Orioles

Quick Links

A capsule look at Tigers-Yankees playoff series

A capsule look at Tigers-Yankees playoff series

A look at the best-of-seven American League championship series between the Detroit Tigers and New York Yankees:

---

Schedule: (All times EDT)

Game 1, Saturday, at New York (8:07 p.m.); Game 2, Sunday, at New York (4:07 p.m.); Game 3, Tuesday, at Detroit (8:07 p.m.); Game 4, Wednesday, at Detroit (8:07 p.m.); x-Game 5, Thursday, at Detroit (4:07 p.m.); x-Game 6, Saturday, at New York (8:07 p.m.); x-Game 7, Sunday, at New York (8:15 p.m.).

x-if necessary.

---

Season Series: Yankees won 6-4.

---

Projected Lineups:

Tigers: CF Austin Jackson (.300, 16, 66, 10 triples), LF Quintin Berry (.258, 2, 29, 21/21 SBs), 3B Miguel Cabrera (.330, 44, 139 for baseball's first Triple Crown since 1967), 1B Prince Fielder (.313, 30, 108), DH Delmon Young (.267, 18, 74), RF Andy Dirks (.322, 8, 35), SS Jhonny Peralta (.239, 13, 63), C Alex Avila (.243, 9, 48), 2B Omar Infante (.274, 12, 53 with Marlins and Tigers).

Yankees: SS Derek Jeter (.316, 15 HRs, 58 RBIs, 99 runs, MLB-best 216 hits), LF Ichiro Suzuki (.283, 9, 55, 29 SBs with Mariners and Yankees), 1B Mark Teixeira (.251, 24, 84), 2B Robinson Cano (.313, 33, 94, 48 doubles, 105 runs), DH Raul Ibanez (.240, 19, 62), RF Nick Swisher (.272, 24, 93), CF Curtis Granderson (.232, 43, 106, 195 Ks), C Russell Martin (.211, 21, 53), 3B Eric Chavez (.281, 16, 37 in 278 at-bats) or Eduardo Nunez (.292, 1, 11, 11 SBs, 7 errors in 38 games).

---

Projected Rotations:

Tigers: RH Doug Fister (10-10, 3.45), RH Anibal Sanchez (9-13, 3.86 with Marlins and Tigers), RH Justin Verlander (17-8, 2.64, ML-leading 239 Ks), RH Max Scherzer (16-7, 3.74, 231 Ks).

Yankees: LHP Andy Pettitte (5-4, 2.87 in 12 starts), RHP Hiroki Kuroda (16-11, 3.32, 219 2-3 IP), RHP Phil Hughes (16-13, 4.23, 191 1-3 IP), LH CC Sabathia (15-6, 3.38 ERA, 200 IP, 197 Ks).

---

Relievers:

Tigers: RH Jose Valverde (3-4, 3.78, 35/40 saves), RH Joaquin Benoit (5-3, 3.68, 84 Ks, 71 IP), RH Octavio Dotel (5-3, 3.57), RH Al Alburquerque (0-0, 0.68 in 8 games following elbow surgery), LH Phil Coke (2-3, 4.00), LH Drew Smyly (4-3, 3.99 in 23 games, 18 starts), RH Rick Porcello (10-12, 4.59 in 31 starts), RH Brayan Villarreal (3-5, 2.63, 66 Ks, 54 2-3 IP).

Yankees: RH Rafael Soriano (2-1, 2.26, 42/46 saves), RH David Robertson (2-7, 2.67, 2 saves, 81 Ks in 60 2-3 IP), LH Boone Logan (7-2, 3.74, 1 save, AL-high 80 games), RH Joba Chamberlain (1-0, 4.35 in 22 games), RH David Phelps (4-4, 3.34 in 33 games, 11 starts), RH Derek Lowe (9-11, 5.11, 1 save in 38 games, 21 starts with Indians and Yankees), LH Clay Rapada (3-0, 2.82 in 70 games, 38 1-3 IP), RH Cody Eppley (1-2, 3.33 in 59 games).

