Yanks Add Garcia

Ken Rosenthal tweets that the Yankees have signed Freddy Garcia to a minor league deal. Garcia is an upgrade over Sergio Mitre in the fifth spot and if he can replicate his 2010 performance (4.64 ERA over 157 innings) in 2011 they would be thrilled.

An area of concern is the drop in his strikeout rate and the increase in his walk rate, but overall this is a solid move. Nothing really risked and a definite upgrade over the current alternatives for the rotation.

The Semis Begin (Yankees)

The ’27 and ’61 Yankees faced off in Games 1+2 today with the 1927 Yankees winning both. While the ’27 Yankees were the “home” team, the fact that they rocked Whitey Ford for four runs in the first inning leads me to believe that they will finish off the ’61 squad quickly. Someone on the ’61 team is going to need to slow down the ’27 offense, they racked up 25 hits and 16 runs in the two games.

I suspect we will have a concluded series by the end of tomorrow, but we will find out.

Game results, info and stats can be round at http://greenmonsta.weebly.com/

Round 2, Day 2 – Red Sox

Well, I guess we should never count out the 2004 Red Sox, neither in real life nor simulation.

Box Score – Game 5

Box Score – Game 6

Box Score – Game 7

The 2004 squad roared back to win the last 3 games and advance to the Red Sox finals. The 1946 team, enjoying some time off, is ready to take them on. Pedro finally pitched a good game and Manny’s bat came alive.

So we are down to a 7-game series with the the 2004 Red Sox and the 1946 Red Sox with the winner heading to the Red Sox vs. Yankees finale.

Game Recaps:

We already know the 1946 RedSox are waiting for the winner of the ’04 & ’75 Series with the ’75 team knocking on the door with a 3-1 lead. Curt Schilling was the starter in game 5 for ’04 vs Luis Tiant. Schilling was masterful, pitching a complete game 5 hit shutout to keep the ’04 Sox alive. Up 1-0 in the 2nd, the 2004 team scored four times, all of the runs unearned after Pudge Fisk mishandled a swinging bunt by Bill Mueller. Schilling cruised the rest of the way striking out five and walking one.

Game 6 – Pedro Martinez vs Bill Lee. Pedro to date was 0-2 and Bill Lee was 2-0. Unfortunately for the 1975 Sox, Bill Lee the 2004 Sox pounded him around for eight hits and six runs in three and two thirds. Johnny Damon hit two homers, a solo shot in the third and a two run shot in the fourth both off Lee. David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez hit back to back solo shots in the sixth off Dick Pole to ice the game, 2004 Sox and Pedro Martinez won 8-3 forcing a game 7.

Game 7 – Rick Wise vs. Tim Wakefield. A matchup that inspires…well…something. Manny Ramirez started things off in the bottom of the first with a two run homer putting the home team ahead. In the third, fourth and fifth innings the 2004 Sox added three, two and two runs respectively to go up 9-0 to end the 1975 Sox dreams of moving on. In total the 2004 Sox bats came alive for eighteen hits and 11 runs, winning 11-4 behind solid but unspectacular pitching from Wakefield. Manny hit a second homer in the scoring spree giving him three for the YRRS.

Up Next : 2004 vs 1946

Round 2, Day 2- Yankees

The 1998 Yankees almost made a great comeback. Down 3-1 in the series, they rallied to tie things up with an incredible Game 6 performance. They actually had a lead in Game 7, but Jeff Nelson couldn’t hold it and the 1961 Yankees advanced.

More details can be seen here

Personally, I am kind of shocked that the 1961 Yankees are in the finals of the “Yankees Bracket” Despite their 109 regular season wins, a lot of critics have dismissed them as overrated. While that label may be overstating it, they did have a pythagorean record of “only” 103 wins. I really thought the ’98 team would take them out, but it was not to be and now we have a really good matchup between ’61 and ’27 to look forward to. Games 1+2 are Monday night.

