So the Mets came home with a 5-1 record, and were met by a raucous and pumped up crowd at Citi Field and it was a beautiful day, so what could go wrong. How about not winning the game but you have to give them a little bit of a pass on this one.
Thanks to a head scratching schedule, the Mets flew home from Miami and landed in NY at around 2:30 AM Thursday morning so it was understandable that they would not be clicking on all or any cylinders for yesterday’s home opener. It showed as they were shutout by Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals.
They get a pass for the home opener but they better start to pick it up at home because that’s where it began to go south after their 11-1 start last season. I think you’ll see a better brand of baseball on Saturday.
What we have discerned from the Yankees poor start (despite the injuries) is that they will once again feature a one-dimensional offense. One that relies heavily on the long ball but they have some pieces within their lineup that can help them shed that label and make them more efficient at the plate.
Gleyber Torres is one of those pieces.
On Thursday, the 22-year old was 4/4 with two home runs and four runs batted in to key a Yankees 5-4 win over the Orioles at Camden Yards. It’s true that a Torres’ home run was the key hit in the game, but the youngster is capable of being a run producer without the long ball.
Torres has the ability to be a .300 hitter, something that is lacking in this Yankee lineup. Even with all their players healthy, the Yankees strike out too much and have had many problems with situational hitting. The by-product of the abundance of K’s is a lack of clutch or situational hitting. That goes hand in hand.
Aaron Judge has struck out 14 times in 26 at-bats which is an alarming number. Judge said he’s taken a different approach with his leg kick once he has two strikes on him but maybe that new approach is not working that well.
The 2017 AL Rookie of the Year has been hitting second in the lineup and is not getting much protection from whoever hits behind him, whether it’s Giancarlo Stanton or Luke Voit. In the old days, a manager would move his struggling player in the lineup to try and get him going. It could be a time to move Judge down, but only one spot to the three hole. That could get him going and benefit the lineup as a whole.
Last night, Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer was lifted after seven innings and 117 pitches of no-hit ball. The combined bid ended in the top of the 9th when Indians reliever Brad Hand gave up a leadoff single to Toronto’s Freddy Galvis.
Indians’ fans have not seen a no-hitter since Len Barker tossed a perfect game in May 1981. Indians’ fans were hoping to end their 38-year drought without a no-no and certainly would’ve settled for a combined no hit game. The question now: Will Indians fans and baseball fans in general, ever see a complete game, no-hitter again.
There is no guarantee that anyone will see a no hitter in their lifetime, but the complete game gems may be a thing of the past because starters are not being pushed like they used to be.
Since 1991, there have been 75 no-hitters pitched. Seven of those have been combined no-hit games. That’s nearly a tenth of that total. In the previous 74 years before 1991, going back to 1917 when Babe Ruth and Ernie Shore combined on a no-hit game, there were four combined no-hitters.
In today’s game, starting pitchers are working on a strict pitch count of approximately 100 or so. A starter would have to be very economical if he hoped to complete a no hit game.
LAST LICKS: Seattle Mariners are off to a fast start but what has become very concerning is that they are not a good defensive team. Seattle has made 16 errors in their first 9 games, including three in the first inning of their loss to the White Sox. The closest team to Seattle is the Cubs with 9 errors…..The Rays are picking up where they left off last season but the World Champion Red Sox are not. Tampa Bay is setting the early pace in the AL East. After Friday’s win in San Francisco, the Rays are 6-2 while the Red Sox fell to 2-7 after losing in Arizona. Boston is opening the season with an 11-game road trip and will be much better when they start to play at Fenway, but you can bet they won’t see that 108 win total this season…..