CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com
New! Search comments:
(NOTE: Relevance, Author, and Article are not applicable for comment searches)
Desperation is a powerful drug...
You were close, Christina. The Yankees came very close to hammering Hunter - close but not quite. Burnett pitched better that I expected, but was left in too long & the Rangers took advantage.
I was unhappy with the IBB to Murphy at the time. Then AJ almost threw one away while walking him! Molina may stink, but so does AJ, and I don't think it could have been clearer that his early-game command had vanished. It was a minor miracle he had pitched that well so far. The move was to use Logan vs Murphy or, failing that, just bring in Robertson there.
Regarding the decision to hold ARod... well, he'd have been out by a mile. It was the right call. Cruz has a great arm. The offense just never got the big hit.
Logan and Robertson have been good this year. Down 2-0, I can't fault Girardi for using a somewhat fragile Mo. It didn't go well, obviously, but I understand the choice.
Lee was ridiculously good, vs. Pettitte's very good. Usually I'd take 7IP, 2R happily. With the Yankees offense and typically good bullpen, that's usually enough.
Burnett is very likely to be awful tonight. I think the Yankees can hit Hunter, but they might hit at'emballs all night. Hunter figures to at least make the Yankees hit. Burnett, on the other hand, is a decent bet to walk the first two hitters, go 2-0 on the 3rd, and then lay one right down the middle (in any given inning. Maybe every inning). He's basically been doing that all year. Then you end up with Dustin Moseley or Sergio Mitre on the mound in the 4th inning, trailing already.
Is there some small chance of "good AJ" showing up? Sure, I suppose. I'd rate it as approximately as likely as me winning Powerball. This game will be on the offense and the bullpen.
Nice stuff. Good to see my subjective opinion about Logan (monster year, in the context of who he is/has been and what his role is) appears correct.
The strike zone for the Yanks/Twins game was just plain bad. Pavano got tons of calls on outside pitches, and the ump missed several pitches for both guys that were clearly strikes, but called balls. The 2-2 to Berkman has caused a lot of angst, but the ump missed two pitches in that AB (strike one was, what, 6 inches outside?).
I didn't see the Posey SB call, but having witnessed the old Willie Bloomquist-was-out-by-five-feet-but-called-safe thing during the regular season in 2008, I'm not surprised.
It's obvious they need an eye in the sky ump to quickly reverse clearly blown calls. Balls/strikes is harder unless we're confident enough in the tech to simply hand that off to PitchFX.
I don't think it matters whether you bring Moseley or Vazguez... the key is to never use them!
Gah. Hughes should be pitching Game 2. Arg.
Apolgies if this doesn't make sense, but...
Ok, say a player has an AWFUL start. Further assume he's young (or old, but not prime). He may well find his (MLB) season over. Down to the minors or riding pine. Had he kept playing, he might have improved enough that his overall stats ended up being closer to his projection, but the team couldn't/wouldn't wait for him to make the adjustment (or his luck to change). So he ends up with 300 ABs instead of, say, 600.
Or let's consider the player who, due to injury, plays a partial season - and plays spectacularly well. I'm thinking of Robbie Cano's 2006 here. He missed a month or so with a hammy injury. He hit .342/.365/.525. Had he gotten more plate appearances, I would have expected him to come down to earth a bit. But he didn't get them - he was on the DL.
Does any of that help explain how a system (any system, whether it's PECOTA, CHONE, etc) might miss?
Which pretty much confirms that these EPSN "insider" articles are dumbed-down BP.
As soon as I saw this, I figured Bloomquist would be the answer. Has to be. He's perfect.
The Swish abides in the Bronx dude. ;)
I'm not all that excited about Crawford becoming a Yankee. I won't be at all upset if the Angels get him instead.
Obviously he's going to be overpaid. Given his history with the team, his pride, the Yankees ability to pay and - this is important - the lack of a viable replacement...
My hope is they go short on years, long on dollars. The Yankees have the ability to have a few ugly contracts on their books. Using up a spot on the 25-man roster for a player who is done (he's not done yet - in fact I think he'll rebound some next season - but in 3 years?) is another matter.
I read that reference to the Beck rally and I just knew that most of the comments would be about it. Now Steve's a pretty sharp guy, so I rather doubt he wrote it w/o realizing it was highly likely to become the primary discussion point.
If so, perhaps LaRussa & Pujols aren't the only fellows who should be reminded about discretion?
On the politics, I happen to agree w/Steve... but this isn't the venue.
"I don't think moving what had become a lower-leverage reliever was going to make the difference for us one way or the other..."
Good article, thanks.
I was hoping the Yanks would sign Bonds in 2008, when injuries took their toll on the team (heck, I think I wanted him in the '07/'08 offseason). I figured hell, the team is hated anyway. So why not go get a productive player? With Bonds (assuming reasonably health), they might have made things closer.
He had become the boogeyman, though, so nobody would sign him. But Andy Pettitte (who I like and all...), oh he's fine. Gary Sheffield - sure! But not big bad Barry.
Gotta be careful not to force poor teams to spend money in the FA market. That's a recipe for constant mediocrity (or worse).
Poor teams absolutely must be able to "pocket the cash" in some years to save up for a run, while investing in their prospects. Will some just keep pocketing the $? Sure, yeah (though everybody's favorite whipping franchise for that sin DID win the WS in recent memory). The only good fix I can think of for that is to make sure you don't let a guy like Loria become an owner. Get guys who really want to win.
If this kid is as good as he appears to be, the Nats shouldn't worry about signing him as a FA. They should get as much out of him as possible pre-FA and then let him go. Especially if there are concerns about his "body type" later in life.
My thought exactly. One can perhaps imagine that his arrogance might lead to complacency, but it doesn't appear to have happened yet. He's a "chiseled athlete" so I have to imagine he's put his work in.
Who knows... maybe he finds himself facing the finest pitchers on the planet and fails a bit, and as a result learns some humility. Maybe not. But if you're the Nats, you gotta take that chance.
I'm pretty sure it was Murphy out in LF who let that Posada pop drop. He took an odd, hesitant route to the ball. To be fair to the guy, he was pulled pretty far over towards CF, playing Po to pull.
It's gotta be projected. The Yankees won 103 games last year, not 91. I know PECOTA projected them to finish third. Red Sox - 95 wins, Rays - 92, Yankees - 91. Yup, those are the projected standings.
Cool stuff, thanks.
Play him. Hope for a modest rebound or a flukey good year (BABIP driven or somesuch) and THEN try and trade him to a sucker. Right now? No chance.
Yeah! Except... that's not what Christina said.
