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


Mets reportedly checking on Matsui

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Dec 03, 2009 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

According to NPBtracker’s twitter, the Mets have asked to see the results of a Hideki Matsui physical. That could be Omar Minaya  simply kicking the tires and turning over every rock, or it could be legitimate interest in putting Matsui in the outfield.

It a lot of ways, Matsui would make sense for the Mets. They certainly need a bat, especially in the outfield and especially one that hits for power. If Matsui can legitimately play left field, he could give that lineup a boost, and Matsui wouldn’t have to leave New York, which might be appealing to him and make him more likely to sign.

It makes no sense in one very obvious way. Matsui has played a total of 23 games in the outfield the past two seasons. Using a medical report to decide he can play there again would be a giant leap of faith.

That said, when MLB.com’s depth chart lists your starting left fielder as Angel Pagan, I guess any and every option is on the table.

• Baseball America has listed the top prospects from the Arizona Fall League. It’s subscription only and has few surprises and no Yankees. BA has also listed some players to watch in the Rule 5. Of their top 10, two are Yankees. Of their second 10, one is a Yankee. We’ll get much more into the Rule 5 candidates in the coming days.

• Speaking of Baseball America, editor John Manuel ranked the minor league systems of every organization for SI.com. He put the top five in order, the bottom five in order and split the middle 20 into a top half and lower half. The Yankees made the top half of the middle group (so did the Red Sox).

• Jerry Crasnick ranks Ben Sheets as one of the potential winter bargains. Given the Yankees depth of young, upper-level starters (Kennedy, Nova, Kontos, McAllister, Sanchez, etc.) I tend to think an injury risk like Sheets or Rich Harden makes sense for the Yankees if they can get him at a reasonable price, though that might not be possible.

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125 Responses to “Mets reportedly checking on Matsui”

  1. tex's friend December 3rd, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    Josh Johnson had a good year and one in 2006. Why exactly do we think he would excel in the AL East?

  2. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    I think not.

  3. Rishi December 3rd, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    SI_JonHeyman: if #mets asked for matsui’s medicals, maybe they just want to learn something about medicine. they are NOT going for #matsui
    26 minutes ago from web

  4. tex's friend December 3rd, 2009 at 3:59 pm

    I like Ben Sheets as an option if the Yankees can make it happen. And of course, Texas is in disarray right now which may make it harder to convince him to go there like he was going to last year.

  5. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    I would love to see the Yankees sign Ben Sheets.

    I could see the Mets trying to sign Matsui to play LF – after all they signed Moises Alou and he couldn’t stay healthy either.

  6. Oscar P. December 3rd, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    If Matsui went to the Mets then he would have to play outfield, then he would hurt his knee and go on the DL. So yeah, he would fit right in.

  7. Erin December 3rd, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    Rishi
    December 3rd, 2009 at 3:57 pm
    SI_JonHeyman: if #mets asked for matsui’s medicals, maybe they just want to learn something about medicine. they are NOT going for #matsui

    **************
    LOL

    I want Matsui to play for a New York team, just not the Mets. ;)

  8. Bronx Jeers December 3rd, 2009 at 4:10 pm

    Matsui to replace Alou on the Amazin’s DL?

    I’d hate to see a great Yankee go out like that.

  9. pat December 3rd, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    Grain of Salt……

    Caller on WFAN radio said the rumor coming from Japan is the Mets are looking at Matsui to play 1B.

  10. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    And the rumor from the Mets is that Matsui is looking to play Japan.

    I don’t know what to believe!

  11. Erin December 3rd, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    pat
    December 3rd, 2009 at 4:11 pm
    Grain of Salt……

    Caller on WFAN radio said the rumor coming from Japan is the Mets are looking at Matsui to play 1B.

    ******************
    Didn’t the rumor that Boston was interested in Sui come from Japan? I wonder if they just make this stuff up.

  12. MJL December 3rd, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    If anyone’s going to Phish at MSG tonight, we’re starting a “Let’s Go Yankees” chant at setbreak…do it!

  13. Patrick from CT December 3rd, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    Sui is a 450 to 500 at bat DH.
    Any more than that he will break down.

    My guess is that Damon will be offered a deal to be a 100game OF and 50game DH for about 9mil and 2 years max.

    If Damon walks Sui will be back for around 7mil.

    The Mets need to get real and sign a big time starting pitcher and big time bat that can play inthe field.

    Sui in the NL make no sence.

  14. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:27 pm

    The problem is, I don’t think Ben Sheets is going to come “cheap”.

    He probably will make in excess of 10 million + incentives, even in a bad market.

    His elbow surgery was the same surgery Pettitte had a few years ago. He has been rehabbing at the Rangers facilities diligently since the surgery.

    I bet he makes some coin this off-season.

    If he’s healthy, he’s a better pitcher than John Lackey and Lackey will make over 15 million in this market.

