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You are currently viewing archive for November 2009.

Posted by: Patrick
On Twitter, Buster Olney posted this:

Heard this: Matsui's attraction as a marketable asset is no factor for the Yankees. It is about getting the right player at the right price.

This seems pretty straightforward. The right player for the right price is always the goal. But, how do you come to the right price? By considering the player's overall value and part of that value is in the money he can make for you. If Matsui is thought to be worth $15 million in additional revenue, then it would make sense for that to factor into the equation. But, if Matsui's not the right player, then no, it doesn't matter.

Via Joseph Pawlikowski.
Posted by: Patrick
Sports Illustrated has named Derek Jeter as their Sportsman of the Year for 2009. It's been a pretty good year for the captain.

Update: The AP has his reaction:

"It's unbelievable. It was completely unexpected. It came out of the blue," Jeter told The Associated Press during a break in the photo shoot. "When I heard it, what can you say? It's one of the greatest honors you can achieve in sports."

He's the first Yankee to pick up the honor.
Posted by: Patrick
Before he was the ESPN personality, Buster Olney was a Yankees beat writer from 1998-2001. In light of Bob Sheppard stepping away from mic, Olney shared an interesting story on his blog about how Sheppard and former team organist Eddie Layton would move toward the back of the press box when a game was nearing it's end. They did this because it put them in prime position to grab the first elevator down to the basement in an effort to beat the crowds leaving the stadium after a game. Olney had a similar routine and would join them.

"When the final out was actually registered, it was like a starting gun went off for the three of us," Olney writes. "We would race toward the elevator, at varying speeds. But Bob was more efficient than Eddie or I, actually; he would make his move at the crack of the bat that lifted a fly to the outfield, for example, assuming that somebody would catch the ball - and if the ball fell, I guess he figured the crowd's reaction would tell him that, and he would just backtrack." His post has more.

Via Zach Links.
Posted by: Patrick
The AP reports on the 2010 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot. It consists of 26 candidates and the results will be announced on January 6.

15 of the 26 are new to the ballot, including former Yankees Fred McGriff (never played in the majors in New York), Robin Ventura (230 games) and Todd Zeile (66). Other first timers include Roberto Alomar, Kevin Appier, Ellis Burks, Andres Galarraga, Pat Hentgen, Mike Jackson, Eric Karros, Ray Lankford, Barry Larkin, Edgar Martinez, Shane Reynolds and David Segui.

They join former Yankees Don Mattingly, Tim Raines and Lee Smith, as well as Harold Baines, Bert Blyleven, Andre Dawson, Mark McGwire, Jack Morris, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker and Alan Trammell.

Via Mike Axisa.
Posted by: Patrick
Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun reports that, according to a major league executive, Roy Halladay would be willing to waive his no-trade clause to play for the Yankees, if a trade can be worked out with the Blue Jays. Meanwhile, ESPN's Buster Olney says that the righty's preferred teams would be the Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies and Angels.

Via Zach Links.
Posted by: Patrick
Ken Davidoff reports that former Padres general manager Kevin Towers will meet with the Yankees, as well as the Mets, Red Sox and Mariners, during the winter meetings in Indianapolis. A friend of Brian Cashman, Towers is looking to join a club in an advisory role and will make his decision after the meetings.

Via Ben Kabak.
Posted by: Patrick
In April of 2006, Bob Sheppard's streak of 55 consecutive home openers as the Yankees public address announcer came to an end. But, he got back to work and was at his regular post for 2006 and almost all of 2007. An infection led to his missing of the ALDS in 2007, ending a streak of 121 consecutive home postseason games.

He signed a two year extension during the offseason and hoped to return. But, it just never worked out. He hoped for a summer return and to be able to call the All-Star Game during the old Yankee Stadium's final season. Neither happened. He didn't call the final game at the old park, either. But, he still aimed to be back for 2009.

But, then he missed the opening game at the new park. Reports soon broke out that he planned to retire, but the Yankees categorically denied the reports, calling them untrue. And so, the season kicked off and there was still hope of a Sheppard return. The season ended, the postseason ended and we won the World Series. All without an appearance from the longtime PA announcer.

With his two year contract at it's end, Sheppard told's Bryan Hoch that he does not see himself back at the post again.

"I have no plans of coming back," Sheppard said. "Time has passed me by, I think. I had a good run for it. I enjoyed doing what I did. I don't think, at my age, I'm going to suddenly regain the stamina that is really needed if you do the job and do it well."

He also shared his thoughts on his successor Paul Olden and how he feels about Derek Jeter insisting that a recording of Sheppard introduce him for the rest of his career.

