Apr
14

Saturday Night Open Thread

By

What the hell is it with O's fans and Tex? Did they really think he was going to sign there? (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

I hope you’re enjoying your Saturday evening. Here’s the open thread if you happen to be around. MLB Network is showing a game later tonight, the Nets are playing, and the Rangers play the second game of their first round playoff series as well. Talk about whatever you like, enjoy.

Categories : Open Thread
  • Dino Velvet

    Phelps > Hughes

    • Gonzo

      I think the question is if Hughes was named Phelps and vice versa, would there be a discussion?

    • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

      The more relevant question is

      Nova>Hughes?

      or

      Garcia>Hughes?

      Those are the ones we’ll need to answer in a few weeks. At this point, whoever is pitching best should stay in the rotation. To say “Garcia isn’t part of the Yankee long term plans” isn’t a factor is Hughes is pitching like shit. Also, once Phil pitches himself out of the rotation, his next stop is a permanent move to the bullpen. So Phil isn’t in their long term rotation plans, either.

    • Plank

      The more Hughes pitches the lower his value gets.

      The high point for trading him would have been 07, then 08, then 09, then 06, then 10, then 11, now it’s 2012 and his value has never been lower.

      I could see switching 09 and 08, but the extra year of team control outweighs it for me. Ranking 06 in different places wouldn’t draw complaints from me, either.

      His value reaches a new nadir every year he pitches.

      That said, I think it’s premature to say Phelps is better than Hughes right now. It could be true, but it will take time to make that determination. He’s certainly making a case for it so far at this very early point in the season.

  • bonestock94

    I’ve developed a strong disdain for the Orioles and their fan base. I relish in their failure.

    • goterpsgo

      I’ve always had a strong disdain for the Orioles and their fan base. I thank God for Peter Angelos.

      • jjyank

        +1

        I know it must suck to be a fan of a franchise so bad and so poorly run, but they seem to be taking out their bitterness on the wrong people. I.E., Tex and the Yankees instead of their own front office. If the O’s were a relavant team, they would probably have better things to discuss. They’re focusing on the wrong enemy.

    • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

      I don’t. That’s a lot of years of frustration, Yankee fans would say similar stuff or worse if we were in their shoes.

      • Plank

        The Yankees would have lower attendance than the Orioles if they sucked for as long as they have.

        http://www.baseball-reference......1992.shtml

        • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

          I remember those days, and the Yanks weren’t as bad as the O’s have been for as long as they’ve been. The 80s teams were at least competitive, and they were on the ascent by 93-94. The O’s have been a mess for 15 years, since 1998.

  • Erica

    I was at the game this afternoon and I have to say, I am terribly impressed by David Phelps. Except for that Vernon Wells home run, he was GREAT.

    • jjyank

      I was just watching on TV, and yeah, he was awesome. Good curveball, good command. It’s rather telling that the even though he gave up 1 run, it was also the only hit against him. Dude just had one bad pitch, but other than that he was stellar.

    • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

      He knows how to pitch with less stuff than Hughes has, and there’s a lot to be said for that. Maybe he can teach Phil a thing or two when they’re both in the bullpen in a few months.

      • jjyank

        I don’t recall Nova being a heralded prospect. There are certainly scenarios where a guy who doesn’t have plus stuff can out-perform his minor league scouting report. From what we’ve seen so far, I am intrigued to find out if Phelps can for more than a SSS.

        • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

          Its called ‘pitchability’ and the Yanks always seem to favor the guys with raw stuff, figuring they can teach the pitchability part. But unfortunately, they don’t have a very good track record of doing so.

          • jjyank

            Right, that makes sense in theory. But if pitchability was so easy to teach, every team would. I usually don’t take much stock in what Fox broadcasters say, but I think they made one decent point regarding Phelps. Later in the game they were raving about how confident he appeared. This is important. Pitchers often get in trouble by “nibbling” at the corners, walking guys, etc. Being a successful professional athlete in any capacity requires some level of confidence, and Phelps does seem to have it. He’s throwing strikes, challenging hitters, and building on his results.

            I mentioned Nova before, and the word “confidence” is also regularly attached to him. Sometimes that confidence and “pitchability” can certainly exceed raw stuff, and Phelps has done that so far. I only hope he can keep it up, he could be a huge asset if he can.

            • MannyGeee

              The kid drips confidence on the mound… That said, he really has not faced adversity out there this season yet either. Nor has he had a high leverage situation to walk into..

              Let’s see how confident he is after giving up 6 ER or protecting a two run lead instead of showing his magic in garbage time innings.

              I was plenty impressed, but devils advocate saying he’s got to show me something in a big spot… Like Hughes did in game 2 of the 2007 ALCS…. Ironically

              • The Guns of Navarone

                ALDS… but yeah I was there. The next “Rocket” relieving the old Rocket. It was only too fitting. But not meant to be, I guess.