I don't think I agree with what she actually is saying (though I've no real way of knowing, since I'm neither in Elijah Dukes' head, nor in the Nationals' clubhouse), but damn, talk about misrepresenting somebody's argument.
I remember so clearly arguing with a Red Sox fan friend (me = Yankees fan) that Nomah was better, whereas he preferred Jeter. This was in 2000. At the time, I was right, though I confess I was probably right for some of the wrong reasons (I really didn't get OBP yet, but knew Nomah had more power. Didn't get park adjustments either, and probably thought Jeter was good at defense).
It's so strange now, looking back at that debate. And a little sad.
Arg. A month of Cody Ransom, not a money of Cody Ransom. Sleep deprivation is uncool.
821 runs scored for the Yankees seems low, considering they scored 915 last season. I get that you have to project dropoffs for Jeter and Posada in particular, but I'd be pretty surprised if they didn't score roughly 900 runs again. ARod should be healthy (they had a money of Cody Ransom last year). Nick Johnson is the wildcard, because if healthy that ~.400 OBP will be fanatastic, but he's often... not healthy. Granderson seems like a good fit for the Stadium (so was Damon, but he gave away runs with the glove). So subtract runs b/c of regression from Jeter and Posada, figure Cano stays roughly the same (though he's entering his prime, hopefully), Swish should be about the same, Johnson & Granderson could match or even exceed Damon & Matsui's 2009 production, ARod and Tex should be excellent again. That leaves Gardner versus the Gardner/Melky mix from 2009. Even if you project a dropoff there and adjust for Boston's improved pitching (does Toronto losing Halladay compensate, at least partially?), I just don't see the Yankees scoring 94 fewer runs.
So I think the words make sense (Yankees - offensive juggernaught with some pitching questions, Red Sox have excellent pitching and a much improved defense but will score fewer runs) but the numbers don't really.
Agreed, I'd like to see the full list too.
Heh. How familiar...
Well that's unfortunate. I'll miss your columns here. I was torn as to whether to re-up my subscription, but ended up doing it. I don't know if this would have pushed me the other way, had I known, but it's possible.
Also, kudos on at least pondering the possibility that you (and perhaps other BP writers) might overrate teams that operate a certain way (sabre-ish) and underrate those that operate another way. Though that doesn't really explain your tendency to pick the Mets. ;)
Woah. Mattingly yes but Raines no? That makes no sense whatsoever.
Injuries. I expect Kevin just doesn't think he'll stay healthy for any length of time.
*Waves goodbye to the #2 guy on this list*
To be fair about the Joba rules, at least in their initial incarnation, they were really the "Torre rules." I liked Torre, really, but his bullpen management was a weakness.
I agree with the general thought, but I think you've exaggerated. Halladay will be 33 next year. Could he have gotten $60-100MM more than he just got?
Well, he just got 3/$60MM with a shot at 4/$80MM. So you're saying he'd have gotten 6/$120 *minimum* on the open market. I doubt that's the floor. I think that's closer to a ceiling.
So he may have left money on the table, yes. But not $60-100MM.
These both seems like steals for the Red Sox...
Also, I think pitching in the AL East made it all the more difficult for him to adjust to the majors. It's an unforgiving place. Joba and Hughes - both better prospects - have had their struggles too.
I'm not as down on Kennedy as Joe is, but the problem I saw with his performance in the majors is that guys weren't chasing close pitches. He wasn't wild in the majors. As far as I can tell, he pitched the same way he would have in the minors, and the difference was major league hitters wouldn't chase.
That's both good and bad, I suppose. He's close. A small improvement in command (or perhaps his newly-minted cutter) could turn him into that #3 starter he supposedly can be. I hope so, even though it will now be bittersweet.
What about his minor league performance? With such a SSS at the major league level, surely you should look at MLEs or something?
"As for market size, The Red Sox are not limited to only Boston, and cover most of New England and even some of up-state NY. The Yankees also have to share their market with the Mets."
I know very well that the Sox's market is more than Boston. I live in CT (which is split, obviously). My wife is a Sox fan from NH.
The NY market is indeed split between the Yankees and Mets. It's just so ridiculously huge that even if you split it 50/50 (which isn't reality - thanks in no small part to good work by the Yankees, but no mind) the Yankees half-share still outclasses the Red Sox market by a solid margin. In no way am I claiming the Red Sox are a small market team. I laugh at Henry's self-serving "plan" that hurts the Yankees, small market clubs, and leaves the Sox untouched.
But the fact remains: the Sox did as much, or nearly as much, with less. I like it, because it's forced the Yankees to get smarter as well. There have been blessedly few stupid moves by the Yankees in the past several years. No more Pavanos, Wrights or Farnsworthlesses. Thanks, Theo!
Solid deal, IMO. Options were limited, and yet they didn't wildly overpay. Another reason to think the Boston FO knows what they're doing. Better still would be finding a better solution for SS, but every team has a weakness somewhere, even smart, rich ones.
Meh. Even the Yankees have limits. It's just neither you nor I really know where those limits are. I've been wrong about this before (assuming the Burnett deal meant no Tex, which infuriated me at the time). We shall see.
The key to a plan like Z's is how you judge market size. Also, what do you do with things like the YES Network, NESN, etc?
One pitfall, it seems to me, is failing to capture the full market of teams that are fairly isolated, like the Mariners, Cardinals... even the Red Sox to a degree (who not only have Boston, but basically all of northern NE along with good chunks of CT and RI).
If stuff like that gets properly accounted for... I like the Z plan better than most I've seen. But then I'd prefer to just add more teams to the NY market.
I'm not sure that's true. At all. The Sox didn't get Johan Santana, and neither did the Yankees. I think each team rightly worries about the other getting a guy like Halladay, but would be happy to let some other team get Halladay while they each keep their prospects and payroll flexibility. Halladay is very good, but the price tag is reputed to be high and he's 33...
1. Sheehan is a Yankees fan, dude.
2. The Red Sox have won 2 WS, won a ton of games and have a very healthy farm system. Their market, while large, is not 1/2 of NY. They have done nearly as much with less. It's not crazy to think of them as a model franchise.
3. I too am a Yankees fan.
Of course, the contracts matter. If "a frontline starter" really means a NAME starter who isn't really all that frontline anymore but is being paid like one, that's another matter.
"Theo Epstein would want either a frontline starting pitcher or middle-of-the-order bat for Papelbon..."
Does he also want Albert Pujols for Jed Lowrie?
Papelbon is a very good reliever, but his value is limited by his role (leaving aside health concerns). Any GM who trades a good starter or a big bopper for a closer (even a very very good one like Papelbon or Nathan) should be shot on the spot.
