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


If Granderson and Gardner were swapped…

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Jan 02, 2010 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

We can debate all day whether Curtis Granderson or Brett Gardner is the better defensive center fielder. Frankly, I think they’re both pretty good, but I know there are several who completely disagree. Bottom line is (I think) both can handle the position, but the Yankees have made no secret of their plans to start Granderson in center, leaving Gardner as the current left fielder.

My question is: If those roles were switched, would that change the way you feel about the current Yankees roster?

This isn’t to debate the defensive merits of the two outfielders. I’m just wondering if the speed were coming from a typically speed-based position and the power were coming from a typically power-based position, would the lineup seem better? It seems there is some debate about whether Gardner provides enough power to be a left fielder, but I don’t see that it matters. If he were to open as the Yankees left fielder, he would be batting in the same spot in the lineup as on opening day 2009. The fact he would be playing left instead of center only means the Yankees defense would have improved.

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325 Responses to “If Granderson and Gardner were swapped…”

  1. sevrox January 2nd, 2010 at 8:40 pm

    Granderson might have a better arm – and for that reason alone he might make a better CF.

  2. tex's friend January 2nd, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Gardner did have the cf job last year, and lost it pretty quickly. This year they won’t have melky to put in his place when he reminds everyone why he shouldn’t be starting to begin with.
    If we have to have him though, can someone teach him to bunt and slap grounders instead of popping everything up and staring as the rest.

  3. jtc January 2nd, 2010 at 8:50 pm

    Gardner will remain in left because his future with the Yankess is in doubt, left field is an easier slot to fill and the Yankees don’t want to mess with Granderson’s head. Ther will be no switch. I agree that Gardner projects to be a quality left fielder defensively and a good fit in the nine spot given his speed skills. His bat handling skills are better than people give him credit for. If he can play 100-120 games, he will put up some pretty good numbers.

  4. Rudy January 2nd, 2010 at 8:50 pm

    In this particular situation this doesn’t really matter. Isn’t LF in YS pretty spacious anyway?

    Gardner’s defensive skills alone will make Granderson a better CF.

  5. AeroFANatic January 2nd, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    According to Fangraphs, both Granderson and Gardner have above league average arms in CF….with Gardner being ahead a tad.

    The reason why Granderson is better in CF…he has better range than Gardner and takes better routes. Also, he can shade closer to a lesser defender in Swisher in RF….because he knows Gardner in LF can track down alot of flies hit into the LC dead zone…

  6. Lenny / Squiggy January 2nd, 2010 at 8:52 pm

    gardner is not our LF on opening day….period…

  7. m January 2nd, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Gardner lost his job because of his performance at the plate. Not his performance in the field.

    I like GGBG in CF, and think that with more experience he can become a better fielder. But you don’t trade for one of the better CF in the game and promptly move him to LF in deference to Brett Gardner.

    (Bodhi-glad you enjoyed your time here. Obama’s been enjoying his time, Rush? Not so much.)

  8. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 2nd, 2010 at 8:55 pm

    Curtis Granderson should be the CF, that’s it.

  9. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 8:56 pm

    Np point swapping them because Brett G will be the fourth OF come opening day.

  10. m January 2nd, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    If I paid attention to defensive ratings, I wouldn’t put much stock in Gardner’s numbers in LF. Talk about small sample size. :P

  11. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 2nd, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    The idea of moving Granderson over to LF because Mickey Mantle Gardner is on this team is ludicrous. Gardner shouldn’t be starting anyway, but if he has to, he stays in LF. Granderson is an all-star CF – he stays in CF.

  12. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    Betsy, this thought that after all these years (and a .484 OPS against lefties…FOUR EIGHT FOUR!) it is folly to think our coaching is so superior. If we are LUCKY, he will get to a .700 OPS which is still weak.

  13. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    “etsy, this thought that after all these years (and a .484 OPS against lefties…FOUR EIGHT FOUR!) it is folly to think our coaching is so superior. If we are LUCKY, he will get to a .700 OPS which is still weak.”

    CG had a .739 OPS vs lefties in 2008. It isn’t that hard to imagine him hitting lefties OK.

  14. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    Doesn’t matter if Gardner is in LF or CF he still doesn’t hit enougn to be an everyday player in the Yankees outfield.

  15. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    TO recap
    doesn’t get a good jump on balls to the OF.
    But he’s fast
    He throws 42 hoppers to the infield.
    but he’s fast
    Pops up and k’s way to much.
    but he’s fast
    is a weak ML bunter.
    but he’s fast
    May at sometime in the future be better than Melky
    but he’s fast and gritty and still young.

    OK, I get it. Now bring in a LF and make BG the fourth OF / pinch runner.

  16. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    Good post Chad…someone gets it. I happen to be in the camp that says Gardner is the better defender in CF because his elite speed covers ground better and NOBODY would have made the catches he made at the fence last year…RC and LC.

    That being said, you have it correct, people incorrectly don;t get that the offense will be the same regardless if the Yankees don;t put them in the correct spots.

    BTW, Gardner hit very well in the first half when he was playing most of the time, he cooled slightly and then got hurt.

    Let us not forget that after 1000+ AB’s, Melky had an OPS of a putrid .641 in 08 and was a mediocre .752 last year. Gardner had an OPS of .724 and when you take his SB’s into account was better offensively (and of course defensively) over Melky.

  17. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:05 pm

    Betsy, your argument has no logic to it. Granderson was an All Star CF’r because he is elite against righties, however, if Gardner is starting and is teh better defender why wouldn;t you play him in CF?

  18. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    Melky won the job over Gardner last year. That tells you something.

    Girardi was able to pick BG’s spots last year – that almost certainly inflated BG’s offensive numbers. If you don’t understand that point, you don’t understand the game.

    BG’s SB’s catch the eye, but while useful they don’t create as many runs as you intuitively think they do.

  19. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:08 pm

    “etsy, this thought that after all these years (and a .484 OPS against lefties…FOUR EIGHT FOUR!) it is folly to think our coaching is so superior. If we are LUCKY, he will get to a .700 OPS which is still weak.”

    CG had a .739 OPS vs lefties in 2008. It isn’t that hard to imagine him hitting lefties OK.
    _______________________

    Brilliant, so you take his best year and say that you hope he will reach that even though his lifetime OPS is .614 and the most recent year was even worse? We can hope, but that would be a bad bet.

  20. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:11 pm

    Guru Man-

    You simply have no basis for asserting BG is a better CF’er than CG. BG hasn’t played enough out there. While BG’s UZR is better than CG’s, CG’s +/- is better. Plus, CG has a much better track record in CF than BG, as BG has almost none. Over the last 3 years CG has been the 2nd best CF’er in the AL defensively. BG isn’t starting in CF – he probable won’t start at all once opening day rolls around.

  21. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:12 pm

    “Brilliant, so you take his best year and say that you hope he will reach that even though his lifetime OPS is .614 and the most recent year was even worse? We can hope, but that would be a bad bet.”

    Well you picked his worst year so I thought I was entitled.

  22. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:12 pm

    I just don’t believe Cashman would have traded Melky if he wasn’t planning on replacing him with somebody. Gardner is a great guy to have coming off the bench but he’s not an everyday player on most teams.

  23. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    Wave Your Hat
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:07 pm
    Melky won the job over Gardner last year. That tells you something.

    Girardi was able to pick BG’s spots last year – that almost certainly inflated BG’s offensive numbers. If you don’t understand that point, you don’t understand the game.

    BG’s SB’s catch the eye, but while useful they don’t create as many runs as you intuitively think they do.
    _______________________________________________

    Wave your hat, this is flat out wrong! Girardi didn’t pick Gardner’s spots, when Gardner was playing EVERY day is when he was playing his best. You may want to go back and check your recollection, because it is flat out wrong.

    You are also wrong about the SB’s because even if you don’t take into account the pitch outs the batters faced when he was on base and more fastballs, when you steal 26 bases and get caught 5 times, that is the equivalent of turning 10 singles/walks or into 10 doubles (10 extra bases).

    I guess you are still learning the game!

  24. Z-Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    If the Yanks’ brass considered moving an All-Star CF (signed through 2013, and acquired to be one of our core players) to LF so a marginal major leaguer who MAY be slightly better defensively can play CF, I’ll cancel my Extra Innings package and watch Melky and the Braves.

  25. m January 2nd, 2010 at 9:17 pm

    blake,

    I still think that Cash did a good job trading melky at the right time.

    And from my understanding, melky’s doesn’t have a position yet with the Braves.

    Tough to comprehend that they’d give up melky for a year of Javy. Unless you understand that melky was going to be making more than the Yankees probably wanted to spend on him. Granderson made one of melky or gardner expendable. But melky was going to cost 4 times what gardner will. And that’s just for 2010.

  26. GeorgeInJax January 2nd, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    Bodhisattva – Destiny Wears Pinstripes
    January 2nd, 2010 at 8:59 pm
    George,
    My point being – I will happily endure the “growing pains” Montero might suffer through, because I know there’s a pot of gold at the end of that road.
    I also expect a lot from Melancon, whose pitching I’m very well acquainted with, beyond the small sample size of 2009 in the majors.
    You’re implying that people here who don’t see much promise in Gardner will, across the board, be as dismissive of Montero and Melancon.
    But the expectation for them is quite different.

    ————————————————

    Very valid points
    The expectations should be very different because they are all very different players.
    The expectations between Gardner and Damon would also be very different. Gardner is not going to be power hitter, so trying to meet those expectations would be foolish.
    The speed he brings is of a value that should not be overlooked for lack of power numbers.

    Speed allows him to greatly improve an OF position defensively, and with just a little bump in OBP he will be a threat to steal and score many runs in front of our terrific lineup. Having him at #9 in front of our top of the lineup creates problems for the opposing team when he gets on base.

    I never proposed that he is an All-Star, but for a 2nd year kid, he brings value to the position.

  27. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    Wave Your Hat
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:12 pm
    “Brilliant, so you take his best year and say that you hope he will reach that even though his lifetime OPS is .614 and the most recent year was even worse? We can hope, but that would be a bad bet.”

    Well you picked his worst year so I thought I was entitled.
    ____________________________

    I picked the most recent history?

    As for the assertion about being better in CF, you should know the defensive statistics are very poor and inconsistent. Bill James even said they are almost useless. Gardner can cover so much ground out there and in slow motion watching he and others, Gardner covered far more ground than others. Granderson is very good, but he doesn;t have the top speed or quickness Gardner has. Both their gloves are pretty close, but I would give a tiny edge to Granderson once they get there. Granderson’s arm is a little better, but nothing of huge amount so overall, Gardner will save more bases than Granderson in CF in my opinion.

    BTW, I really like the move to get Granderson, he is ELITE against righties, but we are sticking our head in the sand if you don;t think he is a liability against lefties and late in the game he will be exploited…(gardner may be as well which is why we need some guys who crush lefties if we need it late in the game.

  28. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    Guru Man-

    Gardner was the everyday starter until April 21st. After that, he started about half the time until July 25th, when he was hurt. He never regained the starting spot. I stick with my original position, which was of course correct.

  29. Bo Knows January 2nd, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    I actually went back and watched June 26 ballgame, where Gardner got 5 hits. There his swing was level. By the playoffs his swing was an uppercut, almost a helicopter swing. Logically it would appear that his thumb was bothering him, other wise why the change? Again, too small a sample size. . All this verbiage is histrionics.

  30. GeorgeInJax January 2nd, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    I wouldn’t change Granderson’s position unless Granderson wanted to change.

  31. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    People are knocking Gardner WAY too much. It seems people forget who was in LF in 2001, when the Yanks were one inning away from winning the WS. …and Gardner is a far superior alternative in LF in 2010 than Knoblauch was in 2001.

  32. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    M, I’m not disagreeing with the trade, I liked it but I do think they will sign someone to play LF. Trading Melky was a fine move because as you said he was about to get more expensive but he was still our best LFer and I don’t think the Yankees seriously consider Gardner an everyday player.

  33. Bronx Jeers January 2nd, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    ¨I’m just wondering if the speed were coming from a typically speed-based position and the power were coming from a typically power-based position, would the lineup seem better? ¨

    Excellent point. When´s the last time a Yankee LFer had 40 HR power?

    But the real question is not whether or not the Yanks can thrive with a bat like Gardner´s in the lineup. They can.

    It´s whether or not they can survive an injury to a major offensive contributor and have to deal with 2 weak bats in the lineup.

  34. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    Guru Man…..Do you even watch baseball ???? It appears to me that this Guru thing cannot be a very well paying profession based on the absurd contributions you have shared in the past 10 minutes…..Time to make a change, and then start watching baseball games…

  35. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    Chad -

    Amen.

    The lineup will be the same no matter where each of those two is playing.

    For me, the jury’s still out on GGBG. He had a decent first half – the injury really halted his season – he never recovered his momentum. The platoon is what was working though. Because even when Melky was the primary CF, he got his rest and Gardner got playing time. That seemed to benefit both players.

    But I wonder why if someone was willing to give Gardner the everyday job in CF, why wouldn’t they want him in LF? One of the reasons I like Granderson in CF is he seems to understand the demands of the position, and unlike Melky (who had issues taking charge over the veterans in RF and LF), shouldn’t have a problem directing the outfield play. I don’t think that should be underestimated.

  36. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    Z-Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:13 pm
    If the Yanks’ brass considered moving an All-Star CF (signed through 2013, and acquired to be one of our core players) to LF so a marginal major leaguer who MAY be slightly better defensively can play CF, I’ll cancel my Extra Innings package and watch Melky and the Braves.
    __________________

    why? if he is better in CF why not play him there when he is in the game? Everytime Gardner came in as a defensive replacement they moved Melky to LF or RF? Yes, I know Granderson is better defensively than Melky, but the concept is still the same. Now if Gardner can’t replicate his OPS of .724 then you he may lose his job, but it isn’t like Gardner won’t be playing CF because when Granderson is pinch hit for against a lefty Hoffman should not be the CF’r?

  37. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    Z-Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:13 pm
    If the Yanks’ brass considered moving an All-Star CF (signed through 2013, and acquired to be one of our core players) to LF so a marginal major leaguer who MAY be slightly better defensively can play CF, I’ll cancel my Extra Innings package and watch Melky and the Braves.
    __________________

    why? if he is better in CF why not play him there when he is in the game? Everytime Gardner came in as a defensive replacement they moved Melky to LF or RF? Yes, I know Granderson is better defensively than Melky, but the concept is still the same. Now if Gardner can’t replicate his OPS of .724 then you he may lose his job, but it isn’t like Gardner won’t be playing CF because when Granderson is pinch hit for against a lefty Hoffman should not be the CF’r?

