<
>

Yankeemetrics week in review

5/5/2011

The Yankees finished off last week’s homestand with a three-game set against Toronto starting Friday night. Coming off a 12-3 thumping of the White Sox on Thursday, the Yankee bats fell silent against the Blue Jays in 5-3 loss. The lone offensive spark was provided by Robinson Cano, who hit two solo shots, for his seventh career multi-homer game. The only Yankee second basemen with more multi-homer games are Joe Gordon (12) and Tony Lazzeri (8).

Highest Win Pct in April
Yankees History

The Yankees turned it around Saturday, finishing off the month of April with a 5-4 win at the Stadium. A.J. Burnett got the “W”, improving to 9-1 in April as a Yankee. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he now holds the highest career winning percentage in April by any Yankee pitcher with at least 10 decisions in the month.

As the calendar turned to May, the Yankees finished off the Blue Jays with a 5-2 win on Sunday to remain undefeated in series at Yankee Stadium this season. The team improved to 16-9, and it’s worth noting that the last time the Yankees had that exact record through 25 games was 1999 -- a year that ended with a champagne celebration at the end of October.

Cano went one-for-three in the game, and it was his 22nd game with a hit this season. Why is that so special? Let’s find out, in our Obscure Yankeemetric of the Week:

This was the second season that Cano had a hit in 22 of the team’s first 25 games of the season. According to Baseball-Reference.com, the only other Yankees in the last 90 seasons to have at least two seasons like that were Lou Gehrig (1927, 1934) and Earle Combs (1926, 1930, 1931).

The Yankees started a four-game series in Detroit on Monday, winning in dramatic fashion thanks to a tie-breaking single in the top of the ninth inning by Nick Swisher. It was his fourth go-ahead hit with the game tied in the ninth inning or later as a Yankee. Since his first season in pinstripes in 2009, only Cano has as many late-inning tie-breaking hits as Swisher.

The Yankees lost Tuesday and managed only two runs, with one of the them coming on an eighth-inning homer by Mark Teixeira. This continued a season-long trend for the Bombers -- after this game, they had scored 81 of their 146 runs, or 55.5 percent, with the longball. If they can keep up this pace, they’ll shatter the Yankees record for the highest percentage of runs scored by homers. In 1961, led by Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle, 46.6 percent of their runs came from home runs.

The offensive slump worsened on Wednesday with a 4-0 loss to the Tigers, as the Yankees were held to just four hits and struck out 11 times. This was the second game this season where they have been that futile at the plate –- zero runs, four hits or fewer and at least 10 strikeouts. No other Yankee team in the last 90 seasons had more than one game like that this early in the season (through 28 games) prior to this year.

The Yankees’ slide continued Thursday afternoon, as they lost the final game of the series 6-3 and extended their losing streak to a season-high three games. They scored only five runs during the three losses, all against the Tigers. That last time they scored five runs or fewer over a three-game span, losing all three games to the same team, was in 2007 against the Rockies.