Sunday, January 11, 2015

Hall of Fame voters not big fans of A-Rod

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez certainly isn't a fan-favorite after his 2014 suspension for PED use, and that growing dislike for him might be spreading to the Hall of Fame voters.

Many of those who decide Cooperstown's inductees are unlikely to select Rodriguez for the honor, according to a report from Newsday's Steven Marcus. Rodriguez, who still has three seasons left on his current contract with the Yankees, won't be up for the accolade until at least 2022, but BBWAA writers in contact with Marcus say that won't matter. 

"I would expect that he'll be shunned even that far down the road by the same people that continue to resist voting for [Barry] Bonds and [Roger] Clemens in particular," ESPN's Peter Pascarelli said. "And I suspect he'll get that treatment or worse. I really don't expect him to get elected."

It's not that surprising people like Pascarelli feel that way, as Rodriguez has been involved in multiple steroid scandals in his career. Not to mention his recent off-the-field issues, which have also affected the veteran's public image.

Even some who have voted for Bonds and Clemens in the past don't plan to put Rodriguez's name on their ballots, Newsday columnist David Lennon being one of them.

"The difference with Rodriguez?" Lennon said. "Unlike [Bonds and Clemens], A-Rod was severely disciplined by Major League Baseball after testing was implemented, with a record suspension, and was constantly at war with both MLB and the Yankees. That is enough to doom his candidacy for Cooperstown in my mind." 

Bonds and Clemens both retired after 2007, and were left out of the Hall in their third year eligible for it earlier this month. They are eligible for 10 years, though, so there's still time for things to change.

The Yankees likely hope that fact will motivate Rodriguez for the rest of his tenure with them, low as their expectations for him are said to be. 

And An Infield Coach Too!!!

Earlier in the day the New York Yankees finally announced the signing of not one but two hitting coaches and now the team has an infield coach. His name is Joe Espada who was most recently a scout for the Yankees and a third base coach for the Miami Marlins. Notice I said infield coach and not necessarily the first base coach. Mick Kelleher had served as New York's first base coach and infield coach but conceivably this could be made into two jobs. Also it's worth mentioning that Rob Thompson could, and should, be moved off the third base coach job and moved to first base while Espada takes over at third base.

Either way it looks like the Yankees coaching staff is finally decided and not a second too soon.

New York Finally Has a Hitting Coach!

The New York Yankees have finally hired a hitting coach and even hired an assistant hitting coach to go with it. The Yankees hitting coach in 2015 will be Jeff Pentland while Alan Cockrell will be the assistant hitting coach. This marks the first time that the Yankees have had an assistant hitting coach in their storied history.

Pentland was the hitting coach with the Marlins and the Cubs while Joe Girardi was there while also being the hitting coach for the Royals, the Mariners and the Dodgers. Cockrell was the hitting coach for that Rockies team that went to the World Series in 2007.

Next up, a first base coach.

Yankees Lose Huff, Miss Arruebarrena

The New York Yankees let left handed reliever David Huff go this offseason as Brian Cashman continued to stockpile bullpen arms, especially those who throw from the left side, and Huff has found a new home. That home is with the Los Angeles Dodgers who signed the lefty to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training. Huff threw 59 innings last season between the Giants and New York and while his numbers were less than impressive with San Francisco but he really turned things around with New York. 

With the Yankees Huff pitched to a 1.89 ERA in 39 IP and quickly became part of Joe Girardi's "Circle of Trust." Huff will now try and latch on with the Los Angeles Dodgers, the same Dodgers team that recently designated Erisbel Arruebarrena for assignment. Arruebarrena would have been a great fit for the Yankees but apparently he cleared waivers and was assigned to minor league camp as he is also listed on the Dodgers invite to spring training list. 

Two guys the Yankees really could have used are now potentially on the Dodgers.

Quick Yankees 25 Man Roster Update

The New York Yankees have made a few moves since the last time we did one of these so let's get caught back up on who I think the Yankees will send out there on Opening Day. Obviously a lot can and will change between now and then and we will update that accordingly here if and when it happens.

