New York Yankees Recap: Luis Gil shines in his Major League debut, Yankees win 13-1

After losing game one to the Baltimore Orioles and finding that ace Gerrit Cole tested positive for the coronavirus, another blow beset the Yankees with a second Yankee starter testing positive Jordan Montgomery has now been named as the newest addition to the Covid list. Pitching tonight for the Yankees was Luis Gil (Heel) in his major league debut. The Yankees needed to win this game tonight to have any chance at taking the series from the Baltimore Orioles. The Yankees blew out the Orioles 13-1.

In the first inning, Gil took the mound in his debut and flew out Cedric Mullins. Ramon Urias struck out. Ryan Mountcastle reached on a collision with Rizzo. Anthony Santander flew out to Judge in right to end the half and a good first inning for Gil. At the bottom, DJ LeMahieu ground out. Anthony Rizzo flew out to right. Aaron Judge flew out as the Yankees were retired in order. No score.

At the second, Anthony Santander led off against Gil, and he flew out to center. Austin Hays flew out to Torres. Pedro Severino went down looking as Gil had a 1-2-3 inning. At the bottom, Giancarlo Stanton flew out to center. Joey Gallo went down on strikes. Gary Sanchez got a base hit to right-center. Gleyber Torres got an RBI double that split the centerfielders scoring Sanchez from first. Rougie Odor ground out to second, but the Yankees took the lead in the game. New York Yankees 1 Orioles 0.

Maikel Franco led off the third inning by grounding out to short. Pat Valaika ground out to LeMahieu at second. Mullins struck out swinging for another 1-2-3 inning for Gil. At the bottom, Greg Allen led off for the Yankees and was hit by a pitch and went to first. LeMahieu had an RBI double that split the outfielders, with Allen scoring for the second Yankee run. Rizzo doubled, scoring LeMahieu for the third Yankees run, Judge singled to left. With men on the corners and no outs singled, Stanton drove in Rizzo for the four-run Yankee lead. Gallo went down on strikes. Sanchez doubled to the left-field wall, scoring Judge for the inning’s fifth run, knocking out Wells. Torres faced the new O’s pitcher Adam Plutko flew out to center, but Stanton scored for the sixth run off the inning. Odor struck out swinging, but the Yankees brought nine runners to the base scoring six runs. New York Yankees 6 Orioles 0.

In the fourth inning, Urias popped out to Rizzo. Mountcastle ground out to third. Santander singled to center. Hays singled to right. DJ Stewart died. In the Yankees, half Yankees Stanton homered to drive in three runs for the Yankees. Yankees 9 Orioles 0. It was Stanton’s 17th home run of the season.

The fifth and sixth inning was scoreless for both the Yankees and the Orioles. Luis Gil finished his debut night after the sixth inning, giving up just 4 hits while striking out six Orioles in his scoreless New York Yankee debut. His last pitch of the inning was a strikeout. Gil only walked one Oriole in the game.

At the top of the seventh, Stewart stuck out. Severino struck out. Franco doubled down the left-field line. Valaika struck out. Stephen Ridings had three strikeouts in his relief debut.  At the bottom, Stanton ground out. Gallo flew out to center. Sanchez ground out to end the inning. New York Yankees 9 Orioles 0.

The top of the Orioles lineup led off the eighth inning. Mullins against Brody Koener making his debut singled to center. Urias ground out to Wade at third. Mountcastle got an RBI double to let the Oriole on the board. Ryan McKenna ground out. Hays ground out, and Stewart flew out to end the half. At the bottom, Gleyber Torres led off against Shaun Anderson and singled to left field. Odor singled to right. Grey Allen flew out to the warning track in right. Tyler Wade men on the corners and one out hit a double down the right-field line to score Torres and Odor for the Yankee 10 run lead. Wade, on a passed ball, advanced to third base. Rizzo, who was 2 for 4, ground out to second as Wade scored. Judge homered for a solo shot to the short porch in right. Stanton flew out to center, but the Yankees picked up another four runs. New York Yankees 13 Orioles 1.

