The LoHud Yankees Blog

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


An honest competition behind the plate

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Mar 04, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Three weeks ago, I thought all the buzz about Jesus Montero having a chance to break camp as the Yankees backup catcher was just talk.

Montero’s still young, he struggled through the first half last season, and regular playing time in Triple-A — learning from a good former catcher in Butch Wynegar — would surely let him take those final development steps. It seemed to me that the Yankees would inevitably let Francisco Cervelli keep his job and send Montero back to the minors for more seasoning.

Today, I’m not so sure.

The Yankees seem legitimately impressed by Montero’s improvement behind the plate, and pitchers say nothing but good things about his ability as a receiver. Six games into spring training, Montero and Cervelli have an equal number of starts.

“You have to make the jump sometime or no one ever gets here,” Joe Girardi said. “So, I mean, there’s a lot of people who’ve handled the jump extremely well. Some people don’t and you deal with that, but the kid works hard. He’s talented. There’s nothing that leads you to believe he couldn’t handle it, but you don’t know.”

True, you don’t know. I still think there’s a lot to be said for sending Montero back to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre — and I think Cervelli is a pretty good option as a No. 2 catcher — but I also think the Yankees are right that on-the-job learning, even as a backup, goes a long way in the big leagues. If this Cervelli injury is more than a bruise, the door could swing wide open. It might be pretty wide open already.

“I hope (Cervelli’s) back on track again,” Montero said. “I wish nothing bad on nobody. I’m just going to do my job behind the plate.”

The Yankees opened camp talking about a three-way competition, but it’s hard to miss the fact that Cervelli and Montero have gotten the starts while Austin Romine has been playing off the bench.

“(Cervelli and Montero) are your first two, but I’m looking at Romey,” Girardi said. “I looked at the job he did (Wednesday), God, he must have blocked 15 balls in the dirt. He caught well yesterday. That’s something that, he’s in the mix too, but when you go into a race, the guys that have played at a higher level are the guys that are the favorites. But that doesn’t mean that they get it.”

Romine has never played above Double-A. He hit .268/.324/.402 in Trenton last season, but Girardi said the jump from Double-A to the big leagues doesn’t bother him.

“I did it,” Girardi said. “(Romine is) probably a much better prospect than I was. I think players can handle that. That’s not a huge concern of mine.”

So Romine could be in the mix, but now that Russell Martin is about to start his first game at catcher, I’m finally ready to believe that there really are two legitimate candidates to be his backup behind the plate.

“We have an idea of what Cervi can do,” Girardi said. “We’ve seen him play very well at this level, so the evaluation is a lot of the young kid, Montero.”

Associated Press photo of Montero

Comments

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235 Responses to “An honest competition behind the plate”

  1. upstate kate March 4th, 2011 at 8:50 am

    oh Girardi…”Romey”??!!!

  2. tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 8:54 am

    Haha, I think Chad was reading our comments about Girardi’s funny nicknames and just had to add that in there. I mean I refer to some of the kids I take care of by adding a Y to their name, but they are all under 3yrs old. Not adults.

  3. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 8:55 am

    Honest competition is good. Beats a faux competition, like last season’s #5 starter thing.

    Things do seem to be coming together for Montero. He’s playing well and the two guys he’s competing with are fighting injury a little.

  4. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 8:57 am

    Has there been a final verdict issued on Cervelli’s MRI?

  5. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 8:57 am

    Hah! I was just going to post this link from the Star Ledger. An article from Marc Carig on Jesus Montero. Good timing!

    http://www.nj.com/yankees/inde.....ntero.html

  6. John in Ohio March 4th, 2011 at 8:59 am

    That Mark Newman interview is just great, great stuff.

  7. pat March 4th, 2011 at 8:59 am

    Are they doing “split squad” workouts today because of the night game or does everyone have an afternoon report time?

  8. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 9:00 am

    cgrand14 Hall of Famer Dazzy Vance was born on this date in 1891. He was the 1924 league MVP while playing with the Brooklyn Robins.

  9. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:00 am

    I see nothing that recommends sending Montero back to SWB. The arb clock is not a strong enough reason considering the talent of the player in question and moreover what seems to be his ability to contribute NOW to help this team win.
    My concern is that if they do send him down and are winning games up here, they’ll be tempted to let him fust in AAA just long enough to screw up the timing of his learning curve in the majors. I want him already in full swing by mid-August, having already conquered the valleys he’ll go through in his first season.

  10. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Guess The LineUp (GTLU) is now open for business.

    Lineups will be accepted from 9 am to 11 am, no exceptions. Make sure you have a complete lineup: 9 players and 9 positions.

    I will update the list periodically. It is your responsibility to make sure your name is on the list and notify me if it is not.

    Once a new thread is posted, post your lineups there.

    Have fun!

  11. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Yea Chad good job bringing us Newman. Anderson Feliz is on my radar, and I’m thrilled to get my first looks this year at Stoneburner.

  12. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:02 am

    MTU, yea I agree but Im not as afraid of the Phils as everyone else……love their top 2 in the rotation obviously but I think their lineup is closer to middle of the pack than the top and their pen has the potential to be a real hole IMO. Hamels may be the key for him. He has the potential to be every bit as good as Lee and then they really would be tough in a playoff series…..until he takes that step though…..

  13. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:04 am

    Blake-

    response in previous thread.

  14. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:04 am

    Romey….add another.

    I think Montero is goin to the big club …..

  15. pat March 4th, 2011 at 9:06 am

    Erin-

    You live in Chicago, right? I’m looking for an educated opinion….is the blue line or cab the faster method of travel from O’Hare to downtown? Would the answer be different if the time was Sunday at 9am or Monday at 6pm?

  16. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:07 am

    good morning lohud

  17. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:08 am

    MTU,

    most thought they were a lock last year though…..and they lost their only right handed threat in their lineup. Im still not sure that the addition of Lee is going to help them as much as the loss of Werth will hurt them…..they really need Utley and Howard to he great and they need Brown to fix the gaping hole in his swing ……

  18. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:08 am

    Cashmoney-

    Do you love the smell of Napalm in the morning too ?

    :)

  19. upstate kate March 4th, 2011 at 9:09 am

    ok, I am thinking it will be the starters, and I can’t remember if Martin is supposed to start catching yet or not

    SS Jeety
    RF Swishy
    !B Texy
    3B Ally
    2B Robbie
    DH Georgie
    CF Grandy
    C Monty
    LF Gardy

    thanks Doreen

  20. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:09 am

    MTU -

    I understand your point about the Phillies rotation, but, Lee hass rarely won more than 14 games a season lately, the Phillies offense is average at best, which means their pitchers will need to be near perfect to win a WS. Doc is getting older, and I’m looking for both he and Lee to spend some time on the DL this season. No, I’m not wishing them bad luck, its just a feeling I have had for quite some time, especially with Lee. Time will prove me right or wrong. But, I for one do not fear the Phillies.

  21. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Blake-

    That rotation is as deadly as it gets.

    If the Giants could win with that skimpy offense then what the Phils have is no problem whatsoever.

    JMO.

  22. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:10 am

    hammels took that step when he won WS MVP in 2008.

    PS stats: 6-4, 4.50, 75IP, 61H

  23. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 9:10 am

    pat-I would take the blue line. It’d be a lot cheaper than taking a cab. It’ll probably be pretty crowded (esp. on Monday) , but I would still go for that over a cab.

  24. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:12 am

    Al-

    I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree on that one.

    Oswalt ain’t exactly chopped liver either.

