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


Postgame notes: “He’s getting closer to what he was”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Notes, Podcast on Jul 17, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

The mechanical difference in Phil Hughes’ curveball is very small. He used to spike his index finger, which forced him to “choke” the ball in order to grip it. By choking the ball, Hughes was able to generate movement but not velocity. Without velocity, Hughes had to release the pitch noticeably higher than his fastball in order to get it over the plate.

Essentially, all he’s done is remove the spike. That lets him hold the ball more loosely, which lets him throw it harder, which makes his breaking ball delivery more similar to his other pitches.

“I thought I made some improvements with it and gave guys less time to react, and that’s what you’re aiming for,” Hughes said. “You want to fool them, but at the same time you don’t want them to be able to readjust for a slower breaking ball. It wasn’t as big, but I felt like I fooled a couple more guys than I normally would with my other one, so that was a good thing as well.”

Take today’s second Blue Jays at-bat for example. Eric Thames went down looking at an 0-2 curveball. Hughes speculated that, in the past, Thames might have recognized the curveball in time to foul it off, letting the at-bat continue and forcing Hughes to find another way to get him out.

“My old one could be anywhere from 72 (mph) to 75-76 if I really threw it hard,” Hughes said. “This one I saw some 78s and mainly 75-76, which is mainly where I want it to be. I look more at the swings and not necessarily velocity, and just make sure there wasn’t a hump in it… I felt like I could throw it for a strike, too. Maybe a little bit easier just because I don’t have to really factor in as much break because it’s shorter and harder. I felt like I could probably throw it for a strike a little easier. When in doubt, I went to it, and it was pretty good for the most part.”

One knock on Hughes last season was his inability to put hitters away. He’d get ahead in the count, but an at-bat would continue. Best-case scenario was an increased pitch count. Worst-case was a hitter staying in the fight long enough to scratch out a hit. Hughes didn’t have the same problem today, and although his first five outs came on the curveball, his last three strikeouts came on the fastball.

Hughes said that, even with slightly diminished velocity later in the game, his fastball became better because of location, and because the Blue Jays had to respect the offspeed stuff.

“It just shows you he’s getting closer to what he was,” Joe Girardi said. “I don’t think you can quantify it, but I thought he took a big step today. That’s what we wanted to see from him. Next time, he’ll be on normal rest and his normal routine, so I hope that helps him as well.”

Here’s Hughes.

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• Hughes tried to plead his case to pitch the seventh, but the Yankees thought the heat at Rogers Centre had been too taxing and didn’t want Hughes back out there. It felt boiling in this building, with no breeze and the sun baking the turf. Hughes said he would have sworn it was over 100 degrees.

• Hughes didn’t thrown any changeups, but he had a reason for staying away from the pitch today. “The couple of lefties that are in their lineup, our reports are that they stay on changeups pretty well, Snider and Lind,” he said. “Obviously if my changeup were my second pitch I’d go to it, but as a fourth option, I just felt like there was a couple of other pitches that I could go to for that.”

• Sweeny Murti brought up an interesting point. Would it make sense for Hughes to keep his old curveball as a slower alternative? “Not necessarily,” Hughes said, “because I can always slow the other one down if I need to, kind of roll it in for a strike. As long as I stay feeling comfortable with this one, I don’t really see the need for both because they both kind of do the same thing.” Oh well. I thought it was an interesting idea.

• This was really the first time Russell Martin caught Hughes when he was pitching well. “There’s some life behind the ball,” Martin said. “I don’t know what the radar gun was saying, but it was jumping out of his hand today. From what I’ve seen in the past, that’s what he’s used to doing. Elevating the ball when he has two strikes, doing different things. Just knowing he can throw it by guys has to feel good for him.”

• Speaking of Martin, he said the Yankees have a “system in place” to deal with potentially stolen signs, and he now considers it a non-issue. “We’re not going to worry about it anymore,” he said. Apparently fans were giving him a hard time all night about stolen signs.

• Brett Gardner had his third three-hit game of the series. He also stole two bases, and the Yankees only scored in innings when Gardner got on base. “After taking three or four days off, you worry about your timing and things like that,” Gardner said. “For me, the first game back after the break, I saw the ball well and managed to square up a couple balls. Things are going well so far for me.”

• Gardner’s big series has come with him hitting all over the lineup, including leading off today. “It’s all the same to me,” he said. “My job is to get on base no matter where I hit in the lineup. The last couple days, I’ve been able to do that and make a few things happen.”

