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Meet the Press
2006-10-10 10:09
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Joe Torre is now meeting with the print media at Yankee Stadium. TV and radio are not there. Check with Pete Abraham's Lo Hud blog all afternoon for updates. I'm listening to the feed on the FAN and the word is: Torre is staying.

Comments (226)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-10-10 10:21:53
1.   yanklifer
He is staying...Confirmed
2006-10-10 10:21:59
2.   pistolpete
Wow, how the hell does he get that stuff up there so fast?

Free WiFi at the Stadium?

2006-10-10 10:22:02
3.   standuptriple
The more I think about it the less convinced I am that anybody else can do better with this team. We may need to run Joe through a playoff re-education course over the off season though.
2006-10-10 10:23:46
4.   pistolpete
3 Everyone in that locker room should just be forced to watch 'Yankeeography:1996' over and over again during spring training. Heh.

"Jeter, sit down - I don't care if you actually 'lived this'..."

2006-10-10 10:24:19
5.   Shawn Clap
All Hail!!!
King George the Benevolent!!!
2006-10-10 10:27:27
6.   wsporter
Kruk and Phillips; I'm going back to work.
2006-10-10 10:29:09
7.   yanklifer
Wherever you stood on this issue, at least it is over now and everyone can concentrate on fixing our pitching problem. I would say that all hitters are available to be moved except Cano, Jetes, Melky, Abreu.
2006-10-10 10:29:33
8.   Shaun P
3 Someone find Torre a tactician who he'll actually listen to.

Why the hell did George have to can Zim . . .

2006-10-10 10:30:21
9.   rbj
Glad Torre's staying.
I want A-Rod to stay too
(Memo to Torre -- sit Alex & Derek down and tell them to play nice).
I want to see the Yankees go after good pitching.
2006-10-10 10:31:14
10.   Bob Timmermann
Meet the press,
Meet the press...
Step right up and greet the press.
Bring your kiddees, bring your wife
Guaranteed time to have the time of your life
Cause the press is really typing it all
Knocking those rumors over the wall...
2006-10-10 10:31:50
11.   pistolpete
Bottom line: anything Mike Lupica thought was a good idea was worth doing the opposite of.

Welcome back, Joe. (cue Kotter theme music)

2006-10-10 10:34:04
12.   Shaun P
7 Good pitching is not easily bought or traded for. It is best developed from within. On the other hand, when a top tier starter who is on the younger side (30 or less) is available for cash, you sign him. So I hope to see Matsuzaka in pinstripes, but not Zito. Zito isn't a top tier starter, whatever Boras says.

Time to take the long road, I think, and build the farm system and see what other Hugheses and Clippards and the like can be produced from within.

2006-10-10 10:34:24
13.   RZG
Madden didn't get his wish. What team will he try to place his bud Piniella with now?
2006-10-10 10:36:36
14.   Marcus
Well guys, now that that's settled, get ready for the endless barage of "trade A-Rod" stories.

I personally don't think any A-Rod trades are going to happen, but I'm sure we'll hear every possible trade scenario and rumor in the coming weeks. Can't wait.

2006-10-10 10:38:59
15.   jonnystrongleg
12 Zito may not be the best pitcher around, but he has gotten American League hitters out for several years now. His bad years are tolerable and his good years are very good. I would expect Pettitte like stats with him in the Bronx. I don't care about what they spend, but the addition of Zito and Matsuzaka would kick ass.
2006-10-10 10:43:12
16.   yanklifer
15 Agreed. I think that is the best case scenario, although it may be tough. Then we would have Wang, Zito, Matsuzaka, hopefully Hughes and a young pitcher recieved for Arod rounding out the rotation. I would keep Moose but only for a 1 yr deal around 10mil, nothing else.
2006-10-10 10:46:22
17.   pistolpete
15 I'll take Zito, but only if we do indeed get Matsuzaka. Keep Schmidt OFF this team. Wright and Lidle - gone. Let Johnson finish out his contract, and get the farmhands up here by July/August when Randy's body starts to give out on him.

Not sure about Moose yet. I guess it depends on money and length of contract.

Johnson
Wang
Zito
Matsuzaka
?

2006-10-10 10:47:21
18.   standuptriple
I just hope they stay far, far away from Schmidt. His #'s have been inflated by the NL, a favorable pitcher's park and feasting on the other friendly NL West locales (exception COL). Add in the arm issues and there is no way he belongs in pinstripes.
2006-10-10 10:49:58
19.   yanklifer
I think Johnson may retire...NOBODY wants Schmidt, and I think if that were to happen that would be a George move, Cash would never do that.
2006-10-10 10:51:36
20.   wsporter
11 In your ear Lupi. I'm sorry for the novella like length of this post but Lupi really pissed me off. This reminds me of the story of President Johnson supposedly firing J E Hoover being leaked by Ben Bradley at the Washington Post. At the newsy Johnson appointed Hoover for life instead of firing him then had some cherce words for Bradley.

Lupica is a real piece of work. He stated in the article that "Nobody wants a bad ending for Torre …." then called for exactly that by attempting to tweak the Bosses nose. "Are you a Boss or just an old man" he essentially asked. His advice was essentially "If you're still the Boss you'll exercise your own voice and fire that looser, those around you be damned". Of course Lupica has made a career out of haranguing the Boss for adopting just that attitude over the last 30 years. But why should something as simple as consistency or truth or honor bother a mind as expansive and all knowing as Lupi's. Up is down, black is white, truth is a lie and apparently that's ok so long as it works for Lupi.

What a Creep. He's like that sneaky little kid in school who would egg the other kids on to break the rules then be the first one to rat when the teacher found out. I can't believe anyone needs to sell papers so badly that they are willing to engage in this kind of shallow, transparent nonsense.

Lupi would have egged George on to fire Mr. Torre then stood first in line to criticize the new choice no matter who that choice was. Heck he'd probably be the first one to criticize the Boss for firing Mr. Torre and then call for his re-hire. What does Lupi care; it's not his ass on the line. Clearly his word and any concept of honor or consistency don't matter to him or his bosses. He is nothing more than an over paid scream. Wish we could have an open referendum on whether Lupi could keep his sorry job. Now that might be fun.

I'm just glad that they did the right thing after 11 straight trips and a lot of good years.

2006-10-10 10:57:46
21.   BklynBmr
20 Lupica? Fire the bum.

Nice post, ws. You nailed it.

2006-10-10 10:59:35
22.   jonnystrongleg
zito, wang, matsuzaka, johnson, wright, rasner, karstens, pavano

need 5 from above. let sheff and moose go. keep everybody else. get a 1B and a back up catcher.

2006-10-10 11:01:10
23.   tommyl
If we do get all these pitchers, what are people's thoughts on pitching Unit out of the BP? I know its tantamount to heresy, but he clearly gets tired in a 9 inning game these days and if he's pitching an inning at a time he could really let go with his fastball, slider combo.

Personally, I'm none too impressed with Zito. I fear he'd be mediocre to start and the press would get on him. Also, if he has a good postseason, his market value will be overly inflated.

2006-10-10 11:04:04
24.   jonnystrongleg
23 What does Zito have to do to impress you?
2006-10-10 11:04:18
25.   yanklifer
Zito has three good attributes: Age, Durability, we can buy him. Even if he is a no 2 or 3 starter he is a lot better than anything we have. Can anyone really say he would not be an upgrade?
2006-10-10 11:05:16
26.   vockins
For the love of all that is holy, NO ZITO. Please.
2006-10-10 11:05:28
27.   RIYank
As someone (I think it was dianagramr) pointed out in the last thread, firing Unit out of the pen is dubious on account of he doesn't exactly warm up fast.
To me he's a very good fifth starter.
I'd pick up Moose's option, or else try to sign him for, say, $25 mil for two years. Mussina is a much better pitcher than you're likely to pick up on the open market -- Matsuzaka excluded.
2006-10-10 11:08:38
28.   standuptriple
22 Why not just work with a 6 man rotation? The Yanks have the resources. I'm sure there are sounds reasons against it, but I'd like to hear some arguments.
2006-10-10 11:08:47
29.   vockins
24 Not walking 100 people a season would be a start.
2006-10-10 11:09:15
30.   Yankee Fan In Boston
22
what about craig wilson backing up 1B and catcher?

23
johnson setting up rivera could potentially be mindblowing.

2006-10-10 11:10:36
31.   Mike T
All I can say is, what a relief that this is finally resolved the way most of us wanted, and that is that Torre is staying. It appears the Boss came to his senses. Now, get to work on that pitching staff Cashman!
2006-10-10 11:11:17
32.   RIYank
28 Gives up a roster spot. No utility infielder? Melky to Columbus? Shorten the bullpen?
2006-10-10 11:12:08
33.   Shaun P
23 I said in the last post that trying Unit out of the pen was a great idea. Huge potential asset. I bet his fastball could get back up to 98 if he was a reliever.

My only skepticism is that he won't go for it. He's at 280 wins and I'm sure he's lusting to get to 300.

22 Why just 5? Why not more? Ask the Red Sox about pitching depth. That said, Zito is not worth 5 years/$15 mil. Nor was Pettitte, for that matter. The Yanks need to avoid overpaying for mediocre talent, so they can continue to shell out the big bucks for the big talent.

With all the pressure, no way Zito comes to the Yanks anyway. I bet he goes to the Dodgers or San Diego.

20 MFD, that was a beautiful post. Well said.

2006-10-10 11:12:42
34.   jonnystrongleg
29 So you think the fact that Zito has pitched successfully all of these years is not a repeatable feat?

It would be a mistake to get Zito and think the Yanks had locked up Sandy Koufax and the 2007 World Series. But he would really help the 2007-2010 rotations. If not Zito, then where is the starting pitching coming from?

2006-10-10 11:12:52
35.   Ramone
Big mistake. Torre was the right man at the right time in the 90's. No longer. I don't care how big a jerk Lupica may be, it is true that replacing Joe now does not diminish his past achievments.

I don't see them winning the WS again with him at the helm. Playoffs? Yes. Then, when the going gets tough, they will fold yet again.

It is not a coincidence that these collapses keep happening. And it is not a coincidence that virtually every member of the team underachieved the last three playoffs. If Mussina -- who I don't particularly like -- had just pitched as well as he did during the regular season, the yanks would have been up 2-0 against Detroit.

2006-10-10 11:15:07
36.   Peter
32 With Torre coming back, half of the bullpen's not going to get used anyway.

I kid! I kid!

