Baseball-wise, Manny might not be worth it


For the better part of the last few months, I’ve been pushing Manny as a potential piece for the Yanks’ lineup. The problem, of course, with Manny is his fielding. He has become a liability in the field almost to the point where an AL team that signs him would do so as a DH, and the Yankees already have a DH in the oft-injured Hideki Matsui.

Yesterday, in the comments to my brief piece on payroll, I got into a debate with long-time RAB fan Dan about Matsui and Manny. I believed that Manny would such a force that the Yanks should sign him now and worry about Matsui later. But Dan disagreed, and in a well-reasoned piece on The Poor Man’s Analyst, Dan offers up his take:

Let’s aggressively project Manny for 40 runs above average next season. He then gets a positional adjustment of -15 for playing DH instead of the outfield. [We don't need to compare him (or Matsui) to replacement because we're not figuring total value, which would be versus a replacement player, we're just comparing the two of them in similar playing time. If you really want to, add 16 or 17 runs to the total to approximate a replacement level comparison in slightly limited playing time (~140 games)]. So that’s 25 runs above average for Manny. Doing the same thing for Matsui now…. his 2007 had him as 20 runs above average in 143 games, so that’s 5 runs above average for Hideki.

So for 2009, Manny is projected to be 20 runs above what Matsui would provide. That’s probably what people expected, I know I didn’t think the gap wold be any smaller. But Manny is reportedly demanding a 3-year deal in the neighborhood of $65-70 million. Are those 20 runs worth the $11 million per win (over Matsui) that they would cost? Is any win worth $11 million?

I can’t tell you the answer, that’s for the Steinbrenners to decide. For those people who say it’s worth it, I’m going to spend a little time thinking of other ways the Yankees can get those two wins over what Matsui provides for less money. Anyone care to make any suggestions for finding those missing 20 runs?

That’s a compelling case against Manny with some not-so-outlandish statistical assumptions to back it up. Perhaps Mark Teixeira would be the better target after all.

Of course, there is a real problem though with Dan’s assumption about Matsui’s health. He’s played 140 games just once over the last three seasons. In 2006, he missed time due to a bad wrist break, but in 2007, even while playing 142 games, he suffered knee problems. His 2008 was cut short due to his balky knees, and while he was playing, his power was significantly off his 2007 mark.

My belief that Manny could fill a need comes about because I don’t think we can pencil Matsui in for 140 games of 2007 level production. He’s going to be 35 and playing on two surgically-repaired knees. To me, that’s a recipe for disaster, and if he goes down, the options to replace him are dire indeed if Nick Swisher is ensconced at first base.

Maybe Teixeira is a better fit because he’s younger and plays a position the Yanks need to fill. With Teixeira, Swisher becomes one of the outfielders who could replace Matsui if Hideki gets injured. With Manny, Swisher stays at first, and Manny flat-out replaces Matsui to start the season. Dan believes Manny is an expensive and unnecessary luxury, but I come out somewhere in the middle. Teixeira is choice number one, but Manny could work as well.

Categories : Analysis


  1. rob says:

    one other argument that is not stastical is the protection he provides for the rest of the lineup. A pitcher is alot less at ease facing manny than facing hideki

  2. Sweet Dick Willie says:

    For the better part of the last few months, I’ve been pushing Manny as a potential piece for the Yanks’ lineup.

    How is the above statement congruent with this:

    • Ben K. says:

      Because, as I’ve said over and over and over again in response to that piece, at no point in that piece do I say the Yankees should not be going after free agents. Rather, the point of that piece is to question whether or not the system keeps baseball on an even field. If the Yanks have the money — which they do — and if baseball allows teams to spend with no regard for parity — which they pretty much do — then the Yanks should spend that money to their advantage. There’s no point in squandering a competitive advantage over morals. The better question is to wonder how to fix the system if you believe, as I do in that piece, that the system is broken.

      Noting that baseball’s economics are out of whack and proposing that the Yanks sign a bat are two positions not at odds with each other.

  3. JRVJ says:

    It is highly likely, with the world economy in dire straits, that some team out there will need to trade away an overpaid player for cents on the dollar (what I call Abreu redux).

    Should the Yanks go all in NOW or should they patiently wait until that happens?

    Me, I vote for the latter….. (in any case, the more time elapses, the less Matsui money will be on the books).

  4. josh says:

    i would try and trade damon, resign abreu and sign tex. if gardner cant lead off abreu certainly could fill that need. he is an obp machine, a better outfielder than damon, and a steadier bet to be healthy

    • frits says:

      Abreu is not a better outfielder than Damon. At all. Abreu was one of the worst fielders in all of baseball last year. Not only that, he’s a RFer, not a LFer.

    • A.D. says:

      Abreu is a worse outfielder than Damon, he was the worst RF in the league last year.