    Rich Harden? I’d bring back Wang before I take Harden. Harden is always hurt and the Yankees don’t need a guy like that for the back end of the rotation.

    You can put Aceves in the back end of the rotation and use Harden money in other areas to improve the team.

  15. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    I believe the Yankees have graduated from the “take an injured pitcher and pay him millions” part of the world.

    They did that with Pavano, Lieber, Dotel, etc with mixed results.

    This team doesn’t have a lot of holes.

    Once they figure out who is playing LF and whether or not Halladay is obtainable, their needs are slight.

    I think Andy will come back. I also don’t buy the spin that both Chamberlain and Hughes will be in the rotation next year.

    Sounds great in December. Unlikely to occur in April.

    They did that before with horrible results. I don’t see that playing out again.

    If Halladay is unobtainable, I could see them putting money into Ben Sheets (the organization loves Ben Sheets) and have Hughes and Chamberlain challenge each other for the last spot in the rotation. The loser goes to the pen.

  16. Patrick from CT December 3rd, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    I’ll take Pettitte and Sheets at 10mil+ each over trading Joba or Phil and and paying Halladay…

  17. jp December 3rd, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    no way sheets is going to make 15 million next year.

  18. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    You may not get both guys at 10 million each.

    I don’t expect Andy to take too much of a paycut (nor should he) this time around. If I was him, if they don’t give me a 12 million base with incentives, I retire.

    Last year, he did them a favor. He doesn’t owe them another favor this year. This year, the Yankees should do him a solid.

    Sheets? He’s going to have an aggressive market, IMO because of the shortage of quality starting pitchers available.

    I think his number will exceed 10 with incentives.

    The Yankees could still fit him in. I just don’t think he’s going to be a “cheap” option.

  19. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    Devil’s advocate here, but wouldn’t there be a substantive difference between going with putting Joba and Hughes in the rotation in 2010 and putting Hughes and Kennedy in the rotation in 2008?

    It would not be a repeat of the exact same experiment.

    (that said, I’m intrigued by this Halladay fellow)

  20. RS December 3rd, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    “I’ll take Pettitte and Sheets at 10mil+ each over trading Joba or Phil and and paying Halladay…”

    That’s exactly what I would do as well. I also like Sheets better than Harden because a healthy Sheets is somewhere between Burnett and Sabathia, whereas a healthy Harden is somewhere between Joba and Kazmir (ie. a 5-inning pitcher).

  21. JohnC December 3rd, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    Maybe they can Sheets for 8 mill. If not, I’d take a shot at Bedard.

  22. James (One of the Many) December 3rd, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    looks like Mad Dog is on letterman tonight, what are the odds of an ugly suit, over a dozen cackles or the mention of something overly odd?

  23. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Devil’s advocate here, but wouldn’t there be a substantive difference between going with putting Joba and Hughes in the rotation in 2010 and putting Hughes and Kennedy in the rotation in 2008?

    Yes, there is a difference in that Joba will be throwing without restrictions whereas both Hughes and Kennedy faced strict innings’ limits. That said, Hughes and Kennedy were both injured/ineffective and so the innings never factored.

    Bottom line is that the only way you can find out if these guys can pitch in the majors is to let them pitch in the majors. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get insurance for them. (Kelvim Escobar/Ben Sheets)

    Escobar intrigues me because he can be signed with the option of using him either in the rotation or the pen depending on how Hughes and Joba pitch.

    As for Sheets – I don’t see him getting 10 mil per year + incentives. I could see him getting a 2 year deal similar to the 1 year deal that Andy signed last year 5.5 in base with incentives that take it up to 10-11 mil for the year.

    Last year, he did them a favor. He doesn’t owe them another favor this year. This year, the Yankees should do him a solid.

    Andy didn’t do anyone a favor but Andy. He was horrible down the stretch in 2008 and hurt and it came on the heels of a year where he signed a contract for 15 mil without giving the Yankees a head’s up that he was about to be named in the Mitchell Report.

    I think the Yankees will offer Andy a fair contract but they aren’t going to bend over for him.

  24. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Nick,

    Not sure. Hughes is going to have innings limits and Joba certainly didn’t distinguish himself well in the second half as a starter.

    I just don’t see the Yankees putting 40% of their rotation in the hands of two young guys, one definitely with innings limits and the other a question mark as a starter.

    Could it happen? Sure. However, I recall too many December promises (“Bubba Crosby is my CF”, “No interest in Johnny Damon”, “No room for Mark Teixeira”) that go by the wayside when reality sets in.

    I think Johnny Damon is the key to the entire winter. If they re-sign him, I bet they pass on Doc and perhaps go the Ben Sheets route for the rotation.

    If Damon leaves, I think they make an aggressive play for Halladay and find a lower cost option for LF.

  25. Jerkface December 3rd, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Hughes innings limit is going to be on no consequence because his career high in IP is 140. So sayeth cash

  26. MJL December 3rd, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Mad Dog on Letterman is a repeat.

  27. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Andy Pettitte did the Yankees a huge favor last off-season.