Round 2, Day 1 – Red Sox

Are you kidding me? The 2007 Red Sox are playing golf and the 2004 Red Sox are 1 game from fishing. The 1946 Red Sox swept the 2007 World Series Red Sox! The 1975 squad has a 3-1 lead and is sniffing the next round.

Wow, Pedro Martinez was just terrible (or has been so far as his 2004 team is still alive). The old school Red Sox are teaching the rich, young Red Sox players just what it means to be a Champion (in sim-world anyway). Well, at least the Yankees seem to be heading in the same direction.

We’ll learn the outcome of this round tomorrow and then onto the “Conference Finals” for lack of a better term.

Game recaps:

#1 seed 2004 RedSox taking on #4 seed 1975 RedSox – Game 1 matchup: Curt Schilling vs. Luis Tiant. Both pitchers were effective through eight. 2004 held a 4-0 lead going into the 9th. Schilling came out for the 9th inning but only got 1 out before needing help. After a Yastrzemski single with one out, Pudge Fisk drilled a 3-2 pitch out of the park to give the ’75 team life. After the pitching change, Fred Lynn drew a walk, was forced at 2nd on a groundball by Jim Rice. With two outs, Bernie Carbo jacked one out to tie the game at 4. After a 1-2-3 bottom of the 9th, the 1975 Sox came out immediately in the 10th with a single from Juan Beniquez and another 2 run homer by Cecil Cooper. Dick Drago recorded the win in relief, 1975 winning 6-4. Game 2 featured Pedro Martinez and Bill Lee on the mound. Pedro struggled, not completing the 4th and Lee was masterful, spacing out 5 hits and giving up a single run in 8. Behind Fred Lynn’s three run homer in the first, the ’75 Sox won 5-2. Game 3 had Rick Wise going against Tim Wakefield. Wakefield was good, giving up 4 runs on 8 hits over 8 innings, but Wise was better giving up only 2 runs through seven and a third. The highly effective ’75 bullpen shut the door and the ’75 Sox team opened up a 3 games to 0 lead. In Game 4, the shocked 2004 Sox sent Derek Lowe out to stop the hemorrhaging. The ’04 Sox squeeked out a 6-4 win with Lowe pitching eight effective innings and going 2-0 in the YRRS. 1975 Sox lead 3 games to 1.

#2 seed 2007 RedSox against #6 seed 1946 RedSox – Game 1 featured Joe Dobson against Dice K Matsuzaka. Neither starter gave up a run, unfortunately for the 2007 team, Dobson pitched a complete game shutout while Dice K went seven and a third. The 1946 team got to Okajima in the eigth scoring twice on a bases loaded two run single by pinch hitter Roy Partee. Game 2 had Tex Hughson vs. Curt Schilling. Both pitchers fared well, giving up three runs apiece and leaving with their team having a chance to win the game. In the bottom of the ninth off closer Jonathan Papelbon, Wally Moses led off with a single. Johnny Pesky singled and JD Drew bobbled the hit letting Moses get to third. Dom Dimaggio was walked intentionally to load the bases, next up, Ted Williams. Papelbon struck the Splendid Splinter out on four pitches bringing up Catfish Metkovich with one out. He hit a ground ball to second, the play at the plate was late, 1946 won 4-3. Game 3 had Jon Lester facing Mickey Harris. This one wasn’t close as Lester was roughed up early. The ’46 Sox won 9-1 with Wally Moses leading the way with three hits and Rudy York adding a couple of his own. Could Josh Beckett stop the sweep in game 4 against Dave Ferriss? Manager Terry Francona kept with Beckett through six complete despite him giving up seven runs. A dejected Beckett left the field to some boos with his team behind 7-2. Wally Moses again had a big hit, a three run homer off Beckett in the sixth inning. Get the brooms out, this one is done. 1946 swept 2007 4-0.

Round 2, Day 1- Yankees

Not much competition in these series as the ’27 Yankees swept and the ’61 Yankees have pushed the ’98 Yankees to the brink of elimination. The 1998 Yankees won the 4th game of the series and will have to make their streak four-straight to advance to the finals.

