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What's Left?
2007-12-03 05:57
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

According to the Houston Chronicle, Andy Pettitte will return to the Yankees next year:

Andy Pettitte, who contemplated retirement this winter, has told his good friends, a few former Astros teammates and some current Yankees teammates that he will return to the Bronx for the 2008 season.

Through people close to Pettitte, the Chronicle has learned that the veteran lefthander has told family members and teammates that he has decided to return to the Yankees in 2008.

...That wait is over, and the Yankees have been informed of the decision by Pettitte's agent, Randy Hendricks.

When reached by telephone this morning, Hendricks, who was in route to Nashville for the start of baseball's winter meetings today, confirmed that he has advised the Yankees that Pettitte will play for them in 2008.

Whoa. If this is true, it's a very good thing. As for Johan Santana, it's been a busy weekend of rumors. First, the Yankees officially included Phil Hughes in an offer, then the Red Sox countered. Now, Hank Steinbrenner wants to get something done quickly (re: today), otherwise, the Yankees are prepared to move on.

"This is not a bluff; it's just reality," the senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner said in a telephone interview Sunday night. "It's a fact. The Yankees will not be used to jack up the price on people — whether by agents or other teams — ever again. That's over."

..."I don't want to continue this dog-and-pony show, playing us against the Red Sox," Steinbrenner said. "I'm not going to participate in that. This is our best offer. Minnesota knows it's our best offer. Everybody knows it is.

"We need to get this done. If we don't, I certainly won't be upset about keeping Hughes and Cabrera. I definitely won't. I don't think Minnesota wants to be stuck negotiating with just one team."
(Kepner, N.Y. Times)

First day of the Winter Meetings. Be sure and hit up Pete Abe's blog for all the latest.

Comments (181)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-12-03 06:13:02
1.   Yankee Fan In Boston
it is a beautiful monday morning.

snowy, sleet-ridden, cold, overcast, and wonderful.

2007-12-03 06:14:03
2.   Rob Middletown CT
This sucks. Well, not the Pettitte thing. That's good.

Hughes + Melky + ? for Santana... oh, please walk away! Please!

2007-12-03 06:15:44
3.   ny2ca2dc
Boo Ya, Andy Pettitte!!!

Forget about Santana, with even an ounce of luck he'll just be a FA next year. This year's (08) rotation could be: Wang, Pettitte, Hughes, Joba, IPK, with Moose as a swingman/Tavarez-role. That's a good, solid rotation, and every single one of the starters is homegrown. How cool is that. Make some trades to solidify the BP, bring Horne up midseason as a middle reliever, and we're set.

oh ya, Save Hughes!

2007-12-03 06:16:59
4.   ny2ca2dc
2 This has got to reduce the motivation for getting Santana. If Hank is sentimental, and we know he is, maybe the all-homegrown rotation will tug his heartstrings.
2007-12-03 06:22:04
5.   Rob Middletown CT
I hope so. But I've got a bad feeling about this.
2007-12-03 06:31:54
6.   ms october
1 i'll second that.

4 hopefully it will reduce the desperation for getting santana. sanatana will be a wonderful addition - but hopefully we can now walk away from an overpriced deal (in terms of players given up) more easily.

2007-12-03 06:33:46
7.   Shaun P
6 Agreed.

God Bless you and your deadlines, Hank Steinbrenner. Now let's keep our fingers crossed that the Twins don't bite.

2007-12-03 06:37:16
8.   williamnyy23
3 According to reports, Santana has told the Twins that he will not waive his no trade in-season and will only go to the Sox or Yankees. So, if the Yankees walk away, it is very likely Santana pitches in Boston for at least the next five years. There will be no second chance.

I don't disagree with the sentiment to keep Hughes, but there are very real consequences to that decision. If Johan maintains his pace and Hughes doesn't develop as a top flight starter, this decision could significantly alter the balance between the Yankees and Sox over the next five years.

6 I agree with that statement...Pettitte's return doesn't override the addition of Santana, but it does give the Yankees the ability to walk away if the price is too high.

2007-12-03 06:38:54
9.   Adrian
1 Yeah, I'm right there with you. Are there any secret Yankee enclaves in this town? I'd like to have a place to grab a beer and watch a game that doesn't cause my rage-bladders to inflate dangerously.

Andy's back! If the Twins take our offer, and we're looking at Santana, Wang, Joba, Andy, IPK, (Moose?) for a rotation...? Wow. I'd still rather have Hughes, but still. Impressive people.

Also, can we take a moment to savor how much better things look now than they did at the end of October?

2007-12-03 06:42:55
10.   murphy
while billy beane is sure to push for big name prospects as well, i really would rather see the yanks make a play for haren.
2007-12-03 06:42:55
11.   Cliff Corcoran
The impression I've gotten from the team is that if Pettitte were to return, they'd drop the Santana hunt and go after him next winter as a free agent, which would be a preferable option anyway. The Red Sox don't need him (they'd be almost unbeatable with him, but they don't need him, as their championship this year proved), and I doubt they'd give up a big chip like Lester or particularly Ellsbury if they were confident that the Yankees wouldn't be getting him either. Andy Pettitte making this decision now may not be a coincidence. I think (and desperately hope) that the Santana rumors will dry up as a result.
2007-12-03 06:45:59
12.   Yankee Fan In Boston
9 sorry, adrian. there is no such enclave. in my opinion, the atmosphere here has become more hostile towards our kind since the sox started winning... for me, that place to enjoy a beer and watch a game is home. usually.

but yes, today is indeed busting at the seams with hope compared to october.

2007-12-03 06:53:27
13.   williamnyy23
10 Haren is a nice pitcher, but he is not even close to Johan Santana. The whole point of making a trade is to get a dominant type ace...I am not sure Haren really qualifies as one of those.

11 Again, that assumption assumes that Santana will in deed become a free agent next season. If the Red Sox do sign him, you are looking at Beckett and Santana until at least 2010. I also don't agree that because Boston doesn't "need" (who doesn't need the best pitcher in baseball?) him, they wont be aggressive here. Personally, I don't think Lester and Ellsbury have star-level ceilings, and I kind of suspect the Red Sox feel that way too. If I was Theo, I would gladly trade both for Santana...I think that's a slam dunk for Boston. If the Yankees drop out and let Santana land in Boston, Phil Hughes had better live up to his potential.

2007-12-03 06:57:31
14.   rbj
Yes! Woo hoo! Yankees don't need Santana for '08 now. Cash should tell the Twins the offer is now Melky + IPK + second tier. It is still an awful lot they'd be getting back. Otherwise the Twins will only be getting a draft pick, which is a worse option.

Wang, Pettitte, Hughes, Joba, Moose is decent. Adding Santana to that, wow. Much less pressure on the kids then.

2007-12-03 06:58:42
15.   Cliff Corcoran
13 The Red Sox have to trade for him before they can sign him to an extension, but you make good points. I do, however, think it's dangerous to use the potential Santana trade to apply extra pressure to Hughes, and completely unfair.
2007-12-03 06:59:30
16.   jeterian swing
10 According to Jayson Stark, Beane is asking for two members of the trinity in return for Haren. If he's sticking to that, we can forget him.

I wish we knew more about the negotiation process with the Twins. For instance, wouldn't an offer of Melky/Kennedy/Tabata/Horne be more attractive to the Twins than the current offer? Wouldn't it be more attractive to us, too? Has such a package been pitched? I'd assume it has, but the only offer we're hearing about is the Hughes/Melky/B-level prospect. Why is that? Is Hughes that attractive to the Twins? Or am I undervaluing Horne and Tabata?

2007-12-03 06:59:57
17.   Cliff Corcoran
14 Start placing your bets on when during the season Kennedy replaces Mussina in that rotation.
2007-12-03 07:01:13
18.   bp1
3 That is indeed a fine sounding rotation, but the innings cap on the kids worries me a bit, esp given the current state of the bullpen. If we get 150 innings from each of those three, that would be amazing.

But no need to rain on Andy's parade. Welcome back, Andy. Opening Day can't get here soon enough!

2007-12-03 07:02:26
19.   Cliff Corcoran
16 I'd say a little of both, maybe? I tend to undervalue Horne and Tabata as well. But yes, I'd say acquiring the top pitching prospect in all of baseball after he proved he could get it done in the majors at age 21 is that attractive to the Twins.
2007-12-03 07:02:40
20.   murphy
17 i have $10 on two spring training.
2007-12-03 07:10:13
21.   ny2ca2dc
18 I agree on the innings, which is why I think Andy's return is so important, as will be having Moose in the swingman role. He'll have to spot the kids quite a lot, which might suite him - he seemed to benefit from the extra rest, contrary to his normal strict-schedule-ness.
2007-12-03 07:11:56
22.   mehmattski
At the very least, the "and another prospect" should be dropped from the trade offer. Ideally, it would IPK+Melky+Gonzales or something like that, but Hughes + Melky would not be out of the realm of possibility. I wouldn't be ecstatic, at least until Santana's first 15 K game...

