UPDATED: On the Money: A-Rod blowout

Not tired of this A-Rod business yet? Then IIATMS has you covered! Join Stacey and me for an impromptu episode of On the Money to cover all of the bases. Stacey and I will share our full thoughts on the matter, and Bryan Hoch of MLB.com will join us to share the latest news. Show starts at 9:00, and you can listen live here.

Update: Here’s the show:

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A-Rod is not Bagwell

I’ve got something of a reputation for defending guys accused of using steroids, especially when the accusers are overtly indifferent to quaint concepts like “proof,” but I’m gonna have to get off the boat here:

Ryan Braun never had a chance. He was guilty in the eyes of the public from the moment his positive test for synthetic testosterone was leaked. Alex Rodriguez is guilty of everything the Miami New Times report says he is – guilty, that is, if you listen to what the public has already decided about the situation. Jeff Bagwell is guilty too, just because.

Slow your roll a little bit. Ryan Braun’s sample was improperly handled so, officially, the positive test result never happened. As such, there’s technically no evidence at all that he broke any rules. The case against Bagwell, such as it is, is that he played during the steroid era and had big muscles. This, tp put it mildly, is no evidence of any kind, circumstantial or otherwise.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees could be close with Hafner

According to Rob Bradford, the Yankees may be close to a deal with former Cleveland DH Travis Hafner. Hafner, who hit .228/.346/.438 in 263 plate appearances in 2012, fits the Yankees’ profile as a power and patience slugger, but health is a major concern, to say the least. Hafner has appeared in at least 95 games just once since the 2007 season, and he’s more or less incapable of being anything but a designated hitter at this point, even on an irregular basis. Still, the Yankees have a pretty significant need for a DH right now, and the left-handed Hafner owns a 117 career wRC+ against southpaws, so a reasonably priced deal would seem to be a great fit.… Click here to read the rest

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

Courtesy of the AP

(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 cited the Yankees’ failure to sign or trade for useful players on multi-year deals and their perceived assumption that multiple prospects are going to come up and contribute as flaws in their logic, and that got me thinking.

As it is, the Yankees have seen their monetary advantage shrink over the past few seasons as teams started signing their own players to new deals before they hit free agency. … Click here to read the rest

The Yankees can’t void A-Rod’s contract

The idea of the Yankees attempting to void Alex Rodriguez‘s contract pops up every now and then even when A-Rod isn’t in the middle of a major ongoing story involving continued use of banned substances, so I certainly can’t say that I’m surprised it’s become all the rage with columnists both national and local since the Miami New Times story came out yesterday. Still, there’s no more chance that the Yankees can actually do it today than there was last week.

The first, and biggest, problem for the Yankees to clear is that A-Rod’s contract is guaranteed, and iron-clad under the rules of the CBA. The Yankees can not simply decide, unilaterally, to abrogate the contract, nor can they go before a judge or an arbitrator making ad hoc arguments as though the law had to be made on the fly due to unclear rules or something. Disciplinary reasonings won’t help either, since the CBA also spells out in detail the exact punishments for A-Rod’s alleged offense, and they don’t include the voiding of a free agent contract.… Click here to read the rest

Yankees Land Three Top Prospects On MLB.com’s Top 100

Prospects season is creeping up on us, and yesterday Jonathon Mayo of MLB.com released his top 100 overall prospects of 2013. On this list, Yankee prospects Gary Sanchez ranked 35th, Mason Williams 41st, and Tyler Austin 75th. The top three overall prospects were Oscar Taveras of the Cardinals, the Orioles’ Dylan Bundy, and Jurickson Profar of the Rangers.

Sanchez also finished as the Yankees top prospect on John Sickels’ 2013 ranking, though he was given the same grade as Austin. The 19 year old catcher played 474 plate appearances in 2012, through Charleston and High-A Tampa. In that time, Sanchez hit .290/.344/.485 with 18 home runs and 15 stolen bases. His abilities to hit for power and average at such a young age are his highest touted tools, but he also showed off a strong arm and better foot work behind the plate in 2012. Sanchez looks as if he can stay at catcher, and if can keep hitting for power and start to avoid the strikeouts, he could be extremely valuable at an awfully weak position in baseball.… Click here to read the rest

Pettitte not playing in WBC

Need a quick interlude in the latest episode of “As A-Rod Tuns?” Well here you go: via Ken Rosenthal, Andy Pettitte will not participate in the World Baseball Classic this spring. Pettitte was originally slated to play for Team USA and former manager Joe Torre, but was not on the provisional roster that was recently released. That coincided with reports that the Yankees didn’t approve of the idea, though they couldn’t bar Pettitte from participating. Now, however, it seems to be officia.l.… Click here to read the rest

A-Rod denies new PED accusations

Alex Rodriguez has released a statement denying reports from today’s Miami New Times that he used banned substances as recently as 2012. From Joel Sherman’s Twitter feed, here’s the statement:

“The news report about a purported relationship between Alex Rodriguez and Anthony Bosch are not true. Alex Rodriguez was not Mr. Bosch’s patient, he was never treated by him and he was never advised by him. The purported documents referenced in the story — at least as they relate to Alex Rodriguez — are not legitimate.”

With the language here, Alex is actually denying not only that he used illegal drugs, but the other stories that he was even connected to Bosch. Meanwhile, the paper has published every mention of A-Rod from the files they reviewed.

Something tells me A-Rod is going to regret this statement.… Click here to read the rest