Game 3: New York Yankees at Blue Jays

New York Yankees, Dellin Betances

The New York Yankees played a hard fought game today. CC Sabathia in his first start had some command issues ,but put together a solid start for the Yankees. He kept them in the game and would not give in to the Blue Jays. Tyler Austin supplied all of the Yankees runs today. This is the first loss of the season for the Yankees, but the Yankees proved they will be in every game. The main problem for the Yankees was Dellin Betances who had alot of control issues and looked similar to himself from last season.

W- Tepera 1-0 (0.00 ERA)

L- Betances 0-1(9.00 ERA)

S- Osuna (1)

Offensive Recap

Before the Yankees scored any runs today they got a scare when rookie Billy McKinney crashed into the left field video board and had to be taken out of the game.

The offense today was basically Tyler Austin. In the fifth inning with the Yankees trailing by two runs Austin smacked a game tying homer off of Blue Jay starter Marco Estrada.

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The Yankees third and final run came on Austin’s second homer of the game which was a game tying one in the seventh.

Pitching Recap

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CC Sabathia looked pretty good in his first start of the 2018 season. He did surrender and early lead to the Blue Jays when Justin Smoak hit a single that scored Josh Donaldson in the first. Besides the first inning run CC pitched a decent game for the Yankees.

Adam Warren came on in relief of CC in the sixth for his first appearance of the season. After retiring the first batter he faced and walking the next Warren got the second out ,but was injured on the play. Jays shortstop Aledmys Diaz hit a sharp liner off of Warrens right foot. Warren existed the game and was replaced by Jonathan Holder.

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Holder served up a a two out single to catcher Luke Maile. Dellin Betances then entered the game in the seventh and pitched a dominate inning. Betances was helped out by catcher Gary Sanchez on the second out of the inning. Sanchez fired a laser to Didi Gregorious at second to catch Curtis Granderson trying to steal second.

The trouble for Betances came in the eighth inning. The first batter of the inning Yangervis Solarte blasted a solo go ahead homer off of Betances. He then recorded two outs and a single to Kevin Pillar. Pillar then stole second with Luke Maile batting. Maile was then walked by Betances. With Gift Ngeope batting Pillar stole third and Maile stole second. Then Pillar stole home for the Jays fifth a final run while Maile advanced to third. Betances got Ngeope to strike out ,but the damage was done and the Yankees went down 1,2,3 in the top of the ninth.

Player of the Game

Todays player of the game is Justin Smoak. He had a dominate day at the plate and recorded his first two RBI’s of the season.

Smoak: 3-4, 2 RBI, 1 Double

Tomorrows’s Game

Yankees at Blue Jays

1:07 ET Rogers Centre

Gray 0-0 (0.00 ERA) vs Stroman 0-0 (0.00 ERA)

Pat Shurmur Will Have A Chance To See Davis Webb In Action Due To Great Rule

The New York Giants and head coach Pat Shurmur are in luck…

Being that Shurmur is a new head coach, the team is presented with an additional mini-camp where players can be introduced to the new systems. This additional camp also gives the new regime a first-hand look at second-year quarterback Davis Webb.

Webb has spent a majority of the offseason working with teammate Evan Engram and wide receiver Brandon Marshall. His work ethic and improvement are both obvious, and if you don’t believe Webb has improved since college, you are surely mistaken. A year under a Hall of Fame quarterback and instruction from professional coaches would help improve any player.

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If you’re interested in seeing how much Webb has improved, check out my exclusive interview with his offseason trainer.

What the extra mini-camp gives the Giants:

The additional camp allows the Giants to break down Webb and make a final decision on if he’s the future of the franchise. Shurmur is known as the “quarterback whisperer,” and was able to find success with third-string quarterback Case Keenum.

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Keenum signed a two-year, $36 million deal with the Denver Broncos a few weeks ago. If Shurmur can make Keenum an $18 million per-season quarterback, just imagine what he can do with a player like Webb. Shurmur plays to players’ strengths, which is why we should expect to see a lot of play-action with Eli Manning and creative routes with Odell Beckham Jr.

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The Giants hold the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, and the decision on whether to take a quarterback or not will influence the team for years to come. Passing on a QB in favor of Webb will put a huge risk on the future of the team, but the rewards would be grand if Webb can fill the shoes of Manning and lead the team to greatness.

