No Love for Valentine

(The following is being syndicated from The Captain’s Blog).

Bobby Valentine is the new manager of the Boston Red Sox. For a franchise trying to overcome the perception of dysfunction, that might not have been the best decision. Valentine is alternately one of the most revered and hated managers in all of...

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Just Say No To Matt Thornton

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod)

As the Hot Stove season continues to be lukewarm for the Yankees, people are starting to get a little antsy and understandably so.  There’s only so long we as fans and bloggers can wait to see which free agents the Yankees...

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Deconstructing Freddy

That leaves us with Freddy. Oh, the things that can be said about Freddy. In retrospect, I actually think his 2011 season has been a bit overrated (an FIP- of 99 over 146 innings isn’t bad, by any means, but it’s not world beating by any means), but solid is solid, and Garcia certainly outperformed everyone’s expectations for him. If nothing else, you can legitimately say that it began to feel like the Yankees had a good chance to win every time he took the mound for a start, and that’s not nothing for a pitcher like Garcia.

So can he repeat his 2011 performance next season? I’m skeptical. 2011 was a clear outlier in Garcia’s career trend line, and though the bottom line performance was good, the underlying peripherals weren’t really there. Consider this illustration of Garcia’s career arc (only years in which Garcia pitched at least 100 innings are included, and since 2004 was the last time Garcia struck out at least six batter per nine innings, the table starts in 2005):

As you can see, 2011 sticks out like a sore thumb, and the numbers that really reach out and grab you are the home run rates,
which went down noticeably, and the groundball rates, which went down even more noticeably.…

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New draft rules even worse than anticipated

Obviously, there’s no team development justification for this policy. If a team can’t get a pick signed, especially a high pick, it would only make sense for them to reallocate that budget money towards making sure to get other picks signed. At the end of the day it’s the same amount of money budgeted, and depending on how spread out the reallocation is, it probably doesn’t even make much of a difference at the margin. This is even more true if a team can’t get a top round pick signed, as they can then attempt to stockpile lower round talent at cheaper marginal prices and hope one or two of them pan out. It can’t be stated enough that good players routinely get drafted and sign well after the first few rounds of the draft, including all-time greats like Albert Pujols, who was taken in the 13th round. Anyone think the Cardinals have spent the last decade bemoaning how much money they had to spend to sign him in the draft?…

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Prospect Spotlight: Gary Sanchez

For a young man who won’t turn 19 until Friday, it feels like catching prospect Gary Sanchez has been in the Yankee organization for a while. Sanchez burst onto the scene as a 17 year-old in rookie ball, tearing up the league with a .353/.419/.597 line, drawing raves for his power and hitting...

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The "Break the CBA" IFA Option

Amid news that the money available to the near-hard capped draft will be a bit lower than expected, I wrote yesterday that the Yankees should pin their hopes, and their money, on a free agency strategy. I admit that a much more creative option did not come to mind until SEHumphrey made the following comment:


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