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Dizziness could KO Stephen Drew from postseason roster — September 28, 2015

Dizziness could KO Stephen Drew from postseason roster

Wallace Matthews, ESPN Staff Writer

NEW YORK — Wondering where Stephen Drew has been lately? Well, it’s quite possible that Stephen Drew has been wondering the same thing.

After Drew started just two games in the past 15 days, Yankees manager Joe Girardi finally revealed — under questioning, of course — that his second baseman has been suffering from dizziness ever since contracting a bad head cold that left fluid in his ears about three weeks ago. On Saturday, Drew underwent a precautionary impact test to determine whether he had suffered a concussion.

The results of that are not back yet, but Drew said after Sunday’s 6-1 win over the White Sox that he still is plagued by dizziness and equilibrium problems that he equates with the head cold, and possibly, with a concussion inflicted by a 2013 beaning.

“I’m always available, it’s just that I have to concentrate for ground balls and hitting and everything because of balance, and feeling the way I do, it’s times 10,” he said. “It’s not that I don’t want to go. It’s just that it’s not fair to me and it’s not fair to them. Just trying to do as much as we can to get this dizziness and off balance feel I have over with.”

Drew said the concussion test was ordered because of the suspicion that he might have suffered another one when he was hit in the face by a grounder that took a bad hop off his glove in a Sept. 9 game against the Orioles at Yankee Stadium. The 2013 concussion, he said, “messed up my vestibular nerve” and took 3 1/2 months to clear up. Still, he believes his problem is more related to illness than impact; Drew said he already was experiencing dizziness from the head cold when he was hit by the baseball in the first inning Sept. 9.

“As players, you play through sickness but really, it was around that time when things were off balance, everything with the ears,” he said. “The congestion in my head went and got in my ears. Took some medicine to try to get over that, but it still lingered this long.”

Drew’s illness could not come at a worse time for him, when the Yankees are wrestling with playoff roster decisions and his replacement at second base,Dustin Ackley, is swinging a hot bat. Ackley has 11 hits in his last 28 at-bats, including a solo home run in the sixth inning Sunday that gave the Yankees a 2-0 lead. Drew’s batting average this season is a disappointing .201, but he has hit 17 home runs, more than any other Yankee infielder with Mark Teixeira out for the season.

“It’s very frustrating,” Drew said. “I was swinging the bat well and the timing’s not good at all. The season’s ending and it’s very frustrating. At the same time, I’ve got to get well.”

The Yankees have four potential second basemen on their roster — Drew,Brendan Ryan, Rob Refsnyder and Ackley — and are unlikely to carry more than three with them into the playoffs. Asked if Drew’s problems had dropped him on the Yankees’ depth chart, Girardi was revealingly noncommittal. “It’s hard to say because we haven’t seen him play for the last 10 days because he hasn’t felt good,” Girardi said.

And Ackley? “He’s worked really hard and put himself right into the mix,” Girardi said.

Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez continues slump — September 25, 2015

Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez continues slump


New York Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran (36) follows through his three-run homer against the Chicago White Sox in the third inning at Yankee Stadium. Brox, NY 9/24/15

By Ryan Hatch

NEW YORK — After six home runs in the first two weeks of September, Yankees‘ slugger Alex Rodriguez’s bat has gone quiet the last eight games, picking up just two hits in 20 at-bats with none flying out of the yard.

Rodriguez went 0-for-3 Thursday night against the Chicago White Sox. (Yanks won, 3-2.)

“It’s what hitters go through,” manager Joe Girardi said after the game. “That’s all part of being a hitter. You’re going to go through those types of times where you struggle, then you’re going to get three hits the next day and you forget about it.”

Rodriguez wasn’t available Thursday to reporters.

Typically in 2015, A-Rod has been rejuvenated after a few days off, which he received last weekend against the National League Mets. But all that’s come since that series is five strikeouts and one walk.

The only highlight in those eight games came Thursday when he scored on Carlos Beltran’s homer, giving him 2,000 runs for his career, eighth best all-time, passing Cap Anson.

“It’s an incredible number,” Girardi said.

Yankees tribute to the late great Yogi BerraMusician First Class, U.S. Navy Vince Beard, of Wilmington, NC., performs Taps as the New York Yankees held a short tribute in honor of the late great Yogi Berra, before their game against the Chicago White Sox. Yogi Berra passed away September 23, 2015. (Video by Saed Hindash | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)

The Yankees, of course, would not be where they are—4.5 games up in the American League Wild Card, 3.0 back in the AL East—without their designated hitter, but with 10 games left, they could use his bat that’s produced 32 home runs and 83 runs driven in.