              • jjyank

                You’re right of course. Garbage time innings can only tell you so much, Phelps needs to be challenged. After today, I think he will be.

          • The Guns of Navarone

            Agreed. Hughes had tremendous raw stuff when he was drafted and during his minor league career. Scouting reports raved about his command as well, saying he had it all. The problem is that he hasn’t progressed (developed) much, if at all, over the last five years.

            His once highly touted curveball may be plenty to keep minor leaguers off balance, but it’s at best an average pitch right now in the majors. I don’t feel like he’s ever developed any consistency with it. He has good control, which again works in the minors, but I would say he has average command at the big league level. He’s never truly developed a changeup (though that could be changing) and his cutter is garbage.

            His fastball velocity is a mystery to me. He hit 94 once (twice?) today but he settled in at 91 once his pitch count climbed. We’ve seen him sit 92-94 before as a starter and we’ve seen him hit 96 with regularity as a reliever, so we know he can do it. It just may not be there anymore.

            Anyway, I’m not trying to dissect his entire career. My point is that, to me, Hughes has clearly regressed as a pitcher in his major league career and never developed that “pitchability” at the major league level.

            • jjyank

              I agree with this assessment of Hughes overall, but I feel like I saw quite a few 94′s, and a whole lot of 93′s on the fastball. I don’t think his velocity is the problem. Like you said, his control is good, but it was his command that was getting him into trouble. He left a few pitches out over the plate that doomed him, but otherwise wasn’t terrible.

              • The Guns of Navarone

                Yeah I’ll admit I casually watched the game today so I may be off on the velocity. Though I did watch the end of his outing and I never saw him get over 91mph after his pitch count got around 60 or so.

                But his velocity concerns me less than the lack of progress with his secondary offerings, particularly his curveball which was always supposed to be his go-to strikeout pitch. It looked pretty decent today, but I’m talking about his overall development with it.

                • jjyank

                  In Hughes’ defense, I recall he ditched his power curve in favor of a knuckle curve a few years ago, and just recently went back to his old power curve. So maybe that pitch isn’t fully developed. At times today, his curved look great. Other times, he was leaving it up in the zone. But it seemed to have a lot of bite either way, and I found that encouraging.

                  • Bo Knows

                    the curve wasn’t the problem, personally he should have thrown it more, the cutter was absolutely horrendous today but he kept throwing it. He had no command of it…most of the mistakes came off that pitch.

                    • jjyank

                      True, but I was responding to a post about his curveball.

                  • OldYanksFan

                    His curve was killer whn he first came up, but I believe the Yankees had him stop throwing it (to protect his arm?).

                    Another issue is Phil was successful in the minors with high heat. However, here in the show, with slightly dimished velocity, he can’t put people away high in the zone, and often gets hit hard.

                • Bo Knows

                  I watched the whole game Hughes was consistently over 91 mph, the only time it dipped were when he was throwing his cutter change, or curve

  • DERP

    Only mid-April and I think we have our stupidest play of the season.

    Brett Lawrie SMH

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      That was one of the dumbest plays I’ve seen in a long, long time.

      • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

        That one is dumb even if you make it.

    • Johnny

      Here’s the clip for those that didn’t see it:

      http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......_&v=3

      Caught stealing home.

      • Johnny

        Sorry, that would be this clip. I wish MLB videos were easier to link to.

        http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......8;c_id=mlb

        • The Guns of Navarone

          Close play though…

          I love how Wieters goes back in the dugout and looks back onto the field like, “WTF?”

        • jjyank

          WOW. Bases loaded with your team’s best hitter at the plate, and you make the third out at HOME? The old baseball adage is “never make the first or the third out at third base”. The reason that adage is about third base and not home is because it is assumed there is enough common sense in the world to not steal home with two outs and a great hitter at the dish.

          I just imagine the New York backlash if, say Gardner got caught stealing home with the bases juiced and Robbie ar the plate. Unreal.

          • Monterowasdinero

            I agree with all of these comments. The play reminded me of Ellsbury stealing home with Andy on the mound. In both situations, there was the element of surprise and the pitcher was pitching from the windup. A pitcher can balk in that situation and a runner a little faster than Lawrie scores. The play was dumb because Lawrie isn’t fast ENOUGH and a righty from the windup is tougher to score on than a lefty with his back to the play.

  • DERP

    Is there a RAB group on FG The Game?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Not yet, I’ll try to do it tomorrow.

    • V

      #1 SP before I picked Hughes (oops) today.

  • Plank

    I can’t wait to hear how the Yankees suck again, just like earlier this season. Why can’t they get back to their winning ways of games 4-7?

  • Widget

    My God Tampa how many homers can you give up today? I really hate Fenway Park.

    • Havok9120

      Be happy. The Rays are more dangerous to us than the Sox, at least until/unless they get their pitching straightened out.

