Sunday, September 30, 2012

I'm Sick Of Andruw Jones

See the look on Andruw's face? That smile? Chances are this isn't the first time you've seen it. I'm sure you've seen it after every one of his 46 hits this season. Which is great. I love seeing players have fun playing baseball, which is one reason I love Nick Swisher*. But the thing that bugs me the most about Andruw Jones is we've seen that same look, that smile, another 71 times... the number of strikeouts he has.

*Yes, Swish has been seen smiling after striking out, but I've seen Nick mad at himself as well. Whereas Andruw always seems amused by his failures.

Although I've seen Andruw fail a number of times before, it was Saturday that really pushed me over the edge. It was the top of the 3rd inning, and the bases were loaded with one out. Jones had worked the count full. On the 6th pitch of the at bat, Ricky Romero reared back with his nearly 6.00 ERA and threw a 4-seam fastball, Jones swung and... whiffed. And what look did he have on his face as he started walking back to the dugout?

Not exactly like this, but not too far off either.

Like I said, it was only in the 3rd inning, so it's not like the Yankees lost due to that strikeout. But after seeing the Yankees, as a team, fail over and over again with runners in scoring position, it really ticked me off that the Jays were one out away from getting out of a bases-loaded no-out situation (which they did after Eduardo Nunez lined out one pitch later). The fact Andruw smiled afterwards made me want to jump in my car, drive to Toronto, find Mr. Jones, and beat the ever-loving **** out of him. He didn't have to break his bat over his knee, a la Bo Jackson, but being just a tad upset over striking out in that situation would have sufficed.

It doesn't help that Andruw's batting line this season is .198/.295/.409, including .202/.294/.411 against left-handed pitchers. Oh, and Andruw's only reason for having a job is to hit left-handed pitching, so that batting line against them doesn't fly with me at all.

It also doesn't help that Andruw Jones' fielding leaves a ton to be desired. His fielding percentage in RF this season, where he's played 131.2 innings, is .963. Compare that to a league average of .985. Which is crazy since his fielding percentage in LF, where he's played 321 innings, is a perfect 1.000.

Don't get cocky about that, because I'd still much rather have Brett Gardner out there.

I think my biggest problem with Andruw is the fact that the team has an option... Chris Dickerson. Not that Chris crushes lefties, but his MLB career line of .253/.344/.316 is better than Jones' (sans the power). Looking at his minor league numbers, I'm not really sure why he has only gotten 94 MLB plate appearances against lefties, as opposed to 503 PA vs. RHP. Chris hit .289 against left-handers in 90 AAA at bats. 

It would be one thing if Andruw Jones was having a good season, and therefore holding Dickerson back, but that's not the case. To be frank, Andruw has stunk. And I, for one, can't wait to be rid of him. I don't even think Joe Girardi would want this guy back, and that's saying a lot seeing as how the current Yankee manager seems to have some sort of man-crush on the guy.

The Irony Of Being The Second Wild Card

The Yankees have been more hot and cold then Katy Perry since about the middle of August and has seen a 10 game division lead dwindle to nothing. The Yankees, barring an epic collapse, have at least a second wild card spot locked up this season. Do not get me wrong I would rather have the best record, home field advantage, and the AL East but also do not get me wrong that I would rather get in the post season then watch it at home again. The playoffs are a new season and commonly referred to as the second season and if you have watched baseball in the wild card era you cannot argue against the nick name. Just get in and we will worry about the rest later.

While the sky was falling in Yankeeland, especially on twitter, I got thinking of how ironic it would be if the Yankees won the second wild card this season. It would be ironic because, trivia alert, the Yankees won the first wild card spot in 1995 after Bud Selig implemented it. Granted they lost the division series against the Seattle Mariners that year but they also did go on to win 4 of the next 5 World Series after that. I am in no way comparing the two teams nor am I thinking we're about to start a new dynasty, I just think it would be ironic to get both of the new wild card spots in their first year of existence.