• Two very nice plays by Ramiro Pena to help get out of the fifth. “The bunt play was good,” Hughes said. “And then I joked with him he was just trying to protect his face with the other one. That happens. I’m not very good on those balls back to the mound, so I have a lot of respect for guys when they can make those plays.”

• The Yankees run in the first inning snapped a stretch of 11 straight games without a first-inning run. That was their longest stretch since 13 straight games in 2006 (that’s according to Elias, of course).

• Nice work by the Yankees bullpen. Cory Wade, Dave Robertson and Boone Logan combined for three hitless innings. They walked none and struck out five. Logan struck out the side in the ninth.

• Jorge Posada played in his 1,790th game as a Yankee, passing Bill Dickey for sole possession of eight place on the franchise’s all-time games played list.

Associated Press photos

 
 

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106 Responses to “Postgame notes: “He’s getting closer to what he was””

  1. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    Gardner really should be leadoff vs RHP

  2. jacksquat July 17th, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    I thought Hughes’ curveball looked much better. Not polished, but much better than that old loopy crap.

    Russell Martin: The mustache has to go. The shades too.

  3. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    Repost

    MTU July 17th, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    The simplest and most economical thing would be for one of our guys to
    step up.

    ———————————

    I think it was Rich who first questioned why Ubaldo would be available if he’s so cost-effective AND that good. My sentiments exactly.

    Any two of Montero, Betances, Banuelos, Nova is too much, I think.

  4. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Boj, there is about as much chance of the Tigers trading Verlander as the Yankees trading CC.

  5. m July 17th, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    Good stuff. Good game. Good Hughes!

    For all the things Phil isn’t, one thing he is-is he’s smart. He’s a quick learner. I’m fully confident that he’ll put it all together one day.

    What a series for Gardner. He went through a terrible streak before the break, but his average is almost back to his season high in one series alone.

    Jerkface, would you happen to know what Gardner’s average is to start an inning?

  6. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    I thought Hughes’ curveball looked much better. Not polished, but much better than that old loopy crap.

    Way better than the curve he had been using for the past 2 years overall. I hope he continues to work on it and make it sharper.

    I want to see more flinching, more swings & misses.

  7. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    .297 .366 .451 .817 leading off an inning for Gardner

  8. m July 17th, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    Wowza. That was fast. Thanks.

  9. Niblick July 17th, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    m – you could look that up in baseballreference.com if you cared to make just the slightest effort to do so.

  10. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    From MLBTR –

    Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail is in a tough spot because he doesn’t know which way owner Peter Angelos wants him to go, according to a rival GM.

    ————————–

    Based on their season versus expectations? Out the door would be my guess.

  11. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:10 pm

    Aldo-

    I have seen U-Jim pitch many times as I get the Rox feed out here.

    He’s not Felix or Verlander at the moment but he has a fantastic arm.

    On his best days he is that good. Nasty stuff.

    He has a rather long delivery and his mechanics can get out of whack
    sometimes but the raw stuff is unquestionable IMO.

    Him and Rothschild would be a match made in heaven IMO.

    I would absolutely trade Montero, Nova, + for him w/o hesitation.

    Another reason is that I am not at all sure that the Yankees see
    Montero sticking at C even though that’s the company line.

    I am content with whatever they chose to do.

    :)

  12. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    edit: choose. Sorry. They haven’t done anything quite yet.

  13. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    How about this rotation ?

    CC
    U-Jim
    Hughes
    AJ
    Whoever (doesn’t matter)

    :)

  14. NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    Erik Bedard could be an option once he comes off the DL and establishes himself again. AL tested and a lefty with swing and miss stuff.

  15. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    OK.

    CC
    U-Jim
    Hughes
    AJ
    Banuelos/Betances

    Does matter.

    :)

  16. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    Bedard hurts himself getting out of bed.

  17. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    MTU, and if he Rox ask for another blue chip, along with Montero, Nova? Do you pull the trigger?

    Betances, Banuelos, Romine … ?

  18. joeman July 17th, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    what happens first…

    NFL gets a deal done or Montero gets traded

  19. BoJo July 17th, 2011 at 7:19 pm

    AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:04 pm
    Boj, there is about as much chance of the Tigers trading Verlander as the Yankees trading CC.
    ___
    Agreed…My point is that if they are discussing those chips, Verlander is one of the few I would do the deal for.

    I’d pass on it otherwise.

  20. BoJo July 17th, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    My other point was that in discussing those names, it will be interesting to see if other GMs contact Cash and offer him other aces.

  21. NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    No way in hell Verlander gets traded.

  22. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Aldo-

    That’s tougher. I’m coping out on that for now.

