Results tagged ‘ Jose Reyes ’
Troy Tulowitzki, a key figure in the Blue Jays’ renaissance the past two months, had to come out of the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader at Yankee Stadium in the third inning after colliding with center fielder Kevin Pillar.
Tulowitzki was tracking a pop fly to shallow center field by Didi Gregorius and made the catch for the third out of the second inning in front of a charging Pillar, who ran into the shortstop. Tulowitzki dropped the ball from his glove and then fell to the ground on his back and stretched his legs into the air. He lay on the field for several minutes and was attended to by a trainer before he walked off the field under his own power.
When Toronto took the field again in the bottom of the third inning, Tulowitzki did not join his teammates. Cliff Pennington entered the game at second base with Ryan Goins moving to shortstop.
X-rays of Tulowitzki’s chest and ribs were negative, but an MRI exam revealed upper back muscle bruises and a small crack in his left shoulder blade.
Tulowitzki and relief pitcher LaTroy Hawkins came to Toronto July 28 in a trade from Colorado that involved shortstop Jose Reyes going to the Rockies. Tulowitzki, who struck out in his only at-bat Saturday, is hitting .232 with five home runs and 17 RBI in 38 games and 155 at-bats since the trade, and the Blue Jays have a 29-8 record when he is in the starting lineup. Toronto was in third place in the American League East and eight games behind the first-place Yankees the day of the Tulowitzki trade and entered play Saturday in first place in the division with a 2 1/2-game lead over the Yanks.
Tulowitzki has had a checkered history of health issues. In his 10 seasons in the major leagues, he has played more than 150 games only once. Saturday was his 126th game this season. The Blue Jays have 21 games remaining so he won’t get to 150 this year, either.
Derek Jeter’s final homestand is off to a promising start for the Yankees, who beat the Blue Jays for the second straight night and capitalized on their usual spanking of Mark Buehrle. The Yanks’ dominance over the workhorse lefthander has covered a decade and shows no sign of letting up.
The Yankees stung Buehrle for five runs and eight hits and two walks in six innings to post their 12th consecutive winning decision against him. Buehrle has not defeated the Yankees since April 10, 2004 with the White Sox. His overall record against the Bombers is 1-14 with a 6.21 ERA in 120 1/3 innings, including 1-8 with a 5.94 ERA at Yankee Stadium.
This has been a see-saw season for Buehrle. Remember, his record was 10-1 in early June. Friday night’s loss dropped his record for the season to 12-10. Four of those losses have been to the Yankees. Hiroki Kuroda continued his strong second half with 6 2/3 sturdy innings and ran his record to 11-9.
Jeter delighted the Stadium crowd of 40,059 with two singles and had fans on their feet with a flyout to the warning track in left field in the seventh inning.
There was a downside to the game, however, as Jacoby Ellsbury was forced out of the game and may be sidelined for an indefinite period because of a strained right hamstring.
The Blue Jays had given Buehrle a 2-0 lead by the time he took the mound, thanks to Edwin Encarnacion’s two-run home run off the left field foul pole in the top of the first inning. The Yanks cut the margin in half in the bottom half on a double by Ellsbury and singles by Jeter and Brian McCann, but a bigger rally was snuffed when Mark Teixeira grounded into a double play.
Ellsbury thrust Kuroda and the Yankees into the lead in the third inning by following a leadoff single by Ichiro Suzuki with his 16th home run. Ellsbury got his third RBI of the game in the Yankees’ two-run fourth. Batting with the bases loaded and one out, the center fielder beat the play at first base to avoid being doubled up as a run scored. A second run immediately followed on an errant throw to first base by Jose Reyes.
Ellsbury remained on the bases the rest of the inning but did not come onto the field for the fifth inning. He was to undergo a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exam later in the evening.
Kuroda overcame the first-inning homer by Encarnacion and pitched well for the most part into the seventh. The Blue Jays got an unearned run in the fifth. Reyes singled, stole second and continued to third on a throwing error by McCann. Jose Bautista notched his 100th RBI of the season on a grounder to third base.
Bautista had another RBI situation in the seventh when he came up with two out and runners on second and third. Kuroda, who gave up a single to Anthony Gose and a double by Reyes with two down, was replaced by lefthander Josh Outman, who got ahead 0-2 in the count against Bautista before walking him to fill the bases.