---

Matchups:

The Tigers beat the Yankees in the division series in 2006 and last year; no team has ever beaten the Yankees in three consecutive postseason series. ... New York acquired Granderson from Detroit in a three-team trade after the 2009 season. The Tigers received Jackson and Coke from New York and Scherzer from Arizona. ... In seven starts against the Yankees in 2011 and 2012 - playoffs included - Verlander is 2-1 with a 3.92 ERA. ... Coke was fairly effective against left-handed batters during the regular season, but righties hit .396 off him. Smyly and Porcello - both part of the rotation at the start of the season - were left on the postseason roster for the division series at Villarreal's expense. ... Sabathia was 3-0 in three starts with 20 strikeouts in 21 2-3 innings against Detroit this season. The Tigers hits .238 against them. ... The Yankees won two of three in New York in April and two of three in Detroit in June before the teams split four games at Comerica in August. ... The two players who should benefit most from Rodriguez's benching, have divergent experiences against Verlander: Chavez is 9 for 25 (.360). Division series star Ibanez has only three hits in 29 at-bats for a .103 average.

---

Big Picture:

Tigers: It wasn't as easy as many expected, but Detroit (88-74) wrested the AL Central title from the fading Chicago White Sox and beat Oakland in the division series to reach the ALCS for the second year in a row. The Tigers lost to Texas in six games last season. ... Detroit is in the postseason in consecutive years for the first time since 1934-35. ... Cabrera's charge to the Triple Crown began in earnest on Aug. 1. He hit .344 with 19 homers and 54 RBIs in 57 games for the rest of the regular season. ... Verlander threw a career-high six complete games and is in contention for a second straight Cy Young Award. His four-hit shutout finished the Athletics in a winner-take-all Game 5. ... Scherzer was slowed by a shoulder problem in late September, but he pitched into the sixth inning without allowing an earned run in his only start of the division series. ... The Tigers grounded into a major league-leading 156 double plays. They stole 59 bases, the second-fewest in the majors. ... Detroit manager Jim Leyland is making his seventh postseason appearance. ... The Tigers signed Fielder last winter after slugger Victor Martinez's season-ending knee injury. ... After going all of 2011 without blowing a save, Valverde was a more pedestrian 35 for 40 this season. ... Benoit's 3.68 ERA was his highest since 2008. He allowed 14 homers, his most since he became exclusively a reliever. ... The Tigers had four regulars with an OPS of at least .856 in the regular season - Cabrera, Fielder, Dirks and Jackson. Then it was a substantial drop to Avila at .736. ... Backup catcher Gerald Laird provided a lift by hitting .282 in 63 games. ... Detroit finished sixth in the AL in runs. The Tigers were 10th in homers - with Cabrera and Fielder accounting for more than 45 percent of the team's total of 163. ... Young was arrested in New York in April on a hate-crime harassment charge. He was accused of yelling anti-Jewish epithets at a group of tourists, tussling with them and tackling one to the ground.

Yankees: This was no walk in Monument Park. The Yankees, who went 19-8 down the stretch, finished two games ahead of Baltimore for their 13th division crown in 17 years, earning home-field advantage throughout the AL playoffs. They then needed five games to eliminate the Orioles, hitting just .211 with 47 Ks in their series. Now they'll try to advance to the World Series against one of baseball's best staffs. ... The aging Yankees (95-67) looked old and tired at times throughout a mediocre second half. Alex Rodriguez's hitting woes carried over into the postseason and he was pinch hit for twice and he didn't play in Game 5. ... Injuries took their toll, too. In addition to A-Rod and Mariano Rivera, Sabathia had two stints on the disabled list, Pettitte missed nearly three months with a broken ankle and speedy LF Brett Gardner (elbow) sat out almost the entire season. Teixeira (calf) was sidelined for all but one game between Aug. 28 and Sept. 30, so he and Rodriguez were in the lineup together only once during August and September. Teixeira returned in time for the Boston series and New York now has its thunder back in the middle of a powerful lineup. Cano ended the season on a torrid hitting streak and the Bronx Bombers led the majors with a club-record 245 home runs. They often struggled with runners in scoring position, though, and were criticized for being too reliant on the long ball. New York was 0-58 when trailing after eight innings before a big comeback in the penultimate game of the season. It was a lack of clutch hitting that cost the Yankees in their division series loss to Detroit last year. ... Jeter did an excellent job setting the table all season and Suzuki, also 38, provided strong defense and a much-needed stolen-base threat after he was obtained in late July. Seeking his first trip to the World Series, Suzuki even hit his way up to the No. 2 spot in the lineup against right-handers with a late surge. ... Many of the biggest hits all season came from the 40-year-old Ibanez. ... Sabathia d idn't have his best season but was dominant against the Orioles in the first round. The rest of the rotation is a question mark. Back in the playoffs after a one-year retirement, Pettitte is baseball's career leader in postseason wins (19) and starts (43). Can he still be clutch at age 40 after only 12 regular-season outings? Kuroda was strong and dependable during his first year with New York, but he piled up plenty of innings and struggled in September before throwing well in the season finale. ... Even without Rivera, there are late-inning answers and effective specialists in the capable bullpen.

