Could the Yankees and the Orioles make a deadline deal?

Mychal Givens

The New York Yankees are clearly one of the best teams in baseball. However, they are not a team that is without flaws. In fact, there are several holes in this team at the moment that might hinder their chances at a 28th World Series.

One of the problems the Yankees are facing is in their bullpen. Before the year started, the Yankees might have had the best bullpen in baseball on paper. However, it’s been a little rocky to start the year.

The team lost Tommy Kahnle to Tommy John, Aroldis Chapman just came back from dealing with COVID, and now Zack Britton has hit the IL with a hamstring issue. The guys who have pitched, haven’t always looked incredible outside of Chad Green.

There is no question that the Yankees have a chance to win the World Series. However, they might need another piece or two to assist in that effort. Perhaps the bombers could look within the division for some help.

Another Yankees – Orioles trade?

If Brian Cashman is going to be active at the August 31st trade deadline, a name that he could realistically target is Mychal Givens of the Baltimore Orioles.

It would be the second time in the last couple of years that the Yankees would acquire a top bullpen arm from the Orioles at the deadline. The Yankees tried to acquire Givens at the deadline last year to bolster the bullpen.

Givens is off to a fantastic start in the shortened 2020 season. In eleven games for the Orioles, Givens has pitched 11.2 innings allowing just one run. His overall line looks like this: 0.77 ERA, 1.029 WHIP, 12.3 Strikeouts per 9 innings.

That is a arm that the Yankees would gladly welcome into their bullpen. There are going to be a lot of buyers given the expanded playoffs so I wouldn’t expect Givens to be given up on the cheap side. If Givens is dealt, the team who gets him will also get him for next season.

We don’t know yet how aggressive Cashman will be at this year’s deadline. The team is suffering right now with injuries, but when healthy, this is a team that can win the whole thing as is. Maybe Cashman plays it safe with the hope that everyone ends up healthy before the playoffs.

My hunch is that the Yankees will make a move this week. I’m not sure if it’ll be a sexy move like landing Givens or if it’ll be something small just to provide depth. Either way, expect Cashman to do something before September 1st rolls around.

 

MLB owners didn’t discuss canceling the season during Monday’s conference call

About 40 percent of the Miami Marlins active roster tested positive for coronavirus. The team played at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia over the weekend, which is where the New York Yankees were slated to play before Major League Baseball (MLB) decided to suspend that particular game as they perform more tests.

However, and according to a report from Scott Miller of Bleacher Report, MLB didn’t show an intention to cancel the 2020 season amid the Miami Marlins latest COVID-19 outbreak. The league did cancel two games that were going to be played on Monday: Yankees – Phillies and Orioles – Marlins.

During a conference call held by team owners on Monday afternoon, canceling the season wasn’t among the discussed topics, which indicates that MLB and the clubs will try to play through the conditions.

Will MLB continue to be able to manage the situation?

What was discussed during the conference call? The report states that the Commissioner’s Office will revise regulations and health directives to try to preserve the health of players, coaches and staffers. Among them are mandatory use of face masks in the clubhouses, and the reinforcement of health standards such as high-fives and spitting during games.

During the first week of MLB action, lots of players have disrespected social distancing rules by engaging in hugs, high fives and other forms of contact, and the no spitting rule has also been ignored in a lot of cases.

A total of 11 of the 33 players in the Marlins’ traveling party and two coaches tested positive for COVID-19. Besides canceling the Yankees – Phillies game on Monday, it’s possible that Tuesday’s game could be impacted pending test results.

Commissioner Rob Manfred would have the final say regarding the viability of a season, but for now, the show goes on even through the difficult reality.

New York Mets and Baltimore Orioles to Play at Naval Academy

The New York Mets and Baltimore Orioles will make history on March 24 when they play at the U.S. Naval Academy for the first time in 35 years. The matchup will be the last each team plays before each team starts their season.

These games come after the Washington Nationals play the Boston Red Sox in 2017, but the Orioles stopped future games from taking place. The territory belonged to the Orioles, according to the MLB Constitution. Both teams plan to tour the base and get to know some of the Midshipmen.

