Dec
09

With Granderson in the fold, where do the Yanks turn next?

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By acquiring Curtis Granderson from the Tigers, the Yankees have essentially replaced Johnny Damon. Granderson might end up playing center field, but as it concerns the team as currently constituted, Granderson slides into the outfield and into the two-hole in the batting order. In other words, if Damon ends up with another team, the Yankees have already replaced him. That’s comforting in a way, but it also means that the Yankees aren’t nearly finished assembling their 2010 team.

While it’s unlikely that Granderson replicates Damon’s 2009 numbers, it’s also unlikely that Damon would do so either. I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to say that Granderson and Damon could put up similar numbers in 2010, provided a bounce back year for Granderson and a slight decline from Damon. In replacing Damon with Granderson, however, the Yankees have traded a $13 million salary for a $5.5 million one. Those savings could go to further upgrade the team.

Next on the ledger is Andy Pettitte. He entered the Winter Meetings as the Yanks’ top priority, but the Granderson trade changed that. He’s still high on the list — now that Granderson’s all but a Yankee — Pettitte is probably back on top. For the sake of argument, let’s assume Pettitte signs a one-year, $12 million contract. If the Yankees aren’t counting salaries for Kei Igawa, Andrew Brackman, and Juan Miranda against their budget, that puts the Yankees at around $182 million for 12 players. That leaves them a bit of room to finish compiling the roster.

On the first day of the meetings, Brian Cashman said that his priorities were “pitching, pitching, pitching — and left field.” If we assume left field is taken care of, at least temporarily, we can assume that the next couple of moves will involve pitching. Pettitte will be the first. What the Yankees do after that is anyone’s guess. They could pick up a reliever to solidify the bullpen, or they could pick up a starter, moving Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes to the bullpen until they need someone in the rotation. Either way, the Yanks have options.

At this point, I wouldn’t count on them signing a big name free agent like Matt Holliday or John Lackey. The $182 million payroll might leave them some wiggle room, but they still have to pay their arbitration-eligible guys — Melky Cabrera, Sergio Mitre (if they tender him a contract), and Chad Gaudin — and then fill the roster with ~$500K guys. Those contracts do add up. They could be at $190 million at the end of that, which makes the picture a bit tougher to envision. After all, $10 million does not buy a top-flight player these days.

We could see them go for a high risk starter — i.e., Rich Harden, Erik Bedard, Justin Duchscherer, or Ben Sheets. They might be able to fit one of them in for around $10 million, which would work well. The risk would still exist, but because the Yankees would have Chamberlain or Hughes as the backup plan, they’d mitigate some of it. But even with another starter, and ergo another bullpen arm, in tow, the Yankees would still have a hole to fill.

If Curtis Granderson replaces Johnny Damon, then who replaces Hideki Matsui? Ideally, Damon replaces Matsui. He can put up comparable numbers, and can still play the field if necessary. But then there comes the issue of salary. Even if the Yankees get Damon at $20 million over two years, that’s another $10 million on the payroll, which, after Pettitte and arbitration raises, would put the Yankees right at $200 million. That means only small wiggle room to acquire a starter or reliever.

In the end, I’m not sure the Yankees will stick with their $200 million payroll projection. They say it now, and maybe that gives them some leverage in negotiations, but if the Yankees find themselves in a position where improving the team means going over that target mark, I don’t think they’ll hold back. They’re already deep into this, too deep to cut back when they might need one more move to put them over the top.

What it ultimately comes down to is having $30 million to add a DH/LF and two pitchers, plus fill out the rest of their roster. Unless the Yankees can find another bargain on the market, it doesn’t seem likely they can accomplish that. Even if they don’t sign John Lackey or trade for Roy Halladay, it appears they’ll have to break that $200 million mark. I just hope they don’t let that number get in the way of making further improvements to the team.

Categories : Hot Stove League

177 Comments»

  1. steve (different one) says:

    i’d be surprised if one of the gaggle of DH’s (Thome, Matsui, Delgado, etc.) couldn’t be had for about $5M. Melky’s money could also be traded.

    would they run with a Granderson/Gardner/Swisher OF?

    actually, looking at the way you broke down those numbers, what were they going to do if they DIDN’T get Granderson?

    • ode says:

      delgado is the most intriguing from the group.. he has 45 homer potential at yankee stadium if he stays healthy

    • Omar says:

      No, this is not going to happen, Granderson isn’t going to play Left Field (unless they acquire Mike Cameron or an elite defensive Center Fielder) they’ll likely re-sign Johnny Damon to play LF unless Holliday comes in at the right price. As to DH, probably one of Nick Johnson or Hideki Matsui. I see them re-signing Andy Pettitte, because…well it’s obvious why they’ll bring him back. As to payroll concerns? They just won the World Series, and want to put another Championship team to display in the Organization’s Jewel (The Stadium) they’ve shown in the past that if the right deal comes along they’ll raise payroll. So yes, if Lackey can be had for Burnett money, they’ll give it too him…if the right trade for Roy Halladay comes along? They’ll make it.

    • Mac1 says:

      I can’t believe they’d go with Gardy everyday – two lefties who can’t hit LHP.

      To trade Melk’s money is silly – he’ll probably make around 3 mil or less, unless they go with a veteran ofer like De Jesus.

      Last year Melk had a 760+ ops against lefties – not much different than Damon.

      Also, if Grandy can’t shake his c ase of the Knoblauchs, Yanks will need a CFer.

      Also can’t believe the Yanks will want to add Cammy at 2 years in this mix and trade Melk for “prospects” which will most likely be throw aways.

      JMO

    • Bo says:

      They didnt trade for Granderson to put him in LF for Gardner.

  2. ode says:

    delgado can be had for cheap. Prob at $5 million. I would love to stick him in the lineup behind A-rod.. real scary tex-arod-delgado

  3. RollingWave says:

    They could in theory try to flip Kei Igawa for Milton Bradley. Bradley’s owed 21 M for the next 2 seasons. Kei igawa takes about half of that off. a DH of Bradley’s caliber for around 5M per year is a reasonably good deal. he could play some OF too if used sparingly. (amazingly he managed to play 124 game this year for the Cubs)

    Seeing that Lou Pinella and Chicago in general seem to sour on him, if nothing else then making some good use of Kei Igawa’s useless contract is worth a gamble.

  4. pat says:

    I’d be down with Sheets on a one year contract like we gave Pettitte last year.

  5. cdg02001 says:

    Why not Nick Johnson as a cheap(er) DH who could spell Tex for a couple of games throughout the year?

    • steve (different one) says:

      i’d be down with that, but i think his ability to play 1B will garner him a 2 year deal from someone like the Giants.

      • andrew says:

        Well, we could just give him a 2 year deal also.

        • All Praise Be To Mo says:

          No 2 year deal for NJ, I love him but we have Montero coming up who I think could play at DH starting later in 2010, no need to clog up a spot with an injury prone backup 1st baseman. If he’ll sign up for a 1 year deal, I’m all for it.

