Trade Deadline Post Mortem

Montero expected to join Yankees "in the very near future"
Putting (a lot) of faith in the kids

To some it came as a shock. To others it made complete sense. But regardless of the reaction, the Yankees made a bold statement yesterday by completing no deals ahead of the non-waiver trade deadline. They will fight down the stretch and into the playoffs with the men currently on the roster. That seemed inconceivable at the beginning of the season, but after watching the first four months unfold and looking at the options on the market, Brian Cashman sounded pretty adamant about standing pat. Let’s take a moment to consider what it all means.

The Yankees’ Position

Despite the cries of an inconsistent offense, and despite the fear that the rotation won’t hold up, the Yankees are in a favorable position at the two-thirds mark. They’re just two games behind Boston for the AL East Lead, with Tampa Bay sitting 8.5 games back. They also lead Anaheim by 6.5 games in the Wild Card standings. The guys already on the roster have put them ahead of the pack. Furthermore, neither the Angels nor the Rays made any significant moves, so they remain on even ground. Boston added Mike Aviles, which hardly counts as a big move, and Erik Bedard, who will replace Clay Buchholz, who will miss the rest of the season with a stress fracture in his back. They might have added, but it was more about replacing a player than purely adding.

The Areas of Concern

Since the Yankees missed out on Cliff Lee last winter, they were expected to add a starter at the deadline. Cashman found nothing worthwhile on the trade market in January, and so played the waiting game. A team might not be willing to trade a high-end pitcher in the winter, when every team has a shot, but when reality set in by July perhaps a few would become available. This did happen, and in a way it is disappointing that the Yankees did not pounce. But as in all stories, there is more than one angle to this

The first angle comes from within, where the winter’s scrapheap signings, Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, have exceeded expectations for the first two-thirds of the season. What’s more, they’ve actually looked good doing it. It’d be one thing if they were cruising along with super-low BABIPs, with regression just around the corner. It’s quite another when they have FIPs of 3.58 and 3.36 and BABIPs around .300. Their performances place them among the better pitchers in the league, so therefore fewer of the available arms represented upgrades.

(The other angle comes in the next section.)

On offense the team didn’t have many areas where upgrade was possible. All eight positions are capably claimed, leaving only the DH role as an opportunity. The Yankees DHs have hit .235/.317/.402 on the season; the .719 OPS ranks 11th in the AL, ahead of only Minnesota, Anaheim, and Seattle. Jorge Posada just finished an awful July, in which he hit .217/.284/.250. That takes away from the run he had from May to June, and leaves him with numbers far below expectations for a DH. There wasn’t necessarily a viable replacement on the market, but that doesn’t make DH any less an area of concern.

The Market

When the season began there was no indication that Ubaldo Jimenez would become available. It became even less of a possibility when Colorado got off to a hot start. But then they faded quickly, their flaws exposed for the baseball world to see. By July they were telling teams that they’d trade Ubaldo for a package that would help them address their several needs. That represented the best opportunity for the Yankees to truly upgrade the rotation.

The price, though, was deemed too great. The Rockies were asking the moon from the Yankees: Dellin Betances, Jesus Montero, and Ivan Nova just for starters. Phil Hughes was mentioned in these talks, and surely other names were exchanged between the two sides. That’s quite a prospect haul, though, and it’s one the Yankees did not deem worthy of the return. They had clear health concerns about Jimenez, and they made sure the media caught wind of those concerns.

Does injury concern justify the non-trade? I’d like to think that the concern, combined with the high prospect cost, was enough for the Yankees to eschew their best chance to add the one player who fit their needs. But I can’t help shed the idea that this is a post-facto justification. After all, there were no available No. 1 or No. 2 starters other than Ubaldo, and there is really only one available this winter (C.J. Wilson, at the cost of roughly $90 million). What are the chances that even one of Betances and Montero pans out? Isn’t it worth the cost in prospects to add a pitcher who has been a top-15 pitcher in the league since 2008, and who is under team control, at a huge discount, for the next two seasons?

There are certainly red flags involved. Jimenez has experienced a dip in velocity, and the Rockies refused the Yankees’ request to perform a pre-trade MRI. Of course, few pitchers maintain 96 mph fastballs for very long, and it’s not as though Ubaldo has dropped to the low 90s; he’s still averaging 94 mph this year. The Rockies’ refusal to perform an MRI makes sense as well, since you can find some sort of damage in any pitcher’s shoulder. It seems that the Yankees, for whatever reason, determined that they didn’t want to pay the cost in prospects for Ubaldo, and they covered themselves well. From the outside perspective, though, I’m still a little disappointed they didn’t put a suitable offer on the table.

