On this episode of the Yanks Go Yard Series Preview Show, brought to you by Knoda.com, I started off the show by giving my thoughts on the Yankees’ moves at the trade deadline. For the New York Yankees, it was two moves that helped them improve the lineup. In the case of Stephen Drew, while he does have to change positions to second base, he is a defensive upgrade over Brian Roberts, who was designated for assignment.
As for Martin Prado, the Yankees gained a versatile player that is under their control till 2016. He will likely play right field the bulk of the time this season, but could be an option at one of the infield spots for 2015. While the team did give up power hitting prospect Peter O’Brien, it was a move that was made due to the fact that the Yankees could not find a position for O’Brien to play defensively. The other off-the-field news for the Yankees involves pitcher Michael Pineda, who will begin his rehab assignment with Scranton Wilkes-Barre on Sunday.
With the Trade Deadline over, the New York Yankees (55-52) will get back on the field tonight at Fenway Park to take on the Boston Red Sox (48-60). For New York, they enter the series five games behind the Baltimore Orioles in the AL East and 3.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the second Wild Card spot. This is a series where they have to get back on the right track after dropping two of three to the Texas Rangers in Arlington. While Brett Gardner had four home runs in the series and the Yankees scored 12 runs in their lone win of the series on Tuesday, the team managed to score four runs in the other two games against Yu Darvish and Colby Lewis. As for their next opponent, the Yankees will see a completely different Red Sox team they saw back in April.
The Red Sox were one of the busiest teams before the non-waiver Trade Deadline. They traded four-fifths of their opening day rotation with Jake Peavy going to the San Francisco Giants, Felix Doubront going to the Chicago Cubs, John Lackey to the St. Louis Cardinals, and of course Jon Lester (along with outfielder Jonny Gomes) to the Oakland Athletics. With the pitchers they gave up, the Red Sox still got some good pieces in return with pitcher Joe Kelly and left fielder Allen Craig from the Cardinals and the big piece, outfielder Yoenis Cespedes from the Athletics. Cespedes is hitting .256 with 17 home runs and 67 RBI’s, but is not in the lineup tonight.
With Cespedes signed until 2015, the Red Sox get a bat to pair with David Ortiz, who has 25 home runs on the season and 25 RBI’s in the month of July alone. Other than Ortiz, the Red Sox haven’t done much offensively this season, as they come into the night 26th in all of baseball in runs scored. The surprise for John Farrell‘s club has been utility player Brock Holt. Holt is hitting a team high .302 on the season.
As for the bullpen, the team sent lefty Andrew Miller to the Baltimore Orioles, but you can’t dismiss the dominance of Koji Uehara for Boston. Uehara, the team’s closer, has 21 saves in 23 chances and a 1.48 ERA. The question now for the defending World Series Champions is what they will get out of their young players the rest of the season, including shortstop Xander Bogaerts, center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr., catcher Christian Vazquez and tonight’s starting pitcher, Anthony Ranaudo, who will be making his Major League debut.
For this episode, I was joined by Sean Sylver, the editor of BoSox Injection. Sean gave his thoughts on the Red Sox trades and what does it mean for the team going forward. Plus, which players does he think need to step up the rest of the season in order to increase their standing with the team in 2015: Here are some of the other topics we discussed on the show:
- Reaction around Boston to the Lester + Gomes for Cespedes Trade
- Cespedes’ great numbers against the Yankees over his career
- Do Red Sox fans fear Jon Lester could be a Yankee next season?
- Was the John Lackey trade to the Cardinals a better return than what the Rays got for David Price?
- How surprising has David Ortiz‘s 25 home run season been at the age of 38?
- Pitching Matchup Breakdown
- Sean’s scouting report on tonight’s starter, Anthony Ranaudo
- Chris Capuano (Friday’s starter) looking for revenge against the team he pitched with earlier this year?
- Allen Webster (Saturday’s Red Sox’ starter) struggled with the walks in his first start last Sunday
- Shane Greene (Saturday’s Yankees’ starter) giving what the Yankees need in the back end of the rotation
- Clay Buchholz (Sunday’s Red Sox’ starter) has given up 15 runs in his last 17 innings of work
- David Phelps (Sunday’s Yankees’ starter) trying to rebound after a bad inning against the Rangers
- Red Sox’ Players To Watch (Sean: Xander Bogaerts and Will Middlebrooks, Ricky: Christian Vazquez and Mike Napoli)
- Yankees’ Players To Watch: Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran
- Why this could be a big opening series for Allen Craig!
- With Andrew Miller gone, what will the Red Sox be looking for out of the bullpen other than Koji Uehara
- Could the Red Sox still move Uehara before the waiver deadline?
- Why Sean is tracking Henry Owens‘ progress, a starter in the Boston organization who is being called up to AAA.
- My small concern for the Yankees: 12 of their last 13 games decided by two runs or fewer