Yankees C.C. (Complete Comeback)

cc

In CC we trust!!

In a decisive Game 5, the Yankees turned to 37-year old, Carsten Charles Sabathia Jr. Sabathia, now a crafty veteran, channeled his former self. Sabathia, and his left arm, were tremendous, striking out 9 in 4 and 1/3 innings. Notoriously a slow-starter, he wasted no time, striking out the first 2 batters he faced. He kept hitters off balance with his swooping slider and surprised Indians’ hitters with his sneaky fastball.

Do you know what the most impressive part was?? He outdueled AL CY Young favorite, Corey Kluber, twice. For the 2nd straight outing, Kluber was ordinary. After lasting just 2 and 2/3 innings in Game 2, he was destined for just 3 and 2/3 innings on Wednesday. It’s hard to explain. Kluber is one of the best pitchers in the world. But hey, I’m not losing any sleep over it….

Kluber was tagged not once, but twice, by Didi Gregorious. Didi connected on a solo home run in the 1st inning. And struck gold again in the 3rd inning with a 2-run home run. It was DD and CC to the rescue.

Too corny??

Sorry.

Following their crushing defeat in Game 2, winning the ALDS was all the more impressive. These young, “baby-bombers” showed grit and resiliency, punching their way out of a corner. After completing the comeback Wednesday night (5-2), the 2017 Yankees became just the 7th team to comeback from an 0-2 deficit to win a Divisional Series.

If I had told you Aaron Judge would go 1 for 20 in this series, but they’d win, you would have called me names I can’t write on my website. Aaron Judge is an impressive, young man. He’s humble. He’s a great athlete. And he hits baseballs really, really far. But he now holds an unenviable record. Judge’s 16 strikeouts in the ALDS are the most by any player, in any playoff series, in MLB history. No es bueno.

Judge mashes mediocre fastballs (under 94 mph), and has a great eye (127 walks). However, he struggles against fastballs 95 mph or faster and strikeouts far too much (208). Pitchers usually raise his eye level with the ‘high-heat’, and then drop the hammer with a low-and-away breaking ball. If the Yankees are going to have a chance against the Houston Astros in the ALCS, Judge will need to lay off those nasty breaking balls. He should walk down to 1st base over and over again, and set the table for Gary Sanchez in this series. This will force opposing pitchers to serve up inside fastballs to Judge later in the series. Then, my fellow Yankee fans can bust out their telescopes to track Judge Moonshots….

Again, I’m not rooting against my team. I simply call it like I see it.

ALCS Prediction: Astros in 7  

Prove me wrong, again, please….

 

Who do you think will win the ALCS?? In how many games?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

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Do Or Die In The Bronx!!

2017-AL-Wild-Card-preview-Upstart-Minnesota-Twins-New-York-Yankees-set-for-wild-card-game_f

It’s do or die! Win or go home! All or nothing! This one’s for all the marbl….Well, you get it. Tonight, the New York Yankees (91-71) will host the Minnesota Twins (85-77) in the American League Wild Card Game. In this 1-game elimination format, tonight’s winner will take on the Cleveland Indians in the Division Series.

Don’t worry, my prediction is coming. First I must let my inner Lewis Black out….

I HATE THE 1-GAME WILD CARD FORMAT!!!!

I know, I know, hate is a very strong word, but when applicable, I’ll throw it out there. This format pins 2 teams against each other in a 1-game, winner take all format. This works in the NFL for a multitude of reasons, but there’s no place for it in a sport like baseball. In MLB, the regular season consists of 162 games. The majority of teams and players go through slumps as well as hot streaks, but generally regress to the mean.

Baseball is a game of series’. Best-of-3 or 4 in the regular season, best-of-5 or 7 in the postseason. The point is, any team, on any given day, can win a baseball game. The San Francisco Giants had the worst record in MLB this season (64-98), while the Los Angeles Dodgers had the best record (104-58). The Giants beat the Dodgers 8 times!! However, they played each other 19 times (being in the same division), and the better team prevailed over time. I’m not suggesting every postseason series be best-of-7. I live in reality, and I’m aware of the logistics of travel and playing baseball in November, but this has to change. At the bare minimum, give me a best-of-3 series.

Oh yeah, there’s a game to talk about….