Beyond Jimenez, the only other starter who represented a true upgrade was Hiroki Kuroda, but he invoked his no-trade clause and will remain a Dodger. There’s nothing anyone can do about that, so we might as well consider him unavailable from the start. There’s a chance Wandy Rodriguez could be a No. 3 in the East, but the Yankees wanted Houston to eat 45 percent of his contract. It’s understandable, since there’s a chance that Rodriguez would merely be a No. 4 in the East and therefore greatly overpaid. The two sides found no common ground, and so the Yankees avoided that risk. Every other starter was of the No. 4 or No. 5 ilk, a resource that the Yankees possess in relative abundance. They’re actually carrying two right now in Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes, and then they have Adam Warren at AAA. They might be able to find even more of this type on the waiver wire, should all of their current No. 4 and No. 5 options falter.

The Next Two Months

The Yankees didn’t necessarily need an upgrade to make the current rotation better. They’re fifth in the AL in ERA, fourth in FIP, second in xFIP, and fourth in WAR. What the Yankees needed at the deadline was insurance against drop-offs from Colon and Garcia. They’re the two unknowns right now, and the Yankees would do well to protect themselves against possible attrition.

That isn’t to say that either or both will necessarily decline later in the season. Garcia has actually seemed stronger as the season has moved along, missing more bats as he’s more fully harnessed his arsenal. He also pitched 150 innings last year, so he has a recent history of relative durability. Colon, on the other hand, hasn’t pitched more than 100 innings since 2005. He might stay healthy yet — we have no idea what the stem cell procedure truly did for his arm health and strength — but there is a matter of general fatigue. Can a 38-year-old out of shape man continue throwing darts for the next three months?

Essentially, all the Yankees lost here was a chance to hedge their bets. Unfortunately, since the bets are so big — both Colon and Garcia are in the top 20 in the AL in ERA and FIP — the hedge costs that much more. In this case it was Ubaldo, and the Yankees thought that the three, or more, prospects weren’t worth what they were getting. That might blow up in their faces, but they’ve pretty firmly stated that they’re willing to take that risk.

It’s surprising, for certain, that the Yankees made no moves at the deadline. But after examining the market, it appears that there was only one player available who truly fit their needs. They don’t need another No. 4 or No. 5 starter; they have enough of those in-house, and those don’t work out there’s the waiver trade market. What they needed, if anything, was a No. 2 starter who would represent a hedge against attrition from Garcia or Colon. But a bet on such a high level of performance will always cost a lot, and the Yankees deemed it unworthy. It’s certainly a risk to move forward with a reliance on Colon and Garcia, but it’s not as though they’ve failed the team this year.

Montero expected to join Yankees "in the very near future"
Putting (a lot) of faith in the kids
  • Chris

    The Yankees prospects owe their possible Yankee futures to Bart and Freddie. If one (not to mention both) tanked this year there is no doubt they would have traded for Jiminez. I think the direction of the Yankees going forward has been changed (or not changed) because of the above average pitching by Bartolo and Freddie. They kept the top end guys and we can see if they will turn out to be the real deal, it also keeps the king felix dream alive. I don’t think a package around Romine would have gotten it done.

    • vin

      You had me until the last 2 sentences. Give up the dream… at least for the next few years.

    • Alex

      King Felix looks off this year too. It hasn’t gotten as much attention as Jimenez’s fall off in performance, but he doesn’t look the same.

      • BklynJT

        It doesn’t help that he get’s owned by the Sox but completely dismantles our offense…

        At least there is no were to go but up from there, unlike with AJ, who killed both the Yankees and Red Sox, just to go winless against the Sox once he signs with the Yankees. I mean wtf!!!

  • JobaWockeeZ

    Cashman seems to be really looking in the future by keeping the prospects. Can’t say I’m not surprised.

    • jsbrendog

      maybe he really is leaving and this is his legacy he is building. one of those “oh man the new gm won 5 world series but if it werent for cashman drafting and not trading montero, betances, banuelos, romine, nova, bichette and culver they wouldnt have even made it here”

      who knows. something to speculate on

      • pat

        AKA Brian Cashman in the early 90’s.

      • Urban

        History says a GM who thinks he’s leaving (either on his own or by management) will do whatever he can to make his final season a major win. Cashman’s actions are not one of a man leaving; they are one of a man staying.

        More likely, he’s simply operating and doing what’s best for the team since he himself doesn’t know the future. He probably believes, for good reason, that he’ll be back in 2012 if that’s what he wants. He did the same a few years back when he made his power play with GMS. All indications were he believed he’d lost that battle and would end up leaving, but he didn’t do anything in the process that damaged the organization long-term for his short-term gain.

        • CP

          What history says that?

