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


The temptation of Matt Thornton

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Nov 29, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

There’s a lot to like about Matt Thornton. He’s a lefty who throws hard and has experience closing games, and he seems to be available on the trade market.

With the Yankees in the market for a lefty, is Thornton a viable target?

To be honest, it might be overkill. Thornton turned 35 last season, and he’s still owed $12 million through the next two seasons. He’s been used as more of a setup man than a lefty specialist, and the White Sox have clearly valued him that way. His contract is bigger than the Yankees ill-advised deal with Pedro Feliciano, and even though the Yankees wouldn’t need him in the seventh or eighth inning — those spots are certainly claimed — other teams would surely view him as that sort of reliever, so the Yankees might have to build that sort of prospect package to get him.

The Yankees seem to be viewing their bullpen as a strength that might need minor tweaking. A trade for the last two years of Thornton’s contract might be a bigger deal than necessary (and a bigger deal than the Yankees would like to make).

 
 

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144 Responses to “The temptation of Matt Thornton”

  1. blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Alone I think its overkill……but if taking him allowed a reasonable trade for Danks then I think it’d be great. Thornton is better than Logan.

  2. m November 29th, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Ugh. Tempting, but only if it’s a salary dump that lowers the asking price for Danks.

    If Mo’s status is truly questionable, having Ro/So/Tho and eventually Jo would be an end game for a lot of games.

  3. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    As usual. It ALL comes down to the price in players.

  4. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    Thornton still owns lefties. On the other hand, how much do you want to pay for a LOOGY? I also always worry when we get big names, that we will pitch them at all costs, regardless of how they are pitching or what else we have in the system. See, David Robertson, who should have been pitching high leverage innings far sooner than he was given them.

    But get him and put Joba back in the SP, and I am all for it. ;)

  5. tucker November 29th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    It’s an interesting question. Cashman (or maybe Hal?) has become very choosy on taking on underwater contracts in which the value of the player does not meet the amount he will be paid. That use to be standard procedure for the Yanks (Mondesi, Abreu, etc.), but it has become less frequent in recent years.

  6. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    I don’t know why this constantly gets glazed over, but Thornton was actually a huge disappointment last year for the WhiteSox, supposed to be the closer and came out throwing beach balls to the batters…

    The Yankee bullpen is a strength, there are other areas that could actually be improved (SP, bench) that would make a larger impact on the roster.

  7. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    I doubt that Chicago is going to just dump Tornton to unload two contracts. Danks and Thornton may go in the same deal, but, it won’t be at bargin basement prices.

  8. Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    I never said the Cardinals were built for the postseason and it doesn’t mean that a team like them can’t win the world series.

    My point was coming into the season the Yankees didn’t have enough starters that a team needs to succeed in the post season and their offense is not a playoff offense.

    You would think that the Yankees who make the playoffs virtually every year would find a little more “luck” in getting out of the first round if luck was all that mattered

  9. blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    “I don’t know why this constantly gets glazed over, but Thornton was actually a huge disappointment last year for the WhiteSox, supposed to be the closer and came out throwing beach balls to the batters…”

    He was better in the 2nd half and he’s better than Boonie…..again only if it helps facilitate a cheaper deal for Danks. If they want real prospects for him then Kenny can dream on.

  10. Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    The Yankee bullpen is a strength, there are other areas that could actually be improved (SP, bench) that would make a larger impact on the roster

    ——————————————————-

    Why do they need to improve? Like you said they were far and away the best team in the AL last year and since the playoffs are a crapshoot what is there to improve?

  11. Gary November 29th, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 12:43 pm
    I never said the Cardinals were built for the postseason and it doesn’t mean that a team like them can’t win the world series.

    My point was coming into the season the Yankees didn’t have enough starters that a team needs to succeed in the post season and their offense is not a playoff offense.

    You would think that the Yankees who make the playoffs virtually every year would find a little more “luck” in getting out of the first round if luck was all that mattered

    ____________________________________________________________________________

    This luck thing is overrated. Yanks didn’t get out of the first round because too many of the big guys struck out, didn’t hit and didn’t put the ball in play. Detroit did and their big guys made big contributions. When you have the likes of Swisher, ARod, and Tex going up there and getting rung up I fail to see how the luck aspect enters in.

  12. Erin November 29th, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    With the Yankees in the market for a lefty, is Thornton a viable target?

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

    Not if it will cause White Sox Guy to come over to my desk and scream at me. I’m still traumatized by what I like to call “The Swisher Incident” of ’08. ;)

  13. blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    “I doubt that Chicago is going to just dump Tornton to unload two contracts. Danks and Thornton may go in the same deal, but, it won’t be at bargin basement prices.”

    You could be right…..I think that depends on where the ChiSox are right now in their thinking. If they are going to rebuild then cutting the salary might be attractive. I can’t see Thornton bringing a big prospect return…..so if they could get a decent return and cut 13-15 million of the payroll by trading them both then maybe they would have interest in that.

