Christopher Carelli

Besides providing coverage of the New York Yankees for SNY.tv, Christopher Carelli's baseball commentary has also been published by Yahoo! Sports and The Cauldron. Follow Christopher on Twitter, @Chris_Carelli.

 

Oct 16, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel (60) walks off the mound after the third out in the first inning of game three of the 2018 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Boston Red Sox at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)
Oct 16, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel (60) walks off the mound after the third out in the first inning of game three of the 2018 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Boston Red Sox at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)

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If you can't beat him, see if he'll join you? Is that the stance the Yankees might undertake with free agent left-handed starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel?

Here are the pros and cons of the Yanks signing Keuchel, what he might cost, and what the team should ultimately do…

Tags: CC Sabathia, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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Patrick Corbin
Patrick Corbin

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

In order to take the next step in 2019 and beyond, the Yankees need a pitching staff ace or at least a hurler that has the potential to be one. Enter free-agent LHP Patrick Corbin.

Here are the pros and cons of the Yankees signing Corbin, what he might cost and what the team should ultimately do.

 

Tags: CC Sabathia, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees need starting pitching and with an eye toward remaining fiscally responsible, the trade market offers some strong opportunities, including Mariners left-hander James Paxton.

Here are the pros and cons of the Yanks trading for Paxton, what he might cost, and what the team should ultimately do...

What makes Paxton a better fit than others?

Tags: CC Sabathia, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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The Yankees might have re-signed CC Sabathia to hold down the back-end of their rotation, but the club has very clearly indicated they will vastly improve the starting rotation. Let's rank, in reverse order, the top six pitchers said to be on the Yankees' radar on the free agent and trade markets...

No. 6 - Nathan Eovaldi

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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees typically traverse the offseason like a wild cat laying in the weeds, readying to pounce on the move that fits into the organization's methodological game plan. With the GM Meetings set to begin Monday, what might be areas where the Yankees concentrate their efforts?

This offseason likely won't be any different than the past, although the cat might take some early morsels before devouring the bulk of its prey. The Yankees established their priorities immediately after their ouster from the playoffs -- again a consistent part of the overall strategy.

Make space

Tags: David Robertson, Gary Sanchez, Jacoby Ellsbury, Miguel Andujar, Sonny Gray, Chris Carelli
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The stars, literally and figuratively, have lined up for the Yankees to make a splash this winter.

The burden of heavy league taxes has been removed and a robust free-agent market is before them. The Yankees worked for years to diminish payroll expenditures with an eye toward the 2019 season.

Tags: Aaron Judge, David Robertson, Domingo German, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, Gleyber Torres, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jordan Montgomery, Justus Sheffield, Luis Severino, Miguel Andujar, Sonny Gray, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees invested heavily in creating a "super bullpen" for the 2018 season and the results were mixed. With two elite relievers -- David Robertson and Zach Britton -- heading to the free agent market, how will the Yankees seek to create a lockdown endgame relief crew for 2019?

Foundation remains

The Yankees will return three of their five high-leverage relievers from 2018 to 2019, with Dellin Betances and Chad Green set to once again bridge the gap to closer Aroldis Chapman...

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Chad Green, David Robertson, Dellin Betances, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: As the Yankees look toward the 2019 season, the starting rotation will be chief among the facets the club will seek to improve. They need an ace. They need a strong No. 2 and heck, they need a back-end of the rotation arm.

As it stands, the Yankees have two starters -- Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka -- locked into roster spots. Yankees GM Brian Cashman has already stated he will try to trade Sonny Gray, while J.A. Happ and CC Sabathia are free agents.

So, how will the Yankees build the 2019 rotation?

Tags: CC Sabathia, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Sonny Gray, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: In a matter of three seasons, Gary Sanchez has gone from "Future catcher of the Yankees" to "Catcher for the Yankees" to "Should he be catching for the Yankees?"

Sanchez endured an utterly terrible 2018 season in all respects of the game. He couldn't hit, seemingly got worse at his position and once again had his effort questioned. He will turn 26 years old in December, so this is not about a player that is heading past his prime, but rather a player that has the talent to put it all together and become a superstar.

