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


Pinch hitting: Brendan Sennott

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Jan 30, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

As expected, I got a lot of Pinch Hitter suggestions in favor of the Yankees offseason approach. I selected a few who gave slightly different versions of why they were in favor of the conservative approach. But certainly not everyone agreed.

Our next Pinch Hitter is Brendan Sennott, a Yankees fan living in Detroit, where his wife of eight years, Angela, says he loves the Yankees more than he loves her. “To which I always respond,” Brendan wrote, “’But at least I love you more than football.’…All kidding aside my family is my life.” He has a a degree in broadcasting and worked as a part-time sports reporter in Detroit until giving it up in 2009. He now works in marketing, but he says he would love to get back into sports media some day.

For today, he dips back into writing to explain why this wasn’t the best winter for a conservative approach. The moves of earlier this month redeemed the Yankees somewhat, but Brendan believes this is a time for aggression, not patience.

It had been quite an unsatisfying winter in the Yankee Universe. That was until the most successful Friday the 13th in the history of mankind.

The Bombers acquired young, fire-balling starting pitcher Michael Pineda and pitching prospect Jose Campos from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for catcher Jesus Montero and pitcher Hector Noesi. While consummating the trade, the Yanks signed veteran right hander Hiroki Kuroda. The moves solidified the New York rotation and instantly improved a team that won 97 games and the American League East last season. The Yankees are now the prohibitive favorites to duplicate that very feat in 2012.

My question is, why stop there? This team still has many holes and question marks to address before pitchers and catchers report in three weeks. In my humble opinion, Yankees GM Brian Cashman still has more work to do to try and upgrade this ball club from a potentially great team to an unbeatable one.

It is my feeling that Cashman’s sense of urgency should be heightened this offseason as compared to any other in his tenure as GM. The reason being the loss of a truly indispensable cog in the Yankee machine is looming.

The Steinbrenner Doctrine has always been championship or bust since the beginning of the family’s reign in 1973. Constant talk of new luxury tax thresholds, payroll limitations, and developing young players from within is quite prudent for the Braves and Royals organizations. It just doesn’t fit the New York Yankee brand and what the late George M. Steinbrenner stood for. This is especially true approaching a season that may well be the last for the undisputable most valuable player of the last five Yankee world championships, Mariano Rivera.

Rivera will begin 2012 in the final year of the two-year, $30-million contract he signed prior to the 2010 season. He will be pitching at age 42 in his 18th major league season, all of which have been gloriously spent in Yankee pinstripes. All signs point to this season being the last of his storied career. Rivera is baseball’s all-time saves leader with 603. He has an incredible career ERA of 2.21.

The scary thing is, Rivera continues to be as dominant as ever. In 2011, he was 44-for-49 in save opportunities with a 1.91 ERA. He retired all four batters he faced in the Yankees’ Division Series loss to Detroit with one strikeout. Rivera has 42 career saves in the postseason, with an obscene 0.70 lifetime ERA. It is that continued dominance on the game’s biggest stage that makes him the ultimate weapon in baseball, a weapon that no other team in the majors possesses.

So why then is a global conglomerate like the Yankees getting away from what it allegedly stands for in winning at all costs??? Why are they selling its fan base on the values of fiscal responsibility and developing young talent? It really doesn’t make much sense now, does it?

I truly hope all of the members of the Yankee hierarchy have the same recurring nightmare that every single Yankee fan has had for the last decade or so. The Yankees are clinging to one-run lead in a pivotal game and there is no Mariano to protect that lead. There is no “Enter Sandman” blaring through the Yankee Stadium loudspeaker. Another, less qualified relief pitcher is coming into the game. That nightmare is getting far closer to a reality for all of us, so why stand pat?

Stop talking about budgets and prospects. It is time to act. Find a way to get rid of A.J. Burnett, even if it means eating the money owed to him. See if Edwin Jackson will take a one-year deal to be the fifth starter. Try to trade Nick Swisher and Phil Hughes for an experienced, clutch righty bat. Help keep A-Rod healthy by signing a quality big leaguer that can actually field (apologies to Eduardo Nunez). Sign Johnny Damon to be the DH and add another lefty reliever to solidify the bullpen.

The Tigers, Angels, and Rangers clearly don’t care about increasing payroll or the future ramifications of the new luxury tax rates in 2014. Why the heck should the Yankees?

After all, the Yankees still have the one guy that all of those other teams don’t: The Great Rivera.

Associated Press photo

 
 

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117 Responses to “Pinch hitting: Brendan Sennott”

  1. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:07 am

    Some of what you suggest could still happen.

    ;)

  2. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:10 am

    The Yankees want to get under the Cap for ’14.

    That seems to be a goal.

    That said, the rules on Int’l FA signings may change and if there is anything out there right now it makes some sense to try and grab it while ya’ can.

    Hint: Hello Cubans.

    :)

  3. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:10 am

    And Mo will pitch forever because he is a cyborg.

