Marlins rookie Anibal Snachez last year.

“Cano lifts one to right-center, into the gap. Rounding first and heading to second, he will get a standing double.

“Cabrera in now.

“Hughes is playing in his second ever major league game, lost his first one, but really making a point in this one.

“Cabrera takes ball one.

“He was never supposed to pitch this early in the year, but a rash of injuries has left the Yankees with no choice but to make emergency call ups.

“Cabrera hit one to Young who throws to Teixeira, cano will advance to third on the play. One out in the top of the ninth, runner on third, Mientkiewicz up.

“As I was saying, the Yankees literally ran out of starting pitching. They currently have three pitchers on the disabled list.

“ Mientkiewicz takes ball one.

“Carl Pavano is out from a sore arm, Mike Mussina will return later this week form a hamstring injury...

“ Mientkiewicz sits on ball two.

“And Jeff Karstens is out for at least another month with a small fracture of his fibula.

“ Mientkiewicz takes ball three.

“So with the Yankees staff riddled with injuries, they had to resort the the farm system and call up a few guys,

“ Mientkiewicz watches strike one go by.

“The replacement pitchers have been holding the team together, even though the Yankees have been in a slump

“ Mientkiewicz grounds one to Blalock who misplays the ball and it goes right by him, Cano will score, Mientkiewicz will be safe on first by an error from Hank Blalock. The Yankees now lead ten to one and Bobby Abreu is next to bat.

“Back to Hughes. He is Baseball America's top pitcher and one of the top prospects in the minors.

“Abreu takes the first pitch.

“Hughes made his debut a couple weeks ago against the Blue Jays allowing four runs and taking the loss.

“Abreu fouls one down the left field line.

“The loss did not shake up the Yankees and they let him stay and here he is, pitching a gem.

“Abreu lines one sharply to Young for out number two. Derek Jeter will come up to bat with two outs in the ninth.

“Hughes said that he has a point to prove to the Yankees and they had enough confidence in him.

“Jeter fouls one back to the net...and another foul ball.
“Jeter has not had much luck in this game with one hit and two strikeouts and as we speak, takes ball one.

“If you will take a look over at the Yankees bench, all the players are sitting on one side and Hughes is all alone on the other side.

“Ball two.

“It's baseball superstition that if a pitcher is pitching this type of game, that not only do we in the announcers booth talk about it, but no one talks to the pitcher.

“Ball three for Jeter.

“It was different when Mark Buehrle had his no-hitter a couple weeks ago, he was chatting with catcher A.J. Pierzynski as if nothing was going on.

“Jeter takes ball four, Mientkiewicz moves to second.

“Josh Phelps will be pinch hitting for Giambi.
“Phelps, if you remember, started the Yankees six-run rally with a home run and ultimately ended in a walk-ff by A-Rod against the Indians two weeks ago
“Phelps will take a strike looking.

“There are two out in the ninth inning, Yankees over the Ranger ten to nothing Phil Hughes pitching a great game so far.

“Phelps fouled one back.

“If Phelps does finish the game in style, it will be the Rangers second time this season being on the receiving end of a no-no.

“That pitch is low and past the catcher, Mientkiewicz will go to third, Jeter to second and the Yankees are threating again. Both runners in scoring position

“Phelps takes ball two, the count is even.

“Fans here in Arlington are started to get restless as they want to see Hughes get the last three outs.

“Phelps strikes out on a fastball away, and we go to the bottom of the ninth, Yankees ten, rangers nothing.

“We welcome you back to the game, for those of you watching the Mavericks and Warriors, trust me, you don't want to miss this.
Philip Hughes, three out away from greatness, three outs away from a pitchers dream, three outs away from the greatest game he will ever pitch.

“Laird will step in and the crowd rises to their feet, cheering for Hughes and witnessing history.
“Fouled back for strike one and listen to this crowd. Cheering against their team in hopes of seeing magic.

“Strike two looking at a nasty curve ball and everyone is going crazy. All around the stadium, there is no one in their seats, even myself.
“Fouled down the first base line, late on the fastball.
“The count is oh and two, Laird digs in, Hughes throws, strike three, he froze him! One out! The crowd is loving this, I am loving this, are you loving this?