2006-10-10 11:15:10
37.   Shaun P
24 I bet that Rasner could put up numbers at least as good as Zito for a fraction of the cost. I'd also say Karstens and Steve White have an outside chance at doing the same. I can't wait to see Rasner's PECOTA projection.

BTW, anyone else think re-signing Dotel is a priority? Dude ought to be back to his strike-throwing self come April.

2006-10-10 11:16:53
38.   pistolpete
35 >> If Mussina -- who I don't particularly like -- had just pitched as well as he did during the regular season, the yanks would have been up 2-0 against Detroit. >>

True, but how do you blame that on Torre? Guidry, maybe.

2006-10-10 11:18:49
39.   RIYank
Shaun, it offends my sense of justice, but I do hope they sign up Dotel again. Bruney, Farnsworth, Dotel, and Proctor at half frequency, that's a good 'bridge to Mo'.

But what will he cost? (Is he a Hilton or a Ramada?)

2006-10-10 11:19:05
40.   standuptriple
32 If it shortens the 'pen isn't that a better option than an ineffective mid-relief guy? (Myers, I'm looking in your direction) Also, theoretically, it could lighten the load of the 'pen.
I am tired of the by-the-book management style. It's the same book and everybody has read it. Torre is not the only subscriber by any means. For instance the TB experiment to use their closer early in the game. While that failed (one could argue they really never intended it to succeed) it did challenge the staus quo. One thing we all can count on is Joe's predictability. I guess I'm asking for a little less-robotic and a little more by-the-pants. Feel free to disagree. I haven't totally convinced myself either.
2006-10-10 11:19:09
41.   Sliced Bread
Lupica had plenty of company:

Madden, Marchman, Klapisch, even Steven Goldman advocated Torre's ouster. Many Yankees bloggers wanted him out as well.

I'm relieved that Steinbrenner is honoring Joe's contract and keeping him on for one more. But man, Joe sure seemed drained and dejected today, and who could blame him after the 5 days he just had?

Dumping Joe would have been a shameful, expensive panic move.

Change for the sake of change would only bring more melodrama to the Yankees, and they've damn well had enough of that.

Let patience and calm prevail as the Yanks revamp and revitalize.

2006-10-10 11:20:13
42.   dianagramr
A-Rod for Beltre straight up ... I think it could work.
2006-10-10 11:21:21
43.   dianagramr
Could have been worse, the Yanks could have hired Larry Brown ...
2006-10-10 11:24:06
44.   DarrenF
35 I think a small percentage of fans are now strongly anti-Torre and they will be mostly silent and unnoticeable. No booing Torre at the Stadium, for example.

But, as 41 mentions, this is the first time the press has largely turned on him. In the last eleven years, I mean. He may be prepared fro that, but he may not be prepared.

I expect the tone of NYY coverage to be far more negative in '07.

2006-10-10 11:24:09
45.   wsporter
41 Slice, from my POV it wasn't that Lupi advocated letting Mr. Torre go; hell he's entitled to his opinion as are the others who disagreed with many of us on this. It was however the sleazy weaselly way he put it in the column that got under my skin. What a twit.
2006-10-10 11:25:00
46.   Peter
39 I've read Dotel wants to come back again next year. He really liked the way the team treated him and he feels like he owes it to them. I think it's a no-brainer for Cashman.
2006-10-10 11:26:08
47.   Ramone
38 How do I put that on Torre? Look, I'm a big believer in clubhouse psychology. I'm not talking about friendships. I don't care if the players like each other or hate each other. But they have to BELIEVE they are the best and BELIEVE that they will win. For some reason, Torre does not inspire that anymore.

Blame Guidry? Look, if Mussina sucked all year, then maybe I would blame Guidry. But if in the most important game of the season, Mussina suddenly can't hold a lead...that's not the pitching coach's fault.

Just to be clear. I'm not saying that Torre DESERVES to be fired. I'm not saying that it is all his fault. What I am saying is that I believe the team would be BETTER with a replacement.

I don't single out Johnson, Sheffield, Matsui, or Farnsworth for blame either. But do I think the Yanks should get rid of them? Yes. A vote for change is not the same as placing blame.

2006-10-10 11:26:53
48.   mehmattski
24 He needs to walk fewer people, that's for sure:

K/BB
2004 2.01 (48th in ML)
2005 1.92 (65th in ML)
2006 1.53 (73rd in ML)

He apparently needs a good defense behind him
Year ERA DIPS (Defense independent pitching)
2004 4.48
2005 3.86
2006 3.83

Here's some more fun numbers:
HR
2004 28 HR (T-21st ML)
2005 26 HR (T-23rd ML)
2006 27 HR (T-24th ML)
(If those don't look particuarly scary, try this: Oakland allowed 71 HR while playing at home this season, 3rd fewest in the majors. Barry Zito gave up 18 of them.)

He can't control what park he plays in (actually his 2006 away numbers are very good). He can't control what defense plays behind him. But he can control his rate of strikeouts, walks, and home runs... and he does a poor job of all three.

Plus, the word on the street is 6 years, $96 million. Pass.

2006-10-10 11:27:21
49.   RIYank
40 I'm not sure how it would work (but I'm listening). You'd have each starter go longer each start? Because if not, you can't make your bullpen smaller, right?

42 Dianagramr, I don't get it. Giving away maybe 15 win shares per year, because... why?

46 Aha. Well, he does owe the team a bunch, huh? In that case, I agree it should be done quickly.

2006-10-10 11:27:34
50.   dianagramr
47

well said ....

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-10-10 11:28:28
51.   Sliced Bread
45 Certainly the other writers and bloggers made their point in a less abrasive way than Lupica. He can't help himself.
2006-10-10 11:29:25
52.   smingers
37 What makes you think Rasner could be as good or better than Zito? I'd love it if it were true, but I don't know of any evidence that exists that would lead to such a conclusion. Zito has a career record of 102-63, a WHIP of 1.25 and an ERA of 3.55. He has never pitched fewer than 213 innings since his rookie season.

I don't consider Zito an ace, and am not advocating that the Yankees sign him, but I think we tend to overvalue our own guys. Rasner has no career numbers to point to future success, yet is only 3 years younger than Zito. He could turn out to be a decent starter, but to expect him to be better than a past Cy Young winner seems like wishful thinking.

2006-10-10 11:29:38
53.   jonnystrongleg
37 If Rasner or Karstens could be Barry Zito, why the hell weren't they pitching in the 2006 Playoffs?

I think calling that sentiment "optimistic" would be an understatement.

Zito has pitched 1400 MLB innings and posted a 3.55 ERA and gone 102-63. Vs the American League. He's 4-2 with a 2.43 ERA in 40 Postseason innings.

I cannot fathom what people on this site expect to find out there.

2006-10-10 11:30:14
54.   dianagramr
49

The Yankees problem is not offense. They have a surplus of that. Beltre is a Gold Glove 3B, and has enough of a bat to hold his spot in the lineup.

I'm not saying the Yanks wouldn't be giving up more in the exchange, but they'd be dealing from a surplus (offense).

2006-10-10 11:31:36
55.   mehmattski
48 Oops, I forgot the DIPS numbers:
2004: 4.53 (52nd ML)
2005: 4.51 (63rd ML)
2006: 4.87 (71st ML)

Compared to his regular ERA numbers, I think this quite clearly shows that many of the A's preventing runs when Zito is on the mound comes from their defense or ballpark, not from Zito.

2006-10-10 11:32:16
56.   Max
51 Lupica is the definition of abrasiveness. He used to conceal his hatred of the Yankees better in the past, but he's been pretty much unreadable since 2003 or so.
2006-10-10 11:32:31
57.   pistolpete
47 >> The most important game of the season, Mussina suddenly can't hold a lead...that's not the pitching coach's fault.>>

You're right - bottom line, it's Mussina's fault. He's a vet who's been through a lot of battles, and he should know by now what's expected of him in big spots.

2006-10-10 11:33:17
58.   jonnystrongleg
There are actually people wanting to trade Arod for Ervin Santana and not wanting to sign Barry Zito on the same day.

Safe to say the media and this particulat heartbreaking loss have a lot of us very confused.

2006-10-10 11:34:11
59.   RIYank
54 I just don't buy that. There's no such thing as a surplus of offense.

If you give away 45 runs of offense per year, and in exchange get 25 runs prevented by your defense of pitching, it doesn't matter whether you started with 970 runs or 810. You've just gotten worse.

If you already score 970 runs and give up 850, and you can either have a guy who will prevent 25 runs by defense or pitching, or else have a guy who will produce an extra 45 runs, then it's a no-brainer: take the guy who produces the runs.

(I'm aware that runs prevented are very slightly more valuable than runs produced, so if it were a very, very close trade, I could see it.)

2006-10-10 11:34:21
60.   standuptriple
49 There are plenty of logistical issues to work out, but it's mainly an insurance plan in my mind (trust me, you don't want to hang around in there). Inevitably a starter goes down, especially with the respective ages of the staff and the assumption that Moose comes back. A lighter load early on in the season and react to an DL stint by switching to a 5-man and use the opened up spot for a young arm of middle guy. I just think that in this day and age it's a little naive to think that you'll have health on your side for an entire season.
It might skew their arm cycles and fail miserably. I don't claim to be any sort of expert.
2006-10-10 11:34:57
61.   vockins
29 Zito's total bases allowed, WHIP, BA against, H/9 and BB/9 have been on the rise since his CY year, his k/9 has been falling, he's a flyball pitcher, on and on and on...

Zito has been smacked around by AL east teams since day one. You want that guy to pitch to Boston three times as much as he already does? I don't.

If Boston got him, I would be thrilled. The Yanks destroy that guy. He's never pitched well against the Yankees.

2006-10-10 11:36:45
62.   Comrade Al
42 ... only if Neifi Perez is not available.
2006-10-10 11:36:46
63.   mehmattski
58 I just posted a pretty damning statistical picture of Barry Zito. And no where was it ever suggested that we should trade A-Rod for Ervin Santana straight up. In fact, most people are saying that we probably shouldn't trade him unless its absolutely a slam dunk. Are you actually reading anything we've written, or are you simply ignoring it so you can stand on a pedestal?
2006-10-10 11:36:55
64.   monkeypants
I don't much care whether Torre stays or goes (I'm no fan, but I also imagine the crazy alternatives). I just hope that Cashman understands that he must 'Torre-proof' the team as much as possible. Torre will continue to abuse the BP and follow robotic BP usage patterns; he will continue to favor 'proven veterans, especially if they are truly awful; he will continue failing to properly utilize flexible and/or platoon type players--indeed, he will continue to use some players in ways that contradict any available analysis (Bernie batting LH).

