The Ultimate Scapegoat

Open Thread: Spring can't come soon enough
Reevaluating Johan Santana: part 1 of 2

*Mike summed up some of his own frustrations about the response to the Yankees’ offseason last week. I thought I’d be more specific.

"The snow is my fault too, guys." (AP Photo/John Marshall Mantel)

It’s been a pretty lame offseason for the Yankees so far. We’ve missed the guys we want. We ended up signing some players that may or may be good choices for the team. Our minor league signings are taking heat. Our pitching rotation is questionable. Our sluggers are aging. Our GM is raising money for prostate cancer.

Wait, what?

I can’t remember the last time I heard Brian Cashman take this much heat (2008?). Every single thing that Cashman has done this winter has been criticized by someone somewhere. I would not be surprised if John Q. Obnoxious Fan woke up yesterday and said, “God, what nerve does Cashman have, making coffee for himself?” At times, it seems the man can do nothing right. If I was Brian Cashman, I’d be more than frustrated with that part of the Yankees fanbase. I think it was perfectly legitimate for him to air some of those grievances to Ken Rosenthal: “Why are people bitching so much? That’s my question. That’s my frustration.” Rest assured, Cash, I would have had much stronger words with a fanbase like this one if I was you.

It’s not that Cashman hasn’t made bad moves in the past. He has. He is not perfect. What gets my goat, though, is how much stuff  he gets blamed for that is absolutely out of his control, or the things that are totally irrelevant.

For example, this whole Cliff Lee business. During the negotiations, and even slightly after, it was hard to pin the tail on exactly who’s fault it was, which obviously meant it was Cashman’s fault. Never mind that same group hating on him would have most likely also lambasted the man for offering a 32-year-old starter (with an injury history!) a seven- or eight-year contract. Never mind that Lee made it obvious afterwards that he wanted to sign with the Phillies. Never mind the Yankees offered him more money. It is obviously Cashman’s responsibility to whip out his mind control device and convince players who aren’t interested to sign with the team. Duh. We all know the Yankees have a mind control device Cashman just wasn’t interested in using because Gene Michael used it to convince Greg Maddux to sign in 1992. Wait, no he didn’t.

Another thing-  do people expect Cashman to open his closet and have a fifth starter who passes the Better Than Mitre test just fall out? He knows the rotation is a problem. I’m sure he has looked at all the different options for that problematic spot. But at this point, there’s nothing he can do. Sure, he could sign Millwood or Garcia or Duchscherer to an unreasonable contract, but he’d certainly get criticized for that. Sure, he could trade our well-grown farm system, but he’d certainly get criticized at for that too. And the fact is, those moves aren’t smart ones. Why would he do them? Why would a fan of the team, a person who wants the team to improve, suggest that we make a stupid move just for the sake of making a move? The Yankees are not the Angels. We do not need a Vernon Wells-type thing going on here.

What grinds my gears the most is how I’ve seen and heard people get down on Cashman for doing charity events. Charity Events! People are yelling at him because he is raising money to fight prostate cancer. Baseball is a game. It’s a game we really love, but it’s a game. Cancer will kill you. Between winning baseball games and fighting cancer, fighting cancer is the way to go. Plus, it seems unreasonable that being a GM would take up every waking moment of his life; finding a single night to help fight cancer doesn’t seem unreasonable. I don’t think Cashman is the kind of guy who needs to be sitting at home staring at the phone waiting for Andy Pettitte or Kevin Millwood to call him. He has people to do that for him. Instead, he takes his “celebrity status” and uses it to raise money to fight cancer. That sounds like a class act to me. That certainly sounds like something I’d want my GM doing in his spare time. How in anyone’s right mind could you blast a guy for raising money to fight cancer? It boggles me.

I’m not even going to start with the “checkbook GM” thing.

This is what I do. Whenever I’m angry about Brian Cashman (rarely), I try to think about all the GMs he is not. He is not Tony Reagins, who is now the laughing-stock of the baseball community. He is not Dayton Moore, who signed Jeff Francoeur and Melky Cabrera. He is not Sandy Alderson, tasked with fixing the mess that is the Mets.

I am expecting someone to blame Cashman for the Astros extending Wandy Rodriguez. I am also expecting someone to blame Cashman for waking up in the morning and putting on his slippers. I mean, he’s only won what, four World Series rings as GM? Taken us to the postseason every year except 2008? What a crappy performance the guy has put on. Fire Cashman. Punish him by making him manage the Pirates. Wait, that might be what he wants, according to some fans and media-types. I guess we’ll just have to force him to stick around here for a few more years. Damn. What a drag.

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Open Thread: Spring can't come soon enough
Reevaluating Johan Santana: part 1 of 2
  • Big Juan

    Amen.

    • BavarianYankee

      +1

  • Jamie

    I agree with your entire article. I hate the bashing that Cash gets. However, Dayton Moore has assembled the greatest farm team, perhaps ever, in all of baseball. He knows they won’t contend this year, so he signed 2 players, Melkman and Francouer, that could possibly rebound and have productive seasons, but more importantly they give the Royals top prospects more time to develop, instead of rushing them. I’m a fan of Dayton Moore.

    • MikeD

      Ummm, okay…

    • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

      Drayton Moore signed Francoeur and Melky because he thinks they are “winning players”

      • Big L

        Dayton Moore signed Francoeur and Melky because they were cheap! And he assembled that great farm system because the teams he puts on the field suck! Sure he has a lot of prospects, but as for that farm system transforming the Royals into contenders, I’ll believe it when I see it!

    • http://twitter.com/firstheart42 Hannah Ehrlich

      The Royals farm system is gorgeous, yeah, but I’d rather win a World Series. Plus, it’s not like the Yankees have no farm farm. It’s no Royals system, but it’s damn good when you consider the successful big league club sitting on top of it.

      • http://twitter.com/firstheart42 Hannah Ehrlich

        no farm farm? I don’t even know….

      • Jamie

        Agree with all that too. But when you consider the Royals financial situation, they can’t think of a World Series every year like we can. They haven’t thought about winning one in almost two decades. Dayton Moore has come in and has set them up to possibly have a great stretch in the near future. Yes, I would much rather be Cash, but your post paints Moore as not a great GM, when in fact, I think he is the exact opposite.

        • http://www.teamnerdrage.com dr mrs the yankee

          That’s not Dayton Moore Great GM that’s Dayton Moore Great Scouting Director. Which everyone already knew. Moore the GM is not so great.

  • elvin

    There are times where i second guess cashman’s decision, because to me sometimes it doesnt make sence, but i also know he knows more about the yankees and their needs than any fan. We have 5 championships with the guy, i say he has done a pretty good job overall. Its also hard when you have an owner shoving decisions down your throat….(R.Soriano)

  • http://twitter.com/stephen_mr Stephen Rhoads

    He has such sad, sad eyes.