I'm not a very big irony kind of guy though so can we start winning some games? Now preferably? Thanks guys!!

- Daniel Burch

Yankees Magic Number

The Yankees magic number to clinch the AL East
Their number to clinch a playoff spot becomes 1 using the Angels losses.

They play one more game tonight against the Texas Rangers. 

Yankees @ Blue Jays 9/30/12

Erich Chavez homers to bring the Yankees back. 2-1 Jays
Cano scores on a wild pitch to make it 5-2 Jays
Ichiro sac fly makes it 5-3 Jays
Cano double brings the Yankees back to 5-4 Jays
Wild pitch ties the game at 5-5 each!
Eduardo Nunez sac fly makes it 6-5 yankees
Jeter rbi single scores Gardner to make it 7-5 Yankees
Granderson adds two insurance runs with a single to make it 9-5 Yankees
Yankees win 9-6 #untuck

This season has come down to four games, four games to determine whether we are AL East champions, wild card winners, or watching at home for the second time in the Joe Girardi era. The Yankees will send Phil Hughes to the mound hoping that he can even the series and get out of Canada with a split of the four game series. The Blue Jays will send Henderson Alvarez to the mound to try and play spoiler. The game will be televised at 1:05 pm ET on YES.


Derek Jeter SS
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher 1B
Curtis Granderson CF
Raul Ibanez LF
Russell Martin C
Eric Chavez DH

Go Yankees!!

Obligatory David Adams/Corban Joseph Post

We found out today that the Yankees will be without Jayson Nix for the next 10-14 days with a strained hip flexor. That leaves us in quite a predicament because now our only healthy middle infielder on the roster currently is Eduardo Nunez. Now while he has more then held his own with the bat and on the base paths the defense has been questionable and shaky. The Yankees have both Corban Joseph and David Adams on the 40 man roster and both are coming off of overall healthy and bounce back seasons. If the Yankees can justify losing a guy, Steve Pearce, to call up a guy simply to run the bases in Brett Gardner then how can they not call up either Joseph, Adams, or both for defense? This would do nothing but help their game and their confidence to be on a big league bench during a pennant race and would help us if we need a middle infield replacement late in a game, if we go into extra innings, if we have another injury, etc. Unless of course we believe that Casey McGehee, Eric Chavez, etc can handle it in a pinch, which for the record I do not.

This Day In Yankees History 9/30/12

In 1927 Babe Ruth hit his, at that time, record breaking 60th home run of the season on the next to the last day of the season.

Jayson Nix Out 10-14 Days With Strained Hip Flexor

This must change the look of our post season roster and the next four games just a bit. We now only have one healthy back up middle infielder and that is Eduardo Nunez. Jayson Nix , as we know, went back to new York to get an MRI on his hip yesterday and the news was not great. He will miss the next 10-14 days with a strained hip flexor which will mean he will miss the rest of the regular season, any potential wild card game, the American League division series, and some of the AL Championship Series if we were to get that far. He has been clutch and a great back up to have off the bench and this has to hurt a little.

What Do The Yankees See In Andruw Jones?

Our friends over at Sliding Into Home asked the question: What do the Yankees see in Andruw Jones? I have been asking myself this same question and blasting it all over twitter for months now. It especially picked up when I took a second to look at Chris Dickersons MiLB stats before his impending call up in September. Joe Girardi is turning into the guy, Joe Torre Version 2.0, that we all wanted out from under just 5 seasons ago. At first we all got what we wanted the young guys were being used, the bullpen was rebuilt from within and being managed well, and we had a world series ring in our back pockets. Now we see guys like Cody Eppley, Clay Rapada, David Robertson, Boone Logan, and Rafael Soriano up in the pen or being used 28 days out of the month. Anyway I digress, let's look at what the SIH boys had to say about Andruw.