EXTRA:

Case Keenum was an undrafted player in 2012. Shurmur managed to turn him into a star, and also helped Brandon Weeden see his most successful years in Cleveland. There’s no doubt he can make Webb great as well.

 

New York Giants Mock Draft 1.0

The New York Giants have a ton of options with the No. 2 overall pick, but finding the most quality is the essential point to hit when considering their avenues of play. They could go the direction of a quarterback, running back, or an offensive lineman. I wouldn’t rule out defensive lineman either for that matter.

But, for this mock-draft, I want to play off a specific scenario. For this specific draft, we will assume head coach Pat Shurmur thinks Davis Webb can be the future at quarterback for the Giants.

With that being said, let’s get started:

Round 1:

With the seconds winding down, the Giants decide to trade out of the No. 2 pick with the Denver Broncos. They move back to No. 5 and collect a 2019 first rounder and a second-rounder for this year.

The Broncos move up and virtually have their choice of quarterbacks depending on what the Cleveland Browns do.

This move gives the Giants the ability to snag Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson and still add value in picks for the future. Remember, Eli Manning ‘needs’ protection to successfully carry his offense, so snagging Nelson is an A+ selection. Another avenue they could still explore is Bradley Chubb, who would fill the shoes of the departed Jason Pierre-Paul.

EXTRA:

I wouldn’t rule out the idea of Saquon Barkley still being available at No. 5. The Browns could decide to address the offensive line with the No. 4 pick.

FINAL PICK: G, Quenton Nelson

Round 2:

The Giants hold the No. 34 pick in the draft, which is the second pick in the second-round. They will surely have some exciting options available to them, but since they will have addressed the offensive line in the first, they can consider running back or linebacker in the second.

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The two most enticing options that could be available are LSU running back Derrius Guice and Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch.

In this situation, I would go with Vander Esch, as he is a good cover linebacker with quickness and athleticism. He exploded onto the scene in 2017 with 141 total tackles and two interceptions.

The Boise State linebacker would work well alongside Alec Ogeltree and Kareem Martin. His abilities in coverage is what separates him from the crowd.

FINAL PICK: LB, Leighton Vander Esch

Round two, pick two:

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The Giants will address the defensive line with their additional second-round pick acquired from the Broncos.

They will look no further than Sam Hubbard from Ohio State. Hubbard has Joey Bosa size at 6-foot-5, 270-pounds. He has struggles with inconsistency, but would be a steal in the second round.

FINAL PICK: DE, Sam Hubbard

Round 3:

The Giants have two picks in the third-round of the draft, one of which was acquire from the Buccaneers in the JPP trade.

Two positions of need for the Giants in round three are cornerback and running back.

Maryland’s J.C. Jackson is a great value pick in the third. He has a troubled past that got him kicked off the team in Florida, but he has returned as a stand-up player and man for Maryland. He is a solid tackler with good instincts at corner.

His off the field issues will be the reason he slips to the third-round and will ultimately land the Giants a quality developmental corner with star potential.

FINAL PICK: CB, J.C. Jackson

For the Giants’ second pick in the third-round, they will be heavily looking into runningbacks. San Diego States’ Rashaad Penny will certainly be on the mind of GM Dave Gettleman in the third-round. He’s a bigger, power back with surprising speed and burst. He has the ability to hit that extra gear and speed past the second level, giving him a leg up on most other power backs in the draft.

Penny averaged 7.8 yards-per-carry in 2017 and recorded 2,248 yards on the ground. He also has soft hands and good ability in the passing game, making him an all-around back.

As you can see from this clip, Penny has a very upright running style, which could present issues for him in the NFL. If he can improve his center of gravity, he could become an above-average runner.

FINAL PICK 2: RB,  Rashaad Penny

Round 4:

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The Giants may look to take a big-bodied receiver in the fourth-round of the draft. Georgia’s Javon Wims could fit the bill nicely if the Giants decide to depart with veteran receiver Brandon Marshall.

Wims stands at 6-foot-4 and weighs 214-pounds. For the Bulldogs, Wims produced big play ability when needed. He managed 720 yards and seven touchdowns in 2017.

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FINAL PICK: WR, Javon Wims

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Round 5:

Dave Gettleman is a master at finding late round talent on the offensive line. This time around, he will look no further than Appalachian State guard, Colby Gossett.

