Sunday, February 7, 2016

TGP Prospects Month Open Thread & The Super Bowl featuring Cam Newton

You know it is surprisingly hard to find a baseball related video for our open thread containing either Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton or the Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning. This is the best I could do, Newton throwing out the first pitch at BB&T Park. Enjoy and quit reading, the Super Bowl is on for goodness sake! Check back tomorrow though, don't forget about us!

Beating the Dum Once Again for Juan Uribe

Back this winter, long before most publications, blogs and newspapers were running the story and long before Greg Bird underwent season-ending shoulder surgery, we here on the Greedy Pinstripes beat the drum for signing Juan Uribe to a small one-year deal or a minor league deal for depth. Uribe is seemingly the perfect fit for this team, he’s a veteran right-handed bat who has not only been there before but can also play a multitude of positions including third base, first base and the outfield. Now that Bird is down and the popular publications and media outlets are jumping on the Uribe wagon I figured I would bring up the idea as well… again.

Reportedly the Cleveland Indians have been in talks with Uribe and are the only team to publicly announce directly or indirectly that they are interested in the 15-year veteran’s services. Uribe is a leader and has been called a great clubhouse presence everywhere he’s gone in his career and would presumably fit in well in a Yankees clubhouse that seems loose and that likes to have fun while winning games. See Alex Rodriguez snatching helmets off of home run hitters, Slade Heathcott’s fist pumps and Didi Gregorius’s million dollar smile for recent examples of this clubhouse mentality in the Bronx.

Uribe has played 556 career games at third base, 215 games at second base, four games at first base and 917 games at the shortstop position, all positions the Yankees could use a backup or two at, and along the way has found the knack for hitting in clutch situations, something that never hurts for a potential playoff team. Uribe hit .253 with 14 home runs and 43 RBI in 119 games last season as a part-time player and it will simply come down to, in my opinion, whether the Indians offer him a starting job or whether he would rather “chase a ring.”

Uribe has played for six teams in his career (the Rockies, White Sox, Giants, Dodgers, Braves and Mets) after being signed as an international free agent back in 1997 and it looks like he’s destined for his 7th MLB team this upcoming season. Will that be in New York, Cleveland or with some other mystery team we don’t know about yet? I honestly have no idea, stay tuned. I will leave you with this though, when you have such an obvious need and upgrade available for whatever reason Cashman doesn’t usually sign these players so I’m not getting my hopes up. 

Fantasy Baseball: Who are the Pittsburgh Pirates?

The Pittsburgh Pirates have quietly made the postseason as a National League Wild Card team three consecutive seasons and enter 2016 looking for a fourth straight trip to the postseason. While the team would like to avoid the Wild Card Playoff round for obvious reasons I am pretty sure the team will take any playoff spot they can get. The same can likely be said for you and your fantasy baseball league this season. Just get into the playoffs and give yourself a shot to do some maneuvering to win the league championship. Maybe these Pittsburgh Pirates can help you.

While everyone salivates over drafting McCutchen you may want to keep an eye out for Starling Marte. Marte has stolen over 100 bases in the last three seasons combined and set career highs in home runs (19) and RBI (81) in 2015. Marte is getting closer and closer to his prime and he may become a perennial fantasy stud as soon as this season. The same can be said for Gerrit Cole who enters his fourth MLB season fresh off a 19 win and 2.60 ERA campaign in 2015.

While we’ve covered McCutchen and Marte we would be silly not to at least mention their fellow outfielder Gregory Polanco in this post. Polanco is at least a step or two behind his battery mates in the outfield but he possesses the same speed and power combination as the other two do. Polanco should be fully recovered from the knee injury that hampered his 2015 production for much of the season and should be able to give you good quality from a later round pick.

The final pick for you today is not a pick that will help you on draft day but could help you by the end of the season. Every year we see a class of prospects that come up around June or July and take the league by storm for the second half of the season, see Carlos Correa’s 2015 campaign as a recent example of this, and the 2016 class may be led by Josh Bell. Bell, now 23-years old, is an outfielder by trade but was moved to first base simply because he’s blocked by so many talented players. Pittsburgh looks to have a combination of Michael Morse and Jon Jaso at the position to begin the year but they can only keep Bell down for so long and when they finally let him out he is likely going to take out all his frustration on opposing National League pitchers. Keep him on your watch list.