    I’ll answer it this way. I don’t think the Yankees would.

    By the way, can’t surrender Romine if Montero is gone.

    He’s the BU to Martin at first and then the eventual replacement if the Yankees choose to go that way.

  23. BoJo July 17th, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Since we are talking about him, Bedard just sneezed and threw out his back

  24. Betsy July 17th, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Martin’s comments about Phil’s FB are encouraging……….

    He needs to stay with this curve period – even if he goes through a time when it’s not good, he has to. All the tinkering Phil has done with the pitch has hurt its effectiveness…….

    I think Joe made the right call in taking him out

  25. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    I don’t remember who it was, but someone recently posted Ubaldo’s ERA split home and away …

    The numbers are compelling -

    Home: 10 starts, 55 IP, 1.709 WHIP, 5.89 ERA

    Away: 8 starts, 2 CG, 55.1 IP, 0.904 WHIP, 2.28 ERA

  26. BoJo July 17th, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Tomorrow is another day, another game, and another win…Enjoy the evening folks!

  27. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Betsy-

    For now I think it would be good if Hughes uses the KISS method.

    ;)

  28. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    Aldo-

    To see U-Jim’s real cieling all you need do is look at last season.

    Scary good.

    ;)

  29. 108 stitches July 17th, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    All that is expected of Phil Hughes is to throw quality starts with hopefully some good run support.
    The only true horse and ace of the staff is C.C. and only C.C.

  30. RhapsodyInBlue July 17th, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Erik Bedard?

    Is he from the Christy Mathewson era?

  31. Betsy July 17th, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    MTU, agreed

  32. RhapsodyInBlue July 17th, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Really encouraging to see Phil not give up one gopher ball to a mashing team like the BlueJays.

    I was impressed with the curveball, imo things are looking up.

    The thought of him on the hill today had me considering not watching the game, but you know how that works out.

    Welcome back Phil.

  33. ron July 17th, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Update: Heyman says the Rockies have named their price for Ubaldo: Montero, Betances, Banuelos, and Nova. They also want tickets to the Metallica/Slayer/Megadeth/Anthrax concert in September, suites on road trips, discounts from W.B. Mason, proceeds from the DJ3K merchandise, and all the bacon and eggs the Yankees have. Seriously though, that’s just a starting point for negotiations. They’d be stupid not to ask for that. ·

  34. luis July 17th, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    ron July 17th, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    They also asked for Cano and the money for the rest of his contract

  35. Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    As SJ mentioned, just think about a rotation in 2012 of CC, Ubardo, Hughes, AJ and Banuelos…Some real serious power arms with swing and miss stuff……

  36. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    RhapsodyInBlue July 17th, 2011 at 7:34 pm
    Really encouraging to see Phil not give up one gopher ball to a mashing team like the BlueJays.

    I was impressed with the curveball, imo things are looking up.

    The thought of him on the hill today had me considering not watching the game, but you know how that works out.

    Welcome back Phil.

    *********

    To be fair – the ground rule double was a well hit drive to centerfield – but true – Hughes came through solid – let’s see how he does w/ Oakland at YS.

  37. GreenBeret7 July 17th, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 7:17 pm
    Erik Bedard could be an option once he comes off the DL and establishes himself again. AL tested and a lefty with swing and miss stuff.

    ————————————————————————————————————————-

    When is he due off of the DL? 2014?

  38. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    Pat M.-

    When did SJ mention that ? Cause I just did above.

    :)

  39. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    ron July 17th, 2011 at 7:34 pm
    Update: Heyman says the Rockies have named their price for Ubaldo: Montero, Betances, Banuelos, and Nova. They also want tickets to the Metallica/Slayer/Megadeth/Anthrax concert in September, suites on road trips, discounts from W.B. Mason, proceeds from the DJ3K merchandise, and all the bacon and eggs the Yankees have.

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

    I am okay with that – but if they try to get Christian Lopez and his student loans – then we walk away.

  40. joeman July 17th, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    OK.

    CC
    U-Jim
    Hughes
    AJ
    Banuelos/Betances

  41. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 7:40 pm
    As SJ mentioned, just think about a rotation in 2012 of CC, Ubardo, Hughes, AJ and Banuelos…Some real serious power arms with swing and miss stuff……

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

    Man that sounds very nice. “U” , Hughes, and Banuelos – all under 30. C.C. just becoming 33 . . . and then A.J.