I think the idea is to get the Sox and Yanks into a bidding war.
The original injury to Wang, a lisfranc (sp?) sprain, was a total fluke. His rehab, however, may have been botched. Hard to say. Bruney had the same injury and came back. He didn't pitch particularly well, but he's Brian Bruney, he does that. He did appear healthy, and had his normal velocity. Wang, on the other hand, was missing several MPH and movement and got absolutely hammered. Then he wrecked his shoulder. I have no idea how to grade that, but I was pretty pissed off at the Yankees training staff at the time.
Good deal. The Sox gave up basically nothing for a guy with real upside. It's a bit like the Swisher trade last year.
Dude. The first two people he thanked were the owner ($) and GM (choses how to spend the $).
Good post, though "market size" isn't a straightforward thing either, is it? You could have two markets of the same size, but one has a history of baseball passion and the other doesn't. The owner who brings a team to the non-baseball market and struggles at first should probably get more leeway than an owner in a good baseball city who flounders around for no good reason. Not that I have any idea how to do that systematically, mind you.
The Yankees have capitalized on their market, and they've invested heavily in their product. As a fan, I love it. But they do have a built-in advantage. So lots of revenue sharing sounds good to me... and yet you have to get owners who will spend it. But FORCING them to spend it is stupid, because teams need the flexibility to plan for rebuilding cycles. So the solution, it seems to me, is to make sure you get good owners who you trust to try to win. And that, in the end, is the real problem. Baseball is a cartel, and Selig & friends can keep out whomever they wish to keep out (imagine Steinbrenner buying a club today. Not a chance in hell!).
I agree with one thing you said: the 90s Yankees teams were more impressive.
Then again, the divisional competition for those 90s Yankees clubs wasn't (IMO) the same as it is now. The Red Sox are a real force now. The Rays have gotten really good, finally. Toronto would be a real contender in many divisions. The Os, well they have been bad.
I know this won't make it all ok for a Yankee hater, but the Yanks and Sox are in a massive arms race. If the Yankees stumble but a little, the Sox overtake them (and now the Rays can too). The Yankees missed the playoffs last year, so I guess they can't always buy a playoff appearance, can they?
That said, there is quite a bit of truth to what you say. And just as soon as I see a comprehensive restructuring plan that makes sense and is really fair (as opposed to a "screw the Yankees" plan, which is not the same thing), I'm in. Either way, I'll root for my team.
The Yankees didn't really have much choice at this point. Partly due to injury (Wang, the #2 starter to start the year) and partly due to their own decisions.
The decision to use Hughes as a reliever was one I disagreed with at the time, but it became harder and harder to argue as he thrived in the role (it sure was nice to see Phil have some sustained success like that). The trouble was that once they realized that Chamberlain had hit a wall (or just plain doesn't have it this year, for whatever reason), they didn't transition Hughes or Aceves to a starting role. They rolled with Sergio Mitre and Chad Gaudin in their rotation. That decision worked FINE in the regular season. In the playoffs, though, it meant going with a 3-man rotation. You're not going to use Chad Gaudin, especially against the Phillies. Could Hughes have been a good option at this point? Hard to say. He's struggled quite a bit as a starter so far. Aceves? Could he have mustered a Blanton-esq performance for game 5 (good enough to win)? Maybe, hard to say.
They didn't trade for someone better (hard to say who that would be exactly, unless you believe they were going to get Halladay or Lee for anything less than a king's ransom - and I don't). They passed on Pedro, back when he was asking for $5 million. That last one may, depending on tonight's performance, end up looking like a mistake.
Pedro's an artist, and I can't help but like him. I'm a Yankees fan, so obviously I want them to win tonight. But if I could script it, Pettitte and Pedro would duel to a draw and the Yanks would win it off the Philly bullpen. Not that that would be good for my blood pressure...
"Chamberlain has not suffered any arm injuries during his time in the major leagues"
Um, he had a shoulder problem in the middle of 2008 (during a start down in Texas). They had to shut him down. He hasn't really be right since.
I sat on my couch, begging Jeter through my TV not to GIDP. I knew it was a distinct possibility. Please get it in the air, I thought. I even wondered how the defense was playing and if it made sense to bunt for a hit. That's how worried I was about a DP ball. Sure enough...
Of course, Jeter's down on the goat list behind Burnett and Coke.
Utley should probably end up the MVP even if the Yankees win the series. He's been a one man wrecking crew.
Yeah, bad baserunning there by Melky. He got lucky.
Joba got two tough outs and then missed badly with a fastball and gave up a HR to the weakest non-pitcher in the lineup. You can't predict baseball, Suzyn...
Girardi needed 6 outs. You can't second guess his decision to use Joba there and say "4 outs away." No, it was 6. Joba got 2 of them before giving up the tying HR, and then got the third after. Mo would have had to pitch two full innings. Not using Mo in the 8th was probably a consequence of being overly jumpy and using him in game 3. That, if anything, was the mistake in Mo-useage, and game 4 follows from that.
I agree re: Phil Coke. When it looked like Lidge was going to get through the top of the 9th, I was very worried.
Something you didn't mention: letting CC hit for himself in the 7th was a mistake, I thought. I think you pinch hit there and start the bottom of the inning with Marte.
According to the PitchFX data, there was one bad call in that sequence: pitch #2, called a strike (it was outside).
I looked it up. There was one pitch in that at-bat (the second pitch) that was a ball but was called a strike. So you've got a beef, but not nearly as much of one as you said.
I assume that was directed at me. Sorry, will do next time.
Silly of me. I can look this up myself on Brooks. Though it's being really clunky right now (maybe it's my comp, I dunno).
Following up, here's a picture:
He sure looks way out of the baseline and unable to reach the base (not that he tried).
Got a link for that. I don't recall the AB going like that.
I can't fault the ump for missing the short-hop play. In real time, it looked like a catch. In superduper slow motion HD, oh look it hit the ground first. So yes, the Yankees lost 2 outs (bases juiced with Tex & ARod coming up against the Philly 'pen was something I'd have liked to see). But man, that's a tough call.
I've heard a number of people (Yankees fans) assert that, even though Utley beat the throw to first, Victorino was too far out of the baseline on his takeout slide and should've been called for interference. Agree? Disagree?
I don't see any bias there, no. It's not like the same pitches were being called balls for the Phillies. The Yankees kept throwing on (and off) that outside edge, and benifitted.
Looks like both teams got jobbed on some inside strikes.
I love the guy. I'd love to see him do well in the Series (as a Yankees fan, obviously I want them all to do well, but it's a little extra with Swish).