  38. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    “Granderson made one of melky or gardner expendable.”

    How?

  39. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    Bronx Jeers, You have made the best point of the night…..Touch them all

  40. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:29 pm

    PatM you are a moron. Not only do I watch about 90 % of every inning the Yankees play, I was drafted as a catcher and have been on forums with Bill James. Please, try barking your BS up some other tree.

  41. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:31 pm

    Pat M-

    The Yanks won’t sign Damon but I am still hoping for Nady (first), Johnny Gomes (second) or Marcus Thames (third). That will partially fix the depth problem.

  42. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 9:31 pm

    men on 2nd & 3rd with two outs always finds hitters like Gardner

  43. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Bronx Jeers -

    There were lots of games in 2009 when Molina that they survived a couple of weak bats in the lineup. :)

    I get your point, though.

  44. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Bo Knows,

    That helicopter swing isn’t some aberration – using his legs is.

  45. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    I hate the argument that the Yankees won 4 WS with bad LFers in the 90s so why can’t they now. They won those titles in spite of that and just because they were able to do it in the past doesn’t mean its a good idea if they can help it.

  46. cameron January 2nd, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    With the players that were traded, don’t think all of them know production is what Cashman is looking for.
    Who would’ve though Melky,Bruney,Coke, traded, or Damon and Matsui let go?
    Gardner,Phil,Job, Mitre know they can be traded too, Yankees can’t wait forever for them to produce.

  47. go johnny go January 2nd, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    if gardner starts in LF what happens in may when he is hitting .220 and nick johnson is on the DL? do we see posada at dh cervelli at catcher and hoffman in LF – how disastrous would that be?

  48. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 9:37 pm

    “There were lots of games in 2009 when Molina that they survived a couple of weak bats in the lineup.”

    “I don’t believe in the “we did it before” argument.”

    You two fight it out. :)

  49. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    Mike S.
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:23 pm
    People are knocking Gardner WAY too much. It seems people forget who was in LF in 2001, when the Yanks were one inning away from winning the WS. …and Gardner is a far superior alternative in LF in 2010 than Knoblauch was in 2001.
    =====

    No, I think what has happened is there is some evangelical-like zeal for Gardner that many are baffled by, given his skills. Those people are seeking some sort of balance and trying to bring a dose of reality to the expectations others have.

    There is also the separate, earnest discussion about where his abilities best lend themselves.

    There also seems to be something else at play here from those who are such advocates…it’s…bizarre.

  50. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    Mike S.
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:23 pm
    People are knocking Gardner WAY too much. It seems people forget who was in LF in 2001, when the Yanks were one inning away from winning the WS. …and Gardner is a far superior alternative in LF in 2010 than Knoblauch was in 2001

    ————————————————————

    Not that many people are knocking Gardner, as much as they are remarking on his limitations. His game, more than any player the Yankees have had in years, is based on his ability to run. Running is his main attribute. He’s good when he has a chance to use the speed and flawed when he can’t.

  51. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    even if they do start Gardner in LF they still need to get a corner OFer who can also become a regular

  52. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    And to think Guru Man, I always thought that catchers were smart…..And what was Bill James drafted as ???? Granderson is a real centerfielder, Gardner is no more than a 4th outfielder at best….He’s a nifty utility guy who will have amybe another year or to in the bigs if he doesn’t learn to hit….You can spout all that stat crap you want, he’s not a good ball player….

  53. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    One thing Damon would provide that some of the other options can’t is a bat that’s good enough to step into the DH role if NJ were to get hurt, which let’s face it is a strong possibility.

  54. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:41 pm

    go johnny go
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:34 pm
    if gardner starts in LF what happens in may when he is hitting .220 and nick johnson is on the DL? do we see posada at dh cervelli at catcher and hoffman in LF – how disastrous would that be?
    ====

    We sign Damon – who is still on the sidelines, team-less? JK.

    I would guess Miranda would assume the DH role, and someone else would have to bat 2nd – Granderson, I’d imagine, vs. righties.

  55. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:41 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:29 pm
    PatM you are a moron. Not only do I watch about 90 % of every inning the Yankees play, I was drafted as a catcher and have been on forums with Bill James. Please, try barking your BS up some other tree.

    ————————————————————

    You didn’t honestly just brag about being on a forum with the legendary Bill James, did you? I would have kept that a secret if I were you.

  56. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Waveman, Gardner had 62 PA’s in April (OPS of .525) and 59 PA’s in May (OPS of .955) and had 57 PA’s in June (OPS of .918). Then his playing time started to go down in July even before he missed the final 6 games as he had 44 PA’s and an OPS of .621.

    He started cold (like a lot of players in the cold) and then did well until his playing time was diminished (this was teh mistake by Girardi in my opinion. After his thumb injury he simply didn’t hit well with an OPS roughly around .600 for his final 51 PA’s.

    I want to be clear that I don;t think Gardner is a star (I do think he is an upgrade over Melky), but I do think the Yankees money is better spent in other areas right now (getting Vazquez for example) and letting Gardner see what he can do while playing great defense. With the offense we still have and the pitching and defense we should win 100 games. If Gardner hits below a .700 OPS then we may want to look later in the year for some help, but we surely don’t need to now.

  57. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    The problem is, people want beer-league softball lineups, and forget about balance. Of needing speed, or defense. People want a lineup of all bashers. It didn’t work (remember 2006, when Leyland said “Murderer’s Row and then Cano? Sheff at 1b didn’t work, did it?)

  58. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Pat M.

    Gardner is no more than a 4th outfielder at best….He’s a nifty utility guy who will have amybe another year or to in the bigs if he doesn’t learn to hit….You can spout all that stat crap you want, he’s not a good ball player….

    ———————————————————— couldn’t have said it any better

  59. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    Remember power goes into slumps. Speed, as long as you are still able to draw a walk, won’t.

  60. m January 2nd, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    Nick,

    Only meant that the Yankees brought in a CF. The two kids are CF in my eyes. Whichever of the two moved over to LF was a placeholder. With the other on the bench. Then if we did find a LF, I don’t think Cash was willing to pay melky $2M to sit on the bench.

    So, to find a taker for melky (yes, it was part of a Javy salary dump) was a good thing. And a rarity in Cash’s new world. He hasn’t traded away too many starters in recent years.

  61. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    # Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    Remember power goes into slumps. Speed, as long as you are still able to draw a walk, won’t.
    ——————————————-
    and that is something Gardner won’t do is draw walks

  62. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    Speed is a great attribute to have as a baseball player but if you can’t do the other parts of the game well it really has very little value.

  63. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    Mike S.
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:42 pm
    The problem is, people want beer-league softball lineups, and forget about balance. Of needing speed, or defense. People want a lineup of all bashers. It didn’t work (remember 2006, when Leyland said “Murderer’s Row and then Cano? Sheff at 1b didn’t work, did it?)
    =====

    But you have to have a modicum of hitting ability – or a propensity for getting on base – to justify your concept of “balance.”

    I too am not a fan to the type of lineups we ushered out there in the middle of this decade.

    As for the Detroit series in 2006 – neither I, nor any of my baseball friends, expected to win that series. I don’t give a damn what Leyland said – we had no pitching and we knew that.

    We were not going to beat that Detroit team. Had nothing really to do with the lineup – the hitters were always working uphill.

  64. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    Mike S.
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:43 pm
    Remember power goes into slumps. Speed, as long as you are still ***able to draw a walk***, won’t.

    ————————————————————

    So much for that attribute, huh?

  65. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:47 pm

    You don’t think that Bill James has a handle on the statistical side of baseball? You don;t believe in having a think tank about what the stats say or don’t say has any relevance?

    That may explain a lot then.

    Oh and it wasn’t bragging, it was in response to the absurd comment by Pat M, who somehow thinks that Granderson is a real CF’r and Gardner is not. Someone may want to explain to him that how well a guy hits doesn’t impact whether they are a real CF’r or not

  66. Arun January 2nd, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    Excellent point Chad. Granderson easily replaces Damon’s power and Gardner represents a major defensive upgrade in left. So your partner’s argument that “left field is the one glaring hole”, is just not true. I really like your analysis and insight, as well as your even tone. You’re doing a great job.

  67. akamgkrebs January 2nd, 2010 at 9:50 pm

    I couldn’t disagree more on Swisher…When you hit close to 30 HRs and drive on close to 90 RBIs, you are an everday player.
    =======================================================
    29 HRs is close to 30 HRs, I’ll buy it. But 82 RBIs is close to 90 RBIs is stretching things a bit, isn’t it?

  68. Wave Your Hat January 2nd, 2010 at 9:51 pm

    “Waveman, Gardner had 62 PA’s in April (OPS of .525) and 59 PA’s in May (OPS of .955) and had 57 PA’s in June (OPS of .918). ”

    If you are correct, that’s 178 PA’s in 3 months – his best months. That would extrapolate to 356 PA’s on a full year basis – a part time player, as I said.

    As anyone who posts a lot around here will tell you I like stats as much as the next guy and more than many, but BG was not as good as MC last year.

  69. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    Go to baseballreference.com. Look at the OPS+ numbers of teams in the past, especially Yankees’ pennant winning teams. Gardner’s OPS+ of 93 of 2009 is actually comparable to many of the past. His 2009 was certainly better than, say, Lou Piniella’s 1980 for the AL East champs of that year.

    If Gardner can give .275 with 35 to 40 SB, cover LF as if it were CF, he’ll be fine.

    We are talking about a #9 hitter, here.

  70. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:47 pm
    You don’t think that Bill James has a handle on the statistical side of baseball? You don;t believe in having a think tank about what the stats say or don’t say has any relevance?

    ————————————————————

    Personally, I think he’s an idiot and a scam artist who suckers people into buying his books.

    PT Barnum was eight, after all.

  71. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    joeman
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:45 pm
    # Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:43 pm
    Remember power goes into slumps. Speed, as long as you are still able to draw a walk, won’t.
    ——————————————-
    and that is something Gardner won’t do is draw walks
    ====

    Agreed. HE DOESN’T WALK.

    “As long as you are able to draw a walk.”

    Where do you get the idea that he is able to do this? You’re just slopping through the sticky part with this kind of wishful thinking: this guy doesn’t walk.

    So, now what?

    See, here’s the problem with the Gardner stuff.

    He’s got blazing speed, and everyone is coming in their pants because of this.

    The fact that he really doesn’t have the skills to get on base? Everyone just sort of blacks out here – but you can’t steal first base.

    What’s also happening is the fascination with this speed makes people lose their reason: they ASSUME that because a guy is a blur when he runs he of course has the requisite skills: bunting, short stroke, hitting grounders, working pitchers – to get on base enough to actually make the speed useful.

    It’s just assumed with this guy.

    But he hasn’t shown that he can do that – why should we assume that he’ll just magically be standing on first to allow us to plunder the fruits of his one skill?

  72. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    Since when is a .724 OPS horrible? Since when is an OPS of .724 no hitting ability at all? This also does not include the extra 16 bases his SB’s garnered us this year which adjusts his OPS up to about .780. If he can duplicate that it would be very good when you take his defense into account. You guys are making it sound like he hits like Granderson against lefties???

    This is not to mention that his OPS was .754 before his thumb injury or adjusted of about .800.

  73. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    Correction:

    PT Barnum was ***right***, after all.

  74. vey January 2nd, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    Don’t fret Spring training will let Joe (who’s under pressure to repeat a WS win, in this his contract year) know how best to work the lineup.

    The Yankees are the hunted team this year, and the team will report still on a high from last season and ready to defend their title. Javier and Johnson have something to prove returning to NY. Granderson is excited to be on the Yankees and will show us fans. Jeter and Mariano are both in a contract year, so they’ll be motivated too

    Yankees fans have so much to look forward to this coming season.

  75. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Speed is useless if it’s walking back to the bench after striking out.

    He needs to learn how to lay down a bunt with the intention of getting a hit out of it.

    He needs to walk more.

    And when he’s on base, he needs to just GO, for cryin’ out loud. He waits and waits and waits for THE perfect time to go. I’m not saying it’s easy to steal a base when the whole world knows that’s your claim to fame, but those with the best instincts do it against those odds. Fearless. Gotta be fearless on the bases. He’s too measured on first base. Tentative.

    My husband doesn’t think he has good baseball instincts. I tend to agree, but like I said, I’m trying to keep an open mind. He was showing some promise before his injury, baserunning-wise.

  76. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    So, after 150 games, you are going to give up on the fact that the guy may develop more plate patience? Please.

    So quick to give up on people. Gracious. Let someone develop, will you?

  77. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 9:57 pm

    Mike S.

    If Gardner can give .275 with 35 to 40 SB

    ————————————————
    ————————————————–

    I really find it hard to believe that Gardner will hit .275 in the ML

  78. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    “Waveman, Gardner had 62 PA’s in April (OPS of .525) and 59 PA’s in May (OPS of .955) and had 57 PA’s in June (OPS of .918). ”

    If you are correct, that’s 178 PA’s in 3 months – his best months. That would extrapolate to 356 PA’s on a full year basis – a part time player, as I said.

    As anyone who posts a lot around here will tell you I like stats as much as the next guy and more than many, but BG was not as good as MC last year.
    ___________________

    We can just disagree then because when you take into account the amount of balls per week Gardner saved over Melky in CF, I would say that he saved 3 bases a week (most hits he saves would be doubles). Melky was a slow CF’r and when you take the defense and SB’s into effect, Gardner was the better player (of course being injured his value is diminished overall.

    I do agree he was not an every day player in the first half, but he was playing about 2/3 of the time so that was a little more than PT.

  79. hideki balboni January 2nd, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    Gardner is not an adequate starting player at this point. He is a fourth OF/pinch runner. Yanks can and will get another outfielder before opening day.

  80. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    Oh and it wasn’t bragging, it was in response to the absurd comment by Pat M, who somehow thinks that Granderson is a real CF’r and Gardner is not. Someone may want to explain to him that how well a guy hits doesn’t impact whether they are a real CF’r or not
    ====

    Guruman,

    No one here wants to see Brett Gardner fail.

    But we’re also not required to be sentimental cheerleaders and wave pom poms just because this kid can run.

    I, and others, have been very specific in critique-ing what he does well defensively, and what he does not.