Sheppard has earned the rest. He's an unmistakable part of Yankee history (I still remember visiting the old Yankees website and hearing his voice), a legend and he'll be deeply missed as the public address announcer. We wish you nothing but happiness, Mr. Sheppard. Thank you.
Posted by: Patrick
Duncan Elects for Free Agency:'s Bryan Hoch reports that after being outrighted to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Shelley Duncan has elected to become a free agent. Good luck, Shelley.

Cashman Talking to Yanks FAs First: Brian Cashman spoke to Hoch and told him that he'll talk to the Yankees free agents before talking to any others. Once he has, he'll "be full-blown into the marketplace."

Jon Weber Signed: Ken Davidoff reports that the Yankees have inked 31 year old career minor leaguer Jon Weber (stats) to minor league deal that includes an invitation to major league spring training. Last year, while playing for the Triple-A Durham Bills, he hit .302 with 14 home runs, 69 RBIs and a .382 OBA in 117 games. Via Chad Jennings.

Yankees Add Seven to 40-Man Roster: Finally, this happened almost a week ago while I was traveling, but I wanted to highlight it anyway: the Yankees added seven players to their 40-man roster according to Jennings, in order to protect them from the Rule 5 draft. They are RHP Hector Noesi, RHP Ivan Nova, RHP Romulo Sanchez, INF Reegie Corona, INF Eduardo Nunez, INF Kevin Russo and OF Austin Jackson. This gives them 39 players on the roster.

In a pair of solid follow up pieces, Jennings explains what this could mean for roster flexibility and what the one spot on the roster could allow the team to do (it allows them to actually participate in the Rule 5 draft, for one).
Posted by: Seamus
The Yankees have signed Dominican center fielder Eladio Moronta, according to LoHud's Sam Borden. According to Borden, Moronta was previously suspended by MLB for lying about his age.

Mike Axisa over at River Ave Blues goes into a little more detail:

The Yanks signed Dominican outfielder Eladio Moronta, a soon to be 21-year-old righty with “plus-plus speed, a strong arm and projectable power.” MLB had suspended Moronta earlier this year for lying about his age, and prior to the suspension it was believed he would receive a seven figure bonus. Instead, he settled for $570,000. One scout dropped a Raul Mondesi comp on him, which would be amazing. 30-30 guys don’t grow on trees.

Just judging from that description, I'd say it couldn't hurt to have this guy around. I won't pretend to know any more about him than the information Sam and Mike gave, though.
Posted by: Seamus
As expected, Twins catcher Joe Mauer was voted the American League's Most Valuable Player for this season. Mauer received all but one first place vote (Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers received the other) for a total of 387 points. Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter rounded out the top three, with Tex receiving 225 points and Jeter receiving 193.

The final vote didn't stray much from what was pretty widely expected, although if it were up to me I would probably have flip-flopped Tex and Jeter. Congrats to Mauer.
Posted by: Patrick's Jon Heyman reports that the Yankees "recently" called the Blue Jays to make sure that they knew the Yankees were interested in their ace, Roy Halladay.

According to Heyman, they did the same thing last Summer and, at that time, Toronto was looking for a package including both Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes. That was a non-starter. However, he speculates that the Yankees might now be open to including one of those two along with some prospect power, such as Jesus Montero, to land Halladay.

It's fun to dream about, isn't it? CC Sabathia, Halladay, A.J. Burnett and some combination of Andy Pettitte, Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Chien-Ming Wang or a lower end free agent? Seems like a fantasy dream to me, but you never know.

Via Chad Jennings.
Posted by: Patrick's Lyle Spencer reports that Mike Scioscia of the Angels has been named the 2009 American League Manager of the Year. With 106 points, Scioscia finished ahead of Ron Gardenhire of the Twins (72), Joe Girardi (34), Don Wakamatsu of the Mariners (19), Ron Washington of the Rangers (19) and Jim Leyland of the Tigers (2).

Girardi received 4 first place votes, 3 second place votes and 5 third place votes and was left off of 16 ballots.
Posted by: Patrick
Joba's Flexible:'s Anthony DiComo Dan Martin of the Post both spoke with Joba Chamberlain about his role on the team during a charity outing. In summary: he's going to do what he can to get Pettitte to come back, he's feeling great and is ready for whatever role the Yankees place him in.

Kennedy Closes Out AFL Season: Ian Kennedy has made his final start of the Arizona Fall League. In 7 starts and 29.2 innings pitched, he was 2-1 with a 4.25 ERA. Like Joba and Phil Hughes, de doesn't know what the Yankees are planning from him in 2010, but the important thing is that everything is good healthwise.

Beat Writer Goes to Fantasy Camp: Finally, Bryan Hoch of has part one in a series sharing his experiences attending Yankees fantasy camp, where fans get the opportunity to talk and play the game with former Yankees players. The first installment is interesting and I'm sure the next ones will be, too.
Posted by: Patrick's Jordan Bastian has learned that the Blue Jays are open to granting any potential Roy Halladay suitor a negotiating window with the starter. This would allow a team to come to terms on a long term deal with him before completing a trade, giving the Blue Jays more of a bargaining chip.

