Is Robinson Cano … overrated?

One thing is for sure, no one looks cooler finishing off a pitch.

Stephen Rhoads at RAB scooped me Thursday. My intention had been to write a post investigating how much money Robinson Cano might be in a position to get once he hits free agency. Rhoads beat me to the punch, forcing me to change my focus. Fortunately for me, I came across another idea while researching my Cano salary post.

Rhoads was elaborating upon a rumor that Scott Boras has approached the Yankees about renegotiating Cano’s current contract. Stephen concluded that Robbie may be in a position to get a six year, $100 million deal from the Yankees. He linked to a Mike Axisa post from the summer that suggested Cano may be due for a six year, $120 million pay out. Those contract numbers represent serious bank for Robbie, but Cano is a steal at those prices because he’s one of the best players in baseball … right?… Click here to read the rest

Requiem For An Unlikely Season

Later this evening, the 2011 season will end. It is a season in which the Yankees were sent home early, where the preseason favorite Red Sox and Phillies won a combined 2 playoff games, and where you could make a strong argument that no matter who wins tonight, the best team did not win it all. And yet, despite all that, I have a feeling that this is a season that will stick out in the minds of many of us for a long time as one that reminded us of why we love baseball.

When people ask me why I love baseball, I often wish I had some sort of wise soliloquy prepared, in which I could distill my love of the game down to a paragraph or two that got at the heart of this amazing game. But the truth is, there are a variety of reasons underlying my feelings about baseball. I love the cadence of a long season, in which we live and die with every pitch but at the same time can always look to a new game the following day.… Click here to read the rest

Why I Do This

This is probably not the first time I’ve written something like this, though admittedly I haven’t looked back. I’m certainly not the first or only one to write a piece of this nature, but it came to me tonight.

There are two things that people will inevitably ask me when I tell them that I write for a blog. The first question is, “What do you write about?” The second question is “Do you get paid?” Maybe it’s because I’m used to it, maybe it’s because I don’t care, but I answer the second question with a non-chalant “no” just about every time. Perhaps I’m non-chalant because I’ve been asked it a bunch. Or maybe I’m non-chalant because I just don’t really see the whole no pay thing as a big deal. Don’t get me wrong, people, if Moshe and Larry were offering checks, I’d take them. Anyway, it’s safe to say that money isn’t my motivation for doing this.

So what are my motivations for writing this stuff every day?… Click here to read the rest

Mailbag: What about Josh Willingham?

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

UYF1950 writes: About a week back you wrote a piece on Nick Swisher. I was wondering your thoughts about Josh Willingham as a possible replacement.  The Yankees could sign Swisher and then trade him. Willingham has played some right field, and his offensive numbers are not that much different than Swisher’s. He would probably cost a lot less both in 2012 and also if the Yankees signed him for two years.  Just wondering what you thought.

I think I’ve made it pretty clear how I feel about Nick Swisher, though the idea of potentially trading Swish for pitching and filling the void with pending free agent Josh Willingham isn’t necessarily the craziest idea I’ve ever heard.

Swisher and Willingham have a lot of similarities. Both have technically been in the Majors for eight seasons, although Willingham didn’t get a full-time shot until 2006, his Age 27 season, while Swisher broke into the bigs full-time by age 24.… Click here to read the rest

Wait to Extend Cano

Scott Boras wants the Yankees to extend Robinson Cano before he hits free agency. The Yankees hold two easy-to-exercise options on Robinson Cano for the next two seasons for $14 and $15 million. The status quo has him reaching free agency at the age of 31. He’s proven to be one of the best hitters in baseball, while playing a strong 2nd base. At this point, he’s a perennial MVP candidate who is due for a huge payday, to the tune of $120+ million, if not much more.

Boras would theoretically offer a reduced rate – to cover some of his and Cano’s risk – to entice the Yankees to renew early. The Yankees would lock up their star before he hits free agency, potentially saving themselves millions and minimizing the risk of a Canoxplosion in the next two years that makes him that much more valuable.

I love Robinson Cano. I want him to retire in Pinstripes just a few years before casually walking into the Hall of Fame.… Click here to read the rest

Bringing back Bartolo?

*Not actually Bartolo Colon

When the Yankees signed Bartolo Colon to a minor league deal this offseason after not pitching in the majors, nobody really paid much attention (except for those who used it as an opportunity to ridicule the Yankees’ apparent lack of pitching depth).  Colon after all had not pitched in the majors since 2009, and his hefty physique did not exactly inspire confidence in his conditioning, and ability to hold up over a long season.  The signing was largely viewed as a “see what sticks” move, a low risk acquisition that could add to the Yankees’ pitching depth if everything works out.  Yes he had the infamous his stem cell injection (using fat from Colon’s ponderous posterior), but who really thought that it would help him become a big contributor to the Yankees in 2011 anywhere outside of the buffet line?

As it turns out, the move did work out very well for the Yankees.  For a measly contract of $900,000, the Yankees got 164 1/3 innings of 4.00 ERA (3.57 xFIP ball), worth a total of 2.9 fWAR over the entire season.  … Click here to read the rest