  14. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    My point was coming into the season the Yankees didn’t have enough starters that a team needs to succeed in the post season and their offense is not a playoff offense.

    Yes, but you can’t point to a single team that was actually built the way your want and actually won, can you?

    You are STILL sidestepping my question.

    My point is STILL that you can’t plan for the postseason with any great effect on the results. The postseason happens, some team gets lucky and wins.

    How were the 2011 Cardinals built to win in the playoffs, but the 2011 Yankees were not?

  15. Mike Ri November 29th, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    Triple Short of a Cycle—-

    You should always try to improve your team. Other teams arent’ going to stand pat . .they’ll make moves to improve,,,,,,, thus making the Yanks job to repeat as AL East champs more difficult

  16. Gary November 29th, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 12:45 pm
    The Yankee bullpen is a strength, there are other areas that could actually be improved (SP, bench) that would make a larger impact on the roster

    ——————————————————-

    Why do they need to improve? Like you said they were far and away the best team in the AL last year and since the playoffs are a crapshoot what is there to improve?

    ___________________________________________________________________________

    We had a very good team, but far and away the best team is a bit of a stretch.

  17. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    Why do they need to improve? Like you said they were far and away the best team in the AL last year and since the playoffs are a crapshoot what is there to improve?

    This just shows that you have no idea what I’m talking about.

  18. blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    Let’s say the Yankees would give Romine, Warren + in a deal plus take both Danks and Thornton’s salary. That reduces Chicago’s payroll significantly and gives them some pretty good young players in return. If they are thinking they’ll compete next year then its not something they’d do……but if not and they just want to get cheaper and younger…..then maybe

  19. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    True, ChiSox aren’t going to just dump Thornton, Danks for nada. I am not interested in overpaying.

    If we did get Thornton though, vs. lefties he was 11.77 K/9 2.08 BB/9, .035 HR 1.60 FIP, 2.20 xFIP. The HR rates and FIP’s blow Logan away. Plus K’s and BB rates are slightly better.

  20. Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    This just shows that you have no idea what I?m talking about.

    —————————————————-

    Yes respond with an insult. Mature

  21. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    triple – It’s not an insult, you are completely off base and avoiding the subject. I’ve had enough.

  22. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    How often has the best team on paper won the world series?

    How often has the team playing the best baseball in August/September win the world series?

    I’m willing to wager the latter happens way more often.

  23. PRDENTIST November 29th, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    If the White Sox’s take on some of the money, then it is doable. $5.5 million is the problem. If they pick up 2 mil of it then it would work. I don’t know what the white sox’s needs are. Now would be the time to cut ties with Joba in exchange.

  24. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:51 pm
    Let’s say the Yankees would give Romine, Warren + …
    _____
    Operative word is the “plus.” I doubt White Sox are satisfied with a B prospect. I am not dealing a Killer B, Montero (obviously), Gary Sanchez. I will give them another pitcher who isn’t a Killer B, and a couple of lower rung players not named Sanchez, Mason Williams or J-Ram. No A specs, and no Nunez. Warren, Phelps, Romine…

    Oops, not enough…. guess I am not making the deal…

  25. Nick in SF November 29th, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    Let’s not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

    Now, who wants to bring some good bbq to the atlanta airport in about two hours? My treat.

  26. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    Joba is at his lowest value. Why would we cut ties with him?

  27. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    How often has the best team on paper won the world series?

    How often has the team playing the best baseball in August/September win the world series?

    I’m willing to wager the latter happens way more often.

    ————–

    In the 35 years from 1969 through 2004, the team with best overall winning percentage won the World Series only eight times. Let me emphasize: the team with the best regular-season record has won the World Series only 23% of the time. The winners include some of the best and best-known teams of our time: the 1970 Orioles, the Big Red Machine in 1975 and 1976, the Mets in 1986 and the 1998 Yankees.

    How about the teams with the best September record? The answer is exactly the same: they won eight World Series, too. Same impact. In six of the eight examples, however, the team with the best September record was also the team with the best overall record. So there’s a lot of overlap between the two groups.

    In fact, in about half of the last 35 years (17, to be exact), the team with the best regular-season record was also the team with the best record in September. Of those 17 teams, six won the World Series. Even teams that were Good and had Momentum won it all only 35% of the time.

    http://www.hardballtimes.com/m.....ostseason/

  28. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    YF, no Ravel Santana, JO-Ram, Bichette or Andujar :D :D :D

  29. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    blake November 29th, 2011 at 12:51 pm
    Let’s say the Yankees would give Romine, Warren + in a deal plus take both Danks and Thornton’s salary. That reduces Chicago’s payroll significantly and gives them some pretty good young players in return. If they are thinking they’ll compete next year then its not something they’d do……but if not and they just want to get cheaper and younger…..then maybe

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

    giving up Romine, Warren and more for one year of Danks and 2 years of Thornton with their combined salaries much of a deal for the Yanks? It’s not. It’s a deal for the Sox. Danks and thornton are more wants (from fan standpoint) than actual needs for the Yanks. There’s no guarantee that Danks would even be a Type A FA next year.