    I think the Phils BP is more of a problem than anything else.

    Lidge is a ?

  25. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:12 am

    big al, ‘average at best’???

    2nd in runs in the nl last year despite below career average #’s for howard, utley and rollins.

    first in run differential last season then they added lee.

    dismiss this team at your own peril.

  26. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I’ll go with the ‘A’ lineup.

    SS Jeter
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

  27. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:14 am

    MTU -

    Remember, the Phillies were out pitched as well, and a very good hitting team will be an even bigger problem for the Phillies pitchers, again, they’ll need to be near perfect every game to win a WS with their offense. The NL East will be no problem for them, because the division is so weak as a whole.

  28. tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 9:14 am

    JAP

    I got to see a litte of Feliz when he got called up at the end of the season, he held his own down here and looked good doing it. I think he will get promoted from Charleston to Tampa before the season is over.

  29. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 9:14 am

    kate-nice job on your lineup. :lol:

  30. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:14 am

    It looks more and more likely, M has a chance of going north with the big club which I did not think it would have been the case. I see merits on both side of the coin; A little seasoning and can’t hurt jesus. on the other side, if the dude is ready he will be an offensive upgrade over the rest. Assuming there is learning curve, we might as well get him acclimate quickly.
    An extra yr of control at the cost staying one month in the minor seem to be pragmatic way to go about as well. Let the best win …

  31. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:15 am

    “most thought they were a lock last year though”

    Last year their #3 and #4 starters were Joe Blanton and Kyle Kendrick. That’s a long way down from Hamels/Oswalt. I think the improvements in their rotation more than offset the loss of Werth, though I do agree their’s is a long way from being a great offense.

  32. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Ys Guy -

    Print each of our comments, and see which of us is correct come November, I’d bet $100 I’m the correct one. This team is going to miss the offense they lost, I’m looking for both Utley and Rollins to have down years, and they are too left handed a team, but, time will tell who’s right.

  33. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:18 am

    If the Phils get to the big dance again this year IMo they will be very tough to be unless the team that faces them has an excellent rotation.

    One that is nearly a match.

  34. pat March 4th, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Erin

    Thanks. Somehow I’ve booked myself into a very tight schedule and was trying to plan the best way to avoid missing a meeting or the plane.

  35. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:19 am

    so the gist is: the red socks suck b/c beckett is bad (about the same as aj)

    the phils offense sucks b/c utley and howard had down years (arod and tex)

    so it’s gonna be a cakewalk for the yankees.

    good to know… :)

  36. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:20 am

    edit : beat

  37. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:20 am

    “The NL East will be no problem for them”

    The Braves were a 90+ win team last year and have improved on paper this time around. I think they’re in the playoffs once again this year and they’ll be in the fight with the Phils all year, IMO.

  38. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:20 am

    Mell,

    In the postseason their #3 was Hamels.

  39. Tom in N.J. March 4th, 2011 at 9:22 am

    The Braves are being overlooked, IMO.

  40. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:22 am

    Blake-

    In my eyes Oswalt is #3 and Hamels #4.

  41. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Don’t be surprised if the Braves battle the Phils to the end in the East. Heyward is on the cusp of superstardom and their rotation is strong as well. This may be the last season the Phillies are better than the Braves……not kidding.

  42. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:24 am

    tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 9:14 am
    JAP

    I got to see a litte of Feliz when he got called up at the end of the season, he held his own down here and looked good doing it. I think he will get promoted from Charleston to Tampa before the season is over.
    ///
    were you there when he hit the GW homer? yea he’s Charleston bound this yr. If he keeps fast-trackin it he’ll quantum jump his way into my backyard.

  43. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:24 am

    i cant get over that ‘average at best’ comment…

    if that’s ‘average at best’ than the yankees and socks might be slightly above average.

  44. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Cashmoney-

    Do you love the smell of Napalm in the morning too ?
    ——–
    love it. it smells like… Victory!

  45. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:25 am

    Ys Guy -

    I never said it would be a cake walk for the Yankees, those are your words, not mine. I simply stated the Phillies are not going to breeze their way to a WS title, just because so many here fear their SP. I was pointing out they have many concerns that could keep them from winning, again.

    That $100 is still on the table!

  46. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:27 am

    blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:24 am
    Don’t be surprised if the Braves battle the Phils to the end in the East. Heyward is on the cusp of superstardom and their rotation is strong as well. This may be the last season the Phillies are better than the Braves……not kidding.

    ///
    I was sayin to a friend the other day the Braves could sneak in with their young pitching. Heyward is already havin a great ST and but for a little stretch last year that skewed what were good numbers anyhow, he was a monster in his first year and will only be better. you seem to like the Braves, do you know what Freeman’s ETA is?

  47. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:27 am

    “Remember, the Phillies were out pitched as well”

    Only marginally so, and a razor thin margin at that. One having Cliff Lee pitch rather than Joe Blanton pretty much washes away. Philly actually scored more runs in that series against the Giants and both staffs allowed 18 earned runs in 6 games.

  48. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:29 am

    JAP:

    Freeman’s ETA is now. He’s expected to start the season as the Braves 1B.

  49. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Mell-

    I agree. Lee pushes them over the top. Bigtime.

    If they get to the final 2 intact they will be tough to beat.

    Getting there is another story.

  50. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:30 am

    good stuff by Newman, I be ‘watching’ Mesa closely. Aside from Laird, if Mesa can show he handles AA pitching and continue to make stride in cutting down his so, he could come quickly.
    I wonder if NYY could go the laird route with a guy like David Adam as well. We need some depth and talent at the corners.

  51. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:30 am

    I have the following participants so far in today’s GTLU:

    upstate kate
    erin

    Lineup submissions will be accepted until 11 am.

    Thanks.

  52. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:31 am

    al im not going to bet you cash but ill guarantee you the phils come out in the top 3 run scoring teams in the nl.

  53. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:32 am

    who’s pitching for boston tonight?

  54. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:33 am

    MTU -

    That’s why they play the games, its got to be done on the field, not on paper.

  55. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:34 am

    Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:29 am
    JAP:

    Freeman’s ETA is now. He’s expected to start the season as the Braves 1B.

    ///
    Thanks. That should help that offense which was pretty powerless last year relying on great team OBP. Now they’ve got Uggla there and Heyward becoming The Man and Freeman debuting. Pitching & BP should be good. I’m no Braves fan but any foe of the Phillies is a friend of mine.

  56. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 9:34 am

    I think the Phils are legit because they are solid and the NL is weak. They will feast on bad teams.

    I think the Red Sox are overrated and if they suffer any injuries among their starters, they will be in trouble because they have no depth. I also think their remade bullpen is nothing shaky and if Papelbon continues his downward turn, it becomes a liability. I think they have a lot of question marks.

    The Yankees? Too early to say.

    I think their question marks are more about their older players than younger players.

    I’m not concerned about Cano, Hughes, Montero, Nova, etc, because I think they will be fine.

    My concerns are whether they get bounce back years from their older players like Jeter, Tex, AJ, amd even Arod to a degree.

    Those questions won’t be answered in the Spring.

  57. BIG AL March 4th, 2011 at 9:34 am

    Ys Guy -

    The NL teams offense does not impress me one bit. If they played in the AL, I’d double down my bet.

    Got to go, be back in a bit.

  58. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Al-

    I know that but those guys are proven commodities IMO.

    All but Hamels. I expect him to improve this season.

    Very tough rotation. Their BP need some shoring up.

