Results tagged ‘ Mark Teixeira ’

Severino cannot stop the rain of Texas hits

Violent weather was in the forecast for Arlington, Texas, Tuesday night,  which threatened the Yankees’ game against the Rangers. The teams were hoping to get the game in so that they woild not lose their off day Thursday. As it turned out, the Yankees would probably have settled for a rainout. Instead they got a washout.

Rain did fall briefly in a couple of spots, but the game went the distance. The rain that bothered the Yankees more was the rain of hits the Rangers slammed all over Globe Life Park as Texas breezed to a 10-1 victory. The relief the Yankees may have felt for facing a right-handed starting pitcher for the first time in five days dissipated as A.J. Griffin eased through the lineup. He allowed only two singles, both by 9-hole hitter Ronald Torreyes, through six innings and pitched through the eighth.

The Yankees finally got on the board in the seventh on an RBI single by Mark Teixeira, who is on a nice run, but they were eight runs behind at the time. The Rangers bashed out 13 hits — five for extra bases, including home runs by Ian Desmond off Ivan Nova and Roughned Odor off Chasen Shreve — in ending a four-game losing streak.

The most disappointing performance by a Yankees pitcher was that of Luis Severino, who was not taken deep but was stung for six earned runs and seven hits in three innings. It was the poorest outing of the season for Severino, who had a strong spring and was projected as a possible staff ace but has stumbled to a 0-3 start with a 6.86 ERA.

The ugliest inning for Severino was the third. After getting two quick outs on grounders, he gave up a single to birthday boy Nomar Mazara (21) and a double to Adian Beltre. With first base open, Prince Fielder was walked intentionally, a wise strategic move unless what happened next happens, a very unintentional walk to Desmond that pushed in a run. With little feel for his breaking ball, Severino tried to muscle his way through the inning and gave up a two-run single to Mitch Moreland and a run-scoring single by Elvis Andrus on fastballs. In between Severino let in another run with a wild pitch.

It was 6-0 Texas, and all the Yankees could hope for was the fierce storm that was predicted to make an early arrival and rinse those runs away.

For the second straight night, Teixeira had the Yankees’ only hit with a runner in scoring position that extended his hitting streak to five games during which he is batting .450 with two runs, a double and three RBI in 20 at-bats.

Hits not easy to come by this time against Eovaldi

The best thing about Prince Fielder’s smoking double in the seventh inning Monday night was that it meant Nathan Eovaldi’s no-hit bid was not spoiled by the preceding hit by Nomar Mazara. Imagine if that had been the only hit of the game? Mazara should have grounded out to shortstop, but the Yankees had the shift on, so Mazara’s ball found a hole and slithered into left-center field for a single leading off the seventh.

You can debate the use of infield shifts that have been in vogue in recent years for hours, but the sight of a pitcher wondering where his infielders are is an indictment of what I think is overuse of the practice. Mazara is a rookie for crying out loud, and the Yankees were shifting against him? Mazara wound up getting doubled up on Adrian Beltre’s line drive to Starlin Castro before Fielder got the first legitimate hit off Eovaldi

As a kid growing up in Alvin, Texas, Eovaldi heard all about no-hitters because that is also the home town of Nolan Ryan, who pitched seven of them, three more than any other major-league pitcher. As a flamethrower whose fastball flirts with 100 miles per hour on occasion, Eovaldi resembles Ryan in that phase as well. However, Eovaldi unlike Ryan has not been stingy allowing hits to opponents, so his taking a no-no into the seventh inning was an eye-opener.

Eovaldi entered the game having allowed 701 hits in 649 2/3 innings over the course of his career, including 21 hits in 17 2/3 innings this year in his first three starts. Hitters usually get on base against him but not Monday night. Until the seventh when they both finally got to Eovaldi, Fielder and Mazara had been the only Texas players to reach base. An error by shortstop Didi Gregorius at the start of the second put Fielder on base, but he was quickly erased on a double play. Mazara walked in the fourth and never got beyond first base.

