Fun with charts: Value vs. Salary

So I took the “value” derived from Fangraphs and compared that to their stated salary (via Cot’s, using just base salary to keep it simple). To state the obvious, the higher you are, the more value you have delivered for the team. The converse is also true. Let’s for the sake of this simple exercise, suspend all debates about the derivation of “value” since it includes WAR, which, according to some, can be skewed by the vagaries of defensive metrics and just accept them at face value.

Alas, the 2011 Yankees: Value vs. Salary (figures through 9/21/11):

[click to enlarge]

Note: not every player on the roster has been shown above and for those at league minimum range but not disclosed, a salary of $400K was assumed.

As you might expect, MVP candidates Curtis Granderson and Robinson Cano are at the far left, sandwiching in Brett Gardner (thanks to a tiny salary “relatively speaking”, of course).… Click here to read the rest

Rays wreck Yanks as Moore wins first career MLB start

Just what the AL East needed. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

I skipped this one, and it looks like I didn’t miss all that much, as the Rays bludgeoned the Yanks 15-8 behind a beastly performance from rookie phenom Matt Moore, who struck out 11 Yankees and allowed zero runs over five innings, picking up the win in his first career Major League start. Ordinarily the Yankees getting completely and utterly shutdown by a rookie they’ve never seen before would drive me up a wall, except for the fact that (a) the Yankees clearly (and correctly) didn’t care whether they won this game, as evidenced by the many regulars who received a night off, and (b) Moore is arguably the top pitching prospect in the galaxy, and his dominating performance wasn’t exactly a surprise, regardless of the constitution of the Yankee lineup.

Bartolo Colon was only able to go three innings and ultimately gave up seven runs (five earned), and some seem to be questioning his postseason rotation candidacy.… Click here to read the rest

Game 156: Rays 15, Yankees 8

The second innings started better, but a throwing error from Derek Jeter allowed Jennings to reach with two outs.  Upton followed with a triple to center and scored on a double by Longoria.  In the top of the third, Ben Zobrist knocked a two-run homer to right, and Tampa held a 7-0 edge.

Tampa did not stop there, as Upton and  Damon each hit two-run homers of Scott Proctor in the fourth inning.  Zobrist singled and Casey Kotchman worked a walk.  Zobrist scored on a single by Reid Brignac.  Zobrist knocked a sac fly to right in the top of the fifth, giving Tampa a solid 13-0 lead over New York.

The Bombers finally got on the board in the bottom of the sixth.  A single by Ramiro Pena was followed by a homer from Andruw Jones.  They rallied again in the seventh.  Eduardo Nunez singled to right and moved to second on a wild pitch.  Austin Romine lined a single to right and Nunez scored on a single by Pena.  … Click here to read the rest

Russell Martin, pitch framing, and saving runs

So what does this say about the Yankees? Well they’re two most recent starting catchers fall on polar opposite ends of the defensive spectrum. Russell Martin has been the third best catcher of the sample group according to Fast’s research, while Posada has been one of the three worst. Posada was one of the catchers Fast watched video of, and here’s what he had to say about Jorge’s work behind the dish:

I selected two of the best catchers—Jose Molina and Jonathan Lucroy—and three of the worst catchers—Ryan Doumit, Jorge Posada, and Jason Varitek—and reviewed video of their borderline pitch calls. I observed two primary differences in technique between the good and bad catchers.

Both Molina and Lucroy displayed stable, quiet mechanics when receiving borderline pitches. Posada was the opposite, often jumping, bouncing, and shifting his stance and lunging and swiping to catch pitches. It was almost painful to watch him behind the plate. Varitek and Doumit had more stable stances, but each displayed a negative behavior that appeared to cost them strike calls.Click here to read the rest

Game Thread | Game 156 | Yankees vs. Rays | Thursday, September 22, 2011

There’s a game on tonight? Oh right. Actually, this one could be pretty interesting, as fireballing lefty phenom Matt Moore is making his first career Major League start after a few appearances out of the bullpen.

This game means everything to the Rays, and is about as meaningless as can be to the Yankees. While I don’t generally condone hoping the Yankees lose under any circumstances, with regards to making things that much more interesting in the Wild Card race as we approach the season’s final six games, there could be worse things on earth than the Yankees dropping this one tonight.

Here’s your lineup, c/o

1. Derek Jeter (R) SS
2. Eduardo Nunez (R) 2B
3. Mark Teixeira (S) DH
4. Nick Swisher (S) RF
5. Andruw Jones (R) LF
6. Jesus Montero (R) C
7. Jorge Posada (S) 1B
8. Brandon Laird (R) 3B
9. Greg Golson (R) CF… Click here to read the rest

The obligatory postseason rotation speculation post

The fact that the regular season has just about run its course is hard to fathom. The Yankees, in typical Yankee fashion, have blessed us with not only another postseason berth but another AL East crown to boot. There are still a few items on the docket though that need to be tidied up, and that includes the postseason rotation.

Here’s how it seems to be shaping up.

Game 1:  CC Sabathia
Game 2: Cliff Lee Ivan Nova
Game 3: Andy Pettitte Colon / Garcia
Game 4: Phil Hughes Garcia / Colon

Obviously, Sabathia has always been (and still is) a lock at number one. The big fella has been a dominating force all year long. Assuming he doesn’t qualify for his 20th win in his upcoming “tune up” start before the playoffs, he’ll end his season with a 19-8 record along withan ERA hovering around 3.00. His 2.87 FIP and 3.01 xFIP reinforce what we already know; that is to say, his actual results are pretty true to what his abilities indicate they should be.… Click here to read the rest

My postseason roster


Mark Teixeira
Robinson Cano
Derek Jeter
Alex Rodriguez
Brett Gardner/Andruw Jones
Curtis Granderson
Nick Swisher
Russell Martin


Jesus Montero
Jorge Posada
Eduardo Nunez
Eric Chavez
Greg Golson


C.C. Sabathia
Ivan Nova
Bartolo Colon
Freddy Garcia


Mariano Rivera
David Robertson
Rafael Soriano
Cory Wade
Boone Logan
Phil Hughes
A.J. Burnett

A couple of observations about my roster:

  • The most obvious difference between my roster and the one the real-life Yankees will probably carry is that I don’t have a true backup catcher. Frankly I don’t really see the point of wasting a roster spot on Austin Romine, or even Francisco Cervelli if he’s healthy. Russell Martin isn’t going to need a day off, and if he happens to get hurt, you’re carrying two emergency catchers in Posada and Montero. If the injury is serious, you can replace him with Romine then.
  • Yes, I’m carrying A.J. Burnett on the roster. I hadn’t anticipated doing that, but when it came down to it, I was between Burnett and Luis Ayala for the final spot.
Click here to read the rest