The Yankees face two left-handed pitchers the next two days from the White Sox. He hits lefties well, 10 homers in 138 at-bats this season, so like Girardi said, maybe it’s just a matter of time.

Yogi Berra, a true baseball hero, leaves legacy of compassion — September 24, 2015

Yogi Berra, a true baseball hero, leaves legacy of compassion

By Bob Klapisch

This was back in the early 2000s, when Yogi Berra would make the drive to an assisted-living facility in West Orange to visit an old friend and teammate, Phil Rizzuto. The former Yankee shortstop and broadcaster was in declining health – he would succumb to pneumonia in 2007 – and had mostly disappeared from the public eye.



But Yogi never forgot his buddy. Three times a week, he’d walk through the doors of the Green Hill facility without being noticed. There were no reporters, no cameras, no entourage. Yogi showed up for one reason only – to play bingo with Rizzuto and keep him company until the end.

Yogi Berra

This May 3, 2005 file photo shows Yankee legend Yogi Berra at the Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center on the campus of Montclair State University.

That was Berra. “He was the kind of person who valued friendships over fame,” said Dave Kaplan, who as director of Yogi’s museum in Little Falls was struggling to put Berra’s legacy into perspective on Wednesday morning.

Related:  Yogi Berra remembered at museum that bears his name

Actually, the prism is as simple and precious as Berra himself. He died in his sleep on Tuesday, leaving as peacefully as he lived. “Yogi loved his country, his religion, his family and people in general,” Kaplan said. Yogi, like Rizzuto, largely kept to himself in the last few years. Yet even as he grew more frail, the legacy blossomed.

It’s likely Berra will be posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, having collected 100,000 signatures this summer. It’s America’s highest civilian award, bestowed for meritorious service to our country, our culture and to world peace.

Timeline:   The life of Yankees legend Yogi Berra

Is there anyone more deserving? Yogi served in the Navy during World War II, including the D-Day invasion, and went on to establish a scholarship at Columbia University that’s still active after 50 years. And even at his 90th birthday, Berra still served as an ambassador for Athlete Ally, which promotes LGBT rights in sports.

Yogi was all things to all people: a cornerstone of the Yankees dynasty of the ’50s and early ’60s, a fixture with the Mets, managing them to the 1973 World Series, a centerpiece of the turbulent Steinbrenner years in the ’80s and then, finally, at home in the Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center, which he would visit almost every day. Just to be around kids.

More than 20,000 students pass through the museum every year for the character education programs. Yogi was especially supportive of the anti-bullying campaign. “He really believed in treating people the right away, no matter what their background or color or religion,” said Kaplan. And that was true a half-century ago, when taking a stand wasn’t politically correct.

Related:   A look back at some memorable Yogi-isms

Berra was one of the first Yankees to welcome Elston Howard in 1955, the year the club finally broke the color barrier. Even though Greater New York had already opened its arms to the Brooklyn Dodgers’ Jackie Robinson in 1947, the Bombers held out – they were one of the last teams in the American League to put an African-American on the roster.

Yogi went out of his way to help Howard, even though he knew the young catcher would eventually replace him behind the plate. “Yogi was good to Elston, he made him feel at home,” Howard’s wife, Arlene, would say years later. “Yogi treated us with respect from the beginning.”

Photos:   Yogi Berra, 1925-2015

Yogi did so from a position of strength, at the peak of a Hall of Fame career that would include 10 world championships and three Most Valuable Player awards. Berra was the only player to hit two home runs in a Game 7 of the World Series – in 1956, as the Yankees, who’d already been beaten by the Dodgers the year before, were on the verge of a second straight upset. Yogi, the ultimate pressure-cooker star, came to the rescue.

No one won more world championships: not Babe Ruth or Lou Gehrig or Joe DiMaggio or Mickey Mantle. Yogi rode shotgun on the greatest golden era in Yankees’ history – five straight titles between 1949 and 1953 — which allowed him to tease Derek Jeter after the Bombers lost the 2001 World Series to Arizona. That streak ended at three.

“Now you’ve got to start over,” Yogi told Jeter.

