Clint Frazier finally appears likely to make his return to the New York Yankees.
Manager Aaron Boone suggested Wednesday that Frazier is likely to be one of the call-ups when MLB rosters expand to 40 on Sept. 1.
Clint Frazier will probably be called up in September, Aaron Boone said.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 28, 2019
Frazier’s story is an interesting one. The 24-year-old hit 11 home runs in just 53 games at the MLB level in 2019. He was suspect defensively, though, and clashed with the New York media at times before being sent down. It’s not clear if that played a role in the fact that he hasn’t been back up, and he was the subject of numerous trade rumors in late July. The fact that he remained in Triple-A despite a slew of injuries indicated that the Yankees just didn’t want him up until now. He still has no guarantee of a major role down the stretch.
Major League Baseball owned up to a call that cost the New York Yankees the tying run in Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, MLB admitted that umpires erred in granting timeout to Dodgers pitcher Kenley Jansen, which meant that the steal of home by New York’s Gleyber Torres was disallowed.
MLB also spoke to the Yankees about the time-out call at Dodger Stadium. In short, their message was that time shouldn’t have been called, sorry about that.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 27, 2019
Had timeout not been granted, Torres would have scored and the game would have been tied in the 9th. The Yankees ultimately lost, with Torres stranded on third after a pair of strikeouts.
It doesn’t appear that MLB can or will do anything else about it but apologize. That probably won’t make the Yankees, who were considering protesting the game, feel a lot better.
The New York Yankees are putting up some unprecedented home run numbers in the month of August.
Yankees second baseman DJ LeMahieu led off Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. That was the 59th home run of the month hit by the team, breaking the previous Major League record for team homers in a month. Outfielder Aaron Judge would add another home run later in the game, bringing the record tally to an even 60.
The Yankees are the first team in Major League history to hit 60 home runs in a calendar month.
— Yankees PR Dept. (@YankeesPR) August 26, 2019
60 home runs in 25 games works out to 2.4 home runs per game, which is a remarkable tally for an entire team over a fairly significant timespan.
The Yankees have a powerful lineup filled with some of the game’s finest sluggers. Cynics, however, might point out that there are some other theories why they — and other teams — are hitting more home runs than ever before in 2019.
The New York Yankees are considering a protest over the way the ninth inning of the their 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers played out on Saturday.
Gio Urshela hit into a fielder’s choice with one out and runners on first and second in the top of the ninth with his team down 2-1. The Dodgers tried to get Brett Gardner at second on a force play, but Gardner was called safe on a review. While the Dodgers were focusing on the play at second (Max Muncy had been taken down by Gardner’s slide), lead runner Gleyber Torres tried to make a break for home. He looked like he would score the tying run but the home plate umpire and Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen indicated time had been called.
Just seems like a very inconvenient time to call time pic.twitter.com/MD7DDnhqB2
— Jomboy (@Jomboy_) August 24, 2019
The next two Yankees batters struck out to strand the bases loaded and lose the game.
After dropping the contest 2-1, Yankees manager Aaron Boone said he was told Gleyber did not score because time was called. He said the team was considering a protest.
Boone said he was told Gleyber did not score because Jansen held his hands up and the home plate umpire called time. Boone said it looked to him like Gleyber was already running down the line.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 24, 2019
Boone said that he watched the replay and that Torres had definitely started running. But that wasn’t how the umps saw it. “As far as I know, if they call time, they called time.”
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 24, 2019
Boone on if the Yankees could protest: “We’ll certainly inquire with everyone and try to get a good explanation.”
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 24, 2019
Muncy said he called time on the play because he was hurt, though he acknowledged some part was an acting job because he didn’t want Torres scoring.
Muncy laughed and said he pulled something of a "soccer" move so the umpires could call timeout and prevent the runner from scoring in the ninth. "He still got me good, it still hurt, so it wasn't entirely fake. But there might have been a little acting class in there."
— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) August 25, 2019
The teams have now split the first two games of the series. Sunday will be the rubber match of the three-game set.
The New York Yankees have run afoul of umpires more than most teams have this season, and there’s a growing sense among some within the game that it’s not coincidental.
According to Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News, there is a “growing opinion” among MLB umpires that the Yankees are singling out younger umpires and trying to intimidate them. The Yankees’ last three major umpire-related incidents have all involved younger umpires, including Ben May on Saturday against Cleveland.
Manager Aaron Boone denied any campaign when asked Sunday.
“Not necessarily,” Boone said. “I don’t think Ben (May) handled necessarily anything wrong yesterday. I was never that irate. I was more trying to take the attention off some of our players. … I don’t think he had a short fuse or anything like that. I thought he tried to defuse the situation as best he could and unfortunately it got a little away.”
The Yankees certainly haven’t held back when talking about umpires after these incidents, which is always going to rub umpires the wrong way. Perhaps it’s the youth angle, or perhaps there’s not as much to it, but umps are going to take notice of repeated behavior like this.
Thursday’s disaster aside, the strategy of using an opener to start a game has worked well for the New York Yankees. It’s been good enough to the point that team general manager Brian Cashman says he will consider using an opener in a playoff game this postseason.
Cashman told reporters prior to the Yankees’ 19-5 loss to the Cleveland Indians that using an opener would be a “possibility” that depended on many factors.
Brian Cashman on using an opener in the playoffs: "(It will depend on) schedule, see who's healthy, who's available to us, is Sevy back? Where is everybody else? How is our bullpen lined up? What are the off-days? … It's certainly something that is going to be a possibility."
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 15, 2019
Opener Chad Green was hammered by the Indians Thursday, allowing five runs over one third of an inning. The rest of the bullpen struggled as well; the entire staff allowed seven home runs in the game. The Yankees have still won 10 of 12 games Green has opened, so it’s mostly been a successful tactic.
The Yankees’ bullpen has been rock solid this season, but Domingo German is their only starter with a sub-4.00 ERA. Using Green in a playoff game might make sense at some point.
The New York Yankees buried the Boston Red Sox in the AL East by sweeping them in a four-game series that ended on Sunday night, but Aaron Judge does not seem all that excited about it.
Following his team’s 7-4 win over Boston, Judge was asked about sweeping his archrival. He said it was just business as usual for the Yankees.
Aaron Judge on sweeping the Sox: "It's what we're supposed to do, being a first-place team. We just went out there and took care of business. It doesn't matter who we're playing. First place, second place, third place team, we're going to go out there and take care of business."
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) August 5, 2019
The Red Sox looked like they might actually make things interesting in the AL East when they took three out of four from the Yankees a week ago, but they have now lost eight in a row and are a whopping 14.5 games back in the division. They’re also 6.5 back in the wild card, so Judge and his teammates must feel good about putting the defending champions’ backs against the wall.
The Yankees lost to Boston in the playoffs last year and watched their rival set records en route to a World Series title, and the fans certainly seemed to enjoy the weekend sweep. No matter what Judge says, it had to have felt better than sweeping the Baltimore Orioles would have.