        • jsbrendog

          brian cashman’s relationship and tenure with the yankees already bucks the trend of most other gms so i do nto agree with thi assertion in this instance

  • ángel

    Give me the number of Colon,Garcia and AJ vs Texas,Boston and Detroit

    • Steve

      This is the point to me – not the last two months and where the Yankees stand in starter ERA, FIP, and WAR or even a possible regression by Colon and Garcia over the last 2 months. Its about the ability of their starting pitching to go out and shut down the opponent (i.e. Red Sox, Rangers) in the playoffs…which obviously past CC no one will be confident.

      That being said there was nothing out there so can’t blame Cash, just don’t think the article hit on the big point.

      • Jim S

        Something else no one will be confident in: Boston’s/Texas’ rotations shutting down the Yankees.

      • Ted Nelson

        Tiny meaningless samples… but…

        Garcia’s been blown up by Boston and has a 6 IP 0 ER start against Texas.
        Last season against Boston he was 7 IP 2 ER, and against Texas 7 IP 2 ER and 6 IP 3 ER.

        Colon against Boston is 4.1 IP 1 ER and 6 IP 2 ER. Boston got him for 4.1 IP 5 ER.

        Again, though, with such small samples there is far too much variation for them to mean anything at all. If, say, Brian Gordon went out an shut-down the Red Sox in a start that doesn’t mean he’s going to do the same thing next time he faces them. Felix got rocked in his last start against the Red Sox, and again that doesn’t mean he’ll get rocked next time out against them.

        • Ted Nelson

          First two Colon appearances I listed were Texas, not Boston.

    • Ted Nelson

      It takes like 2 minutes to look it up yourself.

  • Cris Pengiuci

    Every other starter was of the No. 4 or No. 5 ilk, a resource that the Yankees possess in relative abundance. They’re actually carrying two three right now in AJ Burnett, Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes


    • The Fallen Phoenix

      If Burnett’s HR/FB ratio stabilizes (it’s 14.8% for the season, and the last two years he’s been with the Yankees it’s been around 10%, his career average), he’s going to look more like the No. 3 he is moving forward. Burnett’s xFIP is 3.92, and his SIERRA is likewise 3.92. His tERA is higher – 4.85 – but, again, I think this is due in large part to his HR spike this season.

      Heck, Burnett’s even giving up more groundballs this season than he has in any season since 2007, and his strikeout percentage is back above 20% (though still lower than average). Yeah, Burnett gives up a lot of walks, but that’s always been his calling card, and it’s not going to change.

      I’d say Burnett has a better chance of being a No. 4 type than a No. 5 type through the rest of the season, so your point probably still stands, but I’d hesitate to dump him with what we’ve seen from Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova this season.

      • CMP

        I see your point but hoping for Burnett to be anything more than a 4th/5th starter type moving forward is probably just setting yourself up for disappointment.

        • Cris Pengiuci

          And more to the point, Bartolo and Freddie have been better than him, so they are the 2 & 3 starters, making AJ a 4/5 by default.

        • The Fallen Phoenix

          It’s not a matter of hoping, and it’s not like I’m saying Burnett’s going to be an ace the rest of the season. I’m saying this his struggles this year have been extremely overblown based on an abnormally high HR/FB ratio.

          Maybe it doesn’t stabilize, stranger things have happened. If it does, then there’s a better-than-even-money chance Burnett’s production falls closer towards Freddy Garcia than Ivan Nova/Phil Hughes. But Burnett’s still a useful piece of the 2011 Yankees rotation, and to say otherwise is just as foolish as to say he’s suddenly going to morph into a top-of-the-rotation starter.

          • CMP

            It took Burnett 23 starts and 130+ innings this year just to reach 1.0 WAR after a 1.3 WAR season last year. I believe Mike has written 2.0 WAR is about what you’d expect from an average player.

            AJ is not even an average major league starter. His only real value the past 2 years has been his ability to stay healthy and soak up some innings. To suggest otherwise in my opinion is foolish.

  • CMP

    I still think there were too many red flags with Ubaldo to give up that kind of package.

    • jsbrendog

      i’m with you. we will get to see first hand how it pays off for cleveland now that he is in the al. obviously i do not wish him any ill will but im interested to see how it pans out.obviously we cant judge it in hindsight and my stance, which is in agreement with yours, won’t and can’t change. at the time, it was too much for too many questions.

      we shall see how it plays out in cle.

  • The Fallen Phoenix

    The other angle is that the Yankees still have a chance to flip prospects for a starter over the offseason. Last offseason saw Marcum, Greinke, and Garza switch teams, so it’s unlikely there won’t be any top-of-the-rotation starters available for trade.

    Sure, Jimenez would have stabilized the rotation from 2012-2013, but the idea that there won’t be any opportunities short of CJ Wilson to improve the rotation in the next six months is a little short-sighted. Will any of the options be as appealing as Jimenez? Who knows, but the Yankees certainly didn’t find Jimenez himself appealing enough to justify the prospect cost.

    • Bavarian Yankee

      well, Yu Darvish could be (and should be imo) an option.

