Farnsworth out, Pudge in


How do you solve a problem when your All Star catcher goes down? By going out and acquiring another one, of course.

According to Buster Olney, the Yanks have acquired Ivan Rodriguez in a trade for Kyle Farnsworth. Farnsworth, the beleaguered reliever, had been throwing well of late, but the Yanks had long soured on Krazy Kyle and his unreliability. In Pudge, the team gets back a catcher hitting .295/.338/.417 in 328 plate appearances this year (.377/.423/.526 over 124 plate appearances since June 8th). He’s thrown out 18 of 50 would-be basestealers, a mark not quite as good as Jose Molina’s but not too shabby.

Off the bat, I’d call this trade a clear win for Brian Cashman and the Yanks. They’re trading one rental — a relief pitcher — for another rental — a catcher, and they’re upgrading from Farnsworth’s status as a Type B free agent to Pudge’s Type A. Plus, starting catchers are always more valuable than relief pitchers, and a catcher who can hit better than Jose Molina is a real upgrade for this team. Pudge will become the starting catcher for the rest of the season with Molina backing him up. This should spell the end of Chad Moeller’s run on the Yanks as well.

Nice pickup.

Categories : Transactions


  1. gxpanos says:

    Holy crap, Cash!

  2. UNION YES. says:


  3. mike says:

    Take him – figure Melancon will replace Farns within a week or two anyway, and this lengthens the line-up a bit, putting Molina back on the bench – and freeing a spot by dumping Moeller (bring back Gardiner??)

    • Kyle D. says:

      They probably don’t want to bring Gardner back up if he can’t get regular at-bats, at least they’ve been saying that pretty regularly. Maybe Shelley or Alberto Gonzalez.

      Melancon is awful close to his innings limit, so I don’t know if he’ll be on his way up. Have to see how he adjusts to AAA before you bring him up to the show. They’re probably reluctant to move him too much faster as they tried to keep him in AA the rest of the season but he just tore the competition up.

  4. Manimal says:

    im in the middle on this trade. Pudge is a tad under 300 while farnsworth is having a great rebounding year.

  5. Kyle D. says:

    Can’t complain. Farnsworth had turned his value up with his recent success and the bullpen has enough pieces to be successful without him. Nice swap.

    • mike says:

      cant count on Farns against the Sox, or a big spot. Not going to count on him in a big spot, thus try someone new.

      with him, the Devil we know is worse than the Devil we dont

  6. Mark says:

    I like it. Not a huge move, but gets Molina’s under-600 OPS out of the starting position without sacrificing defense. And we had a surplus of RH relievers anyway.

    • mike says:

      plus he is a FA after this year (draftpick likely equal to that we would get from Farns), and didnt trade any minor leaguers.

      Im not a huge cash guy, but there are still bullets in his pistol and he has filled the three big needs – LHP, Righty bat and Catch

  7. LiveFromNewYork says:

    We needed another catcher. Period. And Kyle drives us crazy.

  8. Alan says:

    Wow, this came out of absolutely nowhere. Krazy Kyle had finally been turning it around. At least this lets Molina go back to sitting on the bench and not being an absolute black hole in the lineup. Can we -PLEASE- DFA Moeller now? We really don’t need 3 catchers.

  9. Scott of 3 Kids Tickets says:

    DREAMS DO COME TRUE! I’ve been saying trade him while his value is at an all time high.

    I’m dancing in the office !!!


  10. mike pop says:

    either way im happy but pudges bat is much better than molinas obviously// we needed a catcher and like we do we made the best trade without giving up much

  11. jsbrendog says:

    i love it.

  12. A.D. says:

    Traded a type B free agent for a type A, not bad

    • Plus you can have Pudge in reserve should Jorge not respond to rehab. I’m not saying that’s likely, but the fact you can offer Rodriguez arbitration and possibly go year to year is another nice backup plan.