      Damon has a no-trade clause

      Damon had a better OBP than Abreu last year, though Abreu career is better

      While Damon has had some injuries with the Yanks, he has only gone on the DL once in his career

      • josh says:

        abreu’s arm is far better than damon’s. abreu would play rf while swisher/nady/gardner/melky would play left/center.
        to say abreu was the worst rf in the league is silly. his only real flaw is when he gets near the wall. overall he is way better than damon – btw damon didnt look so good banging into the wall while letting balls rest on top of it last year either. and arent u sick of hearing about how he is always banged up. maybe he is not on the DL but he always seems to be bothered by something

  5. josh says:

    not to mention we might get something we need back for damon. if not, we could dump the salary and get minor leaugers that could help in the future

  6. frits says:

    Is it possible that the Yanks don’t sign ANY free agent bats? The debate between Manny or Matsui, Manny or Dunn, is interesting, but what are the odds that the Yankees simply acquire Cameron and hope the pitching carries them?

  7. frits says:

    OK. Do you share nomaas’ preoccupation with Dunn?

  8. A.D. says:

    This really should be financially Ramirez might not be worth it. Baseball wise he will add wins, and thats the point of picking up new starters.

    Its the 11 million for each win that you ask, really, is that worth it?? Even with an unlimited payroll 11mil a win may not be worth it. If you paid that much for every win 1.1B to win 100 games… don’t think anyone would do that.

    • nmc says:

      Well, if the 20 million is the difference between making the playoffs and not making the playoffs, then it is totally worth it. They probably make more then 20 million for the first round alone, so it pays for itself. It’s just a matter of whether signing him will get you over that plateau (or if you’re already over that plateau and signing him is just excess).

    • Sciorsci says:

      Just playing devils advocate, but if you end up one game out of the playoffs, would you pay $22M (of the Yankees’ money) to pick up two games in the standings? Also, there’s the chance that Ramirez signs with a different AL team, which means that while he’s NOT giving the Yankees those two additional wins, he IS giving them to a rival team.

  9. Shamus says:

    LOL, we were just debating about how useful Matsui will be in the last post.

    Frankly, I’d rather have (in order):

    Tex, then Dunn, then Manny all over Matsui.

    In regards to Matsui: Loved him, but he is done and taking up payroll and space on this team.

    In regards to Manny: Yes, his bat would be awesome. Especially on a one or two year deal, even at $25M per. But something tells me he’ll want a longer deal, and his attitude frightens me. Manny plus Girardi = Fight Club, the Sequel.

    In regards to Dunn: Shocking. Shocking that their has been no press swirling around this guy. If I was JP Riccardi, I would run and hide. I mean, it that why NO ONE AT ALL is talking about Dunn, save the Nationals as a back-up plan if they swing and miss on Big Tex? B/c of what JP said?

    Regardless, I like Dunn as a backup for the Yankees if they can’t get Teixeira. He’ll prob sign for a three year deal, what (just guessing here) $35 -$45 M? For 40 HR a year ? Heck, sounds good to me. Slot him in RF, maybe 1B? Thats the thing, I’m not too familar with his defensive prowness…

    In regards to Teixeira: SIGN HIS ASS NOW! They can’t let an offensive force liek that go to the BoSox. Nor back to the Angels, for that matter. They are the Yankees biggest threats in the American League (aside from,… gulp… Tampa?!??!!) He fills a void in the 3-hole and on the field. Getting him allows them to move Swish to the OF, with Damon, Gardner and Nady, and allows them to trade Matsui.

    Aside from CC, he should have been the top target this winter. If signing AJ means no Mark, that will be tough to swallow.

    I’d have rather gone CC, Tex, then throw shit at the wall until ti sticks, Garland, Perez, etc.

  10. My belief that Manny could fill a need comes about because I don’t think we can pencil Matsui in for 140 games of 2007 level production.

    Not to mention the fact that we can all pencil in Matsui for 0 games in 2010, 2011, and 2012.

    While Manny’s bat may only be marginally better than Matsui’s (an analysis that I disagree with, btw, but whatever) this coming season, Manny’s bat is unquestionably much better than Matsui’s bat in the years after that, since Matsui will be in an old folks home somewhere with his massive porn collection and his pretend wife.

    • radnom says:

      With all the corner OF/DH options next offseason I don’t think we need to pay both Manny and Matsui this year just for the ‘privledge’ of having Manny on a long term deal.

      • While that’s correct, none of the corner OF/DH options on the market next year, not even Matt Holliday, can hold a candle to Manny Ramirez.

        • radnom says:

          I think youre overrating him a lot based on 50-60 vendetta-fueled games with LA last year.

          If you look at his 2007 and his 100 games with Boston in 2008 he did not produce all that much better than Matsui did in 2007.
          Based on that, I’m really not lining up to sign this guy through his age 40 season.

          • Stephen says:

            .285/.367/.488 123 OPS+ -Matsui 2007
            .296/.388/.493 126 OPS+ -Manny 2007 (Worst Year of his career)
            .299/.398/.529 136 OPS+ -Manny 2008 in Boston

            So two of Manny’s worst years are as good or better than Matsui’s best. Not saying Manny is entirely desirable for more than a year or two, but Manny will always be a much, much better hitter than Matsui

          • Stephen says:

            Josh, can you hit the reply button. That would make it easier to follow your humorous ramblings.