  59. Fran the original March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    Doreen,

    Here is my line-up. Same as Erin. Think I read Martin is starting tonight.

    Thanks :)
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Po
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

  60. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    “who’s pitching for boston tonight?”

    Took a quick look at the Globe. Boston is sending Buchholtz, Varitek and the Portland Seadogs tonight.

  61. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    ill also guarentee that the phils are top 2 in nl run diff this season

  62. tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    JAP

    No, I think that was an away game. It seemed every game he got into though whether as a batter or pinch runner, something good happened.

  63. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    J alfred,

    Yes, Freeman is expected to be their starting 1B to start the season.

    The Phillies are probably still better but the Braves are loaded up with pitching and should only get better over the next couple of years…..while the Phillies continue to age. Uggla will help their lineup as well….even though he’s not the greatest defender

  64. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    “All but Hamels. I expect him to improve this season”

    If he improves on last year, than the NL is in some deep stew.

  65. Fran the original March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    Doreen,

    Blackberry trouble. This is it

    SS Jeter
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

    Thanks :)

  66. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    Fran -

    I think you made a “copy/paste” mistake. Check your lineup. :)

  67. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    ss jeter
    c martin
    1b tex
    3b arod
    2b cano
    dh posada
    cf granderson
    rf golson
    lf gardner

  68. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    Fran -

    Got it! :)

  69. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    Mell-

    I think he will.

    JMHO.

  70. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:39 am

    I think the Phillies are legit as well….just think they have holes that are being glossed over by their shiny rotation. They will feast on bad teams though because of that staff…….

  71. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:40 am

    GM SJ, do you any guys u like in the minors in terms of corner of?

  72. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:41 am

    *then the NL…..

  73. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:41 am

    Blake – the Phillies are apparently better I agree but their age would concern me if I were unfortunate enough to have been born in the Philadelphia area. Imposing rotation, though. The offense isn’t what it was and I believe Utley is already hampered in some way, not sure what his injury is. It will be interesting in the NL East.

  74. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:41 am

    Hamels is the key for the Phils…Hes is capable of being a #1 ….if he is then they will be tough, if he’s not then there are other teams that can pitch wit them IMO.

  75. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:42 am

    MTU:

    He may well. Just sayin’ he was one of the 10 best pitchers in the NL last year. If he’s improving on that, then look out.

  76. Bronx Jeers March 4th, 2011 at 9:42 am

    He pitched yesterday so we’re lucky enough not to have to look at his ugly mug tonight but meet our newest enemy in full regalia.

    http://sportsofboston.com/wp-c....._jenks.jpg

  77. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:44 am

    Mell-

    My theory on that is the added presence of Lee. I think Hamels may learn a few things from him.

  78. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:44 am

    The window is closing for the Phils though. They have traded prospects and made moves for a short term run….which is fine.

  79. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:46 am

    ATL has got some really good positional and pitching talents on it’s way to the major. I love Heyward’s overall game and tools.

  80. blake March 4th, 2011 at 9:48 am

    Heyward will be the best player in the NL east soon….don’t know if it’ll be this year but soon.

  81. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 9:48 am

    Nobody is going to match our young Santana.

    :)

  82. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 9:49 am

    They are light in corner OF in the system.

    Which doesn’t concern me one bit.

    With the pitching and catching depth in the organization, if they needed a corner OF, they have the assets to acquire one.

    I am interested in seeing if Kelvin DeLeon makes some progress. He has the tools but is very raw.

    That’s a name though I’d put in the back of your head and follow the next year or two.

    Melky Mesa? Very athletic but, lot of holes in that swing.

    I will be interested to see how he does in AA. It’s a critical year for him, IMO.

  83. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:51 am

    Is that Jenks, Jeer. Boston certainly has the making of an all Attica team with him on board along with Youkiis. With the dexterous elven Pedroia, I see the potential making of a prison breaking film on the horizon.

    though begrudgingly i have to admit, Youkiliss is a damn good player.

  84. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:51 am

    tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 9:36 am
    JAP

    No, I think that was an away game. It seemed every game he got into though whether as a batter or pinch runner, something good happened.

    ////
    yanks are sky-high on him. He was compared ceiling wise to Jose Reyes, though not quite as fast.I hope he learns to walk more, if that’s the case :D

  85. Niblick March 4th, 2011 at 9:51 am

    The only problem with the catcher competition is that Martin has no business being on this team – not the way he has hit the last couple of years. Let Montero have the starting job, and let Cervelli back him up. Put Romine in AAA, and say goodbye to Martin.

  86. pat March 4th, 2011 at 9:51 am

    From ESPN.com :smile:

    Sheen is only following 25 people, as of Thursday at lunch-time.

    Of the 25, one is none other than Nick Swisher. Sheen is also following Derek Jeter’s significant other, Minka Kelly.

  87. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 9:52 am

    “Heyward will be the best player in the NL east soon”

    Agreed. Kid’s young too. Same age as Montero. Barring injury, his should be a very long prosperous career.

  88. Ed H. March 4th, 2011 at 9:54 am

    Doreen,

    I’m going with the A Team. This is Boston, after all. Thanks for hosting GTLU.

    SS Jeter
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

  89. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 9:54 am

    One thing about J-Hey is I expected a better defender, but he’s got a great arm.

  90. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 9:55 am

    Thx SJ, I was thinking of Deleon as well, but SO numbers and contractibility worries me (this is solely base on stats i read), I think the progress of the athletic bunch they drafted LY in Willam, Gump and others is worth to keep an eye on as well.

  91. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:56 am

    pat -

    Hmmm. I’m beginning to think maybe no wedding there…

  92. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 9:56 am

    They have 4 million invested in Martin. He’s on the team and they aren’t starting the year with a rookie catcher behind the plate.

    The last time the Yankees had a rookie catcher starting on Opening Day was Thurman Munson and that was over 40 years ago.

  93. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 9:57 am

    Philly better hope Utley is ok especially after losing Werth. Rollins gets hurt every year now and Howard is an old 31. Look for him to take a Mo Vaughn career trajectory. They struggled to score runs last year and it is only going to get worse this year. The pen is shaky at best. They better hope their top 4 stay healthy and pitch deep into games. I don’t think they are a lock in any way to win the division.

    As far as Heyward goes it is troubling that he is starting to get labeled as injury prone at this juncture of his career. He has said his thumb still bothers him and he has also been slowed with other ailments this spring

  94. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:58 am

    The following participants have submitted lineups for today’s GTLU so far:

    upstate kate
    Erin
    Fran the original
    Y’s Guy
    Ed H.

    Lineups will be accepted until 11 am.

    Thanks.

    :)

  95. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 9:59 am

    SJ44 -

    Over 40 years ago?????

    OMG.

    Where does the time go?

  96. Niblick March 4th, 2011 at 10:00 am

    Yeah, Munson was only the Rookie of the Year, and helped the team go from 5th to 2nd. But apparently that’s irrelevant; what matters is that the Yanks wasted $4 million on Martin. And letting him go would be a concession that Cash made yet another mistake, and God forbid they can’t let that happen. Better to have a mediocre catcher than show up Cash.

  97. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:01 am

    Depends on Martins health.

  98. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 10:03 am

    pat-that’s a riot. I didn’t know Minka was even on Twitter. I’ll have to start following her. :)

  99. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:05 am

    I would think Cervelli eventually would see the benefit to him personally to being traded. With Montero, Romine and Sanchez in the pipeline there’s not much hope for him to stick IMO. It’s just unreal how good our catching situation looks going forward! Heck, Sanchez may be better than Montero.