So there you have it, technically four players that could help you in your fantasy draft and they are all either young or prospects. I love Prospects Month and I love fantasy baseball so I really enjoy putting these posts up and I hope you enjoy reading them just as much. Pass them along if they help. 

TGP Prospects Month Top 29 Prospects - #23 Tyler Wade

I know what you're thinking, this dude is absolutely crazy. He's finally lost it now. Daniel Burch is dumb and he doesn't know prospects. Hear me out though because I don't see what the rest of the world sees in Tyler Wade and that's why he's ranked so highly on my listing.

Wade was drafted as a shortstop with a huge bat, he hit well over .500 during the season he was drafted out of school, but he has been anything but since coming over to the professional side of baseball. Don't get me wrong, I like Wade, but I don't think his future is as a shortstop with this organization. I truly believe his value comes as a shortstop and that is why I have him ranked so low.

He's athletic, he has a great glove, strong hands and quick feet but his arm is barely adequate at the minor league level. I believe his future is as a second baseman in the majors and his offense is truly lacking for a second baseman. He has absolutely zero power, I could get from behind my computer and hit more home runs in a home run derby than he could, that he's a line drive type hitter that sprays the ball all over the field.

He has speed but like Brett Gardner he lacks the instincts, to this point anyway, to steal bases at a consistent level in the Majors. He hits well but his walk totals in the lower levels of the minors are merely average or adequate. He was exposed in the Arizona Fall League as one of the weaker hitters in the league this winter as he faced advanced talent.

I don't mean to get down on Wade too much but rather than post everything that is good about him, and there is plenty trust me, I felt compelled to defend why I have him ranked so low on my list while so many others have him in or around the Top 10. If he makes it as a shortstop at the major league level then he deserves to be higher but if not he's just another 8th place type hitter on a National League team that bunts in front of the pitchers spot. That's not Top 10 talent in my opinion, sorry.

23. Tyler Wade
24. Nick Rumbelow
25.Jordan Montgomery
26.Trey Amburgey
27. Ben Gamel
28. Austin DeCarr
29. Thairo Estrada
30. James Pazos

Meet a Prospect: Tyler Cloyd

The New York Yankees are stockpiling talent in their minor league system and may need to hand out triple digits at this year’s spring training camp. That’s okay, the Yankees have never been shy about being different or setting trends rather than following them, they don’t have names on the backs of their uniforms, they don’t allow their players to grow beards and they were the first to wear the pinstripes full-time on their uniforms. With this said the team added two more potential pieces to their minor league depth stockpile this week in third baseman Deibinson Romero, who we met yesterday morning as a part of Prospects Month, and today’s showcase as well. This is Meet a Prospect: The Tyler Cloyd Edition.

Tyler James Cloyd was born on May 16, 1987 and spent his college years playing baseball for the University of Nebraska at Omaha. As a member of the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks Cloyd was able to catch the attention of the Philadelphia Phillies who drafted him in the 18th round of the 2008 MLB First Year Players Draft. Cloyd spent four not-so-notable seasons in the Phillies minor league system before finally becoming a bit of a household name in 2012, at least in many Philadelphia based households. Cloyd was expected to start the 2012 season in Double-A with the Reading Phillies but instead was bumped up to Triple-A due to a suspension and made the most of the opportunity. Cloyd pitched his way to a Triple-A All-Star Game appearance during that 2012 campaign and was also named the International League’s Most Valuable Pitcher.

All that hard work paid off in 2012 when the big league Phillies called Cloy up to the show and allowed him to make his MLB debut on August 29, 2012. For you trivia buffs out there Cloyd replaced a man by the name of Cole Hamels and went on to pitch six innings allowing just three runs on seven hits. Cloyd would win his first MLB decision later that season pitching seven innings of one-run ball against the Cincinnati Reds leading the team to carry him in their bullpen for the 2013 season. Cloyd made 11 starts and two relief appearances in 2013 but could not replicate his success posting just a 2-7 record with a 6.56 ERA.

