About EJ Fagan

E.J. Fagan been blogging about Yankee baseball since 2006. He is a Ph.D. student at University of Texas at Austin.

A More Optimistic Perspective On Prospects

Yesterday, Sean offered some commentary about the success rate of prospects: Entering 2011, the Yankees farm system is in pretty good shape. With a lot of the consensus top 10 picks in the AA- AAA range, many Yankee fans have high expectations. While I think that optimism is certainly well founded, I also think we should keep things in perspective. Prospects fail. That isn’t a controversial statement or an overly negative platitude recited by baseball fans, it’s just a fact. Over at Royals Review, Scott McKinney put together a fantastic study looking at 14 years of Baseball America’s top prospect Continue reading A More Optimistic Perspective On Prospects

5 Minor League Players To Watch This Spring

The Yankees have a lot to sort out for their MLB club this spring. We’ll be watching Ivan Nova, Sergio Mitre, Freddy Garcia, and Bartolo Colon fight for rotation spots. We’ll check in and see if Derek Jeter‘s swing is indeed corrected, or if Joba Chamberlain is actually as fat as people are reporting. But Tampa will also be filled with about 200-some minor league players looking to continue their journey to the big leagues. Here are five players who deserve to be watched during spring training. Jesus Montero – A few months ago, he was set to enter Spring Continue reading 5 Minor League Players To Watch This Spring

Frank Piliere Releases Top 100 MLB Prospects List

[image title=”manuel-banuelos-540×366″ size=”full” id=”25087″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]Frank Piliere of AOL Fanhouse released his top-100 MLB prospects yesterday. The Yankees came out pretty big. #4 Jesus Montero: “He still has critics who like to point to his defense but there is just about no one who will criticize Montero’s bat. Will he be a good defensive catcher? No, but he has shown enough improvement to be an adequate defender. That combined with a potentially special bat make for an impressive total package.” #13 Manuel Banuelos: “Some like to pretend Banuelos came from nowhere in 2010. Well, he didn’t. He picked up Continue reading Frank Piliere Releases Top 100 MLB Prospects List

The Looming Time Bomb Of CC's Opt-Out

[image title=”cc-sabathia-with-ny” size=”full” id=”25044″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]Dan Mennella at MLB Trade Rumors noted the following yesterday: Yankees ace C.C. Sabathia has shed 30 pounds this offseason in an effort to reduce the load on his surgically repaired right knee, according to Buster Olney of ESPN.com. Typically, we don’t get too excited over this sort of Spring Training cliche, as we’re bound to hear quite a bit about who’s in shape and who’s not over the next couple weeks, but 30 pounds is a lot of weight, and we’re especially mindful of the opt-out clause in Sabathia’s contract after the 2011 Continue reading The Looming Time Bomb Of CC's Opt-Out

Shameless Plug #1 – Yankees Annual 2011

[image title=”book110_300″ size=”full” id=”25030″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]Forgive me for tooting my own horn and trying to sell you a great product. I have just been informed that this year’s Yankees Annual magazine has been sent to the presses, and is also now available for pre-order. I had the privelege of writing two articles for this year’s Annual, which also includes articles written by MLB Trade Rumor’s Howard Megdal,  AOL Fanhouse’s Dan Graziano, Baseball Daily Digest’s David Golebiewski and a whole bunch of other writers who are universally more qualified than I am. Over the four years that I have been writing Continue reading Shameless Plug #1 – Yankees Annual 2011

Projecting the 2011 Minor League Rotations

With the off season winding down, I figure that it is about time to see where everybody is going to wind up. The Yankees manage to emerge from a slow post-2011 off season while hanging on to all of their top pitching prospects. I have prepared this graphic in order to attempt to project where they will all end up. [image title=”2011 Yankee rotations” size=”full” id=”24896″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ] Brian Cashman wasn’t kidding when he said that our upper minor league rotations are full. The Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees and Double-A Trenton Thunder will have, by some measures, 10 prospects Continue reading Projecting the 2011 Minor League Rotations

Top 20 Yankee Hitters Of All Time?

Over at Bleacher Report, they came up with a list of the top 20 Yankee hitters of all time. The list: 1. Babe Ruth 2. Lou Gehrig 3. Derek Jeter 4. Mickey Mantle 5. Joe DiMaggio 6. Don Mattingly 7. Bernie Williams 8. Yogi Berra 9. Earle Combs 10. Billy Dickey 11. Tony Lazzeri 12. Roy White 13. Bob Meusel 14. Thurman Munson 15. Phil Rizzuto 16. Jorge Posada 17. Roger Maris 18. Wade Boggs 19. Frank Crossetti 20. Bobby Richardson I look at this list with a big fat blank stare. Wade Boggs? Frank Crossetti? Jeter over Mantle? Bernie Continue reading Top 20 Yankee Hitters Of All Time?

The Real Moneyball Lesson

[image title=”Moneyball” size=”full” id=”24842″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]Mike Axisa at River Ave Blues wrote a great post yesterday about one of Cashman’s comments at his talk with Josh Norris: Josh Norris sat down for a chat with Brian Cashman on Friday (part one, part two), getting the GM to spill the beans about a number of topics, including Jesus Montero, the draft, and a bunch of other stuff. Unfortunately he didn’t say anything controversial, so those of you who enjoy that sort of stuff are out of luck. Rather than give you just a link and telling you to check it out, I wanted Continue reading The Real Moneyball Lesson

Yes Censorship Points To Conflict In Yankee Front Office (UPDATED: RAB Statement)

[image title=”yankees-randy-levine-brian-cashman-17b796d2d3c4b7f1_large” size=”full” id=”24691″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]I’ve avoided commenting much on Moshe’s post about how YES seemed to have put pressure on two of its blogs, River Ave Blues and The Pinstripe Bible, to wait to see if anyone involved with deny it. The YES Network’s official response was “no comment”, as was the official response from both the writers at River Ave Blues and the Pinstripe Bible. That they refused to deny that something went on, in my mind, is pretty close to confirmation that something did go on. Some bloggers, promoted by YES, said that the Rafael Soriano Continue reading Yes Censorship Points To Conflict In Yankee Front Office (UPDATED: RAB Statement)