Pitchers and Catchers: Feb. 15, 2008

Dear fellow Yanks fans,

It is over.

All the best,

61 comments… add one
  • amen

    sam YF June 28, 2007, 12:52 am
  • not relating to this post, but I dont recall seeing anything about this on here before. I saw an ad tonite and wrote briefly about it in my blog, consider this a heads up, though im sure you Yankee fans are aware of the mini series.

    TJ June 28, 2007, 1:22 am
  • Now that we are out of the playoffs do you think Cashman can throw us a bone and resign Posada and Mo? Also please restructure Alex’s contract and sign him until his 45. At least give us that Brian. Oh yeah, wake up George and see if he can FIRE JOE please!

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 9:17 am
  • Outside of the 04 Series, this is the greatest single post I’ve ever seen on this site. Bravo, Nick!

    Regular_Brad. June 28, 2007, 9:20 am
  • Dear Nick,
    It’s not over ’til it’s over.
    The yanks will make a run at the wild card.
    You heard it here first.
    Chin up!

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 9:29 am
  • Now that we are out of the playoffs do you think Cashman can throw us a bone and resign Posada and Mo?
    Trisk: how long a contract would you sign these guys to? Posada is having a great year offensively, but defensively he’s been average. He’s getting older, for sure. Mo’s been fine, but hasn’t been used at all (no save opportunities, no saves, and Joe seems to refuse to put him out there in non-save situations except when Mo’s been riding pine for a week). It’s hard to actually know how he’s aging, since he’s not really pitching. How long do you ink these guys for? Or do you say good bye gracefully and trade some of their young chips for someone like Saltalamacchia instead? Or, even more heretically, trade Mo to an NL team in contention in need of a stud closer (Atlanta – Bob Wickman doesn’t exactly inspire fear). Would Mo even approve a trade?
    Painful as it might be to cut the cord to the late 90’s juggernaut (I know this feeling – the Celtics held on to the ’80s triumvurate and their sentimentality crippled the franchise), the Yankees may be better off retooling, leveraging minor league talent and guys at the end of their contract for other youngsters closer to the bigs or in the bigs, and work in the rest of the bluechippers when ready.

    SF June 28, 2007, 9:29 am
  • Yankee fans don’t get to do this, you’re supposed to be arrogant and entitled to the very end!

    LocklandSF June 28, 2007, 9:37 am
  • Salty (Who is a beast physically and skill wise) is not getting traded unless they can upgrade their offense and I am not sure the Yankees have a player like that. No way I move Cano for him. Secondbaseman are equally as difficult to find. I would rather get a FA. If they would do Melky for Salty, fine, but much more then that ehhh.
    Defensive issues aside I would sign Jorge in a second. (Remember Victor Martinez is an awful catcher and they trot him out there PROUDLY on a daily basis) 3 years, with the understanding that he could/would be in the Joe Girardi scenario in the final two. The options (FA’s) that are out there aren’t that much younger or that much better. I say sign him.
    As for Mo, I have been saying all year he is hurt and not being honest. Can he be effective, sure. But he is dominant like he used to be. His pitches aren’t as crisp. If he is healthy and Brian can find that out for certain 2 years MAX.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 9:41 am
  • ” His pitches aren’t as crisp.”
    Hard to tell if this is due to underuse, injury, or age.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 9:50 am
  • Just curious, SF, if you were Cashman, who would you get from atlanta in exchange for Mo? (serious answer, please)

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 10:02 am
  • I’d like to thank the Yankees for timing their suckiness to coincide with the Sox’ suckiness. Otherwise, I’d feel a lot worse about baseball this morning.

    Paul SF June 28, 2007, 10:09 am
  • Don’t know, Andrews. I mentioned Salty, though Trisk finds this unlikely. It’s more a question of whether the Yankees are willing to even think about “moving on”. As a YF, are you? It’s a tough call, for many reasons, some relating to performance, some relating to sentimentality.

    SF June 28, 2007, 10:48 am
  • Oh, by the way, it’s looking like Theo and most sane Red Sox fans were right about Damon, the jury is still out of course, but it’s looking good at this point.