At the top of the ninth inning and last licks for the Baltimore Orioles, Severino faced Koener still in the game and popped out to Odor. Franco was hit by a pitch and took first. Valaika hit into a double play to end the game as the Yankees bounced back with 13 runs. The final Score was the New York Yankees 13 and the Baltimore Orioles 1. The winning pitcher was Luis Gil, and the loser was Alexander Wells.

 

Mets Losing Streak Gets To Three After 5-4 Loss Against Marlins

edwin diaz, mets

The New York Mets Achilles heel is bad baseball teams because they play down to their level. Consistent losses to the Pittsburgh Pirates were the beginning and now losing two straight to the Miami Marlins continues the trend. Taijuan Walker could not get out of his pitching slump and fell victim to the home run again in the 5-4 loss.

Walker was getting beat by good hitters throughout his slump but tonight was the opposite. Alex Jackson was 3-for-47 with one extra-base hit in his big league career but took Walker deep to center field to open up the Marlins scoring. Isan Diaz is a .175 career hitter but also homered off him for the second run. To cap off the scoring off Walker, Bryan De La Cruz, who was 1-for-14 to start his career, had three hits, including a two-run single. Seth Lugo allowed the Marlins to get an insurance run in the bottom of the eight, and it turned out to be the one that saved the Marlins’ win.

Walker still made it through 5.2 innings with the four earned runs but also allowed eight hits. The two home runs allowed pushed Walker’s total to seven in his last three starts after allowing six in his first 17 starts. Regression from his All-Star form or not, there is no reason for the Marlins lineup to hit him around this easily.

Playing From Behind

Offensively, each run the Marlins scored felt like five due to the disappointing bats. They mustered just four hits to get their three runs and went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position. James McCann‘s double brought the Mets within one and put him as the tying run at second, but Brandon Drury could not keep his pinch-hitting magic alive. Drury lined on about 10 feet foul before grounding out to shortstop to end the game. J.D. Davis was once again the Mets’ best hitter as he provided a two-run double to keep his average over .300.

Luis Rojas tried to inject some life into his team after getting ejected to end the seventh inning, but it was a failed attempt. The lack of focus on offense showed when McCann swung at a 3-0 pitch in the eighth as the tying run. The frustration went beyond the manager as Javy Baez showed his after flying out to end the eighth. Baez was chirping at home plate umpire Stu Scheurwater after Baez felt he was talking junk to him. The loss shrinks the Mets NL East lead to just 1.5 games after the Philadelphia Phillies won.

When Carlos Carrasco faces Zach Thompson, the Mets hope to right the ship and end the losing streak on Wednesday. Like the first two games, the first pitch is scheduled for another 7:10 p.m. ET start from loanDepot Park.

 

New York Giants: What is Saquon Barkley’s status in training camp week two?

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley entered training camp on the active/PUP list, but that won’t stop the rampant speculation about what his status for week one will be. Based on how the Giants played last season without him, it’s understandable that Barkley’s status has become an offseason fixation. And while we’re hearing many of the same things from the team, more is also emerging to indicate that Barkley is making fast progress.

For one, Barkley has been getting some work in outside of the main practices despite his status on the PUP list. While he’s not ready to put the pads on just yet, running and catching are well within the realm of Barkley’s current training. Notably, the running back was seen on Monday running a route in the background and making a leaping catch. It’s something that no doubt wouldn’t happen unless his recovery was in the advanced phase.

It’s not the only play that’s worth paying attention to. Barley has been turning heads as far back as last Thursday, and catching passes has apparently been an active part of his training schedule.

Joe Judge offers insights on Barkley’s recovery

We also have more word from Joe Judge about Barkley’s progress. But of course, Judge didn’t say anything about a return date, because the Giants are still committed to not rushing Barkley back on a specific day.

“You know what, he’s making a lot of strides for us and I don’t want to go ahead and make any predictions or anything on Saquon, but I will say that this guy’s showing progress, tangible progress every day with our medical staff, with our strength staff,” Judge said about the matter back on Monday.

