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Big Man on the mound (so is the Big Kid)

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Feb 27, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Even when he’s lost some weight, CC Sabathia is still a big man. And he’s not the only one in the Yankees rotation. Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia are both big guys, and Ivan Nova is a full 6-foot-4. But none of the Yankees starters measures up to Sabathia quite like the new guy. If Sabathia is the Big Man, then Michael Pineda is surely the Big Kid.

“That dude’s a monster,” Nick Swisher said yesterday. “I didn’t know he was that big. We’ve got him and CC, those two guys look like brothers standing next to one another. Two big boys.”

This morning, those two big boys are throwing batting practice for the first time this spring. It might not be a significant step, but it’s a necessary step. And it’s what’s next for two of the most important pieces of this Yankees pitching staff. They’re going to be hard to miss.

Associated Press photo

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60 Responses to “Big Man on the mound (so is the Big Kid)”

  1. Yankee Trader February 27th, 2012 at 8:48 am

    Are we looking at a 6’7″ 290 lb Sabathia and a 6’8″ 280 lb Pineda?

  2. Giuseppe Franco February 27th, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Not exactly original but the nickname “Twin Towers” seems to come to mind.

  3. blake February 27th, 2012 at 8:55 am

    “The Two Towers”

  4. blake February 27th, 2012 at 8:57 am

    I thought about the Twin Towers but wasn’t sure if that would be appropriate in NY….I don’t live there though so I don’t really know.

  5. randy l. February 27th, 2012 at 8:59 am

    “I hope most of you enjoy it. I know the old-timers will laugh at the memory of some of those woebegone players!”

    yanks 61-

    what i remember is michael burke who was running the yankees driving through a snowstorm to come to our baseball banquet before my senior year season. he grew up in my hometown and made it a point to show up because he said he would. i remember him and the night clearly. there was definitely something to this guy that was special. i thought it was just because he was in charge of the yankees. he was also a guys’ guy. you didn’t grow up in our town without being able to fight. that was just a given.but on the other hand he was very distinguished and you could tell highly educated.

    i don’t remember what he told us. probably to do well in school.but i remember really paying attention to the guy. many years later i learned he was a spy in world war two and was awarded the
    “the Navy Cross, Silver Cross, and the French Médaille de la Résistance.[8]“. they made a movie with gary cooper playing him while he was behind enemy lines in world war two.

    all those years later it when i started looking him up on the web, it made sense finally that there was something special about this small guy who was running the yankees during the low point of their history.

    http://www.nytimes.com/1987/02.....to-73.html

  6. Yankee Trader February 27th, 2012 at 9:01 am

    Sampson[7'4"] and Olajuwon[7'] although I read that Olajuwon admitted he was only 6’10″ :)

  7. Erin February 27th, 2012 at 9:08 am

    I vote for “The Two Towers”

  8. tomingeorgia February 27th, 2012 at 9:09 am

    How about “Twin Peaks”?

  9. blake February 27th, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Sabathia can be Everest and Pineda K2?

  10. Villa Nova-Ya February 27th, 2012 at 9:12 am

    I vote NO MORE NICKNAMES!!!!!

    Not such a hot track record…

  11. Yankee Trader February 27th, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Randy-

    Didn’t Gabe Paul take 0ver from Burke?

    Pauls last year was 1977. Wasn’t that the year Paul signed damaged goods from the Braves, free agent, Andy Messersmith?

    Paul made some significant trades to rebuild the Yankees-Nettles, Gamble, Rivers, Chambliss, Dent, Randolph plus FA’s Hunter and Jackson.

  12. randy l. February 27th, 2012 at 9:22 am

    i just love it how pineda is being given the special treatment before he’s thrown a pitch for the yankees.

    just what he needs.

    the reality is he’s a kid with two pitches who was rushed in seattle because his bosses there thought he had enough pure stuff to fool hitters for a while so they could spin him off for a hitter they needed.

    they accomplished that by having him go with just his fastball and slider. his development of other pitches came to and end. we hear frim his seattle pitching coach that he has an aptitude for a change up, but it was so good this same pitching coach wasn’t able to get it effective on his watch.

    pineda left this pitching coach with two pitches just like when he came to him.

    people are counting their chickens before they have hatched with pineda. until he actually starts getting hitters out with a change up with the yankees in the season , he doesn’t prove he has one.

    the thing that i’m reacting to thsi “pineda is special” is that when a young yankee pitcher gets the “special treatment” he seems to goes to hell. the guys who make it have been nova and robertson who were clearly not given the special treatment by yankee management and coaches.

