Oh no, they say he’s got to go

Pete Abe speculates that Hideki Matsui might be on the market. San Francisco seems like a possible destination with Noah Lowry as the return. Such a deal would be a salary dump that would clear roster space for Damon and Giambi to play full time. I guess I like Hideki too much to think this is a good move. And Lowry just doesn’t excite me. Hey, I hear Tim Lincecum is available. How about a package of Ian Kennedy and Matsui for Lincecum and Dave Roberts? That would work for me, but not for Giants fans.

So what do Yanks fans think about trading away Godzilla? My heart says “no”, but my head says “yes” if the deal is right.

58 comments… add one
  • At first I thought it said Hideki Okajima, but I’m relieved to have gotten it wrong.
    Why are the Yanks dumping Matsui? I would rather keep him and get rid of Damon.

    Atheose December 6, 2007, 2:16 pm
  • Hideki had the 7th best OPS in the AL amongst outfielders, and though he’s no cannon, balls he throws actually make it back to the infield before the next batter steps into the box. Trade Damon if their is an opportunity, but keep Godzilla.

    attackgerbil December 6, 2007, 2:17 pm
  • <>
    I pretty much feel the same way. Matsui was my favorite of the nu skool (read: post-2001 addition) Yankees. But the Yanks will also be well served to start clearing up the logjams at 1B/LF/DH, and Matsui is probably the most tradeable part.

    Mark (YF) December 6, 2007, 2:18 pm
  • Also, for the love of God don’t get Dave Roberts. I won’t be able to eat solid food for weeks if I see him in pinstripes.

    Atheose December 6, 2007, 2:22 pm
  • I’m just happy it’s a trade story not involving Santana.
    Oops. I just ruined it by mentioning his name. Sorry.

    KurticusMaximus- YF December 6, 2007, 2:22 pm
  • But what about financially? He’s not a bargain on paper, but he makes up for it in bringing in Japanese tourists, on top of marketing, etc, etc.
    Unless the Yanks can get something really good back, this seems like a bad move..

    Lar December 6, 2007, 2:25 pm
  • Actually, considering what guys like Hunter and Jones are making on the FA market, and the fact that Matsui puts up better numbers than both of them he is a relative bargain. Especially since his contract is up after 2009. He’s valuable, but don’t give him up for a guy who’d be the Yankees’ sixth starter next season (Noah Lowry).

    AndrewYF December 6, 2007, 2:30 pm
  • Damon and Matsui each make $13M.

    attackgerbil December 6, 2007, 2:35 pm
  • AG, I think the problem is that Damon is a lot less attractive as an option to other teams. As it stands I don’t understand why the Yanks are so satisfied with him as a corner outfielder. Does his bat out there make him even average?

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 2:38 pm
  • I gotta think the Giants FO is looking for ways to replace Bonds in the “putting-the-butts-in-the-seats” department and Godzilla is a brilliant way to do that.

    soxgirl December 6, 2007, 2:40 pm
  • If the Yankees can get Lincecum or Cain out of this, then I’ll keep listening. If not, forget it. There’s not really anyone else on the Giants worth having.

    doug YF December 6, 2007, 2:41 pm
  • I think the problem is that Damon is a lot less attractive
    Yeah, ever since Damon shaved his beard I’d definitely say he’s a lot less attractive. Shame.

    Atheose December 6, 2007, 2:44 pm
  • Godzilla must stay, if only for the fact that i bought his jersey. ;-)
    But seriously, no. He’s got a good bat and he’s solid in field. Keep, please.

    rz-yf December 6, 2007, 2:44 pm
  • I’m having a hard time posting…

    Carlos YF December 6, 2007, 2:49 pm
  • It seems to dislike anything more than a sentence in length…

    Anonymous December 6, 2007, 2:53 pm
  • testing with a sentence longer than 1 line, such as this run-on sentence which I am writing right now.

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 2:55 pm
  • I love run on sentences; they make it so much easier to use semi-colons.

    Carlos YF December 6, 2007, 2:56 pm
  • But yes, I had about 100 words on Matsui=only getting older, but it keeps telling me I’m a comment spammer.
    Which might be true considering how much i’ve written on here the last week.

