Selecting the best fit

In baseball, like everything, some sense of balance is needed for success. Just as you need the right balance of motivation and intelligence to succeed in school, or the balance of acumen and people skills to succeed in business, you need the right balance of, well, just about everything in baseball. No where does this strike more true (well, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit) than it does in lineup construction. A team cannot sway too heavily right handed or too left handed for myriad reasons. Though, to be fair, it may behoove a team to use a heavily right handed lineup (say, the Red Sox) or heavily left handed (say, the Yankees) because it fits their park. And, if we’re granting liberties of sorts here, it probably does make more sense to have a LHH heavy lineup since the majority of pitchers are right handed. For the sake of this post, we’re actually going to forgo balance and talk about one lineup: the Yankee lineup against RHP, so the one that will skew LHH.… Click here to read the rest

Polishing a Turd with Raul, Johnny, and Hideki

There has been much ado about the Yankees designated hitter situation yesterday, with Buster Olney tweeting that the team was “in position to add” one of Raul Ibanez, Johnny Damon, or Hideki Matsui within a week. Ken Rosenthal stoked the coals a bit (or, perhaps, took a book of matches from 7-Eleven), adding that the team was in “serious discussions” with Ibanez. Rosenthal further added that Ibanez was willing to take a discount to play in the Bronx, though I am unsure that he is in a position to be terribly picky regardless. Many would argue that far too much ink and effort has been expended on behalf of Messrs Ibanez, Damon, and Matsui, and that may be true … but if a move is truly forthcoming, it makes sense to look for a silver lining and preempt at least a bit of the inevitable gruff.

Ibanez managed a slightly above-average 101 wRC+ against righties last season, batting .256/.307/.440 with 16 HR in 437 PA.… Click here to read the rest

The Yankees and Pitching Prospects

Before I get into this, my first post at The Yankee Analysts, I’d like to thank everyone here for giving me this opportunity and for welcoming me so fully to the team. I have accepted this position knowing that TYA is not only among the best Yankees blogs on the internet, but among the best team centered blogs in all of baseball, and I hope I have something worthwhile to contribute.

I thought I’d introduce myself to the readers by exploring a phenomena I’ve been considering for quite some time now. Given plethora of young arms in the system – Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, Hector Noesi, David Phelps, and Adam Warren – ostensibly close to their shot with the big league club, it’s worth noting how little success the organization has had developing starting pitchers during Brian Cashman’s tenure as general manager. In fact, since Cashman took over before the 1998 season, his system has succeeded in developing exactly one front of the rotation starter.… Click here to read the rest

Yu Darvish: The next great Yankee righthander?

Nippon Professional Baseball superstar Yu Darvish, a 24-year-old righthander who, by many accounts, is not only the best pitcher in Japan but may have the potential to become one of the best starting pitchers in Major League Baseball, recently took over the comment thread of our post looking at next offseason, as it’s expected the Yankees will be all over him when the Nippon Ham Fighters post him next winter.

And if the Yankees really do want him, I wouldn’t be surprised if they did whatever it takes next winter. Between a rather uninspiring crop of free agent starters, as well as the fact that they can reallocate the $160 million they were willing to spend on Cliff Lee and put it toward what could be a Daisuke Matsuzaka-esque $50 million posting fee, along with what RAB’s Mike Axisa expects to be a Felix Hernandez-type contract, for a total cost of around $130 million, the Yankees seem poised to be able to make a big splash with Darvish.… Click here to read the rest

A busy news day: Lee, Jeter, Rivera, Joba, Montero, Pettitte, Crawford, Werth, Greinke, Dunn and more

Apologies for not being further out in front of all of the news that broke today, but our friends at RAB have already done yeomen’s work in covering everything that came out of the end-of-season press conference held by Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi at the Stadium today, so be sure to check that out (as if you haven’t already).

You’ve likely already heard about Dave Eiland getting the boot and Andy Pettitte pitching through injury in the playoffs, but Cashman also talks about the Yankees’ not having an answer for the Rangers despite steamrolling the Twins; Girardi asserts that Joba Chamberlain is a bullpen guy now and forever (groan); both men say the Yankee are obviously interested in Cliff Lee without actually saying it; Cashman stays coy about Jesus Montero joining the Bigs next season; Cashman essentially confirms that he’ll be way overpaying for Derek Jeter‘s and Mariano Rivera‘s services; and in perhaps the most interesting tidbit, Cash admits last winter wasn’t his best, although I’d beg to differ.… Click here to read the rest

Keeping up with the ex-Yanks: New addition edition

A Yankee no more

With the recent passing of the July 31st trade deadline, we have a new name to add to our bi-weekly updates. Mark Melancon reported to the Astros AAA Round Rock Express, where he earned his first save on Friday. He was also interviewed by Alyson Footer and had some interesting things to say about what was going on with him this season. Apparently, the Yanks wanted him to keep the ball down, so they changed his arm slot from over the top to a more 3/4 delivery and the results weren’t pretty.

