It’s Time To Trade David Robertson

David Robertson is becoming a Yankee fan favorite. In the minds of the fans, he’s handsome, charitable, and always missing bats. In the minds of his opponents, he’s clever, got filthy stuff, and always missing bats. In my mind, he’s unsustainable. In 2011, David Robertson led the American League in ERA, K/9, was second in FIP, but also second in LOB%. For better or for worse, he appears to be the same pitcher in 2012 as he was last year.

I'll miss the fistpumps.

Robertson’s one weakness stems from his inability to keep men off base. His 89.8% left on base percentage and .289 BABIP, compared to his career .320 BABIP, indicate just how lucky he was in 2011. While you might thiN. Robertson could be good enough to maintain these numbers, even the greatest reliever of all time and most clutch player in recent Yankee history, Mariano Rivera, has a career 80.1% LOB. Robertson is a well above-average relief pitcher, but due to below-average control issues, he finds himself with too many players on base.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees Trade Sergio Mitre For CF Chris Dickerson

When the Yankees agreed to a deal with Kevin Millwood last night, most Yankees fans took it to mean that Bartolo Colon would make the Yankees and that Sergio Mitre was on his way out. With Colon being a health risk, Millwood seemed like an insurance policy to protect the club’s depth should Bartolo go down after they released Mitre. This thought was confirmed today as the Yankees agreed to send Mitre to the Brewers for 28-year-old centerfielder Chris Dickerson. Here are Dickerson’s numbers, as well as some 2011 projections for him, courtesy of Fangraphs:

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As you can see, Dickerson was terrible in 2010, as his plate discipline abandoned him and any semblance of power disappeared. However, Chris is an excellent defensive center fielder and he projects fairly decently as an offensive player, as his minor league career and his first two seasons suggest that he should at least be able to reach base at a solid rate and steal some bases.… Click here to read the rest

What The Failed Cervelli-Martin Trade Tells Us

According to Michael Schmidt, the Yankees and Dodgers came close to swapping catchers on Wednesday, with the Yankees nearly acquiring Russell Martin for Francisco Cervelli. I said the following about Martin a few weeks ago:

Martin’s career has evaporated over the last two seasons, but he would likely represent an upgrade defensively behind the plate over every catcher that the Yankees have, and he still has some pop in his bat. He could take the Cervelli role in the 3-headed Yankee catching monster while allowing Jesus Montero to ease onto the roster slowly. If the Yankees get lucky, he could revert back to his old self and become an extremely valuable trade chip or allow the Yankees to explore trading some of their catching assets.

A deal could not be reached and Martin was subsequently non-tendered. Although I am sure the Yankees will pursue Martin now that he is freely available, he is likely to get offers from clubs willing to make him their everyday catcher.… Click here to read the rest

No room/need for Oswalt

As most of you know by now, Roy Oswalt, Houston’s reliable right-hander, might be up for grabs as the Astros continue to sputter through another lost season. As a result of their of their terrible losing record, the loyal Oswalt reportedly requested a trade about a week ago in the hopes that he could ultimately join a contendor. However, do not expect the Yankees to enter the bidding for the 32-year old’s services.

Although Oswalt is a dependable workhorse, logging 200-plus innings on a seemingly regular basis, and despite his proven track record as one of the most effective pitchers in the game – he owns a 3.35 career FIP and has posted a 3.20 FIP over 69 innings this year – the Yankees simply do not have any room for him in their rotation. “We have five starters we like,” responded “one Yankees person” to Sports Illustrated’s Jon Heyman last week, when asked about the team’s interest in Oswalt.… Click here to read the rest

Discussion: Do Yanks Trade For Javy If They Know About Phil?