Sanchez appeared on his way to superstardom behind a booming bat, as he launched 53 home runs in his first two big league seasons (175 games, 754 plate appearances). His offensive display was more than enough for many to tolerate some defensive lapses behind the plate...

Tags: Gary Sanchez, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees, who have maintained an above-average offense for years now, have been unable to secure such production from its first basemen since 2015.

Mark Teixeira skidded out the door in 2016, Greg Bird has underwhelmed overall since his call-up, and we won't get into Chris Carter et al. circa 2017 fiasco. Luke Voit put on an amazing show over the final month-plus of 2018, but he's pretty much all bat.

As the Yankees seek to bolster their roster for the 2019 season, who should man first base for the Bombers?

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Coming off an inaugural campaign that could net a Rookie of the Year Award, Miguel Andujar would seemingly fit as part of the cornerstone for the Yankees' future. However, in the business of baseball, no stone is left unturned. And if the right deal is offered to the Yankees, they might consider dealing their third baseman.

Let's take a look at both sides of the equation...

Keep him

Tags: Miguel Andujar, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: As the Yankees have seemingly reset their luxury tax penalty, fans hope the organization has one thing in mind -- go big in free agency this offseason. Luckily for the Yankees, two megastars will be on the open market, both of whom are consistently linked to the bright lights of New York -- Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.

While the Yankees will have the money to try to bring in both players, which one do they need more considering the club's immediate and long-term roster configuration?

The case for Harper

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Sep 15, 2018; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius (18) hits a solo home run against the Toronto Blue Jays during the seventh inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 15, 2018; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius (18) hits a solo home run against the Toronto Blue Jays during the seventh inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

The Yankees' offseason is off to a rocky start.

As if the Yankees weren't dealing with enough disappointment being eliminated from the postseason Tuesday, the club announced Friday that star shortstop, Didi Gregorius, was set to undergo Tommy John surgery. Gregorius reportedly suffered the injury during the American League Division Series, and an MRI after the loss revealed a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing arm.

Tags: Didi Gregorius, Gleyber Torres, Chris Carelli
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Right after being eliminated in the ALDS, questions stirred regarding the slew of free agents that are on the Yankees' roster. Who should stay and who should go?

Zach Britton

Tags: Brett Gardner, CC Sabathia, David Robertson, Giancarlo Stanton, Sonny Gray, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: For the second straight year, the Yankees' season is on the brink after their manager failed to make the correct decision. First it was Joe Girardi, then it was Aaron Boone. Can this year's club turn the page as quickly and forcefully as last year's?

In Game 3 of the ALDS Monday night, Boone not only allowed Luis Severino to pitch the remainder of the third inning, he inexplicably pushed his starter out there for the fourth inning. Seven runs later, the rout and ultimate embarrassment was on.

Severino's first pitch of the game was launched 400-plus feet and it didn't get any better from there. His inability to command his fastball led to diminished effectiveness of his slider, allowing the Red Sox to sit dead red. And as a consequence, Boston was incredibly successful when he actually got one over the plate.

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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees survived the winner-take-all Wild Card Game, beating the upstart Athletics and setting up the first playoff series against the Red Sox since 2004. You can bet the Yankees would like to send some payback Boston's way for how that one ended. Let's break down the upcoming series.

Yankees regulars vs. Red Sox regulars

The second-best run producers in the majors behind Boston, the Yankees produced overall offensive success against the Red Sox this season, hitting 34 homers (among their MLB- record 267 dingers) in 19 games, while averaging 5.4 runs per game. Six of the Yankees regulars generated OPS marks over .879, with Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, and Luke Voit all eclipsing 1.000 OPS marks against them...

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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: On Wednesday night, the Yankees will host the Athletics in the American League Wild Card Game with a trip to the ALDS against Boston on the line. The winner-moves-on affair will be hotly contested between two extremely talented, yet different clubs.

