New York Giants: Sam Beal Fighting For Comeback Versus Dallas

Leading up to next week’s Monday Night Football game between the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys, fans of the Giants will anxiously await the statuses of several injury plagued players – Sterling Shepard and Corey Ballentine are two names that have been in the news recently for returning to full participation in practice, but Ballentine isn’t the only cornerback that’s close to making a return.

Sam Beal is also struggling with injury, something that he’s very familiar with after missing his entire rookie season with an injury – this was supposed to be the year that Beal would reach the field and break out, but a hamstring injury has the cornerback fighting to make it back off the injured reserve list.

Beal’s progress may be close, based on his statements on Thursday.

“They know I want to be out there. I’m not even thinking about it because I know it’s coming, I am just waiting for my moment, I’m waiting for that text or call, just ready for that moment. They haven’t told me, they will tell me later. I’ll eventually find out. Whatever happens, happens,” Beal said about the subject of being added to the active roster again.

While there’s no word on when Beal will get back on the roster, it seems like there definitely is an expectation that it’s something that will happen in the near future.

It also looks like Beal wants a comeback against the rival Dallas Cowboys, who the Giants face on Monday.

“I have so much aggression, that’s the perfect team.  The Cowboys, they are not an easy team, so I can’t go out there 50 percent or 80 percent, I have to come out there 100 percent. They want to see the real me, I’ll get there though, only a couple more days.”

The Giants could use further help in the long term at cornerback, with Janoris Jenkins seemingly having a numbered amount of days with the team despite not being moved on the trade deadline. Will they find that help in Sam Beal? We might just get to see if Beal is indeed able to make a return against Dallas.

New York Giants: Daniel Jones Finally Has All His Weapons

New York Giants, Daniel Jones, Sterling Shepard, Golden Tate, Saquon Barkley, Evan Engram

The New York Giants have been without at least one of their offensive starters in each game this season so far. That is about to change on Monday night. Sterling Shepard cleared concussion protocol and is going to return to the field against the Cowboys this week.

This game will be the first time in 2019 that all of the Giants’ weapons play together. Golden Tate was suspended for the first four games of the season. Sterling Shepard missed weeks two, six, seven, and eight with concussions. Saquon Barkley missed weeks four, five, and six with an ankle injury. And Evan Engram missed week six with a hamstring injury.

In week nine, however, all of these players will hit the field together with Daniel Jones as their quarterback. For the first time in his career, Daniel Jones has a complete arsenal of weapons on the field with him. The Giants are about to tap into his true potential.

Daniel Jones’s Chemistry With Shepard And Engram

In week three, despite not having Golden Tate due to suspension, and being without Saquon Barkley for much of the game due to injury, Daniel Jones lit up the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in his first career start. Much of Daniel’s success came from throwing to Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram.

Daniel Jones targeted Sterling Shepard 9 times against the Buccaneers, completing 7 passes for 100 yards and 1 touchdown. This touchdown pass was a great timing throw in the corner of the end zone, demonstrating the trust and chemistry that these two already have together.

In that same game, Evan Engram managed to gain even more yards than Shepard. Engram was targeted 8 times, caught 6 passes for 113 yards, and scored 1 touchdown. Jones and Engram connected on the first play from scrimmage in the second half in week three for a 75-yard touchdown.

Having Evan Engram and Sterling Shepard both out there on Monday will just add to the Giants’ offense that Daniel Jones has already created such strong chemistry with.

Daniel Jones’s Chemistry With Golden Tate And Saquon Barkley

Since being added to the offense in week five, Golden Tate has been the Giants’ most consistent and productive wide receiver. Over the last three weeks, Tate has averaged 89 yards per game. He is also averaging 10 targets per game with about 6 receptions per game.

Saquon Barkley has also seen an increased role in the passing game recently. Against the Detroit Lions in week eight, Saquon Barkley received 10 targets for 8 receptions, 79 yards, and 1 receiving touchdown. Saquon is a true threat in both aspects of the offense, making him the ideal player to pair with a young quarterback.

Daniel Jones will finally be able to spread the ball around to all his weapons against the Dallas Cowboys on Monday. The season might be a lost cause at this point, with the Giants’ record sitting at a disappointing 2-6, but it will be important for Daniel’s development to have him playing in a fully healthy offense, creating chemistry with his playmakers.

