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Opposing Batters Can’t Touch Yankees Starting Pitching

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(Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)

 

At 39-15, the New York Yankees have the best record in Major League Baseball.

They have been flat-out dominant in all aspects of the game, but their starting rotation has been something to behold.

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Five starting pitchers are the main drives of the early success: Gerrit Cole, Nestor Cortes Jr., Jameson Taillon, Jordan Montgomery, and Luis Severino.

As MLB’s official Twitter account says, “the Yankees rotation is on another level right now.”

In the last five games, Yanks’ starters have allowed just two runs in 36 innings pitched, with an insane 4/35 BB/K ratio.

Those are some incredible numbers.

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Over the weekend, Cole and Taillon became the first two pitchers to throw six perfect innings in consecutive games in the expansion era (since 1961).

 

The Yankees Rotation In Numbers

Yankees’ starters lead MLB in Wins Above Replacement, or WAR, by a comfortable margin: they have 7.7, and the closest competitor, the Philadelphia Phillies, has 6.1.

The Yanks’ rotation currently has the lowest combined ERA in baseball at 2.55, barely edging the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 2.61.

Those are the two best teams in baseball, so if you hadn’t heard, great teams have excellent rotations.

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Part of the Yankees’ success can be attributed to control and command.

The Yankees are the only team in the league handing out fewer than two walks per nine innings, at 1.82.

The next-best squad, the Toronto Blue Jays, have a 2.03 mark.

To sum up, the Yankees’ starters strike people out, limit walks, and are excellent contact managers.

They are a tough bunch to score against: the “worst” pitcher, Montgomery, has a very solid 3.02 ERA that would put him in ace territory for almost every other team.

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The Yankees rotation has been carrying the team this year, and as long as everybody is healthy, there is no reason to think the five stars will stop dominating the competition.

The post Opposing Batters Can’t Touch Yankees Starting Pitching appeared first on The Cold Wire.





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White Sox’s Tony La Russa issues another intentional walk on two-strike count in loss vs. Guardians

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Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa made one of the weirdest strategic decisions of the season in June, when he issued an intentional walk to a batter who his pitcher had already staked out a 1-2 count against. The call backfired, as the next batter unloaded a home run that put the White Sox in a hole from which they could not recover. La Russa defended his decision afterward, and on Friday night he doubled-down, in a sense, by doing the same thing against the Cleveland Guardians as part of a 5-2 loss (box score).

Here’s how it went down:

The White Sox led the Guardians 2-1 entering the seventh inning. Cleveland would subsequently score a pair of runs with two outs in the frame to take a 3-2 lead before La Russa inserted left-handed reliever Jake Diekman. Diekman would then walk two consecutive batters before giving up a single to Andrés Giménez to plate two more runs, making it 5-2 with runners on first and second. At that point, the Guardians rookie outfielder Oscar Gonzalez had a chance to blow the game open.

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Diekman would get ahead of Gonzalez 1-2 before the Guardians’ baserunners succeeded on a double-steal attempt. With first base open and two outs, La Russa called for the intentional walk. It should be noted that Gonzalez, though right-handed, has performed worse against lefty pitchers this season, and that he’s struck out in nearly 40 percent of the plate appearances that have reached two strikes.

Nevertheless, La Russa evidently wanted to force Cleveland manager Terry Francona’s hand with the next spot in the order. Lefty-swinging rookie Nolan Jones was due up, but Francona subbed him out for righty Owen Miller. La Russa then strolled to the mound to replace Diekman with right-hander Jimmy Lambert, who subsequently induced an inning-ending flyout on the second pitch of the at-bat.

The results will spare La Russa from the intensity of criticism that he received in June, but that doesn’t make it a sound process. We know from various studies conducted by smart analysts that microsplits, including those of the platoon and count variety, require regression toward the mean to have any actual predictive value. Maybe La Russa had those numbers on hand from the White Sox’s analytical department, but we’re going to guess that he made his call based on Gonzalez’s two-strike average (.265) and Miller’s average against righties (.262 this year or .242 career). 

After all, if intentionally walking batters who are stuck in two-strike counts was a sound tactical decision based on the numbers, the odds are that the Los Angeles Dodgers or … well, the Guardians would be the ones doing it; not La Russa. 

It may have not factored into the final score on Friday, but the White Sox can’t be thrilled that their manager seems committed to making the same mistake twice.

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Sonya Deville & Natalya face Toxic Attraction in WWE's Tag Team Title Tournament | WWE on FOX

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Natalya and Sonya Deville took on former NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne from Toxic Attraction on Friday Night SmackDown.



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Elks dominate second half, snap three-game skid with win over Redblacks 

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OTTAWA — Taylor Cornelius threw two touchdown passes and the Edmonton Elks scored 21 unanswered points in the second half of a 30-12 win over the Ottawa Redblacks on Friday.

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Cornelius completed 16-of-27 passes for 208 yards, including a four-yard touchdown pass to Derel Walker with 6:34 left in the fourth quarter. The win halted a three-game losing streak for the Elks (3-7).

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Caleb Evans threw for 111 yards and rushed for another 82, including a 21-yard touchdown run, but the Redblacks (1-8) lost for the 19th time in their last 20 games.

One of the few bright spots for the Redblacks was a 50-yard reception by Darvin Adams, who played in his 100th CFL game.

An 18-yard touchdown pass from Cornelius to Kenny Lawler at 11:03 in the third quarter gave the Elks their first lead of the game at 16-12.

Just under eight minutes later, Ante Milanovic-Litre scored on a two-yard run to boost the Elks’ lead to 23-12 following a Sergio Castillo extra point.

The Redblacks entered the third quarter up 12-9 after a less than spectacular first half that began with Ottawa’s PA announcer introducing Edmonton as the Eskimos.

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Lewis Ward made a 46-yard field goal near the midway mark of the first quarter, but a roughing the kicker penalty on Edmonton defensive lineman Jake Ceresna gave the Redblacks a fresh set of downs. A minute later, Ottawa took advantage as Evans ran in for a 21-yard score at the 7:43 mark.

The Elks answered back before the end of the quarter on a 52-yard field goal by Castillo.

In the second quarter, Ward left six points on the board with back-to-back missed field goals from 40 and 47 yards that led to a pair of rouge points. Ward connected from 13 yards out with 4:45 left to give the Redblacks a 12-3 lead.

Late in the first half, the Elks had the ball at the Redblacks one-yard line following a defensive pass interference call.

Quarterback Kai Locksley entered the game for the short-yardage situation but was stopped twice on sneak attempts. Locksley scored on his third attempt on a sweep right play, but Castillo hit the upright on the point after attempt to make it 12-9.

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