I am a journalism student at William Paterson University in New Jersey. I am an aspiring sports journalist who has had a huge passion for the Yankees since birth. Contact or follow me on Twitter at @RAYROBERT9.

Author Archives: Matt Bove

Yankees Shortstop Options

It’s no secret that the No.1 thing on Brian Cashman’s winter to do list is to find a replacement for Derek Jeter. Whether that is a short term or long term replacement remains to be seen. The good news is that it will be easy to improve on Jeter’s 2014 season.

The bad news is that the free agency crop of shortstops isn’t very good and full of players who may have to move off the position. The good news is that there are a good number of trade candidates available, but that would of course mean giving up prospects when the Yankees are trying to rebuild their farm system. Lets take a look at the candidates:

Free Agents

Hanley Ramirez- Ramirez represents what might be the greatest risk of any free agent on the market let alone the shortstop market. His bat is still extremely productive and that is huge in this day and age of baseball when offense is limited.…

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McCann and Beltran Rebounding Essential

As the 2014 MLB season closes and we look forward to the hot stove season nobody really knows what the plans for the Yankees are.

My guess would be don’t expect for the Yankees to sign any of the biggest names like Max Scherzer, Jon Lester or Nelson Cruz, but they are still the Yankees and you never know. Hal Steinbrenner has been resistant to having the payroll more than what it was last year. They haven’t traded a big time prospect since Jesus Montero, so it’s hard to see them acquiring a big name via the trade route with their new commitment to building up their farm system.

Other than shortstop, the Yankees have players under contract for big money at all the other positions. That’s likely to hurt them on the market. Why would Pablo Sandoval or Melky Cabrera want to come here with Alex Rodriguez and Carlos Beltran here?

It’s hurts even more when trying to recruit part time players, which the Yankees desperately need with their injury risks.…

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Sandoval and Headley Solid 3B Options

Nick Carfardo of the Boston Globe reported a few days ago that the Yankees, along with the Red Sox and Dodgers, might be willing to offer Pablo Sandoval a five-year, $100 million contract.

Brian Cashman had a more honest quote about Alex Rodriguez during his media tour yesterday after receiving a new three-year contract.

“I don’t think you can assume he can play third base,” Cashman said. “With his age and missing a full year and how it affected Derek [Jeter] and Mark Teixeira. … In the chair I sit in, it’s safer to assume this is something he might not be able to do the whole year.”

This leaves Sandoval and Chase Headley as the best free agent options. Sandoval has been one of the free agents that I have been an advocate of.  Headley’s WAR was 4.4 last year compared to 3.0 for Sandoval. However, much of that is tied to Headley’s defense. FanGraphs had him at 21.6 runs above average on defense and a 20.9 UZR.…

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Health Not All That Ails Yankees

All signs point to Brian Cashman returning as New York Yankees general manager. My feelings about that are mixed. You cannot deny Cashman’s overall success over a long period of time, and he did make several key pickups this season to keep the Yankees in contention.

On the other hand, his farm system has been not been good enough for awhile and it’s clear that the Yankees have to change the way they do things in order to compete in MLB’s new world. Cashman has been GM since 1998, which may be too long for anybody. Sometimes you just need a new voice and new ideas.

If the Yankees did try to replace Cashman there’s no guarantee they would find someone better. However, a recent Cashman quote is concerning to me.

“I honestly believe if you repeated this season 100 times you would not get this result,” Cashman said to John Harper of the New York Daily News

“You’ll see the real Carlos Beltran next year,” he said.

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Shane Greene Should Be In 2015 Plans

AP Photo/Tony Dejak

AP Photo/Tony Dejak

When you look at the 2015 Yankees starting rotation you see a lot of uncertainty and questions.

Will Michael Pineda, CC Sabathia and Masahiro Tanaka be healthy? When will Ivan Nova pitch? Will Hiroki Kuroda or Brandon McCarthy be brought back? Shane Greene is starting to prove that he is not among those question marks.