    • Rob says:

      Juan Rivera!!! He can be had for cheap and can DH and play both corner spots. They can use Swisher that way to DH him.

  6. pete says:

    i’m pro johnson, but i’m more pro delgado and thome. I’m also pro cameron, moving melky to right and swish to DH. As for the 6th starter, I don’t offer more than $5 mil to any of them. If that pulls in a useful pitcher, great, if not, go with what ya got.

  7. Doug says:

    anyone else concerned with granderson and his .327 (last year)/. 344 (career) OPS in the 2 hole? would really love to get damon (and his .360+ OPS) back there for 1 more year.

    • Doug says:

      it’s late….obviously meant OBP

      • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

        I was going to say, “Did we just sign Brett Fucking Gardner?!”

        Yeah, I don’t think he’s a great fit for the 2-hole. If he can get a .344 or better in the 2 hole, which I think he can, it’s not bad. .327 will not work, obviously, but I’d be surprised if that happened. Swisher would be a better bet at 2, but then again, I’m not sure you’d want Cano, Grand, Cabrera in succession.

        • Mac1 says:

          If Grandy blows at #2, I also think Swish is the backup plan there for right now. Grandy being backed up by Tex\A-Rod and the LF porch could be a tremendous advantage for him – I’m pretty excited about the possibilites.

          • larryf says:

            710 plate appearances in 2009. 1 ground into double play. No rallies will be killed by Curtis….Comforting with Tex coming up next..

    • balistes says:

      maybe he hits lower down in the line up when they face lefties?

  8. whizkid says:

    If we non-tender Wang, that’s $5 M we can use toward a Bedard/Sheets/Harden… And Matsui/Thome/Delgado/Johnson for another $5-7M.. So Nady -5, Damon -13, Matsui -13, Wang -5 = -36 Pettite re-ups for, say, +2 M raise, Granderson +5.5, Harden +7, Delgado +5, arbitration +3.5 = +23 , so net 13 M cost reduction.. Harden and Delgado I just slotted, no particular preference… Does saving 13 M get us under 200? Close, no?

  9. Ivan says:

    Well I assume the yankees will resign Pettitte to a contract of about 12Mil, so that’s taken care off.

    As for left field, yes Granderson yes replaces Damon in concern of production and will do it at a preminum position.

    Damon I think will come back. 2yrs at 20mil is steep but I rather sign a deal like that rather than give a huge contract to Holliday/Bay.

    I think the yankees can look at Sheets, Bedard or Harden. Personally I rather go Sheets. When healthy eats innings and can be a potential CY winner.

    Overall the yankees don’t have to make a huge move for the rest offseason, besides the Granderson deal. I doubt they go after any of the top FA or trade for Halladay. I think the moves the yanks will make are moves like potentially signing Cameron, or Sheets and of course retaining Damon.

    • balistes says:

      why does everyone on this board give melky such little respect?

      • Bo says:

        Cashman likes him and thats all that really matters at this point.

        I dont think they’d bring in a Cameron if they have Melky sitting out there after proving he can play and hit.

  10. William says:

    what about Guerrero for DH, Damon LF. Or if no Damon, trade for a young, productive LF.

    • Joe B. says:

      Only way you’re doing that is by moving at least one of Joba/Hughes/Montero. Any suggestions?

      • William says:

        so basically what you’re saying is that there is no way to obtain a Left Fielder without giving up our top prospects…hmmm. if Damon doesn’t sign then, well then I guess we’re just screwed aren’t we. Who else do you suppose will play LF? and please don’t say Cameron or Melky.

        • Drew says:

          Yes, an OF of Melky, Granderson and Swisher is brutal. Waht ever will we do.

          You want to acquire a young productive LFer? What do you call Melky?

          • William says:

            If Damon and Matsui go, and Melky is starting…our Offense just decreased dramatically. Even if they get a good DH, the fact is that they are still losing.

            • Drew says:

              Even if they get a good DH, the fact is that they are still losing.

              That’s gold. Do you honestly believe that?

              • William says:

                Yes I do. Let’s say they sign Matsui. You still can’t replace Damon’s offensive production with Melky’s. Sorry. Defensively, Cabrera, Granderson, and Swish make for a great OF, but it’s not optimal on an offensive standpoint.

                • whizkid says:

                  Huh? Swish and Cabrera were there last year… Melky just moves to LF… Granderson younger, cheaper, more power, better D, weaker agst LHP, and clutch hitting still to be determined.. No need for Damon anymore… Re-sign Matsui or any of the Delgado/Thome ilk and offense is set…. While saving over 10 mil… sweet….

                • V says:

                  Wait, what?

                  You’re replacing Damon in LF with Granderson in CF. You’re replacing Gardbrera in CF with Gardbrera in LF.

                  What’s the problem?

                • Drew says:

                  Didn’t we replace Damon’s offense with Granderson?
                  Melky has never been equivalent to Damon, that’s a given.
                  Would you feel better if Grandy took over left and Melky stayed in center? That makes no sense. We entered 2009 with an OF of Damon, Grit and Swish. Our infield is the same. Our outfield is similar but with better defense. All we need now is the DH.

                • William says:

                  I’m thrilled we got Granderson but we definitely did not just replace Damon’s production. Homerun wise Granderson might be better, but what about hitting for average? Strikeouts? All I am saying is that a Damon and Granderson OF is much better than a Granderson and Cabrera one. Maybe not defensively, but it is from an offensive standpoint.

                • Drew says:

                  No one is arguing that Melky is better than Damon. You’ve really lost me here.

                • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

                  I’ll bite. Melky is better than Damon.

                  That was fun.

                • Spaceman.Spiff says:

                  Granderson + Melky is basically equal to Damon + Melky which we ran out last year. Granderson might be worse offensively but he’s better defensively.

                • Mac1 says:

                  Against LHP Melky hit .763 ops, Damon was .776.

                  But like said by many, Damon’s bat is replaced by Grandy (especially if he returns to even career ops of 344 or ideally the 360+ in 07/08.

                  Melky either moves over a spot and is responsible for competing against his 08 #’s and then its dependent on whether Swisher DH’s (i.e. the replacement ofer for Swish now competes against what Swish did as an Ofer) or they sign a replacement for Matsui (and its DH vs. DH).

      • Ray Fuego says:

        Montero to LF! ha ha
        (sarcasm)

      • Dean says:

        what say we move Joba Hughes and the young catcher that Toronto wants for Halliday.We loose 2 8th inning relievers and if you believe they are more than that prove it.
        You get the rotation of CC Halliday AJ and Pettite,
        the lineup is Jete, Grands, Tex ARod Posada Matsui Swish Melky Cano
        The tough part is you loose future potential replacement for Mariano and you have to sign Matsui for some bucks too
        Tell me who does not want that rotation

    • Salty Buggah says:

      No Vladdy.

      • WayneD says:

        I agree: no Vladdy. He was great, but he’s not as good as Matsui at this point. Matsui has far more power at this point and overall is a better hitter (again, at this point).