  100. upstate kate March 4th, 2011 at 10:06 am

    but wouldn’t having a mediocre catcher show Cash up anyway?

  101. 108 stitches March 4th, 2011 at 10:06 am

    Russell Martin was brought in as insurance until Montero is ready. Another 2-3 weeks of games need to be played before a full determination is made with Montero.
    Cervelli’s foot could factor in but Montero has matured behind the plate better than expected.

  102. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 10:06 am

    the betting man inside of me tells me to take the safe bet of Martin and Cervelli to start the season. though M can be up as early as May.

  103. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:07 am

    Niblick March 4th, 2011 at 10:00 am
    Yeah, Munson was only the Rookie of the Year, and helped the team go from 5th to 2nd. But apparently that’s irrelevant; what matters is that the Yanks wasted $4 million on Martin. And letting him go would be a concession that Cash made yet another mistake, and God forbid they can’t let that happen. Better to have a mediocre catcher than show up Cash.

    ////
    That’s the problem with these kinds of signings. A guy who is they go and get because they want insurance, or to ameliorate a situation and help ease the younger guy in, becomes the headliner who blocks the way for the better, younger player. I don’t have any problem with Martin being around, as long as his presence isn’t the REASON they send Montero down. Montero is going to make the Yankees not just better, but can be the “swing” player in putting them ahead of the competition. No way Martin is in that league.

  104. austinmac March 4th, 2011 at 10:07 am

    GTLU

    Jeter-SS
    Swisher-RF
    Teixiera-1B
    AROD-3B
    Cano-2B
    Posada-DH
    Grandy-CF
    Martin-C
    Gardner-LF

    Apologies to Doreen for the same line-up, but when you’re right, you’re right. Of course, I am rarely correct.

  105. tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 10:09 am

    JAP

    Well when he came up for those few weeks I hadn’t read anything about him, just by what I saw I thought he really looked good, very comfortable. I don’t really get pitching, which is probably why I don’t like debates over anything relating to pitching, but I do get offense and defense which he is definitely blessed with.

  106. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:10 am

    Unless Martin isn’t ready physically I think he’ll be the starter…..that doesn’t mean Montero couldn’t catch a couple games a week and DH some……ease him in now, reap the benefits later.

  107. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:10 am

    The team also finished near last place.

    Title contending teams, with veteran pitchers, don’t start rookie catchers from Day One.

    The Yankees break in their catchers slowly.

    Their manager and bench coach are former catchers.

    Given the success they have at the position, I’m going put on a limb and say they have a better idea of what they are doing at the position than you do.

  108. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:11 am

    yes the phils had injury problems last year and did sometimes struggle to score runs

    and they ended up with the 2nd most runs and the best run diff in the league.

  109. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:13 am

    Martin will start if healthy that’s already been determined. The decision to be made is who the backup is, Montero or Cervelli. I don’t see Romine in that picture. He needs to play every day at SWB.

  110. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 10:14 am

    ease him in now, reap the benefits later.
    ——–
    one could argue that the benefit is marginal at best if M could comes up as early as May. When weighs against the benefit of extra yr of control and possible more polishing defensively in the minor, I think i rather Jesus going down to AAA at this point.

  111. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 10:14 am

    “what matters is that the Yanks wasted $4 million on Martin”

    I think you need to consider the options before deeming Martin a bad idea:

    1) Posada catching. He’s averaged 60 games caught per season over the course of his present contract, hasn’t been especially good when asked to do it, and as we learned last month can probably do without anymore dings to the head.

    2) Cervelli catching. Fine backup, but he’s just that. Presents no threat offensively and is coming off a pretty lousy defensive season (14% CS, 13 errors in only 90 games).

    3) Montero catching. He’s beginning to provide some good answers to questions about his defense and will undoubtadly hit, but he is nonetheless a rookie and asking him to assume the lead role at catcher right now is pretty damn big ask that comes with some risk.

    Given that, doesn’t make sense to have a veteran catcher, whose offensive shortcomings aside, brings some experience and some ability to control the opposition’s running game to the table for relatively short money on a one year deal?

  112. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:15 am

    After two weeks of ST, there is no way to know if Montero can handle a 110-120 workload behind the plate. Odds are high he can’t yet.

    That’s why, smartly, they will break him in slowly.

    For his long term development, that’s the best way to go.

    Girardi is already talking about breaking him in slowly.

    Whether Martin was jere or not, Momtero wasn’t catching 110-120 games this year.

    With Martin here, it allows them to break him in the right way and maximize his talents.

  113. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:15 am

    SJ,

    Your take? if the Yankees are going to slowly incorporate Montero into the catching situation (and I agree that they should ) then wouldn’t it be better to start that process now if he’s ready? I think that’s possibly what they are starting to consider…..why do in the 2nd half or 2012 what they can go ahead and do now…..

  114. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:16 am

    sometimes i wonder if people on here ever watch nl games.

    which 30 y/o 1baseman had a worse year last year?

    the guy who’s ops dropped 100 pts to .846

    the guy who’s ops dropped 72 pts to .859?

  115. Niblick March 4th, 2011 at 10:18 am

    I wonder if they really have a better idea of what they are doing.

    They may know what they are doing, but they may not be doing the right thing.

    And I wonder if Girardi’s experience colors his views on this subject in a negative way.

  116. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Cashmoney,

    True but the experience he gets in April and May could pay off this Fall…..there will be an adjustment period. The longer you delay him seeing big league pitching, the longer it’ll take him to adjust to it.

  117. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:20 am

    For those that missed Torre Tyson’s promotion from Tampa manager to system defensive coordinator based in Charleston.

    http://web.minorleaguebaseball.....8;sid=t233

    Also, new Charlston manager is Aaron Ledesma who was the hitting coach. Greg Colbrunn was last year’s manager and moves to hitting coach, his preference.

  118. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:20 am

    ease him in now, reap the benefits later.
    ///

    ease him in, sure, but don’t send him down. There’s no reason to overload him from “Go”, but sending him down is what I feel they must NOT do. That will tempt them to leave him there too long for him to get him through the rockier part of establishing himself early enough & achieve his equilibrium BEFORE we get into the downhill race portion of the season, where his bat is likely to make a dramatic difference.

  119. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:20 am

    btw… mo vaughn at 31: 33hr 108rbi, .866 ops

  120. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:21 am

    which 30 y/o 1baseman had a worse year last year?

    the guy who’s ops dropped 100 pts to .846

    the guy who’s ops dropped 72 pts to .859?

    player a was teixeira

    player b was howard

  121. pat March 4th, 2011 at 10:23 am

    WARNING>>>>> Liberal use of the “F” word in link

    The Onion- Derek Rejects Move to OF

    http://www.onionsportsnetwork......ing,19407/

  122. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:24 am

    I was against Montero being the back up in the traditional sense because he needs to play every day….but if they are considering what Girardi has suggested in interviews then I like that a lot if they determine that he is ready to catch 40-60 games in the big leagues. I think that allows him to see big league pitching, learn from the guys around him, and possibly help the Yankees down the stretch in a more significant way.

  123. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 10:25 am

    GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:20 am

    For those that missed Torre Tyson’s promotion from Tampa manager to system defensive coordinator based in Charleston.
    ——————————————————————-
    You’ve been talking about the Yankees needing to do something like this to help shore up the defensive problems they’ve had in the minors. Good call! Hopefully it pays dividends shortly…

  124. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 10:26 am

    blake, I see both sides of argument. What if going down to the minor and getting consistent playing time further speeds his development thus making it a shorter transitional period to the Major when he does come up… If the time frame is a month or two i don’t think it’s a big deal. There is a lot gray in this particular argument. The only certainty i know of is getting an extra service yr if M stays down til May.