    W/ the likes of Noesi, Warren, Mitchell, Phelps, in AAA/pen backing things up and Marshall, Quintana, and Heredia coming to AA – and Turley assuming the mantle next season in High A Tampa.

    To say nothing of possibly Cain/Hamels going on the market possibly after 2012.

  42. joeman July 17th, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    will be interesting to see how Beckett pitches tonight

  43. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    SI_JonHeyman Jon Heyman
    how apart are rox, yanks? colo seeks banuelos, betances AND nova w/ montero. nyy says it wont trade any of those 3 w/ jesus

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

    It’s the same tweet he sent around two hours ago. Or does it mean they will trade some of the pitchers if Jesus is not involved. Negotiations and posturing continues.

  44. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    Forgetting the age difference who do you think is a better hitter right now.

    Holliday or Kemp ?

  45. joeman July 17th, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    two things will happen for sure…RS will get a OFer & Yankees will trade Montero

  46. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    Justin Smoak update: .227 .325 .411 .736

    haw haw

  47. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 7:54 pm
    Justin Smoak update: .227 .325 .411 .736

    haw haw

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

    I have nothing against Smoak – but I loathe Jack Zombie – what he did to his front office last September is despicable. Oh and have fun w/ Seattle w/ Casey Kotchman 2.0.

  48. MTU July 17th, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    Got to root for someone tonite so, much as I can’t stand Maddon, I’m hoping the Rays put a beatdown on the Sux.

    See you all later.

  49. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Hoping for an epic saga 25 inning plus game b/w Rays and Sox – where Rays exhaust all of the pen and two of their starters in the upcoming series against the Yanks. Of course – my luck – this will cause them to call up the best pitching prospect in baseball – Moore.

  50. ron July 17th, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    Cashman is not going to implode his farm system for one nl pitcher,no guarantees that jimenez is the answer.

    He wouldn’t trade that package for anybody,except maybe king felix.
    I doubt even for him though.

    Montero,nova,warren,phelps.

  51. BJK July 17th, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    Has Jimenez’s velocity improved of late? I know he’s -3 mph for 2011 off his usual, but can’t find recent stats. Anyone?

  52. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    Velo is averaging 94 mph now on the year – velo average last year was 96 –

    Could be due to losing time in ST due to early season injuries that appear to be behind him.

  53. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    Missed most of the game today until the 5th inning. After watching the Hughes innings 1-4 on mlb.tv I was really impressed with his curveball. Also impressed that he maintained his composure in what could have been a big inning in the 4th after a walk and double with one out. I give him an A-. It would have been higher if he had more 1st pitch strikes, but hey, he was off 10 days between starts. 6 innings 80 pitches, almost 1/2 of those in the 1st 2 innings.

    Good going Phil.

    Funny quote from Gardner as told to Kimberly Jones:

    “I stole that bag because he made me mad”[Shawn Camp] Camp threw over 6 times. After the 6th one, diving into the 1st base bag so many times, he said to 1st baseman Adam Lind-”That’s it, I’m outta here, I’m gone.”

  54. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    The fact that Gardner get any steals with pitchers paying SO MUCH attention to him is a testament to his ability.

  55. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    Warren ran into the wall in the 6th inning – gave up 3 runs – 2 of them earned in that inning – 4 runs overall – went 5.1 – 6 ks – only 1bb

    5 walks for Manny today in AA.

  56. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    Jerkface-

    I would trade only one of the remaining two killer B’s + pieces at most for Ubaldo Jimenez. Would not include Jesus Montero in that deal. In fact I’m waiting patiently for him to be called up in a week or so.

    Montero only goes for another young power hitter-a Mike Stanton, Justin Upton, etc.

    Opinion?

  57. NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 7:17 pm
    Erik Bedard could be an option once he comes off the DL and establishes himself again. AL tested and a lefty with swing and miss stuff.

    ————————————————————————————————————————-

    When is he due off of the DL? 2014?
    ————————————————————–

    Right before the series against Boston starting 21-22 July. He’s pitched 90 innings this year FYI.

  58. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 8:30 pm

    What is that gunk Big Sloppy just stuck in his pie hole? Tobacco? Yuck!

  59. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:30 pm

    I’m with you 100% Yankee Trader. If the Yankees really want Ubaldo I’d only trade a pitcher for him. Why get rid of the only bat worth a damn in the system for a pitcher? I’d give them 1 of the B’s + Nova and then whatever secondary pieces they want. Keep one of the B’s and keep Montero.

    Gosh how the Yankees could think he is worth trading when looking at Jeter/A-rod/Tex/Martin/Posada’s production is beyond me.