    ;)

  4. Rich in NJ January 30th, 2012 at 9:11 am

    The best way to change the subject around here is a big move for a bat.

  5. jpmatrixfan88 January 30th, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Wow indo not agree with this post whatsoever. Are we supposed to have a $250 million payroll? Jeez. Trade aj and sign jackson? We have 7 starters as it is. No, the team WILL get under the luxury tax whether you fools like it or not, and so will every team in baseball. The penalties for being over the threshold in 2014a are INSANE. And the yankees don’t have that far to go to get under $189 million tbh.

  6. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Rich-

    I believe Cashman is trying.

  7. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 9:13 am

    another guy who has no problem eating $33M in salary then going out and spending more.

  8. Crawdaddy January 30th, 2012 at 9:16 am

    “You know what the Yankees need this year? Steps forward. Pineda can’t regress, which probably means using the change more; that will probably be a function of improved command. Same with Nova and the slider. As for Hughes, I hope he is in the rotation to begin the season, if not, then at AAA. If not, I don’t see a road map back to the rotation with the Yankees because he won’t be stretched out.

    Then it’s whether one of Warren, Phelps, Mitchell are the first call up (assuming Hughes isn’t at AAA) if an injury occurs, and then are they viable.

    Then Banuelos/Betances need to be more consistent with the FB command and demonstrate that 2013 is a real possibility.”

    To expect all that happen this year is unrealistic in my opinion. Something is going to happen negatively with at least one of those pitchers, but I also expect something to happen positively with at least one of those pitchers. That is how it usually is in baseball and sports. Furthermore, I expect the same from some younger pitchers in the system that haven’t been mentioned in the above post.

  9. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 9:16 am

    Brett never mentioned he was participating in the pinch hitter series ;)

  10. CountryClub January 30th, 2012 at 9:16 am

    “This team still has many holes and question marks to address before pitchers and catchers report in three weeks.”

    They do? They need a backup infielder and maybe someone that can DH from the right side.

  11. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 9:17 am

    i constantly have to point out to these people who are too young to know better than the yankees under george’s methods won only 2 WS in 26 seasons and it wasnt till he was suspended and they started developing their own talent that they became dominant.

    the legend of george to these kids that were not around in his prime doesnt match what really happened.

  12. upstate kate January 30th, 2012 at 9:19 am

    actually Shame, Bret DID say he had a pinch hitter post :)

  13. Mike_Boston January 30th, 2012 at 9:21 am

    I don’t get the Edwin Jackson suggestion at all? There are 7 starters right now, if you trade AJ there is still a 6th guy waiting in the wings. Even 3 weeks I wouldn’t have touched Jackson with a 10 foot pole…Garcia or Hughes would make a terrific 5th guy.

  14. Mike_Boston January 30th, 2012 at 9:22 am

    *3 weeks ago

  15. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:22 am

    I agree that the Yankees should push a little harder to win now in 2012….because I believed they have a window here to win another title that may close for a period soon……I’ve posted that many times.

    However….I don’t think that should jeopardize the future either…..if Cashman can make additions to make the 2012 team the best he can then he should …..but the team is certainly stable enough long term now that it shouldn’t be win now at all costs.

    They need another bat IMO….one that can consistently hit RHP….that should be Cash’s focus now for 2012 and beyond.

  16. Rich in NJ January 30th, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Craw

    What are your expectations for Pineda, Nova, Hughes.

    Gotta work, will read later.

  17. Bronx Jeers January 30th, 2012 at 9:24 am

    The Tigers, Angels, and Rangers clearly don’t care about increasing payroll or the future ramifications of the new luxury tax rates in 2014. Why the heck should the Yankees?

    —————————————-

    This guy’s a dinosaur.

    Those teams won’t even come close to 189. Yanks will be dangerously hovering right there.

    I understand the lux. tax and resetting the clock but does anyone have a link that accurately describes these revenue sharing rebates and how they work. I’m seeing several different explanations some which would never apply to the yanks and some that would apply.

  18. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:26 am

    Wether you agree or disagree it’s still good to have opposing POV’s represented on a forum IMO.

    For better or worse the heady Days of GMS seem to have been buried with the boss.

    This is the Hal era. He’ll put his own stamp on things. I’m sure he understands the need to win.

    :)

  19. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 9:26 am

    if old george was still around doing things his way, which current yankees player would he have being followed by a degenerate ‘private investigator’?

  20. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 9:27 am

    I think people’s views of the season depend on how you answer the following questions..

    Over/under on…

    Arod playing 100 games at 3B?
    Granderson continuing to hit against LHP?
    Derek maintaining close to his second half production?
    DH spot being more productive?
    Kuroda being better than Garcia last year?
    Nova at least being as good as Nova last year?
    Aj being better than anyone?
    Hughes being in the starting rotation?
    Tex getting at least a .260 BA against RHP?

    I think if you come up with more unders than overs, you’re of the mind set we have a lot of holes and we won’t win 85 games.. if you have more overs than unders you’re drinking Cashman’s kool-aid ;) #noonewins!