    Put it this way, I won’t be upset if it goes either way.

  125. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:27 am

    The good news is, Girardi has discussed a schedule for Montero along those very lines. That would probably be ideal. Keeping the bat busy is paramount.

  126. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Blake,

    If they believe he is good enough defensively to catch 40-60 games this year, he should go north with the team.

    Between that workload and DH time, that should get him 350 or so AB’s.

    That’s enough to justify him being going north with the team.

    If they determine he’s not ready to handle that workload yet, then he should start the year in AAA.

    Right now, it’s too early to know the answer to that question. They will know the answer to that in the next 2-3 weeks.

  127. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    The following participants have submitted lineups for GTLU so far:

    upstate kate
    Erin
    Fran the original
    Y’s Guy
    Ed H.
    austinmac

    Lineups will be accepted until 11 am.

    Thanks.

    :)

  128. SAS March 4th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Doreen,

    I may as well practice my losing ways….so here goes.

    Jeter SS
    Swisher RF
    Tex 1B
    Arod 3B
    Cano 2B
    Posada DH
    Granderson CF
    Martin, C
    Gardner LF

  129. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:30 am

    Cashmoney,

    Yea but there is a point where further AAA time isn’t going to help at the big league level anymore…..there will be an adjustment period no.matter what when he makes the jump to the big leagues and if he’s at that point the the only way for him to acclimate to the bits is to get on with it…..

  130. NYY626 - Andy in 2011 March 4th, 2011 at 10:30 am

    pat March 4th, 2011 at 10:23 am
    WARNING>>>>> Liberal use of the “F” word in link

    The Onion- Derek Rejects Move to OF

    http://www.onionsportsnetwork……ing,19407/

    _____________________________________________
    I was tempted to post this earlier but was iffy because of the content. Glad someone else did. This made me laugh so hard.

  131. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 10:30 am

    So, in my auction keeper league, I have to make the decision whether to keep Posada for this next year at $7 or keep Montero for (potentially) the next 3 years at $0 this year and then $7 the next two. Any thoughts on this my fellow lohud bloggers?

  132. SAS March 4th, 2011 at 10:30 am

    Does anyone know if this game is on MLB or ESPN? Thanks.

  133. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 10:26 am
    blake, I see both sides of argument. What if going down to the minor and getting consistent playing time further speeds his development thus making it a shorter transitional period to the Major when he does come up… If the time frame is a month or two i don’t think it’s a big deal.

    ////

    It’s a big deal because if the big club is stringing Ws they’ll react to that and stay with the status quo. That’s how they are, very conservative. They won’t be thinking, if they’re leading the division, we’d better get Montero’s feet wet sooner than later. Later gives him obstacles to cope with rather than having them in his rear view as we approach the stretch run of the season. We want a bat of that magnitude firing on all cylinders by then, not still in a more rudimentary stage.

  134. SAS March 4th, 2011 at 10:32 am

    I hope all of you have a good day. I be back this evening EST.

  135. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Blake-

    I’m cool with either way with Montero.

    If they want him to start the season as the BU. Fine.

    If they decide to get the extra year of control for an extra 20 days
    I’m cool with that too.

    They’ll sort it out. As SJ says, they have ton of experience in this area
    with exceelent results.

    The least of the Yankees problems. Most teams would kill to have them.

  136. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Yea but there is a point where further AAA time isn’t going to help at the big league level anymore
    ————
    blake, that is a big question, can he benefit from more AAA time? I am not qualify to answer that. I think the NYY do.

  137. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 10:34 am

    sp: excellent. exceelent is for seals and other water going mammals.

  138. Erin March 4th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    pat March 4th, 2011 at 10:23 am
    WARNING>>>>> Liberal use of the ?F? word in link

    The Onion- Derek Rejects Move to OF

    http://www.onionsportsnetwork……ing,19407/

    *****************************

    :lol:

  139. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    Rodg, Tyson had replaced Luis sojo at Tampa last year and I couldn’t figure out why the Yanks let Sojo leave. As it turns out, Sojo had hip replacenebt and missed the season. He’s back in Tampa this year.

    I’d still prefer that theYankees had an infield/outfield coach and a good young bullpen coach that wants to move up the ladder at each level. An infield coach that could teach base stealing and bunting. These are things that hurt the kids coming up. One other thing is having a pitching coach to teach the pitchers how to hold base runners. A major killer.

    How’s the weather i Kornfield Kounty, Rodg? No more snow?

  140. MTU March 4th, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Later. Time for some pupdemonium.

    :)

  141. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Howards % of flyballs that have reached the seats

    2006: 39.5%
    2007: 31.5%
    2008: 31.8%
    2009: 25.4%
    2010: 21.1%

    He can’t hit lefties anymore. He offers nothing at defense. Players of his body type especially ones that started their career late decline very quickly. Fielder will do the same thing. I would much rather have Tex over him

  142. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    A word of warning for those who believe Johan Santana will be as “good as new” following shoulder surgery………

    Chein Ming Wang’s FB is being clocked at 83 MPH.

    Moral of the story…….

    Regardless of what ANYBODY says, especially doctors, shoulder surgery is one, big risk and nobody can predict the outcome of it until guys start throwing again.

  143. David in Cal March 4th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    I’ll go with the A Team also, because if various backups are starting I’d have no clue as to which one Girardi will use.

    SS Jeter
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

  144. randy l. March 4th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    “Given the success they have at the position, I’m going put on a limb and say they have a better idea of what they are doing at the position than you do.”

    sj44-

    is there a better evaluator of catching than girardi and pena? i don’t always love how girardi manages. he’s kind of conservative, but the man knows catching inside and out. with cashman drafting catchers and girardi being there at the end of the process to make the final choices and fine tune the results, the yankees are in a great position with catching.

    as someone who loves catching , this is exciting to watch.

    the days of wil nieves are long gone.

  145. mick March 4th, 2011 at 10:38 am

    SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Blake,

    If they believe he is good enough defensively to catch 40-60 games this year, he should go north with the team.
    ===================
    SJ-

    What’s all the yap about stalling his promotion by 20 days to preserve his FA another year?
    Is it that important?

  146. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:39 am

    tyanksfan36 March 4th, 2011 at 10:09 am
    JAP

    Well when he came up for those few weeks I hadn’t read anything about him, just by what I saw I thought he really looked good, very comfortable. I don’t really get pitching, which is probably why I don’t like debates over anything relating to pitching, but I do get offense and defense which he is definitely blessed with.

    ///
    He also sounds like a very confident young guy. He said he “should” be high on prospects lists. That made me laugh. I like that kid already.

  147. Joe from Long Island March 4th, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Hi randy, haven’t “see” you for a while, hope you’ve been well.

    I was actually thinking of you the other day, reading Pat M.’s comments on Ivan Nova. As you know, Pat thinks very highly of him, and thinks he’ll have a pretty good year, barring injury of course.

    I started thinking that, if Nova was a young pitcher on the Twins, randy would chip in with “Why can’t the Yanks develop pitchers like that?” ;)

  148. Mell March 4th, 2011 at 10:43 am

    Rodg:

    Regarding your fantasy question. Take the Montero option. Even if he starts the year in the minors, you can probably grab Posada for something close to the same $7 in your auction.