Cloyd was designated for assignment after that lackluster 2013 campaign and was almost immediately claimed by the Cleveland Indians. Just a month later Cloyd was designated for assignment again and this time cleared waivers and hit the free agent market. Cloyd agreed to a new minor league deal with Cleveland two weeks later and headed down to the Indians Triple-A team the Columbus Clippers. As a member of the Clippers Cloy threw a no-hitter on July 30 in a 13-0 victory against the Louisville Bats. Apparently it’s a tough crowd to please in Cleveland though because the Indians released Cloyd on January 6 of 2015.

A mere two days later Cloyd found a new gig but he had to go a long way to get there. Cloyd signed with the Samsung Lions of the Korean Baseball Organization and spent the entire 2015 season in the KBO. Cloyd did enough to catch MLB’s eye while with the Lions and especially caught the eye of Brian Cashman and the New York Yankees and the team signed him to a minor league deal to kick off Prospects Month here on the blog. Now the Yankees have another weapon and another piece of depth heading into their 2016 campaign thanks to Cloyd. Welcome to the team, welcome to the organization and welcome to the family Tyler. 

E:60 Story “The Family Business” Selected a Top Story in 2015

ESPN E:60 Segment "The Family Business" Selected As One Of The Top Three Stories of 2015


Thunder 1B Greg Bird and Bat Dog Derby pose for an ESPN camera on the field before Opening Day 2015. (Dave Schofield)

From December 24-31, ESPN ran its E:60 Top Stories of the year program and "The Family Business," chronicling the three generations of Thunder Bat Dogs, Chase, Derby and Rookie was selected as one of the top three.

The E:60 segment was first broadcast on Tuesday August 11 to a national audience on ESPN.

The story was conceived by ESPN E:60 Producer Matt Rismiller, who spent five full days filming at ARM & HAMMER Park and at the Bat Dogs' training facility, The Green Leaf Pet Resort & Shelly's School For Dogs in Millstone, NJ. The crew was given all-access passes to the ballpark to tell the story of the lives of Chase, Derby & Rookie and the relationships of fathers & sons with the game of baseball.

"The Family Business" was told through the eyes of Derby and narrated by Bob Peterson of PIXAR. The Academy Award Nominated Writer, Director and Voice Actor has been part of many of PIXAR's box office hits, including Mosters, Inc., Finding Nemo, Toy Story 3 and UP! Peterson co-wrote, co-directed and voiced the main character Dug the Dog in UP!

Thunder players Greg Bird, Taylor Dugas and Fred Lewis were each featured in the piece in addition to several front office members.

The Thunder have seen incredible response to "The Family Business" from all over the United States via e-mail, Facebook and Twitter.

Fans can see the E:60 video piece by clicking here.

Thunder fans will have their next chance to see world-famous Bat Dogs Derby and Rookie in action on Opening Night, Thursday April 7when the Thunder host the Erie SeaWolves (Detroit Tigers) at 7:00pm. Groups, season tickets, Pic-A-Plans and mini plans for the 2016 season are on sale now at or by calling 609-394-3300.

The Thunder, Double-A Affiliate of the New York Yankees, play in the 12 team Eastern League. The Thunder have drawn over 8.8 million fans to ARM & HAMMER Park over 22 years and have won the three major awards that Minor League Baseball teams can win; the Johnson Trophy for the "Nation's Best Franchise" (2005), the Larry MacPhail Trophy for Outstanding Club Promotion (2003) and the Bob Frietas Award for Long-Term Success (1998, given by Baseball America). The team has given back over $5.7 million worth of goods, services and monetary donations through Trenton Thunder Charities, under the Grand Slam We Care Foundation umbrella. The Thunder can be found online at,, and

This Day in New York Yankees History 2/7: Alex vs. Biogenesis

On this day in 2014 Alex Rodriguez dropped two separate lawsuits against Major League Baseball over his season long suspension over steroids and his link to Biogenesis. Rodriguez was one of 14 players suspended due to the investigation but was the only player to contest his penalty which led to the record setting suspension.

Also on this day in 1949 New York Yankees outfielder Joe DiMaggio becomes the first American League player to make at least $100,000 for a season. Hank Greenberg was the first player to reach the six figure mark after the Pittsburgh Pirates gave him the deal in 1947 after the Detroit Tigers waived him. The Yankees haven't stopped spending big since.