He also said that the Giants are building up the intensity of Barkley’s workouts, similar to how the regular practices are getting more intense.

“But as you watch him, I know you guys are looking at him, period by period, his rehab is structured to mirror what the other players on the field are doing as much as possible,” Judge told reporters.

Will we see Barkley in week one or not?

Obviously, it’s too early to say for sure. The Giants have been very persistent in saying they don’t have a fixed date to bring the player back. However, we can make some assumptions based on what we’ve seen so far.

The workouts we’re seeing from Barkley right now with him running at high speed, doing routes, and catching passes, don’t look like the kind of workouts that would be assigned to an injured player who needs to be careful on the field.

The Giants are taking a precautionary approach rather than a rushed one, but just based on what we’re seeing out of Barkley in small flashes, it looks like this is more of a safety measure than a statement that Barkley isn’t ready to play yet.

Given that there’s still time between now and the start of the regular season, with the preseason yet to happen, it does look like Barkley is on track. If he doesn’t end up playing in week one, it seems so far that it will more likely than not be due to a sudden setback and not something expected.

New York Jets: Cameron Clark expected to make full recovery from spinal cord injury

New York Jets, Cameron Clark

The New York Jets ended practice early after Clark, a second-year blocker, was stretchered off the practice field.

Tuesday’s practice at New York Jets training camp ended early after offensive lineman Cameron Clark suffered a neck injury during a team drill.

Clark was motionless for nearly ten minutes while medical staff attended to him and he was eventually stretchered off the field and transferred to Morristown Medical Center. The Jets have announced that Clark was diagnosed with a spinal cord contusion but is expected to make a full recovery. He will be held in Morristown overnight for observation.

A further report from ESPN’s Rich Cimini dictated that Clark’s father Al reported a positive diagnosis. Clark reportedly lost feeling in his legs after the incident but returned while he was being transferred. The elder Clark says his son is “fine” and reiterated that there is no spinal cord damage, though he will undergo an MRI in Morristown.

Addressing the situation after practice, head coach Robert Saleh had another team session planned but broke practice out of respect to Clark’s situation.

“It’s never good because football goes away at that moment,” Saleh said in a report from team writers Eric Allen and Ethan Greenberg. “It’s about the person, his family, his mom, and everything in his life. So that’s what takes precedence at that moment. Football kind of goes away. You get empathy in the sense that we all have families. Everything’s going to be good.”

Saleh further reported that he saw the Clark incident “out of the corner of (his) eye”.

“It looked like he was kicking into protection and then he was on the ground,” the head coach said. “I’ll have to go to the tape to see exactly what happened.”

Defensive end Carl Lawson agreed with Saleh’s shutdown and mentioned that the team had a moment of silence in Clark’s honor.

“It shows what type of man Coach Saleh is to at that point realize the situation and cut practice from there to make sure he was OK,” Lawson said. “I think the sentiment was for everybody, even the fans, that we’re hoping nothing is seriously wrong.”

Clark, 23, was chosen in the fourth round of the 2020 draft (129th overall), though he did not partake in any games last season. He is one of the most prominent faces of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s rebooted football team, partaking in a program-record 49 games. Primarily working at tackle, Clark earned first-team All-Conference USA honors and helped the 49ers partake in their first bowl game at the end of his final campaign in 2019.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

New York Yankees: Luis Gil to make major league debut tonight

New York Yankees, luis gil

The New York Yankees entered the day today with a big decision to make. Pitching ace Gerrit Cole was put on the Covid list after testing positive for the virus. He was to start tonight’s game against the Baltimore Orioles. During the game last night, it was mentioned that Nestor Cortes Jr. would most likely get the start.  But late last night, the Yankees called up prospect Luis Gil to make his major league debut.