    Rather than bicker, why don’t you just address those specifics and tell us why, in your opinion, we are wrong?

  81. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    Bernie Williams had World Class speed when he came to the Yankees…faster than Gardner, but, neither were/are instinctive center fielders/base runners.

  82. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    Guru Man,

    Melky is slow?

  83. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    joeman
    January 2nd, 2010 at 9:57 pm
    Mike S.

    If Gardner can give .275 with 35 to 40 SB

    ————————————————
    ————————————————–

    I really find it hard to believe that Gardner will hit .275 in the ML

    He hit .270 last year. Can the guy develop? Or does he have to come to the majors as a star from the get-go?

    It’s like someone like Hughes or Joba has to be a 20 game winner right away, or, God forbid, Montero has to hit 30 HR in his rookie year (whenever that may be).

    Let the guy develop, will you?

    One of the great base stealers ever, Maury Wills, didn’t make the majors until he was 27.

    Patience. Give it time.

  84. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    My memories of Gardner in the outfield are fraught with a guy trying to make a video-highlight catch, only to let what could have been a one-hop single play into a double or triple.

    I do not understand the over-fascination with Brett Gardner.

    He’s fine. That’s it. Fine.

  85. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    Joeman, he just hit .270 and was above your mark before his thumb injury. for the year his OBP was .345 so he does get on base.

    Doreen, I have to admit that I agree with your husband. I don’t think Gardner has great natural baseball instincts. He doesn’t read pitchers well (I believe that is part of what your husband is saying). But,think abut this, he has shown that at every level he struggles and then does well. last year, he improved a lot before the thumb injury and he still stole 26 bases while being caught only 5 times…so even with those bad instincts he was a force.

    If he can duplicate last year we will be fine, but if he can get better, we have a very valuable player. of course, if he drops the ball (and give him at least 2 months), then we make a move at the AS break.

    I still think we need a 5th OF’r on this team, I just don;t want them to sit Gardner for whoever they get.

  86. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    Doreen,

    I’m equally puzzled.

    He’s made some great coast-to-cast catches – he made a stunning catch in Philadelphia.

    His tenure in CF is also riddled with turning the wrong way, getting a bad jump, running with his glove extended, and slowing up on backflight while the playable ball – now UN-playable – drops in.

    He is definitely a work in progress as a CF – I expect him to fare much better in LF, which plays to his strengths. His speed is impressive -his instincts for OF play, not so much.

  87. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    Thank you, m. Now I see what you were saying. I do not think you are incorrect.

    Another way to look at it is to say that Melky and Brett were, together, filling one outfield spot (I am ignoring defensive-replacement duties). Granderson is here to take up a spot but Damon is — for now — gone. And Melky is gone.

    So Gardner is — with Hoffman? — taking up one outfield spot. I’ll be surprised if that’s the case come Opening Day.

  88. m January 2nd, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    Oh, Doreen.

    I don’t see Gardner as a hot-dogger at all. He seem to be a very humble kid (gritty haha). Look at his face after he makes a spectacular play and compare it to what you see from Melky (especially his walk-offs). Two completely different personalities.

    I can’t reconcile my image of Gardner with yours.

    And one of the most embarrassing things I’ve seen in baseball involved Melky and the Bleacher Creatures…

  89. akamgkrebs January 2nd, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    My memories of Gardner in the outfield are fraught with a guy trying to make a video-highlight catch, only to let what could have been a one-hop single play into a double or triple.

    I do not understand the over-fascination with Brett Gardner.

    He’s fine. That’s it. Fine.
    ============================================
    Stop with the hyperbole; he’s not good enough to be classified as fine.

  90. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    GB7,

    Bernie, though, eventually came to glide to the ball on backflight.

    He was, in flight, beautiful to watch when he was prime.

  91. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    It’s not so much what Gardner can do as it is what he can’t do or won’t do. He doesn’t bunt, or, doesn’t want to bunt and he hits too many balls in the air. Whatever value his speed brings to his game, he’s not using it to full potential. He should be able to have had 25 infield hits as a minimum in his half a season. he had 16. Those nine extra hits would have been of great value to the team.

  92. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    Bodhisattva – I have addressed everything you say, but you have yet to come back and say why a .724 OPS adjusted to .780 is such a horrible OPS? If it is I would like to hear why you don’t think Granderson should be platooned? As for his defense I told you how I slow mo’d his plays in the OF to see what he covered and it was absurd how much extra ground he covered over Melky…who yes was slow for a CF’r? Name other CF’rs who are slower than he is?

    As for Green Beret, Bernie never had the speed Gardner has, not even close. Plus Gardner is much quicker off the start, Bernie was a slow starter with really good top speed.

  93. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    I saw some great catches from the guy last year. One of which came in Game 5 of the World Series.

  94. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    Doreen’s diplomacy is a marvel.

    Doreen – I admit I would have b-slapped Upstate, but you were so sincere and polite – and he was so not.

    I love your posts – both slice of life and baseball.

  95. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:12 pm

    Mike S.

    Players like Hughes, Joba and even Cano you are patient with and give time to develop.

    Players like Gardner you put on the bench and pick the spots for them to be successful.

    Not hand them the starting LF job because you have nobody better.

  96. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:13 pm

    Bodhisattva – Destiny Wears Pinstripes
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:09 pm
    GB7,

    Bernie, though, eventually came to glide to the ball on backflight.

    He was, in flight, beautiful to watch when he was prime.

    ————————————————————

    Yep. Bernie had that DiMaggio/Andre Dawson/Devon White Glide. His first two sreps weren’t that great, but, once those long legs started moving, he ate up ground in a big hurry. Bog asset in the field and on extra base hits, bit, it took too much time when stealing bases.

  97. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    GreenBeret7
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:10 pm
    It’s not so much what Gardner can do as it is what he can’t do or won’t do. He doesn’t bunt, or, doesn’t want to bunt and he hits too many balls in the air. Whatever value his speed brings to his game, he’s not using it to full potential. He should be able to have had 25 infield hits as a minimum in his half a season. he had 16. Those nine extra hits would have been of great value to the team.
    ==========================================================

    Agreed. Doesn’t mean the guy doesn’t have more work to do. But anyone with just 150 MLB games and just 425 ABs under his belt can say the same. Gardner needs to pattern his career after that of, say, Brett Butler.

  98. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    Guru Man: have you ever appeared at a people-skills forum?

  99. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    Disagree, TarheelYank. You have to at least give the guy a chance.

  100. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    People keep criticizing Gardner, but not one of you has said that a .724 is so pathetic and not one of you has acknowledged that he was doing better before his thumb injury and not one of you has acknowledged that when you add his SB’s into the number his OPS is higher than Melky’s was?

    Do you all think that last year was a fluke? Do you all think that last year is the best we could ever hope for? You guys should worry more about what we do against lefties when Granderson is up because it would be surprising if Granderson hits lefties better than Gardner.

  101. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    “I love your posts – both slice of life and baseball.”

    Me too.

  102. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    Guru Man….Why don’t you go and watch some tape on Curtis Granderson….And I was out of line about watching baseball games..My point was, have you ever watched Granderson play….Just about everyone here watches every Yankee game…..The only comparision you can make between Curtis & Gardner is that they’re both fast and they hit from the left side….That’s it …Oh yeah, they both play for the Yanks…..It’s night and day…

  103. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    m -

    Generally speaking, i don’t see Gardner as a hot-dogger either. But there were times when it seemed like he was trying to make the great catch (the video highlight catch) rather than let the ball drop for a single. Reading back it does seem like I’m saying he was doing this with the intent of making the highlight reels. Not what I intended to say.

    Melky is definitely the more “expressive” player, I’ll grant you that. And that episode with the creatures was embarrassing, yes.

    Gardner does have a history to working up to the level he’s in, and one doesn’t get a nickname of GGBG without showing some gritty guttiness.

    Just don’t know how far that GG stuff will take him.

  104. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    As for Green Beret, Bernie never had the speed Gardner has, not even close. Plus Gardner is much quicker off the start, Bernie was a slow starter with really good top speed.

    ————————————————————

    There were few players that were faster than Williams legging out doubles and triples, but, he was not a good base stealer. He was faster than Gardner. Short guys look faster because they take so many more steps. There wasn’t a lot of difference, but, on runs of more than 90 feet, I doubt that Gardner could keep up.

  105. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:21 pm

    Gardner was a very good bunter throughout the minors. You watch him bunt now, and he has almost no desire for what should be a major part of his game and value to the team.

  106. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    Nick in SF…I have a bad habit of not being able to ignore stupidity :)

    BTW, some of you should watch film of some of catches Gardner made on shallow liners that Melky would have let drop. When someone makes a good running catch but doesn’t dive people incorrectly assume others would have made that catch as well. if you track the balls Melky let a lot fall in that would have been caught by Gardner and that is not including the ones in the gaps that Melky would have been 5 yards away from.

    Just so you know I am not making the stuff up, any ground ball up the middle take your HD DVR and slow mo as soon as they switch to the middle infielders moving toward 2nd base. Watch how Cano has his 2nd step before Jeter finishes his first…this is almost every time and also why people talk about Jeter struggling going to his left. i showed this to people last year and it is every game. that being said, Jeter played as well as we could have possibly hoped last year.

    I promise if you do this you will see the same thing

  107. akamgkrebs January 2nd, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    People keep criticizing Gardner, but not one of you has said that a .724 is so pathetic and not one of you has acknowledged that he was doing better before his thumb injury…
    ——————————————————–
    define before. You can’t mean the month of July, before the injury. His umbers were .220 BA / .304 OBP / .317 SLP / .621 OPS.
    Oh y

  108. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Gardner is 26. .256-3-39 in 150 games, with 39 of 45 in SB so far in 425 AB.

    The reason I said Gardner should try to emulate Brett Butler is this. At the same point in their careers, at the same age, Butler had 366 AB. 129 games. A .230 average, 0 HR, 11 RBI and 30 of 39 in SB.

    Butler wound up with a .290 average, 558 SB and 2375 hits.

    If Gardner can come anywhere close to that, fine. Time only knows. But Gardner should try to emulate Butler’s style of ball. That will be his ticket.

    I only hope that he can.

  109. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:11 pm
    Bodhisattva – I have addressed everything you say, but you have yet to come back and say why a .724 OPS adjusted to .780 is such a horrible OPS?

    If it is I would like to hear why you don’t think Granderson should be platooned? As for his defense I told you how I slow mo’d his plays in the OF to see what he covered and it was absurd how much extra ground he covered over Melky…who yes was slow for a CF’r? Name other CF’rs who are slower than he is?
    ====

    Guru,

    Re OPS: the SS is a joke – you realize that, right?

    Um, I was never engaged in a discussion re platooning Grandy, but as long as we’re on the subject, I would look forward to seeing what K-Long could do with him, here.

    I don’t think we gave up AJax/IPK/Coke so we could sit him vs. lefties. He’ll just move down in the order.

    I’m not sure what you’re debating re Gardner/Melky in CF, but I would say that what Melky concedes in lateral range, he compensates for in an overall sounder game and getting much better jumps on balls hit over his head.

    On Melky’s speed – he’s not a burner but he isn’t slow.

    Slow players can’t seal gaps, especially not in Yankee Stadium, and Melky became a gap sealer for a leaky OF as soon as he assumed the job from Damon. I think you’re making a false association between body type, running gait, and actual speed.

  110. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Pat M,

    It is fair that i have not seen as much on Granderson as the Yankees. I did look up some tape on Granderson and I gave you my full scouting report between the two in a previous post. I think I was fair in that giving the edge of glove (the ability to catch the ball cleanly) to Granderson and the arm to Curtis, but I saw Gardner with better range. not that this should be that valuable, but i also talked with people I trusted about his defense from Detroit.

  111. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    Mike S.

    The kid has the “potential” to be an ok player. Up to now he is more like a “deer in the headlights”. I like him. I hope a year from now Randy I will bring up this post and make us look like fools. But I doubt it.

  112. pat January 2nd, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    Some players flourish with regular play and some get exposed…….TBD on which of those apply to Gardner.

  113. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    PatM. Also, the only area that Granderson is appreciably better than Gardner is batting against righties…of course, Granderson is elite against righties and Gardner is mediocre so the difference is huge and the difference is against 2/3 of the pitchers.

  114. Bo Knows January 2nd, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Bo Knows,

    That helicopter swing isn’t some aberration – using his legs is.
    —————————-
    No way he got to the Majors with that swing. The bat does not remain in the hitting zone long enough. It’s not a slap as is normal for a splash and dash. They had to be changing his swing. Put some extension on that swing and there is power there if he uses his lower body. I saw positive signs in June. What I saw in the playoffs was blech.

    Anyway he is a work in progress. We will see next year.

  115. Mike S. January 2nd, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    I think Pat has it right. It is TBD. And yes, Tarheel, I can agree where you are coming from. I think 150 games and 425 AB (roughly one full season) is far too early too judge him by.

  116. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    bodhisattva -

    Thanks. :)

    But, there have been times though that I didn’t let a thing slide and it’s too difficult in cyberspace to be agreeably disagreeable – or is that to disagree agreeably? I’m not going there again.

    :?

  117. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    akamgkrebs
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:24 pm
    People keep criticizing Gardner, but not one of you has said that a .724 is so pathetic and not one of you has acknowledged that he was doing better before his thumb injury…
    ——————————————————–
    define before. You can’t mean the month of July, before the injury. His umbers were .220 BA / .304 OBP / .317 SLP / .621 OPS.
    Oh y

    ___________________________________

    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!

  118. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 10:36 pm

    if there are men on 2nd and 3rd with two outs and the #8 hitter is up in that Yankee lineup with Gardner up next I’m thinking of walking the #8 to get to Gardner

  119. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 10:37 pm

    live in CT anyone else feel the earth move

  120. Matt Japko January 2nd, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    There is no reason to take granderson out of his comfort zone in center field which he has played so well the past couple of years. To the debate about Gardner’s capability as a starter, Why can’t the yankees get back to the good old days of small ball, and not rely on the the long ball. Thats exactly what Gardner is bringing to the lineup. When he gets on the base path he creates a distraction, that the yankees benefited huge from this year. He is a great fielder and dynamic on the base paths, which is exactly what this team needs.

  121. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    @Doreen: I like it when you go ballistic on… people. :)

    @Guru Man, I suffer from a similar affliction, but I don’t see how it applies to Pat M, a beloved and respected commenter on here. If you want to be ignored here, calling him a moron is a great start.