It was not the fastball alone that was working for Eovaldi in the 3-1 victory over the Rangers but how he mixed it with all his pitches. His slider and splitter were dead-on, and he had Texas batters off stride all night. It was a magnificent job by a pitcher in a hitter’s yard.

With a three-run lead going into the eighth, Yankees manager Joe Girardi instead of going to Dellin Betances right away allowed Eovaldi to start the inning, but a leadoff walk ended his brilliant night. Betances came in and got a quick double play before yielding his first earned run of the season on a home run by Brett Nicholas. Betances rebounded with his 23rd strikeout in 10 innings, and Andrew Miller (fifth save) finished the Rangers off in a 1-2-3 ninth.

The Yankees got the trip off to a positive start on a night when two of their players, Alex Rodriguez and Adam Hicks, were unavailable. The Yankees once again struggled with runners in scoring position (1-for-9), but solo home runs by Jacoby Ellsbury and Castro off Texas lefthander Cesar Ramos made up for the lack of clutch. The one hit with a runner in scoring position was a double by Mark Teixeira in the third. Austin Romine, who steered Eovaldi through the game from behind the plate, also had two hits.

Nova still adapting to reliever’s role

The invincibility of the Yankees’ bullpen took a hit Wednesday night due mainly because of a pitcher not used to working in relief. In his previous appearance a week ago at Yankee Stadium, Ivan Nova earned his first career save with four shutout innings against the Astros.

So Yankees manager Joe Girardi had every reason to believe that they could remain within a run’s reach of the Blue Jays when he brought in Nova to hold them down in the eighth inning after Mark Teixeira’s third home run of the season had cut Toronto’s lead to 3-2. Nova, who was beaten out in the spring for a spot in the rotation by CC Sabathia, had a miserable time of it in yielding four runs as the Jays pulled away for a 7-2 victory.

“It’s different for him.” Girardi said about Nova’s new role, “but we need him to get outs.”

Toronto scored a run before Nova got an out that inning on doubles by Josh Donaldson and Jose Bautista. The two-base hit was big for the Jays, who have not homered in either game of the series but lashed out six doubles Wednesday night, including two by 9-hole hitter Ryan Goins, who had three hits and two RBI. After getting Edwin Encarnacion out on a ground ball, Nova gave up an RBI single to Troy Tulowitzki and Michael Saunders’ second double of the game on a late swing against the shift.

Russell Martin knocked in a run with a sacrifice fly for the second out, but Nova hit Justin Smoak in the foot with a pitch and gave up a run-scoring single to Goins. The four runs allowed by Nova raised his ERA from 0.00 to 7.20 and that of the overall bullpen from a league-best 0.84 to 2.31.

Michael Pineda got through six innings but threw 105 innings and was uncharacteristically wild with three walks. Goins’ first double with two out in the second put Toronto ahead. After tying the score in the fifth against J.A. Happ on a double by Ronald Torreys, a single by Austin Romine and an infield out, an errant throw by Torreys, who played shortstop with Didi Gregorius getting a night off, opened the door for two Toronto runs. Smoak scored on the wild throw, and Goins came home as Donaldson grounded into a double play.

Kirby Yates pitched a shutout seventh with two strikeouts to extend the bullpen’s scoreless string to 7 1/3 innings before Nova came unglued in the eighth.

Power bats sparking Yanks in early going

The long ball is back for the Yankees at Yankee Stadium, which they will continue to need if their starting pitchers cannot pick up the pace. One game after Michael Pineda lucked out behind a 16-run, 17-hit attack, Nathan Eovaldi struggled through five innings only to be saved by his teammates’ wiping away 3-0 and 5-2 deficits in an 8-5 victory over the Astros Thursday in the rubber game of the season-opening series.

Mark Teixeira’s second three-run home run in two days unlocked a 5-5 score in the seventh inning and was a great sign from a player who has a history of grim Aprils and is coming off a leg injury that ruined the final portion of his — and the Yanks’ — 2015 season. Tex is batting .364 with two homers and seven RBI after a somewhat lackluster spring training during which he expressed concern about his poor timing at the plate. He has come alive at the right time. His 193rd home run with the Yankees pushed him past Tino Martinez into 17th place on the club’s all-time list.