  30. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 1:02 pm
    YF, no Ravel Santana, JO-Ram, Bichette or Andujar
    ______
    No Bryan Mitchell! No Slade! :lol:

  31. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:04 pm
    J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 1:02 pm
    YF, no Ravel Santana, JO-Ram, Bichette or Andujar
    ______
    No Bryan Mitchell! No Slade!
    _____
    Oops, no JR!!!

  32. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    LGY – The team with the best record isn’t exactly the “best team on paper” as I’m referring to it.

    The list you would need is like… the 2011 RedSox – lost, The 2010 Red Sox – lost, The 2009 Red Sox – lost… etc… ;)

  33. yankeefeminista November 29th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    GB, yep, good point.

  34. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    ***How is*** giving up

  35. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    LMFAO…

    No Brett Marshall???

  36. Nick in SF November 29th, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Keep Cito Calver off the table too. Don’t want to sell low.

  37. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    _____
    Oops, no JR!!!
    ///

    No s*** :D . NO JR.

  38. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    “giving up Romine, Warren and more for one year of Danks and 2 years of Thornton with their combined salaries much of a deal for the Yanks?”

    I think its fair and I think its dealing from excess……

  39. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    LGY – Good link, the click through article on there is this:
    http://www.hardballtimes.com/m.....-playoffs/

    Funny, home runs are one of the least impactful events on winning a postseason series… I could swear i said that to someone yesterday *cough* *cough*. (not you lgy)

  40. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    LGY – The team with the best record isn’t exactly the “best team on paper” as I’m referring to it.

    ——-

    How do you measure who the best team on paper is?

  41. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    There are quite a few on here that have no business being anywhere close to Cashman’s ear.

  42. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Just to make my efforts more understood:

    the team with the better regular-season record goes 18-14, about what we’d expect. But the most striking thing about this list is that it supports the old adages: you win in the post-season with pitching, fielding, and speed. Eleven of the 12 most important categories (by this crude measure) demonstrate skill on the mound, in the field and on the bases. Obviously some of those categories are inter-related (a gopherball is not just a HR allowed, but also a hit allowed, at least one run allowed and it ruins a shutout), but their dominance on this list is remarkable.

    Only after these categories do we get to the measures of overall team success (won-lost record and run ratio) and then all the batting categories. Batting prowess (and power specifically) look completely irrelevant, as the teams that score more runs and hit for more power (whether measured by home runs, doubles, or slugging percentage) have done quite poorly in the post-season.

    http://www.hardballtimes.com/m.....-playoffs/

  43. spidanyc November 29th, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Thornton for Boone Logan straight up!! I can’t stand Logan

  44. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    LGY – I have no idea, he (triple) started this conversation by saying the Yankees needed more .300 hitters and relying on guys like Teixeira/Swisher were the reason the Yankees lose in the postseason. Now we are… here… knowing that is not true.

  45. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:09 pm
    “giving up Romine, Warren and more for one year of Danks and 2 years of Thornton with their combined salaries much of a deal for the Yanks?”

    I think its fair and I think its dealing from excess……

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

    It’s fair for Williams, maybe. You’re dealing with excessive talent….not from excess.

  46. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    We will really regret making that trade for Danks when Romine turns into Brian McCann, Warren into Matt Garza, and + into Clayton Kershaw as a pitcher and Albert Pujols at the plate.

  47. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Batting vs Pitching for a stud prospect is much more entertaining than whether Montero can catch or not. Who is this magic man? :p

  48. Villa Nova-Ya November 29th, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Let’s just keep ‘em all!!! :)

  49. GreenBeret7 November 29th, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    It’s not a matter of “keep ‘em all”. It’s a matter of not wasting the talent for something some fan wants over using them for a real need.

  50. comet November 29th, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    Hey Erin, Blake, Shame, GB and MTU.

    I’d like to see the Yankees acquire Thornton IF they believe he can still get it done and the cost is right. Don’t care for Danks or Wilson. If fact, after this years playoff performance, what is there to like about Wilson? I’d also like to see the Yanks and Colon reunite.

  51. Nick in SF November 29th, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    Could Betances/Romain/Mason Wilson get Thorton if we take on all his salary?

  52. Erin November 29th, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    Hi Comet! :)

  53. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    To me, the key is the 1yr of Danks. I do not give up anything of value for a 1yr rental. Building a consistent playoff team is now about developing or acquiring very good players that your gonna control for a length of time. This gives you several bites at the apple, and improves your odds of winning it all. Trading very good players I control for several seasons, and getting Danks for Only 1 season would make me say…….. NOPE.

  54. comet November 29th, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Hey there NIck and UpState Kate! Nick no can. Can’t make it in time.

  55. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    Hi there Comet. Hope you’re well.

