Quick Reaction to Freddy Garcia

As you read yesterday, the Yankees resigned Freddy Garcia to a one year contract, worth somewhere between $4-5M. I think we can all agree that this is more or less a good thing.

Garcia provided the Yankees with 146.2 more quality innings than any of us were expecting him to provide. He racked up a 3.62/4.12/4.36 ERA/FIP/xFIP split (86 ERA–, 99 FIP–, 108 xFIP–). He managed to keep homers down despite a pretty high fly ball rate and was able to strand over 77% of the runners that reached against him, a rate about 4% higher than his career rate.

I’ve always said that it’s better to let a guy go a year early than a year too late and I thought that’s the way the Yankees would go with Garcia. They didn’t, though, and that’s okay. He’s absolutely fine at the back of the Yankee rotation. If he can repeat the innings totals of last year and put up an ERA/FIP/xFIP split in the low to mid 4’s across the board, I’ll be happy and it’ll be worth it.

Now go get Yu Darvish and/or John Danks, Cashman!

About Matt Imbrogno

A native and resident of the Mean Streets of Southwestern Connecticut, Matt is a narcissistic, misanthropic 20something English teacher who lives by a simple creed: Yankees Only.

43 thoughts on “Quick Reaction to Freddy Garcia

  1. Is Darvish even going to be posted? It seems less and less likely as time passes, does anyone know the deadline he has to be posted by? Because the Japanese playoffs are over so he could have been posted at anytime since then.

      • But isn’t it to his advantage to be posted asap? I would think the longer he waits the more teams that would have been interested in him may have gone in another direction. Especially if he waits until after the 1st of the year.

          • Apparently Daisuke was posted on Nov. 2 and the Red Sox won the bidding on Nov. 14, so he’s quite a bit behind that pace. Good to know he has plenty of time though, I had no idea you could wait so long.

          • There are a number of reasons Darvish hasn’t posted yet.

            The first one being that baseball doesn’t end in Japan until this weekend. For Daisuke, he also waited until the season was over, but because of the problems in Japan this year, the season was pushed back over a month. Darvish said he wouldn’t decide until the season was over, so its not a huge surprise he’s waited this long.

            Another factor was the CBA. Posting before the CBA may have affected MLB’s rules on Japan. There was also a push from Japanese agents trying to limit the posting system.

            Apparently, he’s also in the middle of a messy divorce. His wife and her lawyer were trying to delay the divorce as long as they could so that they’d get a piece of his major league money. I don’t know the law in Japan, so that one is an unknown.

            All signs point to Darvish posting next week, unless the divorce ends up being a huge issue. That may set him up for all of the major bidding to take place during the Winter Meetings which could help in driving up his hype.

          • Thanks for the information! I had no idea he was going through a divorce. He’s married to someone famous in Japan isn’t he? I thought I read something along those lines at one time.

            Any chance he decides not to ask to be posted? I would imagine that would a slim chance, but I’ve read before he hasn’t always been so set on playing in America.

          • Chuck Johnson of NY Baseball Digest says he is unlikely to post at all this year, as he wants to postpone posting until after the divorce you mentioned. Apparently his wife’s lawyer has already postponed the divorce courts twice, and they have no intention of finalizing this thing before he comes to the US.

            His dad apparently has said Yu is “50-50” on posting this year.

            Jon Heyman says he is still more than likely to post this season, but he said that before NY Baseball Digest made their report about it being unlikely yesterday.

            I guess this means there is really no way to know anything until it happens. What a weird situation for the Yankees if they really want this guy.

          • What kind of changes did they make the the balls? I know the balls are smaller in Japan, I have also heard the seams are not as pronounced. Did they change the seams some kind of way?

          • @ Mike D. I like the idea of making a trade for a pitcher, though I am not as sold on Danks as many are, but we shouldn’t just make a trade because Darvish is or isn’t available. We have to make a deal we find good for us, after that nothing else matters. If we can’t make a deal we’re comfortable with we can’t force anything.

            The problem is the pitching available on the market has a ton of interest and is going to be really high in terms of prospect return. I don’t think Danks is a great fit for us because he isn’t a number 2 starter and he never will be. Garza is going to cost an arm and a leg. Gio has a lot of potential but isn’t a finished product, and he may never be, so paying an ace price is out of the question. Also The top guys like Felix Hernandez are simply not available, and won’t be. It may be best to try and make a play for someone like Mat Latos, but many around here aren’t are sold on him in the long term as I am. Tough spot to be in, le’s just hope Cashman does the right thing.

  2. I’m curious to find out what people think the chances are of the Cubs realistically moving Garza? And if there was a possibility what it would take on the Yankees part to make that happen.

