The Yankees were said to be interested in Michael Morse the second he hit the trading block, but alas, you can put him into the pile of supposed targets who won’t be suiting up for the Bombers in 2013. Multiple outlets are reporting that Washington has agreed to send Morse to the Mariners as part of a three team deal that also includes Oakland. Seattle is sending John Jaso to the A’s who, in turn, are sending a package of prospects that includes A.J. Cole to Washington. Seems like a good deal for just about everyone but Seattle, and I’m not sure the Yankees could have realistically beaten the return it looks like the Nats will be getting. Shucks.
Author Archives: Brien Jackson
Yesterday was the deadline for eligible players to file for arbitration, and four Yankees were among those who did just that. Phil Hughes, David Robertson, Joba Chamberlain, and Boone Logan submitted their paperwork, and will go to an arbitration hearing next month if an agreement between the two sides isn’t reached beforehand.
Of the four cases, Hughes probably has the most interesting one. This is his final trip through arbitration, he’ll be a free agent next year, and he has some success (albeit not a ton of consistency) as a starting pitcher in the A.L. East. MLB Trade Rumors projects him to earn just shy of $6 million in salary next season.
ESPN revealed their first half schedule of Sunday Night Baseball broadcasts and, as you might expect, the Yankees will make a couple of appearances. Actually, you might be a little bit surprised that the Yankees are only slated to make two appearances on Sunday night, but the entire month of June appears to be vacant at the moment, for what reasons I’m not exactly sure. The Yankees will have their first Sunday night affair mid-way through April, when they renew their surprising 2012 rivalry with the Orioles on April 14th, and then again when they travel to Fenway Park on July 21st. Yeah, that’s right; the first ESPN Sunday Night Yankees-Red Sox game doesn’t come until the second half of July. I’ve spent most of the afternoon trying to get over the shock.
Put that next article about how Bud Selig and baseball’s ownership collective have finally figured out how to stymie Scott Boras on hold for now, because the uber-agent just pulled another rabbit out of his hat, and one that will have an impact on the Yankees. According to Jeff Passan, Rafael Soriano has agreed to a two year, $28 million contract with the Washington Nationals. The deal also includes a $14 million option for 2015 that will vest if Soriano finishes 120 games in the first two seasons, meaning that if Soriano is healthy and closing over those years, he’ll not only make more money than he would have by picking up his 2013 option with the Yankees, but this new contract will be even larger than the one the Yankees signed him to back two offseasons ago.
As far as the Yankees are concerned, Soriano signing with the Nationals means that the Yankees will pick up a supplemental first round pick as compensation.…
The Yankees made an exception to their apparent policy of only signing one year contracts this winter when they agreed to give Ichiro Suzuki a two year deal, and the single season hit king told Japanese media that he feels a “fresh determination” as a result. “It is an absolutely unique team,” said Ichiro. “Being able to take my place alongside such players has been something I have thinking about.”
The Yankees and their fans are now left hoping that that determination leads to continued production, on the level they saw out of him after being traded to New York, as opposed to the level at which he played in his final year and a half with Seattle. At least for now, Ichiro is being asked to bridge the gap between Nick Swisher and their talented trio of outfield prospects, and with age, injury, and diminishing productivity affecting much of the lineup, there’s precious little room for mishaps for this team.…
The Yankees are clearly hoping that Kevin Youkilis can hold down the third base fort while Alex Rodriguez is on the shelf, but more than that they’ve also got to be hoping that Youkilis’ 2012 season was something of an aberration, and that Youkilis can return to being a very productive hitter who can help lengthen a lineup that’s taken a hit due to age, injury, and the departure of Nick Swisher. In the same article in which he discussed A-Rod’s injured hip, hitting coach Kevin Long revealed that he’s already working on Youkilis’ hitting mechanics, and that he hopes he can make major strides with the former Boston star.
“We looked at old film and compared it to 2012,” Long told Dan Martin of the Post. “We saw some considerable differences, mainly in his stance and it looked like the adjustments had an impact. … I think we can get him back to being an all-star caliber player.”
Youkilis had his worst year as a professional last season, and particularly struggled against right-handed pitchers, against whom he posted a wRC+ of just 89.…
For tonight’s show we were joined by Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, who talked about Justin Upton, the messaging coming out of the team’s front office, and whether Yankee fans would rather see Carl Pavano, Javier Vazquez, or an IRS agent in a Yankee uniform in 2013. In the later part of the show our own William Tasker joins us to check in
ahead of a crushing defeat for his Patriots on Sunday from the Northern reaches of New England. He sounds off on the Yankees’ offseason, brings a bit of historical perspective to the discussion, and joins Stacey and I for a rousing round of making fun of Javier Vazquez. We also mention the just passed anniversary of the Michael Pineda trade, and my laughably terrible ability to guess the proper pronunciation of names. You weren’t totally spared the effects of my football (and cough syrup) induced delirium either, though I contented myself with a brief musing on the emotional difference between watching football and baseball, and only for a minute or two, I promise.…
Via Jayson Stark, the owners have approved a trio of proposed rule changes that will now be sent to the union for ratification. The biggest of those changes is likely a proposal to allow interpreters to join pitchers and coaches for mound visits with non-English speaking pitchers. The owners would also like to expand the number of coaches allowed in uniform to seven, in order to accommodate the growing number of teams who are hiring an assistant hitting coach, and to eliminate the fake to third throw to first “pickoff” play. The owners can actually implement that one immediately on their own, but they want the union to ratify it. There’s really no good reason to allow the move, especially since it would be illegal for a left-handed pitcher to do the opposite, and it’s a huge waste of time, so I hope they get that done promptly.
Last week Alex Rodriguez‘s doctor said in no uncertain terms that the hip injury he’s about to have surgery to repair was responsible for his horrific postseason performance, and now his hitting coach is saying that signs something was wrong were present well before that:
“I knew it in August,” the Yankees hitting coach [Kevin Long] said by phone Saturday. “I didn’t know exactly what it was, but his lower half was not letting him do the things he’s normally able to do.”
Long also knew there were no easy fixes.
“At that point of the season, there’s not much you can do other than keep grinding,” Long said. “So I wasn’t surprised when I heard about the hip injury. His explosion was gone.”
This sort of raises the question of why A-Rod wasn’t checked out for an injury sooner, however. Perhaps Alex didn’t complain of any pain, but if the hitting coach was noticing a physical problem in a 37 year old slugger who’s already had a hip surgery, you’d think that would be a “better safe than sorry” sort of scenario, right?…