There were plenty of other good signs from the Yankees in a game that began with a 12-minute rain delay but stayed dry the rest of the way. Starlin Castro continued his torrid hitting with two more knocks, including his second home run. Brian McCann got on the board with this first homer of the season and is batting .455 with three RBI. Mac’s 50th homer since joining the Yankees was his 36th at the Stadium. The Yankees belted seven home runs in the series, including three in each of the past two games.

Alex Rodriguez still has not homered since his first at-bat of the exhibition season, but he broke out of a 0-for-9 season start with a single in the fifth that scored the tying run. A-Rod also singled in the seventh and scored on Tex’s homer, an opposite-field blow off Ken Giles thaty cleared the left-field wall. Jacoby Ellsbury entered the game batting .111 and contributed two doubles and an RBI.

For the second straight game, the Yankees got four scoreless innings from their bullpen. Wednesday night all four frames were handled by Ivan Nova. Thursday, it was an ensemble effort with a shutout inning apiece from Kirby Yates, Chasen Shreve, Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller, who earned his first save. Miller allowed two hits but struck out the side in showing no ill effects from a chip fracture in his right (non-pitching) wrist. Betances bounced back from the Opening Day loss with a 1-2-3, two-strikeout eighth.

Eovaldi’s five-inning start was a mixed bag. He did not walk anybody, which was good. He had seven strikeouts, which was good. But the righthander was touched for two home runs, which was not good, that came in successive at-bats in the second inning by Tyler White and Preston Tucker. White made it a four-RBI game when he singled in two more runs in the fourth as Houston regained its three-run lead. The power bats of McCann and Castro came to Eovaldi’s rescue, and he got off the hook when Rodriguez knotted the score in the fifth. It was A-Rod’s 1,066th RBI with the Yankees as he passed Jorge Posada for 11th place on the franchise’s career list.

Yanks defy conditions with offensive explosion

With the temperature hovering around 40 degrees and the wind swirling Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium, the last thing I expected was an offensive outburst by either team. Yet before the third inning was complete, the Yankees and the Astros had combined to score 17 runs.

Go figure.

The reason, of course, was shaky pitching. After being given a 1-0 lead on Carlos Correa’s first-inning home run off Michael Pineda, Astros starter Collin McHugh could not get through the bottom of the inning. Seven of the eight batters he faced reached base, and all but one scored.  The Yankees loaded the bases on catcher’s interference and two walks with a single by Mark Teixeira and a double by Brian McCann sending those runners home.

Even on the one out McHugh recorded, a hard grounder to first base by Carlos Beltran, a run scored. An RBI single by Chase Headley chased McHugh, whose ERA is a hefty 135.00. Starlin Castro, who has already made a favorable impression on Yankees fans, greeted reliever Michael Feliz with a single for the sixth run of an inning in which 12 batters came to the plate and endured for 36 minutes.

If Pineda thought he could coast with a five-run lead, the Astros had other ideas. With two out, Pineda hit Jose Altuve with a pitch that loaded the bases for George Springer, who abruptly made it a one-run game with the first grand slam of his career.

Castro, who drove in two of the Yankees’ three runs in Tuesday’s Opening Day loss, provided Pineda breathing room by belting a three-run home run off Feliz with two out in the bottom of the seacond. Teixeira followed suit in the third as the Yankees stretched their lead to seven runs. 

‘Tex’ is Yanks’ Clemente Award nominee for 2015

Mark Teixeira is the Yankees’ 2015 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet. Wednesday, Sept. 16, marks the 14th annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by Major League Baseball to honor Clemente’s legacy and to recognize officially the 30 club finalists for the award given annually to a major league player who best represents the game through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement.

Teixeira, who is sidelined for the remainder of the season due to a right shinbone fracture, has been involved in charitable endeavors throughout his major-league career. In 2006, the first baseman and his wife, Leigh, established the Mark Teixeira Charitable Fund, an initiative that awarded several scholarships to students from multiple high schools in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area.