New York Mets: Carlos Beltran is the New Manager

New York Mets to interview Carlos Beltran.

After weeks of searching and speculation, the New York Mets have named Carlos Beltran as the 22nd manager in the team’s history. He beat out Eduardo Perez in the final stages, who seemed to have the job all but locked up. There are many aspects involved in this hiring and lets take a dive into it now.

At first, Carlos Beltran was not even interested in a managing gig. As his name continued to be floated around, his interested slowly grew. It grew to the point where he only was interested in taking the Mets job. Beltran had a hall of fame caliber career and it included many great years as a Met. The only unfair rain cloud over his head is looking at a called strike three from Adam Wainwright in game 7 of the 2006 NLCS.

Respect is Key

Beltran garners respect from players throughout baseball, especially veterans like Robinson Cano and Jacob deGrom. He is the top manager on my list managers without any experience at any level. There is no doubt his knowledge and demeanor is suited for the job. He was set to be a manager at one point down the road, but is he ready now?

Outside of the lack of experience, it is hard to find a reason why Beltran cannot do a terrific job leading the Mets. He is highly respected, knows the game in and out, was a leader as a player and knows how to handle the New York media. Beltran would also prefer to hire Terry Collins as his bench coach, who would be a great person to have in the dugout.

What Role Does the Front Office Play?

A major topic of discussion will always revolve the role of the front office during the games. When Mickey Callaway was the manager, there were constant reports of him being told what moves to make.

This makes Beltran’s hiring is interesting for a couple reasons.

Beltran is a potential hall of famer, who is doing this job because he wants to, not out of necessity. This should mean he will be in full control and will take input from upstairs when he wants it. Should he be unhappy with the way he is being treated, he can easily change things because of the support from his players.

The other aspect is a scary one. Beltran could be here just as publicity, while Van Wagenen and co. continue to run the organization into the ground with their in game decisions. This could be why handling the press was a key part of the interview process. Someone has to take the blame when moves from upstairs do not pan out. Beltran would make the simple moves, but could just be here for the paycheck.

Understanding who Beltran is, the scary aspect is very unlikely. Beltran simply get what it means to be a winner. While most of us still prefer Joe Girardi, Beltran still would qualify as top three in the list of candidates the Mets hired. Despite the dysfunction in the front office, Beltran is the one who can stabilize the franchise.

New York Giants see Leonard Williams as ‘a good fit’

The New York Giants are pleased to have defensive lineman Leonard Williams in the fold. General manager Dave Gettleman came out from wherever he was hiding to speak to columnist Michael Eisen about what Williams brings to his roster and locker room.

“It gives us a really strong inside defensive tackle rotation,” Gettleman said. “We’re very happy with the progress that B.J. Hill is making. We’re happy with Dexter Lawrence and Dalvin Tomlinson. We’re very happy with our defensive tackle group, but you’re always looking to get better. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Defensive tackles line up closer to the quarterback than defensive ends.”

Gettleman believes that Williams will be part of the cadre of players he considers his core as he rebuilds this roster.

“We gave up a three and a five. Our goal is to sign him long-term. He’s only 25-years-old. And obviously talented. He’s a piece you can build around.”

The price may seem a bit high for some, but when it comes down to brass tacks, does anyone think the Giants can get a better player than Williams with one of those picks?

“When you’re building your team, especially in the offseason, you count on guys to be available,” Gettleman said. “When you get into a situation where you can’t count on a guy, how do you plan? The best ability sometimes is availability. Leonard has been available his whole career. We just think that he has plenty of upside, he’s athletic, he can run.

“The other thing we love about him is he plays strong, he plays as powerful. He’s a really good athlete. He chases the ball all over the place. He’s running. Especially when your linebackers can corral those guys and they make them stop and futz around, and you get these big ol’ hog mollies coming from behind, you’re going to get some balls out. That’s another thing about Leonard that really makes him special.”

Defensive coordinator James Bettcher is excited to have a player of Williams’ caliber in his unit.