It's an interesting idea, but I have this nagging thought:
Doesn't this inevitably lead to the old "search for the pitcher who doesn't have it today" problem?
So Pettitte gots +1 or +2, depending on the "possible" pitch you mentioned. Saunders got between -2 and -5, depending on the possibles. To me, that doesn't back up tbe claimed "Glavin-esq" strike zone for Pettitte, but it does back up the claim that Saunders was squeezed.
I think it was more kudos for Brian Cashman convincing ownership (which at times is borderline insane) to pass on Santana, so that they could then go out and sign CC, Burnett and Tex. Preaching patience to the Steinbrenners and winning.
Unfortuntely, Swisher actually wasn't patient in that AB. I love the guy, but he went up there and hacked at two bad pitches to get himself in an 0-2 hole, against a pitcher who had just walked a batter and hit a guy, and generally looked like a deer in the headlights. The fact that it ever got to 3-2 is an indictment of Fuentes, IMO.
I want Swisher to start. I do not believe starting Hairston or Gardner over him is the right play. But Swish is definitely out of whack, and I can understand why Joe feels the way he does about it.
The offday not only sucks for a fan who wants to see some baseball, it also skews the series in favor of top-heavy pitching staffs. This year, that helps the Yanks, as they got to pitch CC in games 1, 4 and, if necessary, 7. They get to avoid using their 4th starter, who is a big step down whether it's Joba or Gaudin. If the Yanks had a deep front four (as they did during their dynasty years) but faced teams with only 2 or 3 really good starters, the advantage would be the other way. It effectively punishes teams with balance and depth in favor of stars 'n scrubs pitching staffs. I'm not sure I like that.
Plus, November baseball is a bad idea in NY, Boston, Chicago, etc.
Man, that was bad.
Swisher was picked off - called safe.
Swisher scored on a sac fly - erroneously called out (makeup call?)
Posada and Cano out at third, but only one was called out (this one was by far the most egregious).
All in the same inning, IIRC. That's impressive, and not in a good way.
"Taken as a whole, there's no major mistake in the sequence; it's the sum of smaller decisions that added up to a problem."
Yep. I've largely been pro-Girardi, but he's taken a step too far with his management in the playoffs. He's burning through relievers too quickly (though I appreciate his clear intention to use Mo rather than lose a game with a lesser pitcher) and, though I didn't pick up on it at the time, he should have pinch run with Guzman instead of Gardner (I was ok with pinch running and trying to steal, though I'm not all that happy with him going on a 0-1 count). Taking out Robertson, who looked excellent, for Aceves was just the final little mistake.
Of course, if the offense had managed to get a hit RISP, this wouldn't matter.
Thanks. Makes sense, since he hasn't been to AA yet. The hitting lines from A-ball don't jump off the page.
Romine seems to get overshadowed by Montero in the Yankees system, but he's a guy scouts think can stick at C, right (unlike Montero)? Does he project as: 1) backup; 2) average ML starting C; 3) solidly above average; or 4) a star?
Mo isn't a normal RHP. He kills LHB, just kills 'em. Plus, even leaving out platoon splits, he's just plain awesome. So no, you don't take him out in favor of Phil Coke.
If Mo were a little more normal and if Coke was, say, Billy Wagner, then it gets interesting.
Also, even if you ignore the bit about erosion of the Sox offense (and there is a grain of truth in there), he then talks about "getting" Jason Bay. Um, Jason Bay was part of the supposedly eroded offense this year. Getting him doesn't solve that issue (if it's an issue at all). Getting Holliday to replace Bay wouldn't upgrade the offense much if at all, but it would help something Buster apparently is unaware of: the defense.
Grateful yet sheepish - exactly. Well put. It's sad that the umps have missed so many calls in really tight ballgames. The call on the Mauer non-double, the non-call on the Inge HBP in the 163rd game, the call at 1st in the Sox-Angels game 1, etc.
Yeah, Po had a bad night, and that play in particular wasn't pretty. The only thing I can come up with was that he looked at Mauer, who froze, started back to 3rd, and THEN came home. For some reason, that seemed to freeze Posada too. Dunno what was going on in his head.
Err... well, off day today, now. Brain not functioning yet...
With an off day tomorrow, that doesn't bother me at all.
Me too. I hate the neighborhood play.
Yeah, I first-guessed that one from my couch. About 30 seconds later, tie game.
Ah, ok. That makes some sense.
Another factor is defense, no? A-Gon has helped, apparently (I have no idea, really, but I'll buy it if you say so), but the Sox put up a terrible defensive efficiency number (28th or 29th in baseball, if I recall correctly) this season, and it wasn't just SS that was the problem. LF, 3B, C and apparently even CF were problems (and SS, but they've supposedly fixed that). They're good at 1B, 2B, RF and SS. I don't know how the Angels rate out, but they almost have to be better.
So it may not just be the Angels running wild: it may be that they got to run wild by getting on due to leaky Sox D. The Sox have the edge at #1 starter, #2 starter and bullpen. The lineups are essentially even. Defense could even things up for the Angels, though.
These predictions are just a guy's opinion, and despite the analysis done they don't mean much. Anything can happen in a short series, so even if Joe is on the money with all this stuff (unlikely), he could end up being wrong with each and every prediction.
Jeter is a SS (who played his position well this year). Tex and Miggy are 1Bs, Bay is a LF (and a bad one). That's why he's got him second.
I'm fine with that. I like Cashman and I'm pleased he's the Yankees GM, but I do think the payroll advantage makes it just about impossible to consider him executive of the year. I doubt he cares much about that in any case.
I'd give him a B+ this year. He spent a ton of money on two premium guys, CC and Tex. He spent a ton of money on a second-tier guy, AJ Burnett, and I think that contract will end up sucking. He spent more money than I'd like on a reliever (Marte) who has done little. He made an excellent trade for Nick Swisher, and two smallish but solid trades for Hinske and Hairston. Home-grown guys developed on his watch are contributing (Cano, Joba, Hughes, Gardner, Melky, Robertson, Coke). All in all, it's good work, but hard to separate from the monster payroll.
Jorge Posada playing Shortstop... wow. I can't even imagine that.
You mean you'll always have the error on the surefire DP ball, several batters before Womack, right? :) It's nice that Womack got around on a cutter, but Mo beat himself in that game.
Though I have to say, there are all sorts of delicious things in there for a Yankee hater. Not only the blown save in game 7 of the WS due to a shocking error, not only the Womack double, but the likelyhood that the Yankees later signed said Womack (Woemack to us Yankees fans) in no small part because of that double. And, of course, his predictable awfulness in NY. The best that can be said of that is that it eventually led to Robinson Cano's debut.
