Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Chris Dickerson in 2013

Earlier today Chris Dickerson went 2-4, with 2 RBI and 2 runs, including a home run in the 6th inning. Not only was it a great game for the "kid" (in quotes since he's actually 30 years old), but his first hit of the game came off left-hander Brian Duensing. Which is something as Chris has been criticized due to his ineffectiveness versus same-side pitching (in 592 plate appearances in MLB he's hit .270/.354/.419 against right-handed pitchers versus .244/.337/.308 against lefties).

"Don't get a big head, Chris."

Lately I've been screaming for Dickerson to get a shot, at least in the outfield, over Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones. Which is due more to the poor play of Raul and Andruw, and less about the potential that Chris possesses. The idea of playing a guy with better defense, who's a pest on the basepaths, was attractive thanks to the rest of the lineup being so potent offensively. However, I'd be lying if I said I had Chris penciled into my plans for the team in 2013.

Brett Gardner should be ready to go, as he was activated today and was in the field for the final out of the today's win. Other than him, though, next year's outfield is up in the air. Nick Swisher will be a free agent, Ichiro Suzuki is a free agent, and Curtis Granderson's deal is technically up at the end of the year... although the Yankees do hold a club option on him for another season.

"Sitting here watching sucks, I want in."

Since it's something I'll talk about more in-depth during the offseason, here's a quick synopsis of what I see happening...

Looking at Fangraph's dollar value, Granderson has been worth over $18 million a season since joining the team in 2010. Making that club option of $13 million seem like a bargain. Even if you see Fangraph's dollar value as inflated it doesn't matter, as $13 million for a guy coming off a season with 40 HR truly is a bargain. Regardless of how many times he strikes out. You can bet on him being in pinstripes next season.

Nick Swisher is looking at his final "big" contract, as he turns 32 in November. On top of being able to bat .265, get on base 36% of the time, and hit 25 or so home runs a season, he's also a switch-hitter that can play RF and 1B. There are going to be a number of teams, including the Red Sox, that would love to bring him to their team. All that without bringing up his great attitude. I love Nick, especially since he played college ball at Ohio State, but I can easily see another team offering him more, meaning he won't be back.

That leaves one more spot in the starting outfield. So what will happen? Will they bring back Ichiro, who has hit .326/.350/.474 in his 59 games since being dealt to New York? What about Cody Ross, regardless of the fact he's a right-handed pull hitter, which doesn't play well in Yankee Stadium? I don't know, but I'll tell you one thing that won't happen... they won't give the starting gig to Chris Dickerson.

This is how I imagine some fans are reacting to what I just said.

Dickerson is 30 and has only started in 36 MLB games the last three years, and only played in 100 MLB games the last 3 seasons too. But the main reason I don't see him starting for the Yanks in 2013 is the fact he only had a little over 2 years of MLB service time coming into this season, meaning he won't be a free agent. The team has no reason to press him into playing time, since it's not like he can take a job elsewhere as a starter, like what Jerry Hairston and Jose Molina did after 2009.

And let's face it... injuries are going to happen. Chances are the 4th outfielder is going to see quite a bit of playing time, so Dickerson will play a role with the team next year regardless of whether it's as a starter or a bench player.

So who is the 3rd starting outfielder going to be for the Yankees? Who will join Brett Gardner and Curtis Granderson out there? I'm going to save that post for the offseason.

My cliffhanger is better.

Yankees @ Twins 9/26/12


Yankees win 8-2

The Yankees will finish their three game set with the Twins this afternoon at Target Field looking for a series win and to take one step closer to the playoffs. On the mound for the Yankees will be CC Sabathia coming off of a dominating performance his last time out. The Twins will send Samuel Dedundo to the mound to look at being spoilers. The game will be televised at 1:05 pm ET on MLB Network.


YANKEES (89-65)
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Derek Jeter SS
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher 1B
Curtis Granderson CF
Eric Chavez 3B
Raul Ibanez DH
Chris Stewart C
Chris Dickerson LF

TWINS (65-90)
Denard Span CF
Ben Revere RF
Joe Mauer DH
Ryan Doumit C
Chris Parmelee 1B
Matt Carson LF
Jamey Carroll 3B
Alexi Casilla 2B
Pedro Florimon SS

Go Yankees!!

This Day In Yankees History 9/26/12

In the season of 1961 Roger Maris hit his 60th home run of the season today tying Babe Ruth for the single season record, asterisk or not.

Yankees Magic Number

Yankees magic number to win the AL East!!

Thinking About 2013 : To #HIROK or not to #HIROK

A Real Head Scratcher
The Yankees got more then they ever could have imagined or hoped for when they acquired Hiroki Kuroda as a free agent on a one year $10 million deal this past off season. He has more then filled that second starter position that the Yankees have been looking for, for what seems like forever. Kuroda has been an ace for this club, win loss record withstanding, and a pleasant surprise in a pitcher that came from the light hitting NL West to the big time offensive AL East. The question the Yankees face will be whether they should bring him back for one more season in pinstripes.

"It's All Good"
Let's start with the good things to say about Hiroki Kuroda and the 2013 season. He has far exceeded anyone's expectations coming into the season, including my own. I personally considered Hiroki Kuroda to be the best #3 or #4 starter in the majors when we signed him on the same day we acquired, what I thought would be #2 starter, Michael Pineda. He would come into the 2013 with pitching in New York and the AL East experience and probably post season experience. He has only pitched over 200 IP once in his career, last season, but he does expect to exceed that this season and only pitched over 200 IP twice in his Japanese career. His max innings in his career was in 2005 with Hiroshima Toyo Carp only pitching in 212 IP and CC Sabathia has that by the All Star break #sarcasm.

Yankees COULD Fall Flat On Their Faces
Let's continue with the bad things that could keep Kuroda out of the Bronx in 2013. First and foremost Hiroki will be entering his age 38 season and you have to wonder when the guy will begin to break down and slow down. The other problem will be that he will want a significant raise, one would think, from the $10 million he made last season. Another thing would be whether he wanted a multi year deal, which the Yankees would be absolutely insane to give to him. A third question mark will be whether the Dodgers, who Kuroda has been open about preferring to play for, will continue to open the wallet to sign a fan favorite coming off of very solid season. Not to mention I believe that the Red Sox, with their new found payroll flexibility, could be involved to simply drive up the price or stick it to the Yankees.

"Well? Which Is It?"
This is really a tough situation and decision for the Yankees to be in, although that may not be a bad situation to be in. Kuroda has not shown signs of slowing down, fatigue, or losing anything so most of me wants to say give Kuroda another one year deal worth big bucks and go out and dominate one more time before the Yankees have to get fiscally responsible. Some of me just worries about signing a guy with such age and innings on his arm after all the aging train wrecks we have seen in pinstripes, like Kevin Brown to name an example. At the end of the day I would wait out the market and see what happens but I think Kuroda has forced our hand into giving him another contract. I just hope, and would be totally in agreement with, it is a one year deal for big money rather then a multi year deal.

This Has Been A Paid Advertisement From The #HIROK For 2013 Campaign