So, Cashman must work within these parameters. All platoon-type players must, unfortunately, be purged (Guiel, Wilson, even Bernie). Veterans who will tempt Torre must be purged (Bernie). If the Yankees wish to intergrate youth, then all potential threats (i.e. veterans) at the same position must be purged.

BP? That's tough. The more Torre destroys a pitcher, the more he trusts him and uses him. So I am not sure if it's better to carry, say, 13 or 16 pitchers and just let him work through them. Or maybe carry just 8 or 9 (5 starters, Mo, two set-up guys, and maybe a lefty specialist). Then, when one starts to suck, he gets put on the DL and another is slotted in his place--Torre would have no choice but to use him becuase he wouldn't get buried.

Just some ideas.

2006-10-10 11:37:11
65.   vockins
61 Jeez, I meant 34. I have got a linking problem. Is ther a self help group for that?
2006-10-10 11:37:49
66.   vockins
65 Get me a spelling self help group while you're at it.
2006-10-10 11:38:11
67.   jonnystrongleg
55 I think we have to pay attention to those stats when we are trying to predict young pitchers' ability to replicate success in new spots. But take Jeter. Everyone says that high ground ball rates and high BABIP are not repeatable, yet Jeter hits for a high average every year. After enough years, I'm not going to be surprised when Jeter hits .315 next year. Same w/ Zito.

Maybe you guys think he has to be the Cy Young or he is not useful. He's a great option for the middle of the rotation for years to come and I would have loved to hand him the ball in game three this year instead of anyone else on our roster.

2006-10-10 11:38:57
68.   wsporter
58 Ervin? Hell I thought they were talking about Johan. Ervin Santana? Are batteries included? Could we hold out for a toaster with that?

Ervin Santana? Straight up?

Oye!

2006-10-10 11:40:07
69.   pistolpete
56 He's found new life since the Yankees started being disappointing in the postseason on a regular basis. From 1996-2001, he really didn't have a leg to stand on.

You know who Lupica reminds me of, and actually looks like him, too? Anyone remember the scene in 'Young Frankenstein', where Gene Wilder is teaching in the classroom (2nd or 3rd scene in the movie), and the wormy guy in the glasses stands up to needle him about his grandfather's work?

2006-10-10 11:40:10
70.   smingers
55 This year Zito had a record of 6-7 at home, with an ERA of 4.71 and a BAA of .275. On the road, however, he went 10-3 with an ERA of 2.97 and a BAA of .240. And looking at his numbers going back four years, those home/road splits don't seem to be an abberation. So his defense might have helped him, but it doesn't look like his home park did him any favors.
2006-10-10 11:40:17
71.   dianagramr
Zito in Yankee Stadium since 2000:

Season AB Hits 2B 3B HR RBI BB K BA OBA Slug%
2000 21 3 0 0 0 1 2 4 .143 .217 .143
2001 23 5 0 0 0 3 2 7 .217 .308 .217
2002 18 6 0 0 1 6 4 6 .333 .455 .500
2003 27 4 1 0 0 0 3 4 .148 .233 .185
2004 57 19 4 0 4 11 3 12 .333 .377 .614
2005 28 6 1 1 0 2 1 5 .214 .241 .321
2006 44 9 1 0 2 6 11 8 .205 .357 .364

2006-10-10 11:40:27
72.   JL25and3
54 Wow, when I read your first post I just assumed that you were joking. You're serious about ARod for Adrian Beltre??? That's way, way out of line.
2006-10-10 11:40:42
73.   Mike T
Would those of you who are professing to not want Zito care to explain your positions? How exactly is a former Cy Young winner who showed Johan Santana the door in one of the biggest postseason pitching matchups this year, and is only 28 yrs old, not adequate to don pinstripes?
2006-10-10 11:42:24
74.   mehmattski
68 Only if it was a Baseball Toaster. I think trading A-Rod for Belth, Corcoran, Timmerman, Weismann, Donohue, Arneson, and Carminati would be fair value. I bet they'd strike out with men in scoring position just as often...
2006-10-10 11:42:47
75.   smingers
Again, I'm not saying the Yanks should sign Zito. But I think we have to keep our expectations for the Yanks young guys realistic. Just because Cano turned into a .340 hitter out of nowhere doesn't mean Rasner will become better than Zito or Melky will all of a sudden learn how to hit for power. It could happen, but shouldn't be expected.
2006-10-10 11:43:49
76.   RIYank
Ervin????

Johan???

I thought we were talking about Carlos!

2006-10-10 11:44:04
77.   smingers
Having lived in Seattle the past two seasons and having been to a fair share of Mariners games I can say that Beltre, sir, is no Alex Rodriguez.
2006-10-10 11:46:41
78.   JL25and3
67 The idea that BABIP doesn't have much consistency from year to year only holds for pitchers. No one has made a similar case about hitters.

69 I am in awe; I bow to you. That's just amazingly perfect - Lupica is that guy.

2006-10-10 11:47:10
79.   Mike T
"I expect the tone of NYY coverage to be far more negative in '07."

Is that even possible? Pretty much all of the national sports news organizations and personalities already hate the Yankees, and make no attempt to hide it. ESPN is of course the primary example of this.

2006-10-10 11:47:25
80.   monkeypants
75 Right. But instead of throwing more millions at Pavano/Wright/Lidle/etc., why not actually give Rasner/Karstens/etc. a real opportunity to make the staff. Are these guys future stars? Now way. Are they going to be worse than the team,s #3, 4 and #5 starters this year? I'm not so sure.

Going after Zito (or whoever is on the market) means probably tying into a four year contract, which we will all be bitching about in two or three years.

2006-10-10 11:47:42
81.   Knuckles
Zito 2003-2005 vs what I'd call the top 5 offenses in baseball:
BOS: 2-3, 6.45 ERA, 1.89 WHIP
NYY: 1-5, 7.01 ERA, 1.77 WHIP
BAL: 2-2, 4.38 ERA, 1.16 WHIP
CLE: 3-3, 3.23 ERA, 1.36 WHIP
TEX: 6-5, 5.59 ERA, 1.43 WHIP
2006-10-10 11:47:45
82.   jonnystrongleg
63 Your "damning statistical" evidence does nothing to dissuade me from my point that Zito is a great option for the Yanks middle of the rotation. I said it would be a mistake for us to think he was a savior or an ace. I know you're probably just fired up, but I'm not trying to call you out. You don't like Zito. Fine. He's not perfect. Go with whoever you want, but your personal comments about me are totally off base and unwarranted.

While I never said that people here wanted to trade Arod "straight up" for Santana, I didn't bother to list the rest of the deal (figgins and a prospect) that people were advocating because I'm talking about pitching.

And the point here has been that Santana would add depth to rotation where it is sorely needed. So my post was just saying "hold on, we collectively think Santana will help, while costing us Arod, while Zito won't help while costing us nothing but money?"

I'll still take Zito and Matsuzaka and bid farewll to Moose and Sheff and take my chances with the rest.

2006-10-10 11:47:46
83.   vockins
73 I think there has been plenty of hard evidence supplied in the thread.
2006-10-10 11:47:48
84.   mehmattski
73 See my 48 and 55.

67 Evidence for repeatability of BABIP is shaky at best. But what's clear is that HR rate, K rate, and BB rate are repeatable, and very independent of park/defense/mojo. And what you see from the numbers is that Zito has been steadily decreasing in all three important categories over his last three seasons. We may have already seen his peak, and so signing him to a 6 year contract may seem good initially (See: Johnny Damon, 2006), but by the time he's 34, he may be worse than Jaret Wright.

2006-10-10 11:48:24
85.   Xeifrank
What people need to keep in mind is that the baseball playoffs are a bit of a crapshoot. The best team from the regular season (record wise), usually does not win the World Series. Over 162 games, the cream will generally rise to the top. In a short series, pretty much anything can happen. Afterall, the Kansas City Royals swept the Tigers three straight games the last weekend of the season with the AL Central still at stake. The games are played, one team moves on and one team goes home. Yes, there are reasons why the Yankees lost the series to the Tigers but if you played the series again starting tomorrow the Yankees would still have a decent chance of winning. You cannot tell the better team over a short series when the two teams are of playoff quality material. The Yankees are a great team. Great teams don't always win the World Series. It's not an easy thing to do, as there are three series' to win. Getting to the playoffs and staying healthy are really the only two things you can ask for. I wouldn't blow-up the team over losing to the Tigers in the first round. That doesn't mean there aren't possible improvements to make, but trading AROD for this years over-hyped pitcher (whoever that may be) isn't going to solve anything. E.Santana is good but not great, Zito is good but not great, Schmidt is on the "down-side" of his career and the Japanese pitcher has alot of innings on his arm. Good luck in your soap opera this offseason. :) vr, Xei
2006-10-10 11:48:58
86.   dianagramr
I'm not saying Beltre is A-Rod. I'm not even saying Beltre is CLOSE to A-Rod. But if the Yanks are really intent on dealing A-Rod, then Beltre actually makes sense.

a) 4 years younger
b) much better defense (and let's face it, the Yanks infield defense has been pitiful for the last 3 or so years)
c) only signed for 2 more years (rather than A-Rod's 4)
d) same $ per year

Yes, Beltre will not go .320/40/140, but in the Yankee lineup, he doesn't have to. I'm sure the Yanks would be fine with his 2006 line of .270/26/88 and Gold Glove defense.

2006-10-10 11:51:58
87.   mehmattski
82 Yes, I'm fired up, as I don't want Barry Zito to be a Yankee. It made me forget for a moment that not everyone types as fast as I do or refreshes this site as much as I do, so response times may have been limited. Anyway I take back the "pedestal" comment and I apologize.

You're right that Barry Zito will make a sufficient middle of the rotation guy. However, with Satan (sorry, Boras) as his agent, he's going to cost front of the rotation money, and I don't think it's worth it. Adam Eaton would be a better option.

As an aside... I think I may be missing something but it does not appear that either Dontrelle Willis nor Miguel Cabrera are under contract for 2007... so any discussions on trades with the Marlins for these players seems to be about three months late.