Yeah, he's hurt and as much as I like him, he has a tendency to walk people. He's had some Bruney-like outings (and also been lights-out a bunch of times, unlike Bruney).
The "fuss" about Joba is largely a product of NY and its nutty media. It's a simple issue of an innings limit and how best to keep him under it. If a small market team was doing the same thing, you wouldn't have the NY Post, Times, Daily News, etc. all freaking out about it.
Pitchers "hitting" against him. General league weakness. Yeah, I laughed out loud about the Bako comment.
When was the last time a Yankee won the MVP, dude? ARod did it, and it was actually deserved. Jeter has actually been jobbed once (although I ultimately have to agree that Pedro was jobbed ever worse that year), and has had other MVP-worthy campaigns (although I'd have voted for Mauer over him in '06, and would this year as well). Buck and McCarver are awful - on that I'm sure we can agree. Use the mute button liberally.
If you want to get all pissy about Yankee MVP talk, Teixiera's the guy to focus on. He's got as much of a case as Morneau had in '06, which is to say he shouldn't get more than a few downballot votes.
I would too, and I'm a Yankee fan (this assumes that Jeter & CC don't go on absolute tears while the others fall apart).
Mauer has been shafted repeatedly in the past. I hope Joe is right and the voters will come around, but something tells me they'll invent enough "narrative" to give the award to someone else. Others have noted this too, but watch this idiocy come back when people talk about Mauer's credentials for the HOF. "Well, he never won an MVP..." Oy.
Wow, the Theo love really is out of control. Theo for POTUS? LOL.
There has to be a way to incorporate injuries... sometimes injuries really are crazy flukes (CM Wang's foot injury last year strikes me as a decent example). Other times, they're really rather predictable (Posada last year was an old catcher. Delgado this year, old guy. They get hurt and/or decline quickly). Maybe tie it up with Will Carrol's system (if a "green" player gets hurt, this system softens the impact so the GM isn't blamed too much. If a "red" player gets hurt, this system shrugs and doesn't care - that's on the GM).
From what I saw (5th inning), Pedro had poor command (for him, anyway). He was missing the target by a lot. The results weren't particularly pretty. I did notice him hitting 93mph. The speculation at the time was that fatigue may have led to a breakdown in command, as apparently he was better in the early innings.
Pedro still has the stuff, if he's throwing 90-93 on the f/b with an upper 70s change. The thing that made him great was that he also had incredible command of his ridiculous stuff. Now that his stuff is just good, he really needs that command. I, for one, hope he finds it.
It seems to me that a salary floor would totally screw small market teams.
The Yanks are going to have a bit of a problem there. They are apparently committed to some sort of innings cap, at least regular season innings. That means some skipped starts down the stretch.
Do you believe Scutaro's 2009 is real, and not a fluke? He has done pretty well with pitching staffs overall, to be fair.
"He's the kind of guy who needs to be perfect with his command and his curveball to make up for his 86-89 mph heat"
Sounds like Ian Kennedy. I still have hope for IPK, but am no longer deluded into thinking he'll be anything more than a back-of-the-rotation type (maybe in the NL). Of course, the problem with IPK was that his command was good enough for the minors, but emphatically NOT good enough at the major league level. In AAA, he could nibble and guys would chase. I've no idea if this Alderson kid does the same, or if he's producing these numbers while attacking the zone.
Good stuff, thanks. I like the CMW reference, especially now that he's probably never going to be the same.
As a Yankee fan, the whole Wang situation has been frustrating to watch. He's just never been right since the foot injury (though he HAD gotten mechanically out of whack before the foot injury. See the 2007 ALDS). This was a really, really valueable guy and now one has to wonder if he will ever been effective again.
"Lost" INF-R Angel Berroa on a waiver claim by the Mets.
LOL! Addition by subtraction, baby. I still don't know what Cashman was thinking when he brought Berroa in.
Hmm... If you're the Dodgers, why not go ahead and kill flies with a sledgehammer? The goal isn't just to win the division, but to win the WS. Plus, you get Doc for next year too.
Wasn't the twist to the Taylor story that he got into said fight in defense of his brother?
Mo's velocity has come and gone this season. He's had days when he was throwing ~90mph. He's also had days when he was throwing 93-94mph. He did just have shoulder surgery.
Velocity may not be *the* thing with him, but it matters. I may be wrong, but my memory tells me that he gave up the HRs mostly on those days when he was throwing 90, not 94.
Hmm, there's a thought.
I had a similar thought reading that comment. The Jays rotation is what it is b/c of injuries.
If he can get his defense to the point where he's bad but not unplayably so (dunno how to define that, though), maybe he could be primary DH + backup C. His starts behind the plate could be (mostly) planned for games against teams that don't run well.
I like Edwar, really I do, but he's been unable to throw strikes this season (and recently got lit up in AAA as well). The change isn't going to work when he's always in 2-0 counts. If he gets his command back, he can be useful. Until then, he's Veras without the stuff. I don't know what to make of Coke. Every time he's got me feeling good, he serves up a gopherball.
I can't defend having Berroa & Tomko on the roster (even if I wanted to), though. I don't think they will last much longer (Berroa in particular).
Interwebs FAIL by me, I guess.
Will, so far you're the only guy to call Melky's injury a dislocation. You're sure about it?
Yeah, it is. But HOF voters have demonstrated, repeatedly, that there is no particular method to their madness.
Yes, but we know Scutaro is a fluke. It's a nice fluke for Jays fans, don't get me wrong, but Joe specifically explained that he cares more about a player's body of work than he does about a couple of months. If you disagree with the method, that's fine (I think I disagree w/it, actually), but if that's the method, Jeter >>>> Scutaro.
Catching is hard.
I think you've been overly harsh on Girardi's bullpen management. The fact is that a good portion of his relief corps has simply stunk. Tomko will apparently at least throw strikes, which is more than any non-Mo Yankee reliever can say. Look at last night. Veras? Walks. Edwar? Walks. Coke? Walks. I for one want to see Robertson back up. I also think Bruney coming off the DL should help. But right now, Girardi just doesn't have many good options.
The bunting... I do think he over-does it. But I'm not totally allergic to bunting in the right situation. Late in a close game, with a weak hitter at the plate (such as Pena, Cervelli, Cash or Gardner - who might turn it into a hit), I'm ok with it. If/when the lineup is back to full strength, I hope to see a lot less bunting.