    • http://twitter.com/JoeRo23 The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      Like a puppy. (A puppy ninja.)

  • Wrath Hannd of Prokchop

    Tha think abut The CashMan does is a great service to America. Hoo Rah.

  • Carl Utica

    The premise of this article is terrific but the presentation is terrible. It’s an attack piece on Yankee fans. I don’t think Cashman handled the Lee negotiations perfectly and I think the rotation could have been shored up better, but this article would contend that I’m a dumbass Neanderthal fan that couldn’t spell Ca$hman without the dollar sign. Lumping someone like me into a group (made up of Steve Lombardi) who bash Cashman for charitable work is irresponsible.

    People are usually turned off by brashness and pretentiousness. You have a fantastic opportunity to use this platform positively. Save the juvenile whining for some other, less responsible place.

    • I Voted 4 Kodos

      It’s attacking the people who are irrationally attacking Cashman, not those who have substance to their complaints.

      She’s mad at the people who blame him for Cliff Lee wanting to return to Philly, not making a panic move for a starter, and doing charity work. I don’t think anything about this entire article is whiny or unreasonable. The things Cashman has been bashed for this offseason are completely ridiculous, and I think Hannah is pretty much spot on in the things she chose to complain about.

    • Teh Comp Pick

      I consider this an accurate take on things.

    • William

      And you don’t think that the Yankee fans who harassed Kristen Lee in the ALCS may also have something to do with Cliff Lee not wanting to come to the Yankees?

      • Zack

        I’m sorry, even if it was true, it was two or three fans at most. It’s not like the entire crowd at Yankee stadium was pouring beer on her.
        Does it make it right? No, but Philly fans have shown plenty of poor behavior over the years as well,and yet I see people stating they shouldn’t be painted with a broad brush.

    • Kiko Jones

      Bravo, Carl Utica!

  • Dr. O

    I think it’s non buyer’s remorse, or envy. Like when you were a kid and you saved up enough money to buy a toy or an expensive video game that you really wanted only to go to the store one day to buy it and find out its all sold out. Then your second choice is also sold out, so you can either be the wise kid and save your money for something you may want in the future or you can be the desperate kid that feels ripped off and MUST leave that store with something expensive whether they needed it, wanted it, or even really liked it that much. The Yankees weren’t that kid, but unfortunately they still let the sale guy talk them into buying something that they’ll either love or just watch sit on their shelf for 3 years making them think “What if?”

    • eyerishyank

      Dr. O, but you have to also factor in that the kid already spent a lot of $ on a game system, which is pretty much money wasted at this point because he only has 2 reliable games when his best friend has 3 or 4. By the time he gets to spend that $ he saved on games (he has a ton of $, by the way) the game system could be pretty obsolete and it might be time to buy a new game system. He probably should have used the resources he had at the time to buy a better game-

      • Dr. O

        The “system” isn’t going anywhere.

        • Teh Comp Pick

          Eyishyank is right, it is. A-rod, Jeter, Posada, Mariano, and to a lesser extent Tex and CC, not getting any younger. That other pitcher the Yanks pay 16 mil per isn’t either.

  • Brock Cohen

    A thousand times yes on all of your points. Yes, I think the organization has and continues to make some glaring mistakes. But notice how I say “I think.” As has been said right here a thousand times, we simply don’t have all the information in front of us that Cashman has.

    Also, to some extent, fans are their own worst enemies. We’ve created this impossible narrative around Cash-man, Cash-money, and Cash-ninja. But, when he can’t bring home Cliff Lee and Greinke in the same offseason, we feel duped that our G.M. isn’t a real life superhero after all.

    That said, I do think it’s a tad disingenuous at this stage of the game for him to be getting snappy about all the over-the-top scrutiny. It’s been that way since, he took the job, and I’d argue that the Cashman hate reached its pinnacle after the Johnson and Vasquez I signings didn’t turn out the way most had originally hoped.

    • Midland TX

      I don’t think his issue is with “scrutiny” per se. His point is that–besides needing a starting pitcher–he doesn’t see which parts of the baseball operation merit criticism. They won it all two years ago; were two games away last year; have a very good farm system; and have been lowering payroll in accordance with management’s directives.

      From a baseball ops perspective you can’t fairly ask for much more than that.

  • Craig

    When “R2C2″ disappoints come postseason and injuries, the haters wont hate anymore, simple as that

  • BigLou

    I have never had a problem with our GM and I think your column is right on the mark…I’m a Yankee fan..the Yankees are the Greatest…since I was five years old– good years and bad years the Yankees are the Greatest! Dimag..Mickey..Melky and Grandy…they are the greatest…well maybe Ed Levy was pretty far out..of course no one here will remember Ed Levy you know with the war and all. I hate Mitre, I die every time he walks out to the mound…but with Mitre on the mound in a game that counts in the record book Mitre is great…ugh…so tough to watch…If Cashman can repell down a twenty story building he can run the ball club…Let’s hear it for the Yankees!!!

  • Billy G.

    Great article.

  • http://www.bronxbanterblog.com Alex Belth

    I blame A Rod.

    • http://twitter.com/JoeRo23 The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      The Blogfather makes an appearance. This is a pretty big deal, right here.

      Ima give this blame thing a shot… I blame* Alex Belth for being one of the first Yankees bloggers and giving so many people the idea that they should blog, which over the course of many moons led to some silly people airing their ridiculous grievances with Brian Cashman.

      *Facetiously.

    • JU

      I blame Eli Manning… Brian Cashman may be fighting Cancer, but according to many NY fans, Eli synthesized the disease in his basement.

  • Bob D

    Cashman deserves the criticism. The guys he chooses to play hardball with were Derek Jeter and Bernie Williams, who have been nothing but class and have done more for the Yankees than Cashman will in a lifetime. Meanwhile, he throws huge money at Kevin Brown, Randy Johnson, Kei Igawa, Carl Pavano, etc. My absolute favorite was Javier Vasquez, who had a LONG track record of proving that he was a bad AL pitcher – not just a bad, i buyers half season in the Bronx. Does anyone like seeing Joba Chamberlain Go from a top prospect to worthless. Finally, he makes a good signing in Soriano, who can really pitch and is needed insurance at Rivera’s age, and guess what? Cash man had to be overruled to get that done. Nice guy, good with the media, refreshingly honest, but a bad GM.

    • JMK

      A refreshing amount of FAIL here. Kudos!

    • jsbrendog

      the yankees never signed or threw any money at kevin brown, randy johnson. you fail. your whole comment is filled with idiocy and fallacies that prove you have no credibility or any idea what it is that we are talking about. we are all now dumber for having had to be subjected to it. thanks for nothing.