2006-10-10 11:53:32
88.   JL25and3
86 I still have trouble believing that's not a joke.
2006-10-10 11:55:50
89.   wsporter
87 Willis + Cabrera = Arbtration, no?
2006-10-10 11:55:53
90.   monkeypants
86 "Yes, Beltre will not go .320/40/140, but in the Yankee lineup, he doesn't have to. I'm sure the Yanks would be fine with his 2006 line of .270/26/88 and Gold Glove defense."

I don't buy the argument that in the Yankees lineup X or Y doesn't have to be a stud. The only reason the lineup is as formidable as it is, is because there are so many studs. But let's look deeper. Who is going to make the lineup so intimidating next year?

Shef: Gone.
Giambi: Injury prone, DH, year older.
Damon: Coming off unpredictable career highs in power, will almost certainly play worse next year (though still good).
Jeter: Second best season at age 32; should regress.
Posada: 35 y.o. catcher.
Matsui: solid but not outstanding power numbers for corner OF.
Cano: maybe if he hits .340 again or learns to walk.
The bench: Fasano? Cairo? Cabrara (maybe he hits for more power)?
Abrea: could be better, since power was down this year.

So basically, you would trade the team's likely most valuable offensive player because the rest of the lineup is strong, despite the fact that this same lineup is due to get worse at almost every position with seemingly no minor league talent to step in?

2006-10-10 11:57:21
91.   RIYank
I figured johnnystronglegs would look pretty good on a pedestal. Oh well.

Dontrelle Willis isn't a free agent.
How do you look up a particular player's contract status?

2006-10-10 11:59:17
92.   Shawn Clap
2007 RJ would be a good 5th starter (in a 4-man rotation).
2006-10-10 11:59:19
93.   Schteeve
1) Sheffield is untradeable in a sign and trade scenario.

2) Giambi is untradeable because he's a twenty million dollar one trick creaky ass pony.

3) A-Rod has too much upside to trade.

4) Why then is it that nobody else seems to want to consider trading Matsui? A very good player, who we have a viable replacement for (Melky.) Who could bring back some good arms.

And I'm not buying the whole "he's Japanese and the Yankees are the only ones who can make money off of his Japanese-ness." Or "He's Japanese and that's the only way we'll get Matsuzaka."

If he wasn't Japanese, would he still be so untouchable?

Look, I like the guy, I think he's a hell of a ballplayer, but I also think he's tradeable for something valuable in return, and we know for a fact that this team can win without him. So aside from his country of origin, why can't I think about trading the guy?

2006-10-10 12:00:13
94.   smingers
80 I totally agree that we NEED to give the kids a shot. I just think we should temper our expectations. It's easy for young players to get overvalued because they are Yankees.
I have a feeling that if Melky played for another team and his name weren't Melky, almost no one would have heard of him. Remember how upset people were when the Yanks traded Brandon Claussen and D'Angelo Jimenez?
2006-10-10 12:00:26
95.   jonnystrongleg
87 Dude, now you're ragging on my typing skills? What's next?

Seriously though I agree with you about most of everything you write here, I just don't care how much money they spend. Never have, never will. I'd much rather spend more for a guy who WILL help rather than pay market value for and Adam Eaton who probably won't help.

I just hope they don't trade Arod for crap.

2006-10-10 12:01:56
96.   smingers
91 This site has some good info:

http://www.mlb4u.com/

2006-10-10 12:03:27
97.   Peter
Arod's "terrible" year: .290/.392/.523 with 35 HR and 121 RBI. His usually provides gold glove defense and I thought it was agreed that his range is responsible for Jeter's improved defense these past few years.

The best value the Yanks will get for him is to keep him in pinstripes and let the media relations folk devise a plan this winter to quiet down the hysterical media. He'll start playing like it's 2005 in no time.

2006-10-10 12:03:29
98.   wsporter
93 He has a great big fat no trade clause in that contract doesn't he? Why would they give up all that Japenese TV revenue and risk not signing any player who ever posted again? I think he's ours for the duration.
2006-10-10 12:04:04
99.   monkeypants
93 Who is going to take Matsui's three years @ 14 million per year, at age 32, coming off a serious wrist injury? Oh, and his numbers aren't that good for a corner OF in the AL. You'd have more luck trying to trade Melky--and I really hope they don't do that.
2006-10-10 12:04:36
100.   mehmattski
86 Since you're so persistent, I think I'll post the relevant statistics:

2006
Alex Rodriguez: .290/.392/.523
Adrian Beltre: .268/.328/.465

Career:
Alex Rodriguez: .305/.386/.573
Adrian Beltre: .271/.328/.457

Fielding (Career, 3B):
Rodriguez: .958 FPCT, 2.50 RF, .752 ZR
Beltre: .955 FPCT, 2.41 RF, .799 ZR

Actually, Beltre is signed until 2009. So, very inferior hitting, similar defense (Gold Gloves be damned) and no savings in money or years? Pass.

Also, "King Felix" is shaping up to be quite the figure head/bust. I take Hughes every day (and perhaps Torre will.... just kidding).

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-10-10 12:05:22
101.   RIYank
96 Thanks.
So his contract runs out now, but he's not a free agent because he doesn't have enough service years? What does that mean, in practice?
2006-10-10 12:06:04
102.   dianagramr
(slinks into corner) :-(
2006-10-10 12:06:40
103.   yankz
88 Same here. Adrian Beltre? What? Come on now.
2006-10-10 12:07:20
104.   JL25and3
91 This site has great info: http://mlbcontracts.blogspot.com/
2006-10-10 12:07:23
105.   tommyl
24 Zito's peripherals are decent, but nowhere near great. He's got a rather high walk rate and he's benefitted from a good A's defense. Also his HR rates are not good over 1 per 9. By comparison, since people have mentioned Pettitte, during most of his years with NY, his HR rate was much lower (under 1 per 9), and he had almost 2 fewer walks per 9 than Zito.

Look, I think Zito is a decent #3 starter, but if he does decently this postseason Boras is going to be asking for ace type money for him likely over a long term deal. With Hughes and Clippard coming up in the next two years, and Wang pitching well I'm less inclined to go for him.

2006-10-10 12:10:28
106.   Andre
93 Matsui is hard to consider trading for sentimental/emotional reasons as much or more so than his contract. It's hard to consider trading a guy who is so classy and plays the game "the right way". He is everything you want in a player, except that he may just not have the type of numbers you want from a player at his position. If you can be mercenary and separate stats from work ethic/class/etc., you'd be able to consider it. My problem with Matsui this year, as much as I like him, is that he's pretty bland. There's no spark coming from him. He can't rally a team. He is a nice quiet classy boring guy (as opposed to Melky/Cano who have youthful exuberance and are "fun" to watch).
2006-10-10 12:10:38
107.   JL25and3
101 The Marlins still have his contract under the reserve clause, but he's arbitration eligible. If they don't want to pay his arbitration salary, they can either non-tender him before arbitration (that's what happened with Ortiz) or trade him.
2006-10-10 12:11:43
108.   JL25and3
Matsui has a full no-trade clause. Playing with the Yankees isn't just good business for the Yankees, it's good business of rMatsui, too. He's not going anywhere.
2006-10-10 12:11:51
109.   jonnystrongleg
Speaking of trading Arod, do people here think he is done? He could not catch up with an 85 MPH fastball this summer. I think that's behind him, but it scares me that it happened at all.
2006-10-10 12:13:59
110.   mehmattski
89 Ah yes... had to go refresh myself on the free agency rules... it hasn't been six years yet? Hopefully, Cabrera will get more than the absurd $472,000 he got last year Plus he had a stipulation for only $270,000 if he was in the minors. It's a steal, for the guy who has put up three straight seasons that Baseball Reference has "most similar" to Henry Aaron.

102 Get out of the corner, it's all dusty over there. Seriously, I know we all appreciate creative thinking around here, so don't get discouraged. Besides, we need you to come up with that "offensive consistency" data.

2006-10-10 12:14:04
111.   weeping for brunnhilde
75 We don't need Melky to hit for power. If he does, fine, but I really don't understand why people think that if he doesn't he'll somehow not be a worthwhile player.

At the very least, he will learn to be a better hitter, and that's what we need.

I'm sorry, no disrespect intended, but I'm so sick of these rules about which position needs to hit how many homeruns.

There are other ways to win baseball games than hitting homeruns.

2006-10-10 12:14:15
112.   Bama Yankee
Maybe after all these A-Rod trade rumors get published this off-season (with no team likely to make a viable "even" offer much less an "overwelming" offer) the "trade A-Rod" crowd will settle down and realize that the best thing for the Yankees is to keep the future HOFer in pinstripes.

IMO, if the team and the fans would get behind him (he is a Yankee and an important part of this team) rather than boo him or throw him under the bus when he goes into a slump he would actually perform better. And that is what we all want, right?

2006-10-10 12:17:01
113.   Knuckles
106 I think Matsui plays with enough fire, given his culture. Anyone remember his primal scream and jump at home plate after scoring on Jorgie's double off of Pedro? Sh1t, that was awesome.
2006-10-10 12:17:26
114.   monkeypants
111 Maybe, but since Babe Ruth showed up, the way to win games is to get on base and slug. Melky needs to develop more power, or develop into a CF, or he will have marginal value for the club. I love the kid, but right now his biggest contribution is that he costs very little, freeing up money to pay for Giambi, Johnson, etc.
2006-10-10 12:17:44
115.   jonm
I would trade ARod for Beltre AND Felix Hernandez.

I agree with mehmattski's hesitancy concerning Zito. His BB9 rate was 4.03 which was the ninth worst in the AL for pitchers who started more than 15 games.

2006-10-10 12:18:56
116.   dianagramr
110

slinking OUT of the corner

OK ... I'll fess up ... part of the reason I'm interested in seeing Beltre in pinstripes (if the Yanks feel the need to trade A-Rod) is that I drafted Beltre for my roto league this year (he was the best 3B remaining at the time), and I had to suffer through his .215/2/10 first two months.

Chalk it up to post-traumatic stress :-)

2006-10-10 12:19:14
117.   weeping for brunnhilde
How about that Cardinal team, for instance? The one from what was it, 1982? Their leading homerun guy was Jack Clark, with 22, and all the other guys were speedsters.

I'm sure they had good pitching, I get it, I get it, I just wonder why they can't serve as a model for a winning team?

Power is one model, but is it really the only one?