    • Joey H says:

      oh yeah and i went through that game thread you posted, and you took numerous shots at me. is it me or is a-rod supposed to tattoo guys like whoever pitched today? hes supposed to do that.

      • Geno says:

        Well, considering nobody has even hit .400 since Williams (let alone over .500), the answer to your question is no. There is no batter alive who is assumed to “tattoo” any pitcher alive. Baseball is far too difficult for such assumptions.

  13. Scott of 3 Kids Tickets says:

    BTW…I feel bad for Moeller. He’s done EVRYTHING we’ve asked of him and more (like playing 3rd base)…


    • jason says:

      There are more talented players that deserve playing time. Besides 500000 a year is more then most people make.

  14. Alex says:

    His offensive value is entirely wrapped-up in his batting average, he doesn’t get on base unless he has hit the ball.

    Is he a good defensive catcher at this point?

    Is there ever such a thing as an expendable bullpen piece for a contending team?

    • Scott of 3 Kids Tickets says:

      When you have a piece that you and everyone else in the park knows will implode during the playoffs…yes, he’s super expendible.


    • A.D. says:

      Still throwing out 36% of baserunners this year

    • Kyle D. says:

      Teams have trouble contending when they have to give regular at-bats to Melky Cabrera, Chad Moeller and Jose Molina. Plus they just picked up Damaso Marte, who at WORST is roughly as effective as Farnsworth.

      Effectively they swapped a bunch of prospects and Farnsworth for Marte, Nady and Pudge Rodriguez. Same or better relief core with definitive pluses at C and OF.

  15. Bill N. says:

    Well that was outta left field

  16. A.D. says:

    Britton, Bruney, or Strickland can come up near term in the pen

    Got Mo 9th
    Marte 8th
    Veras/Edwar 7th
    Robertson/call-up 6th or other

    Giese mop up

  17. Ivan R. says:

    Nice. The D will suffer a little as Pudge no longer has the cannon he used to have and Molina was having a great year behind the plate, but the offense gets a big jolt. The only thing I worry about is Molina’s work with the pitchers.

    I like it though. I’m Puerto Rican and Pudge is arguably the 2nd best Puerto Rican player ever. Glad to see him in pinstripes.

  18. liam says:

    Great swap… selling high on farnsworth and buying low on pudge

    It’s a tough loss, Farnsworth seemed like he had finally figured it out. We needed room for Bruney who is pitching well in AAA, and Marte should replace Farns as the setup guy.

    Great move Cash.

    A) Don’t agree on the type A all the way, I think he would accept arbitration…

    B) Interestingly enough, I think this puts us in a stronger position to trade Melky…

    • iYankees says:

      Actually, I would think that this would give us more incentive to keep him. At least now he can bat at the very bottom of the order where he belongs.

    • TurnTwo says:

      how does it put them in a position to trade melky bc they have a new catcher?

      if anything, now they can afford to keep melky in CF, bc they’ll get some additional offense from the catching position, right?

      although it obviously shows Cashman is going for it.

      great deal. very happy.

      i still think Seattle will come to their senses and hand over Washburn, too.

      • cult of basebaal says:

        melky in CF would be more palatable if joey joe joe started playing christian in CF against all LHP … that would be a useful platoon for the rest of the year.

    • A.D. says:

      Well he’s a type A free agent regarless if he accepts.

      Be a back-up catcher (assuming Posada is healthly) or open market to be a starter? He’s going to co open market

    • Jamal G. says:

      No way he accepts arb, the way teams are always searching for depth at his position, his agent will ensure him of a multi-year deal.

    • jsbrendog says:

      i forgot about bruney, man if he comes back and is lights out again this trade looks even better

  19. The line to start sucking Cashman’s c$#k forms to the left.


  20. Jamal G. says:

    Three reason this is a UUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE trade:

    1. As A.D. and myself has said, traded a Type-B for a Type-A.

    2. Traded from a vast position of strength to upgrade a huge weakness on the team, offensively.

    3. Now we have TWO Type-A guys in Abreu and Pudge.


  21. Mike A. says:

    Man, Farnsworth was ready to cry on the postgame. Seriously.

