A DH! A DH! My Kingdom for a DH!

Via Bryan Hoch’s Twitter, (again H/T RAB, Nick Johnson has suffered a setback in his wrist surgery rehab. This likely shoots any hope that OBP Jesus will return this season and leaves the Yankees looking for a full time DH option. They could continue to use Jorge Posada as a DH with Francisco Cervelli catching, but I’m not a big fan of this (at least not until FC hits another hot streak).

There are some DH options out there, but frankly, none of them are too attractive.

The trade candidates:

–Lance Berkman: His raw numbers are down (.351 wOBA, .405 career, .386 in ’09), but his peripheral stats are still decent: 15.2% walk rate, .192 IsoP. I’m not a huge fan of this because of Berkman’s age but if he could replicate a 15.2% walk rate and a .192 IsoP, he’d be a valuable addition to the Yankees. The price, though, is likely to be high. We haven’t heard much on the Berkman Trade Front lately and he is the hitting face of the Houston franchise, so the rebuilding Astros would likely ask a hefty price for Fat Elvis.… Click here to read the rest

Could Cliff Lee change dugouts tonight?

Joel Sherman is reporting that the Yankees are on the brink of obtaining Cliff Lee from the Mariners. I hate Joel Sherman with the burning fire of 1,000 suns (that is in no way pertinent to this story, but I felt it needed to be said).

If this is true, this means one thing: The Yankees do not feel that Jesus Montero is or will be able to play catcher at the Major League level. I know his bat is “special,” but in a lineup as potent as the Yankees, coupled with their ability to pay for premium talent, finding a guy that can hit 30/100 for you is not that difficult. Christ, I think Carlos Delgado could put up those numbers sandwiched between guys like Alex Rodriguez/Mark Teixeira/Robinson Cano. Truth be told, that lineup took Nick Swish off the junk pile and made him an All-Star (which is now official).

The other question that arises is who gets bumped from a rotation in which 3 of the 5 pitchers are going to Anaheim next week?… Click here to read the rest

A-Rod spearheads comeback charge against Mariners as Yanks top Seattle 3-1

The Yankees picked up an exciting come-from-behind victory in the first of four against Seattle, beating the Mariners 3-1.

Andy Pettitte and Jason Vargas were locked in a classic pitcher’s duel until the bottom of the sixth, when another Pettitte throwing error to first base on a bunt allowed Seattle to score its only run of the game. Given the way Vargas kept inducing high pop-up after high pop-up, that actually looked like it was going to be enough to keep the Yankees at bay.

However, Alex Rodriguez had other plans. A-Rod walked to lead off the 8th, followed by a Robinson Cano single. A wild pitch put A-Rod on third, enabling a Jorge Posada double play to score Alex and tie the game. Obviously with runners on first and third and none out you’d like to see Jorgie not make two outs, but at least he hit the ball in such a way that it allowed A-Rod to score easily.… Click here to read the rest

Buster says: No deal for Lee (yet)

  1. Treating Hughes like a yo-yo and bouncing him back into the bullpen, no matter how good he was last year in that role
  2. Trading Montero for a rental
  3. Trading Javy for mere bench strength. This guy has all the ability in the world and should not be jettisoned just “because”.

If the Yanks could swap Javy, Montero and other prospects for Lee (and an extension) and a potentially impact bat, would you do it?

UPDATE: Craig Calcaterra at HBT/NBC has a take worth repeating:

Final thought: if the Yankees get Lee for prospects who aren’t missed and then turn Vazquez into a useful bat, doesn’t that make Brian Cashman the GM of the year? After all: those aren’t mere money moves. Those moves — going back to getting Vazquez from the Braves — are all trades that (a) vastly improved the Yankees’ competitively speaking; but (b) were also trades that most any team could have made but didn’t.Click here to read the rest

Game 85: Yankees 3, Mariners 1

Vargas was still pitching in the eighth, but gave up a walk to Rodriguez and a single to Robinson Cano before Seattle replaced him with Brian Sweeney.  Rodriguez made a heads up base running play to get to third on a wild pitch.  He scored when Jorge Posada grounded into a double play, tying the game at 1-1.

Pettitte made it through eight innings, but the game was still tied heading into the ninth.  Derek Jeter walked with one out and Nick Swisher, who had an incredible night, double to right, putting runners on second and third.  Mark Teixeira popped out, but Rodriguez delivered with two outs, singling to right and sending Jeter and Swisher home.  Mariano Rivera came in for the bottom of the ninth to close the game and sat the Mariners hitters down in order, giving the Yankees the 3-1 win.

Bronx Cheers:
Brett Gardner: Gardy went 0-4 with three strikeouts and stranding five baserunners.

Mark Teixeira: He went 1-5 and stranded six base runners.… Click here to read the rest

Sherman-Yanks on the verge of acquiring Cliff Lee

Will Lee's next pitch be in pinstripes?

The title says it all, here’s the story from Joel Sherman:

The Knicks didn’t get LeBron James, but the Yankees were on the brink of obtaining Cliff Lee late last night for a package that would include top prospect Jesus Montero, the Post has learned.

Yankees GM Brian Cashman and Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik have been in constant contact over the last week, but it was only last night that the Seattle GM told Yankee officials he wanted to move quickly, possibly before the All-Star break.

The Yanks were not assured of obtaining Lee since other clubs such as the Mets, Twins and Rangers were in talks. But the Yanks were definitely making the strongest move last night, coming from seeming disinterest into the clear front-runner and last night it seemed they were all but certain to obtain the 31-year-old lefty.

(snip)

In the offseason, the Yanks tried to make a deal with Philadelphia and offered Montero as the key piece.… Click here to read the rest

Swisher wins final All Star vote

The results are in, and congratulations go out to Nick Swisher, Joey Votto and all the fans who supported their election to the 2010 All Star Game. Here’s the story from MLB.com:

Swisher, the Yankees’ right-fielder and social-media titan, held off Kevin Youkilis of the rival Red Sox in the closest race in the nine-year history of the Final Vote to claim the 34th and final spot on the All-Star roster with a final tally of 9.8 million votes. Swisher and Youkilis were followed by Paul Konerko of the White Sox, Michael Young of the Rangers and Delmon Young of the Twins.

Votto was a machine throughout the Final Vote. The Reds’ first baseman won wire-to-wire, powered by a fury of snub response and leading all vote-getters with 13.7 million en route to becoming the first Cincinnati player to win the All-Star Final Vote. He was followed by Ryan Zimmerman of the Nationals, Carlos Gonzalez of the Rockies and Billy Wagner of the Braves.… Click here to read the rest