New York Giants Head Coach Tired Of The Daniel Jones Question

New York Giants, Pat Shurmur, James Bettcher

Is Daniel Jones going to be the starter for the New York Giants in 2019? No. At least, that’s if the coaching staff are to be believed. There’s been plenty of talk flying around about how the number six overall draft pick is ready to start right now, and now that Jones has three good preseason games under his belt, it doesn’t seem that the talk is going to cease anytime soon. But throwing Jones right into the line of fire isn’t the plan for the Giants, and it hasn’t been since the draft.

It doesn’t stop the question from coming up by now, though, every week, as if the team’s answer might change. This time, head coach Pat Shurmur had to do what he’s been doing all training camp long and reaffirm that the starter is Eli Manning.

“I think what we’re doing is, and I’ve said it all along, Eli’s our starter and we’re getting Daniel ready to play. I think he’s done a good job in the preseason, as I’ve mentioned all along. He’s getting better, and he’s going to continue to do that so that at whatever time we need him to play, he’ll be ready,” said Shurmur.

But affirming Manning as the starter one time wasn’t enough, and Shurmur found himself being asked again if he was for sure about Manning being the starter once again.

“I just said Eli’s the starter. Didn’t I just say that? Excuse the fact that I had to repeat it, but I felt like I just said that. It’s all good,” Shurmur repeated.

It likely won’t be the last time such an explanation is repeated – the Giants still have one preseason game left, after all, and it’s unknown how the offense will perform in the regular season following major changes. Will the Giants change their stance when the regular season starts due to the performance of Eli Manning?

We’ll see. It’s impossible to know right now, because for now, just how good or bad Manning will play this season remains a mystery, despite being the main deciding factor in Jones’ fate this season.

New York Yankees: Disappointing Start To West Coast Swing

New York Yankees, Masahiro Tanaka

After a home split against a solid Cleveland Indians team, the New York Yankees headed out west with a lot of confidence. But, that confidence went away rather quickly after they were dominated by the Oakland Athletics, on the wrong side of a three game sweep.

You really can’t put the blame on any one person. The Yankee starting pitching didn’t perform, and neither did the offense. All three starting pitchers that faced the Athletics gave up five runs, and the Yankees scored just nine runs all week.

With this day and age of the game, you can’t score three runs and expect to win. You need to score at least five runs to feel even just alright about winning a game.

The bullpen was pretty solid though. The relievers gave up just two runs during the series and they had their work cut out for them, not that it mattered in the end.

Wipe Away The Week

The last thing the Yankees can do now is think about the Oakland series too much. Just 24 hours later, they are in a new city ready to face the best team in baseball.

To win the series with the Dodgers, the Yankees need to only focus on the game they’re playing in. It’s a big series, but with it being players weekend, everything should hopefully be more relaxed in a sense.

Plus, the Yankees play the Athletics again in just a week, so they can get their revenge against them then. For now, the Yankees just need to find a way to make the rest of the road trip successful.

New York Mets: The Resurgence of Noah Syndergaard and Jeurys Familia

New York Mets, Noah Syndergaard

Earlier this season Noah Syndergaard and Jeurys Familia headlined a group of underachieving Mets which led to their horrible first half of the year. During the Mets huge turn around, they have been at the forefront of their new found success.

Before the rain caused an early ending, Syndergaard was dealing Thursday night. He retired the first 16 batters against him before Tyler Naquin blooped a single out of the reach of Juan Lagares. In total Syndergaard went six innings, allowed two hits and struck out five on just 73 pitches. He has a 1.82 ERA with 55 strikeouts in 54.1 innings pitched during the second half. Syndergaard’s ERA on May 7 was 5.14 and has lowered it down to 3.71.

Familia Time?

Prior to 2019, Jeurys Familia was one of the most consistent relievers in all of baseball. It earned him the three year deal in the offseason and he was counted on to set up Edwin Diaz along with Seth Lugo. Familia was dreadful in the first half of the season, he had a 7.50 ERA and 22 walks in 30 innings. The Mets even avoided using him in any important situation through the end of the first half.

Familia has returned to his All-Star form with a 1.64 ERA in the second half and is quickly becoming a dependable option in the Mets bullpen. Mets fans tend to think of home runs from Alex Gordon and Conor Gillaspie when it come to Familia which forces them to forget about how dominant he was. Without Familia, their magical 2015 run does not happen and now it does not seem like this year’s run will be possible without him.