“Matt Kata is coming in to hit for Lofton, and Jeter has called a mound conference to talk to Hughes. I don't blame them, Hughes, in only his second game in the majors, is pitching a game that could change his life.
“The conference ends quickly and everyone goes back to their positions. One away, bottom of the ninth, and the scoreboard says it all.

“Hughes delivers, ball one. Crowd quiets down a bit on the pitch.
“The one-oh, Kata hits it to shallow center, Cabrera come in, settles, two away!

“Listen to this crowd, it's like the World Series, but instead of a championship on the line, it's greatness and history. I have never seen this crowd get the crazy before!

“Mike Young steps in to what we hope to be the final batter of the game. Two outs, Hughes on the brink of entering the record books.

“Heres the pitch, a drive to center, Cabrera there, he makes the catch!

A no-hitter, a no-hitter by Phil Hughes. In just his second game of his career, he throws his best game ever! The Yankees rookie, living to the hype as baseball's next ace, throws a game in which he did not allow a single hit!
The crowd is going wild as they have witnessed history.
Philip Hughes pitches a no-hitter and the Yankees will win the gem.
Congratulations Mr. Hughes!

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 11:10 PM 2 Heckles

Almost Too Comical


Credit where it belongs: NY Post
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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 6:33 PM 0 Heckles

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Hughes the Unhittable, Myers the Ruiner

In just his second ever major league start, as a call up no less, Phil Hughes pitched the best game he may ever pitch in his career, only to see it fall short by injury and Mike Myers.
Hughes took the mound against the Texas Rangers and pitched a no-hitter through six and a third before leaving the game due to an injury. He faced one batter over the limit allowing three walks while striking out six.
After throwing his 83rd pitch of the night, Hughes injured his left leg and despite him remarking that he was OK, was removed from the game.
Mike Myers came in to replace him and promptly closed out the inning giving the Yankees a full seven innings of no-hit ball.
And seven is what all they get.
Myers allowed the first hit of the game to Hank Blalock who scored on Ian Kinsler's double to end the shut out.
The Yankees, back by Robinson Cano and Jorge Posada, provided the offense to win the game 10-1

What would have happened if Hughes stayed in the game? Whatever the answer, he has certainly lived up to the hype as being one of the top prospects in the minors.

***UPDATE***
The injury to Hughes is diagnosed as a left hamstring sprain and will be out 6-8 weeks.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 9:37 PM 3 Heckles

Monthly Review: April


The New York Yankees, with one of the most potent line ups ever, are sitting in last lace with the worst opening month since 1984.
They have had wild finishes with clutch hitting, but when playing in their division, they are a miserable 3-11 with two wins against Tampa Bay and a lone win against Boston.
Their pitching has meet the disabled list with all but one starter making the trip. They have used nine different starters including four minor league call-ups to fill in for the injured pitchers. The bullpen is worse than last year ruining quality starts and suffering losses in games which they would have normally won. Mariano Rivera's ERA is in double digits as he collapsed against the Red Sox twice taking the loss in both games.
The Yankees are in a position that Would make King George begin with the firing and hiring, but with age and the support of players, he will not take any actions, yet. Torre nearly lost his job last year after a first round loss to the Tigers in the playoffs sent them home early for the seventh year in a row, but was saved by General Manager Brian Cashman, who may lose his job with Torre is things do not head upward.
The first week was the toughest, especially for the gloves. The Yankees committed six errors in the first game with Derek Jeter accounting for half of them. Notice how I said Jeter, not A-Rod.The infield was improved a lot overall in defense and the offense is slowly peeking around the corner.
If the Yankees want to march back in first, the starting pitching needs to remain healthy and pitcher at least six full innings and the bullpen needs to shut down the opposing bats, not give the game away.
There is no problem with the line up as the Yankees continue to lead the majors in runs scored with A-Rod and Bobby Abreu leading the way.
One item on the Yankees checklist come July 31 trading deadline is pitching. And when that time comes, I will give my recommendations on who should be signed and who should be in trade talks.

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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 7:40 PM 2 Heckles

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