And the Murray Chass award goes to…

Way to go, Ron. Most mere mortals simply choose to mock the use of advanced statistical data to find market inefficiencies (which is the WHOLE STUPID POINT OF MONEYBALL, YOU DIPSH*T!), you admit your ignorance and actually flaunt it. I’m only disappointed that you didn’t accuse Theo and his front office of living in’their mom’s basements.

You refer to “OBP” as if it were some new-fangled creation. Ron, all it does is measure how often a player GETS ON BASE per plate appearance. Which, if I remember correctly, is a pretty useful thing when trying to SCORE RUNS!

And “OPS”….ooooh boogly woogly spooky! It simply adds OBP plus Slugging. Slugging %, last I checked, includes those bygone things like Home Runs.

I’ll even pardon your lack of understanding about UZR and the other stats since admittedly, I can’t calcuate them, either. However, I understand their concept and appreciate the attempt to quantify the previously-unquantifiable. UZR isn’t perfect, however it’s a good tool to use when evaluating a player’s defensive skills.… Click here to read the rest

Scouting reports that don't help

Overall, he is a poor man’s version of Seattle Mariners 2B Yung-Chi Chen. He does not have the defensive ability of Los Angeles Dodgers SS Ching-Lung Hu nor the hitting/power potential of Boston Red Sox 2B Chih-Hsien Chiang.

So he’s got that going for him, which is nice. Though he’s got soft hands but a bum knee. Good luck with that.

I’m sure this won’t help this guy regain his confidence in the Yanks enough to repurchase his ticket plan, though.… Click here to read the rest

Bench Seems Set

With yesterday’s acquisition of Randy Winn, the Yankees’ bench seems to be set. Let’s examine the implications this could have for the 2010 team.

First off, the fact that Johnny Damon is not returning should give current left fielder Brett Gardner a big confidence boost. By not re-signing Damon, instead opting for a cheaper player who isn’t likely to take a starting job from the “incumbent” Gardner, the Yankees are telling the young outfielder that they believe he can hold the position competently. I don’t have much faith in Gardner getting much better than he was in 2009, but there is still room to grow. With plus defense, a decent OBP (.340-.350?), and his speed, Gardner could be a net positive in left field for the Yankees.

Next we come to the “order of operations,” if you will (excuse me, I’m interning at a middle school and doing a little bit of work in math classes) for the outfield. Barring anything unforeseen between now and the beginning of the season, the regular OF alignment will be Gardner–Granderson–Swisher.… Click here to read the rest

Mike Lupica's Failure In Logic Regarding The Budget

I had promised a few readers an article on the PECOTA projections this morning, but will push that until next week because SG over at RLYW has suggested that their math is a bit off, and Colin Wyers has responded that they are looking into it. I will wait until there is more news on that before I discuss it.

Anyhow, Mike Lupica wrote a column this morning so ridiculously devoid of logic that it needed to be addressed. I am going to go at it FJM-style, addressing the most egregious suggestions made by the once-great writer whose opinions have, for the most part, jumped the shark.

The headline is that the Yankees have a budget. We are supposed to believe that this budget is the reason that Johnny Damon goes now. Sure it is.

Now you can take the Yankees at their word, buy this notion that they can’t spend $200 million on baseball players anymore. But if you do, you sort of have to wonder if the team really is rolling in dough, the way we’re constantly told.

Click here to read the rest

Towers to join the Yankees

According to USA Today‘s Bob Nightengale, the Yankees will announce the hiring of former Padres GM, Kevin Towers, before the spring. It has long been rumored that Towers would eventually join the Yankees after his departure from San Diego, as he is a friend to that of Yankees GM, Brian Cashman, and joining the organization offers him a chance to fulfill a certain set of occupational goals and desires. In early-December, Towers told the San Diego Union-Tribune that he preferred to work with a “big market club,” one that is not as constrained with regards to spending, and that he wished to see “how you put an American League team together.” He’ll definitely get that chance in New York.… Click here to read the rest

Keith Law looks at Montero, Banuelos

Keith Law’s top 100 prospects list is finally out and the Yankees are represented by none other than Jesus Montero (C), who comes in at number 10, as well as Manny Banuelos (LHP), who rounds out the list at number 96.

Here’s Law’s take on Montero:

Montero is really a “CINO” (catcher in name only), as few people outside the Yankees organization believe the giant player — listed at 6-4, 225 pounds, although he’s bigger than that now — can stay behind the plate, even with the improvement in his throwing in 2009. Montero’s ticket to the big leagues is his bat, and his hitting style is similar to that of another big guy who spent a lot of his career at DH: Frank Thomas. Montero transfers his weight early and hits off his front foot, but he generates tremendous bat speed and is so strong that he hits and hits for power regardless of the fact that he’s on that lead foot.

Click here to read the rest

Johnny Damon: 2010 IIATMS Hall of Fame inductee

“My message to Red Sox fans is I tried, I tried everything in my power to come back, but unfortunately, I know they’re going to be upset,” he said. “I’m always going to have a strong feeling about them and I’m always going to remember the great times and the World Series and [how] three out [of my] four years there, we made the playoffs.

“I just want them to know that I appreciate them and I tried and that’s the least I can do. I know they’re going to continue to root for the Red Sox, which they should, and I’m going to win another World Series, so that’s going to have to be right now. It’s going to be tough to say bye to some of the greatest fans in the world. Unfortunately, they had to see this day and it’s time to move forward.”

Yeah, “I tried everything in my power” means “I couldn’t match Scott Boras’ will in pushing me towards the largest contract rather than sustain and build upon my legacy in Boston.”

That’s the sound of greed, kids.… Click here to read the rest

The 2010 Yankees are going to be pretty good

OK, so Randy Winn obviously isn’t going to destroy the Yankees’ season. As I said to Moshe and Joe last night, I was mostly annoyed because I wanted Johnny Damon back, although I’m still not crazy about the Winn signing. But whatever — it is what it is, and there’s no changing that.

Moving on, SG posted extremely early 2010 MLB CAIRO-projected standings the other day, and while we obviously can’t read too much into it, it’s still pretty awesome to see the Yanks projecting as a 916-run-scoring, 102-win team with a 57% chance to win the division before a single game is even played, even with Randy Winn and his .384 OPS against lefties last season Betemiting up the place (couldn’t help myself there, but I promise I’ll stop ragging on Winn, at least for the time being). As SG mentions, we probably need to dock the Yankees a few wins and add a few to Boston’s tally, but even so I’m pretty sure an eight-game gap on paper is the widest margin of victory I’ve ever seen in a CAIRO preseason projection.… Click here to read the rest