Gossett is a durable guard that played 46 straight games in college. He stands at 6-foot-4 and weighs in at 304-pounds. He will need to increase his agility to handle faster interior rushers in the NFL, but he has tremendous ability and should be a high value pick in the fifth round for the Giants.

FINAL PICK: G, Colby Gossett

New York Mets 40-Man Roster Overview: Noah Syndergaard

New York Mets, Noah Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard is the ace of the New York Mets pitching staff and is looking to bounce back to have a healthy season this year. Thor brings a strong repertoire of pitchers and is certainly a favorite of many for this years Cy Young award.

The Toronto Blue Jays took Syndergaard with the 38th pick of the 2010 MLB Draft. After three strong years in the minor league system, the Mets acquired Thor, John Buck, Travis d’Arnaud and Wuilmer Becerra for Josh Thole, Mike Nickeas and R.A. Dickey. The potential was there for Syndergaard but had to learn to be a pitcher, not a thrower.

Syndergaard’s Career as a Met

In 2014, the Mets decline to bring up Syndergaard during September call-ups which surprised many around the team. The organization felt he still was not ready and still had to improve mentally and on the field. In May of 2015 the Mets finally called-up Syndergaard to make his debut against the Chicago Cubs. Thor had terrific rookie season going 9-7 with a 3.24 ERA and 166 strikeouts to 31 walks. He recorded the Mets lone win in the 2015 World Series and finished fourth in Rookie of the Year Voting.

Syndergaard’s game improved in 2016 where he was virtually the only starter, along with Bartolo Colon, who could remain healthy. He put up ace type numbers; 14-9 with a 2.60 ERA (third in the NL) and 218 strikeouts (fourth in the NL). Syndergaard earned his first All-Star selection, finished eighth in Cy Young voting. He pitched seven shutout innings in the Wild Card game to cement his place as the Mets big game pitcher. His ability to throw his fastball at 100 mph and keep his walk rate low was a big key for his 2016 dominance.

Injuries Ruined Thor’s 2017

2017 was a year filled with high expectations for the Mets but like so many of his teammates he succumbed to the injury bug. After starting the season on fire and foregoing an MRI he pulled his lat muscle in May and did not return until September when the Mets were out of it. He only pitched 30.1 innings but had a 34:3 strikeout to walk ratio.

Syndergaard had a terrific start on Opening Day. He picked up the win a struck out 10 without walking anybody against the St. Louis Cardinals. Thor can throw all five of his pitches at any could and combining it with the velocity he has makes him a perennial Cy Young candidate. Syndergaard has the demeanor, guts and confidence to lead the New York Mets to a championship and will not accept anything short of it.

Game 2 Recap: New York Yankees at Blue Jays

New York Yankees

The New York Yankees won their second game of the season and showed how deep the lineup truly is. The Yankees scored four runs even with Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and Gary  Sanchez combining to go 0-12 tonight. Brandon Drury and Billy Mckinney had great nights at the plate. In his first start of the season Masahiro Tanaka backed up Luis Severino’s Opening Day gem with a dominate start of his own.

W-Tanaka 1-0 (1.50 ERA)

L- Sanchez 0-1 (6.35 ERA)

S- Chapman (1)

Offensive Recap

The New York Yankees did not score in the first inning tonight ,but the they did score in the second.  Didi ropped a triple to dead centerfield ,but he was thrown out at home when Sanchez in the next at bat hit a ball to third.  Newest Yankee Billy McKinney, who is up because of an injury to Aaron Hicks, hit is first career major league hit. A single to right that moved Sanchez to third.

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Brandon Drury followed Mckinney with a booming double to right field, he missed a homer by a few inches.

The Yankees then scored again in fourth and it was Drury again who knocked in Didi with a two out single to put the Yankees back ahead.

The Yankees added two more runs to their lead in the sixth inning. Tyler Wade collected his first hit of the season and it was a big one. Wade with the bases loaded hit a double to center that scored Didi and Neil Walker.

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Pitching Recap

Tanaka started his first game of the season and was brilliant. After serving up a second inning solo homer to Randal Grichuk, Tanaka settled down. He retired 13 batters in a row to finish a strong outing.

Tommy Kahnle entered the game in seventh and was dominate. He was a little wild in the eighth as he walked Russel Martin to start the inning and then got Kevin Pillar to fly out to Judge. David Robertson was then inserted into the game and threw five pitches to end the inning.

