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This Just In . . .
2006-07-13 21:47
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Sidney Ponson is bad.

Comments (57)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-07-13 21:56:12
1.   Yu-Hsing Chen
Thank you for your enlightenment!!!
2006-07-14 00:50:50
2.   jayd
ain't that a fact...say it ain't so cash...
2006-07-14 04:10:54
3.   joejoejoe
I don't expect Ponson to be good but if he can be league average in the 5th starting spot it's a great pickup for the Yankees. He's a decent pitcher who is struggling with alcoholism. If he can stay sober and healthy there's every reason to believe he can be a decent 5th starter. He's got 4 200 inning seasons in the bigs. It's not his arm that is his problem, it's alcoholism and poor fitness. If he can find the discipline to stay sober he can find the discipline to be a decent pitcher with his demonstrated talent.
2006-07-14 05:08:21
4.   rbj
Man, I go away for a few days and I come back to Ponson?!

He does (did) have talent, my questions on him are 1) is his trouble with alcohol behind him and 2) is he in shape to pitch. And one more question, what other options are out there?

I do think a .500 record from a fifth starter is not bad.

2006-07-14 05:49:22
5.   Alex Belth
Cliff, that's mad funny. I got an e-mail from Jay Jaffe last night which said that the Yanks better break out a uniform with the extra-wide pinstripes.

Guys, remember when Cliff made his list of least-favorite all-time Yankees? My first thought yesterday evening upon hearing the news was, "Man, Bonzone goes straight to the head of the class."

It's almost so bad, I find it comic. Is there a guy you could think of who is less like your idea of what a Yankee player should be? This guy is like a descendent of our favorite fat, pussy, toad, H. Irabu.

Maybe he'll be good for a few laughs...at least, that help us from crying too badly.

2006-07-14 05:55:12
6.   unpopster
"We looked and compared him to what we had right now and felt it was a shot worth taking, especially since we don't have to give up players from our system," Cashman said Thursday. "The whole package fit with what we're trying to accomplish."

Judging by these comments by Cash, Ponson will be on a very short leash and is not the last move the Yanks will make to shore up the pitching. It seems like they're hoping to get as much as they possibly can out of Ponson before he implodes.

I don't know what's not to like about this move -- no talent given up, less than the minimum salary spent, and an arm with a high ceiling.

2006-07-14 06:00:12
7.   Sliced Bread
Ponson eats everything but innings.
Lightning in a bottle? Smells more like stale Aruba rum punch in Sid's thermos.
What's more bloated? His ERA or his waist size? Ba-dum-bum.

You smashed the snail on the shell, Cliff, "Sidney Ponson is bad."

What in the wide world of cliches is Cash thinking? Does he realize how desperate this dumpster-dive makes the Yankees appear - just as the summer trade winds are beginning to blow?
Holy crop, the Yanks have nobody better on the farm than Sid Voracious?
Who's tending their green acres, Eva Gabor?

Taking a flier on this Hindenburg of a pitcher who's lugging more Samsonite than Newark International.

Who does Cash like at Belmont? Barbaro?

Exaggerated rant off, I guess there's this upside to Ponson: he could deflect some boos away from A-Rod -- the day he's here.

2006-07-14 06:05:19
8.   Felix Heredia
Why not? Don't cost nothin'. Also, he once won 17 games and historically has been among AL leaders in complete games (Proctor's keeping his fingers crossed).

And maybe he realizes he's run out of chances. If not, he and Raul Mondesi can go bowling together.

2006-07-14 06:19:33
9.   JL25and3
Hey, guys, show a little respect: Sir Sidney Ponson is bad.

He's not just bad but a serious underachiever, which makes his suckitude that much more infuriating. Worse yet, he's been an object of our scorn and ridicule for years. I don't know if there's any way I could start rooting for him.

3 I don't cut him any slack for "struggling with alcoholism." Frankly, I don't know if he's struggling with it or rather enjoying it.