    He could have just retired. He’s made over 100 million dollars playing baseball. He doesn’t need the money.

    Lots of guys have bad second halves of a season (he was pitching hurt, BTW, he could have shut it down) and don’t take 60% paycuts.

    If he retired, guess what? They don’t win the World Series this year.

    So yes, the Yankees should do the right thing by Andy and not make him the designated paycut guy on the roster.

    If not, go find a guy in this marketplace for under 15 million a season who gives you what he gives you.

    Not an easy find these days.

  28. Erin December 3rd, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    SJ, Hughes innings limit isn’t going to be quite as severe as Joba’s was, right? That’s what I’ve heard anyway.

  29. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    Well, Cashman isn’t exactly going to tip his hand on innings limits for the young arms in the middle of winter. That would be dumb since it would tipoff to other teams he’s looking for innings eating arms.

    I find it highly unlikely Hughes will double his innings output next year. That’s the kind of risk the Yankees have been avoiding with young arms over the past several seasons.

  30. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    If Damon leaves, I think they make an aggressive play for Halladay and find a lower cost option for LF.

    Not sure that one impacts the other at all.

    If the price for Halladay is still too high Cashman won’t do it. He will not trade high level prospects for a guy he has to give a 100 mil contract to. That’s going to be the case whether Damon is a Yankee or not. Or whether Andy is a Yankee or not for that matter.

    The only way Roy Halladay becomes a Yankee is if Anthopolus accepts a very weak package and Brian convinces Hal that, like Tex last year, this is an exception that has to be made.

    Oh and you can bet your bottom dollar that if Hal were to approve a deal for Halladay that Andy certainly isn’t coming back.

  31. The Damon-ator December 3rd, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    if the mets want power they might want to consider moving the fences lower and closer to homeplate. those dimensions are ridiculous. im all for pitcher’s parks but citi field is absurd.

  32. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    Erin,

    They say no. However, if he’s a starter all year, I don’t see him pitching 180 innings. That’s quite a buildup from last year.

    If he’s just a 5 inning pitcher next year, they may not call it “innings limits” but, it sure taxes a bullpen.

    JMO but, if both Hughes and Chamberlain are back in 2010, I think one of them winds up in the bullpen.

  33. Pat M. December 3rd, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    SJ…My issue is if Matsui walks, who’s in the 5 slot to cover Alex…..Ben Sheets could be the best signing this winter….Is Tony going to camp in mid-Feb ???? He should be getting a whiff of P.T. in the Spring

  34. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    Not just innings limits, but major league experience.

    In 2008, Hughes and Kennedy had very little if it, just a handful of 2007 starts at the end of the season.

    In 2010, Joba and Hughes would both have considerably more ML experience than that. It’s not all GOOD experience, but they learn from the tough times as well.

    I’m not saying it’s going to happen or advocating it, but I don’t think Hughes/Kennedy ’08 is perfectly analagous to Joba/Hughes ’10.

    CC
    Halladay
    AJ
    Pettitte
    Joba/Hughes

    Would be brutal for our foes. With Wang rehabbing somewhere???

  35. Mike RI December 3rd, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    I can see the Yanks signing Bedard , Sheets or Harden. If Matsui and Damon go. I can see Jermaine Dye in pinstripes.

  36. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    He could have just retired. He’s made over 100 million dollars playing baseball. He doesn’t need the money.

    Doesn’t need it, but I bet he likes it.

    With incentives, Andy ended up making 11 mil last year – that’s a lot for a #3 starter. The Yankees aren’t going to say, “well gee whiz Andy, you’re such a good guy we’re going to give you $16 mil for the big favor you did us last season”

    It doesn’t work that way and you’re crazy if you think it does. Andy will get a respectable offer, 1 year between 8-10 mil, maybe some additional incentives, but that’s it. If he doesn’t like it the Yankees will move on.

  37. G. Love December 3rd, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    I don’t see the Yankees giving the final 2 spots to Hughes and Joba either.

    It’s too much uncertainty without enough of a backup plan.

    Trading for Hallyday or signing Sheets in addition to Andy returning is probably the best option.

    It allows one of the young pitchers to break in as a #5 and the other, if they aren’t dealt for Doc, to be an asset in the pen.

    This team is not going to follow a championship season with going into next season willing to take it on the chin by depending on Hughes and Joba in pivotal spots.

    I don’t see it. I know that gets all the prospect huggers furious, but it’s the truth.

    Cashman proved last season he has learned from what went wrong in 2008. And you can sugar coat it all you want, but it went VERY wrong. Hughes and IPK were overmatched after being handed rotation spots.

    From everything we’ve heard the organization wasn’t exactly in love with Joba’s attitude last season.

    I don’t think they are going to risk starting the season in a hole to save a few shekels.

    If Sheets is healthy, he’s a perfect fit since he only costs money.