Santana-Wang-Pettitte-Chamberlain-Mussina/Kennedy. Wow, that'd be something, though.

2007-12-03 07:14:34
23.   Jersey
21 Kennedy pitched about 165 total innings last season. So theoretically his cap should be higher than that.
2007-12-03 07:15:18
24.   jeterian swing
19 But it can't really be both, can it? As it stands, Horne and Tabata (and Kennedy) are among the remaining "untouchables." Is it more valuable to the Twins to receive ONE untouchable (Hughes) or three (Kennedy/Tabata/Horne)? What I'm asking is, which side would nix that deal? Of course, none of us can answer that question; I'm just posing hypotheticals, but it does make me wish we knew more about the negotiations.
2007-12-03 07:16:11
25.   williamnyy23
15 It may be dangerous and it may be unfair, but when Boston comes to town with Johan and Beckett lined up, that's exactly what is going to happen. If Hughes starts slow, or god forbid gets injured again, the pressure will only mount.

By refusing to deal Hughes, the Yankees are gambling that he will be almost as good (with the Yankees, the money equation isn't really a factor) as Santana. Like it or not, Hughes will now have to live up to that.

18 The innings cap definitely plays into the equation here. Even if Hughes is great in 2008, how many innings can he give you? He's been babied in his short career and actually pitched fewer innings in 2007 (I think). With Joba and IPK also likely facing a cap, the Yankees rotation could look very thin come September.

19 I hate taking a swipe at Hughes because I really like him and would be very happy rooting for him over the next 10 years, but what did he really prove? He only pitched 70 innings and was barely league average. That's not bad for a 21 year old, but it isn't eye poping (see Joba). Also, Hughes has proven to be somewhat injury prone (admittedly it's early, but still) and there were concerns about lost MPH on the fastball.

Again, I love Hughes, but he isn't a sure thing (no pitching prospect is, after all). If not for the emotional tie of wanting home grown players (especially after tracking him through the system the last two years), I don't think I'd even question including him in a deal for Santana. Maybe we all need to take a step back and question whether that sentimentality is getting in the way of our judgment?

2007-12-03 07:16:39
26.   ms october
13 i agree with your statement about the red sox going after sanatana.
i know that some of these are different situations (and one that didn't work out in gagne) but boston has shown they will add to their strengths, particulalrly concerning pitching. schill is probably done next year, who knows what else you get out of wakefield and daisuke is a #3 at best - they would love to have sanatna this year, but most defintely the next 4 years. and they are going to have to build more around pitching especially if they decide to let manny go.

16 i have long wanted to see what beane wants for haren or blanton - though neither is anywhere on the level of santana, their high numbers of innings pitched is attractive as the kids increase their innings pitched over the next few years. but as has been pointed out - beane doesn't need to trade either of them yet so he can extract a high price for them

12 9 there is strength in numbers and banterers - maybe we scout out a place to watch a game once in a while next season.

2007-12-03 07:17:44
27.   ChrisS
Ellsbury or Lester and no Bucholz for Santana would be an absolute steal for the Red Sox.

It boggles the mind. Lester is a guy that with a 1.5:1 ML K:BB ratio, comparatively, Hughes, at two years younger, has a 2:1, with even better numbers in the minors (5:1). Ellsbury has speed and that's about it, other than a sterling debut with a small sample size caveat. And while Melky was putting up low .700 OPSs in the majors, Ellsbury was putting up .800 OPSs in the minors. And Melky is a year younger with 2 years of ML experience.

A package of Lester/Ellsbury would still be less than Hughes/Cabrera and the Sox are balking? Seems like Cashman is bidding against himself.

2007-12-03 07:20:17
28.   williamnyy23
Interesting passage from Madden's profile of Hank....it looks like Tino might be hanging around a bit:

As he was talking, I noticed a familiar face approaching our booth. Tino Martinez, another Tampa sports celebrity, and an older man whom he introduced as his grandfather had been dining across the room.

"Hey, Tino, how you been?" Hank said, looking up. "You get that all worked out?"

"I haven't heard back yet," Martinez answered.

"Well just call (Brian) Cashman - I'll call him, too - but I'm sure it's all set."

After Martinez departed, I asked: "Back in the fold?"

"Yeah," Hank said. "Tino asked about doing some work for us, coaching, instructing, and at the very least he'll be in spring training with us."

2007-12-03 07:20:23
29.   Raf
11 The 98 Yanks didn't need Clemens either...
2007-12-03 07:21:52
30.   rbj
17 I'll be generous and say end of April. By then I think there will be the scent of cooked Moose wafting from the Stadium.
2007-12-03 07:23:44
31.   Yankee Fan In Boston
26 i'd be willing to brave the belligerent masses if i were flanked by banterers. i do so by my lonesome at times as well, but i might actually vocalize excitement if i had a posse.
2007-12-03 07:25:41
32.   horace-clarke-era
New banterer here, longtime fan (as the name might well indicate!). I have, as everyone does, many thoughts about the pitching and the Santana trade issue, but want to limit a first post to a query:

Why is The Hank TALKING so much?

Why it is him and not Cash who is speaking for the Yankees at a critical, Winter Meetings, time? Using 'I' and 'I'm not going to participate...' Without looking it up - I'll rely on the Banterers - I can't think of another owner, especially a brand new body in the chair, being so audible and visible, at the expense of his GM.

2007-12-03 07:29:38
33.   williamnyy23
27 I agree...I can't imagine why the Red Sox would not trade Lester and Ellsbury for Santana (why would you not want to team him up with Beckett??), nor would I understand why the Twins would accept the deal. If I was Bill Smith, I would either demand Hughes or Buchholz (Joba was so eye popping, that I think he is an uber prospect and beyond the scope, even for Santana).
2007-12-03 07:31:57
34.   ChrisS
25 I think Hughes has proved a lot, in 70 IP he nearly threw a no hitter, and what's better was that when he returned from his injury (really, after a number of Yankees went down with pulled hamstrings, and none after firing the S&C coach that instituted a new "method", can you blame Hughes?) he had a poor August and a much improved september/october. His Ks were a bit lower, still a respectable ~6.0/9IP, he gave up fewer HRs and, almost as importantly, fewer BBs. It was a glimpse of what Phil Hughes did in the minors at the ML level. Granted it was against some poorer hitting teams, but his playoff performance against Cleveland was inspiring.

Call me sentimental, but trading a true bluechippers for Santana to outbid a crappy Sox offer seems a little damaging. I would trade Hughes for Santana, but I'd probably be very judicious in who else was included in a package. Cabrera/Hughes is plenty, imo. Much better than just a draft pick.

And besides, nobody really has done what Joba did.

2007-12-03 07:34:39
35.   Yankee Fan In Boston
32 welcome.

i hope hank is just marking his territory and will fade into the background eventually. i do appreciate the view into his frame of mind, though.

2007-12-03 07:37:29
36.   williamnyy23
32 Madden's profile touches on the reason given in 35 . Cashman has never been vocal, so his quiet is not a surprising. If Hank's bluster is just that, I have no problem with it. If, however, he is overriding Cashman's judgment, then that would worry me.
2007-12-03 07:39:46
37.   Zack
33 i'm with you William (for once!). I think Andy returning should fuel the Yanks even more to go after Santana. not only would it set them up to have a DOMINANT rotation for this year, but it still gives them that ace they lack. And if Santana will be compared to Hughes (as everyone is doing, saying Santana better be that much better than Hughes etc) than I suppose its just as fair to compare Hughes to Santana.

Don't get me wrong, Andy really takes the sting out of losing Santana, but I suspect the Twins will suddenly realize the package they have is the best...

But as for the Sox, anyway you cut it, Santana and Crisp is > Lester and Jacoby. Giving up both of them wouldn't hurt them all that much but would add A LOT...

2007-12-03 07:42:18
38.   williamnyy23
34 I am with you in drawing the line at Melky/Hughes/marginal prospect...I think the debate is whether Hughes should be included at all. This is such a difficult decision, that I once the news hits, I think I'll be somewhat indifferent. The consequences of a Hughes/Santana swap can vary from steal to bust, so literally, only time will tell.

One more thing...I don't think you can worry about whether the Sox offer is good or not...the only question the Yankees should ask themselves is would they rather have Hughes or Santana over the next 5-6 years.

2007-12-03 07:44:22
39.   dianagramr
36

Given Hank's behavior, I wonder if Cashman walks when his current contract is up ...

2007-12-03 07:55:36
40.   Shaun P
31 You guys in Boston find a place, and I would make the trek in from the 'burbs. I bet I wouldn't be the only one to agree to that.

37 The problem is, Boston is in the same bind the Yanks (and to some degree) the Twins are in - all have lots of pitching, but all really need more hitters.

2007-12-03 07:56:07
41.   ChrisS
38 I still think that, despite the Yankees' vast revenues, the money issue has to be included in any discussion. Best-case scenario Hughes will cost probably as much over 6 years as Santana will over 1.5 years. That's a significant chunk of change to gamble on.