  122. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    Doreen
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:35 pm
    bodhisattva -

    Thanks.

    But, there have been times though that I didn’t let a thing slide and it’s too difficult in cyberspace to be agreeably disagreeable – or is that to disagree agreeably? I’m not going there again.

    ————————————————————

    It’s just a lot easier to be a curmudgeon. You don’t get confused, then.

  123. Frank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:42 pm

    “if there are men on 2nd and 3rd with two outs and the #8 hitter is up in that Yankee lineup with Gardner up next I’m thinking of walking the #8 to get to Gardner”

    Probably, but that’s no different than Melky or most #9 hitters in the AL. I’d be more concerned about the multitudes who will walk Rodriguez to face whoever ends up being the #5 hitter.

  124. Matcohen January 2nd, 2010 at 10:44 pm

    “This isn’t to debate the defensive merits of the two outfielders. I’m just wondering if the speed were coming from a typically speed-based position and the power were coming from a typically power-based position, would the lineup seem better?”

    It makes no difference. This should be obvious. If Gardner is to start, the Yanks should pick the CF/LF split that makes them the best defensively. My gut is that the better defensive player should play center as they can make plays on more balls.

    If you really want to get innovative, play Granderson in CF and Gardner in LF for righties and RF for lefties so that he is the field where the ball will come most of the time.

  125. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:45 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!

    ————————————————————

    You keep yammering about people judging Gardner on a small number of games/at bats over a season, but, then attempt to make your point by useing numbers based on a month and a half.

    As far as people lowering the board’s IQ, I wouldn’t be mentioning that, Bill James, Jr.

  126. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:45 pm

    Bodhisattva – Destiny Wears Pinstripes

    Guru,

    Re OPS: the SS is a joke – you realize that, right?

    _________
    What is SS? Sorry didn’t follow that?

    As for Melky, he was no “gap sealer” I am not sure what you were watching, but for a CF’r he is slow. You can’t name 5 CF’rs in baseball who are slower than he in CF?

    As for this comment that other people have echoed, “I don’t think we gave up our players so Granderson would sit against lefties” What? We gave up a little bit for a guy who is a very good defensive OF’r (and can play CF well) who crushes righties! That is worth a lot. This entire notion about not playing him against lefties because we gave up a lot is pure folly. We paid for his dominance against righties, but we will most likely see the same issue that Detroit fans saw and that is he is a liability specifically in late ball games because he needs to come out against a left specialist. Think about what we did to Ryan Howard in the playoffs…same exact thing (NJ Steve pointed that out previously)

  127. joeman January 2nd, 2010 at 10:45 pm

    if I had a choice to pitch to either Melky or Gardner…it’s going to be Gardner

  128. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    Correction:

    make your point by ***using***

  129. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:48 pm

    Matt Japko

    That’s the problem. He is a “small ball player” who doesn’t know how to play small ball.

  130. Doreen January 2nd, 2010 at 10:48 pm

    Off Topic.

    Watching HBO On-Demand Part 2 of the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. For some reason, we’ve seen Part 1 three times, but never Part 2 (the one with Bruce & Billy).

    Here’s a question: Is Bruce the Derek Jeter of Rock and Roll? Think about it.

  131. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    joeman
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:36 pm
    if there are men on 2nd and 3rd with two outs and the #8 hitter is up in that Yankee lineup with Gardner up next I’m thinking of walking the #8 to get to Gardner
    ====================
    Sure…just as you would if Granderson were in that same spot. This is why we need a guy who crushes lefties because we have at least one liability against lefties and at best we have a mediocre hitter against lefties.

  132. Frank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:50 pm

    “if I had a choice to pitch to either Melky or Gardner…it’s going to be Gardner”

    Sure, but you don’t. The issue is do you pitch to Gardner over the #8 hitter in a tight spot. The answer is yes. But the answer was also yes when the question was do you pitch to Melky over the #8 hitter?

  133. joee January 2nd, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    Stop your crying Damon in lf 1 yr. 9 mil
    just like Abreu………..

  134. stuckey January 2nd, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    Here’s a simple rule that I suggest everyone consider.

    Don’t assume a player won’t continue improving until he actually … you know … stops improving.

    I don’t know if Gardner will be a major league player or a Low A first base coach by say 2012, but I DO know he’s made steady strides pretty much every year he’s been in pro ball.

    I’m going to wait to assume I know what his ceiling is the sec HE actually stops raising it.

  135. Tarheelyank January 2nd, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    Gardner should be required to watch a thousand hours of Tony Gwynn batting.

  136. Bo Knows January 2nd, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    This was nice and brisk, a couple of insults, some snark. Passion in the dog days. Just as it should be. Now for some virtual Pilsner and kick back. Love it.

  137. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 10:58 pm

    Unless Gardner does something to improve his batting approach and the #8 batter is coming up with runners on 1st and 2nd and two outs, I’d be tempted to walk the #8 hitter anyway to get to Gardner. He needs to change the “I’m a slugger” approach. The worst thing that could have happened was him hitting the two homers over the fence.

  138. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    GreenBeret7
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:39 pm
    Doreen
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:35 pm
    bodhisattva -
    Thanks.
    But, there have been times though that I didn’t let a thing slide and it’s too difficult in cyberspace to be agreeably disagreeable – or is that to disagree agreeably? I’m not going there again.
    ————————————————————
    It’s just a lot easier to be a curmudgeon. You don’t get confused, then.
    ======

    Your Curmudgeonliness – done with charm.

    Agree on Bernie critique.

    Remember the Bernie concussion?

    “Bernie – what day is today?”

    “I never know what day it is.”

  139. Whatsa Matta U January 2nd, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    Chad & Sam please back away from the pipe. Now listen…Gardner is not a full time position player. He’s a bench player, defensive replacement/pinch runner. He’s a 5th Outfielder on this team, and a 4th on any other team.

  140. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:02 pm

    Tarheelyank
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:54 pm
    Gardner should be required to watch a thousand hours of Tony Gwynn batting.

    ————————————————————

    That’s only after watching 1,000 hours of himself and then told to forget what he just watched. He should be modeling himself more on the Rod Carew/Ichiro Suzuki style…chop down and run like Hell.

  141. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:06 pm

    Bodhisattva – Destiny Wears Pinstripes
    January 2nd, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    Your Curmudgeonliness – done with charm.

    Agree on Bernie critique.

    Remember the Bernie concussion?

    “Bernie – what day is today?”

    “I never know what day it is.”

    ————————————————————

    Bernie Williams was just a pleasure to watch. He seemed so non-chalant about everything, but, everything was just liquid movement.

  142. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!

    ————————————————————

    GreenBeret7
    You keep yammering about people judging Gardner on a small number of games/at bats over a season, but, then attempt to make your point by useing numbers based on a month and a half.
    ============

    uhh, that would be 3 1/2 months which is the majority of his entire major league career

  143. akamgkrebs January 2nd, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!
    ====================================================
    Sorry that you thought that “before” meaning the entire season prior to the injury was self explanatory. But there have been several posts on the site which indicated that, after his slow start, Gardner was going great guns until he got injured,as if July didn’t really happened. Now that you.ve clarified what you meant by “before”, I understand the context.

  144. RhapsodyInBlue January 2nd, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    “live in CT anyone else feel the earth move”

    Just put the truck in the garage for more snow high winds expected tonight in balmy upstate NY, feels like McMurdo out there.

  145. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    What I remember about Williams more than the concussion was how badly he banged up both shoulders going into the walls. At one time, he’d challenge any wall and very good at going over the top of the walls to bring back wayward homers.

  146. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 11:10 pm

    As for Melky, he was no “gap sealer” I am not sure what you were watching, but for a CF’r he is slow. You can’t name 5 CF’rs in baseball who are slower than he in CF?
    ===

    Melky Cabrera upgraded the Yankees outfield defense significantly when he took over for Damon.

    Calling him slow does not compute. He doesn’t have elite speed – but he is not slow. Yankee Stadium’s CF would drown a slow CF, and quite relevantl to OF defense, Cabrera’s first step is quick.

  147. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 11:13 pm

    Well I’m going to cease ragging on Gardner, for he may verywell be the leftfielder for the club come April…..That is a very difficult concept for me to embrace……I just finished a few Coors ( leaded ) while taking a steam bath & swam some laps & decided to relish the qualities that Gardner brings to the park…..Nick in SF, Thanks……Do you have favorite plays for tomorrow ???? I made small gains today after a brutal day yesterday……

  148. Bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes January 2nd, 2010 at 11:14 pm

    Bernie Williams was just a pleasure to watch. He seemed so non-chalant about everything, but, everything was just liquid movement.
    ====

    Bernie was the perfect foil to intense guys like O’Neill, Tino.

    ====

    At this time tomorrow, the Jets had better be closing in on a playoff berth.

    Otherwise, I’ll be freezing my *** off in vain.

    Goodnight to all.

  149. fishjam January 2nd, 2010 at 11:15 pm

    Do the Yankees have to have a power hitter at every position? Every other player in our lineup is amongst the best offensive players at his position in MLB. Whats wrong with carrying a guy in the 9 hole who will give pitchers a different look and can help create runs even when the big hitters are getting shut down by a hot pitcher?

    Not only that but he makes our OF defense, which was long one of our biggest weaknesses, one of the best in the league.

    And give the guy some credit offensively. He was just hitting his stride when he broke his wrist. Take out the last 48 abs in Sept when he had the bum wrist and look at his 200 ABs prior to the injury. His numbers are more than respectable and are proportionaly almost identical to Jacoby Ellsbury’s.

    Gardner 2009 (based on 600 ABs)
    .275 – 9hr – 60rbi – 60sb – 108r – 69bb – 93so – 18trips 354ob – 400slg – 754ops with 7.2 UZR (4th in AL)

    Ellsbury 2009 (624 abs)
    .301 – 8hr – 60rbi – 70sb – 94r – 49bb – 74so – 10trips
    355ob – 415slg – 770ops with -18.6 UZR (worst in MLB)

  150. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 11:15 pm

    Sure upgrading over a guy who shouldn’t be in the OF isn’t great shakes. I don’t know what to say if you don’t think Melky was one of the weaker CF’rs in covering ground…He simply is below par and I don’t think there are 5 CF’rs who covered less in baseball.

    My feeling on Melky is that his defense was weak in CF but he hit just enough to be a CF’r, but his defense at the corners was good, but he doesn’t hit enough to be a corner OF.

    He is slow for a CF’r

  151. fishjam January 2nd, 2010 at 11:16 pm

    CORRECTION – Meant to say broken thumb, not broken wrist

  152. stuckey January 2nd, 2010 at 11:20 pm

    “He’s a 5th Outfielder on this team, and a 4th on any other team.”

    So who are the Yankees 3rd and 4th outfielders then?

  153. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:22 pm

    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 11:07 pm
    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!

    ————————————————————

    GreenBeret7
    You keep yammering about people judging Gardner on a small number of games/at bats over a season, but, then attempt to make your point by useing numbers based on a month and a half.
    ============

    uhh, that would be 3 1/2 months which is the majority of his entire major league career

    ————————————————————

    .220 in April and July and .250 in September. Doesn’t really leave 3 and a half months, does it, since he missed August? He didn’y hit for the first 10 days in May and in July he dropped from a season high of .303 to .275 when he got hurt.

    Regardless, if you’re going to disregard the other months as being a small sample size, how can you count a month and a half as not being a small sample size? It can’t be both ways.

  154. MDR January 2nd, 2010 at 11:23 pm

    ok since lots of folks do not see Garder as the a stater in LF, which I do agree with who should we be looking at?

    Since Oakland now has Crisp what about a trade for one of thier players Scott Hairston, Rajai Davis (from Conn.) or Ryan Sweeney. Tell me am I crazy or do any of these guys make sence for us.

  155. PittsburghYankeeFan January 2nd, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    Girardi has no pressure–his job is safe.

    The guy just won 103 games and the WS without his #2 pitcher, no 7th or 8th inning guys until June, and his best player out for the first six weeks of the season.

    Hal wants to let him go–everyone will snap him up. Unlikely.

    Damon is still the best bet for the Yankees in left. He’ll now get less than Abreu, but I think with the short porch he still wants YS. In the end, the Yankees want him too. Hal will relent when he gets a number from Boras that Cash likes. If not, have fun, Johnny.

  156. pat January 2nd, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    FYI
    Got an e-mail that Steiner is doing a SportsFest at the New Roc City Skating Rink in New Rochelle on January 30th and Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, AJ Burnett, Joba Chamberlain, Nick Swisher, Brett Gardner, Alex Rodriguez, John Sterling and Michael Kay are scheduled to attend.

  157. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    GreenBeret7
    January 2nd, 2010 at 11:22 pm
    Guru Man
    January 2nd, 2010 at 11:07 pm
    You see it is posts like this that bring the entire IQ of this site down. By before I meant up until teh point he broke his thumb! His OPS before SB adjustment was .754 on July 25th, the day he hurt his thumb!

    ————————————————————

    GreenBeret7
    You keep yammering about people judging Gardner on a small number of games/at bats over a season, but, then attempt to make your point by useing numbers based on a month and a half.
    ============

    uhh, that would be 3 1/2 months which is the majority of his entire major league career

    ————————————————————

    .220 in April and July and .250 in September. Doesn’t really leave 3 and a half months, does it, since he missed August? He didn’y hit for the first 10 days in May and in July he dropped from a season high of .303 to .275 when he got hurt.

    Regardless, if you’re going to disregard the other months as being a small sample size, how can you count a month and a half as not being a small sample size? It can’t be both ways.
    ===============

    What are you talking about? On July 25th he hurt his wrist, April, May, June and July is at least 3.5 months and almost 4 months????

  158. fishjam January 2nd, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    I would sign Reed Johnson. Platoon him with Gardner. Give them each about 350-400 abs between platooning in LF, resting Granderson against certain tough lefties and taking about 15 starts from Swisher in RF to keep him fresh.

  159. Frank January 2nd, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    From what I’ve read, A’s intend to go with their best defensive OF, which leaves Hairston out.

    He can hit lefties rather well. He’s a platoon guy though. .287 career OPS vs. righthanders.

  160. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 11:33 pm

    Pat M, the final NFL Sunday has often been unkind to me… too many strange numbers and half-hearted lineups. So I play it very lightly. I can barely keep straight which teams have exactly what to play for… I think I like Green Bay, they’ve been playing very well. Not sure, but I think they can (maybe) get the 5 seed with a win?