  • Yankeegirl49

    Thank you! I have been having this argument with a bunch of irrational Yankee fans all week!

  • NJYankeeFan

    I agree with the author’s point that the criticism of Cashman has gone over the top especially with people attacking him for doing charitable work but you also need to acknowldge that fact that in the last 1 1/2 years since winning the WS in 2009, his moves have been unimpressive to say the least.

    • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

      You can say unimpressive, yet if Cashman just re-signed Damon/Matsui and they flopped, it would be “Stupid Cashman doesn’t know this team was too old!” or “You won’t trade 88mph Ian Kennedy for Granderson?! Prospect hugger! Prospect hugger!”

      • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

        Point is, nothing Cashman does is correct.
        If it’s successful then it’s because of the payroll or because he mortaged the farm system. If it flops then it’s because he wouldn’t go the extra mile for another FA, disrespected a Yankee FA by not re-signing them, or overvalues his prospects.

        • NJYankeeFan

          Whether or not the moves Cash made for Marte/Nady, Vasquez, Nick Johnson, Granderson, etc were logical at the time, the fact is many of them didn’t work out and while he is not completely responsible for those players injuries and underperformance, the bottom line is they didn’t work out. Just like he would be praised if they did, he is the one ultimately reponsible that many didn’t. Like it or not, it’s a bottom line business.

          • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

            That’s why the businesses suck now, you should value the process over the results. Results are hindsight.

            • NJYankeeFan

              Try filling Yankee stadium or selling Ad spots on the YES network with the argument that “we did everything right, it’s not our fault the end product isn’t satisfactory” No one cares about the process, just whether or not it’s sucessful.

              • http://www.richardiurilli.com Richard Iurilli

                2009 attendance: 3,674,495
                2010 attendance: 3,765,807

                Your argument is invalid.

            • dalelama

              Results are the product of intelligence, perseverance, and luck, to call them hindsight is pretty fricking stupid.

              • Jim

                Admitting that results depend partially on luck is admitting that the results are not always under your control. The process (the intelligence and perseverance part) IS under your control, and therefore can be evaluated. Results, not so much. That’s why the best team (Yankees 2001, Yankees 1960) doesn’t always win.

                The statement that results are hindsight is not only self-evident, Zack’s comment is one of the five best in this thread. Criticizing it is fricking stupid.

                • Zack

                  Don’t forget the 2003 Yankees. Yes,the Marlins won, but I hate the fact a wild card team was able to beat the team with the best record.

  • http://jukeofurl.wordpress.com Juke Early

    Cash is not to blame – people have hated the Yankees since they turned themselves from a last place team into a dynasty. In three different eras. I’ve lived through 2 of them. People hated the Yankees & their fans then too, believe me.

    There is all ready a cure for cancer. It’s called living well & moderately in all things & feeling at peace. The trouble is hardly anybody gets to live a trouble free life. NO matter what anybody else thinks – very few people have it easy. And before some genius takes exception – seven people in my family died from cancer. I did hospice for one in my home. BTW they weren’t all NYY fans. . ..

    • jsbrendog

      this is not the forum for this but one can live the healthiest stress free and most perfect life ever and still get cancer.

    • Slugger27

      There is all ready a cure for cancer. It’s called living well & moderately in all things & feeling at peace.

      dude, what in the hell are you talking about?

    • MattG

      I do believe that cancer is very closely related to all the crap we consume, in our food, air, and even through stress, but the idea that you can do much about it is a fucking fairy tale, man. This is insulting.

      These changes evolve generationally, if at all. Our grandchildren’s grandchildren will probably be appalled at the quality of our air and food, much like we today are appalled at by our ancestor’s bigotries, labor inequities, and so forth.

  • crawdaddy

    Cashman just needs some of those farm hands to cash dividends while helping the Yankees make the playoffs and do well. When that happens, all will be forgiven.

    • The Big City of Dreams

      Hopefully that happens. Cash is banking alot on the farm system. If they fail I’m sure we’ll hear wait for the next batch of kids.

  • eyerishyank

    I think if anyone is bashing Cash for the charity stuff is an idiot. I also think that Cash has had a pretty poor last 7 months. We have a 180 million dollar payroll and a spotty, at best, rotation. I personally, don’t think he handed the Cliff Lee situation properly, based on the fact that he let his camp totally control the situation. He applied no pressure and had no backup plan. Since the start of 2010 Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt and Dan Haren have all been dealt. I understand waiting at this point in time and not making a rash decision NOW, but I think the plan has lacked vision since about June of 2010 and that has gotten us to this point.

    • The Big City of Dreams

      “but I think the plan has lacked vision since about June of 2010 and that has gotten us to this point.”

      Correct me if I’m wrong but June is when the whole Lee thing started correct?

    • MattG

      mmm, no. I’m not on board. Cashman is a bit of a prospect hugger, and I applaud this. There was no plan B for Cliff Lee, as there was no other option. I am certain Cashman knew the risk, but changing one’s philosophy when faced with adversity is a sign of bad management, nothing more.

      This off-season has been a set back for sure, but something will shake free in time for the 2011 Yankees to be a legitimate world series contender.

    • pete

      We have a 180 million dollar payroll and a spotty rotation.

      Yes we do. We also have a fantastularistic bullpen, the best lineup in baseball, and a very strong farm system. The red sox, meanwhile, also have a 180 million dollar payroll, and have a slightly better rotation, a worse lineup, and a slightly worse bullpen. The Phillies have a lower payroll but they also complement their super-awesome front four with a meh lineup and a meh bullpen.

  • http://channel0.tumblr.com Brendan

    It’s a clear-cut case of anti-Semitism.

    • squishy jello person

      What the hell?

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

      lmfao what?

      • fire levine

        He’s obviously being sarcastic

  • Paul

    Excellent article. Many of those taking issue with it seem to miss the point. She is not arguing that Cash has not made some moves worthy of criticism. She is pointing out that some (many.) criticize virtually every move indis criminately and seemingly more to vent their overall frustration that the team doesn’t have 5 all star starters, rather than to actually make valid specific criticisms about a particular move.

  • KennyH123

    I have always been a Cashman fan. But there is no excuse not to at least take a flier on some of these low risk guys for the back end of the rotation…Francis, Duchserer, etc. I mean, Colon? Thats the best we can do? I don’t think so.

    Last year, Cashman wouldn’t even obtain a decent righty hitting OFer better than Thames or Winn, waited until mid season to get a decent bat off the bench (Berkman, who turned out to be terrible, but thats another story).

