4/06/2008 09:23:00 PM

Week One Observations

Posted by Mark McCray |

So I have kind of been taking the first week of the season off from the Blog so that I could actually watch some real baseball games (it was a long offseason).

I have to say that I have seen a lot of good things out of the Yankees so far this season, along with some bad--but that is to be expected.

Here is some of the good things and some of the bad things that I have noticed so far....

The Good-

Joe Girardi: Joe was sick for two games that ended up to be losses in Tampa Bay but I am truly impressed with almost everything I have seen from "The Man". Aggressive baserunning*, bunting, and infield shifts, all combined with the power of the big Yankee bats has me very postive about the Yankees ability to adapt to win ballgames. Something about having Joe Girardi in that dugout just makes me feel calm. I like it.

Chien-Ming Wang:
2-0, 13 innings pitched, 8 strikeouts, 4 walks, 10 hits, with a 1.38 ERA. Wang at this point last season--injured. Ladies and gentleman, we have an Ace.

Phil Franchise: 6 innings pitched, 4 strikeouts, 1 walk, 4 hits, 3.00 ERA. Phil pitched beyond his years and was able to consistently get ahead of hitters with his fastball, changeup and curveball. I heard several commentators say that they think Phil Hughes may already have one of the most dominate curveballs in the game. Very high praise for the youngster.

Joba Chamberlain:
1-0, 3 innings pitched, 4 strikeouts, 1 walk, 1 hit, 0.00 ERA. Joba has looked absolutely dominate out of the bullpen but is still no where near mid season form. He hit 99 on the gun during Sunday's game but his fastballs have been topping out at around 94-96 on average. The Joba-Mariano domination has begun.

Mariano Rivera: 2 saves, 3 innings pitched, 4 strikeouts, 0 walks, 1 hit, 0.00 ERA. "Mo" is still "Mo" and there's just no mo on that.

Hideki Matsui:
.350, 2 homeruns, and 4 RBI's. Matsui was instrumental in the home opener victory batting in Alex Rodriguez with a grounder to break a 2-2 tie. He was also the deciding factor in Sunday night's game with a 2 towering two-run home run to right field.

Bobby Abreu:
.318, 3 runs scored, a double, and 2 RBI's. Bobby is off to one of his fastest ever starts at the plate. Backing that up with some solid outfield play, Bobby will be an important piece to the Yankee puzzle this year.

Melky Cabrera: .400, 1 homerun, and an RBI. The homerun was an opening day rainbow over the shallow 314 foot right-field corner that tied the game and later allowed the Yankees to take the lead with a Hideki Matsui RBI.

The Bad-

Jason Giambi: .083, 1 RBI. Six games in and Giambi is already hurt. He is listed day to day but at this point I really think the focus needs to be on moving Jason Giambi to DH and figuring out a way for Hideki Matsui to play first base (won't happen, but if I were in charge it would).

Ian Kennedy:
0-1, 2.1 innings pitched, 2 strikeouts, 4 walks, 4 hits, 23.14 ERA. Kennedy will be fine and I see no reason whatsoever to worry about him. He had no control in the game he pitched and I chalk it up to a bad case of the jitters and trying to top Phil Hughes' performance. He will bounce back strong.

Farnsworth & Hawkins:
Both of these guys need to find their own groove. Yankees fans need to just show them some patience. As enticing and sexy as the Joba-Mo connection is, Farnsie and Hawkins need to play a big role on this team down the stretch.

The Baserunning:
Stupid mistakes on the base paths have led to too many quick innings. Most of the mistakes have been made by the veterans, so I am confident they will turn it around. They just need to be more heads up.

Stupid Errors:
Stupid errors are never fun. The Yankees need to tidy up their fielding.

Please remember that I will be updating much more during the season than I have been this week-- so bear with me!!!

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