        The same thing goes for Delgado. Matsui hits for a better average and is less of an injury risk at this point in their careers. You guys that are pro Delgado are remembering the guy that killed us years ago in Toronto. That isn’t the Delgado of today. Matsui wins this one easily.

        I like Nick Johnson, but he makes no sense for the Yankees. We don’t need a DH whose only other position is manned by one of the best first basemen in the game. Plus, Matsui is a much better all-around hitter, and Johnson has virtually no power.

        Everyone seems to be overlooking the fact that WE NEED SOMEONE TO PROTECT A-ROD. Damon CAN’T do that at all. Cano is to eratic in the clutch; the same for Swisher. That leaves Posada, who skills have deminished considerable and will probably continue to deminish.

        We NEED Matsui back to protect A-Rod! It’s either that or a costly, long-term deal with Holliday or Bay. Matsui is the logical choice because we can easily sign him for 1 or 2 years at a very reasonable price.

        Damon makes no sense whatsoever for the Yankees now that we’ve got Granderson. Matsui, however, makes all the sense in the world because with Grandy, Melky, Swisher, and Gardner we have no need for Damon. His defense is god AWFUL now, and he has absolutely no arm.

        Resign Matsui, for god’s sake!

        • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

          No one thinks the Delgado of old is the Delgado on the market. That doesn’t mean he may not be a good option as a DH. Would anyone be shocked if he gave you an OBP of .370 with an OPS+ of 130? Sure, he has health issues. So does Matsui. So does Johnson. So does Thome. Pretty much all of the DHs on the market are injury risks.

          Johnson doesn’t need much power when he gets on base 40% of the time. But yeah, there’s no reason for him to come here when his value is greater with his ability to play 1B and we can choose options that are just as attractive for the DH without overpaying what he can bring on the open market.

          They’ll both likely cost you around the same for a one-year deal. My preference is also Matsui, but that doesn’t mean Delgado is a poor option.

          Re Damon: he certainly makes some sense. Speaking in hyperbole doesn’t strengthen your argument; Damon can play the OF in certain situations, DH in others. He provides flexibility and an “A” lineup more than many other options.

          I’d be happy to see the Yankees skip out on Damon altogether, but being dead-set on Matsui is foolish. He’s not the only guy out there; look at everything.

          • WayneD says:

            Delgado can’t hit for the average Matsui can, and Matsui supplies approximately the same power threat.

            And I did address other options (Bay, Holliday, or a trade), but all of those options have a bif downside: among them being we probably won’t have the bucks to sign Crawford next year.

            Who would you prefer having in the outfield next year: Bay, Hollday, or Crawford. I’d say Crawford, hands down.

            That, in my opinion, means Matsui is the only logical choice of our CURRENT options (i.e., Thome, Delgado, Johnson, Vladdy, Bay, and Holliday). If current & future money was no object, I’d say sign Holliday, but that’s not reality, even the wealthy Yankees are nearing their max-out payroll amount.

            One other thing JMK, who do you think can help Grandy learn how to hit lefties for a better average? Delgado, who doesn’t hit .300 anymore? Or Matsui, who still hits .300 and hits tough lefties as well as almost any lefty in the AL?

            • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

              Matsui hit .274 last year, not .300. It doesn’t matter much, though; batting average is not as vital a statistic as you may imagine. OBP, SLG, OPS are much more important, and far better indicators of performance, particularly for a DH.

              The LF chatter isn’t really what’s being argued here. But for shits and giggles, no, I don’t want Holliday or Bay. My preference is Cameron, Granderson, Swisher and Melky as a liberally used 4th OF.

              For 2010? Let’s cross that bridge when we get there. I will say that Crawford worries me a bit on a long-term deal (his primary skills will age poorly).

              I think Matsui is the best option. I’ve said that. So we agree. But he’s not the only option. Don’t be so beholden to one idea—be flexible—other guys may produce as much or more for the same price, with Delgado being one of them.

              I think Kevin Long can teach Granderson how to hit lefties for a better average. Delgado, Matsui have nothing to do with that.

        • Chili Davis says:

          I couldn’t agree more, Wayne. Get Godzilla back in the fold for the five hole.

  11. JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

    Moves that still need to be made:

    -Sign Pettitte ($13 mil.)
    -Sign Cameron ($8 mil.?)
    -Sign Delgado/Matsui ($5 mil.)

    Those are all one-year deals.

    -Sign Chapman to a five-year $21 mil. deal.

    So, for this year, that’s about $31 million. You can even backload Chapman’s deal if you’re worried about this year’s payroll. Cameron and Chapman are not necessities—but if you can get a talent like Chapman for that money, I think it’s worth stretching payroll a bit. Cameron greatly improves roster flexibility, but if they stand pat with the outfield as is, I think we could live with it. Pettitte and a DH, I believe, are necessary.

    Hell, if Cameron is signed, Gardner is unnecessary. Maybe you could get something cheap and of value in return for him, like a LOOGY if you’re not sold on WDLR, Dunn, Kroenke (if around) or whatever the other internal LOOGY is.

    • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

      So, with raises, Pettitte and just a DH, we’re definitely not going to be under the “projected” budget. 200 is way more likely. Grand brings us to about $175 million, Pettitte and a DH are probably $17 million themselves. So that’s around $190 and there are raises to give. Cameron and Chapman would probably bring it to just a touch over $200 million.

      I’d say it’s worth it if you’re already at that point, but I’m not privy to their budget and don’t know what their absolute budget is.

      • Mike Pop says:

        I don’t think the Yankees are going to get all of those targets.

        My wish list in order is:

        1) Pettitte. Obviously he is a big need and a stable 180 innings or more a year guy. Something that is a must for the current team with Burnett, Hughes, and Joba slated to be in the rotation.

        2) Chapman. The Yankees could clearly use a stud #1 type pitcher in the farm and the farm could use a little more improving after the Granderson trade to help with the loss of Jackson. If this isn’t the guy you spend the money for, I don’t know who is.

        3) Kind of torn here. I like both Cameron and Delgado. Cameron is more of a sure thing but I would like to see Melky given one more year to see if he can put it all together. Ultimately if they end up with either Cameron or Delgado after these two I’d be happy.

  12. AJ says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP2dkn_-GR8

    This would be nice if he did it for us.

  13. Brian Cashman is Watching says:

    Love this idea. Perfect plan for the team. Damon as LF/DH, he could play 80 games in the field with Posada getting 40 games at DH, and Granderson and Swisher each getting about 20, or assorted other players in the DH spot for a half day off.

  14. WayneD says:

    I fogot to mention a few other pro-Matsui points:

    1) He’s proven many times that he can produce in high stress situations, like the playoffs.
    2) He loves being a Yankee; he wouldn’t just want to be here for the money.
    3) He’s a great teammate: everbody loves him on the Yankees.
    4) He still runs the bases fairly well, unlike Thome, who takes about three innings to make it to third.
    5) He hits for BOTH average (.300) and power (25-30), which isn’t the case anymore for Thome (no ave. ability), Delgado (mediocre ave.), Vladdy (very little power now), or Johnson, who never hit for power.

