The Yankees are Mets were both winners on Wednesday. The Mets snapped a 6-game skid in Miami and the Yankees improved to 5-0 in 1-run games with a 5-4 win over the Astros.
Both teams are off tonight.
The Yankees made a trade on Wednesday, acquiring Chris Nelson from the Rockies for a player to be named later. Nelson, who can play both second and third base, should be a help on the roster with Kevin Youkilis landing on the DL.
Nelson was the No. 9 overall pick in the 2004 draft out of Pasadena City College. He had a career mark of .281 with 162 doubles, 68 homers and 425 RBI in 2,843 minor league plate appearances. Nelson made his major league debut in 2010 and didn’t get a solid shot with the Rockies until last season, in which he played in 111 games and hit .301 with nine homers and 53 RBI.
Take a look at the splits and he certainly had a Coors Field boost. In 190 plate appearances at home, Nelson hit .347 with three homers and 30 RBI. In 187 road plate appearances, Nelson hit .257 with six homers and 23 RBI. Three of his road homers came in six games played at Citizen’s Bank Park in Philadelphia.
Nelson has also been a liability of sorts in the field. He was -2.1 wins below league average defensively at third base last year even though he was 1.4 wins above average at the plate and on the bases.
It will be interesting to see what the Yankees do with Nelson moving forward. He certainly has more upside than the veteran Jayson Nix, but there will be a roster squeeze when Youkilis and Teixeira both return from injuries. Since Nelson probably can’t play shortstop – he’s played it sparingly in the minors and with the Rockies – and since Robinson Cano won’t need many days off at second, he might not be long for the Bronx. But if Youkilis or Teixeira have setbacks, it’s worth the risk in taking a gamble on Nelson, who was once a promising young player.
Second baseman Corbin Joseph, who was called up when Youkilis landed on the DL, was optioned back to Triple-A Scranton.
This just in…the Yankees will announce this afternoon that Joba Chamberlain will land on the DL with an oblique strain. No word yet on who will be called up, but my money is on Cody Eppley, who’s the most logical of the choices on the 40-man roster.
Elsewhere in baseball…
- Trevor Bauer walked six in five innings, but he held the Phillies scoreless in Cleveland’s 6-0 win. Bauer, acquired from Arizona in an offseason trade that sent Sin Shoo Choo to Cincy, allowed one hit. Bauer has a nasty curveball, but he’s only thrown it 9.5 percent of the time in two Indians starts this year. He used it 21.7 percent of the time last year during his rookie season with the Diamondbacks. Bauer has started using a slider and a splitter more, which has probably made his curveball more effective in limited doses. If the Indians can get Bauer going, along with Justin Masterson and Ubaldo Jimenez, they might be surprise contenders in the AL Central.
- Kansas City trailed the Rays by four runs after three innings, but the Royals put up a 5-spot in the bottom of the sixth to squeak past Tampa Bay, 9-8. The Royals are 15-10 and alone in first place through 25 games.
- Howie Kendrick, Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo homered in the Angels’ 5-4 win at Oakland.
- A.J. Pierzynski got plunked in his first at-bat against his former team, but the White Sox beat the Rangers, 5-2. Chris Sale struck out seven over seven innings to improve to 3-2.
- The Red Sox mashed five home runs in a 10-1 win in Toronto. Clay Buchholz improved to 6-0 and lowered his ERA to 1.01.
- The Nationals finally beat the Braves, 2-0, in a game that featured just five hits. Jordan Zimmermann and Paul Maholm both went eight innings. Ian Desmond’s fourth inning home run was the only scoring offense in the game.
- Josh Beckett fell to 0-4 as the NL West-leading Rockies beat the Dodgers, 7-3.
- Jason Grilli picked up his 11th save in the Pirates’ 6-4 win in Milwaukee. The always-promising Pirates are 16-12 and just a half game back in the NL Central, and that’s with Andrew McCutchen hitting .238 through the first month.
- Edward Mujica, St. Louis’ closer with Jason Motte on the DL, gave up a ninth inning homer to Brandon Phillips, but the NL Central-leading Cards hung on for a 4-2 win over the Reds.
- Rays-Royals and Padres-Cubs are already underway as part of a short slate today.
- The Red Sox and Blue Jays meet again in Toronto tonight. It’s Ryan Dempster against J.A. Happ.
- Joe Blanton (0-4, 7.09 ERA) and the Angels take on the slugging Orioles tonight on the West Coast.
- Dan Haren and Kris Medlen, two starters off to surprisingly poor starts, face off tonight as the Braves and Nats have another go-round in Atlanta. The Mets play the Braves starting Friday.