Jun
25

Olney: Non-Cliff Lee pieces are a good fit for the Yankees

By

The trade rumor circuit is starting to pick up the pace, but as much as we might want to see Cliff Lee in pinstripes, Buster Olney says the Yankees just aren’t focusing on him right now. Despite Javy Vazquez‘s early season suckiness and A.J. Burnett‘s more recent suckiness, the Yanks’ starters have still pitched to a 4.22 xFIP this season, the third best mark in the league. Their ERA is even shinier at 3.82. At this point, Lee is nothing more than a luxury. Another bullpen arm and some bench help should be higher up on the priority list.

Categories : Asides
  • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

    Buster’s really breaking some big news. Where does he get this fantastic info? The worst part is, Buster will probably, 2x a week mention that the Yankees aren’t in on Lee. We get it, we expected it, and until something changes, Olney should focus on actual news.

    • Not Tank the Frank

      This. Oddly similar to how the Yankees weren’t in on Roy Halladay last year either…when they had a championship rotation. Huge news.

      • Thomas

        Actually, last year they had a spot for Halladay with really only 3 set starter plus Joba as a 4th with an inning limit. The 5th spot was pretty open with Wang/Mitre/Gaudin pitching.

        This year the Yankees have 5 legitimate pitchers, so there is even less of a need to add Lee.

        • Not Tank the Frank

          They may have had a spot for him, but the point was they didn’t have a need for him. It was obvious that the Yankees weren’t about to trade prospects AND sign him to a long-term extension; just as it is this year with Cliff Lee. Even more so as you said.

          The Yankees don’t trade top prospects for the opportunity to sign players to $100 + million contracts just for the hell of it.

          • Tom

            Except the offered prospects for him after the season and would have given an extension. But besides that, you’re right.

  • http://www.twitter.com/stophamm3rtime Dela G

    they really need a good righty reliever

    i say bring up ivan nova again and let him play more often. i’m sure many would disagree, but he could easily be better than CHoP, and really impressed me when he pitched earlier in the season

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      RHP Relievers
      Joba
      Robertson
      Aceves (injured)
      Park
      Mitre
      Gaudin
      Albaladejo
      Melancon
      Romulo
      Nova
      Hirsh
      Brackman (h/t Nostra-Artist)
      another dark-horse candidate I’ll unveil in a second*

      I think we can find 4 good righty relievers out of that group of 12 (not counting Aceves). And 4 is all we need; Mo + 4 RHP + 2 LHP = one solid bullpen. I’m more concerned with finding two good lefty relievers out of the following group of five:

      LHP Relievers
      Marte
      Logan
      Ring
      Igawa
      De La Rosa

      I think we need to be examining the lefty reliever trade market, not the righty one. JMHO.

      —————

      The co-dark horse candidate, along with Brackman, to get fast tracked into the 2010 Yankee bullpen if he continues to maintain his excellent K/9 rate? Tim Norton.

      Yeah, that’s right.

      He’s already 27, he’s always had great stuff but only been delayed due to injuries, but he’s now healthy and throwing gas again. Across Tampa and Trenton, he’s got a 41/5 K/BB, a 1.32 ERA, and a 0.841 WHIP this year in 27.1 innings. I’d love to see him bumped up to Scranton in the next month to see if he can do what he’s doing to AAA vets. Joining the pen in September and making a cameo wouldn’t be the craziest thing in the world.

      • deuce bag poster

        You really want to see Brackman bumped up into the Yankees’ pen? Seems a bit of a waste a la Jobber.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          Let me be clear: I have no problem whatsoever with the Yankees, or any other team for that matter, maximizing the value of their young pitching prospects AND getting their prospects feet wet by debuting them in the big league bullpen.

          It’s a sound and time-tested strategy.

          I only have a problem with the Yankees (or other teams) KEEPING those prospects in the bullpen. The fact that I think Andrew Brackman could be a great addition to the 2010 Yankee bullpen does not mean I want him to be a reliever for the rest of his life. On Opening Day 2011, I fully expect him to be in the Scranton rotation.

