Posted on: June 19, 2010 12:26 pm

Jeter scratched from Yankees' lineup

Derek Jeter was scratched from the Yankees lineup on Saturday with a bruised right heel and Ramiro Pena will get the start at shortstop against the Mets.

Jeter hurt his foot in Friday's game and is in a slump. Jeter has just one hit in his last 20 at-bats and "Captain Clutch" failed to live up to his name Friday night, as he struck out on three pitches with bases loaded and one out with the bases loaded. In June, Jeter is hitting just .209. That's still better than his replacement, Pena is hitting  .186 on the season.

Alex Rodriguez played third base last night, so he is the designated hitter today, with Jorge Posada behind the plate for the first time since Wednesday.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: June 18, 2010 11:43 am
Edited on: June 18, 2010 11:50 am

Vazquez not concerned about drop in velocity

Javier Vazquez After getting his return trip to New York off to a bad start, Javier Vazquez has turned it around. In his three June starts, Vazquez has a 2.57 ERA and perfect 3-0 record.

He's doing it without his usual velocity on his fastball, as Marc Carig of the Star-Ledger notes .

Vazquez's fastball averaged just under 92 mph in his final two seasons with the White Sox before slipping to 91.1 mph in 2009 with the Braves. That mark continues to go down and he's now averaging 88.8 mph with his fastball on the 2010 season.

"I'm not worrying about it," Vazquez said.

Even as his fastball continues to approach slower and slower digits -- it averaged 87.7 mph in his last start against the Astros -- Vazquez may be right in not worrying about his fastball. After all, it still grades as his best pitch according to FanGraphs' pitch values. He's also picked up his usage of the fastball, hurling it 54.6 percent of the time which is up from 49.4 percent with Atlanta and most since 2006's 55.8 percent mark with the White Sox.

In addition, Vazquez boasts above-averages offerings of a slider, curveball and changeup.

And that, according to acting pitching coach Mike Harkey, is where Vazquez shines.

"He incorporates his offspeed pitches," Harkey says. "All of them are well above average. It makes him a very, very effective pitcher."

Vazquez and others believe that he will eventually reclaim some velocity on his fastball. However, the 33-year-old doesn't sound concerned about his fastball velocity being permanent.

"I’m 33 and I have 13 years in the big leagues," said Vazquez. "That’s a lot of years throwing 200 innings. You get to a point where hopefully it’s there. But if it’s not, I know I’m going to be successful throwing what I’m throwing now."

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Category: MLB
Posted on: June 16, 2010 11:36 pm
Edited on: June 16, 2010 11:52 pm

Ageless Moyer not slowing down

Jamie Moyer You watch Jamie Moyer and you wonder how, in nearly a quarter of a century, major-league hitters have not figured out how to hit this stuff.

But he just keeps doing it, making batters look silly with a fastball that tops out at 82 mph and a changeup slower than Bugs Bunny's. But being able to put the ball where you want it goes a long way. Check out the location chart from Wednesday's start against the Yankees.

At age 47, Moyer just keeps on going. In fact, he's not even slowing down. His WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched) is on pace to be the fifth-best of his 24-year major league career.

On Wednesday, baseball's oldest player took the mound at the new Yankee Stadium for the first time, the 48th park he's pitched in. Some other numbers:

* At 47 years, 155 days of age, Moyer became the oldest pitcher ever to defeat the Yankees (Phil Niekro was 47 and 122 days).

* Moyer won his 265th game and stands 37th on baseball's career list.

* Moyer gave up two home runs and now has surrendered 504, just one behind Robin Roberts for the all-time lead.

* As noted by Tyler Kepner of the New York Times , Moyer was older than both men in the Yankees broadcast booth Wednesday night (Paul O'Neill and Al Leiter), Yankees manager Joe Girardi and four members of the New York coaching staff.

* Also via the Times , Moyer caught Mark Teixeira, Jorge Posada and Curtis Granderson looking for his first three strikeouts of the night. The pitches were 80, 81 and 81 mph.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 16, 2010 8:50 pm

Burnett booed off mound

A.J. Burnett Wow, the wheels have officially come off the rails for Yankees starter A.J. Burnett.

