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Author: Bobby Page 1 of 96

Game 62: Good Pitching, Good Hitting, and a Win over the Twins

Ah, now that’s more like it. The Yankees should get to play the Twins all of the time. It’s frankly kind of rude that they don’t! With the win tonight, the Yankees improve to a ridiculous 105-37 against the Twins since the start of the 2002 campaign. The Twins have won multiple divisions, gone through multiple iterations of the team with Hall of Fame players and All Stars, and it just doesn’t matter. The Yankees absolutely own them. OWN them. It’s great and I hope it never stops.

It was a great formula tonight too. Gerrit Cole’s spin rate was fine, his velocity was dominant, and he carved through a horrific Twins lineup. The Yankees hit some home runs and even got some production out of Brett Gardner. Offensive malaise? Couldn’t be our team.

Anyway, it was a great return to form for the Yankees. Let’s get right to the takeaways…but not until we appreciate the best tweet of all time:

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DoTF: Gil Rocked As Organization Goes Winless

Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders

The RailRiders fell to the IronPigs 5-4. They scored 2 in the 9th, but could not complete the comeback. They fall to 18-8 on the season.

  • Starting Pitcher: RHP Deivi García: 5.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 7 K – 62% of his pitches were strikes…still a few too many walks for my taste
  • In Relief: RHP Nick Goody: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 K – 82% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Addison Russ: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K – 66% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Reggie McClain: 1.1 IP, 1 H, zeros, 1 K – 90% of his pitches were strikes
  • Florial Watch: CF Estevan Florial: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 K
  • Hard Hittin’: 1B Chris Gittens: 1-4, 1 K
  • Built Ford Tough: DH Mike Ford: 0-4, 1 K
  • Hitting Star: SS Andrew Velazquez: 3-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI – 9th inning HR to close the gap
  • Leftovers: they had 9 hits overall…Thomas Milone (HR), Trey Amburgey, Max McDowell, and Armando Alvarez had the other hits

Double-A Somerset Patriots

The Patriots fell to 18-8 after a 8-3 loss to the Fightin’ Phils. Somerset struck out 16 times and walked just once. Yikes.

  • Starting Pitcher: RHP Luis Gil: 4.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 BB, 7 K – 60% of his pitches were strikes…everyone has a bad start sometimes
  • In Relief: RHP Jefry Valdez: 2.0 IP, 1 H, zeros, 2 K – 77% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Ron Marinaccio: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 K – 60% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Keegan Curtis: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K – 55% of his pitches were strikes
  • Hitting Star: CF Michael Beltre: 2-5, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI
  • Hitting Star: LF Aaron Palensky: 1-4, 1 3B, 2 RBI
  • Leftovers: quiet night otherwise…Diego Castillo, Donny Sands, Jason Lopez, and Matt Pita had the other hits, three of which were doubles, to be fair

High-A Hudson Valley Renegades

The ‘Gades and Blue Rocks were once again postponed due to rain. They will also play a doubleheader when they return to Wilmington from July 13 to 18.

Single-A Tampa Tarpons

The Tarpons and Flying Tigers were postponed due to rain. They’ll play a doubleheader tomorrow beginning at 4 pm. That means three affiliates will play a doubleheader tomorrow. Hope you guys like DoTF because tomorrow’s will be a long one.

Game 58: The Yankees are a Slog

The Yankees once again embarrassed themselves offensively, striking out 15 times against the Red Sox in a 5-2 loss. Honestly, the game wasn’t even that close, and it felt over from the very first inning of the game. If you can’t tell already, be warned: the ensuing takeaways are going to be very grouchy and potentially whiny.

Let’s get right to ’em.

DoTF: Tampa Scores 16 as Farm Goes 2-0

Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders

The RailRiders defeated the IronPigs 5-1, improving to 18-7 on the season. They held the IronPigs to just 4 hits and struck out 12.