    As a fan I would much rather see Joba vs. Phil in the spring with the winner getting the 5 spot.

    I think that’s exactly the kind of challenge that Joba needs since at times he appeared complacent last year.

  38. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    Nick -

    There’s one thing for certain and that’s if Halladay is a Yankee they will not bring Andy back.

    The Yankees are not going to commit nearly 80 mil of payroll into 4 pitchers.

    So when deciding what you’re willing to trade for Halladay throw Andy into the package as well.

  39. Betsy December 3rd, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    SJ, I think the Yankees should make a decision on Doc independent of Damon. They clearly want to solidify/upgrade their rotation regardless of how LF plays out……..I agree, Andy is deserving of a guaranteed contract. However, it would be nice if he decided what he wanted to do before the new year; he always drags these things out……

    I can’t see Sheets coming here (even though the Yankees loved him last year) – he’s likely going to the Rangers. SJ, if the Yanks are done with paying for injured pitchers, then why would they risk signing Sheets? Is he considered basically healthy now?

    Back to Damon – I don’t think the Yankees should wait too long after their offer before they withdraw it and move on. Moves they may want to make should Damon reject their offer may not be available if they delay….I really don’t think he’s coming back at this point. He’s going for security and the Yanks probably won’t offer him more than a year and a team option for another (at least, I hope that’s the case; I don’t want him back for 2 guaranteed).

  40. Mark in Tampa December 3rd, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    “There’s one thing for certain and that’s if Halladay is a Yankee they will not bring Andy back.”

    Chip,

    I agree with you 100% on that, I have been saying that for weeks.

  41. Mike December 3rd, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    “I think Andy will come back. I also don’t buy the spin that both Chamberlain and Hughes will be in the rotation next year.”

    Agree 100% SJ… I highly doubt that Cashman has them both in the rotation next year. Too much uncertainty.

  42. Donnie Dodger December 3rd, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    Cashman saying Hughes and Joba will both be in the rotation is like him saying Crosby would be our CF or Coke is a starter….

    Cashman learned his lesson from 2008.

  43. crawdaddy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    “JMO but, if both Hughes and Chamberlain are back in 2010, I think one of them winds up in the bullpen.”

    I think you could be right or that one of them is traded for Halladay. As I stated this morning, the question remaining to be answered is how do the Yankees currently feel about Hughes and Joba? Do they still feel as highly about them now as they did following the 2007 season? Something tells me they don’t and if that’s true then something might give like one of them being traded or one going to the bullpen and the Yankees signing somebody like Sheets for the rotation. Sure, it might cost more than 10M, but it would be cheaper than signing Lackey or trading for Halladay and then paying him especially if they can get Sheets on a one year deal.

  44. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 3rd, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    Chip,

    I think you’re dead wrong.

    If Andy wants to come back, they’ll bring him back. He’d be their fourth or fifth starter and will not cost them THAT much.

    Andy is coming back regardless of what Cashman does re: Halladay. Period.

  45. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    On Halladay

    I’ve seen a few posts that show a potential rotation of: CC, Halladay, Andy & AJ as the top four – but folks you’re forgetting a MAJOR thing.

    If Roy’s here, Andy will not be.

    I’ve used the Johan analogy a few times to point out why I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for Cashman to send prospects to Toronto for a guy he then has to sign to a big contract but there’s something else about those negotiations to keep in mind. Cashman said flat out that if he had traded for Johan it also would have cost him Andy because he wasn’t going to be able to re-sign him.

    Unless Andy is willing to take a 1 or 2 million dollar contract I don’t see him being brought back if the Yankees are committing nearly 60 mil to AJ, CC and Halladay.

    So (for the sake of argument) say the package would be either Joba and other minor leaguers for Halladay

    The rotation would then be:

    Halladay
    CC
    AJ
    Hughes
    Kennedy

    or if it’s Hughes that goes:

    Halladay
    CC
    AJ
    Joba
    Kennedy

  46. champ809 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    If not, go find a guy in this marketplace for under 15 million a season who gives you what he gives you.

    Not an easy find these days.
    ******************************************************

    Randy Wolf,Brett Myers… imean I’ve loved Pett from day one-i feel he got robbed in for the cy young when Hentgen beat him out- but he’s a mid rotation pitcher now and in last year’smarket wouldn’t have sniffed $15mil from anybody the initial $10mil was where his market was last year but his pride wouldn’t let him take it….i understand.
    He also won’t see a $15mil offer from anybody in baseball this offseason….10mil base 2.5mil in potential incentives is about right for Andy all factors considered

  47. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    Chip,

    Here is what I know…..

    Nobody in the history of MLB has won more post-season games than Andy Pettitte.

    He won all three clinching games for the Yankees this post-season.

    He logs innings, pitches hurt, and is a borderline Hall of Famer.

    The Yankees got him at a bargain basement price last year, given his resume. He only added to it with the season he had.

