Saturday Morning News And Notes: 11/8/14

Here’s the latest run around the Yankee news circuit before a big day of college football.

– Via multiple reports, the Yankees are among a handful of teams who have contacted the Chicago White Sox about the availability of shortstop Alexei Ramirez.  Ramirez, 33, hit .273/.305/.408 with 15 HR and 21 SB in 2014.  He’s owed $10 mil for 2015 and has a $10 team option/$1 mil buyout for 2016.

Via Mark Feinsand, the Yanks and Chris Young have “mutual interest” in a reunion after his stellar September, and the team has already reached out to Young’s people to start talks.  Personally I’d take the great SSS performance and move on, but whatever.

– If you missed the Chad Jennings post yesterday, some of the notable Yankee MiL free agents include Zoilo Almonte, Scott Sizemore, and switch pitcher Pat Venditte.

– They were announced on Thursday, but in an absolute and complete shock, there were no Yankee players on the list of AL Silver Slugger Award winners.…

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Friday Afternoon Linkapalooza: 11/7/14

I’m heading out to Germany for another week on Sunday for my 9-5 job, so I’ll be out of the loop and away from the blog during that time.  That should be welcome news to those of you who find my brand of humor and love of A-Rod loathsome, and you already know you’re in good hands with the rest of the crew here.  The last time I left for this training in July, the Yankees lost Tanaka to his elbow injury, traded for Brandon McCarthy, and I came back to take on my current co-ed job here.  Maybe this time I’ll come home to a job offer on the Yankees’ scouting staff.  That’d be sweet.  Now onto the links!

– On Monday, Steven Jacobson of Bronx Pinstripes broke down David Huff’s pitch mix transformation in 2014.  I honestly never even gave Huff’s repertoire much thought.

– El duque of It Is High… cringed at the possibility of the Yankees losing D-Rob to monetary reasons this offseason.

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Quick Hit: Yanks Decline Then Re-Sign Andrew Bailey

Good stuff from Chad Jennings here.  We knew the Yankees had a decision to make on Andrew Bailey’s 2015 option and there it is.  The team declined the option, saving themselves a few mil towards this year’s payroll, then re-signed Bailey to a MiL deal.  This gives him the chance to continue rehabbing his shoulder injury and keeps the Yankees’ chances of getting something useful from him alive.  Pretty smart.

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Report: Yanks Targeting Jason Hammel, Interested In Bringing Back Capuano

Add a few more names to the free agent pitching list.  Via Jon Heyman on Wednesday, the Yankees are “targeting” righty starter Jason Hammel along with Brandon McCarthy, and “have interest” in bringing back left-hander Chris Capuano.  An unnamed source in the story reiterated the point about the Yankees not pursuing the big money pitchers this offseason, and these new names make it appear as though they’re comfortable swimming in the middle part of the free agent talent pool.

Capuano was solid in 12 starts with the Yanks this season, posting a 4.25/3.85/3.78 tripleslash with 55 strikeouts and 0.9 fWAR in 65.2 IP.  I’d have no problem bringing him back as a swingman or rotation depth piece, although he was let go by 2 other teams in 2014 and he was pitching in Triple-A when the Yankees acquired him.  If he comes back, it should be on a very small deal, possibly even a non-guaranteed one.

Hammel I’m not that high on.  …

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And Then There’s This…

The part of the A-Rod steroid re-shaming spectacular where he pisses on Cousin Yuri’s wall as a way to threaten him.  Via The Daily News:

“She [Sucart’s wife] said Rodriguez came to the Miami home Rodriguez provided to the Sucarts in 2010 and vowed to destroy the family if they went public with his use of performance-enhancing drugs. Then he urinated on the wall and the patio, she said, as if to mark the house as his territory.

‘He peed on the floor. He was so arrogant, he came into my house like he thought he was a god,’ Carmen Sucart said.”

I give up.  I’ve got nothing.  We’ve officially crossed over into Bizarro World and the offseason hasn’t even really gotten started.

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Hey Look! An A-Rod Story That Actually Matters!

Feinsand keeps playing chess while everybody else is playing “I hate A-Rod” checkers.  He filed a report late last night that was chock full of useful, timely, relevant information on Alex Rodriguez.  Stuff like updates on what he’s been doing lately to prepare for next season:

“A source close to Rodriguez told The News Wednesday that the former AL MVP has been working out ‘like a fiend,’ hitting several days a week at the University of Miami among other places.”

What he’s been doing for months to stay in shape and get ready for his return:

“Rodriguez has been hitting, taking grounders and going through an all-around conditioning program for months, the source said, doing everything within his power to be ready for spring training.”

And a direct quote from one of his teammates on how he feels about A-Rod rejoining the team and the locker room next year:

“Guys in the clubhouse, we’re there for one reason; we’re trying to play baseball and trying to do the best we can as a team, make it into October and win a World Series,” Gardner said.

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Quick Hit: Brett Gardner Had Surgery On A Muscle I Probably Don’t Have

So I guess that answers the question of what was wrong with Gardner’s abdominal area in the second half of the season.  Sounds like something that would be painful to walk around with, let alone swing a baseball bat, run around, and throw a ball as hard as you can.  This certainly lends some explanation to Gardner’s second-half offensive fade and lack of stolen bases, and it’s good to know that he’s going to make a full recovery and be ready for Spring Training.

Bigger picture though, is this late-season injury thing starting to become a trend with Gardner?  Without looking it up, I feel like he’s ended 3 or 4 seasons with a bunch of nagging injuries that have left him playing at far less than 100% and killed his production.  He’s not a huge guy and he plays the game very aggressively, so some of it is just the natural result of playing the game every day for 6 months.  …

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Rockies Reportedly “Willing” To Deal Tulo And CarGo; Yanks Have To Put A Call In, Right?

While we’re talking about players that are or aren’t worth the financial risk to the Yankees, we might as well talk about a couple names that have come up before.  Ken Rosenthal posted a story last night about the Colorado Rockies possibly being willing to trade Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez.  According to Rosenthal’s report, the team isn’t actively shopping either player or preparing for a fire sale, but the new front office crew does appear to have changed owner Dick Monfrot’s mind on the idea of moving his top 2 players.

“The Rockies are telling clubs they are keeping their ‘eyes and ears open’ for potential deals involving both players, according to major-league sources.”

Opinions on whether it makes sense to go after Tulowitzki vary, but there’s no denying that he would be the best option to replace Derek Jeter at shortstop from a talent perspective.  And CarGo, while no Fielding Bible Award-level outfielder himself, would be a better everyday option in right field than CarBel.  …

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Quick Hit: Brandon McCarthy, Twitter Savant

Earlier today, grit extraordinaire Ryan Theriot had some not-so-smart words for Dodgers fans that were excited about the hiring of Andrew Friedman and Farhan Zaidi:

Aaron Gleeman pointed out the foolishness of this statement less than an hour later, as countless successful GMs have “never played the game.” This includes the Yankees own Brian Cashman, for example – a man that has been kind of successful. Several people have come forward with several additional responses, as is the norm for Twitter. And, of course, it didn’t take too long for most to realize that Theriot was speaking out of his backside.

The best reaction to this silliness, however, came from Brandon McCarthy:

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