This sure sounds familar

Then PeteAbe added this:

Erik Bedard, the one-time ace of the Baltimore Orioles, is on the market after a disastrous two-year tenure with the Seattle Mariners in which he started only 30 games. But Bedard had a 3.24 ERA in those games. He had shoulder surgery in August.

Justin Duchscherer, a two-time All-Star for Oakland, missed all of 2009 recovering from elbow surgery that was compounded by depression.

Again, no accusations, but just similar to my thoughts. Except I thought the write-up here was better. I might be biased, though.… Click here to read the rest

How come no chatter about Verlander?

Verlander will be 27 in 2010. He’s got a 65-43 career record, having won 19 games last year, a year after losing 17 (post-season hangovers?, but not the Cabrera kind). He’s started no fewer than 30 games in his first four full years in the Bigs, pitching in 200+ innings the last three years, including 240 IP last year. He lead the AL in strike outs with 269 and finished a respectable 3rd in Cy Young voting.

My checklist:

  • Young? CHECK
  • Durable? CHECK
  • Ability to miss bats? CHECK
  • Bulldog mentality? CHECK
  • Staff ace? CHECK
  • Accountable? CHECK

And he’s still in the arbitration zone, according to Cot’s Contracts. Someone’s due for a HUGE raise and contract. How come we’re not hearing his name that much in the rumor mills*? What am I missing?

This is a guy the Yanks or Sox would kill each other to get. And they’d be justified in doing so.

Here’s a bit from MLBTR on Verlander:

  • Dombrowski indicated that no player on his team is untouchable, but “there are some on our club that we want to hold on to.” He also added that there was more trade talk at the GM meetings this year than in previous years.
Click here to read the rest

How Did Cano Turn It Around?

Prior to the season, I wrote the following about Robinson Cano’s 2008:

Basically, a grounder is less likely to produce an out than a flyball, but outfield flyballs yield more runs. I would argue that Cano’s decline can be found in this point. Cano hit significantly fewer ground balls and more flyballs than he did in years past. Most Yankees fans know that when Cano has everything working, he is hitting line drives and ground balls right back through the middle. The decrease in ground balls definitely hurt him. Furthermore, Cano saw a sharp decrease in HR’s per flyball, suggesting that the flyballs that he was hitting were less dangerous than in years past. Essentially, Cano hit fewer grounders and more flyballs without gaining the run production that increased flyballs would give a hitter whose swing is not faulty. One other point to notice is that Cano’s O-Contact% and FB% saw a significant increase, affirming the point that pitchers were throwing Robbie fastballs out of the zone, and he was more than willing to just put them in play rather than fouling them off or laying off of them.

Click here to read the rest

Halladay rumors heating up

“No, not necessarily,” [Cashman] said. “Ultimately, what I feel is a strong reluctance to trade three or four assets to another team [for a player] and then sign him to a multiyear contract. You trade for a guy, give up three or four assets [and then pay him], then you’ve crushed your payroll and your assets at the same time.”

That’s why he didn’t trade for Santana.

And my follow-up comment to Cashman’s comments:

However, what makes me crazy is that looking at just the talent-for-talent transfer is only half the story. We have to remember that Johan signed for over $130 million. That’s not insignificant, especially when you add in the 40% luxury tax hit.

I, like you, would LOVE to have Halladay on my team. What fan of ANY team wouldn’t want a guy like that? Throwback mentality (“I finish what I start”) , durable, accountable, damn good. But at the double-dip cost? And in the Yanks case, it would require the inclusion of the luxury tax on top of any deal.… Click here to read the rest

Discussion: Who Could You Get For Jesus Montero?

Yesterday we discussed who we might give Jesus Montero up for. Now I want to discuss which of those players the Yankees might be able to get with a package built around Montero. Here is the full list of names, from the original post and the comments:

Evan Longoria- unlikely. He’s an all around superstar signed to a team friendly deal.
Justin Verlander- I think that you might be able to steal him this offseason with a mega-offer, as IIATMS speculated this morning.
Zack Greinke- Never going to happen. Ace pitcher just coming into his own and signed to an affordable deal.
Joe Mauer- This depends on how contract negotiations go with the Twins. They could not get him today, but possibly at the deadline if it seems like he will hit free agency.
Felix Hernandez- You would have to empty the farm along with Montero, but he could be had.
Hanley Ramirez- Hanley is signed long term and does not get really expensive until 2012.… Click here to read the rest

Bizarre moves from seasons past: The trading of Mike Lowell

My friend and fellow huge Yankee fan Dave (who comments under Davey) has long maintained that his dream Yankee infield would have been an all-homegrown group of Jorge Posada at catcher, Derek Jeter at short, Nick Johnson at first, Alfonso Soriano at second and Mike Lowell at third.

With talk of Nick Johnson possibly returning to the Yankees, I started thinking about Lowell — who, incidentally and unsurprisingly has been made available by the Red Sox — not because I want him now (does anybody?), but because the unceremonious dumping of Lowell in 1999 is one of the stranger moves Brian Cashman has made as GM during the last decade.

The Yankees traded Mike Lowell to the Marlins on February 1, 1999, for minor league pitchers Ed Yarnall, Mark Johnson, and Todd Noel. In 1997, Mike Lowell put up an OPS of 1.000 in 78 games at AA Norwich, and a .909 OPS in another 57 games at AAA Columbus.… Click here to read the rest

Red Sox Hot For Halladay, and What It Means For The Yankees

From the Daily News:

A source told the Daily News that the Red Sox are “putting on a full-court press” to acquire Halladay, hoping to add the former Cy Young winner to the top of their rotation to go with Josh Beckett and Jon Lester.

“They would love to get it wrapped up before the Winter Meetings,” the source said of the Red Sox.

If the Red Sox make a serious push for Halladay, can it be very long before the Yankees get involved?

Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos seems willing to deal Halladay within the division, but it will take a big-time package from either the Yankees or Red Sox to land the ace righthander, who would probably require a long-term extension worth more than $100 million to waive his no-trade clause.

Boston would likely have to include Clay Buchholz, the organization’s top young pitcher, and Casey Kelly, the 20-year-old pitcher/shortstop who was drafted in 2008 and signed with the Red Sox instead of playing quarterback for Tennessee.

Click here to read the rest

2009 Season in Review: The Outfield and Designated Hitter

This is the fifth in a series of five Yankeeist 2009 Season in Review recaps. Please be sure to check out 2009 Season in Review: The Infield, 2009 Season in Review: Starting Pitchers, 2009 Season in Review: The Bullpen and 2009 Season in Review: The Bench if you haven’t already done so.

If there’s been one offensive constant across Yankee teams of the last 15 years, it’s been a highly productive infield. Not that the Yankees have had lousy-hitting outfielders by any stretch — although they haven’t fielded 100-OPS+-or-higher guys at all three outfield positions since 2004 — but the team’s ridiculously good production from its five infielders over the years — underscored by this year’s unit posting a collective .389 wOBA — has led the team to punt some outfield offense of late.

Having said that, the 2009 Yankee outfield was very productive — the best collective OPS+ (118) since the aforementioned 2004 group (129) — even with Melky Cabrera continuing to patrol center field on a regular basis.… Click here to read the rest