    He had to sing for his supper last year. Borderline HOF’ers don’t need to do that at this stage of their careers. Yet, he did it. That’s doing the team a solid.

    He did it because he wanted to win another ring in NY. He did it and isn’t going to have to do it again because he doesn’t have to.

    You are crazy if you think he is.

    Guys like Andy Pettitte always get overlooked by fans because they don’t have a fancy nickname or throw 98 MPH.

    Yet, no World Series win without him this year.

    The Yankees either pay him fair market value or they need a #3 starter (really a #2 since AJ isn’t exactly reliable) in a big way.

    That will cost them more money than the money they would have to pay Pettitte.

    Pat M,

    I think if Damon walks, they re-sign Matsui to DH and go low rent for LF. I think they would put the money into pitching.

    I do agree though if both Damon and Matsui walk, it leaves a big hole in the lineup.

    Not sure where Tony is going to be yet. The Pirates are making noises about inviting him to ST. If they do, he may play in the first exhibition game against the Yankees in Tampa on March 3. That would be a blast if it happens!

  48. Soul December 3rd, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    I agree with those who say there is no way Cashman goes into camp with Hughes/Joba both penciled into the rotation. Way too risky.

  49. DTX 27 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    Let Hughes and Joba battle it out for a ST spot. Winner goes to the rotation, loser goes to the pen. That is a much more effective way of going about it than guaranteeing them both spots in the rotation, like Hughes and IPK in 08.

  50. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    “There’s one thing for certain and that’s if Halladay is a Yankee they will not bring Andy back.”

    This is certain? Andy would be a one-year deal for something close to what they paid him this season. Then he’s off the books.

    If they got Doc and let Andy go because of money, they have two cheap pitchers at 4 and 5: Joba or Hughes (probably) and… who? Aceves?

  51. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Mad Prince -

    It’s a moot point since Halladay’s not going to be a Yankee.

  52. crawdaddy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Anybody saying that Pettitte won’t be back if the Yankees get Halladay or Sheets is wrong in my opinion. The Yankees are going to bring Pettitte back if he wants to pitch again. They like having him part of the team’s frabic and as long as they view him being able to pitch effectively in 2010 then he’ll be back.

  53. raymagnetic December 3rd, 2009 at 5:08 pm

    Good thing Cashman is a prospect hugger :)

    Thanks to Cashman the Yankees have CC, Hughes, Joba, and AJ.

    If Cashman had decided to trade for Johan and his shaky elbow there would be no CC, no Hughes, and I’m pretty sure no 27 WS championship.

  54. SJ44 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:08 pm

    Randy Wolf and Brett Myers can’t clean Andy Pettitte’s cleats.

    Both guys are a HUGE dropoff from Andy Pettitte.

    That is, if you are interested in winning World Series.

  55. Erin December 3rd, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    DTX 27
    December 3rd, 2009 at 5:06 pm
    Let Hughes and Joba battle it out for a ST spot. Winner goes to the rotation, loser goes to the pen.

    ***************
    I’d have no problem with this, seeing as they’ve both proven they can succeed in the pen

  56. Yank1 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    I echo that, DTX. A competition is the best way to go. Don’t think having both in the rotation is a good idea.

  57. Neil December 3rd, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    If Damon wants to listen to the advice of Scott Boras …. let him.
    Do the Halladay deal, one year of Matsui, and Marlon Byrd anywhere in the outfield will suffice until Carl Crawford is a free agent at the end of 2010.

  58. Chip December 3rd, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    SJ44

    He’s won more games than anyone in the postseason for a couple of reasons:

    1. There are more rounds in the playoffs than there were 20, 30, 40 years ago

    2. Pitching for the Yankees he had lots of opportunities.

    As for what he’s done for the Yankees – I’ll say it again – Andy gets a ton of credit for being some great guy and really that’s not necessarily the case.

    Prior to the 2008 season Andy hemmed and hawwed about whether or not he wanted to pitch for the 2008 season. Yankees left him a nice 15 mil offer on the table and then he waits until he’s about to be outed for using HGH in the Mitchell Report he grabs it before the news becomes public (at which time one thinks the Yankees might have wanted to re-think the offer)

    He has won a lot of games for the Yankees, pitched well and the Yankees have made him very rich. They don’t owe him a thing.

  59. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 3rd, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Chip,

    He may or may not. Regardless, Andy is back and I think SJ spelled out the right way: we don’t win w/o him last year.

    He’ll get paid what he deserves if (more like when) he decides to return.

  60. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 3rd, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    Chip,

    One could easily argue that baseball today is more competitive overall in terms of talent.

    20, 30, 40 years ago are moot…he’s done this in his era for the past what, 13, 14 years?

    He’s done and continues to do great things for the Yankees. He’s not the same pitcher he was 10 years ago, no one’s denying that, but the man still gets it done.

    Your little quip about HGH is moot.

    The guy plays to win. The guy wins.