  11. Joseph M says:

    Manny is a one of a kind player who will raise the platform of the entire line up. Manny made Ortiz the batter he became. Can you imagine what he can do for AROD.

    Texeira is a quality player but he’s no Manny and a long term commitment to him ties up first base for the better part of a decade.

    Matsui might be willing to accept a trade to a west coast team if not you carry him as a spare outfielder. Things happen, people get hurt I’m sure they can get him 300 at bats if he is unwilling to accept a trade.

    • Texeira is a quality player but he’s no Manny and a long term commitment to him ties up first base for the better part of a decade.

      … which isn’t really a bad thing. It’s a bad thing to tie 1B up for a decade if the 1B you’re tying up is Mo Vaughn, an out of shape poor defender who’s aging poorly and likely to be unproductive. Tying up a position for a decade is a good thing, if that player is still young, fantastically productive, and one of the very best players in the league.

      We tied up 3B for the next decade with ARod, and that’s a good, good thing.

      I’m not saying that we should pick Tex over Manny (although I probably would…), but I’m saying I don’t buy the “we can’t tie up 1B with Tex” argument. He’s a franchise player, we’re fine with him at 1B for the foreseeable future.

      I doubt that the Cardinals are going to balk at giving Pujols a lifetime contract simply because he’s a first baseman.

  12. Cameron says:

    I know he has a terrible arm but if we sign manny why not move damon back to center? This would alleviate the need for mike cameron and the yankees could limit Matsui to about 120 games in left with melky, manny, or gardner being able to replace him. I feel like an outfield of Matsui, Damon and Nady is alright defensively and this eliminates gardener hitting .200 with regular at bats.

    • Mister Delaware says:

      His range costs us more than his arm.

      • I know he has a terrible arm but if we sign manny why not move damon back to center?

        Johnny Damon, 2008:

        LF- 659.1 innings, 8.4 UZR, 16.3 UZR/150
        CF- 285.0 innings, -5.6 UZR, -27.3 UZR/150

        Night and day, my friend, night and day.

        Oh, and Matsui can’t play the outfield anymore, his body can’t take it. You’re almost guaranteeing him a DL trip if you put him out there. At this point, I don’t even know if Hideki could dodge a pair of shoes being thrown at him by an Iraqi journalist.

        • Sweet Dick Willie says:

          At this point, I don’t even know if Hideki could dodge a pair of shoes being thrown at him by an Iraqi journalist.

          Well then, I certainly don’t think he could dodge a FB thrown by one Mr. J. Beckett (unless that Iraqi journalist had a helluva arm).

  13. radnom says:

    So much for getting Manny……looks like the Yankees just allocated that money elsewhere…….

    I like this move.
    Keeping pitching the priority…this guy has a lot of upside.

  14. frits says:

    I don’t think many people believe that Matsui is physically capable of playing LF on a consistent basis.

  15. Slugger27 says:

    i have never been on board for a manny signing… but it is impossible to ignore his signifcant offensive output… however, i still feel there are better options out there

    Cons for Manny:
    1. He will come at a VERY HIGH salary… most likely in the 22-24 mill range
    2. We will likely have to sign him for 3 years.. that figures to 65-70 mill investment
    3. He is terrible defensively, and will only get worse in the coming years
    4. He’s old, and even manny isnt above science… his numbers are outstanding, but even manny will decline in the next 3 years, nobody naturally gets better in their 37, 38, 39 seasons, and manny is no different… in fact, u could already see his decline in 06 and 07 in both power and health
    5. He has attitude problems… hes been accused of faking injuries, has been seen not running out ground balls… on more than one occasion has hit a 400 foot single cuz he was staring and admiring his hit instead of running the bases, he shoved a member of the RS front office to the ground, his statement about boston media implies winning aint that important to him
    6. He doesn’t fit the mold that cashman has been working toward (youth, defense, roster flexibility)
    7. While only filled for 2009, and yes matsui has health questions, his position on the team is indeed already filled… i put this last because it seemed like the weakest con for him

    Pros for Manny:
    1. The dude mashes

    Now, this may seem biased against manny, and maybe sub-consciously it is cuz i hate the guy and always have…. but i dont think his 1 pro outweighs his cons, though that is debatable

    bottom line is i think signing dunn for say 3/45 ((which i believe could do it)) or 4/56 would be a smarter move, as dunn doesnt have nearly the potential downside that manny does

    tex would also be adding a gold-glove player who hits almost as well and like dunn… isnt in decline years

    i know there are zillions of “lets sign manny” guys out there… some from people with opinions i greatly respect (TSJC) …. but i just cant see this working out better than dunn or tex would

  16. Bruno says:


  17. josh says:

    how many real .300 hitters are on this team – 2, jeter and arod. damon is more like a .285 guy and cano certainly has something to prove. consider that arod may bat .300 but will never change his swing for a situational hit that leaves jeter (all be it ageing) as the only real pure hitter on the team. i agree that pitching should have been priority #1 but we really need offensive help right now and dunn is not the answer.
    in the nineties we did not have superstars throughout the lineup but there were always at least 3 .300 hitters in o’neil, bernie, and jeter (not to mention many other very proffesional contact hitters that got the job done in various situations)
    the idea that the yankees are trying to shed payroll while entering a new stadium that we will bw paying for anyway is really aggrivating. they have spent in the billions since winning #26 and now they are going to try and reduce payroll – give me a break. with the money coming off after this year theybetter sign some offense because this line-up is WEAK

    • Mike A. says:

      Fun fact: The Phillies and Rays had a combined zero .300 hitters on their teams last year. The high was ex-Yank Dioner Navarro at .295.