  21. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:27 am

    I hope all that are awaiting the Killer “B’s” great success in the future Yankees rotation are not in for a major dissappointment.

    Having read numerous “Expert” scouting reports on Dellin and Manny, it appears those outside of Yankee fans, rate them to be #2 or #3 SP at best, and Betances most likely a BP pitcher. With this in mind, I can better understand the trade of Montero for a high end SP.

  22. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:28 am

    Blake-

    There is still time for another addition or 2.

    ;)

  23. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 9:28 am

    upstate kate January 30th, 2012 at 9:19 am

    actually Shame, Bret DID say he had a pinch hitter post :)

    ——————-

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. upstate kate January 30th, 2012 at 9:28 am

    silly Ys, it would be Alex of course!

  25. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:29 am

    Good morning Al.

    How are you feeling ?

  26. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:30 am

    MTU,

    Yup there is……

  27. Erin January 30th, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 9:26 am
    if old george was still around doing things his way, which current yankees player would he have being followed by a degenerate ?private investigator??

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

    OMG :lol:

  28. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Shame -

    I believe almost every other team would love to have the problems the Yankees have, as well as all the upside. :)

  29. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:31 am

    Blake-

    I am sure Cashman is exploring all avenues.

    If the right opportunity presents itself I have to believe he will jump on it.

  30. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:32 am

    MTU -

    Good morning Mike. Had a little set back, but staying in the fray.

  31. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:33 am

    Al-

    At our age we’re all a little “frayed”.

    Just so long as we do not run out of rope altogether.

    ;)

  32. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:34 am

    “Having read numerous “Expert” scouting reports on Dellin and Manny, it appears those outside of Yankee fans, rate them to be #2 or #3 SP at best, ”

    I think it’d be hard for those guys to rate them with #1 upside now given the walk issues they both had last year…..if Manny gets his command back under control I think he’s got #1 potential……but he has to do that before anybody will label him that.

  33. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:34 am

    MTU -

    If we all had a good opportunity, I think we would jump on it. :)

  34. mick January 30th, 2012 at 9:34 am

    edwin jackson is a bum….another greedy yankee fan….superstar at every position?!? that’s neanderthal.

  35. austinmac January 30th, 2012 at 9:35 am

    I certainly agree the Yankees are unnecessarily pinching pennies. When next year a cap applies to international signing, it seems unfortunate the Yankees seem unwilling to get involved in Cespedes or Soler. If these are high end offensive guys that can be acquired for only money, now is the time to act.

    However, all we hear is the Yankees are not involved. If they want to build from within, signing at least one of these guys, particularly Soler, would be a worthwhile risk.

    In case we haven’t noticed, when the reporters say the Yankees aren’t involved, they have not been. So, I expect nothing on that end.

  36. mick January 30th, 2012 at 9:36 am

    I hope all that are awaiting the Killer “B’s” great success in the future Yankees rotation are not in for a major dissappointment.
    ====================
    Every prospect they’ve ever had was the next coming of Jesus…oh wait.

  37. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:36 am

    Al-

    Not me. I’m pure as the driven snow.

    Besides a frying pan to the head hurts bad.

    :)

  38. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:37 am

    blake -

    I’m sure there’s a lot of truth to what you’re saying. I don’t care how well you throw the ball, if the command is not there, it is very diiicult to have great success.

    Edwin Jackson is a great point, has good stuff, but walks far too many batters.

  39. pat January 30th, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Kate

    George and Alex seem like kindred spirits to me. Both great businessmen who want to be the best at what they did even if it meant crossing a line or ticking people off in the process.

    I don’t think George minded the extra attention that Alex gets that some see as negative because George loved having the back page of the paper so the front page too was probably a bonus to him.

  40. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:38 am

    MTU -

    I think Cashman has 1 more big shoe to drop before ST, and we’ll see a quality bat added, I hope.

  41. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Mac-

    Perhaps the evaluations on those guys are not good ?

    Otherwise you would expect the Yanks to be in on some of them.

    Separate budget for MiLB stuff.

    Don’t forget Concepcion too.

  42. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:41 am

    Most folks tend to think Manny’s command will return as he gains more experience and gets more accustomed to his new velocity……his delivery is just too repeatable for those problems to be chronic I would think.

    Moore kinda developed the same way….he was a good prospect with good stuff and then his command took a step forward and he took off…..hoping for something similar with Manny.

  43. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:41 am

    Al-

    If the stars are properly aligned then yes.

  44. austinmac January 30th, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Welcome back Al. You are on your game this morning. It seems clear the Yankees felt they needed a high end pitcher, and rather than waiting for Hamels et al, they moved on Pineda. This likely represents doubts as to the Bs high end status and an unwillingness to chance one of the high end guys will be avialable next year or the team’s unwillingness to have another giant contract.

  45. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:45 am

    Blake-

    Manny now has 3 plus pitches. If the command comes back around watch out.