  56. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:37 pm

    @ScottMCBSSports: Angels are casting a wide net and being very aggressive in looking for a catcher, multiple sources say.

    ——-

    Cervelli, Dustin Adams, and Noesi (as good as Dan Haren in 2 years) for Dan Haren?

  57. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Im all for building for the future…..but I also want the best possible chance to win next year before Mo retires and before Jeter and Arod get even older. They are built for longterm success……but there likely will be a little overlap in championship years when a few players get too old or retire…..

    GB,

    What would you consider appropriate to give?

  58. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    If Cashman is reading this today he must be LHAO. I believe he will see it through with what he has developed and won’t dump the high end prospects for aging over paid veterans.

    Sign a FA maybe but give up the store…………..no.

  59. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    “Cervelli, Dustin Adams, and Noesi (as good as Dan Haren in 2 years) for Dan Haren?”

    Too much. Cervelli could be the next Thurman Munson clone.

  60. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    IF, your not able to add Darvish, then going the Garza route is far superior than Danks. A 1yr crap shoot with Danks, just aint worth losing the players the Yanks would have to part with.

  61. 4 NYY November 29th, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    What’s the deal with Danks ? I don’t see him as anything special at all. I would rather have Wilson, but not for the $$$ he wants.

    I just have a hunch that Romine will be a very good player in a short time.

    Playoffs are a crap shoot, we just crapped out.

    Somehow AJ has to go !!!

  62. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    We need to win another championship before Ruben Rivera steals Mariano’s vocal chords.

  63. ron November 29th, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    I guess trading swisher & more for stubbs & his lifetime .731 ops isa good trade.

    Talking about not wanting someone in cashmans ear.

  64. 4 NYY November 29th, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    From what I saw on tape of Darvish, I’d rather have him by far than give away any of our future star minor leaguers.

  65. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    “IF, your not able to add Darvish, then going the Garza route is far superior than Danks. A 1yr crap shoot with Danks, just aint worth losing the players the Yanks would have to part with.”

    You’ll have to part for more for Garza than you would for Danks….maybe a lot more.

  66. Villa Nova-Ya November 29th, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    GB7 -

    I was just trying to be light-hearted and not being sarcastic at all. I am an admitted prospect hugger. But I do realize that some of the purpose of having a strong farm system is so that when the appropriate deal comes along, you have the pieces to pull it off.

    I would never advocate over-spending in terms of money, nor in terms of players/prospects. And it’s really impossible to “keep ‘em all.”

  67. 4 NYY November 29th, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    If Cashman is reading this today he must be LHAO. I believe he will see it through with what he has developed and won’t dump the high end prospects for aging over paid veterans.

    Sign a FA maybe but give up the store…………..no.

    ==========================================

    Absolutely !!!

  68. blake November 29th, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    “If Cashman is reading this today he must be LHAO. I believe he will see it through with what he has developed and won’t dump the high end prospects for aging over paid veterans.”

    If Cashman were reading here today he wouldn’t read about anybody suggesting the trade of high end prospects for aging overpriced veterans.

  69. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    We need Drew Stubbs because he is a proven playoff performer.

  70. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    blake at 1:56 pm

    So isn’t Betances a high end prospect? Part of the killer B’s. For Danks? But not the centerpiece? Any ideas on who the centerpiece would be?

    Just been reading along and it seems like many want to move Betances, he is only 24 and needs more time at AAA no? I wouldn’t want to give him up at this point.

  71. upstate kate November 29th, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Hi Comet!

    Who is Drew Stubbs and why do we need him?

  72. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    -BLAKE-
    True, but you gotta give to get. The rent-a-player stuff just don’t hack it. A team gets caught up in an endless cycle of consistently plugging holes, and as a result, the minor league cupboard gets bare inna hurry. As I said earlier, I would stand pat, till we know exactly what Darvish is gonna do. If both Garza and Danks get dealt while I’m waiting, so what? I still got basically the Starting Staff on the team with the best record in the AL in 2011, and the crown jewels in the Minors are still ready and available if need be. There is no Immediate need to do anything.

  73. Patrick November 29th, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    Outside of April 2011 Thornton has been a lockdown setup guy, lefty or not. I would definitely like him on the Yankees if he’s in a package including Danks.

  74. jacksquat November 29th, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    Thornton would be a salary dump. Give something for him? Lol

  75. austinmac November 29th, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    For those who attribute playoffs success to simply luck, was that your perspective when the Yankees were winning the World Series with regularity? Somehow, I suspect the belief was the Yankees won becasue they were the best team.

    No, the best team often doesn’t win, but it is illogical to use that to argue not to improve the team. The better the team the greater the chance of making the playoffs and winning.

    GB, don’t worry no one on here has Cashman’s ear. He just may have people advising him more knowledgable than us. Imagaine that.