Via Ben Kabak.
Posted by: Patrick
Baseball America's Matt Eddy reports that, on November 9, Major League Baseball granted free agency to 536 minor leaguers. This included 17 Yankees,

RHP: Paul Bush (AA), Michael Gardner++ (AA), Justin Pope++ (AA), Humberto Sanchez (AAA), Jay Stephens (AA), Jose Valdez (AAA)
C: Brian Peterson (AAA), Chris Stewart (AAA)
3B: Eric Duncan (AAA), Carlos Mendoza+ (AA), Cody Ransom (AAA), Marcos Vechionacci (AA)
SS: Doug Bernier (AAA)
OF: Edwar Gonzalez (AA), Freddy Guzman (AAA), Richie Robnett (AA), John Rodriguez (AAA)

In addition, Chad Jennings discovered one more free agent: Double-A OF/DH Noah Hall, who played in 59 games for Trenton last season.
Posted by: Patrick
Photographer Robert Caplin put together this video featuring over 5,000 images taken during the final game of the World Series.

Via Alex.
Posted by: Patrick
Mitre's 2010 Option Declined: Sergio Mitre's 1 year, $1.25 million dollar option has been declined by the Yankees. He's still under team control, is arbitration eligible and expected back.

Barry Lackey: George A. King III of the Post has a number of minor free agent notes. But, probably the most interesting is a quote from an agent (who doesn't represent free agent starter John Lackey), who says that the pitcher could command a deal in the range of Zito's 7 year, $126 million dollar deal.
Posted by: Patrick
The results are in and Zack Greinke is your 2009 American League Cy Young Award winner. CC Sabathia finished fourth with 13 points - 7 third place votes and 2 for second place.

Beyond Greinke with 134 points, the other pitchers to receive votes were Felix Hernandez (80), Justin Verlander (14) and Roy Halladay (11).
Posted by: Patrick
Brian Cashman told George A. King III of the Post that the team was "nowhere" when it came to bringing back Joe Girardi's coaches. The only one under contract is Kevin Long, who is signed through next season.

Pitching coach Dave Eiland, third base coach Rob Thomson, bench coach Tony Pena, first base coach Mick Kelleher and bullpen coach Mike Harkey all find themselves free agents. "We would love to have all of them back under the proper circumstances," Cashman said.

Given how early it is in the whole process, this isn't terribly surprising. Tony Pena may receive managerial consideration if a post opens somewhere, but beyond that, I expect most of them will be back.

As an aside, King's article closes with both Cashman and Derek Jeter's agent Casey Close saying that there have been no talks about extending the Captain's contract.
Posted by: Patrick
Maury Brown at The Biz of Baseball has the full list of arbitration eligible players announced by the MLBPA on Thursday. Five Yankees appear and they are Brian Bruney, Melky Cabrera, Chad Gaudin, Sergio Mitre and Chien-Ming Wang.

Let's tackle them in reverse. We've heard suggestions that the Yankees might decline to offer Wang arbitration and instead try to bring him back on a one year deal with a smaller base, but with incentives.

Earlier this week, Joel Sherman of the Post reported that the team planned to bring back Gaudin and Mitre. The question with Mitre is really his option of $1.25 million and whether or not the team will pick it up or try to negotiate with him. But, if they want him, I imagine it'll be a formality.

We haven't heard much about Melky but that's because there isn't much to say. He'll get a nice raise from his $1.4 million dollar salary in 2009.

Finally, we have Bruney. Sherman noted that the team planned to tender him, as well. The overall message here is definitely pitching depth. Bringing back all of these low priced options will give the team more parts to play with as they construct the 2010 pitching staff.

For more analysis, check out Ben Kabak at River Ave. Blues and Mark Feinsand of the Daily News.
Posted by: Patrick
Torre Happy for Yankees: Speaking from his annual Safe at Home Foundation gala, Joe Torre told the Post that he was "real pleased" for the Yankees and their World Series victory. Mariano Rivera was honored at the gala.

Jeter Collects $100,000 Check for Charity: Before the season, Derek Jeter and David Wright of the Mets agreed to a charity challenge of sorts: Delta would give $100,000 to the charity of the player who had the higher batting average. Jeter hit .334 and Wright hit .307, so the big check goes to the Captain, reports's Tom Britton. But, Delta also presented a $50,000 check to Wright's charity, too.