  161. george January 2nd, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    interesting question Chad, but I’d still feel they’ve gone downhill this winter for a few reasons.

    I don’t respect the New York Yankees balking at a 2-year contract for Damon over what amounts for tipping money to the Yankees.

    now that Boras/Damon have shown their cards in terms of seeking an Abreu-type contract, there is no reason why the Yankees can’t start the season with Damon in left, Gardner as the 4th OF/PR, Johnny Gomes as someone who can pinch hit for Granderson against lefties, play OF or DH. Then I feel they’ve improved.

  162. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    What are you talking about? On July 25th he hurt his wrist, April, May, June and July is at least 3.5 months and almost 4 months????

    ————————————————————

    Are you saying that April, July and September were acceptable? He didn’t hit well for 3 and a half months. He hit well for a month and a half. Look up the numbers yourself.

    Just forget it…you’re just much too brilliant for this board. We’re not worthy of your insight.

  163. David in Cal January 2nd, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    I think Gardner is a better CF than Granderson, but there are 2 (bad) reasons why I think Granderson will play CF. As a center fielder, Granderson is a likely all-star. As a left fielder, not so much. Also, if the Yanks were going to play Gardner in CF, they could have acquired a left fielder who hits better than Granderson.

    As I say, those are bad reasons. The Yanks have no obligation to make Granderson more valuable or to justify the trade that brought him here. Nevertheless, based on what Cashman has said, it seems like these two bad reasons will lead the team to use Granderson as the regular center fielder.

  164. Frank January 2nd, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    Correction:

    Hairston has a .287 career OBP (not OPS) against RHPs

  165. nothin but hthe truth January 2nd, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    Melky is gone not for his OF work, but his at bats in the bottom of the order were lacking.

  166. NJ Steve January 2nd, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    I want to go on record and say that Guru is correct on all of his points. He probably shouldn’t have called Pat a moron, but he is spot on.

    As for getting some help in the OF I think someone like Reed Johnson is OK, but I don’t think they are going to spend a lot of money on anyone. Hoffman is a big piece of this puzzle because we are counting on him to be our platoon guy (for either Granderson or Gardner).

    One thing nobody has mentioned is what happens if Swisher struggles? Last year he had his career high OPS and we know he can be streaky. The Yankees may need to get some OF help anyway and from what I see the minors does not give us too much hope right now. I do like having very good defense because our offense will score runs.

    Let’s enjoy this team!

  167. akamgkrebs January 2nd, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    GB7-
    What are you talking about? On July 25th he hurt his wrist, April, May, June and July is at least 3.5 months and almost 4 months????

    ————————————————————

    Are you saying that April, July and September were acceptable? He didn’t hit well for 3 and a half months. He hit well for a month and a half. Look up the numbers yourself.

    Just forget it…you’re just much too brilliant for this board. We’re not worthy of your insight.
    —————————————————-
    I understood your point perfectly, but he didn’t get it. I’m not sure if it’s that he’s too brilliant or just living in some parallel universe.

  168. Lance January 2nd, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    So, has anyone here heard of WAR?

    I know Melky’s not an option anymore, but if he were, I’m sure he would be the one everyone expects to start in left field. His career high in WAR is 1.6. He did that twice (2006 and 2009). The two years in between, he didn’t even add up to being worth a win.

    That said, I submit that Brett Gardner, while not a star, should not only start in 2010, but should have been the starter for the rest of 2009 as well. He had 2.1 WAR last year alone, when many of his games were just an inning or two of defense. In his 150 games, he’s been worth 3.2 wins. Even if this is mostly on the strength of his defense, it doesn’t really matter. A win is a win. I’d happily take his outstanding defense (which is where that speed really matters–not stealing bases) with the hope that a guy with less than a full season’s worth of experience can improve at the plate, which seems very possible given his walk rates that were consistently over 10% in the minors. Give the kid time. He’ll be better than Melky, guaranteed.

  169. GreenBeret7 January 2nd, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    nothin but hthe truth
    January 2nd, 2010 at 11:40 pm
    Melky is gone not for his OF work, but his at bats in the bottom of the order were lacking.

    ————————————————————

    List the best #8 or #9 hitters in baseball.

    Hint: It will be a short list.

  170. Lance January 2nd, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    Also, in response to the article, anyone who thinks the positioning of the players in the field affects the strength of the lineup (barring some psychological effects on the players in question) is just being stupid. The only reason I would think this may matter is because Gardner is more likely to be replaced and a left fielder is more replaceable, but even so, if we acquired a left fielder midseason or whenever, Granderson could just switch back rather easily, I would hope.

  171. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 11:46 pm

    Reed Johnson isn’t very good and hasn’t played more than 110 games since 2006. Not very good + hurt a lot = why bother.

  172. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 11:47 pm

    Thank you NJ Steve…I am not real fond of the options out there right now as well.

    Green Beret…what I have consistently said was for the 3 1/2 months in total, before his injury, Gardner hit decent for a guy who plays such good defense and steals bases. his OPS was .754 and adjusted up to about .800 when you take his SB’s into account.

    IF and that is a big IF, he can do that we will be in excellent shape.

  173. cameron January 2nd, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    Sports.yahoo.com under the mlb blog tab, has a whole thread explaining what WAR is, and means.

  174. Pat M. January 2nd, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    NJ Steve…For the purpose of clearity, what exactly is the Guru Man spot on about ???? That Gardner is a better outfielder than Curtis Granderson ??? Or was it that Gardner is a better ballplayer than Melky ??? Frankly withh all the back & forth for the past 2 hours, I think his original point of view has been lost somewhat…..Better yet, if you agree with him then you can simply make the points on the merits of Brett Gardner

  175. Frank January 2nd, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    “Reed Johnson isn’t very good and hasn’t played more than 110 games since 2006. Not very good + hurt a lot = why bother”

    Doubt 110 games would be required of him. Platoon guy who hits lefties very well. Not an ideal pick-up, but:

    Gardner/Johnson platoon > Gardner playing all the time

  176. Nick in SF January 2nd, 2010 at 11:53 pm

    If Gardener can get the same results he got in that 5-hit game, he’ll be a monster!

  177. Guru Man January 2nd, 2010 at 11:54 pm

    Lance, these guys aren’t looking for any logic or WAR references…that is Bill James hog wash…You can lead a horse to water, but…

    That being said, you are correct, BG is more valuable than Melky..just defensively alone Gardner saves probably 75 total bases if he played every day which would equate to 125 points of OPS. Gardner will still steal bases and with the defense Gardner would need only an OPS of .625 to be as valuable as Melky was in CF. Now, that is not really setting the bar high as we know Melky was a weak link. if Gardner can give us an OPS of .724, just like last year, it will be fine with me.

  178. blake January 2nd, 2010 at 11:59 pm

    Frank, I’d rather them sign a full time LF’er and let Gardner be a bench/pinch runner guy. I think thats what they will end up doing.

  179. Davidson January 3rd, 2010 at 12:01 am

    Does it matter to the Yankees that if they signed Lee after the 2010 season of course, that he won’t pitch on short rest?

  180. Lance January 3rd, 2010 at 12:03 am

    Your numbers seem kind of arbitrary, but our points are the same. Yeah, we all do know Melky was a weak link, but I very rarely have heard anyone go after him like they do Gardner, even in 2008, when I wanted to change the channel every time he stepped up to the plate. That’s basically what I was getting at. If we can win with Melky, and people don’t complain about Melky, why is this such a huge issue? I’d put decent money on the fact that Gardner will at the very least not be worse.

    This doesn’t contribute to the argument at all, but it was always fun last year when I could make fun of my Red Sox fan friends because Gardner had a higher OPS than David Ortiz.

  181. Rudy January 3rd, 2010 at 12:04 am

    I don’t know why everyone hates Gardner and won’t even give him the chance to start – defense is SO undervalued on this board it’s pathetic.

    Reference the Seattle Mariners, who ranked in the bottom half backet of offense yet had the best outfield defense and greatly exceeded win expectations.

    Sorry but Guru Man is on the right track.

  182. Frank January 3rd, 2010 at 12:06 am

    “Frank, I’d rather them sign a full time LF’er and let Gardner be a bench/pinch runner guy. I think thats what they will end up doing.”

    Maybe. Not much left that’s all that good. Think we’re either looking at a sub par defensive LF that is past his prime, but can hit a little, or a Gardner/platoon partner situation. Either way, if it becomes a real problem for them, which I don’t imagine it will, they can always revisit the position at the ASB.

  183. Guru Man January 3rd, 2010 at 12:06 am

    Lance, the numbers on SB’s are exact as I take the SB’s and subtract the CS *2. So 26 sb’s and 5 CS is 16 extra bases. the fielding is based more on my own scouting where I feel that Gardner will save at least 3 bases a week over Melky. That is one single and one double and from my rankings that was conservative.

  184. NJ Steve January 3rd, 2010 at 12:10 am

    Pat, I don’t remember all the reasons I thought Guru Man was spot on, but here is what I can think of:

    Cabrera was less valuable than Gardner last year

    Gardner’s OPS was not nearly as bad as people made it out to be

    Gardner’s defense and SB’s are very valuable (the defense moreso)

    Granderson’s weakness against lefties should be more of a concern than Brett’s ability to hit either side

    I would start Brett in CF as well if/when he plays

    His comments about comparing Granderson’s defense to Brett’s seems right on to me

    And some general comments I thought were logical

    …maybe I should just critique my own posts next time

  185. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 12:15 am

    “Cabrera was less valuable than Gardner last year”

    Obviously the Yankees and Girardi didn’t agree..

  186. Pat M. January 3rd, 2010 at 12:19 am

    There was a great centerfielder in the 60′s & early 70′s who was a .250 hitter, on base maybe around .300 as he really wasn’t much of an offensive player…..However he won 7 or 8 gold gloves….Is this what Brett Gardner will morp into ???? That centerfielder was Paul Blair….If that was to be true then I’m all for Gardner….However, I watched Paul Blair play & I played a few games vs. him, trust me there is no way on God’s green earth will Gardner ever come close to Blair’s level……I just cannot agree with the camp that believes that Brett is the better player when compared to Melky…..Besides, they’re pretty much the same age, yet one is an establised player and the other is not even a starter…..

  187. Lance January 3rd, 2010 at 12:22 am

    “Obviously the Yankees and Girardi didn’t agree..”

    I don’t know how much the front office has to say in this situation, but as for Girardi not agreeing, that’s just further evidence in my opinion. I blame the way each started off his respective stint as the starting center fielder (Gardner cold, Melky hot with a “work ethic” or something that the reporters fell in love with), as well as the visibility of offense over defense in general, for the confusion.

  188. ML January 3rd, 2010 at 12:33 am

    Doreen
    January 2nd, 2010 at 10:48 pm
    Off Topic.

    Here’s a question: Is Bruce the Derek Jeter of Rock and Roll? Think about it.

    I would say that Jeter is the Bruce of baseball! Good comparison.

  189. Pat M. January 3rd, 2010 at 12:33 am

    Is there a stat that records how many extra bases Melky prevented due to his arm ??? I have to think that comes about at least once every 2 games at least where base runners will not challenge his arm…..Teams will run on Gardner far more often that they will on Melky….For how balls Gardner would track down in the gaps that Melky wouldn’t get to, would account for how many bases in the course of a season, compared to how many bases Gardner would surrender due to his rather average arm at best….So I don’t see Gardner being a better defender, and offensively there’s no supportive prove that he’ll ever be more productive than Melky…..

  190. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 12:35 am

    I would like to see what Gardner can do in CF, but I don’t think it’s going to happen.

  191. Good bye Melky January 3rd, 2010 at 12:36 am

    CABRERA hit .274/.336/.416 13 HR 68 RBI in 485 at bats,best wishes.

  192. Doreen January 3rd, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Lance -

    Evidence of what?

    And actually, Gardner and Melky both had good ST last season, but Gardner’s was even better than Melky’s. He won the starting job. I don’t see how Girardi had a preference except for the guy who was most productive at any particular time.

    And Cabrera does deserve credit for not sulking, for working hard, for being able to get himself back into the starting lineup on a regular basis.

    My personal opinion is Melky was the overall better player, but the team benefitted from platooning the two guys. That was really the best situation, prior to the thumb injury.

  193. Doreen January 3rd, 2010 at 12:41 am

    ML -

    Either way! :)

  194. 57' Yankee January 3rd, 2010 at 12:42 am

    Gardner will be a plus for Yanks if he hits .270. But probably will wind up as 4th of’er and pinch runner, late defense man. Give the frickin’ guy some time ! Still young with little major league experience.

    Giving up Melky for Vasquez is a good deal for now. Everyone thinks you have to have an current all-star at every spot ! Ain’t happening ! Things happen during the season every year and changes have to made and surprises sometimes happen, whether it be in the field or on the mound !
    Stop cryin,’ the Yanks will be good unless everyone gets hurt at once !!! ENJOY THE SEASON !!!

  195. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 12:42 am

    “Obviously the Yankees and Girardi didn’t agree..”

    I think they would agree, but Gardner’s injury altered their plans.

  196. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 3rd, 2010 at 12:47 am

    First of all, I refuse to call Gardner GGBG as he has not proven himself to be any grittier and/or guttier than any other Yankees. Second of all, it’s ridiculous to call those of us critical of Gardner’s abilities “haters” unless you want to open yourselves to charges of being “lovers”. The idea of moving an all-star CF (who’s been in the majors for several years now) to LF to accomodate a “youngster” (who isn’t even that young) who isn’t any better is ludicrous. Even if Gardner were slightly better, you’re talking about judging his defensive abilities in less than a full season’s work in comparison to a player (CG) who has done it for years.

    The fact that the best defense of Gardner is that he’s “young” and “inexperienced” is sad. There are young and inexperienced players around the game who are also talented. BG is not among them. He can’t hit………and players who can’t hit are either relegated to the bench or they are out of the game. Defensive-specialists almost never see the light of day as starters…….so for all Gardner’s “brilliance” defensively (which I don’t believe in at all), if he doesn’t learn to handle the stick, he’d better find another occupation.

  197. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 12:48 am

    “Gardner will be a plus for Yanks if he hits .270.”

    It’s not about AVG.

    His OBP has to be around .350 and at least a league average OPS (.732 for an AL CF), which I think he can do. Add in very good CF defense, and you would have a valuable player.

