Cashman talks Martin, Ibanez

What Went Right: Robinson Cano
What Went Wrong: Robinson Cano's splits

Via Kristie Ackert: Brian Cashman chimed in on the status of both Russell Martin and Raul Ibanez, two of the team’s impending free agents, during a recent radio interview. The Yankees and Cashman love what Martin brings to the table but “me liking him doesn’t guarantee us keeping him.” The backstop turned down a three-year, $20M-something extension offer last year and honestly I would not be surprised if he winds up with something like three years and $27M on the open market. There will be competition for him, specifically from the deep-pocketed Red Sox and Rangers.

Meanwhile, Cashman also seemed to indicate that a second tour of duty for Ibanez was unlikely. He said he was a great one-year signing who hit some massively huge homers, but his price went up and he won’t be as cost effective. The Yankees landed him at a discount last winter because of his poor 2011 season with the Phillies. Raul won’t ever have to buy himself dinner in New York again, but I would have no problem with the team bringing in someone else to DH. Ibanez is the kind of guy you want to get rid of a year too early rather than a year too late.

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What Went Right: Robinson Cano
What Went Wrong: Robinson Cano's splits
  • Jersey Joe

    Could Raul Ibanez be the Astros Dh next year? He brings a good veteran presence and with a good first half could net them some prospects at the deadline. I think the Astros should go with an Ibanez/Vlad Guerrero platoon for vet presence and prospects at the deadline.

    • Knoxvillain

      Is Vlad even in baseball? I thought he was in forced retirement.

      • Jersey Joe

        He batted .358 in Blue Jays minor league system, I think the Astros could do worse.

        Maybe Andruw Jones?

        • Jobu

          Vlad played in 12 games, 4 of which were in single A.

        • MannyGeee

          Andruw Jones and that short wall at Minute Maid are a match made in heaven.

    • Jobu

      I would be amazed if either of those guys ends up generating significant prospects at the deadline.

      • Laz

        Thome trade provides a good reference. Both could probably bring back 2 C prospects. Nothing great, but they could get a decent player back. Might be worth it with some incentives, but nothing high in salary.

    • craven moorehead

      the stros dun need a dh unless the NL changes rules.

      • Ellen

        Laz, the astros are members of the American league as of next season. where have you been?

        • Ellen

          Sry Laz, this was for Craven moorehead,
          the Astros are now in the American league. where have u been?

  • Rich in NJ

    I wouldn’t bring either back.

    • Jobu

      Who would you start at catcher? Martin may not be Posada with the bat, but the alternatives are not exciting.

      • Jersey Joe

        Geovany Soto?

        He’s had trouble the past few years, but YS3 could help him out.

        • Jobu

          While I agree with your reluctance to give Martin a multi-year deal, I am not confident Soto is going to bounce back. He and Martin are the same age (both born in 1983) but he has been worse than Martin in each of the last two years. Martin put up RC+ of 100 and 95 in 2011 and 2012, Soto posted 95 and 62. He was a very good hitter from 2007 – 2010 but catchers can age quickly. I guess he might be an option to look at on a cheapish 1 year deal if they let Martin go.

        • alex

          Hey rick i from nj i love the yankees we need raul

          • http://Google Doug

            Who is the very best clutch hitter on the Yankees roster? Ibanez by a mile. So who are the Yanks likely to get of? Ibanez. Then they will start 8 big chokers (exception, Jeter). Apparently the Yankee brass didn’t pay attention to the playoffs from their prized lineup: strikeouts by the dozens, failure to hit in the clutch, failure to hit at all etc. It is not a big salary gamble to resign him. Afterall, Yanks have made bigger gambles before.

      • Rich in NJ

        I would have to look for a stopgap in a trade to pair with Cervelli/Stewart because there is no way I would commit a significant segment of the declining 2014 salary structure to him.

        Now, if Martin would take a one year deal…

        • Rich in NJ

          Some on another blog mentioned David Ross as a possibility.

          • Need Pitching & Hitting

            He’s been a career backup. I think he’d make a great BUC upgrade, but I wouldn’t count on him to start.

      • Bubba

        True the alternatives are not exciting, but Martin at 3 yrs at $9M per is terrifying.

        • Steve (different one)

          I read Cashman’s comments to say the Yanks aren’t giving him a deal like that.

      • George

        Keep Martin Raul retire

  • Eddard

    Martin hit under .200 for most of the season because he swings for the heavens all the time regardless of the situation. He should not be brought back.

