New York Yankees Smack Seven Home Runs to Beat Orioles

The New York Yankees came out swinging on a sunny Sunday in the DMV, hitting seven home runs to beat the Orioles 15-3.

Scary Gary

Gary Sanchez led the New York Yankees by smacking three home runs, while just missing a fourth in the final inning. Two of his long balls came off a fastball, one first pitch, and the third was off a slider.

Clint Frazier built off of Saturday’s game by going 4-for-5 with two home runs and an RBI single. Gleyber Torres went 2-for-5 with a home run, and Austin Romine mashed a home run in the ninth.

New Yankee Giovanny Urshela added an RBI while going 2-for-3 as well as playing a good third base.

The Yankees accumulated 15 hits while drawing nine walks during the game, with Gardner drawing three. Aaron Judge went 0-for-4, but didn’t strikeout at all.

Luke Voit went 1-for-5, and despite him having a .182 average, he has reached safely in all but two games thus far.

Dominant Domingo

Domingo German was dominant on Sunday in possibly his best start yet. He pitched 6+ innings, allowing two hits and two runs. German actually had a no-hitter going through 5 1/3 innings. In the seventh inning, he gave up a hit and a walk before he was pulled.

Once pulled, Steven Tarpley came in and allowed both runs to score, as well as one of his own runs as he struggled to make it through the seventh.

Luis Cessa came in for the eighth and ninth, giving up just one hit. Cessa is looking better and better each time out, and we are finally starting to see why Brian Cashman thinks so highly of him.

Speaking of Brian Cashman, the Yankees won their 2,000th game with Cashman as the GM. What an accomplishment for one of the best general managers in all of sports.

The Yankees now travel down to Houston to take on the Astros in a three game series. Masahiro Tanaka gets the ball for the Yankees against Houston ace Justin Verlander. First pitch is set at 7:00PM (ET) on ESPN, Watch ESPN, YES Network, and FOX Sports Go.

New York Giants Are Taking a Calculated Risk at Free Safety, Could Draft Developmental Player

The New York Giants need to extract value from Antoine Bethea.

The New York Giants are in need of quality assurance at the free safety position, as they cut 26-year-old Curtis Riley for 34-year-old Antoine Bethea. The depth at the position is minimal, but there are several options in the 2019 NFL Draft that could register as reserve alternatives.

Bethea will count $3.625 against the cap this season, an awfully high number for an aged safety that might have his best days behind him. However, the former Arizona Cardinal defensive back made the transition from strong safety to free safety and has shown solid value in the secondary.

In 2018, Antoine earned 121 total tackles and 100 solo. He also earned a career-best three sacks along with four passes defended. His influence on the Giants could be significant after pairing him with new acquisition Jabrill Peppers. The dynamic safety will ultimately replace Landon Collins, but his skill set is far more diversified and effective in the 3-4 defense.

Peppers will be asked to play the run, pass, and cover tight ends. With Bethea in the backfield patrolling the secondary the Giants should be able to improve their pass defense against tight ends.

Could the New York Giants draft a free safety?

I fully believe that general manager Dave Gettleman will draft a free safety at the end of April. While it’s unlikely he will allocate impact-player level draft capital towards the position, he could certainly grab one in the 3rd or 4th round.

One player that could fit the bill is Deleware star Nasir Adderley. At 5’11”, 206 pounds, Adderley is undersized for the NFL, but I anticipate he will gain some size and strength once acclimated with the physicality of the league. The Deleware product has racked up nine interceptions in the last two season, and he has shown improved development during every campaign.

Continuous growth is an extremely beneficial factor in a player, as it shows their ability to learn from mistakes and accept coaching.

Despite having a cornerback frame, Adderley is tenacious and loves to be around the ball. Sticking him behind Bethea for a season would do wonders for his growth.

 

New York Yankees: Gary Sanchez is an Enigma

The New York Yankees have an enigma in Gary Sanchez, one that continues from 2018 right up to the game on Saturday against the Baltimore Orioles where he was picked off third base in the sixth inning with the Yankees holding onto a one-point lead.

What is he thinking, has too often been uttered by Yankees fans in the past year, as they watched him lead the league in passed balls (18) behind the dish and stink on offense (.186/.291/.406).

New York Yankees: Gary Sanchez seems to be regressing

In 2017, Sanchez was as good as advertised, an offensive juggernaut with a .278/.354/.531 slash line with 33 home runs, 90 RBIs and he lead the majors in pull percentage (51.6%).  On defense, he had the best arm strength (87.8), according to Wikipedia, and the third-best average pop time to second base (1.93 seconds) of all MLB catchers; however, at the same time he tied for the league lead in passed balls with 16.  Enigma, right?