Martin on the Veterans Committee Ballot: Finally, the AP reports that Billy Martin will be included on the 10 person manager and umpire ballot that the Hall of Fame Veterans Committee will consider for election into Baseball's Hall of Fame. The voting results will be announced on December 7.
Posted by: Patrick
Innings Limits for Joba and Phil: Ben Kabak of River Ave. Blues pointed out a snippet that I missed in Chad Jennings post about Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes: Brian Cashman told him that the duo would not have significant innings limits. They've paid their dues and this flexibility can only be a good thing for both the rotation and the pen.

Arn Tellem for Matsui '10: Hideki Matsui's agent, Arn Tellem, has taken to the Huffington Post to extol the virtues of the great slugger from Japan. I think it's a generally agreeable piece. I love Matsui. I don't know that I'd call him an "ageless talent," but he's a great player and a guy that you can't really help but root for. Via Ben again.

Sabathia and Halladay?: Jon Heyman of, without offering a source, says that the Yankees will ask about Roy Halladay. This comes after new Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos said that he'd be open to trading within the division. Via (who else?) Ben.
Posted by: Patrick
Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira have chosen to receive Silver Slugger Awards for their 2009 season, honoring them as the top offensive producers at their respective positions in the American League. It's Jeter's fourth and Teixeira's third.

This comes just a couple of days after the pair collected Gold Glove Awards. The trophy case grows.

On a Jeter related note, check out these photos from the Daily News of Jeter appearing as a panhandler in an upcoming film, "The Other Guys," which will feature Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Samuel L. Jackson, among others.
Posted by: Patrick
Andy Soltis and Mike Puma at the Post report that former Yankees closer John Wetteland was taken to the hospital on Thursday night after a frantic call thought to be from his wife. They quote a police office as saying that there was concern that he might be suicidal.

Wetteland has released a statement and says that everything is OK:

"Thank you for your concerns," Wetteland said in a release by the Mariners on Thursday night. "My wife and I are very appreciative of the over and above care of our local officers and paramedics. The circumstances leading to my elevated blood pressure and heart rate have been addressed. I am currently resting safely at home."

Good to hear. Hopefully everything is sorted. He'll be in our thoughts.
Posted by: Patrick
Curtis Granderson: Joel Sherman at the Post reports that an NL executive told the paper that the Tigers have made it clear that center fielder Curtis Granderson could be available for the right offer. Sherman says that it's "likely" the Yankees will pursue him. He mentions a package including Austin Jackson. I think I will pass on that.

Brian Bruney: In the same report, Sherman says that the Yanks plan to tender Brian Bruney, which will probably lead to him making around $1.5 million after the arbitration dust settles.

Kei Igawa: Finally, Sherman mentions that the team has received "strong inquiries" from Japan regarding Kei Igawa, who the Yankees have under contract for another 2 yeas at $4 million per. But, Igawa has indicated that he wants to stay.
Posted by: Patrick
Freddy Guzman and Josh Towers: Chad Jennings reports that Guzman and Towers have elected for free agency. As such, they are now off the 40-man roster.

Juan Miranda and Edwar Ramirez: Jennings also says that Brian Cashman confirmed that the team has fourth options on Miranda and Ramirez. They can both be sent down to the Minors in 2010.

John Lackey: Jon Heyman quotes a league source as saying that the Yankees are keeping an eye on Lackey. However, Cashman says that the team had yet to meet with anyone, as of Tuesday evening. Via Ben Kabak.

Johnny Damon: Scott Boras has come out with many superlatives to describe Damon. Basically they are true. But, he implies that the Yankees should consider Damon similar to how they consider Derek Jeter, which isn't happening.

Chien-Ming Wang: Joel Sherman spoke with Wang's agent, who told him that Dr. James Andrews gave Wang the OK to throw on December 1, suggesting the sinker baller could be good to go come April or May. Yankees doctors have yet to examine him. Because of the Yankee marketability, the writer suggests that Wang may be OK with taking a low base salary with incentives, so that he can make the most endorsement bucks over in Taiwan.

Sergio Mitre and Chad Gaudin: More from Sherman: the team is planning to bring back both Mitre and Gaudin. Mitre has a team option of $1.25 million, but even if they turn that down, they want him to stay in pinstripes, thinking he could improve another year removed from his Tommy John surgery. Via Mark Polishuk.
Posted by: Patrick's Tom Singer reports on the 2009 American League Gold Glove Award winners, announced today. Derek Jeter picked up his fourth, becoming the second oldest player to win the award at the shortstop position. Mark Teixeira earned his third.
Posted by: Patrick
Damon, Pettitte... and Matsui?: Joel Sherman at the Post spoke with a Yankees official who told him the team would like to try to keep Johnny Damon, Andy Pettitte and Hideki Matsui. It's been generally thought of as unlikely that the team would retain both Damon and Matsui.

The Best of Our Last Five Title Winners: Ted Keith at Sports Illustrated ranks the championship teams of the big four dynasty era. Not surprisingly, the 1998 team comes in first. Via Alex Belth.