  149. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:43 am

    ok so his ops is less important that his % of fly balls that went for homers?

    howard has improved on defense every year since he’s come up

    he will never be a great defender but he is better than anyone expected for his body type.

    anyone would probably take tex first over howard b/c of tex’s defense, but their offensive #’s are very close

    why does everyone on this board have to dis every good player whos’ not on the yankees?

    and finally, how many mvp’s does tex have?

  150. blake March 4th, 2011 at 10:44 am

    SJ,

    Cool. Thanks.

  151. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:46 am

    Randy/SJ. A question for you two guys from last night. For 3 years, Romine has had issues with dropping pitches hitting in the pocket, leading to stolen bases. At first, I thought maybe he was blinking or closing his eyes as the ball hit the mitt. Never could get a close view.

    On TV the other day, I noticed that his mitt looked new and hardly broken in/stiff/inflexable. It also looked overly large. How many mitts do catchers begin the season with and try breaking in, and are they replaced every year?

  152. Jacques Strappe March 4th, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Nice to have some good competition behind the plate, but in case anyone needs to be reminded there is no competition at SS …

    http://www.onionsportsnetwork......ing,19407/

  153. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:48 am

    did any of you haters listen to francessa yesterday when he read off johan’s game log for last season?

    he had a great year despite the fact that on here, everyone wants to say hes always injured and doesnt have the same velocity and is on the slide. (199 IP/ 179H, 2.98 era)

    again, most people here dont seem to actually watch any nl games before they comment on nl players and teams.

  154. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Open competition? Does that mean it is Hughes’ to lose?

    :-)

  155. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    There’s Dr. Joe, trying to drum up a little business, getting Randy all riled up so he starts busting heads.

    Good work, Joe.

  156. 108 stitches March 4th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    I suspect that for every stolen base Crawford and Ellsbury get, Saltalamacchia and Varitek will allow bases stolen. The Boston catching tandem is the weakest in the AL East.

  157. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    mick – for a guy that projects to be a $20m/year bat its pretty important to save up as much service time as they can. 20 days of a different backup catcher won’t break the season, assuming Sisco can play.

  158. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Some fans thought there was an open competition between Hughes and Joba as they predicted Joba to be the starter and win 15 games last year.

  159. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Last Chance to Play Today’s GTLU.

  160. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 10:53 am

    # GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    How’s the weather i Kornfield Kounty, Rodg? No more snow?
    ————————————————————–
    It’s still been cold the last couple days. High 20s, low 30s. But, the snow has all melted from the warm weather a couple weeks ago. We hit 60 a couple days, which was NICE. It did it at a good pace too. Didn’t really have any flooding problems from that. How’s things down in your area?

  161. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Ys Guy – Santana’s stats last season have nothing to do with coming back from a shoulder surgery.

    Wang had a less invasive surgery done to repair the same thing and 2 years later can only throw 83 MPH (clocked this morning).

  162. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:53 am

    I think the Yankees knew about Joba’s issues due to his shoulder and the subsuent drop in velocity and stamina, they may have no wanted to go public at that time to dissuade other teams from making a trade offer including Joba.

  163. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:54 am

    sp – subsequent

  164. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 10:54 am

    Ys Guy,

    I am always giving opposing players credit and am far from a Yankee homer. Just look at my previous posts about certain Red Sox hitters. We can agree to disagree on Howard but I would be surprised if he hits more then 36 or 37 home runs this year

  165. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:54 am

    i had phil winning the competition and winning 15 last year :)

    unless jesus hits his way onto this team (and proves competent behind the plate) i send him down and make him fight his way back up.

    he’ll do that by june 1st imo.

  166. mick March 4th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    ID

    Then you can bet they are sending Montero down.
    Case closed.

  167. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 10:48 am
    Open competition? Does that mean it is Hughes’ to lose?
    ///

    LOL.
    Montero’s goin to give the Yanks no choice but to keep him. The mgr seems convinced already that he sticks.

  168. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    SS Jeter
    RF Swisher
    1B Teixeira
    3B Rodriguez
    2B Cano
    DH Posada
    CF Granderson
    C Martin
    LF Gardner

  169. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    # Mell March 4th, 2011 at 10:43 am

    Rodg:

    Regarding your fantasy question. Take the Montero option. Even if he starts the year in the minors, you can probably grab Posada for something close to the same $7 in your auction.
    ————————————–
    Thanks Mell. That’s what I’m thinking too. I had Montero in my minors last year (that’s why I can keep him for $0), so he won’t take up a spot on my roster for the draft. That way, I’ll be able to draft a catcher for that spot that should have a higher guarantee for playing time.

  170. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 10:56 am

    That’s great, Rodg. About time you guys caught a break from annual flooding, though, hopefully the rivers to the north are thawing at the same rate and eliminates the ice jams.

  171. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:54 am

    i had phil winning the competition and winning 15 last year :)

    **********

    You were a smart fan.

  172. mick March 4th, 2011 at 10:57 am

    For that matter, whether Cervelli can play or not, I’m sure they can find another BUC for 20 days.

  173. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:58 am

    Randy,

    I agree. Far and away, the Yankees have the best tandem in game when it comes to working and developing catchers in Girardi and Pena. In fact, there isn’t even a close second place finisher in the mix.

    Mick,

    If they keep Montero in AAA for 20 days, his service time clock is stalled enough to add add another year until he can become a FA. There is some merit toward doing that from a business perspective. Although, Cervelli’s injury could make that a moot point.

    GB,

    Usually, a catcher breaks in 3 gloves a year and uses one until it falls apart.

    I don’t think Romine’s problem is a glove issue. It’s learning the art of soft hands, as Bobby Ramos calls it.

    It’s about relaxing your glove hand in a way that allows you to catch the ball as if it was an egg…….softly.

    It’s difficult to describe.

    It’s allowing the ball to travel to your glove comfortably and you don’t yank your hand or go after it, if that makes sense.

    If you see good defensive catchers, they catch a change up and a 98 MPH FB the same way. The glove doesn’t move.

    It’s a learned art through lots of drilling.

  174. LGY March 4th, 2011 at 10:58 am

    “mick – for a guy that projects to be a $20m/year bat its pretty important to save up as much service time as they can. 20 days of a different backup catcher won’t break the season, assuming Sisco can play.”

    ———————–

    If Montero ends up being that valuable, the Yankees won’t have any problem paying him.

    Who knows what happens in that 20 days? What if they lose the division or even worse a playoff spot by a game?

    I don’t think the Yankees will let arb clocks get in the way winning. When have they ever?

  175. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 10:58 am

    I think the Yankees knew about Joba’s issues due to his shoulder and the subsuent drop in velocity and stamina, they may have no wanted to go public at that time to dissuade other teams from making a trade offer including Joba.

    ////
    It’s startling to see the team rhetoric on Joba (or at least Cashman’s comments on his health, velocity that’s “gone for good”, and “overweight”) and read Joba’s own comments. The two “Jobas” are going in two different directions. Cashman’s version is declining or declined, never to rise again, and Joba’s “I am” is “feeling great” and thinking he can “get back” to where he was when he shined. Very interesting.

  176. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 10:59 am

    wcyf, phil’s always been my boy!

    its only this year that i’ve adopted jah-buddha!

    :)

    triple: ryan howard has won me 3 fantasy baseball championships, twice cause i drafted him and once b/c i traded albert pujols for him (plus sandoval in 2009 at the asb!) so he can do no wrong in my book!

