In George We Trust
A(nother) blog about the most storied franchise in sports
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Don't call it a comeback...
...he's been here for years:

Twelve games into the season, Jason Giambi is showing last year's sensational second half wasn't a fluke.

Noting his body hasn't felt this good in two years, the Yankees' first baseman was named AL Player of the Week yesterday.

"This is the best I have felt in the last couple of years," said Giambi, who was the 2005 Comeback Player of the Year. "From being sick [2004] and blowing out my knee [2003]. All the work I did rehabbing my knee was lost when I got sick [pituitary tumor]. It was nice to finish with a positive last year and the way I came in this year."

Giambi was 8-for-14 (.571) with four homers, 10 RBIs and an on-base percentage of .700 last week. It was the third time he has been named AL Player of the Week but the first time as a Yankee.

Later on the same articles gives an update on Aaron Small and that literal pain in the ass Carl Pavano:

Yesterday in Tampa, Carl Pavano (bruised butt) threw off a bullpen mound for the first time since the final week of spring training. He threw 48 pitches and is expected to repeat the process tomorrow.

Aaron Small (hamstring) took another step toward coming off the DL by throwing four shutout innings of an extended spring training game against the Phillies. He allowed one hit, didn't issue a walk and fanned four.

The Yankees show up at number 12 (up 3 spots from last week) on SI's power rankings:

By all rights, the Yankees probably should have won two out of three against the Twins. But Mariano Rivera blew a game on Saturday night in typical Rivera style -- sawing off a batter (Justin Morneau), breaking his bat and getting burned on a seeing-eye bloop single. "Maybe sometimes you want them to hit the ball harder so the outfielder can catch it," he said. "What can you do?"

Down on the Farm:

Triple-A Columbus (10-1 loss to elite pitching prospect Jeremy Sowers and Buffalo)
Kevin Thompson: 2 for 4, 1 SB
Melky Cabrera: 0 for 4
Eric Duncan: 1 for 3, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K, 1 GIDP
Matt Childers: 3.1 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 1 K

Double-A Trenton (9-0 win over Altoona - first win of the year, still 7.5 GB in the division after only a week and a half)
Justin Christian: 2 for 4, 3 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SB
Kevin Howard: 2 for 5, 1 R, 2 RBI
Vince Faison: 2 for 3, 2 R, 2 RBI
Steven White: 6.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 7 K - 2 of 3 starts have been outstanding
TJ Beam: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K

High-A Tampa (15-10 win over Fort Myers)
Brett Gardner: 2 for 3, 2 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI, 3 BB, 1 K, 1 SB - future CFer is hitting .400
Eduardo Nunez: 2 for 5, 2 R, 1 2B, 4 RBI
Cody Ehlers: 3 for 4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 5 RBI
PJ Pilittere: 2 for 3, 3 R, 1 3B, 2 RBI, 2 BB
Brett Smith: 5.2 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 6 K - 8-2 GB/FB ratio
Josh Schmidt: 1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 2 K

Low-A Charleston (2-1 loss in 10 innings to Augusta)
Austin Jackson: 1 for 4, 2 K
Jose Tabata: 0 for 4, 2 K - third straight game at DH, I wonder if he's hurt
Chris Malec: 0 for 4
Reegie Corona: 1 for 4 - replacement for CJ Henry, who went on the DL with an undisclosed injury
Eric Wordekemper: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
Bryan Villalona: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 K

A commenter asked me about Tabata's defense: I can't find any fielding stats on either or, but when I'm looking through the box scores I check to see if there's been any errors or OF assists or anything like that, and to my knowledge Tabata hasn't done anything too exciting in the OF. He's DH'ed for 3 straight games, so I guess it's possible his defense has been so bad they had to take him out of the field, although I highly doubt it. I'll be sure to let you know if I find anything.

Update: Minor league players of the week were announced, 2 Yankee hitters were honored (no pitchers made the cut):

International League
Russ Johnson, Columbus

.436 (17-39), 9 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 3 HR, 8 RBI, 6 BB, 3 SO, 0 SB, .795 SLG
Columbus third baseman Russ Johnson had seven extra-base hits and hit safely in nine of 11 games. The 33-year-old Louisiana native went 4-for-5 with a homer and a triple while scoring twice to help the Clippers run away from Charlotte, 12-6, on April 12.

Florida State League
Cody Ehlers, Tampa

.343 (12-35), 8 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 14 RBI, 3 BB, 7 SO, 0 SB, .829 SLG
Tampa first baseman Cody Ehlers smacked four homers, three doubles and a triple to drive in 14 runs and raise his slugging percentage to .829. The 24-year-old first baseman went 4-for-4 with four RBIs to lead the Yankees over Lakeland, 5-4, on April 8.
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