You can’t be serious

Readers of this site know that not too long ago Baseball Prospectus released its PECOTA projections for the 2010 end-of-season standings. While the CAIRO and CHONE projections had the Yankees finishing as the top team in all of baseball, BP originally forecast the Bombers to miss the playoffs entirely. The Yankee blogosphere didn’t let this slide even for one second, and SG from RLYW immediately found a flaw in BP’s methodology and wrote about it. Over here at Yankeeist, we poured through BP’s numbers and explained the flaws we saw here, here and here. (Many other blogs would have found Continue reading You can’t be serious

Hughes Plans To Work On Changeup

From Chad Jennings (courtesy of RAB Twitter): For now, Phil Hughes is only throwing fastballs and changeups in his bullpen sessions, and he expects to throw one more bullpen before he mixes in curveballs and cutters. He compared the development of his changeup to last year’s development of the cutter. “I’ll concentrate on it all spring,” he said. “Hopefully I’ll get it to a point where it’s a solid pitch for me. It just comes with repetition.” Although Hughes does not need a changeup to be successful as a reliever or a decent starter, he may need one to be Continue reading Hughes Plans To Work On Changeup

I'd make a joke about denial and Egyptian rivers but I'm afraid David Wright would take it too literally

Super-earnest, reality-shunning third baseman David Wright really, really believes in his lovable ragtag band of underachieving (and $150 million) misfits, also known as the 2010 New York Mets. Despite the fact that their 2009 season was an unmitigated disaster. Despite the fact that they have no reliable pitching after Johan Santana, even though there were several opportunities to go out and upgrade the rotation this winter (where were the Mets on John Lackey, Rich Harden, Ben Sheets or even Chien-Ming Wang?) Despite the fact that they inexplicably resigned Alex (career .291 wOBA) Cora . Despite that they have no catcher Continue reading I'd make a joke about denial and Egyptian rivers but I'm afraid David Wright would take it too literally

The difference three years makes

Late in 2004, I started hearing whispers of an incredible Japanese pitcher. Reports varied–some said the youngster threw 6 average to plus pitchers, some said 8. All agreed that he had easy 98 MPH heat, and a pitch that no one else threw–the legendary gyroball. The kid had already won the Japanese versions of the ROY and the Cy Young. He started the All-Star game as a rookie. His first three seasons he led the Japanese leagues in wins, took home a gold glove, and was awarded to the prestigious “Best 9” award. Not one in each year, all three in each year. In his second year he led the league in strikeouts, and did so again the following year, when he was also awarded the Japanese version of the Cy Young.

The year before he’d been drafted by the Seibu Lions, he had one of the most ridiculous 4 game stretches in the history of ridiculous. In game one, he threw 148 pitches, coming away with the complete game shutout. In game two (yes, he started both), on a total of no days rest, he threw 250 pitches over 17 innings. Even god rested on the seventh day, and so Dice-K was relegated to playing LF in game three, but still managed to throw 15 pitches in a relief role. And to top it all off, he threw a no-hitter in the series final.

He was going to be a star, make people forget about Matsui and Ichiro (indeed, his first time facing Ichiro at age 18, he struck him out three times). He was going to obliterate the all time record posting fee–(the cost US teams pay to Japanese teams for the right to even speak to their player regarding a US contract)–some speculated he could cost as much as $10 million. And people started to dream.

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Montero the outfielder?

In NoMaas’ interview with Brian Cashman, the GM was asked about Jesus Montero’s fate as a catcher. He responded to the question, “Do you think [Montero’s] future is behind the plate,” with the following: We hope so. His value is highest as a catcher. His bat will find a way into the middle of the lineup, that’s without a doubt. Whether he stays behind the plate, is a first baseman, a rightfielder, a DH – that remains to be seen. But he’s got one of the best throwing arms in the minors, he’s got some of the best blocking…he’s just Continue reading Montero the outfielder?

Papelbon talks up Mariano

Jonathan Papelbon loves him some Mariano Rivera. Here’s Papelbon discussing Mariano last month, on Boston’s the Sports Hub: “Deep down in my heart, I would love to finish my career as a Red Sox. And I think everybody pretty much knows that, but that’s a very, very hard thing to do in this day and age. And the way the game is now, I have to understand that as well. Hopefully it works out to where I can stay here for a while and win World Series and break records in a Red Sox uniform like my buddy Mo [Mariano Continue reading Papelbon talks up Mariano

25 Issues For Spring Training

With spring training now approaching, we can start to get get a feel for the answers and solutions to the questions facing the Yankees in 2010. Although this club is probably as strong as last year’s championship team, there are still plenty of issues that they will need to resolve on their way to a successful title defense. Here is my annual list of the top 25 questions facing the Yankees going into 2010, with last year’s list available here. 1) Steve, among others, has suggested on a number of occasions that Jorge Posada is likely to show signs of Continue reading 25 Issues For Spring Training

Five New Invitees

The Yankees invited five more players to Spring Training yesterday. Let’s look at these guys a little more deeply. First up is RHP D.J. Mitchell. Mitchell was not listed in the Yankees’ top ten prospect list however, he had a pretty good showing in 2009. As a 22 year old in Charleston and Tampa, Mitchell posted a combined line of 140.1 IP, 124 H, 44 BB (2.8 BB/9), 125 SO (8.0 K/9, 2.84 K/BB), 1.197 WHIP, and a 2.63 ERA. Though he hasn’t pitched above A+ yet, it looks like Mitchell’s got some skills. Hopefully, he impresses the Major League Continue reading Five New Invitees