Cashman: Yankees might start season with current pitching staff

The RAB Radio Show: December 20, 2010
Pettitte still leaning towards retirement

Via Wally Matthews, Brian Cashman acknowledged that the Yankees might begin the season sporting the same starting rotation they do right now, meaning CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova, and Sergio Mitre. “I’m not saying I want to do it,” said Cash, “but I may have to do it. Could I go out and get a starter? Yes, I could. But there’s just not much out there … I have March, April, May, June and July, really, to come up with someone.” The GM also said that he’s operating under the assumption that Andy Pettitte will not return, which is the right thing to do.

In other news, Bubba Crosby will be the starting centerfielder and Jesus Montero will be the starting catcher. I’ll believe it when I see it.

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The RAB Radio Show: December 20, 2010
Pettitte still leaning towards retirement
  • Yyzz

    Juan Miranda will be the DH too.

  • Granderslam

    Everyone keeps mentioning Zambrano as a possibility since Cubs might want to shed some payroll. Any idea if Dempster if available? That would be a much better possible option.

  • DJH

    “Person with knowledge of Pettitte’s thinking puts his chances of a return at 30%. “There is a very real possibility that he will retire.”

    ~Marc Carig’s Twitter

  • http://www.twitter.com/tomzig Tom Zig

    Bubba Crosby will be the starting centerfielder

    http://www.bubba-crosby.com/ (SFW but NSFL)

    • Adam

      Love this:

      “If Torre had used Bubba more often, instead of trotting out Tony Womack, Matt Lawton, and Ruben Sierra (none of whom hit better than Bubba and all of whom were a lot worse on defense), maybe he and Sheff would be used to each other, and the collision wouldn’t have happened.”

    • DJH

      Wow!

  • Jesus Montero’s Brain

    GOOOOOD.
    I prefer 10 years of Montero over a year or two of any ace, yea ANY.

  • theyankeewarrior

    The news just gets better and better every day.

  • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

    As much as I think its probably Bubba style posturing, there is an element of truth to it. I don’t want Cashman wasting time, money, energy and players getting a warm body when we have our own warm bodies.

    • Mister Delaware

      [insert masturbation joke]

  • http://RAB Nuke LaDoosh

    How can I get a tryout? I’m willing to learn to throw the Knuckleball, and I’m younger than Jamie Moyer…

  • Mister Delaware

    WE HAVEN’T WON AN OFFSEASON TITLE SINCE DECEMBER 2008!!!!!!!

  • Harry

    if thats the rotation during the season cashman should be fired and dropped off in the middle of the ghetto in bronx to be left shot and beat up

    • pete

      what could he have done differently?

    • Mister Delaware

      you right well and i think you should post here more often please do so ok thanks

    • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

      There really wasn’t a ton of other options. Once you accept that Lee wasn’t going to come here regardless, the only thing you could have said was that he should have aggressively pursued some of the lackluster talent while it was still on the market. And I really think people like Garland and Westbrook would have been lit up like a Christmas tree.

    • nathan

      What to do you hv against ghettos.

      Be rational. Critique him that’s fair, don’t hate him.

    • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

      FNOMHR

    • http://youcantpredictbaseball.wordpress.com bexarama

      First Name Only Male Handle Rule.

      • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

        Should have used an acronym, much quicker.

  • http://twitter.com/joero23 The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

    Anybody got Mike Mussina’s number?

    • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

      I mentioned Mussina a few weeks back and was only half kidding.

  • SteveD

    I heard on the radio the other day that AJ Burnett went through a really bad divorce last year. Like his ex wife did some crazy shit. So the thinking is it obviously affected his head and pitching. So hopefully he has her out of the picture this year and will do better. cant do much worse. Has this been mentioned before or has anyone else heard about this??

    • http://twitter.com/joero23 The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      Cowherd said it, AJ and his agent immediately denied it, and Cowherd retracted and apologized.

      • SteveD

        Yup thats where i heard it. did not know that aj and his agent denied it or colin retracted. So I guess AJ just sucked ? lol

      • nathan

        Cowherd has too many important jobs and roles to make such stupid statements. There might have been an element of truth to it but since it was not public he may have retracted it. Fair.

        • SteveD

          agree. why would he make such a comment? I figure there has to be something to it.

          • nathan

            Precisely. He is not just a shock jock. Agree he makes stupid unintelligent comments. But he holds too many roles in the ESPN hierarchy to be that irresponsible. Or so I theorize.

