What fate Melky?

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On the one hand, we have an unnamed American League scout: “In a few years, Melky will be playing in some independent league. Or in the Mexican League.” On the other hand, we have Tim Marchman’s urging us not to write off Melky so quickly. It’s the old numbers vs. scouting debate on display for all to see. The scouts don’t like what they see, but Marchman sees historical precedents for players exiled to the Minors who have managed to turn things around. As always, time will tell.

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  • MD

    Banking on Melky is just one of the miriad of moves (no Johann, outspent in LA FA, outpicked and outspent in recent draft) that indicate to me that $ are more important than winning to the non-George’s……I see the early 60’s with Dan Topping and Del Webb repeating itself…..low investment in prep for sale (once George is gone)…..I’m not saying I disagree with all the moves, just sense a parallel to what I saw back then…..interesting that Yaz is in the news, since he was one of the many talents the Yanks passed on back in the late 50’s and early 60’s on their way toward “financial sanity”. Hope I’m wrong.

    • steve (different one)

      is this post a parody?

      the Yankees committed almost $400M this winter to A-Rod, Posada, and Mariano.

      they took on ANOTHER $8M at the deadline and were willing to take Washburn’s money as well.

      they pass on one big name in 50 years and now we are rooting for the Royals?

      your argument about the LA FA’s is nonsense. they walked away from Inoa because the guy agreed to a deal and then backed out. Cole refused to even hear what would have been a very large offer and put the Yankees’ draft budget right up with everyone else’s.

      Hal has already said he plans to open the wallet this offseason.

      i’m really at a loss.

    • JohnnyC

      They offered Yaz $60,000 in 1958, which was quite a lot of money back then. His father demanded $100,000…and got it from the Sox after Yaz played at Notre Dame for a year. Money aside, Yaz Sr. just wanted his son to make the bigs a lot sooner than he would have trying to buck the Yankees’ loaded system (remember we’re talking 1958). Ironic, but by the time Yaz made it to the Sox in 1962, if he had signed with NY, the Yankees would have had a mid-60s to late-60s outfield of Yaz-Pepitone-Murcer. Impressive. And Yaz and his dad were both big Yankees fans. Sort of makes you think about Gerrit Cole’s decision.

  • Chris

    I think an interesting comparison to Melky is Carlos Beltran. Beltran was about league average for his first 2 seasons in the majors, but posted a 69 OPS+ in his third season, when he was 23. He was sent down to the minors that year, then came back to be a very productive center fielder. Up to this point, this seems like a very similar career path to Melky, who has a 68 OPS+ in the season he turns 23.

    • jsbrendog

      i pray to jesus, budha, flying spaghetti monster and anyone else i can think of we see melky hitting 9 hr in a playooff run to the ws in 3 or 4 yrs

      • Old Ranger

        For us , of course. 27/09?

        • Kyle D.

          Ok, the 27/09 thing is driving me crazy. What the hell is it in reference to? Or should I just feel like an idiot for not realizing?

          • Ivan

            27th championship in the year 2009.

            • Kyle D.

              Ok… so I do feel like an idiot.

              • jsbrendog

                its ok, i just ignored it not wanting to be the guy who asked and didnt get it either til someone else did in a thread awhile ago lol

      • Flying Spaghetti Monster

        Your wish is granted.

        • Count Zero

          I knew my blind, completely unfounded faith would be justified eventually!

    • steve (different one)

      yes, but Melky doesn’t have Beltran’s tools. it’s not even close.

      Melky is never going to be Beltran, he’s never going to be Bernie.

      what he will probably be is a pretty nice 4th OFer for the Yankees next year.

      • bklynJT

        I wonder if everyone was saying the same thing about Beltran the year he posted a 69 ops+ and was sent down to the minors.

        • Chris

          More importantly, were people in KC cursing the fact that they traded away Damon so that the young kid who had regressed each of his 3 years in the majors could get a chance to start in center?

      • Geno

        And a cost-controlled 4th outfielder is more valuable than some may think.

    • JohnnyC

      Except Melky is nothing like Beltran skill-wise. Marchman is right to think that all is certainly not lost for Melky and the Yankees are still pencilling him in for CF in 2009 (pending what occurs in the offseason) but, come on, the ceilings of both players are soooo different.

      • Chris

        So you were following Kansas City Royal prospects in 2000? Or are you basing this on what he has done since then/

    • A.D.

      Beltran was also a fairly large prospect, that got sent to the minors because he was having a bad season, and needed an attitude adjustment

      • JohnnyC

        Beltran has the potential to be a 40/40 man. Melky? He’ll likely never have 40 XBH in a season and doesn’t run fast enough to get more than 15 SBs. He’s Gary Matthews without steroids…if that.