There is no measurable statistic that supports Andruw Jones’ spot on the 2012 New York Yankees roster. None.  There has to be something that I am missing so if somebody can explain it to me, I am all ears. More importantly though, someone needs to tell it to Girardi. Don’t get me wrong, he was fantastic last year in his role. Against southpaws, Jones put up an OPS of .923 as well as an OBP of .384 in 126 at-bats.      

                   It is now September (almost October) 2012, and for the life of me, I cannot wrap my head around the reasoning behind him getting playing time. He should have been shown the door a long time ago but if he is still here on September 29th, I do not expect him to be cut with only one series left in the regular season. What the Yankees can do though is not put Jones on the postseason roster. It won’t excuse the ridiculous amount of leeway that he has received from the organization, but at least he won’t be able to hurt them when it matters most.     

                  Against lefty pitching, Jones is sporting an OPS of .713 to go along with an OBP of .297. Since the All-Star Break, those numbers turn into .524 and .262. Just for kicks, check out his numbers in September. If you don’t feel like it, .593 and .259. He has walked more than he has struck out but when you are putting up numbers like that, there is not even a way someone can say “Well at least, he has drawn a couple walks.” The more you break him down, the worse he looks, and that is not even taking his lack of hustle when he does play. On the rare occasion when he has to hustle, we’ve seen him strolling down to first seemingly without a care in the world. I know that is just pseudo-psychology on my part, but I am just sick to death of watching this guy play.                

     I just cannot understand what the Yankee brass sees in this guy. I would kind of understand if he was a lifetime guy like Jeter or Posada but if the Atlanta Braves can let him walk, I don’t see why the Yankees can’t. Let Melky Mesa get some at-bats, he is an upgrade over Jones. His base running blunder aside, he has excellent speed, can swipe a bag, and play great defense while showing some good power. I would be fine with Chris Dickerson playing, I don’t really care who it is. When you consistently do the same thing over and over again while expecting different results that is insanity.             
Thanks to Trevor Wolfe for the article and letting me know that I am not the only one...

Thinking About 2013: The DH Spot

The Yankees biggest issue over the last what feels like 800 years has been hitting with runners in scoring position. The Yankees want to keep the DH open to give aging guys like Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter days off but we have to do what we have to do. I only mention this because I am willing to sign ANYONE who fits two key pieces of criteria for the 2013 season, they sign a one year deal and they help the team. With that said I want the Yankees, again if they fit those two pieces of criteria, to go out and buy low on the Red Sox DH David Ortiz.

This seems very unlikely, I know, but the off season frenzy and free agency is a time for any fan to dream. The Red Sox as an organization has a slight black eye after signing David Ortiz for a arbitration deal and not giving him the multi year deal that he wanted due to financial reasons but they do not have that excuse anymore. After the Red Sox dumped around $200 million in the deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers they kind of have to sign Ortiz, don't they? Also it will surely cost them, or anyone who signs him, more then the $14.575 million he signed for in 2012.

Let's face it David Ortiz has had a down and injury riddled 2012 season with multiple trips to the DL with an Achilles issue but who hasn't for the Red Sox this year? For that matter who hasn't for the Yankees? I kind of hate to sign a guy entering his age 38 season but, again, for a one year deal and for primarily the DH position I think we can get true value out of David. It is kind of funny how the Red Sox fans hate the Yankees but respect Derek Jeter and, and by no means am I comparing the two whatsoever, it seems like the Yankees fans respect David Ortiz. Even with the down year David still managed to hit over 20 home runs, hit over .300, had an OBP .100 points higher then his batting average, and a 3.0+ WAR.

David has post season experience, World Series experience, experience playing in a big market, and hell you could even argue that he has experience playing in New York as much as these two teams have played each other since the mid 2000's. I have really targeted specific issues when I have written these and David Ortiz screams the end of the #RISPFAIL.