  177. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 11:00 am

    GTLU

    Jeter SS
    Cano 2B
    Teix 1B
    ARod 3B
    Posada DH
    A Jones LF
    Martin C
    Maxwell RF
    Golson CF

  178. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 11:01 am

    GTLU is Now Closed for Today.

    The following participants have submitted lineups:

    upstate kate
    Erin
    Fran the original
    Y’s Guy
    Ed H.
    austinmac
    SAS
    David in Cal
    West Coast Yankee Fan

    Winner(s) will be posted when Joe Girardi’s lineup is posted on this (Lohud) site.

    Thanks, everyone.

    :)

  179. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 11:02 am

    Does Romine not have good hands? Yankee brass seems to say he does…

    From the Interview posted yesterday…

    NEWMAN: I don’t worry about his glove, Romine can really catch. He turns bullets into marshmallows. His arm is strong and accurate. By the internal defensive metrics we use, Romine rates as a very strong defender, and Montero isn’t far behind him.

  180. Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 11:02 am

    And Rodg12, who got in right at the wire!

    LOL

  181. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 11:03 am

    i think girardi sneaks a peek at this comments section before he posts….

  182. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 11:03 am

    mick – it’s the same thing tampa did with Longoria and SF did with Posey. The fact that the Braves did NOT do it with Heyward last season was… quite frankly really strange… but I guess you don’t argue with Bobby Cox in his last year.

  183. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Thanks, SJ. You desribed catching the ball well. I never noticed whether his catching hand “gave a little” as he caught it. Maybe he gets that last half of tonight’s game and gives me something to look for. He’s improving year to year on the interference calls, but passed balls and steals are still the issue. Has a strong and accurate arm, though.

  184. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Ys Guy,

    I have never had him on one of my teams but all I am saying is be careful of him this year.

    I would rank the 1B as

    Pujols, Cabrera,Votto,Gonzalez,Tex,Howard,Fielder,Dunn,Morales,Morneau

  185. LGY March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am

    “mick – it’s the same thing tampa did with Longoria and SF did with Posey. The fact that the Braves did NOT do it with Heyward last season was… quite frankly really strange… but I guess you don’t argue with Bobby Cox in his last year.”

    ————————–

    The Giants were lucky to make the playoffs. They should have had Buster up earlier.

    The Braves only made the playoffs by ONE game. If Heyward was not up there from the start, they are sitting at home in October last year.

  186. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am

    My question is if Cervy is down, is Posada the BUC for 20 days?

  187. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 11:06 am

    I don’t think the Yankees will let arb clocks get in the way winning. When have they ever?

    ///
    I don’t worry about them getting hung up on the arb clock. What concerns me is ‘out of sight, out of mind.’
    I guess it all depends on what one’s take on Montero for 2011 is. If you think he’s this stud who will have a great future, but don’t see him as a true Difference Maker for right now, you’re going to be more philosophical about when he gets here.

    If you feel he’s critical to putting the yanks above their challengers this season, as I do, you’re going to want to see him become initiated sooner. The timing becomes much more relevant. He’s a great talent, but he’s not going to pop up here and not go through a cyle or two of adapting. He did so last season.

  188. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:06 am

    SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    A word of warning for those who believe Johan Santana will be as “good as new” following shoulder surgery………

    Chein Ming Wang’s FB is being clocked at 83 MPH.

    Moral of the story…….

    Regardless of what ANYBODY says, especially doctors, shoulder surgery is one, big risk and nobody can predict the outcome of it until guys start throwing again.
    ___________________
    Just to remind you, the argument has ALWAYS been that he has to be healthy first, and that a trade was possible. It was ALWAYS about keepinghim in consideration, NOT about trading for him sight unseen.

  189. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    # Doreen March 4th, 2011 at 11:02 am

    And Rodg12, who got in right at the wire!

    LOL
    ————————————-
    :wipesbrow:

    Wheeeeew!

  190. SJ44 March 4th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    He didn’t turn bullets into marshmallows last year.

    I think he’s better defensively than what he showed last year.

    However, he did not have a good year defensively last year and the Yankees know that.

    They will never admit it publicly because it serves no useful purpose to do so.

  191. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    Hitch, I think that’s a good take.

  192. J. Alfred Prufrock March 4th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am
    My question is if Cervy is down, is Posada the BUC for 20 days?

    ///
    SOunds like the concussions have taken too much of a toll for him to be put at further risk. Maybe he’ll catch once in a blue moon.

  193. JoeyA March 4th, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Maybe they need to show Romine that scene in Mighty Ducks when Bombay shows the team how to receive an egg with their sticks. “soft hands”

    Anyway…

    Does it concern anyone that with all the hype surrounding Montero, especially in the last week or so from Pena & Girardi, he may take being sent down to AAA poorly?

    i don’t know his personality from the next guy, but that type of thing could affect certain types of people. SJ would probably be most capable of weighing in.

  194. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:09 am

    Romine looks like trade bait to me.
    What about Gary Sanchez?
    Some say he is the best catcher of the 3, don’t know about his hitting.

  195. blake March 4th, 2011 at 11:09 am

    LGY is right. For teams with financial restraints that arent contenders it makes loads of sense to get that extra year of control….for the Yankees its more about whether the player makes them better or not.

  196. randy l. March 4th, 2011 at 11:10 am

    joe from long island-

    i’m down in florida playing golf in the daytime and hitting balls at night to correct what went wrong during the day so i just don’t have much time to get on the blog, but i check in and take a look how much trouble gb7 is causing and what color pat m’s pool cleaner’s top is.

    the yankees appear to be finally bringing up some mid level starting pitching like the twins have routinely done for years. it’s not just about the future stars like betances and banuelos. developing someone like nova is huge. if cashman can stay the course and still win while developing these young pitchers, i’ll come around more in his direction.

    there’s a long way to go though before the potential with the young pitchers translates into wins on the field. there is always going to be the temptation to rush young pitchers on the yankees because of pressure to win on the mlb level.

    it’s possible to get good results at the minor league level to the point it looks like the pitcher has nothing else to learn. the trick is to have the pitcher get the results using his third and fourth pitch and not just his top two pitches.

    as far as montero goes, i took one look at him last year on tv hitting and catching and saw yankee star”. i don’t know why it’s such a big surprise he’s catching well. he looked fine last year to me.

  197. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:11 am

    for the Yankees its more about whether the player makes them better or not.
    ================
    If you or I were running the team, yeah, but don’t think Hal and Cash think that way.

  198. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:15 am

    GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:05 am

    “…… He’s improving year to year on the interference calls, but passed balls and steals are still the issue. Has a strong and accurate arm, though.”

    *****************

    I think minor league pitchers inability to hold base-runners on may have had more than a little to do with Romine’s CS %.

  199. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:17 am

    JoeyA March 4th, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Maybe they need to show Romine that scene in Mighty Ducks when Bombay shows the team how to receive an egg with their sticks. “soft hands”
    ___________________
    I think they should use a drill with Romine where they throw eggs at him and he has to catch them with his glove to develop soft hands.

    I know the eggs would break and it wouldn’t teach him anything, but I sure would love to have Granderson film the look on Romine’s face and post the video to Youtube as his prank.

  200. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:17 am

    I saw Romine drop a throw from Justin Maxwell in a ST game.
    It bounced off his glove and rolled 20 feet to his left.
    What was that all about?

  201. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:18 am

    There’s no reason for NYYs to tade Romine anytime soon, unless it’s part of a deal that’s impossible to turn down. He’s worth more than a #4 or #5 type pitcher. He’s got real talent, especially with the bat and has fairly easy flaws to correct. By this summer, he’ll be with Butch Wynegar.