Gil was acquired from the Twins for Jake Cave in March 2018. In his third year with the New York Yankees, he has become an up-and-coming pitcher of the young arms in the Yankee organization. Fangraphs rates him twelfth in the organization, while Baseball America has him fourth among all Yankees farmhands. Both raters point out his fastball that gets into the high nineties. With the Patriots and Railriders, he has gotten numerous swinging strikeouts. He also has a high-speed changeup and a mid 80’s slider. Scouts say his secret to success is his fastball with movement.

Between the two teams this year, he has a respectable 4.13 ERA and a 4-1 record in his last fifteen games.  Gil strikes out 33% of hitters he faces but also walks too many players, which has dogged his career.

The 23-year-old is 6′ 2″ and weighs 185 pounds. There is no question that Gil will be a major league pitcher; the question will be if it is as a starter or out of the bullpen. But tonight is his night to shine at Yankee Stadium. This is something Gil has waited all of his life for; hopefully, the bright lights of the big park and moment don’t cause him to be overly nervous.

Gill will face the Orioles Alexander Wells, a lefty 1-1 with an ERA of 5.28 and 12 strikeouts in four pitched games. Wells is coming off two straight losses, one to the Tampa Bay Rays and, more recently, one to the Detroit Tigers. In those two games, he gave up seven earned runs. He also walks hitters more than the league average. However, he will have some advantage over the Yankees hitters, as they have never seen him pitch. But the O’s haven’t seen Gil either.

Tonight’s game will be televised on the YES Network, MASN in Baltimore, and nationally on MLBN out of market.

What’s next for Patricio Pitbull after Bellator 263 loss?

Patricio Pitbull Freire

This past Saturday at Bellator 263 we saw the conclusion of the Featherweight Grand Prix. Patricio Pitbull (32-5) was defending his featherweight crown against the undefeated phenom AJ McKee (18-0).

This was the one fight that Bellator fans had been waiting for since the Grand Prix started. The two best featherweights that Bellator had to offer were set to battle for the title and one million dollars.

Patricio Pitbull was the popular pick heading into Saturday night. The two-division champion has virtually ever record in the history of Bellator and he’s widely considered to be the best fighter in the history of the promotion.

While Pitbull was both the featherweight and lightweight champion, he was the much smaller man at Bellator 263. McKee looked much bigger and longer and you could see that advantage very early in the fight.

When the fight started, Pitbull was staying patient on the outside. McKee was trying to keep him at range and Pitbull was trying to find his way inside. However, before he could even get started, he got caught.

McKee landed a massive head kick and uppercut that dropped the Bellator champion. When Pitbull got up, McKee locked in a standing guillotine and put Pitbull out.

What’s next after Bellator 263?

Patricio Pitbull had lost before inside the Bellator cage, but Saturday night was different. This was the first time that he was truly finished and the fight wasn’t even close. AJ McKee ran right through Patricio Pitbull.

After that devastating defeat, what’s next for Pitbull? Well, it’s important to remember that he’s still the Bellator lightweight champion. However, he had previously hinted at dropping the lightweight title to allow his brother, Patricky Pitbull, the opportunity to become lightweight champion.

Having just lost to McKee at featherweight, I wonder if that potential plan has changed. I wouldn’t be shocked to see McKee and Pitbull fight again. McKee has teased about going up in weight and he’s said that he wanted to become a two-division Bellator champion.

Ultimately, Scott Coker is going to have a decision to make. I believe that Pitbull is going to want an immediate rematch. Given his legacy with the promotion, I think they’ll give it to him. Question is, will it be a featherweight rematch or a lightweight title fight? Time will tell on this one.

New York Giants WR Kenny Golladay leaves practice early with apparent hamstring injury

New York Giants, Kenny Golladay, james bradberry

The New York Giants had their first padded practice of the 2021 season today. Training camp has intensified now that the pads are on, leading to some big hits and some big brawls. The Giants grabbed headlines today because of a team-wide fight sparked by a big hit handed out to running back Corey Clement. This was not the only big-hit from training camp, as wide receiver Kenny Golladay took a shot from linebacker TJ Brunson a few days ago.