      Next years FA market will be awesome. Cain, Danks, Greinke, Weaver, Hamels etc. and at least Weaver will be FAs for sure and there’ll probably also be awesome bats on the market (Hamilton, Kemp, Ethier)

      • Bavarian Yankee

        damn typos :D

      • Nigel Bangs

        I’m definitely guilty of lusting over Yu Darvish. I know imports are always sketchy, but his stuff appears to be so wicked.

        • CMP

          The excitement surrounding those kind of guys is always off the charts.

        • Chris

          So was Dice-K’s

          • Preston

            There are a lot of reasons to like Darvish more than Dice-K, body type and velocity being the main ones.

    • CMP

      CJ Wilson isn’t the only option though he’s probably the best one given his performance and the fact that he’d only cost money and a draft pick.

      2013 is when there really could be a lot of great options available like Hamels, Cain, Danks, Greinke, Weaver, Anibel Sanchez, Pavano.

      • mt

        I also believe Scott Boras is agent for at least Danks and Weaver so chances of them signing a team friendly early extension with their current teams are not great.

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          Jered Weaver being in pinstripes two years from now almost seems like a fait accompli.

          Too bad we have a “No-Weavers” policy.

          • CMP

            I’d much rather have Cole Hamels.

          • CBean

            Too bad we have a “No-Weavers” policy.

            It’s ok. We can have just one.

      • Owen Two


        • CMP

          Threw it in as a joke.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    btw: MLBTR writes that ownership wanted Wandy Rodriguez not Cashman. Glad to hear that Cashman didn’t want him, not glad to hear that the ownership still has no f’in clue. Let Cashman do his job.

    • RkyMtnYnk

      Agree’d, how’s that Soriano thing working out? I guess we’ll see …
      Cash did a great job by doing nothing imo !!

    • The Big City of Dreams

      It’s like they want to make moves just to make them. Would it surprise anyone if they were the ones that wanted Heath Bell.

      • Bavarian Yankee

        Cashman probably had to convince the ownership 24/7 for the past few days to NOT trade the farm for Wandy Rodriguez and Heath Bell :D

        • jsbrendog

          which, sadly, does not bode well for the future of cashman with theyankees or the yankees in general imo

        • The Big City of Dreams

          He probably did.

          Levine: ok hear me out Manny for Wandy. *grins ear to ear*
          Cashman: yea ummmmmm that’s not going to work
          Levine: *shrugs shoulders* fine Jesus for Wandy.
          Cashman: *exhales slowing and then face palms* Let me get back to you on that

          deadline passes

          *Levine anxiously waiting to see his idea become breaking news*

          • Reggie C.


          • Delaware – Ralph

            +1 well done

          • The Big City of Dreams


            Thank you

    • MannyGeee

      Cashman had a “Soriano” chip to cash in there.

  • KyleLitke

    I wanted Ubaldo up until the Rockies didn’t want to allow a physical or MRI. I get why they didn’t but there are real injury concerns and they wanted a lot back for him.

    • YankeesJunkie

      Yeah same here. Considering how big the trade is the Yanks were just doing due diligence.

    • Delaware – Ralph

      I agree completely. I am still scratching my head alittle as to why they were in such as rush to trade him when he is still under team control. They could have made this same deal this winter or next trade deadline. IMO

  • Hester Prynne

    Price was too steep for Ubaldo, nobody else would be better than what we already have. Good no trades, we’re just fine with what we’ve got. With Bucholz down our rotation is every bit as good as Boston’s. With Arod back our lineup is every bit as good as Boston’s, Cano would hit 6th, Swisher 7th.

  • Alex

    Nice post.

    I disagree the assessment of Jimenez though – there’s something clearly not right with him. I think if you give up that type of package you need to be convinced you’re getting an elite pitcher and I don’t feel like you can be sure of that with him.

    With Nova (who I feel has already established himself as at least a solid #4 and maybe a #3 in a very difficult division) and the other prospects, you are essentially paying them very little $ for what may be years of productivity down the road.

    I’d rather spend the $90 mil on CJ Wilson and keep the prospects, than get Jimenez and have to spend a ton to fill in holes down the road.

    That said, I understand the sentiment. The Yankees are a dominant team and a World Series favorite if they add a second ace.

    I still like the Yankees chances. Boston and everyone else in the AL is totally beatable. Lester and Beckett are creaky (let’s see if either of them pitches 200 innings), and outside of Bard the rest of their staff is trash.

    As far of the lineup, I agree – where else do you want to get more production from besides DH? The only other places to seriously upgrade would be right or left field, but Swisher and Gardner are both solid and their are only a small handful of elite offensive outfielders right now. And I can live with Posada, and ARod, Texeira, and Jeter getting a day off every now and then.

    • Ted Nelson

      “I disagree the assessment of Jimenez though – there’s something clearly not right with him.”