I don't know, I guess I should trust Cashman to not get fleeced in any deal, since I don't think that he has yet. I'm of a similar opinion as you, if it happens, yay! we have Santana, but if it doesn't, I won't lose any sleep. I'm not sure that Hughes will be a bonafide #1 starter for the next 6 years, but I think he will be at least a good ML pitcher, so I don't think the Yankees lose that much by not trading him.

2007-12-03 08:01:19
42.   ms october
31 vocalizing excitement sounds good.

39 i was very leery of hank at first (still am a little) but a lot of what he says and my own take on him is he knows the importance of treating people with respect and giving people the space to do their job. if hank is letting cashman have the major say in baseball decisions through a collaborative process but hank is the one having to deal with the media, my guess is cashman may be okay with this.

2007-12-03 08:04:46
43.   mehmattski
For you Dan Haren lovers: Jason Stark reports that Beane's initial asking price was two of JobaKenHughes from the Yankees or two of Buchholz, Lester, and Ellisbury from the Red Sox.

Sure, its the beginning of negotiations, but, uh, pass.

2007-12-03 08:05:32
44.   Yankee Fan In Boston
40 42 what areas of town are we all in? i live in dorchester, but work and go to school in cambridge... so i'm at opposite ends of the city every day.
2007-12-03 08:13:25
45.   OldYanksFan
I don't know how we have some here (William) comparing Santana to Hughes. Thats silly. When Murrcer came up, he was an excellent player, but some insisted on 'comparing' him to Mantle, which was down right idiotic.

This trade is not a head-2-head of 2 guys at similar salaries and ages.
The equation is:
Santana >? Hughes + Melky + ??? + $22+m/yr

If we don't do the trade, we have $22+m/yr 'extra' to spend on a #1. I can't guarantee who will be available, but just for mathimatics sake, lets say we can get Sabathia.

This equation is now:
Santana >? Hughes + Melky + ???? + Sabathia --- or maybe
Santana >? Hughes + Melky + ???? + M.Cabreara --- or maybe
any number of combinations that become available after 2008.

And the obvious answer is NO!
While we have money to spend, a 'trade' is about value gotten for value given. We don't even have to talk about how much Melky and ??? make the trade look worse. We don't even have to talk about how Hughes gives us 5 more years then Santana.

Murcer did NOT have to be Mantle. Murcer was good enough being Murcer.
Hughes does NOT have to be Santana. If Phil is close to as good as we expect, it is more then enough.

And we can't ignor certain realities, which I believe are:
We are tired of hiring other teams mercenaries...
We are tired of not being able to develop our own, and enjoy the youth and financial savings that comes with it
We are tired of hearing everyone discount our team because we 'buy' our success.

So if Boston gets Santana, we may be the 'underdogs'. So what? We will be young and flexible with tons of money to spend. The Sox will have traded 4 major prospects over the last 2 years at be at the lux. cap

I not only think we still can will, but that with expectations of the Sox winning, and so many kids on our team, I think we have a better chance to win.

Can somebody tell me the last year we had a pitching prospect TRULY as good as Hughes? That had his MiLB numbers? Was Guidry this highly thought of?

We still have the most money in the league, and a bunch of talented players, and more talented kids in the wings.

I, for one, am looking forward to a season with Hughes, Joba, IPK, et al more then any other season I can remember. We are seeing Cashmans work come to fruition.

In chess, sometimes you sacrifice a piece of greater value to gain position. Not getting Santana may make us weaker in 2008, but puts us in position to be stronger in the future.

Lastly, for those who think that money does not dictate our decisions, remember how much we have into ARod, Mo and Po now, and then think...

Carlos Beltran.
He is NOT of CFer because his contract was too long and expensive. MONEY DOES MATTER!

SAVE PHIL HUGHES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2007-12-03 08:13:38
46.   tommyl
43 Actually, that's about what I expected Beane to ask for. Haren is cost controlled for a couple of years iirc, so in some ways he's more attractive than Santana. The trouble is, I don't think Haren will be any better than Hughes would be, so what's the point?
2007-12-03 08:15:20
47.   liam
41 i agree with everything you said.. BUT

this is not a one team race. i wouldnt lose sleep if we didn't get santana, but i WOULD lose sleep if the sox got him. im on the save hughes train myself- everytime you think about the fact that he's just 21, it makes you very confident that he will be at least a #3 guy.

something else that i thought you touched upon is the part that makes this most difficult for us (in the blogosphere) to figure out. where the yankees budget ends would be one of the most significant factors in this decision as well, and the fact is that none of us know.

i think that hank wants to make a big splash in his first year running the show, but hughes/cabrera seems like an awful lot to give, especially since the team we have now (without clemens / viz) won 94 games and we were a couple of midges from being in the ALCS.

im more than happy to throw kennedy in and remove hughes, and make that trade but with hughes im skeptical that we as yankees soldiers will be happy with the results.

2007-12-03 08:16:26
48.   Yankee Fan In Boston
45 that was a lot to digest. i need to read that again.

i am not even pretending to work today.

2007-12-03 08:17:27
49.   Yankee Fan In Boston
gammons is now saying that the miguel cabrera to the angels might happen.

http://tinyurl.com/2phnhy

[gulp]

2007-12-03 08:17:41
50.   tommyl
45 What he said :)
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-12-03 08:18:46
51.   Rob Middletown CT
Good post, Old Yanks Fan.

There are other fish in the sea. Not getting Santana is not the end of the world... even if Boston gets him.

2007-12-03 08:22:42
52.   ms october
44 i live in roslindale and work/go to school in dorchester.

47 very true about the budget. cashman seems to have been working with reducing the payroll somewhat over the last year or so (not sure how the re-sigings this off season play into that though).
while i agree that hank wants to make a big splash, we don't know how he and his brother feel about spending so much money as this is basically their money. we also don't really know what the profit/loss of the yankees and related entities are and what revenue the new stadium will really bring in.

2007-12-03 08:25:11
53.   OldYanksFan
horace-clarke-era --- BUDDY! What a name!
For the kids here, a can remember a year that was soooooooooooo bad, that the highlight of the year was Horace breaking up TWO no-hitters in the 9th inning! Yup, being one-hit wasn't THAT bad.

I remember that Horace and Roy White both came up as 2nd basemen. White was move to the OF so we could have his bat. Roy ending up setting the record for most consecutive games without an error, and when he finally made an error, it was a REALLY, REALLY bad call (I was pissed for a week).

2007-12-03 08:27:08
54.   mehmattski
45 Sorry, but there is no denying that Johan Santana and Phil Hughes will be connected, whether this trade goes down or not.

This is especially true if either extremes happen- the trade goes down and then Santana gets hurt and Hughes wins the 2008 Cy Young or something... or if he's traded to the Red Sox and Hughes gets another injury, while the Red Sox win 120 games. It's connecting it, and there will be second guessing for at least the next year no matter what happens.

There is no doubting that Johan Santana will be a better pitcher in 2008, and likely 2009 and 2010, than Phil Hughes. In his "down year," Santana had an ERA+ of 130 and struck out 235 men. The last Yankee to do the former was Pettitte in 2002... and the latter, 235 strikeouts: not since Guidry in 1978!

If the deal were Hughes+Melky, period... I've gotta pull the trigger. Another prospect probably wont matter as long as he's not in the Yankees' top 15, so if that gets the job done, I'm not losing sleep over the third guy.

The thing you're forgetting, wrt the money, OYF, is that the $22M or whatever is based on the team trading for Santana having a monopoly on negotiations. Who knows what the contract will look like in a year? And with Santana getting that kind of money, Sabathia will indeed look for similar, if not even more money. If the price to pay for locking up the best pitcher of our generation is Hughes and Melky, I'm inclined to pay.

2007-12-03 08:29:41
55.   OldYanksFan
Yankee Fan In Boston
-------------------------------------------
I don't know if there are other NH Yanks fans here or folk north of the burbs. But I for one would LOVE to join a bunch of Banters for a game someplace with a large Hi-Def TV and good drinks. If we could do a Saturday and Sunday gig, I'd crash at a hotel for a night.

If ya put it togther, let me and everyone else here know. Power in numbers!

2007-12-03 08:31:18
56.   williamnyy23
45 I am not comparing Hughes to Santana...that would be silly. Santana has been the best pitcher in baseball over the last six years, while Hughes is a prospect. Based on the discrepancy, a Hughes for Santana deal should be a no brainer for the Yankees. Of course, there are other factors that come into play, which makes the decision very difficult. By suggesting that a trade of Hughes for Santana would clearly be a bad deal, however, I think you are way off base.

For starters, your assertion that the Yankees could simply sign another FA pitcher while keeping Hughes is wishful thinking. Off the bat, there aren't many pitchers of Santana's caliber (including Sabbathia). Regardless, you are gambling that other options either wont be extended (like Peavy) or wont be traded before declaring. For example, if the Indians can't afford Sabbathia, why wouldn't they trade him instead of letting him walk?

