What’s Going On Behind The Scenes In Yankeeland?

Cash 2013

Cash had a lot to say to the media yesterday.  Unsurprisingly, the bulk of it was about injuries.  While the news on A-Rod and Michael Pineda was both positive, it was what Cash said about Mark Teixeira that stood out.  When asked about Kevin Long’s statement over the weekend that Teix hadn’t seemed right since coming off the DL, Cash pulled off the impressive feat of going both on the defensive and the offensive, saying that Long had never said anything like that in any internal discussions and calling it “alarming” that Long would then say that to reporters.  When pressed further to comment on whether he was angry with Long, Cash summed up his feelings with this statement:

“I think some people are better with the microphone than others.”

Boom, roasted! I don’t care if you like Cash or not, that’s a good line.  What I do care about is the fact that it’s another example of Cash publicly airing out his people, something that’s never been a part of his playbook and has come as a bit of a surprise to me this season.

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Who’s To Blame For The Youkilis Screw-Up?

MLB: New York Yankees at Toronto Blue Jays

(Syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod)

We’re never going to find out, and I ask the question knowing full well that it really doesn’t matter in the long run.  What matters is that Kevin Youkilis get 100% healthy and not come back to play until his back is 100% healthy.  But just out of sheer, morbid curiosity I’d like to know what went on behind the scenes on Friday/Saturday that led to Youkilis’ name being put on the lineup card so he could go out there and hurt himself again.  Cash’s statement on the matter yesterday Tuesday was pretty damning, about as clear-cut an instance of people getting thrown under the bus as I’ve seen in some time, and I work at a company that specializes in that.  It’s pretty out of character for Cash to be that blunt and sell his own people down the river like that, so I’d be very interested in knowing what happened to inspire his comments.

As far as I can figure, the “everyone involved” would have had to include Youkilis, Joe, and the training staff, with maybe Cash getting a vote on the matter after he heard all the reports.  His statement indicates that he wasn’t on board with Youkilis playing, so who effed up?  We know Joe’s been talking to Youkilis every day since he first started missing games, so did he just misunderstand something that Youkilis told him about how he felt?  Did the training staff miss something when they checked him out?  Did they miscommunicate something to Joe?  Or did Youkilis just snake everybody and say what he had to say to get himself back on the field?

Any and all of those explanations are possible and I’d believe all of them if that was the explanation the team gave.  But I still really want to know and it’s driving me crazy knowing that I’m never going to know.  It’s not every day that something like this happens in professional sports and it’s not every day we see Cash sell his people out that publicly.  Somebody dropped the ball here, Youkilis is going to miss more time as a result, and his back injury could become an even greater lingering issue moving forward.  I DEMAND ANSWERS!!! Continue reading Who’s To Blame For The Youkilis Screw-Up?

Jeter related ramblings

Happy Friday, all. I hope your week hasn’t been too stressful. Anyway, let’s get down to business. We’re all aware of Derek Jeter‘s injury situation. Opening Day has long been Jeter’s goal, but that now appears in jeopardy. Yesterday, GM Brian Cashman announced that Jeter would no longer participate in Major League Spring Training games; however, he’ll continue to play in Minor League games. As we’ve all heard by now, this is essentially a clerical “just in case.” It allows Jeter to get game action, but also allows the Yankees to retroactively place Jeter on the 15-day Disabled List in case he isn’t ready to go for Opening Day. This all makes me think that they should just place Jeter on the DL now.

The Derek Jeter we’ve all come to know and love is the guy who “shows up to work every day” and just “does his job” (and does it exceedingly well most of the time). Like any successful worker, Jeter is goal-oriented, and in this case, Opening Day readiness is the goal and he’s been steadfast in his determination to reach that goal. That effort is certainly laudable, but is this “toughness” actually a good thing? Being in the lineup on Opening Day is certainly admirable, but if Jeter isn’t field-ready by then, can’t we argue that it hurts the team just as much as–if not more than–it would if he just sat out for the first few games and returned on April 6th? Granted, Eduardo Nunez isn’t going to be any great shakes at short for those few games, but how effective would an injured Derek Jeter be? His range is already limited and now he’s got another year to his name as well as an ankle plate and some screws to match. Wouldn’t it be better to get the DL stint out of the way now rather than in May or June when he’s an absolute statue in the field and possibly unbalanced at the plate?