  202. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Does anyone know where they sell packs of Topps baseball cards?

  203. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Does anyone know where they sell packs of Topps baseball cards?
    __________________
    In my childhood?

  204. Vineyard Yankee March 4th, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Definitely need games to start, the Joba, Santana, Cervelli discussions are just redundant day in and day out.

  205. blake March 4th, 2011 at 11:21 am

    ” Does anyone know where they sell packs of Topps baseball cards?”

    Walmart I think….

  206. rodg12 March 4th, 2011 at 11:22 am

    # Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Does anyone know where they sell packs of Topps baseball cards?
    —————————————————————
    You could always buy a box on eBay. Most Wal-Marts and Targets should have them too.

  207. 108 stitches March 4th, 2011 at 11:22 am

    Many say that Gary Sanchez is an equal to Jesus Montero at a similar stage of development. He’s slated to be at Low A Charleston this year with the possibility of some time at High A Tampa.

  208. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Hoping to see Prior get an inning or 2 tonight against Boston. Need to see him repeat his last game.

  209. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:24 am

    With our abundance of catching prospects Romine may very well be a valuable trade chip when it’s all said and done. He’s a top 100 prospect for a reason. He can hit, has quick feet and a gun for an arm. Hi pop times are consistently below 2. The dropped throw thing is much ado about nothing IMO. You don’t make it to this level if you can’t catch the ball. Girardi mentioned he blocked a bunch of balls in the dirt the other day.

  210. Tom in N.J. March 4th, 2011 at 11:24 am

    “Does anyone know where they sell packs of Topps baseball cards?”

    I saw them at CVS this A.M.

  211. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:27 am

    I bought my first pack in a while like 2 or 3 years ago at Bob’s store but they don’t have them anymore. I was feeling a little nostalgic today

  212. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Tom, you posted about Nick Ebert’s signing last night as a NDFA. Have you seen his college numbers at U of So Carolina? Not at all bad. A little older than usual college prospect, though.

    http://www.thebaseballcube.com.....nick-ebert

  213. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:31 am

    What do the Yankees do if Prior is lights out all spring? I don’t think there’s another bullpen slot available; I can’t see the Yankees going north with thirteen pitchers.

    1. Sabatia
    2. Hughes
    3. Burnett
    4. Nova
    5. Garcia
    6. Mariano
    7. Soriano
    8. Robertson
    9. Joba
    10. Logan
    11. Feliciano
    12. Mitre

  214. Vineyard Yankee March 4th, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Is Toby getting a bone at game time ?

  215. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 11:32 am

    triple – I have an entire book of 80′s and early 90′s topps cards i’ll sell you cheap :p

  216. blake March 4th, 2011 at 11:32 am

    I bought my son his.first pack of cards not long ago…..he got Arod and CC!

  217. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    How about Prior going to the minors to see if he can hold up?

  218. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Post is reporting that Cervelli has fractured toe…Montero is coming norht

  219. mick March 4th, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Post is reporting that Cervelli has fractured toe…Montero is coming norht
    =============
    Blessing in disguise?
    F the money.

  220. Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 11:34 am

    WCYF – my suggestion would be to leave mitre in AAA and keep him stretched out… so when someone in the rotation invariably gets hurt he will be reayd to go.

  221. Tom in N.J. March 4th, 2011 at 11:36 am

    GB, thanks. I read that he was “academically ineligible” for some of last season, which may be the reason his 2010 wasn’t as good as ’09.

    Looks like he can hit.

  222. Triple Short of a Cycle March 4th, 2011 at 11:36 am

    Irreverent Discourse,

    lol. I still have most of my cards from the 80′s. Of course my real collection is behind screw tight lucite plastic.

    My most treasured card is my topps wayne gretzky rookie card. I wish I had the o pee chee one

  223. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:36 am

    Irreverent Discourse March 4th, 2011 at 11:34 am

    WCYF – my suggestion would be to leave mitre in AAA and keep him stretched out… so when someone in the rotation invariably gets hurt he will be reayd to go.

    **************

    What about a long man; if you need someone to go three to four innings?

  224. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 11:37 am

    Ys Guy,

    “I have never had him on one of my teams but all I am saying is be careful of him this year.

    I would rank the 1B as

    Pujols, Cabrera,Votto,Gonzalez,Tex,Howard,Fielder,Dunn,Morales,Morneau”

    /////

    the thing with howard is to cover his first 6 weeks with someone with a high ba. then you put him in every day when its warm and bask in the glow…

    when i traded him for pujols, howard had the better 2nd half straight-up, but i also picked up sandoval who more than covered howard’s ba.

    i think that was the year that adrian beltre had that unfortunate ‘groin’ injury which started the whole thing.

  225. West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    Vineyard Yankee March 4th, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Is Toby getting a bone at game time ?

    *****************

    No! For Red Sux games Toby gets the shredded remnants of a Red Sux bear and is renamed Cujo for the day.

  226. LGY March 4th, 2011 at 11:39 am

    :arrow:

  227. Tom in N.J. March 4th, 2011 at 11:39 am

    When i was a child, I often traded for as many Yankee cards as posible. When I was, like, 7 I traded a Gregg Maddux rookie card for a run of the mill Mike Pagliarulo card.

  228. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:40 am

    I mis-stated that Post story….should have said “may have a fractured foot” Sorry.

    The deal is that Cashman last night said that when results take this long to come back, there is usually something wrong.

    Here is the link:

    http://www.nypost.com/p/sports.....dGQd2D88GI

  229. Ys Guy March 4th, 2011 at 11:41 am

    *when i traded him for pujols, howard had the better 2nd half straight-up, but i also picked up sandoval who more than covered howard’s ba.*

    i meant to say i traded pujols for howard and sandoval.

  230. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Baseball cards….the real nostagia is buying a couple of packs from the store with your last dime (5 cents a pack) just hoping that there are Yankees and hopefully a Mantle card in side, the smell of the gum that stays forever. It doesn’t come from buying them by the case.

    A couple of years ago, in a special magazine on Mantle, they interviewed a guy that worked for Topps in the warehouse. He was asked what they did with left over cases of cards. He said that they stored them for a few years and then destroyed them. He talked about the day that his job for the day was taking 2o00 cases of 1952 Topps cards out into the Atlantic off the New Jersey coast and sinking the cases of cards. Imagine how many Mantle Rookie cards sank that day?

  231. Vineyard Yankee March 4th, 2011 at 11:44 am

    West Coast Yankee Fan March 4th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    That’s not fair.

  232. Tom in N.J. March 4th, 2011 at 11:44 am

    GB, Do you think those cards were in water-proof barrels?

    I’m sure you have scuba-experience…

  233. BoJo March 4th, 2011 at 11:45 am

    GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:41 am
    _______________
    Damn the Titanic! Let’s form a search party for Topps cards!!

  234. GreenBeret7 March 4th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    Tom, I’d risk your life to go after them. The guy said they were loaded on an ocean going barge and they went out abou 8-10 miles (his estimate) and the just dumped ‘em. You have to believe there are a lot of Topps execs that regret that move. The article was about 2-4 years ago and he said this was done before the big card explosion…in the 70s. I don’t know about them being in waterproof wrap, but, if I had a submarine with bottom mounted cameras, I know where I’d be right now.

  235. Cashmoney March 4th, 2011 at 11:58 am

    off topic, trip, did u check out DDO?

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