  • Plank

    Arod just tied Griffey for most career HR. It seems like a lifetime ago they were young teammates in Seattle with Randy Johnson and a middle aged Jamie Moyer in the rotation, Jay Buhner and Edgar Martinez raking, and Sweet Lou in the dugout.

    Those were fun teams.

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      What the hell did you trade Jay Buhner for????

    • jjyank

      Don’t kid yourself, Moyer was actually 45 years old in those days.

      • Plank

        They made a movie about the life of Jamie Moyer. They changed his name to protect his identity.

        It’s Name: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

        • jjyank

          I feel like I would laugh at that, but I never saw the movie.

  • Tom I

    I missed Lawrie’s play; can someone help me out?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Two outs, bases loaded, Jose Bautista up, and Lawrie got thrown out trying to steal home.

      • Tom I

        Ahhhh. Thanks.

  • http://bloodfarm.tumblr.com mattdamonwayans

    At this point why would the Orioles even want Mark Teixeira? Would he make them a serious contender? Would he stabilize their rotation? Would he manage to bat over .260? Would he make Brian Roberts healthy?

    • Pat D

      Not as if Brian Roberts being healthy would turn their fortunes around either.

  • Andrew

    that dude is really ugly.

    • MannyGeee

      We 100% on that being a dude? Kinda thinking a body building lesbian… Or a Miss Baltimore runner up.

  • 42isNotMortal

    At least Hughes is missing bats more this year. The Yanks have at least 5 Hughes outings to analyze before either Pineda or Andy forces any decisions. No need to start throwing Phelps name around yet. Phelps will provide valuable innings in his current role, which can only be beneficial to the 7-8-9 + Loogy core.

  • Johnny

    Time for some memories. YO TANYON STURTZE.

    http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......1&v=3

    And O’Neill:

    http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......9&v=3

  • William Bonney

    Andy and Pineda can’t get here soon enough. We’ve got 3 good starters and CC hasn’t hit his stride yet. Phil gets to an 0-2 count and either throws a meatball or walks the guy. He hasn’t shown any improvement. Hopefully Freddy can at least keep us in ballgames.

    We’ve got a tough schedule this month. Hughes’s next start will be against the Twins. If he can’t turn it around against them it’s time to switch him and Phelps.

    • jjyank

      I agree to an extend, but I actually thought Hughes had decent stuff. I know he lost a bunch of guys after getting two strikes, but he did had 6 strikeouts too, so he clearly was putting guys away as well, not just meatballs as you claimed. You can’t strike 6 guys out and be unable to throw a good pitch with 2 strikes at the same time.

      Of course he needs to improve or he will be the odd man out, but let’s not pretend this was a complete disaster.

      • Havok9120

        This. People are acting as if all 4 innings were terrible. The line looks worse than his pitched. Was it frustrating? Yeah. Was it front of the rotation quality? No. Was it absolutely terrible? Also no.

      • boogie down

        +1

        I felt like it was an up and down start — case in point the Pujols AB in the third. Phil threw two straight nasty curves but then left a fastball up and out over the plate (granted, it actually was high enough but Pujols is… well, Pujols) and gave up a deep double to center.

        Give Phil a chance, he’ll get there. So far, he has 11 K’s in 8 IP, (12.38 K/9) and, while that’s certain to come down, it represents a dramatic improvement over his 2010 K/9. It seems like he’s taken some strides in putting hitters away when he’s got two strikes on them, but, obviously he’s not completely out of the woods yet.

    • Voice of Reason

      Yeah, the Angels hit him hard, but just because the hits weren’t cheap doesn’t mean the performance wasn’t a fluke. It’s easy to say he’s throwing meatballs when every well hit ball ends up a hit, but that’s just not going to happen very often. He’s not gonna give up 2 homers every 3 innings and have opposing batters hit .600 on balls in play for the rest of the year.

      He’s struck out 11 guys in 8 innings so far. I’d say that’s more encouraging than giving up a bunch of hits and too many foul balls is discouraging. I know it’s Phil Hughes so Yankee fans are required by law to overreact to everything he does but it’s 8 innings, his stuff looks fine, his ratios aren’t bad, just relax.

      That said, when (and if) Pettitte and Pineda both return in good form, hopefully Hughes will get demoted rather than Nova.

  • Zack

    Here’s the thing O’s fans don’t seem to get with Mike Mussina and Tex. It wasn’t just about money. Most baseball players want to win a World Series during their career. That isn’t going to happen if you play for the O’s,the Pirates etc.

    • radnom

      The O’s had finished first in the AL East only a few years before Moose signed, they weren’t anything close to the Pirates back then.

    • DERP

      I think they lowballed Moose. He signed one team friendly contract and I don’t think he was willing to sign another.

  • Plank

    I came across this and thought I would share it.