    To reiterate my earlier point, Matsui is currently our only option to protect A-Rod, other than signing Bay or Holliday or trading our top prospects for someone.

    And if we sign Bay or Holliday, we probably won’t have the bucks to sign Crawford next year, so Matsui (NOT Damon) is the logical choice this year. Damon makes no sense whatsoever now that we have Grandy.

    If we don’t have someone like Matsui behind A-Rod, A-Rod is going to rake up about 150 walks next year. Damon will NOT prevent that AT ALL!

    • WayneD says:

      One other VITALLY important point on Matsui:

      Who else on the Yankees can do a better job than Matsui to teach Grandy how to hit lefties?

      Matsui’s one of the best at it; I’m sure he could help Grandy DRASTICALLY improve on his sub-200 average against lefties . . . if he’s willing to listen and learn from a master like Matsui.

      PS – sorry for the type on the “A-Rod wil ‘rake’ up 150 walks”; I guess you can put me on the rack for that one.

      • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

        They have hitting coaches for a reason. You don’t think Miguel Cabrera could have “taught” Granderson how to hit them in Detroit? His numbers against lefties are even better than Matsui’s.

        • WayneD says:

          Cabrera?! The guy that was out boozing it up before game 161 when his team was in the heat of a penant race? NO, he’s not the teacher type; he can’t even manage his own life; Detroit would love to unload him at this point; he’s the reason they had to trade Grandy, after all.

          Matsui, who loves being a Yankee, would certainly try to help Grandy learn how to hit lefties better.

          As far as hitting instructors go, no one on the Yankees understands how to hit tough lefties better than Matsui; and players almost always respect the advice of an active player who “walks the walk” more than a hitting instructor who was NEVER a good enough hitter to hit .300 in the majors.

          • I am 100% sure Detroit would not love to unload Miguel Cabrera since bats like that don’t grow on trees.

            Nor is his salary the reason they had to clear payroll. That would be the amazing contracts given to Dontrelle Willis, Nate Robertson, Carlos Guillen and Magglio Ordonez.

            Ordonez’s original deal was big but justifiable, however since they let his option vest they put themselves in a hole.

          • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

            With all due respect, these statements are all based in sentiment and speculation. You’re saying Cabrera would never teach Granderson how to hit lefties because he makes poor personal choices, but Matsui would because he loves the Yankees and is a good person? That’s crazy!

            There’s absolutely no way to know any of that, and even if Cabrera were unwilling and Matsui willing, who’s to say he’d be a good teacher? I’ve had plenty of instructors and bosses that were technically proficient in something but were unable to impress the knowledge upon the student effectively. Bring them in for their ability to play baseball, not to coach it.

            Similarly, signing Matsui or Delgado or whoever should have absolutely no weight placed on them “loving the Yankees”, being a “really good teammate”, being “clutch” or willing to teach others. They’re there for their ability to play baseball. While some of those attributes you listed are desirable, they’re not the real value.

            Hitting instructors are hired to help the hitters, not the other players. Would it be cool if they helped each other out? Sure. But that’s not their job.

          • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

            Also, they don’t want to trade Cabrera. They’d have to be floored by an offer to give him up. The reason they’re willing to deal players is because they made poor deals to guys like Ordonez, Willis, Bonderman, Guillen.

            Cabrera is worth his production. He’s the only guy in that lineup you’d be scared to face.

      • Bo says:

        You dont bring a guy like Matsui back to teach people how to hit.

        You bring him back to focus on hitting.

        You pay coaches for a reason.

    • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

      Points 1-3 are irrelevant. Point 4 is untrue.

      Point five has some merit. He’s an attractive option because he is a balanced hitter. That said, looking at average to measure a DH isn’t a very good way to analyze performance. Nick Johnson will probably give you an OPS+ of 125, Delgado 130, Matsui 130, Thome 120, Vlad 115 (optimistic).

      Nick Johnson won’t protect A-Rod, but he’d get on base 40% of the time, and the injury that sapped his power should be healed by now. He won’t mash you 30 home runs, but you could do a lot worse than Johnson in the five-hole, though he’s better suited for the two-hole. Still, because he can play first, he’s not likely to be a fit.

      Thome struggled in 2009. He might be washed up. Ditto for Vlad. Not sure if either would “protect” A-Rod better than our in-house options. Delgado and Matsui are both appealing options. SSS warning, but Delgado mashed when healthy in 2009. If he can come back, he can easily throw up .285 with 35-45 home runs. That definitely protects A-Rod. Matsui will probably give you around .290 with 25-30 home runs, so that works, too.

      They’re both good options.

      • WayneD says:

        I agree with you that Delgado could provide protection for A-Rod on paper. I just think Matsui is more of a sure thing at this point.

        Matsui has proven he could do it under World Series pressure, whereas Delgado was injured most of last year and he’s never faced WS pressure, so we would be gambling that he COULD do what Matsui has ALREADY DONE.

        To his credit, though, Delgado has hit in his limited opportunities in the early rounds of the playoffs, but that was 3 years and several injuries ago. So, why gamble on an unknown, when Matsui’s proven he can do it just a few weeks ago?

        PS-Even though I’ve disagreed with you on several points, I like (and respect) how you present your arguements; they’re well thought out. I’ve enjoyed the exchanges . . . and, ultimately, we both want what’s best for the Yankees.

        • Good hitters can hit any time of the year.

        • JMK THE OVERSHARE's Milton Bradley Fat Park Factor says:

          The clutch stats are over-thought, in my opinion. Maybe jitters or nerves get to some players. Maybe. But “clutch” stats are generally subject to issues of sample size.

          Pick out a ten game series of any player and you’ll see Ruth-ian numbers and Ransom-ian numbers. Good hitters will likely hit how they do all of their career. You notice it more because it’s a bigger stage. Look at Jeter’s numbers in the playoffs. They’re really similar to his regular season numbers.

          Even A-Rod. Or Tex. Do you expect Tex to continue to hit .200 in the playoffs because he has in a few games? No, he’ll likely meet the mean. Matsui is “clutch” in the playoffs because he plays well in the regular season. It’s not some mythical skill.

        • OldYanksFan says:

          So…. who do you think should DH?

      • WayneD says:

        I strongly disagree that points 1-3 are irrelevant. Point 1: Proven ability in the clutch, including the World Series, is irrelevant? Really?

        And I think Jeter, A-Rod, and the rest of the gang would say Points 2 & 3 are very relevant, but that’s unprovable unless they chime in, which is HIGHLY unlikely, of course. But I think we can at least infer that Jeter would agree, based on his own love of the Yankees and his obvious affection for Matsui (you can see it in his face when he greets Matsui in the dugout).

        Point 4 is true in the context that I wrote it; Matsui runs the bases “fairly well” compared to Thome, Johnson, and Delgado; which is what I meant when I said he still runs the bases “fairly well.” Does he run “fairly well” compared to Grandy? Of course not, but Grandy’s not in his mid- to late-30s, like the other guys we’re discussing.

        That’s it for tonight JMK; again, I enjoyed the exchanges and I’ll check in for additional comments tomorrow.

