Mar
23

Nady has leg up in right field competition

By

For much of the winter, at least since the Mark Teixeira signing, there’s been plenty of debate as to who will start in right field for the Yanks. Two able-bodied vets are vying for the job: newly-acquired Nick Swisher and contract-year Xavier Nady. Via Bryan Hoch’s Twitter feed, we learn that Nady is the current favorite. This doesn’t appear based on spring performance, as Nady isn’t exactly lighting it up. Pete Caldera notes that “Nady has more in the bank with Girardi based on last season.” So was it really a competition at all?

Update (11:45 a.m.): Hoch’s Twitter feed just lit up again, letting us know that Kei Igawa has been optioned to AAA. Not huge news, hence no new post.

Categories : Asides

97 Comments»

  1. Slugger27 says:

    swish gets on base more and plays a little better D… id still prefer him

  2. Double-J says:

    I think it’s Nady’s job to lose, based on last seasons performance. Swisher is a great talent and I’m glad we’ve got both of them, but I think that while many RAB’ers expect Swisher to rebound from his 2008 campaign and thus should get the nod in RF, there’s also several of us RAB’ers who think Nady has been progressing steadily and can continue his 2008 performance as a sign of things to come.

    On whether or not it was a competition…is it only a “competition” if the guy some folks here want to win the job gets in (i.e. Gardner/Swisher over of Melky/Nady)?

    • Joseph P. says:

      It’s a competition if the competition continues. I know Girardi hedged by saying “if camp broke today,” but I think he just basically declared Nady the starter. I’d like to have seen them getting regular at bats before seeing a winner declared.

    • On whether or not it was a competition…is it only a “competition” if the guy some folks here want to win the job gets in (i.e. Gardner/Swisher over of Melky/Nady)?

      No. It’s only a competition if the better player wins the competition. Thay may not be happening in either case.

      Many RAB’ers said going into the spring that there should be an open competition in both CF and RF and predicted that Gardner and Swisher would win those open competitions. During the spring, Gardner and Swisher have, in fact, won those competitions for all intents and purposes, as they’ve outplayed Melky and Nady, and despite that, neither of them have “won” the competition as Girardi has said that Melky has been “closing the gap” on Gardner and now, apparently, Nady’s got a “leg up” on Swisher.

      Those two statements don’t make much sense to me. Girardi seems inclined to give an advantage to the guys who were here last year over the newer guys who were statistically projected to do better, and who have validated that statistical projection during the spring.

      • steve (different one) says:

        During the spring, Gardner and Swisher have, in fact, won those competitions for all intents and purposes, as they’ve outplayed Melky and Nady

        sorry, not really seeing it:

        Swisher – .265/.409/.324
        Nady – .244/.262/.488

        yes, if this were the regular season, give me the OBP.

        but one of the big concerns for Swisher from last year, is that he can still work walks, but that his bat speed has slowed.

        he hasn’t exactly calmed that concern yet.

        yes, we all like Swisher better. we all think he will eventually win the job.

        but i don’t see the evidence that he’s won the job based on their ST performances.

        • anonymous says:

          Swisher wasnt hitting anything at the beginning of spring. Just like last season. Then a week ago K-long tweaked his stance and he started hitting again.

      • Double-J says:

        I gotcha. Still, if I had to guess, I’m assuming it’s going to be an OF of Damon/Gardner/Nady. Whereas the CF job may be a “lesser of two evils” decision, in RF I think both guys are decent and bring some nice options to the table.

      • Andy In Sunny Daytona says:

        Girardi Statistical Nerd

      • “It’s only a competition if the better player wins the competition.”

        Don’t you really mean the following?

        “It’s only a competition if the player I think is the better player wins the competition.”

        You can’t attack Girardi for not holding a “true competition” just because the guy you like better might not win.

  3. andrew©®™ says:

    That was posted pretty fast, it only showed up on ESPN 25 minutes ago… impressive.
    If Nady falters, I don’t think Girardi will hesitate to make the switch, so I’m not too concerned with who wins the job initially. Hopefully Swish will get enough at bats this year though, I think he may end up being more effective than Nady, although I’m not as sold as everyone else here on RAB

  4. Mike A. says:

    Igawa’s not on the 40 man, so he couldn’t have been optioned. He was just assigned to minor league camp probably.

  5. steve (different one) says:

    This doesn’t appear based on spring performance, as Nady isn’t exactly lighting it up.

    this only really makes sense if Swisher IS lighting it up, no?

    checks…nope.

    they’ve played about evenly during the Spring. Swish is getting on base but not hitting for any power. Nady is hitting for power but not getting on base.

    both will get lots of ABs, and the better player will eventually settle into the job.

    i don’t think it’s crazy to assume 2008 give Nady the slight head start on the “competition”.

    and yes, i do think Swisher will eventually win the job.