  198. Ed in PR January 3rd, 2010 at 12:50 am

    Someone previously compared Bernies speed to Gardners is so wrong. Bernie had long limbs so his strides were longer, great for longer distances.

    Gardner is much more agile and quicker on his feet than Bernie ever was. Sure Bernie could steal bases here and there but he too lanky to match Gardys speed around the diamond.

  199. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 12:54 am

    Bernie had awful instincts on the bases and never got good jumps on flyballs. While he was young and healthy he was able to outrun his mistakes in the field.

  200. Nick in SF January 3rd, 2010 at 1:00 am

    Always choose love over hate. :)

  201. Phillies nation . January 3rd, 2010 at 1:01 am

    The Braves, by trading VAZQUEZ LOST AN EXTREMELY EFFECTIVE STARTER,who struck out 10 batters per 9 innings pitched in 2009, while walking only 2 per nine. Every single number Vazquez compiled last season was extraordinary (1.02 whip,238 k’s,219 innings,) as evidenced by his fourth place finish in the race for NL CY. It’s difficult to call the Braves winners
    in a deal that loses them a dominant starter….

    Article thread , Adversaries in Atlanta

    http://www.philliesnation.com

  202. Lance January 3rd, 2010 at 1:11 am

    Doreen,

    Evidence that Gardner is actually better. (i.e., I take everything Girardi does with a grain of salt, especially after the Robertson/Aceves fiasco.)

    I said how they started off their respective stints. That is, the beginning of the season until Gardner lost the job (for Gardner) and the period directly after that (for Melky). Not spring training.

    There’s not really much way to tell who’s more productive at any given time if they’re not both playing equally, and if they are playing equally, the sample in said period of time can’t possibly mean anything, and they would both likely be worse off than if either played regularly, except by luck.

    Yes, Melky does deserve credit for not sulking, but he does not deserve credit for being the better ballplayer. He is approximately the same hitter as Gardner, even in his best season compared to Gardner’s rookie season, essentially, and he is quite clearly inferior on defense, whether you’re just watching or using stats.

    Betsy,
    From a strictly objective standpoint, the better defensive player should play center field. Period. It doesn’t matter who has proven anything or who has been an All-Star, especially since All-Stars are so heavily based on offense. If you have two players who are both going to be in the lineup, they should be arranged to optimize the defense. The only question with Gardner is whether his defense is as good as his statistics suggest because of the small sample size, which you acknowledge. I don’t know the scouts’ opinion on this, but I would say the biggest factor that would preclude the switch would be Granderson’s, fans’, and the media’s reactions, which would likely be much like your own.

    To your second point… what do you think of Melky Cabrera?

    Finally, hitting ability is not really about average, on-base percentage, or OPS. It’s simpler to just use wOBA, which is much more meaningful than any of those and more mathematically sound than OPS. Once again, Gardner was better both last year and for his career, even though the differences are negligible and they are both below average. Gardner, however, would seem to have more upside, and Bill James agrees, actually projecting him as a league average (actually slightly better) hitter next year.

    So, one more time… why is everyone crying about Gardner? Really, people, he won’t be THAT bad…

  203. m January 3rd, 2010 at 1:17 am

    So, why does Ellsbury have such a bad zone rating when he plays in a sardine can?

    pat,

    What do you think? Should Gardner stay away from that opening? Someone might throw things at his rather large caput. teehee.

  204. m January 3rd, 2010 at 1:27 am

    So, I’m cleaning out my mailbox. I just saw a Sporting News Today e-mail with the headline that Hideki fuels the Yankees 7-3 win over the Phillies in the WS clincher. What a night that was…

    So, um, where’s everybody?

    Pat m, you still in the hot tub? haha.

  205. Phil the Thrill January 3rd, 2010 at 1:31 am

    Wow, Bill James bashing. Let’s burn books next. Then let’s get that evolution nonsense out of our classrooms!

  206. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 3rd, 2010 at 1:32 am

    Lance, I like Melky a lot better than Gardner, but I don’t think he’s really a starter either – more like a perfect 4th OF.

  207. Doreen January 3rd, 2010 at 1:32 am

    Lance -

    Your original post said Gardner started cold. But he didn’t. I think it is relevant that he won the starting job fair and square last spring.

  208. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 1:32 am

    I love the gardner hate for these comments:

    - He doesn’t walk!!

    (9.5% walk rate last year, when I’m sure pitchers knew that he was a weak slap hitter, its his scouting report. That was higher than Melky )

    - He doesn’t hit enough balls on the ground!!

    (50% groundball rate, 68% positive hit rate Groundballs + linedrives, he should probably get a lot higher but 50% is good)

  209. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 1:33 am

    Melky Cabrera hit a similiar number of infield fly balls as Gardner, only 4% away.

  210. Pat M. January 3rd, 2010 at 1:41 am

    m, i just finsihed another set of laps in the pool under the glow of the full moon…..I packed on 19 pounds since my surgery last April & I’m determined to lose the flab before opening day…..Also I’m going back to Coors unleaded ( GB’s choice of brew ), plus all the Christmas candies and cookies are just about gone now…Halloween to New Years is the flab zone and in the past it never mattered to me because I’m at 24 hour fitness at least 4 times a week……I’m up to 215 pounds now and my playing weight used to be 185, so I have my work cut out for me…..

  211. Josh from Brooklyn January 3rd, 2010 at 1:43 am

    This is purely a defensive argument… no? Kinda chopped off the conversation by removing dialog around defensive merits.

    For what it’s worth, I love the idea of Grandy in left and Gardner in center. Gardner is a UZR stud and it would be fun watching him track down gappers all season. Moving Grandy to left would allow him to float into his 30s in a more offensive minded position… and he has played left before.

    Go Yanks!

  212. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 1:44 am

    “This is purely a defensive argument… no?”

    It’s about maximizing positional value.

  213. Lance January 3rd, 2010 at 1:48 am

    Doreen,

    Yes, he did win the job fair and square. When I say he started cold, I mean during the regular season. For example, he had a .525 OPS (for quick reference) at the end of April. He absolutely did start the season slow. If he hadn’t, why would he have lost the job? Unfortunately, I can’t remember or seem to find the exact date that he lost the job, but I guarantee you that if he hadn’t started cold, he would have had a much better chance of keeping it.

    Here’s a fun article I happened to find while looking for that date: http://www.theyankeeu.com/2009.....ner-in-cf/

  214. Lance January 3rd, 2010 at 1:49 am

    “This is purely a defensive argument… no?”

    It’s about maximizing positional value.
    —-

    Given that the same players will be on the field either way, that means it’s a purely defensive argument.

  215. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 1:55 am

    Article on Gardner’s defense. Despite all his ‘twisting and turning’ and whatever, bad routes / jumps / whatsits. He was above average going back, going laterally, and going forward on balls last season.

    http://oneifbylandsports.blogs.....balls.html

  216. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 1:55 am

    “Let’s compare Ellsbury to another center fielder picked completely at random — or, you know, not. Let’s compare him to Yankees center fielder Brett Gardner, an outfielder who will be replaced by Curtis Granderson next season because he wasn’t good enough to play every day.

    Well, actually, Gardner was really good in the field:
    * Deep fly balls: plus-6
    * Medium fly balls: plus-1
    * Shallow fly balls: plus-4″

  217. m January 3rd, 2010 at 1:56 am

    Yah, I’m not a big fan of pidgeonholing players or evaluating them on what a corner OF should produce or a 1B should produce.

    Rewinding a bit, someone said just bring back Damon already. I think the Yankees in their mind (org. mtgs) wanted to play Damon less in the field. With NJ being the primary DH (thank you Cash for not going with the rotating DH cr-ap), there’s not really room for Damon in the field.

  218. tennore January 3rd, 2010 at 2:06 am

    You know as much as I hate it, you had to say goodbye to Johnny as well as Matsui. I wanted to keep them both, but with the other slick moves Cash made it allowed them to call Boras’ bluff. Besides, the Yanks took a page out of the Sox’s book and the old 49er way and let players go a year too early instead of the usual Yankee way of a year too late.

    In addition, I think it is always a good call to leave one hole in the lineup to either continue to develop a young player or have the opportunity to discover a new young player from the minors in case the first player bombs. Remember the revolving door at 2B when they decided to go with a young player named Cano. Rather than spend that money on a LF, re-sign Wang and mend that bridge, “you can never have enough pitching.”

  219. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 2:14 am

    If we got Damon back at a discount for 1 year the team would be pretty unstoppable. Even if damon faded a bit he’d be a dangerous lower order player.

  220. Nick in SF January 3rd, 2010 at 2:30 am

    “I’m not a big fan of pidgeonholing players or evaluating them on what a corner OF should produce…”

    But Brett Gardner is a CF in your eyes, no?

  221. m January 3rd, 2010 at 2:37 am

    I don’t know what that means, but yes, defensively I think that Gardner’s a CF. I suppose he could be a corner OF, but I’m no expert and as far as I know the Yankees have played him primarily in CF.

    What I meant is I’ve seen people say, “He can’t play there, he doesn’t have enough power for a (fill in the blank)”.

    That’s all I meant. Was not referring to any particular player or position.

    In general, you try to maximize performance on both sides of the ball (ah, the challenge of being a real gm).

    But in a perfect world, players would be alligned where they fit best defensively and not based on their offensive output.

    Long story short, Gardner hasn’t hit well enough to play everyday in the majors. But he could definitely play everyday in the outfield.

  222. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 2:40 am

    “Given that the same players will be on the field either way, that means it’s a purely defensive argument.”

    That’s not true. I’m viewing it through the prism of league average offensive production for each position.

    Gardner’s production could enable him to be a league offensive average CF, and Granderson’s production is good enough to be a league average offensive LF, in a down year like 2009.

    So as I said, it’s about positional value.

  223. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 2:44 am

    “What I meant is I’ve seen people say, “He can’t play there, he doesn’t have enough power for a (fill in the blank)”.”

    I doubt anyone said “can’t.”

    But when you are building a team, you want to maximize output at each position, both offensively and defensively.

  224. m January 3rd, 2010 at 2:48 am

    Rich,

    I’ve seen it plenty. Say for instance moving a player from one position to another. They’ll say, “But he doesn’t have enough power to play that position”, even though for the sake of argument it would be better defense.

    Chad may be simplifying it a bit, but the fact remains that if you’re dealing with the same 9 players, then the offense depends more on the lineup than the defensive alignment.

  225. Jerkface January 3rd, 2010 at 2:53 am

    Like M is saying, owning hypothetical 1 on 1 matchups does not matter when the game actually begins. Posada doesn’t fist fight the other catcher to determine who wins the catcher position.

    If Gardner and Granderson have to play in the same lineup, I’d want them in the best defensive position as the coaches see it.

    Owning positional advantages only matters if you can get all your players to be above average.

    Having Granderson at center and then say signing Damon or Holliday or anyone better than Gardner (defense+offense considered), then yes positional advantage achieved. Having Granderson in center allowed us to also haev a great leftfielder and we gained the advantage!

    But refusing to move Granderson and then playing Gardner anyways is dumb. That is if Gardner is in fact better than Granderson, which UZR says he is but apparently plus minus disagrees with.

    Either way, 9th hole aside, I love the yankees 1-8 right now.

  226. MikeD January 3rd, 2010 at 2:56 am

    If Gardner and Granderson are two of the Yankees starting OFers for 2010, well of course Gardner should be in CF over Granderson. It’s not that Granderson can’t handle the job defensively, it’s simply that Gardner covers for more ground and is the better defensive CFer. Granderson’s mover from center to left will also make him a superior LFer compared to most.

    What I wrote above is all logic. That means Gardner will be in left and Granderson will be in center.

  227. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 3:01 am

    m

    This may be about semantics, but I am only taking exception to the word can’t.

    I am one of the people who would say that a given player, perhaps like Daniel Murphy on the Mets, probably doesn’t hit with enough power (SLG, not HR) to play 1B.

    But I would never say he “can’t” player 1B. It’s just that the defensive requirements at 1B are less than they are at other positions, so it behooves a team to put a top offensive player there.

    Similarly, LF is a less demanding defensive position than CF so you want a better offensive player there.

    If you don’t get league average production from each position, you should be looking to upgrade that position.

  228. Greg January 3rd, 2010 at 3:02 am

    This really is a pointless arguement, as Gardner is not and will not be a starter. He is a good defender with above average speed, who also has a hole in his swing the size of Texas. He has to start swinging five minutes from now to catch up with a major league fastball. I love brett’s makeup, but he’s nothing more than a fourth or fifth outfielder/pinchrunner. Yanks know that, hence why they’re looking for a left fielder.

  229. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 3:05 am

    “Owning positional advantages only matters if you can get all your players to be above average.”

    As I just posted, if you don’t get it, then you should be looking to upgrade. If you put Gardner in CF and Granderson in LF, and Gardner produces offensively as well as defensively, then there is no reason to look to upgrade.

    Now if a superior player becomes available at the right price, then you would still upgrade, but that’s true of any position and any player (with the limitation of being able to move the existing player’s contract).

  230. Pat M. January 3rd, 2010 at 3:10 am

    Greg, I wish you luck in conveying your message….To some it’s rather obvious what you’re saying…..However your pissing in the wind

  231. m January 3rd, 2010 at 3:11 am

    Greg,

    How hard are they looking?

  232. m January 3rd, 2010 at 3:14 am

    Granderson’s a good CF, not poor enough to move from the position.

    That’s like moving Jeter to another infield position so Pena could play. Close to impossible. haha.

  233. Johnny Damon January 3rd, 2010 at 3:14 am

    I don’t know why everyone finds this so hard to believe, including the media, but I’m absolutely coming back to the Bronx. Just like Andy was supposedly good as gone last year, both sides found a way to make it work in the end. Same thing shaping up this year…

    http://nysubwaychatter.wordpre.....ir-for-it/

  234. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 3:17 am

    Greg’s post is funny in a way because it obscures a reality that some people like to complain about.

    The Yankees, to their credit, do try to put at least a quasi-AS at every position, but sometimes that’s not possible.

    With that in mind, there is sufficient evidence to make wanting to see Gardner get an extended chance to be a starting CF a reasonable position.

    But if he plays LF, his offense is going to be viewed with much more searching scrutiny.

    That is another reason why this argument isn’t merely about defense. It’s also about positional value.