The two men couldn’t have been less similar – one was cool and hip, lean and athletic, the other stubby and unpolished. Yet, Yogi had a baseball acumen that was unrivaled. He stood only 5 feet 7, undersized even by yesteryear’s standards, but he nevertheless blasted 358 career home runs.

Yogi was blessed with bat speed and an uncanny ability to out-think pitchers. It was nearly impossible to strike him out. Ted Williams once said the Yankee he feared the most in a big game wasn’t DiMaggio or Mantle, but Lawrence Peter Berra, who fanned only 414 times in his 18-year career. Even more impressively, Yogi whiffed just 12 times in 597 at-bats in 1950.

Younger fans have no idea how talented Berra was. To many, he was the funny guy with the funny name and one-of-a-kind sayings. We knew them by heart – “it ain’t over till it’s over” and “when you come to a fork in the road, take it” and “you can observe a lot just by watching” – but they weren’t meant to be snarky or clever. That was just Yogi, the man without an agenda, being kind.

“He was always positive about players. He wasn’t afraid to like players,” said former Yankees manager Buck Showalter, now with the Orioles. “Too many people, you go into a meeting and they’re always talking about what a guy can’t do. Yogi didn’t talk about that. For a guy who was as good as he was, that’s a rare trait.”

Berra was the son of Italian immigrants, growing up in Depression-era St. Louis. There wasn’t much money in the household – Yogi dropped out of school in the eighth grade to start working — but he had his friends, his family and his love of baseball. A stroll through his museum will speak to a life well-lived, gentle and without scandal. If you walk in curious about the man, you walk out the door a better person.

Look closely, and you’ll find a photo of a much younger Yogi that includes the following inscription. This one wasn’t funny, it was simply wise:

“Whatever your background or whatever you are, it doesn’t matter. Treat everyone the same, that’s how it should be.”

In a world divided, we loved him as one. It’s the gift Yogi leaves behind.

The 50 greatest Yogi Berra quotes — September 23, 2015

The 50 greatest Yogi Berra quotes

By Nate Scott

Yankees legend Yogi Berra passed away on Tuesday at the age of 90. An 18-time All-Star, Berra appeared in 14 World Series as a member of the Yankees and won 10 of them.

Berra’s contributions to MLB history are incalculable, but his legacy might be even better remembered for what he contributed to American language. A sportswriters’ favorite, Berra had countless expressions and turns of phrase that were memorable because most of them didn’t make any sense. (At the same time, every one had some truth to it.)

Berra-isms (colloquial expressions that lack logic) are now countless, and many of them are just attributed to Berra, even if he never actually said them. As he so perfectly put it: “I never said most of the things I said.” Here are 50 of our favorites.

1. When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

2. You can observe a lot by just watching.

3. It ain’t over till it’s over.

4. It’s like déjà vu all over again.

5. No one goes there nowadays, it’s too crowded.

6. Baseball is 90% mental and the other half is physical.

7. A nickel ain’t worth a dime anymore.

8. Always go to other people’s funerals, otherwise they won’t come to yours.

9. We made too many wrong mistakes.

10. Congratulations. I knew the record would stand until it was broken.

11. You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I’m not hungry enough to eat six.

12. You wouldn’t have won if we’d beaten you.

13. I usually take a two-hour nap from one to four.

14. Never answer an anonymous letter.

15. Slump? I ain’t in no slump… I just ain’t hitting.

16. How can you think and hit at the same time?

17. The future ain’t what it used to be.

18. I tell the kids, somebody’s gotta win, somebody’s gotta lose. Just don’t fight about it. Just try to get better.

19. It gets late early out here.

20. If the people don’t want to come out to the ballpark, nobody’s going to stop them.

21. We have deep depth.

22. Pair up in threes.

23. Why buy good luggage, you only use it when you travel.

24. You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you are going, because you might not get there.

25. All pitchers are liars or crybabies.


26. Even Napoleon had his Watergate.

27. Bill Dickey is learning me his experience.

28. He hits from both sides of the plate. He’s amphibious.

29. It was impossible to get a conversation going, everybody was talking too much.

30. I can see how he (Sandy Koufax) won twenty-five games. What I don’t understand is how he lost five.

31. I don’t know (if they were men or women fans running naked across the field). They had bags over their heads.

32. I’m a lucky guy and I’m happy to be with the Yankees. And I want to thank everyone for making this night necessary.

33. I’m not going to buy my kids an encyclopedia. Let them walk to school like I did.

34. In baseball, you don’t know nothing.

35. I never blame myself when I’m not hitting. I just blame the bat and if it keeps up, I change bats. After all, if I know it isn’t my fault that I’m not hitting, how can I get mad at myself?

