Advertisements
Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Colby Lewis’

Throughout the season, you kept on hearing about how well the Yankees were playing and why they were the favorites to win the World Series. They spent 94 days in first place. On the other hand, the Texas Rangers were certainly considered a formidable opponent, but you didn’t hear people talk about them like they were on top of the American League. The Yankees, Rays and Phillies were thought to be the strongest teams in all of baseball.

By Season Half: New York Yankees

First Half: (W-L, 56-32) RS: 469  RA: 352  WP: .636

Second Half: (W-L, 39-35) RS: 390  RA: 341  WP: .527

As the season was winding down, the Yankees looked as if they were dragging their feet across the finish line. They weren’t playing like they did in the first half of the season. Girardi was resting players when they didn’t lock up the AL East division. I just never understood how you could bench your starters (even if they could use a day of rest) if you are in the middle of a pennant race. The bottom of the lineup consisted of Ramiro Pena, Austin Kearns and Juan Miranda. That wasn’t going to cut it with the fans. It’s always good to give your players a rest, especially if you expect to go deep into October, but you can do all that once you lock up that playoff spot.

The month of September didn’t turn out  the way the Yankees had envisioned it. It wound up being the worst month of the season, compiling a W-L record of 12-15 (.444). They were playing under .500 baseball during the most important part of the season. Their offense may have been doing just fine during that period, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the large deficits the pitching staff was placing them in. In the last 12 games of the regular season, the pitching was horrendous, allowing an average of 6.3 runs per game. In that time, they went from 2.5 games up in the division to 1 game back. In the end, the Yankees (95-67) handed the division over to the Rays (96-66). You were actually hearing rumblings from the fans about how they “might not make the playoffs” (even though they had a nice lead over the Red Sox) during the month of September. They took the AL Wild Card and stumbled into the postseason. They had a clean slate after that. They gained some confidence when they swept the Twins in the ALDS. After seeing the Rangers take the Rays in five games, it looked like Texas was for real.

The Yankees took Game #1 of the ALCS, but you wouldn’t see them laughing after that. The Rangers would go on to win the next three games of the series (Lewis won Game #2, Lee won Game #3, & blew out the Yankees 10-3 in Game #4). Lewis pitched really well for the Rangers, but he’s not the type of pitcher who should be shutting down the Yankees. The ball was given to CC Sabathia in Game #5, and he pitched well enough to force a Game #6 (even though he didn’t have his best stuff that day).

The Yankees had their season lay in the balance, and they gave Phil Hughes the ball. Colby Lewis shut down the Yankees offense in embarassing fashion. The Rangers batters eventually got to Hughes in the 5th inning, and it was all over. You can blame the manager in some instances, you can blame the lineup and the pitching staff. In general, the team didn’t play up to what they were really capable of. There were a few players who stood out, such as Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera and Curtis Granderson. That wouldn’t be enough to get this team to the Fall Classic. The Rangers simply outplayed them in every facet of the game.

We all saw the Rays get knocked off by the Rangers, the Rangers eliminate the Yankees and the Giants beat the Phillies. Now, you can ask yourself..how did that happen? Back in July, the Rangers swooped in and grabbed Cliff Lee from the Mariners, which made them a major threat to anyone they would face in the postseason. Their offense was rolling on all cylinders, and the young arms on the team raised their level of play when it mattered most. Some might say the New York Yankees were the better team, but they simply didn’t step up in big situations. During the regular season, the Yankees went 4-4 against Texas. The Rangers came to play, and they earned every right to be in the World Series. Sometimes, the better team doesn’t always win.