    Still want him to spend the majority of the season in the Minors getting his innings in and finishing off the polish.

    Maybe see him in Sep’t. but I doubt it.

    Let’s just hope he stays healthy and continues his progression.

  46. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:45 am

    MTU -

    What are your thoughts on David Price? In watching him pitch late last season, and in recent PS games, I feel he’s heading in the wrong direction, and in the very near future will be more of a #3 SP than a #1, JMO.

  47. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:46 am

    “This likely represents doubts as to the Bs high end status and an unwillingness to chance one of the high end guys will be avialable next year or the team’s unwillingness to have another giant contract”

    I don’t know that it represents overall doubt in those guys so much as it represents that they know they can’t help them now…..both are at least a year away and they Dantes help for 2012. Hopefully Pineda and Nova can hold down the fort and can give Banuelos and Betances the time they need to get ready properly ……..they’ll need them to get under the coming soft cap.

  48. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 9:47 am

    george was a genius at building the yankees brand, not at building championship teams. he understood the value of publicity to both the yankees and to baseball and embraced the opportunities that came with wooing and signing big stars to humongous contracts (for that time) and what that did for the yankees reputation. george actually believed you could buy a championship and considered the minor leagues as a place to develop trading chips you could trade for aging veterans.

    but the fact is that while his method made him crazy rich, it didnt produce consistent winners nor did it drive attendance. the yankees operating under george’s method never drew more than 2.6 Million and the top 15 yankees seasons in attendance have been post-george’s suspension. in fact, had george contintued his ways, the yankees would very likely be playing in new jersey right now.

  49. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Price’s peripherals were better last year than in 2010.

  50. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 9:48 am

    Al-

    Big time arm. Maybe just a slight regression.

    Might need to work on a few things, i.e. mixing pitches better, command.

    Same story as other young guys. Patience required.

    Matt Moore might outdo him eventually.

  51. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:50 am

    blake -

    Both Dellin and Manny need a least 1 more full year in SWB. They need to not only add innings, but time to work on control issues, without the pressure of pitching in NY.

    Going from AAA to MLB is a great step, and to rush either of them could have an adverse effect on their careers.

  52. blake January 30th, 2012 at 9:53 am

    AL,

    I agree….they both need most if not all of 2012 at AAA. They needs innings and they need refinement. Hopefully the rotation is strong enough now to allow that and they’ll be ready to contribute next year.

  53. trisha - true pinstriped blue January 30th, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Reading these posts reminds me of Stuart’s Chase quote about belief: For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don’t believe, no proof is possible.

  54. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:55 am

    MTU -

    Price has great control, perhaps too good. By this I mean he’s always in the zone, and ML hitters can hit almost any FB, so his secondary pitches have to get better, or he’ll become more hittable. I watched him in AAA and he was so dominate, like a man pitching to kids. Perhaps too many innings too soon, I don’t know.

  55. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 9:57 am

    trisha -

    Good morning sunshine. We can always expect a few words of wisdom from you.

  56. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 10:00 am

    C U all in a little while.

    Gotta walk the Mops.

  57. DONNYBROOK January 30th, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Yanks currently have an abundance off MLB Starters and you guys wantta talk about what a Busher must do to be regarded as a #1? Hughes was regarded as a guy with the stuff to be a #1, and where is he currently? Yanks need a DH on the 25 Man at roughly $2-$3 Mill. Damon’s asking price is outta that range, so let’s either trade AJ for a stick, or sign Matsui and be set for ST. I like what I saw outta Vazquez last ST, but it’s hard to envision a $200 Mill payroll with Vazquez as the DH.

  58. Crawdaddy January 30th, 2012 at 10:01 am

    “Craw

    What are your expectations for Pineda, Nova, Hughes.”

    My expectations for Pineda is more about his stuff than anything else. I want to see the fastball that others have written about him and that great slider too. I want to see him use the change and not be like Hughes when it comes to executing that pitch only at certain times or not at all in some games. His stats, I hope remain the same or even better, especially, when it comes to his win/loss record with more offensive support than he had last year.

    With Nova, I want him to be healthy first and foremost. Though it’s a common injury among pitchers, it still can be a danger sign for the 3 letter surgery. As far as his stats, I would be very happy if they’re about the same with an increase in SO’s and swing and misses percentage.

    As to Hughes, well he can’t be much worse than he was last year. He needs to get his velocity and command back for one thing and if that happens and he remains healthy I expect significant improvement over last season. I want him in the starting rotation over Burnett and Garcia, if not then they need to trade him or keep him stretched out in SWB. No more bullpen!

  59. mick January 30th, 2012 at 10:09 am

    Yanks have never wasted time on prospects.
    Their fans would scream as they have no patience but love to squawk and contradict.

  60. BIG AL January 30th, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Later y’all.

  61. trisha - true pinstriped blue January 30th, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Big AL – :)

    Once again out of the loop. From what I’m reading it appears you havn’t been feeling well? I sure hope all is okay!