C: Brian McCann
1B: Mark Teixeira
2B: Stephen Drew
SS: Didi Gregorius
3B: Chase Headley
LF: Brett Gardner
CF: Jacoby Ellsbury
RF: Carlos Beltran
DH: Alex Rodriguez

BN: Garrett Jones
BN: Brendan Ryan
BN: John Ryan Murphy
BN: Chris Young

SP: CC Sabathia
SP: Masahiro Tanaka
SP: Michael Pineda
SP: Nathan Eovaldi
SP: Chris Capuano

CP: Dellin Betances
SU: Andrew Miller
RP: Justin Wilson
RP: Adam Warren
RP: David Carpenter
RP: Jose Ramirez
LR: Esmil Rogers

Yankees Hot Stove: A Rod Suspended 162 Games

It was today on this day last season that Alex Rodriguez learned that he would miss the entire 2014 season including any playoff games due to a steroid suspension and his attachment to the Biogenesis clinic. Yankees Hot Stove had plenty to say about the issue and since it's a slow news day on this Sunday morning so let's watch it all over again, shall we? 

Sabathia excited about Yankees' offseason moves

The Yankees' offseason this year might not have been the most memorable to some, but team pitcher CC Sabathia likes the moves they made. 

Sabathia expressed excitement for the players the Yankees have acquired when asked about them Friday night at the first ever boxing card for Roc Nation Sports, the sports agency the left-hander signed with last January. Sabathia, whose hasn't played since late may due to a knee injury, specifically named third baseman Chase Headley and reliever Andrew Miller, and gave his own take on New York as a whole.

"I'm excited to get Chase back," Sabathia told The New York Daily News' Mitch Abramson. "I like the Andrew Miller signing. I think we're in a good spot. Obviously [the front office] made a lot of moves, a lot of transitions, lot of good stuff but I think we'll be fine."

Transitions like letting right-handers Brandon McCarthy and David Robertson sign elsewhere and trading longtime catcher Francisco Cervelli to the Pirates, things that will likely affect the Yankees next season. 

McCarthy was 7-5 with a 2.89 ERA in 14 starts, Roberton successfully converted 39/44 save opportunities and Cervelli hit .301 in 49 games off the bench for them last year, so their absence will certainly be noticeable in the future. Still, deciding not to pursue Roberton did help garner the Yankees' interest in Miller and dealing Cervelli gave them control of lefty Justin Wilson, so it's not like the club didn't get plenty in return.

Not that that's Sabathia's biggest concern or anything.

"Just to be healthy," he said when asked what his hopes for next year are. "If I can be healthy I'm sure all that other stuff will fall in place."

If recent history is indicative of anything, that's a mindset the entire Yankees rotation could use right now, as four of the five hurlers in the group last season went on the DL at some point. The only who didn't, coincidentally, was Hiroki Kuroda, also the only one who left the Yankees this winter.

That leaves Masahiro Tanaka, Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova and Sabathia as those who will attempt to stay on the field more next year, a feat they might have a hard time accomplishing due to the severity of their individual wounds.

This Day In New York Yankees History 1/11: ARod Suspended 162 Games

On this day in 2014 arbitrator Frederic Horowitz reduced Alex Rodriguez's doping suspension from 211 games to 162 games. Rodriguez had appealed the suspension handed down by MLB Commissioner Bud Selig that included any potential postseason games.

On this day in 2001 David Cone agrees to a one year contract with the Boston Red Sox leaving a $500 K guaranteed offer by the Yankees. Cone would make between $4 million to $5 million with Boston with incentives so who could blame him for being a traitor.

On this day in 1983 Billy Martin was hired as the manager of the New York Yankees for the third time. The third time will not be the charm as he would be replaced by Yogi Berra in 1985. Martin would be moved to the front office though so it was not a total loss for Billy.

On this day in 1915 Colonel Jacob Ruppert and Colonel Tillinghast L. Huston buy the New York Yankees from Frank Farrell and Bill Devery for $460,000. Ruppert considers renaming the Yankees the "knickerbockers" to promote his product from his brewery but thankfully doesn't after pressure from newspaper men.