Born in Dover, Delaware and raised in Danbury, Connecticut, Brad now resides in Wisconsin, where he regularly goes out of his way to remind Brewers fans that their team will never be as good as the Yankees. When he’s not writing for IIATMS, he likes to spend his time incorporating “Seinfeld” quotes into everyday conversation, critiquing WWE storylines, and drinking enough beer to be good at darts.

Author Archives: Brad Vietrogoski

Report: Yanks Could Have New Hitting Coach By Tuesday

George King continues to dominate the new hitting coach coverage.  He had an update on the search on Friday afternoon in which he talked to Dave Magadan and got word from Magadan that a decision could be made on Tuesday.

“I interviewed Wednesday in New York with the Yankees. They told me they were going to interview a couple of other candidates. I don’t know if that was going to happen Thursday or Friday. They said they would make a decision shortly thereafter.’’

The belief is that the Yanks want their new hitting coach in place before the start of the World Series.  We already know they were interested in a few other candidates, although it has not been confirmed if any of them were part of the late-week interview schedule.  According to King’s report, Chili Davis was interviewed on Thursday.

Seems like Magadan is the front runner based on these reports.  We’ll find out if that’s enough to get him the job soon.…

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Friday Afternoon Linkapalooza: 10/17/14

The guy who cuts my hair is from New York.  I’ve been going to him for a while, mainly because I was still a snotty tri-stater when I moved out to Wisconsin and felt much more comfortable letting a fellow tri-state member handle my hair than a mouth-breathing midwesterner.  It really doesn’t make a difference because I get my head buzzed, but that’s neither here nor there.  The point is I’ve been a regular customer of his for years now, and because of this he usually hooks me up with a beer or 2 or a free hair wash or whatever when I come in.  And I gotta tell you, there’s a certain power move feeling that comes with strolling across an entire salon full of women getting their hair and nails done with a beer in hand to get a hair wash they know you’re not paying for.  For that handful of seconds, I’m the belle of the ball.

I’m getting my hair cut after work this afternoon and I can guarantee you that feeling that feeling today will be the highlight of my week.  …

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Quick Hit: Greg Bird Off To A Hot Start In The AZFL

The Arizona Fall League is a little over a week underway and so far it’s been mostly uneventful for the Yankee reps.  Tyler Austin and Dante Bichette Jr. are both off to slow starts with the bat and Aaron Judge has only appeared in 3 games.  None of the 3 pitchers are doing anything special in their first few appearances.

The one player who is making headlines is Greg Bird.  He’s gotten the most burn out of the 4 position players, playing in 8 of the 9 games so far, and he’s been a fixture hitting in prime middle-of-the-order spots and playing first base.  In 36 plate appearances, Bird has a .394/.444/.758 batting line with 3 doubles, 3 home runs, 9 R scored, and 9 RBI.  His 25 total bases are almost double the next highest total on his team.

About the only thing Bird hasn’t done well is limit his strikeouts.  He’s K’d 10 times in his 36 plate appearances.  …

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The 2014 IIATMS End-Of-Season Awards Post

I know I said last Sunday that the 2014 season was over and we’d be moving on, but the season isn’t really over until you do your year-end team awards post.  Staff voting was held over the last 2 days and the results have been tallied.  Without further ado, I’d like to announce the winners of the 2014 IIATMS end-of-season awards.  The envelopes, please…

MVP- 3-Way Tie (Dellin Betances, Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner)

The vote: Betances 3 (Scott, Matt B., Tamar), Ellsbury 3 (Katie, Stacey, Dom), Gardner 3 (Matt I., William, Kenny), Masahiro Tanaka 1 (Brad)

In what will surely go down as one of the most controversial votes in IIATMS history, the team MVP award will be split 3 ways.  Betances’ gaudy numbers, the league-high workload in which he accumulated them, and the consistency with which he pitched lights out in big situations all combined to garner him a sizable chunk of staff support.  Ellsbury and Gardner, as the 2 best and most consistent hitters for the whole season and the top 2 WAR guys on the team, did the same.  …

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Report: New Names Added To The Hitting Coach Pool

We know the Yankees interviewed Dave Magadan for their open hitting coach job on Wednesday and we know they were supposed to meet with Chili David sometime this week.  Thanks to this report by Jon Heyman, we now know 3 more names that are on the Yankees’ radar.  According to Heyman, the Yanks have “some interest” in Dante Bichette, Marcus Thames, and James Rowson.  None have been officially linked to them yet and none have any kind of meeting or interview scheduled.