  15. MJ says:

    I don’t follow the Yankees minor league players very closely, but I’m curious about Jesus Montero and what we should realistically expect from him.

    Is he Posada’s possible future replacement?
    How far is he from making it to the MLB?

    Just looking to gain some knowledge.

    • Januz says:

      I actually think the future replacement for Posada will be Austin Romine, with Montero becoming an outfielder or DH. What is interesting is how the Yankees have really stacked up at catcher: Higashioka, Murphy, Gary Sanchez, and the Australian kid Kyle Perkins, have all been added to the organization. If you look at the contract that a washed-up Ivan Rodriguez got, you see why Cashman, Damon Oppenheimer, and the Yankee Brass is well ahead of the curve. The same applies to pitching (Look at Brad Penny’s contract with St Louis).

      • MJ says:

        I was shocked to see Penny get 7.5 million, plus 1.5 in incentives. Isn’t this an example of overpaying or is this actually his market value?

    • barry says:

      Dude’s bat looks like it could replace anyone’s in the line-up after he’s done developing and his production projects to be greater than Posada’s offensively. Thing is nobody seems to think he’s athletic enough to stick at catcher and everyone’s having problems figuring out where he’ll play. I personally think he’ll be a DH with Romine the possible replacement for Jorge behind the plate.

      • MJ says:

        How many years/seasons is Montero from being MLB ready?

        • barry says:

          Well I’m not really the best one to project this but I’d say his bat is like 1/2-1 season away, his defense at this point is an enigma.

          • All Praise Be To Mo says:

            From what I’ve heard his bat would play in the majors right now but they’re keeping him down to work on his ctaching skills to see if he could play there passably in the majors where his bat woudl be even more of an asset.

  16. Januz says:

    I flat out do not want Delgado on my team (His anti “God Bless America” sticks out like a sore thumb to me). In addition he essentially missed the entire 2009 season (I would prefer Matsui to him as a DH).
    As for replacing Damon or Matsui, I really trust what Cashman is doing. Starting with last year’s signings of CC, Tex & Burnett, and the Swisher trade, he has been on point. This Granderson trade, cannot be praised high enough (Coke was a disposable piece, IPK was not going going to cut it here (Does it mean he can’t be a good pitcher? No it does not, But, he may very well be a guy who does not belong in NY), and Jackson (Although he has a world of potential), still hit FOUR home runs in Scranton). Granderson, from everywhere I read, is a quality individual, and even financially wise, Granderson will be making less than Nick Swisher. What this means is, I fully expect, that whatever move Cashman does: Damon, Matsui, Nick Johnson, whatever, to make a who;e lot of sense.
    Finally, what is interesting about Cashman, is how underrated he actually is. A guy like Billy Beane who gets universally praised for “Moneyball”, and has Brad Pitt playing him in a movie, still has ZERO Championships, and Theo Epstein is called “The Boy Genius” with TWO titles. Meanwhile, Cashman as Yankee GM, has FOUR titles since 98 (I do not think it is a stretch, to say with one more title, this man will be a HALL OF FAMER (If he is not there already)).

  17. Angelo says:

    Id love to see Matsui or Damon return for another season, along with Pettite and a high risk starter like Harden, Bedard, or Sheets, but its unlikely to do all of this without the payroll going over 200 million because of player salary raises and arbitration. It should be interesting to see how this plays out.

    Looks like I just summarized what everyone else was saying.

  18. barry says:

    If Montero start’s off hot in AAA(assuming that’s where he’ll start this year) couldn’t all this DH discussion be nil? If he’s hitting that well in AAA they’ll probably just promote him mid-season.

    • Double-J says:

      I’m pretty sure they’d want to avoid starting the clock on Montero…he’s not on the 40-man. I doubt we’ll see Montero for another year at the very, very least.

      • barry says:

        i just dont see his defense stopping the yanks from getting value from him this year at the major league level…

      • All Praise Be To Mo says:

        Double-J, do you think the Yanks honestly care about starting the clock on Montero? Anyway, if it’s after May or June the clock he wouldn’t be a Super 2 and have to wait another year for arbitration. Teams have been doing this a lot lately (Braun, Hanson, Wieters) to save money, come the all star break if he’s tearing it up we can bring him up and not have to worry about all of that.

        • Double-J says:

          But look at the case of Wieters, he had a defined role when coming up. If we’re bringing up Montero, who still needs to refine his catching skills, and who should get promoted to AAA for the first time just this year, and is just 20 years old, I see no reason to bring him up unless there are major injuries. He’d be playing DH anyways, and that’s not going to help him be a better catcher…again, this is why I think (think being the key word, I’m just speculating) that it’s at least a year before Montero sniffs the MLB. There really is no need to with the way the Yankees roster is constructed.

          But of course, others more well-versed in prospects could tell you something else. I’ll defer to them.

  19. CJ says:

    Add Matsui or Damon for DH, add Jack Cust 4th OF/2nd DH will be non tendered he will not make much more than Hinske
    start Melky if LF

    How can anyone possibly mention adding Carlos “I don’t stand for the Star Spangled Banner” Delgado who decided he didn’t like Willie Randolph and dogged it till Mets fired Willie, when there are two proven ring bearing Yanks for that spot….

    • Mike P says:

      Cause his political views can’t affect his bat?

      • Januz says:

        I admit to despising his political views. That said, he has had a negative influence on young Latin players in the Met Clubhouse (Ask Wilie Randolph about it sometime). Last year’s Yankee team was one that fans could root for: CC, Jeter, Tex, Robertson, Swisher, Mariano to name a few. Even A-Rod was not the center of attention once he came back. It is sad to say, that one bad apple could spoil an entire team (See Burress, Plaxico). I think about a guy like CC, who made sure that Pena and Cervelli got full playoff shares. That will help this team next year and for years to come, because it lets these guys know they are appreciated.
        Having this team operating like a well-oiled machine, and bringing in parts like Granderson, that make it run better, and bring in Championships. is the goal, not having guys like Delgado who will clog it up.

        • Rob in CT says:

          Personally, I thought that took balls. But whatever, I hate America and make baby Jesus cry.

          • Bo says:

            His political views are disgraceful but it didnt seem to affect him in Queens.

            • pete says:

              i’m not sure how one can say that anybody’s opinion, when it is specifically an opinion and not a refusal to look at the facts, as disgraceful. There’s nothing wrong with hating America (provided you don’t fly planes into our buildings). A lot of the world does.

        • WayneD says:

          You’re right on target Januz. Chemistry matters BIG time.

          That’s one reason I pointed out in another post that Matsui is a great teammate & loves being a Yankee.

          Think about it people, why do we love Jeter so much? Clutch, no doubt. Always gives 100%, certainly. And he has pinstriped blood in his veins.

          Matsui is similar, although obviously not to the degree of Jeter . . . but then Jeter is about One in a Million.

          Matsuin adds to team chemistry, Delgado may detract from it, as Willie can well attest. So, why take the chance when a proven NY commodity is available (i.e., Matsui).