  76. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Yankees Pitching Coordinator Nardi Contreras on Killer Bs:

    On comparing Betances and Banuelos in their development:

    “Well, I think Banuelos is probably just a little bit ahead of Betances. His parts are smaller and it’s easier to control, where Betances is 6-foot-8, has long arms and body and legs. With Banuelos, he’s able to locate his pitches out there and he still has a plus curveball and he has a plus changeup. It’ll be a matter of time for Banuelos. We’ve just got to make sure he stays healthy, especially when it’s cold up here, we’re not going to extend him until a little later.”

    On if, stuff-wise, Banuelos is Major League ready:

    “Stuff-wise, he’s better than the majority of the pitchers in the big leagues. When you’re able to throw a baseball like he can…he’s got life with his fastball, he’s got a plus curveball and a plus changeup. It’s just learning how to pitch with command, not just control but command.”

    On what Betances needs to do to stay on the right path in relation to Banuelos:

    “Just stay healthy, that’s just the biggest thing. He’s going to throw harder than Banuelos. His breaking ball is better, his changeup is better. He’s got a lot of power. Just stay healthy and keep his delivery together.”

    On if he feels Banuelos is the best arm in the organization right now:

    “Best arm? No. Betances has got the best arm. He’s got a stronger arm. He throws the ball harder than anybody else, when we’re talking about starters. He’s got the best curveball in the organization and he’s got the best changeup in the organization. He’s 22, I think, and Banuelos is 20. They both are pretty good.”

    http://thunderbaseball.wordpre.....contreras/

  77. MTU November 29th, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    Greetings Comet.

    Hope all is well in the North Country.

  78. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    “So isn’t Betances a high end prospect? Part of the killer B’s. For Danks? But not the centerpiece? Any ideas on who the centerpiece would be?”

    Kenny Williams said that……nobody here that I’ve read. I said this morning that if that was his price then he needs to get real or plan on not trading him.

  79. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    “Best arm? No. Betances has got the best arm. He’s got a stronger arm.”

    Aj has the best arm in the big league rotation……that means next to nothing. Banuelos is ahead of Betances and is 3 years younger. That doesn’t mean Dellin isn’t any good……or even that he doesn’t have more upside……but it does mean than Banuelos is the better prospect right now.

  80. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    Prufrock

    If the Yankees keep Manny and Dellin what year do you see each of them grabbing spots in the rotation?

  81. Triple Short of a Cycle November 29th, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I think the article proved exactly what i said that the Yankees had very little contact hitters (too many home run or bust guys) and poor pitching

  82. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Its too bad Casey Kelly wasn’t a Yankee prospect…….

  83. MTU November 29th, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    I’m not for giving up any of our top prospects for a rental.

    I would not even include Romine for a rental. Nunez either.

    Now if you want to talk negotiating window that might be a somewhat different story.

    For that you can have Romine +. Throw in Thornton and we work a better deal.

    The Yankees really do not HAVE to do anything.

  84. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    “The Yankees really do not HAVE to do anything.”

    Nah they don’t……but that’s no fun to talk about ;)

  85. MTU November 29th, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    Blake-

    sure. Just sayin’ that we’re in the driver’s seat.

    ;)

  86. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    blake at 2:14 pm

    Perhaps I misinterpreted the comments about Betances being the ‘centerpiece’, sorry about that. I think youth is the best course for the team. Need a SP / RP sign a FA, don’t mortgage the future based on all the time spent developing the farm. The Yanks need to get younger.

  87. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    The Yanks Real problem offensively is situational hitting. We got guys trying to hit the ball 9 Miles, (Gardner included), instead of simply making a Productive Out.

  88. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:17 pm
    “Best arm? No. Betances has got the best arm. He’s got a stronger arm.”

    Aj has the best arm in the big league rotation……that means next to nothing. Banuelos is ahead of Betances and is 3 years younger. That doesn’t mean Dellin isn’t any good……or even that he doesn’t have more upside……but it does mean than Banuelos is the better prospect right now.
    ////

    Comparing Betances to AJ Burnett just does not compute at all. Betances has a third plus pitch to add to his weapons – if AJ’s getting the heart of the plate, which is what happens when he’s a little off, he becomes a flyball pitcher who basically becomes BP. He’s got a great curve, but is reluctant to use a good changeup. Nothing like Betances whatsoever.

    I’m not sure how having the best arm in the system means “next to nothing,”; it means he has the best arm. Was it supposed to be code for something else? He’s got the best arm, the best FB, the best hook, the best change, he can top out at 98 sometimes 99 mph, he has a really good cutter, he generates mostly groundballs on contact, he’s 23 years old, until March, incidentally, and he’s a genuine prospect who could become a front-of-rotation guy if he reaches his ceiling.

  89. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    “Perhaps I misinterpreted the comments about Betances being the ‘centerpiece’, sorry about that. I think youth is the best course for the team. Need a SP / RP sign a FA, don’t mortgage the future based on all the time spent developing the farm. The Yanks need to get younger.”