  60. Joe from Long Island July 17th, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    Yankee Trader – You might be onto some thing with your 8:26 post.

    If you look at precedence – no guarantee, of course – Cash sent Austin Jackson – a CF of the future – to Detroit, for Curtis Granderson, a CF of the present, and what Jackson might turn into at best; except that the Yanks get that now, and with a ML track record.

    If Cash is consistent, he would do a similar deal with Colorado, for Jimenez, sending them Dellin Betances. I don’t think they would deal Banuelos, because of the lefty thing. There might be lesser pieces added on, but that would be the main part of it.

    Just a thought.

  61. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Joe,

    I agree 100%! Betances for Ubaldo. I’d give them Nova too simply because I think they need to trade guys like him and Noesi when they are looking like viable starters.

  62. NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    There is no way NY would have a rotation of CC, Ubaldo, Hughes, AJ, Manny/Betances. Some of those pitchers would be going to Colorado.

  63. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 8:33 pm
    There is no way NY would have a rotation of CC, Ubaldo, Hughes, AJ, Manny/Betances. Some of those pitchers would be going to Colorado.

    ***********

    I think the hope is to get Colorado to bite on Montero and Manny/Betances – thus leaving one of Manny or Betances viable for 2012 at some point.

  64. Against All Odds July 17th, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    @ Jerk it seems like the Yankees don’t see Jesus in their future plans for the team

  65. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    There is no way NY would have a rotation of CC, Ubaldo, Hughes, AJ, Manny/Betances. Some of those pitchers would be going to Colorado.

    One of Manny/Betances would be going, which leaves that spot open for who doesn’t go. They aren’t sending Hughes/Aj/CC to Colorado.

  66. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    The best thing that can happen for Montero at this point IS to be traded – no way he can live up to these expectations. Unfair to the kid.

  67. Joe from Long Island July 17th, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    Jerkface – yeah, I wouldn’t be terribly surprised if either Nova or Noesi was dealt at some point. Not both, though. They still need ML ready arms themselves.

  68. Vineyard Yankee July 17th, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    The ultimate Fantasy Blog.

  69. AldotheApache July 17th, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    NYY fan in NH July 17th, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    Right before the series against Boston starting 21-22 July. He’s pitched 90 innings this year FYI.

    ———————–

    Which is Bedard’s HIGHEST total in 3 seasons, which I think was the point.

  70. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    @ Jerk it seems like the Yankees don’t see Jesus in their future plans for the team

    Then they better have really, really good advanced scouting or some plan for the offense going forward, because Montero is their best bat in a while and most of their bats in the majors backslid from 2010. Only Granderson took a leap forward and I don’t expect they want to pay him 20 million a year when his contract is up.

    I am already imagining Montero hitting .330 with monster power in Coors.

  71. Niblick July 17th, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    The Yanks don’t ever seem to see any of their “prospects” in their future plans. They’d much rather sign, or trade for, an established player, preferably one whose best days are behind them and who are on the “back nine” of their careers, or who have chronic injuries known to everyone but the Yankees “brain trust”.

  72. Joe from Long Island July 17th, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    I’m concerned, also, about the offense going forward.

    Guys are getting older. We talk about Matt Kemp coming as a FA, but that’s no guarantee, and he’s only one guy. Unless they get an established hitter in exchange, I would lean against trading Montero. And, if they do, that to me suggests that they have some serious concerns. I wouldn’t know what that might be, but, given the situation with their lineup, I wouldn’t know what else to logically conclude.

  73. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    Joe-

    Earlier this morning I said that I’d trade lefty Banuelos+ pieces for lefty Clayton Kershaw and righty Betances +pieces for either of King Felix or Justin Verlander.
    Now I know they’re not available.

    When I asked who those pitchers had the potential to be if given the chance I got Josh Johnson, JR Richard, Whitey Ford for Betances and Teddy Higuera for Banuelos. Montero potential to be Piazza/Posada type.

  74. West Coast Yankee Fan July 17th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    What a great day; it’s beautiful at the beach and the Yankees won with Phil Hughes looking a lot closer to the All-Star he was last year.

  75. Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Face….How’s his numbers in Scranton ????

  76. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Niblick July 17th, 2011 at 8:39 pm
    The Yanks don’t ever seem to see any of their “prospects” in their future plans. They’d much rather sign, or trade for, an established player, preferably one whose best days are behind them and who are on the “back nine” of their careers, or who have chronic injuries known to everyone but the Yankees “brain trust”.