    It would seem to me that he would be the ideal #2 for the Yankees rotation for some time.

    Any thoughts from anyone?

    • He would definitely be an ideal fit as the Yankees #2 starter.

      I think the Cubs would be very inclined to begin trade negotiations with Montero. However, there’s no way (in my opinion) the Yanks would give him up for Garza. If I’m Cashman, I’m thinking a deal around Betances, Romine, Noesi/Phelps/Mitchell, and another lower level prospect.

      I have no idea what the current asking price is for Garza, however.

      • At least from my perspective I could live with a trade like that (Betances, Romine, one of Noesi/Phelps/Mitchell, then a lower level prospect for Garza.

        • Yeah me too. I mean, you’d be getting 2 years of a very talented pitcher who’s in his prime. And because of that, you really can’t say no to such a deal.

      • I don’t see the Cubs trading Garza unless they get a top package in return. He’s pretty much their most reliable player in general, and he’s the only starter they have that isn’t a giant question mark.

        I wouldn’t trade Montero for him but I don’t see them doing the deal you have proposed. Romine should be a solid pro but his bat is a low enough projection to keep him from ever being elite, and Betances has question marks surrounding his long term status in the rotation.

        I think Theo is probably going to want at least one of Montero, Banuelos, and Sanchez, and with Sanchez being so far away a package with him is going to require more mid level prospects than the other two. Garza’s a good fit for the Yankees but I don’t think I’d pay the cost it will take to get him.

  3. for the record i fully expected garcia to pitch as well as he did in 2010. looks to me like he is finally healthy and knows how to work within hus stuff. further proof by the way that the split is one of baseballs most under urilized weapons (see that hughes) easy to learn same arm action.

    i again expect 160 ip of 4.00/4.25/4.50 type ball with a bunch of effective starts abd a handful of disasters when his command is off.

    now darvish. even more important with the new cba implications. this is the last chance for a long time to add a young top starter who saves money in the luxury tax.


    looks solid and extremely deep

    • I think the Yankees would do just fine if they completed the offseason with a trade for Danks.

      Then the rotation would look like:

      Competition for 4th and 5th slots between: Nova, Hughes, Phelps, Noesi, Burnett. Like it or not, unless A.J. is traded, he’s going to be in the mix for the rotation.

      It’s also good to not let Nova get too comfortable. That’s partially what happened with Phil Hughes. He had a very good 2010 year, and got much too comfortable with his spot in the rotation.

      • I’d like to see Danks in the Yankees rotation but I think Williams is/will be asking to high of a price for him.

        I think slotting Garcia in the #3 spot is a bit optimistic. If either Danks or on the outside chance Garza were in the rotation in 2012 I could see it:
        Danks or Garza (if a trade can be made)

        With, Hughes/Noesi/Phelps/Mitchell waiting in the wings just in case. Or some combination of them depending who may or may not be traded for Danks or Garcia. Hughes, being the first option to fill in the rotation spot. Just a thought.

      • Garcia wouldn’t be the three in that rotation, and I doubt Danks would be the number two. Danks isn’t a two anyway, he also didn’t have a better season last year than Nova. Danks might win the number two spot over Nova, but there is no way Nova won’t be above Garcia in the rotation. I imagine that rotation would be Sabathia, Nova, Danks, Burnett, and Garcia.

        I would think like it or not AJ is going to be in the rotation, no competition involved. There is really no way they can put him in the pen considering how much he’s paid, the fact he’s never really pitched out of the pen before, and the fact that you’ll probably mentally lose him for good if you do so. He’s made 33 starts a year since he’s been a Yankee, there is at least some value to the innings he pitches making starts every 5 days, out of the pen you would get even less value out of him than you would as a starter. If you are going to put him in the pen you’d be better off just DFA’ing him and eating the salary. You’d basically be doing that anyway by making him a 6th inning/long reliever.

        Can you really define Hughes’ 2010 as “very good”? He had a very good first half of 2010, but he was pretty awful with a mid 4 ERA after the All-Star break.

        • I meant more that he put himself in a pretty good position, poised to have a rotation spot in 2011. No I don’t think he had an overall, very good season.

          • I agree with that yes. He had a decent season, but I’ve seen a lot of people overrate that season because of his wins so that’s why I was clarifying the very good.

          • He led the league in run support that year I believe right? Wins is never a great way to determine what kind of season someone had, but especially in that case it means very little.

          • So Hughes 18 wins behind 6.75 of run support ever make you look sideways at Nova’s 16 wins and 5.95?

          • I think that kind of run support did help Nova this past year, but Hughes’ peripherals got worse as the season went along while Nova’s got better. But yes I want to see Nova have another season like this one before I say for sure he’s that good. There were a lot of games he got a big lead in the first few innings and then just coasted to an easy W. Hughes seemed to win a lot more games in which he pitched badly though down the stretch.

