Jun
25

Thoughts following Monday’s off-day

By
Yogi could probably catch like twice a week, right? (Presswire)

Yogi could probably catch like twice a week, right? (Presswire)

It will be three weeks before the Yankees enjoy another day away from the park — yesterday’s was their last scheduled off-day until the All-Star break. The annual 20 games in 20 days stretch is always brutal, so hopefully the Yankees can weather the storm before getting some of the injured guys back. Hopefully that will start to happen right after the break. Here are some miscellaneous thoughts.

1. Assuming Ivan Nova goes back to Triple-A before tonight’s game — “I don’t view Nova right now as a threat to [Phil Hughes],” said Brian Cashman to Andy McCullough yesterday, so it seems likely he goes down — I have absolutely no idea who the Yankees will call up to fill the roster spot. I would think it would be a position player so they can get back to normal 12-man pitching staff, but the only player in the minors who is both on the 40-man roster and not on the DL is outfielder Ramon Flores. He’s not coming up from Double-A. They do have an open 40-man spot after cutting Chris Bootcheck last week, so I guess someone like Dan Johnson or the recently acquired Brent Lillibridge could be the guy. Lillibridge can play all over the field and Johnson (gasp!) might actually hit the ball out of the park on occasion. We’ll find out soon enough, I guess.

2. Even though David Adams has been brutal for about a month now, I like that the Yankees installed him at third base full-time and put an end to the rotating left side of the infield. Playing part-time is tough and something Adams has never done before, so maybe getting back in the lineup on an everyday basis helps get his back going. I do think his at-bats have looked better of late, particularly when he drew two walks in Saturday’s win, but at some point the results will have to come. The Yankees have gotten nothing out of their third basemen this year and it’s unclear how much Alex Rodriguez will provide if/when he rejoins the team. Giving Adams a chance to sink or swim right now is the lesser of multiple evils and gives the team some more time to evaluate him before the trade deadline.

Zoilo. (Jim McIsaac/Getty)

Zoilo. (Jim McIsaac/Getty)

3. Zoilo Almonte won’t continue to hit to a 345 wRC+ the rest of the way, but his recent emergence has made the need to add a corner outfield bat a little less of a priority. Don’t get me wrong, the Yankees should still add one if the right deal comes along, but it’s no a longer absolutely imperative. If anything, a corner infield bat is the bigger hole now. Lyle Overbay stopped hitting about 40 games ago, and it’s sounding more and more likely that Mark Teixeira is heading towards season-ending wrist surgery. Maybe getting back in the lineup everyday will bring Overbay’s bat back to life, but I’m not optimistic. First baseman aren’t the toughest thing to find, and if the Yankees can drum up someone better than Lyle, I’d make the switch in a heartbeat. Hell, maybe Johnson is that guy. I appreciate what Overbay did earlier in the year, but goodwill never won anyone anything.

4. How awful have the catchers been this season? They’re hitting a collective .225/.290/.326 (67 wRC+) despite Frankie Cervelli‘s insane start to the season (141 wRC+), something that probably wasn’t going to continue anyway. Even the most ardent Cervelli backers can acknowledge that. Austin Romine had been a disaster (-17 wRC+), and since taking over as the number one guy following Frankie’s injury, Chris Stewart is hitting .233/.299/.291 in 119 plate appearances. He has thrown out eight of 20 attempted base-stealers (40%), which is awesome, but overall I’ve felt his glovework behind the plate has really lagged behind his reputation. No amount of pitch framing can makeup for the offensive black hole and blah defense. The Yankees really dropped the ball by not addressing their catching situation this winter; it’s such an incredibly important position yet they completely ignored it. Hard to believe a self-proclaimed championship-caliber team thought this lot of catchers was a viable solution behind the plate.

Categories : Musings
  • Algae

    Any thoughts on the Yankees going after Chase Headley? He fits the profile of a corner OF with 1b/3b versatility and is seemingly a good buy-low candidate because he is struggling in SD.

    • trr

      I’ve always liked Headley, but the devils are in the details.
      I just can’t see overpaying in terms of prospects, and I don’t think a package of Hughes + Joba + b-list minor leaguers is gonna get it done…

      • I’m One

        IPK + Melky? (Agree with your comments, BTW.)

      • Kosmo

        San Diego is looking to add , they´re still in the hunt and are reported to be looking for SP. Gyorko and Alonzo have been injured so Headley, although he isn´t hitting much, could get hot at anytime remains important to the lineup.

      • jjyank

        I like Headley as well, but he’s gotten pretty overrated in the last year or so.