          What the Yankees did with Joba in 2007 was perfectly fine. It’s what they did with him in 2009 and 2010 that was stupid.

          • deuce bag poster

            True. But with Brackman, it seems like it would stunt his development. He’s having a brilliant rennaissance season. I wouldn’t want to waste time in his development by having him languish in the Yankees’ pen.

            Also, the Yankees have made me rather paranoid with regards to starters in the bullpen.

            • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

              You have a point.

              I was really only talking about September for Brackmeezy. He’d probably be close to getting shut down at that point anyway (plus, his minor league season would end).

              • jsbrendog (returns)

                true. if he hasn’t been shut down once his MiL season ends why not bring him up when rosters expand? dude’s already on the 40 man and if he has innings to spare why let him go home and do nothing til he starts his offseason regiment when he can get some experience in low leverage situations ion the bigs

                • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

                  dude’s already on the 40 man and if he has innings to spare why let him go home and do nothing til he starts his offseason regiment when he can get some experience in low leverage situations ion the bigs

                  This guy knows what I’m talking about.

                  Nostra is gonna be so pumped to see us on the Brackman to the Pen (TEMPORARILY) Bangwagon™.

                • deuce bag poster

                  This situation I could see. Why not?

                  • jsbrendog (returns)

                    exactly. it’s science. you can’t fight science.

                    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

                      I’m a man who built the Eiffel Tower out of metal, and brawn. That’s the kind of man I am.

            • jsbrendog (returns)

              Also, the Yankees have made me rather paranoid with regards to starters in the bullpen.

              the thing about this, though, is that while they effed up jobber they def did right by hughes with this approach…so i can’t really say that i have lost faith completely…i’m kinda confused just what to think currently

          • pounder

            “maximizing the value of their young pitching prospects AND getting their prospects feet wet by debuting them in the big league bullpen.”
            Ditto,and real old school….and effective.

      • http://www.twitter.com/stophamm3rtime Dela G

        wait a second, brackman is already 27??? holy shit!

        yeah that makes sense. wouldn’t be a bad idea

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          Heh… no.

          Tim Norton is 27. Andrew Brackman is 24, he turns 25 in December.

          • http://www.twitter.com/stophamm3rtime Dela G

            ha ok good, you had me scared there for a second

            this is what i get for reading this while drinking a red balls

            • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

              this is what i get for reading this while drinking a red balls

              … nah, too easy.

              • jsbrendog (returns)

                red is not a color i would want my balls to be….

              • http://www.twitter.com/stophamm3rtime Dela G

                haha thats one of my favorite chappelle skits ever

                • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

                  It gives you wings!!!!!!

              • pounder

                Go for it…you’ll hate yourself if you don’t.

        • Tom Zig

          No. Brackman is 24. Tim Norton is 27.

        • jsbrendog (returns)

          no norton

      • tony c.

        You failed to mention one more r.h.p.in Dustin Moseley(29).yanks got til thurs.to make up there mind whether to Promote him & or release him.I say,promote him,turn Chan-Ho-Park loose.

  • bonestock94

    Giving up prospects for half a season of Lee would be nothing short of retarded, especially with a top rotation like the Yankees. Free agency is a different story.

    I’d like to see the bullpen addressed internally and a good bench slugger or DH type traded for with low level prospects, a la 2009.

    • steve (do)

      That depends entirely on which prospects, doesn’t it? Mediocre prospects and an entension window? Sign me up. Lee is awesome. That’s not going to happen, but trading for an awesome player is usually not “retarded”

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

        That’s not going to happen

        And you admit it as well. So your argument is:

        “In scenarios which are totally impossible and never happen, it’s not retarded to trade prospects you have for an awesome player you don’t need and can sign for nothing but money in the next offseason.”

        • steve (do)

          So you agree with his first sentence, as written? There are many, many scenarios where trading for Cliff Lee would not be “retarded”. They are probably unlikely, but I wasn’t the one making the emphatic blanket statement. I didn’t really see this as controversial and I was really just objecting to the absolutism.

    • tony c.

      sounds good to me.