“I do believe that this will be a good fit for him,” said Bettcher. “I think that he’s a guy that when you just keep watching more, obviously we watched quite a bit of his tape from the Jets, and I think I said this a couple weeks ago, sometimes there’s more to rushing the passer than just—we all want the sack number, we all want the quarterback hit number, but there’s something to getting a guy off the spot on the inside and making the quarterback lower his vision and have to move left or right. Whether that counts as a pressure or a quarterback hit or not, you see him doing that on tape. I’m excited for him to do that with us, and I think our interior D-linemen are excited to have him with them, too, and those guys have been working well and have been having a lot of great conversations together.”

The Giants expect Williams to pay immediate dividends and are planning to play him quite a bit on Monday nigh against Dallas.

New York Yankees: Aroldis Chapman Wants To Stay

New York Yankees, Aroldis Chapman

Rumors are circulating that Aroldis Chapman would like to remain on the New York Yankees. He has completed the third year of a five year, $86 million deal but has an opt-out.

Chapman would like a contract extension, and one rather soon. If he doesn’t get the extension that he wants, he will become a free agent. There, he could rework a new deal with the Yankees or sign with another team.

Chapman’s great season has been overshadowed the result of the ALCS. He did give up the walkoff home run that sent the Yankees home, but won the AL Reliever of the Year.

The 31 year old was 3-2 with a 2.21 ERA and 37 saves. He had 85 strikeouts over just 57 innings.

He’s been forced to learn and improve offspeed pitches over the last few seasons. He still throws over 100 MPH, just not as frequently and not quite as hard. He could consistently hit 103 MPH on good days, but 101 MPH still ain’t bad.

It’s been a combination of that and more batters learning to hit extremely fast pitching that’s led to more offspeed pitches, since most high leverage relievers hit at least upper 90’s these days.

Keeping Aroldis Chapman for years to come is a great idea. I just think that the coaching staff and Aaron Boone needs to do a better job with when and how much he pitches. He has always thrived off of pitching every day, and only struggles when he doesn’t pitch for more than a few days.

Hopefully, the Yankees will be able to strike a deal with him to keep him where he wants to be.

New York Mets: How special was Pete Alonso’s rookie year? Pretty special

The New York Mets almost didn’t take rookie first baseman Pete Alonso north with them after spring training in March. He was too green defensively, they said. He needed more seasoning in the minors.

Many thought after a monster spring training, Alonso was a lock to make the Mets’ 25-man roster. But there were other issues in bringing him up besides his suspect defense. The Mets didn’t want his MLB service clock ticking yet. If they kept him in the minors to start the season, they would gain an additional season of control on the back end.

General manager Brodie Van Wagenen, also in his first season with the Mets, decided to trust his best judgement and green lighted Alonso’s debut. The “Polar Bear” as Alonso would become to be known, hit .352 with four homers in the spring. He swatted his way to Flushing.

“When players perform and earn opportunities, we as an industry and certainly the New York Mets, will reward those players for those performances,” Van Wagenen said in March. “[Alonso] showed us and certainly showed his teammates he was one of those 25 guys. He earned it. …The guys that earned it are here, and I’m happy for them.”

Alonso ‘s defense at first base never became an issue. He made just 12 errors in 1,202 chances. His bat, on the other hand, terrorized pitchers across baseball.

In 2019, Alonso set the Mets single-season record for homers (53), total bases (347) and extra base-hits (85)…In addition, Alonso has set the franchise single season rookie records for RBI (120), runs (102) and hits (154). He also tied the club rookie record with 72 walks and tied for fourth among all Mets rookies with 30 doubles.

Alonso’s 53 home runs were the most by a rookie in MLB history, breaking Aaron Judge’s record of 52 in 2017.

No rookie in baseball’s “modern era” (1900) has finished a season as the majors’ outright leader in homers. Two rookies since 1900 tied for the most home runs in a season: Tim Jordan for Brooklyn in 1906 (12 homers) and Mark McGwire with Oakland in 1987 (49). Alonso also became the first Met to ever lead the league in HRs at the end of the season.

Alonso hit 27 home runs at Citi Field this year, the most home runs at home in team history, surpassing Darryl Strawberry, who hit 24 home runs at Shea Stadium in 1990. To show he wa son fluke, Alonso hit 26 HRs on the road…

The Polar Bear became the eighth player in franchise history with a 100+ run/100+ RBI season, only the 12th time in franchise history and the first since Davis Wright (115 R & 124 RBI) and Carlos Beltrán (112 R & 116 RBI) did so in 2008. Alonso is the first Mets rookie to record a 100+ run and 100+ RBI season.

