Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Odds of the Yankees Signing This Winter's Top Free Agents, According to Bleacher Report

With the conclusion of the World Series tonight, it'd certainly seem appropriate for fans of each and every MLB team to start looking forward to the offseason.

And by the offseason, obviously. I primarily mean free agency, the time every year where the rich get richer and the poor stay poor. So with that, thanks to Bleacher Report, here are the odds of the Yankees signing this winter's top talent, along with my thoughts on them.

1. Victor Martinez: 5%
According to the site, Martinez, 36, currently wants a four-year deal, something the Yankees just aren't gonna give him. I still expect them to show some interest in him this December, but ultimately not enough to cut a deal.

2. James Shields/Jon Lester: 15%
With this duo, writer Kenny DeJohn simply stated that the Yankees' acquring either of them isn't likely, as the ex-AL East hurlers are both going to ask for top dollar and around seven years. This seems about right, seeing as both are climbing in age.

3. Andrew Miller: 20%
I've always liked Miller, but I like David Robertson more. Give him the money instead.

4. Asdrubel Cabrebra: 50%
It's him or Stephen Drew. Yes, Drew's good on defense, but since Cabrera can also hit I'd definitely make a run at him. It just seems like doing so would help the team more.

5. Brandon McCarthy: 75%
No comment necessary. 

Read the full article here.

Derek Jeter - The Clean Up

Derek Jeter used his Player's Tribune to let the fans in on what it was like to clean up his locker at Yankee Stadium after the season and his career was over. It's an unprecedented read from the Yankees captain and it's a deep, well written, and great read. Check it out HERE and see below for an excerpt.

So about a week after the season was over I took one last trip to the clubhouse, and spent a long time staring at everything in and around my locker. I wasn’t sure where to start or what to do. I gave a bunch of stuff to the clubhouse guys and then just started throwing things out. Someone finally moved the garbage can closer to me so I didn’t have to keep walking over to it.
There were a few special items I knew I wanted to take home: The two bats I used for my last hits in Yankee Stadium and last hit at Fenway Park, the bases the Red Sox gave me from my final game. There were other items, too. But more than any one thing, I know what I’ll miss most of all is the people. So after spending way too long trying to figure out what to take, I just decided to box it all up and ship it to my house in Tampa. I wanted to spend my last afternoon hanging out with the clubhouse guys.

Update on the BYB Hub

Last week Robert Casey of Bleeding Yankee Blue founded the BYB Hub which is basically a one stop shop for baseball bloggers and news sites. Whether you're distinguished as a "pro" or a "rookie" or "prospect" your work can be seen by all in one place. This idea is truly golden and I am in full support of this so I wanted to keep you guys in the loop of what is going on.

At the time of this writing the BYB Hub now has 11 blogs up on the hub and are being automatically updated on the hub giving the sites automatic exposure. You could be #12 by joining the BYB Hub by clicking here.

Yankees Could Be Interested in Cuban Andy Ibanez

The latest player from Cuba to officially defect from his native country in hopes of landing a major league deal in the United States is Andy Ibanez and he is a second baseman. Ibanez is 21 years old and stands 5'10" and 183 lbs from the right side of the plate.

Ibanez does not have any "premium tools or star upside" according to Baseball America but is overall solid at about everything he does on the diamond. Ibanez won the equivalent of a Gold Glove Award in his rookie season in 2011-2012 and slashed .267/.377/.435 in 280 plate appearances last season in Cuba. With all this said many speculate that Ibanez would start out no higher than Double-A ball and more than likely in Low-A or High-A in the minor leagues.

Ibanez did not play the necessary years in the Serie Nacional and would be subject to 2014-2015 International spending caps. Teams like the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and Tampa Bay Rays have already gone over their caps for this season and could easily swallow the penalties to sign Ibanez as a long term investment for their minor league systems.

If the Yankees could land him it wouldn't hurt to have the project and the depth in the system but if he went elsewhere that would be okay too.