    Carlos YF December 6, 2007, 2:57 pm
  • Carlos, there are certain words that you might be using that are detected as spam. Maybe that’s the issue.

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 3:03 pm
  • Without knowing the words, i’d be hard pressed to edit the text.
    Either way, I’ll start from scratch in Hemmingway-style form.
    Matsui valuable, not just in batting order, but as piece to create a future. He is 33 this year, only getting older. Logjam in outfield. Return of youth possible but at cost.
    Cost is worth it if return is mlb-ready and a presence in our future. You can not have 9 nucleus guys: jeter, a-rod, the pitching big-two, and Cano. I believe in Melky, but not enough to place him in the “this is the next 10 years.”

    Carlos YF December 6, 2007, 3:08 pm
  • What is it about the Yankees that makes them do such boneheaded things? Matsui was one of the few Yankees last year that was actually performing, unlike the waste of space that is Jason Giambi or the intruder Damon.
    Shop those two. I wouldn’t miss them. Hideki, I’d miss. C’mon Hank, get with it. You really want the Baltimore Orioles to finish ahead of the Yanks too?

    Brave Astronaut December 6, 2007, 3:15 pm
  • filter does not like me at all.

    attackgerbil December 6, 2007, 3:20 pm
  • BA,
    No one would take Giambi’s contract as he has not performed at the level to justify it. No one wants players who suck, especiall when they suck at nearly $20 million a year.
    Damon could be shopped; i think his skills are sill wanted by other teams. But again, the price tag on him is not attractive.
    In order to get younger AND good, you have to give up, not just old, but great.

    Carlos YF December 6, 2007, 3:21 pm
  • Of course you are right about value, Nick. I just really admire the way he plays the game, his respect towards his teammates – he apologized for breaking his wrist – and baseball itself, I would hate to lose him. He’s arguably my favorite Yankee.

    attackgerbil December 6, 2007, 3:22 pm
  • AG –
    I don’t think you’re alone in that. You see an awful lot of Godzilla signs waving around at Yankee Stadium.

    soxgirl December 6, 2007, 3:26 pm
  • the yankees would only consider this if they got another young pitcher back. The giants arent the best run team so maybe they’ll be sucker enough to give one of those two young guns up. They are both very good. Although its not clear to me why we need MORE young SPs.

    sam-YF December 6, 2007, 3:39 pm
  • Wow. Matsui’s one of the few guys that always scared me when he was at bat against us (and yet at the same time one of the few Yankees players that never inspired a visceral hatred in me); I wouldn’t be sad to see him moving but I’d never considered the possibility that he might be traded.
    Of course, he IS getting older and will probably decline a bit in the next few years, so it might not be a bad move. My impression has been that he’s been a little more hesitant in the field since that really awful wrist injury… seems like his bat has been declining since 2004, but slowly (OPS+ for the last four years: 137, 130, 128, 123). Still kind of surprised that this has come up though!

    Jackie (SF) December 6, 2007, 3:42 pm
  • The man who most wants this deal: Shelley Duncan, who suddenly becomes the leading candidate as 4th OF every time Damon’s legs get weary.
    (Incidentally, anyone else sort of tired of hearing about Damon’s weary legs – I mean other than SFs who just hate all things Damon? Can the guy just work out a little? I know standing and running every day for a full season is tough but it is – you know – his job).

    IronHorse (yf) December 6, 2007, 3:55 pm
  • Nice, Nick! Blue Oyster Cult! I didn’t get it until about 5-10 minutes after reading.

    Devine December 6, 2007, 4:05 pm
  • Wonderful way to tie in that song. It seems so obvious, but I don’t know that I’d have thought of it.
    Matsui’s lowest OPS+ since 2004: Last season, 123. Damon’s highest OPS+ ever: 2000, 118.
    I’m gonna go ahead and root for the Matsui trade.

    Paul SF December 6, 2007, 4:25 pm
  • After I wrote that line I’ve had the song in my head all afternoon.
    Will you root for a trade that gets us Lincecum? I’m praying we have another Kazmir situation on our hands!