The right-hander was booed off the mound at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night after getting shelled and then capping it off by failing to cover first base. His ugly numbers for the night: 3 1/3 innings, six earned runs, back-to-back homers allowed, four walks.

Burnett's second season in the Bronx got off to a stellar start as he won his first four decisions and had a 1.99 ERA through his first six starts. In his seventh start, he gave up nine earned runs to the Red Sox in 4 1/3 innings, and he has continued the spiral. Since that game he has a 2-4 record (not counting Wednesday's result) and a 6.36 ERA.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 16, 2010 5:23 pm

A-Rod to DH against Phillies

Alex Rodriguez is back in the Yankees' lineup, but he's the team's designated hitter and not playing third base.

“We watched him take ground balls and I just didn’t think he had the lateral movement we want to see quite yet," Yankees manager Joe Girardi told reporters before Wednesday’s game .

Rodriguez hasn't played since leaving last Thursday's game against the Orioles with tendinitis in his right hip flexor.

Kevin Russo is starting at third base for the Yankeess.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: June 16, 2010 5:06 pm
Edited on: June 16, 2010 5:11 pm

Yankees might be set in OF after all

Nick Swisher If you're like me, you stay up nights worrying about how to save the Yankees money.

Well, sleep tight, says Joel Sherman of the New York Post -- the Bombers might not have to pop for a big-money outfielder next winter after all if their current outfield keeps playing like this.

It has been assumed that the Yankees will add free-agents-to-be Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth to their Big Box O' All-Stars (hey, why not buy both?), but at the moment they have one of the better outfields in the American League.

Nick Swisher (.245 career average, now batting .301) is playing out of his mind, having his best season in virtually every statistical category. Curtis Granderson's numbers aren't great, but he's showed signs (a .978 OPS in May). Brett Gardner (.322 batting average, 22 steals) has given them more than they expected.

Tuesday night, the trio drove in the first four runs in an 8-3 victory over Yankee-killer Roy Halladay and the Phillies.

"I definitely do not think we are short in the outfield," hitting coach Kevin Long told the Post.

The question is, do the Yankees believe this level of play is sustainable for their current outfielders? If they do -- and there's a lot of season left before they have to make the call -- they might wonder how much improvement Crawford or Werth would bring with their huge pricetags.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 15, 2010 4:36 pm

Yankees place Mitre on DL, recall Logan

Sergio Mitre The Yankees have placed reliever Sergio Mitre on the 15-day disabled list with an oblique strain.

The move is retroactive to June 5 as Mitre had not pitched since June 4. As a result, Mitre will be able to come off the DL as soon as this weekend.

In Mitre's place, the Yankees recalled left-hander Boone Logan from Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre. This is Logan's second stint with the club and previously posted a 5.06 ERA and 1.88 WHIP over 10 2/3 innings.

Logan will give the Yankees a left-handed weapon against the lefty-heavy Phillies, who arrive in The Bronx Tuesday night for a three-game series.

Mitre has a 2.88 ERA so far on the year, pitching 25 innings over 12 appearances -- two starts -- as the Yankees' long reliever.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 14, 2010 4:18 pm
Edited on: June 14, 2010 4:29 pm

Do Astros deserve league of their own?

Casey Daigle It doesn't seem that the Astros left a positive impression on New York Daily News columnist Bill Madden during a three-game sweep at Yankee Stadium last weekend.

In fact, watching the hapless Triple-A-stros set him to wondering about whether baseball should institute some version of the process used by English soccer in which the worst teams are demoted from the top-tier division and the best second-tier teams can move up.

"(Owners) who refuse to give their baseball people the financial resources to acquire the best talent should have to pay a price for that insult to the fans," Madden wrote, "by having their teams consigned to baseball purgatory from which they have to play their way out of, without sharing in the revenues of the real major league teams."

It is frustrating to watch teams seemingly sit around and collect TV and revenue sharing money while not seeming to make an honest effort to field a competitive team. But the logistical and financial realities of demoting and promoting teams would probably create more problems than it solved.

Madden's complaint is that fans are paying major league prices to watch minor league-quality teams. But if you consign the Pirates to Triple-A, or some newly created level of play, what you're doing is depriving fans in Pittsburgh from being able to see major league talent -- and the fans aren't the ones who picked the owner.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Category: MLB
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