2006-10-10 12:19:55
118.   Chyll Will
102 Hey, no pushing! {:-(
2006-10-10 12:20:34
119.   Bama Yankee
Hey mehmattski, your boys gave me quite a scare for three quarters Saturday night. Either they are not as bad as everyone said or we have got some serious problems with our run defense.
2006-10-10 12:21:38
120.   weeping for brunnhilde
113 Wasn't that a single that Jorgie dunked into center? (See what can happen if you just put the fucking bat on the fucking baseball, btw?)

Matsui was the one who roped the double in the corner.

Or did some mishap occur that allowed Jorgie to reach second?

2006-10-10 12:21:51
121.   RIYank
102 You had a Get Out of Corner Free card for that awesome {28} in the previous thread!
2006-10-10 12:23:59
122.   smingers
111 It's not all about HRs. For instance, Jeter hit only 14 home runs this year, but he slugged close to .500. Melky slugged about 100 points lower. And for all the talk about how Melky still managed to work walks and get on base, he finished with an OBP lower than Cano, who's not exactly a model of plate discipline.
2006-10-10 12:25:08
123.   monkeypants
117 That Cardinals team was a bit of a freak team, but even so--they one of five teams that did not hit 100 HRs as a team. That was a rather different era. Moreover, they were fourth in the NL in scoring and tied for third in slugging. So they replaced HRs with 2Bs and #Bs. You still need to slug to score, and especially with todays ballparks and batters.

Just go through the record books for tha last 80 years--occasionally light hitting speed teams win. But more often than not the great teams hit the hell out of the ball (not just singles) and keep the other team from doing the same.

2006-10-10 12:25:09
124.   dianagramr
121

... cool .... I wasn't aware of those cards .... sweet!

2006-10-10 12:26:24
125.   Chyll Will
121 "Nobody puts dianagramr in the corner..." (besides, I was there first)
2006-10-10 12:27:27
126.   smingers
117 I don't think you can compare eras. Plus, I just looked up that Cardinals team and they had a team ERA of 3.37. This Yankees team is not constructed that way.
2006-10-10 12:27:50
127.   mehmattski
119 They're not quite as bad as everyone says, if what everyone says is that they are the worst team in organized football. The team is slowly turning around, and we look with hope towards a Rutgers team that pulled itself from similar hopelessness.

I've watched Duke football for 5 years now. You think being a Yankee fan is hard lately? Let me put it this way: If football games were only 3 quarters long, Duke would have had some major upsets the last few years...

2006-10-10 12:28:42
128.   Knuckles
120 Jorge definitely ended up at 2B on that hit, whether they ruled it a double, or a single taking 2nd on a throw home, because I def remember him popping up at second after a slide, also screaming fire.
2006-10-10 12:29:20
129.   dianagramr
Could we at least move A-Rod back to SS (but where would Jeter play)?
2006-10-10 12:29:22
130.   Shawn Clap
March 23, 2007 (AP)
NEW YORK -

The United Nations, impressed with Yankees pitcher Chien-Mien Wang's ability keep cool under pressure, has sent the young star on a year-long diplomatic mission to North Korea, hoping to diffuse the mounting nuclear situation there.

Embattled manager,Joe Torre, posted this year's starting rotation on the clubhouse wall, then quickly retreated to his office mumbling, "You can't blame this one on me".

The sheet on the wall simply read:
Randy Johnson
Jason Schmidt
Jaret Wright
Carl Pavano(?)
Cory Lidle

2006-10-10 12:30:29
131.   Shaun P
I have nothing to add to the "reasons why the Yanks shouldn't sign Zito" but this -

Zito's VORP and MLB ranking by year:

2001 - 51.2, 17th
2002 - 75.3, 3rd
2003 - 56.1, 13th
2004 - 32.5, 51st
2005 - 41.1, 29th
2006 - 51.0, 12th

Zito's SNLVAR and MLB ranking by year:

2001 - 6.6, 16th
2002 - 8.5, 3rd
2003 - 6.7, 10th
2004 - 4.7, 36th
2005 - 5.5, 21st
2006 - 6.1, 11th (tie)

I see an early peak (2002) and then some fluxuation, with another little peak in his (surprise!) age 28, free agent season.

It wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, but I hate to see the Yanks spend that kind of money on Zito.

And maybe my "Rasner could put up Zito-like numbers" comment is too optomistic - but if you're looking for Zito to be a 3rd starter/league-average innings eater, yes I think Rasner could do that, if given the chance.

2006-10-10 12:30:47
132.   JL25and3
117 It's very hard to compare teams across eras, and the early 80's were a very different offensive environment than today. Playing in bigger, multi-purpose turf stadiums made it viable to base an offense around slap hitters who could run like hell. Now, a lot of those ground ball singles would just be outs.
2006-10-10 12:31:58
133.   Ken Arneson
74 Bob wants Jon to give him back his extra n.

As for Zito, all free agent pitchers are risky, but Zito is probably the least risky pitcher in the history of free agency. He's healthy, consistent, and still pretty young. You don't need to project anything (e.g. Burnett's got ace-like stuff if he can stay healthy): you should pretty much know exactly what you're going to get: a solid 2-3 starter who will give you a lot of innings, and won't choke in the playoffs.

There's no reason any team can't figure out exactly what he'd be worth, and then offer that amount. Every team should want him; the team that gets him will either be the team he has the most value for, or the team that does the worst math.

2006-10-10 12:33:32
134.   weeping for brunnhilde
122 I take your point, but I do believe that Melky will develop into a stronger hitter and wouldn't be the least bit surprised to see him hit .320 next year, if given the opportunity. If he can do that, his OBP will skyrocket. He may hit more doubles, too, I don't know.

I'm just saying that with him I think we ain't seen nothing yet and I love his approach at the plate and can't see him not turning into a monster player, even if he doesn't hit for much power.

123 Fair enough, fair enough. I just have a deep suspicion for this newfangled cult of the home run, is all. Watching the rise of the home run in the nineties made me kind of sick and I've just never warmed up to it.

Call me a reactionary.

I'm just trying to offer a bit of admonition because I do think that slugging can be overrated--and I mean that literally, "overrated" not "utterly without value"--and I fear that disproportionate attention to "power" can cause us to not appreciate other aspects of hitting or offense that can also help you to win games.

2006-10-10 12:34:01
135.   mehmattski
130 You definitely can't blame Torre, since the nuclear situation in North Korea is undoubtedly A-Rod's fault.

Here's my Underpants Gnome strategy for 2007:

Step 1: Post and sign Matsuzaka.
Step 2: ?
Step 3: Profit!

2006-10-10 12:34:14
136.   Bama Yankee
127 You've got a pretty good QB who can run the option very well. The defense can put the pressure on the QB (our O-line did a better job against Florida's D-line than against Duke). I think when they get the turnover problem straigtened out they will surprise some people. They are no where near the worst team in organized football (not with Temple still around).
2006-10-10 12:35:25
137.   weeping for brunnhilde
128 You're right, now that you mention it, I see the image too, him popping up, clapping his hands.

It must have been on the throw.

2006-10-10 12:36:41
138.   smingers
131 Again, I'm not saying the Yanks should sign Zito. But just for the sake of argument, how do those rankings make Zito a league average starter? With the exception of 2004, he has ranked in the top 30 pitchers in the league every year. I freely confess I don't know much about those statistics you cited, but wouldn't his rankings put him the near the top? How does Mussina compare over the same time period?
2006-10-10 12:37:22
139.   Peter
130 Arod convinced Iran to give up their nukes yesterday, but critics say their program was in its early stages so that doesn't count.
2006-10-10 12:37:24
140.   RIYank
Weeping, there's reason to think that Melky will indeed have a much higher batting avg. next year: a player his age tends to jump by 15% in his second year. Yow. That actually would put him over .320!
Suppose he hits .305, but adds a lot of walks. Then I think he's fine and he should stick. Now, where do they play him???
2006-10-10 12:37:47
141.   Bama Yankee
137 & 128 IIRC, no one was covering second as they all went after Posada's flair.
2006-10-10 12:38:37
142.   smingers
134 One thing I don't like about Melky, putting stats aside, is his swing. There's nothing really pretty or fluid, in my lay opinion, about that swing.
2006-10-10 12:39:46
143.   mehmattski
133 Hey, at least I spelled your name right. I had to look up Corcoran, though.

136 Yeah, I like Thaddeus Lewis, he looked awesome in the game against Wake Forest (during which, I might add, we blew a 10 point 3rd quarter lead and lost when the game winning field goal attempt was blocked...), and we seem to have some pretty capable running backs. Far cry from 2002 when our best player was our punter and we habitually ran up the middle for no gain on 3rd and long...

134 I recall a commercial with Maddux and Smoltz trying to learn how to hit because "chicks dig the long ball." Yeah, that's all I've got to add to this discussion, but that commercial always made me laugh.

2006-10-10 12:40:45
144.   Shaun P
117 The difference is in the era. In 1982 almost all teams were trying to get by on speed and doubles. The average NL player hit .258/.315/.373. The average NL LF hit .273/.336/.394.

In 2006/7, especially in the AL, its a high-power, high-OBP game. The average AL player hit .275/.339/.437 in 2006. The average AL LF hit .280/.347/.449.

Melky, meanwhile, hit .280/.360/.390 in '06. OBP is more valuable than SLG, but the +.013 in OBP doesn't make up for the -.059 in SLG.

If Melky isn't hitting at or above average compared to all other AL LFs, the Yanks are essentially taking a hit in production out of LF.

The speed game could work again, but given the current offensive context of the AL, I don't see it working next year. In the NL, that's another story.

2006-10-10 12:48:27
145.   wsporter
144 MFD, remember when Mr. Torre first hit town in '96 and he was lavished with praise for bringing NL style ball to the AL and winning with it? Why couldn't he do it again; build an offense based on timely hitting, speed, pitching and defense that thrives in late close game situations? I wonder how hard it would be to rebuild that way.

Did you decide to go up to the old school for Home Comming next weekend?

2006-10-10 12:49:22
146.   Shaun P
134 I see that I'm late to the party again. Cursed real-world work for getting in the way of interesting baseball talk!

I too think Melky could develop some power as he grows up and fills out. He'd make a fine CF, though I hope Brett Gardner ultimately fills that slot for the Yanks. There's a guy you could love, weeping - not much power (.370 SLG across A and AA and zero HRs!) but man does he get on base (.395 OBP).

2006-10-10 12:50:14
147.   weeping for brunnhilde
142 I'm glad you bring that up, because that's an important point and gets to the difference between him and Arod.