    Has nothing to do with the Yankees “owing” him anything. He’s a solid middle of the rotation starter, end of story.

  61. champ809 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    you guys need to let 2008 go already!!!!

    it’s the 2010 season so it’s two years later and both Joba and Hughes are much further along in their development and have had varying modicums of success on the ML level both as starters and relievers.
    The optimum value to the organization is for both of these guys to establish themselves as major league starters and eventually over the next 3-4 years move into the ace of the staff roles that is projected for them. If that is ever to happen then they must be given the OPPURTUNITY NOW to do that.
    What uncertainty are we really talking about? From a talent standpoint everytime that their respective turns came up in the rotation theoretically they would be matched against an inferior pitcher as the Braves are the only team i can think of with a starting five with equal talent at the backend of the rotation(Jurjjens and Hanson). Everything is lined up now for this to happen and they should continue to trust the player development system and turn these guys loose,they will be fine.

  62. DaSaint007 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    Chip,

    SJ hit it on the head. From even just a public relations standpoint, they Yankees want the winningest post-season pitcher back on their team for 2010, regardless of the Halladay results.

    With Halladay:
    CC+Halladay+AJ+Andy+1 of Hughes/Joba/Aceves/Gaudin

    Without Halladay:
    CC+AJ+Andy+ 2 of Hughes/Joba/Aceves/Gaudin + Free Agent Rehab.

    I think that Matsui is more likely to be re-signed than Damon, who wants desperately to get to 3000 hits. He can only do that if he gets approx 4 more years of productive playing time. 2 years from the Yankees doesn’t make it likely that someone will give him another contract at 38, so it’s either multi-year deal now or never.

  63. DaSaint007 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    Chip,

    SJ hit it on the head. From even just a public relations standpoint, they Yankees want the winningest post-season pitcher back on their team for 2010, regardless of the Halladay results.

    With Halladay:
    CC+Halladay+AJ+Andy+1 of Hughes/Joba/Aceves/Gaudin

    Without Halladay:
    CC+AJ+Andy+ 2 of Hughes/Joba/Aceves/Gaudin + Free Agent Rehab.

    I think that Matsui is more likely to be re-signed than Damon, who wants desperately to get to 3000 hits. He can only do that if he gets approx 4 more years of productive playing time. 2 years from the Yankees doesn’t make it likely that someone will give him another contract at 38, so it’s either multi-year deal now or never.

  64. Pat M. December 3rd, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    SJ, Pirates are talking about moving Doumit, if that turns out to be true, it means they are openning up the tracts for Tony…..Been saying it since the season ended, no way will both Hughes & Chamberlain will break camp in the rotation together……Finding a # 5 hitter is imperative if they lose Matsui…..I see this as the # 1 issue right now….

  65. crawdaddy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    “The optimum value to the organization is for both of these guys to establish themselves as major league starters and eventually over the next 3-4 years move into the ace of the staff roles that is projected for them. If that is ever to happen then they must be given the OPPURTUNITY NOW to do that.”

    What if the organization’s evaluators doesn’t feel one or both of them aren’t going to be staff aces now? You’re right it’s not 2008 any longer and opinions do change.

  66. Baseball Guy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    I’ve said this before – if the Yankees win next year it’ll be “The bought the penant.”

    So, if it were I, and it’s not, although I give the Yankees some of my hard earned money in a small Season Ticket package (and I do this because the Yankees always invest in the team, so I feel I should do my part….)

    So, if it were I, I’d pay Pettitte, I’d bring in Sheets, and I’d sign Lackey.

    I’m exaggerating, a little, but the Yankees have struggled in years when they try to be cheap and fiscally responsible with the bottom of the roster.

    Go for the gusto.

    No Halliday – he costs $$$ and players. Get Lackey. get Sheets. Bring back Pettitte.

    We’ll all hear “The Yankees buy championships.”

    Yup.

    Maybe. (Don’t they all???)

    BUT, we’ll also say, “The Yankees are champs.”

    If it were me, and it’s not, that trumps everything else. $200 million or $215 million. Pay the extra.

    Win. Period.

  67. Hunt December 3rd, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    In 08… Hughes was coming off an excellent September and won a playoff game.

    Kennedy destroyed the minor leagues in 07 and was great in September that year.

    This year, Joba was dreadful down the stretch and Hughes only made a handful of starts in May and pitched to a 5.45 ERA.

    Saying they are both in the rotation is posturing by Cashman. Girardi and Cash themselves said the rotation needs to be addressed at the DVD premier last week.

  68. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    SJ, I agree with you that we don’t win #27 without Andy — we probably don’t get to October in the first place and then don’t win there without him. What he did in the postseason was, in a baseball sense, heroic.

    But I recall you taking a very hard line on Andy on this board a year ago when Wave Your Hat (in particular), CB, Pat M. and myself were arguing that he should and would be brought back at around what he ended up making.

    Like I said before, I think Andy will be back at around what he made last year, give or take, but maybe with more of it guaranteed and not incentive-based. Unless he retires, of course.