  • Patrick

    Axisa, you are such a Stewie-hater! He’s OK, not bad, and was thrust into a role he had no business being in. It would be like if they turned Boone Logan (err… 2012 Boone Logan) into a starter… he’d be terrible at it, masking his better qualities.

    • hogsmog

      …a role he has no business being in because he is bad.

    • BeanTooth

      Stewie isn’t in that role because the Yanks’ regular starter got hurt. The team went into spring training saying he and Cervelli would essentially split duties. Considering how bad Cervelli was last year in AAA, there was no reason to think he’d be a viable starter on the big league team. Yes, Stewart’s been better than expected. For us. The problem is I get the feeling the team expected him to be a suitable replacement to Martin, which he’s not.

      • Jim Is Bored

        No, the team expected Stewart+Cervelli, at their performance per $, to be equal to Martin at his performance per $.

        I refuse to believe they thought that they would perform equal to or better than Martin salaries aside.

        • LK

          I think that is what they thought.

          Unfortunately they’ve been spectacularly wrong. Martin’s been the 4th most valuable catcher in baseball, worth 2.5 fWAR by himself (his 124 wRC+ is tied with Cano (!!!)). Yankee catchers have combined for .4 fWAR. WAR doesn’t do a great job with catchers because the defensive component is hard to fully quantify, but Martin’s a very good defensive C, so I don’t think you’re going to make up much of the gap there. Considering teams are paying ~$5M/win on the open market these days, Martin’s basically already earned 2/3 of his contract and he’s only 1/4 of the way through it.

          • Jim Is Bored

            Well no one in their right mind would have predicted a 124 wRC+ for Martin. He’s playing above his head right now.

          • Jim Is Bored

            And WAR is cumulative, which means a terrible 2 weeks can take away from his WAR.

            • LK

              Yup. He almost certainly won’t keep it up. But he’s making ~$8.5 million this year. That’s worth less than 2 wins. To be worth the contract this year, he just has to play the Yankee catchers even for the rest of the season (he could actually even play a little worse). You want to bet against that?

              • Jim Is Bored

                Of course not.

                But saying the decision was wrong without hindsight is just silly. There is a greater than 0% chance it could have been right. You can say it was 50.

                We’ll never know. But of course in hindsight I wish we’d had Martin.

                • Jim Is Bored

                  I don’t know what happened to that comment.

                  You can say it was less than 50%, I can say it was more*

        • MannyGeee

          ding ding ding. And for what its worth, they’ve succeeded at that. Be careful what you wish for.

    • MannyGeee

      Signed,

      John Sterling

  • I’m One

    despite Frankie Cervelli‘s insane start to the season (141 wRC+), something that probably wasn’t going to continue anyway. Even the most ardent Cervelli backers can acknowledge that.

    Not sure Eddardworld would acknowledge that based on some of his comments late last week, I believe. (Days kinda get blurred.)

    • jjyank

      Heh, I was about to say the same thing.

  • Kosmo

    Kendrys Morales might be a possibility. Michael Young and Rios. Morales could slide in at 1B and looks like a much better option than Overbay.

    • I’m One

      Yeah, at the right price, I’d be OK with Morales. Liked him a lot before the injury, but he’s still OK and probably an upgrade all around over Loverbay.

      • Jim Is Bored

        At a cheap price, sure. Not worth giving anything substantial up for though.

        • I’m One

          Agree. He’s a rental with ~2.6M remaining on his contract. Shouldn’t have to give up much of anything to get him. But I do think he’s an upgrade over Loverbay.

          • Jim Is Bored

            Definitely an upgrade. Would be difficult not to be.

          • jsbrendog

            he is 100000% an upgrade over overbay

            http://www.baseball-reference......ke01.shtml

            and as said since he is a rental and jack z and cashmang have a history it is possible they could reach a deal for something that isn’t really a big deal. maybe one of the yanks rule 5 eligible players that is borderline 40 man rosterable?

            my trade proposal suuuuuuuuuuucks

          • Robinson Tilapia

            I already put Mikey O’Brien in a shipping container yesterday. I just need an address to ship him to.

    • MannyGeee

      Yup Morales is on the short list of guys who make sense as a target. Low cost, quite possibly being moved this year, passes the “Better than Loverbay” test. Also on that list, Corey Hart (yes, imma keep beating that drum. Eat it)

      • jsbrendog

        corey hart ma miss entire season
        http://www.rotoworld.com/playe.....corey-hart

        • jsbrendog

          that being said I would LOVE, if he did miss the season, for the yanks to sign him as a part time OF/DH/Teix insurance in the offseason at the coming off a serious injury discount!!