Yankees regulars vs. Athletics regulars

The Yankees come at opposing pitchers with a strong right-handed leaning lineup. They pounded 267 home runs this season, but not a single player hit over 40 alone, and Aaron Judge played in just 111 games. Instead, the Yankees distributed their homers across 19 players, with 12 players reaching double digits (an MLB record). Each of their presumed starting nine managed at least 14 homers. And despite a much higher payroll than the A's, the Yanks maintain a young offensive core, with eight players no older than 28.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Austin Romine, Brett Gardner, Didi Gregorius, Gary Sanchez, Gleyber Torres, Greg Bird, Neil Walker, Tyler Wade, Chris Carelli
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Zach Britton (53) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Zach Britton (53) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

The Yankees have not settled on their Wild Card Game starter, but it appears they will not utilize a reliever to open the game. As such, this leaves two distinct scenarios in which the Yankees might deploy its vaunted relief crew.

Bullpenning: The undesirable method

In the 2017 Wild Card game against the Twins, the Yankees had one of the game's best starters on the hill, but it was then that Luis Severino endured his worst start of the year. With Severino pulled after recording just one out, the Yankees were forced into a bullpenning situation and it amazingly worked.

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, CC Sabathia, Chad Green, David Robertson, Dellin Betances, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: When the postseason arrives, the Yankees will have a choice to make among their five outfielders. For most clubs this type of decision would be somewhat easy as the fourth and fifth outfielders are typically clear bench types. That's not that case for the Yankees, who sport one current All-Star, three former All-Stars and another player in the midst of a breakout season.

One thing is certain -- if healthy, Aaron Hicks and Aaron Judge will man center field and right field, respectively. Hicks is the aforementioned breakout player, who owns an .814 OPS (124 wRC+ in 551 plate appearances) with 24 home runs, 72 RBI, 83 runs and 11 stolen bases, plus an above-average defensive presence. As for Judge (.933 OPS, 153 wRC+, 26 HR and 61 RBI in 455 PA), you might know about him and the mammoth home runs, great eye at the plate, and above-average defense.

Let's review the qualifications of the three options remaining to man left field (in alphabetical order)...

Tags: Brett Gardner, Giancarlo Stanton, Chris Carelli
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New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge heads to the dugout after scoring a run against the Kansas City Royals during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge heads to the dugout after scoring a run against the Kansas City Royals during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

The Yankees are 23-19 since August 2, the day the season began to completely turn when they lost the first of four straight games to Boston. As the Red Sox return to the Bronx Tuesday, the Yankees are looking for the switch to flip. But despite manager Aaron Boone's optimism, time is running out for the club to get it all together.

Meanwhile, they might have to watch the Red Sox celebrate the division title on their home field as they work for a chance to exact revenge in the ALDS.

The Yanks, whose descent goes back to July 12 (30-27 record since then) have a handful of issues that need to be resolved. And the chances that all of them will be remedied before the wild card game are not great...

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Dellin Betances, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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The Yankees are likely on their way to playing in the wild card game, and creating a roster for the winner-take-all contest is at the forefront of their front office duties. The Yankees will have to cover all the bases in a game that now has the potential to be played on the road against the surging Athletics.

Here are five questions the Yankees will have to answer when creating its wild card roster... 

Who is the starting pitcher?

Tags: Aaron Judge, Aroldis Chapman, Austin Romine, Brett Gardner, CC Sabathia, David Robertson, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, Greg Bird, Luis Cessa, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Neil Walker, Ronald Torreyes, Tommy Kahnle, Tyler Wade, Chris Carelli
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Time is running out, but Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez still has a chance to make a miserable overall season disappear.

Fans remember big hits and exhilarating plays. Those moments are especially engrained in our memory banks when they occur down the stretch and more so in the postseason. If Sanchez can abruptly change his overall production over the final three-plus weeks of the regular season and be a major contributor to an extended Yankees' run in the postseason, the glory he gained in 2016 and parts of 2017 may return.

It might seem like a long shot to suggest that any positive finish to Sanchez's season can mask the problems he's encountered behind the plate in 2018. Moreover, it could be considered an egregious thought that Sanchez would turn things around defensively after Wednesday night's two passed balls and two wild pitches in a singular inning.