Playoff Predictions : The Lineup

1 - Derek Jeter (R)
2 - Ichiro Suzuki (L)
3 - Alex Rodriguez (R)
4 - Robinson Cano (L)
5 - Mark Teixeira (S)
6 - Nick Swisher (S)
7 - Curtis Granderson (L)
8 - Russell Martin (R)
9 - Chris Dickerson (L)


1 - Derek Jeter (R)
2 - Ichiro Suzuki (L)
3 - Alex Rodriguez (R)
4 - Robinson Cano (L)
5 - Mark Teixeira (S)
6 - Nick Swisher (S)
7 - Curtis Granderson (L)
8 - Russell Martin (R)
9 - Chris Dickerson (L)

No real surprises except for Alex Rodriguez in the 3rd spot and not in the clean up spot. I know a lot of people out there think that your "best" hitter absolutely needs to be in the 3 spot in the lineup but I totally disagree with that. You, in my opinion, use your best hitter in the clean up spot and give massive protection to a "lesser" guy batting in the 3rd spot. Let's face it Alex Rodriguez is getting old and obviously deep in decline, especially in the power department. With Robinson Cano, rather then a .250 hitting Mark Teixeira, batting behind him  and these obvious signs of decline he is going to see a ton of fastballs. Alex can still catch up to a fastball and I think we get the most out of A Rod with him batting there. Also I am kind of a sucker for the whole L,R,L,R,L,R thing in a lineup.

* Note these are what I would personally do more-so then what I think Joe Girardi will do. Unfortunately you will not see much of Chris Dickerson and more of Andruw Jones, Eric Chavez, and Raul Ibanez.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Steve Pearce Claimed Off Waivers By Orioles

Steve Pearce is going back to the Orioles for the final four games of the season after being claimed off of waivers today. This will be the second time this season he was with the Orioles after spending his second time with the Yankees this season. This will be the 5th time Steve has changed organizations this season if memory serves.

Steve will not be post season eligible because he was not on the Orioles 40 man roster at midnight on August 31st. The scales just may have tilted in the Orioles favor in the AL East.

Yankees @ Blue Jays 9/29/12


Robinson Cano sac fly makes it 1-0 Yankees early
Curtis Granderson sac fly makes it 2-0 Yankees
Yankees lose 3-2

The Yankees will face off against the Toronto Blue Jays this afternoon in the third game of a four game weekend set. These two teams have split the first two meetings but the Yankees need the wins so they can get that magic number down. The Yankees will send Andy Pettitte to the mound to face off against Ricky Romero. The game will be televised at 1:05 pm ET on YES.


1. Jeter DH
2. Ichiro LF
3. Rodriguez 3B
4. Cano 2B
5. Swisher 1B
6. Granderson CF
7. Jones RF
8. Nunez SS
9. Stewart C

Go Yankees!!

This Day In Yankees History 9/29/12

Don Mattingly hit his 5th grand slam of the season on this day in 1987 setting a new major league record. These would be the only 5 grand slams he would hit in his entire career.

Mark Teixeira Progressing In Instructional League

Mark Teixeira is now officially on the fast track back to the majors and it started yesterday in the Instructional Leagues. Mark Teixeira took advantage of the wacky rules of the Instructs and got himself seven at bats and even played first base for an inning. He ran the bases at 75-80% and reported no injuries, stiffness, or problems whatsoever.

Today he is scheduled to play another five innings and Joe Girardi came out and said he would be available to be back with the team next week for the final series with Boston. This is great news for a team that has had less then stellar replacement for Teix since his injury.

Jayson Nix To Get MRI

In news that is bound to upset nobody, Jayson Nix is heading back to New York in order to get an MRI on his hip flexor. Chances are Eduardo Nunez will take over Jayson's duties, McGehee and Chavez will help out at 1B and/or 3B, and the team may call upon somebody else for extra bench help.

Mark Teixeira To Return Against The Red Sox

Mark Teixeira's strained left calf first kept him out of the lineup starting on August 27th. Nearly two weeks later Mark was put into the lineup on September 8th against the Orioles, but he ended up re-aggravating the injury and has not played since that point. Well, good news...