        • Chris

          Melky had 40 XBH last year.

          and of course there is no hind sight in the analysis of Beltran. Scouts (and numbers guys) are wrong all the time. I don’t think there is anyone that thinks Melky will be a 40/40 player, but he still very likely could be an above average CF.

    • http://www.blogtalkradio.com/baseballdigestdaily Eric SanInocencio

      I wish, but I just don’t see the same talent in these two. Call it eyes, but to me they aren’t comparable in terms to natural ability.

  • jsbrendog

    mark this thread in your minds so if melky becomes a star we can all thank flying spaghetti monster

    • Old Ranger

      Yup, sounds reasonable to me!
      Uh, what if he just fades away in to the dark places? Flying spaghetti wasn’t cooked enough? That’ll do.
      It would be nice to see him back in the show as a starter, next year…along with X-Man (LF), Brett (CF), Melky (RF). All of them hitting league avg., or better with stellar defence. Be a novel approach, don’t you know! 27/09?

      • JohnnyC

        What? You don’t think a team full of aging DHs who can’t run, field, or hit with RISP demonstrates great baseball vision? Seriously, I’m hoping the organization knew this was a transitional year due to the expiring contracts. The moves they make in the offseason will be very telling.

        • steve (different one)

          do we really believe the ability to “hit with RISP” is something any team can predict before the season?

          • JohnnyC

            No, it’s the product of a coherent team offensive approach. It’s about role-playing, making contact and, at the very least, moving runners and avoiding double plays. In an offense like the Yankees this year, ARod and Giambi have to try to do too much. The incredible K rates with runners on base shows that. The Earl Weaver 2 walks and a 3 run homer offense works if you have guys with high OBP hitting ahead of sluggers. Well, this year, Jeter and Abreu are not getting on base much above the league average and the bottom of the order, due to injuries and Cano sucking, doesn’t get on base at all. When home runs occur, they’re solo jobs.

            And who’s we?

            • Chris

              A-Rod has not been trying to do too much with RISP. He’s at .253/.410/.434. This suggests that he’s cutting down his swing and taking pitches. That sounds like a very good approach to have with RISP.

            • Old Ranger

              No, it’s the product of a coherent team offensive approach. It’s about role-playing, making contact and, at the very least, moving runners and avoiding double plays.
              ***********************
              Now that I agree with, Chris!
              It has always been that way, when one has a team like Indians and Orioles, in the old days…hit’um hard and far, will get one to the play-offs. you get there, then what, good pitching will shut you down…most of the time.
              That is what has happened to the Yanks the last few years. Until the team changes their approach; going with very good pitching and basic good all around defence, hitting within the situation as presented. Not trying to go for the 5 run HR.
              Granted, right now some of the guys are trying to do to much…instead of moving the line along. Oh, the WE is, most of the people that understand the game. 27/09?

      • steve (different one)

        if that is the Yankee OF next year, they are basically starting the season with zero chance to make the playoffs.

        • JohnnyC

          If they signed Tex, they could live with that outfield (as long as Jeter, ARod, Cano, and Posada had at least average seasons). The pitching staff would be much happier with the defense of that outfield. But, you’re right, without an added bopper like Tex, Dunn, Burrell, whomever, we’d be begging for runs once again.

        • Old Ranger

          Maybe, maybe not.
          Who really knows how well they would hit, we do know they could save more then one run, or one game. Good play from the others along with good pitching would make it work reasonable well, I think. Maybe I think this way, because I have seen it work before. Good pitching and good defence will win many more games then power hitting, with suspect pitching and defence. Last nights game is example #1.
          I am not claiming I AM right, just saying, why not? 27/09?

  • A.D.

    Melk is probably a Ricky Ledee type, talent & ability to go on a tear, sure, but actually putting it all together for a quality major league career, maybe not. I hope Melk does it, I just wouldn’t bet on it

    • JohnnyC

      Juan Rivera’s no superstar but, geez, he’d be awfully useful to have around…but I guess he didn’t have a belly full of guts and an AARP card.

      • A.D.

        hopefully they can resign Rivera this offseason

  • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

    I agree with the 1st scout. Melky will bounce around the minors and a few clubs in the majors then end up in Mexico, and Indie League or maybe Japan.

  • bill

    Cashman is obviously not the best talent evaluator in the world. I think Melky is a fourth outfielder at best who would make a nice defensive replacement late in games. If he plays everyday, he gets exposed. Kind of like Endy Chavez for the Mets, although Melky doesnt have his glove.

