The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Jeter announces formation of The Players’ Tribune

Derek Jeter

One of the early and obvious questions from Derek Jeter’s postgame press conference on Sunday: What’s the first thing you’re going to do now that you’re free to do whatever you want?

“I don’t know,” Jeter said. “That’s a good thing. I’ll take some time off, I’ll rest and relax just like I’ve done every season when the season is over with. I don’t know if I’ll necessarily realize it or anything will be different until about three or four weeks from now when I would normally start working out. At this point, I’m on vacation. Get away from it for a while.”

Vacation lasted, what, two days?

This morning, Jeter announced that he’s going into the newspaper business. Sort of. Jeter is starting an online publication called The Players’ Tribune, which seems to be basically an attempt to let players tell their own stories and offer their own perspectives without the filter of a reporter. I’m not entirely sure how it will work — how many players are going to write their own stories mid-season? — but it’s an interesting concept from a guy who’s clearly thought a lot about the impact of media.

“I realize I’ve been guarded,” Jeter said in a letter announcing the new publication. “I learned early on in New York, the toughest media environment in sports, that just because a reporter asks you a question doesn’t mean you have to answer. I attribute much of my success in New York to my ability to understand and avoid unnecessary distractions.

“I do think fans deserve more than ‘no comments’ or ‘I don’t knows.’ Those simple answers have always stemmed from a genuine concern that any statement, any opinion or detail, might be distorted. I have a unique perspective. Many of you saw me after that final home game, when the enormity of the moment hit me. I’m not a robot. Neither are the other athletes who at times might seem unapproachable. We all have emotions. We just need to be sure our thoughts will come across the way we intend.”

I don’t believe Jeter will leave himself set up to fail in one of his first post-retirement ventures. He carries enough weight to get nearly any athlete on board in some capacity. It’s going to be interesting to see this thing develop and to see where it goes and how it impacts my industry.

Here’s the full press release announcing the formation of The Players Tribune:

Derek Jeter(New York, NY, October 1, 2014) Derek Jeter today announced the creation of The Players’ Tribune, an innovative multimedia digital company where world-class athletes will share their unfiltered, honest and unique perspectives, bringing fans closer to the games they love. Jeter is the company’s Founding Publisher.

The Players’ Tribune will provide fans with unprecedented access to top athletes across every sport. The platform gives athletes the tools to develop and create quality content ranging from first-person written features to videos, podcasts, photo galleries, polls and more, and will cover topics from sports commentary to lifestyle and popular culture. The Players’ Tribune will provide an authentic and holistic perspective from the athletes themselves. In the coming days and weeks, The Players’ Tribune will announce All-Star professional athlete contributors and will enlist more athletes to become part of this new platform.

“I do think fans deserve more than ‘no comments’ or ‘I don’t knows,’” said Jeter, in an original letter shared on The Players’ Tribune website this morning. “We want to have a way to connect directly with our fans, with no filter.”

Legendary Entertainment, a prominent producer of film, television and digital content joins Jeter and The Players’ Tribune as a partner providing creative support as well as capital. Legendary was founded and is run by Chairman and CEO Thomas Tull, an avid sports fan, who translated his love of baseball into the widely popular film 42, chronicling the heroic efforts of Jackie Robinson as he worked to break through baseball’s color barrier. Tull is also a Board Member of The Baseball Hall of Fame and part of the ownership group of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Legendary Entertainment is known for producing such blockbuster franchises as GODZILLA, PACIFIC RIM, INCEPTION, 300 and CLASH OF THE TITANS along with THE DARK KNIGHT and HANGOVER series of films. Legendary also operates the online destination Nerdist.com, a site designed to showcase all things for the fandom demographic, from news to original content. Legendary also produces content via its Legendary Digital banner.

“I have had the privilege of knowing Derek for a number of years,” said Tull. “His idea of providing athletes with a platform to communicate directly with their fans and the world at large is a forum that we are excited about.”

Gary Hoenig, former Editorial Director of ESPN Publishing and a founding editor of ESPN The Magazine, serves as Editorial Director of The Players’ Tribune and is shaping the team of editors who will help the athletes share their voice on a regular basis. Maureen Cavanagh, former Photography Director for Sports Illustrated, is the Creative Director and Sarah Turcotte, former Senior Writer/General Editor at ESPN The Magazine, is the Executive Editor. Alex Rose, a seasoned sports content strategist, is the company’s General Manager and Mark Grande is the Vice President, Content and Strategy.