2009 Elias Rankings: The 2009 Elias Rankings have been released. Free agents ranked as Type-A or Type-B players can gain their former team some type of draft pick compensation when they sign with a new team. Johnny Damon is a Type-A, while Xavier Nady and Andy Pettitte are both Type-B players. Somewhat surprisingly, Hideki Matsui does not chart. Via Mike Axisa.
Posted by: Patrick
Tim Dierkes of has his annual list of the top 50 free agents in baseball, along with his prediction for the destination of the player. It's mainly a fun list as it's near impossible to actually predict most of these and even the ones you get tend to be in some way affected by luck.

But, for the sake of discussion, he has John Lackey (number 2 overall) going to the Yankees, along with Andy Pettitte (6) and Johnny Damon (12). He suggests Matsui will end up in Seattle.

11/08: Thank You

Posted by: Patrick
Now that we've had a few days to savor the victory, I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you to everyone who supported this season. Thank you to all of our readers and those who have left thoughtful comments. Thank you to all of our fellow Yankees bloggers who linked to us.

Thank you to my fellow blogger Seamus and our season long weekly guest blogger Andrew Fletcher of Scott Proctor's Arm. It was a lot of fun blogging with you guys. For those keeping track at home, the final regular season recap records were:

Regular Season: 49–27 (.644)
Postseason: 5-5 (.500)
Total: 54-32 (.627)

Regular Season: 42–20 (.677)
Postseason: 4-0 (1.000)
Total: 46-20 (.696)

Regular Season: 12–12 (.500)
Postseason: 1-0 (1.000) (even if he did miss the game!)
Total: 13-12 (.520)

It was a great season for us and, obviously, the Yankees. The last time that the Yankees won, in 2000, was years before we launched. So, you could say this was our first title, as well. Or not. Heh. Thanks again.
Posted by: Patrick
2010 Roster Suggestions: It's only been a few days since we won, but ESPN's Tim Kurkjian and the Daily News' John Harper both have thoughts on who the 2010 Yankees roster should contain. Kurkjian suggests the Yankees might let both Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon go and look at Matt Holliday and Jason Bay. He also thinks they might move Joba Chamberlain to the bullpen and Phil Hughes back to the rotation.

Harper agrees with the idea of Joba to the pen, but says that the team should try to sign both Damon and Matsui. Both he and Kurkjian have more suggestions, as well. Via Drew Silva and Luke Adams.

World Champion Joba and Dad: 'Duk at Big League Stew writes about how special the World Series title was for Joba and his dad; picture included. Via Ben Kabak.
Posted by: Patrick
In the November 2 issue of ESPN Magazine, they listed the statistical leaders in a handful of categories for the decade spanning from 2000-2009. Alex Rodriguez had the most home runs with 435 (238 with the Yankees), Andy Pettitte had the most wins with 148 (111 with the Yankees), Randy Johnson had the most strikeouts with 2,182 (383 with the Yankees) and Mariano Rivera had the most saves with 397.
Posted by: Patrick
Andy McCullough of The Star-Ledger spoke with Chien-Ming Wang, who will have an appointment with Dr. James Andrews on Monday as he works his way back from arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder.

As Joseph Pawlikowski of River Ave. Blues pointed out, the Yankees will need to make a decision about where Wang fits in the organization's future. They could offer him arbitration or let him walk, possibly signing him for less than he'd receive in arbitration. I'd lean toward bringing him back.
Posted by: Patrick has a couple of great 360 degree panoramic images from yesterday's ticker tape parade in New York City. Check them out.
Posted by: Patrick
Mariano Rivera told's Bryan Hoch that he hurt himself during game 6 of the ALCS.

"It doesn't matter now," Rivera said. "It's over. Thank God it's over. It was manageable. 'Geno' did a tremendous job. Thank God we were able to do what we did, to put me on the field every day so I would have a chance."
Posted by: Patrick
Joe Ward, Amanda Cox, Matthew Ericson and Xaquin G.V. of The New York Times have put together an awesome infographic depicting Mariano Rivera's postseason history and results on a batter by batter basis. So worth it.

Via NPB Tracker.
Posted by: Seamus
Haven't had enough Yankees yet? No? Well a bunch of them hit up the late night television scene last night, with Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada and Hideki Matsui making an appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. Shortly after, you could have switched over to NBC and caught Joba Chamberlain playing some music with The Roots on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Jeez, it's like the Yankees just won the World Series or something.

Jeter, Pettitte, Posada and Matsui with Letterman (Matsui doesn't appear until the 3rd part):

» Read More

Posted by: Patrick
Girardi, a Friend to You and Me: After the Yankees manager left the stadium last night, where do you think he went next? The answer was a pit stop at Cross County Parkway. Girardi stopped to help someone who had been in a car accident. Not only that, but police officers say he stopped at a particularly dangerous stretch or road and ran through traffic that reaches an excess of 80 MPH. Wow. Via Sam Borden.

