The LoHud Yankees Blog

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


The competition begins

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Feb 14, 2013 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

I’m not sure exactly which pitchers are scheduled to throw bullpens today — the clubhouse opens to media in about an hour, I’ll have the assignments then – but based on the guys who pitched yesterday, I’m guessing we’ll see both Ivan Nova and David Phelps this morning. It’s interesting only because, for now, that’s the most important pitching competition in camp.

How much are the Yankees learning from these initial bullpens? Probably not much. But I think it all matters, and it especially matters because we know that Phelps has already faced hitters once this spring and seems to be a little farther ahead that we generally expected pitchers to be in the first week of camp.

Yesterday we got a lot of the nonsense out of the way — Francisco Cervelli talked about Biogenesis, Mariano Rivera gave his not-ready-to-announce speech about retirement, and Andy Pettitte had a press conference about being back with the team — but spring training is all about the roster decisions.

Today we should get our very early, very premature look at one of the most important roster competitions of the spring. Nova should be considered the front runner, but how often do things play out exactly the way we expect in spring training?

Associated Press photo

 
 

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83 Responses to “The competition begins”

  1. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:11 am

    I agree Chad.

    Nova’s job to lose.

  2. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:16 am

    Nova needs to do a “crazy Ivan” and turn it around 180 degrees this season.

    Our pitching is our strength.

  3. blake February 14th, 2013 at 8:18 am

    Yea Id say that everything equal its Nova’s to lose….but I do think Phelps can earn it. May the best man win

  4. RadioKev February 14th, 2013 at 8:18 am

    Wasn’t Nova awful in Spring Training last season? Worth remembering. He got off to a better start in the season, but can you tolerate a bad spring from Nova if Phelps is better?

  5. Chip February 14th, 2013 at 8:20 am

    Chad – your take on the Almonte/Kelley deal seems to be the prevailing wisdom. I’ll admit that when I first reacted to it I had forgotten about guys like Neal, Garcia and Flores who also figure into the mix.

    My point of contention was that I don’t think Kelley (or Eppley) make the team and (like Almonte) have more talented guys behind them too in Kahne and Montgomery.

    My hope was that the Yankees would use their areas of depth (either OF or RP) to fill an area of need (RH OF or C) rather than trade from where you’re deep to add a player in another area that you’re deep. Maybe adding Kelley allows them to move Eppley to do that…that would be the smart move.

  6. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:22 am

    Kev-

    No.

  7. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:24 am

    Blake-

    Nova needs to take massive hits from the “consistency pipe”.

    And that’s no “hyperbolic” statement.

    :)

  8. austinmac February 14th, 2013 at 8:26 am

    MTU,

    Isn’t the consistency pipe a PED violation?

  9. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:27 am

    Mac-

    I don’t believe so.

    :)

    Why aren’t you hiking at BB ?

  10. blake February 14th, 2013 at 8:30 am

    MTU,

    Isn’t the consistency pipe a PED violation?

    Probably….but they don’t have a blood rest for it yet

  11. Bronx Jeers February 14th, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Somebody brought up a good ” what if ? ” a couple of days ago. Instead of being a true fastball, WHAT IF tomorrow’s asteroid turns out to be a breaking ball?

    This is why Hal’s $189MM mandate is so pointless.

  12. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:38 am

    Nova and Phelps have both overcome obstacles thrown in their paths.

    I hope they continue to do so.

  13. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Jeers-

    I think Hal should hire Bruce Willis to turn it away.

    Money talks.

    :)

  14. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:44 am

    You’re only other options would be to be a burrowing mammal or an insect.

    ;)

  15. Bronx Jeers February 14th, 2013 at 8:46 am

    Bruce would probably be too expensive and we’d end up with somebody like Jean Claude Van Damme.

  16. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:50 am

    Jeers-

    Grab your your surfboard and head for Ecuador.

    Ride the big one and drink copious quantities of beer.

    If you need a sidekick let me know.

    I can photo the whole thing for you. Gratis (well almost).

    :)

  17. J. Alfred Prufrock February 14th, 2013 at 8:55 am

    Morning all,

    Happy Valentine’s Day.