Results can be seen here

Cashman Steps In It

By now I assume most of you have read the comments Brian Cashman made about Derek Jeter moving to the outfield. If not, try this or this for a recap and commentary.

Personally, I feel a bit sorry for Cashman. Francesca, or the “Sports Pope” as he has been nicknamed by Bob Raismann, has become a bombastic ass on the radio since Mad Dog left. Cashman after having to sit through a Francesca soliloquy about how he should move A-Rod to DH and Jeter to third probably just snapped. He probably just wanted to shut Mike up and didn’t think about the impact his comments about Jeter moving to the outfield would have. It’s unfortunate and should not have happened. Cashman should have just said that Jeter is our shortstop and there are no plans for that to change.

Instead he talked about the outfield, specifically centerfield and created a ruckus. The problem is, Jeter isn’t going to be the centerfielder of the Yankees. He could have been, before the Curtis Granderson trade, but now the Yankees have a centerfielder, in fact they have two of them and Granderson is under contract through 2012 with a team option for 2013. Assuming they exercise that, and unless Curtis gets hurt, they will, Jeter doesn’t have a spot to play in the outfield until 2014. That’s the season he turns 40 and the Yankees would be committing a crime against baseball if they asked Jeter to play centerfield at that point. Cashman referenced Robin Yount in his Jeter example, but Yount started in center when he was 29 and his career was over at 37. Jeter is 36 right now.

In reality, the time to move Jeter to center was before the Granderson trade. However, we all know that wasn’t going to happen and now the Yankees and Jeter are stuck with him at short. The Yankees made a bet that he would remain at least an average shortstop offensively for the next three years when they brought him back. If he isn’t, the answer isn’t a position change, it is a seat on the bench.

*****
The other nugget that Cashman dropped is that Joba Chamberlain hasn’t been the same pitcher since he injured his shoulder in 2008. That’s the reason du jour for not using him as a starter. This comment ignores two facts.

1- The Yankees still went with Joba as a starter in 2009. Why would they do this if they were concerned with his injury?

2- Joba went 7-2 with a 3.58 ERA in his first 20 starts of 2009. Doesn’t that qualify as pretty good evidence that he could succeed as a starter?

I speculated in December that the Yankees just don’t think Joba has the mental makeup for the rotation. But, with Soriano now in the fold are the Yankees seriously going to use Joba as a middle reliever? It seems more and more likely.

UPDATE- As I pressed “publish” on this post I saw a tweet from Joel Sherman saying the Yankees have signed Bartolo Colon and given him an invite to camp. They really will do anything to avoid Joba pitching in the rotation.

Round 1, Day 2 – Red Sox

Please visit THIS LINK to see day 2 of the Red Sox, Yankees Rivalry Simulation.

PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO READ BOTH OF OUR COMMENTARY ON THIS SIMULATION AS WE ARE BOTH WITTY, YET VERY, VERY MODEST. DID I MENTION WE WERE WITTY? AND, MUCH WORK HAS GONE INTO THIS AND WE ARE HOPING YOU ENJOY IT AND CAN PROVIDE SOME MANAGERIAL ADVICE HEADING INTO THE NEXT ROUND. YES I AM YELLING, I SUFFER FROM VOICE IMMODULATION ALSO KNOWN AS VAN ORTON’S SYNDROME.

Ok, after a rough Day 1 for some Red Sox teams, some normalcy has taken over. Both recent World Series winning Red Sox team, versions 2004 and 2007, both made it through to the next round. Joining them will be the 1946 team and the 1975 team.

For the 2004 team, the hitting starts were David Ortiz (1.429 OPS), Jason Varitek (1.271…remember those days, or at least some of those days?), Trot Nixon (1.012 OPS) and Kevin Millar (1.194). Manny Ramirez had a disappointing series, perhaps readying himself for the next round (and completing his steroid cycle…er…excuse me, his womens fertility cycle) Mark Bellhorn also scuffled. The pitching star were Curt Schilling (0.00 ERA and a 0.48 whip). Pedro Martinez was terrible (8.44 ERA as was Derek Lowe, even though Lowe got the decisive win). Keith Foulke, Mike Timlin and Bronson Arroyo, working in relief, pitched well.

