The Yankees' 2010 rotation

To the surprise of no one, the Yankees resigned Andy Pettitte for the 2010 season, inking the big lefty to an $11.75 million contract. As it stands today, the Yankees’ 2010 rotation is as follows: 2009 FIP 2010 Projected FIP LHP CC Sabathia 3.39 3.44 RHP A.J. Burnett 4.33 3.85 LHP Andy Pettitte 4.15 3.77 RHP Joba Chamberlain 4.82 3.73 RHP Phil Hughes 3.22 3.35 Obviously Hughes’ FIP numbers are skewed as his 2009 total is primarily a function of his relief appearances, and Bill James appears to have projected Hughes as a reliever for 2010, because — as much Continue reading The Yankees' 2010 rotation

Interesting peek inside TOR's trade thoughts

Thought this was interesting enough to share:

What would it take to get Halladay? Well, I have heard that Toronto thinks Jesus Montero is among the handful of best hitting prospects in the game. But I also heard this: That the Blue Jays definitively see Montero as a first baseman and not a catcher. And the Jays are not doing a Halladay deal with a first baseman as the lone center piece.

So the second main piece for a package that the Jays have let everyone know must be quality more than quantity heavy almost certainly has to be Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes.

Here is the case why the Yanks could live with that even after including three prospects, notably Austin Jackson, for Granderson: The Yanks still want to believe Montero will be a catcher. But if he is not, what do the Yanks do with him? Teixeira blocks first base for years. Do they really want to have a youngster as a full-time DH when they will probably need that spot to protect older bodies? Also, the Yanks do have catching depth in the organization with Francisco Cervelli, Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez and John Murphy, who was their second pick last year and might be their favorite of the whole group.

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Will Granderson Bounce Back?

[image title=”Granderson_Curtis_2009_scatter” size=”full” id=”13053″ align=”center” alt=”Granderson’s Home Runs In ’09, courtesy of Hit Tracker” ] By now, most of the relevant numbers on Curtis Granderson have come to light, and they suggest that some correctable issues plus bad luck contributed to his poor year. I want to run through some of the more interesting observations made by others, and then touch on some nuggets of information that have not gotten much attention at all, but are extremely vital to the analysis. The first bit of data that I wanted to note is the excellent study done by The Detroit Tigers Continue reading Will Granderson Bounce Back?

Grandy: Beloved in Detroit, but the sniping begins

In nearly every Detroit-based website and blog yesterday, there was an outpouring of anger and disappointment about the prospect of losing Granderson. Not just about Granderson The Ballplayer, but Granderson The Person. Wonderful stuff. Makes me even happier about adding him to the Yanks. I believe chemistry is real and the lockerroom environment is a key indicator. Skills carry the day, but a “team” is better suited for the rigors of a long baseball season.

The Yanks added some high-character guys last off-season in Sabathia and Swisher, plus reportedly Burnett and Teixeira to the Yanks’ lockerrom, which was probably more fractured than we knew in the prior years. Now, it seems that the team is a better “team”. Does winning breed chemistry or the other way around? Not sure. But talent + chemistry sure makes winning easier. And more fun.

That was a rather long preamble to an article that surprised me a bit this morning, one that takes some shots at Granderson, accusing his magnanimous nature as a reason (not the reason) for his 2009 decline.

He’s involved in everything. He has a difficult time saying no. He loves community work. He’s here for this event, there for that gathering, and almost always available for a kid who needs him at a hospital.

Wonderful, and praiseworthy. And also of likely consequence to his fundamental assignment: playing baseball.

One must be careful about making criticisms here. But this feeling has been deep for a very long time, mostly because Granderson, for all his decency, on too many days appeared to be putting in more of a work shift than concentrating adequately on a game that must be played with consummate passion and attention.