    LocklandSF June 28, 2007, 10:59 am
  • I’m not ready to concede that we won’t make the playoffs. But it isn’t going to happen without a major change in the lineup, and maybe the manager. Frankly, though, I would rather just see the Yanks take it on the chin this year and retool over the next year or two for another run like we had in 96 – 00.
    I’d say re-sign Mo and Jorge to two-year deals. They aren’t the problems on the team this year and I’m kind of sentimental in regards to the fact that they came up through the farm system and have been Yankees all their careers.

    nettles-yf June 28, 2007, 11:10 am
  • I grew up spending my school year in Florida (mid-70’s to mid-80’s) and my summers on Cape Cod. This was back when Atlanta was the closest thing to a team that Florida had; so I have a special place in my heart for the Braves (since I’d see 15-20 games a year there).
    That said, Saltalamacchia isn’t going anywhere without an OVERWHELMING deal. Atlanta is a franchise that prides itself on homegrown talent. Chipper isn’t what he once was, but he is a lifer in Atlanta. Francoeur, McCann and Salty will be there a very long time. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Andruw resign there after the pitiful year he’s having.
    They don’t have the payroll freedom like they did in year’s past, so look for the Braves to keep cultivating their farm system.

    jp-sf June 28, 2007, 11:12 am
  • “As a YF, are you?”
    Maybe, but certainly not if that means giving up mo for salt :). We should have a better idea about mo by season’s end. I have to say that I think age is the reason for his struggles this year – he’s had other stretches on relative inactivity in the past; the difference in those years was that when he pitched after the layoff, he almost always pitched well. I’m with trisk – sign Jorge for 3, Mo for 2, unless someone makes an offer that can’t be refused.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 11:21 am
  • that was me.
    should read “of relative…”

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 11:24 am
  • I would be shocked if Mo were traded. It might make sense to do but it would outrage fans, media too much. I don’t think the front office would want to take the PR hit.
    That said, I agree with SF’s overarching point. The Yanks need to get younger at key positions and they should think about leveraging their young pitching talent for players who are close to ready (think Marte for Crisp as an example). I agree with Trisk. Restructure A-Rod’s contract so that he retires a Yank. I think he’ll age very well considering his athleticism and his sociopathic desire to be the best ever. Try as hard as you can to unload Abreu (but for whom?), Farnsworth (hey, the Braves liked him and were upset when they lost him to the Yanks), etc. This team needs to be restocked. Its current incarnation has three above average positional players (all on the wrong side of thirty) and aging expensive players.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 11:42 am
  • My main concern right not is 1B and the bench. The problem is there is nobody at Scranton to help either of those problems.
    Shelly Duncan has 19 HR’s and is a AAA All Star, but he’s 28 and an OF’R. Don’t think he translates into a ML player.
    Alberto Gonzalez is hitting .227, with an OBP of .270…..Looks like the scouts were right when the said he’s all glove.
    Eric Duncan is also hitting .227 with a .312 OBP, so much for him playing 1B on the ML level.
    Cody Ehlers, our only real 1B prospect (other then Miranda) is hitting .222 with 2 HR’s and an OBP of .325.
    There really isn’t firstbase help on the horizon, Brian needs to concede to the fact that we may have to move a Joba The Hut or Ian Kennedy to get a YOUNG 1Bman with a glove and some pop.
    My plan of attack:
    *Sign Jorge (3 yrs) and Mo (2 yrs)
    *Re-Work Alex’s contract
    *Trade for a 1Bman (Young, Young, Young)
    *Keep Hughes down all season, go with the 5 we have. Even when that ankle heals keep him down until Spring Training next season.
    *Fire Joe and Hire Joe G. before he’s taken.
    Sounds good to me.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 11:52 am
  • Looks like Shea should be a Yankee very very soon. Help us out here Sox fans, is this a good move personality wise?

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 11:57 am
  • Trisk, in other words, trade for Texeira. Are there other young first basemen available that I’m forgetting?

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 11:59 am
  • Help us out here Sox fans, is this a good move personality wise?
    Trisk. Really? That can’t be a serious question.

    Regular_Brad. June 28, 2007, 12:00 pm
  • Looks like Shea should be a Yankee very very soon. Help us out here Sox fans, is this a good move personality wise?
    Shea has had beefs with every manager he’s ever played for, and complained almost everywhere he’s been. Should work out fine – personality is over-rated.
    He’s better than Cairo, right?

    SF June 28, 2007, 12:00 pm
  • hey, he’s probably worth taking a chance on. He’s had streaks of effectiveness I think. But he’s a d*ck.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:02 pm
  • Shea was DFA’d by the Angels, so he’s moving on.
    The Yankees will get ever-so-slightly more dislikeable if they sign him. He’s an easy guy to root against, from my perspective, no matter who he plays for.

    SF June 28, 2007, 12:04 pm
  • By the way, I rather the Yanks didn’t hire Joe G., but I think his rejection of the O’s gig suggests to me that there is a plan in place that he’ll get the job once Torre moves on after this season.
    Girardi’s a little too small ball for my tastes and I find his personality on air off-putting.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:05 pm
  • Yeah that’s what I thought. But I thought Sox fans would have a sliver of something nice to say. Guess not, LOL.
    Nick, Girardi is the man. He is respected in that clubhouse and he is a player’s manager. He was a small ball, hit and run guy because that’s what he had in Fla. He may adapt to the team once he’s in. Still who wouldn’t like to see this team hit and run more and steal some bases?

