Report: Actual MLB Team “Has Had Interest” In Ivan Nova

Deep in the underbelly of his latest weekend MLB column, Nick Cafardo did something that I honestly didn’t expect to see done this offseason.  He provided some real, actual, reported evidence that another MLB team is interested in trading for Ivan Nova.  The Yankees have had Nova on the market for a while now, although I think it would be a stretch to say they’re actually “shopping” him.  Team-friendly arb deal or not, there’s not much about Nova’s recent track record that would inspire teams to want to trade something away for him.  And yet Cafardo managed to tie the Marlins to Nova, saying “Miami has had interest.”

Whether that interest still exists now in the present or only in the past is unknown, and either way there isn’t a great match to be made between the Yanks and Marlins.  Miami doesn’t have any non-Jose Fernandez young starting pitching of value and there’s no way they’re trading Marcell Ozuna back to the Yankees for Nova.  … Click here to read the rest

Quick Hit: When Does Baseball Start Again?

With the calendar flipping over from December 2015 to January 2016 and the football regular season wrapping up, I think it’s safe to say we’ve crossed the threshold from “excited about hot stove season” to “suffering from hot stove cabin fever” in the baseball world.  Good thing too, because with 46 days until pitchers and catchers report to Tampa, we’re closer to the start of the 2016 season than we are to the start of the 2015 offseason.  That’s a good thing.  Means it won’t be long now before we can step out of the hot stove haze and into some fresher baseball air.

But in the meantime, can somebody go check on my boy John Harper?  Maybe fluff his pillows a little bit, get him some more juice, and take his temperature?  He’s taking the hot stove fever thing a little too far with his latest trade proposal:

“If only the Mets and Yankees would be willing to take the chance.

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Wednesday Morning Links: 12/30/15

We’re coming to the final few strides of 2015.  Hope everybody has at least one New Year’s resolution knocked out by now.  I think I had 2 done by Valentine’s Day this year and I’ve been coasting ever since.  Not even worried about next year’s yet.

– On Monday, Jeff Sullivan of FanGraphs broke down all sides of the Aroldis Chapman trade: on-field possibilities, off-field concerns, and the prospects involved.

– On Tuesday, William Juliano of The Captain’s Blog discussed the different type of risk the Yankees took in acquiring Chapman and the potential on-field rewards.

– Mike Axisa of RAB looked at how the Yankees’ offensive acquisitions could help create a more balanced team approach next season.

– Christina Kahrl of ESPN’s SweetSpot put the new Yankee bullpen trio up against the best ‘pens of all time to see how they compare.

– ICYMI here last Saturday, Ted took a look at the list of candidates for the final bench spot.  … Click here to read the rest

Rounding out the Rotation

Last week, George King reported that the Yankees would look to add starting pitching depth through minor league deals. This has been a strategy for the team in recent years, and it worked out amazingly well with Bartolo Colon (2.1 bWAR in 164.1 IP) and Freddy Garcia (3.5 bWAR in 146.2 IP) in 2011. The Yankees have not had much success since then, albeit not for a lack of trying (Ramon Ortiz, Scott Baker, etc), but it makes sense that the trend would continue. After all, the worst case scenario is that the player opts out of his deal and costs the team a few thousand dollars along the way.

Realistically speaking, the pitchers that are willing to take a minor league deal have some sort of glaring flaw, which is oftentimes of the injury or poor performance variety (or some combination of both). Expecting a repeat of Messrs Colon and Garcia would be optimistic at best – but that should not dissuade us from those pitchers that could potentially be had on such a deal.… Click here to read the rest

Thoughts On The Aroldis Chapman Trade

How’s that for something unexpected?  I got a text from a friend yesterday afternoon while I was white-knuckling the drive home from work in a snow/sleet storm saying “Aroldis Chapman to the Yanks?” and I didn’t know how to take it.  I didn’t know if he was asking me if I thought it was a good idea, if there was a rumor out there I wasn’t aware of, or if he was just trying to start a hot stove conversation.  It didn’t occur to me that it might have actually been a trade the Yankees executed.  But they did and the 4-for-1 swap was quickly announced and confirmed by both teams.  This one really came out of nowhere.

Despite Chapman’s jaw-dropping on-field performance to date, this trade isn’t as fun to discuss as the Starlin Castro trade because of the circumstances surrounding Chapman presently.  Let’s be honest, those circumstances – the domestic violence allegations against Chapman and the potential impending suspension under MLB’s new domestic violence policy – are the only reason the Yankees made this deal and Brian Cashman openly admitted that in his statements yesterday.  … Click here to read the rest

Quick Hit: Aroldis Chapman is a Yankee

That happened quickly, didn’t it?

Baseball Prospectus ranked Jagielo 8th in the Yankees top-ten, and did not mention the other three. Baseball America ranked Davis 6th in its top-ten. My off the cuff analysis of the four prospects dealt would be as follows: Cotham is a reliever, Renda is a bench player, Davis could be a 3rd or 4th starter, and Jagielo has serious pop and a good approach, but he’ll end up at 1st (and he’s no #GREGBIRD).

More analysis is forthcoming, but for now enjoy some additional tweets.

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That Last Spot on the Bench

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There’s plenty of off-season left to shake things up, but at the moment the Yankees roster looks pretty close to set on the position player side.  Assuming Starlin Castro is their starting 2B, the 9 starting spots are filled.  Aaron Hicks, Dustin Ackley, and a back up catcher (Romine or Sanchez, likely) are all but locks on the bench.  If the Yankees carry 12 pitchers, that leaves one bench spot open.

I don’t think there’s an obvious answer at that spot, but there are a few intriguing possibilities.

(The last bench spot may not seem like the most meaningful topic to discuss, but this could ripple into the starting lineup through more rest for certain players without missing a beat as a team or giving the Yankees a legitimate alternative if someone struggles.)

The Boring (but maybe most likely?) Option 

Let’s get this one out of the way first.  The Yankees have been somewhat reluctant to use a starter elsewhere as their primary back-up SS.  … Click here to read the rest

Merry Christmas!

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Merry Christmas from all of us at IIATMS to all of you who read the site, comment on our work and help keep us going. If you do celebrate the holiday, we hope you have a healthy and happy day with your friends and family. If you do not, we hope you have a nice December 25th.

We will be back to our regularly scheduled blogging tomorrow. … Click here to read the rest