    i would not let pineda think he’s special. i’d send him to triple a to learn a change up the right way and have him pay his dues.

    the yankees won’t do this of course. what they’ll do is let him think he’s a star like hughes and joba thought before they learned their craft. as it is hughes and joba are nowhere near the star status they were accorded.

    what the yankees are doing with pineda is creating an undeveloped pitcher who will be amazing at times and frustratingly bad at times. just like hughes and joba. it’s just the wrong way to develop this kid.

    he’s not a cc sabathia learning at the mlb level for a 65 win cleveland team. that was really a AAAA team. pineda has to win and learn at the same time.

    it’s just wrong to throw him into the yankee fire like this. he’ll either get hurt like joba and hughes by trying to do too much or he will never really learn a third pitch and will plateau as a #3 or#4.

  13. randy l. February 27th, 2012 at 9:24 am

    yankee trader-

    i’m not sure when gabe paul came, but he was a good one obviously. he made some amazing trades.

  14. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 9:35 am

    How about – Pocket Aces?

  15. Yankee Trader February 27th, 2012 at 9:37 am

    How about NY Giants! :)

  16. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 9:39 am

    hey what a surprise, it’s monday and randy is still babbling about something he HAS NO FREAKING CLUE ABOUT!

    So boring. Is this place going to entertain this week? or will it be more of the same.

    Only time will tell :/

  17. Yankee Trader February 27th, 2012 at 9:41 am

    Time to go. Have a great day everyone.

  18. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 9:41 am

    ID -

    Just ignore him.

  19. Crawdaddy February 27th, 2012 at 9:45 am

    “hey what a surprise, it’s monday and randy is still babbling about something he HAS NO FREAKING CLUE ABOUT!”

    Just ignore him as he couldn’t pick Pineda out of a lineup on January 12th.

  20. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 9:45 am

    Zimmerman’s extension makes me sad. :/

    What is wrong with these young hitters?

    “Hi, I’d like $100mill, no rings necessary.”.

  21. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Crawdaddy February 27th, 2012 at 9:45 am

    “hey what a surprise, it’s monday and randy is still babbling about something he HAS NO FREAKING CLUE ABOUT!”

    Just ignore him as he couldn’t pick Pineda out of a lineup on January 12th.
    ——————-

    Probably couldn’t pick Derek Jeter out of a lineup on opening day either.

  22. blake February 27th, 2012 at 9:48 am

    “Hi, I’d like $100mill, no rings necessary.”.

    The Nats have a bright future….and as I’ve been saying…..teams are locking up young position players much more frequently than in the past. Zimmerman is yet another potential Yankee that’s now gone…….

  23. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 9:50 am

    ID – you want to talk about sad – as soon as that deal was announced any Met fan who thought there might be a chance of keeping CGWWW had to be talked back off the ledge.

  24. yanks61 February 27th, 2012 at 9:54 am

    YT – Johnny Blanchard – loved him! His PH homers that year were amazing. I think he cried when he learned he had been traded to the KC A’s. I believe Mel Allen used to call him “Johnny on the Spot.” He told a great, funny story in Goldenbock’s “Dynasty” about his “transition’ to Charlie Finley’s funhouse – Catfish Hunter riding in from the bullpen on Finley’s donkey, “Charlie,” I believe. What a hoot!

    J. Florham – Cool that you remembered those guys – I recall Jerry Kenney quite well but the others names – I’m not so sure that I do.

    Tackleberry – exactly – sticking with the Yanks thru thick and thin.

    Randy L – Mike Burke – a true hero. It must have been quite a thrill to have met him. I always regretted the fact that he couldn’t make a go of it with the Yanks. I just don’t think CBS cared – and of course they bought an aging team with a depleted farm system.

    By the way, Randy, I admire your passion and knowledge of the game, but you’re just going nuts with this Montero/Pineda stuff. Time to get a grip on yourself, old man:)

  25. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 9:55 am

    As for the decision to stay with the Nats long term – I don’t think it was such a bad call from him.

    Look at the division:

    Phillies are old with no farm system to back them up
    Braves are what the Braves are
    Marlins will sell off all the players they brought in within the next 3 years
    Mets are a disaster

    On the other hand, Washington has a very good, potentially great, young rotation with Strasburg, Zimmerman and Gio. They have a few good young players (Zimmerman, Morse, Flores, Espinosa) Jayson Werth stunk last year but he’s no slouch, and they have some good prospects on the way in Harper and Rendon.

    I like them a lot to win a division within a couple of years.

