March 14, 2018

Q&A with Bryan Hoch, author of new Yankees book 'The Baby Bombers'

Longtime Yankees beat reporter for Bryan Hoch just released his first book, and it's definitely worth the read if you want to hear how the Yankees cultivated the next potential "Core Four."

Hoch features extensive detail on how the Yankees scouted and developed Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Luis Severino and Greg Bird. Brian Cashman's key trades and near-trades over the past few seasons are also detailed like never before.

I breezed through my advance copy in about a week. Go pick up this book now.

If you're still looking for a reason to buy it, I'll let him tell you why you should, as Hoch was nice enough to hop on the phone with me for a 15-minute interview about the book and the current state of the Yankees.

I’ve just finished reading it, but why should other fans pick up a copy of your book?
I hope it captures the excitement that fans have around this team right now. The concept beginning the book was how the Derek Jeter Yankees became the Aaron Judge Yankees. You know from watching the team last year that people really fell in love with these guys – the Judges, Gary Sanchez, Luis Severino, Greg Bird – there’s so much excitement around the Bronx. For the first time in a very long time you can really see a future where the Yankees are gonna be good for a sustainable period of time and compete for championships year in and year out. I think watching these guys come up through the farm system, become stars at the big league level, get to experience New York for the first time. It’s not just that they’re young, it’s that they’re good. I think the sky really is the limit for what these guys can accomplish going forward. 

February 22, 2018

7 reasons why the Yanks could fail in 2018

Don’t get me wrong, I have a lot of hope for the Yankees in 2018. But it won’t be easy. The AL East is still the deepest division in baseball, and while the Yankees made the biggest move of the offseason to acquire Giancarlo Stanton, now they have a target on their backs. 

Plus, a lot of things could very easily go wrong with this team. Here are seven of the biggest concerns I have with this squad.

1. We can’t expect so many career years again
Let’s get real for a second: it all came together for the Yankees in 2017. Luis Severino, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Didi Gregorius, Starlin Castro, Ronald Torreyes and Chad Green all had monster seasons. That’s a lot to live up to this year, as all are back with the exception of Castro. Realistically, maybe one of this bunch will be able to improve on last season, while the rest will likely not be able to match their magical 2017 campaign.

February 19, 2018

Yankees Games to Watch in 2018

It’s Feb. 19. The Yankees’ first game of 2018 is just a few days away, and there’s something different buzzing around camp than there has in recent years.

Last year they were the underdogs, but then they overachieved and fell one game short of the World Series. As CC Sabathia said over the offseason, the Yankees have reclaimed their Evil Empire status with the acquisition of reigning MVP Giancarlo Stanton. 

They’re back to being hated.

With that in mind, and given the excitement for the season ahead, I wanted to take a closer look at some of the most-anticipated matchups slated on their schedule.

October 12, 2017

Yankees Postseason Gear: Pinstripe Judge Robe, Sir Didi Shirt & More

After Joe Girardi's Game 2 gaffe I thought the Yankees were done. But then when I was at the Stadium for Game 4, I saw a team playing with a lot of heart. And then Todd Frazier confirmed that after the Yankees polished off the Indians in Game 5 last night when he said, "This one is for Joe."

What a time to be a fan. As the ALCS is set to begin Friday night, it's time to gear up. Literally. Check out this Pinstripe Judge Robe.

I'm a big fan, despite his record-setting 16 strikeout performance in the ALDS.

And who doesn't love "Sir Didi" Gregorius? I love this spin on a classic T.

Disclosure: I will receive a 10% commission on any purchase made on Happy shopping! 

April 2, 2017

2017 MLB predictions: Sanchez, Bird & Judge

Without a doubt, these 2017 Yankees are the most exciting I've ever covered on this blog, which dates back to 2009. What a good year that was to start a Yankees blog, am I right?

Anyhow, with names like Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird and Aaron Judge slotted in the Opening Day starting lineup, how can you not be pumped? Are these three the next Jorge Posada, Tino Martinez and Paul O'Neill? Only time will tell. 

And let's not forget about Gleyber Torres, the blue-chip prospect the Yankees received in last year's Aroldis Chapman trade with the Cubs. With Didi Gregorius sidelined to start the season (shoulder), it's possible Torres makes a Sanchezesque rise to the Show later this year.

As for the team's fate, unfortunately, the AL East remains one of the most competitive divisions in all of baseball. The Red Sox are the heavy favorites despite losing David Ortiz to retirement, and the Orioles and Blue Jays are still loaded too. 

The Yankees' offense looks to be much improved with a full season of Sanchez and Bird at the top of the order, plus a seemingly healthy Matt Holliday inserted at DH. Their bullpen also looks almost as good as last year, as Chapman is back in pinstripes after helping the Cubs break their curse. However, the Yankees' success will come down to starting pitching, as it usually does. 

After Masahiro Tanaka, there are a lot of question marks. Can CC Sabathia keep it together for another year? Will Michael Pineda's numbers match his electrifying stuff, for once? And which Luis Severino will we see: the 2015 dominant young stud or the 2016 bust? 

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