“We have the chance to close the gulf between players and athletes and bring us all closer together,” said Hoenig. “It’s a great opportunity to change the playing field in a positive way.”

Associated Press photos

 
 
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Posted by:Chad Jenningson Wednesday, October 1st, 2014 at 10:27 am. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Looking for leadership with a retired captain

Derek Jeter

There was a lot of talk about leadership this weekend. Derek Jeter was playing the final games of his career, it was clearly the end of an era, and Joe Girardi kept answering questions about who would replace Jeter’s leadership in the clubhouse. But that conversation was nothing new.

On the very first day of spring training, Brian McCann was asked about leadership in the context of Jeter’s upcoming retirement.

“For me, I think sometimes that word gets thrown around, like you have to have this or you have to have that,” McCann said. “I’m not a big guy (on being) set in your ways. You can get 25 guys pulling in one direction, (and then) you’re going to win a lot more ballgames. Here you’ve got veteran guys that know how to play the game. You show up every day and you play hard, that’s a leader to me. It’s someone that sets good examples for young guys. Go from there. I feel like sometimes when Chipper left last year (in Atlanta) it was like, we need to have a leader. If you get guys that show up and play hard (that’s what you need). If something needs to be said, you say it.”

CC Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka, Ivan NovaThere are still plenty of well respected guys in the Yankees clubhouse. Carlos Beltran and CC Sabathia are probably the most obvious examples, but there are others. And I’m not sure the Yankees will necessarily replace Jeter’s singular brand of leadership right away.

“Having one set leader in the clubhouse, who people look to, is a good thing,” Girardi said. “But during the course of a season, it takes more than one guy, because the starting pitchers are kind of a group, you know what I’m saying? The bullpen is kind of group. The infielders are going to be a group, the outfielders are going to be a group, the catchers. It takes more than one guy. But I think people look to (Jeter), and they’re going to look to other people, and there are other people that are capable of leading down there. But it will be a different feel.

“I thought David Cone was a leader, and he left, and people took their place. When I was first here, Andy Pettitte was not a leader as a pitcher. But the last years that I had (as manager), he was the leader of the staff. He learned how to do it. So it’s just kind of a passing of the torch. Kind of like the great teams that pass the torch as players leave. People come in and replace them in a sense. The one thing that you can’t replace necessarily is the personality and the relationship. But roles, in our business, get replaced.”

I would even argue that Jeter’s brand of leadership changed as he became more and more of an icon and less of a true superstar on the field. At some point it seemed to be less about what he did and more about how he did it.

“I think he gets to know people,” Sabathia said. “He knows everybody in the clubhouse good enough to have a conversation about your family and stuff like that. When you know people, it’s easier to lead that way. He does a good job. He might be as vocal as people want him to be as a captain, but he knows his players and does a great job.”

So who leads next year’s team? I can’t imagine it will be just one guy, but I’m also not so sure it was just one guy this year. Jeter was obviously a figurehead, and he remains the model of how to handle this market, but he’s never been the only one setting an example.

“When I played here in the 90s, we didn’t really have a captain,” Girardi said. “We didn’t have one guy. We had a lot of guys that did a lot of things and took care of things. I just remember in ’96 how John Wetteland was in charge of the bullpen. And let me tell you, he was in charge, and they knew he was in charge. And then that became Mo’s role. The transition didn’t happen overnight, but pretty quickly, that was Mo’s pen. It will happen, but you won’t necessarily see it right away.”

Associated Press photos

 
 

Posted by:Chad Jenningson Wednesday, October 1st, 2014 at 9:00 am. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Jeter’s jersey popular to the very end

Derek Jeter

It seems Derek Jeter was wildly popular to the very end of his career.

Major League Baseball announced that, based on sales of Majestic jerseys from the MLB.com shop since the All-Star break, Jeter’s jersey was the most popular in baseball through the final months of his career. No other Yankees player cracked the top 20.