  26. blake February 27th, 2012 at 9:59 am

    6/100 is a very nice deal for the Nats. The Yanks really need to get on Cano

  27. LGY February 27th, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Zimmerman’s extension makes me sad. :/

    What is wrong with these young hitters?

    “Hi, I’d like $100mill, no rings necessary.”.

    ———–

    This game has always been about making money.

    The only difference now than in the past is you don’t have to wait until free agency to get PAID.

  28. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:02 am

    blake – I especially don’t like it because it brings credence to your idea about hitters/FA/contracts, which i’m doing my best to believe is not true :/

  29. upstate kate February 27th, 2012 at 10:02 am

    The Nats also have the most hyped prospect ever, Bryce Harper, possibly as soon as this season.

  30. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:02 am

    If Cano stays healthy the Yanks may cost themselves 50-70 million by allowing him to reach free agency…..with the budget concerns that’s unacceptable….now Robbie may not do an extension…..but IMO its unacceptable for them not to talk to him about it unless they are willing to pay the piper in free agency to keep him.

  31. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:03 am

    Chip – They have certainly done everything right for the last 2 years or so… amazing what a new ballpark can infuse into your club. The NL East could very well become a Marlins/Nats affair in few years time.

  32. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:05 am

    now Robbie may not do an extension

    This is why though, I’m completely shocked that these young players continue to sign these deals. Zimmerman passed up that same $50-$60million, he would be the only elite talent 3B other than Wright even on the 3B FA radar.

    I don’t believe for a second that Cano, especially as a Boras client, would ever sign an extension.

  33. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:10 am

    If the Yanks get Cano to sign an extension its going to same them Pennies on the dollar, not $50+mill. Boras is too good at his job for that to ever happen.

  34. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:10 am

    “This is why though, I’m completely shocked that these young players continue to sign these deals.”

    Some of it is about security…..and insurance in case they get injured. Cano has two Morris years until free agency…..its unlikely but he could suffer a major injury in that time. If someone offers you 100+ million guaranteed now then it takes that risk away…..you may make a little less than you would as a free agent…but its still a ton of money.

    Kemp for example…..the Dodgers stepped up and offered him close to market value….so he took the security….the Yanks should do the same with Cano.

  35. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:12 am

    “If the Yanks get Cano to sign an extension its going to same them Pennies on the dollar, not $50+mill. Boras is too good at his job for that to ever happen.”

    Carlos Gonzalez and Jered Weaver …..its up to the player. The Yanks should offer Cano 8/160 right now….maybe even a little more AAV if it’ll get it done. Lock him up through age 37 instead of age 39-40.

  36. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:13 am

    The 50+ million in savings im talking about isn’t in AAV its in years on the contract…..

  37. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:15 am

    blake – Car-Go’s deal is crazy, much like Zimmerman’s to me. Weaver’s deal is not that outrageous, and in my eyes pitchers should always take that security blanket deal anyway. They only bought out what, one year of FA from Weaver?

  38. pat February 27th, 2012 at 10:19 am

    “Rookie LHP Matt Moore will indeed miss his scheduled batting practice session today due to what the Rays are calling “a mild lower abdoninal strain.””

  39. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:19 am

    blake – Unless they were going to give Cano $25mil per for the age 39 and 40 seasons, they aren’t going to save $50mil on a Boras client with an extension.

    Car-Go clearly wanted to stay in Colorado (what hitter wouldn’t, it makes average men into HoF players). They only bought 2 (or 3, super 2 possibly) of his FA years off of him anyway, and probably saved themselves $10-$15mil in arbitration money.

    Zimmerman clearly likes what is going on in Washington for him to sign his deal. Cano would have to do the same. These are not the same deals that Car-Go took though as he was considerably younger and greener to the league.

  40. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:19 am

    “They only bought out what, one year of FA from Weaver?”

    Yea but its still a year and with pitchers you just never know…..the Dodgers just bought out a year with Kemp as well.

    Kemp is a perfect comp for the Yanks to use for Cano…..Cano is actually older and farther from free agency than Kemp was so that’s a fair number to me.

    The Yanks don’t need to get themselves into a situation where they are up against the 189 threshold in two years and Cano is unsigned…..that coukd be a disaster where they either have to let him walk or Boras uses that leverage and makes them go over budget.

  41. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 10:20 am

    another lost year for Joel Zumaya – sad – kid was super once upon a time.

  42. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:21 am

    “blake – Unless they were going to give Cano $25mil per for the age 39 and 40 seasons, they aren’t going to save $50mil on a Boras client with an extension.”

    Not an extension….buy out 2012 and 2013 and start the new contract now…..Robbie gets an immediate raise and the contract ends in 8 years.