  235. m January 3rd, 2010 at 3:21 am

    Rich,

    I don’t get your point (i’m a little dense, haha)

    If they make no more moves, Gardner is it. LF/CF, it doesn’t matter because really, he’s not league average at either position!

  236. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 3:22 am

    “Granderson’s a good CF, not poor enough to move from the position.

    That’s like moving Jeter to another infield position so Pena could play. Close to impossible. haha.”

    Is this in response to my post, m?

    I don’t understand the comparison to Jeter.

    Jeter was bad at SS from 2005-07, and if he wasn’t Derek Jeter, they may have actively looked to move him to another position.

    If Granderson’s defense was that bad, the Yankees would not have traded for him to play CF.

  237. Rich in NJ January 3rd, 2010 at 3:26 am

    m

    “If they make no more moves, Gardner is it. LF/CF, it doesn’t matter because really, he’s not league average at either position!”

    2009 AL league average CF:

    .265/.329/.403/.732

    Gardner’s 2009:

    .270/.345/.379/.724

    He’s right there.

  238. m January 3rd, 2010 at 3:28 am

    Rich,

    No, I said way up the thread that I didn’t think they would move one of the best CF in baseball to LF for GGBG.

  239. m January 3rd, 2010 at 3:32 am

    Rich,

    You don’t have to convince me. But there are many who are unconvinced that Brett can even play at this level.

    Personally, I think he can be a game changer a lot of times. Reminds me of Victorino at AAA. Scranton manager called up the big club everyday reporting what game-changing things Shane did that day.

    If Gardner can adjust to the adjustments, I think he can do it.

    Jerkface,

    meant to thank you for that link. was wondering why they were talking about Tom Terrific on the site. No homerism for a Yankee farmhand from the “one of by..” folks.

  240. Joe R. January 3rd, 2010 at 3:33 am

    I think its dismissive to say that Gardner is not and will not be a starter based on the information we have now. Looking at his career stats, they are comparable to Melky’s, and he hasn’t been granted nearly the same amount of apportunities. I would not be at all surprised if the Yankees dished out some money for a left fielder, but its by no means a guarantee based on all the budget talks we’ve been hearing.

    Its also dismissive to label either Melky or Gardner as fourth or fifth outfielders at such young ages, and in Gardner’s case, with such little major league experience logged in. Let the players develop.

    I still think you keep Granderson in center though, as I don’t think experimenting with a switch is worth it. Make Granderson as comfortable as possible unless there is clearly a substantial difference, he’s going to be with the Yankees a long time.

  241. akamgkrebs January 3rd, 2010 at 3:55 am

    2009 AL league average CF:

    .265/.329/.403/.732

    Gardner’s 2009:

    .270/.345/.379/.724

    He’s right there.
    ==========================================================
    Two pints. First, it’s hard to project part-time statistics into a full year as a starter. Baseball is riddled with players that have acceptable numbers playing partime, but have failed when asked to start day in and day out. Second, Melky’s 2009 numbers were .274 / .336 / .416 / .752.; I guess that makes him substantially above average.

  242. akamgkrebs January 3rd, 2010 at 3:55 am

    that’s two points, not pints

  243. NYYanksFan January 3rd, 2010 at 4:04 am

    “She (Rachel Uchitel) came back to Vegas and when she was in town, she called me and said, ‘Hey, you want to come join me for the evening?’ We had been texting and stuff back and forth since Spain, getting along just fine. She asked me, ‘Look, I’ve got to go meet Derek Jeter and will you come out? We need some girls at the table…..”

    “As it turned out, Samson never got to meet with the Yankee captain…….”

    http://www.nydailynews.com/spo.....z0bXNLrYKy

  244. m January 3rd, 2010 at 4:06 am

    Ha. Just perused PA’s blog. He had a clever Christmas post. I guess Heidi doesn’t get her own rules like Kim Jones did. And check out what he says about Big Papi. He was wronged by the Times!

    http://www.boston.com/sports/b.....befor.html

  245. Sesn Ryan January 3rd, 2010 at 5:06 am

    Some of you really make Yankee fans look like greedy bastards. Do you really need an all-star at EVERY POSITION? For God sake, take a look at the Yankees lineup and pitching staff. Is it really the end of the world if you insert a good defensive player with speed in the bottom of the lineup?

  246. akamgkrebs January 3rd, 2010 at 6:07 am

    Is it really the end of the world if you insert a good defensive player with speed in the bottom of the lineup?
    ——————————————————
    Who’d you have in mind that the Yanks could get?

  247. Paco Dooley January 3rd, 2010 at 6:18 am

    I’m amazed at how many people seem to totally miss Chad’s point. He IS NOT suggesting that it would be a good idea to swap them defensively. Rather, he is making the point that, if you look at Gardner as that light hitting speedy CF and Granderson as the power hitting speedy LF then the overall team looks less odd. They can stay in their positions, but when you view the team as a lineup, keep in mind that you have quite a powerful CF making up for that lighter LF that looks more like a CF.

  248. akamgkrebs January 3rd, 2010 at 6:39 am

    I’m amazed at how many people seem to totally miss Chad’s point. He IS NOT suggesting that it would be a good idea to swap them defensively. Rather, he is making the point that, if you look at Gardner as that light hitting speedy CF and Granderson as the power hitting speedy LF then the overall team looks less odd. They can stay in their positions, but when you view the team as a lineup, keep in mind that you have quite a powerful CF making up for that lighter LF that looks more like a CF.
    ———————————————
    That argment sounded a lot better when Melky was still on the team.

  249. Greg January 3rd, 2010 at 6:48 am

    I just want to clarify that I don’t extend my Gardner point to mean the yanks should sign matt holiday. I just think gardner doesn’t have what it takes to be a starter. I realize it is a small sample size, but he gets exposed the more he plays. Melky was a much more polished hitter. I don’t care about brett’s lack of power, but when I watch him swing he appears to make contact by pure accident. Maybe I’m being harsh, but I just don’t see his potential. But I like having him on the bench.

  250. Paco Dooley January 3rd, 2010 at 6:51 am

    “That argment sounded a lot better when Melky was still on the team.”

    I assume you mean Chad’s basic point that the team is not as unbalanced as people might think with Gardner in LF. I don’t disagree with your point about Melky, but I think we have to also avoid overvaluing Melky. He’s played enough to probably be the player we see. He’s a mediocre outfielder in terms of range and offesnive ability with an above average arm.

    Gardner benefits from still being a little bit of an unknown. Personally, I don’t think he’ll ever be that great an offensive player. He’ll be a Ricky Ledee type, or maybe develop better and be of similar quality to Chad Curtis (but hopefully he’ll be smarter and actually treat Jeter with respect).

  251. GreenBeret7 January 3rd, 2010 at 7:44 am

    Actually, Chad Curtis had decent skills. He just couldn’t hang on to them long enough.

  252. NJYankee January 3rd, 2010 at 8:09 am

    Why don’t they just get Holliday? he wants to play here, and have better chance to win the world series.

  253. NYYanksFan January 3rd, 2010 at 8:19 am

    Sorry to read this…..

    “It appears Cone’s short but brilliant run in the YES broadcast booth may be over. Sources say Cone is out after a heated disagreement with network executives.

    A spokesman confirmed via e-mail: “David’s contract is up. We’d love to have him back, but he’s in the process of evaluating his various options. … He may not be back based on what he decides.”

    http://www.northjersey.com/spo.....l#comments

  254. bru January 3rd, 2010 at 8:30 am

    putting gardner in cf & cg in lf wouldn’t make much of a difference unless their uzr rankings show that it is the right thing to do like when we put damon in lf because he was a disaster in cf

    gardner imo can’t pull that far ahead of cg too make it worth it if he can pull ahead of him at all.

    offensively it makes no difference

    the concern i have is gardner & cg against lefties & matsui’s power that we lost

    nj is a perfect number 2 hitter but cg is not the power hitter or the protection that matsui was & against lefties he is a bottom of the order hitter

  255. Smacketh Downeth January 3rd, 2010 at 8:34 am

    We’ve kinda hashed out all of the trade and FA possibilities, and that’s good; what I would like to consider is what if there ARE no more acquisitions between now and Spring Training? Who do we go with in the outfield?

    There’s Swish and Grandy, Gardner and Hoffmann. What about Juan Miranda? [Stop laughing and consider this seriously for a minute]. He’s slow, but he might just mash if we give him a chance. [Not to mention that he can step into the DH role if Nick Johnson goes down]. Now, Swish is faster and a better outfielder: put him in the big LF with Curtis in CF and Miranda in RF [shorter fence, less area to cover]. Brett and Jamie for defensive purposes and PR duties. Anyone think this might work?

  256. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 8:34 am

    “Why don’t they just get Holliday? he wants to play here, and have better chance to win the world series.”

    Just makes too much sense so they can’t go there.

    And Haven’t you heard ? The Yankees have a budget(ha Ha).

  257. trisha - OPPC forever - (new lucky picture from last day at the old Stadium) BRING ON THE GHOSTS! January 3rd, 2010 at 8:38 am

    So I’m watching MLB’s rerun of the world series. Game 2 is on. AJ pitching, with Molina behind the dish. Hmmm. Wonder if it works out???

    ;)

    I forgot how much I miss this game until I start watching it again! Funny that despite knowing that the Yanks take this game, I still get that a version of that nervous feeling watching the game. Maybe it’s automatic postseason viscerality (is that a word?)

  258. trisha - OPPC forever - (new lucky picture from last day at the old Stadium) BRING ON THE GHOSTS! January 3rd, 2010 at 8:39 am

    It also made me sad watching Sui get a hit against Pedro, knowing that we won’t have him next year.

    :(

  259. Mike S. January 3rd, 2010 at 8:41 am

    Interesting arguments on Gardner last night. One argument was that he doesn’t walk enough. Interesting. Yes, I’d like Gardner to walk more in order to take advantage of his speed. But let’s look at something.

    Gardner 26 walks in 248 AB in 2009. Let’s double the ABs (496) for a full-time player, and you’d have 52 walks. (Yes, I know it’s hard to project, but for discussion’s sake): Remember that Gardner had an OPS+ of 93 in 2009.

    Player A had 13 walks in 590 AB in 1976. OPS+ 122 because of a .312 BA.
    Player A had 18 walks in 565 AB in 1977. OPS+ 115 because of a .326 BA.
    Player A had 29 walks in 559 AB in 1978. OPS+ 98 because he dropped to .265.

    It’s safe to say that speedster Player A almost never walked.

    Let’s look at speedy Player B.
    380 AB last year. Just 27 walks. OPS+ 105.
    2008? 22 walks in 375 AB. OPS+ 75.
    A 162 game average of 38 walks per year in 626 AB. Career OPS+ of just 85.

    Player A is Mickey Rivers. Player B is Juan Pierre, and although Gardner doesn’t have a cannon for an arm, what he has is better than what Rivers had or Pierre has, and his walk ratio is actually better.

    We’ll have to see.

  260. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 8:53 am

    Though it aint likely to happen.

    I think our current best option for LF other than MH is JD on a 1 year Abreu-type contract with CC firmly in our sights for next year.

    JD is somewhat shakey out in LF but his bat is still awesome.

    So for those who might see it that way, a theme song :

    “When Johnny comes marching home again,
    Hurrah! Hurrah!
    We’ll give him a hearty welcome then
    Hurrah! Hurrah!
    The men will cheer and the boys will shout
    The ladies they will all turn out
    And we’ll all feel gay when Johnny comes marching home.”

  261. joeman January 3rd, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Mike S.

    you like Gardner ? Well time will tell & I believe that this is a telling year for him in a Yankee uniform…
    BTW..he’s not the all around hitter those two are & they didn’t need to draw walks like he needs to do to get on base

  262. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 9:04 am

    MTU. If no MH then I also think JD for one year is the way go go. This is assuming his price falls to one year at 5-8 million. I would rather have Damons bat in LF than Gardners glove and Gardner could still be valuable late in games defensively. I’d also like to see them bring back hairston if they can cheaply. He can play infield and outfield and is a good utility guy for the price.

  263. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Blake-

    It seems to be one of the better options still possible.

    JD can push NJ to the bench ocassionally, who can give MT a rest.

    If JD and NJ are both utilized a little more sparingly I think it helps the team.

    Was also thinking of altering the lineup if JD comes back maybe letting NJ lead off w JD in the 2 hole and DJ back to his more traditional #3 spot.

  264. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Blake-

    I didn’t favor patching the tire over buying the Michelin.

    Next year’s tires might be high quality radials built to handle high speed.

    Might find them on sale. Who knows ?

  265. Mike S. January 3rd, 2010 at 9:16 am

    Pierre’s an all-around hitter? Hmm. You have me scratching my head there. Gardner had an OPS+ of 93 last year. Pierre has reached that just three times in his career.

    You have to give Gardner time. He has 150 games and 425 AB under his belt, roughly the equivalent of one full season. You can’t judge anyone after one full season.

    Take a look at Brett Butler’s beginning in 1981 and 1982. How he was after his first 366 AB. Butler I bring up because he is the type of player Gardner must try to become. Where blogs around in January of 1983, what do you think would have been said of Butler? Probably the same things said of Gardner, yet Butler went on to steal over 500 bases, hit .290 and have 2375 hits.

    This isn’t to say Gardner will do the same. Far from it. But if he can develop into something close to the type of player Butler was, then good. But the only way to find out is to give the guy a chance, not give up on someone after just the equivalent of one season.

    Would I like JD back? Of course. But not at a ridiculous price or terms for a 36 year old.

    Can Gardner fill the #9 spot? We’ll have to see. Let’s remember it is the #9 spot. Let’s remember that his game is speed and defense. Hopefully he can get on more because when he does, he disrupts the pitcher.

    We’ve seen flashes of what Gardner can do. Hopefully he becomes more consistent. He hit .270 with 26 SB (2nd on the team) in 248 AB last year. That’s not bad. If he becomes a semi-regular, and can hit .270 or higher, play good defense and steal 40 bases, I’ll take it.

  266. Ed H. January 3rd, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Mark Newman of MLB.com points out that Alex has some cool HR milestones coming up this year:

    “Alex Rodriguez and the 600 Home Run Club. It is projected to happen in the Subway Series: June 19 at Yankee Stadium against the Mets. Rodriguez — now free of the postseason-pressure yoke — enters the season with 583 homers. His first long ball of 2010 he will pass Mark McGwire for eighth place on the all-time list.”