He also won the Home Run Derby at the All-Star Game, setting new record (23) for HRs in the final round.

Alonso’s 120 RBI tied him with Robin Ventura (120 RBI in 1999) for the third- most in team history. Only Mike Piazza (124 RBI in 1999) and David Wright (124 RBI in 2008) have driven in more runs in a single season.

The Mets got an instant shot in the arm from Alonso, an outgoing, fan-centric, media-friendly personality with a powerful bat to match.  His future – and that of the Mets’ – appears to be on the upswing. The Mets were in dire need of a home-grown star and Alonso is shining as bright as any right right now.

Former New York Giant Amukamara Leading with the Bears

New York Giants, Prince Amukamara

The New York Giants drafted Prince Amukamara in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft.  After four seasons, Amukamara went to play for the Jacksonville Jaguars and is now on the Chicago Bears.

Amukamara is a force to be reckoned with on any defense he plays.  He studies every team he plays against and knows the ins and outs of their schematic plays.  He goes out there every game and gives it his all.  Amukamara never runs out of fuel and plays every game like it’s the championship!  He rallies his teammates and motivates the team and the fans. On the field, he plays with such vigor and force, but off the field, Amukamara is as kind as can be!

Amukamara is a true family man and is so down-to-earth.  He is docile and so well-mannered to all, which is the reason he is liked by everyone!.  Amukamara and his beautiful wife Pilar are a true team and a match made in Heaven!  The two of them support one another and are there for each other always.  Pilar is always at the games cheering Prince on and even bakes for his teammates.  They are great parents to their utterly adorable kids Paisley and Princeton and always spend quality time together.  They are easygoing and teach their kids through their words and actions on how to be upstanding people.  They have great role models as Amukamara and Pilar are always giving back to the community in every way they can, whether it be going to support Coach Coughlin’s Jay Fund or donating goods to those less fortunate!

Amukamara may no longer be a New York Giant, but he most certainly has a Giant heart.  As his name entails, he is royalty through and through!

New York Yankees: Is Mike Ford the future at first base over Luke Voit?

New York Yankees, Mike Ford

With the New York Yankees failing to reach the coveted World Series after a season with over 100 wins, they must find the weaknesses on the team and begin to diagnose the issues currently present. One of the question marks heading into the offseason is at first base, where the Yankees feature Luke Voit, Edwin Encarnacion, and Mike Ford.

Voit, who finished the season batting .263 with 21 homers, missed the latter portion of the season due to a sports hernia injury. The ailment inevitably forced him out of postseason play as he watched on from the bench. The Yankees could have used his power throughout the ALCS against the Houston Astros, but clearly, he was not capable of playing at a high level, even though he managed to convince team doctors he could play if needed.

The first baseman was on a one-year, $573K salary, which might have been the reason he was so excited to be a part of the active postseason roster. This might have been his final chance at playing for a playoff-caliber team, but the Bombers would be smart to bring him back on a cheap deal. Hitting 21 homers goes along with the Yankees’ mantra, and he can be a reliable designated hitter, given his defensive qualities don’t improve.

Does Edwin Encarnacion have a future with the New York Yankees?

As for Edwin Encarnacion, his services were purely situational. Adding a big-time slugger to the lineup for a late-season push was the reason behind his trading. The Yankees will undoubtedly activate his $5 million buy-out to avoid paying $20 million for his bat in 2020. This will force the Yankees to wither stick with Voit or fall back on Mike Ford.

Ford, who hit .259 on 12 homers last season, saw his first major league action in a stellar campaign for the Yankees. The team fought through injuries, and Ford played a significant part in supplementing the loss of Voit and Encarnacion at times. He can undoubtedly be the first baseman for the future if the Yankees believe he can be a consistent option. He has the power and strikeout rate to be a quality player.

Comparable to Encarnacion, Ford struck out far less. Over 143 at-bats, Ford struck out just 28 times, while Edwin missed the ball 48 times over 177 at-bats. With only one year of experience under his belt, Ford can develop into a reliable player.

New York Yankees: Will the Yankees regret letting Encarnacion go?