    Raul is a clutch hitter and should be brought back on a 1 year deal. He was this team’s Hideki as Ichiro was this team’s Johnny. Both want to come back and should come back. They weren’t to blame for this team’s collapse. They were actually our best postseason hitters. Next year Raul will be DH vs righties, Jeter/ARod DH vs lefties.

    • Jobu

      I agree. Raul is the kind of vet, clutch hitter that can be relied on to produce a second season of improbably good offense late in his career. I would give him whatever it takes to bring him back for another year so he can drive this offense, just like Thames and A. Jones did in their second year with the Yankees.

      • Steve (different one)

        I enjoyed this post, but I don’t think Thames had a second tour (in this context, which really means third tour) with the yanks. Thought he went to Japan after his big year in NY.

        • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

          He went to LA, where he was brutal, then came back to NYY on a minor league deal. Didn’t play in a major league game though.

    • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

      your posts make my head hurt.

  • David Ortizs Dealer

    If not Russell, then who will catch I cant imagine the Yanks going with Stu and fistpump in 2013. Napoli seems to be the only name FA catcher out there.

    • Rich in NJ

      I like Napoli, but he doesn’t seem to fit Scioscia’s Girardi’s stated requirements for a catcher.

      • YanksFanInBeantown

        The Angels played him at catcher more than the Rangers do. He doesn’t fit anyone’s requirements at catcher.

    • Bubba

      Someone will. A year of cervy and stu is better than 3 years of Martin at $9M per.

      • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

        Are you sure?

        • Bubba

          Yeah. We have catchers in the pipeline. $27M for 3 years of 200/300/400 seems foolish no matter how nicely he frames pitches.

    • Laz

      Napoli is a 1B that can play catcher a couple times a week.

  • vin

    Glad I didn’t buy the RAUUUUUUUUL shirsey.

  • http://twitter.com/mikhel2 Mikhel

    Martin has to go, it doesn’t matter if he hits 20+ homeruns, his batting average is dreadful, his OBP next to non-existent, his clutch hits are almost null, despite being the yankee with most walk off hits all year… with TWO.

    Austin Romine + Francisco Cervelli can’t be worse than Martin, even though it looks like Cervy won’t come back because JoeG doesn’t like him at all (just like McGeehe).

    • Captain

      no trust me, they’d be worse.

      • JU

        That’s the easy thing to say, but Martin hit .200 this year, and he was a complete zero for about 85% of the season. Maybe they wouldn’t produce as much power, but Romine and Stewart/Cervelli may approximate Martin’s production in other ways. And they would do it for about 10% of the cost.

    • Jobu

      I want Romine to do well, but it is hard to count on him with the injuries in 2012. Back injuries are scary but especially for a catcher (or pitcher I guess). I think you would have a better argument if you could be reasonably certain that Romine would be healthy and ready for major league action (looks like 106 PA above AA).

    • YanksFanInBeantown

      You know, I can’t wait to see what happens if we get an actually bad offensive catcher.

      Martin was exactly league average for a catcher this year. Cervelli had a worse batting line in AAA. Romine has chronic back issues, there is no guarantee that he will hold up for a full season. There is no one better out there.

      • Bubba

        Unless average means in the bottom quartile, I don’t think that’s true. You could number the catchers who had a worse offensive season than Martin on one hand… after an industrial accident.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting

          False.
          MLB Catchers average: 248/318/400 .718 OPS
          Martin: 211/311/403 .713 OPS

          Martin had a lower average, but walked more and hit for more power than average C. He was almost exactly league average for a C.

          • Bubba

            That’s not what fangraphs shows. If you look at the catchers with at least 450 PA he is at or near the bottom in just about every offensive category.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting

              There were 12 C’s on that list. There are 30 teams with catchers. Of the 12 on the list, 4 started fewer than 100 games at C.

              • Bubba

                Decrease the PAs. Still firmly in the bottom third.

                • Need Pitching & Hitting

                  Nope. Of the 29 catchers with at least 230 PA (chose 230 to get close to 30 catchers, since there are 30 teams) who played at least 90% of their games at C, Russ ranks 16th in OPS+. Firmly in the middle third among regular catchers.

                  • Bubba

                    You’ve arbitrarily decided to exclude data that doesn’t fit your narrative(played at least 90% of their games at C)and include data that does (230 PA is less than half a season meaning more than likely a back-up).

                    • Ted Nelson

                      You are wrong Bubba. He was about league average for a C.

                    • YanksFanInBeantown

                      The league average wRC+ for a catcher was 95.

                      Russell Martin’s wRC+ was 95.

                      What more do you need?