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 12:08 pm
  • Still who wouldn’t like to see this team hit and run more and steal some bases?
    Should they do it just to do it? Or is this team not exactly put together to do it well? It’s a plodding, older team, and running, bunting, and moving too quickly might just result in lots of pulled hammys…

    SF June 28, 2007, 12:11 pm
  • The one thing that truly scares me is the mention of Girardi in this thread. Teixeira would be ok, if he can adapt to playing in NYC, trading your Yankees “lifers” would be ok to get younger, but this team in the hands of someone like Girardi would probably be a MONSTER. That scares me.

    jp-sf June 28, 2007, 12:12 pm
  • There have been leaks from the firing last year that Girardi is very controlling and anal (a Buck Showalter type) and I wonder how that would mix with a veteran club such as the Yanks. But I’m getting dangerously into the territory of baseball psychology. I will say that when he was a bench coach with the Yanks I found Torre to be conservative in his judgements; Torre had an especially bad year of decision-making with Girardi on the bench along side of him.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:13 pm
  • “It’s a plodding, older team, and running, bunting, and moving too quickly might just result in lots of pulled hammys…”
    Let’s not get crazy. With the exception of Jorge, assuming Johnny is at DH, everyone should be able to run. You don’t have to be a base stealer to hit and run, that’s the reasoning behind it. It’s not a matter of doing it to do it, it’s what they need right now. Who hits HR’s on this team right now? Alex. You can’t wait for Alex to hit a 3 run HR every game. Matsui, Abreu, Jorge, DJ all gap guys. The Days of Alex, Sheff, Giambi are gone fellas. We need to find another way to score.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 12:16 pm
  • tongue was half in cheek, Trisk.

    SF June 28, 2007, 12:21 pm
  • JP, I think the Braves have to trade Salty at some point. You say McCann and Saltalamacchia will both be there for life, but they’re both catchers, aren’t they? Absent a position change, it’s gotta happen. I’d say a potential trade of Saltalamacchia speaks to both the Sox’ and the Yanks’ weak points. The Braves could profit nicely playing one off the other — were they to make him available at the deadline or after the season.

    Paul SF June 28, 2007, 12:33 pm
  • Whoever gets him will profit greatly, this kid is a real player. Not that McCann isn’t. I just don’t see him coming to the Yankees, I think the Braves would take either a position player or a closer and short of Mo, I don’t think we have either to give up. Like I said if Shuerholz wants to do it for Melky or Tabata, sign me up. Other then that, I doubt it works.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 12:36 pm
  • Sorry SF, I am just fired up! LOL

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 12:38 pm
  • Salty has been playing 1st, hasn’t he??

    jp-sf June 28, 2007, 12:41 pm
  • I do think a Sox trade for Saltalamacchia would be very good — both for the stretch and for the future. I wonder if the Sox and Braves have ata ll discussed that possibility. The Sox might not want to switch catchers on Wakefield midseason (either teaching Salti how to catch the knuckler or thrusting Varitek into that role), which is understandable, but we’ve got to get rid of Mirabelli after this season, and Kottaras has shown nothing in AAA.

    Paul SF June 28, 2007, 12:42 pm
  • Yeah, they’ve been talking more and more about converting either him or McCann to first base.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:43 pm
  • by the way, when was the last time John Scheurholz lost a trade?

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:44 pm
  • wouldn’t Salty get back a Bucholz-type prospect?

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 12:45 pm
  • The Braves do love their pitchers…so does Salty warrant giving up a Hughes or a Lester/Bucholz???

    jp-sf June 28, 2007, 12:51 pm
  • If I’m either Cash or Theo, I don’t make the trade.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 12:54 pm
  • me

    Andrews June 28, 2007, 12:55 pm
  • the braves appear most likely to convert saltamachhia or what ever his name is to a first baseman

    TJ June 28, 2007, 12:57 pm
  • Also, if you get a Saltalamacchia, where do you play him on a regular basis? If you put him at 1st, what do you do with Lowell/Youk?