36. I never said most of the things I said.

37. It ain’t the heat, it’s the humility.

38. If you ask me anything I don’t know, I’m not going to answer.

39. I wish everybody had the drive he (Joe DiMaggio) had. He never did anything wrong on the field. I’d never seen him dive for a ball, everything was a chest-high catch, and he never walked off the field.

40. So I’m ugly. I never saw anyone hit with his face.

41. Take it with a grin of salt.

42. (On the 1973 Mets) We were overwhelming underdogs.

43. The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase.

44. Little League baseball is a very good thing because it keeps the parents off the streets.

45. Mickey Mantle was a very good golfer, but we weren’t allowed to play golf during the season; only at spring training.

46. You don’t have to swing hard to hit a home run. If you got the timing, it’ll go.

47. I’m lucky. Usually you’re dead to get your own museum, but I’m still alive to see mine.

48. If I didn’t make it in baseball, I won’t have made it workin’. I didn’t like to work.

49. If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be.

50. A lot of guys go, ‘Hey, Yog, say a Yogi-ism.’ I tell ’em, ‘I don’t know any.’ They want me to make one up. I don’t make ’em up. I don’t even know when I say it. They’re the truth. And it is the truth. I don’t know.

Yankees asked about Josh Donaldson, report says —

Yankees asked about Josh Donaldson, report says

By Brendan Kuty

The Yankees asked about the availability of Josh Donaldson last offseason, according to a report from the New York Post’s Joel Sherman.

General manager Brian Cashman’s call to his close friend and Oakland counterpart, Billy Beane, happened early last offseason, but Beane told Cashman he wasn’t going to trade the talented third baseman, the report said.

Eventually, however, the aggressiveness of Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulous proved to powerful, and the A’s sent Donaldson to Toronto.

The move paid dividends for the Blue Jays, who have watched the 29-year-old Donaldson put up and MVP-worthy season. The third baseman had clubbed 39 homers and hit .299 while leading the league with 120 RBI.

Meanwhile, the Yankees overpaid for Chase Headley, giving him a four-year, $52-million deal. Headley has hit .262 with 11 homers and 61 RBI. His defensive reputation has taken a huge hit, as he’s committed a team-high 22 errors, the majority of them throwing to first base.

Donald Trump was once scouted by the Phillies and Boston Red Sox? — September 22, 2015

Donald Trump was once scouted by the Phillies and Boston Red Sox?


Donald Trump 

By Charles Curtis

Just when you thought Donald Trump couldn’t be more on a roll, there’s this revealing nugget from a Rolling Stone cover story: Trump (who we know loves golf, but might cheat at it) used to be really, really good at baseball.

PLUS: WATCH: Trump answers the Joe Flacco question

How good are we talking here? Good enough to be scouted by the Phillies back in the 1960s, when he attended the New York Military Academy. His former coach, Col. Ted Dobias, had this to say to the magazine about the potential presidential candidate’s skills:

“By ninth grade, Trump was a model cadet; as a senior, he made cadet captain, says Dobias, and was the star first baseman for Dobias’ varsity squad. ‘He was good-hit and good-field: We had scouts from the Phillies to watch him, but he wanted to go to college and make real money.'”

There’s a great what-if: If that happened in this century, Trump probably would have wanted to make “real” money in the majors.

But wait! There’s more! The Daily Mail also spoke to Dobias, who said the Boston Red Sox scouted Trump too, though we know the mogul would have hated playing for theYankees‘ rival.

What’s behind CC Sabathia’s unlikely, much-needed emergence — September 21, 2015

What’s behind CC Sabathia’s unlikely, much-needed emergence

By Dan Martin

9/20/15 - New York Yankees vs. New York Mets at Citi Field - New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia #52 pitching in the 3rd inning.
9/20/15 – New York Yankees vs. New York Mets at Citi Field – New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia #52 pitching in the 3rd inning.

It’s the brace that may wind up saving the Yankees’ season.

While the Mets look to create new ways to protect Matt Harvey and his elbow in the opposing dugout, CC Sabathia tossed a second straight gem while wearing a brace on his balky right knee, this time limiting the Mets to one runs over six innings in a 11-2 victory at Citi Field.