      Verlander had a drop in velocity a few years back that coincided with a relatively bad season, then from the next season on he’s been a much better pitcher than he ever was before. A loss in velocity doesn’t necessarily mean any kind of long-term problem.

      • CMP

        But when coupled with report that they wouldn’t allow the Yankees to perform a physical is pretty alarming.

        • Ted Nelson

          Not really… as is literally explained in the above article, every pitcher has damage in his shoulder. There’s a chance something out of the ordinary would have come up, but there’s a chance the Yankees could have just taken a tear that isn’t a big concern to lower the market cost of Ubaldo. Then they don’t get two stud pitching prospects from the Indians.

          Unless you have stats on how often MRIs are requested pre-trade, how often they are granted, what they show, etc… it’s not alarming.

          • CMP

            Maybe to you it’s not. Based on the posts I’ve read including Keith Law on twitter, it is quite alarming.

            • Ted Nelson

              Again… tell me how often teams request MRIs and are granted them. If you don’t know the context, your reaction is one of ignorance.

              What motivation did the Rockies have to get an MRI? None. They had White and Pomeranz on the tabel… roughly the same as Betances and Banuelos. All that could have come from an MRI was a leak of a tear that would have taken the Cleveland deal off the table.

      • Alex

        Agreed that a loss of velocity doesn’t necessarily mean long term problems .

        That said, Jimenez has been only an average to below-average pitcher the last 12 months and really hasn’t looked good.

        Not knowing whether this a bump in the road or he has really lost his stuff, why would you sell the farm?

        • Ted Nelson

          “Jimenez has been only an average to below-average pitcher the last 12 months”

          That’s not true. His xFIP this season is 37th in MLB. xFIP is adjusted by division, maybe ballpark (can’t remember), and has been a better predictor of future ERA than FIP or ERA. There are roughly 150 starting pitchers in MLB (5×30). 75th would be average. Ubaldo has been in the top 25% of starters even in his down season.

          I’m not saying they should have traded for him. I’m just saying let’s not ignore reality. The guy is a good pitcher.

          • CP

            Where does it say that xFIP is adjusted by division?

            As far as I know, it’s just FIP with the HR/flyball rate normalized.

            • CMP

              That’s what I thought too.

              According to Fangraphs:

              “Expected Fielding Independent Pitching (xFIP) is a regressed version of FIP, developed by Dave Studeman from The Hardball Times. It’s calculated exactly the same as FIP, except it replaces a pitcher’s homerun rate with the league-average rate (10.6% HR/FB) since pitcher homerun rates have been shown to be very unstable over time.”

            • JobaWockeeZ

              As you said xFIP puts in the league average HR rate for each pitcher regardless of division or ballpark making those factors neutral for each and every pitcher.

      • CP

        For Verlander, it was almost 2 full seasons that his velocity was down. Let’s say this is similar with Ubaldo, and he’ll regain his velocity in 2013. Is it worth the risk of giving up that many prospects for a #3 type starter for the next year and a half and then an ace in 2013?

        • Ted Nelson

          My point is not that Ubaldo is Justin Verlander. Clearly he is not. My point is that dimished velocity does not automatically mean arm problems.

          You are patently incorrect about Verlander, though: 2005 he only pitched 11 innings… once he made the show his FB velo was 95.1, 94.8, 93.6, 95.6, 95.4, 95.1… what’s the outlier there? 93.6.

          • CP

            You are patently incorrect about Verlander, though: 2005 he only pitched 11 innings… once he made the show his FB velo was 95.1, 94.8, 93.6, 95.6, 95.4, 95.1… what’s the outlier there? 93.6.

            Ah… the beauty of averaging.

            The drop was from the middle of the ’07 season through the end of the ’08 season. In fact, the start is almost exactly the same date as his (first) no hitter.


  • crawdaddie

    The Yankees at 3.47 are third in AL in ERA behind the Angels at 3.36 and Oakland at 3.41

    • Joe Pawlikowski

      Read it again. Just talking about starters.

  • King George

    From Jayson Stark on ESPN regarding the Rangers:

    “They can play Little League now,” laughed one NL executive. “Just give ’em six [innings], ’cause they’ve got the final three covered.”

    Didn’t know Feliz and Uehara were so dominant. Wasn’t Texas in a panic because they wanted Heath Bell to replace Feliz? I love the media.

    • Bavarian Yankee

      Uehara is one of the very best relievers. I never understood why Gregg was and still is the O’s closer.

      btw: I think the Yanks still have the best pen if everybody’s healthy. Adams and Uehara are awesome but Feliz has been shaky this year (4.50 FIP).

    • Kevin G.

      And the Yankees aren’t with Robertson-Soriano-Mo?

      • MannyGeee

        imagine if we had signed Heath Bell… we coulda shortened the game to 5 innings!