The Yankees are better than the Twins in every conceivable way, but all it takes is 1 pitching gem from Ervin Santana, and the Yankees’ season is over. That won’t happen tonight. Seemingly everyone on the Yankees’ roster contributed to their 91-win season, including Luis Severino (who will take the hill tonight), however no one was more vital to the Yankees’ success than Aaron Judge. Judge is the runaway AL Rookie of the Year, and is in a 2-man race for AL MVP (Jose Altuve).

The question asked of Judge, isn’t if he has the skill set, rather, can he handle the pressure??

There will be no bigger test than tonight.

The regular season in New York inherently shines brightly, however, the spotlight shines brightest in October (or November), in the Bronx. We are going to learn a lot about Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, and Luis Severino this evening. Will they fall or take this talented Yankees’ team to new heights??

I know who MLB is rooting for. I’m not a biased Yankees’ fan, but ratings are ratings. No one, outside of Minnesota and Cleveland, would tune in to that ALDS. There’s a reason why the Yankees’ hat travels more than any other.

Luis Severino will parlay his successful regular season into a quality start: 6 innings, 5 hits, 3 earned runs, 7 k’s, and 1 walk. Girardi will then go through his robotic 7th, 8th, and 9th inning moves; Robertson, Betances, Chapman. If, on the odd chance Dave is wrong, and Severino gets in early trouble, Girardi will either bring in another starter, or get the ball to Tommy Kahnle or Chad Green. This game will be a microcosm of Aaron Judge’s season. Expect him to draw a walk, strikeout, and hit a baseball really, really far….

Prediction: Yankees 8, Twins 4

Tune in to ESPN tonight @ 8:00 P.M. EST to catch the action.

Who do you think will win?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

Red Sox Clinch Playoff Berth (Boo!)

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Tampa Bay Rays

I don’t like you. No seriously, I really don’t like you. You keep winning when we want you to lose. And you continue to have fun while you win. How dare you?! This isn’t supposed to be fun!! This is baseball.

The Boston Red Sox have had a successful season — so far. They currently stand 3 games ahead of the New York Yankees in the American League East division. They clinched a playoff berth on Wednesday night after a combination of a win against the Baltimore Orioles (9-0), and an Angels loss (6-5). Also, Chris Sale (he’s good) became the 1st Red Sox pitcher to record 300 strikeouts in a season since Pedro Martinez (1999).

Even though Dustin Pedroia is still hanging around, the Red Sox have a new look. They’ve transitioned from the Pedro Martinez’ to the David Ortiz’ to the Mookie Betts’ of the world. They’re in the midst of a youth movement. And they’ve created their own version of the ‘Killer B’s’:

  • Betts (24)
  • Benintendi (23)
  • Bogaerts (24)
  • Bradley Jr. (27)

Only time will tell if this group will be as good as Biggio, Bagwell, Berkman, and Bell. I’m going to say Naaaaa, considering that group has 2 Hall of Famers in it. But these young players have had a great season. What’s most impressive is their resolve this late in the season. While their arch nemesis Yankees have won 14 of their last 18 games, the Red Sox have managed to win 11 of their last 14.

Did I mention I strongly dislike the Red Sox?! 

It’s not that the Red Sox are winning, it’s how they’re winning. Over this stretch, they have won 4 games in extra innings (11, 11, 15, and 19 innings!). If those games had gone the other way, the AL East would be a completely different animal right now. As a Yankees’ fan, I’ve come to terms with not winning the division, but the Yankees are getting hot at the right time.

The Red Sox don’t want a piece of US right now.

Nobody does. When the Yankees’ lineup is firing on all cylinders, it is as dangerous as they come. Once they handle their business in the Wild Card Game against either the Twins or Angels, they can set their sites on the rest of the American League. And, who knows, maybe they’ll meet up with these pesky little Red Sox down the road. Betts and Benintendi are nice players, but my money’s on Judge, Sanchez, and company.

 

Who has a better young core of players, the Yankees, or the Red Sox??

Answer me in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

The Sucker Punch Heard Round The World

yankees tigers

Drama. Intrigue. Altercations. Retribution. Betrayal. You’d think I was talking about a movie or soap opera, rather than Thursday’s day-game between the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers. If you missed it, all I can say is, WOW!!

Of the many different angles to examine this, it’s difficult to do it justice, but I’m going to give it a good old college try.

1st, we must come up with a Headline….

