General Yankees Humor The Media

“Mr. A-Rod, What’s a “Player’s Option”?

The Post has a description of A-Rod’s book signing:

Alex Rodriguez’s appearance at a signing for his children’s book was
mishandled by his publicist and bookstore staff members, turning the
ballyhooed event into a media circus that included a paparazzi member
tossing A-Rod a ball to sign. At one point, a New York policeman
grabbed a reporter for the crime of trying to interview the beleaguered

I wish I was there because it sounds sort of ridiculous. I imagine the following scenario: Approximately thirty children, ages 6 to 8, and a gaggle of New York beat writers sat cross-legged on a rug as A-Rod read to them from his new children’s book. And the following question and answer session took place when A-Rod opened the floor to questions.

General Yankees

Alex in 08: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Jayson Stark brings us a story today on the future of A-Rod, as regards his ability to opt-out of his contract following the 2007 season. Stark foresees these possibilities:

-A-Rod has typical year, but is again maligned, departs for greener pastures
-A-Rod has typical year, is heroic, uses it as leverage to get monster extension
-A-Rod has typical year, decides to play out the contract (not likely with Boras)

Not mentioned but also possible:

-A-Rod is mediocre or injured, is forced to play out contract

No matter what, he won’t be depending on his royalties.

General Yankees

The Weasel


Who was the lone celebrity at a certain low-grade comic/actor’s birthday party over Super Bowl weekend in Miami?  That’s right. A-Rod!

No comment necessary.  Though writer Dan Wetzel issues the following proclamation: "Derek Jeter never would attend Pauly Shore’s birthday party."  Any YFs care to disagree?

(ht to commenter Malik for the find)

General Yankees

Hope Springs Eternal

On this weekend otherwise devoted to the pigskin (though not so much in this house), our thoughts turn to the green pastures of the mind. Pitchers and catchers report soon. A few things we are (and are not) looking forward to, come opening day.

In Our Mind’s Eye
-Derek Jeter’s first smack to the opposite field
-Philip Hughes
-Joe Torre drinking his green tea on the bench….
-Next to Donnie Baseball
-Mo’s canter in from the pen across that great green expanse
-Wang’s slumpy walk off the mound after another 6-4-3 DP
-Carl Pavano, St. Louis Cardinal
-Take your base, Mr. Abreu
-Robi: first-pitch double off the wall
-Jorge’s quiet excellence
-Yanks vs. Sox. Obviously.

Visions We Could Do Without
-Bonds passes Aaron
-The eye rolling after A-Rod’s first K with men on
-_____will be on the DL for __ weeks with a ____
-Centerstage: Stump Merrill
-Murray’s columns
-Carl Pavano, Yankee
-Roger Clemens, Agoniste

What about you?

General Yankees

Bernie’s Cold Spring

The Yankees have offered Bernie Williams a non-roster invitation to spring training. Whether he accepts is to be determined. LoHud’s Peter Abraham points out just how delicate a situation this is for the Yankees:

It’s a no-win situation for Joe Torre and the Yankees. If Bernie plays poorly, Joe has to call him in and cut him. If Bernie plays well for a few weeks, there will be a public clamor to keep a player the team really doesn’t want or need.

Do the Yanks owe Bernie the opportunity to win a job that probably won’t exist? Does he still want to play? Is there another team out there with interest? Tough.

General Yankees

Peter Pan Syndrome

Bernie Williams was approached by a camera crew at a charity dinner last night, and was of course asked about his plans for this year, how he felt about the Yanks not offering him a deal, and whether he would be willing to play for another team. Bernie responded with the thoughtful, courteous, introspective answers we’ve come to expect from one of the classiest players to ever don the pinstripes. This, he said, was the "difficult" part of the business, and spoke of "Peter Pan Syndrome"—of playing a child’s game and never wanting to grow up. "Who wouldn’t want to continue to do this?" We’ve said this before and we’ll say it again here. There’s probably no room on the Yankee roster for Bernie. If he chooses to retire, he deserves every possible honor in the Bronx. But if he chooses to continue with his career elsewhere, we’ll only wish him the best, and look forward to seeing an old friend play out his career at his own pace. 

