The Case For Raul

So the official word from “sources” justifying the Ibanez signing is that it’s all about defense:

“The Yankees, in part, favored Ibanez over other free agents, like Johnny Damon, because they think he can play defense. With Ibanez’ numbers similar against right-handed pitching as other free agents the added element gave Ibanez the tie-breaker.”

Fine. Damon was never a great fielder, and if everything else is equal, the Yankees should try to grab the most versatile player. While I understand this logic, it seems a little facetious to me: we are talking about a lefty DH, and while it would be nice if he could play the field on occasion, it’s certainly not a necessity. In short: it doesn’t seem like a convincing reason to rule in favor of Ibanez (especially because he’s a mediocre-to-bad fielder himself—he had a ghastly -16 Defensive Runs Saved last year in LF, and is a career -8). Ironically, going by most of the fielding metrics, Damon had a better defensive season last year than Ibanez—though again, there are a lot of caveats.…

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PECOTA run scoring projections

We’re finally days away from Spring Training. Soon enough, the waiting will be over and we’ll be able to watch REAL LIVE BASEBALL (shameless plug time: if you’re in the NYC metro area, you should totally come to this). But, before we get to that, let’s take another look at some run scoring...

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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...

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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...

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Jays jettison Yankee Killer Vernon Wells while Tampa Bay goes all 2004 Red Sox and signs both Manny Ramirez and Johnny Damon

I step away from the Internet for two hours only to come back and find that two of the Yankees’ AL East rivals have made a handful of notable moves.

First up, the...

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News and notes on a Wednesday: Soriano, Pettitte, Jones, Damon, Pavano and Joba

Though nothing official has happened outside of the Rafael Soriano signing, there has been a flurry of Yankee-related information and rumors in the aftermath of the Soriano presser,...

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Outfield Notes: Damon and Ramirez

Just a few notes and some commentary for Christmas Eve Day Morning:

–The Yankees are “internally discussing Manny Ramirez. As far as discussions go, I can imagine this one went something like this:

Yankee Front Office Guy 1: “Hey wouldn’t it be funny if we signed Manny?”

There’s no way in hell that...

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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...

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