        Levine just peed a little bit, and is now Googling the Waiver Deadline rules.

    • FIPster Doofus

      Uehara and Adams are both excellent. The 2011 version of Neftali Feliz sucks.

  • crawdaddie

    I had to read it three times to get your meaning about the starters. I guess I’m just slow.

  • ángel

    Please the numbers of Garcia,Colon and AJ vs Boston,Texas,Detroit ….please Mike

    • Jim S

      Small sample sizes.

    • Ted Nelson

      Against Texas they’ve both been good. Against Boston they’ve both been rocked.

      As Jim S says above, though, the samples are really small. This means there is a lot of variation from their true performance level. Let’s say Garcia had two starts against Team X… one he had 7 IP 2 ERs, the other 4 IP 5 ER. If his long-run/average performance against that team going to be the good start, the bad start, the average, none of the above?

    • A.D.

      just go to baseball-reference

    • TheMick

      You’ve already been given the numbers the FIRST time you asked this question. Quit begging for attention.

  • EndlessMikeJr

    THe only thing thats going for the Yankees is that tne Red Sox with Clay out for the season and Lackey being worst then normal have as much pitching problems as us.And the rangers without Cliff Lee isn’t that good.

    But this rotation cannot win in the postseason.But hey everybody here just is more excited about Montero then the rotation.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      But this rotation cannot win in the postseason.

      That’s just not true.

    • Alex

      So Boston’s crap rotation can win in the post-season? What are the odds of Beckett and Lester both being in top form and healthy for the playoffs?

      • MannyGeee

        first thing, Beckett hasnt been ‘in shape’ since 2008. he’s been ‘a shape’, but not ‘in shape’…

        second, anytime you can go to war with Lackey, Bedard and Wakefield as the back end of your rotation for the playoff push, well then the world is your oyster…

        oh, wait. What year is this? Well, shit, those 3 wont get you there.

        • Greg

          Bingo. Yanks need an elite number 2 pitcher to compete in the playoffs this year. Unfortunately none were available. Jiminez is a cut below.

    • Kostas

      I live for agitation but saying that the current Yankee rotation cannot win in post season compared to the Sox, Rangers or even the Tribe is ludicrous.

      While not ideal, the Yankees have won far more post season games with far less pitching than they have now, especially if you look at the bull pen ranks. But just as much as you see shakiness on the horizon for the pitchers, you could argue that the line up will all finally find their grove. That is a potent line up to face 4 times a game trying to keep them in check for 4 wins.

      This is the year Cashman pulls off a “David Justice” waiver trade that will really make the difference.

  • Cy Pettitte

    I think when we look back in a few years this lack of deadline moves will be viewed as a good move. There’s really no one that was traded or available that was an upgrade or worth the risk/asking price. Probably just my homerism clouding my judgement on prospects but I think Montero, Betances, Hughes and Nova combined have a strong probability of being more valuable than Ubaldo over the next 5 years. Just too many red flags with him.

    • Cris Pengiuci

      I’m looking forward to finding out. Certainly hope you’re right. If Ubaldo somply maintas what he’s done with the Rockies while in Cleveland, it’ll take very good production from the guys coming up to make up for that. However, I’m hopeful! I beleive Hughes will regain form (perhaps not this year, but going forward), Nova is a fine piece to have, we just need to give the AAA/AA guys time to work their way on the the big team. Hoping they perform well for 5 or 6 seasons (cheaply!).

  • toad

    The refusal to allow a pre-trade MRI is a huge red flag, IMO. Sure, you can always find something, but so what? If the Yankees were determined to make a big issue out of a minor problem in Jimenez’ shoulder, why would they be interested at all? There is at least some evidence of a problem, and if you can’t check, then don’t deal.

    I don’t totally buy the argument that there is no gurantee that Montero or Betances will pan out. I mean, that’s true, of course, but there’s also no guarantee that Jimenez will be successful. There are risks with everyone. And when you get only one player back, the risk of an injury making the trade a disaster gets bigger. That was reason enough to ask for the MRI.

    • wilcymoore27


  • Ryan 407

    It confuses me to see Cashman talk about all this depth the Yankees have but he has brought in Brian Gordon for spot starts (rather then use Noesi, Warren, Phelps, or Mitchell) and then acquires the corpse of Sergio Mitre to be the long man.


    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      It confuses me to hear about Derek Jeter having sex with mad women and then I hear about more women that he has had sex with.

      Adding Gordon and Mitre because they’re available doesn’t mean the depth we’ve accumulated isn’t real depth, it just means more opportunities were available to add even more depth, so we jumped on it.

      Low-hanging fruit.