          And don’t forget, the Yankees make about $15 million a year from Japan when Matsui is on the team, which is enough money to pay the salary of a really good fourth starter or outfielder (other than Holiday or Bay, who would cost more).

          So don’t underestimate the importance of that $15M, especially if we go after Doc.

        • OldYanksFan says:

          Degado’s actions were in PROTEST to the war in Iraq. Ya know, the one that cost over 2 trillion dollars, killed thousands of Americans, badly wounded tens of thousands of Americans, and was financed by loans from China, which the next generation will be paying for, for decades.

          Too bad Congress was not as smart as Delgado.

  20. Mike P says:

    I think the Granderson trade makes it likely we’ve seen the end of Melky as a Yankee. You basically have two superior realistic FA options for left/center field in Damon and Cameron. Obviously Damon’s ideal but if you get Cameron that’s fine too.
    On the DH front, there are loads of decent options (Damon included) and you have to remember Posada is on this team for two more years so flexibility is premium.

    Basically, the Yankees are likely to have two 4th outfielders in Cabrera and Gardner when all is said and done in FA this winter. That is just unecessary. So you get rid of the more valuable trade piece. Cabrera is that piece and Gardner is probably a better fit as the bench player anyway.

    • Double-J says:

      I’d say it’s more likely the end of Gardner…Granderson fulfills the role of speed and defense, and Melky is a great 4th option. Gardner’s complete absence of a bat/plate discipline makes him, at best, a late-innings substitution. Melky could, and did, play everyday.

      • barry says:

        I absolutely disagree with you that Melky is more valuable than Gardner. Gardner was a 2.1 WAR player and worth ~10M this season while making only probably ~400K. Melky played about 50 more games, was worth both less wins and less money than Gardner. Simpler stats? Gardner had 40 BBs this year while Melky had 43 in a boatload more at-bats. If you ask me Gardner is the far superior player to Melky and if you’re going to trade either one of them, Melky makes more sense, he costs more and is worth less.

        • barry says:

          Cabrera has also had 4 full seasons to show he can be more than what he is and he isn’t. Gardner did better as a rookie in the AL east than his veteran teamate who has had 4 years to see the pitchers and learn the game at a major league level. Why’s everyone so high on Melky?

          • Mac1 says:

            Gardner showed what type of player he is in the World Series – a guy who can’t hit and is overrated as a base stealer.

            I did like how he played a double into a triple in Game 6 though.

            Jason Tyner was a better player than Gardy will be.

            Melk at the very least is average in all facets of the game which makes him a very nice 4th ofer spot starter at the worst.

        • Bo says:

          If you or anyone thinks Gardner was worth 10 mil last season you’re out of your mind. And any stat or analysis that shows that is inherently flawed.

        • Mac1 says:

          How’d you like Gardy in the WS? How bout when his biggest fan – Joe G. decided to pinch run Guzman over Gardy after Gardy couldn’t steal a bag in three previous attempts.

          Gardner is fine as a defensive replacement, pinch runner, but against better competition his lack of power, high K, inability to bunt or even steal a bag exposes him as a AAA player.

      • MattG says:

        Gardner’s complete absence of a bat/plate discipline power makes him, at best, a late-innings substitution

        Fixed. Gardner has patience, pitch recognition and discipline. It’s Melky who doesn’t.

        • Mac1 says:

          Melky 3.87 p\PA last year – Mike Cameron who is a tough out(its true b\c I read it here) was 3.96.

          Gardner is a sham – a guy with no power who never learned how to bunt who had a grossly inflated obp thanks to walking a ton against erratic and inferior minor league pitching.

          Gardy in the majors is real good at recognizing strikes – unfortunately he either watches them go by him or swings through them and goes to take his rightful place on the pines.

  21. Melvin FTW! says:

    My order of signings that should be made

    1. Pettitte
    2. Cameron
    3. Matsui
    4. Duchscherer and/or Sheets

    1. Does this add too much payroll?
    2. Is this realistic at all or just a crazy pipe dream?
    3. Am I wrong to want Matsui as DH instead of Damon?

    • Mike P says:

      No, but you are wrong to want Cameron instead of Damon. Unless you figure Damon can’t be had for less than three years.

      • Melvin FTW! says:

        cameron plays MUCH better D than damon and is NOT a bad hitter AND could be had for a 1 year deal. Cameron also plays center, meaning Granderson in left. That outfield defense is REALLY good.

        • Mike P says:

          Those points are all valid. Except the Yanks already have a centerfielder, the position where Cameron’s defence is a real advantage. LF just isn’t important enough to forgo a quality bat like Damon’s for defencive reasons. And the upgrade over Granderson in center just isn’t significant enough.

          That being said, I agree that Cameron is plenty good enough to replace Damon if his contract isn’t suitable.

          • MattG says:

            I’m with Melvin on this one. I don’t think the value of Granderson’s defense would be damaged at all by playing left field, especially in Yankee Stadium. I like Cameron over Damon by a smidge.

            Also, the occasional right handed hitter would be nice.

            • barry says:

              Cameron has nowhere near the leadership credentials Damon has… Damon’s a born winner and has been a gamer for the Yankees, never complaining and always smiling. In my opinion, historically, Damon is the better fit than Cameron.

      • Rose says:

        The main reasoning for wanting Cameron instead of Damon, especially right now is because our entire outfield at the moment isn’t that great against LHP…and Damon is OK again LHP. Cameron on the other hand can rake it. Makes more sense to sign a cheaper, better defending, complimenting free agent outfielder than sign a much more expensive, much worse defending, same ol’ free agent outfielder.

        • Mike P says:

          Good point about left handed pitching. That and the flexibility Cameron would offer certainly makes him an attractive option.

          This trade just added so much flexibilty and certainty, the more I think about it the more I love it!

          • Melvin FTW! says:

            thanks for the input guys!
            now that pettitte has signed…wghat other pitcher do you think the yanks should get? duchscherer, sheets, harden?

  22. If the Yankees aren’t counting salaries for Kei Igawa, Andrew Brackman, and Juan Miranda against their budget, that puts the Yankees at around $182 million for 12 players. That leaves them a bit of room to finish compiling the roster.

    Since the Yanks are such a lightning rod on $$ issues, everyone wants to toss in this stuff for them, but not for anyone else. If were going to be fair we have to do this for every team, which is so unwieldy my head hurts just trying to think about it.

    If were going to do that then we need to count the signing bonuses for all IFAs on every team, the MLB deals handed out to every draft pick, the money picked up in trades, etc, etc. And while were at it, lets pro-rate Dice-K’s posting fee on an annual basis.

    This stuff gets impossible to follow if you’re going to try to really do it right. Opening Day roster payroll, period.

    • Mr. Max says:

      It’s relevant here in these 3 cases because they are ML deals that count towards the ML payroll, including 40% luxury tax.

  23. Mac1 says:

    I think if Abreu is worth 2/19 Damon is worth that and a bit more.

    Matsui was great against lefties last year and is great for A-Rod in the #5 and he comes with his own Revenue stream.