2006-07-14 06:30:31
10.   unpopster
7 ppuuullleeeaaase...any more desparate than the Red Sox picking up Jason Johnson off of waivers?
2006-07-14 06:55:44
11.   unpopster
um, desperate
2006-07-14 07:14:08
12.   Sliced Bread
10 I don't really care about the Red Sox acquisitions, but certainly, there are degrees of desperation. There's criminal recklessness due to despair, and there's "desperate measures" taken as a last resort.
There's also "desperate need" and I think
the Ponson Experiment illustrates a desperate need for pitching.
Yes, there's minimal risk and out-of-pocket cost in attempting to salvage Ponson, but I think it decreases the market-value of every minor league pitcher in the Yankees system. It renders Chacon and Small pretty much useless on the trade market. It could also be translated as an admission that the Yankees do not have more than 4 Major League caliber starters in their system. Even if that's only a perception, is that how the Yanks want to be perceived as the trade deadline approaches?
Plus, I just don't want to see the guy wearing a Yankees uniform, let alone root for him.
2006-07-14 07:27:10
13.   singledd
This is what Man-of-Cash said:
"The Ponson signing doesn't come at a player cost at all from our organization, and in terms of dollars and cents, it doesn't cost much," Cashman said. "Our scouting reports indicate this is a shot worth taking for Sidney as the fifth starter here. This is something that made sense compared to everything else that's been available so far."

...doesn't come at a player cost
...dollars and cents, it doesn't cost much
...this is a shot worth taking
...compared to everything else that's been available

Pretty clear to me. It's a 'Small' deal. Hardly worth bantering about. It's like dating a pretty but real fat chick who says she's on a diet. The odds are long, but you never know.

2006-07-14 07:27:15
14.   sam2175
The guy was cut to make room for Jeff Weaver, who was cut from the Angels. The overall record as it stands today is: Yankees > St. Louis > Angels. It seems like a communist conspiracy where teams are moving towards parity through merry-go-round acquisition of bad players.

The sidebar on this site has a character who goes by the name Steven White. His AA and AAA records indicate he has been a very decent pitcher. At the very least, I expect him to do what Alay Soler is doing for the Mets. Instead, we have to endure at least a couple of starts from Ponson. Who not ask Al Leiter to come down from the YES booths? Or Kevin Brown from retirement? Can't be any worse.

Man, I miss Rob Gee!

2006-07-14 07:33:39
15.   rmd0311
Look., Is he bad YES... But is a risk at little to no cost for the Yankees. The Yankees losing 160k is nothing, we gave up NO PLAYERS, just 160k. Steins shoes probably cost more than that.
2006-07-14 07:38:37
16.   standuptriple
10,12 Now that I've had a little more time to reflect could it be that this was a move to keep the Sox from picking him up off waivers? I mean, in addition to the little cost could it be that Cash wanted to jack-knife Theo (or at least cause him some grief)? We've got 2 weeks until desperation time and with all the teams in the hunt maybe Cash can flip this into something else. I know, I know EVERYBODY passed on Sir Sidney already, but again, very little cost (financially) to the Yanks and maybe somebody bites on him or a combo of him and the upside of Chacon. Stranger things have happened. I'm not sold on the deal either, just being semi-patient and optimistic.
2006-07-14 07:41:02
17.   standuptriple
That or Big Stein has a judge he needs "taken care of", if you know what I mean.
2006-07-14 07:42:15
18.   pistolpete
Hopefully the professionalism in the Yankees clubhouse can have some impact on Sid...
2006-07-14 07:49:55
19.   Murray
I suppose it could be worse: Jose Lima is available.

Sidney Ponson in pinstripes. Jesus Tapdancing Christ.

2006-07-14 07:57:54
20.   Max
As others have said, this is the Yankee's equivalent of the Red Sox's acquisition of Jason Johnson...at the time the latter move was made, I was incredulous that anyone would pick up that stiff, given he was lit up by our anemic offense (while we were in the middle of a cold streak).

It's a sad indication of just how awful the market for pitching is. I would be shocked if someone the quality of Lieber dropped in our lap by the trade deadline...I suspect there will be quite a fight for a pitcher with any semblance of quality.

2006-07-14 08:04:28
21.   Bama Yankee
16 The Red Sox getting Sir Sidney might have been a good thing for the Yankees...
He has a career record of 6-12 against New York and 3-10 against Boston...
2006-07-14 08:21:22
22.   standuptriple
21 Please stop ruining my theories with your "stats" and "facts". Obviously, Sid facing BOS or TOR would be a horrible thing. Let's hope we don't pay dearly for this move.
2006-07-14 08:32:12
23.   Dimelo
Go to the bottom of this link to see what Ponson is all about.

http://tinyurl.com/rdhxw

2006-07-14 08:37:01
24.   unpopster
guys, enough with the hysteria over the Ponson move. This is a minor deal by Cashman and is definitely not his last move. I think the Yanke FO sees an opening in the AL East since the Sox played to a 12 game winning streak a few weeks ago and still have not buried the ShefMatsui-less Yanks.