      The demise of the Yankees lineup has been greatly exaggerated. It’s not going to be the monster 900+ run offense it was a few years ago, but it’ll be fine. There are worse fates than having this lineup:


      • Ivan says:

        Hey it’s better than TB and they went to the WS.

        If the Yanks are gonna be successful, it’s going to be by their pitching period. They gonna have to outpitch teams and they have the potential to do so.

    • steve (different one) says:

      the idea that the yankees are trying to shed payroll while entering a new stadium that we will bw paying for anyway is really aggrivating.

      i guess you were sleeping through all last week?

      they spent $243M.

      but i won’t be happy until they spend a billion kajillion dollars!!

  18. Yankeegirl49 says:

    And how Manny runs will Manny provide us when he decides he doesnt like the food in the clubhouse and quits on his team again?

  19. R. Arnold says:

    Don’t get me wrong, I have been infatuated with the idea of getting Mark Teixeira for a long time. Remember the clutch diving catch he made in Boston, with the go ahead on second (I believe), and the Angels season in the balance? However, I am a baseball purist, and am on the pitching/defense bandwagon. Look at the Yanks as constructed right now, Great 1-4 SP, top 5 (?) bullpen, Average to below defense. Question marks throughout the offense.

    I feel that with the team as constructed now, small parts are going to get them back on top, as opposed to one big one. They need to improve defensively (even if the offense is sacrificed a little) and get one or two guys with a high OBP. Granted Teixeira greatly improves both the offense and defense (which is why I said I’ve been infatuated). I really don’t see ways for them to greatly improve on the defensive side, other than trading. The Cameron deal makes sense, but as this site has pointed out, wait on Teixeira first. So this is my suggestion to improve the offense;

    Resign Abreu! Yes he is bad defensively (still has a good arm), which makes this post a little hypocritical, but he takes pitches and gets on base. Just look at his team ranks from last year. He was 2nd on the team in walks (73) RBI’s (100), Runs (100) SB (22) Games played (156), and third in HR (20) and OPS (.843). Add to that the fact that he takes a TON of pitches, and wants to be a Yankee To me it’s worth his troubles going to the wall in Right. Thoughts?

    • steve (different one) says:

      Abreu is not the OBP-machine he used to be.

      .369 in 2007, .371 in 2008.

      that’s solid, but it’s not worth his defense.

      • R. Arnold says:

        I think as Yankee fans, we get a little spoiled. A lot of us have the mentaility that every player should win both the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger. If they can find a way to sign Tex, I’m with everybody else, let Abreu’s defense go elsewhere. If they can’t sign him Tex, bring Abreu’s offense back! He is what the Yankees need right now. He can always spend time at DH, with Nady’s experience.

      • Ivan says:

        Funny cuz .371 OBP is pretty cool considering Nady won’t even approach that.

    • Slugger27 says:

      swisher is theoretically replacing the whole “takes pitches, works count, draws walks, gets on base” thing… and by looking at peripherals and just konwing his age, abreu can be expected to decline pretty quickly over the next few years

    • A.D. says:

      His defense is about trouble to the wall, he was statistically 2nd worst outfielder in baseball with enough innings to qualify. Given this does not calculate arm

      Nice article by Fan Graphs that pretty much sums up that Abreu’s defense outweighs his offense:

  20. Cameron says:

    But do you think Matsui’s bat makes up for Damon’s downgrade in his defensive switch? Gardner is a terrible pro hitter and I was just trying to think of a case where he wouldn’t have to be a regular if we sign manny and not cameron. I mean if Swisher is a better CF then damon then we should have swisher play CF damon play left and then just stick matsui or someone at first. I don’t have the statistics to back it up but I feel the difference between Matsui’s bat and Gardner’s bat is far greater than the defensive liability of Damon or Matsui.

  21. josh says:

    you are kidding with the ba is a stupid stupid stupid stat right

  22. gianthinker says:

    AJ over Mark….thats sad. I hope we AT LEAST give Mark an offer.

  23. josh says:

    arnold – i agree. i like the tex idea the most, but if they dont sign him i think resigning abreu will be the only way to replace abreu’s #’s

    • Slugger27 says:

      it will also be the only way to replace abreus defense, as he is the worst RF in baseball

      • R. Arnold says:

        I woudn’t say he’s the worst. I will agree he’s not the best. But the Orioles aren’t trading Markakis any time soon, so why not give him another year. Bobby Abreu helped the team a lot more than he hurt it last year.