Esmil Rogers then came in against the dangerous Encarnacion and retired him on a grounder to shortstop. The Yanks’ bullpen came through again in the eighth. Adam Lind led off with a single and was balked to second.
Dioner Navarro put a scare into the crowd with a fly ball to right field that Suzuki caught on the warning track. Lind crossed to third but was stranded as Adam Warren took over and struck out Danny Valencia and Munenori Kawasaki. Warren followed that with a 1-2-3 ninth for his third save.
Meanwhile, the Royals were losing, which meant the Yankees might have cut the deficit in the wild-card standings to four games with nine to play.
Joe Girardi wasn’t taking any chances Wednesday night. The manager wanted to avoid being swept in Toronto as the Yankees had done to the Blue Jays last week at Yankee Stadium. Toward that effort, Girardi did not hesitate to have David Robertson work a five-out save to salvage at least one victory in the three-game series.
The Yankees came back from Tuesday night’s sloppy loss to turn back the Blue Jays, 5-3, and end a four-game losing streak. The Jays jumped out to a 1-0 lead when Jose Reyes hit the first pitch from Hiroki Kuroda for a home run, but the Yankees attacked Blue Jays starter Drew Hutchison for four runs in the third and held the lead with solid ensemble work from the bullpen.
Kuroda earned his first victory in five starts since May 28, although he had not pitched that poorly (3.33 ERA) during the four-game stretch in which he had two losses and two no-decisions. The Japanese righthander gave up two runs on a two-out single by Melky Cabrera in the fifth that made it a one-run game but worked out of trouble in the sixth and departed with one out and a runner on first base in the seventh with the Yankees up by two runs.
Shawn Kelley gave up a single to Reyes but then got Cabrera on a fly to right. Girardi brought in lefthander Matt Thornton to face lefty-swinging Adam Lind. During the at-bat, Anthony Gose and Reyes, two of the fastest players in the major leagues, pulled off a gutsy double steal. Thornton got the job done, however, as Lind hit the ball right back to the pitcher for the third out.
Adam Warren started the eighth, but when he gave up a one-out single to Dioner Navarro Girardi summoned Robertson. D-Rob had not pitched in a week and was plenty strong. He finished off the eighth with two strikeouts, then got another punchout to start the ninth before inducing two ground balls for his 18th save.
The Yankees were only 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and had two runners thrown out trying to steal but got key hits when it mattered. Getting a rare start behind the plate, Francisco Cervelli doubled home the Yanks’ first run in the third inning. The first of Jacoby Ellsbury’s three hits was a two-out single that sent home Cervelli. Mark Teixeira followed with his 14th home run to make the score 4-1.
After the Jays closed to 4-3, the Yankees scored a run without a hit in the seventh on two walks, a hit batter and a sacrifice fly by Teixeira.
The Yankees can now exhale Thursday, their first day off after playing for 23 straight days. It is also Derek Jeter’s 40th birthday. He and his teammates could surely use the rest.
No sooner had the Yankees allowed the Blue Jays to pull in front by the score of 6-0 due in part to shabby defense that Toronto did the same thing in return and watched its sizable lead disappear.
Mark Buehrle seemed poised to end his personal nine-game losing streak against the Yankees only to watch his career record against them remain at 1-11 as he was hung with a no-decision. Errors by left fielder Melky Cabrera and shortstop Jose Reyes were key factors in the Yankees’ putting up a five-spot in the seventh inning to knot the score at 6.
Derek Jeter, whose hesitating play in the fifth contributed to a three-run inning by the Blue Jays, began the Yankees’ comeback in the sixth with a solo home run (No. 2) off Buehrle. After Brian McCann doubled with one out in the seventh, Brian Roberts (No. 3) also took Buehrle deep, and Toronto’s lead was cut in half.
Then things got really crazy after Yangervis Solarte made the second out. Brett Gardner was credited with a double when Cabrera couldn’t hang on to the ball while attempting a sliding catch in shallow left field. Righthander Dustin McGowan replaced the left-handed Buehrle and had all four batters he faced reached base.