A Headline should be catchy. It should grab the reader’s attention and give them a reason to click on your article. Some days, creativity meanders. Other days, like today, the options are plentiful:

  • The Sucker Punch Heard Round The World
  • Motown Melee
  • Rumble In Motor City
  • I Went To A Fight And A Baseball Game Broke Out

Which is your favorite??

2nd, we need a Setting….

2 outs. Top of the 5th inning. The Yankees are winning 3-2. Michael Fulmer of the Tigers is on the mound, and Gary Sanchez steps to the plate.

Very important Side Note: Gary Sanchez hit a home run in the 4th inning, his 4th of the series.

3rd, tell the Plot….

Michael Fulmer proceeds to hit Gary Sanchez, presumably because Sanchez is KILLING the Tigers. As ridiculous as that justification is, it’s the truth. Gary Sanchez has 4 home runs and 9 r.b.i.’s in the series, so Fulmer made him “pay”. Little did Fulmer know, he had just set in motion a hideous chain of events.

In the bottom of the 6th inning, Yankees’ reliever, Tommy Kahnle, took matters, and the ball, into his own hands. He fired a pitch behind Miguel Cabrera, and Kahnle was immediately ejected from the game. Yankees’ manager, Joe Girardi promptly went ballistic, causing a scene while getting ejected. Girardi most likely blacked out during his tirade but argued Kahnle’s ejection, without warnings issued, wasn’t justified. Girardi also pointed to Fulmer remaining in the game.

*Girardi was right. This is on the umpires. Issuing warnings could have prevented this whole situation.

As the dust settled on the ejections, Cabrera and Yankees’ catcher, Austin Romine, exchanged words at home plate. Apparently, Cabrera took exception to Romine’s verbiage, so Cabrera shoved Romine. Benches cleared, and a melee ensued.

To watch the brawl, click here.  

Romine and Cabrera were both ejected, however Gary Sanchez SHOULD have been as well. While a Yankees and Tigers’ player were wrestling on the ground, Sanchez threw a sucker punch at the Tigers’ player. I am a Yankees’ fan, but this was terrible!! I LOST A TREMEMDOUS AMOUNT OF RESPECT FOR GARY SANCHEZ YESTERDAY!! Don’t be surprised when Sanchez lands on the suspension list.

My favorite part of this was the argument that took place in the Tigers’ dugout between Justin Verlander and Victor Martinez. Verlander wasn’t a happy camper when Martinez could be seen having a friendly conversation with Sanchez. I gotta side with Mr. Verlander here….

What took place in the bottom of the 7th inning is what’s wrong with baseball.

Dellin Betances struck Tigers’ catcher, James McCann, in the head with his 1st pitch. This is frightening. This is dangerous. THIS WAS INTENTIONAL. And this shouldn’t be allowed. Baseball’s unwritten rules and the acceptance of pitcher retaliation is absurd. Yes, Betances was simply retaliating. But he could have killed McCann. Is that what it’ll take before there is a ZERO tolerance policy for head-hunting?!?! A Death?!?! I hope MLB smartens up before it’s too late. Some clichés, better safe than sorry, ring true.

As if that wasn’t enough fun for 1 game, Tigers’ reliever, Alex Wilson, plunked Todd Frazier in the 8th inning, bringing our grand totals to:

Ejections: 8

Benches Cleared: 3

Hit Batters: 4 

Suspensions: ?? 

The ultimate question is, who will be suspended, and for how long??

My guess is Dellin Betances, Gary Sanchez, Austin Romine, and Miguel Cabrera will receive suspensions. Betances and Sanchez should receive twice as many games as Romine and Cabrera. Period.

 

Did you watch this ridiculous game?? How long should suspensions be?? Tell me in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

Yankees’ Bullpen Falters LATE

Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees

Screw you ESPN!! You and your bags full of money. You’re the reason I only got 4 hours of sleep last night. Watch out Monday!! I am one sleep-deprived, ornery Yankees’ fan.

Listen, I’m an ESPN child. I grew up on a balanced diet of Sportscenter and top 10’s, and if ESPN offered me a job I’d drop everything and run to Bristol, CT, but they’re killin’ me here!! Sunday Night Baseball is not a smart idea. Starting a baseball game at 8:00 P.M (which is really 8:15), on a Sunday, is not fair to anyone who works — anywhere. But nobody wants to hear my sob story, right??

What do you say we talk about the game?? Ya know, since I stayed up to watch the whole freakin’ thing….