        • frits says:

          R. Arnold – Bobby Abreu was the 34th ranked RFer in all of baseball last year, defensively speaking. 34.

        • A.D. says:

          I’ve written this in a few places, but using UZR/150 Abreu is the 2nd worst right fielder in the game (behind Brad Hawpe) of those that have enough innings to qualify.


        • Slugger27 says:

          “bobby abreu helped the team a lot more than he hurt it last year”

          if u factor in defense, he gave back a ton of his offensive production out in RF… then when u factor in his $16M salary, he wasnt nearly the asset to the team many ppl think he was

          1. i doubt he would come back on a 1 year deal
          2. his offense would be expected to decline (as his peripherals and age indicate)
          3. his defense wouldnt get any better
          4. it would probably mean that damon is our everyday CF… if any move means damon becoming our CF, it damn sure better mean tex/dunn/manny in the lineup

    • whozat says:

      Once you take into account how many runs Bobby cost the Yanks on defense, Nady actually replaces Bobby pretty effectively. He’s not much above average, but abreu was sooooo awful that average RF D + a bit above average bat = Bobby’s overall 2008 contribution.

      Also, use the reply feature if you want to reply to someone’s comment. It keeps things nicely threaded.

      • R. Arnold says:

        I’m not trying to defend his defense in any way. I’m just asking what is a better alternative for this team right now? Nady in Right, Gardner Center, Damon Left? Is everybody okay with that team as far as run production? That is a better team defensively than with Abreu, but they are all about average (Gardner slightly above) when it comes to fielding the position.

  24. josh says:

    yes. there is so much more to baseball. but the best hitters (for contact) almost always have the best batting averages. while i understand this is not an absolute truth it is a very good way of judging how good a hitter someone is over a long period of time.
    obp, and slugging (power) are also very important but when it comes down to needing a game winning hit, you almost always want your best pure hitter up – not the guy who is looking to walk and not the guy who is looking to hit the ball 600 ft. – when it comes to getting a sacrifice the same can be said – you want the guy who can handle the bat (usually the batting average type guy (ie, boggs, jeter) – i know we have been spoiled in the steroid era with guys who bat .325 and hit 45 homeruns but in baseball there really are different types of hitters (for example average type hitters and power type hitters, amongst other things)
    i feel that on a team built around pitching that we are better off with batting average type bat control guys who can play defense than power guys like dunn

    • UWS says:

      …because if Dunn comes up and hits a ball 600 feet it’ll count less than an RBI groundout?

    • Joseph P. says:

      “it is a very good way of judging how good a hitter someone is over a long period of time.”

      Except that’s just plainly false. Batting average fluctuates far more than OBP.

      I also disagree with your premise about needing the “winning hit.” You’re talking about one situation, late in a game. What about the previous innings? If you had a high OBP guy instead of the high BA guy, you could have scored earlier, thus not needing a winning hit later on.

      In other words, there are enormous logical gaps in this post.

    • Mister Delaware says:

      “but the best hitters (for contact) almost always have the best batting averages.”

      Yuniesky Betancourt had the lowest K total of AL qualifiers last year.

  25. josh says:

    i think these stats get a bit ridiculous – in yankees stauduim rf is not that vital – the guy has a good arm – maybe the most important apsect of playing rf . you may have numbers to back it up but watching the guy all season, he really is not that bad

    • Joseph P. says:

      They get ridiculous? Or you just don’t bother to take the time to understand them?

    • UWS says:

      Man, I don’t know what games you watched. I’ll never be accused of being an expert on defensive prowess of baseball players, but even to my untrained eye Abreu looked absolutely horrendous out there.

    • you may have numbers to back it up but watching the guy all season, he really is not that bad

      Bullshit. That statement is batshit insane. There is no amount of “watching” Bobby Abreu all season that could lead you to the conclusion that Bobby was “really not that bad” defensively, unless you are legally blind, your view is obstructed by a foul pole in some way, you’ve had a lobotomy, or you think you’re at a outdoor badminton tournament and you simply don’t understand that the goal of the game defensively is to catch the ball.

      You have lined up the words in the correct order, and they’re all English and spelled correctly, but that statement is nonsensical gibberish. Please don’t speak again on this subject until you’ve been debriefed on it by the NSA.

      • Joseph P. says:


        I contemplated a response to this, mainly because I felt the same way. Actually, I thought that there was no way Bobby was actually as bad as he looked, and that the consensus of defensive metrics would prove my eyes wrong. Nope. He was actually that bad. And he’s only going to get worse.

  26. josh says:

    yeah but the 600 ft. home run doesnt count any more and the rbi groundout gets you the run and maybe that same guy gets a hit in another one of those earlier innings you mention for another rbi while the power guy strikes out.
    sitiuations is what baseball is all about – the 98 team had no one with 30 hr but they had several guys willing to do the unpopular thing to win.
    i am not saying abreu is the best thing in the world, but clearly this line up right now looks awful – we have a lot of guys that neither hit for average or power.
    with the pitching staff looking good right now i think it would be nice to have some guys who put the ball into play a bit more, that is all i am saying – nick swisher and his .250 and mike cameron and his 180 k’s will not be the answer

    • frits says:

      Yo…Just stop

    • A.D. says:

      While its true that the 1998 yankees hit for more avg than the 2008 yanks, they did everything better:

      98 Team numbers: .288/362/460 117 OPS+
      08 Team numbers: .271/342/427 101 OPS+

      So theres a good chance the 20 points on the OBP & 33 points on slugging had a big thing to do with it.