    Etta James (a GB7 favorite) doing the classic, here. Any jazz fan will also appreciate the horn here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bt7eqkPXO8A

    P.S. Earth-bound asteroid? Oh, goody!

  18. J. Alfred Prufrock February 14th, 2013 at 8:56 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-8nRiyrIAk

    Here’s a version of the classic that will no doubt please certain others ;)

    Good one, all.

  19. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:57 am

    JAP-

    Just magnifies the absurdity of our Earth-bound existence.

    We really have to stop chasing after the wind.

    :)

  20. Tackelberry February 14th, 2013 at 8:58 am

    Can’t you just hear Frank Costanza screaming; “HOW COULD YOU TRADE ABE ALMONTE!!!”

  21. J. Alfred Prufrock February 14th, 2013 at 8:59 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0XhQNdtuxU

    Finally, The Man doin’ it. :D

    If this don’t sate your soul I dunno what will.

    Peace b’wi’ye.

  22. Rich in NJ February 14th, 2013 at 9:00 am

    Whatever they do, don’t put Phelps back in the pen. He needs innings. This franchise’s focus on the here and now as opposed to development is a major reason why they have the underwhelming roster they currently have.

    That’s why I disagree with blake (who I often agree with) about Cashman being kicked upstairs. Neither his performance as GM with the most money to spend, by far, over the last 15 years, nor off the field behavior, warrant that.

    Back to the meeting. Later.

  23. Bronx Jeers February 14th, 2013 at 9:00 am

    I can photo the whole thing for you. Gratis (well almost).

    ——————————————————————

    You could probably stand on top of the Andes and catch me just as it breaks.

    Or it could hit a few thousand miles north and you could have yourself a beach house. :smile:

  24. J. Alfred Prufrock February 14th, 2013 at 9:01 am

    MTU February 14th, 2013 at 8:57 am

    JAP-

    Just magnifies the absurdity of our Earth-bound existence.

    We really have to stop chasing after the wind.

    :)
    //

    MTU – Certain quantum-sympathetic folks have noticed that filimentous ether has neural-like pathways that are exactly like the human brain. To grossly overslimplify, if an asteroid is coming our way, we threw it at ourselves ;)

    Have a great day and a better burrito! :D

  25. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 9:02 am

    Jeers-

    I have to contemplate that.

    :)

  26. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 9:04 am

    You too JAP.

    :)

  27. blake February 14th, 2013 at 9:06 am

    @TBrownYahoo: Remember when Jordan hit .202 in the minors? I was impressed. So was Terry Francona, who was there. http://t.co/zDlvSRrZ #50

    Cool column

  28. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 9:07 am

    And now it is time for my beloved Pupperazzi to walk me.

    Later.

  29. Doreen February 14th, 2013 at 9:08 am

    Thanks, J. Alfred. Really nice arrangement. Loved the soulfulness of the horn solo.

    GB7 had a song ready for any occasion…miss him.

  30. blake February 14th, 2013 at 9:10 am

    “That’s why I disagree with blake (who I often agree with) about Cashman being kicked upstairs. Neither his performance as GM with the most money to spend, by far, over the last 15 years, nor off the field behavior, warrant that.”

    They have missed the playoffs once since 1995….he’s made some mistakes but he has useful skills and you have to give him some credit for this run….you have to….other teams have spent money too and have records nowhere close to that.

    Cashman has some good qualities…. I just think they need a fresh voice with different ideas to compliment him

  31. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:12 am

    Morning breakfast club!! Hey there, MTU, haven’t seen you in a bit!

    Saw Chad posted this in the last thread: “The Yankees basically swapped a guy who might be a pinch runner for a guy who might be able to fill a hole in the bullpen. Neither one is a must-have, but I’d much rather have pitching depth than position depth.”

    I wasn’t up in arms over Almonte and I think most of the reaction on here was based on many other moves than this one alone, but I really don’t know how I feel about that last sentence there. The Yanks have an awful lot of pitching options out of the pen.