  62. trisha - true pinstriped blue January 30th, 2012 at 10:11 am

    “Yanks have never wasted time on prospects.
    Their fans would scream as they have no patience but love to squawk and contradict.”

    That would be a BINGO!

  63. KennyH123 January 30th, 2012 at 10:14 am

    We have 7 starters. Edwin Jackson sucks anyway and always has.

    Thank God you don’t run the Yankees.

  64. austinmac January 30th, 2012 at 10:16 am

    MTU,

    The Yankees may not like the Cuban position players much. Others seem to. I understand the minor league budget is different, but I believe the Yankees are in a budget mode in all aspects. Last year they were very conservative with international signings and with did little over slot drafting of expensive high end, difficult signing guys.

    Concepcion has nowhere near the buzz of the offensive guys with his 89-91 mph fastball. He will be cheaper and therefore, a possible Yankee interest.

    That’s how I see things from outside the Yankee meeting room. For some reason, they never let me in.

  65. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 10:22 am

    i often wonder how many of these people who cannonize george steinbrenner would have reacted had they lived through 13 consecutive seasons of no postseason baseball…

  66. Crawdaddy January 30th, 2012 at 10:23 am

    Concepcion is younger than those offensive guys and has participated in less international competition which is why the buzz around him is less.

    Also, it’s about what projection with an 18 year old pitcher. What he throws now isn’t nearly as important as what he’s throwing 3-4 years from now with better coaching and mechanics along with a healther diet and workout routine.

  67. austinmac January 30th, 2012 at 10:29 am

    Ys,

    I lived through all the years of George along with many poor decisions. However, after the CBS ownership in which they didn’t care a whit if the team won or lost, George was a blessing.

    If nothing else, he wanted to win and was willing to spend to do it. It is likely no coincidence the last major free agent signing occurred before his death.

    How about continuing the willingness to spend on new players with some baseball wisdom thrown in? The $189M soft cap would not have inhibited George as it does Hal, and I miss him for that.

  68. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Concepcion is only 18, is 6’1” and 175 lbs and is a *lefty who has velocity @89-91 MPH fastball. That is a lot to like. He also supposedly has decent secondary pitches. If Yanks think he is projectable, I would think we would be all in on Concepcion.

  69. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 10:39 am

    yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Concepcion is only 18, is 6’1” and 175 lbs and is a *lefty who has velocity @89-91 MPH fastball. That is a lot to like. He also supposedly has decent secondary pitches. If Yanks think he is projectable, I would think we would be all in on Concepcion.
    ——————–

    If they’re not it’d make me scratch my head.. their entire strategy seems to be to stack the minors with high upside guys like this.

  70. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Yep, Shame. We should be all in on these IFA’s, especially a lefty pitcher, which we have had a dearth of in our system. And even the Cubans, although cost there might preclude getting Cespedes. However, I would think we are going hard after Soler.

  71. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 10:44 am

    Whatever happened to Jeremy Bleich after his arm surgery.

    Is he toast ?

    He was kind of a Concepcion type (only better) before his injury.

    He’s a lefty too !!!

    ;)

  72. Jerkface January 30th, 2012 at 10:44 am

    Concepcion at that velocity/age means it should increase. Even if they don’t project it to increase or they only think he might be a 5th starter type, they should still sign him.

  73. Jerkface January 30th, 2012 at 10:45 am

    They should have seen Bleich’s bust coming. That is a bad baseball name. Jeremy BLEH

  74. ac1 January 30th, 2012 at 10:47 am

    How about continuing the willingness to spend on new players with some baseball wisdom thrown in? The $189M soft cap would not have inhibited George as it does Hal, and I miss him for that.

    ___

    There is no way to know this for sure and on the other side, the cap allows us not to get into these ridiculous contracts that only hurt us in the end.

    No more 275 for aging ARods….

    Granderson is due a payday and Cano is looking at a Tex type contract of 8/180 in FA.

    Yankees definitely need to change their idea of no extensions if they are going to work within this new cap structure.

  75. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 10:50 am

    JF-

    Bleich was Stanford product I think ? He had a pretty good College career. Never seen as great.

    High risk guy due to arm issues. That’s how he fell to us.

    He had already made it all the way to AA.

    And yeah, I know he’s a little older but he was also closer to the Majors.

    Oh well. Excrement happens !

  76. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:51 am

    MTU, they shut Bleich down in mid Sept. 2011 because of bicep soreness, but supposedly he was to have pitched in live games so he’d made big progress till then. His rehab went well, they just didn’t want to push it. Hopefully, he should be good to go in 2012.

  77. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:53 am

    I don’t think it is premature to say they consider Bleich a bust. Key will be his health this year.

  78. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 10:53 am

    I think it *IS premature, that should have read.

  79. Jerkface January 30th, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Bleich both wasn’t very good and is now injured with a pitcher killer type injury, he is busting pretty hard. He is in the death spiral. I was being facetious though just because he has a bad name.