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 4:29 pm
  • In my experience, the harder you pray for something, the less likely it is to happen. Therefore, I couldn’t care less!

    yankeemonkey December 6, 2007, 4:31 pm
  • Matsui is probably my favorite Yankee too, so of course I would love to see him on a different team (although the Giants aren’t that much higher on the totem pole). San Fran does dig the old outfielders too; I can’t rule this one out.
    As a special bonus, I like that Matsui would play for the real American Giants, after playing for the American analog to the Yomiuri Giants, the Yankees.
    Did I make sense there? I can’t tell.

    FenSheaParkway December 6, 2007, 4:33 pm
  • that’s because you don’t sacrifice animals at the shrine of Pallas Athena when you pray!

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 4:33 pm
  • Yeah, that song’s stuck in my head, too. I actually don’t really like that song either. Thanks, Nick. Jerk.
    I know Sabean isn’t exactly considered a great GM anymore, but surely even he will know to at least get someone younger than 30 for a player like Lincecum or Cain, right?

    Paul SF December 6, 2007, 4:40 pm
  • Judging from the average age of the Giants over the last few years, i think his scale for “young” is much different than ours. These guys have made the yankees look like whippersnappers for the better part of the last decade.

    sam-YF December 6, 2007, 4:43 pm
  • He wouldn’t possibly do it for just Matsui but say you make it a package. How about Horne and Matsui? I guess it’s pretty surprising that Lincecum is even being discussed. He’s connected to Alex Rios, who is definitely a good player and more valuable than Hideki, but isn’t spectacular. The talk is revealing…maybe…of the Giants belief that Lincecum’s arm might not hold up.
    I’m not a big fan of the song either, although I do find it amusing.

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 4:44 pm
  • I’m not sure the Giants try to field a team that wins the WS so much as pulls in spectators – why else hold on to Bonds that long. Given the number of Japanese tourists flooding into the SF Bay Area, seems like a big financial win for them. some enterprisign tour director will start selling packages in Tokyo that include a ticket to a game and a short hop to Seattle to see Ichiro. Cha-ching.

    soxgirl December 6, 2007, 4:50 pm
  • Swindling Giants out of Lincecum….Mmm, I’m all tingly!
    *sacrifices puppy at the shrine of Pallas Athena*

    yankeemonkey December 6, 2007, 4:51 pm
  • Soxgirl, other than Bonds (who, given the record he was chasing, I think every team in the league with the financial capacity to hold on to him would have) is SF known for going more for fans than wins? I hadn’t heard that but I also don’t really know.

    IronHorse (yf) December 6, 2007, 4:52 pm
  • IH – They certainly have that reputation if you live out here. Don’t get me wrong, the ballpark is gorgeous and as a mom, I appreciate all the diversions they have for little kids who can’t sit through an entire game. It’s a great afternoon out with the family but I would argue even the Zito trade was to bring a hugely popular player into the park at the cost of being able to afford a more well-rounded competitive team.

    soxgirl December 6, 2007, 4:58 pm
  • Interesting take on Zito…I thought it was just a bad trade based on over-valuing the player in a pitching-dry market, but I get your take on it. It looks worse and worse as Zito shows what he is (not) made of.
    And yeah, I’ve been to the park out there once and loved it. The worse your seats are for watching the game the more picturesque the view of everything outside the park becomes.

    IronHorse (yf) December 6, 2007, 5:22 pm
  • Im gonna file this trade under “fat chance” i just dont see this happening.

    sam-YF December 6, 2007, 5:34 pm
  • Trading Linecum for Hideki Matsui would be the 2007 version of Victor Zambrano for Scott Kazmir, positional differences notwithstanding.
    If Sabean just sent a mass email saying “make your best offer for Linecum” to all the Major League GMs he’d probably get ten offers better than Hideki Matsui. If a Linecum/Mastui deal happens it’s only because of complete incomptence or because the Yankees also include two or three other young players and/or pay for Matsui’s contract.

