Discussion: Who Plays Left Next Year?

The only major roster question that the Yankees have for 2010 is what to do with left field, and by extension, the DH spot. Here is my plan, and I encourage you to chime in with your plans below.

Johnny Damon becomes the regular DH. The Yankees inquire on Matt Holliday, but pass if his cost exceeds 3 years 45 million. If so, the Yankees sign Mike Cameron to play LF, with Xavier Nady and Chone Figgins being my backup plan. This is how I would break up the playing time based on that scenario. I did this quickly, so feel free to correct my numbers if they are off.

Cameron:
120 starts in LF
20 starts in CF

Damon:
40 starts in LF
110 starts at DH

Swisher:
135 starts in RF
15 starts at 1B

Teixeira:
147 starts at 1B
10 starts at DH

A-Rod:
140 starts at 3B
15 starts at DH

Posada:
110 starts at C
25 starts at DH

Gardner/Melky combined
27 starts in RF
2 starts in LF
142 starts in CF

What would you do?… Click here to read the rest

MLB's new superhero? The #8 Train!

Scouting report: A tall, big-bodied first baseman who’s a better athlete than one would think. He’s shown ability to hit for average and power and he’s working on improving plate discipline. The key will be his weight and conditioning.

Upside potential: An everyday first baseman and run-producer. High-end, he’s a version of Frank Thomas.

They said it: “I call him Big Hondo. I like his power. He has a chance to hit for power and average. And he’s a better first baseman than people think. And he can play left field like the real Hondo [Frank Howard]. He runs a 7.1-7.5 in the 60, too, which is good for a near-300-pounder. The biggest thing for him is if he keeps his weight down. If he does that, he’ll continue on to the Major Leagues. If he doesn’t keep his weight down, he may never make it.” — Padres scout Bill Bryk

And, as a tease, I am working towards something involving Blanks.… Click here to read the rest

The All-Homers Club

The Yankees could potentially have eight of their starting 9 hit 20 or more home runs this season.

Four Yankees have already reached or surpassed 20: Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Johnny Damon and Nick Swisher.

Matsui has 19, Cano 18, and Jeter and Posada each have 15. Matsui and Cano are almost certain to reach 20, and I’d say Posada probably gets there, too. Does Jeter have five more bombs in him?… Click here to read the rest

Gaudin's Start: Don't Expect A Disaster

In the first game of the current series with Oakland, the Yankees seemingly had a huge advantage in the pitching matchup, as it was Yankee castoff Brett Tomko locking horns with AJ Burnett. However, as John Sterling is wont to say, you just cannot predict baseball, and the Yankees fell to the A’s 3-0. On that note, I would like to point out tonight’s pitching matchup is less disastrous than it seems, despite Chad Gaudin making his first start against Oakland “ace” Brett Anderson.

The Yankees selected a perfect location for Gaudin’s first start in pinstripes. Gaudin spent 3 seasons in Oakland, and pitched fairly well in Network Associates Coliseum. He walked too many batters, which is his most noticeable flaw, but was otherwise pretty successful. In 165 innings, he went 12-9 with a 3.71 ERA, K’d 6.2/9, allowed just 16 homers, and held hitters to a .258/.348/.404 line. While those numbers are not spectacular, they are solid, and suggest that Gaudin might be able to provide a quality start tonight.… Click here to read the rest

Although periodically you can predict that CC Sabathia is going to throw a great game

I was going to talk about how Jeter has nine hits over the last three games, or that the Yankees have left what feels like 800 runners on base while they’ve been on this west coast jaunt, but Cliff Corcoran sums up how I’m feeling nice and succinctly:

“Sabathia’s last three starts: 23 2/3 IP, 10 H, 3 R (all solo HRs), 5 BB, 26 K, 3-0, 0.63 WHIP, 1.14 ERA.”

I think it’s safe to say he’s pretty good at pitching.… Click here to read the rest

Yanks changing Joba’s schedule between starts

Marc Carig of the New Jersey Star-Ledger has the story:

OAKLAND, Calif. – Joba Chamberlain escaped during the All-Star break, returning home to Nebraska and blocking out all talk about baseball. It worked so well for the talented right-hander, who emerged from the hiatus and pitched perhaps his three best consecutive starts of the season.

But Chamberlain’s last three starts have yielded in a 6.75 ERA during that span, which is why Yankees manager Joe Girardi ordered the pitcher to relax with his extra time. As part of the Joba Rules, the pitcher will have eight days’ rest heading into his next scheduled start, Tuesday against the Rangers.

Instead of using the extra days off to throw, Chamberlain has laid low.

“We told him during this extra stretch to just take a couple of days off,” Girardi said. “You don’t necessarily have to pick up a ball, just take a couple of days off then we’ll get you on your five-man schedule.

Click here to read the rest

Game 120: Yankees 7, Athletics 2

Bronx Cheers:
Teixeira: The Yanks first baseman went 0-4 and stranded six runners.

Cano: Robbie went 0-5 at the plate and left three on base. He started and ended the sixth inning…with outs.

Posada: The Bombers backstop went 1-4 and left 5 on base. He did pick up two RBIs, so it wasn’t all bad.

Curtain Calls:
CC: Sabathia had a successful homecoming, as he took only 94 pitches to get through 8 innings. He only gave up five hits and two earned runs (both homeruns). CC also K’d seven, giving him a three game total of 26 strikeouts.

Jeter: For the third straight game Jeter had 3 hits, going 3-5 with a run and a RBI. He did not leave any runners on base.

Melky: Cabrera has been in a bad slump, however, tonight he may have finally pulled himself out of it. He went 2-4 and scored twice. Melky was instrumental in starting a few rallies and reminds us all of his potential.… Click here to read the rest

Throwing leverage out the window

For a team with a poorly regarded farm system, the smartest thing the Mets COULD do is sign their picks and get them started. Yet, they fail to sign their guys and are likely forced to toe Selig’s slot recommendations since the Wilpon’s are steadfastly loyal to Bud first and foremost (team second?).

The recommendations are MEANINGLESS!!!! Yet the Mets stuck to them. Enjoy frustrating mediocraty into the 2nd decade of this century, Mets.… Click here to read the rest