    The whole preaching “patience” thing..i.e., doing absolutely nothing, is beyond ridiculous when you have gaping holes to fill, an aging core, and tons of money to spend after getting burned by Lee.

    Cashman may not be responsible for all the worlds problems, true. But he sure as hell is going to take the blame for some of the very obvious Yankee team problems that is charged with fixing, and has not.

    • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

      The whole preaching “patience” thing..i.e., doing absolutely nothing, is beyond ridiculous when you have gaping holes to fill, an aging core, and tons of money to spend after getting burned by Lee.

      1. The only hole on the team is one rotation spot.
      2. The core is aging, that’s why he went after and have Gardner, Swisher, and Granderson as everyday players – while fans bitched that they disrespected Damon & Matsui. And that’s why he moved Posada to DH.
      3. After Lee, there was no one to spend 170m on.

      • Slugger27

        i agree with what you’re saying overall, but one common thing ive seen here is ppl saying the only question/hole is the no. 5 spot.

        the no. 4 spot is a question as well, and you could argue an even bigger question mark. also, i wouldnt necessarily call the no. 3 spot a “hole”… but its certainly would be if 2010 happens again.

        i agree with your other points, and im not overly-worried about the 2011 yankees, but “the only hole on the team is one rotation spot” is pretty misleading.

        • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

          That’s true. But if you fill that 1 rotation spot with Pettitte or whoever, then Nova is your 5th starter – so that basically puts them equal and/or better than basically every other 5th starter no?

          • Slugger27

            well, true. but they HAVENT signed pettitte, and neither your comment nor the one you were responding to had any mention of pettitte, so im not even sure why youre bringing that up.

            • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

              I’m bringing that up because Kenny’s post about the “glaping hole” acts like it’s impossible to fill.

    • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

      Colon is on a minor league deal; I doubt he’s even Plan C for the 5th starter’s spot. Maybe they weren’t comfortable offering ML deals to Francis and J-Dukes considering their health issues. Signing Colon to an MiL deal means a lot less risk for the Yankees, and that’s a good thing.

      Did the Marcus Thames/Randy Winn signings cripple the team? Not at all. In fact, Thames well outplayed his expectations and Winn was cut loose and easily replaced by minor leaguers and Austin Kearns. The Winn signing may’ve been odd, but it didn’t hurt the Yankees in terms of the roster or financially.

      There aren’t really any “gaping holes” to fill. The rotation may be a little shaky, especially after CC/Hughes but the spots are all filled and that counts for something.

      The reason the team is being patient is because there aren’t any better options than Nova/Mitre out there and the trade market is, presumably, unfavorable to the Yankees’ liking right now.

    • FIPster Doofus

      Marcus Thames was awesome last season.

  • Claudell

    The “air some of those grievances” link doesn’t work.

    • http://twitter.com/firstheart42 Hannah Ehrlich

      Apologies. Try now.

  • Poopy Pants

    I think he was criticized more a year ago (getting Javy and Nick Johnson, trading Austin Jackson for Granderson, letting Damon and Matsui go).
    I don’t think he’s being attacked much this year.
    Sometimes people hang out on this site too much and think that it represents all of America.

    • pete

      But last year was no more worthy of complaint. Javy was coming off a dynamite year, and a reasonable regression would have still left him a more than solid #4 starter at a decent price. Nick Johnson was an injury risk, but really no more so than Matsui, and had far and away the most offensive upside of any available DH, plus the added bonus of being able to play 1B very well. The yankees wisely considered Damon to be a DH only, and offered him and his 109 career wRC+ a more-than-reasonable 2 years / $14 million contract. He refused. That’s on him, not Cashman.

      As far as the complaints about trading Austin Jackson and Ian Kennedy for Curtis Granderson, I’m not even going to get into that stupidity here. There are still people who think that was a bad trade by the Yankees, and that scares me.

  • Kurt

    Here are some of the players Cashman signed or traded for over the past few years:
    Octavio Dotel, Kyle Farnsworth, Randy Johnson, Jaret Wright, Kei Igawa, Carl Pavano, LaTroy Hawkins, AJ Burnett, Xavier Nady, Nick Johnson, Javier Vazquez and Randy Winn. On the plus side, he outbid everyone to sign two sure-fire stars, CC Sabathia and Mark Texeira. He is a mediocre general manager who is generally wrong when it comes to judging talent.

    • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

      Nick Swisher & Curtis Granderson do not exist I’m guessing.

      • Slugger27

        that wouldnt be cherry-picking, would it zack?

        • http://www.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

          He mentioned Octavio Dotel, who Cashman took a flier on because he had TJS the previous June. Along with a bench player (Winn) and a guy who got hurt (Nady), so yeah I think he should mention 25% of our starting lineup.

          • Slugger27

            in hindsight, my comment may not have been worded clearly. i was agreeing with u. the “cherry-picking” i was talking about was directed at kurt

      • MattG

        Forget the hindsight. Let’s get Kurt on record for his thoughts concerning Martin, Feliciano, and Andruw.

        Really, looking at the names without considering the contracts or traded players is useless, if looking at the transactions matter at all. A GM is supposed to put forth a vision for building a team, and a method for making decisions. You can disagree with the vision, or the manner in which the Yankees make decisions. Looking at the decisions in hindsight might tell you the Yankees’ method for making decisions is flawed, but again, you don’t know that without evaluating the parameters of each decision.

        Because I can guess at the methods, I can defend almost all of these decisions. The fact that some didn’t work out is irrelevant.

        • Slugger27

          very well said, great post.

        • Kiko Jones

          Yeah, it’s very easy to evaluate in hindsight. And I believe that smart moves can be backed up even if they don’t pan out. But many were baffled when Cashman stated he wanted to make the team younger and signed 36 year old Randy Winn, who with the SFG the season prior hit for 100 points less than Brett Gardner; and the very injury-prone Nick Johnson. Even Stevie Wonder could see where that was headed.

          And that’s what bothers a lot of people about Cashman: it’s not the Kei Igawa deals, which might or might not pan out, it’s the ones that make no sense before, during, and after.

    • http://www.retire21.org first name only male (formerly Mike R. – Retire 21)

      Which GM would you consider an excellent evaluator of talent?

      • AndrewYF

        You know what’s funny is that Omar Minaya is generally considered a very good scout, and a good evaluator of baseball talent. Yet, that doesn’t translate to putting together a winning baseball team.

        Something to think about.

    • http://www.theyankeeu.com Eric

      It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s…Captain Hindsight

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cY_oKve-bH0

    • OldYanksFan

      Cashman does NOT evaluate talent. He has a bunch of professionals to do that. Cashman is a ‘manager’.