Others have pointed out the fact that Tampa is a good team, the Indians are projected to be pretty good, and that pythag in a small sample is often misleading (CMW will either a) improve dramatically; or b) be replaced with someone who will do much better than a 34 ERA).
Replacement Level Yankees Weblog has a post up comparing the Yanks' performance so far to their log5 expected record. Result: they're slightly ahead of expectations, but so little that basically they're where they should be.
Nady apparently has a partially torn ligament and will rehab. No surgery (yet).
Assuming he'd be limited to DH if/when he returns?
I don't think it's the defense. The D, if anything, is improved. He's not giving up dribblers and flares that are falling/getting through. He's giving up screaming line drives.
It probably is mental. They say he's fine in warmups, which screams "in his head!" to me. Which is the scariest part for me.
It's possible, but the team and the pitcher himself have made repeated statements that he's totally healthy.
They could be wrong. They might be lying (though I can't imagine why at this point). But I don't think so.
His mechanics are a mess, and I think it's mental. Possibly b/c he's subconciously favoring the foot he hurt last year. Or maybe something else, since we've seen this with him before that injury.
Watching him pitch this season transports me right back into the horrorshow that was the 2007 ALDS, when Cleveland treated him like a pinata. The location & movement of his pitches is the same (lateral movement, instead of vertical, fat fastballs up in the zone, etc). So yeah, he's lost it like this before.
When he's good he's very very good and when he's bad his awful. And he's just plain killing the bullpen right now.
Is "can kind of maybe catch a little if you squint your eyes and crook your neck funny" the sort of thing that might ultimately turn into Jorge Posada (an offensive force who isn't exactly known for great D)? Or is Jorge a much better fielder by virtue of once being a 2B and having a good arm?
Jeter's UZR numbers have fluctuated between basically average (-0.4 runs last year) and really bad (-15.5 runs a couple of years ago). It seems to me that Jeter's "ceiling" on defense is league average play. If he pulls that off, and hits ok (even his down year last year was solid for a SS), he's valueable. The worry is that he puts up another -15 and has an even worse year with the bat. So far, I've been encouraged by the two dingers he's hit out to RCF. He's driving the ball.
Of course it's utterly meaningless. It's one start out of ~33.
Nobody expects him to put up a 2 era in the AL East. Nobody with a brain, anyway. I think mid-3s is about right. If you think that's low, ponder whether you really believe Chien-Ming Wang is a better pitcher than CC Sabathia. Wang has consistently put up ERAs in the 3.75-4 range, in the AL East.
The BBQ ones are the chip equivalent of crack.
As a Yankees fan, I sympathize. I had to watch this schmuck throw gas on fires for years.
Seeing it on TV... it looks just like the old one. A quick glance and you wouldn't even know.
That's ok for me, since I was comfortable with the look of Yankee Stadium and I don't need anything new (for my TV viewing pleasure... when I go in person at some point, and sit in the upper deck, I expect to miss the old version). But does it justify $1.3 billion? Only if they milk those luxury boxes and concession stands the way they hope to.
That "well below average" defense actually projects to be average (or even slightly above, if they'd use more Swisher and less Nady). Abreu and Giambi were really, really bad. Nady/Swisher and Teixiera are major upgrades. Gardner in CF is a wildcard (great numbers in a tiny MLB sample, sick speed, questions about his routes, arm is solid but not Melky's), and of course Jeter could easily do worse than he did last year (he was surprisingly not-awful). Cano seems to fluctuate all over the place. I think he will bounce back, but you could argue otherwise.
The defense is still behind that of the Sox and the Rays, yes. But it's been improved.
I can't see any of the AL East teams topping 100 wins, unless there are multiple devastating injuries to the competition. Like, say ARod ends up being out for the year, and then Posada reinjures his arm, Kazmir blows out his elbow and BJ Upton reinjures his shoulder. And, conversely, everything goes right for the Red Sox. 102 wins then, sure.
Oh, for an edit feature. He's not a prospect anymore, is he? Too many MLB innings. Right then, more caffeine for me!
Another "prospect limbo" guy is Phil Hughes. I figure he's the Yanks 6th starter, and *if* he stays healthy and pitches well in AAA, he should be the guy who eats up some of the innings that Joba won't pitch. Plus, the first guy to be called if/when one of the starters get hurt.
MORP is just about on-field value, as far as I know. I don't see the Yankees bringing in $30MM in ARod jersey sales. Besides, IIRC, merchandise profits are spread amongst all the teams, so even if they *did* make a killing on jerseys, they'd be helping their competition too.
If Jeter would accept that scenario, I'd be all for it. There are two possible problems:
1) Jeter's ego; and 2) Possible fan/media fury at the decision, particularly if the new starting SS isn't CLEARLY superior to old Captain Jetes. And by that I mean the new SS probably has to out-hit him as well as out-field him. Of course, by 2011, that shouldn't be very hard.
There's also the Yankees CF situation. Brett Gardner has been dubbed the opening-day CFer. The alternative, for now, is Melky Cabrera. Those guys might not be historically bad, but now we're talking about starters (as opposed to the injury-backup/stopgap Cody Ransom) on a $200MM team.
This Yankees fan is relieved to see at least 1 obviously dumb thing done by the Red Sox brass.
Also, though I have no trouble giving lots of credit to Shilling for 2001 game 7, he gave up the go-ahead homer to Sori (absolutely ridiculous HR, btw) and RJ came in (on zero day's rest) and held the line (and then Mo threw a DP ball into CF).
The Bloody Sock game is more of a story because: a) Red Sox finally overcome eeeeeevil Yankees (with the hero Shilling playing a lead role); and b) the hero risks his health for the team and prevails.
While the 2001 WS was the end of the dynasty according to Buster Olney, 2004 was what changed the image of the Yankees from the great big villians to great big *bumbling* villians. The team that blew a 3-0 lead and all that (a narrative that irritates me, not because it labels my favorite team a bunch of chokers, but because I think it undervalues the ability of the 2004 Red Sox - the team I thought would win the series from the start).
I haven't gone to a game in years. When I did go, I bought very little (maybe a soda, maybe a pretzel), precisely because I do care that concessions are wildly overpriced. It irritates me - it's not that I couldn't afford it. I sat in the upper deck ($20).
I don't go to games anymore for basically 3 reasons:
1) I used to live ~1.5 hours away from Yankee Stadium. I now live ~3 hours away.
2) It used to be that you could get Yanks/Sox tickets without herculean effort. It's not just the price, it's the insanity. It's even worse if you want to go to Fenway (which I also used to do).
3) I get YES. I get to watch the games in HD in my living room. If I want a beer, I go to my fridge. If I want a snack... etc.