Five Mo Years?: At the on-field trophy ceremony last night, Mariano Rivera joked that he's ready to pitch five more years. But, it was no joke. The closer told Chad Jennings: "I'm serious. I hope the organization does whatever it takes to bring me back."

Matsui's MVP Big in Japan: Finally, Jay Greenberg of the Post spoke with someone at a Japanese newspaper who said he expected news of Matsui's exploits in last night's game to be on the front page of the paper and to possibly be bigger then when Ichiro won the MVP or collected 262 hits in a season. Godzilla!
Posted by: Patrick
During game 4 of the World Series, Mariano Rivera was shown holding a heating pad to his side or his ribs, in the bullpen. At the time, it was thought to be nothing and that he could just be keeping warm.

But, after the game last night, he admitted to an injury on ESPN, without going into a lot of detail. Check out the end of the video below. It sounds like he says that he "had some ribs going on; some injury that we don't want to talk about."

Posted by: Seamus
Worth mentioning of course is that the Yankees' victory parade is going to be held this upcoming Friday at 11 a.m, according to's Bryan Hoch. No truth to any rumor that city officials have dubbed this Friday as "Call in Sick Day."
Posted by: Seamus
OK, so we all know what happened by now. Hideki Matsui went absolutely berserk on the Philadelphia Phillies and Andy Pettitte gave the Yankees a solid start in Game 6 as the Yankees wrapped up their 27th World Championship, defeating the Phillies 7–3 at Yankee Stadium.

Andy Pettitte gave the Yankees 5 and 2/3 very respectable innings, pitching on short rest as the Yankees went with a 3-man rotation for this series. The only blemishes on Pettitte in this one were a sac fly off the bat of Jimmy Rollins and a two-run homer by Ryan Howard.

Pettitte was impressive, but we'd be headed for Game 7 tonight in the Bronx if it weren't for Hideki Matsui. Matsui completely demolished the Phils, driving in 6 of the Yankees 7 runs (Mark Teixeira drove in the other one), en route to taking home the World Series MVP award. Matsui put the Yanks ahead with a two-run homer off of Pedro Martinez in the 2nd to make it 2–0. He made it 4–1 with an RBI single in the 3rd, and then he pretty much put the nail in the coffin with a two run double in the bottom of the 5th inning that made it 7–1 Yankees (Ryan Howard's home run in the 6th made it 7–3). The 6 RBI for Matsui on the night tied a World Series record.

There were no bullpen issues to speak of in this one. Joba Chamberlain allowed a hit and a walk in his inning of work, but left unscathed after Damaso Marte helped him to get out of a jam by finishing out the 7th with a strikeout of Chase Utley. Utley, who had tied Reggie Jackson with a record 5 home runs in a single World Series, was neutralized in this game as he went 0-for-3 and struck out twice.

After Marte struck out Ryan Howard to start the 8th, Joe Girardi brought in Mariano to close this series out. At that point, we pretty much all knew it was over. Rivera did cough up a double to Raul Ibanez later in the 8th and walked Carlos Ruiz in the 9th, but that was the extent of any damage. With two outs and a runner on second, Shane Victorino grounded a 3–2 pitch to Robinson Cano, who made a short throw to Mark Teixeira to end the game, and the Yankees were champions of Major League Baseball for the 27th time.

Hideki Matsui, as mentioned was named the MVP of the series. Matsui hit a sizzling .615 for the series, driving in a total of 8 runs and homering 3 times. Matsui became the first Japanese-born player ever to be named MVP of the World Series.

Andy Pettitte was serenaded with chants of "Andy Pettitte! Andy Pettitte!" as he was being interviewed on the outfield stage after the victory. Pettitte was a horse all throughout October, going 4–0 this postseason and winning the final game of each postseason series.

A lot was made of course about the big four (Jeter, Rivera, Posada, Pettitte) getting their fifth Yankee rings and there were a lot of interesting stats thrown around after the game, but what stuck out most to me was a statistic that scrolled through on the bottom of the screen on YES that stated that Derek Jeter became the third player to hit .300 or higher in FIVE DIFFERENT World Series. My first reaction to that one was astonishment that this had even been done twice before. Another noteworthy statistic was that Joe Girardi became the third Yankee (Billy Martin and Ralph Houk being the other two) to win a World Series with the Yankees as both a player and a manager.