So far in ‘19, passed balls have not been his problem, rather, he has four throwing errors from behind the dish, a .946 Fielding Percentage and he’s 5-for-13 (.217) on offense.  

He has three homers and looks like the Sanchez of 2017 on those.  His hard-hit rate is at 55.6%, according to Scott Thompson of SNY.com, that combined with his 66.7% fly ball rate is encouraging for Yankee fans.  Thompson states that:

“…having a higher fly ball rate with good exit velocities will obviously lead to more round trippers and extra base hits off the fence”

Sanchez is trending in the right direction and some reports claim that he has just hit into bad luck -otherwise known as hitting into the shift-this season and fans should be encouraged by the hard-hit homers off Sanchez’ bat that his offense is getting hot.

There are many questions about Sanchez, including whether he’s focused enough behind the plate to overcome his issues and whether he can live up to his 2017 break-out numbers.

The Yankees are fully invested in Sanchez, considering they were not players in the J.T. Realmuto sweepstakes this offseason.  Austin Romine is not in line to take a full-time position behind the plate for the Yankees.  Sanchez is the man.  The Yankees need him to step up on defense and offense, especially with the number of players the Yankees have on the Injured List.

Sanchez is an enigma, but not insoluble.  He needs to combine the confidence and swagger of his rookie season with his growing experience and responsibilities as a veteran.

Fans who are calling for his head just need to be patient and they will likely be rewarded with a solid season from the now veteran backstop.  Steamer projects he’ll hit .245 this season with 27 homers and I believe most fans would sign on for this type of production from him at the plate.

Defensively, Sanchez continues to work on areas of his game that need improvement and fans will continue to hold him accountable for his miscues, as they should.

The 2019 season is just beginning, let’s give Sanchez a chance to put it all together and achieve a balanced, elite performance on both sides of the plate.  The Yankees obviously believe he is capable of doing it and so do I.

 

New York Giants Should Pursue Dark Horse Cornerback in 2019 NFL Draft

The New York Giants have drafted Notre Dame corner, Julian Love.

The New York Giants might be holding onto the optimistic hope that supplemental draft pick Sam Beal can emerge as a starter, but coming off a serious shoulder injury should temper our expectations.

The Giants secondary is thin, some might even say non-existent. Relying on Janoris Jenkins, Beal, and Grant Haley to hold it down in coverage is not the most ideal scenario, but the 2019 NFL Draft offers several great options, one of which is Notre Dame prospect Julian Love.

Where can the New York Giants draft Julian Love?

The Fighting Irish corner is one of the better options in pass-breakups, recording 16 passes defended in 2018 and 20 in 2017.

Simply put, Love has outstanding hips, feet, and natural instincts. His competitiveness is top-tier, offering extreme value as a mid-round selection. The Giants could potentially grab him in the second round or top of the third. NFL.com has him graded as a potential NFL starter.

https://twitter.com/BarstoolIrish/status/1014544382278717440

Love operates with great quickness and technique. He has the ability to anticipate throws and turn his head to make plays on the ball, something Eli Apple couldn’t do if his life depended on it. The Giants are in dire need of a second outside corner, a slot that Love could fill with ease.

The Notre Dame product’s negatives are purely physical. Scouts believe that Love might lack the strength and toughness to grapple with bigger receivers on the outside. Adding a bit more size and strength could be beneficial for the corner, which would increase his potential that much more.

The primary issue with Love is speed – he ran a 4.54 40-yard-dash. With a lack of size holding him down at 5’11”, 195 pounds, he relies heavily on his technical abilities. If he’s unable to keep up with NFL caliber wideouts, he will struggle in coverage.

However, his fundamentals are pure and he has the potential to be a starting caliber corner at the next level. Grabbing him at the bottom of the second or beginning of the third could be a great value pick.

 

New York Yankees: Clint Frazier’s Late Homer Powers Yankees to Win Over Orioles

Clint Frazier may not have started the game, but he sure helped end it for the New York Yankees. Pinch-hitting for Mike Tauchman in the sixth, Frazier struck out but would remain in the game with him being the only outfielder off the bench. In the eighth inning with two on, Frazier bashed a 2-2 slider to left field with no doubt, giving the Yankees a 6-4 lead that would hold for a win.

The Judge with two verdicts

Yankee slugger Aaron Judge finally got on the board with two home runs on Saturday, both to center field.