  (2nd From L-R) Kerry Wood #39, Mariano Rivera #42, Derek Jeter #2, And Andy Pettitte #46 Of The New York Yankees Look

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

New York Yankees Starting Pitcher Phil Hughes DeliversYankees (2-3) vs. Rangers (3-2)

Pitching Matchup:

RHP Phil Hughes (1-1, 5.73) vs RHP Colby Lewis (1-0, 1.69)

Lineup

Jeter SS
Granderson CF
Cano 2B
Rodriguez 3B
Berkman 1B
Swisher RF
Posada C
Thames DH
Gardner LF (more…)

Read Full Post »

With the Yankees down 3-1 in the series, the team will look at CC Sabathia to keep them alive. It’s Do or Die. Here are the pitching probables for the rest of the series: (Key: *= If Necessary)

Wed: LHP CC Sabathia (1-0, 7.20) vs LHP C.J. Wilson (1-0, 2.03)

Fri: RHP Phil Hughes (1-1, 5.73) vs RHP Colby Lewis (1-0, 1.69)*

Sat: LHP Andy Pettitte  (1-1, 2.57) vs LHP Cliff Lee (3-0, 0.75)*

Read Full Post »

New York Yankees Starting Pitcher Phil Hughes ParticipatesYankees (1-0) vs. Rangers (0-1)

Pitching Matchup:

RHP Phil Hughes (1-0, 0.00) vs RHP Colby Lewis (0-0, 0.00)

Lineup

Jeter SS
Granderson CF
Teixeira 1B
Rodriguez 3B
Cano 2B
Swisher RF
Posada C
Berkman DH
Gardner LF (more…)

Read Full Post »

The Yankees open up the American League Championship Series tonight against the Texas Rangers. Here are the pitching probables for the series:

Fri: Game #1: LHP CC Sabathia (1-0, 4.50) vs LHP C.J. Wilson (1-0, 0.00)

Sat: Game #2: RHP Phil Hughes (1-0, 0.00) vs RHP Colby Lewis (0-0, 0.00)

Mon: Game #3: LHP Andy Pettitte (1-0, 2.57) vs LHP Cliff Lee (2-0, 1.13)

Tue: Game #4: RHP A.J. Burnett (0-0, 0.00) vs RHP Tommy Hunter (0-1, 4.50)

*I’ll update you with more pitching matchups if those games are necessary.*

Read Full Post »

So, it looks as though the Texas Rangers are the winners of this year’s perennial Cliff Lee sweepstakes. Does this mean the Yankees can expect to meet them in the playoffs?

Texas is currently 50-35 and in first place in the AL West. Adding Lee will undoubtedly help their starting rotation, which currently consists of Scott Feldman, CJ Wilson, Colby Lewis, Tommy Hunter and Dustin Nippert.  Rich Harden is also in the mix, but the oft-injured righty is, well, injured yet again. Lee is better than any of these guys and will only improve on the group’s combined 4.27 ERA, which is currently the 8th best mark in the AL. By comparison, the Yankees rotation has posted a 3.79 ERA, 3rd in the league.

However, Texas sent their starting 1st baseman, Justin Smoak, to Seattle in the Lee deal. It’s not that Smoak was hitting at the level expected of him – but he was the only 1st baseman on the 25 man roster. The Rangers could return to using Chris Davis at first, or try putting one of their outfielders there. I doubt either move is particularly palatable to them, but the rules say you can’t play without a 1st baseman (or with 5 outfielders).

Texas is in a weak division, where one of their rivals just got a lot weaker. FanGraphs projected the Rangers to win 93 games before the Lee trade, so you have to figure adding Lee’s 4.0 WAR should pencil them in for 96-97 wins. That will be enough to get them into the playoffs, likely as the #2 seed behind the Yankees – which means they won’t face each other in the divisional round. Right now, that figures to be Yankees/Tigers and Rangers/Rays. The question for Texas will be, has adding Lee done enough to get them past the top two teams in the AL and into the Fall Classic?

I wouldn’t bet on it.

As for those of us in the Evil Empire, we can be content to watch the Rangers empty their farm system in an attempt to get a ring. After all, we know where Lee is headed this upcoming offseason. :)

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: