Open Thread: Eric Chavez


The Yankees were busy trolling the “it would be a great move if it was 2003!” crowd at this time last offseason, and one year ago today they signed Eric Chavez to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training. He went on to win the backup corner infielder’s job with a strong showing in camp, and had an up-and-down regular season that featured little power, some big hits, injury, and surprisingly excellent defense given his history of back and shoulder problems. The Yankees could still bring him back for that very same role in 2012, though I have to think it would be another minor league deal. They can’t guarantee him anything given his frailty.

* * *

Here is your open thread for the night. The Knicks and Nets are playing each other, and the Islanders are also in action. The Caribbean Series will be on ESPN Deportes and ESPN3.com as well, in case you’re in serious need of a baseball fix. Mighty Matt DeSalvo and Randy Keisler were opposing starters in yesterday’s game, just to give you an idea of the talent pool (failed prospects, org. players, etc.). But still, it’s baseball. Use the thread to talk about whatever’s on your mind.

Categories : Open Thread


  1. Nathan says:

    Being in the Bay Area market, I’ve seen a lot of Eric Chavez during his career (mostly during A’s-Yankee’s games, but a few regular A’s games on TV). I remember all the fuss about him being a perennial All-Star & Gold Glover but he never lived up to it. Shame because, when healthy, he’s a solid player.

    I hope the Yankees bring him back. When healthy, he still has a decent bat and can spell A-Rod at 3rd. I wonder what type of career he would have had if he hadn’t been injured so much.

    Speaking of injured so much, anyone know what’s going on with Mark Prior?

  2. tony says:

    go get him!!!!!

  3. Bryan V says:

    I’d much rather have Chavez than Damon. And I would be okay with the Yankees passing on Chavez.

    • Bryan V says:

      I’d say why here, but you can click my name and see for yourself.

      • Monterowasdinero says:

        “It would be a great move if it was 2009″

        For Johnny Damon. He can run and he can hit/hit for power and catch an outfield flyball in an emergency and he is healthy and he is durable. He cannot throw.

        Chavez cannot run and is not durable and will hit for far less power.

        I think the Yanks are just waiting till Johnny comes marching home-as he does not seem to have any other offers/teams interested in his services. Perhaps we are going to get a little $$ retribution for Johnny not resigning at his asking price in 2010.

        • CMP says:

          .785 OPS against righties over the last 3 years for Damon and he can still run a little and he’s durable. He’s not great but he’s a better choice than Chavez as lefty DH.

        • Bryan V says:

          I don’t understand the conclusion of that post. Why should we give Johnny any more money, if we feel spurned at all by him not taking the deal with NY and going to Det? Having him settle for less is great, but he’d still get a couple million dollars. Do you think he’d care that much? I don’t.

          And who cares if a guy can run? It’s great when Gardner steals 45+ bases, but before Brett we were lucky to have a player steal 15 bases. Base stealing is just not part of NY’s game, so having Gardner be a threat on the basepaths is all we need.

          Power? The Yanks don’t hit for enough power already, that we’re starving for 15 HRs out of Johnny?

          And to wrap up, who cares about having a guy that’s healthy when you’re not leaning on him that much anyway? Great… he can play 140 games. We don’t need him to play 140 games.

          • Guns of Navarone says:

            But like it or not, staying healthy is a big “pro” on Damon’s side. Last season was the most games Chavez has played since 2007. The last time he could match or beat the numbers that Damon put up in his WORST season was 2006.

            I understand you like Chavez for his glove. I wish the Yankees could have both. I am NOT an Eduardo Nunez fan and I don’t like the playing time he’s expected to get. But at this point I almost feel like Chavez is guaranteed to miss significant playing time. I say have Damon split DH duties and try to upgrade the back up INF position mid-season.

          • Monterowasdinero says:

            Beating out a dp, going from 1st to 3rd, stealing bases in key situations, tagging up and scoring…..yes speed counts.

    • Steve (different one) says:

      Doesn’t need to be either/or…there is room for both of them.

    • Urban says:

      Chavez is done.

      Present your case to the opposite.

    • CJ says:

      Who are you going to get to DH when Chavez is on DL April 15?

  4. Andy E says:

    where is the brian cashman stalker post?

    • Thomas Cassidy says:

      Probably not worthy of a post. Not much is known and not much to talk about on the subject. But his wife did file for divorce. They were separated for over a year, so it’s not a big surprise.

    • jsbrendog says:

      i don’t give a shit about the guy’s personal life, personally I’m glad RAB isn’t touching it. if you want to read gossip go to tmz. this is about the yankees and their comings and goings.

      stay strong mike ben and joe.

    • Urban says:

      Probably in the same area as the “who Derek Jeter was seen dating” area of RAB. Oh, yeah. That dosen’t exist…and shouldn’t.

  5. Bryan V says:

    Chavez is nothing special, but he fills what the team needs better than Damon. A guy that can play 3B, and is serviceable with the bat. If we were looking for a guy to hit in the middle or top of the order regularly, things would be different. This is a bench/part-time position.

    • Steve (different one) says:

      No, there are TWO open positions to fill. The bench/part time 3B position is there for Chavez, there is another open spot for Damon or someone else.

    • Bob says:

      I hope we get Damon! How about you?

    • jsbrendog says:

      eric chavez – not serviceable with the bat. has ZERO power. cannot stay healthy. hits singles.

      the guy ops+ 79 last year. 79.

      0.0 bwar, 0.6 fwar.

      in what world is eric chavez serviceable with the bat?

      • jsbrendog says:

        eric hinske, ops+ 96, serviceable with the bat

        johnny damon, hasn’t ops+ under 105 since 07 when he was 95. serviceable with the bat.

        you don’t need someone who can play 3b because you have nunez. you need someone who can play defense and/or hit. chavez played in 58 FIFTY EIGHT games last year. how is that something you want to bring back? 58 games at a 79 ops+ and 2 hr? how is he a good option. do people understand eric chavez is no longer good at baseball?

        • jsbrendog says:

          jerry hairston jr, serviceable with the bat.

          • jsbrendog says:

            of the remaining free agents who are more serviceable with the bat than eric chavez (and most of whom totes suck ace)

            johnny damon
            kosuke fukodome
            vlad guerrero
            raul ibanez
            derrek lee (for dh? no? why not?)
            aaron miles (there’s one, can play 2b and 3b and didn’t do too poorly with LAD last year)

            edgar renteria had a similar season to chavez but actually played 100+ games and he SUUUUCKS

            frankie cervelli was better offensively than eric chavez and only played 9 or so less games. i just don’t get it.

            ok, i’m done.

        • MannyGeee says:

          god do I wish Hinske was availible.

  6. ThatstheMelkyMesaWaysa says:

    Remember when he was really good?

  7. TinoBambino24 says:

    I believe the Yankees will end up getting Damon. The Yankees need him, and Damon needs the Yankees. No other team is willing to pony up and overpay for a declining DH. Also, where’s that cat that said Kotchman would be a Yankee? I’d love to have another conversation with the lad.

  8. Gonzo says:

    Cooking chili for another couple hours. Check.
    Marinating wings in buttermilk hot sauce. Check.
    Chips and avocados ready for tomorrow. Check.
    Beer ready. Check.

    Alright, so what’s going on with that Miguel Andujar article? I can’t find it.

    *I may not have looked hard enough.

  9. jsbrendog says:

    after looking up how bad chavez was why not aaron miles for the bench spot? dude hasn’t been signed yet, can play 2b and 3b. he was about average at 2b and wasn’t a wilson betemit butcher at 3b last year (although he sure was in 2010, my word)

    was worth almost a full win in fwar, he’s a bit better with the bat than chavez, which would prob even out if (IF) chavez stayed healthy, which he won’t, and he played in 136 games last year. He even played a game at ss so breakglassincaseofemergencynunezandjeterinjuries. at least you knwo he will play and can do what chavez did in 52 games over an entire season.

  10. cranky says:

    Damon has the best all around bat of the remaining suspects: Damon, Ibanez, Matsui, Ankiel, Branyan–but Ibanez might represent the biggest homerun threat against RH pitching.
    Chavez can’t hit for power anymore, so he’s not a serious DH candidate. But I could see the Yanks signing him to a contract, anyway, as insurance. He was the Yanks’ best defensive 3B in 2011 and probably would be that again in 2012. He’s a ++defensive player. He just doesn’t have much value anymore as a “punch ‘n judy” hitter. And the chances of Chavez making it through an entire season without sustaining a major injury are about 1/10,000.
    But Chavez would have to just really, really, really want to keep playing MLB to sign with ANYone. His role would be small no matter what team he played for, and if he weren’t playing for a winning club, his name would fade into oblivion almost as quickly as if he’d already retired. If he weren’t to get an offer from a winning club–and I suspect he hasn’t had one, yet–Chavez would retire. I can’t see him signing a $650,000 contract to sit on the bench for the Pirates. (But I could see him signing a $1m contract with the Yankees to sit on THEIR bench.)

  11. Monster Mike says:

    I understand why everyone is clamoring for Damon, and out of what is offered, he is the “Best” option. However, when dumpser diving, the best outcome is still a piece of trash.x

    • G says:

      In what world is a guy who had an OPS+ of 110 last year, played 150 games, and was worth 2.8 bWAR (1.5 fWAR, by their standards that’s high for a DH) garbage?

  12. Brendan says:

    It was pretty cool to see Luis Ayala serving as the closer for the Mexican team. Had a scoreless 9th where the great Karim Garcia let a bloop drop in front of him because he’s too damn slow, only to pick it up and throw out the guy trying to stretch out a double.

    But damn, the quality of the baseball sucks. Error after error.

    The only good part is watching the stream on Espn3.com – no commercials so during the breaks there is dead air and the camera guy just finds semi-attractive women to put the camera on.

    • Steve S. says:

      where the great Karim Garcia…

      Once upon a time, Karim Garcia was one of the best prospects in the game. As was Luis Soho, Ruben Rivera, Wilson Betemit, Andy Marte, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and *cough* some guy named Hughes *cough*.

  13. Monster Mike says:

    I understand why everyone is clamoring for Damon, and out of what is offered, he is the “Best” option. However, when dumpser diving, the best outcome is still a piece of trash.

  14. Bronx Byte says:

    Damon can still hit and has speed on the basepaths but he’s a Scott Boras client. Chavez (if healthy) can hit and spell A-Rod at 3rd base occasionally plus DH.
    Both are LH hitters. It’s all about the money.

  15. Monterowasdinero says:

    Pitchers and catchers report in less than a week!

    /for Montero fans.

    Mariners a week earlier due to opening 2 games in Japan.

    King Felix and Millwood (who Jesus caught at Scranton last year) in the same rotation?

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