Open Thread: Fun Media Guide Facts


During the slow time of year that is early Spring Training, pieces like this fromWFAN’s Sweeny Murti are open thread gold. Sweeny posted a bunch of interesting/weird facts from the Yanks’ 2009 Media Guide, which always makes for a fun read. Here’s some of my favorites:

Hank Steinbrenner (General Partner/Co-Chairperson) was “directly involved” in the free agent signings and managerial hiring after the 2007 season, but was “part of the collaborative front office effort” this past off-season (page 8).

Translation: Hank, we’re putting the training wheels back on.

Joe Girardi was ejected twice in 2008. The Yankees won both games with “walk-off” hits (page 38).

I think this is a big enough sample for us to draw serious conclusions from. Joe, get in the umps face more often this year.

Nick Markakis (38) and Michael Cuddyer (37) are the only American Leaguers with more outfield assists than Melky Cabrera (35) since 2006 (page 76).

Elsewhere in the world of interesting stats, Melky’s totaled 2.1 WAR since 2006. Nick Markakis was a 6.1 WAR player last year alone.

Hideki Matsui acts as a foster parent for 10 kids in Vietnam and worked with Japan’s Eco-Safety Drive campaign in 2008, encouraging Japanese citizens to decrease their car pollution (page 164).

Very awesome of Hit-deki.

In 1991, Jorge Posada led New York-Penn League second basemen in double plays turned with 42 (page 200).

Holy crap, 42 double plays turned? They play like, 70 games in the NY-Penn League. That seems ridiculously high. Anyway, make sure you give it a read, there’s a ton of interesting stuff in there. Otherwise, here’s your open thread for the night. The Islanders are the only local team in action tonight, taking on the Avs at home. Anything goes, just be nice.

Oh, and if you haven’t voted in this week’s Fan Confidence Poll, make sure you do so.

Categories : Open Thread


  1. Dude, the Devils traded for a guy with my birthday! My hockey team loves me!

  2. J.R. says:

    Move Posada to second. Thats the only logical conclusion. And move Cano to Center. Then everything will be fine.

    And while we’re at it we could move Melky to catcher.

  3. J.R. says:

    And Tabata is getting an MRI. That is not good news for the Pirates.

  4. LC says:

    How many innings do you guys think CC, Wang and Burnett will pitch on Fri-Sun (when I’m in Fl)?

    CC threw 2 innings today, as did Wang. Is it wrong to think they will all pitch 3-4 innings? Will they be kept at two innings b/c of the extra week of ST?

    • Mike A. says:

      Two innings, max.

      • LC says:

        Thanks so much. Also, did you see the O-Cab deal? I like it (4 mil/1 year)

        • Steve H says:

          Can’t believe the Giants gave Renteria 2/18 and O-Cab gets 1/4.

          • Ryan S. says:

            If they had that $18M back, they may have been able to get friggin ManRam. And Renteria would be unemployed still.

            • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

              Yeah, great job by Renteria’s agent (Barry Meister) reading the market and striking fast.

              And as usual, another horrendous job by the guy who just might be the worst GM in Baseball.

        • Matt says:

          I think the A’s can win that division. Their pitching is a little “meh” but the AL West is pretty weak. Giambi/Holliday/Cust is a great 3-4-5.

          • Mike A. says:

            “Meh” is generous. There starting rotation is downright atrocious.

            • Matt says:

              Dana Eveland and Dallas Braden will make you eat your words, Mike.

              • LC says:

                Their rotation is really talented, just inexperienced. I think their starting rotation can be good though, especially if they do a midseason trade for a pitcher.

                • Matt says:

                  I feel as though the only thing that could get them an impact starter would be Holliday and if they’re giving him up, they’re out of it.

                • LC says:

                  another thing about the O-Cab deal…what do they do with Crosby? Do you think they could get a decent return for him?

                • Matt says:

                  Probably not too much–he’s only posted a .330+ wOBA once (2005), but he is a decent fielder. Who’s in the market for an all field-no hit shortstop?

                • Mike A. says:

                  Just FYI, we have something on O-Cab and Crosby set to go for the overnight post.

                  They might as well DFA Crosby to free up a 40-man spot if they need one. No one will claim him with his contract ($5.25M this year), and he won’t refuse the Triple-A assignment because he’d be forfeiting all that money.

                  Remember when Gammons and Olney were touting him as an MVP candidate?

                • Matt says:

                  They might as well DFA Crosby to free up a 40-man spot if they need one

                  They’ll just add another outfielder to it.