Here’s the list:

1. Derek Jeter, New York Yankees
2. Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
3. Mike Trout, LA Angels of Anaheim
4. Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants
5. Yasiel Puig, Los Angeles Dodgers
6. David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox
7. Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates
8. Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers
9. Yoenis Cespedes, Oakland Athletics/Boston Red Sox*
10. Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox
11. Albert Pujols, LA Angels of Anaheim
12. Manny Machado, Baltimore Orioles
13. Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners
14. Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals
15. Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles
16. Josh Donaldson, Oakland Athletics
17. Anthony Rendon, Washington Nationals
18. Anthony Rizzo, Chicago Cubs
19. Hyun-Jin Ryu, Los Angeles Dodgers
20. Jonathan Lucroy, Milwaukee Brewers

Associated Press photo

 
 

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Posted by:Chad Jenningson Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 9:33 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Robertson faces free agency for the first time

David RobertsonAfter good outings, after bad outings, after outings even he was likely to forget about in a few days, Dave Robertson would routinely walk into the Yankees clubhouse, make eye contact with a reporter, and point to himself. It was his way of asking whether the beat writers needed to talk to him. He was just making sure, one way or the other, that he wasn’t neglecting that part of the job.

That’s Robertson. He’s observant. He sees the bigger picture. And after nearly a decade in the Yankees organization, he’s most certainly observed the business side of the game. This might his first time as a free agent, but he knows how it works.

So, Dave, are the Yankees your top choice this offseason?

“Yeah, I’m not going to discuss that at all,” he said.

Smart man.

So, manager Joe Girardi, do you want your closer back next season?

“Obviously those are decisions that are made upstairs about the club,” Girardi said. “…I’ve loved having Robby the whole time he’s been here, and he’s done a great job for me. And that’s the hardest part for me in this game — besides the losing — is the relationships that you make with players and the time that you invest, and sometimes they leave, but that’s part of it and sometimes you have to deal with it.”

Girardi gets it too.

Of all the Yankees heading for free agency, Robertson just might be the most interesting case for a fresh contract. Maybe it’s a qualifying offer. Could be a multi-year deal. Or it just might be that some other team – one that doesn’t have Dellin Betances waiting in the wings – will lure him away.

I’m of the opinion that it’s worth bringing Robertson back. Obviously Betances looks like a closer in waiting, but there’s great value in being free to use Betances earlier in the game – maybe to put out a fire in the seventh inning before pitching the eighth – while saving Robertson for the ninth. And with so many young and cheap relievers in place, the Yankees could pay Robertson for the next three years and still have a relatively cheap bullpen.

“I think everyone wondered who was going to replace Mariano Rivera,” Girardi said. “David Robertson did a tremendous job. Did he have a couple of hiccups? Yeah. So did Mo in 2013, so did Mo in 2012, and so did every closer who’s ever taken the field. I’m very fond of Robby and what he’s done here, but Robby’s approaching a situation in his career that a lot of players look forward to getting to getting to – a free agent and you see where you’re at.”

Associated Press photo

 
 

Posted by:Chad Jenningson Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 5:31 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Beltran has bone spur surgery

The Yankees just sent the following update on Carlos Beltran. Sounds like his offseason schedule shouldn’t be thrown off by much if it’s thrown off at all.

Earlier today at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Carlos Beltran underwent surgery to remove loose pieces and a bone spur from his right elbow.

The surgery was performed by Yankees Head Team Physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad. Beltran can begin throwing and hitting in approximately six weeks and can begin playing in approximately 12 weeks.

 
 

Posted by:Chad Jenningson Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 2:26 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Hitting the open market

Chase Headley

Derek Jeter is not the only player who played his final Yankees game over the weekend. Plenty of key pieces — and complimentary pieces — from the 40-man roster are heading toward free agency. These players are set to hit the open market at the end of the World Series.

Chris Capuano
Left-handed starter
How he got here: A mid-season addition when the Yankees were desperate for starting pitching, the veteran lefty wound up providing some real stability at the back of the rotation.
Bring him back? Probably not. There’s something to be said for a lefty who has experience as both a starter and a reliever, but if Capuano is going to look for a rotation job, the Yankees can’t promise him that. And signing a lefty is probably not a priority. Left-handed relief is one thing the farm system actually seems ready to provide next year.