            Whatever is bugging AJ, hopefully its over with. And his 2011 season is more in line with his 2009 season.

            • The Big City of Dreams

              If ppl remember and I’m sure they do Cashman said the things that were around Aj last yr won’t be around him this upcoming season.

              Something definitely happened divorce or not

    • Mister Delaware

      Maybe stop listening to Colin Cowherd.

      • Teh Comp Pick

        For a guy who’s first Media related job was with a Padres affiliate, and is “buddies” with Kevin Towers, he sure knows jack about baseball. His show can be interesting sometimes, knows his football, but baseball…eesh.

        • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

          His description of Antonio Cromartie as a “dumpster fire of a human being” is still one of my all time favorites.

          Otherwise, I can’t listen to him

          • Mister Delaware

            Its funny because I bet he knows Cromartie really well, making that a well informed comment.

        • The Big City of Dreams

          Colin “loves baseball” but always bangs on it because he feels the sport is eroding.

      • Jorge

        I love Cowherd. He falls into the same pratfalls of any sports talk guy, but the way he dismisses any small market team, and goes out of his way all the time to say that the Sox fanbase isn’t even on the same planet as the Yankees, makes him a joy to listen to.

  • ultimate913

    Mitre? Really? Nova, I understand. But Mitre? What the hell? Bring up a B or give some other AAA guys a chance. Keep Mitre away from the rotation.

  • Teh Comp Pick

    Trade for Soria…..see if you can make him a starter.

    • http://www.or.ly JM

      Why would you waste Soria’s talent in the starting rotation? He has the build and the mentality coming out of the ‘pen!

      The 8th Inning>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>The First 6 Innings

      • Teh Comp Pick

        I knows your joking, but on the real…It would be a super ninja move

  • http://twitter.com/kschmidt2 Kiersten

    I just have a really hard time taking somebody named Wally seriously. Especially when he works for ESPN, but that’s beside the point.

    • http://www.facebook.com/cecala Joseph Cecala

      I understand where that is coming from, and agree.

    • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

      Not just ESPN, but ESPN-NY

  • http://www.facebook.com/cecala Joseph Cecala

    Cue the bridgejumpers

    • http://www.twitter.com/tomzig Tom Zig

      The Hudson is mighty cold this time of year.

    • Jimmy McNulty

      Most of us are waiting until it warms up, thankyouverymuch.

  • http://www.thegeekwriters.wordpress.com ponch303

    As long as Andy comes back the team is as strong if not stronger than it was last year at this point. I’d rather have Nova starting versus Javy and Jeter, A-Rod, and Teix probably cannot have seasons as bad as last year. That’s the thing everyone forgets. The Yankees were two games from the World Series last year with below average production from a 1/3 of their lineup and 2/5 of the rotation. The Yankees can survive this type of slump other teams simply cannot. I don’t care who the Phils or Sox or whoever have starting or in the field. The Yankees are still a playoff team as presently constructed.

    • nsalem

      100 percent true.

    • Tom Swift

      And once you get to the playoffs, anything can happen. Mighty teams can be humbled. Humble teams can get hot and run the table. So I am fine with staying pat for now and looking for upgrades that make sense and for a reasonable cost. During the season, the next wave of pitchers in the minors will mature and get another step to the majors, so Cashman is actually working from a position of strength in that regard.

      • Jimmy McNulty

        You don’t spend 180M and hope for a 2006 Cardinals run of luck.

        • http://mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

          You also can’t unspend what you’ve already spent. They didn’t spend $180 million this offseason. There are many deals that if they could get out of, they would. Just having a high payroll doesn’t mean success or even expected success (based on $$ alone).

          • Reggie C.

            Starting the season off with Mitre and Nova as starters isn’t a ninja-move waiting to happen, its an all-out joke. Somebody should alert Cashman to this fact.

            • Louis

              i agree. Whatever the scenario, Sergio mitre should not be in any opening day starting rotation, let alone the yankees.

    • Jimmy McNulty

      A few things:

      Give Nova 160 innings and see what happens.

      36 year old middle infielders usually end up sucking.

      A-Rod is a 35 year old third basemen with a bad hip and a former steroid user.

      Teixeira should improve, but can we really expect Cano, Swisher, and Gardner to perform just as well as they did last year?

      • http://youcantpredictbaseball.wordpress.com bexarama

        Give Nova 160 innings and see what happens.
        Agreed.

        36 year old middle infielders usually end up sucking.
        Agreed.

        A-Rod is a 35 year old third basemen with a bad hip and a former steroid user.
        if I had a nickel for every time you said “former steroid user…” when it came to A-Rod (but never when talking about Ortiz in the Boston offense). It’s mostly irrelevant… as you’ve said multiple times in the past, yet you continue to say it.

        Teixeira should improve, but can we really expect Cano, Swisher, and Gardner to perform just as well as they did last year?

        Cano? It wouldn’t surprise me to see him put up similar numbers, or ones just a little worse/better. This is his prime and he’s a very good player.

        Swisher? The BA/OBP/SLG will maybe change around a little, but I expect him to put up similar OPS+ numbers.

        Gardner? Yep, I think he can stay a quite high OBP/low power guy with very good defense. I’d like to see him stay healthy though.

        • Jimmy McNulty

          if I had a nickel for every time you said “former steroid user…” when it came to A-Rod (but never when talking about Ortiz in the Boston offense). It’s mostly irrelevant… as you’ve said multiple times in the past, yet you continue to say it.

          Huge difference. The Red Sox only need about 120 games and .350/.500 level production out of Ortiz. Which is about his average of the past three seasons. If all the Yankees needed from Rodriguez was .340/.506 I’d be fine going into the season, but they realistically need somewhere around .380/.530 in order over 140 games in order to stay competitive in the division. Rodriguez is a much bigger part of the Yankee offense than Ortiz is of the Red Sox offense. More is expected of him, thus he’s a bigger concern.

          Cano? It wouldn’t surprise me to see him put up similar numbers, or ones just a little worse/better. This is his prime and he’s a very good player.

          Yes, but last year was a monster career year, if he has a couple more of those and a reasonable decline he likely has a hall of fame case.

          Swisher? The BA/OBP/SLG will maybe change around a little, but I expect him to put up similar OPS+ numbers.

          Inflated BABIP from his career norms, and by xBABIP he was the luckiest Yankee. Jeter and Rodriguez were the unluckiest Yankees, so there’s hope for that.

          Gardner? Yep, I think he can stay a quite high OBP/low power guy with very good defense. I’d like to see him stay healthy though

          Meh…I dunno. I’m expecting like .270/.350/.340 type of numbers with great defense, definitely deserving of a roster spot but I think the .320/.400/.420 guy he was before the wrist injury was a mirage. If it wasn’t I’ll be pleased as hell.

          • Mister Delaware

            “Inflated BABIP from his career norms, and by xBABIP he was the luckiest Yankee. Jeter and Rodriguez were the unluckiest Yankees, so there’s hope for that.”

            His zone swing rate increased 11% while his contact rate remained the same so its quite possible he was making much better contact. Alas, we’re still waiting on hit f/x …

            • Jimmy McNulty

              Yeah, there’s that too.

          • MikeD

            I’d be careful trying to project Swisher’s 2011 based on 2010 stats compared to previous seasons. Yes, his BABIP did increase, yet his approach as a hitter changed dramatically. As Swishers BA went up, his walks went down. Overall, the change was for the better. What we have to see if this is a permanent change, or a one-year fluke. Yet if his change in approach was a fluke, what he losses in BA he should regain in walks.

            His OPS+ have been in the 122-130 range, save for the one off year in Chicago, when he had a career-high LD%, yet a career low in BABIP. Those two stats did not add up, which is why he was an obvious candidate for a come-back year in 2009. Yet looking at his 2009 numbers with the Yankees, his LD% was low based on his career norm, so he actually did project for an even better 2010, which is exactly what he produced. The problem in projecting Swish is he became much more agressive in 2010, dramatically increasing his swing percentage both out of the zone and in the zone.

            I’m comfortable projecting another good year from Swish. I just don’t know if it’s 2010 Swish or 2009 Swish. I’ll take either.

        • MikeD

          I expect a better year from Granderson, and also expect improvement from Gardner, although I seem to be in the minority on that front. He clearly was impacted by the wrist injury, so as long as he mends well, I’m expecting improvement, or at the lest to hold his own. I expect some regression from Swisher, but nothing major.

          Teixeira will be 31 next season, which means it’s likely he’s already produced his single best peak season, yet he is still in his peak zone years, so improvement over 2010 is likely if he can avoid some of the injuries and the extra extended slow start from last year. Teixeira does not always get off to a slow start, so if he can even get off to a moderate start, a .285/.385/.550 upper 30s HRs is likely. Probably likely even with a slow start. Overall, the Yankees outfield should collectively be at least as good as last year, and might be slightly better. Granderson will be the key to lifting the collective OF production higher.

          Cano is right in his peak years, which means there is still the chance for upside, but I think it’s more likely that we will see a modest regression, producing a season somewhere between his ’09 and ’10 campaigns. I’ll take it.

          I’m split on Jeter and A-Rod. I’d like to think Jeter has a bounce-back season, but I’m not confident because his hitting zone stats showed he had difficulty with the fastball last year, and that’s one of the clear signs of age. He may make some adjustments, but I’m expecting a similar year in ’11 as ’10. I’m more optimistic on A-Rod’s side. He still handled the fastball well last year, even though he didn’t properly use his lower body until later in the season. His biggest issue was for some reason he expanded the strike zone. That’s unusual for a power hitter in his 30s. As a group, they generally get better at zeroing in on pitches they can drive as they age. It’s one of the easier parts of the game to correct. I expect a better year.

  • CBean

    Come back to us Andy-wan-Kenobi! You’re our only hope.

  • Jorge

    Way to make a mountain out of a molehill here. We expected Cashman to say what else?

    • Louis

      “Were actually working out a 4 team trade that would send Felix Hernandez, Josh Johnson, and Ubaldo jimenez to the Yankees for the rights to our double-a minor league team”.

  • JohnathanCold

    CC, AJ, Hughes, Nova, Mitre <— Yikes

    I don't believe Andy will return and also don't believe that will be our starting rotation to begin the year.

    Cashman doesn't need to make any blockbuster moves, but he's got plenty of time to find 2 starters better equipped than Nova and Mitre.

    • nathan

      Well just give Joba a shot until you use Mitre. If Mitre is the option why not try Joba before that.

      This may be clears up a lot of doubts, Joba has not recovered from his shoulder issues. IF it is true that Joba’s shoulder has issues they should have traded him.

      Now? He is another Papelbon, Yanks will use him for his arb years and let him go. Hopefully, he will be a type A.

      • The Big City of Dreams

        Exactly sell high on Joba as a starter if he isn’t going to start for your club. I find it weird that Chamberlain is not even being considered to start. I remember the belief among many fans was the only way Joba goes back into the rotation is if Lee signs with someone else and Andy retires. Well Lee signed with someone else and Andy might retire but yet Joba is not even going into camp as a possible starter WTFFFFFFFFFFFF.

        If it is an injury just come out and say we believe he won’t be able to hold up as a starter.

  • mustang

    So Ok Cashman wants me to believe that he is willing to let AA players get shots at the Yankees rotation, but not Joba?

    Come on Cash this was weak very very weak.

    • http://youcantpredictbaseball.wordpress.com bexarama

      Aren’t you the one who never wants to talk about Joba starting?

      I agree, it’s weak if that’s the case.

      • Bulldozer

        Joba moratorium.
        I think it’s clear the FO has information we are not privy to right now.

        • The Big City of Dreams

          If it’s true just come out and say he won’t hold up as a starter. Red Sox did it with Papelbon.

      • mustang

        Yes I am, because I’m tired of the debate, but if your going to give Mitre and a bunch of kids from AA a shot its just crazy not to give Joba a chance unless something is structurally wrong with his arm.
        That’s why this whole thing is full of shit and I meant “weak’ as far as Cashman trying to sell anyone on this story.

  • Mattchu12

    Ink is drying on a deal as we speak, I’ve been waiting for the “we will totally go into the season with [insert crappy player here] as our [insert role here] next season” statement.

  • It’sATrap

    Don’t worry guys we’ll be fine…because we’re a 95 win team w/o a rotation an stuff. but 95 projected wins right?..bank on it

    • Jimmy McNulty

      As of now this team might not even project to win 90 games.

      • It’sATrap

        but but everyone says we’re projected 95 win even w/o a rotation…

        • Jimmy McNulty

          Well they’re wrong or they’re using an extremely optimistic model.

      • Mister Delaware

        What about now?

  • Yank the Frank

    Cash is just trying to improve his bargaining position. I doubt very much that will be our rotation come opening day. We will pick up some cast offs during ST that are better than Mitre and Nova and then make a splurge at the trade deadline.

    • billbybob

      I’m down to give Nova a shot at the fifth starter’s role, but I do not want Sergio meat-tray anywhere near the starting rotation.

  • A.D.

    No reason to say anything but this, as some poster noted in another thread, what do you want him to say OMG WE NEED A STARTED PLEASE COME AND TRY AND GET ME TO OVERPAY IN A TRADE

  • http://twitter.com/themanchine Bruno (The Manchine)

    Welcome to the Bronx Wandy and Jeff Francis.

    • Mister Delaware

      Did they get married?

      • icebird753

        Mike was the priest

  • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

    Carl Pavano for 2011 Opening Day Starter. Make it so, Cash-MAN!

    • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

      Jk I’d rather get cancer

  • wow

    deep down, I believe Cashman will make a big-time, out-of-nowhere deal.

    But if he is telling the truth… wake me up after the 2011 WS.

    Open up the farm, let Seattle take five, and give us the King.

    • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

      “…wake me up after the 2011 WS”
      “Open up the farm, let Seattle take five, and give us the King.”

      Are you foreshadowing the dream you’ll be having while you’re sleeping?

    • ultimate913

      Not gonna happen. Stop thinking Felix or Josh Johnson. Think smaller. Much smaller.

      • Mister Delaware

        That would be Wandy Rodriguez. He’s listed at 5’11 but I swear, standing at field level, he looked about 5’8.

      • Louis

        Tim Lincecum?

  • Reggie C.

    Here’s hoping MATT CAIN hits the trade block at the 2011 trading deadline.

    • It’sATrap

      Matt Cain is too flyball to even bother in YS…he;s going get killed here

  • bottom line

    Bullpen is also suspect. Sign Rafael Soriano. Then build a deal for a decent starter (Gavin Floyd?) around Joba, Warren, Nunez/Laird. That way both pen and rotation improved at bearable cost. Very strange that Cashman has done so little with the pen.

    • Mister Delaware

      Maybe because the Yanks pen was really good last year and the only positive contribution it lost was Wood’s 26 innings? Adding to a back-end of Mariano/Joba/D-Rob + 2 lefties is a luxury, not a necessity.

      • The Big City of Dreams

        the pen was good because of Wood and his 26 innings. Joba was a disaster the 1st half and didn’t perform to his ability until Kerry joined the team.

    • FIPster Doofus

      First-round pick + multiple years + big money for Soriano = bad idea.

      Floyd, on the other hand, is someone I’d absolutely love to see in a Yankees uniform.

  • cranky

    I’d sign Soriano–but not for three years and $15m. that would tie up too much dough in a guy who isn’t really all that likely to be dominant for the next three years.
    As for trading to get a decent starter, I’ll say it again: Wandy Rodriguez.
    Bad first name, and all, the guy is a solid middle-rotation pitcher for any team. And a lefty. And available.
    Joba+Romine would come close to getting it done.
    The Yanks are uncertain (to say the least) about what to expect from Joba. They’ve lost faith in him and are, I think, just “hoping for the best.” I’m not too sure of what he’s got between his ears, but he still has an electric arm and could be a nice trade chip.
    Romine is a good catching prospect but, given the presence of Montero, in front, Cervelli, to the left, Murphy to the right, and Sanchez in the rear view, he is expendable.
    It’s a safe guess that Houston would be interested in both Romine and Joba.

    • bottom line

      Agree that Joba and Romine a good package. BUt you can’t trade Joba without getting someone for the 8th inning. And I wouldn’t bet against Soriano for three years. Check out his last five or six. He’d be a steal at 15 mill for 3 years. Could he really go that cheaply, I wonder.

      • cranky

        yeah, maybe you’re right.
        good relievers seem to be getting extraordinarily big bucks this year.
        soriano IS a good one. maybe he WOULD be worth it.
        I’d definitely feel better with him as the 8th inning guy than with Joba.
        And I’d feel a whole lot better about the rotation with a guy like Wandy in the stable.

  • bottom line

    Yeah, Wood’s 26 innings were the only consistently rliable 8th innings we had much of the year. I see Logan, Joba and D-Rob as risky– nothing like the strong set up men we’ve had in past. Besides, the bullpen was one area where guys could be had. Most gone now but SOriano would be big upgrade.

  • Michael Mirabella

    Sox signed Jesse Crain to 3 year 13 million deal.

    • MikeD

      …as in the White kind of Sox, not the Red ones.

  • KDB

    On this site a few days ago, there was a link to John Sickels top twenty Yankee prospects. He count eight not named Joba that he thinks can hold down a major league rotation spot. Go with them to begin with.
    Don’t trade two or three prospects for a maybe fourth starter. We already have plenty.

  • Ari G

    This could be the worst offseason in the history of the yankees

    • Jeremy

      I think you must have not been watching baseball long.