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I was having a discussion this morning with @NYBD on twitter, and he raised an interesting question that I wanted to pose to you: if the Yankees had known that Phil Hughes would be as good as he has been thus far, would they have made the move for Javier Vazquez? To elaborate, let’s assume that Hughes finishes the year with 14-16 wins and an ERA below 4.00. If you had guaranteed to Brian Cashman that Hughes would turn in that sort of season, would he have felt it necessary to bring in Javier Vazquez and relinquish Arodys Vizcaino? Or would he have allowed Hughes to be the 4th starter and gone with Joba Chamberlain or possibly Alfredo Aceves at #5?

I happen to think that Vazquez would be a Yankee no matter what the Yankees expected out of Hughes. The allure of Vazquez had a lot less to do with his sub-3.00 ERA in the NL last year and a lot more to do with the fact that he is practically a lock for 200 league average innings every year.… Click here to read the rest

Should the Yankees trade Joba Chamberlain?

The Yankees should trade Joba Chamberlain.

Yes, I said it. Now, before I am criticized – such a response is understandable – or, at the least, ridiculed for that statement, allow me to explain my perspective. First, from a macro standpoint, good starters are generally more valuable than good relievers. Let’s establish that much, at least. As Dave Allen of FanGraphs notes, “an elite reliever is worth about the same as a just slightly above average starter,” which underscores this notion of good starterdom versus good relieverdom, with good starterdom winning every time. With that said, moving from macro (general) to micro (specific), Joba Chamberlain’s value is intimately tied to his role on the Yankees. As a reliever, even an elite reliever, he is just not as valuable as he would be if he were an above average piece of the team’s starting pitching. Joba has that ability, though – to be an above average starter – and other ballclubs know that.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees ship Edwar to Texas for cash

Via Bryan Hoch, the Yankees have traded right-handed reliever, Edwar Ramirez, to the Texas Rangers for “cash considerations.” Edwar was recently designated for assignment in order to make room on the roster for Chan Ho Park. The slender 28-year old ends his disappointing New York tenure with a 5.22 ERA (ERA+ of 85) and 1.955 WHIP over 98 1/3 innings pitched (his K/9 of 10.6 was a bright spot).… Click here to read the rest

What to expect from Melky in 2010

Here’s Dave Cameron of FanGraphs, offering an “optimistic” outlook for Melky Cabrera‘s 2010 prospects.

He’s been around long enough that its easy to forget that he’s just 25 years old. He gets labeled as a tweener, because he’s not a great defensive CF or a great offensive LF, but guys like this are often better than people realize, and there’s still upside left with Cabrera. He’s a really good contact hitter and strong enough to add to his current gap power levels. He doesn’t even have to add all that much power to turn himself into a legitimate 20-20 threat.

He may not look like a classic corner outfielder, but Cabrera can play, and I think Braves fans will be pleasantly surprised with what he offers. His defense is going to be a solid plus in a corner, and he’s not far from being a quintessential #2 hitter. Given his physical skills and age, don’t be surprised if he locks down an outfield spot in Atlanta for the next several years.

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Vazquez’s nomadic past not a problem

Over the weekend, the Daily News’ Anthony McCarron analyzed the Yankees’ recent acquisition of starter Javier Vazquez. To the right of that text, in a sidebar titled “JAVIER VAZQUEZ, RHP,” McCarron briefly summarized his article, and outlined both “The Positives” and “The Negatives” pertaining to the team’s newly acquired strikeout specialist. One of the negatives — actually, the only negative listed by McCarron — seems flawed, however.

“Why has a guy so talented been on five teams,” asks McCarron, as Vazquez’s geographical fluidity — he has been traded five times over the last seven years — is the lone question mark, according to McCarron, that is tied to the Puerto Rican hurler. Apparently, if we are to cull some sort of significance from Vazquez’s lack of a steady home, then perhaps we are to believe that being traded five times in a seven-year period is indicative of a performative deviancy or personality problem. In some way, he must be defective. “He was a Yankee in 2004,” adds McCarron, “and they did not keep him at a time when they wanted to build around young aces, dealing him for Randy Johnson instead.” Again, the general willingness to trade Vazquez, despite his abundance of talents, must indicate the presence of an underlying (and significant) issue, right?… Click here to read the rest