So that's all she wrote for the 2009 season. It's been a great ride, and soon it'll be time to talk about offseason moves, arbitration and all that good stuff leading into the 2010 baseball season. But for now, let's just soak this one in. You never know how many years it will be before the next one comes.
Posted by: Patrick
On page 3 of today's issue of am New York, I'm quoted very briefly about tonight's game 6, specifically about Pedro Martinez. The paper is free in NYC and is available online. The article I was quoted in is online. Thank you to the author of the article, Heather Haddon, for including me.
Posted by: Patrick
Marc Carig of the Star Ledger reports that Pettitte will start game 6, as expected. Via Mike Axisa.
Posted by: Patrick's David Gurian-Peck reports that Phillies manager Charlie Manuel and center fielder Shane Victorino have both come out to dispel the rumors that the team steals signs through the use of a camera or bullpen personnel, as shared by Dodgers third base coach Larry Bowa.
Posted by: Patrick
The Post shares the news that plans are being considered to christen the not yet built East 153rd Street bridge as "Derek Jeter Bridge." Nothing is official, but the idea has the support of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

Via Mike Axisa.
Posted by: Patrick
We're a little late mentioning this as it got lost in the attention paid to last night's game. But, infielder Ramiro Pena has been added to the roster, replacing the injured Melky Cabrera.'s Bryan Hoch reports that Melky has a "slight strain" of his left hamstring.
Posted by: Seamus
The Yankees had an opportunity to end the night as the 2009 World Series Champions, but A.J. Burnett was off his game and the Philly bats proved to be too much for the Yankee pitching staff in Game 5. Instead, the Yankees and Phillies will be heading to the Bronx for Game 6 after an 8–6 victory for the Phillies.

The game was all Phillies for the first seven innings of the game. Philadelphia jumped ahead 3–1 in the first on yet another home run by Chase Utley, this time a 3-run shot off of A.J. Burnett.

Three more runs would score off of Burnett in the third, giving the Phillies an early 6–1 advantage. Burnett in this game was just a shell of the man who dominated the heavy-hitting Phils in Game 2 of this series, walking 4 batters and allowing 6 runs to come across on short rest, and was unable to make it out of the third inning.

The game became seemingly out of reach for the Yankees in the bottom of the seventh, when Chase Utley and Raul Ibanez both took Phil Coke deep to give the Phillies a commanding 8–2 lead. Utley's home run was the 5th for him in this series, tying him with Reggie Jackson for the most home runs ever in a single World Series.

With Cliff Lee still on the mound entering the eighth inning, things didn't look very good for the Yankees. However, the Yanks would threaten in this one as they would tag Lee for three runs in the inning to pull within 8–5. The inning was highlighted by a two-run double by Alex Rodriguez that went off the glove of Raul Ibanez in left field. The third run was scored on a sacrifice fly by Robinson Cano that scored A-Rod.

The Yankees would get the tying run to the plate in the final inning, but the rally took a huge blow when Derek Jeter grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to record the first two outs in the ninth (Jorge Posada scored on the play). A base hit by Johnny Damon did put the tying run on base yet again to give the Yankees one final crack at tying the game, but Mark Teixeira struck out swinging on a bad at bat against Ryan Madson to end the game.

So it was a game that looked like a blowout that turned out to be a game that was lost on missed opportunities. A bad start by A.J. Burnett, a bad seventh inning out of Phil Coke, and an untimely double play by Jeter all stand out in this one. It's a little easier to take though when you consider that the Yanks still lead the series three games to two and will be coming home for the final game(s) with two chances to wrap things up.

Andy Pettitte will try to do something that he also did in 1998, and that is start a World Championship clinching game for the Yankees. He'll be up against Pedro Martinez in what could be an epic battle at Yankee Stadium Wednesday evening. Scheduled start time is 7:57 ET.
Posted by: Patrick
Sam Borden reports that Melky Cabrera may have a full hamstring tear, rendering him inactive for the rest of the World Series. Brian Cashman told Borden that under MLB rules, the Yankees could petition for a new player if it is decided that Melky cannot play. He said that, if that happened, the player selected would be someone who was with the team right now. Borden says that this likely means it'll be one of Francisco Cervelli, Freddy Guzman, Ramiro Pena and Sergio Mitre.
Posted by: Seamus
The Yankees are now just 27 outs away from wrapping up their 27th World Series title, thanks to a tie-braking 9th inning rally that led to a 7–4 victory over the Phillies and a commanding 3–1 series lead. This latest installment of the 2009 World Series was a seesaw, back-and-forth affair in which the Philles rallied from two separate two-run deficits before the Yankees finally put them away in the final inning.

The Yankees jumped ahead against Joe Blanton in the first inning on a series of productive outs. A ground out by Mark Teixeira to first scored Derek Jeter from third and also moved Johnny Damon from second to third. Damon was brought home on a sacrifice fly by Jorge Posada after Alex Rodriguez was hit by a pitch.