    McNamee kept a low profile until October of 2001, when he was suddenly in the New York tabloids. According to police reports, an employee of a St. Petersburg, Fla., hotel where the Yankees were staying had noticed a man and a woman apparently having sex in the hotel pool, while another man looked on from a few feet away. All three were naked in the pool. One of the men, Charles Wonsowicz, the former St. John’s pitcher who was now the Yankees’ video technician, left immediately when confronted by the employee. The other, McNamee, continued to hold on to the woman until the hotel employee asked him to leave again, according to police documents.

    “You mean now?” he said. McNamee got out of the pool, leaving behind the woman, who witnesses said appeared “out of it.” She said to the hotel employee, “Help me,” and then McNamee pulled her out of the pool and tried to put clothes back on her.

    Employees called police, and an ambulance also arrived. It turned out the woman had ingested a near fatal dose of GHB, a powerful drug used by bodybuilders, teenage “ravers” and date rapists — who have used it to incapacitate victims. A bottle of the GHB was found on the pool deck.

    Police investigated the incident as a rape and questioned McNamee the next morning.

    The report of Detective Don Crotty, who questioned McNamee, cites McNamee as lying several times during the questioning: about where he first met the woman, saying it was the hotel lobby rather than another bar, as other witnesses said; and about his whereabouts over the course of the night. McNamee didn’t mention that he was with the woman with several other Yankees players in Chuck Knoblauch’s room. He denied to police that he even knew Wonsowicz, his college teammate and fellow Yankees employee. He said Wonsowicz looked familiar, and he might be a “green fly,” ballplayer slang for a hanger-on who looks for autographs.

    For more than a month in 2001, McNamee was a suspect. However, no charges were filed. Early in the investigation, the woman lied to investigators about her reason for being at the Renaissance Vinoy hotel — she was having an affair with another Yankees employee who was married, and didn’t want to reveal that. When investigators realized this, they declined to pursue the investigation of McNamee. A few months later, the Yankees quietly let McNamee go. But Clemens and Pettitte kept using him as their personal trainer

    I’m a Yankees fan, but reading stuff like this makes it hard sometimes.

    • DM

      Maybe they can sign him to a personal services contract. He can be The King’s assistant.

    • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

      Nobody comes out looking good here, but the least culpable would be Clemens and Pettitte. McNamee’s job is to work them out, not be a moral leader. If he was a great trainer, that was what they wanted from him. This other stuff was his problem, and he probably denied all of it to them if they asked. I’d also imagine that since this girl was already involved with another Yankee employee that was married, she fell into the groupie category.

      • CS Yankee

        Wonder if it was Cashman mistress/stalker?

        Truth is stranger than fiction.

      • Plank

        Really? Obiously other than the 2 guys in the pool, Clemens and Pettitte are the two I have a problem with the most. Presumably he was in Florida at the time while on a business trip if you want to frame it in the employee/employer relationship.

        Whether she was a groupie or not, raping her isn’t okay. Employing their rapist isn’t okay. Continuing to employ the rapist after the fact isn’t okay.

        I just read the moralizing and demonizing in the Leyritz thread and all he did was drive over the legal limit and get hit by a drunk driver.

        • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com/ Steve S.

          You’re right, but you have McNamee convicted and he wasn’t. If he was found to be a rapist, then everything you say would be true. But the charges were dropped, so what are Pettitte and Clemens supposed to do? Hold their own investigation?

          • Havok9120

            This. I mean, sure, you’re within your rights to fire a guy who is involved with such an investigation. You’re also within your rights to let it go. Its hard for some third-party to hold McNamee accountable in a situation as grey as this when the police, the ones who know the most about the case, aren’t willing to press it further.

    • Dino Velvet

      gross

    • MannyGeee

      Who rapes someone in a public pool? I mean seriously… McNamee is obviously a piece of shit, and the watcher is a scumbag, and she was whoring around with a married ballplayer… And the ballplayer not mentioned is also a dick. Hell, while we’re at it, Chuck Knobloch is the key instigator for having the party where she may or may not have been date raped. Or even the Yankees for not making a bigger deal about why they let him go…

      Of all the bad guys, we really going with Clemens and Pettitte here? Who merely got trained By the guy?

  • Mike HC

    I missed the second half of the game, but the first three runs Hughes gave up were a cheapy homer and Pujols double. He looked ok other than that, not sure if he fell apart during the second half of the start.

    On the plus side, looks like Phelps is coming out on fire to start the season looking at the box score.

    • Havok9120

      Phelps looked great. And that homer was just one pitch. Came out of nowhere. Then one of his walks was the next batter and then he settled right back in. It was impressive.

      Phil got in trouble in the 4th inning and gave up a no-doubter on bad pitch. He didn’t come apart, at least not in my opinion.

      • Mike HC

        Thanks. With the fastball looking like it did, I’m hoping Hughes throws a gem next start. It is tough to stop rooting for Joba and Hughes, no matter the setbacks.

  • Dino Velvet

    I’ve got a feeling Lawrie trying to steal home was probably inspired by the press coverage surrounding tomorrow’s Jackie Robinson day.

    • Plank

      Only Benny “The Jet” Rodriguez should steal home.

  • jjyank

    Dear O’s fans,

    Stop booing/making stupid signs denouncing a player for not signing with you. Just because Tex is from the area does not mean he wants to play for a team that finishes in last place consistently. Get over it. It was three years ago, and he wanted to play for a team that could get him a ring. It appears as if he chose wisely. Maybe if the O’s weren’t so pathetic, Tex would have signed there. It’s not as if he was drafted by the O’s, spend 6 amazing years there, and then left for more money. Tex has never been apart of your organization and thus has no reason to play for a losing team there. It is not time to move on.

    Sincerely,
    Everyone

    • CS Yankee

      Apart?…I thought he was never with them?

      /spacebarfollies’d

      • jjyank

        Heh, nice catch. I’m usually pretty good with my grammar, but I missed that.

  • CS Yankee

    Hughes seemed to have his up-and-downs today…he did K six in just over three & was somewhat decent against Tampa.

    He looked real good in ST while Nova looked like crap. If Hughes doesn’t get things worked out, I feel they need to send him to AAA; as Phelps has taken to MRP like a duck to water.

    Overall, the heart of the lineup is hitting like Coco Crisp, the SP have only shown up for two games, Mo blew a game and were 4-4? Things are going to improve. Nova pitches against their 5/6 guy tomorrow and than we get to feast on the Twin-kies… Life is good.

    • Plank

      The season is a week old. Wait another three weeks to make any roster determinations based on 2012 stats at the very least.

  • Brian

    I was at Tex’s 2nd game as a Yankee at Camden Yards. The whole crowd started to boo him when he came up to bat and the O’s fan behind me says to his friend: “Hell, I’m born and bred in Maryland and even I wouldn’t want to play for the Orioles!”

    • CS Yankee

      Baltimore has three things going for it;
      1) Best Blue Crab on the planet
      2) really nice ballpark
      3)….

      • jjyank

        The show The Wire is good?

        • Pat D

          But over.

        • MannyGeee

          Jimmy McNulty, is that You?

          • jjyank

            …no? Why, does he like that show too? Color me confused.

      • Havok9120

        Well placed for touring the East Coast.

  • mustang

    Montero is catching again good for him.

    • mustang

      He is catching Noesi which totally makes sense since he should catch him in the minors. Didn’t understand why they didn’t team them up in Noesi first game.

      • Plank

        I would look at that as a reason to split them up. Noesi isn’t a rookie, but he’s a young inexperienced starter. It would make sense to me for him to be matched up with a veteran catcher.

        • Havok9120

          There are arguments both ways. I think a lot of it would hinge on which you value more, Noesi’s development or Montero’s as a catcher.

        • mustang

          So far them being team up is working good, but its only the 2nd.

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      he just hit a bomb line drive to center as well. I never thought I’d be a Mariner fan…

  • Johnny

    How is David Robertson at holding baserunners? Mo famously isn’t good at keeping them in check; if Robertson is to be the closer next year and hereafter for the next ten to fifteen years, he might get Andy to teach him some pickoff tips.

    Obviously Dave isn’t left-handed like Andy, but Pettitte’s so good at the pickoff that he must have some serious knowledge to impart. Given Dave’s propensity to walk batters, the ability to hold runners on base would be a useful (maybe even necessary) skill to have.

    The Rocket was good at holding runners too as far as I recall. Are we ever going to see Roger back in camp? I like him. Top three pitcher of all time (I’d say #1, but he’s practically interchangeable with Maddux); I’d love to see him have some kind of organizational role with the Yankees.

    • Plank

      Pettitte’s ‘pick-off move’ is a balk. If anyone else made the exact same move, it would be called a balk. He got the superstar treatment when he was a player.

      • Johnny

        In most cases it probably was, yeah! I don’t know about superstar treatment, though. The umpires never seem to care with any lefty pitcher. Many other players had a similar move to Andy. I remember Bruce Hurst in particular having a move almost identical to Andy’s. Fangraphs says Hurst got called balking 19 times where as Andy got called 11 times. Brian Anderson, the Dbacks pitcher, didn’t have as good a move as Andy but it was practically a balk too.

    • jjyank

      Well, Roger is probably busy with legal issues. But as for your overall point, I would love for D-Rob to get better at holding runners. Not that he’s particularly bad as far as I can tell, but I do think that picking runners of and holding them is an underrated trait. Nothing wrong with taking in Pettite’s advice.

      • ArchStanton

        Roger also has a 10-year personal services deal with Houston. I don’t think he’s really done anything with it because of the legal issues, but I bet he’s still getting paid by them.

  • The Guns of Navarone

    Rangers and Sens are fighting a war right now. Great game. Sens spent the entire 2nd period in the Rangers’ zone. Lucky to be tied up right now.

  • Plank

    Pettitte’s ‘pick-off move’ is a balk. If anyone else made the exact same move, it would be called a balk. He got the superstar treatment when he was a player.

    • jjyank

      Well a “balk” is a vaguely defined term. Similar to a check swing. It depends on the umpire. But yes, as the years wore on, umpires that would call a balk on the move Pettite does would not do so because it was Pettite, But remember there was a time when Pettite was not a superstar, yet still had the same pickoff move. Because it is a vaguely defined term, it is hard to determine whether or not his move is completely legit. Maybe it is just so good that nobody can tell. I’ve seen lots of moves that I thought might have been balks, but weren’t. I’ve seen balks that I thought were legit. It’s a fruitless excursive. Pettite didn’t get “superstar” treatment out of the gate, so his pickoff move must have earned a legitimate reputation for going great, and thus umpires didn’t call him for it later. If that’s even the case.

      • Havok9120

        This.

        It was something he was always good at. It got easier for him to do near the end, but he did it his entire career, much of it without the benefit of superstardom.

  • Slamalamadingdong

    Man this Rangers game is intense.

    • The Guns of Navarone

      AWESOME GAME!

  • mustang

    Montero has left the park111

    HR!!!

    • Kevin G.

      Fire Cashman!

      • Dino Velvet

        It’s one thing trading Jesus for CLee or Halladay, but for Pineda…. that was hard to take.

        • Havok9120

          Cliff Lee or Halladay would not have been worth it any more than Felix would have. Sure, you’re getting an amazing pitcher…who you then have to pay 20M+ a year shortly thereafter. I’m willing to take on the risk if it means we get the cheap team control to go with it.

  • FIPster Doofus

    Montero just crushed his first homer as a Mariner (straightaway center). Good for him.

  • Tex, the real Big Poppi

    Jesus just got loose.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

    Montero homered!

  • Monterowasdinero

    Monterowasdinero for us but he will be for the Mariners.

  • mustang

    Noesi pitching well and Montero just hit a bomb if this keeps up its going to be the longest open thread history.

  • Monterowasdinero

    His bat speed through the zone is special.

  • mustang

    The other side Montero also show up Donaldson stole second.

    • Monterowasdinero

      Noesi has something to do with that as well.

      • mustang

        Easy dude we know you’re in love that doesn’t mean that we don’t see the pimple in her face.
        Your boy is 2 for 3 with 3 RBI’s just enjoy it.

  • DERP

    Three year deal for Heath Bell is looking real good right about now.

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      is it just me or are closers gettting hammered this year?

      • Havok9120

        Either Captain’s Blog or TYA did a piece on that, and its just us. Statistically, its pretty much in line with where its been for the last five plus years.

  • Karl Krawfid

    Are the Dodgers really this good, or is it playing the Padres 6 times and the Pirates 3 times in the first 9 games?

    • V

      The latter.

      I mean, they can certainly win the NL West. But they’ll be one and dones in the 1st round of the playoffs. Some really good players (Kemp and Kershaw), but not a deep enough team to win a WS.

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      do you really thin, Magic would invest all that money in a crap team?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      They’re not *this* good, but I think they’re a WC team this year. They’re two bats (3B and 1B, preferably) and half a bullpen short of being really dangerous. They have the pitching prospects to make trades, and I’m sure the new ownership will be willing to take on money at the deadline to generate buzz. They have the pieces to get David Wright if the Mets are willing to trade him.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    I really hate the Montero trade the more I think about it, not just because Montero just went deep and Pineda’s on the DL, but thinking about it rationally…trading an elite hitting power with contact, plate discipline, and prodigious power for a young flame thrower? I dunno…young pitchers flame out at a surprising rate, predicting a young pitcher to get injured is usually the safest bet in sports…why trade that sort of high floor high ceiling type for such a risky commodity?

    Sigh…water under the bridge, I guess.

    • Karl Krawfid

      I didn’t understand the deal because I hate the idea of a rotating DH.

      I believe you rest a 37-38 year old player by sitting them on the bench for the whole day.

      • Jimmy McNulty

        There’s another thing too.

    • Monterowasdinero

      The first elite homegrown righty bat in 20 years (longer if you consider power) was alot to give up for the rotating DH.

      But hey Montero is 22-he’ll never be able to catch as well as Posada!

      • Jimmy McNulty

        Well I don’t think he’ll be able to catch either.

    • Johnny

      Cashman will tell you that it’s hard to get good pitching locked up cheap and for a long time. On the other hand, it’s easy to buy a hired gun that can hit long balls. A guy like David Ortiz was on the market this winter and would have apparently signed with the Yankees had they asked.

      By all accounts, Pineda will be that good pitcher; we’ve just yet to see it. I agree though; I did like Montero a lot, and the move has been a let down so far.

      I think we have to see where Cashman is coming from. I wish it was as easy as “throw money at a pitcher when he becomes a free agent,” but every guy I had my eyes set on for this offseason has gone ahead to sign long term contract extensions. Matt Cain is a prime example; the Phillies look to be grilling Cole Hamels as well, trying to get him to sign an extension. Who knows if those guys will even become free agents?

      The Yanks recently failed with Cliff Lee too. So, when I think about that stuff, I feel like yes, Cashmoney made a good move with the trade. But when it starts out with a whimper it feels like crap. It seems like everybody’s trying to forget the trade even happened. When Pineda returns we’ll be like, “Oh yeah, they did trade for that guy!”

      • Jimmy McNulty

        Well the thing about young pitching is that the injury rate is just obscenely high. Far higher bust rate than young hitters like Montero, those guys are usually very good hitters. Pineda has the dreaded mechanics issues that derail so many young pitchers. (Detailed here: http://www.chrisoleary.com/pro.....ineda.html ) And Montero seems to have everything a hitter needs to be awesome, save for maybe a position. The offense is also aging, now some say that’s why the DH needs to be free, but there’s several pieces about why the rotating DH is a terrible idea, I don’t need to rehash it.

        Though, I agree that pitching is especially hard to come by, so the market price is overpaying. It’s like QBs in the NFL, if you want a shot at a good one you have to take them ten to fifteen slots higher than they deserve. Ryan Tannehill will be a top ten pick even though he’s no where near one of the ten best players in the draft, pitching in baseball is kinda like that. That’s what makes me merely hate it as opposed to want Cashman to be fired, it’s a justifiable trade…I just don’t like it. Hell, hopefully I’ll be wrong; I was wrong about Hughes and Joba, so maybe I’ll be wrong about Pineda. To be honest, Pineda could have thrown a seven inning 2 ER 10 K gem against the Angels and I’d still be nervous, admittedly less so, it’s the inherent risk with young flame throwers that has me worried.

        Don’t get me wrong, it’s stupid to hate the trade now just because Pineda’s on the DL and Montero just hit his first HR as a Mariner. You really can’t judge it at least until the end of next season. Pineda gets a year to adjust to the AL East and get used to pitching full time. That being said, Montero’s first HR as a Mariner still provides a good chance to revisit the trade.

        • Johnny

          That was an interesting little analysis; thanks for the link. I’d never heard of any of that stuff before. Now I’m going to be looking for inverted Ws everywhere.

          • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

            Don’t waste your time. Just predict that a pitcher will get hurt and you’ll be right 50% of the time. You don’t need a fancy name for it.

            • Pat D

              I just always go back to TNSTAAPP.

            • Johnny

              :)

              Sad but true.

            • Jimmy McNulty

              Please, this is ridiculous, there has to be a certain type of mechanical flaw in pitchers that get injured frequently, and there also has to be a certain type of mechanics that allows pitchers to have a healthy arm and long career. Whether the inverted W or other things that Chris O’Leary harps on are the causes, is one thing, but there’s definitely are mechanics that cause injuries and those that are conducive to long careers.

    • Havok9120

      He’s not just a flame thrower. The guy can pitch, velocity or no. That slider is nasty and the changeup was coming along, though I take that with a mammoth grain of salt in March.

      We can’t sit around and bemoan how rare it is for elite pitchers to come to free agency (making us doomed because we can’t raise elite pitching and hang on to it or whatever the narrative is today) and then be ticked when we try to lock up a young, cost controlled, potentially elite pitcher. Not if we want to call ourselves reasonable.

      Position of need from a position of depth. Name of the GM’s game.

  • Johnny

    I was watching the Seattle game to see Montero’s first at bat, and he goes ahead and drives a ball to dead center, and way back too. I will say this: it felt like crap watching that. :(

    I’m definitely looking forward to Pineda, though. It’s just that with some of the guys having slow starts at the plate, you kind of think more about offense. (It’s not like Montero’s had a hot start either, but that homer was high and long and gone.)

    • Tex, the real Big Poppi

      Jesus is like a kid I watched grow up, cant feel anything but happy for him.

  • Monterowasdinero

    Montero, Noesi and Chris Chambliss batting coach.

    Gotta like the M’s.

    • Havok9120

      To do what?

      • Monterowasdinero

        To enjoy the success of ex-Yankees as long as it’s not against us. A Montero HR to beat Boston will be a thing of beauty.

    • Midland TX

      That will be true when and if Chambliss replaces Wedge as manager:

      http://www.ussmariner.com/2012.....countable/

  • Reggie C.

    Tyler Austin … Wow. I guess Austin wants to debut in next week’s BA hot prospects list.

  • Bo Knows

    In happier news, the baby bombers won again today.

    Dante Bichette Jr. continues to show he was an over draft by going 2-4 with a walk

    Mason had shows some pop with a triple and a hit

    Austin went 4-4 with 2 dbl’s and a walk

    Sanchez had a hit and a walk

  • STONE COLD Austin Romine

    Let it go.

    • mustang

      There not. Last week Noesi couldn’t make it to 4 innings and Montero was batting around .200 and few said anything.

      It’s ridiculous to be judging this trade after 2 weeks, but its fun to watch people try.

  • FIPster Doofus

    Montero with a two-run double.

  • Dino Velvet

    Jesus knocks in 2 more runs.

    I still can’t accept that he was traded for Pineda.

  • Zack

    Jesus was NEVER going to be a mainstream Yankee. It sucks that he’s gone but guess what folks,yes bats help and you do need them but at the end of the day,pitching wins championships,not offense.
    Look at the Yankee Dynasty. It was made possible because our pitching was so good and was able to go toe to toe with the best of them.
    Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson managed to win a World Series by themselves basically and if you knew real proof that pitching wins championships,look at the Texas Rangers.
    They slug their way to the World Series only to get shut down by the Giants in 2010 and the Cardinals in 2011 because their pitching staff couldn’t hold leads the offense gave them.

  • The Guns of Navarone

    Looks to me like Jesus changed his batting stance somewhat.

    The HR tonight: http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......8;c_id=mlb

    Earlier in Japan: http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......8;c_id=mlb

    • Monterowasdinero

      Good pickup. He is not as crouched down in his new stance. Maybe he sees the ball better. That double was a lucky one but luck happens. More importantly, he caught a great game with the backstop not getting the bruises that many expect. He has now caught 2 games and Seattle won them both.

      Noesi had a great changeup last night.

      And how can Cespedes hit into a 5-4-3 dp? The way he ran in those workouts? i thought he could hop to 1B in 2 jumps.

  • Charles R.

    Hi everyone! I’m a baseball fan from the Philippines and I would just like to extend my thanks to the staff here at RAB for their tremendous work as always! I’ve been following this site for the last couple of years, and I mostly just lurk and read the comments and at times I get a laugh or two at the witty inside jokes and memes thrown around here (Side note: I miss tommy-whatevercomesafter’s comments!). That said, this site has been an excellent resource of baseball insights and discussions for someone coming from a country who’s biggest sport is boxing (Manny! Manny!) and with absolutely zero coverage about baseball. Again, thank you RAB and keep up the good work! The site means a lot for us non-US residents.

    Oh, and also I still believe in Huuuuuughes!

  • mustang

    After the way Hughes pitched and with the Noesi/Montero performance I expected a much bigger revolt then this I’m actually surprise.

  • OldYanksFan

    You also have to consider the Montero trade in light of the $189m payroll… which makes buying an elite pitcher all but impossible. And while young pitchers are injury prone, those that survive are even more rare, and valuable.

    Cashman admits the trade was a gamble, as Montero is more of a sure thing. But if Pineda works out, we potentially have a very nice, reasonably priced staff in the future with CC, Pineda, Nova, ManBam and Hughes/Betences/Phelps.

    When you consider how many darft picks we lost (signing FAs) and the crappy picks we have had over the last 16 years, I think Cashman has done a tremendous job with our pitching.

    • Monterowasdinero

      I’ll wait to see Campos’s mechanics. Already worried about Pineda/mechanics/arm strain/future injuries. Hopefully a blip but…

      see Phil Hughes…..

    • jjyank

      I agree. Montero is more of a sure thing, but if Pineda lives up to his potential, he will be far more valuable than a DH.

      That’s the tipping point of the trade for me. If Montero could catch, I don’t think the Yankees trade him. But even Seattle has only let him catch 2 games so far, and they’re rebuilding. If the Mariners aren’t starting Montero behind the plate at least 3-4 times a week, that is pretty telling.

      A DH is much, much easier to find than an elite starting pitcher. That simple fact makes me perfectly fine with the trade.

      A DH is also likely cheaper than an elite starting pitcher. I’m pretty sure we could find a good DH type player for less than the $160 mil or so an elite pitcher can get.

      • jjyank

        Also, a pitcher’s volatility works the other way too. Say we keep Montero and sign Hamels next year instead for 6 years and $160 mil. Hamels then promptly has his shoulder blow up and is shelved indefinitely. If a pitcher is more likely to get injured, I’d rather have the cheap pitcher, no? I’d rather trade a prospect (Montero is a prospect remember, not a sure thing) for a pitcher making the league minimum instead of a mega huge contract that will handcuff the Yankees for years if he gets injured.