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Yanks Go Yard 19 July, 2021 - 01:17pm 7 views

Why is Red Sox Game Postponed?

A COVID-19 outbreak within the Yankees' player group has prompted the postponement of Thursday's game between the Yankees and Red Sox at Yankee Stadium, allowing Major League Baseball to conduct continued testing and contact tracing. The league will continue to provide scheduling updates as available. MLB.comRed Sox-Yankees Thursday game postponed

Who was the fan that hit Verdugo?

Aaron Boone didn't equivocate late Saturday. "Hopefully he's in jail right now," Boone said. The "he" the Yankees' manager spoke of after his team's rain-shortened 3-1 victory over the Red Sox was a fan in the leftfield seats who, in the sixth inning, pegged Boston leftfielder Alex Verdugo in the back with a baseball. NewsdayFan who hit Verdugo banned for life from Yankee Stadium

What happened at Red Sox Yankees game?

The game between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Saturday was delayed briefly after a fan threw a baseball at Boston outfielder Alex Verdugo in the sixth inning, hitting him in the back, which led Red Sox manager Alex Cora to pull his team from the field. The AthleticRed Sox-Yankees delayed after fan throws baseball at Alex Verdugo

Why is the Yankees game delayed?

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The New York Yankees announced that Thursday's series-opening game against the Boston Red Sox has been postponed due to positive COVID-19 tests within the organization. Major League Baseball released a statement saying the postponement is to allow for continued testing and contact tracing. CBS New YorkYankees Game Postponed Following Multiple Positive COVID Tests

Don’t do it, Yankees! Joey Gallo is better off somewhere else.

That was Alex Rodriguez’s free advice for old GM Brian Cashman that was aired publicly Sunday night while he called the Yankees’ 9-1 win over the Red Sox for ESPN.

“I love the player,” A-Rod said. “I don’t think he fits this team at all.”

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According to the rumor mill, which is heating up with the July 30 trade deadline less than two weeks away, the Yankees have had talks with the Texas Rangers about dealing for Gallo, an All-Star right fielder.

If Cashman pulls this off, he’d add a lot of left-handed power to a right-handed-heavy lineup that often underachieved even before being ravished by injuries and COVID.

Gallo is third in the American League with 24 homers, but he ranks second with 112 strikeouts and is just a .235 hitter.

A-Rod criticized the Yankees for already having all-or-nothing hitters up and down their lineup.

“I don’t want any more swing and miss,” he said. “I want contact guys.”

According to A-Rod, the Yankees should be looking to add a hitter like the guy who often batted two spots ahead of him on the Yankees’ last World Series team. In 2009, A-Rod hit cleanup and often drove in two-hole, table-setting left fielder Johnny Damon.

“You talk about Johnny Damon, (the Yankees need) guys like that,” A-Rod said. “You need a complimentary set of skills, people that can go from first to third. You want somebody to really compliment the two big boys in (Aaron) Judge and (Giancarlo) Stanton. I don’t need another 6-foot-6 guy.”

Gallo, who stands 6-5 and 250, probably will be moved to someone before the end of the month because the Rangers are last in the AL West with a 35-58 record and looking to dump salary.

At this point, it’s still a mystery whether the Yankees will be buyers at the trade deadline because they’re currently a 48-44 ballclub that would miss the playoffs if the season ended today.

Also, the Yankees only might have a couple bullets if owner Hal Steinbrenner opts to keep payroll below the $210 luxury-tax threshold, which is believed to be the case.

The Yankees currently are at $203.4 million, according to spotrac.com. That would leave them $6.6 million, which would be enough to add Gallo, who will be owed $2.07 million in August and September on his $6.2 million deal for 2021, the year before he can file for free agency (if the rules are the same in the next CBA).

Regardless of affordability, the Yankees should pass on Gallo, A-Rod insisted.

“I love him,” he said again. “Not on this team. It goes back to architecture. You’ve got to think about your 26-man roster.”

By the way, A-Rod approves of a different trade rumor materializing, one that could dramatically affect the Yankees’ chances to make a run at a division title: Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo to the Red Sox.

“I do think Rizzo fits the Red Sox perfectly,” A-Rod said.

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5 takeaways as Yankees use a sloppy 7th inning to roll over Red Sox 9-1

Boston.com 20 July, 2021 - 07:10am

By Tom Westerholm

The Red Sox dropped their second straight game to the Yankees on Sunday, falling 9-1.

The Red Sox’s offense couldn’t get going throughout most of the game, but the Yankees really pulled away in the seventh inning. Brett Gardner both led off and closed the frame — notching a single in his first appearance and a ground out with the bases loaded in his second.