    • Ryan S. says:

      Yeah, I think you’ve nailed it. Whoever is the starting day guy could lose it the day he has a couple 0-fors in a row.

    • they’ve played about evenly during the Spring. Swish is getting on base but not hitting for any power. Nady is hitting for power but not getting on base.

      Swish- .269/.409/.324
      Nady- .244/.262/.488

      I’m sorry, no. An extra .164 points of slugging is not worth .147 points of not making an out. OBP > SLG.

      And, in any event, defense should be the tiebreaker, and it’s not remotely close there.

      • Ryan S. says:

        Hmph…Swish has been getting more hits lately. He BA was in the .100s last I checked. This is an interesting gut check for Girardi – is he going to go the Torre route and give a job to someone arbitarily, or is he going to actually be smart and look at the numbers?

      • Slugger27 says:

        im with u tommie… id rather have the guy obp-ing 409 without hitting for extra bases than the guy obp-ing 262 and hitting a few extra base hits…. especially when player 1 is better defensively and more versatile

      • steve (different one) says:

        I’m sorry, no. An extra .164 points of slugging is not worth .147 points of not making an out. OBP > SLG.

        and if this were the regular season, absolutely.

        but this is SPRING TRAINING.

        who is Swisher working his walks against? minor leaguers?

        is he hitting the ball with any authority or just going up there looking for walks?

        i don’t know. but i DO KNOW that Girardi and the coaching staff are wathing every AB and making a decision with much more info than we have.

        it’s pretty silly to look at a handful of ST numbers and draw such definitive conclusions.

        there is more than just numbers to this.

        and i don’t think we really KNOW who is “winning” the competition.

        • Slugger27 says:

          “its pretty silly to look at a handful of ST numbers and draw such definitive conclusions”

          correct, but we arent just lookin at St numbers, we are looking at careers

          over the course of their careers, swish has had about equal power with nady while obp-ing 20 points higher, and playing better defense

          5 seasons is a big sample size

          • steve (different one) says:

            over the course of their careers, swish has had about equal power with nady while obp-ing 20 points higher, and playing better defense

            which is why i think he’ll eventually win the job.

            i am not arguing that Nady is a better player than Swisher.

            what i am arguing is that Girardi’s approach for who gets the job ON OPENING DAY seems perfectly reasonable to me.

            Swisher is coming off a super shitty season. Nady is coming off a very good season.

            yes, we all understand the underlying issues with both of their performances. we all understand the possible fluke (good for Nady, bad for Swisher) factor in 2008.

            i get all of that.

            i just think it’s perfectly reasonable for Girardi to want Swisher to show him a little more before he hands him the job. and so far, he hasn’t put enough distance between himself and Nady. he still has 2 weeks though.

        • who is Swisher working his walks against? minor leaguers?

          Nady’s facing those same minor leaguers and not working walks at all.

  6. Tampa Yankee says:

    I know this is off topic but did anyone else see this…

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/.....id=4007993

    “BOSTON — Curt Schilling retired from baseball Monday after a career in which he won World Series titles with the Boston Red Sox and Arizona Diamondbacks and was one of the game’s most dominant pitchers and grittiest competitors.”

    “Grittiest”? It’s obviously because he’s was a Sox…

  7. Cor Shep says:

    Does anyone know if they’re going to use every starter/half starters/ or no starters in the exhibition games vs the cubs? I’m heading home to Ny for a wedding and would like to catch the first game but tickets start at 35 on stub hub. Would it be worth it or is it gonna be all scrubs playing giving the vets rest?

  8. Yankeegirl49 says:

    Wang has been announced as the starter for the first game against the Cubs

  9. Yankeegirl49 says:

    Tommie, its really a shame that Im probably old enough to be your mother ;)

  10. Rich says:

    In what world is a player with a .409 OBP behind a player with a .262 OBP?

  11. Darth Stein says:

    If Nady has the advantage over Swisher based on last year, then at least I hope that Melky will be riding the pine based upon the damage he did to my retinas last year. That’s right, I saw it with my own eyes and it hurt . . . a lot!

  12. [...] Kei Igawa has been optioned to SWB after a strong spring. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Swisher’s [...]

  13. [...] Girardi’s proclamation of Xavier Nady as starting right fielder earlier this week was a bit of a disappointment. Yet at the same time, as we’ve all noted [...]

Leave a Reply

You may use <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> in your comment.

If this is your first time commenting on River Ave. Blues, please review the RAB Commenter Guidelines. Login for commenting features. Register for RAB.