Sunday night’s Yankees/Red Sox Game was a rubber match of a 3-game series. A series I thought the Yankees would win. Not because I’m a Yankees’ fan, but because the Yankees tend to step-up their game when the Red Sox come to town. Unfortunately, Dave was wrong.

The Yankees put forth a lackluster performance throughout this crucial, weekend-series with the Boston Red Sox. Forget the rivalry, these games were really important. And without a 5-run, 8th inning on Friday night, the city of Boston would be carrying brooms around this morning.

The Yankees had a chance to do something rare Sunday night — win a game Chris Sale started. Sale is the Red Sox ace who is currently in the Cy Young and MVP race.

We’re going to fast forward to the 9th inning because there are only so many Sale strikeouts a Yankees’ fan can watch (he had 12 of them). Aroldis Chapman took the hill with a 2-1 lead. 103 m.p.h. looks really nice on the radar gun (ESPN will make sure you find it), but when MLB hitters know it’s coming, it’s not that impressive. Give me 98 with movement over 103 right down the middle any day. Rafael Devers, the youngest of the Red Sox young guns, proved that theory. With 1 out in the 9th inning, Devers tied the game with a solo home run. Devers took a Chapman fastball the opposite way, just clearing the fence in left-center field. To see the heart-breaking home run click here.

Just like that, the game was blown. By the way, half of Chapman’s blown saves this season are against the Red Sox, the last coming on July 14th.

To the 10th inning we go….

This is when my (100 pound) eyelids started fighting with my brain. The Yankees can bolster their bullpen all they want, they will continue to shoot themselves in the foot. Before Andrew Benintendi drove in the go ahead run, Chapman and Tommy Kahnle thought it would be a good idea to walk the bases loaded. I couldn’t have planned it any better myself!!

And then came a visit to the mound from Craig Kimbrel (aka the best closer in baseball). An Aaron Hicks groundout, an Aaron Judge strikeout (man I’m tired of hearin’ that one), and a weak fly ball from Gary Sanchez was all it took. 1-2-3. Goodnight Yankees. Goodnight moon. Goodnight Dave.

But hey, at least the Mets are comin’ to town. Nothing cures a losing streak like playing the Mets….

 

Will the Yankees make the playoffs?? Do Sunday Night Baseball games anger you as much as they anger me?? Please tell me in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

Casual Dominance

Aaron-Judge-Campeon-del-Home-Run-Derby

Human beings are not supposed to be able to do that. Just when you think there are limitations to what humans beings can do, expectations are shattered. And that’s what it’s all about; expectations. No one expects a rookie to be leading the MVP race. No one expects a rookie to hit baseballs 500+ feet. No one expects a rookie to take the world by storm. Until they do.

Aaron Judge is that rookie. Yes, he is only in his first full season in Major League Baseball. It’s hard to believe due to his size, strength, ability, and demeanor. He walks, talks, and acts like a 12-year, MLB veteran.

If Aaron Judge Isn’t The Perfect Candidate To Be The Face Of Baseball, I don’t Know Who Is.

MLB needs to seize the moment. Forget the “Judge” nicknames, they should make him the poster child for their league. He is just what baseball, and more importantly society needs. He is as confident as he is humble. He is as selfless as he is gracious. He is as talented as he is grounded. But don’t ask him for an opinion of himself, because he won’t give it. He’ll assuredly attribute his success to the support of his family, friends, coaches, and teammates. In a world filled with self-promotion, it is refreshing to see a 25-year old break the mold.

The mold is not the only thing Aaron Judge broke last night. He broke records and possibly some windows during his first Home Run Derby. As the 2-seed in the new “bracket” format the home run derby adopted, Judge had to overcome a mountainous obstacle in the first round. His opponent, 7-seeded Justin Bour, rallying behind his home crowd in Miami, posted 22 home runs in the first round (4th most in a single round..ever). It’s hard not to like Bour, “Mr. No Batting Gloves”, as I like to call him. His monstrous frame and forearms lend themselves to a Home Run Derby. I mean, the guy was fed a doughnut by teammate Giancarlo Stanton during one of his “timeouts”. You owe me a doughnut!

While Bour and Stanton brought energy and excitement to the Home Run Derby, Aaron Judge was not to be outshined, outmatched, or outdone. His home run hitting power stole the show, as he hit 23 home runs to narrowly advance past Bour.