Stephen Drew
Shortstop
How he got here: A trade deadline acquisition, Drew was brought in as an upgrade at second base. While he played strong defense, his bat was even less potent than Brian Roberts.
Bring him back? Having turned down a qualifying offer, Drew didn’t sign anywhere until mid-season, and he wound up having a brutal year at the plate. He’s a good defender, and the Yankees have an obvious need at shortstop, but at this point he looks like little more than a left-handed Brendan Ryan.

Chase Headley
Third baseman
How he got here: Just after the All-Star break, the Yankees made a move to upgrade at third base and landed switch-hitter Headley. He was a terrific defender and he hit pretty well with a .262/.371/.398 slash line.
Bring him back? The Yankees could certainly use some insurance at the infield corners, and Headley definitely made a good first impression, so he could fit on the right contract. Problem is, he’s not a typical power bat for a corner guy. Rather have Headley’s glove or the bat of, say, a guy like Mark Reynolds?

Hiroki KurodaHiroki Kuroda
Right-handed starter
How he got here: This was Kuroda’s third one-year deal with the Yankees, and he was once again a source of consistency even at 39 years old. Despite being the oldest member of the rotation, Kuroda was the only Yankees starter to stay healthy all season.
Bring him back? Depends on many factors, including whether Kuroda wants to pitch again. This season suggested Kuroda could be a solid No. 3-4 starter again next season, but the Yankees surely want to get younger, and Kuroda won’t help with that effort. If they miss out on other high-end starters, Kuroda wouldn’t be the worst fall-back plan as a one-year place holder.

Brandon McCarthy
Right-handed starter
How he got here: Just before Masahiro Tanaka went down with his elbow injury, the Yankees made strong trade for McCarthy, who was underperforming in Arizona. With the Yankees, he thrived, essentially becoming a kind of staff ace for the second half of the season (or at least until Michael Pineda got back).
Bring him back? In my opinion, absolutely. The Yankees infield defense will surely be better next season, which matches well with McCarthy’s ground ball tendency. Also his personality fits both the clubhouse and the market. The Yankees are going to need to build some rotation depth, and McCarthy might be a good place to start.

Dave Robertson
Closer
How he got here: A draft pick who rose through the system, climbed through the bullpen and wound up replacing Mariano Rivera as the team’s closer. Robertson was an All-Star setup man, and he was terrific in his first season handling the ninth inning. One of the most obvious recent success stories from the farm system.
Bring him back? I’m normally against giving multi-year deals to relief pitchers, but I think I’d make an exception for Robertson. Putting him back in the ninth inning frees Dellin Betances to be a fireman/setup man. And with a lot of cheap bullpen arms in place, the Yankees could pay Robertson for a few years and still have a cheap pen.

Ichiro Suzuki
Right fielder
How he got here: Traded to the Yankees in 2012, Ichiro wound up signing a two-year deal that expired this season. He was supposed to serve almost a fifth outfielder role this season, but he wound up being the regular right fielder when Alfonso Soriano was released and Carlos Beltran got hurt. He hit .284 with very little power.
Bring him back? No. Just not a great fit. The Yankees have some left-handed fourth outfielder types (with the upside to be more than that) in the minor league system. I’ve loved covering Ichiro, and I’d like to see him back if only because he’s interesting, but it’s just not a good fit for the Yankees. Some team should find a spot for him on their bench.

Chris Young
Outfielder
How he got here: Released by the Mets, the Yankees signed him to a minor league deal in late August then gave him a September call-up. The move was laughed at in many circles, but Young wound up being a valuable bat through the final month of the season.
Bring him back? He has right-handed power, and he can run a little bit. That’s not a bad combination for a fourth outfielder on a team with two left-handed outfielders locked into the everyday lineup. Bringing Young back wound depend entirely on the contract. Might be worth a small deal, and he’s certainly worth a look as a non-roster invite.

Associated Press photos

 
 

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Posted by:Chad Jenningson Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 11:55 am. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

First things first: Find a general manager

Brian CashmanThe Yankees usually hold organizational meetings almost immediately after the season ends, but as general manager Brian Cashman stood in front of the Yankees dugout on Saturday, his immediate schedule was a little unclear.

“We’ve got (Sunday) to play and after that, we’ll go from there,” Cashman said. “I have no meetings scheduled currently.”

No meetings because Cashman has no contract beyond the month of October. Before the Yankees can truly move forward with offseason plans — and there’s clearly work to be done — they’re going to have to officially put someone in charge of rebuilding this team.