The Yankees did plenty of damage in between Gardner’s two at-bats, however. Rougned Odor blasted a 418-foot homer that gave the Yankees a 5-0 lead. Brandon Workman entered the game and struggled immensely, walking three batters including two with the bases loaded.

The Red Sox, who don’t have an off day until August, never recovered and fell to 56-38.

Rougned Odor — 2-for-3, two RBIs, three runs, two-run HR

Odor jumpstarted the decisive seventh with his homer, but he was a tough out all evening for the Red Sox with two hits and a walk, and he scored every time he reached base.

The Rays won their contest against the Braves on Sunday, closing their gap in the American League East to a half-game. The Yankees are now seven games behind the Red Sox.

1. The Red Sox’s offense has slipped over the last few weeks. Per FanGraphs, in the month of July, the Red Sox (9th for the season offensively) are just 20th in their offensive metric and 15th in team WAR.

“We haven’t hit since we went to the West Coast,” Alex Cora told reporters after the game. “We’ve been chasing pitches, and we’re in one of the stretches kind of like when we played Houston and those guys. We love to swing the bats. We do, but we’ve been chasing pitches out of the zone for a while. …

“We can talk about the numbers, I think we’ve been hitting .220 as a group since that Friday in Oakland. So obviously we played some tough games on the West Coast, some tough games against Philly, but offensively, we’re not near the team that we are. We know that.”

The Red Sox are now 4-7 in their last 11 games.

2. With the MLB trade deadline approaching, Buster Olney raised some eyebrows online by suggesting the Yankees could explore trading Aaron Judge if their struggles continue.

Judge, who missed Sunday’s game on the COVID-19 injured list, is perhaps the most popular Yankees player and one of the most popular players in the league. If he became available, the Yankees would have a lot of suitors.

3. Jarren Duran struggled in his second appearance, finishing 0-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts. He did, however, draw some comparisons from an intrigued ESPN booth: Jacoby Ellsbury by Matt Vasgersian, Steve Finley by Buster Olney, and Trot Nixon by Alex Rodriguez (although, as multiple observers noted, Nixon was significantly slower than the fleet-footed Duran).

Alex Verdugo, who was wired for sound, is a fan of the Red Sox’s outfield prospect.

Alex Verdugo is a Jarren Duran stan 😂#RedSox | #DirtyWater| #MLBpic.twitter.com/Qu5TRC2ehZ

Later, Vasgersian drew a comparison between Bobby Dalbec and Mark McGwire, so as always, take player comparisons with a grain of salt.

4. Speaking of Dalbec, he replaced Christian Arroyo at first base after Arroyo appeared to injure his groin stretching for a throw. Arroyo recently learned how to play first base and told reporters earlier this weekend that he was fine with the switch, even if it felt a little different.

“At the end of the day, you’re fielding ground balls still and just trying to catch the baseball,” he said. “I don’t think it’ll be too difficult, but again, we’ve got some of the best infield coaches in the league and they’re going to help me any way they can. I can play wherever they need me.”

Cora sounded dejected about Arroyo’s injury after the game.

“Most likely an IL thing,” Cora said. “He just felt it when he stretched. It’s a hard one, right? Because we felt like he was ready, of course, to play first, but he stretches and that happened. It’s a tough one for us, but we’ll bounce back.”

The Red Sox have Franchy Cordero taking reps at first base in Worcester, which could be interesting to monitor. Cordero seems to have found his groove at the plate and is batting .344/.425/.573 in Worcester.

5. The last time the Red Sox walked five batters in an inning was 2014, according to the ESPN broadcast. During the Red Sox’s disastrous seventh, Workman handed out three walks while Darwinzon Hernandez added two.

The Red Sox got a run back — their only run of the game — with the heart of their order batting in the top of the eighth. If Red Sox pitchers had kept the Yankees off the board in the seventh, it’s hard not to wonder what might have happened in a strange contest.

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Fan banned for life by MLB after hitting Red Sox player with baseball at Yankee Stadium

The Washington Post 20 July, 2021 - 07:10am

The incident occurred in the bottom of the sixth inning, when Verdugo was hit in the back with a ball that flew out of the left field stands. Play was halted as the umpires and stadium personnel sought to identify the fan who threw the ball. Verdugo reacted angrily, and he was quickly joined in the outfield by Red Sox first base coach Tom Goodwin, who shepherded the 25-year-old away from the scene.

The fan was identified and led out of the stadium but not arrested, according to NJ.com. With persistent rain falling, the game was called after six innings for a 3-1 Yankees win, marking the first time New York beat Boston in their past nine meetings going back to September.

