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New York Yankees: White Sox Not Struggling Thanks To Rafael Soriano

It was another tough night in the Bronx, as the New York Yankees lost for the second night in a row to the Chicago White Sox.

Rookie pitcher Ivan Nova pitched a great game, as did White Sox’s Gavin Floyd who was still on the bump on the ninth inning. Skipper Ozzie Guillen knows that his bullpen has blown too many close games already this season so it was a no-brainer to leave Floyd out there while he was still dealing.

Ivan Nova left the game to 40,000+ Yankee fans on their feet cheering on a great outing, smart move by skipper Joe Girardi to get Nova out on a high like that.

David Robertson came in and did his job, keeping the White Sox at bay 2-1 but handing the ball to 2010’s AL top closer once again failed the Yankees.

Rafael Soriano is definitely proving GM Brian Cashman’s reasoning behind NOT signing him during the off-season semi-true.

Hey, I was a huge supporter in grabbing Soriano after being burned by Cliff Lee. I thought Soriano would make the bullpen lights-out, but he honestly just looks like he doesn’t care.

Joba Chamberlain, Boone Logan and Robertson have all shaken off their early season jitters and are whizzing threw innings to keep the team in a position to win. These are the younger pitchers who should be admiring Soriano and it is not even his performance necessarily, but his attitude, which is evident and apparent when he gets into trouble.

Look, I hate to admit booing players and up to this point, other than Kyle Farnsworth I have been not participated in that at games. Then I sat tonight watching a pitcher who just didn’t seem to care, as if it was everybody’s fault but his and that is what bothered me more.

At this point I need to get a tattoo on my forehead that reads, CASHMAN RIGHT. I AM SORRY.

This is not disregarding what Hank and Hal Steinbrenner had to do because Yankees fans would have rioted if the off-season did produce some big-time player contract signing. That my friend, is a fact.

So after the amount of time I wasted criticizing Cashman, look at how things are turning out. Guess that is why I am not the Yankees GM, but can I please blame something for all of my anger?

Yes, it is crazy but the rejection by Cliff Lee did break my heart a little because who would not want to come to New York? It is my hometown and isn’t everything about money these days?

Add that to the re-signing Derek Jeter stress, and my aggression had to be taken out on someone, I guess. I just forgot that being the most expensive doesn’t guarantee anything but a nicer seat.

Hey, now who looks like the fool?

I do but booing doesn’t make me look any better.

What it really comes down too is the reality is that Soriano has appeared in 10 games this season and the team boosts a 7-3 record respectively.

So, it is more of just expecting Soriano to be a little bit better and maybe it is because I wanted him to be the Cliff Lee the Yankees will never have.

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New York Yankees: Remember Pitcher Ian Kennedy, Let Me Help

After watching the New York Yankees bats waste a great outing from AJ Burnett in a 3-0 loss to the Chicago White Sox in the first of a four game set, I turned to the MLB Network to see what else was happening in baseball.

First came the phone-in from White Sox pitcher Phil Humber and some well-deserved congratulations for stunning the Yankees, getting the White Sox a much needed win. This was Humber’s sixth start in his career and the first time he went past six innings ever, as he had a no-hitter through seven until A-rod broke it up.

This is a typical performance from the Yankees, who are known to get beaten by pitchers they have never faced before, a theme that was repeated over and over by the MLB Network’s round table.

I almost changed the channel after the tenth Brian Wilson beard commercial, but I held out once I heard Arizona Diamondback and ex-New York Yankee Ian Kennedy was flanking the Philadelphia Phillies was coming up LIVE.

Kennedy was part of the Yankees trio of Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes, and tonight he posted his first complete game shutout tonight against the Phillies.

What is even more gratifying is that Cliff Lee was the opposing pitcher, but I am not done yet. Kennedy became a dad this past Sunday morning at 2:04am and it took the new dad 2 hours and 4 minutes to get the win. Kennedy still has that wicked change-up that seems to be clocking in in the low 90’s.

Goodness, maybe the Yankees let the wrong one of the trio go? Considering Chamberlain is about to hang up his gloves and call it a career; while Hughes is getting an MRI as his dead arm is still well…. dead.

Congratulations to Kennedy, his family and the Diamondbacks for shutting down the predicted 2011 World Series Champions.