Tags: Gary Sanchez, Chris Carelli
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Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played Aug. 30, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played Sept. 6, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees might be flirting with getting back into the AL East race, but if we're being honest, chances are they'll be playing in the wild card game. As much as the game might beckon for a bullpenning effort -- one that the Yankees could likely handle -- let's look at the true starter options New York can throw in the winner-moves-on contest...

J.A. Happ

Happ has been an absolute stud for the Yankees since coming over from Toronto. He was expected to provide innings in the middle of the rotation, but he's been more or less their most consistent starter since the trade deadline. Happ, being a left-hander, would be an interesting option if the game was being played in Yankee Stadium, where southpaws have an advantage. That said, if the Yankees were to win the wild card game, they might want Happ to be starting as many games as possible against the Red Sox (their likely ALDS opponent), who he has a career 2.98 ERA against in 105.2 innings...

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The Yankees made some astute trades ahead of both the July 31 non-waiver and August 31 waiver deadlines. But one decision - to remain under the $197 million luxury tax threshold - might have been the make or break choice for how they finish the 2018 season.

Within the 15 days leading to the non-waiver trade deadline, the Yankees hovered around five games back of first-place Boston. With 57 games left on the schedule after July 31, some have asked whether the Yankees should have been looking to maximize their chances of winning the American League East instead of tiptoeing around the luxury tax threshold they are so desperate to reset.

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The Yankees might make a trade before the August 31 waiver deadline, but a September call-up could provide a boost to the club.

The Yankees recently shifted Justus Sheffield, the team's No. 1 prospect, to the bullpen so that when rosters expand in September, he might make a significant contribution. Sheffield will not come up for a cup of coffee, but rather he'll be relied upon in some fashion to aid the Yankees' push to the postseason.

Tags: Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played Aug. 23, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees had to know the day was coming -- Aroldis Chapman is finally on the disabled list.

After battling knee tendinitis for several weeks, the pain became too much for Chapman and it was clearly affecting his ability to rear back to gain velocity in his abbreviated appearance Tuesday night.

The Yankees may have entered the season with what was considered the preeminent bullpen in the game, but without Chapman, the relief crew will be tested. Chapman, who has converted 31 of 33 save chances, owns a 2.11 ERA and has 84 strikeouts in 47 innings, is having the type of season the Yankees expected when they signed him to his five-year, $86 million contract. This isn't a situation in which the Yankees simply slide someone into the closer role and keep up the pace...

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees have endured their share of injuries to key players this season, but the latest to Didi Gregorius could throw the team over the edge in terms of testing depth and the impact it will have on the club's ability to maintain their position as the league's top wild card team.

Gregorius was diagnosed with a deep bruise on his left heel after a collision at first base Sunday, with the team placing him on the 10-day DL on Tuesday. With Gregorius out, Gleyber Torres will likely take over shortstop responsibilities while Neil Walker heads back to a much more familiar spot at second base.

Removing Gregorius, who is hitting .270 with a .333 OBP and .482 slugging percentage along with 22 home runs and 74 RBI, from the lineup will have an adverse affect on a squad already missing Aaron Judge (with Giancarlo Stanton hobbled enough to keep him from playing right field) and Gary Sanchez. Gregorius is also the glue that keeps this team together in the infield, and his absence from the game will have as much of an impact as Judge's in terms of cohesiveness of the group...

Tags: Aaron Judge, Didi Gregorius, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, Chris Carelli
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Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees' farm system providing updates about the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB rank, if appli-cable, in parenthesis. Team records, statistics and current club assignments are through games played August 10, 2018.

Top-10 Prospects

No. 1 (No. 27) - Justus Sheffield (LHP) - Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre - ETA 2018

Sheffield finally suffered a blip in what has been a fantastic season. In 1 1/2 innings, Sheffield allowed four runs on four hits and a whopping five walks. The Yankees have been reluctant to bring Sheffield up to the majors and his command has likely been one of the issues (21 walks in last 53 1/3 innings, which is 3.5 walks per nine innings).

Tags: Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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As the Yankees push for 100 wins, the mark will likely come up well short of the Red Sox, forcing New York to participate in the Wild Card Game for the second straight season. There are currently three teams -- all in the AL West -- that could be potential opponents. How would the Yankees stack up against the clubs and which team might be the best matchup?