In other news, rotoworld is reporting:

1. "The White Sox have been calling around to clubs letting it be known that Javier Vazquez or Freddy Garcia would be available in a trade. The White Sox expect Brandon McCarthy to join the rotation soon and want a top notch middle reliever back in exchange. According to a source, the Phillies are willing to give up Tom Gordon in a deal with the Sox. The Mets could also be interested, but Duaner Sanchez or Aaron Heilman would be part of the price tag."

2. "Along with the Yankees and Red Sox, the Mets have expressed interest acquiring Abreu before the July 31 trade deadline. An NL executive said Phillies GM Pat Gillick is giving his club two weeks to nudge back into the race or else he will more seriously consider major deals. The Mets also inquired about Jon Lieber and Tom Gordon."

Things are now starting to really get interesting and I am sure Cashamn is burning through his cell phone minutes right now.

There's so much more to discuss about than Ponson.

To quote Linda Richman, talk among yourselves...

2006-07-14 08:37:46
25.   hensley
Slightly OT, and I know I should never listen to the NY Daily News, but they say the White Sox are making Vasquez and Garcia available for "top-notch" relief help? Would Farnsworth + cash = Garcia? I would do that, assuming Dotel looks good (and even if not, I think we have in-house options that are close to what Farnsworth has given). Same article says the Phils are making Gordon available.
2006-07-14 08:38:52
26.   jdb
Unlike the rest of you, I'm celebrating the beginning of the Ponson era. How could you not be excited?

On a slightly related topic, did anyone else notice how Sully from THTDB threw in that Keith Foulke was "every bit as good as Rivera?"

I think I did a triple-take.

2006-07-14 08:49:55
27.   pdc7
(if this posted twice sorry)
I manage a bar on the beach in Ft. Lauderdale. When Sidders was w/ the O's he came in pretty regularly as did a few other players ( Marty Barrett every day). He is not the raging alcho that the media makes him out to be. He's a grown up, single , and likes to knock back a few with the boys.. Sound familiar? He only drank beers tipped my staff pretty well- and beleive me athletes DONT tip well- He is stuck with the dreaded "potential" tag but I am rooting for him. Hopefully the Big stage will bring something out of him. I also think he will be a great clubhouse guy and keep things loose. The Yanks are the underdogs now and people are jumping off the bandwagon quicker than a Rivera cutter in October. I hope this team makes a lot of people eat crow.. Go Yankees
2006-07-14 08:50:50
28.   Bama Yankee
24Here's a topic: Rhode Island, it's neither a road nor an island. Discuss.

Let's just hope that Sir Sidney doesn't leave us verklempt this season...

2006-07-14 08:56:29
29.   murphy
14, et al. where is Rob Gee? did i miss something?
2006-07-14 09:00:48
30.   Schteeve
He is bad, but is he badder than Chacon has been this year? That will be the thing.
2006-07-14 09:01:10
31.   Max
26 There were many absurd declarations made in the wake of the euphoria of 2004 -- the one about Foulkie from Burger King being in the same galaxy as Mo can cheerfully be retired now. Even Red Sox fans were able to clear enough off of their beer goggles to see that reality eventually.
2006-07-14 09:05:54
32.   Schteeve
26 At least Sully didn't say, "Foulke is better than Rivera...and it's not even really that close."
2006-07-14 09:09:26
33.   Zack
31 And now they are already making the same claims about Pappelbon, who, for all his dominance, has blow more saves than Mo has...
2006-07-14 09:33:11
34.   Sully
Wow - I am getting it pretty good over here today.

When did I make the Foulek-Rivera comment?

As for Schteeve's reference, that's pretty funny. I'll never live that one down.

2006-07-14 09:40:51
35.   singledd
33 There have been many years where Mo wasn't the best... Gagne and others. He can't be the best every year of his career... nobody can. Not Cle, not Cy. not Sandy. Maybe this year Papsmear will be better. Maybe others will be better.

Mo is NOT the best reliever every year.
He is simply the best reliever in the history of baseball.

Intellectualize as much as you like, but there is always some amount of random luck it baseball. Geez, last year lightning struct twice for us. Cash would be a fool not to trade a pair of Stein's shoes for Ponson.

24 I think we need Abreu. However, regarless of what he might bring us, we simply can't let him play at Fenway. Get him or shoot him, but we can't let him play for the Sox, batting 5th behind Papi and Manny. The very thought makes me shutter.

21 Go to the track on any given and there's always a horse going at 100:1, because there are always some idiots who are willing to bet on him and lose $2. Of course, at the end of the year, there are always a few guys who are 'idiots like a fox'.

I said the Ponson deal is a 'Small' deal, but there is one difference. Small NEVER had avy potential.