Tex will play 5 innings in Instructs today, and Girardi says he'll rejoin the team next week for the series against the Red Sox. It's too bad Mark won't get much time against MLB pitchers before the postseason, but he can't do any worse than his replacements, who have hit .225/.343/.393.

Yankees Magic Number

The Yankees magic number to clinch the AL East
Ther magic number for a playoff spot is 2 using the Angels losses. 

Thinking About 2013: The 5th Outfielder

The last time the Yankees went out and signed an oft injured former star who was young enough to still be in his prime but opted to play for the Yankees as a part time player they signed INF Eric Chavez. The Yankees will presumably want some situation guys off the bench next year much like they did with Andruw Jones and Raul Ibanez this season. Ibanez will be entering his age 41 season so I see no way he comes back to the Yankees but I may have someone in mind who can match or exceed his production. I think it is time for the Yankees to take yet another waiver on a guy who's career has been slowed due to injuries and that is Grady Sizemore.

It is hard to believe that Grady will only be entering his age 30 season entering the 2013 season and what was such a promising career has been abruptly halted by injuries. Grady has only played in roughly 100 games combined in the last three seasons including missing the entire 2012 season but early reports I have seen suggest that he seems more fiery and healthy then ever.

Contrary to twitter rumors this IS Grady Sizemore and NOT me...

Grady signed a 1 year $5 million deal for the 2012 season giving the Indians a home town discount and gave them nothing for it. Unless he just wants to stay with the Indians since they have consistently stayed with him, and I would not blame him whatsoever, I do not see a scenario where he does not sign a one year deal and/or a minor league deal. Those kind of deals basically mean NO risk EXTREMELY HIGH reward and the Yankees tend to get the better end of those kind of deals.

Grady Sizemore has a career batting average in the .280's against right handed starters with 105 of his 139 career home runs against righties. He has drawn twice as many walks career against a right handed starter then he has a left handed one and three times as many steals against right handed pitchers. He screams platoon player for the Yankees in the same situation as Raul has been this season. He is a well below average hitter against left handed pitching.

Not to mention that Grady and his girlfriend would also be a welcome addition to the wives and girlfriends section, I'm just saying.

Robinson Cano's Getting An X-Ray


Robinson Cano was hit by a pitch in the 6th inning of tonight's game. While he remained in the game after the trainer checked him out, the Yankees want to make sure everything is okay. Cano, after all, is the team's most valuable player.

Robbie did have what is called a fluoroscopy at the Rogers Centre, which I hear is like a poor man's x-ray, which turned out negative. But I think having a real x-ray would be ideal. Let's keep our fingers crossed until we hear the results tomorrow.

EDIT: Although the Yankees haven't officially said everything is okay, word is that Cano's x-ray was negative. Oh, and the fact he's starting today at 2B, and batting 4th, is really all we need to hear.

Playoff Predictions : The Rotation

With the Yankees currently having seven starting pitchers, and only four needed to start in the playoffs, the Yankees have some tough decisions ahead of themselves to make. Adding another problem on top of the decision on who will be starting is who will even make the roster. I do not see a need in carrying 7 starting pitchers, I actually think we are a going for a little overkill  with six starters, but Phelps is versatile and flexible as he has come out of the pen for most of the season. This makes one of our starters the odd man out for the post season and I think that man will be Freddy Garcia.

Obviously CC Sabathia is a lock. Andy Pettitte, barring health, and Hiroki Kuroda also seem to be locks. The decision comes down to Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova. Let's look at it statistically to make this decision maybe a little easier.