On his first home run, he swung at a 2-2 fastball that got too much of the zone for a solo shot, putting the Yankees up 1-0 in the first inning.

In the third inning, he put a full-count slider over the wall that was a bit too high in the zone for Oriole pitcher Dylan Bundy. Bundy lasted just 3 2/3 innings.

Aaron Judge’s two home runs and Frazier’s home run accounted for all six Yankee runs.

Happ and Holder struggled

JA Happ didn’t have a great outing in a rematch against the Orioles, and Jonathan Holder sorta made a mess in relief.

Happ pitched just 4 1/3 innings while allowing five hits and two runs while issuing two walks and punching out five. The lefty threw 88 pitches, and had trouble keeping the ball out of the air. He got six fly balls compared to two ground balls. However, Happ gave 12 of his 20 batters he faced a first pitch strike.

Holder was quite wild in relief of Happ. He only had one first pitch strike against eight batters. After a clean start, Holder hit Cedric Mullins with a pitch and allowed Jonathan Villar to single in the seventh inning.

A fielders choice hit by Chris Davis and a sacrifice fly by Rio Ruiz scored those runs. It seemed that Aaron Boone tried to stretch Holder too far. (Side note: Davis hasn’t gotten a hit in 40 consecutive at-bats)

Ottavino came in after for five outs, and despite only one strikeout he got the job done. It took Chad Green 16 pitches to get the final out of the eighth after an error by DJ LeMahieu.

Aroldis Chapman came in and got the save in the ninth. He looked good, but he isn’t quite at his 100-102 MPH fastball. He was maxing out at about 97 MPH.

The Yankees and the Orioles conclude their series on Sunday at 1:05PM. Domingo German will get the ball for the Yankees against the Orioles’ David Hess. The game will be on YES Network, Fox Sports Go, ESPN+, and out of market on MASN.

 

New York Giants: Mock Draft Rounds 1-2, The Trenches Gain Reinforcements

The New York Giants could be looking to snag Clelin Ferrell in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

With the New York Giants heading into the final three weeks of pre-draft evaluation, the rumors are bountiful. The question remains – will the Giants spend the No. 6 overall pick in the draft on a quarterback? Or will they elect to take a defensive player with their top choice?

The 2019 NFL Draft is stocked full of defensive talent which could help the Giants’ defense after the departure of Landon Collins, Damon Harrison, Eli Apple, and Oliver Vernon. Losing four starters hurt the unit last season, but allowed the team to add draft picks with trades involving Vernon, Harrison, and Apple. General manager Dave Gettleman stated in hindsight that trading Collins for a draft pick would’ve been a good move given they knew he would have left in free agency on a record-breaking deal.

New York Giants: Rounds 1-2 to address the trenches

Second round pick (No. 37):

With the 37th pick int he draft, just outside of the first round, the Giants grab an offensive tackle in Dalton Risner. The Kansas City product provides solid value in the second round, as he is a high-upside option with plenty of experience at the collegiate level – four years at tackle.

While Risner has average length and athleticism, he has above average core strength and is consistent with his level of performance. The Giants have produced a turnstile level of talent at right tackle, which makes the drafting of a potential starter a necessity.

First round (No. 17):

The middle of the first round often sees the talent drop off from top-tier prospects second-tier with a higher probability of success. The pick here is Clemson star pass-rusher, Clelin Ferrell.

Ferrell has a prototypical frame for the NFL, standing at 6’4″, 264 pounds. In 2017, he racked up 31 tackles for a loss and 21 total sacks. Last season, he earned 29 solo tackles, 11.5 total sacks, and three forced fumbles. While his numbers took a major hit, he was still productive when rushing the passer. He also posted 19.5 tackles for a loss.

The bottom line, his ceiling is massive with a bit of development. He has the tangible skills to become a monster at the next level, but he must be utilized appropriately to extract the most value.

First round (No. 6):

The Giants run the 3-4 scheme under defensive coordinator James Bettcher. He’s keen on adding big linebackers with the ability to rush the passer and clog up holes on the line of scrimmage. Elite defender Devin White earns the Giants’ 6th overall pick with two consecutive seasons over 120 combined tackles. Adding 12 tackles for a loss and three sacks to his resume in 2018, White offers the most at the draft spot and can immediately bolster the defense – pairing him with Alec Ogletree could be deadly.

Having two first-round picks and allocating them towards top-tier defensive prospects changes the narrative completely on the unit. As of right now, there are various holes on the defense, including pass-rusher, linebacker, safety, and cornerback. Several picks must be spent on upgrading the unit as a whole, and adding White/Ferrell is a solid foundational move.