The way Mickey Callaway is using his bullpen now, it seems like he is trying to avoid using Edwin Diaz. He would prefer to have Familia throw the eighth and Lugo throw the ninth. Friday night’s game again the Braves will be a huge test for the bullpen, assuming deGrom goes deep into the game. Familia likely will not pitch three days in a row which could force Callaway’s hand to throw Diaz in the ninth if the Mets have a lead. If the Mets can get Diaz right, they can finally have a legitimate trio in their bullpen.

New York Knicks: Who’s better for Mitchell Robinson?

New York Knicks, Knicks, Mitchell Robinson

The New York Knicks have another player that is looking to challenge Mitchell Robinson.

Last season, De’Andre Jordan was traded to the Knicks in the Kristaps Porzingis deal.  Jordan became a vital piece for the development of Robinson. The veteran, who is known for his dunking, rebounding and blocking, helped improve Robinson in such areas.

Now, Jordan is a member of the Knicks cross-town rival, the Brooklyn Nets.  However, the Knicks have found their replacement to mentor Robinson in Taj Gibson.

Gibson is coming to the Knicks expecting to ‘challenge’ Robinson into becoming even better.  Talking to the New York Post, he added, “it’s tough to get a shot over him.  He’s a crazy shot-blocker.”

Gibson is not really known for his shot-blocking ability, as compared to Jordan.  But, he does know how to grind on defense, keep his man in front of him and get rebounds.  Gibson can also be able to work with Robinson on controlling his fouls, which is Robinson’s biggest problem.  He is also a .709 free throw shooter, not bad for a big man.

He may not be as big as Jordan, but he brings just as much veteran value and experience to the table for the betterment of Robinson.

Gibson has yet to play a game for the Knicks but will be taking Robinson under his wing.  He will have a full season with Robinson as compared to Jordan, who only had a few months.  The sky continues to be the limit for the young integral piece and his potential seems to be always rising.

New York Yankees: Can Trevor Rosenthal make an impact in 2019?

New York Yankees take shot at Trevor Rosenthal.

You might be asking yourself just who is this Trevor Rosenthal fellow, and what does he offer to the plate? Better yet, what does he offer the New York Yankees on the mound?

Rosenthal, the 29-year-old strikeout machine from Lee’s Summit, Missouri, elected to pursue a free agency in early August. Not long after, the New York Yankees acquired Rosenthal and agreed to a minor league deal.

I want to examine his history and stats throughout his major league career. Rosenthal has pitched on three different organizations, including the St. Louis Cardinals, Detroit Tigers, and Washington Nationals. During his time with the Cards, he showed no mercy and flourished. Through 6 seasons and 325.0 innings pitched, he posted a fantastic ERA of 2.99, while establishing other substantial numbers, such as a 2.60 FIP, 12.0 K/9 and a 0.5 HR/9 (Baseball-Reference). The only concern at the time was his extremely high 4.0 BB/9 ratio, and the pinpoint reason why his 1.30 WHIP wasn’t exceptional.

As for the Tigers and Nats, the stats aren’t precisely elite by any standards. Through 15.1 innings of work, Rosenthal racked up an outrageous ERA of 13.50, while posting a 6.87 FIP and a 2.41 WHIP. Diving deeper into the ocean of uncertainty, Rosenthal also collected a 9.98 K/9 and a 15.26 BB/9. Although Rosenthal has been known for his abilities to strikeout batters left and right, the rest of his numbers scream unsatisfactory and by a significant margin. The small sample size argument makes sense in this case, but regardless, his BB/9 is rather alarming.

Taking a quick glimpse at his 2019 projections, Rosenthal is expected to possess the following stat line this season:

  • 33.7 IP / 3.48 ERA / 3.28 xFIP / 1.37 WHIP
  • .234 AVG / 12.30 K/9 / 4.54 BB/9 / 0.80 HR/9 

Rosenthal’s expected 4.54 BB/9 will remain a major concern for New York Yankees fans and the organization in its entirety. However, his expected 12.30 K/9 and 0.80 HR/9 are rather impressive, especially considering Yankee Stadium is known for its short porch and home run derby like atmosphere. Will Rosenthal live up to the hype in the minors and produce quality outings for the Yanks later in the season? Only the future will determine the outcome, hopefully for the better and not the worst.