  32. blake February 14th, 2013 at 9:13 am

    We can criticize Cash for giving up on Montero…. But you have to credit him for sticking with Hughes….for getting CC…:for signing a whole host of low risk moved that have turned to gold over theist few years and for putting together teams that always seem to find a way……the bubble on that may burst this year but I don’t see how Cashman can get zero credit for the run the Yanks have had…..,

  33. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:16 am

    I wouldn’t mind Cash moving up in the org because ultimately you need continuity and people that know your business top to bottom. The guy has been working for the Yankees for decades now and there’s valuable knowlegde there. What scares me, however, is that he might not be open to ideas presented by others.

    I’m of the school of thought that there are no ideas that are not worth exploring. I feel like, in many aspects of life and baseball, you just can’t afford it.

  34. MTU February 14th, 2013 at 9:17 am

    Hola Shame.

    Good to see you too.

    Catch you later. Dogs are nipping at my heels.

  35. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:21 am

    Dogs are nipping at my heels.

    —————

    Omg, me too! People really get desperate on Valentine’s Day ;)

  36. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:23 am

    Short article, but very on point for anyone interested in sports media:

    Why newspaper sports journalists don’t like Deadspin

    http://jimromenesko.com/2013/0.....-deadspin/

  37. Tackelberry February 14th, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Anyone see Gammons on MLB tonight last night? He was reporting from where else?? Red Sox camp, and fawning all over how much weight Lackey has lost and how the Sox will have one of the best bullpens in baseball. YEESH!

  38. blake February 14th, 2013 at 9:32 am

    @AdamKilgoreWP: There’s been no sign of Rafael Soriano at Nats camp. Team officials have offered no explanation. It’s odd.

  39. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:39 am

    blake February 14th, 2013 at 9:32 am

    @AdamKilgoreWP: There’s been no sign of Rafael Soriano at Nats camp. Team officials have offered no explanation. It’s odd.

    ——————

    Mo rubbed off on him. Sori throws when Sori wants to throw!!

  40. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 9:45 am

    did ped usage cause the labrum tear in the right hip?

    or was it the meat dress?

    http://www.rollingstone.com/mu.....y-20130214

    different ped’s maybe?

  41. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 9:50 am

    “@AdamKilgoreWP: There’s been no sign of Rafael Soriano at Nats camp. Team officials have offered no explanation. It’s odd.”
    ========================================
    probably visa problems.

    …like he is using his visa to pay for a vacation in hawaii…

  42. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 9:51 am

    “But you have to credit him for sticking with Hughes….for getting CC…:for signing a whole host of low risk moved that have turned to gold over theist few years”

    I’ll give Cash credit for sticking with Hughes but no credit for not extending him. I’ll give Cash credit for building up the farm, but no credit for not looking ahead post 2009, to put us in a healthy position to compete 2010-2013. I won’t give him credit for overrating his offense, and underrating his pitching in 2012, for letting us get old, and not seeing it coming, and for trading a prospective new core. I will give him credit if he doesn’t panic now and guards the elites of the farm. I’ll give him credit if he parlays players going into their walk year into assets or can extend some of them. His dumpster diving is overrated; what is the “host” of recent low risk moves Cash has made that have turned to gold?

  43. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 9:52 am

    …and signing CC was a no-brainer. I could have signed CC…

  44. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 9:53 am

    (with Hal’s trust fund…)

  45. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 9:55 am

    theres no such thing as a no brainer. wasn’t signing lee a ‘no brainer’? a couple of years ago most people would have called re-signing arod a ‘no brainer’ (not realizing how apt that term was.)

    teixeira was a ‘no brainer’

    you can’t stick a guy for his bad signs then call the good ones ‘no brainers.’

  46. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 9:56 am

    I didn’t mention Cash’s bad signs. (See above.) And I am not dumping on Cash, just responding to Blake’s post.

  47. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 9:56 am

    You’d be amazed how many LoHud commenters didn’t want CC and/or didn’t think Cashman could sign him. Convinced he was going to the west coast they were.

  48. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 9:59 am

    Not relevant to the discussion above. Kudos to Cash for signing C.

  49. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 9:59 am

    @CC_Sabathia

    Happy Valentines Day! @AmberSabathia #tbt pic.twitter.com/KxjqYK9Z

  50. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 9:56 am

    You’d be amazed how many LoHud commenters didn’t want CC and/or didn’t think Cashman could sign him. Convinced he was going to the west coast they were.

