Thursday, April 6, 2017

Can We Have a 2013 Off-Season “Do-Over”?…

In a recent interview, GM Brian Cashman indicated that the Yankees should have traded 2B Robinson Cano at the trading deadline during his last year in 2013.  

I still don’t get the math…  

I would gladly take 10 years at $240 million for Cano’s continued production (despite the injuries in his first couple of years with the Seattle Mariners) over 7 years at $153 million for Jacoby Ellsbury.  Cano is still considered among the best at his position (a few notches below Houston’s Jose Altuve), whereas Jacoby Ellsbury is not on anybody’s top ten list (except maybe for prospective Disabled List candidates).  Ellsbury and Cano are linked because the Yankees opted to sign the former the year they wouldn’t budge from their offer for Cano and he subsequently signed with the Mariners with Jay Z’s help.  

A few more years of high productivity will place Cano into Hall of Fame consideration.  It’s too bad that he won’t do it in Pinstripes.  I don’t entirely blame the Yankees because there was fault by Cano too, but I do think they could have found common ground.  The Yankees never valued Cano like they did for the former Core Four players even though he remains a middle of the order bat.  

The ascent of Gleyber Torres to second base in the Bronx is probably the only thing that will ever ease the pain of Cano’s loss for me (assuming, of course, that Torres gets moved to second).  

I know it was only one start but Jose Quintana did not fare well with his first Opening Day start for the Chicago White Sox.  He gave up 6 earned runs in 5 1/3 innings in the loss to the Detroit Tigers.  One start does not a season make, but he is human.  Of course, if we base one start for the season, CC Sabathia should be the Cy Young Award winner!  Now, we know for sure that’s not going to happen.  I suspect that Quintana, the future Mr Astro or Brave, will be better the next time out.

David Schoenfield of ESPN identified his list of “Must Watch Players” on every major league team.  Surprisingly, he chose Greg Bird over Gary Sanchez.  Nothing against Bird, but I still find Sanchez to be the most intriguing player for his combination of offensive and defensive skills.  But Bird, in two games thus far, has showed more defensive prowess than I expected even if the bat has not come around to his Spring performance yet.  Schoenfield stated “he’s probably not the next Joey Votto, but maybe he could be?”.  No pressure.  It’s a little early to start comparing Bird to first base greats but I certainly feel that he has a chance to make a name for himself.  Maybe he’ll be the next Greg Bird?  I am confident that whatever version he turns out to be, it will be a good one.

Because of weather conditions, both Jordan Montgomery and Chad Green are scheduled to pitch in Tampa today in preparation for a possible start on April 16th as the fifth starter in the rotation.  Assuming that Bryan Mitchell is not the choice, the odds certainly favor Green considering he’s on the 40-man roster.  But if it was up to me, I’d make room to add Montgomery.  I think he brings so much more promise and potential to the rotation than Green does, and he adds the dynamic of being a second left-hander to go with CC Sabathia.

It has been reported that Derek Jeter is part of an ownership group interested in buying the Miami Marlins.  If successful, that would make him Don Mattingly’s boss.  One Yankees Legend reporting to another.  It would be odd, but Jeter has long desired to get into ownership.  Better that he does it in the National League and away from the Yankees.  

So, the Tampa Bay Rays series is over, and the Yankees depart Florida with a 1-2 record.  Masahiro Tanaka underperformed, CC Sabathia overperformed, and Michael Pineda pitched kinda like we’ve come to expect (3 2/2 innings, 8 hits, and 4 runs).  While he did strike out 6 batters, he was ineffective and continues to be the puzzle that is Michael Pineda.  Very disappointing.  Of course, Pineda wasn’t helped by Yankees offense.  The only run scored in the 4-1 loss was a second inning home run by Jacoby Ellsbury.  Outside of Ellsbury (3-for-4) and Chase Headley (2-for-3), the bats were very quiet.  The young Core of Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird and Aaron Judge was a combined 1-for-12.  So, even if Pineda had pitched a quality start, it was a night they probably would have still left with the loss.  

The Yankees now need to re-group as they head to Baltimore to take on the Orioles for a three game series that begins on Friday night.  Let’s hope that Luis Severino pitches more like Sabathia and less like Pineda.  The Yankees get another shot at the Rays next week when they open Yankee Stadium.  

Have a great Thursday!

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