  267. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 9:20 am

    MTu, who is going to DH if NJ gets hurt? Damon would also provide a bat that’s good enough to fill that role if Johnson were to miss time. Damons bat makes the lineup a complete circle and even more of a nightmare for opposing pitchers. I love Gardner as a bench player and occasional starter but feel that 162 games would expose his weakneses. JMO

  268. trisha - OPPC forever - (new lucky picture from last day at the old Stadium) BRING ON THE GHOSTS! January 3rd, 2010 at 9:22 am

    You probably all know this (I’m the one who is absent from here so someone emailed me the info) but MLB network is showing the entire world series. Right now we’re still in game 2.

    Nice watch for a snowy Sunday.

    (By the way what’s really cool about this is that they have player comment during the game. So I just watched Tex tie the game with a homer and then they had comments he made about that homer. Pretty neat.)

  269. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 9:25 am

    Blake-
    If NJ got hurt.

    w/o JD it might be someone like Miranda.

    But I like the idea of JD much better.

    What do you think of a lineup like this :

    NJ
    JD
    Jeter
    A-Rod
    Tex
    Po
    Cano
    Grandy
    Swish

  270. joeman January 3rd, 2010 at 9:27 am

    isn’t Pierre a lifetime .300 hitter

  271. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 9:28 am

    MTu, I also still think MH cures a lot of problems and does so for several years but we don’t know what his price is still. If they feel they can get Crawford much cheaper and fewer years next year then that’s probably the way to go. However I don’t see how they can sign Crawford and a pitcher and still stay under 200M next year.

  272. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 9:35 am

    MTU, I’m not a fan of NJ in the leadoff spot..I know he’s an OBP machine but I still like a guy that can run a little in that spot. Jeter is perfect there.

  273. 86w183 January 3rd, 2010 at 9:37 am

    This is the only place on earth where Granderson vs Gardner would even be discussed.

    Mike S….. I like your post on what Gardner has to try to become as a ballplayer. I wrote a few weeks back that the Yanks should hire Brett Butler as a special instructor to teach bunting techniques to Gardner and possibly others.

    I’m okay with Gardner in LF, but they need to add a veteran for depth/insurance ideally a RH hitter for balance. If they did bring Damon back they would have the same balance they have right now, 4 LH, 2 RH and 3 SH in the lineup.

  274. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Blake-

    I have always viewed the Budget as a “strawman” argument.

    Yanks are a cash cow, and they are addicted to winning.

    If they really want someone they can get them.

    Their new found religion on the budget is temporary IMHO.

    The farm will help keep costs down going forward.

  275. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 3rd, 2010 at 9:38 am

    MTU, you make it sound like the Yankees are idiots by saying stuff like it makes too much sense so it’s not happening. They have decided (for whatever reasons – many, I’m sure) that they do not want to pursue Matt Holliday. You may disagree, but their lack of pursuit makes plenty of sense to them.

    That’s freaking annoying about Cone and YES and very disappointing. I love Coney both personally and professionally…..

  276. Smacketh Downeth January 3rd, 2010 at 9:38 am

    MTU, I do think Jeets would be an excellent #3 in the classic sense. I’d go with Tex at 4 and Alex at 5, however, in that scenario.

    What do I hope happens? I’d prefer Matt Holliday in LF and hitting 5th, but I’ll cheer the Yanks and hope for the best no matter what scenario evolves :-)

  277. Stan January 3rd, 2010 at 9:41 am

    The 1st thing Joe Girardi should say to Brett Gardner when he reports with the rest of the position players is, ” Welcome to Tampa. ”
    The 2nd thing he should say is, ” I can’t estimate how many hours you’ll spend learning how to bunt but it will be many hours. “

  278. MTU January 3rd, 2010 at 9:41 am

    betsy-

    IMHO opinion. I think the yanks might be being penny wise and pound foolish on MH.

    It aint my money so in that sense you are absolutely correct.

    I just drooled over the thought of a new Murderer’s row with MH in it.

    that’s all.

  279. Smacketh Downeth January 3rd, 2010 at 9:42 am

    New thread :-)

  280. Doreen January 3rd, 2010 at 9:43 am

    Lance -

    (If you’re around)

    I can meet you half way and agree that Gardner at least cooled off once the season began. :)

    I read the article you linked to. They lost me when they decided, without benefit of stats or much back story, that “we can all agree” that Gardner is a better CF than Granderson. (Seems obvious to me that the opposite is true.)

    The first half of the article took great pains to compare Gardner to Melky (comparing minor league stats to major league stats, which is suspect in my mind), and then jumped to the conclusion that Gardner was better than —— Granderson.

    I understand that the author of the article was stuck in a snowstorm away from all his usual sources of information, but at least a cursory something about Granderson’s defense compared to Gardner’s would have lent more credibility to his conclusion.

    Anyway, as of this date, it sure looks like BG is going to be the starting LF for the NYY. He may not be my favorite or my choice, but I’ll sure as heck root for him to prove me wrong. :)

  281. Betsy - Romine wasn't built in a day January 3rd, 2010 at 9:46 am

    MTU, you’re missing my point. I know you’re drooling over Holliday, but to imply the Yankees have no idea what their doing is silly. Penny Wise, Pound foolish? I might have agreed if they lost Holliday at 5/80 but at 6/7/8 years at over $100 million? The Cardinals can have Holliday at that price. Ick.

  282. 86w183 January 3rd, 2010 at 9:48 am

    Jeter is not a # 3 hitter in any sense or in any way that makes sense. NJ is not a lead off hitter either? Why would you make a lineup that assures NJ roughly 80 more PA than Alex Rodriguez? Seriously.

  283. 86w183 January 3rd, 2010 at 9:54 am

    I don’t think the Yanks plan for fiscal sanity is temporary at all. Last year when they “desperately” needed another starting pitcher they didn’t spend money and prospects for a big name, but instead tried a more affordable alternative and that patience was rewarded.

    There’s no shortage of guys who would be significant improvements over Gardner and they all comes with various “costs”.

    Recent history tells me the Yanks will go low on the cost and bring in a Reed Johnson/Marcus Thames type rather than Holliday or even Damon.

    That’s okay with me. The Yanks spend more than any other team and continue to re-invest in the product and that’s really all any of us can ask for.

  284. blake January 3rd, 2010 at 10:00 am

    I don’t think the Yankees sudden interest in payroll is temporary either. The days of wild spending are over but the days of smart spending are not. I think the Yankees will cut money where they can but its going to be very difficult to keep that number under 200M and field a chaionship team in the future because they have so much money tied up in a few players.

  285. GreenBeret7 January 3rd, 2010 at 10:00 am

    Mike S.
    January 3rd, 2010 at 9:16 am
    Pierre’s an all-around hitter? Hmm. You have me scratching my head there. Gardner had an OPS+ of 93 last year. Pierre has reached that just three times in his career.

    You have to give Gardner time. He has 150 games and 425 AB under his belt, roughly the equivalent of one full season. You can’t judge anyone after one full season.

    Take a look at Brett Butler’s beginning in 1981 and 1982. How he was after his first 366 AB. Butler I bring up because he is the type of player Gardner must try to become. Where blogs around in January of 1983, what do you think would have been said of Butler? Probably the same things said of Gardner, yet Butler went on to steal over 500 bases, hit .290 and have 2375 hits.

    ————————————————————

    I’ll repeat this for you one more time. The issue isn’t so much about his fielding. It’s about his inability or lack of desire to maximize what skills he has. He has bunted 18 times in his career. 9 ended up as sac bunts. 2 were hits. You don’t have a problem with that? Even Nick Swisher had 6 bunts in 2009…3 for sac bunts and 2 for hits.

  286. Rich January 3rd, 2010 at 10:16 am

    What about Dan Uggla for LF? Maybe put Cano in LF and sign Orlando Hudson to play 2B. The defense once again would be much improved, and he is a character guy, good for the clubhouse… Thoughts on this idea??

  287. Guru Man January 3rd, 2010 at 10:22 am

    m

    “If they make no more moves, Gardner is it. LF/CF, it doesn’t matter because really, he’s not league average at either position!”

    2009 AL league average CF:

    .265/.329/.403/.732

    Gardner’s 2009:

    .270/.345/.379/.724

    He’s right there.
    ========

    This is the point that many people miss. Not only is Gardner right there offensively, when you take his SB’s into account his offensive production IS ABOVE AVERAGE for a cf’r. People keep saying he has a huge hole and this and that, but those same people simply don’t see what he actually did offensively. Sure, he is not good offensively and being league average for the Yankees isn’t really what we expect, but when you add the SB’s and you add the terrific defense, if the worst starter on the team is above average that is fine.

    It is a similar discussion of why the bias people have for a particular player shines through when reality doesn’t support their incorrect assumptions. Silly comments like “that guys isn’t clutch” “he never comes through” “he is a choker”

    There is a guy who writes a blog, I have to find it (it is in honor of Mariano Rivera) who was getting creamed by everyone when he was saying that ARod is not unclutch. This guy said he was clutch before he came to the Yanks and was actually very clutch against Minnesota and would have been the MVP of the series against Boston if Rivera didn’t blow the save in game 4 and then went into (I am trying to remember what he wrote) a 40 AB stretch…only 40 horrible AB’s. He kept talking about guys don;t have clucth or unclutch ability, they only have clutch or unclutch performances. Anyway, this guy was logical and smart, but he was the only one believing it and everyone told him what they thought. Obviously, he was 100% correct…just like you wouldn’t say he is clutch now, you would only say he has leveled off based on the type of player he is as his OPS is now slightly higher in the postseason than the regular season..

    I will find his blog for you guys as it is the best around.

  288. Rich January 3rd, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Another thought could be trading Igawa and Marte for Gary Mathews Jr., we owe Marte another 12m, and Igawa 4m or 8m, thoughts??

  289. deadrody January 3rd, 2010 at 10:41 am

    First of all, regardless of where Gardner plays, he will sit against lefties and Hoffmann will play. Hoffmann mashes lefties.

    So now that Gardner’s problem with lefties is out of the picture, where will he play in the field ? That will be determined in Spring Training by the coaching staff. I would give Gardner about a 20% chance to win the CF job and Granderson about 80%.

    There will not be another LFer in NY next year. Even IF Damon were willing to drop his price, its debatable whether you want a grumbling, bitter Damon on the team. The only legit possibility would be Reed Johnson. I tend to think the Yankees are willing to roll the dice and see if they can get by with Gardner starting in LF and if not, they will attempt to deal for somebody mid season. I would not, however, be surprised to see Juan Miranda and Montero get a shot in LF if necessary.

  290. OYF January 3rd, 2010 at 10:57 am

    Chad, you hit this squarely on the head, and quite frankly I just don’t understand how so many fans are so hung up on the fielding position of Gardner instead of his position in the lineup.

    BTW, I’ll miss your reporting of SWB but very much welcome the MiLB insight and interviews you bring to Lohud.

  291. Juke Early January 3rd, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Gee, I wouldn’t stop being a NYY fan if that ill-advised switch were made. But I might wonder out loud ” Hector Lopez must have a son somewhere on one of those islands. . ..”

  292. ortforshort January 3rd, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    As a Yankee fan, the thought of both Gardner and Granderson in the lineup at the same time is a scary proposition. Two automatic outs against any kind of schlock lefthander makes you extremely vulnerable particularly late in the game when speed doesn’t help you much if you can’t get on base

  293. Sarl January 3rd, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    I really don’t care what FANGRAPH has to say, Ganderson has a much stronger arm than Gardner. That is why he will play center. Gardner may be a tad faster but Granderson is more adept at playing CF. Case closed.

  294. Ryan Kelley January 3rd, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    Gardner is the better defensive center fielder– period.

    While Granderson is a superior athlete, his arm is actually a tick below Gardner’s, and is speed is a tick below as well. Gardner is often said to have a “below-average” or “weak” arm, from analysts or fans who don’t watch him play. Just because he plays like Scott Podsednik or Jacoby Ellsbury doesn’t mean his arm is below average–it’s actually WELL above average.

    Gardner is superior in range, arm strength and route-running than Granderson. While Curtis is athletic, he takes circular routes to fly balls, possesses an average arm and often doesn’t use his plus speed to his benefit. Frankly, Gardner has a skillset equal in value to Jacoby Ellsbury, with better arm strength and plate discipline, and a lesser ability to make square contact.

    Granderson should be in left, where his arm and range could win him a Gold Glove, while Gardner should patrol center as one of the better fielding centerfielders in the AL.

    All and all, the Yankees don’t need another bat. A utility man like Jerry Hairston would be just fine. Actually, before Kelly Johnson signed with the Diamondbacks, if he was ready to accept a bench role, could have been a nice fit. Johnson can play the outfield corners, start at second or fill in at third, first or even short. DeRosa was overpriced and overrated.

    With Gardner in center, Granderson in left, and a serviceable Nick Swisher in the small right field, the Yankees would have one of the best fielding teams in the AL.

  295. Ryan Kelley January 3rd, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Trading Gaudin (if possible) for a decent bench player like Ryan Raburn (never happen), Chris Getz (never happen), Jeff Baker (I wish), or Adam Rosales would be a good move. I like pitching depth, but Mitre has more upside, Aceves is a junker good for mop-up and mediocre spot-start, and Gaudin is a tweener capable of being a 5th starter on a mediocre team or a long man in a shoddy bullpen.

  296. Michele January 3rd, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    I found this thread a day late, but still wish to comment (or VENT)…
    It’s not only that Gardner has NO POWER. I just don’t feel he is a reliable-enuff hitter, PERIOD! I don’t see him as more than a good pinch-runner, possible OF defensive-replacement. OK, I’m not a Gardner fan!

  297. warlok January 3rd, 2010 at 7:04 pm

    Gardner will fill the Lf fine I think that Yankee’s should focus on another pitcher,remember good pitching take’s home the gold. yankee’s have alot of slugger’s and if you can stop the other teams offence and maintain the players healthy,I garantee a REPEAT…………….GO YANKEES

  298. Bill O January 3rd, 2010 at 8:09 pm

    We really just need OF depth. If Gardner performs like he did last year he’ll be fine in LF. However Hoffmann cannot be our only backup option especially with very little depth in AAA. We need at least one more and possibly even two more OF’s on our ML roster.

  299. Anthony M January 4th, 2010 at 10:33 am

    You all do realize that the Yankees are going to sign Carl Crawford next year right? That is why BG will start in LF this year, and the Yanks will not be going after anyone else to fill the position unless they are willing to sign for 1 year.

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