Three years later, Teixeira served as spokesman for the National Foundation for Cancer Research through the organization’s “Help Strike Out Sun Damage” program. He endowed a scholarship at his alma mater, Mt. St. Joseph High School in Baltimore, to honor his friend, Nick Liberatore, who died in a car accident while the two were in school together. Tex also established the Mark C. Teixeira Athletic Scholarship Fund at Georgia Tech, where he attended college.

Teixeira has been an avid supporter of Harlem RBI, a nonprofit organization in East Harlem, that provides more than 1,700 boys and girls with year-round academic, sports and enrichment programs. In 2010, he became a member of their board of directors and made a donation of $100,000 to the organization’s college preparation program. In 2011, he was honored at Harlem RBI’s “Bid for Kids” gala, which helped raise $2.25 million.

Since then, Teixeira has chaired the event each of the last four years as it has raised a combined $14.8 million. In 2011, he donated $1 million to Harlem RBI and launched his own “Dream Team 25” campaign to call on his fans to raise additional funds for its partnership with DREAM charter school to construct a 450-seat public charter school facility, community center, 87 units of low-income housing and a rebuilt public park. The project is designed to serve as a model for urban development.

In addition, Teixeira, who is the co-chair of the Harlem RBI’s $20 million Capital Campaign and the chair of its Home Run Leadership Council, continues to work with MLB to connect fellow players in support of local RBI programs around the country.

Teixeira has made personal visits to the Harlem facility, reading to students and providing baseball instruction to them. Notably, since Teixeira joined the organization, Harlem RBI has expanded its efforts to reach Mott Haven in the South Bronx, with special attention on the Paterson Houses. This year he organized Yankees teammates Alex Rodriguez and Brett Gardner to participate in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge along with Harlem RBI youth.

The Yankees will recognize Teixeira’s nomination for this year’s Roberto Clemente Award with an on-field ceremony Thursday, Sept. 24, prior to their 7:05 p.m. game against the White Sox.

Beginning on Roberto Clemente Day, fans are encouraged to participate in the process of selecting the winner of the award by visiting ChevyBaseball.com, which is powered by MLB Advanced Media, to vote for one of the 30 Club nominees. Voting ends Friday, Oct. 9, and participating fans will be automatically registered for a chance to win a trip to the 2015 World Series, where the winner of the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet will be announced.

The concept of honoring players for their philanthropic work was created in 1971 as the Commissioner’s Award but was renamed the Roberto Clemente Award in 1973 in honor of the Hall of Fame right fielder and 15- time All-Star who died in a plane crash New Year’s Eve 1972 while attempting to deliver supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.

Yankees players who have received the Clemente Award were Ron Guidry in 1984, Don Baylor in 1985 and Derek Jeter in 2009. Others who played for the Yankees but won the award while with other clubs were Phil Niekro with the Braves in 1980, Dave Winfield with the Twins in 1994, Al Leiter with the Mets in 2000 and Carlos Beltran with the Cardinals in 2013. Leiter’s broadcast partner in the YES Network booth, Ken Singleton, won the award in 1982 with the Orioles.

Among the other winners are Hall of Famers Willie Mays, Brooks Robinson, Al Kaline, Willie Stargell, Lou Brock, Rod Carew, Gary Carter, Cal Ripken Jr., Barry Larkin, Ozzie Smith, Kirby Puckett and Tony Gwynn.

Teixeira out for rest of season with bone fracture

The pain in Mark Teixeira’s right shinbone seemed too severe for a mere bruise, but test after test indicated that was all it was until Friday when a bone fracture was diagnosed, which came as no surprise to the Yankees’ first baseman whose 2015 season came to a painful end.

“I can’t put into words how disappointed I am,” Teixeira said before Friday night’s game, the first in a pivotal four-game series against the first-place Blue Jays, who have a 1 1/2-game lead over the Yankees in the American League East. “I believe this is a team that can win the World Series. It’s disappointing that I can’t be part of it.”

Teixeira went on a gluten- and sugar-free diet over the past off-season in an attempt to reduce inflammation in his body after two injury-plagued seasons. He was in the best shape of his career and determined to be injury-free. Then on Aug. 17, Teixeira hit a foul ball off his right leg. He has had only three at-bats since and now faces a two-month recovery period.
“When I got hurt, it was as painful as any injury I have ever had,” Teixeira said. “I was trying to play every single day.”