    • Joltin' Joe says:

      I feel bad for him, he has to go play on another AL contender. Boo hoo.

      Pudge could’ve netted them a much better reliever, why did they settle for him?

      • Kyle D. says:

        He throws in the upper 90s. They’re going to turn him and Zumaya into starters. Only idiots would keep them in the bullpen!


        • Jamal G. says:

          Farnsworth failed as a starter in the Cubbies’ system, that ship has long sailed. They are actually contemplating whether to shift Joel Zumaya back into the rotation for 2009 (he was a starter up until his MLB debut in 2006).

    • KW says:

      Man, that sucks. I’ve always liked Kyle and he always seemed to me to be a guy who wants to do well but sucked at times. I feel bad for the dude.

    • Ivan says:

      Wow that’s surprising.

  22. Ivan R. says:

    That’s 18 of 50 caught compared to 26 of 55 for Molina. Not 18 of 32….

  23. Ellis says:

    So psyched about this trade.

    Article needs a slight correction though – I-Rod has thrown out 18 baserunners but allowed 32 stolen bases, good for 36%. Jose Molina has thrown out 47% this season.

    Still, obviously a huge upgrade. Now this looks like a playoff contender!

  24. gxpanos says:

    Good trade, Cash is hitting on all cylinders.

    But what about Washburn? We NEED to get rid of Sir Sidney/Ras. Is Seattle really going to demand a prospect?

  25. Ben K. says:

    The caught stealing percentage data has been corrected. Thanks. I was writing a bit on the fly.

  26. Jon W. says:

    This is why Brian Cashman should never go anywhere.

    • TurnTwo says:

      continues to make this team better little by little, and hasnt given up a single impact player who was going to really help this team come 2008, 2009, or 2010. unreal.

  27. Josh says:

    Put it this way NONE of us would have ever wanted Kyle Farnsworth on the mound in a game that mattered. This past friday night I almost had a heart attack when they didn’t let Joba come out for the 8th, and sure enough, Farns walks the leadoff batter and Mo needs to get a five out save.

    Good riddance to Farns, and no matter what Pudgicito (sorry Dionar) does, this is positive.

  28. Ivan says:

    Great trade. Pudge gives us a righthanded bat who can catch and defend. Molina becomes a viable backup.

    Ironic that Farnsworth gets traded, that Mark Melancon is promoted to Triple A.

    Love the trade.

  29. Joltin' Joe says:

    So we gave up Tabata, Karstens, McCutchen, Ohlendorf and Farnsworth for Nady, Marte and I. Rodriguez. We now have how many Type-A candidates? At least two of which (Marte/Pudge) that we shouldn’t really need at all. I might be wrong on Damaso, he does have a club option so I don’t really know where that one goes.

    • TurnTwo says:

      they’ll keep Marte and his $6 million option for next season, IMO. that would be the right choice. strong lefty presence on a high money, but 1 year deal. this era of baseball economics, thats a no brainer.

    • A.D. says:

      Marte has a 6 mil club option for next year

    • Jamal G. says:

      Bobby Abreu, Ivan Rodriguez, Damaso Marte, and Andy Pettitte are the guaranteed Type-A designations. The only two guys I definitely seeing not being on this team in 2009 is Abreu and Rodriguez. They should also both reject arbitration offers by the Yanks. Marte’s option might be picked up ($6M for ’09) and Andy Pettitte, if he plays in 2009, will play only in the pinstripes.