I'm also dubious about the design of the new stadium. I will probably try and get to a game next year. But if it's too much of a hassle, bah.
Aaron Boone is still around? Wow.
The problem with the Nady idea is Nady hasn't played 3B in 4 years, and that was a brief emergency appearance. He's very likely to be AWFUL defensively. Not bad, as Cody Ransom may be, but flat-out "I can't watch this" awful.
I wish it was a viable option, really I do. But I can't see it.
Plus, the whole "he can't hit righties" thing hasn't actually be true for years. If you look at his splits, there is reason to believe he's made a heckuva lot of progress in that department - even if you dismiss last year.
The real problem with this proposal is the idea of Mark Teixiera playing 3B in 2009.
I'd be interested if Cano hadn't had such an awful year last year. I want him concentrating on playing 2B.
I think this winter\'s contracts have reflected the fact that teams are valuing defense more. Obvious examples include Abreu, Burrell and Dunn - guys who in other years might have gotten more lucrative deals.
You have the GM of the Yankees quoted publicly stating \"we\'re a bad defensive ballclub\" and pointing to it as one of the reasons for going all-in on strikeout pitchers.
I think defense was the new walk until recently... but not now. Teams like the Red Sox (and, I believe, the As) figured it out first, but the rest are getting with the program.
As for BP - yeah, their defensive stats are behind the curve. I was hoping Simple Fielding Runs (am I remembering that right?) would bring them up to speed, but didn\'t the guy who created that get hired by a MLB team?
The Yanks have finally figured out that handing large amounts of money to the Kyle Farnsworths of the world is a bad idea. Hurray. It\'s something.
You think the Yanks talked themselves into it because Iggy throws with his left hand? Or because the Sox had just gotten DiceK? Or a both?
The 2008 Yanks developed a darn good no-name bullpen (aside from Mo), and then acquired Marte. The rotation was Mussina, Pettitte and a MASH unit, so you\'re right there.
As for their upgrades, Teixiera is an upgrade at 1B and their RF defense (whether it\'s Nady, Swisher, or various combinations thereof) figures to be *much* better (check out Abreu\'s defensive stats - they\'re shockingly bad). They will probably decline at SS (Jeter was actually decent last year)... 2B is a bit of a ? mark, as is CF (depends on who plays - Melky or Gardner, or someone else... if it\'s Swisher, the D takes a hit). Overall, I expect mild defensive improvement. Combine that with better pitching and you should see a serious RA improvement.
I haven\'t gone to a game in years. I used to go once per season to see a Yanks-Sox game. But it was getting harder and harder to get tickets. Given the hassle of getting to/from the Stadium (I\'m in central CT), I stopped going. I\'d rather watch on YES... even if it means listening to Michael Kay.
This makes me less likely to bother going in person.
A lot can happen in the time it will take for Montero to be ML-ready. So yeah, right now 1B looks blocked for 7 years. The Yankees certainly hope it is. But there are certainly scenarios (less rosy for the Yanks) wherein it\'s not. Maybe we end up seeing the aging veteran Teixiera mentoring the young 1B Montero in 5 years... who knows? Maybe Montero manages to be the new Jorge Posada (questionable behind the plate, but man can he hit).
And that\'s what I get for posting too fast. Oh, for an edit button.
You\'re looking for examples of teams that didn\'t play good D and bashed their way in, and were a surprise in doing so (so no 2005 Yankees, the worst defensive team of our lifetime). Hmm, ok, that\'s harder.
I don\'t know if they count as a team that surprised people by making the playoffs, but the 2002 Angels were, as I recall, a team that played good D and had an offense based around batting average. A good offense, as it turned out, that chewed up some pretty good teams on the way to a Championship.
Cry no. Scream in fury, yes. I think that scenario is pretty unlikely, though. Not because I think Burnett will be particularly healthy, but because Pavano just isn\'t a good pitcher, and he\'s got 4 years of rust to shake off. Anything is possible, I suppose, but I just don\'t see him pulling a Contreras. If he does, enjoy your schadenfreude.
As a Yankee fan, I was amazed when I saw that happen. I thought Moore was supposed to be smart? Farns is a bad pitcher. There is a mountain of data to prove it. The illusion of his usefulness is, if I recall correctly, 2-3 months of flukey goodness. And, of course, radar gun readings.
I do think the Jays could\'ve handled Burnett better, but that contract is still likely to suck. I hated it when it was first announced, and I still dislike it (the hate was due to my fear that it meant no Teixiera, which thankfully was not the case). He\'s 32, he\'s got a spotty health history, and they just signed him for 5 years.
That said, I\'m hoping for the upside to shine through.
I\'m not going to bother defending ARod, but I disagree that there was something he could\'ve done that would\'ve resulted in Brian Roberts-like forgiveness. This is ARod. People already hate him. Now add in that he comes across as a total phony (and is probably, in fact, a total phony), and you have a recipe for disaster.
Steve does doom and gloom pretty often. I say this as a Yankee fan who reads his articles all the time. The Yankees could have a HOFer (in their prime) at every position and Steve would be pointing out the weakness of the bench. He\'s been hammering away at the Molina situation for a while. Ditto Nady. The CF pit of despair (well, it could be) as well. He does this, and Yankees fans often rip him for it.
So, while I happen to agree that the article is a worst-case scenario that is unlikely (and the PECOTA numbers look like dropoffs but really aren\'t in the context of the overall projections - we noticed this when we mulled the Yankee projections over at RLYW), he\'s not a Yankee homer trying to take down the Sox. He\'s just a glass half empty kinda guy. :)
Hah. I wondered if it meant \"won AL West\" but the West was cut off. Perhaps I\'m being charitable.
\"but the Yankees already have a solid set of catching prospects...\"
I think that\'s the first time I\'ve ever heard that particular phrase. I\'d love for it to be true.
The more time passes, the more it looks like Jose Canseco was closer to the truth than anyone really wanted to know.
As for ARod... I\'m not particularly surprised. I\'m disappointed, but I\'m pretty numb to it at this point.
Someone above mentioned Jeter. That would sting a bit... as would, say, Mariano. But I don\'t think I could claim surprise.
There\'s not really anything the Yankees can do but pray Posada is healthy.
If you\'re Selig, do you really want to get up in front of the cameras and drone on (which is all he\'s good for in a public setting) about these drugs which are undetectable... casting the validity of the sport back into question, during a nasty recession no less?
I mean... what\'s he supposed to do? Lobby the owners to put serious money into research for testing is probably the best he can do.
Assets: good speed, good arm, heads-up play.
Liabilities: poor first step, zero experience at the position.
