Sunday, October 12, 2014

If the Giants Make the World Series...

If the San Francisco Giants make the World Series this season they may owe the Yankees organization and the Steinbrenner family a share of the funds that comes with the trip. San Francisco has seven former Yankees just on their coaching staff alone. Here is the list:

  • Giants pitching coach Dave Righetti spent the 1979-1990 seasons in the Bronx. 
  • Giants hitting coach Hensley Meulens spent the 1989-1993 seasons in the Bronx. 
  • Giants first base coach Roberto Kelly spent the 1987-1992 and the 2000 season in NY.
  • Giants assistant hitting coach Joe Lefebvre spent the 1980 season in pinstripes.
  • Giants base running coordinator Henry Cotto spent the 1985-1987 seasons with the Yankees. 
  • Giants assistant JT Snow was a Yankee in 1992. 
Shout out to It Is High for the list....

Do We Really Want "Big Game" James Shields?

Do the Yankees really want "Big Game" James Shields when he becomes a free agent after the 2014 season? At first glance I would say yes, he is AL East proven, he is postseason proven, he is young enough, and he would add some incredible stability to the Yankees pitching staff. Then I saw the tweet above from Sweeny Murti after his Game One start in the ALCS and that may change my mind.

Sure Shields may get us to the postseason, which is something I would take every day of the week after the last two seasons, but Shields doesn't look like he could get us far in the postseason. With a team chock full of questions marks in the starting rotation in 2015 already so we really want another if we head into October?

Originally I said yes but after a few starts this postseason I may be changing my mind a bit.

Tanaka & Betances Baseball America's All Rookie Team

Baseball America has been naming their Top 20 prospects from each of the minor league league's this offseason and this weekend announced their All Rookie squad. Two members of the New York Yankees made the cut as Masahiro Tanaka was named as one of the five starting pitchers and Dellin Betances was named as the only relief pitcher on the team.

Here is the write up for Tanaka:

“The Yankees’ $155 million import pitched like a Cy Young Award winner in the first half, going 11-3, 2.10 and leading the AL in wins and ERA, but an elbow injury scuttled his second half and leaves his 2015 season in doubt after a pair of lackluster September starts … he proved he can pitch like an ace, health permitting, in both Japan and the U.S."

Yankees Should Make Alex Rodriguez The Regular First Baseman

Yesterday it was reported that Joe Girardi has had conversations with Alex Rodriguez about playing first base. We don't know how extensive those talks were, but it's certainly something to consider since a second first baseman would be a very good thing for the Yankees to acquire. And that's even if they bring Chase Headley back, because Chase would likely be the regular third baseman.

"I'm a Yankee again, and I will play regularly at 3B? Sweet!"

If something were to happen to Mark Teixeira, like... say... he nicks his face while shaving and needs a day to recover from it, then what does Girardi do? Thanks to Martin Prado, it actually wouldn't be that difficult. But keep in mind that somebody from the bench is going to come into the game. And I think it's a safe bet that the offense would get weaker as a result, because it's very rare that a bench player will out-hit a regular.

Not to mention that the defense would likely take a hit.

For example, to start, let's say the Yankees bring back Chase Headley. While losing a gold glover in Teixeira at first base would hurt, they could probably get by just fine with Headley there. But if Chase were the regular third baseman, and he were replaced there by Alex Rodriguez, then that would be a much bigger problem. Basically, the defense would go down a little at first base, and would go down a lot at third.

So what do they do to combat that? Play Alex Rodriguez at first base regularly, while Mark Teixeira is the primary designated hitter.

In this scenario, if Mark Teixeira gets a mosquito bite doing the game and needs to take the rest of the night off, you can do so many things, as anybody can DH. And say Alex Rodriguez gets hurt, then just move Tex to 1B. Of course, assuming Tex started the game as the DH, then a pitcher is going to have to hit as you lose the DH when he changes positions. That's not a good thing, but chances are that move wouldn't happen until later in the game when you can pinch-hit for a reliever when that spot in the lineup comes up.

You can't avoid an offensive hit, but with ARod at 1B and Tex at DH you simplify things, and the defensive hit is minimized.

Let's look at things another way...

Alex Rodriguez is not the poster child for great health. In 2011 he missed 39 games for his right knee, missed 36 games due to fracturing his left hand in 2012, and of course had hip surgery in 2013. But he hasn't had any further problems with his right knee, his left hand recovered just fine from the fracture, and he just spent the entire 2014 season resting and recovering from that hip surgery. At this point, ARod should be fairly healthy.

On the other hand you have Mark Teixeira. In 2013 Mark missed 147 games due to tearing a tendon sheath in his right wrist, and has had problems with that wrist since (including missing 5 games this past season). On top of that, this past season, he had to go on the 15-day disabled list because of straining his right hamstring. Furthermore, this past season, he missed time due to issues involving his left wrist, fingers of his left hand, back, trunk, and groin.

The bottom line is that Mark Teixeira is a much bigger question mark, as far as health, than Alex Rodriguez. Because of that, it might be a good idea to make it a goal that Alex becomes the regular first baseman, while Tex becomes the regular DH.

"I know... I know... I have to stay healthy and play right field regularly."

MLB's Official Offseason Schedule

10/21 — World Series begins with home field advantage going to the American League champion.
November— Deadline to offer qualifying offers to free agents 5 days after World Series.
November — Deadline to accept qualifying offers 12 days after World Series.
11/10 - 11/12 — GM Meetings
Nov. 19-20 — Owners’ meetings, Kansas City, Missouri.
12/8 - 12/11 — Winter meetings
1/13 — Salary arbitration filing.
1/16 — Salary arbitration figures exchanged.
2/1 -- Prospects Month Starts on TGP
2/19 — Reporting date for pitchers, catchers and injured players.
2/1 - 2/21 — Salary arbitration hearings
2/24 — Reporting date for other players.
3/3 — Mandatory reporting date.
4/6 -- Yankees Opening Day

TGP Daily Poll: Cardinals Win Game Two

Call it a gut feeling but I believe that the St. Louis Cardinals will win Game Two of the NLCS tonight against the San Francisco Giants. What say you?

Vote in our poll.

Triple-A Hitting Coach Butch Wynegar Fired

Another option to replaces Kevin Long comes off the board for the Yankees. 

This Day in New York Yankees History 10/12: Casey Stengel Day

Not much has happened on this day in New York Yankees history believe it or not. The team didn't capture any World Series championships, break any records, or win any big games. Casey Stengel made the Yankees news a couple times though when on this day in 1948 the Yankees named Stengel the manager. Stengel was replacing Bucky Harris after never finishing higher than fifth place with the Braves or the Dodgers in his managerial career.

Also on this day in Stengel history the Hall of Fame manager hit the deciding home run in a World Series against the Bronx Bombers. In front of the largest crowd in MLB history, a mere 62,430 fans, Stengel hit his second home run of the World Series for the Giants in a 1-0 victory over the Yankees.