  30. BigBlueAL says:

    Can you believe at first I actually said to myself, why are we trading Farnsworth!!!! Then I woke up and realized the HUGE difference in offense between Molina and Pudge and even though he may not throw like he used to the reputation you know is still there. Cashman should go to the World Series of Poker cause he is the master at bluffing. This came so out of nowhere its crazy. Say what you will about Cashman, but after reading how depressed he was after last night’s loss and then making the trades he has made in the past week w/o sacrificing the future but strengthening the present significantly, how can you not LOVE Brian Cashman!!!!!!!!!

    • DaveM says:

      Funny… That is the same exact reaction I had. I was actually pissed when I first heard about it. Mostly because Kyle seems like a decent guy, and Pudge never seemed like a team player. He used to have a rep as a guy who would hurt his pitching staff by calling for a fast ball to make it easier to throw out runners. Allowing the batter to sit on a heater….. That’s what I’ve heard any way. Never actually saw it myself.

  31. mustang says:

    WOW!!!!! WOW!!!!!
    Heard it in the car. NO WORDS
    Cashman is fucking amazing right now.

  32. stuart says:

    great trade… pudge is better by far then Molina offensively even though Pudge is not what he was.

    the Yanks have many legit pen arms in AAA that can fill in..

    In essence the pen swapped kyle for marte and added there strting LF and catcher….

    Cash has done great and the last piece of course is a SP.. If they do not find one, they need to give Kennedy another chance Ponon is not going to cut it.

    BTW if Joba stays focused and does not get hurt man is he going to be GREAT….

  33. Michael says:

    If we offer Pudge arbitration and he accepts, we have a better backup catcher to complement Posada. If Pudge walks for a multi year deal, we get the draft picks so long as they’re not first round protected (picks 1-15).

    • A.D. says:

      Well we get picks regardless, Supplemental 1st round, 1st round if unprotected, 2nd round if protected, so either way we net a pick. Also chances are Pudge gets signed by a contender, that would be un-protected

    • Mike A. says:

      He’s not going to accept. His options will be decline and sign on as a starter elsewhere, or accept and backup Posada.

      • DaveM says:

        I’ve heard on YES that Posada might not be ready to catch to start next season. This might sound crazy, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Jorge was playing mostly 1b next year. That still doesn’t mean that Pudge will be the catcher, but you never know.

    • Count Zero says:

      Pudge backup Jorge? Are you serious? Like he would ever agree to do that…

      • Nate says:

        Well hey, if that happened, the Yanks would have an even better backup catcher that could split the time with Posada to keep his body rested for the rest of the years of his contract.

  34. Jack says:

    This doesn’t mean we’re bringing LaTroy back, does it?

  35. LiveFromNewYork says:

    Anyone who doubts Cash at this point is an idiot.
    Both his farm development and his trades are great. And I was one who knocked him all the time. But I love it when a plan comes together.

    • mustang says:

      “And I was one who knocked him all the time. ”
      Add me to that list, but at least I can learn Mr. Cashman has put me in my place and I love him for it.

  36. Manimal says:

    What are the odds that Phil Hughes pitches the 8th inning for the yankees this year.

  37. Rayblay says:

    I’M GONNA CRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I love Farnsy, and Pudge is such an a**

  38. Simon B. says:

    Wow, is Pudge really going to be a Type A? He’s been okay this year, but pretty well below-average last, so it seems unlikely to me.

      • the most felonious vocalist in the wide world of showbusiness says:

        They must use some terrible stats to get those rankings for the second base, shortstop, and third base group. Alex Rodriguez is below Michael Young, Miguel Tejada, Robinson Cano, Derek Jeter, and Mike Lowell. I suppose the first four can be justified somewhat (not to me, but still) by the scarcity of middle infielders but there is no way that Mike Lowell was a better player than Alex Rodriguez over the 2006 and 2007 seasons. I’m thinking batting average plays a large role in these rankings which makes Ivan Rodriguez a shoo-in for Type A status after the season.

    • Jamal G. says:

      It’s not compared to the entire league, it’s compared to a group of positions. Group 3 is the group that compares only Catchers. So Pudge only has to be one of the top offensive Catchers in the A.L.