---

Watch For:

- Sit Rod. Rodriguez was benched for Game 5 in the division series after being pinch hit for in each of the previous two games. Will he become a distraction the more he sits? And he will. A-Rod was 2 for 16 with nine strikeouts against Baltimore, looking fooled by breaking pitches and hardly able to catch up to fastballs. The Tigers have four right-handers so he may be relegated to a pinch-hitter role.

- Missing Mo. This marks the Yankees' 17th playoff appearance in 18 years - but the first one during that stretch without Rivera in the bullpen. The career saves leader and postseason stalwart tore a knee ligament while shagging flies in early May. Soriano stepped in and did a fantastic job, but now the pressure on him intensifies. All it takes is one blown save in October, especially when you're replacing Mr. Automatic.

Grandy can, can he? Granderson homered in his last at-bat of the division series but was 1 for 16 with nine strikeouts before Game 5. Girardi has been batting his slugger eighth but he'll need to produce more like a middle of the order player for the Yankees to win.

- Starting Strong: Detroit's rotation went 2-1 with a 1.30 ERA in the division series, enabling the Tigers to advance despite a relatively quiet showing from Cabrera and Fielder. Detroit's pitchers can strike out a lot of hitters, which is important since the Tigers haven't been good defensively.

- Bullpen Blues?: Valverde and Benoit have been a lot shakier than they were a year ago, and that's a potential concern for the Tigers. Benoit allowed a big home run in Game 2 of the ALDS, and Valverde blew a lead in Detroit's Game 4 loss.

Quick Links

What could the Orioles have done differently with Manny Machado?

What could the Orioles have done differently with Manny Machado?

Brooks. Cal. Eddie. Frank. Earl.

For most Orioles icons, last names aren’t necessary. That will never be the case for Manny Machado.

In failing to extend the most purely talented player in franchise history, the Orioles cost themselves not just another one-namer for Legends Park, but also a chance to stay competitive and reload, rather than be forced into a rebuild.

With the benefit of hindsight, every organization in baseball would love to make certain moves differently. Machado should have either been an Oriole for life or the centerpiece to a franchise-altering trade.

Instead, the front office held on too long, removing the most valuable asset teams covet: years of control. As a result, the O’s found themselves with a star they couldn’t afford and a league unwilling to pay them top dollar for a rental. Halfway through a lost season, in which the team was out of playoff contention by June, the Orioles had no good options.

So, what could they have done differently? The most obvious answer is to avoid the situation entirely.

It’s no surprise to hear the front office bungled negotiations with Machado throughout his time in Baltimore. Reports suggest they were interested in an extension but scared off after multiple knee surgeries (both of which came on fluky injuries). Other reporting claims the sides came close to an extension, but Peter Angelos balked at a difference of $10 million.

Chump change for a man like Angelos, and it may have been all that kept Machado from sticking around.

Make no mistake, the Orioles, who once went more than *1,000 days* without reaching out to their best player to discuss an extension, put themselves in this unenviable position. What could they have done differently? Just about everything, especially in the years leading into 2018.

2012 and 2014 provided incredibly memorable postseason runs that Baltimore fans will never forget. They were fun, exciting and worthy of the resources put into those teams.

But 2014 was four years before the end of Machado’s contract, and the team was never close to contention again. Instead of recognizing when it was time to start over, GM Dan Duquette decided to make trades for other team’s rentals, giving up talented players for veterans who never moved the needle. He decided (or was forced by ownership) to pay an exorbitant amount to Chris Davis, the archetype of a slugging first baseman who in the course of baseball history has never aged well.