Exclusive Event

The game will be unique because of its exclusiveness that only allows Midshipmen and U.S. Navy members to attend. The game overall is the 13th ever played at the academy, and it is the first time for the Mets. It will be a quick turnaround for the Mets as they go from playing the worst team in 2019 to the defending champion Nationals on Opening Day two days later.

Safe to say they will not be lucky enough to see Jacob deGrom pitch, but they will get a chance to watch the star-studded Mets take the field up, close and personal. Pete Alonso is one of the major supporters of the military, and he will enjoy the trip as much as anyone on the roster. It would be no surprise if he had something up his sleeve for the Midshipmen.

New York Yankees: Will Boone Call Up Frazier When Rosters Expand?

New York Yankees, Clint Frazier

Clint Frazier has been one of the question marks for the New York Yankees this season.

Many forget that he endured a brutal concussion injury that sidelined him for most of the season last year, which could have thrown off his rhythm. He has been up and down from majors to minors this year, based on his below-average skills on defense. Frazier has had difficulty to realize that some of his game is not at a major league level. Once he was optioned to Triple AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, he deleted any pictures of him in a Yankee uniform from his Instagram page.

Has Frazier Proven his worth in the Big Leagues?

He is one of the many Yankees to display his power against the Orioles this season by smashing six home runs (Baseball-Reference). In 53 games with the Bombers, he is batting .283 with 11 home runs, and 34 runs batted in (Baseball-Reference).  In the minor leagues this season, he is batting .248, with 8 home runs, and 25 runs batted in (Baseball-Reference). There is some decline in production from the majors to minors, which is quite odd for a player that has a lot of potentials. He most likely lost some confidence and motivation when he got sent down. With his quick swing and fast hands, Frazier should be dominating the minors when facing lower velocities on average.

There may be some inconsistency to his approach at the plate, but if Aaron Boone is looking for some pop off the bench, Frazier is the guy. He has still proven to be a valuable pinch hitter with runners on base. The 34 RBIs he has driven in is significant enough to be placed on the expanded roster.

Hopefully, next spring, the fans will get to see a new Clint Frazier that could be part of one of the best outfields in baseball, when everyone is healthy. Frazier is still young and if he works on his defense, he will have a place on the team for years to come.

The New York Yankees Absolutely Dominated the Orioles

New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez

With Wednesday’s win, the New York Yankees have won 16 straight games against the Baltimore Orioles this season. They finish 17-2 against them this season, where the two losses came from the first series of the season.

The New York Yankees set a new record of their best series against any team since they went 21-1 vs. the Saint Louis Browns in 1927, per stat guru Katie Sharp.

Following Tuesday’s 15th straight win, manager Aaron Boone said this about the impressive feat: “It’s been crazy. It’s not easy to do by any means, I just think our guys have had a really good mindset no matter who we’re playing. The guys just daily focus hunger, coming in ready to compete.”

Gleyber Torres and Gary Sanchez both individually owned the Orioles this season. Torres hit 13 total home runs and Sachez hit a total 10 home runs.

Didi Gregorius led off Wednesday’s win with a single to right field that knocked in Aaron Judge. Later that inning, Gary Sanchez hit a bomb to center field for 422 feet that scored Gio Urshela and Didi Gregorius. In the bottom of the sixth inning, Mike Ford hit his first career based loaded RBI which scored Gleyber Torres.

J.A. Happ had a quality start where he pitched five full frames while allowing just two runs on six hits. He fanned six while walking three. Happ’s ERA decreased slightly but remained inflated at 5.40.  Luis Cessa allowed the three runs to let the O’s get back in the game, but Aroldis Chapman sealed the win in the ninth with two strikeouts.

New York Yankees: Domingo German Dominates as the Yankees beat the O’s

New York Yankees, Domingo German

The New York Yankees continued their dominance over the Baltimore Orioles Tuesday night as they improve their record to 16-2 against them this season. They set a new season-high of 39 games being above .500 and improve their overall record to 80-41.