        Nova - 12-7
        Hughes - 16-13

       Nova - 4.94
       Hughes - 4.10

       Nova - 1.46
       Hughes - 1.24

       Nova - 27
       Hughes - 34

       Nova - 149
       Hughes - 161

       Nova - 54
       Hughes - 44

      Nova - 45.2%
      Hughes - 32.6%

     Nova - 1.6
     Hughes - 1.8

As you can see, based on these key statistics, the 4th starter for the Yankees should be Phil Hughes. The home runs really do Phil Hughes in especially when pitching in Yankees Stadium but he has found a lot of confidence in his fastball lately and has really improved and gotten stronger as the season has gone on. Nova struggled for a big stretch this season before going on the DL with shoulder inflammation. Either way one of these too can and will help us get to the goal we're all looking for, an #untuck.

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Yankees @ Blue Jays 9/28/12

The Yankees find themselves up only by 1 game over the Baltimore Orioles for the AL East title going into play tonight in game 2 of a four game set with the Toronto Blue Jays in Rogers Centre. The Yankees will send Hiroki Kuroda to the mound looking to lower their magic number down from 6 to win the AL East and down from 3 to clinch a playoff spot using the Angels losses. The Blue Jays will send Chad Jenkins to the mound to play spoiler. The game will be televised at 7:05 pm ET on YES Network and MLB Network.



Go Yankees!!

This Day In Yankees History 9/28/12

In 1923 the Yankees beat the Red Sox 24-4 while collecting a staggering THIRTY hits in the game to set an American League record.

In 1947 the Yankees hosted their first Old Timer's Day at Yankees Stadium.

In 2005 Alex Rodriguez breaks Joe DiMaggio's team record for single season home runs by a right handed batter when he belted his 47th home run.

In 2008 Mike Mussina, on the final game of the season, finally got the 20 win season that had alluded him his entire career. He would retire after that season.

Thinking About 2013: The Outfield

The Yankees have a few questions looming that are going to be tough to answer if they are serious about getting under the $189 million luxury tax thresh hold and those begin this off season with Nick Swisher. The decision, assuming we do not go outside the organization, is going to come down to Nick Swisher vs. Curtis Granderson. If we were asked this question at this time last year or even just two or three months ago we would have all said Curtis Granderson and flamed the person who even thought of asking the question but now, not so fast...

Curtis Granderson has, in a lot of fans minds, struck himself out of the Yankees plans beyond 2013. Let's just get one thing out of the way we are going to pick up the option on Granderson for 2013, no doubt in my mind.

Nick Swisher has been killed on twitter for killing rallies, smiling when losing or making bone headed plays, etc etc etc but it has been ignored that he has been exactly what we traded for and way more then we could have ever wanted.

Playoff Predictions : The Roster

MY 25 man roster for the playoffs. Call me greedy, call me biased, or call me crazy but after looking at this roster I truly believe we have what it takes to go all the way this year. Before anyone asks though, NO, I do not think we are going to win it every single season. I WANT to win it every single season but some years you just know that we are going to get exposed in the playoffs. Anyway, enough of that, on to the roster.

C - Russell Martin
1B - Mark Teixeira
2B - Robinson Cano
SS - Derek Jeter
3B - Alex Rodriguez
LF - Ichiro Suzuki
CF - Curtis Granderson
RF - Nick Swisher
DH - Raul Ibanez

BN - Chris Stewart
BN - Eric Chavez
BN - Chris Dickerson
BN - Eduardo Nunez

SP - CC Sabathia
SP - Hiroki Kuroda
SP - Andy Pettitte
SP - Phil Hughes

CP - Rafael Soriano
SU - David Robertson
MR - Joba Chamberlain
MR - Boone Logan
MR - Cody Eppley
MR - Clay Rapada
LR - David Phelps
LR - Ivan Nova

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Yankees @ Blue Jays 9/27/12

Update :
 Yankees lose 6-0
Derek Lowe and Ivan Nova still suck

The Yankees will start what could be an important four game series with the Toronto Blue Jays over the end of this week and into the weekend up in Toronto Canada. The Yankees have a magic number of 6 to clinch the AL East and 4 to clinch at least a playoff spot. The Yankees will send Ivan Nova to the mound so will we see Dr. Jeckyl ( 9/15 start 6 IP 2 ER 8 K's and a win) or Mr. Hyde ( 9/22 start 2.1 IP 3 ER 2 K's and a loss) tonight? The Blue Jays will send Brandon Morrow to the mound looking to be spoilers. The game will be televised at 7:05 pm ET on YES and MLB Network


Derek Jeter SS
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Alex Rodriguez DH
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher 1B
Curtis Granderson CF
Russell Martin C
Raul Ibanez LF
Jayson Nix 3B

Go Yankees!!