  39. Mike W. says:

    Absolutely sick deal for the Yanks and Cash! Cash certainly has given the Yanks everything they need (albeit a new 5th starter would be nice) to take it home this year. I am so psyched with the past two deals….

  40. Manimal says:

    Just when we thought 8th inning situation was taken care of and Joba’s transition was considered a mission accomplished we give away our 8th inning guy. We have some options, Bruney, Melancon,bump up edwar, ect but none were as stable as edwar.

  41. CB says:

    Fantastic trade.

    Molina was hitting at replacement level this year. No matter how good your line up is you still only get 27 outs and carrying even one player producing at replacement level will cost you wins.

    There’s only so much you can “make up” for carrying a replacement player at any position – even catcher.

    BP has looked at the impact of carrying a replacement level bat in the line up – the impact is very large and has often led to the difference between making and missing the playoffs.

  42. Ross says:

    They only get the draft pick compensation if they offer Pudge arbitration which is a risky proposition.

  43. Joe says:

    only downside of this trade is I won’t be able to type “Krazy Kyle” as often as I do now. Love Cash-money

    • Joey says:

      Don’t know what happened to the “Y” in my name. Oh well. Perfect “sell high” example on Farnsworth, it wasn’t too long ago I was calling him Farnsworthless everyday

      • Kyle D. says:

        Sure, he makes 10M or so, but its a one year contract and he probably is looking for more insurance at this point in his career. Especially considering he’s not going to be able to showcase anything when he’s a backup. He’s not going to jump back into the market after a year of backing up and expect to get anything close to what he will if he goes FA this year.

  44. Jake says:

    I absolutely love this deal. The upgrade from type-b to a is key.

  45. cult of basebaal says:

    this is from mr cashman, to all you doubters …


  46. Jake says:

    Cashman needs to be extended. I understand championships is the endgame, but Cash has still done a great job.

    • mustang says:

      Are you kidding Hank and Hal are looking at each other right now and saying fuck he just double his salary.

  47. mustang says:

    How does that right-handed line-up look now if they could ever get Matsui back as a DH and of the bench? WOW

  48. daneptizl says:

    I like it as long as Pudge doesn’t ask for 90% fastballs.

  49. Mark B says:

    I have been critical of Cashman earlier this year, but after the Pudge and Nady/Marte deals, Cashman is Da Man!!! What a great deal….no way would Farnie been reliable come September / October. Finding out this was a Type B for a Type A deal was even better!

  50. Brian says:

    So Inge is full-time, I guess. If they bring in their AAA backup (not Moeller, though don’t you think he could have been part of the deal?), it’s Dane Sardinha of the Famous Sardinha Brothers.

    • Jobu says:

      I was thinking the same thing. Why do the Tigers make this deal? Inge has stated repeatedly that he doesn’t want to catch and they have no organizational depth at that position. I think Max St. Pierre would be the call-up instead of Sardinha though. I guess another deal could be coming for Detroit.

  51. pat says:

    of course cash is gonna produce….. its a contract year

  52. Haggs says:

    Last year, all he could get for Farnsworth was a broken down Bob Wickman.

    This year he gets Pudge and fills a glaring need. That’s like swatting away a dunk and hitting a 3 pointer on the other end (or maybe it isn’t really like that at all, I”m just giddy the Farnsworth era has ended).

    Farnsworth has looked better this year compared to years past, but everyone who has ever seen him pitch knew he was not to be trusted when the chips were down – including Girardi – who wisely pulled him from Friday’s game in Fenway before he could poop on Joba’s great start.

    Well done Mr. Cashman.

    Molina will likely still catch Mussina, and Pudge will catch the rest of the time.

  53. McCann says:

    Fuck the pitching is gonna suck without Jose Molina

    • Kyle D. says:

      Lets move for Varitek. I’ve heard his game-calling more than makes up for his .210 average and his noodle arm.