    • Mike A. says:

      yeah but the 600 ft. home run doesnt count any more and the rbi groundout

      Except it does. The guy with the RBI ground is making an out, while the guy hitting a homerun isn’t. A team only has a finite number of outs to work with – 27 to be exact – and it doesn’t tale a genius to understand that the guys that make fewer outs (ie have higher OBPs) are more valuable.

      OBP > BA every day of the week.

      • RichYF says:

        Mike, you’re missing one other small piece of information.

        The guy who hits the ball 600 ft not only doesn’t make an out, but he drives in TWO runs. The guy who grounds out gets ONE RBI AND makes an out.

        So the 600 foot homerun counts for 2 runs and 0 outs while the groundout counts for 1 run and 1 out. Probably should resign Abreu based on this analysis. Or just get Eckstein for those gritty groundouts.

  27. nick blasioli says:

    who in the hell thinks matsui will produce anyway…he cant run or field..all very huge minus’s…i think it looks very bad where he is concerned…

  28. josh says:

    yeah’ 4realz. probably the least important position on the diamond – if you dont know that maybe its because you were the one always stuck playing there because you sucked at sports growing up. the only important quality is a strong arm – which abreau does have

    • whozat says:

      “yeah’ 4realz. probably the least important position on the diamond”

      Then why are the worst OFers usually stationed in LF? Oh…right, it’s because you’re wrong.

      Right handed batters hit far more catchable fly balls to RF than left field. There are more RH batters than LH batters. Thus, an RFer will have more opportunities to create outs. Good range will turn more gappers and bloopers into outs. Bobby had issues with the wall, yeah, but he also let bullshit dinkers drop in front of him. That stuff adds up.

      Honestly, adding average D in RF to 110 OPS+ bat is better than a 120 OPS+ bat with the worst RF defense in the league.

      • R. Arnold says:

        So, how would you solve this problem?

        • frits says:

          Personally, I would sign Abreau. He has a fantastic arm, which is totally sweet, and he isn’t very good in the field but that doesn’t matter cuz u don’t need to field the baseball that well in yankee stadium. Also he gets good RBI groundouts and he has great 8th inning numbers.

        • whozat says:

          Um…which problem? They’ve already done exactly what I said: Put Nady’s average D and a-bit-above-average bat in RF.

          If Tex can be had on a contract that doesn’t blow your mind for 7 years, give that strong consideration with swish spending some time at the corners with Damon in CF, but make liberal use of late-innings defensive replacements and off days to keep Johnny’s legs in shape.

          Since that probably won’t happen, see what Dunn will command. If it’s 3-4 years at 35-45 mil…sign him and work him in at LF and 1B. Again, must be sure to put Damon/Swish in CF as little as possible…but, it’s going to have to happen.

          As a fall-back, trade for Cameron. Everyone plays basically one position, but you’ve added plus defense to CF, and some power (coupled with league-average OBP) at a premium position.

          • R. Arnold says:

            Which Problem? The New York Yankee Outfield. I’m fine with Nady, but everybody else scares me a little. Their left field options are old, slow, hurt, or all of the above. Their Center field options are fast but can throw the ball farther than they can hit it. Cameron is a low risk, medium reward type of guy. Especially, if Cash can get the Brewers to take Igawa or pay some of Cameron’s salary. So I like that idea. But something needs to be done, and there are just a few options. Baseball is defense up the middle, offense on the corners. So…bring back Abreu, trade for Cameron.

            I really doubt Tex will be able to be had on a contract that doesn’t blow your mind. Maybe you could make a case for him taking less money because he wants to win, but Boston will probably offer $20+ a season. Will the Yanks offer that? Doubt it.

            • whozat says:

              “Their left field options are old, slow, hurt, or all of the above.’

              Well…Damon was still very good last year, so not sure why you’re worried on that.

              As for the rest of your issues…that’s why I proposed three different options, in decreasing order of “goodness” but increasing order of likelihood.

    • Slugger27 says:

      this post is hilarious

    • A.D. says:

      this isn’t little league, they put the worst player in RF for that since almost everyone hits right, and almost everyone pulls the ball. That doesn’t apply when you’re in pro ball.

  29. corsari says:

    “The problem, of course, with Manny is his fielding.”

    No, it’s not. The problem is his mentality. Remember how he demanded to be traded every year? Or how often he decided not to play in August or September if he weren’t completely satisfied? Or this year in Anaheim, where he laughed after dropping a ball that cost Boston a few runs? Or how he refused to swing the bat against Mariano? Or how he forced his way out of Boston this year?

    He is one of the best hitters in the game, maybe one of the best ever. But if he’s not satisfied he’ll refuse to play, he just cannot be counted on. Plus I really don’t see how Girardi and Manny would get along well.