    —————–

    A lot of that narrative was perpetuated by the media.. Personally, I always figured if he wanted the most money we’d have no problem signing him.

  51. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:02 am

    People that ‘didn’t want’ CC were just dumb.. are they the same group that still thinks he isn’t an ace? I can’t keep up with all the divisions on here. We’ll have to ask randy to break out his catalog of LoHud posts.

  52. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 10:04 am

    my recollection isnt that people didnt want cc, i think by far the most did want him (unlike lee).

    there was the media driven impression that he was going to stay on the left coast but i think by far the majority here wanted him ‘if they could get him’

  53. backbench February 14th, 2013 at 10:04 am

    For what its worth, odds makers have NYYs winning fewer than 87 games this year.

    http://www.businessweek.com/ne.....makers-say

    Interesting perspective as the underdog.

  54. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:04 am

    How is who didn’t or did want C. on Lohud relate to the discussion above? FTR, I was in the school of C. is an ace from the get-go, but I digress.

  55. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:05 am

    “Not relevant to the discussion above.”

    And a Happy Valentine’s Day to you as well.

    I’m sure Mr. Cashman would appreciate the kudos over the no-brainerism.

  56. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 10:09 am

    backbench February 14th, 2013 at 10:04 am

    For what its worth, odds makers have NYYs winning fewer than 87 games this year.

    http://www.businessweek.com/ne…..makers-say

    Interesting perspective as the underdog.
    =============================================
    how can they be the underdog when the oddsmakers have them and toronto tied and the rays 1/2 game behind.

    to me that makes them the co-favorite.

  57. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Chet Baker, Torino 1959:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....ata_player

  58. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Happy Valentine’s Day, yourself, Nick. I hope you have a joyful day.

    I gave out some props; feel free to reread the post. Let’s not get all tangential now…

  59. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:12 am

    I think Cash’s work has been greatly impacted by the change over in the FO.

    They had Swindal in line to take over and when he and Jennifer got divorced it really shook up the hierarchy and succession planning.

  60. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Lol, the co-favorite?? That’s depressing. Who wants to be the co-favorite?

    Random/Unrelated: That reminds me of a dog show recently where they named (for the first time ever!) a ‘reserve winner.’

    I guess if the winner of Best in Show got caught making doggy porn or something the reserve winner was committed to taking their place.

  61. Doreen February 14th, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I was hesitant on supporting signing CC due to his weight, thought it could be a problem at some point.

    Wanting to sign CC could be considered a “no-brainer.” Being able to do so did take a good sales pitch, and a good old-fashioned courting.

  62. backbench February 14th, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Ys Guy,

    You’re quite right. I just get nervous when the NYYs are predicted to have a sub-90 win season. Too close to the edge.

    But no doubt this season will be competitive.

  63. Hassey February 14th, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Nick in SF – Great tribute to Chet Baker in the award winning Israeli film “The Band”

  64. Ys Guy February 14th, 2013 at 10:18 am

    wow, that book has boston at 79 1/2 wins and baltimore at just 76 1/2

  65. Hassey February 14th, 2013 at 10:19 am

    Doreen – Would you support me despite *my* weight?

  66. blake February 14th, 2013 at 10:21 am

    YF,
    I think we have to know the context of ownership meddling before really being able to evaluate Cashman……for example had Hank not given 275 million dollars to Alex against Cashman’s recommendation then perhaps the dominoes fall differently …..

    at the end of the day though all Cash had to do is point to the scoreboard when folks criticize him….and he will be able to do that until it changes.

  67. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:23 am

    ” feel free to reread the post.”

    Wow, throwing heat this morning!

    Not everyone — including some intelligent commenters, perhaps overly influenced by the pernicious media narrative — thought Cashman could reel in CC. And there was considerable discussion about the wisdom of a huge, long deal for a pitcher. It looks like much more of a no-brainer now, but I am not going to label those with differing opinions brainless or dumb. Maybe I should, though. And I was firmly in the camp that argued that Cashman should and would sign CC. It’s one of the few things I was right about. :oops:

    Tangential up in blue.