          • I’m One

            Enticing!

        • MannyGeee

          Please don’t tell me this. My fantasy team doesn’t want to hear this shit right now

  • Pseudoyanks

    Right now, I think being 1 game back in the loss column is a curse in desguise. I’d personally like to see Cashman use the next few weeks, leading up to the Trade Deadline to Sell and Position for 2014. I’m probably in the minority here (maybe even in a group of 1.) Frankly, I’d like to change my screen name to Resurgentyanks in 2014 (maybe Phoenixyanks.)

    • I’m One

      You’re probably not a party of 1, but definitely in the minority. Being 1 game back in the loss column means you’re in the hunt and should be buying, not selling. I’d like to see the Yankees fill in some holes without gutting the farm or compromising the future. Add some solid players or perhaps get lucky and find someone that fits the long term needs of the team (willing to give up top prospects for this only).

      • jjyank

        “I’d like to see the Yankees fill in some holes without gutting the farm or compromising the future.”

        My thoughts exactly. I think the Yankees should do everything in their power to compete while keeping the farm as intact as possible.

        Admittedly, this is far easier said than done, and a strategy that most teams try to employ. If the Yankees can find upgrades via waiver moves and trades that don’t involve top tier prospects, that’s what they should be doing. $189 budget or no, the farm system is going to be pretty important for the next several years.

    • LK

      My problem with this strategy is that I think they’re better positioned for 2013 than they are for 2014. I’d rather go for it this year. Don’t bottom out unless you have to – there’s no guarantee the climb back to the top will be easy.

      • jjyank

        “there’s no guarantee the climb back to the top will be easy.”

        This is a point that I think too many people in the pro-rebuild crowd miss. If doing so was easy in any way, team like the Cubs, Royals, Mariners, Astros, etc. would be powerhouses by now.

        Blowing up the team in a year or two in order to achieve a decade of success in a nice idea in theory, but it could just as easily spiral into a decade of failure.

        • The Doctor

          But unlike many of those smaller market teams, the Yankees have the monetary means to sign free agents, they wouldn’t be banking entirely on all the prospects panning out. They could, theoretically, sell Cano for a huge haul, then sign McCann, Beltran, and Choo to supplement the prospects slowly coming up.

          I’m not advocating such a course of action, I’d like to see them do their best to contend this year and keep Cano, then continue to build off of that with free agents and the farm system. If, however, it were a choice between trying to win with what we have right now, letting Cano go in the offseason, and not making much of a play on the free agent market; and the aforementioned plan, I’d take that one 100% of the time.

      • jsbrendog

        def, as of now hughes (even though he sucks)/pettitte/kuroda puts them in a better position than 2014 with no pettitte, hughes or kuroda. at least in theory.

        oh, and no Mo or grandy in 2014. and maybe no Cano.

        yeah, this yr they need to go for it cause next yr could be an early 90s yr haha

        DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

    • MannyGeee

      Yeah, because the fans in Miami love cheering for a team that’s gotten blown up and gone into rebuilding mode so much, Jeff Loria has made it a constant thing… like the Hunger Games.

      Anyone who is actually wishing for a rebuild of a team that has a winning record and one game out of the Division lead has NEVER lived through a rebuilding cycle.

      And YES, its a cycle, because they won’t trade away everyone and get a playoff caliber team back in 2014. Try 2018. Or more.

      • jsbrendog

        all i have to say to your point is 1982-1993.

        enough said.

        • MannyGeee

          TIL: Pseudoyanks was born in 1994

          • Robinson Tilapia

            I’m pretty sure Pseudoyanks is no spring chicken.

            • Pseudoyanks

              Haha, you STFU! ;)

          • Pseudoyanks

            Haha, no Manny. Likely I was born before you. We’ve been conversing on this site for years (Nuke LaDoosh, Paul VuvuZuvella, Austin Aunelowitzky, all previous names for me), and you may have missed me adopting this name in Spring Training.

            You assume incorrectly that I believe Cash can turn the Yanks into a Dynasty with my recommended strategy. I don’t believe that. I believe they MUST start a rebuilding process SOON and would like it to happen ASAP with the trading deadline approaching and tradeable Chips available who may not be available in the off season (Hughes, Joba, even Cano.)

            I’m not fooled by 1 game out now meaning they are 1 trade away from ALCS calibre baseball.

            Cheers buddy.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              I forgot about LaDoosh.

