April 27, 2015

Coincidence? Bullpen ERA leaders also lead their divisions

The Yankees didn't even get five innings out of their starter last night but still won. How? It's no secret: their bullpen has been untouchable.

No Mariano? No problem. David Robertson put an end to that discussion quickly, but then left for the White Sox and more money.

This year's dynamic duo is Dellin Betances & Andrew Miller, who've combined for 18.2 scoreless innings in 17 appearances. Betances had a "slow" start but has really looked sharp in his last few outings, and Miller has been as filthy as advertised. Esmil Rogers also deserves a shoutout as the go-to long reliever with a 2.84 ERA in 12.2 innings.

After last night's W, the Yankees sit atop the AL East tied with the Rays at 11-8. It turns out the Yankees aren't the only team benefiting from their bullpen. Sorted by bullpen ERA, the top six ranked teams also lead their division, except for the Royals who are a half game behind the Tigers.

But the Tigers are pretty to explain. First, their offense has been explosive in 2015 – I still can't get over how Miguel Cabrera has a .652 AVG against the Indians this year (15-for-23). The Tigers also lead the majors in innings pitched by starters, so they haven't had to rely on their 26th-ranked bullpen as much to win games.

For a bit of context, six of last year's 10 playoff teams had a bullpen ERA in the top 10, including the World Series champion Giants.

Fifty years ago, bullpens were barely even a thing. 

April 13, 2015

Yankees Bleacher Creatures Roll Call

Just attending last night's Yankees-Red Sox game would have been satisfying enough for me. But with a last-minute invite, I found myself chanting with the Bleacher Creatures in the first inning before the Yankees scored seven in the first and went on to a 14-4 victory.

Here's the full roll call video, just a few seats away from Bald Vinny & The Creatures.


Also, The Boss.
Oh by the way, I've attended two Yankees games this year and they've been their only two victories thus far. Anyone have tickets for tonight?

April 12, 2015

The best time to buy Yankees tickets

Looking to get out to Yankee Stadium? Of course you are. Go ahead and plan your trip out to the Bronx, but consider holding off on purchasing the tickets until just before game time.

According to Rukkus, a website that helps people find the best ticket deals for events, the best time to buy for Yankees game is an hour or two before it starts. 

April 5, 2015

2015 MLB predictions: Yankees & Mets, A-Rod & Severino, World Series, MVPs and more

It's that time again. Baseball is BACK! And so are my annual predictions. 

See below for the usual standings, World Series picks, awards and Yankees player stats. But the real prediction that everyone seems to be buzzing about this year isn't really covered below. That would be the Battle for New York -- who will be better this year: Yankees or Mets?

I say Yankees. Sure, the Mets got Matt Harvey back. He's excellent, but it was really unfortunate for them to lose Zach Wheeler in spring training. Their bullpen hasn't improved much and neither has their hitting. Plus, they play in a pretty tough division with the all-hailed Nationals and hyped-up Marlins. 

The Yankees, on the other hand, play in a very weak division that is totally up for grabs. Heck, I even see them stealing an AL wild card spot. CC Sabathia's velocity (and weight) increase excites me, and so does the fact that their worst injury of the spring was to fifth starter Chris Capuano. He'll be OK, and, if not, I like his replacement, Adam Warren, a lot. 

Bottom line: the Yankees, when healthy, easily have the best staff in the division and maybe even the American League when you weigh in the bullpen too. The hitting is looking, well, old, but we'll see if Alex Rodriguez's good spring was any indicator of how he'll perform this year. We shall see. 

AL East 
1. Red Sox
2. Yankees*
3. Blue Jays 

4. Orioles
5. Rays

AL Central 

1. Tigers
2. Indians
3. Royals
4. White Sox
5. Twins

AL West 
1. Mariners
2. Athletics*
3. Angels
4. Rangers
5. Astros 

NL East 

1. Nationals
2. Marlins*
3. Mets
4. Braves
5. Phillies

NL Central 
1. Pirates
2. Cubs*
3. Cardinals
4. Brewers
5. Reds

NL West 
1. Dodgers
2. Giants
3. Rockies
4. Padres
5. Diamondbacks

*Wild Card Winner 

AL Champion: Mariners
NL Champion: Dodgers
World Series Champion: Dodgers, 6 games

AL MVP: Robinson Cano
NL MVP: Yasiel Puig
AL Cy: Felix Hernandez
NL Cy: Stephen Strasburg
AL RoY: Kendall Graveman
NL RoY: Kris Bryant
AL Manager: Terry Francona
NL Manager: Bruce Bochy

Yankee Stats 
Alex Rodriguez home runs: 24
Carlos Beltran RBIs: 74
Jacoby Ellsbury OBP: .349
Masahiro Tanaka games stared: 29
CC Sabathia ERA: 3.91
Dellin Betances saves: 21
Andrew Miller saves: 19
Luis Severino holds: 10

Previous Predictions
2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014


2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014

April 3, 2015

Results for my 2014 MLB predictions

As you'll see below, one glaring thing from last year's predictions is not a single correct call by me in the AL East. Don't expect that to change next year when we look at my 2015 predictions (coming this weekend). Top to bottom, the AL East is one mediocre division.

As a Yankees fan, I of course loved the Yankees and Red Sox (mostly the Yankees) being at the top year after year for a decade. But this is pretty fun too, I guess: Not knowing whether last year's division winner, the Orioles, will finish in first or last.

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