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Update: Yankees Resign Andy Pettitte to a 1 year, 11.75 million dollar contract

Update (11:30 AM) – Digital Sports Daily, via twitter, reports that the Yankees have resigned Andy Pettite to a 1-year, 11.75 million dollar contract. Via MLB Trade Rumors: The Yankees are closing in on a deal with Andy Pettitte for about $12MM, tweets SI’s Jon Heyman.  He says the contract will be finalized today. I think that we all knew this was coming. Andy was doing his “I want more money so I might retire” thing, the Yankees paid him, and he’s back. Andy Pettitte will bring his above-average innings and playoff experience yet again to the Bronx, and I’m sure all Yankee Continue reading Update: Yankees Resign Andy Pettitte to a 1 year, 11.75 million dollar contract

Buster Olney: Yankees May Trade Nick Swisher

Via MLB Trade Rumors: The Yankees’ acquisition of Curtis Granderson yesterday obviously affects their other outfielders and free agents Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui.  ESPN’s Buster Olney says that if the Yanks re-sign Damon, they’re more likely to trade Nick Swisher.  He finds it “increasingly unlikely” that they re-sign Matsui, whether or not Damon returns.  Olney doesn’t mention it, but we also have to consider the possibility Melky Cabrera is dealt.  Damon, for his part, still thinks there’s a window for him to return (talking to Tyler Kepner of the New York Times). Trade Nick Swisher? I’m calling BS on Buster Olney here. Swisher was a very Continue reading Buster Olney: Yankees May Trade Nick Swisher

Curtis Granderson: The most exciting Yankee outfielder since Rickey Henderson

I’ll be the first to acknowledge that calling a player “exciting” on a blog infatuated with statistical analysis seems counterproductive, but the fanboy in me absolutely loves this move. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Curtis Granderson is the most exciting outfielder the Yankees have had since the late 80s, at least in regards to speed, athleticism and offensive prowess. Brett Gardner may display some flash defensively, but the jury’s still out on whether he can be a useful everyday offensive center fielder, and even if he can he’ll never have Granderson’s power. First things first: the Continue reading Curtis Granderson: The most exciting Yankee outfielder since Rickey Henderson

Will Matt Holliday Struggle To Find A Mega-Contract?

[image title=”matt-holliday” size=”full” id=”13031″ align=”center” ]This time last year, the Mark Teixeira rumors were in full swing. The Orioles had offered him 140 million. The Nationals and Red Sox were reportedly offering him similar deals. The Angels were trying to get him to stay. But the Yankees swept in with a mega-offer and won the bidding at 8 years, 180 million. That’s a huge contract. Bigger than it feels. Part of the reason that Teixeira got it was because so many teams were willing to shell out the big cash for him. Had the Yankees not stepped in, there would have still Continue reading Will Matt Holliday Struggle To Find A Mega-Contract?

Paging Mike Cameron

Today the Yankees struck decisively (aided by Brian Cashman’s new best friends, the Arizona Diamondbacks) patching one of the Yankees’ bigger holes–an outfielder for 2010. Except, he didn’t, really, because the Yankees already had two average or slightly above average center fielders (Melky Cabrera and Brett Gardner) and no adequate left fielders. Simply put, Melky and Gardner are both below average offensively relative to the position–while being good enough defensively to play CF. It’s not a travesty if they end up manning LF, especially given how large the Yankees’ left field is–but neither is it ideal.

Additionally, everyone who owns a tv or computer is well aware that Granderson can’t hit lefties at all (.202/.261/.309 over the last three years)–which really does pose a problem against the Jon Lester’s of the world. Fortunately, there is an outfielder who is currently a free agent, plays tremendous defense, and hits lefties quite well (.283/.407/.530 over the last three years!). Mike Cameron, come on down.

Don’t be surprised at all if the Yankees snap Cameron up on a one year deal, with the intention of playing Granderson in LF and Cameron in CF, and holding Melky or Gardner as the 4th OF. Now, neither Melky or Gardner have exactly killed lefties in their time in the majors–but they’re both above .620 in the OPS department (which is perhaps the lowest hurdle in the history of baseball)–something Granderson can’t claim. I’d probably go with Gardner for the ability to run Cameron/Granderson/Gardner out there in the late innings defensively–which would rank in the top 2 or 3 OF defenses in MLB.

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