      If a player gets on base 40% of the time, he is considered great.
      I will assume a GM who makes good deals 50% of the time, is average. So what’s a great manager? A guys who does right 60% of the time? 65%? So like ballplayers, even the best GMs have plenty of failure.

      Cashman also aquires ‘paper’ players. He looks at their history, past and recent, and many other factors. But how about the players? Does how they perform, or underperform, enter into this equation?

      Thames was not a great get. But he played well, so I guress he was a great get.

      Javy, as a #3/#4 guy was a good get. But he performed terribly, so I guess he was a terrible get.

      We won’t even talk about the totally unique situation Cashman is in… of ALWAYS needing to Win now (and therefore never allowed to rebuild or give players adequate development time), and also working for a demanding ownership.

      I think theo is pretty good, but he has (also) had many trades that didn’t work well. And my guess is a $140m Crawford will be added to the list.

      Cashman is not perfect, but all-in-all considered, I think he’s pretty good. And frankly, I’m not sure who might do better if he leaves.

    • Evan3457

      Not to mention that Johnson and Wright were clearly “Tampa” acquisitions.

      Oh, and that Burnett was essential in helping them win the title in 2009, being one of the three in the 3-man rotation, and pitching brilliantly and winning perhaps the biggest game of the post-season, game 2 of the World Series.

    • toad

      You forgot to include the big mistake he made in trading for Santana and giving him a huge contract.

    • Zack

      Carl Pavano WAS a good move at the time. No one knew he was going to wilt under the New York spotlight and simply steal our money the way he did.

  • http://twitter.com/nebkreb Nebkreb

    This article is terrible. The ideas are fine, the writing is excellent and the evidence given is adequate. However, the failure is that the writer has some of growth of hair coming out of the back of her head, which results in her need to tie it together with some sort of loop. It looks somewhat similar to the tail of a small horse.

    • Slugger27

      i know the meme/joke you’re alluding to, but still found the way you referenced it very bizarre

  • http://www.twitter.com/eddyxd Eddy

    This might be just stating the obvious, but i think Cashman is getting lots of criticism right now because his contract is ending.

    • Slugger27

      he gets criticized because hes the GM of the yankees. if he were signed thru 2014, everyone would still be making the same complaints.

  • Teh Comp Pick

    Last offseson was worse than this one really. I think the Lee thing could have been handled more wisely but last offseason had a couple of really bad moves: Javy and Nick the stick???? Those did not work out so well.

    • The Big City of Dreams

      I think he broke even last yr some moves were terrible while others worked out well.

    • http://www.thesubwayconnection.com Alex Taffet

      I don’t think it’s fair to call those moves “really bad.” Yes, neither worked out at all, and yes, in hindsight, no one would have made either of them. That said, when judging a past move, it is important to look only at what was known at the time.

      In the case of Javy, the Yankees were getting a durable pitcher coming off a Cy Young caliber season for a costly backup outfielder, a meh lefty reliever and a very nice yet far away prospect in Arodys Vizcaino. If Javy had pitched half as good in 2010 as he did in 2009, the move would have been fabulous.

      In the case of Nick Johnson, Cashman was giving a guy coming of a .426 OBP season a one year contract which would not hamstring the Yankees in any way. Maybe he could have found a better option for DH, but I would hardly call a high-upside, one year deal a “really bad move.”

      • Teh Comp Pick

        When you let a guy walk who goes on to hit .274/.361/.459 (124 ops+) to sign a guy at the same price to hit .167/.388/.306 (89 ops+) in less AB’s, its a really bad move. There is no way to try and defend that. Saying it was higher upside or anything of a sort is silly. Nick Johnson has never been healthy. That was a horrible move. A lot of us were saying it before the season. Cash tried to get fancy on that one and got burned big time, Hideki had a good year. I liked the Granderson move, and I didn’t think the Javy one would go on to be so disastrous, I’m not a consummate hater, but he had a terrible off season last year.

        • Slugger27

          alex’s first paragraph directly addresses your point. had cashman had a crystall ball and saw those triple slash lines before the deals were made, and STILL made the move, then yeah, hes a fucking idiot. you only know those slash lines after the fact.

          do you think friedman is an idiot for taking beckham over posey?

          • Teh Comp Pick

            Beckham over Posey = Not comparable in anyway. Friedman’s draft record is not in question. There are lot’s of instances where his pick was on the other end of such a comparison.

            Cashman tried to get cute and get rid of ‘Sui “a year too early better than a year too late”. Well he messed up and deserves to be called on it. He let a faithful soldier of 8 years on the Yanks walk because of injury concerns to sign a less proven, less capable, injury risk in his early 30’s. The guy added no additional flexibility as he can only play first, had a spotty record at best of staying on the field (Hideki avg’ed 28 more gm’s per year over the last 5 yr’s), wasn’t a young kid, and isn’t a guy with a ton of power (career .440 slg) which is what I’d want in my DH, maybe you get blinded by the obp like cash-$ did. Wasn’t he also like a year removed from wrist surgery?? This is hyperbole. In an article about the super haters, which I am not one, your going out of your way to defend Cashman. This move was in no way defensible.

            You are right about those triple slash lines meaning nothing. If ‘Sui had played at YSIII last year, his would have been a whole lot better. The Yank’s may have had another >.500 slg’er in the lineup, and may have been able to mash their way through the Rangers in the postseason, we’ll never know. Don’t come at me with a completely unrelated draft sequence involving two franchises removed from this conversation, and no numbers to support a lousy argument.

            • Slugger27

              whoa….

              the draft thing was just a way for me to express that GMs can only act with the available knowledge they have. with the knowledge they had at the time, the rays preferred beckham. looking back, they were wrong, but it doesnt make the move bad, it makes the result bad. the same line of thinking applies here. the rest of your comment makes little to no sense.

              The guy added no additional flexibility as he can only play first
              matsui can only DH, so he offers even less flexibility

              wasn’t a young kid, and isn’t a guy with a ton of power (career .440 slg)
              1) matsui is even older
              2) johnson makes up for a lack of power with obp. this is what has led to him to have a slightly higher career OPS+ … it doesnt matter which specific skill they have, all that matters is overall production. 124 OPS+ is a good thing. whether it got there with more obp or more slugging doesnt really matter

              maybe you get blinded by the obp like cash-$ did
              i really dont understand this at all. youre accusing me of being blinded by a great skill? i guess im blinded by sabathias ERA and cliff lee’s walk rate, too. obp is an important stat. citing it isn’t blinding me to anything.

              Don’t come at me with a completely unrelated draft sequence involving two franchises removed from this conversation, and no numbers to support a lousy argument
              this is perhaps the most confusing of all. my argument was not a statistical one, so i have no idea what numbers you’re accusing me of neglecting. my argument did not need nor warrant any supporting numbers, as it was logic-based.

              also, “come at me”??? really? i expressed a different point of view on an internet forum.