              • Pseudoyanks

                Everyone forgets LaDoosh…it was way to common a name.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        They love cheering for a team that obviously went into spending mode in order to make a championship grab, then sold off parts in a spectacular fashion, TWICE, with not even getting even close to a title the second time, even less.

        At least 2003 was half the product of the pieces they got from the post-’97 fire sale.

        This is where my useless knowledge of the fucking Florida/Miami Marlins comes in handy.

        • CS Yankee

          They have had three runs at the ring (kinda)…
          1) ’98…Sheff’, Lowell, etc…firesale after ring.
          2) ’02…Pudge, Becket etc…firesale after ring.
          3) ’12…Reyes, Buerle, etc…firesale by the 4th of July.

  • Kosmo

    August 1st lineup:

    Gardner CF
    Young INF
    Cano 2B
    Morales 1B/DH
    Arod 3B/DH
    Granderson LF
    Almonte RF
    Cervelli C
    Nix ? SS

    • I’m One

      Exchange Jeter for Nix (and swap batting positions accordingly) and I’d be down with that team.

  • Jim Is Bored

    Of course no one thought Cerv would hit at a 141 wRC+. We didn’t need him to. But I fully believe he could have maintained a ~100 wRC+, something that no other catcher on our 40 man has a prayer of doing. And he’d be doing it cheaply.

    • trr

      At the very least he is an unquestionable upgrade over Romine.

    • I’m One

      Considering his cost and expected performance (going by your numbers, probably close enough), he’s not only an upgrade over what the team has now, he’s probably the best they can get (due to salary).

    • LK

      He’ll be an upgrade for sure, but a 100 wRC+ going forward is optimistic. It’s higher than his career number or the RoS ZiPS and Steamer projections (which take into account his torrid start). I could see it happening, but it’s not something I think we can count on.

      • Jim Is Bored

        Just as we couldn’t count on Martin hitting at a 124 wrc+.

        • LK

          Totally. Problem is he didn’t need to in order to be the right move. It was the wrong decision. Martin playing over his head just makes it even more wrong.

    • MannyGeee

      All Cervelli needs to do is be better than +64 and keep the fist-pumps coming.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    I think the Yanks should see if eiter McCann or Gattis is available. Both would be a huge upgrade.
    Reyes will be activated by the Jays tomorrow. I guess Kawasaki or Bonifacio will be cut. Also worth looking at those guys. Though I really doubt they let Kawasaki go, right now he’s crazy popular in Toronto and the clubhouse. http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......d=28246573

    • trr

      Would love to get McCann, but that might take even more than Headly….

      • BeanTooth

        No way. He’ll be a free agent at the end of the season and the Braves have given many a hint that they’re going to let him walk. He’d be much cheaper than Headley, who doesn’t become a free agent until 2015.

        • jsbrendog

          a team in contention for a title doesnt really trade useful parts that would help them win said title away unless it is for some serious cheddar.

    • Kosmo

      as much as I like McCann he ain´t going anywhere. Gattis is a keeper. Laird would be a more realistic acquisition.

      Yanks need offense, Kawasaki and Bonifacio don´t bring any.

      • jsbrendog

        but it is all about incremental upgrades. every little bit helps, no?

        boneface may be able to get on bse and if he does he can steal. and his defensive versatility fits with a team so beat up as the yankees. I would def say they should sign him over the former attorney general if he is released.

      • MannyGeee

        funny thing is, I can get behind a Laird move. He is better than Romine and I feel like he can be at least on par with Stewie. In limited time, he’s hitting well enough to warrant a go.

  • Frank

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Yanks obtain Ian Stewart for 3B. Just a feeling.

    • The Tenth Inning Stretch

      What’s Shannon Stewart up to these days? #GetAllTheStewarts

      • MannyGeee

        Also Patrick, French, Kordel and Kristen Stewart.

        • trr

          (passing on French)

        • Bavarian Yankee

          maybe Tony Stewart is tired of racing :D

          • MannyGeee

            #NASCARisasport

        • The Tenth Inning Stretch

          At least nobody would be getting upset at Kristen Stewart for smiling after striking out.

          • I’m not the droids you’re looking for…

            She never smiles. More accurately, the few times she does she looks like she’s in pain.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Patrick does live in my neighborhood now. Let me go check.

          • bobtaco

            Make it so

  • Chris in Durham

    The catching situation criticism is boring Mike. We hear it all the time from you. GET. OVER. IT.

    • FEED.ME.MORE!