                  IIRC, someone here made a joke about the A’s having an ass-ton of OFs on the 40 man.

                • Tom Zig says:

                  Well we can sure use a late inning defensive replacement for Jeter.

                • Matt says:

                  For $5.5 mil, though? I’d do it if they took Kei Igawa, I guess.

                • A.D. says:

                  As soon as I saw the Cabrera signing I thought of Gammons picking Crosby as his pre-season MVP candidate a few years ago….so far off

                • Ryan S. says:

                  I could see Crosby staying on as a utility guy for them … but I also have zero knowledge about the A’s depth chart.

                • Mike Pop says:

                  Eh, Hakuna Matata Ryan.

                • Ryan S. says:

                  You know what? You’re right. Its just a matter of which team gets knocked out in the first round of the playoffs anyway

          • You think they can beat the Angels?

            • Matt says:

              They might be able to. It’ll be a tight race all year, I think.

            • A.D. says:

              Angels pitching will take a step back

              • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

                Yeah, the Angels had enough trouble scoring runs last year before they lost Tex. They had the run differential of a middling team and an insanely record in 1-run games. Now that they’ve lost their closer and Tex, its tough to see them not regressing.

                But is anyone else in that division good enough to take advantage? Maybe 89 wins takes it.

            • Ryan S. says:

              Well I think the A’s win the AL West award for “most improved” and Angels win the AL West award for “biggest step back”, so it should at least be an interesting race. If I had to bet I’d still put money on the Angels to win it, but you better believe the division won’t be won by the middle of August like it was last year.

  5. Jamal G. says:

    Hey, check out some videos I recorded of some in-game action of MLB 09: The Show:

    The other two are on the right. The one with David Price in an Orioles uniform was a game that had fantasy-drafted rosters – it was Conor Jackson who took him deep.

  6. Steve H says:

    Must see TV (youtube) for Duke haters.

  7. Jamal G. says:

    Oooh, two-hour episode of 24 tonight!

  8. LC says:

    heh have you guys seen the nomaas post about their b-reg pages? One is for Schilling and one is for Beckett.

    Their tagline on the Schilling page will be: 38 pitches, 42 hot dogs. Pretty hilarious

    • You know, my opinion of Schilling changed a lot when he posted after Todd Drew’s death.

      I disagree with him on nearly every issue, but he won my respect with that.

      • LC says:

        It was really nice of him to post after Todd Drew’s death, you’re right. It showed he was more of a decent person than I had thought before, but still I think that tagline is pretty funny (and true).

        • Alright, I’m sure I’ll come off looking like a real S.O.B. for this, but here goes nothing…

          Rebecca: “You know, my opinion of Schilling changed a lot when he posted after Todd Drew’s death. I disagree with him on nearly every issue, but he won my respect with that.”

          LC: “It showed he was more of a decent person than I had thought before…”

          Hold on… Seriously? Before he wrote that post you thought he was maybe the type of person to talk shit about the recently departed? I mean, of course it was nice of him to write a nice post about it. Something like that shouldn’t change your opinion of the man though. You had no reason to think he was an evil, cold-hearted asshole before he wrote that post. The guy’s a blow-hard and he pitched for the Sox, but please, let’s get some perspective here.

      • Mike A. says:

        Shyster had the best take on Schilling saying he’d be willing to pitch for the Cubs or Rays.

    • Matt says:

      I noticed this on their post about Gardner:

      We’ve made this point several times over the past year — Gardner has wiffleball power and has struck out a high clip during his minor league career. Why would any major league pitcher not go right at him, when he’s only been able to get on base in the minors through walking? He won’t hurt you on the basepaths if he can’t hit his way on base.

      I dislike batting average a lot, but Gardner did hit .291 in the minors, so it’s not like he was just walking. He may not have hit for much power, but he got singles and walks, then stole. There’s nothing wrong with that so long as he’s playing strong defense in center. I don’t get how they say he struck out at a high clip when he’s only K’d over 80 times once in the minors (90 2006), and that same year, he had 70 walks, tied for a minor league career high (2008, too).

      • NoMaas is useless for anything other than draft coverage and funny pictures.

        • Mike Pop says:

          I disagree. Mainly, that is what they are for but they make some real good posts. The one bout Tex and Swish/Nady are ones that stick out. Their funny pictures make it worth it to visit the site anyways.