              • Teh Comp Pick

                Come at me?? meaning bring to my attention, not attack me physically buddy.

                You did nothing to prove your point while I used numbers to suggest that Matsui has the ability to hit the ball harder and farther more frequently as well as stay on the field more frequently.

                I’ve seen your handle around these parts many times before so the idea that you should perhaps be equipped with some numbers shouldn’t be something foreign to you when you suggest that a crystal ball would have been needed to know it was a bad move.

                They had just won the WS so more people weren’t critical of it at the time (I was so were a contingent of others both casual and serious fans), but it was a really bad move. Cash tried to get cute, channeled his inner Theo and paid for it.

                • Slugger27

                  we can agree to disagree. you like matsui for his slugging, but criticize others for citing johnsons OBP. that doesnt make sense to me. u complain about his flexibility, yet matsui has less. you say he isnt young, yet matsui is older. u acknowledge johnson being 1 year removed from major injury/surgery, yet u neglect to mention matsui was also 1 year removed from major knee surgery, an injury that caused him to spend a lot of time on the DL in 2008.

                  nearly everything u said negatively about the move is either irrelevant or negated by the fact that it applies to both players. all the while u fail to recognize that johnson was actually signed for less guaranteed money, an important part of evaluating a move.

                  again, my lack of numbers doesnt matter because it wasnt a numbers argument, it was a logic argument. the few numbers you cited arent even relevant anyway.

                  • Teh Comp Pick

                    Matsui hits, Johnson doesn’t it’s called a DH, not a DBB. I appreciate obp and never cricized anyone except for Cashman for citing his expertise in the area, as he clearly overvalued it. Although NJ can take a walk with the best of em, another .400obp wasn’t even realistic anyway. As far as the flexibility goes. The Yanks front office chose not to use Matsui in the OF, that doesn’t mean he offers less flexibility than NJ. Matsui played more games in the field last year than Nick Johnson did. As for the surgeries, The Knee surgery didn’t slow Matsui down. Nick Johnson hasn’t had any real power in like four or five years, wrist surgery doesn’t seem to bode well for a DH with already minimal power.

                    You can start with logic, thats fine, but your lack of numbers would make any reasonable person question if there are any to support your logic. I’ve provided you with statistics which suggest your logic may be faulty. You’ve turned around and rather than provide statistics so support your argument, you’ve said things which don’t fit your narrative aren’t relevant. Ability to hit for power is very relevant when talking about someone’s capacity to serve as a DH. The ability to stay on the field is also relevant and additionally was the reason the Yanks decided to let Matsui walk. This point was made above, they let a guy with injury risk walk over injury risk and signed a guy with less upside and a greater injury risk. It backfired.

                    • http://www.thesubwayconnection.com Alex Taffet

                      He is choosing not to cite 2010 numbers because they are irrelevant to the argument. How can numbers be irrelevant when judging a trade, you say? It’s simple. Brian Cashman did not know what was going to happen in 2010.

                      All he had at the time was prior performance, age, and cost. In 2009, Nick Johnson had a better offensive season than Matsui. (His wRC+ was 4 points higher.)

                      Neither provided much flexibility or durability. While Johnson has missed more time in the past, Matsui’s knees were just about ready to explode. It certainly made sense to let Matsui go and hope that Johnson, by playing a whole season at DH rather than at first base, would be able to stay healthy and productive.

                      Furthermore, you do not know whether Cashman would have taken Johnson over Matsui at the same price. Maybe Matsui, like Damon, would go to another team rather than take a pay-cut to stay with the Yankees.

                    • Slugger27

                      i disagree with quite literally almost everything u said except the final 2 words

                      Matsui hits, Johnson doesn’t it’s called a DH, not a DBB
                      they both produces runs equally, as evidenced by their career OPS+… the production is equal. matsui hits, but he also makes more outs, its a tradeoff, the overall production is the same

                      400obp wasn’t even realistic anyway
                      i can’t decide if this is stupid or funny. his career OBP for over 3000 PAs is .401

                      The Yanks front office chose not to use Matsui in the OF
                      hes been worth -75 runs in the field over his career, and had major knee problems. not only would playing him in the OF cost the team wins, it would also be an injury risk. how u can argue otherwise is beyond me

                      The Knee surgery didn’t slow Matsui down
                      yes it did. he sucked in the field, and spent plenty of time on the DL

                      wrist surgery doesn’t seem to bode well for a DH with already minimal power.
                      this is actually opposite. if nick’s skill was power, it would be a great concern, but his production has never been dependent on his power

                      I’ve provided you with statistics which suggest your logic may be faulty
                      no you havent, and the few you have referenced, im explaining why theyre untrue or dont matter

                      Ability to hit for power is very relevant when talking about someone’s capacity to serve as a DH
                      as is the ability to get on base, arguably moreso

                      almost every sentence of that entire post contained flawed or irrelevant information. it’s clear we arent going to agree on this.

                    • Teh Comp Pick

                      Almost every sentence of that entire post contained flawed or irrelevant information.
                      This, you.

                      it’s clear we arent going to agree on this.
                      No, were not.

                      I have the final results on my side of the argument. You have theories about the wonders of OBP.

        • The Big City of Dreams

          I wouldn’t say terrible because there were moves that did work. Last yr was a mixed bag for Cash.

      • http://www.itsaboutthemoney.net Brien Jackson

        I’d make both the Vazquez and Granderson deal again.

        • Slugger27

          well, in hindsight vazquez trade sucked.

          given what we knew at the time though, i agree with both trades

        • The Big City of Dreams

          You’d do the Vazquez trade again because it brought us Logan and Javy got us a pick right? That would be the only reason to do it again.

          • Slugger27

            even thats not enough reason to do it again, if we’re using what we know now to judge it.

            • The Big City of Dreams

              You have a point about that

    • toad

      For all the people saying Lee could have been handled more wisely, my question is, how?

  • cano is the bro

    I kinda thought this was a little over the top. Yeah cashman doesnt deserve all the criticism he does and most of us know how good of a GM he is, but the media and fan scrutiny is part of being the GM for the Yankees and i’m sure cash knows that.

    • Teh Comp Pick

      I think this is a good take on things. He catches the most heat. He also gets the biggest checkbook. I think a lot of GM’s would make that trade.

  • John Cerra

    I think the amount of criticism that is heaped upon Cashman has more to do with the large fan base and the intensity of the fan base. There are 500+ experts here (myself included) who judge every move by this criteria: would I do this. We also expect to win, everywhere.

    So we don’t have all the info he has (willingness to grow payroll, Joba’s shoulder) but we have opinions….we make great fans because we are really into it…but let’s give Cash his due, he is one year away from winning the World Series. Who here is wearing a ring?

    My gut call here: Andrew Brackman pushes out Mitre or Nova by May for the #5 starter, and wins 16 games for the Yanks.

    • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

      Whatever your gut is smoking, can I have some? ;)

  • Monteroisdinero

    Cashman knows that Jesus saves.

    • Slugger27

      ive been wondering this for a while:

      are you actually related to the guy?

      • Monteroisdinero

        No but I have met his parents and seen him play as a man amongst boys at Scranton several times. He really is the biggest addition to our lineup if he is all we think/hope he can be. Unfortunately, he can’t pitch.

        • The Big City of Dreams

          Yea he could pitch it would definitely solve the issues in the rotation.

  • Sick Nwisher

    What grinds my gears the most is how I’ve seen and heard people get down on Cashman for doing charity events. Charity Events! People are yelling at him because he is raising money to fight prostate cancer

    Who was yelling at him for doing a charity event? Sport writers? Fans?

    • The Big City of Dreams

      Fans

    • http://twitter.com/firstheart42 Hannah Ehrlich

      Awesome article on Was Watching about him throwing his “celebrity weight” or whatever around.

      • Jess

        Oh not that guy. Steve Lombardi of Was Watching is a very hateful and sick man who is obsessed with hating Cashman and many Yankee players. He is much more a Yankee hater than fan now. He is the type of guy that gives bloggers a bad name. Just a wanabee GM. Every Yankee fan I know stopped going there when he proved himself to be wacky.

        Every fanbase has a kook fringe. It does seem like we have more of them though.

  • http://fotr.mlblogs.com Scott Fiedler

    I completely agree from beginning to end. I know that Cash has a plan and it will be executed…it is just a matter of when and where. It’s all part of his plea for patience. The Yankees don’t need the best starting rotation on April 1st. So long as the team is in the running for the play-offs in September, there’s time. I’d rather see a move for a frontline pitcher made on the Yankees terms rather than a desperation move that costs the farm system.

  • virginia yankee

    Brian Cashman appears to be a wonderful fellow; anyone would be proud to have as a friend. It is likely Yankee fans simply hold him to impossibly high standards where every season can turn sour on a an injury or underperformance. The YANKEES fail according to Derek Jeter when the don’t get to the World Series — when they don’t win it. Jeter must know well the difficulty of winning consecutive short series, given in season “failures” and post season “failures” in 1997, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010. It may have taken a few improbable plays Maier catch, Backhand flip, Pettit Shutout, several critical home runs just to keep things going. Field manager flush jobs don’t help either. Either Cashman did his best to keep post season competitive (praise), or he inherited a core not seen since free agency and tinkered on the edges (faint praise), or failed to make the “DEAL” that “Guaranteed” a WS win. There was the MO error against the D’Backs; St Joe brain cramp using Weaver against Marlins (plus Wells and Giambi taking passes); St Joe again overuse of MO agaist Red Sox (plus Brown and Vasquez), Offense death vs Tigers, St Joe lineups. The same Cashman and Jeter might have 2-3 more rings if not for Torre — or none if Torre meant as much to the 1996-2001 Teams as has been opined.

    The jury is still out but Brian will be rated by his ability to transition from MO, Jeter, Posada, Petit, (and ARod) to a team that is annually WS competitive. He will get less interference from the sons that he did from George and will bear more responsibility.
    The coming 4 years are critical — the Yankees need a CORE to go the next 15 years. IT IS NOT HERE and it is no easy task to assemble one – EVER – in any sport. He has YANKEE money and CATCHET but a few losing sesons like 2008 in succession can lead to a quick ruin. He has terrible contracts to work with in Jeter and ARod IF they fail to produce at their standards. Grander, Swisher, and Gardner are not perennial WS outfield solutions although (age is against them). If Granderson can hit lefties as the close of the season suggests he will be a force but typical decline years are only 4 seasons away. Gardner needs to change his approach at the plate to be a productive force — not slap and run hitter; Swish is older. We can love them but they will use up their REMAINING productive years even as Jeter, ARod enter their dotage. Mo is a marvel; but his effectiveness is diminished by the way Girardi uses him and by any added USAGE/AGE stress. He is not a knuckleballer– he needs effort to make the cutter move, but the cutter has already lost inches of movement — maybe there is a pitch he can add to extend his physical life and increase batter’s uncertainty — but MO is year-to-year. Maybe Soriano is the “replacement”, but it is impossible to beleve that ONE GUY can give a team the EDGE Mo provided. SO NO MATTER WHAT ELSE CAN BE DONE it is certain that the collective team has to replace the EDGE Mo alone provided. Cano is 30 — he may be a marvel but he is in that 4 year time frame as is Texiera.

    Where is the CORE youth — it may be in Hughes and the AA pitching. Montero is an everday hitter perhaps equal yo or better than Manny Ramierez but he will not have a career as a Catcher without the position taking a terrible toll on his projected offense — so why push him to CATCH. He should be DH but the Yankees WANT JORGE to succeed there to the end of his contract — so do we as fans but Jorge will “steal” one or more offensive years from Montero just as Girardi stole 2.5 productive years from Posada — years that would have made Jorge a statistical HOF lock — when i say steal I know that wasn’t a Jorge or Girrardi decision it was Front Office and field manager. BUT THERE IS REAL IMPACT ON THE TEAM and on how to assemble the other 8 in the order and on the field.

    Due to the age of the team here is the CASHMAN scenario — due to injury, minor nicks and bruises the Yankees get 5% decrease in performance from Granderson, Swisher, Cano, ARod; 5% better than 2010 from Catcher, Texiera; equal from Jeter and LF. 5% better from DH in 2011. In 2012, 2013 and 2014 the offense declines 5% each year UNLESS increasingly productive players are added. During those years 2011 – 2013 CC faces the opposing ACE and Hughes the #2 in 70% of the season series. HOW MANY POSTSEASONS WILL THE YANKEES ACHIEVE – HOW MANY WS? If you don’t like the RESULTS/RISK who will you change — missed opportunities like a concentration on LEE change the plan–prevent perhaps grabbing a Peavey, or Hardin. Putting Montero into the C lane to get to the show means not trading for the SS or 3B or OF replacement. Each decision; each poor choice, bad contract or missed opportunity shapes the future — as it does for each of us. Brian has 10 million critics watching each.

    • Monteroisdinero

      Very good points. I do think Montero would put up better #’s as a full-time DH in 2011 than the aged Posada. I also think that having him catch for a few years but still get the ab’s will be fine. I know I am criticized for invoking Pujols (13th round, 402nd overall pick in 1999) as a comparison but Albert hit 37HR’s and had 130 rbi’s as a 21 year old. Montero probably won’t do that but Jorge definitely won’t.