Secondly, you mentioned that Hughes gives the Yankees 5 more years than Santana, but that's absurd. Clearly, if a trade is made a long-term contract will follow. That's why the question becomes how much better will Santana be than Hughes over the next five years (the defined period whem Johan will be a Yankee and Hughes a Twin)?

The rest of your arguments are all emotional/sentimental. While I don't disregard them, I also don't think they necessarily represent what gives the Yankees the best chance to be successful over the next five years.

As for pitching prospects as highly regarded as Hughes, well, Joba Chamberlain comes to mind. All kidding aside, guys like Drabek and Leiter were well thought of, but probably Brien Taylor stands out (BA's top prospect in 1992 and 2nd in 1993 behind Chipper Jones). Off hand, i don't think Guidry was highly thought of at the time...remember, he did toil with the Yankees for a few seasons before blossoming. That is, after all, part of my point. Great pitchers often emerge out of "thin air", while top prospects often flounder. Afterall, remember, Johan Santana wasn't a top prospect...in fact, he was a Rule V guy.

2007-12-03 08:35:10
57.   mehmattski
56 Yeah, I had forgotten about Brien Taylor. Oh how things might have been different with him... last I heard of him he was back in Beaufort, NC running a restaurant. Hopefully, one without a bar, and the related fights... I worked as a tutor in the high school he went to and a number of the teachers remembered him fondly.
2007-12-03 08:35:46
58.   OldYanksFan
54 If we did sign Sabathia for the same money as Santana (would have gotten), I believe:
Sabathia + Hughes + Melky + ??? >>>>>> Santana

I would love to know who agrees/disagrees with my formula above. I can't guarantee Sabathia, but we are taking about anyone with a $22m+ 'value'.

2007-12-03 08:38:21
59.   joe in boston
26 31 40 52 55

I'm in (as long as Bronxer isn't Banter-stalking me ......) I'm North of Boston ....

Awfully lonely up here - just me and my Yankee hat

2007-12-03 08:39:22
60.   joe in boston
57 BTW - I saw Brien Taylor pitch for the Albany Colonie Yanks a hundred years ago - terrible end to his story (baseball wise that is )
2007-12-03 08:41:15
61.   Yankee Fan In Boston
55 52 this is a good idea. if anybody knows a good spot, speak up.

i'm trying to come up with a place that is easy to find and near public transportation, so that nobody needs to drive...

i guess we have a few months to scout locations.

this should happen.

2007-12-03 08:41:47
62.   OldYanksFan
"The rest of your arguments are all emotional/sentimental. While I don't disregard them, I also don't think they necessarily represent what gives the Yankees the best chance to be successful over the next five years."

You are quite correct. But the deal as it stands now is close to 'equal', either way.
If we have to flip a coin, why not go with our guys? And if it is indeed a 'toss up', why not go with 'fan favorite sentimentality'? We fans ARE financing this whole gig, right?

What's the point of (maybe) having a better team if you don't like it?

2007-12-03 08:42:05
63.   Max
I like Santana better than Hughes for the next five years, and I'd prefer to see him on our team than Boston's. But downgrading two outfield positions (Mats in left, Damon in center), making us one of the worst defensive outfields in baseball, and all that money does make me nervous.

This is a complete knee-jerk reaction; if someone wants to throw some numbers at me to show our outfield won't be a total cesspool after this deal is done, I'd be comforted to see them. While others are having nightmares of Santana's arm blowing out and Phil Franchise winning five Cy Youngs for the Twins, I"m having nightmares of the fumbling routes Matsui will run in LF, the constant advance from first to third of anyone not named Molina on any single to center, and our guy in RF continuing to avoid walls.

I bet Johan is going to love seeing that behind him.

2007-12-03 08:42:18
64.   Yankee Fan In Boston
59 was that mystery ever solved, joe?
2007-12-03 08:42:28
65.   williamnyy23
58 The fact that you can't guarantee Sabathia is a major flaw in your equation. To think that the Indians would simply let CC walk without getting a boatload back in a deal before free agency is wishful thinking at best. If the Red Sox end up with Johan, the Yankees might be even more desperate by that point and wind up paying even more for a lesser pitcher.
2007-12-03 08:42:33
66.   mehmattski
58 See: Bird in hand.

Compare to: Two birds in bush.

2007-12-03 08:43:24
67.   Yankee Fan In Boston
60 i sawa bespectacled bernie williams play there. that story had a happier ending.
2007-12-03 08:44:15
68.   ChrisS
56 Brien Taylor was a "toolsy" pitcher and a lefty. His minor league numbers were good, but not really in line with what Hughes, Kennedy, or Chamberlain showed.

I guess we will find out what happens in the next couple of days. I am glad that Andy decided to come back. That makes today a happy day, despite my flight being delayed.

2007-12-03 08:45:01
69.   Yankee Fan In Boston
65 they might not have to overpay, if (cross your fingers) the baby bombers start tearing up the league.

now is the time to have these beautiful dreams.

2007-12-03 08:45:18
70.   joe in boston
64 no, and I'm still scared ;)

67 I think, I think my brother saw Ron Guidry on a rehab there - not sure though ....have to ask him tonight ....

2007-12-03 08:45:27
71.   OldYanksFan
I am at: singledddd -at- yahoo.
Why not Email me your first name and phone# (or IM name). Based on locations, I'll locate a buch of possible places, check out the food and surroundings, etc and offer up a list.

Once the Yankee schedule is announced, we can make a date.
Maybe we should make wearing our Yankee garb mantatory?

2007-12-03 08:46:08
72.   horace-clarke-era
53 I -almost- used Roy's name as my handle, yup. But Horace seems to better define those Dark Ages the kids know not of.

My own provisional take on Santana has been that 21 year old pitchers can be glorious hopes for the future but are as-often heartbreakers (the two Cubbies? Rich Harden?) Santana is 29, probably the best P in baseball, and 5-6 years does -not- necessarily take a power pitcher out of his top years. I'm hesitant to overvalue our assets in-hand here. Agree with whomever posted that one reason to develop a farm system is to have people to trade when and as needed. Doing this trade does -not- invalidate Cashman's efforts last few years ... it is a form of validating them.

What I -don't- like is turning into bullies again, overloading the budget, and losing the sheer fun factor of Melky/Cano sandwiching people in the dugout, the 3 (maybe) aces coming up, Shelley threatening to put people on the DL with forearm smashes. No Melky means (very likely) 5 years and 50 million for Rowand, or some equivalent. Rowand is a nice ballplayer, but I doubt he jumps as much in the dugout.

2007-12-03 08:46:11
73.   OldYanksFan
71 Eeeek! Tell me what town you live in!
2007-12-03 08:46:54
74.   williamnyy23
62 It isn't close to a toss up on a talent basis...it becomes a closs call when you add in sentiment, finances and opportunity costs. If the goal is to win as many games as possible, the Yankees have to weight the disparity between Hughes and Santana against the added financial cost. If money isn't an issue for them, I think they should make the deal. As much I'd love to watch a home grown guy blossom into a star, the last think I want to watch is him become a Pavano while Johan wins 2 CY Youngs in Boston. Like it or not, that would be a real possibility, and one that needs to be weighed against sentiment.
2007-12-03 08:48:34
75.   williamnyy23
63 That's an excellent point, but having two dominant K guys in Joba and Johan as well as groundball guys with Wang, Pettitte and IPK would mitigate some against having an awful OF.
2007-12-03 08:52:01
76.   Yankee Fan In Boston
72 melky led the majors in dugout jumps last season.
2007-12-03 08:53:51
77.   OldYanksFan
65 Whether or not it's Sabathia is not the issue. We can can someone who's price/value is equal to a Sabathia. Maybe a pitcher. Maybe 2 killer BP guys. Maybe M.Cabrera to play first.

My point is, we should be considering VALUE, because a HUGE amount of money is being talked about.

If we get Santana, for the next 2 years, ARod, Jetes, Mats, JD, Santana, Mo and Po cost about $127m. And we need 18 other guys. My problem with your posts is you continue to speak about Santana/Hughes playing value without adding that $150m to the equation.

If Santana made $5m or Hughes made $15m, I'd JUMP at the deal. But that ain't the case. You need to consider the money, and well as being locked in to a long and expensive contract (probably with a NTC) for a pitcher.

2007-12-03 08:54:34
78.   mehmattski
75 I also hear that one of the top five defensive CFs in the game is a Free Agent this year. And, despite a down year (a real down year, not this Santana down year stuff), he's also a pretty good hitter. Give Andruw Jones a 2 or 3 year, $15M per deal after trading for Santana and presto, World Series contender.
2007-12-03 08:55:15
79.   dianagramr
53

dark age name would have to somehow invoke Celerino Sanchez or Duke Sims :-O

45

last pitching prospect as good as Hughes may well have been Guidry, but he was at least 3-4 years older when he (was allowed to) break through ...

2007-12-03 09:02:26
80.   OldYanksFan
On a totally different note:
I have found the MLB database, and it was FREE. I now have over 100 years of comprehensive stats in an ACCESS DB. As I am a bit of a programmer and website designed, I can now put up a search/sort/filter page to display any data anyway we like.

