TYA Predictions: MVP

Brad Vietrogoski: AL) Albert Pujols– He’s motivated to show St. Louis and everybody else that his 10-year contract won’t become the disaster that A-Rod’s is, he’s completely healthy, and he’s been hitting the crap out of the ball all spring. Plus, by moving to the AL Pujols can use the DH spot to stay rested, stay healthy, and still be able to contribute offensively if he does get banged up. The Angels’ lineup is full of guys who are either marginal offensive players, aging, injury-prone, or a combination of those 3. If a few guys go down, Pujols is going Continue reading TYA Predictions: MVP

Nightly Links: Kuroda, Cust, Montero

Hiroki Kuroda was strong yet again in today’s 7.0 innings of work, giving up 6 hits,  2 runs, and 6 strikeouts. Cory Wade struggled again and George Kontos went 2.0 innings, earning 3 strikeouts, but blew the save by giving up 1 hit, a 2 run homerun off the bat of Jason Heyward. Offensively, Eduardo Nunez and Eric Chavez had big days, each picking up a double amongst multi-hit days. Raul Ibanez had a single and was robbed of a homerun by Heyward. He certainly looks better at the plate following his homerun on Saturday. It was an interesting game Continue reading Nightly Links: Kuroda, Cust, Montero

Catching Up With Some Ex-Yankees (Part 2)

Last time we looked at the recent ex-Yankees was already 3 weeks ago, Spring Training is flying by. Jesus Montero– The former Yankee top prospect, and now Mariner top prospect is 11 for 36 in March, with 2 homeruns and 3 doubles. That’s good for a triple slash of .306/.366/.556. The 22 year old and Felix Hernandez appear to be developing a good pitcher/catcher relationship, as well as a friendship for the two Venezuelans from Carabobo. Hernandez pitching to Montero was certainly a dream for us Yankee fans, unfortunately its happening in a different uniform. Also, apparently Montero can catch… Continue reading Catching Up With Some Ex-Yankees (Part 2)

Romine’s Back Still Hurting

Via Chad Jennings, Austin Romine has suffered a setback in his rehab from back inflammation issues. The Yankees’ catching prospect has not played in a Spring Training game and his rehab was proceeding cautiously, but it now appears that he will not be able to start the season with Empire State. Jennings thinks this is why the Yankees claimed Craig Tatum off waivers today. Tatum is a catcher who has no offense but is a solid defender. The most interesting part of this, however, is that Tatum has no options left, so he could be the Yankees backup catcher to start the season. I believe, Francisco Cervelli still has an option left. Continue reading Romine’s Back Still Hurting

No really, what could go wrong?

A (not so fun) exercise on baseball’s most optimistic (but sadly, Yankee-free) day: C – Russell Martin – The second-year Bomber, fatigued in the middle of yet another season of near full time play behind the plate, lands on the dissabled list and hoists Francisco Cervelli or Austin Romine into the starting lineup full time. Extension talks falter and the Yankees are left with no bridge to their plethora of catching prospects. 1B – Mark Teixeira – The former MVP candidate falls prey to 30-something-slugging-first-baseman-syndrome. He hits 22 homers with a .222batting average and an atrocious on base percentage. Tex has a couple nice weeks Continue reading No really, what could go wrong?

Granderson MRI negative

After being scratched from last night’s game with a sore elbow, Curtis Granderson was sent for a precautionary MRI which, via Mark Feinsand, came back negative. That’s certainly good news for the Yankees, as they can ill afford for their slugging centerfielder to miss any significant time. He’s being called day to day at this point.

On a larger point, is it just me or does it seem like there have been more nagging injuries like this one this year than there have been in recent spring trainings? Continue reading Granderson MRI negative

Yankees sign Jack Cust

Well, this was unexpected. Via Sweeny Murti, the Yankees have signed Jack Cust to a minor league contract after he was released by the Astros this week. Cust is one of those fun, under appreciated sluggers sabermetrically inclined people grew fond of arguing under valued around the middle of the last decade so, much as I was when the Russell Branyan signing was announced, I’m personally a little bit tickled by the move. Substantively, I have to think this means that, despite what everyone has been saying on the record, Raul Ibanez‘s roster spot is in jeopardy after the less than impressive showing he’s put on this spring. It probably won’t change anything right away, as Cust hasn’t been particularly effective and/or healthy for the past few seasons, but he is only 33 years old, so there’s reason to think he might still have something in the tank if he can stay on the field and Ibanez’s spring struggles carry over into April/May. Continue reading Yankees sign Jack Cust

Different Batted Ball Numbers From Hughes This Spring

Monday night we learned that Phil Hughes has likely earned himself a rotation spot. His sleek 2.03 ERA speaks for itself, but behind a regained velocity, Hughes appears to be a different pitcher. The 0.975 WHIP is inspiring, but aside from velocity, whats so different about the young righty? Watching his performances, it appears that Hughes is receiving better results from his breaking pitches, yet isn’t showing lofty strikeout numbers. Curious, I broke down Hughes’ 4 outings this spring, and found some meaningful numbers despite small sample size. Hughes’ Batted Ball Profile Batted Ball Results Spring Career Ground Ball 17 Continue reading Different Batted Ball Numbers From Hughes This Spring

Yankees win Montero trade

For a day. So I woke up early this morning to watch the Oakland Athletics host the Seattle Mariners in Tokyo, Japan. The game started on MLB.com at 6:15 eastern time. When the first pitch was thrown, the coffee wasn’t ready yet and I had a headache. But I couldn’t miss the very first game of the 2012 MLB season. Plus, the game featured a lot of interesting story lines. There was Felix Hernandez making his first start. He didn’t disappoint. Brandon McCarthy made his first start since becoming a magazine cover and Twitter star. He didn’t disappoint either. Yeonis Cespedes made his first major league start. He hit a double on a wicked curve which was impressive. Dustin Ackley is a huge story and he came up big in the game. Ichiro Suzuki was playing in his homeland and needs to bounce back from last year. He had four hits and hit the ball hard the only time the A’s got him out. But more than anything, I wanted to watch Jesus Montero.

Look, there is going to be this silliness all season long about who won the big trade between the Mariners and Yankees that sent Michael Pineda and Jose Campos to the Bronx for Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi. I figured I might as well get the silliness started. It will take years to evaluate this trade, but that is not how the Yankees’ market works. Every Montero hit or Pineda clunker will fuel the stupid-talk and vice-versa. I will start it off today since Jesus Montero went without a hit in four at bat. Montero stranded three runners. See? The Yankees were smart to trade him. He’s a bum. Last season was a fluke. Is not Brian Cashman the smartest man on earth?

The moral here is that one game doesn’t make a season or a career. Nor does two games or three or a hundred. Try to keep that in mind during Michael Pineda’s starts and Jesus Montero’s box score results. It is a long season and careers are not made or broken in a short period of time. In ten years we can talk about the merits of this trade. But that will not stop us from enduring this debate every week of this season. Continue reading Yankees win Montero trade