  • Frank

    Maybe not today, but if 1 month from today AJ and Vazquez continue to pitch erratically and considering Hughes is on an innings limit (and may ultimately go to the BP), Lee may well become a target.

    • Tom Zig

      I think it would require 1 or 2 pitchers going down with a season ending injury. Not just AJ and/or Vazquez pitching erratically.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

        That.

        AJ and Vazquez pitching erratically is not a reason to trade for Lee. AJ and Vazquez not pitching at all because they’re out for the year with an injury, THAT’S a reason to trade for a pitcher… but not Cliff Lee.

        It’s more like a reason to trade for Ted Lilly or Ian Snell or Edwin Jackson or Jake Westbrook or some cheap(er), innings eater kind of guy. CC/Pettitte/Hughes gives us the luxury of not needing to add an ace, just a reliable back end guy.

      • Chris

        I think the bigger problem is that someone else is going to offer more for Lee than the Yankees. It’s not so much that the Yankees don’t want him, couldn’t use him, or don’t have enough to offer. The bigger issue is that there are teams that want him more and would give up a lot more to get him.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          Exactly. Our need for Lee is so much lower that we’d only trade for him at steal prices, and some other team that needs Lee more will be more willing to trade for him at market rate prices.

    • tony c.

      the only way Lee would fit. the yankees would have to move Hughes to the pen &I don’t see that happening.

  • dan genovese

    if we want lee next we can buy him……………tell me who can outspend us………..ill wait for that answer………..

    • Tom Zig

      No one can, but conceivably someone might offer him more than we feel he is worth to us. Say we offer him 19-20M a year, and someone counters with 24M a year. Could we offer 25? Sure. Would we? Probably not.

      • Brad Toughy

        Would someone offer a pitcher $24MM a year though? Roy Halladay didn’t get that much, and even though Cliff Lee is a year younger, I don’t see a team locking a guy with some injury history up for huge money and huge years.

        He’ll probably end up with more than a Burnett/Lackey deal but less than Sabathia.

        • jsbrendog (returns)

          He’ll probably end up with more than a Burnett/Lackey deal but less than Sabathia.

          yeah i kind of figure this as well

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      Dear dan genovese:

      Thank you for not capitalizing every letter of your post. We appreciate very much your willingness to speak civilly.

      (I could ask you to knock off the ellipses, but I guess it’s baby steps, huh?)

      • Esteban

        don’t… get… carried …. away.

  • emac2

    As much as we might not need Lee for ourselves (I’m not sure that is true for a playoff rotation that looks much better with CC, Lee, Hughes and Pettitte) I would be worried about a few teams in the playoffs if he was added to their roster.

    If we could trade for him now AND have him accept a CC deal I would consider it pretty strongly.

    I would also love to figure out how we could trade Vasquez and AJ to NL teams for prospects we could then send to Seattle for Lee. The return from those guys plus a Laird and Nunez should be plenty.

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      I would also love to figure out how we could trade Vasquez and AJ to NL teams for prospects we could then send to Seattle for Lee.

      This isn’t Playstation.

      • deuce bag poster

        I once managed to get a team, through the trading of backup players only, that consisted entirely of HOFers and that won 135 games. The Red Sox won 100 games and finished 35 games back.

        If I can do it, I’m sure professional GM Brian Cashman should be able to. Unless he’s an idiot.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          Solution: sign Jermaine Dye and Jarrod Washburn off the FA list, then trade them to the Royals for Grienke and Soria.

          BOOM, THAT JUST HAPPENED.

          • jsbrendog (returns)

            why not trade brackman??? he is a bust. do you really think he will keep this up eric????? where’s your movie quote???

            (not gonna lie, i kinda miss the guy)

            • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

              (sips glass of lemonless lemonade)

              • Tom Zig

                What would lemonless lemonade taste like?

                • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

                  I have no idea.

                  SHUT UP WOMAN GET ON MY HORSE

                  • Tom Zig

                    my horse is amazing!