    Did anyone really expect Michael Kay to be talking about BLEGH the ACE STARTER. BLEGH winds BLEH BLEH BLEH

  80. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Jerkface January 30th, 2012 at 10:44 am

    Concepcion at that velocity/age means it should increase. Even if they don’t project it to increase or they only think he might be a 5th starter type, they should still sign him.
    ———————–

    He could be our future LOOGY!

  81. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 11:03 am

    I actually think Soler has more potential than Bleich in terms of pure stuff. I never was the biggest Bleich fan.

  82. rl1856 January 30th, 2012 at 11:04 am

    Needs: An IF who is adept enough at SS/3B to be an acceptable sub for Arod and Jeter. A 4th-5h OF who can DH on a regular basis. A trade partner for AJ, assuming the Yankees will eat some of his salary.

    Expectations:

    Nova regresses slighlty…partly due to IP jump last year and normal growth process. He will still be a 15w pitcher, but ERA will be closer to 4 than to 3. Garcia regresses slightly as age starts to catch up. His numbers last year were deceiving. Expect a mid 4 ERA and about 5.5ip per start. Kuroda will put up better overall numbers than Colon did last year…12-15w, mid 4 ERA about 6ip per start, 190ish innings. He will keep us in games which is all we want from him. Hughes will bounce back and I hope he is our 5th starter. He may not win 18g, but his season will be considered good and a significant improvement. I also expect spot starts from the high end ML prospects. Pineda will show more consistency but will tire down the stretch. Backed by the Yankee offense he should give us 18w and close to 200ip with a low 3 ERA.

    Arod has a great first half and very good second half. About 120 games / 300-360-800+ / 30+hr 100+ RBI. Jeter plays about 140 games / 290 ish – 350 OBP power will continue to decline. Granderson will be about the same as last year. Cano will contend for a batting title. Swisher will be closer to his first year in pinstripes. Tex will improve over last year, but not perform as well has his first year in pinstripes. Gardner will improve at the plate. Adruw will regress slightly. Martin will improve at the plate. Cervelli is what he is.

    98W and we make it to the WS !!!

    Pitchers and Catchers report in 16 days !

  83. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Shame, I’d rather he be a starter. He’s supposedly got some decent breaking pitches already and even a change. Or so “they” say.

  84. DaSaint007 January 30th, 2012 at 11:07 am

    Love the passion, but I can’t disagree with this post more.

    I think Cashman has done a good job simultaneously maintaining a championship caliber competitive team, while building a solid minor league system.

    Yankees are good up the middle with Granderson, Cano, Nunez/Jeter, Martin.

    They are still solid at the corners with ARod & Tex.

    Starting rotation this year will be good with CC leading the way, with Kuroda and Garcia providing consistency, and youngsters like Hughes and Nova providing the bridge to next year’s class of Banuelos and Betances. And we seem to forget that we’ve got AAA arms ready to help now, in Warren, Mitchell, and Phelps. Just in case.

    And yes, Rivera is still King. Robertson and Soriano back him up, and Joba will return the 2nd half of the season. That’s a solid bullpen, yes with possibly left handed shortcomings.

    Gardner and Swisher have important roles, and neither should be discounted. I know we’re all upset at Swisher’s post-season production, but let’s worry about that when we get to the post-season. The only upgrade that I would want in RF is Justin Upton, and that’s probably not going to happen – but it’s not impossible.

  85. Jerkface January 30th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Expect a mid 4 ERA and about 5.5ip per start. Kuroda will put up better overall numbers than Colon did last year…12-15w, mid 4 ERA about 6ip per start, 190ish innings.

    Neither of these guys should be in the rotation with a mid 4 ERA. In the current run environment that would be well below average.

  86. DONNYBROOK January 30th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Gotta say the majority of the pinch hitters seem like a bunch of relative newbees when it comes to following and rooting for the Yanks. I was told by my Dad a long time ago, that you Inherit being a Yankee fan. Most of the stuff I have seen above has no generational ties. Not even close to the 24\7 365 Yankee repartee that went on in my parents house from the day my memory began. And as I got older, the discussions only got More colorful if you know what I mean. To their credit, some of the pinch hitters are attempting to Start a dedicated allegiance of that magnitude. Only time will tell if their kitchen table is primarily used to eat upon, or simply as a gathering place to discuss the Kekich- Peterson wife swap, or whether Morris should be traded for Leary.

  87. DaSaint007 January 30th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Final point: it seems to me that almost every ballplayer has a great season when in the last year of their contract, so my gut tells me Swisher will do the same. That’s good for the team whether he returns or not. And frankly, unless there is arguably a better overall RF available without depleting the minor-league system, don’t be surprised if he’s not re-signed for 3 or 4 years.

  88. pat January 30th, 2012 at 11:12 am

    Phil Hughes first candidate for BSOHL!

    http://hardballtalk.nbcsports......um=twitter

  89. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:14 am

    yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Shame, I’d rather he be a starter. He’s supposedly got some decent breaking pitches already and even a change. Or so “they” say.