The 2010 Offseason That Could Have Changed Everything

The New York Yankees went into the offseason of the 2010 season after failing to defend their World Series crown and an early exit in the postseason. The Yankees faced much uncertainty that offseason like they do most winters but this winter was a little different as their manager Joe Girardi was a free agent.

Girardi was hired for the 2008 season on a three year deal to replace the popular and legendary Joe Torre and promptly snapped the Yankees skid of 13 straight seasons of making the postseason. This was not exactly the way the Yankees wanted to say goodbye to Yankee Stadium and goodbye to Joe Torre but the team bounced back in 2009 to win the World Series. The Yankees were back in the playoffs in 2010 but failed to defend their crown leaving Girardi unsure about his job security.

The Chicago Cubs pursued Girardi hard and heavy this offseason but ultimately on this day Girardi signed a new three year deal to stay with the club. What would the state of the Yankees be in today if Girardi had not signed on with New York and went back to Chicago where he spent some of his playing career? Would the Yankees have made the playoffs in 2011 and the ALCS in 2012? Would the Yankees have missed the postseason in 2013 and 2014? Who knows! One thing I do know is that if he had not signed on with New York on this day in 2010 Joe Maddon would probably be donning pinstripes right about now.

It’s something to think about anyway as we head towards a long and cold, dark winter. 

Korean Southpaw Kwang-Hyun Kim to Be Posted

 Kwang-Hyun Kim will be posted this offseason by his Korean team in hopes of landing a contract in the United States and in Major League Baseball. Kim has been one of the best left handers in the history of the KBO and finally has the seven seasons necessary to be posted. Just as a reminder the KBO, Korean Baseball Organization, does not fall under the same posting rules as Japanese players do. There will be a silent bid and the highest bidder will get the opportunity to discuss a contract with Kim.

Kim is 26 years old and posted a 3.42 ERA this season as one of only four, and the only Korean born pitcher, pitchers to have an ERA under 4.00 after an offensive explosion in the KBO. 

TGP Daily Poll: David Robertson Will Accept a Qualifying Offer

No free agent in Major League Baseball history has ever accepted a qualifying offer before heading into free agency. The Yankees David Robertson will be the first almost tripling his salary.

Vote in our poll!

Quick Hit: Toronto Blue Jays Potentially Get Worse

Just a quick hit this morning after reading the news that the Toronto Blue Jays claimed first baseman Justin Smoak from the Seattle Mariners. Speculation has run amok  that Toronto could move power hitting first baseman Adam Lind to fill some of their holes on the club and this claim may be a precursor to the speculation becoming a reality.

You have to think that Toronto, depending on what they received in return for Lind, would worsen with Smoak on the squad over Lind. Smoak has a career .224/.309/.380 batting line and has not yet hit for the power that Toronto would be losing with the loss of Lind.

This is good news for the Yankees unless the team decides to play Edwin Encarnacion and uses Lind and that plethora of pitching depth to acquire a Giancarlo Stanton.

This Day in New York Yankees History 10/29: Jeter wins Clemente Award

On this day in 2009 Derek Jeter would win the Roberto Clemente Award which is given to the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, and community involvement. Jeter would be the 3rd Yankees to ever win the award, Ron Guidry and Don Baylor the other two, and would join 13 Hall of Fame players with the award.

Also on this day in 1991 the Yankees hired Buck Showalter to replace Stump Merrill as the Yankees manager. In four seasons, including the strike shortened 1994 season, Buck would compile a 313-268 (.539) record as a 36 year old manager. Buck would win the American League Manager of the Year Award and the AL East title in 1994 and would lead the Yankees to the playoffs in the first Wild Card series in 1995.

Finally on this day in 1920 the Yankees hired ex-Boston Red Sox manager Ed Barrow to be their General Manager. Over the next quarter of a century the Yankees would see 14 American League pennants and 10 World Series Championships while Barrow would see a Hall of Fame induction.