  • Starting Pitcher: RHP Brian Keller: 4.0 IP, 1 R, 4 BB, 3 K – 59% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Kyle Barraclough: 2.2 IP, zeroes, 1 BB, 5 K – 62% of his pitches were strikes…earned his 3rd win
  • In Relief: RHP Braden Bristo: 1.1 IP, zeros, 3 K – 74% of his pitches were strikes…dominant performance
  • In Relief: RHP Luis García: 1.0 IP, zeros, 1 K – 75% of his pitches were strikes
  • MLB Watch: CF Socrates Brito: 1-4, 2 RBI, 1 SB – had a 2-RBI single in the 6th
  • MLB Watch: 1B Chris Gittens: 2-3, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 BB – another nice offense night for hard hittin’ Chris Gittens
  • Red Hot Alert: 2B Hoy Jun Park: 2-4, 2 R, 1 BB – hitting .362 on the season
  • Leftovers: Trey Amburgey added another hit, a double….Andrew Velazquez had the other Scranton hit…the team walked 10 times overall

Double-A Somerset Patriots

The Patriots and Fightin’ Phils were postponed due to rain. They will play a doubleheader on Saturday at 4:00 pm.

High-A Hudson Valley Renegades

The ‘Gades and Blue Rocks were postponed due to rain. They will also play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 4:00 pm.

Single-A Tampa Tarpons

The Tarpons are 19-8 following yesterday’s laugher against the Flying Tigers. They won 16-2 on 9 hits and 15 walks. Their pitchers surrendered just 2 walks and 4 hits. That’ll do the trick.

  • Starting Pitcher: LHP Ryan Anderson: 3.0 IP, zeros, 1 BB, 4 K – 60% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Nelvin Correa: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 3 K – 64% of his pitches were strikesearned his first win
  • In Relief: LHP Clay Aguilar: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K – 84% of his pitches were strikes
  • In Relief: RHP Kevin Millam: 2.1 IP, zeros, 1 K – 67% of his pitches were strikes
  • First Round Watch: 3B Anthony Volpe: 3-5, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 1 BB, 2 SB – what a performance
  • Multi-Hit Watch: LF Elijah Dunham: 2-4, 3 R, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 1 BB – that’ll do
  • Multi-Hit Watch: CF Pat DeMarco: 2-3, 3 R, 1 B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB
  • Multi-Hit Watch: SS Josh Smith: 2-3, 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 BB, 1 SB
  • Leftovers: amazingly, that was every hit they had…everyone with a plate appearance reached base except Pedro Diaz, who was a late game entry…Austin Wells walked 4 times and stole a base

The Yankees Can’t Hit Strikes Anymore

It’s been an alarming season for the Yankee offense. We’re now a third of the way through the season and the team is hitting .227/.315/.370 (95 wRC+) as a unit. This is where the team ranks in some key offensive categories:

  • Homers: 64 (14th)
  • Slugging: .370 (24th)
  • wOBA: .304 (18th)
  • ISO: .143 (25th)
  • Runs: 207 (25th)

To say that this is an unexpected development is an understatement. I don’t think anyone could have predicted this. Not even the most pessimistic Yankee fan. The offense completely collapsing would probably have been at the bottom of every person’s prediction list.

There have been no shortage of proposed hypotheses for the problem, but none of them have really been sufficient explainers. The ball changed, sure, but it changed for everyone. And yes, the Yankees swing and miss – but they also did that in 2018 and 2019. And they had right-handed heavy lineups then, too. These answers may be pieces of the puzzle, but they are far from the adhesive holding it together.

Normally, when a team is struggling offensively, the first place I’d look is to see if they are pressing and chasing pitches out of the zone. That’s not the case for the Yankees. Not at all, actually. Their approach is largely consistent with their typical output. The Yankees are second overall in walk rate (10.8%), and their chase rate (28%) ranks toward the bottom of the league. All of this tracks with the patient, measured approach we’re used to seeing.

In some ways, I wish the Yankees were actually chasing. That’s an easy fix and tweak to the approach. Instead, what’s going on with the Yankees is that they simply cannot hit strikes anymore. It is bizarre. I don’t know how to fix it, but it’s pretty clearly the root of the problem. Let’s get into it.

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