Domingo German shut down the Orioles en route to his 16th win this season, where he leads the rest of the MLB. German went seven innings allowed two runs on five hits while fanning seven. It seemed that every pitch in his arsenal was working and he absolutely dominated the O’s lineup. Manager Aaron Boone mentioned that German’s breaking ball was remarkably sharp and had life to his fastball.

German holds a 16-2 record this season where he holds the highest winning percentage at .882 (Baseball Reference). In 109 frames pitched, German has fanned 117 batters. He is regarded as the ace of the staff during Luis Severino’s absence.

The New York Yankees scored their runs off on a leadoff home run from DJ LeMahieu and hits from Maybin, Judge, Tauchman, Urshela, and Sanchez. The Orioles scored their runs on a solo shot from Renato Nunez in top of the ninth and hits from Anthony Santander and Stevie Wilkerson.

With this win, the Bombers can put another home series victory in the books. The Yanks will continue the series against the Orioles where they try to seek their 16th win in a row against the O’s. They will take them on at 1:05 pm EST. Watch as hot-hitting Gleyber Torres tries to break the MLB record for most home runs hit against a team in a single season.

New York Yankees: Gleyber Torres Makes History Against the Orioles

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

New York Yankees’ 22-year-old slugger Gleyber Torres absolutely owns the Baltimore Orioles this season. He made history Monday night against the Orioles where he hit his 13th home run off them this season. Not only was it his 13th, but he slugged three bombs off the O’s in Monday’s doubleheader. This multi-homer game was Torres’ eight this season, which is nothing short of remarkable.

The 13 bombs this season against the Orioles set Torres in a four-way tie with Roger Maris, Joe Adcock, Hank Sauer, and Jimmie Foxx (ESPN Stats & Info) for most home runs against a team in a season. Lou Gergic holds the number one spot in that category where hit 14 home runs against the Cleveland Indians in 1936.

Prior to his career in the Major Leagues, Torres did not hit for power. In the minors with triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre Railriders in 2017, he only slugged two home runs in 81 at-bats. This season he’s just under matching his home run total from last year (24), and the Yankees still have 42 more games in the regular season.

This season Torres is currently slashing .278/.345/.501 (Baseball Reference). Selected to his second All-Star game in two years, he is regarded as one of the premier young talents in the Major Leagues. The Yankees agreed with this as they forbid to accept any offers with Torres during the July 31st trade deadline.

The New York Yankees swept the double-header against the Orioles which advanced them to 79-41 and a three-game winning streak. They will continue their domination over the Orioles Tuesday night in the Bronx.

New York Mets Series Preview: Baltimore Orioles (8/14-8/15)

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Zack Wheeler

The New York Mets had a quick turn around after winning their makeup game against the New York Yankees. They will take on the Baltimore Orioles in a battle of two of the worst teams in baseball. The Mets have won four out of five on the back of their strong starting pitching. The Orioles have lost five straight and are on pace to finish with the worst record in baseball. The Orioles took two games from the Mets earlier this season.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(8/14, 7:05 PM) Jason Vargas (2-8, 8.75 ERA) vs. Andrew Cashner (3-10, 4.85 ERA)

(8/15, 7:05 PM) Zack Wheeler (7-6, 3.82 ERA) vs. TBD

Wheeler On a Roll

Zack Wheeler has been one of the best pitchers in all of baseball over the last two months. He has a 1.34 ERA in the second half and a lot of it has to do with the rise in his velocity. Wheeler has thrown with his full effort on all his pitches instead of trying to conserve his energy to get deeper in the game. He is facing a very poor Orioles offense and will have a chance to keep up his hot streak.

Jason Vargas has been a complete failure this season and has not looked like a professional pitcher at any point this season. The $8 million that the Mets owe him over this season and the following season are likely the only reasons he still gets opportunities to pitch. With Corey Oswalt undoubtedly pitching better than Vargas, it certainly forces the Mets to decide on which direction they want to go in the future.