“While the Yankees appreciate the spirit and passion of our fans in our various rivalries — especially with the Red Sox — reckless, disorderly and dangerous behavior that puts the safety of players, field staff or fellow fans in jeopardy will not be tolerated,” the Yankees said in a statement. “There is absolutely no place for it at Yankee Stadium. The safety of everyone at Yankee Stadium, including guests in the stands and players on the field, will always be the top priority for the Yankees organization every time we open our doors.”

In the immediate aftermath of Verdugo getting hit with the ball, Red Sox Manager Alex Cora pulled his team off the field until the situation could be sorted out and tempers cooled.

According to the New York Post, the sequence began when Verdugo — who reportedly had been in verbal exchanges with Yankees fans during previous games in New York — tried to toss a baseball to a Red Sox fan. A Yankees fan intercepted the throw, at which point other fans began chanting for the ball to be thrown back, and the fan obliged, witnesses told the newspaper.

“I come to expect it when I’m out there. The trash-talking, bringing up family members, having everybody chant — excuse my language — ‘[Expletive] Verdugo’ and all these things, I’m used to that,” Verdugo said after the game. “I don’t care. That’s cool with me.

“As players, we’re throwing a ball in the stands to try to give people souvenirs, try to make a little kid’s day and things like that,” he continued. “Just to hear people saying, ‘Throw it back,’ and someone to throw it back, and it felt it was targeted toward me, it don’t sit right with me.

“You don’t throw [expletive] at people,” added Verdugo, who is in his second season with the Red Sox after coming over from the Los Angeles Dodgers in a blockbuster trade for Mookie Betts. “You wouldn’t do that to somebody in the street. You wouldn’t do that to me if we were staying right next to each other without a 40-foot gap and a fence to separate us.”

“It was wrong,” Cora said Sunday of the fan’s act (via the New York Post). “[Saturday] was one incident. Somebody made a bad decision, throwing a baseball. … One thing’s for sure: When I went out there, it was loud and it got nasty, from both sides. I just needed to calm [Verdugo] down. That was the whole reason I took everybody off the field.”

Verdugo came back onto the field with his teammates after the umpires held a discussion near the Boston dugout.

“Obviously the player was upset, understandably so,” umpire crew chief Jeff Nelson said of Verdugo after the game Saturday (via the Associated Press). “We tried to make sure that there was a security presence in left field, that the issue was addressed by security, and then also balancing that with continuing the game and keeping the game moving, knowing that we had continuous rain.”

“It’s awful, embarrassing, unacceptable,” Yankees Manager Aaron Boone said of the incident, which became the latest episode of unruly fan behavior since teams and leagues began letting large crowds back into events this year.

“This is just a game,” Cora said Saturday. “It’s a game. It’s not life and death, and it’s not this drama. And the fact that people come to the ballpark and they decided to throw a baseball [at] one of the players, I was in shock that that happened.”

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It’s time to shake up the lineup

Over The Monster 19 July, 2021 - 09:30am

Move some struggling hitters down and try to add a spark.

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So while part of this is certainly the ebb and flow of a season, you also just can’t sit and watch it happen. That’s especially true right now as the Red Sox are in the midst of a long stretch of playing only their main competitors in the AL East, with games exclusively coming against the Yankees, Blue Jays, and Rays through the start of August.

As far as the struggles themselves go, it would be a mistake to say the offense is the only reason the Red Sox are scuffling. Their lack of productivity was entirely too evident over the weekend against the Yankees, however, and they have been sputtering of late. The group that was among the best in baseball for most of this season has been hitting a wall of late, and it’s time for a change. You see it all the time from teams that find themselves in ruts, and shaking up the lineup can be a mixed bag. It’s not a guarantee fix, but it makes sense right now for the Red Sox.

Of course, the flips side of all this is that it can backfire, and players can either get angry, or discouraged, or both after being shifted down. That’s where the manager comes in. Alex Cora is good at a lot of things, but communicating things to his players and getting them on board with whatever his plan is on any given day is the biggest in my mind. This is a place where that quality can shine. With his ability to connect to players, he should be able to explain a lineup shakeup in a way that would not alienate anyone on his roster. It’s not something I would necessarily entrust any manager to do with a first-place team, but Cora is on the list of skippers with whom I would place that trust.

So, if we determine that shaking up the lineup can help a struggling team in a vacuum, and we determine that Alex Cora is the kind of manager who can pull it off without too much backlash in the clubhouse, then we go to the next step, which is simply figuring out what it means for the Red Sox. And Boston has two players that are struggling right now in Alex Verdugo and Hunter Renfroe. The former has been struggling to different extents for a few months now, and if we go back to May 23 he is hitting just .246/.323/.359. Renfroe, meanwhile, is hitting just .200/.275/.289 since the start of July.