Kenny Golladay walked away from that big hit unscathed. But today, the Giants’ big-time receiving threat left practice early with an apparent hamstring injury. After catching an underneath reception in team drills, Kenny Golladay had the ball punched out of his hands by linebacker Tae Crowder. After fumbling the football, Golladay almost immediately reached for his hamstring and walked off the field with a trainer.

Kenny Golladay’s apparent hamstring injury

There are no details yet on the severity of Kenny Golladay’s injury. However, this is a situation that Giants fans will want to closely monitor. Golladay has had some injury troubles in the past. Last year, his season with the Detroit Lions was cut short after five games as KennyG suffered a serious hip injury. Kenny was shut down in Week Eight due to a hip injury after playing Week Three through Week Seven. Golladay missed Weeks One and Two with a hamstring injury that he suffered in an early September practice.

He returned to the lineup in Week Three and caught a touchdown pass, though he was not playing at 100% health. The hamstring injury Golladay suffered last year was a three-four week injury, considering he was not fully healthy when he got back on the field. But he was only sidelined for two weeks. The Giants are hoping this new injury is less severe as they need their new alpha dog wide receiver to practice with the team and gel with Daniel Jones before the season begins.

This is where depth signings, like the ones the Giants made over the weekend, exhibit great importance. The Giants do not have many big-bodied, 6′ 3″ or taller wide receivers on their roster. Kenny Golladay fits that bill and plays a particular role in the Giants’ offense as their X-receiver. But what do the Giants do if Golladay is injured or cannot play?

Well, now they can continue to practice and install their offense with Damion Willis, a 6′ 3″ wide receiver that the Giants signed over the weekend. Willis is not the elite receiving threat that Golladay is, but the two players share a similar playing style which is important for quarterback Daniel Jones as he continues to get comfortable in the Giants’ remade offense. An official update will come soon enough on Kenny Golladay as New York Giants fans hold their breathe and cross their fingers in the meantime.

Taj Gibson returns on a one-year deal; Knicks still under the cap limit

new york knicks, rj barrett

Veteran big man Taj Gibson agreed to run it back with coach Tom Thibodeau and the New York Knicks for one more year.

Ian Begley of SNY first reported the deal that will pay Gibson $2.7 million next season, the equivalent to the veteran minimum’s salary for an NBA player with 10 years of experience. Gibson’s salary would not count against the Knicks’ salary cap.

After re-joining the team mid-season as frontline insurance, the 36-year old Brooklyn native averaged 5.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks in 20.8 minutes per game. He shot 62.7% from the field while being Thibodeau’s emergency backup, who ended up playing a pivotal role after injuries to Mitchell Robinson and Nerlens Noel threatened Knicks’ playoff chances.

The Knicks can officially make the deal once they go over the cap. John Hollinger of The Athletic explained that the Knicks used their Early Bird rights on Derrick Rose’s three-year, $43 million deal, giving them some wiggle room to make another move.

“The Knicks have just under $9 million in cap room remaining and could extend it to $11.4 million by waiving Luca Vildoza’s $3.3 million number (the league would put a cap hold of $925,259 in its place); the Knicks could also extend their room by putting little-used Kevin Knox ($5.8 million) into a sign-and-trade,” Hollinger wrote.

The Knicks can use the remaining cap room to sign a point guard or a wing.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

Islanders now have possible layout for Ilya Sorokin’s next contract

The days just keep on passing, and still, we have not heard a peep from the Islanders. General manager Lou Lamoriello has literally driven the entire league mad (no seriously) and has the fan base still waiting with anticipation that new deals for several key names will be announced soon. Other teams continue to fill up their rosters with their own restricted free agents and those players still on the market.

That includes the Islanders’ division rival just a few miles away in Manhattan, the Rangers. USA Today/lohud.com’s Vincent  Mercogliano reported yesterday the Blueshirts were on the verge of locking up starting goalie Igor Shesterkin to a long-term contract that would pay him close to $6M a year.