And this is the only part of the Home Run Derby I would tweak. The time limit and brackets were great ideas, but Justin Bour (22) and Giancarlo Stanton (16) deserved to advance to the second round. Next year, of the 8 competitors, the top 4 should advance to the semi-finals. From there, based on the same rankings (1-8), the bracket format should ‘kick in’. This would allow the best performers to advance, and still provide the head-to-head matchup excitement.

Anyway, back to Judge….

He hit 47 total home runs, 5 that travelled at least 500 feet. He also owned the longest home run of the night; 513 feet. Can you imagine hitting a baseball 500 feet?! Yeah, me neither.

My favorite part of Judge’s performance was he showcased his opposite field power, utilizing the entire ballpark as his playground. And you’d need to watch the Home Run Derby to understand his raw power. Balls that mere mortals pop-up to shallow right field are 400 foot home runs for Judge, the demi-god. And as if all this wasn’t impressive enough, Judge actually hit the ceiling last night. HE HIT THE CEILING!! And it didn’t even count as a home run. Fortunately, this didn’t cause a Home Run Derby controversy. While it was certainly Aaron Judge’s night, I think he just drew a few more eyeballs to the game of baseball for the rest of the year.

 

Did you watch the Home Run Derby last night?? Did you tune in just to watch Aaron Judge?? Tell me all about it in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel called DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

Will The Real Masahiro Tanaka Please Stand Up

tanaka

There is something wrong with Masahiro Tanaka. Entering an important 3-game series with the Boston Red Sox, Tanaka took the hill on Tuesday night. He has been, how do you say this, less than stellar so far this season. I’m being wayyyy to nice..HE’S PITCHING LIKE POOP!! That’s better. Tanaka’s struggles continued last night. He gave up 5 earned runs in just 5 innings, serving up 3 home runs. Chad Green and the Yankees’ bullpen gave their team a chance, holding the Red Sox to those 5 runs. The Yankees scratched and clawed their way back into the game, losing 5-4. Red Sox closer, Craig Kimbrel, recorded a 4-out save (his 17th of the season), and the Yankees’ lead in the American League East is now just 1 lonely game.

Let’s take a deeper look at Tanaka’s first 12 starts of the season. I’m going to hit you with some stats and numbers now, so dust off those thinking caps and slap ’em on….

He is the owner of a shiny, brand spankin’ new E.R.A of 6.55. He is averaging just over 5 innings per start and has now given up 17 home runs in just 66 innings. Not exactly a recipe for success. With all the question marks surrounding the Yankees’ starting rotation to begin the season, Tanaka was supposed to be the anchor. The rock. The immovable object. Yeah, not so much. In the first game of the year, Tanaka was shelled to the tune of 7 runs in 2 and 2/3 innings. And he has now given up 5 or more runs in 4 of his last 5 starts. Yikes!!

The question is: Is this the real Masahiro Tanaka or will this be just an ugly blip on the radar?? As a Yankees fan, I’m hoping for the latter, but I’m not sure. If you believe Tanaka’s 3-year MLB track record is enough to prove he will ‘right the ship’, then I’ll have what you’re having. You can check out his career stats here. If you’re too lazy to click there, here is a quick overview of Tanaka’s stats. Entering this season, Tanaka had an impressive E.R.A. of just over 3.00 and sported a W.H.I.P. (Walks + Hits / Innings Pitched) around 1.00. He had struck out just over 8 batters per 9 innings, and had won at least 12 games every year. Those numbers represent the ace of your pitching staff. Not the guy who’s being outpitched by 36-year old, C.C. Sabathia.

The Yankees first 55 games have shown they are contenders. The young roster is filled with exciting offensive talent, their bullpen is fantastic, and their starting rotation as a whole has exceeded expectations. The 2nd question is: How long can they continue to run this version of Masahiro Tanaka out to the mound every 5 days?? I’m also not sure of the right answer here, but I have an idea. If I were the Yankees, I would put Masahiro Tanaka on the fake disabled list. I’d have the trainer conjure an elbow injury out of thin air, and I’d place Tanaka on the 10-day disabled list. This could give him time to get his mind right and focus on pitching deeper into games and deeper into the season. IF the Yankees are going to make the playoffs, Masahiro Tanaka needs to pitch better. Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez can only bail out their pitchers so many times before the well runs dry.

Will Masahiro Tanaka turn his season around?? Will the Yankees make the playoffs?? Give me your opinion in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. You can also follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!