I am looking for formulas on some of the Sabermetric stats, as they are not part of the MLB DB.

This would allow us to 'design' our own formulas for display and evaluation of players, trades, comparisons, etc.

I'd love to do it, post it, and have a link here so we could instantly pull up data reports to go with opinions and discussions here. As opposed to individuals going to various site to collect data, we would ALL have access to ALL data, and I can have 'saved routines' of any custom queries we can decide on and design.

We could design our own 'stats' if we liked.
With some creativity, we could do some VERY cool stuff.

Is this something you guys would WANT or USE?

2007-12-03 09:03:25
81.   williamnyy23
77 If that's the case, why haven't we found one over the past 5+ years? More and more, to get a top pitcher (or player), you have to swing a deal for prospects. If you pass up on Johan, you'll be in the same position as you are in now, except, the pitcher isn't likely to be as good.

I am not considering the money because I am assuming that the Yankees are cognizant of what they can and can't afford. I am also aware that nearly $65mn is coming off the books next season and that the team is moving into a new ballpark. I am not ignoring the costs of each player, but am instead suggesting that far and awat the Yankees chief concern should be value on the playing field.

In other words, if the Yankees can afford the money (by the way, the comp needs to include would a successful Hughes would get in his arbitration years), why let it stand in the way of deal?

2007-12-03 09:04:54
82.   mehmattski
77 Er, except of those 18 other guys, the following players are cost-controlled:

Wang
Cano
Joba
Kennedy
Britton
Ohlendorf
Ramirez
Bettemit
Duncan
Karstens
Rasner

And the following players whose contracts expire after 2008:
Farnsworth
Abreu
Mussina
Molina
Giambi
Pettitte

There will be plenty of money to play with even if Santana is locked into a large contract.

Fallacy #2: There is no salary cap in baseball, so the Yankees can spend as much money as they want. There is plenty of marginal value in acquiring Johan Santana and giving him a monster contract, because he is a monster pitcher. The Yankees need to stop spending money unwisely, yes- no more Pavano-Wright-Brown contracts... Johan Santana, however, IS worth that kind of money.

Fallacy #3: Miguel Cabrera isn't going to be a Free Agent for a long time... the Angels are getting closer to acquiring him, and they will more than likely get a big contract done before Miggy's free to go.

2007-12-03 09:11:47
83.   JL25and3
77 Unless Santana becomes a free agent - and it's virtually certain that he won't at this point - no, you can't get someone else who's equivalent to Sabathia. There is no other starting pitcher of that caliber available, nor will any two bullpen guys offer anything like the same quality.

The Miguel Cabrera equation doesn't hold either, because he's going to cost about as much as Santana. He's not a FA for two more years.

If you want to keep Hughes, fine. But these equivalency arguments really don't hold water.

2007-12-03 09:14:28
84.   OldYanksFan
If money is NOT an issue, when Beltran offered a 1.5m/yr discount to play for us instead of the Mets, why did we say NO?

And even if the Yanks are zillionaires, isn't it possible they just won't go higher then 200m/yr... or some other figure?

And this is JUST a GUESS, but I can't see the Sox paying 6/$140 for Santana.

Anyway, I can't argue with your logic. Santana is great. I am just personally happy to stay 'pat' on this issue, and I will still believe we will get #27 this year.

2007-12-03 09:17:31
85.   JL25and3
34 Don't overestimate what Hughes has proven. For that matter, we shouldn't overestimate what Joba has proven, either.

Even if Hughes does turn out to be a stud pitcher, there's a very strong chance that it won't be for, say, another three years.

I believe that if the Yankees back out, the Red Sox will close a deal quickly. If they do, they will be much, much better than the Yankees.

2007-12-03 09:20:43
86.   Rob Middletown CT
If the Yanks walk away, the question is will the Red Sox up their offer again, or will the Twins accept the Red Sox's current offer. I think there is a good chance that if the Yankees pull out, no deal gets done at all, which projects to Santana being a Yankee in 2009 anyway. That is the thing that the Yankee FO needs to keep squarely in mind.

If the Red Sox do up their offer... well, then they are rolling the dice I don't want the Yanks to roll (trading a boatload of talent + putting up huge money over the long term for 1 pitcher, albeit a great one), and that's fine.

The only realy worry, for me, is that the Twins would take the Red Sox's current offer. I don't think they would, though.

2007-12-03 09:21:41
87.   Sarasota
With Petite back the Yanks should take Hughes off the table and try another route to get Santana. The Sox are just posturing. Keep Hughes....blue chips like him don't come around often. Yanks, please don't make the trade.
2007-12-03 09:24:56
88.   Rob Middletown CT
See, that's my impression to: the Red Sox are only in this to drive up the price.
2007-12-03 09:25:13
89.   weeping for brunnhilde
Oh, praise Jesus, he's coming back!

What good news in the dead of winter.

Oh, what a relief.

2007-12-03 09:27:25
90.   JL25and3
87 "blue chips like him don't come around often."

True. But pitchers of Santana's caliber come along rather less often.

2007-12-03 09:29:25
91.   jeterian swing
84 Not adding Beltran could have been an arbitrary decision by George: "Unit or Beltran but not both." That's not evidence enough that the Yankees have any such constraints here. Especially for the next three years, I doubt the Yankees will be instituting any sort of payroll cap: Between the burgeoning Red Sox dynasty, the All Star Game, the closing of old Yankee Stadium and the opening of new Yankee Stadium, I believe the powers that be will spend every last dime on players in the hopes of building the brand at this point.
2007-12-03 09:29:53
92.   ms october
80 i would use it - i get annoyed with bp and br sometimes

78 if melky is traded i think andruw for a short term deal (2-3 yrs) is a good idea.
it adds another right handed bat that we could use even with arod coming back; it keeps matsui out of the of, damon in lf; gives jackson a little more time to develop; and gardner can be used as a 4th of

i don't see him getting any big offers maybe the white sox or rangers or the angels - one can never have enough cfs; but i think it is something to consider

2007-12-03 09:35:17
93.   markp
Correction: Drabek et al weren't regarded as well as Horne, let alone Hughes.
Taylor never got above AA and didn't dominate there. He had a good heater, but nothing else. When he tried to throw other pitches, he couldn't get them over or got hit hard when he did. (I watched him pitch a few games.)

I agree about the equation not being anything like Hughes vs Santana. It's obviously a lot more than that from the Yankees side.

I doubt Santana is anywhere near what he is now by age 33. Looking at the history of finesse pitchers in MLB history shows that assuming he will is tempting fate. Let Boston have him.

2007-12-03 09:38:22
94.   JL25and3
84 I can easily see the Sox paying him that kind of money. For them, Santana alone can turn them into a completely dominant team.

I'd suggest that the Yankees are driving up the price every bit as much as the Sox are. If the Yankees drop out, the Sox can keep the Ellsbury-or-Lester line; if the Yankees stay in, the Sox would have to include both.

If you don't want to make the deal, fine, but you have to decide you don't want it even if the Sox get Santana. The argument that they won't sign him and that he'll come to NY as a free agent next year is a mere bag o' shells.

2007-12-03 09:40:52
95.   JL25and3
91 And that one was such an egregious mistake that they might not be inclined to think that way again.
2007-12-03 09:45:20
96.   horace-clarke-era
93 "...Looking at the history of finesse pitchers in MLB history shows that assuming he will is tempting fate."

It would be if he was a finesse pitcher, agreed. But they tend not to top the league in Ks or have devastating, filthy stuff.

2007-12-03 09:47:00
97.   williamnyy23
85 I am not underestimating anything about Hughes...just stating that he hasn't done anything to transend the bounds of a prospect (and therefore he should still be treated as an unknown quantity).

I also don't think Joba's 2007 should be over estimated either, although he certainly displayed eye popping stuff.

I also agree with your two conclusions. As much as I like Hughes, those are two risks that the Yankees face and everyone needs to be aware of them.

2007-12-03 09:52:39
98.   Levy2020
55 Any good DC-area meetups? 51st State was kind of a little underwhelming.
2007-12-03 09:54:15
99.   jeterian swing
94 I'm not so sure the Sox would be eager to add Santana to their payroll: It will certainly affect any negotiations with Beckett (if not his attitude), and after '08 they'll have to replace Manny as well. In a vaccuum, the Sox adding Santana might make sound fiscal sense and fit into their budget, but that deal's effects might hamstring the Sox going forward in a way it wouldn't hamstring us.
2007-12-03 09:59:58
100.   OldYanksFan
94 I don't want the deal, unless they take out Hughes and offer IPK, Melky and 2 or 3 non-top10 guys. I think the Sox are willing to trade, I don't THINK (I'm NOT predicting) the will spend $140m+.

These guys wanted ARod and turned him down for somewhere in the $10m area.

91 "..arbitrary decision by George: Unit or Beltran but not both." If NOT for the money, then why? Our FO makes non-reasoned 'arbitrary' decisions?