In other ex-Yankee news, Brian Bruney was placed on the DL retroactive to August 3rd by the Mets AAA Buffalo Bisons affiliate, where he was working as a starter. Xavier Nady narrowly avoided being traded to the Giants at the trade deadline. Johnny Damon, Austin Jackson and Phil Coke return to the Bronx on Tuesday. Johnny had some kind words of support for ex-teammate Alex Rodriguez after #600.… Click here to read the rest

Keeping up with the ex Yanks-July 17th edition

Time to dust this baby off after a few weeks and a long All Star break. In recent news, Mike Dunn was called up by the Braves. The 25 year old has been dominating for their AAA Gwinnett farm team. But of course, if you’re a regular TYU reader then you knew that already. Since our last report the Mets signed Brian Bruney to a minor league deal. In other news, Mike Scioscia expects the slumping Hideki Matsui to hit better in the 2nd half, Johnny Damon reflected on the passing of George Steinbrenner. Austin Jackson still leads all of Baseball with his .417 BABIP, has the 17th highest K%, is in the bottom fifth with his walk rate and is hitting for no power (.107 ISOP). He’s just having one of those years.

Here’s the full recap:

Melky Cabrera

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg   G   PA   AB   R   H  2B 3B HR RBI SB CS  BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+  TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB   Pos Awards
2010                       25           ATL            NL  87  304  274  29  72  13  1  3  24  4  1  23  37 .263 .321 .350 .671   82  96   5   1  5  1   3         *789

Hideki Matsui

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg    G   PA   AB   R    H  2B 3B  HR RBI SB CS  BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+   TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB    Pos   Awards
2010                       36           LAA            AL   87  343  302  24   76  14  0  10  47  0  0  37  69 .252 .332 .397 .730   96  120   4   1  0  3   3             *D7

Johnny Damon

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg    G   PA   AB    R    H  2B 3B  HR  RBI  SB CS  BB   SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+   TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB    Pos   Awards
2010                       36           DET            AL   79  340  296   54   81  21  2   6   28   7  1  40   47 .274 .361 .419 .780  108  124   3   1  2  1   1            D7/8

Ian Kennedy

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg W  L  W-L%  ERA  G GS GF CG SHO SV    IP   H   R  ER HR BB IBB  SO HBP BK WP  BF ERA+  WHIP  H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2010                       25           ARI            NL 4  7  .364 4.12 18 18  0  0   0  0 111.1  97  55  51 19 42   2 100   6  0  7 470  109 1.249  7.8  1.5  3.4  8.1         2.38

Austin Jackson

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg   G  PA  AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+  TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2010                       23           DET            AL  79 344 317  53  96 21  5  1  20 15  3 23  88 .303 .356 .410 .766  104 130   4   3  1  0   0         *8

Arodys Vizcaino (High-A)

Year              Age           Tm        Lg       Lev       Aff  W L W-L%  ERA  G GS GF CG SHO SV    IP   H  R ER HR BB IBB  SO HBP BK WP  BF  WHIP  H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2010               19      2 Teams     2 Lgs      A-A+       ATL  9 3 .750 2.71 15 15  0  0   0  0  83.0  76 33 25  2 12   0  77   4  3  7 344 1.060  8.2  0.2  1.3  8.3  6.42
2010               19         Rome      SALL         A       ATL  9 3 .750 2.34 12 12  0  0   0  0  69.1  60 24 18  1  9   0  66   3  2  6 283 0.995  7.8  0.1  1.2  8.6  7.33
2010               19  MyrtleBeach      CARL        A+       ATL  0      0 4.61  3  3  0  0   0  0  13.2  16  9  7  1  3   0  11   1  1  1  61 1.390 10.5  0.7  2.0  7.2  3.67

Xavier Nady

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg   G   PA   AB   R   H  2B 3B HR RBI SB CS  BB  SO    BA   OBP   SLG   OPS OPS+   TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB     Pos Awards
2010                       31           CHC            NL  62  156  138  12  31   5  0  4  19  0  0   9  37  .225  .295  .348  .643   67   48   6   6  0  3   0          9/37D

Brian Bruney

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg  W  L  W-L%  ERA   G GS GF CG SHO SV    IP   H   R  ER HR  BB IBB  SO HBP BK WP   BF ERA+  WHIP  H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2010                       28           WSN            NL  1  2  .333 7.64  19  0  6  0   0  0  17.2  21  18  15  1  20   1  16   0  0  1   93   55 2.321 10.7  0.5 10.2  8.2         0.80