Arod's swing is perfect, yet he's easily fooled. What that means is that he'll crush all mistakes and even borderline mistakes, but if you make your pitches, which pitchers do more of in the postseason, you'll get him out.

Melky's swing doesn't look as pretty, but his success depends on something other than the raw talent of his mechanics.

That's why I think a guy like Melky has the potential to be a great hitter, relatively speaking, whereas Arod's not so much a great hitter as a hitter with a great swing.

I think that's a key distinction.

Does that make any sense?

The real question, I think, is how much of your game rests on making adjustments and battling and how much rests on pure natural ability. In a tight spot with an ace pitcher, I'd feel more comfortable with the former type of hitter at the bat, even if his batting average is lower than the latter's.

2006-10-10 12:52:10
148.   jonnystrongleg
With Damon, Jeter, Abreu & Arod batting 1-4, the Yanks could steal a lot of bases and score a lot of extra runs without necessarily becoming an NL offense.
2006-10-10 12:53:26
149.   Yankee Fan In Boston
this just in:

randy will likely have surgery to help with his disc situation.

ditto giambi & his wrist.

ditto phillips and the cartilidge in his knee.

speaking of injuries, espn says:

Cashman also said the Yankees will meet with right-handed pitcher Carl Pavano and the players' association to discuss discipline for Pavano's decision to hide a rib injury from a car crash for several weeks.

if he finds a way out of that deal, ca$hman deserves a monument in monument park.

2006-10-10 12:53:38
150.   JL25and3
145 The problem with that sort of offense is that it has to function perfectly - because while you're hitting singles and stealing bases, the other team is hitting home runs. And, honestly, I have no idea how to build a team around "timely hitting."

Pitching and defense are good, though. And I think everyone agrees that the pitching needs a serious upgrade.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2006-10-10 12:54:28
151.   choirboyzgirl
129- I hear 1st base is open :)
.
.
.
.

before anyone throws anything my way I'm joking.

2006-10-10 12:54:40
152.   Ramone
144 It seems to me that you are leaving something out of the equation with regard to Melky.

First, in order to win, it isn't necessary to have above average players at every single position. In the aggregate you do. But not at every position, so long as you aren't being hurt anywhere.

Second, given that Melky doesn't hit for power, he will likely never demand an exhorbitant sum to play LF. Money saved at LF is money the Yanks can spend at SP and middle relief (among other places).

I imagine that one could even quantify it. One would be willing to pay $X for each increase in slg %. Or one would expect a discount for each percentage drop off.

Assuming that were the case, I imagine that Melky is a pretty cheap, but valuable, LF, and will be going forward.

2006-10-10 12:56:28
153.   Peter
149 Andy is really hurt? I just assumed that DL stint was a ruse.
2006-10-10 12:57:04
154.   Shaun P
145 MFD, I think the pitching is the key. You'd have to keep the other guys' run totals down, keep their power guys in check. Because odds are you wouldn't score many runs (see Tampa Bay).

The AL has too many sluggers right now. I think it'd be much easier to pull off in the NL, at least going into 2007.

As for old U, we might be going, we might not. It will depend on the weather and my wife's work schedule. I will let you know - I see all the leaves in color and I think of the old place.

2006-10-10 12:58:44
155.   weeping for brunnhilde
145 One thing I think that's critical to that kind of team is to have guys who are capable of not striking out in big spots.

One reason I've been so frustrated with these current teams is because over and over and over again they've whiffed when all we've needed was a single or sac fly or some such.

I said this yesterday, but I'll say it again, because I think it can't be overstated:

Luis Gonzales after Game 7 was interviewed about his approach in that last at-bat.

He told the reporter that he choked up because he just didn't want to strike out.

He also said he hadn't done that since little league.

It was really that simple. It was within his power to alter his approach as per the dictates of the circumstance and look what happened.

Bravo, Luis.

If only our guys were capable of making those kinds of adjustments.

Or remember Winfield? He decided to hit for average and went out and hit .340 with only 19 homers rather than his standard .280/35 or whatever.

Major league baseball players have enough talent to make these adjustments, but it takes work and it takes desire.

Why can't all major league baseball players play pepper if the situation calls for it?

Or bunt?

Melky can't bunt.

Why is that?

Is it some special mysterious skill that only the elect can execute?

The problem, if you ask me, is that players are simply allowed to be one-dimensional and no one ever calls them on it.

That's the problem.

2006-10-10 12:58:45
156.   Yankee Fan In Boston
153
according to mr. cashman, yes.

i thought it was just roster mechanations, too.

guess not.

2006-10-10 13:00:15
157.   Bama Yankee
141 I just watched the Jorge double on MLB.TV. He did reach second because no one was there. The ball landed in the Bermuda Triangle of Nomar, Damon and Walker. Watching that play again gave me chill bumps. Jorge was pumped, the crowd was going crazy and Grady Little finally goes and gets Pedro. The good ol' days when we used to play in the ALCS...
2006-10-10 13:00:59
158.   weeping for brunnhilde
150 You find guys who refuse to strike out and alter their approach, shortening their swing, going the other way when hits are really needed.

No, of course they won't always get hits, but they won't pop up or strike out in those types of situations.

2006-10-10 13:01:05
159.   wsporter
150 That's pretty much what we had 96 - 2001. I think the difference in our scenarios is that in mine we're picking up late game runs and the other team is posting either zero's or ones because our staff isn't issuing walks or following them up with homers.

You build it by finding players who can get timely hits. You're right though you can't plan on it and probably can't "build" with it as the plan. I should have said "solid" hitting.

2006-10-10 13:03:00
160.   weeping for brunnhilde
154 Yes, yes!

Of course it's the pitching. Remember how we used to just walk through Texas, despite all their power?

If you have the pitching the other guys won't be hitting home runs and you'll be fine singling the other team to death.

2006-10-10 13:03:37
161.   smingers
155 There's no smaller sample size than one at bat. And we didn't we win game 4 in that series via a walkoff HR and time game 5 in the ninth inning with another HR?
2006-10-10 13:06:07
162.   Yankee Fan In Boston
159
the key late in games is having a bullpen that can hold a lead more often than imploding.

the yankees had solid relief in the championship years way back when.

...not so much right now.

2006-10-10 13:07:55
163.   wsporter
149 He pulls that off he deserves the park to be named after him. "Cashman Park at Yankee Stadium" Ah, I like the sound of that.

162 No argument here. You need all those pieces to win and that's what we had. That's what we need.

2006-10-10 13:08:00
164.   weeping for brunnhilde
161 So you think it's meaningless that the man said he choked up because he didn't want to strike out?

And as to Tino's home run, you know what I remember him saying about that at-bat?

He said, "I went up there thinking the first two swings were mine."

Which is to say, in a situation that called for power, he tried to hit for power.

Had the at-bat reached 2 strikes, he would have changed his approach.

And I can't recall, but when Paulie reached by dunking that single into left field, did he have two strikes on him?

2006-10-10 13:09:22
165.   JL25and3
152 At last year's level of production, Melky hurts you in left field. At this point I think he makes for a very good fourth outfielder, which will be his role next year. I'm not going to put his development in the bank until it happens.

147 I'm sorry. Look at ARod's career. He's a great hitter.

This gets back to "trusting your eyes." I don't think our eyes are good enough - we just can't see things the way major leaguers do. ARod didn't get this far by being unable to make adjustments. And, with all due respect, if they lead us to the judgment that Melky is sure to be a monster player but ARod isn't a great hitter, I think doubts should creep in.

2006-10-10 13:10:06
166.   weeping for brunnhilde
Or when Jorgie hit that flair into center, does anyone recall the count?

Two strikes?

2006-10-10 13:16:04
167.   RIYank
165 Am I wrong that a 22 yr old outfielder projects to jump 15% in BA his second year?
I can't remember where I heard that. I think it was here at BB.
If that's true, then Melky projects to help next year, maybe better than Godzilla.
2006-10-10 13:16:23
168.   weeping for brunnhilde
165 I think you're misunderstanding me.

I'm not saying Arod isn't a great hitter, I'm saying there are different kinds of greatness.

I watch the man hit and I see his greatness in his swing. Balls he hits that I never expect to carry out of the ball park, carry out of the ballpark. That's freakish, and it's great.

As to his approach at the plate? Honestly, I'm not impressed by it at all.

I've been watching this guy a lot now and he just doesn't impress me as a guy who has consistently quality at-bats or who I feel can hang in well against tough pitchers.

I'm not saying he's not great, I'm saying that just watching him as a hitter, his singular strength is in his swing.

Maybe I'm wrong, but that's what I see with my eyes when I watch him.

What do you see with your eyes when you watch him?

As to Melky, again, I don't mean "monster" player in the way that Arod is. I'm talking about him being a player I feel confidence in in a big spot, someone with a plan.

I could be wrong, sure, but I'm telling you that from watching him play, I expect greatness from him. He'll only get better and I think the ways in which he'll get better are ways that will help the team.

Am I totally off base here?

2006-10-10 13:16:39
169.   mehmattski
166 My memory is not nearly that good. Unfortunately, my surrogate memory (retrosheet.org) isn't that good in this case either. But it does say that Posada was officially credited with a double:

http://tinyurl.com/sypmj

2006-10-10 13:18:42
170.   weeping for brunnhilde
169 Mine isn't either, but I do have the feeling that at the time, I was grateful he didn't strike out, which leads me to believe he had two strikes on him.

But the memory can play tricks, no doubt.

2006-10-10 13:18:56
171.   Bama Yankee
166 You are correct. The count was 2-2.
2006-10-10 13:22:09
172.   weeping for brunnhilde
171 Those are the kinds of hitters we need more of. Giambi is the first guy I'd ship out of here if I could because he's unable to not strike out when that's the most urgent thing needed out of him.

If you put the ball in play, anything can happen.

I know, I know, as Earl Weaver (I think) used to say, "If you're going to hit into a double play, at least have the good sense to strike out."

Point taken.

2006-10-10 13:24:16
173.   JL25and3
168 When I look at ARod, I see a great hitter. I know he's a great hitter, because no one accomplishes what he has without being a great hitter. So I look at him and try to learn a little more about what makes a hitter great. But I'm not going to try to look for the flaws, because whatever mechanical flaws he has just aren't that big a deal.

A player who can't adjust doesn't look like Alex Rodriguez. He looks like Juan Samuel, or Mickey Rivers, or Kevin Maas.

2006-10-10 13:25:35
174.   weeping for brunnhilde
165 Maybe another (perhaps somewhat simplistic) way to put it is that some players are great because of raw talent and others because of hard work.