94 "Santana alone can turn them into a completely dominant team"
This is true. It's a little scary. But it will turn them into a very inflexible team and cost them 2 pieces of their future.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-12-03 10:01:14
101.   JL25and3
97 I think you misread me. I was agreeing with you.
2007-12-03 10:02:58
102.   williamnyy23
93 Correction...Santana is not a finesse pitcher.

As for Drabek, he very much was considered one of the Yankees better prospects before he was traded (and most definitely was in the class of Horne, who was an unknown before last season). As for Taylor, you might not have liked what you saw, but it was enough for Baseball America to make him the #1 prospect in 1992 and the #2 in 1993.

2007-12-03 10:03:15
103.   OldYanksFan
101 Is that legal?
2007-12-03 10:06:27
104.   yankz
99 Boohoo, Beckett. He already signed a contract.

If the Sox bid 51 million to talk to Dice-K, they'll pay Santana enough.

In re: CF- why not Mike Cameron? He's probably better defensively than Melky and his arm is close. Batting 7th or 8th, he'd provide a ton more pop. And after the suspension, I wouldn't be surprised if he'd take something like 8 million over 3 years.

2007-12-03 10:06:38
105.   williamnyy23
101 I did...let me change my response to ditto.

100 What is so inflexible about having a rotation of Beckett, Johan, Dice and Buccholz for at least the next four seasons, not to mention a closer like Papelbon under control? That seems to make the Sox not only very formidable, but also very flexible.

2007-12-03 10:07:47
106.   JL25and3
102 Led the AL in K's for 3 straight years, second in the league last year.
2007-12-03 10:08:46
107.   OldYanksFan
From what I see, Brien Taylor had:
a 5.13 ERA, a 1.64 WHIP, walked 7.28/9
We are not really comparing this to Phil, are we?
2007-12-03 10:14:29
108.   yankz
I always thought the Beltran thing was simply because the Mets outworked them. The way I remember it, Cash was busy with AZ, and Minaya literally pulled an all-nighter with Beltran.
2007-12-03 10:14:42
109.   OldYanksFan
Considering the Yankees ultimatum (by late Monday) I would have though we would have some news by now. I guess 'leaks' are no longer necessary at this point?
2007-12-03 10:15:17
110.   williamnyy23
107 You're not being honest now...those number include Taylor's post injury performance (when he was awful). In his first season in A-ball at age 20, Taylor threw 161 IP/187 K/1.16 WHIP. At 21 in AA, Taylor threw 163IP/150 Ks/1.40 WHIP.

Once he was injured, his career was over. Before the injury, however, he was widely considered as the best pitching prospect in baseball...probably even better than Hughes.

2007-12-03 10:25:50
111.   jeterian swing
108 If I'm not mistaken, Boras came to Cashman at the 11th hour, with the Mets deal in his pocket, offering Beltran to us at a discount (Beltran wanted to be a Yankee). I don't remember the numbers, but the discount was substantial (maybe 6 yrs instead of 7?). We turned them down because we ostensibly couldn't handle his salary along with Unit's. Of course I could be mistaken...
2007-12-03 10:26:45
112.   Sarasota
90 also true. But what I'm saying is re examine the deal. Hughes' upside is way high and Andy's return bolsters the rotation. I seriously doubt Epstein/RedSox will part w/ Ellsbury and Lester, they already have their ace. Santana would be icing, but at what cost???
2007-12-03 10:34:10
113.   williamnyy23
112 Didn't the Red Sox already have an ace when they acquired Schilling? I think Theo is smart enough to realize that adding the best pitcher in baseball to a world champion is a building block to a dynasty. Both the Yankees and Red Sox are prospect rich...in the right deal, both can affor to trade from the strength. In the Red Sox case, the trade is even more of a no-brainer because Lester and Ellsbury do not have the ceiling of Hughes.
2007-12-03 10:35:32
114.   williamnyy23
And then from Buster Olney, the happy middle ground arises:

1:08 p.m. ET
• Buster Olney has heard whispers that the Twins might decide to hold onto Johan Santana. With a healthy Francisco Liriano alongside Santana in the rotation, that would be a fearsome 1-2 punch. If the Twins do some big things in '08, they could find a way to re-sign Santana. If not, they could move in July.

2007-12-03 10:35:48
115.   OldYanksFan
110 Not trying to be dishonest, just didn't know. I'm assuming from his stats, he only had 2 injury free years?

In the first 2 years, his WHIP was 1.28, his ERA about 3.1, his BB/9 was 4.65.
Better then my post above, but still not even remotely close to Phil.

2007-12-03 10:37:54
116.   RIYank
Just to be pedantic, let me break things down this way.

Trading Hughes + Cabrera for Santana makes the Yankees better next year. I think this is obvious. (It's not guaranteed, but it's obvious that it makes the expectation better.)

Because of the salary albatross, plus what I can only assume would be another big salary for a cf FA to replace Melky, we'd have to expect problems later. Keeping Hughes and Cabrera would mean a lot more flexibility after, say, 2009.

Now: does the news that Pettitte will be playing for us next year mean (a) we no longer need an extra improvement, so we can play it smarter for the long run, or (b) that we now think we have a real shot at the whole bag of marbles next year, so it's time to cash the prospects and go for it?

2007-12-03 10:38:19
117.   markp
Drabek was considered one of the Yankees best prospects, but that's because they had very few decent prospects at the time. He certainly wasn't considered one of the MLB top prospects.
2007-12-03 10:38:51
118.   RIYank
114 That's my favorite outcome right now. (Though Santana announced that he would veto any July trade, so I don't know what Olney means by that last part.)
2007-12-03 10:39:36
119.   OldYanksFan
114 TGTBT!
Hey... many other blogs have simple polls. Would it be nice to have 'count-em-up' polls on many of our issues? Alex? Cliff?
2007-12-03 10:41:07
120.   OldYanksFan
114 So William.. with Andy back, and (if) Santana staying a Twin, how do you think the Yankees/Red Sox stack up (can Beckett possibly have a 145 ERA+ again?)?
2007-12-03 10:41:11
121.   markp
As for Taylor's numbers in A ball-that was when he was throwing 98% fastballs. If you recall, Dimingo Jean (if I recall the other pitcher's name correctly) had similar (I remember slightly better) numbers on the same team as Taylor.
2007-12-03 10:41:39
122.   OldYanksFan
And I guess no one is interested in having a dynamic stats generator here?
2007-12-03 10:44:19
123.   williamnyy23
115 It's still not a fair comp because Taylor held out before signing, which resulted in missing the 1991 season. He then started 1992 (his first pro season) in high class A. Hughes, on the other hand, immediately went to the rookie league before bumping to the sallie league and then eventually to high class A.

The bottom line is that Taylor was in fact widely regarded as the top pithcing prospect in all of baseball for two straight years. The hype surrounding him was actually greater than Hughes' (who kind of snuck up on most people before emerging last season).

2007-12-03 10:52:57
124.   williamnyy23
120 I think as things stand, the Yankees and Red Sox stack up pretty evenly...and I might even give the Yankees an edge.

While I do believe Beckett has permanently turned a corner (he should rank among the top-5 AL pitchers for the next 3 years, IMO), I think Dice K could settle in around his debut level and am not as high on Lester, Buccholz and Ellsbury as many other. I also think Big Papi's knee surgery is something to think about, as is another year of wear on Manny's deteriorating legs.

What the Yankees have going for them is they have more and better young pitching options (I wouldnt be shocked if Sanchez, Horne and/or Melancon play a positive role during the season)and better athletes among their superstars.

That's why this Santana decision is so monumental. He really does hold the balance of power in his left hand.

2007-12-03 10:54:22
125.   williamnyy23
121 What does it matter if he was throwing 98% fastballs (assuming he was)?

122 What is that?

2007-12-03 10:54:57
126.   jeterian swing
114 Santana staying put seems like a best-case scenario for us (and the Sox), but I'd bet against it being anything more than posturing. By threatening to keep Santana, the Twins have added a third bidder into the mix: themselves. But to keep Santana would be a mistake: He could refuse any trade in July; he could get injured; he could look GREAT and then the Twins would be pressured to re-sign him for '09...any package they obtain now is head and shoulders above two picks next year, and Bill Smith is smart enough to recognize this. Still, I think we'd all breathe a sigh of relief were this to occur.
2007-12-03 10:58:41
127.   Rob Middletown CT
"What does it matter if he was throwing 98% fastballs (assuming he was)?"

That might work in A ball, but not in MLB. I dunno if that's an accurate characterization of Taylor's approach, though.

Look, Brien Taylor is one example of a pitching prospect who didn't work out... because he got into a bar fight.

Is there any particular reason to think that Phil Hughes will? Otherwise, we're talking about the injury risk that all pitchers face - including Johan Santana.