General Yankees

Called Out

Ignore the fact that this story is from the Globe website (it’s a Reuters piece), YFs.  And ignore the fact that it was written by one of the Three Stooges.  But don’t ignore those former professionals calling out a certain Third Baseman.  What is it with those obsessed Sox fans ex-Pinstripers, always taking the piss out of A-Rod? 

I think it’s time to start calling him A-Rodney.

Addendum: This analysis of situational hitting for several of our faves is worth a surf. (ht to waswatching for the link)

General Yankees

Derek and Gabrielle: Will This “Union” Be Forever?

Derek Jeter was involved with Jessica Biel for two months. That’s like a 40 year marriage in Derek years. And children, I hate to upset you, but your old mom and dad are getting divorced. Dad found  another lady:
She’s Gabrielle Union. Could this be love?

General Yankees The Wire

Good Riddance, Unit!

So says Jim Leyritz in an article in The Journal News by John Delcos.  "He didn’t fit in here from the beginning," Leyritz continued.

Both Leyritz and Lee Mazzilli have a hard time imagining Bernie Williams, who seems to not be a part of New York’s future plans until they retire number 51, in another uniform.  Me too, King.  Me too.


In a New York Daily News article, Jorge Posada says that he talked to Bernie and
"He’s not even thinking about (retirement) yet."

General Baseball General Red Sox General Yankees

Down on the Farm

On, Bryan Smith has his top 75 prospects in baseball, plus honorable mention candidates. Baseball Analysts posts the results in a simple list. From our teams:

4. Phil Hughes (p)
23: Jose Tabata (of)
52: Humberto Sanchez (p)
HM: Tyler Clippard (p)

Red Sox:
42: Jacoby Ellsbury (of)
43: Clay Buchholz (p)
66: Mike Bowden (p)
68. Dustin Pedroia (inf)
HM: Daniel Bard (p)
HM: George Kottaras (c)

Addendum for YFs: What to Expect When You’re Expecting

How will Hughes fare in 07? In his 2006 list, Smith had 2 pitchers in his top 10 prospects: Matt Cain and Francisco Liriano. In 2005 there were 3: Adam Miller, Chad Billingsley, and Felix Hernandez.

General Yankees

Collector’s Item

That Cano 22 jersey in your closet? Hold on to it. Someone else might be wearing the double-deuce in 07.

Books General Yankees The Media

The Pride and the Pressure

Over on WasWatching, YFSF pal Steve Lombardi interviews the Post’s Mike Morrissey on his new book, The Pride and the Pressure: A Season Inside the Yankee Fishbowl. Good interview, but we’ve been around the block here on this subject (NY and pressure), and, frankly, it’s kind of a tired conceit. I’m sure Mr. Morrissey was hoping for something more than a first-round exit for the Yanks when he envisioned the book.

General Yankees Predictions and Projections

Projecting the 2007 Yankees

Thanks to everyone for the great response to the Red Sox projection thread, which even got a lead-panel mention in Soxaholix (sorry, Deadspin, but that’s the coolest thing ever). To simplify all the conclusions in that post, a combination of the two projections and the Jamesian Pythagorean theorum gave the Red Sox the possibility of 111, 105 and 99 wins. I like the 99-63 record best because it simply adds the wins gained from the projected additional runs scored and additional runs prevented to last year’s record, which already was affected by the use of bench players and poorer relievers. It’s not perfect, but this method at least counts for that performance by assuming it stays unchanged (and for the Sox, it can only get better, right?).

I won’t use the Bill James projections for the Yankees (buy the book for yourself!) because we determined that PECOTA was nearly identical on offense and far more realistic on pitching. Otherwise, I’lll do the projections the exact same way, with the same non-bench flaws, so we can have an apples-to-apples comparison.

General Baseball General Yankees

The Yankees Are Coming To Town!!!