      • mike

        More to the point – the signings themselves are not in question – its the fact that given the need to win games at the ML level, the organization believed the slop which the Yanks signed from other organizations offered a better chance to win those games/pitch those innings than any in-house AAA option.

        that is a comdemnation of the AAA starters…

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

          No, it’s not. It’s a realization that Brian Gordon was probably good enough to win a spot start or two and he was available for nothing but cash.

          Me going to work today and earning money is not a condemnation of the other money I earned last week at work and already had in my bank account. It’s simply a recognition that I like money and having more is better than having less (or the same amount).

    • Cy Pettitte

      depth can disappear pretty quickly with injuries, why not bring in a guy like Gordon when there’s no cost to acquire him ?

    • A.D.

      Spot starts has to do with the 40-man and options, don’t necessarily want to DFA someone and burn an option if it’s just for 1 start

  • ángel

    Hahahahha tis team is a joke

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      I agree, T.I.’s management team is a joke. I mean, Takers? That’s just a cheap knock-off of The Italian Job with black gangsters instead of white ones. What an awful movie. Not a good follow-up to ATL; he needs to avoid being typecast if he wants to get this movie career off the ground.

      • Hall and Nokes

        You know what happens every time a Yankee hits a home run….hey tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder, this Bud’s for you!

      • MannyGeee

        What chu know abou dat…
        What chu know abou dat…
        What chu know abou dat…
        Hey I know all abou dat.

    • Jim S

      I think you’re on the wrong team’s blog.

    • Xstar7

      New York Yankees > Los Tigres del Licey

    • Jedile

      Yeah, the Yankees will be laughing all the way to the playoffs!

    • Pants Lendelton

      Based on?

  • Bob Stone

    I wanted to see an upgrade in the staring rotation but not at a crazy cost.

    Cashman made the right non-moves.

    • Bob Stone


  • ángel

    The top payroll is NOT only to go to the playoff! Its to go to the WS

    • Bob Stone

      You can only buy what is for sale – nothing more.

      • CMP

        Everything is for sale. It just depends on whether or not you’re willing to pay the price.

        • MannyGeee

          Mr. Ted DiBiasse, everyone…

  • Gonzo

    I wonder if this deadline is the calm before this winter’s storm. I think CC ensured it would be an interesting one, but I think it could get even crazier since this deadline was a non-event.

    • King George


      • Gonzo

        I am very curious to see how they plan out the rotation for 2012 is all. I think there could be some interesting moves that are required for that plan. Total guess.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      I wonder if this deadline is the calm before this winter’s storm.

      I agree. This winter, we’re going to sign resign CC to a 6/150, and then sign C.J. Wilson, Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Lance Berkman, David Ortiz, Jose Reyes, Jimmy Rollins, Johnny Damon, Mark Buerhle, Jonathan Broxton, and Jose Valverde while trading for Felix Hernandez, Hanley Ramirez, Brian McCann, Jordan Walden, and Mike Moosetacos.

      And we’re moving Jesus Montero to shortstop.

      Ante: upped.

      • Gonzo

        I fold.

      • MannyGeee

        and retain Cervelli as bench coach/3rd base coach/head cheerleader.

  • Kostas

    Clearly there are many in here who side with the Steinbrenner’s and Randy Levine that anything that can quack must be a duck so therefore go out and buy it.

    But for the rational folk, Cashman – since this IS his last year as Yankees GM – is trying to go out with a WS win and has done an above average job.

    Stop for a minute and consider the “dynasty” that could have existed if ownership and Levine would have left real baseball operations to the person who understands them rather than think because they owned baseball cards and played tee ball they are in the know?

    • King George

      Just playing devil’s advocate, but you kind of killed your point. If you aren’t in the “know” in terms of baseball operations, how can you logically conclude that “Cashman IS leaving”?

      • Kostas

        Not really. it is a gut feeling that he is tired of this circus act – and determining his employment status is not even the same as determining that Soriano is worth $35 million or that Randy Johnson was a necessary piece.

        But I like the devil inside you.

    • nsalem

      Cashman has been sick of the circus for a very long time. It’s the money he is quite fond of and probably won’t leave until he has grown sick of that. BTW I don’t know anyone in the know, nor do I know anyone, who knows anyon, who knows someone in the know.

      • CMP

        So what you’re saying is that Cashman is going to stay around until he gets sick of being one of the top paid GMs at $2 million/year.

        Maybe its me but that doesn’t make much sense.

        • nsalem

          yes it’s you

      • toad

        I don’t know anyone in the know, nor do I know anyone, who knows anyon, who knows someone in the know.

        Actually, that’s probably not true.

  • Sweet Dick Willie

    See, this is what I love about RAB.

    On what other blog would I read the word “eschew” in a post?

    • MannyGeee

      only here and NoNaas. Except in NoMaas the commentors would have abruptly turned it into an antisemetic rant.

  • Cuso

    “The Rockies’ refusal to perform an MRI makes sense as well, since you can find some sort of damage in any pitcher’s shoulder.”