        • YanksFanInBeantown

          He had a 95 wRC+. That is exactly league average.

  • bob imperato

    Why would the Red Sox want Martin, when they have two catchers?

    Why would the Yankees overpay at $27 million for three years when Martin had a poor offensive season and his hitting history is tracking down?

    Vlad got black balled this year, his worst hitting season was.290 (top 20 in the league that year) (which would have been third on the Yankees).

    Vlad or Raul for one year makes sense to me.
    Yankees have alot of off season decisions to make, the 2013 team will certainly be different that this month’s squad.

  • Jerkface

    If you think he can get a multiyear deal then offer Martin the qualifying offer to get the draft pick or retain him at a slightly more premium price for just 1 year.

    • Preston

      Yeah I was thinking this, it’s not like we’re struggling to stay under budget this year, so maybe we overpay a little. It would allow us another year of flexibility to see how Romine, Murphy, Sanchez are progressing, plus if he declines, we can still try to sign him and guarantee ourselves a pick if we don’t. I definitely see it the other way though, because it would be an overpay if he accepts.

  • I am not the droids you’re looking for…(I believe that children are our future)

    If ANY team gives Martin three years in the remote vicinity of $27 million I will happily lick my own balls.

    • Jobu

      If licking your own balls makes you happy don’t wait for an excuse. Be proud of who you are and don’t listen to what society says behind your back . . . or to your face for that matter. Also, congrats on the mad flexibility.

      • jjyank

        IETC

        • I am not the droids you’re looking for…(I believe that children are our future)

          Me too. Also enjoyed the ball licking. Thanks guys!

  • mick taylor

    martin is not worth more than 2 years 14 million. bring back jose molina . he will be cheap. what do you think about johnny gomes to replace jones and michael bourn for nick swisher, sign ichiro, and use gardner as your 4th outfielder. and if you can, please bring back ibanez if it costs less than 2 million

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      Tampa has a $1.8M option for Molina. I doubt they decline that.
      Why spend a top of money for Bourn only to make the almost identical Gardner a 4th OF?

      • Need Pitching & Hitting

        * a ton of money

      • MannyGeee

        I wish they’d decline Jose’s option… He is all things back up catcher.

  • Bill

    The new Yankees will not sign the best player available but the cheapest.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      Or the most cost-effective.

    • DC

      LOL at Bill for pretending to know baseball.

    • MannyGeee

      I’ll bite… Who’s the ‘best player’ at the respective positions?

  • Jersey Joe

    SOLUTION TO DH/OUTFIELD PROBLEMS:

    1. Sign Ichiro
    2. Three way trade:
    -Twins get: David Phelps, Eduardo Nunez, Nationals B- prospect
    -Nats get: Denard Span
    -Yankees get: Mike Morse, Nationals C+ prospect

    Twins need pitching, and Phelps can help out. Brian Dozier is not starting SS material, and if he is, Nunez can play second, where he belongs
    Nats need center fielder, have had their eye on Span for a while
    Yankees need Morse:

    vs. rhp
    1. Ichiro RF
    2. Jeter SS
    3. Cano 2B
    4. Teixeira 1B
    5. Rodriguez 3B
    6. Morse DH
    7. Granderson LF
    8. Romine/Cervelli/Stewart/Nick Hundley/whatever they can get for cheap with at least a war of 1.4
    9. Gardner CF

    Morse starts at DH against righties, and vs lefties, on of the OF gets a day off, move Jeter/ARod to DH. Also, Morse can give Tex a few DH days like Swisher did.

    • 0 for infinity and beyond

      Where did you get Nick Hundley from?

      • Jersey Joe

        Just pulling out catchers who have had mild success in the past, but last year fell off the map.

        Hundley, Soto, Olivo, are all defensive-minded catchers with a bit of pop

    • Jobu

      Wait, the Nats give up Morse and two prospects to get . . . Denard Span? I may not be a smart man, but even I can see that will be the most incredible sell job of the offseason.

    • http://Facebook.com Get a grip

      This a very detailed description of an idiotic idea. $6.8 million and two of the better prospects in system for a player that put up 18 homers and 62 RBI in 2012, that you plan to use primarily as a DH. (For 1 year). This is brilliant, get Cashman on the phone ASAP to let him know that you structured a blockbuster deal that makes zero sense for the team.

      • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

        The only team this makes sense for is the Twins. They get a versatile pitcher in Phelps, a good offensive shortstop in Nunez, and a prospect. The Nationals lose one of their better power threats, and a prospect, and all they get in return is a good defensive CF who BABIP’d himself to a good offensive year this year and in 2009. The Yankees give up what is essentially 2 ML ready young players w/ years left of team control AND a prospect for a guy whose production can be duplicated by a bunch of guys who are FA who will cost only cash.

        • Jersey Joe

          What if the Yankees only gave away one of Phelps/Nunez and maybe Betances? Twins need pitching badly and I don’t see how they could turn down Betances, who has had success in the past.

          • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

            My question is WHY give up anybody when you can get the same thing Morse is going to give you from guys like Hunter, Hafner, Thome, Lee, or even a Berkman could give you for nothing but money?

            • Jersey Joe

              It’s just the 189 thing. Hunter will get way too much money on the market, and none of the other names mentioned can play the outfield.

              Also the 2014 outfield class is quite deep. Either way, Tyler Austin will be filling this role by late 2014-early 2015, so it’s not like we need a long term solution.

              • MannyGeee

                Hunter gets $5M tops this season dude. He’s getting to that “year to year, Marcus Thames” territory.

          • Preston

            Betances currently has next to no value. He got demoted from AAA to AA this season, prospects who move down the Milb ladder are not a good bet to start moving back up.

          • toad

            Please explain again the big rush to trade Phelps.

      • Jersey Joe

        We need 1 year of Morse, and if they send only Nunez and Adam Warren (maybe), they get Morse for 1 year. 2014 outfield class looks good, and they would just need a 1/2-1 year stopgap for Tyler Austin.

        • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

          Rule #1 of prospects: Never expect anything of them until they are in the majors doing it. Just like they did with the catching position and Montero, they should plan their outfield like their minor leaguers don’t exist because even “sure things” tend to crap out more than half the time.

          • Jersey Joe

            If Austin’s numbers take a dip next season, there is the 2014 FA class…..and the $189 mil.

            -sigh-

            How long is this 189 mil thing going to last? Is it just for 2014? I don’t want to count on Jeter, Rivera, ARod retiring because Nunez has no future with the Yankees and Culver/Bichette had horrible seasons.

            • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

              I think there are more benefits if the team stays under for 2015 as well. I get what you’re trying to do, but I think you’re shooting yourself in the foot in the long hall…giving away 2 ML ready players with years left of team control at the league minimum for 1 year of a DH/OF isn’t fiscally responsible.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting

              I think the goal is for 189M for both 2014-15, so that they reset their luxury tax rate and completely reset their market disqualification rebate tier.

              That said, I’m very skeptical that $189M happens in 2014.

          • Ted Nelson

            That’s not what happened with Montero. They signed Martin for 1-2 years. You make your top prospects earn it, you don’t act like they’re not there.

        • http://Facebook.com Get a grip

          What is your infatuation with Morse?? You want to give up too much to get him and pay him too much for his duties. Get the DH of the free agent market. Even Ibanez fetches $5 mil (which he won’t) it would be a better fit with comparable numbers for $1.8 mil less and and you are not giving up any prospects.

          P.s. need is very strong word. For instance, the yankees don’t NEED Morse, but you NEED to get grip

  • 0 for infinity and beyond

    I wonder if Brian McCann can be had cheap if his option is declined and he is healthy.

    • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

      I brought this up earlier in the season and almost got laughed off the website…apparently the Braves would be fools to decline his option.

      • Need Pitching & Hitting

        If he’s expected to be healthy, they won’t.
        If the injury is still a major question mark, they might, but then he’d be a big risk.

        • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

          Big risk hoping he’d be healthy, small risk on cost, and the upside would be huge. He’s one of the better catchers in baseball right now.

      • Preston

        The Braves actually might decline his option, because his shoulder injury is far more serious than they originally thought. He might not be healthy to start next season. If the Braves, who know his medicals better than anyone, wouldn’t keep him for 11.5 million (it has a 500k buyout) then I’d be very wary of signing him. Somebody will take the risk on getting a great player and would offer him a multi-year deal. But since this is surgery to his throwing shoulder there is a chance he can’t catch, and the Yankees definitely don’t need another DH/1B guy.

  • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

    I’d be willing to bring back Martin on a 1-2 year deal, but if he wants anything more than that and any more money than 5-8mil, thanks for your time here Russel, it’s time to part ways. Ibanez is tough, I have an irrational love for him because of his big moments this year and his uncanny resemblance to Lord Voldemort. That said, because of his big moments this year, and resurgance of power (and most likely having nothing to do with looking like Lord Voldemort) I can see a team giving him a multi year deal. I love Raul, but like Mike said (and like we learned from Andruw Jones this year) it’s always better to get rid of that type of player a year early rather than a year late.

