Sunday, January 25, 2015

Gardner, Teixeira accept awards at BBWAA dinner

Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner and first baseman Mark Teixeira were two of those honored during the 2015 BBWAA dinner Saturday night in New York, both seeming to accept their awards with much gratitude. 

"I'd like to thank the Yankees organization not only for being so committed to putting such a winning product on the field, but for taking a chance on me in the draft back in 2005," Gardner said after being presented the Good Guy Award for his cooperation with the media. "It's been a real honor to go out every night and put those pinstripes on and I love playing the game of baseball and I love doing it for the Yankees."

Former Yankees beat writer Marc Craig preceded Gardner with a story to demonstrate the latter's deserving of the accolade, in which Gardner replied to a message from Craig after the then-rookie had gone home. Taking place prior to Opening Day of 2009, Gardner's "good guy" act came shortly after he was named the Yankees' starting center fielder that season, when Craig was also new to the team's clubhouse. 

As for Teixeira, he was honored with the Joan Payson Humanitarian Award for his extensive community service, especially his work with children in New York's inner city. 

"New York is a special place," Teixeira said at the podium. "Yankee Stadium is a special place. To be able to put on the pinstripes everyday is something I'll never forget. Another special place for me in New York is Harlem RBI."

Harlem RBI is an organization at which Teixeira often volunteers, coaching and teaching about baseball. In 2011, Teixeira donated $1 million to the charity, and continues to raise money for it to this day.

His website,, currently collects contributions.

"Long after my career is over, kids that we coach at Harlem RBI are going to forget about my stats, they are going to forget how many games we won, they are going to forget how many home runs I hit," Teixeira said. "But they will remember the impact that we had as an organization on their lives."

Predicting The Opening Day Roster

The countdowns have begun around the league with the fans and on Twitter as Spring Training draws closer and so does Opening Day. With the Yankees likely done making any significant moves on the free agent and trade markets now is a good a time as any to predict your 2015 Opening Day roster. Enjoy.

Starting Pitchers:

CC Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka, Michael Pineda, Nathan Eovaldi, Chris Capuano

Relief Pitchers:

Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller, David Carpenter, Adam Warren, Justin Wilson, Chris Martin, Esmil Rogers


Brian McCann, John Ryan Murphy, Mark Teixeira, Garrett Jones, Stephen Drew, Didi Gregorius, Chase Headley, Alex Rodriguez, Brendan Ryan


Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, Brett Gardner, Chris Young, 

The Yankees Farm System "Deepest in the Game"

Riley McDaniel knows more about prospects, specifically Yankees prospects after being a former scout for the team before going to work for Fangraphs, than most people on the internet today. McDaniel also knows the Yankees better than most and has broken numerous stories about the team recently including the International Free Agent spending spree months before anyone else had it. McDaniel has spent the offseason going over prospects and farm systems and is now readying himself to reveal his work on the farm system of the New York Yankees.

McDaniel is a source I trust more than most and when he is quoted like he was above it makes me feel good as a Yankee fan. It especially makes me feel good when his words mirror what I have been saying all offseason long and have been questioned about all offseason long.

Be sure to check out McDaniel's work when it comes out later this week by heading over to

Yankees Who Need a Strong Spring

The New York Yankees are preparing to head to spring training camp down in Tampa, Florida with more questions than they have answers. New York has the ability to have one of the most talented teams in all of baseball in 2015 that can run the gauntlet all the way to October and they have the same ability to be in last place on July 31st. This season will all hinge on the health of certain players and the bounce back of others and while health can never be predicted it is more likely that the bounce backs can. In this article we will look at the Yankees who most need that bounce back and the Yankees that are most likely to achieve them.

Carlos Beltran heads this list in my opinion as an elbow injury, whether it physically hurts or not when you swing the bat, has to factor into your hitting. With a clean bill of health and an entire offseason to rest and rehab the elbow I truly believe that Beltran will have a much better season in 2015. He almost has to have a better season next year which is why I was careful to say "much" better season.

In all my years of being a Yankees fan, especially when George Steinbrenner's checkbook was at its peak in the 90's and 2000's, it always seemed to me that the first year a free agent came over was a wash. It always seemingly took a full season for the player to adjust to the city, the media, the fans, the stadium, the league's opposing pitchers etc. For that reason alone I expect improved seasons from Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury specifically. While I do not believe they will win any MVP Awards I do believe they will play much closer to the back of their baseball card.

Stephen Drew did not have a Spring Training last season and while he worked out at the complex owned and operated by Scott Boras nothing can replace full speed major league action. For that reason alone Drew should at least improve on his 2014 numbers and once again play closer to the back of his card historically. Drew doesn't need to hit 30 home runs or bat .300 he just can't hit .160 again.

Finally I stop at Didi Gregorius. The only thing that worries me about the man replacing Derek Jeter is the fact that he seems, on the surface anyway, as his "own worst enemy" type of player. I don't pretend to know Didi personally and I don't pretend to be an expert on him and his time in Arizona because I wrote a "Meet a Prospect" post on the guy. I only know what I have seen on Twitter, what has been written about him by people who know more than I and the Jack Curry interview. Didi seems like a "when it's good it's good and when it's bad it's real bad" type of person. Didi seems like he would let an extending slump or boos from the crowd get to him making it especially important that he come out strong and show the Yankee faithful just what he brings to the table in 2015.

The Jorge Posada Retirement Press Conference

After 17 seasons Jorge Posada officially announces his retirement from the game of Major League Baseball and from the New York Yankees. Never forgotten, but always missed on the field and in the club house. 

This Day In New York Yankees History 1/25: Jorge Posada Says Goodbye

On this day in 2012 the second of the Cour Four announced his retirement when Yankees catcher Jorge Posada announced it at a SRO Yankee Stadium news conference. Posada played with the Yankees for his entire 17 year career and joined Bernie Williams and Andy Pettitte in retirement.

Also on this day in 2008 the New York Yankees offered Robinson Cano a six year contract worth $55 million to buy out his arbitration and some free agent seasons. Cano was 25 years old and was under contract through the 2011 season with the Yankees, although New York held two team options for the 2012 and 2013 seasons. Cano was coming off a season in which he hit .306 with 19 home runs and 97 RBI's.

Also on this day in 1999 the Yankees lost one of their free agents after winning the 1998 World Series in Tim Raines. Raines signed with the Oakland Athletics on a one year deal worth $600,000 at age 39.

On this day in 1966 the Yankees Tony Kubek announced his retirement after nine seasons. Kubek was diagnosed with having three crushed vertebrae from a childhood injury and decided to retire rather than risk further harm to his back.

Also on this day in 1945 the Ruppert estate sells the New York Yankees to Dan Topping, Del Webb, and Larry MacPhail for $2.8 million. Topping and Webb, who ended up buying out MacPhail two years later, will sell 80% of the Yankees to CBS for $11.2 million after 1964.

Finally on this day in 1943 The New York Yankees sold Lefty Gomez to the Boston Braves. Gomez will be released before playing a game with the Braves and will sign with the Washington Senators in May.