Jacoby Ellsbury followed a walk to Jeter with a single to left that scored Gardner. Jeter and Ellsbury were able to advance a base apiece on an errant throw to the plate by Cabrera. Mark Teixeira hit a grounder up the middle that was gloved by Reyes, who had plenty of time to throw out Tex but hurried his peg that bounced past first baseman Edwin Encarnacion for an error that allowed Jeter and Ellsbury to score and tie the game.
Alfonso Soriano kept the line moving with a single to left, which prompted another pitching change. Lefthander Aaron Loup got the final out by gloving a hard grounder to the box by Carlos Beltran.
So it was somewhow appropriate that the game should end on an error, which it did in the bottom of the ninth. Reyes, who had a miserable game in the field with two errors, doubled to lead off the ninth against Adam Warren. Cabrera, whose 20-game hitting streak against the Yankees came to an end, dropped a sacrifice bunt toward third baseman Yangervis Solarte, whose throw to first base sailed past Roberts covering as Reyes ran all the way home with the winning run.
The Yankees’ losing streak stretched to four games as they fell 3 1/2 games behind the first-place Blue Jays in the American League East.
So the Blue Jays did not roll over and play dead for a change. That was a tough wake-up call for the Yankees who lost ground in the race for a postseason berth. The Yankees have had their way with the Jays this year but not Monday night as Toronto emerged victorious against the Yanks for the first time since April 21 and only the second time in 14 meetings.
R.A. Dickey, who lost his previous two starts against the Yankees this year, had the upper hand this time with 6 1/3 sound innings. The first-inning run he yielded was not earned due to a passed ball by catcher Josh Thole. The other run Dickey allowed, in the fifth, was quite earned since it came on Alex Rodriguez’s 650th career home run.
Brett Gardner also reached a milestone in the fifth inning with a two-out single that was the 500th hit of his major-league career. The Yankees did not have much else to celebrate offensively. The Jays bullpen shut down the Yanks for 2 2/3 innings with Casey Janssen notching his 24th save.
Derek Jeter returned to the lineup but had a quiet night going 0-for-3 with a walk.
Phil Hughes watched his record fall to an unsightly 4-13 with a 4.91 ERA as he failed to pitch the minimum number of innings – five – to qualify for a winning decision for the 10th time in 25 starts this year. Hughes gave up the 1-0 lead the Yankees gave him in the first two innings later and was knocked out in a three-run Toronto fifth that was fueled in part by a rare error from 10-time Gold Glove winner Ichiro Suzuki.
Hughes nearly worked out a second-inning jam, but Kevin Pillar poked a soft single to center field that tied the score. A leadoff walk to Jose Reyes in the third was asking for trouble. Edwin Encarnacion singled sharply to left to score Reyes, who had advanced to second on a bunt, that gave the Blue Jays the lead.
A-Rod’s homer got the Yanks even again, but the game got away from Hughes in the fifth. He gave up a double to Reyes with one out and a single to Ryan Goins. Reyes was held at third, which gave Hughes a chance to get out of the inning without a run scoring. Encarnacion lifted a fly ball to right field that was deep enough to score Reyes but was more damaging when Ichiro dropped the ball while leaping on the warning track.
Instead of two outs and a runner on first, the Blue Jays had a run in, one out and runners on first and third. Adam Lind doubled down the right field line to score Goins and after an intentional walk to Brett Lawrie loaded the bases Moises Sierra delivered another run with a sacrifice fly.
Lefthander David Huff took over at that point and was one of the few highlights for the Yanks. He struck out Thole to put an end to the fifth and tacked on three more scoreless innings with four strikeouts. It was an important contribution because Huff kept manager Joe Girardi from having to use several relievers to complete a game in which his starter made an early exit.
Girardi said after the game that there were no plans to remove Hughes from the rotation despite the righthander’s troubles. Hughes is winless with a 5.64 ERA in his past nine starts since July 2 and is 1-9 with a 5.32 ERA over his past 13 starts.
With the Athletics winning at Detroit, the Yankees fell 4 ½ games behind for the second wild-card berth.
Okay, it is time now to forget all this stuff about how the American League East is not just about everybody chasing the Yankees and the Red Sox. After a lot of talk in pre-season publications that the division will have a different look and that the traditional rivals aren’t the teams they used to be, well, take a lot at the standings. The reconstituted Red Sox are in first place, and the pieced-together Yankees are right behind them.
