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New York Yankees News Roundup: Bautista, Bunting and Colon

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After a series win over the crosstown rivals, the best hitter in baseball comes to the Bronx for a three-game set. Jose Bautista is rewriting the record books for how a player can turn around a career. For the first (roughly) 600 games and 2000 plate appearances of his career, through age 28, Bautista was a 91 OPS+ hitter. Since then, he's been the best hitter in baseball. Better than Albert Pujols, Miguel Cabrera, Josh Hamilton or Joey Votto, with a 187 OPS+ since the start of 2010. He currently leads all of baseball in on-base percentage and slugging, and is second in batting average. How can a batter have such a turnaround? He wasn't a good hitter that became great, or a hitter that couldn't show his true self due to lack of playing time... he went from a sub-par hitter (over 2000 PA) into the game's best. What happened between September 3rd and 5th of 2009? It's nearly unprecedented.

  • There are times when a bunt is the right move, but yesterday in the seventh inning, when Joe Girardi told Curtis Granderson to do so, was definitely not one of those times. Girardi's reasoning was that he wanted to take the lead and the pitcher was a tough lefty... not only is Grandy second in MLB in home runs (fourth in SLG), but he's hitting better against lefties this season (1.122 OPS vs. .861). It ended up in a victory, but that doesn't mean it was the right move. Because the Yankees scored eight runs that inning, Girardi might think he made the correct call. And that's scary to think about.

Stem cells were taken from Colon's bone marrow and fat tissue and were then injected into Colon's elbow and shoulder to help repair damaged ligaments and a torn rotator cuff. What raised a red flag within Major League Baseball was that the doctor who performed the procedure, Joseph Purita, advocates the use of human growth hormone with certain non-athlete patients...

It is one more instance in professional sports where the line between medical treatment to heal and recover and treatment for performance enhancement becomes a blurry one...

While the World Anti-Doping Agency prohibits [stem cell surgery], baseball does not...

HGH is banned in baseball, although it is not tested for on the major league level.

So I ask you: What separates rehabilitation treatment from "unfair" performance enhancing treatment?

  • With the Yankees on a semi-roll, and having scored 16 runs over the last two games, the focus has shifted off of the offense somewhat, but the person in the spotlight right now is Nick Swisher. He's last on the team in OPS (.633) among qualifiers.
  • Yankee legend Moose Skowron was recently diagnosed with lung cancer -

"We were leaving a spring game around the fifth inning, which was unusual for him," [said his son.] "Then he turned down an autograph request, which I'd never seen him do before. Then he turned to me and said, 'I don't feel so good.' "

The initial diagnosis was pneumonia.

Tests later found lung cancer.

  • The Toronto Sun previews the upcoming series -

There is little separation in the standings between the American League East teams. The Yankees are in first place, only four games ahead of the basement-dwelling Orioles.

A week ago, there was the Jorge Posada aging diva drama but while Posada is no longer stamping his feet and threatening to quit, the problem still exists. Just what do the Yankees do with over-the-hill players such as Posada, with legendary shortstop Derek Jeter not far behind?

  • Releasing players a year too early is better than a year too late says SBN Pittsburgh, who looked at Posada and Jeter as prime examples.

In the more desirable seats at Yankee Stadium, an already pricey $10.50 draft beer will run you an eye-popping $12.60 thanks to an involuntary 20 percent "service fee" tacked on to the original price. If the sticker shock doesn't make that brew bitter enough, consider this: Despite what you might expect, that extra $2 and change isn't going to the hustling server who sold it to you, according to a new lawsuit.

Legends Hospitality, the concessionaire co-owned by the New York Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, and Goldman Sachs, allegedly pockets the 20 percent service fee...

  • Jeff Freier of SBN NY broke down the latest Subway Series.