Teixeira took batting practice several times, but he could not run and recently could not walk without the aid of crutches.

His is a deep loss to the Yankees. Teixeira was in the AL Most Valauble Player conversation for much of the first half. He is still the team’s home run leader with 31, one more than Alex Rodriguez, and batted .255 with 79 runs batted in.

The Yankees are 12-9 since his injury but have lost 2 1/2 games in the standings to Toronto over that period.

More rotation question marks with Eovaldi out

The Yankees entered play Tuesday night merely a whisper out of first place in the American League East, but the medical reports continue to be unfavorable. Naturally at this time of year, plenty of players are banged up. Still, the Yankees are dealing with more of their share of injured players.

The latest to throw a monkey wrench in the division race is Nathan Eovaldi, the staff’s leading winner with a 14-3 record. An MRI revealed inflammation in the righthander’s pitching elbow. He has to be shut down for two weeks, which essentially means he is toast for the rest of the regular season.

Also hurting is left fielder Brett Gardner, who was out of the starting lineup for the second straight game because of a sore left shoulder which he crashed into a fence trying to make a catch in Saturday’s loss to the Rays.

Meanwhile, the prognosis on first baseman Mark Teixeira (right shinbone bruise) is not good. He received two more injections Tuesday. “The progress we expected to see we have not seen,” manager Joe Girardi said.

And Wednesday night, the Yankees’ starting pitcher will be CC Sabathia coming off the 15-day disabled list and wearing a new brace on his arthritic right knee.

Eovaldi’s injury creates a major hole in the rotation, which most likely will be filled by righthander Adam Warren, who began the season as a starter but has done a terrific job in relief. He had been expected to be a potent weapon out of the bullpen in the upcoming, four-game series at Yankee Stadium against the Blue Jays, whose lineup is laced with right-handed power hitters. It almost makes certain that Masahiro Tanaka, the scheduled starter for the Yankees Tuesday night, will go again Sunday on four days’ rest against Toronto, even though Girardi has preferred giving him an extra day between starts.

“I blame Eovaldi on myself,” Girardi said wearily, “because I used to say he is the one starter I didn’t worry about, and then this inflammation arose.”

Eovaldi said he felt fine during his start Saturday when he allowed three runs in 5 1/3 innings but uncomfortable after it. His chest felt tight, and there was soreness in his right elbow and shoulder. He did not play catch Sunday, his normal routine the day after a start, and told trainer Steve Donahue there was still pain in the elbow.

“I’m relieved that it is just inflammation and that everything is fine with the ligament,” Eovaldi said, “but the timing is bad.”

Is it ever? The Yankees have seven more games against the Blue Jays with their winningest pitcher unavailable for any of them.

Bird filling key role in Teixeira’s absence

It was only a little more than a week ago that Yankees manager Joe Girardi contemplating using Alex Rodriguez, a season-long designated hitter, as a first baseman as part of the plan to deal with the loss to injury of Mark Teixeira. Girardi was concerned that the Yankees might be vulnerable against left-handed pitching with the switch-hitting Teixeira out of the lineup.

Fortunately for the Yankees, the play of rookie Greg Bird as Tex’s caddy has turned this situation into a non-issue. Bird got the most important hit of Monday’s 8-6 victory over the Orioles, a three-run home run in the seventh inning that unlocked a 5-5 score. It came off a left-handed pitcher, too, as Brian Matusz got too much of the plate with a slider on a count of 0-2.

As Matusz was jogging in from the bullpen, Bird ducked into the runway and watched some quick video of the lefthander, which he later said may not have helped all that much. “For me, it’s more important what I see from the batter’s box,” Bird said.

Bird anticipated fastball from Matusz and adjusted when he saw the spin indicating breaking ball. It was a big-league approach from a young hitter who has gotten more and more comfortable in the big leagues, so much so that you don’t hear too many people around the Yankees mentioning Teixeira’s injury any more.