Rodgriguez does not exceed his level of talent, but plays up to it.

Other people, like Pete Rose, become great through sheer force of will.

Or maybe that's a myth about Rose, I was too young when he played to have noticed such nuances, but that's what I've read about him.

2006-10-10 13:26:57
175.   weeping for brunnhilde
173 But pretend you didn't know anything about his stats.

Let's say you had one month to watch him play.

Or one year.

Whatever. But pretend you only could judge him based on watching his at-bats.

What kind of hitter would you say he was based on what you see?

2006-10-10 13:28:15
176.   Yankee Fan In Boston
want to see the gyroball?

matsuzaka footage:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bdr0N9HDptg

2006-10-10 13:29:39
177.   weeping for brunnhilde
173 Or, for example, hasn't there been a time when you've watched him fail in one isolated at-bat and thought, "Gee, if only he'd not swung so hard at that pitch" or "Damn, why'd he try to pull that ball?"

Because that's what I see when I watch the guys hit. I watch how they respond to each and every pitch they see and develop a sense for what kind of hitter they are, how they're apt to be fooled, etc.

2006-10-10 13:29:55
178.   dianagramr
2006 Yankees batting with a 3-2 count:

NAME AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG
Jason Giambi 88 23 3 0 12 29 40 31 .261 .485 .705
Derek Jeter 75 23 4 2 2 17 36 30 .307 .536 .493
Johnny Damon 60 8 1 1 0 4 36 18 .133 .458 .183
Alex Rodriguez 59 11 1 0 1 6 38 27 .186 .510 .254
Jorge Posada 41 10 2 0 1 6 33 16 .244 .587 .366
Melky Cabrera 41 10 1 0 1 3 24 11 .244 .523 .341
Bernie Williams 35 5 2 0 1 6 10 7 .143 .326 .286
Bobby Abreu (98 Phi) 33 12 3 0 2 7 18 12 .364 .588 .636
Andy Phillips 25 3 0 0 0 3 8 13 .120 .333 .120
Robinson Cano 24 5 2 0 1 3 4 6 .208 .321 .417
Hideki Matsui 22 4 0 0 2 5 16 9 .182 .526 .455

2006-10-10 13:34:21
179.   dianagramr
2006 Yankees batting with an 0-2 count:

NAME AB H 2B 3B HR RBI SO BA OBP SLG OPS
Alex Rodriguez 50 10 2 0 2 7 25 .200 .212 .360 .572
Robinson Cano 49 11 2 0 1 1 23 .224 .224 .327 .551
Jorge Posada 43 6 3 0 1 5 20 .140 .191 .279 .471
Derek Jeter 39 8 2 0 1 5 18 .205 .244 .333 .577
Johnny Damon 39 8 1 0 0 2 14 .205 .220 .231 .450
Melky Cabrera 34 7 1 0 0 1 14 .206 .206 .235 .441
Bernie Williams 29 6 1 0 0 1 14 .207 .207 .241 .448
Jason Giambi 25 3 0 0 1 3 16 .120 .185 .240 .425
Andy Phillips 22 4 0 1 0 0 9 .182 .182 .273 .455
Miguel Cairo 19 2 0 0 0 1 10 .105 .150 .105 .255
Bobby Abreu (98 Phi) 15 3 1 0 0 3 5 .200 .200 .267 .467

2006-10-10 13:36:44
180.   smingers
175 By the same token, say Melky was named Joe Smith and he played for the Brewers. In his first full season he hit .280 with 7 homeruns, 26 2B and 12 stolen bases and played good defense (limited range, but strong arm).

Would you really be that excited about him or think he is the kind of player the Yankees should be focusing on rather than Alex Rodriguez, who is one year removed from winning MVP?

Or say you had one month to watch Melky play and you choose June, when he hit .214 with a .313 OBP and .296 SLG. Or September when hit .247/.346/.315. How psyched would you be about him then, watching him hit weak ground out after weak ground out?

This is why sample size matters. Arod has a career as one of the best hitters in baseball. Melky has one year of mediocre production.

I like that he's young and enthusiastic and determined too, but don't get carried away by your affection for him.

2006-10-10 13:37:02
181.   JL25and3
175, 177 I'd have no interest in forgetting his stats. And, of course, it would depend on what month I was watching him in - May or June, for example. How about if I'd watched Derek Jeter in April and May of last year - what conclusions would I have drawn?

And yes, of course I've had those thoughts. I've had them about every player. I've also wanted Sheffield to be able to slow up his swing just a bit, so those Foul Balls of Death would go fair instead. Every time a Yankee hits into a double play I wish they'd laid off that pitch, or something. I want them to be perfect; the fact that they're not doesn't detract from their greatness.

2006-10-10 13:37:58
182.   standuptriple
So, assuming the Yanks decline to spend on Zito, what then? (leaving Matsuzaka out of the picture because he's a wild card at this point) I think the next step is to snipe a high $ pitcher from an organization trying to rebuild. To do that they'll have to trade young talent. I think we can all agree Wang and Cano are off limits (unless a Dontrelle or Miggy Cabrera are offered) so that leaves more young pitching and Melky as the asking price. I can't see getting the kind of Abreu/Lidle deal again in the off season. So what I'm saying is, prepare for Zito unless the Mets want to break the bank.
2006-10-10 13:39:08
183.   Yankee Fan In Boston
more from matsuzaka:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smzIyFHTX6U

this is more recent footage. (from april.)

the kid's control on the corners of the plate is amazing.

the K at 2:15 on the clip is astounding.

granted, this is a highlight reel of sorts, but still...

...if cashman could dump glass carl and pry this kid from the lions, i'd be ecstatic.

(...and yes, the new stadium should be named after him if he can make all of our wishes realities.)

2006-10-10 13:39:44
184.   JL25and3
178, 179 Great stats. Everybody sucks with two strikes - though, not surprisingly, they get a lot of walks on a 3-2 count. ARod's no worse than the rest of the team.
2006-10-10 13:40:24
185.   RIYank
Those are pretty small samples, though. 178 179
2006-10-10 13:42:29
186.   weeping for brunnhilde
180 181 Sure, I take your points. I feel like maybe we're talking past each other, though.

Let me think about this, because maybe I'm not articulating myself well.

2006-10-10 13:45:11
187.   RIYank
If Ca$hman gets Matsuzaka and dumps Pavano, then I'll support "Yankee Stadium, located in historic Cashman County".
I guess Alex would have to rename this blog. 'Cashman County Corner'?
2006-10-10 13:49:45
188.   weeping for brunnhilde
183 Thanks for that!

That was some sick pitching.

2006-10-10 13:52:55
189.   Yankee Fan In Boston
188
glad to share.

a side note: there is another clip of him pitching 5 days before that. so, it seems as though he has pitched 2 consecutive starts this season.

compared to pavano, this guy is cal ripken.

(there are a bunch more on youtube, i need to stop. i am getting my hopes up.)

2006-10-10 13:53:22
190.   Shaun P
182 What, Hughes, Clippard et al aren't good enough? =)

Seriously, I don't think its possible to get young pitching from an organization that's honestly trying to rebuild, because they are going to need that young cheap pitching to rebuild.

Except the Cubs. They are morons when it comes to giving up pitching (sorry, Cubs fans). That said, I'm not sold on any of the young pitchers the Cubs arent' already attached to.

I honestly think Cashman makes an offer to Zito at a reasonable level: say 4 years $52 million. Boras laughs, rejects it out of hand, and Zito signs with the Dodgers or the Padres for whatever large amount they offer.

2006-10-10 13:56:18
191.   Shaun P
178 179 Diana, those are fascinating numbers. Strikeouts don't bother me too much. I see it as a side affect of working out of lots of 3-2 counts. And of course the Yanks do more than their fair share of walking in that situation.

A sac fly is nicer than a K, but I'd rather have a non-out event anyday.

2006-10-10 13:57:40
192.   marc
Like I said yesterday guys, Joe and A-Rod ain't going anywhere. Torre not until his contract is up next year at which point he'll probably get kicked upstairs unless he really wants to manage elsewhere which Steinbrenner would be scared would come back and beat him. And A-Rod could have turned into a No No Nannete disaster if we let him go prematurely. What we need is pitching. Do they think Hughs can be a starter next year or do they want to take it slower?
2006-10-10 14:04:49
193.   standuptriple
190 I didn't imply young pitching (the Dontrelle example was an extreme just because his name has been tossed around way too much). They'll have to take somebody who had an off year or wants to be dealt and even then I can't see the Yanks being the best trading partner out there. I'd love to see the young guns get a fair shake, but I certainly am not counting on it. I also don't want to sacrifice the future by rushing them. I think they are good enough, but are they seasoned/durable enough? Time will tell.
2006-10-10 14:15:39
194.   wsporter
192 Lots of minor League analysis says bring him up. But Bill Maase's attempts to rush Hughes at Trenton this year seem to have cost him his job so my guess is that Hughes opens the season in a nice warm climate and then moves up to SC/WB (seems wierd to think that let alone write it) I just don't see them rushing the kid. That said, if the rotation needs help mid year I'd bet he's up and at em.

I will bet the Yankees grab Matsuzaka and plug him in at their number 2 or 3. I see Moose working something out so he finishes here. I'm willing to bet they can coble together a decent rotation with what's left at the 4 and 5. For the life of me though I'm gald my job doesn't depend on doing it.

2006-10-10 14:17:00
195.   Xeifrank
I just laugh when I read people criticizing AROD as a hitter. The guy is consistently one of the best hitters in baseball every year. sheesh. The grass is always greener... vr, Xei
2006-10-10 14:19:05
196.   OldYanksFan
In many posts here, a number of folk have been for getting rid of Giambi. One called him a hacker, and called for more 'professional hitters'.

Lets put aside the fact that Giambi is due in the range of $40mil/2 years, and is untradeable.

1) He lead our team in HRs and OPS, and was second in OBP only to a career year for Jetes.
2) Even with a month of a bad wrist, where is number plimeted. he was still 6th in the league in both OBP and OPS.
3) While he is no longer a .300, if healthy, you can bank on a .270+ average, to go with 30+ HRs. If ARod and Matsui start hitting HRs, Giambi might not try to tiy yard, and be back at .300.
4) He is a guaranteed .400 OBP guy every year (hacker?)
5) He helps wear down pitchers by being in the top 3 of pitches/AB.
6) He's clutch. As ARod under-performed, Giambi stepped up and carried this team, along with Jetes, for quite a while.