For the 2007 team, the offensive stars were Ortiz (1.150 OPS), Jacoby Ellsbury (.985 OPS), JD Drew (1.050 OPS…actually his OPS was fine, but very little production…sounds like the real life Drew). Manny Ramirez disappointed in this series as well (.686 OPS) as did Dustin Pedroia (.583 OPS) and a slightly older Jason Varitek (.325 OPS…older than his 2004 version anyway). The pitching stars were Jonathan Papelbon (2 saves, 0.00 ERA in 4 IPs, but he did give up 4 hits and a walk in semi-typical Papelbon fashion). Josh Beckett was great (1.80 ERA, 1.13 WHIP) so was Hideki Okajima (3 IP, 0 Hits, 1 BB, 5 Ks). Daisuke Matsuzaka was ok, a typical Matsuzaka game (6 IP, 5 H, 4 W, 5 K and 2 minutes between pitches).

For the 1975 Red Sox, the offensive heros were Carlton Fisk (1.021 OPS), and…well, that’s really it. Jim Rice was ok (.800 OPS), as was Danny Doyle (.760 OPS), but all of the other batters left their bats at home. The pitchers who secured the series win were Bill Lee and Reggie Cleveland (both with a win and a 2.25 ERA and 8 IP) and relievers Dick “Don’t Call Me Ivan” Drago (2 saves, 0.00 ERA) and Jim Burton (1 save and 1 clean IP).

And the first team to clinch was the 1946 lead on offense by (I mentioned this yesterday) Ted Williams (1.700 OPS…yes, other wordly), Wally Moses (1.051 OPS), Bobby Doerr (1.045 OPS), Rudy York (1.055), Dom DiMaggio (.967 OPS and the most famous of the DiMaggio brothers in my opinion…did I mention I’ve never been out of Massachusetts?), and Johnny Pesky chipped in (.439 OBP with 5 runs scored). The key pitchers were Dave Ferriss (2.00 ERA, 0.89 WHIP), Tex Hughson (3.38 ERA, 1.13 WHIP) and Mickey Harris (3.38 ERA, 1.00 WHIP). There were only 3 innings pitched by relievers in the 3 game series for the Red Sox, just like things were back in 1046.

Next up:

#1 2004 RedSox vs. #4 1975 RedSox – I put the 2004 team as the heavy favorites in this.

#2 2007 RedSox vs. #6 1946 RedSox – This one is a crap shoot, given the potential of Ted Williams.

Game Recaps:

#1 seed 2004 RedSox up 2 games to 1 entered game 4 against #8 seed 1978 RedSox. Derek Lowe was called on to close it out against Bill Lee. Both pitchers struggled, Lowe giving up 4 runs in 6 innings and Lee giving up 7 runs in 4 and two thirds. The 2004 Sox closed out the series with a convincing 9-5 win. Kevin Millar was the hitting hero, going 3-4 with a double and a homer and 4 RBI. He batted .438 for the series.

#2 seed 2007 RedSox were down 2 games to 1 against the #7 seed 2003 RedSox. 2007 threw rookie Jon Lester against John Burkett. Neither pitcher made it past the 5th as the runs piled up. The 2007 RedSox won game 4 by a score of 9-7 behind 16 hits led by Kevin Youkilis’ 3 hits. Deciding game 5 pitching matchup? Pedro Martinez vs. Josh Beckett. Both pitchers pitched well into the 7th, score was tied 1-1 when the 2007 Sox scored 3 against Pedro on a run scoring single from Youkilis, a double by Ortiz and a sac fly from Manny Ramirez. Papelbon recorded his 2nd save of the series. Final score 5-2 2007 RedSox

#3 seed 1986 RedSox was swept by #6 seed 1946 RedSox (see day 1 post)

#4 seed 1975 RedSox was up 2-1 heading into game 4 against #5 seed 1967 RedSox. Reggie Cleveland vs. Gary Waslewski wasn’t a marquee matchup but both pitched well enough to win. 1975 RedSox scored 3 in the third and added one more in the 5th to secure a 4-2 series clinching win. The ’75 team had 9 hits, all singles with Rick Burleson smacking 3 of them. Pitching was the key for the ’75 team in this series as the hitting never really exploded. All four starters went eight complete innings while the batters did enough to get the wins.