    I agree in general…..but sometimes signing a FA is more of a risk than making a trade is. It all just depends on how much money we are talking about and which prospects we are talking about.

  90. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:39 pm

    “Comparing Betances to AJ Burnett just does not compute at all.”

    Im not comparing him to AJ Burnett…..just saying that having a big arm is merely a piece of the puzzle.

  91. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    Triple – If you read the article, it showed that speed defense and pitching are more important than any hitting skills. It also showed no direct correlation between any skill set and success in the playoffs… meaning that playing the games means more than the composition of your roster. i.e. luck.

  92. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    LGY November 29th, 2011 at 2:19 pm
    Prufrock

    If the Yankees keep Manny and Dellin what year do you see each of them grabbing spots in the rotation?
    ///

    Depends on health and how far and how fast the Yanks want to push them. Another year at AAA will get them more innings. Their ETAs are 2013, maybe we see one of them after the first half of 2012.

  93. Warning Track Power November 29th, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    The only LH pitcher who wore a WS uniform the Yankees need is
    Buerhle! That guy is crafty, he eats up innings, etc….

  94. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    Sure, AJ has the best arm in the big league rotation. His Left.

  95. MTU November 29th, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    I’m glad Cashman is patient when it comes to acquiring players and that he also keeps his mind open when listening to proposals.

    That seems like a good combo.

    :)

  96. UnKnown November 29th, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    http://riveraveblues.com/2011/.....eda-59535/

    ——

    Be tough to accept losing Montero for Pineda. But as the write-up states. Probably a fair trade.

  97. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    The Yanks need a #2 or maybe #3 Starter. Buehrle would be that in the NL, but not the AL. More hits than IP DQ’s him in the AL.

  98. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    Prufrock

    You think the Yankees would go with both Manny and Dellin in the rotation in 2013?

  99. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Fair?

    How about just stupid.

    I can’t understand how people can’t understand now a mid-order OPS freak of nature is more valuable to the Yankees’ immediate present and future than even an elite arm.

    Oh, well. Narratives die hard.

    Time to walk the non-existent dog :D .

  100. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Laird, Russo, Phelps, and Vasquez for Pineda.

  101. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Cashman Thought he hadda deal for Lee involving Montero going to Seattle. I seriously doubt Cashman would Now do a Montero for Pineda trade, fair or not. I gotta believe bad blood is stil freelyl flowing there.

  102. DaSaint007 November 29th, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Yankees are in the proverbial catbird seat:

    Already have a premier lefty ace for the next several years.
    Already have young arms for the back of the rotation.
    Already have signed a saavy veteran pitcher for near the back of the rotation as insurance.
    No needs in the starting infield or catcher.
    No dire needs in the outfield for 2012.
    LOTS OF CASH.
    Excellent and recognized pitching talent & depth at AAA.
    Excellent and recognized catching prospects throughout the system, one of whom could be at least the next Edgar Martinez, as well as a tradable, young, energetic backup catcher with major league experience
    The world’s premier closer in Rivera.
    Bullpen depth in Robertson and Soriano (who is tradable for the right package).

    An enviable position. Cashman doesn’t have to do anything but wait for the right deal.

  103. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    blake at 2:38 pm

    Regarding signing a FA and the thought that after this coming season Swisher may be too expensive going forward how do you see filling the RF slot with no help in the upper levels of the farm?

  104. MTU November 29th, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Just a heads up folks in case you hadn’t seen it.

    The MLB network is gonna have a lot of coverage of the Hot Stove especially starting next week.

    They have a whole segment each day devoted to it.

  105. DaSaint007 November 29th, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    The Yankee holes that need to be filled are pinholes.
    Some other teams have gaping holes.

    There is a difference.

  106. J. Alfred Prufrock November 29th, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    LGY, say if one just forced a promotion this season and the other had a lights out second half on the farm, I suppose it’s possible, but after IPK-Joba-Hughes and also innings issues they’d probably prefer to stagger them more. I don’t think that either will be rushed, nor should they be.

    See ya.

  107. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    The Yanks need a #2 or maybe #3 Starter. Buehrle would be that in the NL, but not the AL. More hits than IP DQ’s him in the AL.

    ——————

    Buehrle has pitched his entire career in the AL and has always given up more hits than innings pitched.

  108. blake November 29th, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    “Regarding signing a FA and the thought that after this coming season Swisher may be too expensive going forward how do you see filling the RF slot with no help in the upper levels of the farm?”

    The Dodgers screwed up my plans :( too early to say. They coukd roll the dice on Cespedes and see if he’s an answer…..they could explore the trade market……they could sign Josh Hamilton…..they coukd re-sign Swisher.

  109. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    UnKnown at 2:46 pm

    Wouldn’t ya think that the M’s would want to build on Felix and Pineda? At some point perhaps they will garner enough common sense to build with their best pieces going forward instead of tearing down and rebuilding every few years.