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

    Like Curtis Granderson

    Like C.C. Sabathia

    Like Nick Swisher before 2009

    Like Mark Teixeira

    Like going w/ Brett Gardner over an aging Johnny Damon

  77. joeman July 17th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    if UJ comes this way lets see Wiggy with him

  78. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:44 pm

    Face….How’s his numbers in Scranton ????

    pretty good for a 21 year old.

  79. West Coast Yankee Fan July 17th, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    I hope Cashman gets a strong number two this month. You never know.

  80. Abomb82 July 17th, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    Cash better have some solutions for the offense. Their catcher is hitting .180 over the past 3 months and looks like the guy LA got rid of. Jeter is obviously a shell of himself. A-Rod can’t stay healthy and his power is now obviously a concern. Tex is a .240 hitter now.

    Swisher is a FA in a year. Granderson is a FA in 2 years. Both will be 32+ and looking for big money. Gardner? Who knows.

    And referencing future FA classes is the ultimate crap shoot. Kemp? McCourt has left the building, the new owner will likely have significantly deeper pockets and won’t let the face of the franchise in the 2nd biggest market walk away.

    Montero is more important than people think.

  81. Against All Odds July 17th, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    @ Jerk it seems like the Yankees don’t see Jesus in their future plans for the team

    Then they better have really, really good advanced scouting or some plan for the offense going forward, because Montero is their best bat in a while and most of their bats in the majors backslid from 2010. Only Granderson took a leap forward and I don’t expect they want to pay him 20 million a year when his contract is up.

    I am already imagining Montero hitting .330 with monster power in Coors.

    ——————-

    As sad as it sounds it does feel like Jesus is as good as gone. I would love to see him in pinstripes but it’s clear what they think of him. He’s a trade chip nothing more.

  82. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    Guys are getting older. We talk about Matt Kemp coming as a FA, but that’s no guarantee, and he’s only one guy.

    **********

    But so is Montero – he is just one player. I am not getting how trading Montero for a pitcher who could be a solid number 2 on our staff is bringing down the offense in the future and making us the Seattle Mariners.

    There is FA: w/ the likes of Kemp, Ethier, Hamilton, Cuddyer, etc coming available

    There are the proverbial salary dumps

    And no joke – there are other offensive prospects in the pipeline – while not ready for 2012 – could conceivable at least be viable trade chips going into 2013 and assist going forward.

    You always try to trade the hitting prospect for the pitching and try to hold onto your pitching prospects. The league is turning more and more towards pitching and defense – we see that on our team w/ LF and Catching. We would be doing the same at SS probably if not for special circumstances.

  83. West Coast Yankee Fan July 17th, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    Montero likely can’t catch in the big leagues and he’s not hitting like a star. Don’t make the mistake of keeping him too long like Joba.

  84. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    You always try to trade the hitting prospect for the pitching and try to hold onto your pitching prospects. The league is turning more and more towards pitching and defense – we see that on our team w/ LF and Catching.

    I don’t think you ‘always’ do that at all. The league might be trending towards pitching and defense but that gives extra incentive to be strong on offense where other teams might not be. The Yankees have always had the advantage of being strong offensively, and the one season they weren’t surprise they missed the playoffs.

    The biggest problem is that fixing the offense via trade or free agency means committing huge contracts to those positions. Immovable contracts that lock you into potentially disastrous situations. The Yankees should be recognizing not the shift to pitching/defense(they have) but the shift towards keeping your impact position prospects and signing them to long, cheap, team friendly deals.

    If Tex tanks (which I don’t think he will) they will have to deal with him for 5 more years with no where to put him.

  85. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    Oh no Montero so far is 0-4 tonight!! Bring up Terry the Tiffmeister whose hitting .326

  86. Stoneburner July 17th, 2011 at 9:01 pm

    The Yankees have always had the advantage of being strong offensively, and the one season they weren’t surprise they missed the playoffs.

    ***********

    08 was a perfect storm of injuries – Wang going down and then Joba getting injured in Texas – PLUS Cano getting hit by Lester in late July right as he was getting hot. Sure ARod had the hip injury and that will plague him going forward but he does have his moments still – batting average this season – 2009 an amazing postseason – but surprise surprise – that team w/ Andy, healthy Wang, 08 Mussina, and healthy Joba – very interesting

    Does 08 turn out differently if freak injuries did not happen to Wang and then Joba (ivan rodriguez throwing and joba slipping) – and instead we get stuck with Darnell Rasner and Sidney Ponson.