The HBP was the third for A-Rod in the last two nights, prompting home plate umpire Mike Everitt to issue a warning to both benches. The warning could have turned out to be huge, because it potentially could have taken the inside part of the plate away from both pitchers before CC Sabathia even took the mound, but it didn't really seem to be much of an issue and there were no further extracurricular fireworks to speak of in the game.

Philadelphia would bounce back with a run in the bottom of the inning as Sabathia's apparent nemesis, Chase Utley doubled home a run, scoring Shane Victorino from second with a knock to right to pull the Phillies to within a run. The Phils would later tie the game in the bottom of the 4th, as a base hit by Pedro Feliz scored a hustling Ryan Howard from second.

The Yanks would get those two runs back in the 5th. A ground ball to the left side by Derek Jeter found a hole and rolled in to the outfield, scoring Nick Swisher from second to give the Yankees a 3–2 lead. Johnny Damon was next up and he would add some insurance, scoring Melky Cabrera from second on a base hit to right.

The Phillies would claw back again, however. In the bottom of the 7th, Chase Utley took Sabathia deep for the third time in this series, pulling Philly to within 4–3. That was the end of the night for CC, who in 6 and 2/3 labored a bit, but was in position to win the game as he left. Sabathia did allow 10 runners to reach base, 7 of them on hits and 3 via walks, allowing 3 runs while striking out 6.

Damaso Marte was able to finish the 7th without any damage, but Joba Chamberlain was not quite so fortunate in the 8th. Joba struck out the side, but it was not before Pedro Feliz took him deep to tie the game for the second time, this time at 4 apiece.

The Yankees would eventually deliver the final knockout punches in the 9th. Brad Lidge entered the game and retired the first two batters he faced, before Johnny Damon kept the inning alive with a line drive single to left. With Mark Teixeira up next, Damon stole both second and third base on a bizarre play in which no Phillies defender had been covering third base because of the defensive shift they put on for the pull-hitting Mark Teixeira. Teixeira was later hit by a pitch, making the stolen bases a bit less consequential.

That set the stage for A-Rod, who delivered, to date, his biggest hit as a Yankee and probably his career to this point, breaking the tie with a double to left field that scored Damon from third. Jorge Posada would add two more runs to the scoreboard for good measure, as he lined one into the left-center field gap, scoring both Teixeira and Rodriguez to put the Yankees ahead 7–4. Posada tried to stretch the play into a double, but was tagged out well before making it to second base to end the top half of the inning.

Mariano Rivera would enter the game to close things out in the bottom of the 9th, and as he customarily does, went through an opposing lineup in the World Series without even having to breathe. Rivera retired the side in order, giving the Yanks a 3–1 series edge, and giving the Yanks an opportunity to wrap up the series as early as tonight.

A.J. Burnett will take the mound tonight on short rest, and will hope to put his team in a position to wrap up their 27th World Championship. It won't be a cakewalk, though, as he'll be up against Cliff Lee and the Phils. Get your champagne ready, folks. Game starts at 7:57 ET.
Posted by: Patrick's Barry M. Bloom reports that Derek Jeter has been named as the American League Hank Aaron Award winner, the second such award he has won (the first was in 2006). It was created to honor the top offensive performer in each league and was determined by an online vote.
Posted by: Patrick
On Halloween night, the Yankees sent Andy Pettitte up against Cole Hamels as the Yankees stepped into Citizens Bank Park for the first time since June 21, 2006.

The first run of the day came when Jayson Werth led off the bottom of the second with a home run to put the Phillies. It didn't stop there. After a Raul Ibanez strike out, Pedro Feliz doubled and Carlos Ruiz walked. Hamels, the pitcher, laid down a bunt that neither Pettitte nor Jorge Posada fielded, which loaded the bases with one out. Pettitte would issue a bases loaded walk to Jimmy Rollins for the second run and Shane Victorino's sacrifice fly brought the third one in. After the dust settled, the Yankees found themselves down 3-0.

In the fourth, the Yankees would answer. A one out walk to Mark Teixeira brought A-Rod to the plate. He hit what at first looked like a double. But, upon watching the replay, it was clear that the ball had hit a camera that was leaning over the right field fence slightly. A-Rod felt it was actually a home run and Joe Girardi came out to request a replay review. The umpires did so and upon further review, they declared it a home run. The Phillies still had the lead, but it was down to 3-2.

Nick Swisher finally broke out in the fifth with a lead-off double. Melky Cabrera struck out for the next out and Pettitte was the next hitter. The lefty delivered a single that scored Swisher. Derek Jeter followed this up with a single to move Pettitte to second. Johnny Damon came through with the go ahead double to put the Yankees ahead 5-3. In the top of the sixth, Swisher added what had to be a gratifying home run off of Phillies pitcher J.A. Happ to move the Yankees to 6 runs.

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