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Yankees’ Plan This Offseason Could Be Setting Them Up For Future Failure

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod) One of the posts I read over the weekend that really stuck with me was Greg Corcoran’s open letter to Brian Cashman over at Bronx Baseball Daily letting Cash know what he thinks of the Yankees’ offseason plan.  The general theme of Greg’s post was that while he can get on board with what the team has done this offseason to transition to the sub-$189 mil payroll in 2014, he didn’t see their no-spending approach as a real plan for success after the payroll ceiling had been reached.  Specifically, he Continue reading Yankees’ Plan This Offseason Could Be Setting Them Up For Future Failure

Would The Yankees Really Go To Tampa With What They’ve Got Right Now?

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod) I didn’t write about it last week when the comments were made because it didn’t tie in to the Prospect Week theme, but Cash made some head-scratching statements to our buddy Wally Matthews about the Yankees’ current roster makeup and the stance they’re taking as the offseason winds down and moves into the preseason. “I know it’s getting late, but we’re still looking.” “We’re open for business, but we’re not going to do something just to do something. If we have to, we’ll go to Tampa with what we’ve got.” Continue reading Would The Yankees Really Go To Tampa With What They’ve Got Right Now?

Cracking The Hot Stove Code

Last week, we had four days of Winter Meetings to look forward to, and all we got were four days of rumors. (1,2,3,4) The Yankees haven’t needed this much TLC since 2008, and now they get to do it with a budget in mind. On top of that, the free agent market isn’t exactly booming with potential. Brian Cashman may have missed a number of outfield  and infield free agents last week, but none of them were “must-haves”. He has to please the fans with a winning team, he has to please ownership by staying within a budget, and he Continue reading Cracking The Hot Stove Code

Finding The Next Great Swish/C-Grand-Type Trade Candidate

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod) Barring a a big-time unexpected swerve, the Yankees seem pretty well set in their plans to not add significant payroll this offseason as they try to address their team needs.  They’ve engaged pretty much every older free agent from last year’s team in some capacity while letting the younger, more expensive ones walk.  If there is going to be any real effort towards improving the quality of the on-field product next year and not just controlling the dollars, that effort may have to come through the trade market, a roster-building Continue reading Finding The Next Great Swish/C-Grand-Type Trade Candidate

The Yankees Aren't Good At Trading For, Developing, or Signing Pitchers

After five years of developing Jesus Montero into a budding young star, they traded him for fellow budding young star Michael Pineda. Almost instantly, Pineda disappointed with some kind of shoulder injury, which eventually developed into a labrum tear, and will not only sideline him for the remainder of year, but is a severe existential threat to his career. Pitchers are time bombs waiting to explode. They commonly suffer catastrophic injuries. They see much more variance in their skills from season to season than do hitters. It would be foolish to judge a team by looking at the performance of Continue reading The Yankees Aren't Good At Trading For, Developing, or Signing Pitchers

Nightly Links: Ibanez, Cashman, Pearce

It looks like Raul Ibanez has finally picked things up. After his homerun on Saturday, he was robbed yesterday, and today we have another homerun off Jason Hammel. The game is currently on YES. Curtis Clark at Bronx Baseball Daily takes an in depth look into Hiroki Kuroda, his $10 million contract, his consistency, and lack of hype. Speaking of pitching, Yankees Fans Unite takes a look at how the current bullpen and rotation is built, and how Brian Cashman and the front office have molded their strategy in recent years. The Yankees have signed Baseball America’s #89 prospect from Continue reading Nightly Links: Ibanez, Cashman, Pearce