Mark Teixeira Running In Instructional Leagues

Mark Teixeira has been down with the instructional league team since Monday taking fielding drills, taking batting practice, and all the other routine things trying to stay in shape for a return to the Bronx before the playoffs. The only thing he has yet to do, until yesterday, was run but Mark participated in some running drills  yesterday for the first time since re-aggravating his calf injury. With only seven games left in the season it is now or never for Mark to test the leg and see if he is going to be able to come back and help us or not. I would rather him stay away from the turf in Toronto so maybe we will see him back for the final series of the year when we finish up with Boston.

This Day In Yankees History 9/27/12

In 1938 Lou Gehrig hits his 493rd, and final, home run in his career before retiring from ALS, or more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease. 15 years earlier to the day he hit his first career home run.

Yankees Magic Number

Yankees magic number to win the AL East
Magic number to clinch a playoff spot is 4

Thinking About 2013 : The Catching Situation

As we all know Russell Martin will be a free agent after the 2012 season, thankfully not signing the extension this past off season, and so will backup Chris Stewart. That only leaves the Yankees with long time back up and fist pumper Francisco Cervelli and Austin Romine, who missed most of the 2012 season with a back injury. What should the Yankees do to shore up, or stop gap for guys like Gary Sanchez, the catching situation for next season? One guy comes to mind when I looked at the 2013 Free Agents from MLB Trade Rumors, Mike Napoli.

Napoli is not going to bat .300, he is not going to be Pudge Rodriguez behind the plate and controlling the running game, but he will be a definite improvement over what we have had the last couple of seasons. Napoli is a power hitting catcher that is currently playing for the Texas Rangers and has played for them the last two seasons. Napoli strikes out a little more then you would like to see but also has a nice on base percentage to even it out. That is just the beginning of what Napoli could bring to this team.

Napoli, like I said, is in his second season with the Texas Rangers so he has post season, pennant chase, and World Series experience which is always a plus in New York. You do not hear about Napoli being a trouble maker, a club house cancer, or anything like that so I consider that another plus to the Yankees. Mike Napoli is also easily considered the best available catcher, unless the Braves somehow have a computer glitch and click DECLINE when asked to pick up the option on Brian McCann, and the Yankees love to get the big names.

While both Napoli and Russell Martin are both hitting around .200 the similarities pretty much stop there. Napoli's OBP is usually around .120 points higher then his batting average and has a mid .400 SLG% year in and year out.In 2014 Napoli will be two years removed from a 30 home run season while Russell has never had a 20 home run season in his career. Napoli is having a considerable "down" season this year and still has a 20 point higher wRC+ at 106 so this kind of seems like a no brainer to me. Napoli also has less errors then Russell Martin, although he is no defensive catcher by any means, and also has some experience at 1B which could come in handy to give Teixeira days off.

The downside of Napoli will be that there are not a ton of power hitting catchers so the market should be pretty high for Mike. Not to mention that this will be his first year of free agency so he will probably want a multi year deal. This season Mike Napoli signed a 1 year,$9.4 million deal to avoid arbitration and stay with the team so expect a, and I say this loosely, significant raise on that. Is he going to command $15 million a season? Doubtful but I do not see him taking an AAV of less then $12 million in my opinion. This should be considered by the Yankees brass and the Yankees fans alike because this, assuming the money is right, makes too much sense NOT to do.

Plus his girlfriend would be a very welcomed addition to the wives and girlfriends section...

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!!