Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Linkin' Around
2007-02-02 10:07
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

Couple of few tidbits:

Tim Marchman on Phillip Hughes; Steve Lombardi on the best seasons ever by a Yankee shortstop (peace to Repoz for the heads up); also, there are a bunch of good new Yankee blogs out there--two of the best are Yankees for Justice, and Bronx Liaison. Oh, and Sweeny Murti is going to blog about the Yanks this season over at WFAN's site. He won't really get rolling for a couple of weeks, but that's one to keep an eye on.

2007-02-02 10:34:39
1.   jayd
Thank you for the Marchman article. I'm pinning a copy over my bunk, right next to the shelf that holds my Brad Halsey and Ed Yarnall bobblehead dolls...This sounds like I might not need JohanMyJohan after all.

Maybe I'll start on my serial "Bernie Heads North" posts now...

2007-02-02 10:35:48
2.   jayd
oh my god I was first, can you believe it, FIRST!!!!
2007-02-02 11:41:53
3.   mehmattski
1 Don't forget Brien Taylor.

I was looking up other Yankees prospects when I ran across Baseball America's Yankee prospects page, and found this:

Projected Lineup, 2010:
C:Francisco Cervelli
1B: Eric Duncan
2B: Robinson Cano
3B: Alex Rodriguez
SS: Derek Jeter
LF: Melky Cabrera
CF: Johnny Damon
RF: Jose Tabata
DH: Bob Abreu
No. 1 Starter Philip Hughes
No. 2 Starter Chien-Ming Wang
No. 3 Starter Dellin Betances
No. 4 Starter Joba Chamberlain
No. 5 Starter Ian Kennedy
Closer Mark Melancon

This was of course befor the Sheffield and Johnson trades, so maybe other RHPs sneak in there. I'd prefer to have Damon at 1B and Gardner in CF. And I refuse to believe that Mariano Rivera is ever going to retire.

2007-02-02 11:49:53
4.   Shawn Clap
3 ??? Where's Bernie???
2007-02-02 11:52:18
5.   mehmattski
4 I think they're expecting Bernie to evade Cashman's attempts to exile him by changing his name to "Fransisco Cervelli" and learning how to play catcher. Seems reasonable to me.
2007-02-02 11:54:34
6.   Cliff Corcoran
3 The RJ trade won't change that lineup at all.
2007-02-02 11:58:45
7.   Shaun P
Thanks for the links, Alex. Some good stuff there.
2007-02-02 12:11:20
8.   Aviezer
A Q, and one that I am almost embarrased to ask. Here goes, how do you link to a page and then incorporate that into a word or phrase such as you see many posters doing. I know how to post links just not how to switch the format.
2007-02-02 12:44:36
9.   Jim Dean
6 Yup. The real question is whether any of those guys are even in MLB in 2007. But I'm rooting for you, Dorf!

Sanchez would seem to be ahead for 3 through 5.

3 I know it's my new rant, but I can't believe the guys at BA take the time to put that together and yet rank guys like Chamberlain, Kennedy, and Betances (all three) ahead of Clippard based on nothing more than looks and reputation. Weird.

2007-02-02 13:03:47
10.   Shaun P
9 Chamberlain I can see ahead of Clippard. But not Kennedy. Or Betances.

Betances will be all of 22 in 2010, so if he turns into Hughes Part 2, he might be in the bigs as the 5th starter. I hope he does, but that's a huge if. I think including Betances is very unrealistic on BA's part.

I agree wholeheartedly on Sanchez, Jim, but IIRC, the list was done before the Sheff trade.

Damon's contract is up in 2009; he'll be 36 in 2010. If he comes back, I can't see him playing CF. Melky I could see in CF. Gardner, maybe. But not Damon.

And if Damon and Abreu are still around, why isn't Matsui, who is just a little younger than those two, and every bit as durable?

So many questions . . .

2007-02-02 13:16:31
11.   Jim Dean
10 I know - what did they have an intern put that together? And for one of their free pages? That's some advertising for me NOT to buy their books.

And Abreu at DH when he's already losing power? I understand they're trying to stick with guys in the organization now, but still.