Houston Astros

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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: At 4 p.m. on July 31, the trade deadline came to an end with the Yankees starting play 5.5 games behind the Red Sox. Two weeks later, the Yankees are now 10 games back, and just 3.5 games ahead of Oakland for the top Wild Card position.

Yankees GM Brian Cashman made a couple of trades that have turned out well thus far -- J.A. Happ and Lance Lynn among them. However, did he do everything he could or should have when it came to upgrading the club for a run at first place and a potential World Series title?

Too much faith in Britton turnaround?

Tags: Aaron Judge, Billy McKinney, Clint Frazier, Giancarlo Stanton, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played Aug. 9, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives A rookie skipper automatically gets some rope to navigate his way up the managerial learning curve, but what happens when the rope begins to fray?

Yankees manager Aaron Boone has been provided more leash than others due to a 50-22 start. But, since the exceptional opening to the season, Boone's Yankees are 19-20 and lost five straight games before Monday night's win in Chicago.

Boone has called the span of lackluster play a "blip," and repeatedly says there is not an energy problem. After the sweep at the hands of the Red Sox, Boone said the Yankees were "too good" to let it define them.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Aroldis Chapman, Austin Romine, Dellin Betances, Gary Sanchez, Kyle Higashioka, Neil Walker, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees made a statement as they were swept by the Red Sox, but it was not the one its fans were hoping for. The sweep spells doom for New York's chances to win the AL East, but can they stop the bleeding and find themselves in time to maintain hold of their wild card spot?

Why the Yankees won't make the playoffs

Inconsistent rotation

There just isn't enough consistency within the rotation. Luis Severino is a mess right now, CC Sabathia is a five or six-inning pitcher with varying results, and newly acquired J.A. Happ is on the disabled list. Meanwhile, Lance Lynn is brand new to the rotation and Masahiro Tanaka -- despite a strong recent run -- has had his own issues this season. The Yankees have shipped Sonny Gray to the bullpen and the reserves in the minor leagues are either underwhelming or untested.

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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played Aug. 2, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Zach Britton (53) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Zach Britton (53) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees were quite active in the trade market this season, as they made more than a handful of deals in the last week.

Despite demonstrating interest and making an offer, the club did not land the big dog of the trade season, Manny Machado, but they were able to solidify the rotation (twice) and add to an already potent bullpen. The Yanks also managed to accumulate the maximum allotment of international bonus pool cash via trades of players with a future fit on the 40-man roster.

Here are my grades for the deals...

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Luis Severino (40) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Luis Severino (40) Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

The Yankees might have a bullpen and offense built to survive a postseason of occasional rotation clunkers. However, at least one rotation member has to dominate opponents.

For the Yankees, Luis Severino is clearly the most likely ace-like candidate among a group of middle-of-the-rotation arms.

Unfortunately, as the Yankees are busy improving their roster, the club has a pressing matter in regard to Severino's recent production. If the Yankees and Severino cannot figure out what ails the All-Star pitcher, then New York will be hard-pressed to win a World Series title this season.

Tags: Luis Severino, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played July 26, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher J.A. Happ pitches to the Boston Red Sox in the second inning at Rogers Centre. (John E. Sokolowski/USA TODAY Sports)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher J.A. Happ pitches to the Boston Red Sox in the second inning at Rogers Centre. (John E. Sokolowski/USA TODAY Sports)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

There is little doubt the Yankees needed to upgrade their rotation, and the addition of J.A. Happ fit the bill. However, is the rest of the Yankees rotation strong enough to make a charge to catch the Red Sox with 61 games left on the schedule?

Happ is a certain upgrade over current No. 4 starter Sonny Gray, as well as the two pitchers -- Luis Cessa and Domingo German -- the Yankees had been interchanging of late in the No. 5 spot. However, Happ had been in a slump before his most recent start (five innings, one run), pitching to a 9.75 ERA over three starts.

Before the skid, Happ had tossed 97 innings to the tune of a 3.62 ERA with 107 strikeouts and just 27 walks. Happ's production was enough to get him named to the American League All-Star team, and the Yankees hope a chance to pitch in the postseason gets Happ back on track.