Renfroe is less of an issue for me, both because of where he hits in the lineup right now and the kind of player he is. Streakiness has always been a part of his game, and it was expected that he’d hit a cold spell after ripping through much of May and June. That’s not to say he’s not costing the Red Sox runs, because he’s failed to come through in some big spots. But with Verdugo, you have one of the core hitters in the lineup who hits in the most important spot in the order providing very little right now. He’s not hitting for power, and lately he’s not even getting on base. The start to the shakeup is with him, and moving him out of that two spot. In turn, you can put one of your best hitters in that important spot, preferably (in my mind) with Rafael Devers.

From there, you can keep things largely stagnant, with Verdugo moving down to the bottom half of the lineup and Renfroe moving down to the bottom third, and perhaps getting more time off than he had been. That’s an easier call to action with Jarren Duran up. And speaking of Duran, there’s an argument to really look for a spark in this lineup by putting him at the top. That said, while I wouldn’t complain if it happened I’m okay sticking with Kiké Hernández there for now, as he’s been hitting better in July with an .814 OPS. If he slows down, then I’d likely turn to Duran. But, all that said, this is how I’d line things up right now:

At first base, you can put whoever you want there between Christian Arroyo, Marwin Gonzalez, or Danny Santana. But generally, this is what I’d like to see. It’s putting a bit of pressure on Duran hitting right behind the big bats in the lineup, but we’ve seen the team’s not worried about putting pressure on the rookie. And, for what it’s worth, Renfroe is only ahead of Verdugo to keep up the righty/lefty splits as much as possible.

I’m not really expecting this to happen, as I think the Red Sox are going to try and let their guys work out of the slump. But the fact is, right now they don’t look poised to do that, and Verdugo especially seems like he needs some sort of shake up. This is too important of a stretch to just hope everything falls into place on its own, and I’d like to see some changes to spark a turnaround.

Yankees just looked different than earlier this season against Red Sox, and success followed

The Athletic 19 July, 2021 - 07:33am

Yankees just looked different than earlier this season against Red Sox, and success followed

Roger Clemens lost his father figure as a child. Now he tries to be there for the children who need him.

Insider 19 July, 2021 - 12:00am

The former seven-time Cy Young-winning pitcher has been leading his charity organization, The Roger Clemens Foundation, since 1992. He dedicates it toward helping underprivileged and at-risk children attain educational and religious resources. 

For Clemens, the passion for the foundation stems from a tragic loss he suffered during his childhood. His mother's husband, Woody Booher, whom Clemens considered a father, passed away when he was just nine years old. 

When he watched his mother work tirelessly to provide for him and his five siblings, it motivated him to want to do the same for other children someday.

"I was raised by two strong-willed women, my mother and my grandmother," Clemens told Insider. "My mom worked three jobs, morning, noon, and night, we cleaned office buildings at night ... I felt like we were rich, I always had a nice glove and a new pair of cleats that the rich kids had because of her." 

Clemens went on to play 23 years in the major leagues from 1984-2007  for five different teams, including the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, making over $150 million in career earnings. One of his first ventures into using his money for philanthropy came during his fifth season in Boston in 1988 when he met a young girl while working with the Jimmy V Foundation. 

"I got a letter from a little girl, like 9, 10 years old in that area, and she was a big fan of mine, so on my way in to start the game that night, I left early and went to the Daner Farber Cancer Institute," Clemens said. "Her parents recognized me right away, but I was in a golf shirt and jeans, and the little girl was convinced it wasn't me, and I couldn't convince her."

"So I had the police officer take me over to the ballpark real quick, I put my uniform on, and he brought me back, and I went into the room with a handful of signed stuff, and she lit up like a Christmas tree. I just had to have the Sox uniform on in order for her to recognize me," he added.

Clemens has stayed heavily involved with the Jimmy V Foundation and spent the next 31 years investing time and resources into philanthropy for children in need through charity golf tournaments, baseball camps, and millions of dollars in outright donations to other charity funds. 

Clemens still stays connected to the baseball world, too, offering his baseball wisdom to players at youth camps, minor league clubhouses, and even at major league clubhouses of his former teams. But ensures his lectures always include his message about the importance of helping children, carrying on his mother's example in the aftermath of his father figure's death.

"When I hold clinics, whether it be 12-year-olds, high school, college, or even the minor league guys, I always make sure they know that their worst day is not the worst day," Clemens said. "We got a young man at the hospital missing a foot, another one missing a hand, and they would love nothing more than to go to home plate and take a full swing ... and they'll never get the chance to do that."

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