    Getting Manny would be a big big mistake. Think further than just his bat (and fielding)

  30. dan says:

    Can nobody really think of a cheaper alternative to make up at least some of those runs?

  31. josh says:

    we all know that the left fielder on the yankees is a more important player than the right fielder – that really is no arguement. that being said, if the arguement is which position is normally where you put the worse fielder lf or rf – get real. that is why you usaully get you offense from those postions, they are not that important relative to the others.

    • Joseph P. says:

      “we all know that the left fielder on the yankees is a more important player than the right fielder – that really is no arguement.”

      And here all this time I thought Paul O’Neill was more important than Chad Curtis. Shit! I’ve been wrong all along!

      • josh says:


      • josh says:

        the arm is more important in rf – everything else is more important in lf

        • frits says:

          Can you point me to the Encyclopedia of Importance, where I can learn all about this shit? This is the first I’ve heard of it…

          • Mister Delaware says:

            “we all know that the left fielder on the yankees is a more important player than the right fielder – that really is no arguement”

            Counterargu(e)ment: According to the Hardball Times database, there have been more balls hit to RF than LF in each of the past 3 seasons. The gap was wide enough for me to decide, unilaterally, that this is not a 3 year statistical anomaly and I could feel confident concluding my testing here.

            2006: RF +653
            2007: RF +404
            2008: RF +583

        • josh says:

          if you are trying to say rf’s are better fielders than lf’s than that is fine with me – particularly since i am trying to say that abreu is better than damon. but ithink that overall damon is a worse player than abreu and i would rather trade him and sign abreu. could abreu play cf – never, but damon could never play rf with his arm either. i dont think damon should even be playing cf anyway and probably not lf either. all i am saying is that we need offense and replacing giambi and abreu with swisher doesnt seem to be enough just because you dont like abreus glove – i dont care if the yankees keep abreu but they better do something to improve the line up. after all they improved the rotation but are cc’s numbers going to blow away the ones we lost from mussina? i know he brings a different elemnt as far as innings per staret and dominant stuff but this team needs alot right now (imo)

          • Mister Delaware says:

            Isn’t it really replacing Giambi, Abreu and Molina with Swisher, Matsui and Posada? Because saying its Swisher for Giambi and Abreu implies we’re literally giving up a spot in our lineup (opposed to how we figuratively gave two away last year).

  32. josh says:

    who are the big free agents after this year – particularly offensive. if they are not better than tex than there is NO REASON to not sign him

  33. John C says:

    Other people may have mentioned this, but I was too lazy to read all of the posts.

    What about building a healthy clubhouse???? Manny will do nothing to contribute to that. He is a clubhouse cancer. We now have Swisher and Damon to lead the charge, let’s leave Manny out of the picture.

    We didn’t have mashers at every position from 1996-2000. No, we had a clubhouse that all got along, and loved to play the game. We need to get back to that!

    • Stephen says:

      As Bo said above, Manny wasn’t enough of cancer to kill the Red Sox in 2004 or 2007, was he? Clubhouse chemistry comes with winning in baseball, not the other way around. Did the Rays suddenly get ‘chemistry’ in 2008, allowing them to win more, or did winning more give them ‘chemistry’? I think it’s the latter.

  34. Bo says:

    This team needs a bat. They need someone in his prime. They need someone whose defense in top notch.

    That is Tex. Now the last time they turned down an in prime talent was Beltran. Not a good move.

    But I can see Wash going 200 for 10 yrs and Tex would be crazy to turn that down. Teams can go from worst to first pretty quick with the right ingredients.

    • josh says:

      great point on beltran – he would solve many of our current problems- cash really shit the bed on that one – (maybe it wasnt his fault though – i cant remeber who deserves the blame on that one

  35. thisisthedavid says:

    What if we move half of hideki’s salary plus Nady?

    then our current payroll would be somehwerebetween 155-160 with 53-48 million you gotta believe we could resign pettite sign tex AND manny. That would be crazy.

  36. frank says:

    Manny is the polar opposite of players like Jeter, Damon, A-Rod and Swisher- who bust it 100% for 9 innings. I don’t care about the stats- he could bat .800 -Manny is not worth the disruption he would eventually cause this team. His track record bears that out. Get Tex, trade for another bat if need be, but stay away from Manny.

  37. ko says:

    There are a lot of compelling reasons to go full bore after Teixeira and no valid ones not to. If the Red Sox get Teixeira, they’re clearly the better team than the Yankees is a big one. The Yankee lineup desperately needs another stud, particularly in the five hole. The lineup is weak as its constituted now even if both Posada and Matsui are healthy. Plus all of the great stuff that Teixeira brings to the table – great hitter, switch hitter, power hitter, great fielder, great in the clubhouse, young. Ramirez, on the other hand, is a cancer in the clubhouse, who is not worth his bat, which is saying a lot because he’s an absoutely great hitter who’s shown no sign of slowing down. The only reason not to go after Teixeira is this assinine 180 million salary cap that Yankee management has conjured up. With all of the money the Yankees are projected to bring in over the next few years, the 180 million is a nice target, but nothing to stand in the way of getting what you need and is not worth mentioning.