    ————————–

    Yanksfem – Oh so would I, I was just being facetious since so many of our top end arms end up in the pen. It’d be nice if we could have him and Campos in the same system.. sort of preparing them to be the wave right after Dellin and Manny.

  90. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:20 am

    Starting rotation this year will be good with CC leading the way, with Kuroda and Garcia providing consistency, and youngsters like Hughes and Nova providing the bridge to next year’s class of Banuelos and Betances. And we seem to forget that we’ve got AAA arms ready to help now, in Warren, Mitchell, and Phelps. Just in case.
    ———————-

    I’m sort of glad everyone’s forgetting about Pineda, takes a little pressure off the kid ;)

  91. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Shame, I still hope to see De Paula in that wave between the A-, short seasoners and the Killer B’s. Yanks have been waiting for De Paula for a reason.

  92. Oscar Madison January 30th, 2012 at 11:27 am

    Nice post by Brendan. Too bad those moves don’t have a prayers chance of all happening unfortunately. His other plan is better, to pay more attention to his family, especially Angela.

  93. DaSaint007 January 30th, 2012 at 11:30 am

    Thanks Shame!

    Edit:
    Starting rotation this year will be good with CC leading the way, with Kuroda and Garcia providing consistency, and youngsters like Pineda, Hughes and Nova providing the bridge to next year’s class of Banuelos and Betances. And we seem to forget that we’ve got AAA arms ready to help now, in Warren, Mitchell, and Phelps. Just in case.

  94. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:30 am

    “His other plan is better, to pay more attention to his family, especially Angela.”

    I know, right? When you get home from work Mariano isn’t going to be the one putting dinner on the table.. ;)

  95. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:34 am

    DaSaint – its funny, the other day I forgot we signed Kuroda. I know losing Montero isn’t going to stop stinging for a while but having this much solid pitching depth is going to really be an asset.

  96. MTU January 30th, 2012 at 11:35 am

    Yf-

    Thanks. You mentioned Soler in connection with Pitching. I think you mean’t to say Concepcion.

    Anyway, I’ll see ya’ later. Time to visit a Dr. Blake clone.

    :(

  97. G. Love January 30th, 2012 at 11:35 am

    I like the sentiment of this post. If this is indeed Mo’s last year the Yankees owe it to him to go all out and get the DH who can crush RHP.

    Signing Edwin Jackson makes no sense though.

    A great DH vs. RHP would lengthen this lineup and mitigate against Swisher and Tex failing miserably vs. RHP which the team faces the majority of the time.

    I would love this team to give Mo a chance to retire off a world series win. He’s a Yankee living legend and seeing him have that storybook finish would be very nice.

  98. yankeefeminista January 30th, 2012 at 11:38 am

    MTU, yes, I meant Concepcion. Have fun at the dentist’s. :)

  99. Shame Spencer January 30th, 2012 at 11:43 am

    Too many people spend too much time checking their email on Monday’s :)

  100. monzagorilla January 30th, 2012 at 11:43 am

    Wow, Brendan’s piece reflects the kind of thinking that got the Yankees into the mess they were in through most of the 80s and early 90s. Yeah eventually Mariano will be done, but Dave Robertson would be a good one to step up. I would suggest a quick reading of Moneyball (or at least watch the movie).

  101. Chip January 30th, 2012 at 11:46 am

    I’m sure some of you read Joel Sherman’s column over the weekend and browned your pants as a result.

    I for one found it amusing. Sherman points out that pretty much every scout, GM, or other associated baseball mind thinks that the Yankees did really well in the Montero/Pineda swap, but he (Sherman) isn’t so sure and so we should take his opinion over those of people actually in the game.

    It was hubris at its best…the same kind of mindset that keeps a guy like Bagwell out of the Hall of Fame because such and such writer thinks that maybe he might have done PEDs though he’s never been linked to them in any way.

  102. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 11:47 am

    aren’t you glad the yankees didn’t go ‘all-in’ for mattingly’s last year and trade away chips like jeter posada pettitte and rivera?

  103. Rich in NJ January 30th, 2012 at 11:50 am

    Craw

    Except for trading Hughes (I don’t like selling assets that low if you have a choice), I like your take.

  104. Chip January 30th, 2012 at 11:50 am

    As for where the Yankees go from here – I still think the most likely scenario (and best for the long term) would have the Yankees dealing Soriano instead of AJ.

    There’s been nothing that even suggests there’s a market for Burnett – at least not at the amount of money the Yankees indicated they would be comfortable taking back ($8 mil), but if you’re willing to take that much back on Soriano’s contract then you probably can move him and possibly even get something back for him.

    It also opens up a spot in the bullpen so that either Hughes or Burnett can join Garcia there at the end of spring training. The logical choice would be Hughes, but I don’t discount AJ’s ability to step up into a 7th inning role.