2007-12-03 10:58:46
128.   ny2ca2dc
126 Sign of relief, hell, I'll be dancing in the street. Then sign him next year to replace Andy: Santana, Wang, Hughes, Joba, IPK. Wow.
2007-12-03 10:59:00
129.   williamnyy23
121 Also, Domingo Jean's age was listed (and it was thought he might be older) at 23 in his first pro season. Despite nice numbers early in his ml career, Jean was not even close to the level of Taylor as a prospect. In fact, he wasn't really a prospect at all.
2007-12-03 11:00:11
130.   tommyl
118 I don't know about that Santana saying he'd veto a midseason trade. A lot of it seems like posturing. You're telling me if Minny is tanking with no offensive support in June and that the Twins want to trade him to the Yankees (and that monster offense) who are 2 games back of the Sox he'll turn it down to finish in 3rd place? In a contract year? I dunno...I think he's just trying to bluff a bigger return now.
2007-12-03 11:00:38
131.   williamnyy23
126 When you think about it, why wouldn't the Twins want to pair Santana with Liriano for a shot at the World Series and keep tyring to extend him? At some point, you have to overpay for a player, so why not one who was the best at his position (and therefore grossly underpaid) over the previous six seasons?
2007-12-03 11:00:49
132.   Shaun P
114 A ray of sunshine!

Its almost a Devil Ray, but not quite! =)

115 Correct.

Pitcher A: overall: 324.3 IP - 9.35 K/9, 4.66 BB/9, 0.278 HR/9

A and below: 161.1 IP - 10.43 K/9, 3.68 BB/9, 0.17 HR/9
AA/AAA: 163.0 IP - 8.28 K/9, 5.63 BB/9, 0.39 HR/9

Pretty darn good overall, but when the competition get better, Pitcher A's K/9 dropped a lot, his BB/9 skyrocketed, and his HR/9 did about what you'd expect. AA and AAA are much tougher than the low minors.

Then there's Pitcher B:

Overall: 275 IP - 10.18 K/9, 2.16 BB/9, 0.196 HR/9

A and below: 123.3 IP - 9.78 K/9, 1.75 BB/9, .073 HR/9

AA and AAA: 151.7 IP - 10.5 K/9, 2.49 BB/9, .297 HR/9

Even better overall than A, and the change between the low minors and the high minors is nothing like A. The K/9 went up! The BB/9 increased, but only a bit, and the HR/9 went from otherworldly to pretty good - again, to be expected, due to the increased competition.

A is Brien Taylor and B is Philip Hughes.

2007-12-03 11:04:02
133.   ny2ca2dc
131 I'm with you, and with the Young trade, they're a much better team in 08 than 07 with Liriano back. If they can trade Nathen for maybe something equal to Betemit & Melky + (not that I'm suggesting that's a deal worth pursuing, just using our guys as currency), they could really contend.
2007-12-03 11:04:12
134.   OldYanksFan
125 Please read 80 to see what I am referring to in 122
2007-12-03 11:06:05
135.   ChuckM
I believe part of the reason that Taylor was so "hyped" may have had something to do with the insane (at the time) $1.55m bonus that he got. It's safe to say that people thought the Yanks knew what they were doing for that kind of cash, which may or may not have been the case...
2007-12-03 11:07:57
136.   jeterian swing
130 But in July he'll be three short months away from free agency; he might not want to sign an extension at that point, he might want to test the market. It's not smart for the Twins to take that gamble, which is why you're better off betting on him being moved now than him being held.
2007-12-03 11:09:32
137.   williamnyy23
127 When your fastball is clocked in the high 90s, you can definitely get away throwing a high percentage of them.

You are also missing the point...no one was suggesting that Taylor's history is a bad omen for Hughes. The question was asked if the Yankees ever had a pitching prospect as highly touted as Hughes, and the answer is Brien Taylor.

2007-12-03 11:12:21
138.   tommyl
136 Sure, but its a lot of maybe's. Maybe he'll get traded but the other team will not require an extension. Maybe Minny will be competitive. Maybe he'll get traded and the Yankees will offer $25/year in an extension. Who knows? I'm just saying I can see a lot of scenarios where it'd benefit him to agree to an in-season trade.
2007-12-03 11:13:36
139.   Rob Middletown CT
Ah, I missed that. In terms of hype, yeah, it sounds like Taylor was as hyped or more.

Anyway, I don't care about hype. I care about winning, and to a lesser extent, I care about developing home-grown players. Hughes, to me, is the best of both worlds. He's "our guy" and he's damn good. I want to keep him.

2007-12-03 11:13:49
140.   Yankee Fan In Boston
i know that someone mentioned getting andruw jones earlier. ESPN's jerry crasnick is saying the dodgers have now offered him 2 years at about $32M.

http://tinyurl.com/3yo3g6

2007-12-03 11:14:15
141.   williamnyy23
132 See 123 for mitigating factors in your comparison. The two biggest is that Hughes' A and lower seasons were at lower levels than Taylor's, while his AA+ seasons were gradually compiled over two seasons, whereas Taylors were crammed into his second pro season.
2007-12-03 11:15:17
142.   Rob Middletown CT
As for the Twins... there is no guarantee that Liriano will stay healthy. Even if he is healthy, will he be as effective as he was pre-injury? Even if he is both healthy and effective, how many innings can he throw in 2008?
2007-12-03 11:18:23
143.   williamnyy23
135 I don't think publications like Baseball America and his peers in the minors were awed by what the Yankees paid him. In an era where prospects and MLB drafts were not heavily covered, Taylor was widely regarded as the best pitcher in the country before the Yankees selected him.
2007-12-03 11:19:55
144.   williamnyy23
134 It sounds like you want to re-create baseball-reference.com :)
2007-12-03 11:21:29
145.   Rob Middletown CT
williamnyy23,

If the point of bringing up Brien Taylor is merely to answer the question "when did the Yankees last have a prospect this hyped" I'd say it's asked & answered.

2007-12-03 11:21:51
146.   jeterian swing
138 Oh, I agree completely -- my point is, it is not in the Twins' best interest to keep him till then. They'll see more return now than they will in July, period, and even though they CAN afford him, they won't pay him in '09 and beyond. This being the case, they will trade him now. Saying they "may" keep him is posturing, plain and simple. They won't. He'll be dealt, and soon.
2007-12-03 11:22:57
147.   williamnyy23
145 I'd like to think so...not everyone else seems to be convinced.
2007-12-03 11:29:33
148.   williamnyy23
According to the Star Trib, the reports of Johan's demands are untrue:

The Star Tribune has just been contacted by Johan Santana's agent, Peter Greenberg.

Greenberg said Santana is mad after reading reports that he's ordered the Twins to trade him to either Boston or New York. "Johan told me to tell you that's completely inaccurate,'' Greenberg said. "He's upset about that. He's put no limitations on (Twins GM Bill Smith) to do his job.''

Also from the same article, it seems as if the Twins are upset that some of Hank's comments might border on tampering (letting Johan know how much the team wants him). Maybe Hank reads the Banter and was taking our advice?

2007-12-03 11:33:35
149.   Yankee Fan In Boston
latest unconfirmed rumor: elijah dukes to washington

http://tinyurl.com/2z58xk

2007-12-03 11:34:35
150.   tommyl
146 I don't get it with the Twins. They have Santana and a healthy Liriano. That arguably gives them the best 1-2 in baseball, or close to it. If they flipped Nathan for a decent position player or two they could be competitive. Why not take a shot? If I were a Twins fan I'd be livid. All this taxpayer money for a new park being given to the team, and they won't even hang on to the best pitcher in baseball to make a run. To me, the greatest thing about the Yankees having money is that we never have to worry about losing our homegrown stars.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2007-12-03 11:36:45
151.   williamnyy23
150 How about Carl Pohlad taking some of his $3.9 billion fortune and subsidizing a portion of Santana's salary. That'd be a nice way to reward Johan for being great for 6 years as well as the city for building you a new stadium. Oh yeah, it might be a nice way to spend the revenue sharing you've accumulated over the years.
2007-12-03 11:37:57
152.   JL25and3
145 Comparing Taylor's MiLB stats with Hughes's only tells you that Hughes was more advanced and more polished. But Taylor wasn't just hyped, not by the money or anything else. He really was considered the #1 pitching prospect around.
2007-12-03 11:39:37
153.   Yankee Fan In Boston
151 yeah, but a sixth summer home you'll never go to is nice, too.
2007-12-03 11:41:14
154.   tommyl
153 Don't forget that ivory backscratcher.
2007-12-03 11:43:40
155.   OldYanksFan
144 The idea is we/I can create custom screens/comparisons based on our discussions. I can display results from multiple queries on one screen. We can look at data anyway we like. We could design our own formula for HOF points.

Yes, many people have the data. It's nothing new (although it's cool to have). It's how you process/compare/contrast/tally this data that gives it meaning.

There are things that others aren't doing. For example, we all wonder how much 'weight' we should give length of career when considering the HOF. Or how much weight to give Peak vs Career numbers. And many other factors. These could all be variables and multiple runs could be made using various weights.

We have some very good minds here. The Saber folks don't have a monopoly on creative thinking when it comes to 'crushing' stats.