New York Yankees, Edwin Encarnacion

The New York Yankees picked up Edwin Encarnacion in a trade during June this season. They took a shot on an MLB veteran who has postseason experience and is one of the best power hitters in the Major Leagues.

The team announced on Thursday that they have declined their $20 million club option for Encarnacion for next season, paying him a $5 million dollar buyout which will make him a free agent.

Encarnacion played 44 games with the New York Yankees, where he was limited because of a few injuries. He slashed .249/.325/.531 (with the Yankees) with 13 home runs and 37 runs batted in. Not a stellar year, but he did some good things for the Yanks.

The truth is, the Yankees took a shot on Encarnacion. I think when they picked him up, they knew that this was most likely going to be a one-year thing.

But here’s the truth: the Yankees have too many guys with high home run totals but low averages with a ton of strikeouts, and that’s the same thing Encarnacion brought to the table. One of the things that bit them during the playoffs was not having guys looking to put the ball in play rather than hit it 400 feet every time.

Despite having a stellar ALDS performance against the Minnesota Twins, Encarnacion went 1-18 with 11 strikeouts in the ALCS against Houston. I understand that players go through cold streaks and this clearly isn’t how Encarnacion usually plays, but there’s also an argument how he went ice cold when it mattered.

Encarnacion is 36 years old so he’s nearing the end of his career. He’ll most likely sign a one or two year deal with a team.

New York Giants: Ranking each offensive lineman through eight weeks

New York Giants, Kevin Zeitler

After eight weeks of regular season play, the New York Giants have seen plenty of ups and downs in regards to the offensive line. Left tackle Nate Solder has been inconsistent and a liability at times to rookie quarterback Daniel Jones’ blindside. Finding a way to supplement Solder’s deficiencies this season has been a challenge, and it has led to 15 total turnovers for Jones, who leads the league in the category.

However, while Solder has been lackluster, others have shown resiliency and promise.

Ranking the New York Giants offensive linemen:

1.) Kevin Zeitler

Zeitler, who was acquired in the Olivier Vernon trade with the Cleveland Browns, has earned a grade of over 70.0 through eight weeks, as per PFF. The tackles have been struggling for Big Blue, but their guards have been fantastic. Zeitler has been nursing a shoulder injury since the beginning of the season, but he has fought through it to become the Giants’ best offensive lineman.

The Giants own the rights to Zeitler for the next two seasons, and his cap hit is very team-friendly. His cap hit will be $12.5 million next season and $14.5 million in 2021. Compare that deal to Andrew Norwell, who’s averaging $15 million per season, and you can see what great value Zeitler provides.

2.) Will Hernandez

The second-year guard out of UTEP has been stellar for the Giants. Not hearing an offensive lineman’s name is usually a great thing, and Hernandez has been a ghost so far this season. He’s been on a rock next to the unreliable Solder and has saved Jones’ butt on numerous occasions.

Hernandez is only in the second year of his rookie deal, which provides value in of itself. He’s the future at left guard for the Giants and will likely be paid accordingly in the future, but the Giants must take advantage of his low cap-hit now.

3.) Nate Solder

Solder has been anything but good this season, allowing seven sacks through the first eight weeks. Jones has been blindsided frequently at the expense of Solder, and he realizes how poor his play has been. Solder and Remmers have combined to allow 58 quarterback pressures this season, which is a severe issue for Big Blue and has many scratching their heads.

The Giants will likely stick with Solder moving forward due to the lack of quality left tackles in the NFL, but they will need more from him to be a competitive team.

4.) Mike Remmers

The plug-in right tackle has hurt the Giants at times and saved them at others. I don’t expect Remmers to remain with the team beyond the 2019 season. Allocating draft capital or cap space to sign a quality right tackle is the plan for Gettleman, who desperately needs to upgrade the position. Remmers has a PFF grade of 61.6.

5.) Jon Halapio

Halapio has been plain bad this season, and general manager Dave Gettleman will undoubtedly look to upgrade the center position next offseason. He sits in last place with a PFF grade of 52.1, ranking in the bottom tier of starters in the NFL. Halapio might be an even more significant liability than Solder and Remmers at the tackle position. The Giants currently rank as the 17th best unit in the NFL.