Aroldis Champan came into the game to try and earn his first save of the season. Chapman made quick work of the first two batters he faced ,but struggled to record the final out. He gave up back to back hits to pinch hitter Steve Pearce and Yangervis Solarte. Chapman finally got the third and final out after he caught Grichuk looking at a 100 mph fastball on the corner.

Player of the Game

Brandon Drury and Billy McKinney are co-players of the game. Drury was the spark for the Yankees lineup as he drove in  two runs for the Yankees tonight. He has a solid approach at the plate and shows why he was acquired to be the starting third baseman.

Drury- 2-3, 2 H, 1 BB, 2 RBI, 1 Double

Billy McKinney was called up today because of an injury to Aaron Hicks. He did not disappoint and collected his first major league hit. McKinney is a solid player who has the potential to become a good major leaguer.

McKinney- 1-4, 1st major league hit

Didi’s Post-Game Tweet

Tomorrows Game

Yankees at Blue Jays

4:07 ET Rogers Centre

Sabathia 0-0 (0.00) vs Estrada 0-0 (0.00)

Breaking News: Aaron Hicks to the DL

New York Yankees, Aaron Hicks

The Yankees Opening Day center fielder Aaron Hicks has been played on the 10-Day Disabled List with a Right intercostal muscle strain.

This injury to Hicks marks the third New York Yankees outfielder that has been injured so far this season. Hicks along with Jacoby Ellsbury (oblique) and Clint Frazier (concussion) are all on the DL currently.

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This injury allows rookie outfielder and novice first baseman Billy McKinney to be called up. McKinney played well this Spring. McKinney had five home runs this Spring and with that performance he will be making his major League debut tonight, starting in Left Field and batting seventh.

The Yankees once “Crowded” outfield that was questioned how guys would get any playing time is now evening out. The Yankees will shift Gardner over to center field for the time being.

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The Yankees have a ton of Minor League depth thanks to Brian Cashman and his brilliant. That depth will now be put to an early test.

New York Giants Draft Profile: CB J.C. Jackson

One position the New York Giants need to address in this year’s draft is cornerback. Marylands’ J.C. Jackson has tremendous athletic ability and is projected to go anywhere between the rounds three and four.

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Jackson would likely be in consideration in the earlier rounds if it wasn’t for his legal troubles earlier in college. The former University of Florida recruit found himself hanging around the wrong crowd and got himself arrested and kicked off the team.He spent 2015 playing in community college before he got his second chance with the University of Maryland.

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In his final two years at Maryland, Jackson started 23 of 24 games and was the top of his team in pass breakups and interceptions. He also posted 40 tackles each season.

Pros:

  • Good in press coverage
  • Recovers well when beaten underneath
  • Physical within the first five yards
  • Can throw receiver off of route
  • Aggressive in run support
  • Good tackler

Cons:

  • Can let plays behind him too often
  • Can lose composure when beat downfield
  • Nine pass interference calls and four holding in two seasons
  • Needs to work on passing lanes in zone coverage

Summary:

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J.C. Jackson is a physical corner that has good speed and quickness. He will play well against the run and can defend short and intermediate passes well. The concern is how he will defend on deep routes, as he has shown he can get beat. J.C. Jackson is a talented athlete and will be a bit of a project as a cornerback, but absolutely has the ability to start in the NFL.

 

 

 

 

Giants Can Replace Brandon Marshall With Cheaper, Big Bodied Receiver

The New York Giants need to make a decision on big-bodied receiver Brandon Marshall, and finding a cheaper replacement might be in the best interest of the team.

Cutting the former New York Jet would save the Giants upwards of $5 million in cap-space. The influx in cash could not only sign a quality replacement, but also allocate a bit more capital towards the special teams unit. The Giants’ special teams has been lackluster over the course of the past few seasons. Increasing the quality of the roster in all facets of the game is essential in returning to success.

The replacement:

Marshall has yet to take his physical, which would ultimately allow the Giants to either cut him or retain him. Marshall has spent a majority of the offseason practicing alongside Eli Manning and building chemistry with the future Hall of Fame quarterback. If GM Dave Gettleman decided that cutting Marshall was the right thing to do, it’s possible he retires on the spot.

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Several days ago, head coach Pat Shurmur stated in regard to Marshall:

Giants’ WR Brandon Marshall has been working at the team facility, “trying to get healthy,” Pat Shurmur said. He hasn’t passed a physical yet. As for his place on the team, Shurmur stated, “We’ll have to see.” 