In the early days of the motion picture, traveling movie theaters would bring films to remote villages. The provincial townsfolk would be able to experience for the first time this exciting new medium. Movies such as "Espiritu de la Colmena, El" depict such occurrences. It’s difficult for us 21st Century men and women to truly empathize with the experience of these villagers. It’s hard for us jaded urbanites (translated: New Yorkers) to be thrilled, let alone surprised, by anything. The sun having no alternative shone on the nothing new. We’ve seen it all. Done that. The price of the knowledge gained from our city experience is ennui. I’m yawning as I write this.

But imagine if there was something in this age that could make you feel truly awestruck. I’m not talking about Ethan Hawke accidentally spilling popcorn on your back as you watched "Crumb" at a NYC theater a few years back (that did, in fact, happen and the thespian apologized profusely and seemed a decent guy.). Celebrity is so cheap these days. I’m talking about true spectacle. I’m talking religious experience middle-ages style. Apparently, Major League Baseball might just very well have the antidote for our collective indifference: The New York Yankees!

Ballparks General Baseball General Yankees

Going Out Strong

Buster Olney reports that Yankee Stadium, in its final season of 2008, will be host to MLB’s All-Star Game for the third time, and the first since 1977 (and I need not remind you who claimed the October prize that season). We’ll take that as a good omen. One question: Will Philip Hughes be starting?

General Red Sox General Yankees Predictions and Projections

PECOTAing the Yanks and Sox

Baseball Prospectus has posted its PECOTA projections (subscription only). Here are a few Yanks- and Sox-related highlights:

  • PECOTA doesn’t see A-Rod having a bounce-back year. He’ll stay around the rather miserable 34 home run mark, knocking in 104 runs and batting .288.
  • It likes Big Papi a lot, although, again, he will not match his spectacular 2006. Ortiz is predicted to hit 41 dingers (I imagine 20 of those will be game winners).
  • Melky!!! His numbers don’t look great in his second year but 3 of his 4 comps do: Carlos Beltran, Roberto Alomar and Rickie Ashburn. Not too shabby.
  • Coco Crisp and Jason Varitek will both have bounce-back years. PECOTA has the Sox center fielder batting over .300, with an OBP over .360. His numbers do not match Johnny "Heart of the Yankees" Damon, but they’re in the same territory. Damon is projected to hit 18 homers and get on base at a .362 clip.
  • J.D. Drew and Bobby Abreu are very similar players with PECOTA giving the slight advantage in VORP to the man who most clearly resembles the love-child of Jose Canseco and Sammy Sosa (minus the steroids stigma). Abreu’s VORP: 21.2; Drew’s VORP: 19.6
  • Philip Hughes is projected to have a nice ERA and WHIP in limited innings: a 3.91 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 108 k’s in 130 innings. Of all the pitchers on both teams predicted to be starters next year, Hughes has the lowested projected ERA.
  • PECOTA’s thoughts on the Beckett v. Wang debate: Beckett bounces back (a little) with a 4.47 ERA and 23.7  VORP; Wang regresses  to a 4.35 ERA and a 21.5 VORP. They pitch almost exacty the same number of innings. Essentially, PECOTA has them having very similar years.
  • PECOTA thinks Dice-K will be good, along the lines of what Paul has predicted on this site: 162 strike outs in 182 innings and a 4.01 ERA. Schilling is predicted to put up very similar numbers, with the Japanese import having slightly more value.
  • PECOTA likes Robinson Cano’s upside. The first two comps on his list are Carlos Baerga and Rod Carew. He is projected to have another nice year, although PECOTA is somewhat conservative with his BA (.308).
  • From the "Might We Regret The Day We Traded Him" Category: PECOTA likes Hanley Ramirez, predicting a high VORP for the former Sock. I assumed PECOTA was high on Randy Johnson and was going to include him in this category, but it only sees the Big Unit as making 19 starts with an ERA of 3.97. In Arizona, I ain’t too impressed by those numbers.

There’s a lot more fun stuff which I don’t have time to cover. You might choose to put zero stock in these numbers. Anyway, I find them nice to look at during these boring empty months.