The Blue Jays? The team that brought to Toronto all that star power from the Marlins trade plus the acquisition of last year’s National League Cy Young Award winner (R.A. Dickey) and the signing of last year’s NL batting champion, Melky Cabrera (I don’t care what Bud Selig says; Cabrera had the highest batting average in the NL in 2012), is at the bottom of the AL East with the third worst record in the major leagues.
The Yankees kept Toronto in its place with their first four-game sweep of the Jays at Yankee Stadium since Sept. 18-21, 1995, which was the rookie season of Mariano Rivera, who made it 9-for-9 in saves this year by wrapping up Sunday’s 3-2 victory over Dickey. That makes it both of last year’s Cy Young Award winners that the Yankees beat in a week’s time. They defeated the Rays’ David Price, the 2012 American League winner, five days earlier at St. Petersburg, Fla.
All those warning signals that went up when the Yankees started 1-4 out of the gate seem silly now that they won 14 of their past 19 games with contributions coming from just about everyone on the roster, particularly from some guys other clubs couldn’t wait to rid themselves of.
Take Sunday, for example. The Yankees had only four hits, but two of them were home runs off Dickey by Brennan Boesch and Lyle Overbay. During spring training, the Yanks signed Boesch after he was released by the Tigers and Overbay after he was released by the Red Sox. The Angels were willing to eat more than half of what was left of the sizeable contract of Vernon Wells, who has batted .379 with three homers and six RBI in seven games against Toronto this year, six of them Yankees victories.
Overbay entered the game with a 1-for-14 (.071) career mark against Dickey but ended up going 2-for-3. His third homer of the season, a two-run shot in the seventh with two out, turned a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 lead that was held up by the relief work of Boone Logan, David Robertson and the great Rivera. The long ball has haunted Dickey (2-4, 4.54 ERA), who has yielded five home runs in 36 innings.
The Yankees came from behind in all four games of the series and won two games by one run apiece and the other two by two runs each. They are 9-1 in games decided by two runs or less, 4-0 in one-run games and 14-1 when holding opponents to four runs or less.
Phil Hughes remains winless this season despite a good, six-inning outing in which he gave up seven hits and a walk (intentional) with nine strikeouts. One of the two runs he allowed was the result of three soft, two-out singles in the fourth. Hughes was once again plagued by an elevated pitch count (111), but for the first time since Aug. 7 last year he did not give up a home run in a start at Yankee Stadium. He had allowed a total of 10 homers over his previous six starts at the Stadium.
Rivera now has the highest saves total in one month for his career and has converted 32 saves in a row at the Stadium since the start of the 2011 season. Overall, the bullpen has been sensational. Over the past six games, the relief corps has held opponents to three earned runs, three walks and 11 hits in 17 innings with 24 strikeouts and a 1.59 ERA.
And, remember, the Yankees are doing all of this with five regulars out of the lineup. Francisco Cervelli last week joined Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Curtis Granderson and Mark Teixeira on the disabled list, and Kevin Youkilis with an ailing back may not be far behind. This should have been the time that the Yankees were the most vulnerable, but they have stayed near the top of the division standings while the Blue Jays have stumbled to the bottom.
The tightness in the scores of this series indicated that Toronto was not exactly blown away by the Yankees, but the losses continue to mount with a 9-17 record looking fearfully like a team pretty much buried before the first month of the season is completed. The Jays can moan all they want about the loss of All-Star shortstop Jose Reyes, but the Yankees have shown that injuries to key players do not have to be crippling.
The news keeps getting grimmer for the Blue Jays, who after all their off-season moves had been considered favorites to win the American League East. Toronto went into Friday night’s game at Yankee Stadium with a 9-14 record and last-place standing in the division and had to scratch the scheduled starting pitcher, Josh Johnson, because of tight right triceps.
Inserted into Johnson’s spot was lefthander Aaron Laffey, whom the Blue Jays signed earlier in the week off waivers from the Mets. Laffey made two starts and two relief appearances for the Mets and had a 7.20 ERA in 10 innings during which he allowed eight earned runs and 16 hits but was not involved in a decision.