Quick note: This is regarding Wilson’s beard; after getting embarrassed by the Atlanta Braves in your own house, don’t you think it is time to shave that thing off. I presume Wilson’s extra paycheck is coming from the beard, but the Giants are not winning. You would think a four game sweep by a team that you beat in the playoffs last season would be enough of a reason to grab that BIC, because no one is fearing much except Timmy Lincecum, who might not even like baseball that much.

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Lady Loves Pinstripes Giveaway: Win $50 Gift-Card To Shop.MLB.com

Lady Loves Pinstripes is hosting a START-TO-MAY $50.00 GIFT-CARD GIVEAWAY.

Two lucky Lady Loves Pinstripes readers will be picked at random on Sunday May 1st and each will win a $50 Gift Card to Shop.Mlb.com, the Official Store of Major League Baseball.

Who Is Eligible?

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  • On Sunday May 1, 2011 the winners will be selected through a random contest generator and notified on Monday May 2, 2011.
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2011 MLB Season: Cashman A Genius? Best Pitching Not In Philly? Red Sox Suck?

Yes…you read the title right, as 2011 is proving to be the craziest season in years.

Everything that is NOT suppose to happen is already happening.

Not that everything can’t change because the season is still in its baby stages and trust me nothing will stay as is. Still, the first three weeks are mind-boggling with dramatic walk-offs, sensational pitching and home-runs galore.

It seems as if EVERY team has come to win this season. Teams that are supposed October locks and players that are not supposed to good anymore are proving all of us baseball nuts to be fools.

Here are the 5 biggest shocks that are now baseball realities (the order is for number not ranking purposes):

  1. The Philadelphia Phillies starting rotation does not feature the best one-two punch in baseball. Phillies Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee are no slouches but they don’t compare to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim aces Jered Weaver and Dan Haren. The Halos tandem have a combined 9-0 record in nine starts and have 66 strikeouts. While the Phillies duo have a combined 53 innings pitched, with 52 strikeouts and a win-loss record of 4-2 in eight starts. The Halos #1 and #2 cost around $20 million combined; compared to the Phillies paying $31 million, with $20 million for Halladay alone, who is worth every penny. That is a lot more money to not be on top.
  2. The competition in the AL Central is no doubt about as good as it gets, but who thought that it would be the Cleveland Indians and the Kansas City Royals fighting it out for the first place? As the Chicago White Sox and Minnesota Twins are barely keeping their head above water. Can everyone agree now that Twins Joe Mauer is the biggest overpaid bust in baseball? Mauer is on the DL for the millionth time in his career and his 2009 MVP season sure seems more and more like a fluke.
  3. Picked by every expert, except my favorite ESPN Skip Baylor, to run away with the AL East the Boston Red Sox are proving that buying players doesn’t guarantee anything. You think GM Theo Epstein would have learned this by watching their rival Yankees fail at this many times. Boston didn’t win two World Series in the past decade with this formula. Still, don’t complete write them off the Red Sox cause they will get better.
  4. New York Yankees GM Brian Cashman’s off-season was considered a disaster after missing out on ace Cliff Lee. In an attempt to make up for Lee, Cashman inked every over-the-mound veteran, with an injury history, bad attitude or all three. To put it mildly, Yankee fans were not happy, but now they are in awe of their genius GM who has put together an All-Star back-up plan to come in for the already aging starting All-Stars. You forget how much baseball experience is now in that Yankee locker room, as the amount of awards won on this roaster alone could fill an entire stadium. Don’t think the Yankees are going anywhere just yet because champions know how to win championships.
  5. The Mets have hit rock bottom…NOT! You wonder what else could go wrong at this point, but it is almost a guarantee now that the Mets will find it. The team is at the bottom of not only the NL West but is the worst team in baseball with a 5-13 record. The explanation that “The Mets have all the talent and they are not this bad” is getting old because it is about time they start to prove it. This team needs to do figure itself out or the players need to start to play for all nine innings, not seven or eight. Also, respecting David Wright might do wonders as he is the franchise’s player and deserves better. No one thought that things could really get any worse and the fans are starting to hate the game of baseball now.

 

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New York Yankees Vs. Orioles: Time To Win One For CC

The New York Yankees are in Baltimore for Easter Weekend to play a three game set against their division rival Orioles. So far in 2011, the Yankees are 2-0 against the Orioles.

The first game on Friday night the Orioles will send 25-year-old, righty Brad Bergesen to the mound to face Yankees ace and one of the best pitchers in baseball CC Sabathia.