When Greene was first brought up expectations were pretty low. He only had a 4.61 ERA in Triple-A and was not a highly touted prospect. He has blown those expectations away at the MLB level, which in most cases would be some kind of fluke like Chase Whitley’s first few starts were. However, by watching Greene’s stuff and looking at his peripheral numbers you can see that he looks legitimate.

Greene has a 5-3 record in 13 starts for the Yankees with a 3.24 ERA and a 3.37 xFIP. The thing that you love about Greene is that he often gets the two best results a pitcher can hope for– a strikeout or a ground ball.…

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Should Yankees Sign Victor Martinez This Offseason?

New York Daily News writer John Harper wrote a column yesterday saying that the Yankees should sign Victor Martinez.

Martinez has had a career year at age 36 for the Detroit Tigers, as he has hit .335/.406/.571 with a 165 wRC+ and a .411 wOBA. The 30 home runs Martinez has hit already are a career high. He is the only player in MLB with an OBP that is over .400 and has an amazingly low 6.8 percent K rate. Martinez’ .315 BABIP is right in line with his career rate, so that suggests that he has not been overly lucky to have this career year.

Obviously, the Yankees need a hitter producing like Martinez and more than one of them. Their offense this year is among the worst in franchise history and has made this season brutal to watch. However, Martinez just does not seem to fit into the Yankees right now.

The Yankees desperately need to get younger, and Martinez would add another old position player to go along with Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez and Carlos Beltran.…

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Giving Chris Capuano Some Love

Courtesy of Getty Images

The pitching staff of the New York Yankees is the reason that they have even the slightest chance to make the postseason this year. Michael Pineda, Shane Greene and Brandon McCarthy have been getting a lot of credit for their performances. Nobody has really realized just how good Chris Capuano has been.

When the Yankees traded for Capuano for cash on July 24th, he was thought just to be a filler in the rotation for a little bit. However, he has pitched so well that he has managed to stay in the rotation ever since. He has been another bargain bin pickup found by the Yankees’ analytics team that has turned into much more than that.

Capuano’s 1-2 record and 4.01 ERA will not jump out at you right away until you look deeper into his peripheral numbers. The Yankees don’t score runs for anybody, which explains his record. His 3.20 FIP with the Yankees suggests that he has been unlucky.…

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Can Yankees Pull Off A 1995 Esque Run?

Every time you say you’re done with the 2014 New York Yankees they manage to pull you back in with a little glimmer of hope. Everybody was writing their obituaries of this year’s Yankees after two embarrassing losses to the Houston Astros on Tuesday and Wednesday, but they have come back to win four straight games and sit only three games in the loss column behind the Seattle Mariners for the second wild card spot.

Obviously, they have a lot to prove and four wins over the Astros and White Sox is not the greatest accomplishment. However, they did have some magic with two walk-off wins and a meeting among the position players and hitting coach Kevin Long might have sparked something:

We all came together as a team, Kevin Long had some things to say, and we’ve responded really well,” said catcher Brian McCann.

They can prove this week whether or not they will stay in the race for the remainder of the season when they play three other wild card contenders on the road in Kansas City, Detroit and Toronto.…

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On Brian Cashman’s Job Status

Brian Cashman is a huge source of controversy and disagreement among Yankees fans. There is the group of people who want him fired, and a group who still think he’s a very competent general manager.

This became a big topic again last week when Hal Steinbrenner was noncommittal about signing Cashman to a new contract this winter.

“We’re so busy right now, trying to figure out who’s going to be playing in any given game, much less that,” Steinbrenner said. “We’ll be talking about that soon enough. But you know me. We’ve got enough things to worry about during the season. That’s where our focus needs to be.”

On the surface it seems silly to suggest firing a man who has a career record of 1,612-1,099 for his 16 years on the job.

The biggest argument I can see for letting Cashman go is that 16 years is a long time for anybody to be in a position. Cashman is only 47 years old, so you forget that he has been here so long.…

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