Johnson is the second player in the major, off-season trade with the Marlins who has gone down with an injury. Shortstop Jose Reyes is expected to be lost for up to three months with a severe ankle injury. Johnson has not exactly been lighting it up for the Jays this year. The righthander, who led the National League in earned run average three years ago, is 0-1 with a 6.86 ERA in four starts. Johnson has allowed 28 hits in 19 2/3 innings.
With Kevin Youkilis still unable to play due to persistent back stiffness, Yankees manager Joe Girardi continues to toy with his batting order, particularly against left-handed pitching. Friday night, he moved Jayson Nix into the 2-hole, which is not a bad thought considering the way Nix has hit against left-handed pitching this season (.316) and against Toronto the past two seasons.
Nix, who has done a solid job as a backup shortstop and third basemen, spent the 2011 season with the Blue Jays and batted only .169 in 136 at-bats. The Yankees signed him for a utility role in 2012, and Nix has given his former club headaches ever since. With two hits Thursday night, Nix lifted his average against the Blue Jays this year to .417 in 12 at-bats and over the past two seasons to .370 with five doubles, three runs batted in and 12 runs scored.
Vernon Wells, who spent 12 seasons with the Blue Jays before he was traded to the Angels in 2011, has also wreaked havoc against his former club. Wells connected for his seventh home run of the season Thursday night, a majestic shot over the center field wall. In four games against the Jays this year, Wells had batted .421 with five runs, three home runs and four RBI in 19 at-bats.
Over an 11-game stretch against Toronto dating to Sept. 19, 2011, Wells has been a .340 hitter with nine runs, four doubles, five home runs and 10 RBI in 47 at-bats. It may not get any easier for the Blue Jays. Wells has batted .444 with three home runs and three RBI in seven day games this year. The Yankees have day games against Toronto Saturday and Sunday.
Do not be surprised if Derek Jeter earns a spot on the American League All-Star squad even though he probably won’t play an inning of baseball before the game, which is scheduled for July 16 at Citi Field in Flushing.
The Captain is extremely popular with fans all over the country. Just last year, he received more than 4.4 million votes, the third highest total of any AL player. Only Josh Hamilton and Jose Bautista were ahead of him, and no other shortstop was within three million votes of Jeter.
Jose Reyes, in his first year in the AL with the Blue Jays after being traded from the Marlins, might have threatened Jeter’s hold on the All-Star vote at shortstop. But Reyes is also out for three months with an ankle injury, so his chances of overtaking the Captain seem out of the question now.
How weird would it be for Jeter to win an All-Star spot without having played a game? Well, go back to 1989. Phillies third baseman Mike Schmidt retired in late May while batting .203 in 148 at-bats. The All-Star balloting was only a week old, and yet when it was over Schmidt was voted onto the National League squad as the starting third baseman, even though he had not played for six weeks. You could say that at least Schmidt played as many as 42 games, but then again, he was not very good in many of them. The future Hall of Famer was invited to the game that year at Anaheim Stadium and took a bow, but his place in the NL starting lineup was taken instead by the Mets’ Howard Johnson.
So don’t bet against Jeter.
With six shutout innings for the Yankees in their 5-2 victory over the Mets Saturday at Citi Field, Bartolo Colon continued his remarkable comeback story that had been interrupted with a three-week stint on the disabled list because of a strained left hamstring.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said he had hoped to get an 80-pitch effort from Colon, who had precisely that total, and for all but one of those innings Colon was locked in a scoreless duel with Mets rookie Dillon Gee.
The only threat against Colon came in the fifth when the Mets loaded the bases with one out on three consecutive singles. That brought Gee to the plate. In a similar situation in the sixth inning Friday night, Yankees manager Joe Girardi lifted his pitcher for pinch hitter Jorge Posada. Mets manager Terry Collins decided to let Gee bat rather than try to break the game open at that point.
The Yankees and Colon should be grateful. Gee held his own in a seven-pitch at-bat before hitting a high, one-hopper that Alex Rodriguez gloved near third base, stepped on the bag and threw to first to complete a rally-killing double play.
Okay, so maybe it was too early in the game to pinch-hit for a pitcher who was throwing a shutout, but another piece of strategy would have been to instruct Gee not to swing the bat at all. With that thought in mind, the worst thing that can happen is a strikeout, which is only one out.