“My stuff’s not really resolved, so there have been no discussions just yet,” Cashman said. “That will all wait for another day. I don’t want to talk about game-planning or focus, what should or shouldn’t be looked at. I’ll wait until we all sit down with ownership, they can map out their strategy and who’s going to be a part of that, and we can go from there.”

Right now, there’s really little reason to think Cashman won’t be back. The Yankees front office has generally shown nothing but support for their long-time GM, and Cashman has not indicated that he wants to move on. Should the Yankees make a change? I’m sure there are plenty of strong opinions in favor, and that’s understandable given three hard facts.

1. Back-to-back seasons missing the playoffs.

2. Lack of offensive production from the farm system.

3. Spending nearly a half billion dollars this winter and not getting so much as a wild card.

Those are pretty glaring negatives. I would argue that last season really did feel fluky given all of the long-term injuries to the lineup (the easy counter argument is that this is what you get with an aging roster, which goes back to the lack of production from within the system). I would also argue that the farm system is coming off a strong season and that the Yankees have produced quite a bit of quality pitching (again, easy counter argument is that the team’s expected-to-be-high-end talent has failed to reach a high-end ceiling, and every team stumbles into a productive role player now and then). I would also argue that Cashman did have some real wins this season from taking a shot on Masahiro Tanaka’s talent, to getting some surprising production out of Yangervis Solarte and Chris Capuano, to trading for Brandon McCarthy, Chase Headley and Martin Prado (counter argument: finding bit parts and one injured starter wasn’t nearly enough to make the playoffs).

With serious holes to fill, the Yankees first order of business is determining whether Cashman is still the man to run the show.

“I don’t anticipate anything,” Cashman said. “My contract runs through October 31 and I can’t tell you anything past that. When and if decisions get made, you guys will be brought in the loop.”

Associated Press photo

 
 

Posted by:Chad Jenningson Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 8:57 am. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Gardner named Yankees nominee for Hank Aaron Award

Brett Gardner is not going to win the Hank Aaron Award — given to each league’s top offensive performer — but the fact he’s the Yankees nominee is pretty amazing. Granted, his batting average dipped by the end of the year, but he still finished with the highest OPS on the team (among guys who got more than 200 at-bats). Nice year for Gardner. Bad year for the Yankees lineup. Here’s the press release from the league.

Brett GardnerMajor League Baseball and MLB Advanced Media announced that outfielder Brett Gardner was named the New York Yankees’ nominee for the 2014 Hank Aaron Award.

Fans can vote exclusively online at MLB.com and the 30 Club sites. For the fifth straight year, a special panel of Hall of Fame players led by Hank Aaron will join fans in voting for the award, which is officially sanctioned by Major League Baseball and has recognized the most outstanding offensive performer in each League since it was established in 1999.

In 148 games, Gardner hit .256 (142-for-555) with 87 runs, 25 doubles, eight triples, 17 home runs and 58 RBI, surpassing his previous career bests in both homers (eight in 2013) and runs batted in (52 in 2013). Each of his 17 home runs was hit out of the leadoff spot, tied for the highest such total in the American League. Gardner was 21-for-26 in stolen base attempts, marking his fifth season with at least 20 steals. He was named the AL “Player of the Week” on August 4, batting .478 (11-for-23) with eight runs, three doubles, five home runs and seven RBI in six games from July 28-August 3.

The Hall of Fame panel led by Aaron includes some of the greatest offensive players of all-time – Roberto Alomar, Johnny Bench, Paul Molitor, Eddie Murray, Frank Thomas and Robin Yount. These Hall of Famers – who combined for 16,956 hits, 8,844 RBI and 2,109 home runs – have all been personally selected by Aaron to lend their expertise to select the best offensive performer in each League.

Through October 5, fans will have the opportunity to select one American League and one National League winner from a list comprising of one finalist per Club. The winners of the 2014 Hank Aaron Award will be announced during the 2014 World Series.

Associated Press photo

 
 

Posted by:Chad Jenningson Monday, September 29th, 2014 at 9:46 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Girardi cites home runs and base running as offensive culprits

Yankees Girardi Baseball

The Yankees were 11th in the American League in OPS with runners in scoring position. The four teams below them: Houston, Boston, Tampa Bay and Texas. Those are four of the worst teams in the league.