Tags: CC Sabathia, Domingo German, Justus Sheffield, Luis Cessa, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: The Yankees made their splash in the trade market Tuesday night, acquiring Orioles reliever Zach Britton -- expanding the dominance in an already stacked bullpen by creating a "Super Bullpen," with an eye toward locking down the organization's 28th World Series championship.

Assuming the Yankees reach the playoffs, the addition of Britton to the mix of All-Star caliber endgame relievers in Dellin Betances, Aroldis Chapman, David Robertson, and even Chad Green, could go a long way to aiding the team's ability to string together 11 or 12 victories ending with a World Series title more so than a middling starting pitcher.

Brian Cashman understood the above, so when an impact reliever like Britton became available at their terms they pounced on it, understanding that once October begins the game changes.

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Sometimes, being aggressive in the winter is better than hoping to perform alterations in the summer.

The Yankees will be making phone calls around the league over the next several days, searching to upgrade the club's starting rotation. It is arguable the Yankees made a mistake by not being more vigorous pursuers in the starting pitching market during the winter.

Tags: Jordan Montgomery, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Sonny Gray, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played July 19, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: There is little question the Yankees are in need of starting pitching for the second half. However, adding a starter will unlikely have the impact that might be required as the trade market is filled with more "what-if" hurlers than "sure things."

For example, is anyone fully confident J.A. Happ or Michael Fulmer will carry the team to the World Series? They are solid pitchers and Fulmer's combination of team control and future potential might make him a more attractive commodity. But, right now, neither pitcher resembles an upgrade akin to the Astros adding Justin Verlander last season. This leaves the Yankees in a bit of a predicament.

Enter Masahiro Tanaka...

Tags: Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

The Yankees - on pace to win 106 games - are on vacation with the rest of baseball. But when they come back from the All-Star break, they will have to undergo some changes.

That's an amazing statement, but the reality is if the season ended today, the Yankees would be a wild card team because the Red Sox have been that much better.

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Brandon Drury, CC Sabathia, Chad Green, David Robertson, Dellin Betances, Gleyber Torres, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Neil Walker, Ronald Torreyes, Tyler Wade, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

The Yankees - on pace to win 106 games - are on vacation with the rest of baseball. But when they come back from the All-Star break, they will have to undergo some changes.

That's an amazing statement, but the reality is if the season ended today, the Yankees would be a wild card team because the Red Sox have been that much better.

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Brandon Drury, CC Sabathia, Chad Green, David Robertson, Dellin Betances, Gleyber Torres, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Neil Walker, Ronald Torreyes, Tyler Wade, Chris Carelli
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Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played July 5, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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New York Yankees pitcher Dillon Tate throws a pitch during the fifth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at LECOM Park. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees pitcher Dillon Tate throws a pitch during the fifth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at LECOM Park. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Our weekly minor league report canvases the Yankees farm system, providing updates about the status of the teams in action and the organization's top prospects.

Notes: Top-30 prospect rankings (via MLBPipeline.com) are club based with overall MLB ranks, if applicable, in parenthesis. Prospects currently in the major leagues will not be covered here. Team records and statistics are through games played July 5, 2018, unless otherwise noted.

Tags: Chance Adams, Domingo Acevedo, Justus Sheffield, Chris Carelli
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Bird's slump continues 00:03:25
The BNNY panel discusses Greg Bird's struggles at the plate, and how long the Yankees can wait for an improvement in a tight division race.

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives: Not all the prospects make it, no matter how much we like them and regardless of the evident talent.

There was a point that Yankees first baseman Greg Bird, then 22 years old, filled fans' visions of a new beginning at the position. Bird's sweet swing, seemingly built for Yankee Stadium as well as patience at the plate made it easy to envision him in pinstripes for years to come.

Bird was spectacular over a two-month stretch as Mark Teixeira's replacement when the veteran went down with an injury in 2015. Bird was so good in fact that it seemed as if it would be rather simple for the Yankees to transition from Teixeira when the veteran's contract would come to an end the following season...

Tags: CC Sabathia, Boston Red Sox, Chris Carelli
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