Jays jettison Yankee Killer Vernon Wells while Tampa Bay goes all 2004 Red Sox and signs both Manny Ramirez and Johnny Damon

I step away from the Internet for two hours only to come back and find that two of the Yankees’ AL East rivals have made a handful of notable moves.

First up, the...

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A look at the Yankees’ projected 25-man roster

With the signing of Andruw Jones as a dangerous bench bat/4th outfielder, I thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to take a look at the possible composition of the Yankees’ likely 25-man roster, if the season were to begin today.    Most of the spots are set at this point, but there are a few...

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More on the “messed up Joba”

Joe Tetreault brought the logic on the subject:

Small sample size caveats apply. In August and September, Chamberlain made 28 appearances, had a 2.36 ERA and held opponents to a .200/.245/.350 batting line, facing 106 batters. Does that say he’s fine? Of course not. But the notion that Chamberlain is a busted commodity overstates things by a damn sight. Small samples size caveats off. He’s 25 years old, has pitched 353.1 innings in the major leagues and owns an ERA of 3.77 and a K/9 of 9.2. Exactly how is it that we regard him as being messed up badly?

The only way the Yankees will truly mess up with regards to Chamberlain is if they listen to their fans and media types who insist he can’t make it in the Bronx and sell him off for fifty cents on the dollar.

Amen brother. Amen.

Some Joba-related splits to nibble on:

Split G SO/BB BA OBP SLG OPS BAbip
1st Half 84 2.20 .264 .349 .387 .736 .335
2nd Half 82 3.05 .234 .302 .369 .671 .295
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table; Generated 1/21/2011.
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The Readiness of the Killer B’s

ESPN New York writer Wallace Matthews and I had a civil back and forth Wednesday and Thursday over the readiness of the Yankees’ trio of starting pitching prospects Manny Banuelos, Andrew Brackman, and Dellin Betances. Matthews indicated, with no real justification, that the Yankees feel both Banuelos and Betances are more ready to contribute than...

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Is Joba Really Messed Up?

More than anything, Joba is a victim of a narrative, or multiple narratives, that are just completely impervious to fact. Look at the widespread belief that he had such a bad year last season, despite the fact that his final numbers were quite good; striking out over 9 batters per nine innings and posting an FIP of 2.98. Yeah his ERA was high, but so was his BABIP at .342. But he did start the season out horribly, and after that no one noticed that he finished strong, the narrative was already cast. The Yankees had “screwed him up,” and he was never going to be the pitcher he was in 2007 ever again.

And you know what? There’s some truth to that. Joba Chamberlain will never be the pitcher he was in 2007 ever again, and if I had to bet money on it, the safe bet is that no one will. Because the numbers Joba put up in his brief Major League stint in 2007 are just mind boggling.…

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A different way to look at the performance of starting pitchers

When baseball analysts talk about pitchers they cite a number of familiar statistics: ERA, FIP, WHIP and ERA+, for example. These are all valuable metrics, but they don’t accurately portray the modern game. With...

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Is Andruw Jones a HOFer?

With the Yanks officially signing Andruw Jones yesterday, I took a look at his numbers and began to wonder if he has date with Cooperstown in his future. He was an elite player with the bat during his prime, and his reputation as a CF is well...

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The Accidental Budget

My best guess is that the Yankees will end up with an Opening Day payroll of around $206 million.

So, here’s our headline: the Yankees are holding the line on spending — in their own way.  The Yankees have the largest payroll in baseball, but this payroll has remained relatively constant for the last 7 years.  Since 2005, the Yankees’ opening day payroll has averaged around $203 million, never exceeding this amount by more than $10 million.

The Yankees’ spending restraint can be seen in the team’s “luxury tax”, the penalty the Yankees have to pay each year as a result of exceeding spending limits set forth in baseball’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.  In 2010, the Yankees’ luxury tax bill was “only” $18 million – the Yankees’ lowest tax amount since the inception of the tax in 2003 (when the Yankees were paying tax at a lower rate).

OK, sure.  If the Yankees had signed Cliff Lee, their opening day payroll would be at or above the record $230 million figure I projected late last year. …

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