    But if we’re basing 2010 contracts on past service and #27 heroics, does that mean Matsui and Damon get more than (New York) market value?

  69. U-Turn December 3rd, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    Has Cash even said that Hughes and Joba are going to be in the rotation next year?

    From what I can recall, the furthest he went was saying that he has plenty of depth for the bottom of the rotation with guys like Hughes, Joba, Ian, Gaudin, Aceves, etc.

  70. raymagnetic December 3rd, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    What exactly is Cashman’s incentive to trade for Halladay, and trade one of Hughes/Joba for him?

    He didn’t do it in July and they won the WS. Why on earth would he trade one of them now?

    I just don’t see it happening.

  71. G. Love December 3rd, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    Chip,

    I normally agree with your points, but thinking that if they get Doc they can’t bring back Andy doesn’t sound right to me.

    Andy is a year to year pitcher with next year probably being his last.

    Even if they gave him 10 million for a season, I don’t see how that stops them from getting Doc if they deem a trade worthwhile for him.

    I think with MLB basically telling the rest of the league the “days off advantage” in the post season is over, the Yankees know there is no way they can walk into another post season with 3 pitchers.

    I honestly think before all is said and done the rotation will be CC, AJ, Andy, Sheets/Doc and then Joba/Phil.

    If they don’t get Sheets or Doc maybe they take a chance on Bedard/Harden, but I hope it doesn’t come to that.

  72. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 3rd, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    raymagnetic,

    Personally, he probably didn’t because of how lockdown Hughes was out of the bullpen and at that time Joba was still part of the rotation. Maybe he wanted to see how they shook out the rest of the season which makes sense because as someone pointed out on here a while ago, Joba was 8-3 at the break with a 3.7something era.

    if they are tempted now, it is because there is some concern about either or both of these guys moving forward.

    I’m not lobbying either way…if we got Doc, I’d be fine by it at the right price, if we don’t, I am fine as long as Andy returns and we find someone decent for the 4th/5th slot.

  73. crawdaddy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    “I honestly think before all is said and done the rotation will be CC, AJ, Andy, Sheets/Doc and then Joba/Phil.

    If they don’t get Sheets or Doc maybe they take a chance on Bedard/Harden, but I hope it doesn’t come to that.”

    That’s about how I see it too. I’m leaning towards Sheets over Halladay if Cashman can sign Sheets for one year and the price for Halladay is too expensive when it comes to traded players.

  74. Dave D. December 3rd, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    Andy has much more leverage this year that he did last.

    This year, he was was healthy all year except missing one start in September. He was lights out in the 2nd half and was our 2nd most reliable pitcher all the way down the stretch and through the playoffs. He won 3 clinching games in the playoffs, including the last one on 3 days rest to clinch the WS.

    Last year, he had a 4.54 ERA and was dreadful in the 2nd half and had a balky elbow. He looked finished.

    This year, he has earned the big money that he wants and the Yanks should give it to him, not play hardball. Last year, they had the right to play hardball.

  75. Bill December 3rd, 2009 at 5:35 pm

    craw,

    I’m with you. Don’t think Hughes and Joba will both be in the rotation, whoever looks better will be in the rotation and the other in the pen. And we’ll fill that other spot with a Sheets or someone, if we can’t get Doc.

  76. Phil December 3rd, 2009 at 5:38 pm

    I think whether they get Halladay or not that if Andy doesn’t retire he will be back on an incentive deal with a bunch of easy incentives. They will play it out publically as him still trying to decide, then when he comes in late, he’ll be hero for giving a hometown discount.

  77. Hi-Tek December 3rd, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    If the theory was that Joba came into camp out of shape and unmotivated this year… wouldn’t the smart money be to create a competition for a rotation spot? Let Joba and Hughes know that they have to battle for one spot… that should bring out the best in them.

    I too am in the camp that Cash is just posturing when he says Hughes and Joba will both be in the starting rotation.

  78. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 3rd, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    SJ44,

    You kinda have to respond to Nick’s bit about you being down on Andy this time last year…I remember too.

  79. Phil December 3rd, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    Cash didn’t say Phil and Joba are both in the rotation, he said they still view both as starters.

  80. champ809 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    “What if the organization’s evaluators doesn’t feel one or both of them aren’t going to be staff aces now? You’re right it’s not 2008 any longer and opinions do change.”

    that obviously is a different animal but that’s my point
    the organization Cash and the guys continue to say Joba and Hughes are starters and will be in the rotation next year as starting pitchers

  81. Erin December 3rd, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    Hi-Tek
    December 3rd, 2009 at 5:41 pm
    If the theory was that Joba came into camp out of shape and unmotivated this year… wouldn’t the smart money be to create a competition for a rotation spot? Let Joba and Hughes know that they have to battle for one spot… that should bring out the best in them.