2006-07-14 09:53:21
36.   Zack
But Small was actually easy to root for, Ponson, no matter how he does, will never be rootable...If that is a word...
2006-07-14 09:58:27
37.   JL25and3
33 You know the way RSN is. Papelbon is the greatest closer in the history of the game, maybe the best pitcher ever - until he has one bad year, at which point he'll be civilization's greatest scourge.
2006-07-14 10:08:36
38.   Schteeve
34 Sully, no offense, I just can't resist a cheap punchline.
2006-07-14 10:32:53
39.   Bama Yankee
35 Have we gotten to the point that Cashman has resorted to the $2 quinella to improve our pitching staff?

For the record, I do think it is worth the gamble (as long as they don't wait to long to cut their losses if it goes bad). I read somewhere (Anthony McCarron, I think) that Sir Sidney has been dry since August (almost makes me feel bad for all the comments I made yesterday... almost). Let's hope that pistopete is right in 18 and the Yankees clubhouse turns him into the next Dwight Gooden reclamation project.

2006-07-14 10:39:37
40.   KJC
37 "You know the way RSN is. Papelbon is the greatest closer in the history of the game, maybe the best pitcher ever"

I have yet to hear any (educated*) Sox fan claim that Papelbon is on Rivera's level. He is the best closer Boston has had in many years, and he's had half a year of being one of the best closers in the game. The only things I've really heard from "us" is that (a) Papelbon has been as effective as Mo this year, and (b) it's nice to finally get that feeling the Yankee fans have felt for years now: that games are almost 8 inning affairs.

*WEEI and FOX don't fall into this category

2006-07-14 10:42:07
41.   Simone
For the moment, I have decided to be totally optimistic about our very own Sir Sidney. The man has been knighted by a Queen and now he is on the greatest team in the history of baseball, he must have something left in his arm. Hell, even Leiter found a tiny bit of magic last season. Let's go, Sir Sidney!
2006-07-14 10:45:56
42.   Simone
I know I shouldn't ask, but is there is any news about Pavano? Any chance that he returns later in the season? Thanks.
2006-07-14 10:52:11
43.   yankaholic
42 i think i read somewhere.. according to Cashman.. he is 45 days off.. Sheff n matsui are due Sep and mid august respectively.

Dotel end of July.. Cano by weekend..

Sturtze3.. oops we all forgot abt him, he is out fo the year

2006-07-14 10:52:27
44.   jayd
great thing about the banter is that after reading all the ponson stuff I have come around to singledd's opinion 35. can't see the white sox trading with any potential AL adversary 25. I think they would rather face the RS in the ALDS. Abreu and Gordon might be worth giving up something for but as soon as a name is mentioned I always think NO.

I have a feeling Cash is going to bet the house on Farnsworth improving in the second half, Dotel (do tell),an earlier than expected return for Matsui (mid August), Sheff coming back BIG in September. Is Pavano now definetly out for the rest of the year -- I keep hearing that and then the opposite.

Less the Yankees more the RS making moves is the real story here. They don't have a fourth never mind a fifth starter and do you really think Poppelbum is going to have the arm strength to make it through a whole season. Curt's elbow is bleeding as we speak here.

The only really great trades would be for a difference maker like Dontrelle or Zito for the series or the ALDS against Detroit. Don't see that happening anymore. Aside from that I think we take the Sox -- hell we'll be in 1st by the end of the month -- they play Oakland 10 times. I see that as 3-7 at best.

2006-07-14 11:13:04
45.   JL25and3
40 WEEI was what I was talking about, not the (relatively) few sane Sox fans. Not that WFAN Yankee fans are necessarily any better, just different.
2006-07-14 11:18:35
46.   yankee23
5 Yo Alex, right on. The very first thing that came to mind when I heard about it was that it's too bad the Boss already called someone a fat pussy toad.
2006-07-14 12:11:23
47.   bobtaco
Isn't the Ponson signing already better than the Pavano signing?
2006-07-14 12:17:25
48.   unpopster
37 re: Papelbon

In his last two appearances, he blew a save (HR by Dye) and then gave up to 2 hits in one inning in yesterday's game.

Now this may just be wishful thinking, but suddenly he's not so invincible, is he? It's a very, very small sample...but I wouldn't be suprised if he struggles over the next few weeks. Eventually, the league will catch up to him because he has very good stuff, but not amazing stuff (a la Detroit's Joel Zumaya). A 96 mph fastball and a good split does not a .50 ERA pitcher make. My guess is that he finishes the season with an ERA closer to 2.00, whcih means he'll have his share of blown saves in the 2nd half.