    SF December 6, 2007, 5:41 pm
  • Trading Linecum for Hideki Matsui would be the 2007 version of Victor Zambrano for Scott Kazmir, positional differences notwithstanding.
    You make it sound like it’s a bad thing!

    yankeemonkey December 6, 2007, 6:00 pm
  • By all accounts out here in the Bay Area, Lincecum is considered pretty much untouchable, and same with Matt Cain. The Giants really view those two, and Zito as the foundations of the team going forward. Of course, everything else is a mess… Matsui would be a fantastic draw in SF, that’s for sure. They’re hungry for anyone besides Bonds now.
    Noah Lowry has been decent at times, if a little inconsistent the last couple years.

    ToddSF December 6, 2007, 6:05 pm
  • Two things:
    1. Why in the world would the Giants trade Lincecum for Matsui? Even if they added in IPK, it doesn’t make sense. They are an old team that doesn’t have enough to win. Why then would they trade their best SP prospect for a 32 year old 25 HR guy? If they are that concerned with getting a Japanese player to put butts in seats can’t they just get Fukudome without giving up a stud like Lincecum? I would be shocked if anything like this went down.
    2. Trading Matsui isn’t a terrible idea. He will bring back much more then Damon. BUT I don’t like Lowry enough to do 1 for 1 and I don’t want Rich Aurillia. If the Yankees could get Jonathan Sanchez in the deal, I would be all for it. He’s lefty and had 62 K’s in 52 IP and only 25.

    John - YF December 6, 2007, 6:10 pm
  • Yeah, Sanchez showed some real talent last year. He’s got a cannon. Totally agree Lowry alone shouldn’t net Matsui, even if it is a salary dump.

    ToddSF December 6, 2007, 6:13 pm
  • it’s far-fetched indeed. BUT, there is a chance that the Giants are convinced that Lincecum’s delivery and small frame won’t hold up. This was the same resoning that led the Mets to trading Kazmir away.

    Nick-YF December 6, 2007, 6:14 pm
  • Getting Sanchez would give them that hard throwing lefty that they need. They wouldn’t have to trade for Marte or sigh Mahay to an inflated contract.
    Todd did he spot start last season for SF?

    John - YF December 6, 2007, 6:15 pm
  • Nick, his delivery is odd and he is small in stature, but people have been waiting for Hudson to break down for years now. Being a coach I will say it’s more difficult for “small framed” guys with odd deliveries to make it long term, but I think Kazmir and Hudson are proving them wrong. But I’m with you Nick…

    John - YF December 6, 2007, 6:17 pm
  • One of our players was drafted a few years back. Dominated HS, threw gas but struggled at the next level. He was barely 5 ft 10. It’s a shame had he been 5 inches taller things may have been different.

    John - YF December 6, 2007, 6:57 pm
  • John, he did make a few late season starts and did fairly well, although most of the season he was used in middle relief. He did seem to tire in September and got tagged a few times, but I recall SF being recall him being fairly dominant through mid-August. He’s be a nice addition to Lowry, but it just feels to me like Batsui is worth so much more.

    ToddSF December 6, 2007, 7:18 pm
  • Why in the world would the Yankees trade 25/100/.300 for Lowry?
    If the Yankees wanted to dump salary, why not package Matsui in the deal with Hughes for Santana?? Matsui’s salary is a BARGAIN for any team in the current market.

    Jay-YF December 6, 2007, 9:33 pm
  • Minnesota wouldn’t spend ninety-nine cents at a dollar store, so I don’t think Matsui’s a bargain for them. There’s a reason they’ve been asking for only league-minimum or close-to from the Sox and Yanks so far.

    FenSheaParkway December 6, 2007, 9:39 pm
  • And by “dollar store”, I don’t mean a place where everything’s a dollar – I mean a place where they have dollar bills for sale.

    FenSheaParkway December 6, 2007, 9:41 pm
  • No way the Yankees should trade Matsui. Hideki’s famed porn collection alone is reason enough to keep him. ;)

    SoxFan December 6, 2007, 10:00 pm
  • apparently no maas and I think alike on this one. I swear that my suggestion of IPK and Matsui for Lincecum was up before their’s.

    Nick-YF December 7, 2007, 12:00 am

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