I think it is pretty clear that while many people will say the Yanks were sparked by Jeter’s return; the truth is evident that my blog sparked the Yanks. My blog was written before Wednesday’s win!
As for Wednesday’s win; I was thrilled to see Nova follow-up his game with another good one. He is very important to us moving forward. What I liked was he threw his fastball hard (95) and also took a few limes off of it for a little more movement (92). That is how you start to become a good pitcher and not just a thrower. His breaking ball is very good, although it was a little inconsistent at times; it still had break when it wasn’t as sharp.
Notes since last blog…
Nunez can’t play SS if he is going to tap his glove before every throw. There was a play in the hole that he did that and it made him take an extra step and no chance of throwing a guy out. Then later he tapped his glove on a routine play and knocked it out of his hand for an error. I still don’t think he has the chops to play SS defensively, but as we have seen with a lot of players, they can make big improvements year over year. I just don’t think he is fluid enough with the glove and throw. He has great speed which is nice to see, but his hitting has not been good enough to cover up the defensive shortcomings. Al Leiter mentioned (a little while back) that “we know Nunez can hit, but if he can make plays like that, he will be a weapon.” I am paraphrasing a little but that was close…I am not so sure I know he can hit well? He had 2 hits yesterday, but we are talking about a guy who has a career OPS of .678 and in 100 AB’s this year it is a pathetic .572. I do think he is better than .572, but how much above .700 is the question (it is an odd swing). That being said, if I knew that ARod was not coming back, I would keep Nunez at SS and find out what we have both offensively and defensively and I would play Jeter at 3rd. Jeter’s range at SS has always been an issue for me anyway. Long term, when ARod comes back, what do you do with Nunez? He either goes down and plays nothing but SS or you make him the Jason Nix and get rid of Nix.
Pettitte was very inconsistent with his same pitches. One time his curve was sharp and the next one was a spinner. One time the cutter had some movement and other times it just sat there. Since he came back from Houston I thought Pettitte had so much better movement than before, but the last few outings have been very unimpressive and he needs to find that consistent release point because he won’t be very successful with the stuff he has been bringing out there over his last 5 or so starts. This could be the sign of father time catching up. Hopefully he can regain it for a last run, because he does show it at times…but that is classic age catching up.
Nova lost his shutout because he threw a fastball away rather than jamming Hosmer. Bad pitch location was the reason.
Ichiro had the weakest slide of home I have ever seen. It is amazing that someone with so many SB’s slides the way he does dragging his front foot.
Clearly it was cool to see Yankee stadium rock when Jeter stepped to the plate; that is what the stadium should be like…all the time.
In the 5th inning yesterday, with the Yanks losing 4-3, 2 outs and Suzuki was on 3rd the Royals intentionally walked Cano. It was an interesting choice in a 1 run game in the 5th inning. Wells then walked setting up a key pitch in the game for me. Overbay stepped up with bases loaded and the Royals tried to throw a fastball on the outside corner. The pitch missed the spot, but was still a strike on the inside corner, but the ump called it a ball. This put us in the driver’s seat and Overbay took advantage of the next grooved fastball and ripped a 2 run single. Two more hits later we had a 7-4 lead and the game was ours.
Excellent catch by Ichiro going deep into CF to make a “Mays type catch.” Clearly not as important or as good, but it was still a tough play.
Nobody has really talked about Shawn Kelley. He is throwing a hard 95 MPH fastball and a great slider and his location has been pretty good. His numbers are outstanding, but his big issue has been 5 HR’s in 33.2 innings. Outside of that (I know you can’t dismiss them) he has allowed on 24 hits (.194 batting average against) while walking an average amount of people (13) but striking out 50! He is the reason Joba is being dangled. BTW, Joba hit 97.
Finally, why the push for Robertson? The Yankees are talking about resting guys yet instead of taking days rest we want to push to send them to an All Star game? In my opinion, I don’t want any of my players going to the AS game. Let Cano rest! I surely don’t want Cano doing HR derby and risk messing up his swing. As for Robertson, that was a horrible/embarrassing “commercial” they created for pushing him into the All Star Game!