2006-07-14 12:19:57
49.   unpopster
Rotoworld: "Nationals designated outfielder Marlon Byrd for assignment."

Why do I have a feeling that Cashman is on the phone with Byrd's agent as we speak?

2006-07-14 12:27:07
50.   Bama Yankee
47 That's true, the butts that Ponson will bruise will not be his own...
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-07-14 12:44:35
51.   C2Coke
50 Can't explain why this line stands out as the most hilarious by far....at least for today. Just for this line, Ponson seems to be worth it.
2006-07-14 12:55:14
52.   SF Yanks
51 I gotta go with 13 as being the funniest line so far. "It's like dating a pretty but real fat chick who says she's on a diet. The odds are long, but you never know."

As for the Ponson signing, there could be many reasons for this deal going down. Ie: leverage, nothing to lose, lightning in a cell-sized test tube. Obviously we don't know the real reason, so without jumping to conclusions I say we just see how it goes.

2006-07-14 13:05:33
53.   Bama Yankee
Anyone remember those back-to-back games in 2004 where Ponson faced the Yankees? He gave up 15 runs & 22 hits in 10.1 IP over the two starts. The two things I remember most about those games are:
1. During the top of the 5th inning of the first game as Ponson was giving up 8 runs he was standing out on the mound laughing (I remember telling my wife that he was a loser)
2. During the bottom of the same inning as Contreras was struggling to find the strike zone Jeter called time and went to the mound. You could tell he said something like "we just gave you 8 runs, throw strikes". Contreras may not have understood the words he said, but he certainly understood what Jeter was trying to tell him. I remember how Jeter's attitude contrasted with Ponson's and how those little things that don't show up in the box score are sometimes the difference between winning and losing over the course of a 162 games.

Let's hope that Jeter and company can have a positive influence on Sir Sidney and Cashman's gamble pays off.

2006-07-14 13:16:58
54.   Bama Yankee
51 Thanks C2Coke.

I think Sliced was on a roll in 7:
"Ponson eats everything but innings."
"Lightning in a bottle? Smells more like stale Aruba rum punch in Sid's thermos."
"What's more bloated? His ERA or his waist size? Ba-dum-bum."
and my favorite:
"Who does Cash like at Belmont? Barbaro?"

David Letterman called, he want's his Top Ten one-liners about the Ponson signing back...

2006-07-14 13:23:52
55.   MattinglyHOF
Ponson is a shot in the dark if he does well he stays if not hes getting DFAd very soon.Best case I think is hes 2006 Leiter
2006-07-14 14:08:35
56.   Chyll Will
29 Sorry Murphy if you already figured it out or no one told you (and forgive me for rehashing what is apparently dirty laundry for some), Rob Gee was ousted around the time I came in (June?) after an audacious back-and-forth, then was reinstated after our veteran Banters rallied to support him; but it seems that he never got the message or is still too bitter to return. I hate personal speculation, but it is funny that more than a few people have said it at the same time; this is a particular time in the season when his persona would certainly be in 4x4 mode. I'm a rookie here, but I do catch on pretty quick. I would have liked to have read his viewpoint because it lent a certain depth to the discussions, as well as an edge of madness that was in a bizzare way endearing.

Okay, back on topic. Might I say something quixotic in that Ponson, for what it's worth, could very well be considered a reclaimation project if he were to stay for the duration; we have two fairly-decent pitching coaches who could do a bad cop/good cop on a guy with potential (he didn't win 17 games with a highball) and to echo a point made by PistolPete 18 we do have some sober professionals left in the dugout who could have a positive impact. It somehow worked for Gooden and Straw, even Canseco wasn't as boisterous as you expected during his two-month bid. Ruben, anyone? Didn't work for Brown (panic move by multi-factioned FO expecting too much in a no-win situation), but what are you going to lose having him pitch one or two games on a short leash before the trade deadline?

Besides that, what if this is a chips move? If he pitches well, his value is raised just enough for someone needing to dump salary to take him on cut-rate for the rest of the season. The way I see it, it's kinda like taking a cough drop for acid reflux. Fans and opposing teams expect him to fail, but Cash has already said they don't anticipate him being the difference-maker. Relax, he's not going to poison Cano or Wang by sitting next to them; and you have to many five-ohs in the dugout to let him get that stupid. Breathe out...

2006-07-14 14:13:11
57.   uburoisc
There's no better place for a drunk to go through rehab than as a baseball player in NYC. Sidney is taking a cab to McSorley's as we speak.

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