So how does this have any effect on the Islanders? Well, Shesterkin’s latest deal might be a layout for Ilya Sorokin, his fellow countrymen and backup to starter Semyon Varlamov.

The length of Shesterkin’s contract — which Mercogliano pointed to being between five and six years — seems like the ideal amount for Sorokin. Sorokin turns 26 tomorrow and by the time that contract would end, the Mezhdurechensk native would be nearing age 32. In that time, the Islanders are expected to compete for a Stanley Cup while also finally handing him the keys as their franchise goalie who would be in his prime.

Sorokin just finished a very successful first campaign playing in North America. He came into his own in the regular season forming a terrific one-two punch with Varlamov and played a key role in the team’s run in the playoffs. He was an RFA coming into this offseason after his first contract he signed last summer expired at the conclusion of the postseason.

The Islanders also see Sorokin as next in line to succeed Varlamov. Varlamov is signed for another two seasons at $5M per with him holding a modified no-trade clause, according to CapFriendly.com.

Now speaking of money, Mercogliano said the number would come between the $5.75-$6M range. That sounds pretty steep for a goalie who only has 47 career games to his name. Sorokin has played less than that but has found more success in an even a shorter amount of time. But it would be unthinkable for Lamoriello to offer that amount to Sorokin knowing that he would then have two goaltenders racking up close to $12M of cap space and still having to deal with a flat cap situation.

Sorokin did say in a lengthy chat with a Russian news outlet over the weekend he was hoping to have a new contract in the next few weeks. He acknowledged he has no desire to go back to the KHL as well.

The interesting thing is Sorokin can very well return home if the Islanders were to offer him one-year deal for this upcoming season. That seems highly unlikely based on how close the Isles are to a championship, but also that they don’t have many candidates behind Sorokin who could jump right into the NHL. Jakub Skarek probably seems to need a few more seasons in the AHL. Beyond that, most of the goalies in the system are recent draft picks still in juniors or playing at the college level.

Sorokin is obviously the Islanders’ future in net and he enjoys playing for the organization. His next contract could have the same look as Shesterkin’s in many ways. We’ll know soon on when the two sides come to an agreement. That said, the Isles now have an idea of how they can get it done.

 

Yankees’ starter will begin a rehab assignment on Tuesday with the Somerset Patriots

New York Yankees, Luis Severino

The injury-related hits keep coming for the New York Yankees, as they found out on Monday night that ace Gerrit Cole, scheduled to start on Tuesday against the Baltimore Orioles, tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss between two and three turns in the rotation depending on his recovery and other things. Third baseman Gio Urshela was also placed on the 10-day injured list.

Are there ever good news on the injury front for the Yankees? Well, yes, there are. Starting pitcher Luis Severino will start a rehab assignment today as he works his way back from a groin injury that put a halt on his recovery from Tommy John surgery.

Severino hasn’t pitched for the Yankees since 2019, when he had a 1.50 ERA in 12 innings, adding 17 strikeouts. A litany of physical issues have robbed him most of the last three seasons, ending with the Tommy John surgery in the spring of 2020 and the groin strain that delayed his return in 2021.

The Yankees are planning to give Severino around 50 pitches tonight

Now, however, he is ready to restart his journey back to the Yankees, as he will take the ball tonight for the Double-A Somerset Patriots. Over the weekend, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM that Severino and fellow righty Corey Kluber are on track to return in the Aug. 22 to Sept. 1 range.

“I think that’s probably reasonable, especially with Sevy,” Boone said, per NJ Advance Media.

The Yankees are expected to give Severino “probably three innings, 45-to-50 pitches” on Tuesday night with Somerset.

The plan is for him to complete three or four rehab starts with the Yankees’ minor league affiliates and stretch to five or six innings before he is called up in late August – early September for the stretch run.

The Yankees, more than ever, need Severino to contribute at some point in the second half if they want to make a push for the playoffs.

Can Luis Severino return in time to make a significant contribution to the 2021 Yankees?