  87. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:01 pm

    Mike Stanton, who seems to be pretty well regarded here as a person they’d trade montero for, didn’t even spend any time in AAA. He hit as well as Montero in AA and got called up. Montero hit every year of his career, and even this year he is hitting for average, and actually has a .900 OPS vs LHP. And OPSing .850 in his last 10 games.

    Should stop relying so much on the stats of the minors and focus more on Montero’s natural ability and the motivating aspects of a trip to the majors and the challenges it represents, as well as the intangible teaching aspect that A-rod/Jeter/Granderson/Swisher/Gardner/Tex/Posada/Martin can have on him. And the better coaching, equipment, and lockerrooms!

  88. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    08 was a perfect storm of injuries

    Yes, but the injuries on the offensive side hurt the most. They only scored 700 runs. The first time they scored under 800 since 1995. They had Jose Molina catching most of the games! They got pitching like in 08 every year in the aughts, and managed to make the playoffs.

  89. Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    WCYF…….This is the 3rd consecutive trade deadline where Montero has been offered for a starting pitcher …..At what point do we Yankee fans come to the conclusion that the FO is not convince that he’s the catcher of the future ??? Let’s face facts he was in line to come north when Cervelli went down and yet he didn’t and his 2011 season isn’t exactly Pujols like as many here have been selling…..He’s not ready to play in The Bronx right now and the real question is will he ever play in The Bronx in Pinstripes…..But if he can help deliver Ubardo to 161st street then you say goodbye….Yanks have several catchers in the pipeline and a wealth of DH types at The Stadium for years to come

  90. igotid88 July 17th, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Is Montero really that bad as catcher? I haven’t really heard of him losing games. The Yankees did well with Posada behind the plate.

  91. Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    And actually has a .900 OPS vs LHP, and you’re telling me to stop using stats ??? How many lefthand pitchers are in International League Face ???? Honestly there are times you are simply exhausting….

  92. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    This is the 3rd consecutive trade deadline where Montero has been offered for a starting pitcher …..At what point do we Yankee fans come to the conclusion that the FO is not convince that he’s the catcher of the future ??? Let’s face facts he was in line to come north when Cervelli went down and yet he didn’t and his 2011 season isn’t exactly Pujols like as many here have been selling

    Shortsighted. First of all he got offered straight up for Halladay and in a deal for Cliff Lee. Thats not exactly the Yankees trying to give him away. And who said he is Pujols? He hit 20+ HRs as a 20 year old in AAA against guys 8 years older than him. you don’t know that he is ready to hit in the majors any more than the Yankees do or anyone, even Montero himself. You can only find out if someone is ready if you give him a shot. And considering Martin + Cervelli is a black hole offensively and Romine is hitting WORSE than Montero in a lower league they probably should be giving him a shot. Look at Dustin pedroia, he was hitting .300 in 2006 when he got called up and hit .191 and looked overmatched. Look at Matt Wieters. Not everyone who looks ready is ready and not everyone who doesn’t look ready is going to fail. Besides which Montero is hitting .280, its not like he is hitting .200. Do you think his power has fled his body?

  93. Joe from Long Island July 17th, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I wonder if the Justin Smoak experience – supposed to be a great hitter, and not really delivering on the promise – is in Cash’s mind. Or, Matt LaPorta (the CC trade with Milwaukee) – he’s had problems hitting at the ML level. As has Matt Weiters.

    My point is that some of these guys with great reps as can’t miss hitters, do miss.

    I don’t remember Robbie Cano having a rep as a great hitter in the minors. Sometimes, for all the scouting, you just can’t tell. That’s why a ML track record is held in the highest regard.

  94. GreenBeret7 July 17th, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    Laird is a tough character. Just got drilled flush in the ear flap and never went down. Walks down to 1st base

  95. JobaTipsHisCap July 17th, 2011 at 9:14 pm

    Ray are hanging there, it’s juts matter of time Sux breakout.

  96. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:14 pm

    And actually has a .900 OPS vs LHP, and you’re telling me to stop using stats ??? How many lefthand pitchers are in International League Face ????

    Montero’s stats aren’t as bad as they are made out to be and why put so much importance on *these* stats instead of his entire career where he has mashed everyone into grits? you’re the exhausting one, giving up on a bat so fine. He has tons of natural ability and has shown he can use it multiple times. Why focus so much on this year? When even in this year he has glimpses of that ability.

  97. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:16 pm

    That’s why a ML track record is held in the highest regard.

    Maybe they should give Montero a major league track record and find out. Montero as a younger hitter beat out Laporta in AA. Its crazy to give up on a 21 year old with as much talent as Montero.