Phil Coke

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg  W L  W-L%  ERA   G GS GF CG SHO SV    IP  H  R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP  BF ERA+  WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2010                       27           DET            AL  5 0 1.000 2.48  42  0  8  0   0  1  36.1 34 12 10  1 14   1 30   2  0  1 154  177 1.321 8.4  0.2  3.5  7.4         2.14

Mike Dunn (MLB)

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg W L W-L%  ERA  G GS GF CG SHO SV  IP  H  R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP  BF ERA+  WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2010                       25           ATL            NL 0      0 0.00  1  0  0  0   0  0 1.0  1  0  0  0  1   0  2   0  0  0        5 2.000 9.0  0.0  9.0 18.0         2.00

Jose Tabata

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg   G  PA  AB  R   H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS OPS+  TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2010                       21           PIT            NL  30 134 120 12  30  7  0  1   6  8  4 14 18 .250 .328 .333 .662   81  40   1   0  0  0   0        7/8

Tyler Clippard

Year                      Age            Tm            Lg  W  L W-L%  ERA  G GS GF CG SHO SV    IP   H  R ER HR BB IBB  SO HBP BK WP  BF ERA+  WHIP  H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2010                       25           WSN            NL  8  6 .571 3.31 44  0 10  0   0  1  51.2  43 21 19  4 24   4  58   2  0  1 218  125 1.297  7.5  0.7  4.2 10.1         2.42
Click here to read the rest

Keeping up with the ex-Yanks June 27th edition

It’s been 2 weeks since my last update, so it’s time to take this baby out for another spin. At this point of the year (mid-season) most of the numbers are a big enough sample that we should have a good idea of where these guys are and what they’ll produce. Arodys Vizcaino has earned himself a promotion to the Braves High-A affiliate, but has been getting knocked around in his first 3 appearances. While the Diamondbacks are looking at a fire sale, don’t expect Ian Kennedy to go anywhere. He and Justin Upton are the only two players on the team who are considered “untouchable” by GM Josh Byrnes. Looking up and down the list, there’s very little to complain about, especially with the free agents who left the team in Damon and Matsui. The only guy who the Yanks really miss right now is Mike Dunn, as they find themselves looking for a 2nd Lefty out of the bullpen.… Click here to read the rest

Keeping up with the ex-Yanks May 27th edition

It’s been 2 weeks since my last update, so it’s time for another edition. In recent news, Brian Bruney has been released by the Nats. Mike Scioscia has dropped Hideki Matsui from the clean up spot and is considering platooning the Japanese slugger, who’s done little after his hot start. Austin Jackson and Tyler Clippard are coming back down to Earth after their extremely hot starts. Ian Kennedy has continued to pitch well for Arizona and Mike Dunn is earning himself an MLB call up from the Braves.

Here’s the full list:

Melky Cabrera

G-43 PA-142 H-27 BB-15 HR-1 SO-17 BA-.220  OBP-.304 SLG-.276 OPS-.581

Hideki Matsui

G-45 PA-176 H-36 BB-17 HR-5 SO-34 BA-.231  OBP-.307 SLG-.372 OPS-.679

Johnny Damon

G-44 PA-187 H-45 BB-26 HR-3 SO-27 BA-.283  OBP-.385 SLG-.428 OPS-.813

Ian Kennedy

W-L 3-3 G-10 ERA-3.41 IP-63.1 H-53 ER-24 BB-20 SO-51 WHIP-1.153

Austin Jackson

G-43 PA-196 H-60 BB-15 HR-1 SO-52 BA-.333  OBP-.388 SLG-.450 OPS-.838

Arodys Vizcaino (A)

W-L 6-3 G-9 ERA-3.16 IP-51.1 H-50 ER-18 BB-9 SO-49 WHIP-1.154

Xavier Nady

G-33 PA-76 H-15 BB-5 HR-1 SO-14 BA-.227  OBP-.316 SLG-.318 OPS-.634

Brian Bruney

W-L 1-2 G-19 ERA-7.64 IP-17.2 H-21 ER-15 BB-20 SO-16 WHIP-2.321

Phil Coke

W-L 3-3 G-15 ERA-1.80 IP-15.0 H-15 ER-3 BB-8 SO-412 WHIP-1.533

Mike Dunn (AAA)

W-L 1-0 G-15 ERA-0.83 IP-21.2 H-15 ER-2 BB-9 SO-27 WHIP-1.132

Jose Tabata (AAA)

G-42 PA-178 H-58 BB-16 HR-2 SO-27 BA-.326  OBP-.382 SLG-.433 OPS-.814

Tyler Clippard

W-L 7-3 G-23 ERA-2.12 IP-29.2 H-18 ER-7 BB-16 SO-33 WHIP-1.146… Click here to read the rest