  54. Manimal says:

    What about the Rasner/Moeller Fiasco.

  55. GoYankees says:

    Good job Cash building a farm system that allows flexibility to make these moves

    • Captain Wiley says:

      Exactly right. For years when the players we coveted became available we had no chips to trade. That led to us having to fill holes through free agency with big, lengthy contracts that have crippled our flexibility recently. It was a never ending cycle that finally appears to be coming to an end. Not only that, the potential FA designations of some of these recent acquisitions could pay huge dividends with the potential early round picks we could get. The Yankees have an enormous advantage in the early rounds of the draft with their money, allowing players like Brackman and Cole to fall in our lap.

  56. Newman says:

    Mike, you think Melancon will get a shot in the bigs this year because of this deal? I know his innings are pretty high up there given the TJ – you think a promotion is on the horizon or will he stay at AAA for the remainder of the season?

  57. mustang says:

    Buster Olney on ESPN just put the chances of Yanks getting Jarrod Washburn at 50%. Everyone else seems to think the is deal dead, but I’m betting it gets done at the end.

    • Jake says:

      But the deal would make way to much sense for the Mariners to do such a deal.

      • mustang says:

        The bottom line is that the Mariners are trying to shop him, but from all reports they have no takers. The Yankees and Mariners are playing chicken my bet is on Cashman.

        • Jake says:

          I guess you missed my point…

          I am fully aware of the situation, the question though is: are the Mariners? They have proved to be an inept organization for quite some time. What I was saying was that, the Mariners wouldn’t know a good deal if it slapped them in the face. There is no reason for them to keep him. They should be thanking the baseball gods that someone would take his contract. It’s clear that they aren’t winning this year or next. This time next year he only loses value as he becomes a rental; this is on top of continuing to pay his large salary. If the Mariners were at least half competent, they would realize that now is the time to deal him. The Mariners never do anything that makes sense.

          • dbroncos31 says:

            We just got a 22 year old RHSP with 4 pitches (Marlins’ #5 prospect) for a 38 year old LHRP.

            Bill Bavasi doesn’t run this team anymore.

            Also if we put Wash on waivers teams will take him. We don’t need to deal him tonight.

  58. nick blasioli says:

    lets try to get washburn…and this will seal the deal…great job mr. cashman even though i bashed you before…never again…you floored us all with that trade…good job…one more please….

  59. Brian says:

    listening to cash’s press conference, sounds like the emotion of losing farnsworth today (and I’m not doubting that bit of emotion is real) is a much easier discussion to have than the “thanks, but we’re going with the young guys” discussion they would have with kyle in the off-season. this is a bit of luck and a bit of genius on cash’s part.

    and what can we say about dave dombroski now? i can’t help but think the tiges are doing us some kind of favor here.

  60. Joseph M says:

    It’s a bad trade, It’s a great trade. I love Melky but 3 month long nose dive left no choice. The bottom of the line-up was killing us something had to be done, and this is something. IROD is a major upgrade offensively over Molina it’s a no brainer.

  61. E-ROC says:

    Yanks traded Latroy Hawkins to the Astros for a minor leaguer according ESPN’s trade blog.

  62. Phil McCracken says:

    I wouldn’t be so sure that Pudge wouldn’t accept arbitration. Its 13 mil.

    If Boras doesn’t see a huge market for him, he might tell Pudge to take the arbitration then the Yankees would have a ton of money tied up in catchers next year. Jorge 13M, Pudge 13M, Molina 2M. That would be 28M in catchers.

    • dbroncos31 says:

      Exactly. What matters to veterans is the total money. If he can’t get a 2/15 type deal he could easily accept 1/13.

      Although if Posada is having trouble catching that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing

  63. [...] in the brouhaha over the Pudge-for-Farnsworth deal was a stellar Yankee win. Prior to a very tough series against the Angels, the Yanks delivered a [...]

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