You've got to feel for Javy Vazquez today. He out-pitched one of the game's top hurlers for seven innings and ended up with nothing to show for it (at least in the W-L column).
Joba continues his inconsistent (to put it mildly) season, and is making a case to be pushed down in the bullpen pecking order. Maybe an eighth inning combination of D-Rob and Marte would fare better, at least for the time being? At the very least, he's making it clear that bullpen help is a priority at the trade deadline.
- In place of the suddenly injured Robbie Cano will step Nick Swisher to take part in the Home Run Derby. He already got the green light from the front office if you were hoping they wouldn't let him participate.
- More details are emerging about the trade that didn't happen:
So the Mariners apparently got cold feet due to David Adams' bum ankle - hearing about it, Seattle's back out became more understandable: what should take a couple weeks to return from has kept him out six weeks now. It's worse than initially expected.
- Experts have been comparing Jesus Montero to Justin Smoak the last 36 hours trying to figure out which is a better prospect and who fits better with the M's. This is the best take I've read -
The question is less that than whether or not this was the best possible deal for Lee, and there, I'm less supportive. There's the matter of the player they didn't get, in the much-reported, much-anticipated, never-consummated Yankees/Mariners package deal: Jesus Montero. I know that I'd rather have him than Smoak, so seeing this transpire in its place leaves me a bit disappointed from Seattle's perspective. Whatever the virtues of the supporting players in the package from Texas, so much stuff ends up not adding up, while Montero's 2010 season is a disappointment, so too has Smoak's campaign been, and Smoak's 2009 didn't exactly live up to his billing as a blue-chip prospect either. The difference - between a 20-year-old prospect who might be the best young hitter in the minors, and a 23-year-old who isn't - puts a ton of pressure for the remainder of this package to live up to [Seattle GM Jack] Zduriencik's confidence in them...
The consensus is that Smoak fits better into Seattle's plan due to being a plus defender and switch-hitter (whereas the righty Montero would be hampered by Safeco's spacious left-field).
- Meanwhile, Cliff Lee threw a 95-pitch complete game for the Rangers... but allowed six runs on nine hits (including a season-high three homers).
- Jesus said, "I will not be traded," then walloped his seventh homer of the year -
Montero just hit a homer into the trees in right field. That is a shot for a left-handed hitter. I've never seen a righty do it.
Actually, Montero said the following after last night's game -
... all my dreams are with this team. Whatever they do, I’m going to have to live with it. But I want to stay here. I love the Yankees.
Andrew Brackman did thus against the Bowie Baysox -
99 mph on the black ends the inning... Goodness.
Though he ultimately didn't finish well (4.2 ip, 5 h, 4 er, 3 bb, 8 k), the velocity and K's are certainly encouraging.