Bichette’s name has been on the rumor mill since the minute Kevin Long was let go.  He is a very good friend of Joe Girardi, his son plays in the Yankee farm system, and he was the Colorado Rockies hitting coach in 2013.  Thames is an interesting name because he’s already coaching in the Yankee system.  He was the hitting coach at High-A Tampa in 2013 and got moved up to Double-A Trenton this past season.  …

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To Qualify Or Not To Qualify: Hiroki Kuroda

Hirok vs TOR

How could anybody not want this guy back next year??? Courtesy of Getty Images

On Tuesday we weighed the cases for and against making David Robertson a qualifying offer this offseason.  Today we do the same for the other potential qualifying offer candidate, reliable right-handed starter Hiroki Kuroda.

Case For:

  • Consistent Very Good Performance- In his 3 seasons as a Yankee, Kuroda ranks 12th in MLB in IP (620.0), T-12th in BB rate (5.1%), T-20th in WHIP (1.15), and 18th in fWAR (11.0), with a 3.44/3.68/.360 slash line.
  • Consistency Within The Consistency- Made 33, 32, and 32 starts in his 3 Yankee seasons; pitched between 199-220 regular season innings in each season; had ERAs between 3.31-3.71, FIPs between 3.56-3.86, and xFIPS between 3.54-3.67 in each season; K rate between 17.8%-18.7% in each season; 11+ wins in each season; 3-year fWAR values of 3.7, 3.8, and 3.5
  • Rotation Health Questions- Tanaka, Pineda, Sabathia, and Nova all enter 2015 with health-related concerns.  
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Yanks Reportedly Start The Interview Process For A New Hitting Coach

Didn’t take long for the new hitting coach hiring process to start.  Per a George King report yesterday afternoon, the Yankees were set to interview Texas Rangers hitting coach Dave Magadan for their vacant hitting coach job.  The interview was scheduled for yesterday afternoon.

“Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and Magadan were slated to meet Wednesday in New York to discuss the job that opened when former hitting coach Kevin Long was fired Friday with a year to go on his contract.

On Tuesday, Magadan said he had been contacted by the Yankees and that ‘it was in the preliminary stages.’’’

The report also named the Mets as another team to have contacted Magadan.  He is currently under contract with the Rangers, but due to ex-manager Ron Washington‘s recent departure, the team is allowing all its coaches to interview elsewhere.  In addition to Magadan, King’s report named Oakland hitting coach Chili Davis as the other scheduled interview for the Yankees this week.  …

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Refsnyder Ranks 13th In Baseball America’s Top 20 International League Prospects List

Refsnyder SWB

Courtesy of Andrew Krech/NY Daily News

Fresh off the heels of his 13th place ranking in yesterday’s Double-A Eastern League list, Rob Refsnyder became a 2-time member of Baseball America’s league-by-league top 20 rankings today when he was named to the list for the Triple-A International League.  Coincidentally, he came in at number 13 on this list as well, joining Aaron Judge as the only Yankee prospects to appear on multiple lists.

Refsnyder hit .300/.389/.456 with 28 XBH and 47 R scored in 77 games for the SWB RailRiders (333 PA).  That, paired with his results from Double-A, gave Refsnyder a .318/.387/.497 slash line for the full season.  That’s very impressive when you remember that he didn’t hit for that kind of average or nearly that kind of power in 117 games at the High-A level last year.  He may be a work in progress defensively at second base, but Refsnyder has proven beyond a doubt that he can handle the stick at any level of the Minors and that’s why he’ll be knocking on the Major League door come next spring.…

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Sanchez And Refsnyder Named To Baseball America’s Top 20 Eastern League Prospects List

Baseball America’s year-end run through the top 20 prospects in every minor league is almost over.  Today it was the Double-A Eastern League’s top 20 and the Yankees had 2 of their big names show up on the list.  Catcher Gary Sanchez came in at number 11 and second baseman Rob Refsnyder was lucky 13.

Sanchez hit .270/.338/.406 in 477 plate appearances over a full season at the Double-A level.  He continued to show great promise with the bat and improvements in his defensive game, but not at a level as high was what his original ceiling made him out to be.  Refsnyder was arguably the best position player in the Yankee system this year, and in his short stint in Trenton he hit .342/.385/.548.  Sanchez is no longer the top Yankee prospect on my board, but he and Refsnyder are both top 5 easily.  Refsnyder should be in competition for the starting second base job next spring and Sanchez could be in serious consideration for a roster spot in 2016.…

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