That is the way of baseball. A player goes on the disabled list, and someone else must step up. Bird has done that for the most part. He is batting .263 with five home runs and 17 RBI in 76 at-bats. And get this: against left-handed pitching, the lefty-swinging Bird is 6-for-17 (.353) with a double, two home runs and six RBI. Who needs A-Rod to leave his DH perch with this kind of production?

Rodriguez also contributed a home run (No. 29, career No. 683), a solo shot in the fifth off Wei-Yin Chen as the Yankees clawed away at a 4-1 Baltimore lead. A two-run homer by John Ryan Murphy later in the inning put the Yanks ahead, 5-4. Justin Wilson gave up a game-tying homer to Manny Machado in the top of the seventh before Bird settled matters in the bottom half.

His blow was the 38th homer of at least three runs (31 three-run homers and seven grand slams), the most by a major-league team in one season since 2009 when the Phillies had 39. The Yankees had have multiple homers in six of their past 10 games.

The long balls were vital for the Yankees to bail out Michael Pineda, who gave up four runs (three on a home run by Jonathan Schoop) in the second inning and then allowed only one walk and one hit over the next four innings. Girardi credited Murphy, the catcher, with helping the struggling pitcher through the outing.

Labor Day marked the third holiday this season on which Pineda started. The others were Mother’s Day and Fourth of July. In those starts, the righthander was 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA and 31 strikeouts in 20 innings.

After Bird’s homer, Girardi went with his twin bullpen aces to finish off the game, but it was a bit dicey. Dellin Betances had a weird eighth in which he walked three batters and struck out three. The next inning, Andrew Miller was touched for a run but prevailed to record his 32nd save.

The victory coupled with Toronto’s loss at Boston moved the Yankees within a half-game of the Blue Jays in the American League East.

The Yankees are 12-7 in the games following Aug. 17 when Teixeira fouled a ball off his right shinbone. He started one of those games and pinch-hit in another, and the Yanks lost both. So without Tex taking part in games over this stretch, the Yankees are 12-5. Sure, they may have had a better record if he did not get hurt, but clearly they are succeeding despite his loss.

Tex, CC vow to be back this month

Mark Teixeira and CC Sabathia are determined to return to the Yankees before the regular season is completed. Tex joined CC on the 15-day disabled list Friday, retroactive to Aug. 27, which allowed the Yankees to recall pitcher Nick Rumbelow from Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Teixeira, who is back on crutches while dealing with a right shinbone bruise, told reporters before the game against the Rays that he plans to return to the club at some point this month. General manager Brian Cashman said, “We are looking at weeks,” when talking of Teixeira’s time away, but the All-Star first baseman vows it will be only two.

“There’s progression now,” Teixeira said. “There’s going to be a build-up, from walking to jogging and running, making sure I can do everything. That’s why I’m back on the crutches, really letting the whole thing calm down and starting from scratch. Hopefully this weekend, I’ll be off the crutches and getting into walking again. There’s no permanent damage. It’s just a really bad bone bruise, worse than we first expected. It’s unfortunate, but hopefully we have two months of the season left, so there’s plenty of time for me to get healthy and come back.”

Sabathia, disabled since Aug. 24 because of inflammation in his right knee, pitched a four-inning simulated game, which impressed manager Joe Girardi, who said the lefthander is a candidate to return to the rotation Wednesday night against the Orioles.

“I felt good,” Sabathia siad. “No pain. I tested it pretty good as I would as if I was in a game, so I’m excited.”

The Yankees’ 13-8 victory over the Red Sox Wednesday at Fenway Park was the 800th of Girardi’s managerial career (722 with the Yankees since 2008, 78 with the Marlins in 2006 when he was the National League Manager of the Year). Girardi is one of 10 active managers with at least 800 victories. The others alphabetically are the Giants’ Bruce Bochy, the Mets’ Terry Collins, the Indians’ Terry Francona, the Pirates’ Clint Hurdle, the Cubs’ Joe Maddon, the Athletics’ Bob Melvin, the Angels’ Mike Scioscia, the Orioles’ Buck Showalter and the Royals’ Ned Yost.

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