New York Giants: Daniel Jones Should See Playing Time Against Starters This Preseason

New York Giants, Daniel Jones

The New York Giants‘ selecting quarterback Daniel Jones sixth overall in the NFL Draft gave critics fuel to bash the logic behind the selection. Yet so far this preseason, Jones has made those critics admit their own fault with his play on the field. As the future QB of the Giants, Daniel Jones needs to see playing time against the starters this preseason.

Eli Manning has long been the franchise quarterback for the New York Giants, and he has delivered not one but two Super Bowls for New York. But one opponent he and every other athlete he cannot defeat is father time, and the Giants know this. That is why they selected Daniel Jones with the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft.

Look at all mock drafts, college tape, and combine measurements you want, but ultimately a team selects who they see as the best fit for the franchise. The Giants saw Daniel Jones not just as the best quarterback available, but the future player under center after Eli Manning’s eventual departure.

Critics, opposing teams, essentially everyone outside the Giants’ organization scoffed at Jones’ selection and the reasoning behind it. Now? They’re likely reevaluating their doubts as Daniel Jones continues to flash potential this preseason.

Through two preseason games so far, Daniel Jones has completed 16 of 19 passes for a stellar 84.2% completion rate. He’s found the endzone twice through the air without a single interception to account for. With all these stats combined, he’s accounted for a 151.8 quarterback rating (NFL.com/stats).

Does this mean Jones is ready to take the reigns from Eli Manning and lead this franchise come Week 1? No, and he may not even be ready to do so come this season. Because before he can handle starting defenses in the regular season, he needs to get the same exposure come preseason.

There are only two preseason games left as the Giants travel to face the Cincinnati Bengals and New England Patriots. More and more we are seeing coaches rest their starters, opting them to play little to no snaps at all during the preseason.

But should Cincinnati or New England opt to have a few defensive starters out on the field through the rest of August, Pat Shurmur should leverage the learning opportunity for his future quarterback. To be the best you have to play against the best, and there’s a significant difference between the starters and second units.

Coach Shurmur, the Giants organization, and most importantly Jones himself know what they have in their future quarterback. He’s flashed the potential, but before it comes to a realization, there are steps to take along the way. If there are starters lined up across, let Daniel Jones have a go at them.

New York Yankees: What Severino’s Role Could Be if he Returns

New York Yankees, Luis Severino

The New York Yankees are anticipating that their ace who hasn’t pitch a single major league inning this season, will return soon. Luis Severino has been on a throwing program where he’s been throwing bullpens and simulated games. The Yankees are working him up to 60 pitches before he begins a minor league rehab assignment.

I think what the Yankees should do is use Severino in an opener/bullpen kind of role. A strategy they could use is using Chad Green as an opener, then moving to Severino to get three or four innings before heading into the bullpen. The Yankees will get about four of five innings of their hardest throwers before they move into their bullpen who all have an arsenal of pitches.

Another thing the New York Yankees could do is just put Severino back as a starter. However, we haven’t seen him as a dominate starter in over a year. Not pitching this season and then having a rough second half last season, fans haven’t seen Severino consistently dominate in a long time. However, he is on a normal five-day routine of a starter in his throwing program, so this might be what the Yankees go with.

Severino threw a simulated game Thursday down in Tampa. Manager Aaron Boone said, “assuming everything goes well with him bouncing back tomorrow, he’ll be on that five-day rotation now. He’ll throw another side in between, probably have a more extensive sim game next time out in five days. If that goes well, then in five days maybe some game action after that.”

New York Yankees: Luis Severino’s Throwing Program is Looking Good

New York Yankees, Luis Severino

The New York Yankees have given Luis Severino a throwing program where they are trying to work him up to around 60 pitches. It looks like the Yankees intend to bring him back into his starter role with what they’ve been doing in his workouts and bullpens.

Severino threw a simulated game down in Tampa on Thursday where he faced more live batters. Here you can watch him throwing via a video from his wife that she posted on Instagram.