The Giants could look no further than his former teammate Eric Decker to replace him on the outside. Decker spent the 2017 season with the Tennessee Titans on a $4 million deal over one -season. Marshall struggled to live up to expectations in 2017, dropping two key passes that resulted in two ‘giant’ losses.

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Decker racked up 536 yards and one touchdown in a secondary role last season. He played in all 16 games and started in eight of them. An interesting statistic: Decker caught 65.1% of his passes, making for the highest since 2012.

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Adding a strong, big receiver to the team would complement Odell Beckham Jr. well, and he would fit perfectly on the boundary with Sterling Shepard working out of the slot.

 

 

Game 1 Recap: New York Yankees at Blue Jays

What a great start to the season for the New York Yankees in 2018. The Yankees season got off to a bang. The Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-1.

W-Luis Severino (0.00) ERA

L-J.A. Happ (3.86) ERA

Offensive Recap:

Brett Gardner reached base on an E7 from former Yankee Curtis Granderson, and Giancarlo Stanton blasted an opposite field homer in his first at bat of the season.

The Yankees added two runs to their lead in the fifth when Stanton and Gary Sanchez hit back to back two out doubles.

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Brett Gardner then hit a solo homer in the sixth off of Blue Jay reliever Danny Barnes. The Yankees final run came on another Stanton homer in the eighth and this time he hit a solo one off of old Yankee Tyler Clippard.

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All in all the Yankees offense was fantastic today and the newest Bronx Bomber Giancarlo Stanton played a big role in the win. Aaron Judge also had a productive day hitting ahead of Stanton as he went 2-4 with a double and single. This was only a taste of what the Yankees offense will look like this season.

Pitching Recap

Luis Severino proved today that he is the Yankees ace. After facing some trouble in the first Severino struck out Kendrys Morales to strand two runners on base. Severino settled down and compiled a strong 5.2 innings pitched and only surrended one hit, a single to Granderson in the fourth.

Chad Green came into the game in relief of Severino in the sixth and struck out Granderson for his first strikeout of the year. Green came back out to pitch the seventh and retired the Blue Jays in order.

Betances came onto pitch the eighth and served up a solo homer to Kevin Pillar on the first pitch he threw. Betances settled down and retired the next three hitters. Chapman came on to pitch the ninth and retired the Blue Jays in order to seal the win for the Yankees and earn Aaron Boone’s first win as a manager.

Player of the Game

Without question Giancarlo Stanton is the Yankees player of the game for the Yankees. He had a tremendous debut and was the first Yankee to homer in his first at-bat as a Yankee since Aaron Judge in 2016.

3-5, 2 HR, 1 Double and 3 RBI

Didi’s Post-Game Tweet

Tomorrows Game

Yankees at Blue Jays

7:07 ET Rogers Centre

Tanaka (0.00) vs Sanchez (0.00)

Getting to Know Your Yankee Bench Coach: Josh Bard

Background:

Joshua David Bard (born March 30, 1978) is a former Major League baseball catcher. Bard played for the Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox, San Diego Padres, Washington Nationals and Seattle Mariners from ’02 to 2011.

Bard played along side of the new New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone in 2005 for the Indians. Bard spent most of his career dealing with injuries, however when healthy Josh served as a good backup catcher.

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After Bard retired in 2012 he became a Special Assistant with the Los Angeles Dodgers and would serve in that role until becoming the bullpen coach for the Dodgers prior to their 2016 season.

Through his relationship with Aaron Boone Josh Bard was hired to be the New York Yankees bench coach for the upcoming 2018 season.

Bench Coach? What Does He Do ?

According to the MLB.com Glossary the definition of what the Pitching Coach is:

“A bench coach is typically considered the right-hand man to his team’s manager and helps to foster a positive environment in the clubhouse as well as communication between the player roster and coaching staff. Bench coaches assist their managers in decision-making and will sometimes relay scouting information from the team’s front office to the club’s players.”

“Many bench coaches are former or aspiring managers. The bench coach typically steps in to act as manager when the regular manager is unavailable (often as a result of being ejected from the game).”

What to Expect ?

Josh Bard is the right hand man of Aaron Boone as thus his responsibilities will be many, however his biggest and arguably most important job will be assisting Boone on this brand new journey.