Yanks Go Yard Radio Show Rewind: Yankees-Rays Series Preview (4/17-4/19)


On this episode of the Yanks Go Yard Radio Show, brought to you by KNODA.com, I started off the show by talking about the New York Yankees (3-6) losing their third straight series to begin the 2015 season. While New York had Stephen Drew hit a game winning grand slam to steal the first game of the series, the Yankees had issues hitting Miguel Gonzalez on Tuesday and on Wednesday, the bullpen struggled after Nathan Eovaldi was only able to throw five innings, despite nine strikeouts.

Even though it looked like Brett Gardner was going back in the lineup for the Bronx Bombers on Friday after hurting his wrist in Monday’s win, Gardner is still out due to the bone bruise. New York is heading into Tampa Bay to take on the Rays, a place where they have struggled. Plus, Tampa Bay is off to a 6-4 start and has won five of their last six for first year manager Kevin Cash.

More from Yankees News

While the Rays are not known for their offensive power, Steven Souza Jr., one of their new outfielders , is off to a good start. The former Washington National, who is 25 years old, is hitting .250 with two home runs and seven RBI’s. He has six RBI’s in the last four game for a Tampa squad that is 11th in the Major Leagues in runs scored. Souza Jr. is one of eight rookies that are on the Rays’ current 25 man roster.

As far as Tampa’s pitching goes, keep in mind that they are currently without Matt Moore, Alex Cobb, and Drew Smyly in their rotation. Even with those injuries, Jake Odorizzi (Saturday’s starter) has a 0.61 ERA thru two starts. As a whole, Tampa’s opponent batting average is .214, which is fifth in all of baseball. If you look at their first ten games, especially their six wins, all six of their wins have been in games decided by three runs or less.

To get an insight on some of these young Rays players, I spoke with Robbie Knopf, the co-editor of Rays Colored Glasses. Robbie and I discussed Kevin Cash and the Rays win against the Blue Jays on Thursday in which Evan Longoria had to leave the game after being hit by a pitch in the hip. Here are some of the topics that Robbie and I discussed:

  • Takeaways from the Rays’ first ten games
  • What has stood about by Souza Jr’s solid start
  • What have been some manager tendencies that Robbie has seen from Kevin Cash
  • Pitching Matchup Breakdown
  • Nate Karns (Friday’s Rays starter) working on command of his fastball
  • Adam Warren (Friday’s Yankees starter) with a good first start last Saturday
  • Jake Odorizzi inducing 13 groundball outs in his last start
  • Masahiro Tanaka (Saturday’s Yankee starter) not giving New York much length in ball games
  • Getting to know Matt Andriese (Rays’ Sunday starter)
  • Michael Pineda (Sunday’s Yankees starter) continues to rack up the strikeouts
  • Rays Players To Watch: Robbie: Evan Longoria and Kevin Kiermaier
  • Yankees Players To Watch: Brett Gardner and Chris Young
  • Update on how Drew Smyly is doing on his rehab assignment
  • Is it any concern that Tampa has all these rookies?


More from Yanks Go Yard