Last Place Orioles

The Orioles are one of the only teams whose season has been worse than the Mets. They have traded two of their best players in Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop and are in a complete rebuild mode. They rank in the bottom five in almost every offensive and pitching stat in the American League. Manager Buck Showalter’s contract expires at the end of the season and the Orioles have not discussed bringing him back for the 2019 season.

Adam Jones was rumored to be traded at the deadline, but chose to remain in Baltimore for personal reasons. He was recently moved to right field for the young prospect Cedric Mullins and Jones welcomed the move with open arms. Mullins has gone 5-13 to start his career and Jones has become a mentor to the young prospect. Jones is one of the most stand-up guys in baseball and his unselfishness will make him a welcomed member to any team next season.

Matchups To Lookout For

Adam Jones vs. Jason Vargas: 6-32 (.188) 2 Doubles, Walk, 4 Strikeouts

Craig Gentry vs. Jason Vargas: 5-23 (.217) 2 Walks, 3 Strikeouts

Todd Frazier vs. Andrew Cashner: 5-13 (.385) 5 Doubles, Walk, 2 Strikeouts

Kevin Plawecki vs. Andrew Cashner: 2-8 (.250) Double, 2 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Zack Wheeler against the 3-hitter in 2018: 21-61 (.344) 3 Doubles, 3 Home Runs, 6 Walks, 16 Strikeouts

Miguel Castro ERA during Away and Home Games: 3.86

New York Mets Series Preview: Baltimore Orioles (6/5-6/6)

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Zack Wheeler

After a disappointing four game sweep at the hands of the Chicago Cubs, the New York Mets hope to rebound two game series against the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles have lost seven games in a row and currently have the worst record in baseball (17-41). The Mets need to sweep the series if they want to start turning their season around.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(6/5, 7:10 PM) Alex Cobb (1-7, 6.80) vs. Jason Vargas (2-3, 8.53 ERA)

(6/6, 1:10 PM) Dylan Bundy (3-7, 4.46 ERA) vs. Zack Wheeler (2-4, 5.14 ERA)

The Cubs Mauled the Mets

The Cubs overmatched the Mets in almost every facet of the game. The Mets were held to six runs in four games and their bullpen allowed a scary 16 runs in those games. The Mets starters were the lone bright spot throughout the series. After their starters exited the game, there was a feeling of hopelessness in the Mets bullpen.

Manager Mickey Callaway was out managed and looked way over his head throughout the series. Joe Maddon showed why he is a top tier manager in baseball and Callaway seemed a step behind in every game. Reinforcements will be on their way as Todd Frazier is expected to return to third base in the series. Yoenis Cespedes and Noah Syndergaard are also expected to return in the following series against the New York Yankees. The Mets will need their superstars back because the team currently looks lost and has no true leadership in the clubhouse.

Rebuilding Year For the O’s

The Orioles are in a rebuilding position and never had a true chance to compete this season. Like most Oriole teams, they have a mediocre pitching staff that has the third worst ERA, worst WHIP and batting average against in baseball. They have put a lot of stock into Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy to anchor this Orioles pitching staff for the future, but they have not lived up to their expectations. Even a great manager like Buck Showalter has not been able to compete with this roster.

The lone storyline for the Orioles is their star shortstop Manny Machado. After a down year in terms of his batting average, he has bounced back to put together a strong season. He is in the top-10 of all three triple crown categories and is a free agent at the end of the season. He will be traded and the Orioles have asked for a lot in return. At age 25, he will headline a stacked 2018-19 free agent class and will certainly draw offers north of the $200 million mark.

Matchups to Lookout For (Not Much Analysis Here)

Nobody on the Orioles has a .300+ average against Jason Vargas and only Mark Trumbo has faced Zack Wheeler

Nobody on the Mets has an .300+ average against Alex Cobb and only Todd Frazier, Jose Bautista and Adrian Gonzalez have faced Dylan Bundy (0-for their careers)

Manny Machado is good at baseball

Interesting Stats

Manny Machado in Late & Close Situations in 2018: 13-29 (.448) 2 Doubles, 4 RBI, 8 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Asdrubal Cabrera in Late & Close Situations in 2018: 19-44 (.432) 1.308 OPS, 13 RBIs