    If it were me, I’d offer Damon 2 years 22 and give him 24 hours to take that deal. If he didn’t, I’d go to Matsui with one year at 9 mil with an option if he gets 500 plate appearances.

    I’d look into DeJesus as well, play him in LF, Swisher DH and Melky in RF – which isn’t ideal offensively, but would make for a pretty nice OF defensively.

    • Mr. Max says:

      Trade who for DeJesus?

      • Mac1 says:

        Not sure, don’t know if the Royals would be interested in some of the pitching i.e. names like Z-Mac, Nova and Austin Romine or even Juan Miranda – he’s in his last year at 500K then he’s a FA (not ideal).

        DeJesus only makes 4.7 mil with an option -you can look at it a buch of ways – maybe 4.7 mil is alot for a guy who posted a 781 ops – I just think he gives a good glove, good arm and a pro bat and at 30 and from Brooklyn he’d be a nice fit.

        Marlon Byrd is a type B FA as well – there’s options aplenty thanks to the Grandy deal.

        • Mr. Max says:

          I’d do DeJesus for Melky, Eduardo Nunez, and George Kontos, or something like that. Is this too little? Or is Melky comparable to Dejesus (though the former is a lesser fielder)?

          • Mac1 says:

            I think you want to keep Melky unless someone overpays -at the least he’s insurance against injury, Grandy not turning around his defensive yips in CF or even against LHP and even if they go with Cameron – same deal – insurance against a 37 year old getting hurt.

            An of of Grandy\De Jesus\ Melky should be very good defensively with Swisher as the DH. Its just an option.

            De Jesus (30 years old) was a good CFer with a good arm, he’s above average defensively as a lfer (13 assists last year 15 runs above average (Rtot).

            Actually, a few years back the Yanks tried to get him for Melky – career stats 286/358/425 – a solid player from Brooklyn.

    • mike says:

      I would get Nady at a 2-way contract with a ton of vesting options, and put him in left – keeping Melky as the 4thOF who can spell Granderson against tough lefties and Nady on occasion.

      If Nady gets hurt, Melky can be the 4th OF until another option comes up.

      This is an inexpensive, lower risk option than any of the pitcher’s named as reclamation projects, ans still gives the Yanks roster and financial flexability to sign Matsui to protect ARod.

      This would be analagous to the deal the Yanks made for Swisher where they told everyone he would be their 1B, and even though the Yanks still had to pony up the most $ to get Tex it was a reasonable option as an inexpensive fall-back

  24. Ace says:

    Would anyone take a chance on Vlad at DH and how much do you think it would cost on a 2 year deal?

  25. Januz says:

    One thing that is very important to remember is the Yankees (Along with the Mets & Twins), can deduct some of the mortgage interest payments on their new Stadiums. That being said, the goal of the New York Yankees for the past 90 years (Except for the period when CBS owned the team in the 60s and early 70s), is to win Championships (And they will spend money to do just that, starting with when they purchased Babe Ruth from Boston). This is nothing new, there was a famous quote by Red Smith “Rooting For The Yankees Is Like Rooting For US Steel” That was in the 50s. So when teams complain about the Yankees, it does not bother me. If every organization had the Committment To Excellence the Yankees do. they would be much better off.

  26. MattG says:

    I’ve been counting salaries down, and with the removal of Damon, Matsui, Pettitte, Nady, Wang, Bruney, and Molina, there’s $52M to spend. I don’t know how much of that will go to raises–this is where my methodology fails–but adding one player for $5.5M can’t possibly result in just $18M left to spend, can it? That would mean the Yankees need to pay out $28.5M in raises this year.

    • MattG says:

      reading comprehension fail–the $182 includes Pettitte. $16.5M in raises is more reasonable.

      If I had $18M in my wallet at the MLB FA store, I’d put Cameron, Delgado and Chapman in my cart (Chapman will need a major league deal to sign, I read).

    • Mr. Max says:

      CC get 13 mil more, plus guys like cano and swish have contractual raises too

  27. Chris says:

    I say they go after Ben Sheets or Duke (I’d probably pick Sheets) as the last starter (assuming Pettitte resigns).

    As for the offense, I would say they have to consider either Damon or Cameron in the outfield, and then worry about DH if they can’t get either guy for their price.

    For DH, you have consider Delgado or Matsui from that list. Thome to me seems done, at least when compared to the first two guys. The advantage Delgado gives you is slightly more power and the ability to play 1B on the days Tex takes off, which removes the possibility of a no-stick player out there.

  28. Mac says:

    I think I have a bit of different view then most of you. I do agree I think the Yankees NEED to sign Pettitte. I also believe they NEED to replace Ian Kennedy with Mitre and/or Gaudin.

    But as far as the lineup, we more or less replaced an aging Damon with a much younger Granderson. Which also improved our defense by being able to shift Melky to a more suitable position for himself.

    We also can fill our bullpen departures with younger guys such as Dunn and Melancon. Marte and Robertson will hopefully be able to stay healthy and play in the bigs all year.

    So that leaves us with some nice to haves:
    Another starter and a DH

    I want to see Hughes and Joba attempt to start for a full season this year so instead of getting a risky guy like Harden, Sheets or Bedard why don’t they sign Chapman who will cost less and be able to be groomed in AAA until needed.

    And for DH, would it be that bad if Juan Miranda was given a shot? The kid may not be a Matsui, or a Delgado but he has put up a solid line in the minors the past few years. .280/.366/.474/.840

    I know as Yankee fans we always demand to go out and grab all of the best possible players we can, but would it really be that bad if the only major signing we make is Pettitte and Chapman?

    • MattG says:

      Chapman is a raw kid. He figures in no ones plans until 2012, at best.

      I don’t mind the apparently growing sentiment to go cheap on DH, but do they need to go Miranda cheap? Thome and Delgado would certainly sign one year deals, and Delgado would probably take a $4M base + incentives.

      • Mac says:

        Chapman needs some work, but he isn’t 2012 far away. He has pitched on the big stage in the WBC already. Really needs to develop a changeup to go along with his Fastball/Slider.

        If he signs with an NL team he could be starting by the end of this year. But having him on the Yanks would allow us to groom him in AAA for at least a year. Gaudin/Mitre would be the go to 6th/7th starters.

        If they can sign Thome/Delgado/Dye for under a 5 million 1 year base with a few incentives I would be all for it.

      • Mac says:

        But for the same price if they can get a healthier guy who can play the field I may be more for that. Even if their bat isn’t at the same level.

        That adds a lot of versatility. A guy like Cameron, or even DeRosa would give Joe some flexibility. Posada needs to be babied a little bit more this year and given the DH spot. They can’t afford to have him get hurt and need to bring up Montero before he is allowed to mature as a catcher.

  29. Rob in CT says:

    Pettitte
    Sheets
    Cameron or Damon for LF (Cameron >> Damon defensively, Damon > Cameron offensively, plus is a much better fit offensively for the stadium).
    Matsui, Thome, Johnson or maybe Delgado. They’re all good DH options with health issues.