    *************
    I think it’s a great idea to have the 5th spot be a competion between them in ST. And whoever ends up going to the pen has proven he can succeed there. Win-win, IMO

  82. Tim December 3rd, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    What’s wrong with making Andy work for his supper?

    He is 38 yrs old and has a balky shoulder and has not had an ERA under 4 since coming back here. He isin’t CC Sabathia or someone who we know what we can expect from. Do we really know what to expect from Andy next year if he comes back?

    Don’t let the guy get too comfortable… make him work each start and chase the money. Dangle the carrot in front of him. Nothing wrong with motivating the man.

    The incentive deal worked last year and Cashman would be wise to offer him the same deal this year.

  83. Robbykid December 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Is it too early for Jackson to be brought up?

  84. Robbykid December 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Is it too early for Jackson to be brought up?

  85. crawdaddy December 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    “that obviously is a different animal but that’s my point
    the organization Cash and the guys continue to say Joba and Hughes are starters and will be in the rotation next year as starting pitchers”

    I wouldn’t believe Cashmoney if he told me that straight to my face. Not at this time of the year when he’s in stealth mode.

  86. Blake December 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    If they don’t move on Halladay then I would really like a Sheets deal. If he’s 100% as they say he is he could the the #2 starter, he’s that good.

    Chip, I agree with a lot of the things you say but I do believe that if Andy wants to come back then they will bring him back regardless of what they do with Halladay. If they bring Halladay in then likely either Joba or Hughes will have been traded to get him and they would need another starter anyway.

  87. Blake December 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    If they don’t move on Halladay then I would really like a Sheets deal. If he’s 100% as they say he is he could the the #2 starter, he’s that good.

    Chip, I agree with a lot of the things you say but I do believe that if Andy wants to come back then they will bring him back regardless of what they do with Halladay. If they bring Halladay in then likely either Joba or Hughes will have been traded to get him and they would need another starter anyway.

  88. Pat M. December 3rd, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    Nick in SF I certainly remember the great Pettite debate last off season….I think the # that we were tossing around was 13 million……Once the Yanks inked both CC & AJ, The Hendrick Brothers were more apt to answer the phone when Cashman called…..Could be the same scenerio this winter…..I’m taking the 10 points ……I know as Ynkee fans we get so caught up in the moment and sometimes turn a blind eye to the future…..That being said, getting Granderson, keeping Hughes & Joba is a smart move…..It’s incredible to know that the Yanks can waltz out sure HOF’ers everyday in Jeter, Alex, Rivera and even a boaderline player like Jorge Posada…..However as nice as that is, it also displays that the everyday lineup is getting long in the tooth…..It’s a fine line that Cashman walks

  89. Betsy - high on pie December 3rd, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    Ick – I hate the idea of a competition between Joba and Phil to decide who gets to pitch in the rotation and who has to be in the pen. What a great way to develop pitching (cue the sarcasm). Phil will remain a reliever for as long as he’s a Yankees, even longer, if he gets sent to the pen (I say this because he will then forever be on innings limits). He’s almost 24 already – at what point does he get the chance (now that he’s fully healthy) to be a starter?

  90. S.o.S. December 3rd, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    How can you add Kennedy to the mix when he missed most of last year and got bombed the prior year? Cash is smarter than you think. He will not go into the season with question marks in the rotation ala 08. We will get Andy and one other stud via trade or free agency. Joba fell off last year and Hughes hasnt proven anything as a starter yet. They will battle for a 5th spot and the consolation prize being the 8th inning guy.

  91. GreenBeret7 December 3rd, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    Pettitte has never held up a team over money. He’s earned every dime of it. As far as him “hemming and hawing around” and holding up the Yankees, I’d rather have somebody playing because they are fully committed to playing and wondering whether or not he really wants to play. It’s a tough decision to make, spending years of the kids growing up away. NYY hasn’t delayed any important decisions on player acquisition because of Pettitte. It won’t be an issue now.

  92. Brick City December 3rd, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    Cashman loved Sheets last year and I see no reason why he won’t love him this year if his medicals clear out

    Sheets > Lackey

    Hughes and Joba will not be in the rotation together…. not after 08……

  93. Blake December 3rd, 2009 at 5:58 pm

    ….”.It’s incredible to know that the Yanks can waltz out sure HOF’ers everyday in Jeter, Alex, Rivera and even a boaderline player like Jorge Posada…..However as nice as that is, it also displays that the everyday lineup is getting long in the tooth….”

    This is why I think the Yankees should be doing everything they can to win now.

  94. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    Pat M, I’m glad you agree with me about OSU +10. Both teams blew out the Golden Bears, but OSU did it in Berkeley…I think the Rogers brothers make it a very competitive affair.

    I have teased OSU with the Jets/Bills over and some Saturday action.

    Sad (as a Cal fan) that the Cal-UW game is less significant than I once hoped it would be…

    Where is our pal dennis-costanza???

  95. Nick in SF December 3rd, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    oops :arrow:

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