The Best: Wow, this is tough! Do I go with 1937? 1947? 1957? 1967? 1977? 1987? 1997? 2007? 2017? OK, that last one was merely speculative, but there you go. The point is: there are so many options!
The Yankees, obviously, know what looks good and how to stick with it. With the exception of an occasional patch, some updated fabrics, and differences in tightness and looseness depending on the fashion of the time, their uniform has been unchanged for 74 years. You don’t mess with perfection, and the Yankees’ uniform is perfect. In 20,000 years, when alien archeologists excavate the ruins of our planet and try to piece together the important aspects of our culture, they will find the Yankee uniform and hold it up as the ideal. It is baseball. And no matter how much you hate the Yankees, if you don’t admit it, you’re lying.
The Worst: This is all relative, of course. Pfun Pfact: they first put the interlocking “NY” on the uniforms in 1905, but it was an off–and-on thing for years thereafter, and didn’t stick for good until 1936. Still, they never looked bad. Even in dark blue. Even without pinstripes. Though, I suppose, we have to pick one of those for the worst of all time, because the Yankees look freakin’ weird without pinstripes.
Assessment: I have a personal, idiosyncratic favorite that is not the New York Yankees — we’ll get to it on Monday — but you could put any ballplayer in history in a Yankees uniform and they’d look pretty damn spiffy. Even guys like David Wells.
Who says no-hitters can’t be just as fun when they happen during spring training?
Angels’ right-hander Bud Norris delivered two perfect innings on Friday night, paving the way for an eight-pitcher no-hitter against the Mariners at Tempe Diablo Stadium. Jose Alvarez, Cam Bedrosian, Andrew Bailey, Austin Adams, Drew Gagnon and Justin Anderson each filed a hitless inning of their own, leaving right-hander Abel De Los Santos to close out the ninth inning with just three pitches — and three game-saving plays by the defense.
Of course, it didn’t hurt that the Angels were facing a bevy of Mariners’ backups, rather than their starting lineup. In fact, Seattle’s lineup featured just two starting players — outfielder Leonys Martin and shortstop Jean Segura — while the majority of their everyday position players took on the Royals in a 4-3 win elsewhere in the Cactus League. The Mariners managed to reach base twice, first on catcher interference in the fourth inning, then on a four-pitch walk in the sixth, spoiling the Angels’ chances of turning their combined no-hitter into a combined perfect game.
Still, whether it’s executed in spring training or the regular season, against an All-Star lineup or one comprised of minor leaguers, a no-hitter is a no-hitter. The team’s eight-pitcher effort marked the first spring training no-no the Angels had completed since 1996, when they took on the Giants in a 15-0 showdown. Unfortunately for the 1996 squad, their regular season ended with a 70-91 record, good for last place in the AL West. Perhaps this no-hitter will prove a better omen for the coming season.
Rangers’ bullpen candidate Tanner Scheppers left Friday’s Cactus League game with pain in his “lower half,” according to reports by Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. The specifics of the right-hander’s injury have yet to be determined, but he was accompanied by the athletic trainer when he exited the game and is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Saturday.
Scheppers, 30, has a long history of elbow and knee injuries. He missed all but 8 2/3 innings of the 2016 season after undergoing a procedure to repair torn articular cartilage in his left knee. While he appeared healthy enough through his first seven appearances this spring, he failed to impress with three runs, five walks and six strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings with the club.
Should Scheppers find himself on the disabled list for another lengthy stay, MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan speculates that his absence could clear some room in the bullpen for Rule 5 draft pick and fellow righty Mike Hauschild. Hauschild, 27, has dealt seven runs, five walks and 15 strikeouts through 17 1/3 innings in camp.