Round 1, Day 2- Yankees

Three of the four series saw a team down 2-1 come back and win. The 1961 Yankees victory over the 2009 Yankees stands out to me. Not only did the ’61 Yankees get to Mariano, but Roger Maris won Game 4 with a homer in the bottom of the 11th. Sabathia got shelled in Game 5, but the 2009 Yankees almost pulled it out, scoring five runs in the 8th to make it 10-9 and putting the tying run on first to start the 9th.

The ’27 Yankees will now face the ’78 version with the ’61 and ’98 squads facing off. All results can be seen here

#1 seed 1927 Yankees up 2 games to 1 heading into game 4 against the #8 seed 1923 Yankees. Dutch Ruether (27) throws a complete game, 1 run gem while his hitters amass 12 runs for the win. Shortstop Mark Koenig went 2-4 with 3 RBI and Ruth and Gehrig each knocked in 2 runs. For the series, Babe Ruth (27) hit .357 with 1 HR and 7 RBI and Mike Gazella (27) added a .455 average with 4 RBI. Yankees 27 win 3 games to 1 over Yankees 23.

#2 seed 1998 Yankees down 2 games to 1 vs. the #7 seed 1950 Yankees hoped Andy Pettitte would out pitch Whitey Ford to get the series even. Pettitte was ok giving up 4 runs in 6 innings and was bailed out by the offense in the 7-4 win. Darryl Strawberry continued his amazing series with a double and a single and 3 more RBI. Mariano Rivera saved his 2nd game. Game 5 had David Wells going against Vic Raschi. Both pitched very well, but Raschi gave up 2 runs in the 8th in a 1-1 game that was enough to give the ’98 Yankees the 4-1 win and the series. Jorge Posada and Chilli Davis singled home the go ahead runs in the 8th. David Wells evened his record at 1-1 with 8 solid 1 run innings. Rivera recorded his 3rd save.

#3 seed 1961 Yankees, also down 2 games to 1 against #6 seed 2009 Yankees. Game 4 went 11 innings before ’61 Yankees pulled out the 8-7 win. Both teams had 12 hits with Clete Boyer and Roger Maris hitting homers in the win. It was Maris’ 3rd homer of the series. After an off day, game 5 pitted CC Sabathia against Whitey Ford in the game 1 matchup. In a thrilling game, the 1961 Yankees eeked out a 10-9 victory to take the series 3 games to 2. The ’61 crew hit 5 homeruns, 2 off Sabathia, 2 off Phil Hughes and one off of Aceves. Roger Maris finished the series with 4 homeruns and 7 RBI while hitting .368. Tony Kubek hit .435 and scored 5 runs.

#4 seed 1941 Yankees were up 2 games to 1 on the #5 seed 1978 Yankees. Game 4 had Dick Tidrow throwing against Atley Donald. Both men pitched well with Tidrow throwing a gem. Eight innings, 5 hits and a single run was Tidrows line for the night. Thurman Munson hit the game winning 2 run homer in the top of the 8th. Goose Gossage closed the door in the 9th for his first save. Game 5 paired the starters from game 1 that both pitched amazing. Marius Russo vs. Ron Guidry. Both pitched well again, but Guidry pitched a little bit better, winning 3-1 with Gossage again getting the save. The ’41 Yankees only managed two hits in the loss while Munson had 3 of the team 10 hits and hit .381 for the series.