    jp-sf June 28, 2007, 12:58 pm
  • I think all this speculation over Salty would be based on the future of both teams. He is not going to come to either team and start in 2007. Also I don’t see him moving from behind the dish, he is a solid defensive catcher. I would definitely not give up Hughes for him. I would go as far as Joba The Hut or Ian. Historically Catchers take a while to pan out, if ever they ever do. Look at Ben Davis, JD Closser, this season Iannetta. So I wouldn’t spend a ton to get him.
    Young catcher to keep your eye on is Kurt Suzuki from the A’s. He is going to be a good one also.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 2:12 pm
  • That was me.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 2:36 pm
  • Trisk’s last comment on Salty is absolutely correct. If the Braves keep both, the best defensive alignment involves ‘macchia behind the plate and McCann at 1B (perhaps in ’08 if they keep both). If McCann comes on strong in the 2nd half, I wouldn’t be shocked if they trade him in the offseason and keep ‘macchia.
    That all being said, I’m not sure it makes sense from the Braves’ standpoint to trade either this season unless they fall completely out of the race. I’m not sure a power bat gets it done, unless it’s one who plays a premium defensive position. A young stud SP (he is, after all, the Hughes/Bailey of C prospects) should be the return on S—–, but they probably need both bats to contend this season, and their immediate pitching need isn’t an ace; Hudson/Smoltz have been fine at the top.
    Also, on Girardi, just how many of those young stud SPs did he run into the ground in Florida for no reason at the end of last year? To make an unneccessary analogy, do YFs want this to be true:
    Girardi : Hughes :: Baker : Wood.
    Also, Trisk, Salty is almost certainly worth more than Cano, unless you want to make the “MLB performance over potential” argument.
    And…the Braves have a second baseman. Kelly Johnson.
    .271/.373/.451. 13 2B, 6 3B, 8 HR, 5 SB.
    You might not want to give up Cano; don’t worry, they won’t ask for him.

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 5:00 pm
  • “don’t worry, they won’t ask for him”
    After a great April, Johnson’s numbers have fallen considerably in both May and June:
    April: .326 .473 .593 1.066
    May: .259 .322 .426 .748
    June: .228 .319 .329 .648
    Potential aside, that should raise some concern. Cano would be an upgrade.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 6:25 pm
  • that was me.

    Andrews June 28, 2007, 6:27 pm
  • So am I now allowed to point to how ridiculously awful Cano was early in the season? Or that Johnson, despite his lowered batting average, is STILL drawing a good number of walks, something Cano has shown little ability or interest in doing?

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 6:41 pm
  • well, they’re both young players and both have had prospect status. The question (to be determined by the Braves) is whether they believe Cano has a much bigger upside than Johnson (I have no idea). He did bat .342 at the age of 23, which is quite an accomplishment.

    Anonymous June 28, 2007, 6:44 pm
  • that was me

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 6:45 pm
  • It’s absolutely quite an accomplishment. My point (which I wasn’t clear on, perhaps) was that if Kelly starts having some hits fall in, those and his ability to walk make him valuable enough to the Braves, especially since they need their 2B to fill their leadoff role. Unless he continues to tank it, 2B is not a need for them.

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 6:54 pm
  • you don’t always go for need I guess is my point. Now, I have no idea what the Braves think about Cano. But it can be argued that Cano has shown flashes of superstar potential, which Johnson hasn’t yet. If they’re high on him, then there’s a chance they make the deal.

    Nick-YF June 28, 2007, 6:57 pm
  • Kelly Johnson is an overachiever. He’s a converted OF’r. I would imagine they would jump at a Cano offer.

    John - YF (Trisk) June 28, 2007, 7:07 pm
  • Kelly Johnson is not a converted OF’r. He was originally a SS prospect. He played OF for the Braves in ’05 because it filled a defensive need for them, and because he’d earned a promotion with his #s at Richmond (.310/.438/.581).
    Kelly Johnson is an overachiever?
    Kelly’s MiL OPS: .830
    Cano’s MiL OPS: .756
    I’m really stumped as to why Kelly is the bigger risk going forward.

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 7:20 pm
  • He was an overachiever with those gaudy numbers in April.
    The steep decline in ALL his numbers since then may mean that he can’t hit ML pitching.
    We’ll see as the season plays out…

    Andrews June 28, 2007, 7:59 pm
  • I’m just not sure it’s smart to label a guy an overachiever after just 3 months in the bigs, during all of which he’s shown good plate discipline.

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • I think the real point is why would the Braves give up a superb youngster for what may only be an upgrade over someone who is at or above league-average already. If you are going to trade a young stud, I think you trade that player for someone who fills a really big need, and second baseman, like Johnson or not, just isn’t a great need for the Braves.

    SF June 28, 2007, 8:06 pm
  • Hell Trisk, if they would jump at a Cano offer (and I still think they would hang up the phone immediately), I think the Yankees have to take it. Good-hitting, solid defensively, switch-hitting catchers are ridiculously rare. Much more rare and more neccessary than a LHH 2B who hits well with decent power and for most of his career has been allergic to walks. Heck, guys like Mark Loretta/Grudzielanek (yes, I know, no power here) are available every offseason, it seems.
    This guy could be the offensive equal of Jorge Posada, but also not wait until his mid-30s to spend any appreciable amount of time working on his defense. How often are players like that available?

    QuoSF June 28, 2007, 8:35 pm

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