    • Mister Delaware says:

      I’d argue that 1B being the easiest offensive slot to fill is atleast a somewhat compelling reason to pass on an 8-10 year deal.

    • nick blasioli says:

      i agree with you completely…we are at the finish line…sign and lets win…

    • steve (different one) says:

      The only reason not to go after Teixeira is this assinine 180 million salary cap that Yankee management has conjured up.

      i love how people are still clinging to this meme even after what happened last week.

      find me anywhere that Cashman quoted $180M as the cap.

      they have almost no chance of getting under $180M next year.



      you bitched for a month that they wouldn’t even spend to get Sabathia. now that they blew everyone away for him, you are just looking for something else to complain about.

  38. Infamous says:

    If Manny becomes too expensive for our liking, which is possible i think. I think we should go after Dunn. Seeing that Ibanez just got 3 years 30 million I cant see Dunn getting much more than that in this market

    Get Dunn to Dh. Eat some of Matsui’s salary and try and trade him for mayb one or acouple b level prospects.

  39. Will says:

    Take this all as you want, but a cousin of a friend of mine (i know… i know) lives next door to the Teixeira’s and he told me that Boras isf pretty much forcing Mark to go to Boston so that there will be a market for Manny in NY. If he goes somewhere else (NATs or elsewhere) there will be no need for Manny.

    Who knows if that story is actually true, I just it was interesting and that I’d share.

  40. bob says:

    I think what a lot of people forget is that not everything has to be accomplished in the off season. In the past, Cashman has been at his best in making midseason adjustments. Although they didn’t work particularly well, last season was a great example of how he addressed the issues that came up because of injuries during the season. Before spending $20 million a year on a DH with an attitude, I would rather wait and see how Matsui does next season. If he hurts himself again, or is ineffective, there will always be some willing trade partner out there, particularly with the pitching depth of the organization to offer.

  41. Brad says:

    I definitely go hard after Texiera.
    This is our lineup:
    3B-A Rod

    It wouldn’t be crazy if Damon, Jeter, A-Rod, Posada, Nady and Matsui decline somewhat, and a Nady/Posada/Matsui cliff fall is a very real possibility. Gardner has a low ceiling, Cano’s plate discipline could see him get insanely exploited and Swish (who I love) might just be having one of those Bill James “old player skills” problems. If was a middle of the pack offensive unit last year, I don’t feel all that happy with the ’09 Yankees offense.
    Texeira is an elite performer and should be for another five years at least.
    Oh my goodness, I dearly hope the Yankees sign him.

  42. josh says:

    does anybody here kbow who the big offensive free agents will be after next year

  43. Kevin says:

    Ben, I think you are missing an important part about signing Manny. He is a BAD person. I mean that with no exaggeration, he threw a 64 year old guy to the floor over some baseball tickets. I mean cmon. He’s all about the money. Did you not pay attention this summer when he forced his way out of Boston? He said he wanted to get out because he hated the media being on his back. Umm New York media center of the world. He is a bad person. I mean like Todd Bertuzzi, Kobe Bryant, OJ Simpson, Mike Vick bad. Think about the effect that he would have on the clubhouse. Do you really think Manny and Girardi wouldn’t get into a fist fight by May? Manny isn’t about winning, he’s about doing what he wants, just being Manny. I think there’s a non statistical effect of signing Manny. He would drive Girardi insane. Do you want to have a manager who dislikes one of his star players that much? That’s what will happen. Manny will say some stupid things to the media and Jeter won’t back him up because he won’t agree, and then the whole media creation of a feud between them will happen. Just like it did a few years back with Jeter and Arod. Manny’s old, slow, has a terrible glove, is a bad clubhouse influence, is a bad person, won’t listen to our manager, and as a Yankee fan I’ve grown to hate him so much over his time in Boston that I’d probably have to turn off the tv every time he came to the plate. He is not a good signing. Not one bit. If we’re gonna get a mashing OF/DH type let’s get Adam Dunn. Best power hitter available. Yes, that means better than Manny and Tex.

  44. ko says:

    They’re half way done. I’ll stop bitching when they complete the job.

  45. Kidwithanopinion says:

    Yankees 2009 lineup

    1. Damon(coming of a good year but is old and pussy about his back)
    2. Jeter(he’s getting up there)
    3.Nady(I like him but he’s a natoinal leage player)
    4.A-rod(what if he has his slump year)
    5.mastui(old,streeky, and going tobe out half the season)
    6.Posada(I love but he’s also old and coming off of suggery
    7.Swisher(he bats in the low 200′s)
    8.Melky(he’s batting 230, yeeeeesssssss!!!!!)
    9.Cano(he’s OBP was 300 last year)

    we need a big bat. screw the pay roll and the ecconmy. we’re the yankees

  46. Kidwithanopinion says:

    I’m not anti Adam Dunn but that means we would have two low average power hitters who strike out a lot. Nick swisher. And he played in cincinnati which is a homrun park. But on the other hand he is in the prime of his career. I like him better than Manny because he’s younger. But he’s also a natoinal league player and boring as shit. I say offer him a 3 year deal.

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