Orioles Brad Bergesen:

Bergesen will have his hands full with the hot Yankees bats of Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson and Alex Rodriguez.

Cano has an 11-hitting streak going; and A-rod has hit a home-run and two RBIs in nine at-bats vs. Bergesen. In Granderson’s seven at-bats against Bergesen, he has a .555 batting average; with three hits, one double, three RBIs, a walk and zero strikeouts.

Bergesen has had some success versus the Yankees, as Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter have yet to get a hit in a combined 17 at-bats. He also pitched two innings of relief in New York back on April 13th, not giving up a hit and striking out two of the six Bombers he faced even though the Orioles lost the game 7-4.

Still, for the Orioles to have any chance to win the first game of the weekend, Bergesen has to pitch like he did in relief 10 days ago, but for about four more innings.

He has made two prior starts in 2011 posting a 0-2 record, throwing a combined 8.2 innings, allowing seven hits, three homers, four earned runs and striking out five. That isn’t going to cut it with the way the Yankees are hitting.

Yankees CC Sabathia:

Sabathia’s 0-1 record over four starts is not an accurate account of his performances. Sabathia has a 2.52 ERA in just over 25 innings pitched.

This is Sabathia’s slowest start and the only time he hasn’t posted a win in four outings in his 10 past seasons. Sabathia would throw nine innings all the time, but skipper Joe Girardi is not going to allow Sabathia or any Yankee pitcher get overused.

Sabathia is 14-2 in his career against the Orioles, so going eight innings is something Girardi would love to see. Whether Sabathia can keep his pitch count below 100 through seven innings is the question. Sabathia’s pitch count has been over 100 in all four outings, but only once vs. the Twins did he throw an efficient 104 pitches in seven full innings.

MY PREDICTION (and plea):

 

The motto in baseball or any other team sport is you win as a team; you lose, as a team. With the idea that no player is supposed to ever ask or imply otherwise, but this is America and to say it has never happened would be lying.

I can guarantee that selfish attitude has and never will materialize from a player like CC Sabathia. So I have no reason not to hope that Sabathia’s Yankee teammates win this game for their ace, who has come through above and beyond for the team, both as a player and a person.

Obviously the Yankees and the O’s both want to come away with the win, but the Yankees have an extra reason to make sure it happens in this game.

It would be hard to imagine that the Yankee players aren’t thinking about winning for CC and my guess is that is exactly what will happen.

Yankees beat the Orioles with a final score of 10-2.

 

2011 MLB FACT: The Bombers are the only team in baseball who has not lost two games in a row this season.  They also have the most homeruns with 30 already on the season.

 

New York Yankees: Bartolo Colon’s Debut Shut Me Up

Toronto Skydome (Rogers Centre), NY Yankees vs...

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What year is it…2011?

Well, you could have fooled me as it sure felt like 2005 up at the Roger Centre in Toronto tonight, watching New York Yankees pitcher Bartolo Colon throw a gem in his first start filling in for Phil Hughes who is still on the DL with a dead-arm.

After losing a heartbreaker the night before in the bottom of the 10th inning, Colon led his new Yankee teammates to a well needed win. It came as a surprise, but not a shock after the impressive numbers Colon had in Spring Training.

Colon exhibited such an aura of confidence that you would have never guessed it was his first start on a Major League mound since July 24, 2009. He allowed seven hits and two runs over 6 2/3 innings. He struck out seven batters in the tough and hard-hitting Blue Jays line-up, while walking just two. At one point he sent 12 Blue Jays down in a row.

More proof that GM Brian Cashman knows what he is doing, as when Yankees bench coach Tony Pena suggested Colon, Cashman didn’t listen, he acted immediately.

Cashman got such grief, me included before the 2011 season started and all the while he was just doing his job and well I might add.

Looking forward to watching Colon in his next start because after tonight he certainly earned another start on the bump.

Hey, it is about time the low-risk/high-reward actually worked for the Yankees.

The odds were in the ball-clubs favor, as Cashman probably learned after his first few failures of taking on older talent in hopes of a re-birth.

So, could the 37-year-old Colon be turning back into a pitching machine?

As isn’t the never-ending mystery of sports why fans love it in the first place?

Darn right it is….

My advice to Hughes is you better get to work and wake-up that arm because you spot is not guaranteed after the show Colon put on in Toronto tonight.

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