    • Scheister

      But your handle?!

      • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

        I’m working on some new ones, this handle will remain until Raul is no longer a Yankee though.

  • Adam

    I wnt Martin back, n i am a DIE HARD YANKEE FAN…Ibanez came up RELI big for us, and it knda surprises me he prolly wont be back, but its not sumthin to cry over

    • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

      I really don’t like being a grammar Nazi, that is a complete lie, I love it but for the love of God, at least spell the words out improperly. Spelling mistakes are much more bearable than this crap.

      • 0 for infinity and beyond

        LOL! IMO, 4 sur…

        TTYL

      • Kevin

        Isn’t there a theory that anybody who claims “I am a….” actually isn’t whatever they are proclaiming? Because, y’know, we’re all on here because we love the Yankees, but this one-upmanship can escalate forever.

        It’s the up-scaling version of the “I’m not racist/homophobic/sexist, but…….”, or, worse “I met this bloke, he was ‘….’, but he was alright though.” It’s all about trying to give your opinion more weight, because you’ve provided some background information that gives it some relativity.

        And don’t get me started on the block capitals….

        Cheers

        Kevin (Die-hard, non-racist, non-homophobic Yankees fan with lots of selectively cosmopolitan friends and tongue firmly placed in cheek)

  • mitch

    Ibanez looked washed up a very long stretch during the season…can’t bring a guy back just because of a few clutch HRs.

    I like the idea of travis hafner as a DH. He still mashes RHP and is playable vs LHP.

    • Preston

      They would probably prefer a DH candidate who could at least be used in an emergency in the field. Hafner hasn’t even played 1b since 2007 and didn’t play their for more than 100 innings since 2003. That said Pronk would definitely look good as a LH DH in YSIII.

      • Need Pitching & Hitting

        Agreed. With Jeter and ARod possibly needing more and more DH games, I would expect them to look for a DH who could play a passable OF or 3B.

  • Brian S.

    Bring back Russ.

    • Preston

      Martin is definitely the best C option available IMO. Plays good defense, runs the bases well for a C, hits for power, takes walks, has been durable for us. His average definitely leaves something to be desired but look around at C’s in the big leagues they all have flaws. There is no other FA C I’d rather have, and any trade candidate that would actually be an upgrade would cost a lot in prospects.

      • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

        The thing that doesn’t really concern me about Russel’s average though is his BABIP was abysmal this season and all of his LD, GB, FB and IFFB% were right in line with his career numbers. The only things that concern me are his walk rate was the third lowest of his career and his K-Rate was the highest of his career.

  • TomH

    What I like about these different threads since the season ended for the Yankees is GM’s-Helper-Mentality as it unrolls on an ad hoc basis. E.g., these are some of the we-should-get-rid-of’s in that time:

    Cano
    ARod
    Martin
    Granderson
    Swisher
    Ibanez.

    That’s about 150-60 Hr’s.

    Let’s hope Cash sticks to his working principle of not taking the fans’ advice (for fear of winding up sitting among them) all at the same time!

    • Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle AKA True Yankee(TM)

      So of guys under contract our team would be
      C-
      1B Tex
      2B
      3B Nunez
      SS Jeter
      LF
      CF Gardner
      RF

      Damn it’s gonna be a fun year.

  • JLC 776

    Can we keep Russell around simply for Red Sox games? Not because of his hitting, but because of his hatred for Boston.

  • The Moral Majority is Neither

    If the Yankees really want Martin but without using the precious 2014 payroll then the qualifying offer accomplishes this easily.

    It’s too much, but boosting the 2013 budget on 1-year deals might buy them some time.

  • Optimus Prime

    The Yankees need to stop this stupid rotation of the DH. If you need to rest the so called “old” players then sit them down all game. Bring back Raul as the permanent DH. That spot needs consistency and not a rotating bunch of different players.

  • Optimus-Prime

    The Yankees need to stop this stupid rotation of the DH. Bring back Raul as the permanent DH. That spot needs consistency and not a rotating bunch of different players.

  • Vic

    Qualifying offer for Martin, not a penny more.
    If he gets more than 3 and 20 I’ll be shocked.
    3 and 27 is insane.

  • http://www.rowlandscherman.com Rowland

    RS says:
    Cashman is the one to be packing up his suitcase. He’s been wrong about so much, so long.

  • FreeAgentSignee

    Get a deal Russell, Yankees!
    At least until Romine is ready.