    Players won’t want to play there when they are in the rebuilding mode all the time. Doesn’t the Nintendo guy own the M’s? Money shouldn’t be a problem, must be management as in Jack Z. huh?

  110. upstate kate November 29th, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    Nicely put Saint.
    It makes for a more relaxing off season, altho I am sure Cashman will surprise us w/ something.

  111. dogface November 29th, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    The MLB network is gonna have a lot of coverage of the Hot Stove especially starting next week.

    ============================

    So Heyman tweets with volume????

  112. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    -LGY-
    If more hits than IP fits your definition of a #2 or #3 Starter you got him. As for me……….NOPE.

  113. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    -LGY-
    If more hits than IP fits your definition of a #2 or #3 Starter you got him. As for me……….NOPE.

    —————

    So Buerhle has been a #4 or 5 starter in his career?

  114. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    If Montero does go the back-up catcher route, where does Cervelli go? Hard to imagine the Yanks carrying 3 catchers on the 25 Man.

  115. blake November 29th, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    Buerle always outpitches his peripherals …..some guys do that. He’d be a nice 3 for the Yanks but he’s going to get more money and years than Id give him.

  116. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    Last season I woulda classified Buehrle as such. You get into the Playoffs and a SP like that will kill ya.

  117. CalYank November 29th, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    blake at 2:54 pm

    I think Swisher will be looking for $13-14 million a year after this year and I don’t think the Yanks will want to pay that much.

    Cespedes would be interesting and all it would take is money. Perhaps he can start the year in AAA and see what transpires going forward and make to the Bronx for the 2nd half..

    IMO the Yanks are not going to go after Hamilton, too expensive, always injured, needs to be baby sat (Narron left for the Brew Crew the other day)

    Cashman, I believe will infuse youth and reduce payroll to get that payroll tax thing more manageable going forward.

  118. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    What does it matter how many hits Buerhle gives up if he has limited walks and more importantly runs his entire career?

    In terms of him getting killed in the playoffs, that certainly wasn’t the case in 2005 when his Sox won the WS.

  119. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    LONG time ago.

  120. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    -Mark Buerhle 2001-2010

    3.84 ERA, 120 ERA+, 9.5 H/9, 1.0 HR/9, 2.0 BB/9, 5.1 K/9

    -Mark Buerhle 2011

    3.59 ERA, 117 ERA+, 9.7 H/9, 0.9 HR/9, 2.0 BB/9, 4.8 K/9

    Last season he was the same guy he has always been.

  121. PRDENTIST November 29th, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    If Martin is back as starting catcher for the next year or so. If Montero is the back up catcher/DH for next year and becomes the starting catcher the following year or so, then what do you do with Rommie? Does he waste away in the minors cause he is blocked out? Do you use him as trade bait? Where would you use him? Same thing for the killer B’s, there has to be room on the Yankees so that they can come up and pitch.

  122. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    The only thing that saved Buerhle last year was his sparkling numbers at home (which don’t even make sense).

    Why bother going in on an expensive pitcher with such a large flaw in his game? Yes, he’s outperformed his peripherals… great. Do you want to bet on him continuing to do that? That’s silly.

  123. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    -ID-
    Finally, some common ground. Unless I’m Only looking for an innings eater, I don’t waste time on SP’s that give up more hits than IP. That’s courting disaster no matter what their history is. The Buehrle length of contract and $$$ are also valid points in this Specific instance.

  124. dogface November 29th, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    Little off the beaten path, but via R. Neyer, Jim Kaat on his HOF candidacy:

    “I wasn’t Secreteriat. I was that No. 3 horse that could go to the post every week and get a check for you. I wasn’t a dominant pitcher, or a perennial All-Star… I don’t say that to be overly modest. I’ve just looked at my career pretty objectively. I lived in the Hall of Enjoyment for 25 seasons and you can’t beat that.”

    The man’s no Bert Blyleven, that’s for sure…….and that’s a good thing.

  125. Stoneburner November 29th, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:03 pm
    If Montero does go the back-up catcher route, where does Cervelli go? Hard to imagine the Yanks carrying 3 catchers on the 25 Man.

    ***********

    W/ Montero on the roster – you need two other catchers – IF Montero is not the full time catcher. For example, when Martin is catching, Montero would presumably be the DH – b/c everyone wants his bat in the lineup. If Martin were to become injured or needed to leave the game – and if Montero was the backup catcher – there would need to be a double switch and the pitcher is now batting where the DH spot was. Hence – why you do NOT let your backup catcher also serve as your primary DH.

  126. dogface November 29th, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    If Montero does go the back-up catcher route, where does Cervelli go? Hard to imagine the Yanks carrying 3 catchers on the 25 Man

    ====================================

    Not much of a departure from having Martin, Cervelli, and Posada last season is it? Montero may eat into some of both guys’ time behind the plate, but in general it seems to be about the same thing.