      • Monteroisdinero

        BTW, I am now a Virginia Yankee fan too.

      • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

        Pujols’ draft position is completely meaningless.

        • Monteroisdinero

          It just means YCPB. Lots of stuff here is completely meaningless. Hopefully Montero’s bat continues to develop. It will be great for our lineup.

    • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

      Whoa.

    • Esteban

      What was the decision making process for which words you chose to capitalize?

      • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

        I want to know the decision process for invoking the name Andy Pettit and Andy Petit, without bringing up Andy Pettitte.

  • Christine Holland

    I could not agree more

  • Big Bertha

    Brian Cashman needs to be shown the door by the Steinbrenners. If it weren’t for Hank and Hal we wouldn’t have even signed Soriano to bolster our bullpen! Cashman didn’t get Lee last year or this year which cost us a trip to the WS last year and this year it might even cost us a playoff berth. Hank and Hal did the best they could with what was left to choose from. George must be rolling in his grave after the Red Sox made big move after big move while we countered by signing Bartolo Colon and Andruw Jones.

    • Esteban

      George that traded for Raul Mondesi and took Gary Sheffield over Vlad Guerrero and Randy Johnson over Carlos Beltran (who wanted less money to go to the Yankees)? What great baseball moves did George Steinbrenner ever make?

      • mike c

        Signing Reggie

        • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

          Sold!

      • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

        What great baseball moves did George Steinbrenner ever make?

        Can we count being suspended by baseball as a great baseball move for George? That alone was a huge factor in the past 5 titles, so there’s that.

    • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

      George must be rolling in his grave

      Next time you write this sentence, please put it at the top of your comment so I know immediately to stop reading.

  • mike c

    Cash also gets a lot of undeserving praise. He wouldn’t be anything without the steinbrenner pocketbook, the igawa signing would have crippled most franchises. Some “ninja” indeed

    • Esteban

      Nick Swisher for Wilson Betemit and Jeff Marquez. Terrible trade.

      • mike c

        the a-rod trade was way more impressive than the swisher trade, both were brilliant. I’m just saying that cashman has a safety net no other GM has. he’s made great moves, but he’s also made terrible moves that the yankees were able to simply absorb with their seemingly limitless finances

        • Esteban

          Maybe he takes more chances because he no they won’t be franchise killing. I doubt Cashman would have signed Igawa if he were the GM of the Pirates.

          • Esteban

            he knows*

        • Zack

          One can make that argument about Theo Epstein, who has made some VERY solid moves that helped Boston…but it also helps that he has a checkbook to go along with it.

  • uselessarticle

    In keeping with spirit of the complaining yankee fan, just wanted to point out that the defense of Cashman, however incisive and logical is not something that is most appealing about this blog.

    Leave the “rant” to us, we are really good at it.

    Please write something substantive, the apparent lack of objectivity among fans is no mystery, and the resultant love hate relationship we fans have is well documented. It certainly does not need the disguise of careful documenting to bring it out, so stop writing if you have nothing to add.

    • Total Dominication

      Yes my overlord.

      • uselessarticle

        i pardon thee, thou shalt taketh from me what i giveth…

        ha ha … ok easy on the pot plants from the himalayan bosom…

    • Andrew518

      While I agree with the primary basis of this article, that the offseason hasn’t been that bad despite the lack of a splashy addition, its tone really rubs me the wrong way. As a GM you win some you lose some, some moves work while some fail. This is New York and this is the Yankees there will be critisism of anything and everything it comes with the teritory, he (Cashman) knew this to be the case when he took the job. Is some of the critisism unwaranted? Of course, am I going to feel sorry for him as a result, absolutely not, he’s pretty well compensated for his efforts and I doubt he loses much sleep over what I the average fan thinks of him.

      There’s even less of a chance that I’m going to get my undies in a bunch over what other people are thinking/saying about him, it’s pointless and a waste of time, which leaves me wondering what is the purpose of such a lengthy article directed at “John Q Obbnoxious Fan.” The Yankees have a large and diverse fan base and we are not always going to see eye to eye on every issue. I have seen a disturbing trend by writers/posters on this site to seperate themselves as “better” fans because they are more rational, calculated, patient, numbers based etc..
      This is baseball it’s a game and ultimately it’s completely pointless but we all love it, and we all love the Yankees otherwise we wouldn’t be on a baseball site in Feb. If one fan choses to be reactionary to a particular issue it doesn’t make him a better/worse fan it just means he reacts differently.

  • Big L

    Thanks for putting my thoughts on paper! I totally agree with everything you wrote, and certainly could not have said it any better!

  • bobmac

    Hannah,I agree with the absurdness of the Cashman bashing.I think he’s a stand up guy and good GM.I would not characterise a Duchscherer signing as stupid.Duchscherer signed an incentive laden contract with Oakland last year that would have maxed out at 5.5 mil.The Yanks could probably give him a guaranteed 2 mil with similar incentives.If he hits his incentives even the most jaded Yankee fan would be ecstatic.The money would be worth the upside.

  • Greg

    The problem is not Cashman.

    Its New York.

    Preaching “Patience” to New York sports fans is like trying to sell garlic to a vampire. It won’t work. The key is to make smart deals and I think Cashman in the last two years has not made many smart deals in the offseason.

  • Rich D

    Maybe expectations are too high but with a payroll that is far and away the largest in baseball, expectations come with the business. My beef with Cashman is that when he has to do more than open his checkout, he is average at best. The Yankees throw boatloads of money at the draft and free agents, and if these pay off, which with a competent GM they should, he gets all the credit but little blame when they don’t. Evidence exists of other GMs doing as well as better with far fewer resources (see every year in the 2000s except 2009).

    It is gettng pretty old to roll out the Bobby Abreau trade as evidence of Cashman’s trading expertise. The Yankees problems don’t start and end at a 5th starter. Try a No 3 starter. 3-5 are a giant question mark right now. And I’m still skeptical about Phil Hughes. That shouldn’t happend with a 200M + payroll. But I digress, AJ Burnett isn’t the GM’s fault. I forgot. An overpaid, underperforming infield. Sorry, not the GM’s fault either. The Joba meltdown? Maybe the switching from starter to reliever is hurting him but isn’t the GM supposed to have organizational control? So whose fault is that?

    But the Brian Cashman worship continues. He can do no wrong. Great analysis. Supported by ad hominen attacks on those who disagree with you. Real good stuff. I for one would have no problem overpaying for Cliff Lee because based on the other options in Brian Cashman’s organization, that is far and away the best, if not only, option of putting a quality rotation together.