          • Mike Pop says:


        • Matt says:

          I’ve already picked apart one post on my blog (by J. Sherman) maybe I’ll pick up the FJM banner and tearing up blog posts and what not.

        • whozat says:

          I disagree. They can be pessimistic sometimes, but they do have some good analysis. Some fans here just aren’t interested in hearing bad stuff about Gardner. He HAS struck out in worryingly high percentage of his plate appearances. Looking at his plate approach (which is, essentially “wait…wait…wait…”), you can certainly see that his numbers could be created by taking lots of pitches and taking advantage of minor league pitchers with poor command. Is that true? We don’t know. However, it’s certainly not out of the realm of possibility. If so…that could indicate that his numbers will not translate well to the big leagues, where pitchers have better command and are not afraid to come right at you. He could wind up in a hole real quick in every at-bat.

          • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

            Why do you assume that approach is the only approach he could ever have? If he knew he could do something at a certain level and be successful with it, that doesn’t mean its the only thing he’s able to do.

            And you can’t hit .294/.414/.422 at AAA by simply waiting pitchers out. Their control isn’t that bad, and if they had zero fear of you they would throw the ball over the plate and let you hit it. Its not that simple.

            If you noticed his September ABs, he was more aggressive and far more successful in his 2nd call up. I know many Yankee fans tuned out at that point because they were out of the playoff race, but I didn’t.

            Gardner showed me last September the #1 thing I look for in any young player, the ability to make adjustments. That tells me we have something we can work with.

      • Steve H says:

        That and, he’s a high strikeout guy BECAUSE he’s a high walk guy. He see’s a ton of pitches, which leads to K’s and BB’s. Gardner could easily drive his K rate to Ozzie Guillen levels by swinging at everything early in the count. Would that help his game? Shit no. Big K guys are almost always big BB guys, and vice versa.

        • whozat says:

          Big K guys are almost always big BB guys, and vice versa.

          They’re also pretty universally big power guys. Why? Because the reason they manage to walk a lot despite striking out a lot is because pitchers aren’t going to pound the zone against them, because they know it’s big trouble if they miss. THAT WILL NOT HAPPEN WITH BRETT GARDNER. No one is going to be afraid to throw the ball in the zone against him, because the worst that’ll happen is he’ll hit a single, if he even swings. They’ll be throwing the ball over the plate until he shows that he can actually hurt them. And there’s reason to believe that he never will.

          • Mike Pop says:

            Agreed whozat. While he might be a serviceable outfielder with plus d, there is a good reason to doubt that he will be serviceable with the bat.

          • Steve H says:

            Why did Brett Butler walk so often in his career? Pitchers obviously weren’t afraid to throw the ball in the zone against him. You’ve seen MLB pitching lately right? A ton of them struggle to throw strikes, yet often are bailed out by impatient hitters. I don’t expect Gardner to be an All-Star, but I don’t see why he can’t get walked in the bigs at a regular pace, like many other non-power hitters have throughout MLB history.

            • steve (different one) says:

              Brett Butler did not strike out nearly as much as Gardner has in his career.

              that’s the difference.

              that’s what Brett needs to do to be successful.

              mind you, i’m not saying he can’t. but he HAS to improve his contact rates from the minors.

              but look at Butler’s numbers, he K’ed about once every 9 ABs. if he K’ed once every 5 ABs, his BA would fall enough to drop his OPS down past the point of usefulness.

              that’s why people are skeptical. if Brett doesn’t cut down the K’s, it’s unlikely that he’ll walk enough to have a decent OBP if his AVG is too low.

            • whozat says:

              They specifically talk about THAT too in the NoMaas post.

              “[Butler] made more contact, hit for more power, had a much higher BABIP, and walked more.”

              So, when Butler put the ball in play, he did so with more authority — which is borne out by his numbers.

          • Mike A. says:

            No one is going to be afraid to throw the ball in the zone against him…

            Throwing strikes in the Major Leagues isn’t easy. If pitchers think they can just take it easy and lay 88-90 mph fastballs in there and get him out, then they’re sorely mistaken. Believe it or not, the guy can actually hit the ball over the heads of infielders.

            • Jamal G. says:

              “Believe it or not, the guy can actually hit the ball over the heads of infielders.”

              I enjoyed this comment.

            • whozat says:

              Throwing strikes in the Major Leagues isn’t easy. If pitchers think they can just take it easy and lay 88-90 mph fastballs in there and get him out, then they’re sorely mistaken. Believe it or not, the guy can actually hit the ball over the heads of infielders.