Just a quick for instance. In comparing players, we could have a screen with:
1 line with career average
1 line of last 3 year average
1 line of last year
columns to show progress/regression between years
1 line with ALL defensive stats
We could create a 'mean' measurement as opposed to 'average'. Sometime the 'mean' is more relevant then the 'average'. We could create an 'other' formula that uses speed. baserunning ability and SB/CS.

We could basically put any stats and any alalysis we want on one screen... available to all of us.

No more cherry picking stats or showing part of the picture. With one click, we could generate compresive screens and for player to player comparisons.

Anyway, I like playing with numbers. It's not bad here, but on other blogs, people pick the stats they want to reinforce their own argument. I just thought it might be nice for all of us to have to same comprehensive data and analysis one click away.

It might be fun to try and create some of our own. I am working on a 'stat' to try and equalize WINS between pitchers on various teams. Remember M.Kay and "how do we replace RJs 17 Wins!". Last year, Wake was 17-10. Some people think he has a good year. But his winning percentage was LESS then the average of the team (minus his results).

Just a though. I got the data, a website and can write and display and query in searchable/sortable/filter format. Thought it might possibly be a nice addition to this site.

2007-12-03 11:45:04
156.   jeterian swing
150 151 Yep, it's infuriating. People say the Yankees are bad for baseball? The Twins are worse.
2007-12-03 11:48:24
157.   tommyl
156 The Royals, Rays and Orioles are even worse. At least the Twins make an attempt. There should be a requirement that 75% of revenue sharing must go into payroll or something. I don't mind giving a few million to help the Royals get a CF. I do mind when they pocket the money for themselves.
2007-12-03 11:51:15
158.   Yankee Fan In Boston
157 why not all of it? we're paying the twins' billionaire owner to fill his hot tub with cristal? (you know he does... then he sinks in, laughing at all "them stupid yankees fans.") what a jerk.
2007-12-03 11:51:34
159.   williamnyy23
155 It's a great idea, but it sounds like a monumental task. I know B-R.com has consumed Sean Forman, so I'd imagine you'd be looking at a similar effort. If you could improve upon what he does and use the Banter as a source pool for your ideas, I think everyone would use it. I just think you'd go nuts in the process.
2007-12-03 11:54:59
160.   tommyl
Maybe the Twins are trying to relocate to Miami? ;)
2007-12-03 11:57:16
161.   jeterian swing
157 Well, this is another tangent, but at least the Orioles have TRIED to spend money -- they've just done it ineptly. The Rays don't sell off talent at its peak just to clear payroll (thought that might happen, when their talent becomes arb-eligible); I'm inclined to wait till they're settled in a new stadium before passing judgment. As for the Royals...hey, they signed Gil Meche, didn't they? The Twins, though, deserve to have their fans turn on them: Not signing Santana is indefensible, especially when the offer they made is not far off from Santana's demands, and ESPECIALLY when Carl Pohlad could pay Santana's full salary out of his pocket and not miss a penny.
2007-12-03 11:58:29
162.   Shaun P
141 Let me start out by saying I completely agree with 145 . I just think that, hype aside, Hughes is a better "prospect" than Taylor was, which makes me wonder why Hughes isn't getting more hype.

My response to your mitigating factors would be, ignore the low minors numbers, which can be wildly skewed anyway because of the low level of competition. Instead, directly compare Hughes in AA at age 20 to Taylor in AA at age 21. Again, Hughes comes out way on top, even accounting for the innings difference (116 to 161).

If the Yanks of today were looking at two pitchers with those lines, I think what they'd say is, Hughes is clearly ready for AAA, and Taylor needs more time at AA to work on his command/control.

2007-12-03 12:01:13
163.   Shaun P
151 Here here!

IIRC, the Glasses of the Royals are also worth more than the Steinbrenners, so its been nice to see KC finally spending cash. They have a long way to go to make up for all those years of being cheap, though.

2007-12-03 12:04:53
164.   williamnyy23
162 Your might be tight...Hughes might probably be a better prospect. Having said that, you can't discount that Hughes had three years of pro ball under his belt before hitting AA (including instructional seasons in the rookie leagues) whereas Taylor had one season of forcefed high A+ ball before being promoted. I think it's pretty clear that Hughes was more advanced at the same age. By holding out, Taylor stunted his development, and that needs to be considered.
2007-12-03 12:05:09
165.   liam
159 i want one, i almost bought the BP one last night actually. but keep in mind the high amount of load and traffic that could ensue..
2007-12-03 12:05:37
166.   Yankee Fan In Boston
161 the steinbrenners could easily pay rodriguez out of their pockets, too. i don't expect owners to do that, but i do wish that they'd spend the revenue sharing cash on the team in some fashion.

so... what are the penalties for tampering?

2007-12-03 12:09:13
167.   markp
Outside of some Yankee fans, Taylor was never considered the top pitching prospect in baseball-at least not by anyone that was actually paying attention. Bill James described him as "Yankee airhead" and gave him next to zero chance of becoming even a borderline MLB pitcher.
2007-12-03 12:09:30
168.   markp
Outside of some Yankee fans, Taylor was never considered the top pitching prospect in baseball-at least not by anyone that was actually paying attention. Bill James described him as "Yankee airhead" and gave him next to zero chance of becoming even a borderline MLB pitcher.
2007-12-03 12:11:12
169.   Yankee Fan In Boston
pettitte deal is final.

from peter abraham:

Just received an e-mail back from Randy Hendricks.

Andy Pettitte will play for his original $16 million next season. There are no options. He decided on Saturday, they talked it over on Sunday and now it's done.

2007-12-03 12:21:17
170.   Rob Middletown CT
Excellent. You have chosen wisely, Andy.
2007-12-03 12:27:45
171.   JL25and3
167 , 168 FWIW, Baseball America ranked Taylor as the #1 overall prospect in 1992, and the #2 prospect - behind Chipper Jones - in 1993.

http://tinyurl.com/jvqs9

2007-12-03 13:17:36
172.   jeterian swing
As of 3:45 p.m., BP's John Perrotto -- in Nashville, blogging the Winter Meetings -- had the following to say about Johan:

"There is a growing sense around the various lobbies and atriums of the Opryland Hotel and Resort that Johan Santana may not be going to either the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox...If that is the case, Minnesota would be forced to trade Santana somewhere else for what would likely be a lesser package, or just hang on to him for the 2008 season, take a run at one more American League Central title, and then lose him as a free agent next winter, and settling for the two draft picks they'd get as compensation..."

I'd still be shocked were such a scenario to unfold, but anything is possible.

http://tinyurl.com/2zvww2

2007-12-03 13:19:49
173.   OldYanksFan
159 Well, maybe I'm wrong, but it doesn't seem to bad to me. Probably the hardest part will be tracking down all the sabermetric formulas for the + stats and others we've come to rely on.

Also, I might have to collect park factor and any other data needed for formulas that aren't in the 'raw' MLB database.

I'll put up a quick page of what I've got, you guys can take a peak at it, and maybe help me collect formulas.

Also, I guess some stats have formula's that are unpublished that I woundn't be able to reproduce those.

It would be nice for us to devise an 'MVP formula'. x% this, y% that and so on. If we can discuss and agree on a formula, then all we do is run candidates through it and... there she is... rendering all discussion 'mute'.

2007-12-03 13:22:56
174.   tommyl
173 MVP = HR+RBI
2007-12-03 13:24:02
175.   OldYanksFan
165 Gee.... my thought would be it should be for Bronx Banterers only. This site would be the only one with a link.

Mets and Sox fans could use BP (although I don't know if those fans really look at stats...)

2007-12-03 13:26:09
176.   OldYanksFan
174 Geez... I feel so stupid!
2007-12-03 13:27:18
177.   tommyl
You know guys, I think we're missing out on the most important thing with Santana. How would he look clean shaven? Discuss.
2007-12-03 13:28:20
178.   OldYanksFan
Does anyone else feel Andy has come to our rescue?
I mean, after his fathers statement, I thought he was cooked. I gave him 0% chance of coming back.
But here he is.
Just when we really needed him.
Was it a sense of duty and obligation to his teammates that made this decision?
2007-12-03 13:28:52
179.   tommyl
176 Its a first order approximation. The next term in the perturbation series involves a subtraction for how places behind first in the division your team finishes. The next term involves a "market factor" to explain why Hanley Ramirez got no consideration this year, whereas had he still be on the Sox he might have finished second.
2007-12-03 13:31:11
180.   OldYanksFan
Well it ain't my money, but according to Pete:
"I have their 2008 payroll at $200.6 million. That assumes Cano and Wang would receive $4 million each. That $200.6 million figure accounts for only 16 players.

If they retain Vizcaino for $3 million and sign the other eight players for around the minimum, the Yankees are looking at a $207 million payroll.

Could they really add $20 million (at least) for Santana? That would involve increasing the payoll by nearly $50 million from last season."

Yikes!

2007-12-03 13:32:00
181.   OldYanksFan
pssst... Tommy.... new thread.

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