Yes... he a bit one-dimensional... but he's a consistant force, and with the possibility of no ARod and no Shef, he is CERTAINLY needed in our line-up.

2006-10-10 14:46:46
197.   ChuckM
I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that Matsuzaka doesn't throw a gyroball, that pitch he throws is called something else.
2006-10-10 14:50:30
198.   weeping for brunnhilde
195 If you're referring to me, I wonder if you understand exactly what I'm trying to say.

If you do and think I'm crazy, fine, go ahead and laugh.

Do you think his greatest asset is his swing? Because I do.

That's what seems to me, from what I've observed, to carry him as a hitter.

That "fact," if it is indeed one, has implications and I'm just trying to explore them.

Why is this cause for laughter?

2006-10-10 14:52:04
199.   RIYank
191 Shaun, I can just hear you sitting in the grandstand screaming, "We want a non-out event! We want a non-out event!"
2006-10-10 14:53:36
200.   weeping for brunnhilde
196 You make a strong case and may be right.

I find #5 especially compelling.

That said, I'm still not sure that he's the guy I want at the bat in a huge spot because I don't like that he doesn't alter his approach when the situation seems to warrant it. Maybe this is a downside that we have to live with.

I don't know, but I do think it's a considerable downside.

Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2006-10-10 14:54:08
201.   weeping for brunnhilde
199 ha ha hah ah!
2006-10-10 14:56:14
202.   weeping for brunnhilde
196 Also, I agree. If he's to be the power hitter, that's fine, I can live with him.

Part of what I'm trying to ask is whether we need any power hitters at all, rather than maybe a bunch of 20 hr guys who never strike out but all hit .310.

Or whatever.

I hope you take me point.

2006-10-10 15:00:12
203.   randym77
Well, Cashman says they aren't trading A-Rod.
2006-10-10 15:01:36
204.   smingers
203 The truth is that, for the most part, the hitters we have are the hitters we have. Most of them have more years on their deals and will not be easily traded. Besides, who are the kind of hitters you're thinking of?
2006-10-10 15:04:36
205.   smingers
Sorry, I meant 202.
2006-10-10 15:10:59
206.   weeping for brunnhilde
204 Of course, of course. I understand that guys may not be movable.

Who am I thinking of? Excellent question. Off the top of my head, I'm often impressed with Paul LoDuca's at-bats.

I know, I know, small sample size, anecdotal evidence, I know.

But theoretically, his good at-bats impress the hell out of me and I'd look for hitters who have such at-bats with great frequency.

That's the kind of approach to hitting I'm looking for.

Also, someone like, as I mentioned, Luis Gonzales in that last at-bat. Someone who actually thinks about his approach going up to the plate and is deft at tailoring the approach to the situation.

Someone who you can see adjusting from one at-bat to the next in a single game.

2006-10-10 15:11:03
207.   seamus
I'm fine with our lineup. pitching, pitching, pitching. We need to do a better job at building our rotation since we have had SO MANY busts these last few years. Youth and smart signings.
2006-10-10 15:15:37
208.   C2Coke
I am back from a long weekend break, now I am sitting here with no Yankee game to watch. No matter how many times I've experienced it, it is still one strange feeling.

203 What I don't get is that I thought Arod has no-trade clause? Is Arod basically willing to agree to whatever decision the Yankees come to?

2006-10-10 15:18:04
209.   C2Coke
207 Speaking of the pitching, according to Pete Abraham, the Daisuke Matsuzaka chase is on.
2006-10-10 15:18:14
210.   weeping for brunnhilde
207 Absolutely. Everything I say about the lineup carries with it an implicit preface: "Presuming we get our pitching in order, I'd like to see our lineup assume the following character..."
2006-10-10 15:19:08
211.   randym77
208 He sort of left the door open. He says he's committed to being a Yankee...but if they don't want him around, why would he stay? I'm sure he'd insist on being traded to a contender, though.
2006-10-10 15:23:43
212.   Xeifrank
it will take Paul LoDuca another 3-4 years to hit 20 HRs. And by the way stolen bases and sacrifice bunts don't correlate well with scoring runs. vr, Xei
2006-10-10 15:28:10
213.   Shaun P
206 Actually weeping, when you said "a bunch of 20 hr guys who never strike out but all hit .310" in 202, I immeadiately thought, "Paul O'Neill!"

199 I haven't used those exact words, but I've chanted something like that while sitting in front of the TV many times, and the few times I've made it to a game. Its more like, "Anything but an out!" Its usually in response to my dad saying, "C'mon you (blank), hit a home run!"

"We want a non-out event!" is what you chant when you're a baseball fan who's also an engineer-turned-patent attorney.

2006-10-10 15:33:17
214.   joejoejoe
196 I can't find any fault with your analysis but I still thing Giambi should be the one to go. He always has a minor injury or something that is forcing him to DH. When other players have the same problem Torre plays him at 1B even when defensive needs dictate otherwise. I'd like to free up DH ABs for 30something players like Posada, Damon, Abreu, Jeter, ARod, and Matsui.

I don't think you have to replace Giambi if you trade him. If Darin Erstad can switch to 1B, so can Damon. Then you supplement the 1B starts with a cheap option like Phillips or some pickup ala JT Snow or Doug M.. As for Giambi being untradeable - I think you have to eat a bad contract coming back. My prime candidate would be Garret Anderson of the Angels.

2006-10-10 15:34:34
215.   joejoejoe
Note: ESPN has probably done 25 minutes on the Yankees out of the first 30 on Sportscenter. No wonder other fans hate the Yankees. I'm a Yankee fan and it's too much. How about telling us about the teams that are still in the playoffs ESPN?
2006-10-10 15:48:46
216.   Simone
Great news about Joe!

Cry, Gollum (Lupica), cry like the whiny meanspirit person that you are. Joe said that he won't forgot you backstabbing media hypocrites. I hope he sticks it to you over and over again next season.

Alex Rodriguez needs to ignore all this crap. He is so talented that I refuse to believe that he needs to be coddled like some people say. He needs to field well and hit like crazy and give Joe, Jeter, ESPN, and all his critics the finger behind their backs.

Now the Yankees need to tell whiny excuse making Sheffield and Lidle to get on their bikes, sign Barry Zito, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Frank Thomas as the DH.

2006-10-10 15:51:01
217.   OldYanksFan
Wow... I was sure no ballplayers knew the value of money UNTIL I read this:

"Ninety percent I'll spend on good times, women, and Irish whiskey. The other ten percent I'll probably waste."

Tug McGraw, on his plans for his $75,000 salary

2006-10-10 16:02:16
218.   Schteeve
216 I agree with everything you wrote except, we need another DH like we need a hole in the screen door on our battleship.
2006-10-10 16:04:00
219.   Schteeve
Jason giambi is a Yankee for life. Look up "untradeable" in the dictionary and his picture is next to it.
2006-10-10 16:08:37
220.   randym77
Fresh thread is open.
2006-10-10 16:14:42
221.   marc
I'm sure this is an unpopular view but I think it's crazy to break up what is still the greatest line-up ever next year. We need pitching and then we'll have a tremendous post-season team as well. So I say bring back Shef and let him play first. he's done well at first but anyone with an angry mob with a microscope on him is going to make foolish hasty judgements. The only problem that causes is what about Melke?. I'm not sure how much of a problem that is considering the age of the outfield and Sheff and Giambi for that matter. The kind of problem of finding playing time seems to never be a problem. Damon always seems to be playin with numerous injuries and Melke's got the arm when we need it so he may just basically be taking Bernie's place.
sure, one of these guys may need to go for a young marquee pitcher but we'll just have to see. I just don't see breaking up a line-up of Damon. Jeter, Abreu, A-Rod, Giambi Matsui, Posado Sheff, Cano, not necessarily in that order. If that line-up holds up and we're able to shore up our pitching before the PS we'll have a great shot of going all the way but best of 5 is always going to be a crap shoot especially without a top notch rotation which we never had this year.
2006-10-10 17:02:42
222.   Schteeve
221 Sheff is gone, you don't throw the manager under the bus the way he did, and have your team option picked up. He is G-O-N-E. That said, it's not a panacea. Something has to be done about the scouting on this team. It still makes me sick to my stomach that the scouts for our last three post season opponents have very obviously discovered a blueprint for how to shut the Yankee hitters down. We need to vary our approach I think, and we also need to realize that we have some sort of weakness that can be exploited (our legendary patience is my guess) and figure out how to address it. Until we figure that out, getting all the All-Stars in Cooperstown won't prevent this from happening again.
2006-10-10 17:02:42
223.   Schteeve
221 Sheff is gone, you don't throw the manager under the bus the way he did, and have your team option picked up. He is G-O-N-E. That said, it's not a panacea. Something has to be done about the scouting on this team. It still makes me sick to my stomach that the scouts for our last three post season opponents have very obviously discovered a blueprint for how to shut the Yankee hitters down. We need to vary our approach I think, and we also need to realize that we have some sort of weakness that can be exploited (our legendary patience is my guess) and figure out how to address it. Until we figure that out, getting all the All-Stars in Cooperstown won't prevent this from happening again.
2006-10-10 17:02:43
224.   Schteeve
221 Sheff is gone, you don't throw the manager under the bus the way he did, and have your team option picked up. He is G-O-N-E. That said, it's not a panacea. Something has to be done about the scouting on this team. It still makes me sick to my stomach that the scouts for our last three post season opponents have very obviously discovered a blueprint for how to shut the Yankee hitters down. We need to vary our approach I think, and we also need to realize that we have some sort of weakness that can be exploited (our legendary patience is my guess) and figure out how to address it. Until we figure that out, getting all the All-Stars in Cooperstown won't prevent this from happening again.
2006-10-10 17:02:43
225.   Schteeve
221 Sheff is gone, you don't throw the manager under the bus the way he did, and have your team option picked up. He is G-O-N-E. That said, it's not a panacea. Something has to be done about the scouting on this team. It still makes me sick to my stomach that the scouts for our last three post season opponents have very obviously discovered a blueprint for how to shut the Yankee hitters down. We need to vary our approach I think, and we also need to realize that we have some sort of weakness that can be exploited (our legendary patience is my guess) and figure out how to address it. Until we figure that out, getting all the All-Stars in Cooperstown won't prevent this from happening again.
2006-10-10 17:03:15
226.   Schteeve
Sorry for the quadruple post, my computer is a piece of crap.

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