  4. oh absolutely danks or garza would be fine. to me tho the new painful luxury tax and restrictive ntl rules mean getting young elite starters will very soon be imposdible or insanely expensive. you’re talking paying a guy 30 plus mill a yeaylr after the tax. darvish and his 10 mil a year look even more attractive in light of the new cba.

    tho damks for romine,noesi or phelps and say segedin or joseph seems fair to me

    • I think he’s a good pitcher, no worse than a 3 starter on any team, but I don’t think he’s worth the asking price. So I understand where you are coming from. For the stuff he has he never really pitched up to that.

      • I think Garza would be a good fit. I just feel the Cubs would want a kings ransom for him. So i agree with you T.O. Chris

  5. me either. results dont ever seem yo matvh stuff peripherals. even in tampa where defese park effect were not issues.

    hes very good but outside of sanchez or williams id be wary if includinfmg a top guy. meaning banuelos or montero.
    if a reasonable deal can be built around sanchez, williams phelps and lesser pieces maybe but thats diloubtful.

    and my general skepticism on toolsy rospects may have me undervaluubg williams

  6. I’d put his chances way above the 50% his dad said they were. For one, the pitching market is extremely weak this year. When you look at the next few years, there will be a lot more options and he’ll command less interest.

    He’s also coming off his best season yet, something that might be a product of the ball changes NPB made earlier this year.

    He’s also the perfect age to sign to a 5-6 year deal and have some potentially big free agent years after. Thanks to the posting system, I don’t think an MLB team could beat a Japanese teams’ average yearly salary if he posted the next 2 years.

    Its the perfect storm for him, I’d be shocked if he didn’t post.

  7. I think we can all agree that this is more or less a good thing.

    Not so fast there cowboy. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a bad thing but I would have been just as happy to see them not choose to gamble that a guy who had already passed his sell-by date before last season and somehow, with some of the most unimpressive stuff I’ve ever seen, miraculously squeezed another productive season (for a 5th starter) out of himself can do it again.

    I’m not at all sanguine on the prospects for a repeat performance from Garcia but this is, after all, the Yankees and they can eat all or part of a $5 million contract without burping if things don’t work out. My real concern is that they not let sweaty Freddie stand in the way of the development of any of their young pitchers who may pitch well enough to merit some big league time next year – and I’m thinking of the guys who will be on the bubble between the nomad AAA team and the big club (Warren, Phelps, Mitchell, Noesi) and possibly even ManBan and Betances (long shots for 2012 I agree).

    At some point you have to develop players and build a team and you don’t get there by denying opportunity to guys who may, either by themselves or in combination perform just as well as a guy who’s already been everything he’s going to be and is not part of your future.

    • He’s not going to get in the way of anyone in the minors. Cashman was never going to go into the season with someone like Noesi/Warren/Phelps/etc… in the rotation anyway. The best shot they would’ve had would be open competition with other veterans brought in on minor league deals, in which the vets would have had the leg up like Colon and Garcia did last year. If Garcia pitches his way out of a rotation spot he’ll either be sent to the pen or straight DFA’d, and his spot will be taken by one of those guys (or Hughes if we add another pitcher who sends Hughes to the pen). A cheap one year deal won’t block anyone who deserves a spot.

  8. T.O. Chris said: “The problem is the pitching available on the market has a ton of interest and is going to be really high in terms of prospect return.”

    Hey, Chris–you’re off your game as a prospect hater!

  9. Intersting stuff. Cain seems to be a long shot, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. I would love Cashman and Epstein to work out a Garza trade. RSN would be steaming.

  10. Freddy Garcia has to have the stupidest agent in the world. Or the unpublished incentive package he got with the one year deal has to be a double your salary bonanza.

    Really Freddy youre 35 youve burned out twice and now sign for half of what you made 3 years ago. Don’t you think for a second a long term deal is a better option? Youve done the ‘will pitch for soup’ contact and came out of it in your usual just better than .500 rate despite having an offense behind you that should have netted better results than you got with the White Sox. Is there anyone who thinks he gets away with the 77% clearence again?

    Great deal for the Yankees and may be a better deal for the rest of the ALE as Cashman may shelve the starters file and go hang off of buildings and sleep on sidewalks for the rest of the offseason.

    • He probably has saved enough money in his career to be well off. He seems to have just wanted to be loyal to a team who gave him a shot, and a team that will give him offensive support and probably make the playoffs. Says a lot about his character really. He could have gotten 2 year deals in other places, and he probably could’ve got more than 4 million guaranteed.