              There’s a world of difference between this and what I’m saying. I’m saying no one’s going to nibble in a three ball count against Brett Gardner. Guys with decent stuff aren’t going to throw him a pitch out of the zone to start off the AB. And I’m also NOT saying he’s certain to be useless. I’m not even saying he shouldn’t be given every chance to start in CF for the Yankees in 2009.

              I’m just saying that there is a a decent chance that he will not amount to much above a replacement-level ballplayer, even given his defense.

          • A.D. says:

            bascially he needs to come out of the box hitting

      • whozat says:

        I don’t get how they say he struck out at a high clip

        They explicitly explained that. He was striking out in 20% of his plate appearances. That’s a LOT.

        • Matt says:

          But in the minors, much bigger sample size, he was at 16.6% (290 strikeouts in 1,738 PAs). He was striking out a lot in the majors because it was his first foray into Major League Baseball. If he keeps striking out like that w/o working walks or getting base-hits then I’ll have a big problem. I’m not gonna call him a high-strikeout guy after 141 plate appearances.

          • steve (different one) says:

            i think that part was awkwardly worded. all they were saying was that he had a great Spring Training last year as well, and didn’t do much in the majors.

            it’s a separate point. not all that relevant, but it was a different argument.

            i agree that his minor league numbers are much more relevant, but at the same time, that 16.6% is still a “high clip” for someone with as little power as he has.

      • steve (different one) says:

        don’t get how they say he struck out at a high clip when he’s only K’d over 80 times once in the minors (90 2006), and that same year, he had 70 walks, tied for a minor league career high (2008, too).

        he’s K’ed about once ever 5 ABs in the minors.

        that’s a “high clip”.

        i’m not saying Gardner will suck, but they are abolutely right on that one.

  9. A.D. says:

    Matsui is just a class act.

  10. A.D. says:

    Tabata MRI showed nothing major

  11. LC says:

    Just wondering…how long will guys like Montero and Jackson be with the major league camp? For another week or so?

  12. Steve H says:

    Just on baseball reference and I found another juicer. At 35 years old this player hit 55% more HR’s than his previous career high. This happened in 2002, the year before testing began, and he hasn’t hit more than half of his career high since.

    Omar Vizquel=Juicer

  13. Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:



  14. Jamal G. says:

    Pretty interesting way to look that the depth of the starting rotations of the American League teams:;p=2142158

  15. dan says:

    I was just reading an article on Squawking Baseball interviewing a Braves front office employee who used to work for the Yankees. Read this:

    Speaking of scouting, you signed Edwar Ramirez for the Yankees and Jorge Campillo for the Braves, two diamonds in the rough. Tell us about what you saw in them.

    On Edwar Ramirez, it was a case of a pitcher whose statistics simply jumped off the page. During a routine check of independent league statistics, an intern named Kiley McDaniel and I came across Ramirez’s numbers with the Edinbug Coyotes in the summer of 2006: 45 strikeouts in 26 innings and a 1.07 ERA. After talking it over with my superiors I called up the area scout who lived closest to Edinburg, Mark Batchko, and he drove 3+ hours on a moment’s notice to lay eyes on the player. I remember talking to Batchko on the 4th of July from a pizza stand in a mall in my wife’s hometown of Peekskill, and hearing how much he liked the player. I called it into the office, called up the independent league, worked out an agreement, and we signed the player the next day. If not for the work of McDaniel or Batchko, he wouldn’t have been a Yankee.

    Yes, that’s the Kiley McDaniel from the formerly-awesome So we can all thank Saber-Scouting for our usually reliable change-up artist.

  16. Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

    2/3 of the way through the Torre book. Just like when I was 2/3 of the way through Torre’s managerial run, I’m again getting sick of his bullshit.

    When they won 96-2003 it was ‘team, team, team’. After 2004 its ‘why is Cash giving me all these shitty players?’. And Torre was every bit as tight and beaten as the rest of the team by game 5 of the 04 ALCS.

    That’s one of the things that always bugged me about Joe. When things went bad, he had no answers.

  17. E-ROC says:

    Does anyone know if Yu Darvish will be pitching in the WBC?

  18. c says:

    Darvish is on the Japanese roster

  19. Zell says:

    I thought I would share these new yankee stadium pics that i just posted up on my site. (150 photos)

  20. [...] Edwar Ramirez through a routine check of independent league stats. Make sure you check it out. (h/t dan and EJ [...]

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