  105. BryanV21 January 30th, 2012 at 11:54 am

    Wow. I don’t know where to start.

    What’s the Rivera thing about? Are you saying the Yankees need to sign his heir now? Soriano or Robertson isn’t good enough? The Yankees should have signed Cordero, Rodriguez, Lidge, Madsen, or Bell (you better not be thinking Papelbon)?

    And let’s get this “clutch hitter” myth out of here. There’s no true measure of “clutchness”. There are good hitters and bad hitters… period.

    Edwin Jackson is no better than Ivan Nova. Hughes’ ceiling for 2012 is higher than Jackson’s (although his floor is lower). Being a DH, as opposed to playing the field, is no assurance of health (swinging the bat was harder on ARod’s hip than fielding ground balls). Johnny Damon as DH? No thanks. The guys is a shell of what we saw in 2009. Get another lefty reliever? I guess the Yankees should have given out another 3 year $12 million deal.

    I have one word for this post… “yikes”.

  106. blake January 30th, 2012 at 11:55 am

    “January 30, 2012 at 11:47 am aren’t you glad the yankees didn’t go ‘all-in’ for mattingly’s last year and trade away chips like jeter posada pettitte and rivera?”

    Or Montero? I don’t think they have to necessarily trade the future away to push a little harder for this year….maybe it means taking a flyer in Cespedes….or working out a deal for a bat with excess pitching depth.

  107. Chip January 30th, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 11:47 am

    aren’t you glad the yankees didn’t go ‘all-in’ for mattingly’s last year and trade away chips like jeter posada pettitte and rivera?

    —————————

    Yankees did go all in – they brought in Wetteland, Tony Fernandez, Jack McDowell, added Cone, Sierra, Polonia during the season.

    Really if you look at it, there wasn’t much more they could have done to improve that team.

  108. Rich in NJ January 30th, 2012 at 11:56 am

    “There’s been nothing that even suggests there’s a market for Burnett –”

    Yes, there is, but it would be a heavily subsidized market, with the Lowe and Zambrano dumps setting the parameters.

  109. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 11:58 am

    i see no chance that they trade soriano with joba on the fritz. burnett with the walks and WP’s cannot be in the mix for end of games and assuming they move a pitcher they will need hughes in the rotation. if hughes ends up in the bp it will be because he fails in the rotation, imo.

  110. J. Alfred Prufrock January 30th, 2012 at 11:58 am

    monzagorilla January 30th, 2012 at 11:43 am
    Wow, Brendan’s piece reflects the kind of thinking that got the Yankees into the mess they were in through most of the 80s and early 90s
    ///

    Yes. The writer’s out of touch.

    Ironic, that he rhapsodizes about Rivera, whom Steinbrenner had to be talked out of dealing away by Gene Michael.

    Had Brett-er…Brandon..?… got wind of that at the time, he’d have been advocating to get rid of Rivera, probably Jeter, too, whom Steinbrenner, according to Michael, wanted the trade, also. Stick had to talk him down from that, too. Both Rivera and Jeter were “potential” guys, at the time.

  111. J. Alfred Prufrock January 30th, 2012 at 11:59 am

    *wanted TO trade

  112. Oscar Madison January 30th, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    New Thread :arrow:

    ‘Timing is everything’

  113. J. Alfred Prufrock January 30th, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    Brendan…NOT Brandon. That was Alex’s name for Arroyo. :D

  114. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    chip, i guess i should have said ‘aren’t you glad they didn’t trade away the farm for mattingly’s last year’ to be more accurate.

    they certainly could have upgraded at 2b and done better than polonia had they chosen to move prospects.

  115. DONNYBROOK January 30th, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Till AJ gets moved, the Yanks aint shellin’ out any serious money. $2 maybe $3 Mill on a DH and that’s about it. And why is Edwin Jackson even being mentioned on this Blog, when the Yanks currently have a surplus of SP’s?

  116. Ys Guy January 30th, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    :arrow:

  117. GoAwayKimJones January 30th, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    This was a fairly low-brow addition to the blog—maybe more befitting the type of stuff you hread here on the comment section. This seemed like a letter to Santa, not a serious, thoughtful approach to the offseason. These other teams you mention aren’t coming close to the luxury tax thresholds yet, because they have developed from within and have largely refrained from repeatedly shopping for big ticket items. The one reasonable point I kept waiting for him to make was that if we are entering a new period of austerity in the Bronx, let’s kick that down to the fans. If we aren’t going to spend big anymore, maybe we can buy a beer for less than $15, park our cars for less than $40, and actually be able to take our families to a game. The Yanx are pricing families out of the game, and seem to be focusing primarily on corporate packages. The Yankees do have to be more responsible with their money, but with the prices we are being charged, why is the luxury tax so toxic all of a sudden, even with the new CBA? We have always paid that tax, and that tax has been passed right on down to us. As a fan, I still expect the Yankees, in 2014 and beyond, to live in the taxable area–just perhaps not so much as in the past.


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