“I think I needed the rest,” Sabathia said, referring to his stint on the disabled list that began Aug. 24 with the fear his season was over. “The brace has been helping.”

Sabathia’s revival wasn’t predicted by many, including in the Yankees’ organization.

“I didn’t know how serious it was,” Sabathia said of the knee injury. “For sure, no matter what, I was coming back.”

The lefty has looked like a different pitcher since returning from the knee pain that landed him on the DL.

And it’s a good thing he has, because the rotation has taken its share of hits lately — the most recent to Masahiro Tanaka, who won’t make his scheduled start on Wednesday in Toronto because of a hamstring injury.

Sabathia got off to a rocky start in the Subway Series finale, allowing back-to-back doubles to Ruben Tejada and David Wright to open the game and fall behind, 1-0. He struck out Yoenis Cespedes and Juan Uribe, before walking Travis d’Arnaud and Lucas Duda to load the bases. But he recovered to get Michael Cuddyer to hit a foul pop out to get out of the inning.

After the 32-pitch first inning, Sabathia cruised much of the rest of the way, helping the Yankees get to within two games in the loss column as they head to first-place Toronto.

Sabathia said he appreciates pitching in a pennant race more now than in previous years.

“For sure,” Sabathia said. “At this stage of my career, having chance to go back to the playoffs. It’s been a two-year break and we’re trying to get back to where we’re supposed to be.”

Sabathia left after six innings and 111 pitches. He’s now allowed just two earned runs in 17 ¹/₃ innings in three starts since rejoining the rotation.

“Today what I saw was a guy going out there, even though he’s had a few knee issues his previous starts, able to go out there and fight,” Carlos Beltran said. “I think that’s a great message for the younger guys to look up to a guy like that and understand that right now, this time of the year, some days you’re gonna feel sore, but this is the time of the year you cannot focus on that. You’ve got to focus on performing and trying to help the team win.”

Pregame notes: “… and then you’re in a whole lot of trouble” — September 20, 2015

Pregame notes: “… and then you’re in a whole lot of trouble”

By Chad Jennings

New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, of Japan, takes batting practice before a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla.  (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, of Japan, takes batting practice before a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

So here’s what happened…

Masahiro Tanaka tried to lay down a sacrifice bunt in the second inning on Friday, but it was a bad one, and Tanaka needed to hustle down the line to make sure it wasn’t a double play. As he came out of the box, Tanaka felt something unusual in his right leg. When he got to the dugout, he told the Yankees’ coaching staff that his hamstring was tight.

Tanaka convinced the team that tightness was not necessarily a problem, and he pitched five more innings before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh. When the situation was relatively unchanged on Saturday — not worse, still tight — the Yankees sent Tanaka for an MRI that revealed a Grade 1 strain.

Masahiro TanakaTanaka told the team he wanted to pitch on Wednesday anyway. The Yankees decided not to risk it.

“He pitched well,” Joe Girardi said. “But our fear is that if he goes out there Wednesday he could hurt it worse, and then you’re in a whole lot of trouble.”

If Tanaka really does miss only one start, he presumably still could make two more starts this season, and I’m guessing he could also be lined up to start a potential wild card game. But those are issues for another day. The issue at the moment is that Tanaka is hurt, perhaps not badly, but enough that he won’t be starting in a key game against the team the Yankees are chasing in the American League East.

“I did tell them that I wanted to pitch on Wednesday,” Tanaka said. “At the same time, I understand their decision. The season is not over. We don’t know when, but I’ll probably be able to pitch again after the Toronto series. … I felt strong enough to be able to keep myself on the mound and pitch effectively (Friday). If I felt that it was something that I could not have handled, then I would not be in that game.”

Girardi said he always asks his pitchers not to do too much when they have to hit in these National League ballparks, but Tanaka clearly saw the need to hustle down the line, and we’ve now seen the end result. Tanaka said he had a hamstring issue roughly five years ago that cost him a month, but this one doesn’t feel nearly as bad. He believe he can pitch, but he seems to understand that perhaps he shouldn’t.

“It just feels very unfortunate,” Tanaka said.

Tanaka will not travel with the team and will instead stay in New York for three days of treatment. How soon he pitches again seems to depend on how quickly he shows progress.

“He went through everything he went through (Friday) and it didn’t get worse,” Girardi said. “He didn’t wake up Saturday and it was worse. It’s not worse today. So he’s going to get a lot of treatment and hopefully get it out of there.”