  127. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    If Montero is only gonna catch on the 1 day or so per week Martin gets off, just how much time behind the plate is Cervelli gonna get? Doesn’t sound like much PT for Cervelli and basically wasting a spot on the 25 Man.

  128. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Posada had that big $$$ contract. Cervelli does not have that security.

  129. austinmac November 29th, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Stoneburner,

    You are exactly right about your backup catcher not being your primary DH. That is why Montero’s value to the Yankees is not as great as some would think. He will be a DH at 22 years old, or alternatively, Cervelli will play only a handful of games while taking up a roster spot.

  130. DaSaint007 November 29th, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    Since we have time and can daydream…

    Upgrades I’d like to see…though not necessarily for 2012.

    RF – Justin Upton, Nick Markakis or Nick Swisher (smile).
    SP – Banuelos & Betances
    Bullpen – Sean Marshall, Kevin Whelan
    DH – Montero
    Catchers – Martin & Romine

    That’s it for me.

  131. comet November 29th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Hey MTU!

    Good fortune to you Blake. Allis well here. How’s the little Guy.

    MTU I’ve heard we may get some snow tomorrow, first of the year.

    No thanks, to Danks or Buerhle.

    Would not trade Montaro for Pineda.

  132. DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    I don’t know what level Romine is gonna be at, but it’s hard to believe the Yanks wouldn’t shuttle him in to fill in, if an emergency came up. To have Cervelli on the pine inna break-glass-in-case-of-fire role is wasting a roster spot.

  133. dogface November 29th, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    Good point on the Posada contract. Still, they’re kinda compelled to keep another C around if Montero is the primary DH.

  134. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    How many games did Martin have to leave last season?

  135. Stoneburner November 29th, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    DONNYBROOK November 29th, 2011 at 3:33 pm
    If Montero is only gonna catch on the 1 day or so per week Martin gets off, just how much time behind the plate is Cervelli gonna get? Doesn’t sound like much PT for Cervelli and basically wasting a spot on the 25 Man.

    *******

    As a general rule – it is usually not a good idea to play your backup catcher and your starting catcher in the same lineup. You need a true backup catcher – not some player that will catch every now and then but DH most of the rest of the time.

  136. Stoneburner November 29th, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:46 pm
    How many games did Martin have to leave last season?

    **********

    Yeah – b/c Martin has been a beacon of health and durability . . . .

  137. 108 stitches November 29th, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    Cashman goes to the meetings as the only GM with no strong sense of urgency to make a deal. He will not pay a “Yankee tax” to finalize a deal. Other GM’s have to approach him. He still has the rest of the offseason and late March if he sees the need for a missing piece.
    Anybody including Epstein can talk to Cashman but the deal better be right or no deal.

  138. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    Yeah – b/c Martin has been a beacon of health and durability . . . .

    —————-

    Serious question. How many games did he have to leave?

  139. Stoneburner November 29th, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Just read speculation is Texas could revist its attempts to get Garza – they had an offer on the table last offseason – but Tampa went w/ Cubs (wonder if it was to get Garza out of the AL).

  140. Stoneburner November 29th, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    I just have a hard time believing a strategy by the book and numbers guy like Joe G is going to DH his backup catcher (his only realistic catcher on the bench) in Montero while also having Martin be the starting catcher in the same lineup.

  141. dogface November 29th, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    Serious question. How many games did he have to leave?

    ============================

    Not many. Started only 8 games he didn’t finish. 4 blowouts, 1 pinch ran for, 1 when they were sort of tanking it at the end of the season in St Pete and 1 that appeared to be injury related.

  142. LGY November 29th, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    dogface

    So basically just one game?

    Seems like a pretty big waste to carry a third catcher considering it would have only been useful once last season.

  143. Irreverent Discourse November 29th, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    Yeah – b/c Martin has been a beacon of health and durability . . . .

    Actually, he has. He only has 1 injury shortened season.

  144. champ809 November 29th, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    Blake-

    FYI ….CC has the best arm in the big league rotation, not AJ.

    Banny is only ahead of Bettances because Dellin missed ’09 due to TJ surgery and the yanks really babied him his first year and change with the organization by keeping him out of game action.

    Banny meanwhile was pitching in the equivalent of high-A/AA at the age of 16 when we first saw him in the Mexican league.

    The Yanks operate with the goal of putting a team capable of winning a championship on the field every year and as such make moves accordingly. By necessity you have to mortgage some of tomorrow for the betterment of today when that’s your goal. What we’ve become better at is assessing what we can let go of and what we need to hold onto.

    Having said all that moving guys like Romine,Warren,Noesi,Phelps and the like to improve your chances of bringing home next years title is a prudent use of the wealth of resources that we have.

    Danks and Thornton if healthy are exactly the types of upgrades that we are looking for to shore up the 2012 team.

    Then the final piece would be to add Cespedes into the fold and start him off @ AAA with Dellin, Banny and the like.

    Romine is replacable with guys like Sanchez, JR Murphy, Higgy, Tejada and Bird right behind him.


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