That’s where the departure of National League Most Valuable Player candidate Jose Reyes, who left the game in the third inning because of a tight left hamstring, helped the Yankees. Gee might not have been swinging the bat at all if Reyes was the on-deck hitter.
Nevertheless, Gee’s at-bat was a turning point. He had been pitching a gem matching Colon and then suddenly everything fell apart. When it came to breaking open the game, the Yankees took charge the inning immediately after Gee’s at-bat.
Curtis Granderson’s 22nd home run got the Yankees on the board, and they on three more runs on singles by Mark Teixeira and Rodriguez, a two-run triple by Robinson Cano and a sacrifice fly by Nick Swisher. Eduardo Nunez completed a 3-for-4 game with a homer in the eighth. Nunez has 7-for-8 in the series and is putting himself more in the Yankees’ picture with every game.
Colon could also be grateful that the Mets never attempted a single bunt against him. I mean, why not? Here was a 38-year-old, stocky pitcher off a hamstring injury in his first start in three weeks, and nobody on the Mets thought it would be a good idea to lay one down here and there to test Colon’s agility.
Jason Bay came closest with a full-swing trickle of a grounder for a single that started the rally in the fifth. Colon barely moved in attempting to field the ball, so it was clear the pitcher was not going to risk re-injury. I don’t blame him, but if I’m in the other dugout I’m thinking of taking advantage of that.
It might have been the only strategy that had a chance to work.
The mumbo jumbo you hear in press boxes can be mind-numbing at times. In the third inning, the Mets removed Jose Reyes from the game and inserted Ruben Tejada at shortstop. Reyes has been the most exciting player in the National League, maybe even its Most Valuable Player, for three months, so when he comes out of the game it is big news.
An announcement came soon after that Reyes felt tightness in his left hamstring while running to first base to beat out a single in the bottom of the first inning. He was taken out of the game, the announcement continued, as a precaution.
Huh? As a precaution against what? Why not just say that Reyes came out of the game because he was hurt? If he is not playing because they don’t want him to injure the hamstring more, that is an admission that Reyes is already hurt. A player doesn’t come out of a game if he is not hurt unless a manager starts emptying his bench in the late innings of a lopsided game. This was in the third inning of a scoreless game. Reyes is a hurt player, the degree of which is all that is in question.
So with Reyes out of the game and Derek Jeter on an injury rehabilitation assignment at Double A Trenton Saturday night, the shortstop focus in Subway Series II at Citi Field has fallen on the Yankees’ Eduardo Nunez, who is having an impressive series.
Nunez had four hits and an RBI in the Yankees’ 5-1 victory Friday night and doubled in each of his first two at-bats in Saturday’s late-afternoon game. Nunez has had shaky moments in the field as Jeter’s caddy during the past fortnight, but overall he has done a decent job.
“I’m not trying to replace Jeter because he’s Derek Jeter; he’s Hall of Fame,” Nunez said. “I’m a young guy, and I have to learn a lot and do my best. I don’t think about going back to the bench, I just think about the moment and enjoy my game. Any part of the game they need me: bunt, stolen base, anything that they need from me, I’ll be ready. I know he’s going to come back, but I just want to play hard and in time my moment is going to come to be an everyday player.”
While the Mets may be dealing with another possible injury, the Yankees are getting healthier. Jeter is on the mend and due to rejoin the team Monday at Cleveland and to resume his pursuit of 3,000 career hits. Barolo Colon was back on the mound after missing three weeks with a strained left hamstring of his own. Space for Colon was cleared on the Yankees’ 25-man roster with the option of pitcher Brian Gordon to Scranton/Wilkes Barre where he will go into the Triple A affiliate’s rotation.
It looked as if Colon had never gone away. The infield single by Reyes was the only hit off the veteran righthander through the first four innings in which he struck out six batters, all but one on a called third strike.
Colon also tried to help himself with the bat in the third inning when he bunted Nunez to third base. The Mets brought the infield in against Brett Gardner, who hit a grounder to first baseman Lucas Duda, who threw home to nail Nunez trying to score. Nunez was at second base again in the fifth when Colon came to bat, but there were two out this time and the pitcher was swinging away – into the sixth strikeouts by the Mets’ impressive rookie Dillon Gee.