Ivan Nova• Ivan Nova was taken out of the rotation after a brutal start against Toronto last weekend. Now he’ll jump back in the rotation to once again face that lineup. Girardi pointed out that Nova actually pitched pretty well in Toronto last month, but clearly this isn’t the rotation the Yankees wanted to carry into such a key series. “He’s had some good starts and some bad starts the past month,” Girardi said. “We’re just going to need a good start in his next start.”

• Nova threw a side on Saturday just to get some work because he hadn’t pitched in a while. “After that (last) start that I have, I think the time off can help a lot,” Nova said.

• For the second day in a row, the Yankees are starting Dustin Ackley ahead of Stephen Drew at second base. He’s barely played the position the past two years, but he’s been a really nice hitter since coming off the disabled list. “We’ve liked the way he’s swung the bat,” Girardi said. “And our expectation (when trading for him was) that he would be able to help us out in different positions since he had played a number of positions over in Seattle; that we could move him around and that our ballpark could play really well for him. He’s swung the bat really well, whether we’ve pinch-hit him, played him against knuckleballers, played him against a guy that threw 100 yesterday, he’s been productive and that’s why we went and got him.”

• Because tonight’s game is so late, the Yankees are having both Adam Warren and Luis Severino fly ahead of the team to Toronto before tonight’s game. Those two will start the first two games against the Blue Jays, and while it’s not unusual to have the next day’s starter fly aheaed — in this case, Warren — the Yankees are also sending Severino because they don’t want tonight’s late flight to mess up his sleep routine.

• Toronto lost against the Red Sox this afternoon. That means, if the Yankees can win tonight, they’ll be only two out in the loss column heading into this upcoming three-game series. “You know you have an opportunity to pick up a game,” Girardi aid. “Going in there two behind sounds better than three behind, that’s for sure, when you start talking about the loss column, so it’s encouraging for us.”

Everything you missed from Game 2 of Yankees-Mets Subway Series —

Everything you missed from Game 2 of Yankees-Mets Subway Series


Yoenis Cespedes strikes out in the sixth inning as the New York Mets host the New York Yankees at Citi Field. 9/19/15 Queens, NY

By Ryan Hatch

NEW YORK — Here is everything you may have missed from Saturday, the second game of the Subway Series between the Yankees and Mets:

1) Yanks crushed the Mets, 5-0

2) Yankees’ GM Brian Cashman: Wild Card OK with me

3) Alex Rodriguez at first base? Just doesn’t look right, says Joe Girardi

4) Dustin Ackley’s playing time at second base appears to be on the rise

5) Yankees’ reliever Chasen Shreve needs help, Cashman says

6) Mets’ Michael Conforto robs Brett Gardner

7) At age 38, Carlos Beltran is still raking

8) Yanks made history with seven pitchers in the shutout win

9) Bad outing? Oh well: Noah Syndergaard will still make a playoff start, Mets say

10) Yoenis Cespedes struggled Saturday at the plate

Why didn’t Yankees pinch-hit Alex Rodriguez in 6th inning? — September 19, 2015

Why didn’t Yankees pinch-hit Alex Rodriguez in 6th inning?

By Ryan Hatch

NEW YORK — The Yankees and Mets were tied, 1-1, in the top of the sixth inning when the visiting team had runners on first and third with two outs against starter Steven Matz.

The Yanks’ eighth hitter, Brendan Ryan, came to bat and promptly grounded out to shortstop, ending the inning.

With runs a premium Friday night, why didn’t the Yankees pinch-hit Alex Rodriguez—not playing because National League parks don’t allow a designated hitter—in that spot instead of the .229-hitting Ryan?

Rodriguez has 32 home runs this season and 20 doubles for a .255 average, but the Mets probably would have just walked A-Rod to get to Masahiro Tanaka, who was pitching great and not coming out of the game at that point.

(Tanaka gave up a home run in the bottom of the sixth inning to Daniel Murphy, but of course they didn’t know that would happen at the time.)

Tempting to give A-Rod an at-bat in that spot, but probably a gamble worth not making, since the Yankees theoretically would have had to pinch-hit again later on for Tanaka, (which they did the next inning with Jacoby Ellsbury.)

A-Rod did pinch-hit in the ninth inning but the Yankees were down, 5-1, at that point. Rodriguez walked, but it didn’t end up mattering.