                    • jsbrendog (returns)

                      tastes just like raisins

                • jsbrendog (returns)
              • jsbrendog (returns)

                mmmmmmmm sugarwater

    • jsbrendog (returns)

      this is nowhere near reality

      • deuce bag poster

        Related: I decided to go through the postseason with the Tampa Bay Rays. My game is from 2003, so the Rays sucked.

        I won the World Series with a 6.75 ERA.

        I fell behind 2 games the none to the Angels in the first round. I won game 3 in extra innings and then the next two games easily.

        I fell behind 3 games to 1 to the Yankees. I threw out Nick Johnson goig for a triple down by one with 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth in game 5, then one game 7 on a blown save by Mo.

        I won the WS against the Cardinals in 6 games with a comeback from being down 6-0 in game 6. Oh, and I was down 1 game to none in that series.

        /Totally realistic’d

        • jsbrendog (returns)

          GET DEWAYNE BRAZELTON ON THE PHONE RIGHT NOW!!!

    • Total Dominication

      Deal.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

        My favorite part (emphasis mine):

        I would also love to figure out how we could trade Vasquez AND AJ to NL teams for prospects we could then send to Seattle for Lee. The return from those guys plus a Laird and Nunez should be plenty.

        (counts)

        Who’s the fifth starter in our rotation in that scenario?

        Chad Gaudin?

        • jsbrendog (returns)

          HEY, SERGIO, LET”S GET THE HELL OUTTA HERE
          SAID HEY, SERGIO!

          • dffdg

            Catch 22 reference. nice.

        • Total Dominication

          Roy Halladay!

          :: head explodes ::

          • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

            Step A: Trade AJ Burnett and Javier Vazquez to the Phillies for Kyle Kendrick, Domonic Brown, Antonio Bastardo, and John Mayberry Jr.
            Step B: Trade Kendrick, Brown, Bastardo, Mayberry, Laird, and Nuñez to Seattle for Cliff Lee
            Step C: Trade Jesus Montero and Slade Heathcott to the Phillies for Roy Halladay
            Step D: Trade Nick Johnson, Curtis Granderson, Nick Swisher, Brett Gardner, Andrew Brackman, and Cito Culver to Detroit for Johnny Damon, Austin Jackson, Phil Coke, Hideki Matsui, and Bobby Abreu (just trust me, this will work somehow)

            • deuce bag poster

              Step A: Trade AJ Burnett and Javier Vazquez to the Phillies for Kyle Kendrick, Domonic Brown, Antonio Bastardo, and John Mayberry Jr.
              Step B: ????
              Step C: Profit!

              • tony c.

                forget”Lee”for now.we need to concentrate on bench&pen

            • Jp

              You can’t trade culver, he hasn’t been in the organization.

            • tony c.

              What are you smokin anyway????? You can’t be 4-real.hahahahahahaha.your a trip or on one…

        • emac2

          What kind of loser worries about a 5th starter when trading for Cliff Lee?

          • jsbrendog (returns)

            please remove your internet tough guy hat.

          • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

            Spot on response. You’re already divorced from reality; no point reconciling with it now.

            We’ll make your InsanityLand trade, then petition the league to just give us an automatic win every fifth day because our front four is so awesome, we’ve earned it. Fantastic.

            • jsbrendog (returns)

              that squirrel sure can waterski

              • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

                Mmmmm… burned my tongue.

              • tony c.

                Yeah,& im willing to bet he thinks he could walk on water.

            • emac2

              http://www.milb.com

              Check it out!

              You’ll love it!

    • whozat
      • jsbrendog (returns)

        fact

      • tony c.

        Not only does it suck,it sucks big time..Buster O.would luv to run with this one.

    • tony c.

      And while your at it,throw in Marcus Thames.

  • bonestock94

    lol at AJ Burnett not being on the playoff rotation

    • tony c.

      You might be right if he does’nt get his act together & real soon.

  • dffdg

    The Orioles of the 1970’s were famous for bringing up minor league starters and introducing them to the majors via the bullpen. That tactic broke in some good pitchers.

  • Jp

    Trade Romine, Nunez, and McAllister for Lee.

    • Mattchu12

      Just no.

    • tony c.

      Just rumors…