The lack of self-evaluation cost them value in the short term and wins in the long term, and it added up to completely take them out of the running to keep Machado.

Which brings us to the trade itself.

The Orioles received OF Yusniel Diaz, SP Dean Kremer, INF Rylan Bannon, RP Zach Pop and INF Breyvic Valera from Los Angeles last July in exchange for Machado.
Five guys is a lot to get back for one, but the truth is, the haul looks underwhelming. Diaz is the only player to appear on any top 100 prospect lists, and even he brings split opinions among evaluators. It doesn’t help that he’s struggled mightily since joining the organization. Kremer is the only other one who looks like a future contributor.

In an era of baseball in which star power is more important than ever, the Orioles settled for a top 100 prospect defined by his floor rather than his ceiling, with no more than depth pieces behind him. Sure, there’s value in depth, especially considering the state of the team’s farm system. But no player the O’s got back will ever come close to the success Machado found in Baltimore, and that’s disappointing.

It’s even harder to swallow when comparing to other recent deals. Just two years earlier, the Yankees brought back Gleyber Torres for three months of Aroldis Chapman. Manny Machado, an infinitely more valuable player than Chapman, topped out with Diaz.

It’s hard to say what they should have done differently without knowing the offers on the table, but it’s clear the O’s weren’t willing to pay part of Machado’s salary or take back any bad contracts, moves that would have brought additional prospects. For a team with no designs on competing anytime soon, and therefore no reason to invest big money in the big league club, that’s another disappointment.

The Machado trade was the most important move in recent memory for the franchise, and they let a lame duck GM coordinate it. When asking what could have been done differently, this is hard to ignore.

It rarely works out to have someone make major decisions for which he or she will not be around to suffer the consequences. Duquette wasn’t trying to sabotage the franchise with this move, but his vision probably doesn’t coincide with Mike Elias’. If ownership knew they weren’t retaining Duquette’s service after the season, which seems like a safe bet, why let him orchestrate such a critical trade deadline?

It all comes back to a disturbing lack of foresight with decision-makers in the organization. Hindsight may be 20/20, but foresight shouldn’t require a microscope. It was obvious to all who followed the team where this was headed, yet the Orioles continued to dig themselves into a hole, and no one came to bail them out.

Considering the situation they were in, the trade doesn’t look like an abject disaster. It certainly could have been worse. But it would have been nice to see the team go after some players with higher upside.

Nicer still would have been avoiding the situation altogether.

Quick Links

Orioles Roundup: Andrew Cashner earns seventh win this season

cashner.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Orioles Roundup: Andrew Cashner earns seventh win this season

The Birds seemed more like spring chickens as they topped the Seattle Mariners. Here are the news and notes from the West coast victory.

Player Notes:

  • Andrew Cashner came to win. After allowing an RBI double in the bottom of the first, the 32-year-old pitcher didn't see another hit until the sixth inning. After six, Cashner's WHIP is down to 1.31 and ERA at 4.37.
  • Jonathan Villar absolutely rocked Seattle. His home run ninth home run of the season gave the Orioles a 3-1 lead in the fourth inning. On two steal attempts (one successful), he stole his 15th base of the season.
  • Although he went 1-for-4, Anthony Santander's two-run home run off Gerson Bautista extended the Orioles lead by two in the sixth inning. Santander tallied his seventh RBI in the past 16 games on his second homer of the season.

Injuries:

  • SP Josh Means (shoulder): 10-day IL, status uncertain

  • OF Trey Mancini (elbow): sidelined, day-to-day

  • RP Josh Lucas (shoulder): 10-day IL, out indefinitely

  • OF DJ Stewart (ankle): 10-day IL, out indefinitely

  • SP Alex Cobb (back): 60-day IL, returns in 2020

  • SP Nate Karns (arm): 60-day IL, out indefinitely

  • DH Mark Trumbo (knee): 60-day IL, out indefinitely

Coming Up:

Sunday, 6/23: Orioles @ Mariners, 4:10 p.m. ET, T-Mobile Park

Tuesday, 6/25: Orioles vs Padres, 7:05 p.m. ET, Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Wednesday, 6/26: Orioles vs Padres, 3:05 p.m. ET, Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Source: Rotoworld

MORE ORIOLES NEWS: