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


Infield alternatives waiting in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Jun 26, 2014 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Jose PirelaThe Yankees don’t really have a standout, no-downside alternative to their current rotation situation. They don’t really have an obvious, right-handed power bat that could replace struggling Alfonso Soriano. Their most realistic defensive upgrade is Brendan Ryan, who’s not likely to step in front of Derek Jeter for regular playing time at shortstop.

Of the many ways the Yankees could look to immediately change — and possibly upgrade — their roster, the area with most readily available alternatives is the infield. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s infield is so overcrowded at this point that Jose Pirela and Zelous Wheeler have basically become corner outfielders, and Corban Joseph — who was in the big leagues just last year — is having a hard time cracking the lineup. Second baseman Rob Refsnyder and first baseman Kyle Roller have hit since coming up from Double-A, and Pirela has been an unmistakeable standout.

“Those guys are swinging it in Triple-A,” vice president of baseball operations Mark Newman said. “And they’ve got major-league value.” *

It’s not just Refsnyder, Roller and Pirela. Wheeler’s offense has been steady this year (and he’s played four different positions). Sizemore has been terrific against lefties (and has big league experience in a platoon role). Dean Anna just came off the disabled list (and impressed the Yankees enough to win a spot on the Opening Day roster).

Question is whether the Yankees would see any of them as a potential upgrade over Kelly Johnson (who’s hit but hasn’t done much in the field), Yangervis Solarte (who’s hit .193/.270/.281 since May 15), or Brian Roberts (who’s production has come and gone throughout the season). Could they even find at-bats for a guy like Roller, who’s a left-handed power hitter limited to first base and designated hitter?

Long term, the most interesting of the Triple-A infielders seems to be Refsnyder, an outfielder-turned-second-baseman who’s moved quickly through the system and has hit .292/.404/.458 through his first 14 Triple-A games. The Yankees sound encouraged by his improvement in the field.

“Big time improvement. Huge,” Newman said. “Just keep playing and recognizing game situations, that’s what he needs to do. He’s making routine plays, he’s making good plays, he’s making double plays.”

Short term — assuming the Yankees want Refsnyder to get more than a couple weeks of Triple-A experience — the most interesting of the Triple-A infielders just might be Pirela, a former shortstop whose prospect status faded about three years ago only to have him pop back on the radar with a couple of strong years in Trenton. Now he’s having a standout season with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, hitting .320/.361/.466 and leading the team in both batting average and total bases. Pirela also has been a strong hitter in winter ball, truly thriving back home in Venezuela. Sometimes development takes a while, and Pirela is still just 24 years old.

“He can hit,” Newman said.

Although the Yankees moved Pirela away from shortstop in 2012, Newman said the organization still considers him a viable defender at second base. His most recent playing time in left field and at first base is primarily about adding some flexibility and making sure he gets regular at-bats while Refsnyder — clearly a priority at the position — gets the regular reps at second. Pirela, Newman said, should be considered a viable option at second base despite having not played the position since June 4.

“He can play the outfield,” Newman said. “(And) he can play second base.”

* Leading into that quote about guys who are “swinging it in Triple-A,” the “those guys” Newman specifically mentioned were Refsnyder, Roller and Pirela (which is why I specifically mentioned them leading into the quote), but Newman also mentioned outfielder Zoilo Almonte, who’s hit with good power from the left side of the plate. The Yankees would seem to have use for that sort of power in the big leagues, but with lefties Brett Gardner, Jacoby Ellsbury and Ichiro Suzuki each playing well — granted, with very little power — the Yankees seem content to leave Almonte in Triple-A. He hasn’t hit enough from the right side to be much of a Soriano alternative, Carlos Beltran is taking the DH at-bats, and the outfield is already full of lefties.

Associated Press photo

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142 Responses to “Infield alternatives waiting in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre”

  1. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    Again, I love the work but I take Newman’s comments with enough salt to make Mike Bloomberg faint.

    If the Yankees considered Jose Pirela a viable option at 2b defensively then they would not have him in AAA and be playing Brian Roberts with his mid-.600 OPS every day.

    Roller is kind of stuck until/unless Beltran can play the OF. If Beltran can’t play the OF then Zoilo Almonte should be.

    Regardless of where these guys were playing, if the Yankees had any interest in playing these guys there are places for them to play.

    A lineup (for example) of

    Gardner – LF
    Jeter – SS
    Ellsbury – CF
    Tex – 1b
    McCann – C
    Beltran – DH
    Almonte – RF
    Kelly Johnson – 3b
    Pirela – 2b

    May not be any better than what they have now – but it has the potential to be.

  2. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    got ya austin. i noticed that ppl outside philly always made some kind of ‘soft’ reference about cole. maybe because he’s kind of a pretty boy, maybe because his style is laid back, or because he’s a change-up guy, but on the hill, that guy is tough as nails and one of my favorite ballplayers. i really wish we could make a play for him, but that’s just not in the cards.

    hammel…bleach… He’s having a great year, but it’s such an outlyer for a 31 y/o.

  3. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:17 pm

    solarte has options doesn’t he? he should not be on the ml roster at this point. thats the spot where they could slip a railrider into the bigs, imo.

  4. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    haha *bleach*….lauging at myself…..

  5. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 4:00 pm
    Chip,

    When comparing rosters and Pythagorean numbers as well as prospects, particularly pitching, the Mets seem build better going forward. At some point, we have to develop players who are above average to compete with them or anyone else.
    ———————-

    That’s all well and good. I don’t know if you live in New York or not, but I do and up here they’re considered a joke and every time Alderson or Wilpon start talking about the future or the kids in the system fans roll their eyes and ticket sales drop.

    Remember, teams aren’t marketing to fans like us, they know we’ll be there – it’s the casual fan who doesn’t post on blogs, know what MiLB.com is and wouldn’t care if they did know – that’s the person who they are trying to woo and the Yankees are convinced that the way to do it is with big names and splashy pickups – not by playing prospects.

  6. astrocityfan June 26th, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    inderstand they have three lefties in the outfield but considering a. none of them have power and b ichiro hits leftoes better than righties it is very frustrating to me they dont step outside the box a little and get almonte in there in rf. and pierla not getting a shot is becoming borderline criminal

  7. astrocityfan June 26th, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    i had a brief twitter convo with donnie collins the other night you guys might get a kick out of.
    roller hit against the shift twice in a series this week. the opposing tem set up on the right side and pitched him outsie. he poked it through for a single. after the game roller said “Dont see why theyd shift and then pitch me outside. They hope a dumb hitter will still try to pull it and hit a weak ground ball”

    my new hero ladies and gentleman

  8. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    The only Y’s regular in the LU who came up under Girardi is Gardner in 2008. Gardner had the luxury of being surrounded by good players and was considered primarily their 4th OF and a pinch runner.
    Even under Torre, both Cano and Melky had the luxury of being surrounded by quality players and they both batted down in the order.
    With the Y’s lineup basically subpar, bringing up any of their “prospects” will put an enormous amount of pressure on them to succeed, even if they bat 8th and 9th initially.
    The Y’s no longer have the players to enable their young players to come up to the big team and escape the intense scrutiny of the Y’s fans, who would expect Refsnyder, Roller, or any other prospect to be immediate improvements over Roberts, Johnson, or Ichiro, just to name a few.
    This is probably one reason most of the prospects mentioned will never see the light of day at YS, except as opposing players.
    The only problem with my analysis is what player presently on the market has the ability to step in the role of a #3 hitter, and has not yet hit 30 years old.
    Note: The post on Banuelos regarding blisters brought me back to the old Nolan Ryan days with the Mets; Ryan also had a problem with blisters early in his career.

  9. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    On another note, HankFlorida, if you are still reading the blog posts, I have a question based on your response to one of my previous posts: “Do you think the Y’s should have kept Granderson?”
    The reason I ask is because I do believe I am the only “stupid” person here who believes the Y’s made a mistake by signing Beltran and not keeping Granderson.
    Note: I used “stupid, because one of the many experts here believes resigning Granderson would have been a “stupid” decision on the part of the Y’s.

  10. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    “Remember, teams aren’t marketing to fans like us, they know we’ll be there – it’s the casual fan who doesn’t post on blogs, know what MiLB.com is and wouldn’t care if they did know – that’s the person who they are trying to woo and the Yankees are convinced that the way to do it is with big names and splashy pickups – not by playing prospects.”
    ====================
    this has been the yankees way all of my life. and i saw mel stottlemyre in his rookie year.

    and they are right. prospects dont fill seats, stars do and winning does, but not instantly. prospects can turn into stars and winners, but when they are prospects, the average fan will find something else to do until they become stars.

    despite how amazing 1995, 1996, 97 and 98 were, the yankees did not draw 3M until 1999, only after 4 postseasons and 2 championships.

  11. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 4:42 pm

    One final note: I am looking forward to Roller coming up to the Y’s only because they can play Nick Lowe’s “Going to See the Rollers” as his theme song.
    TominGeorgia, if you are out there, the above song is probably even more obscure than Mason Williams, “Classical Gas.”

  12. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 4:43 pm

    I still don’t think people truly appreciate what Pirela is doing. I’ve been pumping up Refs as a potential future Yankee starting 2b since last fall, but I don’t think it’s a slam dunk he’s a better prospect than Pirela. The guy has hit .320 in 300 ABs at age 24 in the International League. This ain’t the PCL. And for a second baseman, he’s shown pretty decent power. How many current major league infielders have done this well in AAA?

    He may be a total bust in the majors but his performances demands that some team give him a shot.

  13. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 4:43 pm

    Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:39 pm
    “Remember, teams aren’t marketing to fans like us, they know we’ll be there – it’s the casual fan who doesn’t post on blogs, know what MiLB.com is and wouldn’t care if they did know – that’s the person who they are trying to woo and the Yankees are convinced that the way to do it is with big names and splashy pickups – not by playing prospects.”
    ====================
    this has been the yankees way all of my life. and i saw mel stottlemyre in his rookie year.

    and they are right. prospects dont fill seats, stars do and winning does, but not instantly. prospects can turn into stars and winners, but when they are prospects, the average fan will find something else to do until they become stars.

    despite how amazing 1995, 1996, 97 and 98 were, the yankees did not draw 3M until 1999, only after 4 postseasons and 2 championships.
    ———————

    Except it’s a catch-22: Derek Jeter can’t become Derek Jeter if you don’t give him a chance to play

  14. hornblower June 26th, 2014 at 4:44 pm

    I think Mr. Newman is trying to tell his boss to get moving and promote Pirela, Wheeler and Zoilo now. The roster is overloaded with dreck and age it’s a no brainer. Sori, Ichiro(4doubles), Johnson and Roberts are done. Give them their money and ask them to leave now.

  15. Jerkface June 26th, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    Except it’s a catch-22: Derek Jeter can’t become Derek Jeter if you don’t give him a chance to play

    The Yankees are basically hoping for the miracle prospect who steps in during a time of injury related need to immediately perform and perform well and never stop performing.

    Its an unrealistic expectation of development and what it takes to succeed as a Yankee prospect.

  16. tomingeorgia June 26th, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    JimK,
    It sure must be. Never heard it, or of it!

  17. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    “Except it’s a catch-22: Derek Jeter can’t become Derek Jeter if you don’t give him a chance to play”
    =======================
    i totally agree. i got on this track originally talking about whether fans would stick with the team if they took a year or so to bring up the rookies and try to develop some young talent.

    make no mistake about it, attendance ratings and revenue will take big hits which will be hard to reverse quickly, that’s the buisness reality.

    the baseball reality is a different thing altogether…

  18. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    You what would be a real smart move. Keep giving Refs the reps in AAA and trade him at the deadline. Then move Pirela to 2b and make him your future 2b. Package Refs and Sanchez (hopefully he can get hot) and now you are talking. Add Severino and that should be enough to make a play for Shark or maybe Price. But I’d rather switch out Judge for Severino. They can pretty much have anyone else, O’Brien, Williams, whatever.

    But Refs and Sanchez is a pretty good front end for a package.

  19. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Ys,

    On a family visit to the City, I saw Stottlemyre pitch his first game. Quite a day.

  20. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    Y’s guy, attendance records, especially during the 60′s do not mean much; the 64 Mets outdrew the 64 Yankees by 400,000, and no one expected the Mets to go anywhere.
    Even the 93 Y’s had an average attendance above the league average; 95′s attendance drop was probably due to the 94 strike more than anything else.
    Additionally, from 96 to the present, the Y’s attendance has been consistently above the league average.

  21. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    Tom, its from an album titled “Pure Pop for Now People,” and the “Rollers” were the “Bay City Rollers.”

  22. Jerkface June 26th, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    Who is this Shark that everyone is talking about? JS?

  23. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 5:04 pm

    Tom, I am not sure, but it may have been Austinmac who called me out on my “Classical Gas” reference.

  24. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    Yea they call him Shark I think. Easier to spell.

    I’d give up those guys for a year and a half of Shark. The Yanks are going to need a No. 2 next year anyway and those pitchers on the market are going to be overpriced.

    This way you keep Murphy as your second No. 1 catcher for the long haul and you let Pirela get a shot at 2b. The guy can hit and I don’t think his fielding is as bad as his rep.

    But I do everything I could to keep Severino. Judge is not as special. At least not now.

    And you actually have a shot if you make it to the playoffs with Tanaka and Shark.

  25. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    nice austin! was that your first time at the stadium?

    i know mel started against the senators, so it had to be august 26th, 1964 for me. yankees lost 2-0, mel’s first ml loss. 50 years ago this summer.

  26. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    One for jmills, who posted a Doors reference the other day: “Driver where you taking us.”

  27. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    I am waiting for the ghost of Fred McGriff to resurrect himself with one of the many sure fire trades being bandied about here.

  28. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    the 64 mets had the new stadium and 51 million visitors to the adjacent world’s fair, so you really can’t include that.

    im just saying that attendance revenues and ratings will crash if they do a rebuild.

    im not saying that they shouldn’t rebuild, but people shouldn’t fool themselves into thinking that they can rebuild with young guys from the farm AND sell tickets AND compete all at the same time. a rebuild will cost them alot of money in the short term.

  29. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 5:16 pm

    Jim,

    That was me, but you got me with The Rollers’ tune.

  30. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    Ys,

    No, we also went in 1961 and I saw a Ford victory and a Maris’ homer. Here I am, still hooked after all these years. The rest of my childhood games were black and white.

  31. hardwired7 June 26th, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    “Who is this Shark that everyone is talking about? JS?”

    Yes, Samardzija.

    He definitely has a case of Saltalamacchia-itis. Any nickname that sticks is preferable to correctly spelling out that last name.

  32. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    so 50 years ago i was taken into the yankee’s universe…

    …just as it was about to collapse!

  33. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    Ya,

    My Mel game was August 11th. I remember a headline from the next day’s story “Memo to AL, Yanks Ain’t Dead”. No, they were not. Not yet.

  34. Pat M. June 26th, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    Y’s Guy, Austinmac…..I too was at The Stadium for that Mid August pennant race game vs. The Chi-Sox. The Mick hit this monster shot into the centerfield bleachers which was said to be the longest ball ever hit there….. I remember clearly losing sight of the ball in the blue sky eventually I turned my eyes to Chicago Centerfielder Mike Herchberger ( ? ) as he stopped chasing the ball somewhere near the monuments. Yanks won that game and went on a roll to beat out The Twins, Baltimore and The White Sox and win the AL Pennant. As we all know now that was the end of The Mantle Era as they’d end up losing in 7 to The Cards

  35. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    Pat M.,

    I read the next day Mantle said he almost slammed his bat down thinking it was a fly out. I had forgotten it was the White Sox. I should have remembered because we went the night before and Juan Pizarro beat us.

    I think I was the first to say last year reminded me of 1964 because I suffer from post-collapse syndrome. The first five years of my baseball life was at worst a loss in the Series. A life’s lesson was learned for the next decade.

  36. mick June 26th, 2014 at 5:42 pm

    1960 was no walk in the park.
    But as a child I knew we were going to the WS every year.
    Until it happened.
    This does not feel like it..

  37. Pat M. June 26th, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    mick…..I was thinking about this the other day, this is the 2nd straight July that the Yanks are a bubble playoff team or even a possible seller ( although that doesn’t happen in Yankee world ). You just read about possible trades and what it’d cost for a David Price etc., I just shake my head in despair and lament on how The Yanks could have restocked their organization with top shelf talent had they just looked at the 2013 Jeter less season as the real transition year and moved Cano, Granderson because I believe that they had already decided not to resign either guy…..

  38. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    I do not recall my 1st Y’s game, but I believe it was twi-night DH against the RS in 1964, and to be honest I do not even recall the outcome. Although, I do remember attending Y’s games in the late 60′s and early 70′s when attendance probably averaged a little better than 10K per game, and if not for the giveaways, such as bat day, the Y’s would probably had drawn less than one million fans.
    But it was a different time, since a team’s revenue came mostly from ticket sales and local television revenue; there was no team marketing memorabilia or Jersey sales and if a team failed to make it in the local market they would just pick up and move. Moreover, BB teams could not blackmail local officials by threatening to pick up an leave town(The Dodgers tried and failed).

  39. mick June 26th, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    I just shake my head in despair and lament on how The Yanks could have restocked their organization with top shelf talent had they just looked at the 2013 Jeter less season as the real transition year and moved Cano, Granderson because I believe that they had already decided not to resign either guy…..
    ===================
    Pat M—I don’t think they think that way, never have, never will…..if Hal is indeed running things, even if never a ball fan, it’s not in his DNA to think small market style.
    I have no idea what’s gonna happen with our team and those that pretend to have a crystal ball are just wasting their time…..saying I told you so isn’t worth the blog paper it’s written on.

    They might have known they weren’t coming back but that doesn’t mean any team was offering us anything worthwhile either.

  40. mick June 26th, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    JimK

    I still remember my 1st game, 7/4/61, what a year, doubleheader vs Det . Yanks 1 game out.
    We waited on a long line and bought tickets at the Stadium, day of game. Sellout, att. ~ 75,000
    My Dad had a flair for the dramatic.

    It must have been 95 degrees, I remember the smell of cigar smoke and a man vomiting behind me…

  41. RhapsodyInBlue June 26th, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    I’m anxious to see what happens before the TD. There is so much they need at this point. Hard to know what they’ll get from CC if anything, same is true of Pineda.

  42. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Pat M. You are probably right, Cano and Granderson were not going to fetch much during the 2013 season. I still believe the Y’s missed the boat with Cano after the 2011 season, when they did not look to extend his contract.
    As to Granderson, his sell date would have been after the 2012 season, not 2013 when he missed almost the entire season.

  43. Pat M. June 26th, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Dodgers told Robert Moses that NO we are not moving to Flushing Queens. So O’Malley already had a plan in place which secretly included Stoneman’s Giants. NY City Hall called Wlter O’s bluff and he kicked their tails and changed the landscape of American Sports……Now did O’Malley fail ???? Los Angeles gave him a parcel of very valuable land and he built and designed his palace in Chavez Ravine

  44. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Mick, I think given the circumstances you describe I would have remembered that game also.

  45. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Josh Norris
    ?@jnorris427 Just got off the phone with a scout who called Luis Severino the best pitcher he’s seen all year. #Yankees

  46. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:12 pm

    Pat M. O’Malley did alright for himself, but not so much the Brooklyn Dodgers fans. I may be mistaken but isn’t the Nets stadium located where O’Malley wanted to move the Dodgers?

  47. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    That’s quite a compliment about Severino. He is sounding like a trade chip, but he is the kind of guy we should keep except for Price, in my opinion. Maybe Shark(it is easier isn’t it).

  48. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 6:16 pm

    Not that I care about such things, but if the season ended today, the Yanks would have four top 100 prospects: Sanchez, Severino, Judge, and Refsynder.

    I think they only had one going into this year, Sanchez.

  49. wanzies222 June 26th, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Greetings…I’ve got a few minutes before we get the g’babies for the night…

    A couple of comments about potential trades:

    1) Shark (Samardzija) and Price are the two #1′s available, followed by Hammel/Lee/Kennedy.

    2) Cubs and Yanks do not match up at all as trade partners. A third team would have to be included and that’s particularly difficult at the deadline, so NYY first target is still Price. Yes, they know he is going to require a premium, but they don’t care (they being ownership).

    3) Hitting is not realistic at the TD; more likely in the offseason.

    Summary: FO is hunkered down; scouts have done their work; now they are simply watching for signs of injury. You won’t hear much that is true on the rumor mill from NY.

    FWIW, NYY are trying real hard to get a deal done ASAP for SP.

    Thanks for your time.

    Steve

  50. Hankflorida June 26th, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    On another note, HankFlorida, if you are still reading the blog posts, I have a question based on your response to one of my previous posts: “Do you think the Y’s should have kept Granderson?”

    Jim, I am on the same page as you as I would have kept a home run player who could hit forty home runs by taking advantage of the Stadium. I cut my teeth on a team that had DiMaggio, Keller as Heinrich, and I always thought that it was much easier to get power players in the outfield and the table setters should come at 2nd, SS and 3rd. I will never understand this outfield of Ichiro, Ellsbury and Gardner as I would prefer Granderson and Beltran playing at the corner outfield positions.

  51. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    One other footnote on the Dodgers and the Giants moving: both locations are now NYC housing projects, which was one of Moses defining “achievements.”
    Note: I grew up in housing project, but I am fairly sure the homeowners in the surrounding areas were not very happy about having a housing project in their neighborhood. I tried to join the local LL, and was told the “projects” were outside the zone for membership.

  52. Pat M. June 26th, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    JimK…..My position although not well received back in July 2012, was regardless of what was going to happen in the postseason it was time to retool and get younger. Then Jeter blew out his ankle and that was only the beginning of what was soon to follow the 2013 season

  53. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    i also remember going to a mets game in 1964 because we went with my uncle and cousin and my cousin had one of those annoying long orange horns they sold at the world’s fair. (my brother just reminded me of that.)

  54. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 6:25 pm

    The problem with Severino apparently is he’s not filled out yet. His mechanics aren’t great and you can’t truly stabilize the mechanics until the body matures. He’s getting all his velocity now from his arm whip.

    I’m sure there’s folks on this site better qualified than I regarding what all this means. I wonder if when he fills out he actually could lose some of his stuff.

    Young pitchers are just such huge risks in so many ways. But this is the best guy the Yanks have had in quite some time.

  55. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    my dad was a giants fan so he had no loyalty to either team.

  56. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    Y’s guy, I went to several games at Shea, but the one I remember was a Saturday game in 1965(?) where Koufax pitched a 5-0 shutout.
    The price was 10 coupons from Bordens Milkshakes.

  57. Pat M. June 26th, 2014 at 6:32 pm

    Steve… I was told yesterday that Theo and Cashman keep moving names around with the hope of getting something done and possibly lead to a larger deal. Now as for the 3rd team I don’t know but Theo seems to want both Bryant and Baez on the big club positioned for 2015. They might want to get them up by August……

  58. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    I appreciate the tidbits Steve provides here, but if what he’s saying is indeed accurate (and I’m not suggesting it isn’t), then all I can do is shake my head regarding the FO’s ability to self evaluate.

    Sure, it would be nice to snag an elite starting pitcher but how can these people in charge watch this team for nearly 70 games and conclude that this team does not need a bat at the TD.

    The starting pitching this season, especially without 3 of their starters, has not been that bad. It’s clear that Nuno needs to be replaced (and will be replaced by Sabathia) but the others have done a pretty good job.

    They didn’t make the playoffs last season because they couldn’t score runs. They probably won’t be in the postseason this year for the very same reason.

    So let’s fix our inability to score runs consistently by adding another starting pitcher!!!

  59. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 6:35 pm

    i remember the borden’s coupons! that’s a blast from another lifetime!

    apparently i saw some guy named buster narum throw a 5 hit shutout against the yankees according to the boxscore of august 26, 1964. attendance was 14K and the game only lasted 2 hours 7 minutes!

    narum won only 14 major league games.

  60. wanzies222 June 26th, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    Pat M -

    I’ve heard the same thing. A couple of guys told me that they thought a 2-3 for 6-8 might work, but it would take most of the Yanks’ top guys. They’d like to leave a few bullets, obviously.

    Theo is tough to deal with; a real hugger when it comes to the kids.

    Steve

  61. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    for some reason the filter will not allow the yankee’s starting lineup for that game to go through

  62. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    Y’s Guy, Apparently the game I attended was on June 12, 1965.

    http://www.baseball-almanac.co.....6506120NYN

  63. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    jimk…an ‘unmanageable 2 hours 57 minutes!

  64. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    Ys Guy, I just looked at the time of the game and thought the exact same thing; games back then seldom lasted more than 2 1/2 hours.

  65. Hankflorida June 26th, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    My first game was on a hot day in August in1937 watching Gehrig and DiMaggio while sitting in the bleachers at a double header. Double headers on a Sunday was when my father took me to the games, and I remember one in particular against the St Louis Browns in 1944 where their one armed ball player, Pete Grey, made his debut at the Stadium. I also remember going with my friends to a game against the Chicago White Sox where Floyd Baker hit a foul ball off Yankee pitcher, Bob Porterfield, and I caught it.

  66. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I remember watching Tommy John pitch and I think the game took 87 minutes.

  67. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 6:56 pm

    Hank, you still have the ball?

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    Hank, wow! This novice is lucky to have you here. In return, I have a bag full of Dave Stieb stories and a ball Lymon Bostock gave to me. Not bad, eh?

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    Call me loose, Tommy John is in my hall. Cripes, hockey put Clark Gillies in.

  70. JimK June 26th, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    I must be mistaken about the length of Tommy John’s game; it was probably just under 2 hours.

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    Every baseball fan wants very good, young, cost controlled players on the team. I want that as much as anyone. But not just because they are young. Because they are good and ready and have proven themselves.
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    Agree with this and other comments on the subject. Almost 70% of BA top 100 prospects end up as busts. Numbers only tell part of the story, really need insiders to assess raw talent and even they don’t agree and have a high miss rate. In other words, more art than science and a ton of luck.

    However, a prospect who does make it and produces at elite level in the MLB is a financial bonanza for a team. Tons of surplus value for 6-7 years. Organizations treasure prospects like some people treasure lottery tickets. The odds are long but the payoff high, and in tough times dreams of what might be allow GM’s and owners to sleep peacefully. Some teams have been in deep slumbers dreaming of prospects taking them to the promised land for decades.

    Hype the prospects as much as possible and then deal them for useful MLB players to organizations who live for their future dreams and have given up on the present. If a prospect is advanced enough in the system and fills a clear organizational need like there is at 2B then keep him. So a guy like Ref should obviously be given a shot to upgrade 2B. I think he might struggle a bit against good RHP’ers, but sometimes you get lightning in a bottle for a month or two like with Solarte.

    I am surprised that Solarte was dumped so quick by so many after a bad week. This platoon nonsense has me shaking my head since he is better from the left side. He is not an All Star but I think he is a league average bat, even if he is a bit streaky

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