  98. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    Pat M-

    Montero+pieces for Ubaldo. If it’s Montero+Betances/Banuelos+Nova/Noesi+pieces for Ubaldo Jimenez as discussed by some here that’s trading away way too much.

  99. West Coast Yankee Fan July 17th, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    WCYF…….This is the 3rd consecutive trade deadline where Montero has been offered for a starting pitcher …..At what point do we Yankee fans come to the conclusion that the FO is not convince that he’s the catcher of the future ??? Let’s face facts he was in line to come north when Cervelli went down and yet he didn’t and his 2011 season isn’t exactly Pujols like as many here have been selling…..He’s not ready to play in The Bronx right now and the real question is will he ever play in The Bronx in Pinstripes…..But if he can help deliver Ubardo to 161st street then you say goodbye….Yanks have several catchers in the pipeline and a wealth of DH types at The Stadium for years to come.

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

    I agree with you totally, well said. It’s nice to see intelligent reasoning based on logic and reality. The bottom line is that if Montero was “that good” he would be here right now. He didn’t meet expectation in spring training and he hasn’t this season in SWB so far either. I really suspect the consensus is also that he can’t catch in the majors and they have no spot for him at DH with A-Rod, Jeter and others aging. They clearly see the DH as a revolving door in the future.

    I also think as I have mentioned before, that the Yankees don’t want him showcased here in case he does poorly and his trade value drops. I don’t know anything more than anyone else, but I think Yankee management is worried about that too.

  100. Benny Blanco July 17th, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    I hate to bust everyone’s bubble but if the yankees decide the trade for ubaldo its gonna hurt a little. You can’t make a trade without it hurting just a bit. If the Yankees have to deal one of the bee’s then so be it.

    None of us have a clue as to how successful the “prospects” be in the major leagues.

    The bottom line is neither betances or banuelos help us now. Were not even sure if they will be ready come 2012. And if so, we’ll still have to go through the same growing pains that Hughes is going thru rIght now. I’d much rather take a ready made pitcher who has already shown flashes of brilliance.

  101. igotid88 July 17th, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    Montero got screwed in Spring Training. They wanted him to focus on his catching and worried about his hitting later. So he didn’t have a good ST bat wise. And was sent down because of that. At least that’s how I saw it.

  102. Yankee Trader July 17th, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    GB-
    I see where Logan Kensing gave up the tying run to Toledo in the bottom of the 9th.

    Which AAA reliever should the Yankees bring up next, barring a trade, so that they can finaly put Mitre on waivers? Kontos? Whelan again, Wordkemper?

  103. Jerkface July 17th, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    Look at the kind of numbers Colby Rasmus and Matt Holliday put up in the minors before getting called up, and they were both able to make an impact in the major leagues.

  104. Pat M. July 17th, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    Face…So he hit 28 year old hacks last season but not this season ???? His numbers are anemic so far and judging by what he looked during the last 2 weeks of Spring Training is what leads me to make these comments……Guys who are ready generally are hitting .380 with 20 dingers at this stage of the AAA season…He’s not ready to be catching in The Bronx right now especially when you add all the expectations……Besides the people who run the most successful organization in sports over the past 15 years whose jobs are on the line must think the same way as well…….When the time is right he gets the call and apparently that phone isn’t ringing……What’s the rush ????

  105. blake July 17th, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    That package that Heyman tweated is crazy and Colorado just shooting for the moon…..they know that’s not happening. I agree with those who would rather deal pitcher for pitcher if possible. Id rather do something like Betancea, Nova, Romine than to include Montero……howver Im sure Montero is a must for the Rockies.

    If the price dropped to Montero + Nova as the headliners then I bet Cashman does it……would I approve? Id have very mixed feelings. Ubaldo could be the difference in a title for the Yankees this year and beyond……but then again so coukd Montero. Its a risk…..I don’t know how Id feel about it at this point.

  106. Dill Pickler July 17th, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Watching the Red Sox and Rays on ESPN. It is absolutely sickening how in love that network is with Pedroia. Jeebus, he makes one diving play and they’ve shown it again and again and again and again. They keep showing it, innings later. They show him running off the field and getting high fives. They show him from different angles. They show him in super slow mo. Unbelievable. Brignac makes a great play to get the midget out and what do they do? Show Brignac’s play a few times? No, they show it once, then show Pedroia running off the field looking “gritty and gutty.” Like, 100 times. Jesus, ESPN. Get a room already with the guy. It really is sickening the amount they fawn over “the Nation” and Pedroia in particular.


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