Don\'t get me wrong, I\'m not particularly excited about watching more groundballs get pastadivingJeter, nor am I amped up to watch plate appearances by Melky Cabrera and/or Brett Gardner (though PAs from the 34-yr old OC might not be much fun either). I\'m just not convinced that the odds of Jeter in CF + OC at SS > Jeter at SS + Gardner in CF are worth the risks involved. One big questionmark is Gardner\'s defense. In a small sample, his UZR last season was eye-popping. His rep is good, so even if you are skeptical about his work last season, he\'s gotta project as an above-average defender. If he\'s not... well then the gambit makes much more sense.
I agree it\'s too late to do this for this season. Regarding ARod... I tend to think he wasn\'t the good defensive SS lots of people thought he was.
If we\'re going back in time, the right thing for the Yanks to do was to sign Carlos Beltran to play CF.
Here\'s what I don\'t get:
Why should we believe that Derek Jeter, at his current age, would be a decent CFer? I buy that O. Cabrera at SS + Jeter with ok defense in CF > Jeter at SS + Belky (Brett Gardner/Melky Cabrera) in CF. But I\'m not at all sure Jeter would play a good CF.
This is a pipedream anyway. Jeter is in some ways DiMaggio reborn. His pride would get in the way. Even if you could convince him that, despite his hard work, he\'s not a good defensive SS, you also have to convince him to stick himself out there in CF and endure the inevitable embarrassment of the adjustment period. Remember the Melky-assisted inside the park HR by Trot Nixon? Now imagine the CFer isn\'t a 20-year old rookie, but Derek Jeter. Oh, the humanity.
Great flick. One of my favorites. I\'m generally a Cusack fan, and I dig dark comedy, so there ya go.
Have you seen War, Inc.? I\'ve heard some good things...
Huh. I\'d have thought he had a really solid case.
I\'ve long been amused that English soccer is decidedly more of a free-market than American baseball (let alone US Football or Basketball). And relegation... ah, a boy can dream.
Apparently Posada wants to play but the Yanks are saying no. I don\'t blame them one bit. They need to know if he can throw, they need him to work with the new pitchers, and they really don\'t need him getting hurt (even if he only DHs, it\'s possible). His injury killed them last year.
\"...if you\'re a Hall of Fame pitcher you\'re able to lift your team up; you can win the close games that bad teams need to win, and to me, he just never did that. I know that he lost an awful lot of 1-0 games, but I just felt that, despite all his terrific numbers, he just wasn\'t quite good enough\"
Apparently, Bert Blyleven\'s stupid terrific numbers were insufficiently inspiring to his teamates, as they failed to score runs for him. You suck, Bert!
That would be interesting (as a Yankee fan, I think of it in the sense of the Chinese curse \"may you live in interesting times\"). The AL East is already interesting. Manny to the Jays would make it borderline unreal. Fun, though.
I have a soft spot for Scott Proctor. The guy is/could\'ve been a fairly useful reliever. Torre wrecked his arm (and also misused him situationally such that his value wasn\'t what it could\'ve been... for instance, you do not let SP pitch to Manny. You just don\'t.). So good luck in FLA, Scotty P.
As for the Marlins ownership,yeah, sure, and yet... they\'ve won. Recently. Twice. That complicates my impulse to condemn their practices. As for extortion of taxpayer money for a stadium... um, that\'s MLB ownership 101.
The Yankees useage (or lack thereof) of Britton is even more puzzling when you consider their overall bullpen strategy in 2008. Outside of Mariano, Farnsworth (before being traded) and Marte (once he came over), it was \"throw a bunch of no-names up against the wall and see who sticks.\" And honestly, by this year Farnsworth was just another against the wall guy to the Yankees.
Guys like Brian Bruney, Edwar Ramirez, etc. were trusted to pitch important innings. Yet Chris Britton, with solid results in both the minors and the majors (AL East, no less), was basically ignored. The only thing I can come up with is that he\'s fat and someone (Girardi?) in the organization *really* doesn\'t like fat guys.
If the Pirates suddenly were a good team, Jack Wilson would probably be out of a job.
That is all.
Actually, IMO it would be far worse if they asked and got the money and then didn\'t spend it on players in order to compete.
It\'s an upgrade, that\'s for sure. The rotation desperately needed both quality and innings. CC provides both.
I agree they need a good young position player too. And their minor league system is really, really thin on those, whereas they have decent pitching talent. I hope for serious rebounds from Cano and Posada (though Po isn\'t likely to be as good or play as much as in years past), and I think those are fair bets. Others will continue to decline with age. Nady will go back to being the fringy player he is. He needs to be platooned with Swisher. Melky has proven he\'s a 4th OF. They\'ve got issues, yeah. But they\'re better with CC, and I can still hope they will sign Tex too (hey, be the Evil Empire or be not the Evil Empire. There is no try).
At least some of the bullpen guys will not be good next year, it\'s true. They\'re middle relievers for a reason. But the Yanks have a pretty good bunch of them to throw against the wall. Mariano you can still count on to be good (if healthy), and I think Marte is a pretty good bet. I\'m all for picking up more live arms and throwing them into the mix. I\'m emphatically NOT for going out and doing another Karsay/Farnsworth style deal.
Plus, upgrading the starting would reduce strain on the bullpen. One of the big reasons the Yankee bullpen has struggled in recent years is that their starters haven\'t gotten deep into games with an regularity (Wang was the only guy who did). If they bring in CC and Wang is healthy, that right there lops off some innings from the bullpen\'s workload.
I forgot Marte. I think picking up his option is the right call. So he\'s the lefty in the \'pen, with Coke as another option.
Exactly: one way or the other, the Yanks need to improve their run differential. Scoring more runs would be good. So would giving up fewer. Best is to achieve both.
I agree that Tex seems like a must-sign. I disagree on Sabathia: I think he\'s worth the risk. Pavano... is one of those things that simply cannot happen. I get the reasoning, really I do, but no.
C: Posada, Molina
IF: Betemit (I guess, man he was awful this year)
Starters: Sabathia, Wang, Chamberlain, Mussina, Hughes, with Aceves, Giese, Kennedy and Rasner in reserve.
BP: Rivera, Ramirez, Veras, Bruney, Coke, Giese/Aceves/etc.
The backup plan to not getting CC would be another year or two of Andy Pettitte. The backup plan to not getting Tex is... The Return of The Stache, I guess.
If one wants to go out and get someone who can hit more than Gardner to split time with Melky in CF, I think he has to hit righty: Melky cannot hit RH. At all. Therefore, no to Endy Chavez.