Yankees’ Game Cap: Sunday, March 8th


The New York Yankees beat the Washington Nationals with the score of 3-2. This game wasn’t as promising as some of the early games the Yankees played. The obvious headline was that Alex Rodriguez played his first game at third base. However, I want to dig into this game a little deeper than the usual Arod headline.

The immediate start to game, the first pitch of the game, resulted in a home run from the Nationals’ center fielder Michael Taylor. I went back and analyzed the pitch to figure out how that happened and what I noticed was the start of a reoccurring theme. Brian McCann called for a fastball low and away but Adam Warren missed his spot and left a flat fastball down the middle of the plate. Taylor did what every manager hopes their player will do with a mistake and hit it against strong, opposing winds out of the park to deep left center. Warren relied heavily on his fastball and, despite only giving up that one run, he was erratic in his three innings of work.

Despite missing with his fastball and the fact that it looked flat, his curveball looked sharp. He used it for his one strikeout and to induce swing-and-misses. If Warren can get the movement on his fastball that we got used to seeing and his location down then he could be a strong spot starter during the season. Michael Kay made an interesting remark that there is an evident difference in Warren’s velocity and aggressiveness between him starting and coming out of the bullpen. He obviously holds back when starting for the sake of stamina but in doing so he leaves a lot to be desired.

The Yankees actually marched out about 2/3 of the starting lineup today and it was nice to see the big names healthy again. As I previously mentioned Arod started at third and did make a nice back hand play; however, his bat was less impressive. He was aggressive at the plate and even though he did hit a double, it was a bloop into right field that bounced into the stands. Arod failed to put solid wood on the ball in his at bats.


The outfield was mediocre during this game. Jacoby Ellsbury batted leadoff and Brett Gardner batted in the two hole. This is most likely going to be the one, two during the season but they might switch back and forth. I had mixed feelings about what I saw. Ellsbury was way too aggressive in the leadoff and jumped on the first pitch in his first two at bats. He ended up going 0-3 on the day. Gardner showed he is in mid season form by working the count and making the pitcher throw more pitches then desired. He went 1-2 with an RBI and a walk. Chris Young and Carlos Beltran went 0-3. Young looked lost at the plate and Beltran was working on getting his timing down. Lastly, Aaron Judge went 1-1 and continues to impress.

The pitching today was strong and our bullpen is looking impressive. Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller pitched one inning each and both were scoreless. Miller had one strikeout and Betances put up two strikeouts. They both looked dominant in their short work and this is what we can expect from them during the season. Luis Severino, the Yankees’ top prospect, threw 1.1 innings and boasted electric stuff. He allowed one unearned run but had three strikeouts and only gave up two hits.

Severino’s fastball was impressive as it sat in the high 90’s and his offspeed was enough to fool batters. The one thing I did notice is that he needs to slow down. At times, he was too excited and wouldn’t finish his follow through which would result in inaccuracy. I also fear that he may run into shoulder problems in the future because of his violent delivery and his failure to get low. He stands up during his delivery rather then getting low.

Jose Pirela looked good again today going 2-3 with an RBI and he continues to compete with Rob Refsnyder for second base duties. McCann did something that I have been dying to see; he went against the shift and hit a ball to left field.

Next: Did the Yankees pick the wrong time to load up on Southpaws?

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