    With all due respect, I’m not buying the veiled attempt to ‘poo-poo” that particular little nugget.

    While maybe not Machiavellian, the face value of an outright refusal to allow an MRI is sufficient cause to balk at the deal IMO.

    • Ted Nelson

      Do you have any information on how often teams request an MRI before a trade, how often they are granted, and what they tend to show?

      If no team has ever granted an MRI pre-trade for an apparently healthy pitcher… this should not be a surprise. If every team asked to has… this was a surprise.

      At face value the Rockies had no reason to grant the Yankees’ request since Ubaldo is pitching well and they probably already knew they had Alex White and Pomeranz on the table from the Indians. The Yankees were unlikely to make a substantially better offer than the Indians, but any damage shown in the MRI could have seriously reduced Ubaldo’s market value.

      • Ted Nelson

        Pomeranz and White is fairly comparable in terms of value to Banuelos and Betances.

    • nsalem

      Good that you can share you feeling on this subject and doubly good that you were so emphatic it.

  • Urban

    I didn’t like the asking price for Ubaldo considering the velo dip, the questions about his arm, and the belief among credible talent evaluators that he wouldn’t be a number two in the AL East, more likely a number three. That’s certainly good, but not enough to strip the farm.

    I don’t necessarily view this as a firm belief that Yankees are committed to Banuelos and Betances and Montero. They are committed to the belief they have value, perhaps to the Yankees MLB squad, or perhaps to be traded this off season. The Yankees may simply be waiting for a better deal when they can score a true #2.

  • Bronx Byte

    A-Rod coming back is like having a huge waiver deal fall though the cracks.
    Need the health of Chavez and Soriano.
    Let’s go to war !

  • theyankeewarrior

    Glad we didn’t sell the farm.

    Still wondering why no one has asked Cash about Bedard. Can someone with more prospect knowledge give me a comparison of the Sox prospects that were moved in Yankee terms?


    • Mister Delaware

      In a few years, we’re going to look back and laugh at Theo for not just hanging onto Trayvon Robinson.

      • MannyGeee

        July 31, 2007, 6:26 PM ET
        Red Sox upgrade bullpen with Gagne deal

        ‘The Red Sox sent left-hander Kason Gabbard and minor league outfielders David Murphy and Engel Beltre to the Rangers, who were the busiest team in the majors before Tuesday’s 4 p.m. EDT non-waiver trade deadline.’

  • dkidd

    the one guy (ublado) who would have increased our chances of winning the ws in 2011 would have lowered our chances of winning the ws in 2013-2018

    i’m very happy we stood pat. i would rather face bedard in the lcs than count on him to shut down the red sox

    • Mike HC

      That is not necessarily true. Ubaldo is young. There is a decent chance he is still better than any of the prospects we would have given up from 2013-2018.

      • Chris

        The fact that they didn’t want anyone to give him a physical is enough for me and everyone else to pass on him. This reminds me of the Santana deal. Once the big boys decided to pass the little guys got in and took the risk.

        • Tim

          This is not true. As with any trade, Jimenez had to pass a physical from the Indians before the trade was completed, which he did. The Yankees asked the Rockies to have Jimenez take an MRI BEFORE agreeing to terms on the trade, which Colorado patently (and correctly) refused. Why would you do that if you were Colorado? It would make no sense, and offers no benefit to you as the selling team.

          • Fin

            If you believe your pitcher, is indeed healthy and you want Montero, Bentences, Nova, and Hughes. A haul bigger than Cliff Lee recieved…the benefit is getting those players. I agree though, if I was CO, I wouldnt allow that unless an agreement was made first and conditional upon the MRI results. Getting the MRI before a package is agreed upon seems to be a smoke screen by the Yankees. It seems more likely the Yankees just didnt feel Jimenez was worth the asking price, but knew the fans wanted him. MRI request seems to be a way for the Yankees to sell this to the fans.

  • A.D.

    Would I have felt better about the Yanks chances of winning the WS this year (and next) had they gotten Ubaldo? Of course. But given the question marks and lack of anything else intriguing available I’m fine with what happened.

  • Fin

    Not trading for Ubaldo who currently seems to be closer to number 3 than a number 1 for a Cliff Lee type package has bought the Yankees time. Time for either the Manny, Delin, Monteros ect.. to make it to the bigs or time for a more sure thing to hit the market. It doesnt seem far fetched to think that Weaver could become available during the offseason or before the trade deadline next year. The Angles did not treat him well during the offseason with arbitration and the odds of Moreno comming to an agrement with Boras seems pretty slim. If they had given up the package CO wanted it would have left the Yankees without the ability to land a number 1b to C.C.’s 1a.

  • Hardy

    Ubaldo Jimenez career xFIP-: 92
    Wandy Rodiriguez career xFIP-: 92