  • bill

    Historically, the Yankees have won with great centerfielders. Dimaggio, Mantle, Williams, Cabrera? The last name doesnt belong there. The Yankees will NEVER win a championship with Melky Cabrera as their centerfielder, or Brett Gardner for that matter. Melky Cabrera is destined to become a fourth outfielder, while Brett Garder is destined to be the next Homer Bush. The only centerfielder in the Yankees system with the potential to be great is Austin Jackson. Hopefully, the future list of great Yankee centerfielders will read: Dimaggio, Mantle, Wiliams, Jackson.

    • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

      Is Jackson the real deal or an over hyped minor leaguer that wont pan out like the rest?

      • bill

        Jackson has a better chance to succeed in the majors than Cabrera. He has more talent and tools and Cabrera. Cabrera was hyped only by the Yankees, while Jackson is listed in several national prospect lists like Baseball America, which Cabrera never was. I’m not saying Baseball America is always right or that Austin Jackson will definately be a star, but I’ll take my chances with Jackson over Cabrera and Gardner any day, and most scouts will tell you the same.

        • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

          Hype comes from the media and mostly bloggers. I’ll admit that I don’t follow the minors closely. I’m just tired of being disappointed when “the guy” comes up from AAA and stinks.

          Right now Jackson is in AA. He seems to have decent numbers too.

          What I’m looking at is that the 4 OFers at Scranton are scrubs. Why can’t Jackson break that line up?

          • steve (different one)

            What I’m looking at is that the 4 OFers at Scranton are scrubs. Why can’t Jackson break that line up?

            that’s not the way it works.

            • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

              Explain.

              • bill

                Personally, I dont think what you were talking about would cause any harm, but alot of people on this blog think they know everything and think it would be absolutely devastating to promote Austin Jackson to AAA or to the majors in September. I was told those sort of propositions were “retarded” and “absolute crap” to name a few. I agree with you, Jackson should be in AAA right now.

                • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

                  One of the reasons I like this blog is that the writers don’t over hype.

                  Anyone who reads my blog will see very little coverage of the minors at all.

                  As for Jackson, MiLB lists him as prospect #49, you said BA thinks highly of him. Thats great.

                  Bottom line is that journeyman Ben Broussard is starting for SWB, not Jackson.

                  When Jackson is hitting .300 at AAA and gets his 1:5 strike out ratio down some, then I’ll consider him a prospect.

              • Old Ranger

                Steve (d.o.) may be to tied up (w/work) to answer that question. I will endeavor to try.
                He has to adapt to each level as he moves up. Until he shows he can handle the level he is at…why move him? They will move him to AAA when the playoffs start (for AAA), more then likely. Look what happened to IPK, Phil…some said they were moved before they were ready, true or false…I don’t know.
                Basically, that is why. Steve can do a much better job then I, I have a habit of thinking people know more then they do. No, disrespect to you. You asked, at least.

                • http://nyyu.blogspot.com Mike @ NYYU

                  I know nothing…just ask my wife.

  • Adrian-Retire21

    If The Yankees were hitting like last year no one would have cared of he’s lousy hitting.

  • bill

    Chris’s comments earlier that Cabrera’s situation is similar to Beltran’s is utter bullshit. Cabrera is NOWHERE NEAR the talent that Beltran is. To make that comparison is EXTREME wishful thinking on Chris’s part to say the least. I hope that Cabrera can be Beltran too, but I know that would also mean that Brett Gardner would be the next Mickey Mantle.

    • jsbrendog

      again, were you a royals fan in 200 or so when he got sent down? he was absolutely terrible and i doubt people then were saying ohmygod!!11!! he is such a wonderful talent and will be a superstar one day. no one ever realy heard of him until he went to houston and hit all those hr and he had 3 yrs of regression into awfulness before he put together any semblance of positive ml experience.

      is melky as good as beltran? maybe, maybe not, only time will tell

      • bill

        At least you could see that he had talent, something that Melky doesnt possess a whole lot of. It hurts me to say that, because he was one of my favorite players last year and I always thought the Melkman would deliver, but I really feel he’s been exposed this year. The odds of Melky Cabrera having a Beltran career are slim to none.

  • Old Ranger

    Just so some will understand, Brett doesn’t have to be anyone other then himself to be better then Melky was this year.
    Now, next year is the challenge, can he hit well enough to play for the Yanks? I don’t know, no-one does, I am trying to be optimistic. Being the optimist I say; why not have X-Man Brett and Melky (if he can earn it) or a FA in the OF next year? It could work out, we may know better next ST or FA signings this winter. I don’t trust Melky to improve enough to play in the show, next year. But, one never knows, does one. 27/09?

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  • Rob_in_CT

    One thing about Melky: he came out of nowhere (and may well return!). I don’t recall him ever being hyped as a big prospect. He was a nice surprise at a time when the team was desperate for a CFer. So I can’t get all that pissed off about it, ya know?