“There were a lot of nights that it wasn’t necessarily with runners in scoring position, we just didn’t get a lot of hits,” Girardi said. “So, your opportunities were fairly limited. I do believe that driving in runs for a lot of people is a skill. And the reason I say that is it’s more of a mental skill than a physical skill. Understanding what you need to do. Understanding how to relax in the moment. Not trying to do too much.

“And that’s why I think you consistently see a lot of guys, and it’s the same guys, at the top of the chart when it comes to RBIs. They know how to do it. ‘You know what, I’ve got to hit a groundball to second base. That’s all they’re trying to do. Let me get this run home.’ And a lot of times, some players are better at controlling their emotions and understanding what they have to do. So I do believe it is a skill. Now as a club, overall, can you predict one year to the next? No. I think it’s harder when you start taking 13, 14, 20 different hitters. But I think there is an art to it, I do.”

If it’s an art, then were this year’s Yankees simply not good at it?

“You know what, you look at a lot of statistical categories, we’re about middle-of-the-pack everywhere, whether it was batting average or ERA,” Girardi said. “Part of it was we didn’t hit home runs early (in the season) in a ballpark we were supposed to hit home runs. We didn’t hit home runs early, and that was a reason. At times our runners couldn’t score from second on a hit just because they weren’t physically able, and that’s something I think we as a club need to get better at base running. Some of it’s limited because of the speed of some of the guys that we have, but I that’s something tangible we need to get better at.”

Granted, offense is down throughout baseball, but it does seem possible that the Yankees have been affected more than most. Might the Yankees adjust the way they handle defensive shifts in the future?

“We talk about it every time,” Girardi said. “Will it be something we work on in spring training? Yeah, it will be.”

Associated Press photo

 
 

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Posted by:Chad Jenningson Monday, September 29th, 2014 at 7:33 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Girardi on coaching staff: “We’re all evaluated on what we do”

Brian Roberts, Kevin LongJoe Girardi was asked today whether he expects to have his entire coaching staff back next season. His answer was essential one of uncertainty.

“The one thing that’s done here every year is we’re all evaluated on what we do,” Girardi said. “My coaches work their tail ends off for me, and obviously I have a close relationship with all of them. But it’s what, 20 hours since we played a game or whatever it is, and we haven’t had a chance to sit down and talk about it. I’m sure I’m being evaluated as well, but I can tell you one thing, they worked extremely hard for me. We’ll sit down and talk, and obviously we’ll get a couple days removed here. I’ll sit down and talk to Brian (Cashman). I mean, the players are being evaluated. This happens every year, whether we win or lose. That’s just the nature of New York and it’s the nature of the business. We’re just 20 hours removed from what we did, and I haven’t had a chance to talk to Brian or who I need to talk to.”

Although the Yankees scored the second-most runs in baseball just two years — and although they’ve led the league in runs scored for three of his eight seasons — hitting coach Kevin Long has certainly taken the most heat of anyone on the coaching staff. He’s presided over some terrific offensive seasons, but this year the Yankees scored the third-fewest runs in the American League.

“I don’t see really, anything different (in Long’s work),” Girardi said. “For me, he works tirelessly. He’s always working with the guys on their swings, he’s looking at tape, but as I said, we’re all being evaluated. We’ve missed the playoffs two years in a row. That’s part of being a coach.”

What does Girardi look for in a hitting coach?

“Philosophy, work ethic, preparation, helping the players prepare for the game,” Girardi said. “You can do all those things right and as a team you may not have as much success as you want. That’s part of the game. So that’s why we’re constantly being evaluated as coaches and as players. And as a player you can do all the same work you did as the previous year, and it may not work out the same.”

After missing the playoffs two years in a row, it seems entirely possible there will be some sort of coaching staff shake up. I think it’s always hard to determine how much credit or blame a coach deserves. But I also think the Yankees front office might feel a need to do something in response to two disappointing seasons.

“As I said, we’re going to sit down and evaluate everything, just like we do every year,” Girardi said. “I can remember being here in winning years and we sit down and evaluate what do we need to do to get better. And that will be done shortly I’m sure.”

Associated Press photo

 
 
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Posted by:Chad Jenningson Monday, September 29th, 2014 at 4:57 pm. InMisc with Comments Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post


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