    I’d also at least look into a trade for DeJesus (Melky+?). IIRC, he plays solid D and, being a lefty, won’t get killed by the stadium (as I fear Cameron might be).

    • Mac1 says:

      I want to keep Melk but that aside I think the Royals probably don’t want Melk b\c he’s arb eligible and getting expensive. Gardy + going over for DeJesus would be amazing but unrealistic (I guess).

      I like De Jesus and he’d be my choice over Cameron.

      De Jesus in LF, Grandy and Melk with Swisher as DH is a pretty decent option IMO.

      Melky\Grandy\Swish with Damon as a DH also is more than fine by me.

  30. Grover says:

    I’m surprised the Tigers couldn’t unload one of their awful contracts with Granderson and/or Jackson. I thought there was a scenario where the Mets gave up little and filled most of their holes. The big Halladay wait will continue until Toronto calls and says they have a deal with another club at which time the Yanks will pounce.

  31. Upstate says:

    FIRST
    I’d like to see the Yankees bring Pettite back into the fold.

    SECOND
    Go after Damon and get him on a 2yr deal. I know most of you on this board think they should go after Cameron, but I disagree. Cameron’s defense is better but I believe Damon’s bat is better and he has the intangibles of being a clubhouse guy and contributed to the teams good chemistry this year. I don’t think that can be replaced with Cameron, but if Damon wants too much money and too many years then obviously you have to go with plan B.

    THIRD
    I would love to see them get Rich Harden on a 1yr deal as the 4th starter. When he is healthy he is lights out. Plus I think the injury list on Sheets is more extensive than Harden.

    LAST
    I’m also one of those people that would like to see Joba in the bullpen and hughes as the 5th starter. My reasoning is I think Hughes has more stuff and is better suited to be a starter than Joba. I would love to see Marte/Joba/Rivera close out games next year. Joba is a 2-pitch fastball/slider guy and would be better in a closers role than a starting pitcher. Just my opinion I know a lot of you will disagree.

    • Bo says:

      Right on.

      Damon is vital to this lineup and just a much better player than Cameron. You would be signing them for LF not CF.

      And Joba should be in the pen all yr. Let the kid do what he does best. Relieve.

      • Mac1 says:

        Damon at DH would be fine with me.

        All the other comps aside, I don’t think you want to change this team too much unless its a clear upgrade that gives you a bump in youth, offense and defense.

    • MattG says:

      I only want to talk Harden vs Sheets. Harden’s injury history is much worse. All Harden’s injuries have been arm-related. Sheet’s have not, and Sheets just had a nifty year off. If one of those guys is likely to take his turn this year, it’s Sheets.

      But being that Brad Penny got $7.5M, the Yankees can’t actually afford Sheets.

    • Mac says:

      I’am on board with that. But I don’t like Damon on a 2 year deal to be primarily a DH. It really makes me sick watching him play the field.

      Sign Delgado to a 1 year 5 million dollar contract with incentives for hitting 30 and 40 home runs.

      He hit 38 in 2008 at Shea. If hes healthy he could still his 40+ in Yankee stadium.

      Lineup: Jeter (R), Grandy (L), Tex (S), Alex (R), Delgado (L), Posada (S), Cano (L), Swisher (S), Melky (S)

    • Mr. Max says:

      FIRST
      Cameron has always been considered a great clubhouse guy, is tremendously consistent, and plays awesome D. He’s already friends with guys like CC, too, from playing together in MIL.

      SECOND
      There ain’t much more extensive an injury list than Harden’s, who barely survived breaking down in the NL recently. Sheets at least has done the 200 IP thing, and is a big game P.

      LAST
      Your Joba Hughes comp is just wrong. Joba has a great FB, great slider, good curve, poor change. Hughes has a good FB, good curve, poor change, poor cutter, slightly better control. Stamina is something else, and a big part of Joba’s dropoff last year came after his career high in IP. Both should be unleashed starters this year, with a slight babying of Hughes.

      • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

        I thought Hughes’ cutter improved a lot this year. I could see it becoming a plus pitch.

  32. “Oh, she’s a full-on Monet ….. You see, it’s like the painting. Seen from far away, it’s okay; but up close, it’s a big ol’ mess.” ……. Cher Horowiz, Clueless

    So the question I ask …..did the Yanks just pick up a Monet?

    One final thought on Grandy …..Part of last season’s big decline can be explained by the following …… Curtis wasn’t swinging at more pitches out of the K zone. But he was hitting a far higher percentage of those balls. In other words, he got much better at doing something that he shouldn’t be doing in the first place. And the results showed. To recover from last year, Curtis really needs some of that bad-ball contact to go away.

  33. Dev Das says:

    Who needs Delgado, Nick Johnson, Milton Bradley. You need Damon, Matsui, or Vlad for DH. Forget Damon in left he cant throw for his life. You need Holliday or Bay in left, with Grandy in center, and swisher in right for now. If Slade Heathcott is ready, bring up the 5-tool player in right, and have swisher be back up 1B. Ramiro Pena shoul be the backup IF, Cervelli or Molina backup C, and Juan Miranda or Swisher for 1B. Now for pitching. Go after Lackey for # 2 and dont get Halladay. We used up all our good prospects to get Grandy, and if you wnat Hallday you have to do the Johan thing (trade for and sign for 6 years). If no lackey, then waht about Erik bedard, Justin Ducsher, Jon Garland, Mark Mulder, Mark prior. If none of these then leave Pettite as 3, Guadin for now (until Wang comes back) as # 4 and bring Joba back for # 5. Then get a good lefty and another righty for bullpen with Mo, Hughes, marte, Aceves, and Robertson. This is my depth chart for now.

  34. Dev Das says:

    Perhaps for bullpen, Mike Gonzales and JJ Putz or Eric Gagne, Juan Rincon, Chad Cordero.

  35. Dev Das says:

    My Lineup

    Jeter, Granderson, Tex, Arod, Holliday, Matsui, Cano, Posada, Swisher.

    or

    Jeter, Granderson, Tex, Arod, Holliday, Cano, Vlad, Posada, Swisher.

    Rotation

    CC, Lack, AJ, Pettite, Gaudin (for Wang)

    or

    CC, AJ, Joba, Pettite, Gaudin

    Pen

    Mo, Hughes, Joba, Robertson, Marte, Aceves, Gonzales

    or

    Mo, Hughes, Gonzales, Robertson, Putz, Aceves, Marte

  36. Dev Das says:

    Damon doesnt want to play DH and where in the lineup would you play him if you brought him back. The point is to get younger and not older

  37. [...] Late Monday night, we got word the Yanks were working on a three team trade to land Curtis Granderson. They agreed to a deal on Tuesday, sending Ian Kennedy, Austin Jackson, and Phil Coke elsewhere. Once the medicals were reviewed, the deal was made official and the team’s offseason picture became a little clearer. [...]

  38. [...] Early last week, we got word the Yanks were working on a three team trade to land Curtis Granderson. They agreed to a deal on Tuesday, sending Ian Kennedy, Austin Jackson, and Phil Coke elsewhere. Once the medicals were reviewed the deal was made official. [...]

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