  43. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:22 am

    “Rookie LHP Matt Moore will indeed miss his scheduled batting practice session today due to what the Rays are calling “a mild lower abdoninal strain.””

    Pitchers……

  44. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Id probably even offer Cano the Tex contract now if he’d sign it…..at least then you know what he will cost going forward…..and you know when his contract will end.

    If you wait until 2014 to sign him and he remains on the path he’s on then you’re looking at paying him until age 40 to keep him…..and at a price you don’t like.

  45. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 10:25 am

    I just don’t see the Yankees engaging Cano until his contract is up.

  46. Irreverent Discourse February 27th, 2012 at 10:25 am

    blake -I’m not arguing that they should not try to do this, clearly they should.

    I just don’t understand why a player like him or Zimmerman would ever sign that extension. To cost themselves how many millions of dollars for 1 or 2 years of “security”… I don’t know, I just don’t think I would do it in their position. They are not pitchers, so they are not nearly as likely to suddenly “lose it all”.

  47. jacksquat February 27th, 2012 at 10:26 am

    They should definitely try to extend Cano now, before he puts up a .350/35/120 in his walk year…

  48. J. Alfred Prufrock February 27th, 2012 at 10:27 am

    blake February 27th, 2012 at 9:48 am
    “Hi, I’d like $100mill, no rings necessary.”.

    The Nats have a bright future….and as I’ve been saying…..teams are locking up young position players much more frequently than in the past. Zimmerman is yet another potential Yankee that’s now gone…….
    ////

    How can you say that, when we just signed Ibanez?!!?

  49. dogface February 27th, 2012 at 10:29 am

    I just don’t see the Yankees engaging Cano until his contract is up.

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

    Hasn’t been their history for the most part, but the new CBA might compel them to rethink their position on matters such as these.

  50. Tackelberry February 27th, 2012 at 10:32 am

    Cano is the one exception they should make as far as negotiating extensions. Maybe Granderson too

  51. dogface February 27th, 2012 at 10:33 am

    I just don’t understand why a player like him or Zimmerman would ever sign that extension. To cost themselves how many millions of dollars for 1 or 2 years of “security”…

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

    Zimmerman is a Virginia guy. Maybe it’s just a matter of being able to stay close to home, with a franchise seemingly on the rise, and doing so while making $100M.

  52. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:33 am

    “How can you say that, when we just signed Ibanez?!!?”

    Can’t argue

  53. austinmac February 27th, 2012 at 10:34 am

    It seems obvious to me the Yankees are going to have to change their non-extension practice. They used to believe they could wait to reduce the risk of injury and pay the extra money that would cost. If they tried to re-up Cano now it would save them some money.

  54. dogface February 27th, 2012 at 10:34 am

    Cano is the one exception they should make as far as negotiating extensions. Maybe Granderson too

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

    Be very difficult to do both.

  55. Chip February 27th, 2012 at 10:36 am

    Two things working against the Cano contract getting done before he’s a FA:

    1. How do you offer him a new deal when you didn’t do it for Derek, Jorge, Mariano, etc when they were in their primes?

    2. How does Cashman turn to Boras and say that they want to start negotiations when he flat out humiliated Boras in the press for even suggesting that the Yankees tear up the two option years on Cano’s deal and start working on a new contract?

  56. dogface February 27th, 2012 at 10:38 am

    1. How do you offer him a new deal when you didn’t do it for Derek, Jorge, Mariano, etc when they were in their primes?

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

    Different times. Different CBA. Precedent already set when they did it for Sabathia.

  57. blake February 27th, 2012 at 10:41 am

    “1. How do you offer him a new deal when you didn’t do it for Derek, Jorge, Mariano, etc when they were in their primes?”

    Yea as DF says I don’t think you can worry about that….its a different time. They can’t continue to operate as they were and budget towards a set payroll limit…..their old policy is outdated given the new CBA

  58. J. Alfred Prufrock February 27th, 2012 at 10:45 am

    Who needs Cano?

    Pitching wins.

  59. J. Alfred Prufrock February 27th, 2012 at 10:45 am

    :twisted:

  60. randy l. February 27th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    By the way, Randy, I admire your passion and knowledge of the game, but you’re just going nuts with this Montero/Pineda stuff. Time to get a grip on yourself, old man:)

    yanks 61-

    i wasn’t 100 % right about hughes, joba, wang, and kennedy before the crap hit the fan with them ?

    seems like i was one of the few that got it right ahead of time :)

    i have no doubt they will muck up pineda.

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