Severino has been throwing off a mound for a couple of weeks now where he’s already faced hitters once before this where he worked up to a total 25 pitches. After throwing a few more simulated games and bullpens, Severino will most likely start a minor league rehab in either Tampa or Scranton. Since he hasn’t pitched in a game all season leading back to last season, he’ll have to complete a full Spring Training before he steps on a major league mound in pinstripes.

Manager Aaron Boone said this following the simulated game, “assuming everything goes well with him bouncing back tomorrow, he’ll be on that five-day rotation now. He’ll throw another side in between, probably have a more extensive sim game next time out in five days. If that goes well, then in five days maybe some game action after that.”

Following his bullpen last week Boone said, “I thought he looked really good. He continues to feel strong. I thought the ball was coming out really well” (New York Post). Severino spoke about his throwing and said, “For me, it means a lot. It’s been a very long, long year. Now by doing this step, I feel I’m ready. I feel I’m going to help my team in a couple of weeks” (MLB.com).

The New York Yankees have indicated that they are willing to have Severino return in either a starter or bullpen role. When asked about this, Severino said only one thing: “I just want to pitch.”

New York Knicks: Frank Ntilikina’s impressive defensive rating in France

New York Knicks, Frank Ntilikina

New York Knicks point guard Frank Ntilikina is steadily improving his overall game overseas with France in five preparation games before they begin competing for medals.

Ntilikina so far has an impressive defensive rating of 66.1 in five preparation games. From the looks of it, Ntilikina is adapting and gaining confidence with his teammates. Rudy Gobert and Nicolas Batum rave about the talent Ntilikina possesses. It’s just a matter of grooming his game and putting everything together. He has the early makings of a solid two-way glue player for the Knicks moving forward.

Even though the game is played slightly different overseas, this kind of experience for Frank is priceless. This is what Ntilikina needs the most, and that is reps and playing time, plus it doesn’t hurt playing with actual NBA vets on the French team.

This opportunity also displays how the French coach uses Frank Ntilikina in different basketball situations. If you’re curious about how Frank is used with the French team, you should watch the highlights.

Ntilikina is playing superb basketball in France, either he is getting steals, deflections and taking charges, or offensively setting the table for teammates. He’s playing high IQ basketball, and it’s leading to wins so far for the French team. Can Ntilikina bring this style of playback to New York? That remains to be seen, ladies and gentlemen.

New York Knicks add veteran three point specialist to roster

New York Knicks, Wayne Ellington

New York Knicks veteran signings Julius Randle and Marcus Morris have plastered the headlines for the past few weeks, but some of the more underrated options have fallen through the cracks.

Veteran three-point specialist, Wayne Ellington, could receive consideration as a potential starter during the 2019-20 season. The likelihood that Ellington earns starting minutes is unlikely, though, considering the drafting of rookie RJ Barrett and the elevation of sophomore power forward, Kevin Knox.

The starting lineup could look something like this, Barrett, Dennis Smith Jr., Marcus Morris, Mitchell Robinson, and Julius Randle. However, Ellington might play a similar role to second-year man, Allonzo Trier. Both are unique scorers that serve a specific purpose and will make their impact when called upon by head coach David Fizdale.

The New York Knicks needed a boost in this area:

Last season, the Knicks were 27th in three-point shooting at 34%. The spacing on the floor was inadequate, and the Knicks weren’t able to score efficiently without consistent shooters from beyond the arc.

Ellington gives them that advantage and will play a unique role in expanding the space between players and allowing better passing and ball movement. Without space on the court, the defense will lack, and there will be less driving lanes for the power forwards to exploit.

Ellington is a career 37.9% three-point shooter. Throughout the last four seasons, Ellington has connected on average 2.5-3 three-pointers per game. In 2018, the Knicks averaged only 10 per game. Having more threats from the perimeter with veteran experience and knowledge will help the team grow as a unit. It will benefit the aggressive players that attack the rim, and it will help them on defense.

At 31 years old, Wayne has the veteran leadership accolade and can help the flow of the game for the younger players while on the floor. He has experience in the playoffs and playing with quality teams; something needed after last season’s 17-win debacle.

While the idea of Ellington starting might go against the preferences of most fans and analysts, he could provide more value in terms of spacing and perimeter shooting then options like Barrett or Knox. However, I highly doubt Coach Fizdale takes this route.