Yankees Daily Briefing 07/30/11

The Yankees will have two chances against the Orioles on Saturday, as the teams will play a doubleheader. In the day game, Bartolo Colon (7-6, 3.29) will be on the mound; in his last start against the Orioles he went eight innings without allowing a run. He'll face Chris Tillman (2-3, 4.69). Ivan Nova( 8-4, 4.12), who last pitched in the majors on July 1st, is scheduled to start the night game; he'll face Zach Britton (6-7, 4.05).

Discussion of the Day: What do you think is the best trade (from the Yankees' point of view) that Brian Cashman has made while GM? Explain your answer in the comments.

1) Katie Sharp takes a look at statistical oddities for the Yankees over the past week. Of note: while the Yankees beat the Athletics 17-7 last Friday, the New York football teams, the Giants and Jets, have never played a game with that score; Derek Jeter taking the lead of the most seasons of 15 or more doubles in Yankees' history and CC Sabathia's striking out seven batters in a row on Tuesday is the most consecutive strikeouts since Ron Davis struck out eight in a row in May 1981.

2) Matt Imbrogno at The Yankee Analysts writes that after a slow start, everything is back to normal for Nick Swisher.

Indeed, Swisher's statistics have almost reached his career norms for this season -- his average and on base percentage actually are higher. Since April 28th, when he started the day with a .208 batting average, Swisher has hit .274/.387/.475; a little better than his career mark of .253/.359/.465/.824, but not an unsustainable hot streak, either. Swisher fills out what has to be considered one of the best outfields in baseball -- the Astros are the only other team to have three outfielders in the top thirty of outfielder wins above replacement -- and, as long as he stays healthy, remains an obvious candidate to have his option picked up by the team next season.

3) Brien Jackson at It's About the Money wonders if the Yankees can win in the postseason as presently constructed. Using FIP, Jackson argues that they can -- with the caveat that the Yankees would have to maintain the current level of production from their rotation.

This, of course, is the biggest "if" -- whether Bartolo Colon can stay healthy for the rest of the season and whether or not Freddy Garcia can continue to beat hitters with a fastball in the 80s remains to be seen. That said, Jackson does make the point that while the Yankees have flaws, so too do their rivals. In fact, of all the Yankees' likely rivals in the postseason, it might be the Red Sox that are most in need of pitching help. Still, while the Yankees may not need to move mountains to improve their team, an opportunity to improve is one that should be taken if the cost is reasonable -- something Cashman has had success doing in the past.

4) Triple-A Scranton lost to Buffalo, 8-5.

Jesus Montero had one hit in four at bats and struck out once.

Andrew Brackman allowed three runs on no hits in 3.1 innings. He walked nine and struck out two.

Double-A Trenton lost to Richmond, 3-2.

Austin Romine had two hits, including a double, in four at bats, and struck out once.

High-A Tampa beat Charlotte, 6-5 in 14 innings.

Michael Solbach, a pitcher, hit the walk-off single.

Low-A Charleston lost to Greenville, 4-1.

Gary Sanchez was hitless in four at bats and struck out twice.

Short Season Staten Island beat Batavia, 10-7, while the Rookie GCL Yankees beat the GCL Phillies, 15-4.