Round 1 – Red Sox

Stunning departure of the 1986 Red Sox at the hands of the 1946 Red Sox. I guess Ted Williams was as good as they said he was. You’ve heard of him, right? Pedro turned in a terrible outing but the 2004 Red Sox hold 2-1 lead over the 1978 edition. The most recent Red Sox World Series winners from 2007 are down 1-2 to the Grady Little led 2003 Red Sox (it’s only a 5 game series, so maybe Grady won’t have to make any difficult decisions). Lastly, the 1975 Red Sox, led by Jim Rice (who wasn’t there in real life but thanks to the miracle of simulation, we can see what could have been) hold a 2-1 edge on the Impossible Dreamers of 1967.

See all of the results here. http://greenmonsta.weebly.com/

#1 seed 2004 RedSox own a 2 games to 1 lead over #8 seed 1978 RedSox. Game 1 saw a dominating outing from Curt Schilling, pitching 8 and one third, one run ball. The offense scored 11 times with homers from Jason Varitek and David Ortiz and 5 team doubles. Final score was 11-1 with Dennis Eckersley taking the loss. Game 2 had Mike Torrez and the ’78 Sox bounce back with a 5-4 win saved by Bill Campbell. Pedro Martinez took the loss for the ’04 squad. Jim Rice and Fred Lynn both homered in the win. Game three went to the ’04 Sox as they broke a 5-5 tie in the bottom of the 8th on a 1 out run scoring triple by Mark Bellhorn. Keith Foulke saved the game in the 9th.

#2 seed 2007 RedSox find themselves down 2-1 after 3 games to the #7 seed 2003 RedSox. Game 1 starters Josh Beckett and Pedro Martinez both went 7 innings without a decision. The ’07 team won in 10 innings as Dustin Pedroia tripled home Jacoby Ellsbury with the go ahead run. Jonathan Paplebon saved the game in the bottom frame. ’03 Sox evened the series in game 2 behind strong pitching from Derek Lowe and Scott Williamson. David Ortiz homered for both teams in the 6-4 win. Game 3 was another tight game with the ’03 Sox winning 7-6. The ’03 team chased Curt Schilling in the 4th inning scoring 5 runs off the veteran. Homeruns by Kevin Millar and Todd Walker led the hit parade for the ’03 team.

#3 seed 1986 RedSox are the first team eliminated in the YRRS. Credit the #6 seed 1946 Sox for sending them packing in 3 games. Game 1 saw Tex Hughson pitch 8 good innings for the win. Roger Clemens struggled in 4 plus innings. Ted Williams was the hero, smacking 2 home runs and knocking in 5. Game 2 saw the ’46 team outlast the ’86 squad in 10 innings 8-7. Ted Williams hit his 3rd homer of the series and Dom Dimaggio had 3 hits in the win. Don Baylor hit a homer in the losing effort for the ’86 team. Game 3 saw the series first dominant pitching performance by Dave Ferriss. A complete game 3 run outing. Oil Can Boyd was no match and the ’46 Sox completed the sweep 8-3. The ’86 team held Ted Williams hitless in the clincher but his 3 HR and 9 RBI in the series was impressive.

The #4 seed ’75 Sox lead the #5 seed ’67 Sox 2 games to 1. Game 1 went to the 1967 team in a good pitching matchup of Jim Lonborg and Luis Tiant. Both went 8 innings but the ’67 team won 4-3. Jim Rice homered in the loss. Game 2 was another close contest with the ’75 team edging out the win 3-2 with all 3 runs scored in the top of the 9th. Lee Stange was throwing the shutout before running into trouble, Sparky Lyle couldn’t close the door either. Bill Lee got the win with the big hits coming from Pudge Fisk and Fred Lynn in the 9th. Game 3 was another 1 run game with the ’75 boys winning 5-4. Rick Wise was very good through 8 and Dick Drago collected his 2nd save in as many days. Dwight Evans hit a homer in the 7th that ended up as the game winner. Rico Petrocelli, Carl Yastrzemski and Tony Conigliaro hit homers in the loss.