  68. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:25 am

    (Of course the key factor was $$$$$)

  69. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:33 am

    @BobKlap

    Curious how Fred Wilpon waits until all the free agents are signed to say #Mets actually have money.

  70. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:34 am

    Nick, no heat; I’d call it dispassionate appraisal. And I should think you wouldn’t label those with differing opinions brainless or dumb; that wouldn’t be very nice, now would it? And it is indeed tangential to the post. Please address my other points if you wish, and I will look for your answer when I return.

    Blake, true about Alex’s contract but finances didn’t block moves to get younger, be more creative, extend Hughes, overrate the offense etc. but you arrived late on the scene and unfortunately, I have to run.

    Enjoy your day.

  71. Stoneburner - The Return of Wax February 14th, 2013 at 10:34 am

    Here’s the thing about this lohud comment section – - – -

    This is Stoneburner, reporting from Ceti Alpha V, with the wax poetic minute – - – -

  72. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:36 am

    ..and Blake, what was Cash pointing to in the ALCS, our lack of scoring on that scoreboard? Love that pitching but them boys needed some help. Later!

  73. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:36 am

    @jonmorosi

    Stephen Strasburg said he wasn’t invited to play for Team USA at the World Baseball Classic.

  74. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:37 am

    I think that Morosi report is code for: No one in the Nats organization was letting Torre anywhere near Strasburg.

    How do you NOT ask that kid to be on the team?

  75. Shame Spencer February 14th, 2013 at 10:40 am

    @Deadspin

    Is Trevor Bauer’s terrible new rap song a diss track directed at Miguel Montero? http://deadsp.in/EODzKY7

    ——————

    Now we know why Arizona wanted to move Bauer… poor rap skills!!

  76. blake February 14th, 2013 at 10:40 am

    yankeefeminista says:
    February 14, 2013 at 10:36 am
    ..and Blake, what was Cash pointing to in the ALCS, our lack of scoring on that scoreboard? Love that pitching but them boys needed some help. Later!

    Yea….but he can’t spend any money so I’m not sure what he can do

  77. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:43 am

    I addressed the point I wanted to address — was signing CC a no-brainer and could a LoHud commenter have done it? Maybe and maybe, but neither point was as clear at the time. Thankfully Cashman had the GM skills and the checkbook to get it done.

    I hope this little coversation didn’t start just because some late-night idiot said that Cashman was one of the better GMs.@

  78. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Gotta go, but money isn’t the issue with most of the moves I am referring to, and this wasn’t a bashing Cash party (which it seems to have turned into inadvertently and unnecessarily because the responses have disregarded the positives I referred to); however, Cash could have traded Montero for a cost-controlled bat for instance? Um, made some Friedman-esque (even Theo-esque in his Cubbie stage) moves to set us up better for this… OK, back to ST optimism but don’t make it only about the money.

  79. yankeefeminista February 14th, 2013 at 10:48 am

    “I hope this little coversation didn’t start just because some late-night idiot said that Cashman was one of the better GMs.@”

    No, unless you are referring to Blake, who I highly esteem, as a late night idiot, or maybe I am missing your esoteric joke, but gotta run for real this time. Peace.

  80. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:50 am

    blake is definitely not the late-night idiot. ;)

  81. blake February 14th, 2013 at 10:51 am

    I don’t know how to rank Cashman amongst the GMs….I think he has some flaws but I also think he has strengths and that he has a lot of crap to deal with in NY and with a meddlesome ownership that apparently has suddenly changed the business model without giving the organization time to prepare for it……Cashman isn’t perfect…,but if I’m gonna point a finger at someone for the Situation the yanks are in first it wouldn’t be him……

  82. blake February 14th, 2013 at 10:54 am

    Nick in SF says:
    February 14, 2013 at 10:50 am
    blake is definitely not the late-night idiot.

    I’m only an idiot before 10

  83. Nick in SF February 14th, 2013 at 10:55 am

    blake, I’m unscientifically ranking Cashman as one of tbe top 15 GMs… thus one of the better ones. :arrow:


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