2007-02-02 13:23:26
12.   Shaun P
11 I don't know if they explain the choices in a book, but perhaps that's their angle - you wonder just how the heck they came up with such a list, and so you have to buy the book to find out.

3 Mo's current contract is up after 2007. He's said he wants to pitch the last year in the old Stadium, and the first year in the new one. That means he pitches until 2009. Unless he gets severely hurt, I don't see why Mo couldn't be around for another year in 2010 either.

A world without Mo pitching for the Yanks is something I don't want to think about.

2007-02-02 13:26:44
13.   Yankee Fan In Boston
12 "A world without Mo pitching for the Yanks is something I don't want to think about."


2007-02-02 15:17:29
14.   standuptriple
Jeter as the starting SS in 2010 is something I don't want to think about.
2007-02-02 17:41:12
15.   rbj
12, 13 Mo's never going to retire. He's going to keep on pitching for ever and ever. Would God ever lay His Hammer down?
2007-02-02 23:18:44
16.   mikeplugh
9 Jim, I think there's more to it than that. I actually like Clippard as much as you do, and I agree that he seems to get short changed on his reputation, but I think that there's a good reason that Betances is ranked higher.

Based on what's accomplished, Clippard should get more love. Based on where all 3 are today, Clippard is the better player. The thing is, when scouts make their prospect profiles it's as much about body type, quality of pitches one by one, and so on. If the sum of all the parts gets a good score, the player gets a better rating. This page gives a good look at the criteria that goes into a scouting report:

I'm with Jim in wondering why Clippard doesn't get the love that the others do, but when I consider the criteria, I think I can see why Betances rates as a potential #1 pitcher on any team in the sport. Whatever the rating, if it helps Clippard come in under the radar, the splash he makes just might look bigger. SWB's starting rotation this year is going to be sick.

Hughes, Clippard, Sanchez, Ohlendorf, Rasner or Karstens.....

I believe that rotation is significantly better than the Royals or the Pirates, among others.

2007-02-03 03:33:24
17.   Jim Dean
16 Thanks Mike. But that's exactly my point. The player gets judged more on how he "looks" than on how he "performs". For pitchers especially that's a recipe for some whack expectations.

IMHO the scouting reports are very important, but only until the player reaches minor league ball. You'll still need scouts (for defense and to round out the numbers) but by that point the numbers (SAL - stats, age, level) should be primary.

Further, what's BaseballAmerica's rush any ways? It's not like they're going to be consistent if the numbers don't hold up (like Duncan getting devalued so heavily). So why not wait for the numbers to come in to get a more accurate assessment?

See, it's not that I have a problem with Betances, Chamberlain, and Kennedy looking good. It's just that they've proven so little and so it makes the projections almost empty - it makes their books a waste of money in my mind.

When they've overvalued prospects based on looks and then the numbers don't come back to match, they look foolish when they have to devalue that prospect. Then they look foolish again when the prospect comes back to their potential (see Cano, Melky, Wang).

Why not skip all that and stick to the SAL numbers?

Tyler has proven he can be very successful given his less than shining appearance. That's the story for this year. And if he dominates AAA there's little doubt he'll suddenly appear at the top of the prospect lists.

But I agree - Scranton has one sick rotation. Though I wouldn't be surprised to see Dorf start in Trenton because they're less familiar with him. Humberto has at least been in the Eastern league for the past two years.

2007-02-03 06:34:08
18.   OldYanksFan
16 Fantastic LINK Mike! Thanks!
I did notice that CONTROL got a 2-8 rating whereas COMMAND only got a yes-no-maybe rating. Am I wrong in that Clippard does not have great stuff but does have great command? Ball placement? Mixes pitches well?

This form does not put much emphasis on COMMAND, so maybe thats why Clippard is not ranked as highly.

I also noticed that FEEL FOR PITCHING: some, good idea, limited, thrower, no idea...
The best ranking is 'SOME'? What about guys that have an AMAZING Feel For Pitching?
Maybe a field called: PITCHING INTELLIGENCE is needed?

I wonder how Greg Maddux types rate based on that form. Maddux does not have great STUFF, but has great COMMAND and INTELLIGENCE. Does Clippard fall into this category?

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