      Yeah, the “Russell Martin Love Club” never misses a chance to lament the offseason.

      • BronxBombers?

        Did you ever consider the fact that he says it all the time because it is an actual problem and something the front office decided to cheap out with? If it is a constant problem then of course you will hear about it, and last I checked Stewart isn’t proving Mike wrong.

        • FEED.ME.MORE!

          The move wasn’t about Stewart. It was about Cervelli and Stewart basically matching Martins production at low cost.

          Would we be crying the same way if Martin was signed and then got hurt the same way Cervelli did? The starter got hurt, it wasn’t neglect by the FO.

          RF I could agree was braindead decision-making. But I don’t have to go back and go over and over and over the moves they made or didn’t make. It’s beating a dead horse.

          • I’m not the droids you’re looking for…

            Your refund is waiting for you at the door.

            • BronxBombers?

              You’re absolutely right Droids I’m not looking for, if you guys don’t like what Mike has to say, get off the site and don’t bitch in the comments. Nobody is making you come on here.

  • Reggie C.

    Havent seen anywhere the possibility that Mark Teixiera could be heading to season-ending wrist surgery. Has anyone here?

    • Reggie C.

      Nevermind. Just saw the Cashman quote acknowledging that possibility.

      Aww man, that is dire!

      Is it time to kick the tires on a Joe Mauer?

      • I’m One

        No.

      • Tio Rico

        No way. That contract is not going to help the situation.

        • jjyank

          Bingo.

    • trr

      They haven’t yet publicly confirmed any surgery, but Tex’ wrist is not getting better

  • Slu

    Romaine is a waste of a 25 man roster spot. He can’t hit at all and his defense is not great. And he won’t improve on the bench,if ever.

    • Slu

      Or Romine. Auto correct.

      • FEED.ME.MORE!

        Lettuce forgive….

        • jsbrendog

          Lettuce forget…

          • MannyGeee

            Lettuce walk away from this pun driven narrative while we can still Ceaser the opportunity.

            I’ll show myself out.

      • JohnnyC

        Thought you were trying to be clever. You weren’t.

    • BeanTooth

      He’s definitely wilted at the major league level.

      • trr

        so toss him…yikes, enough!

        • Robinson Tilapia

          He can go dress for another team.

          • I’m not the droids you’re looking for…

            I long for the salad days.

    • Stan the Man

      We actually don’t know what he can do since he doesn’t play often enough. He is young and is only up because of an injury, so I think we can cut him some slack for the time being.

  • mt

    Whenever I see Kendrys Morales play it looks like he can barely move – is he really a viable option at 1B as opposed to DH?

    I see in some ways being 1 game back being a curse is that it lulls Yanks into thinking current line-up is OK or can hold down the fort until August 1 or so (earliest Grandy, Cervelli, Arod and Jeter all come back) – Yet all these guys will all have adjustment periods, if they come back at all. The offense is officially dreadful and there should be ways – trade some of our minor league pitching – that we can improve at margins without gutting the system. I am not even talking about getting Headley or Satnton or anyone like that. For example, are you telling me that we can’t get a better back-up than Romine in here without trading away all the farm? A more offensive minded 1B?

    Given our Pythagorean overperformance it would be very easy for us to be 7-9 games back. There is a lot of negativity now – imagine the furor if we were 7-9 games back? If we were closer to that level, it would be a lot harder to argue that we are truly fielding a competitive team. I heard a reporter describe it correctly – the Yanks are acting like they are trying to hold the ball and let the clock run out on the season without doing something.

    They did well in April and surprised us by getting 12 games over .500 but now have gotten evidence over last 40 games or so that offense is terrible as the 2006 All Stars return to their level of the last few years AND new injuries happened (Grandy, Cervelli, Tex, Youklilis).

    • jsbrendog

      the yankees cannot score runs. Morales >>>>>>>>>>>>>> overbay

      overbay will in no way save more runs than morales brings. it just won’t balance. morales would be a great pickup depending on prospect price, which depends on demand for him which….i cant really think of any team in contention off the top of my head in need of a 1b/dh type…..am i missing someone?

  • Jersey Joe

    I think before the Yankees do anything about 1B, they should see what Dan Johnson can do in YS3 – his swing is perfect for the stadium and he has a good OBP and probably more pop than Overbay.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I have no problem giving him that open 40-man spot and bringing him up right now. None.

  • LarryM Fl

    The OF situation should start to heal itself with the return of Granderson then Granderson, Gardner, Ichiro, Altmonte and Wells. It seems a bit crowded. But we are not there just yet. I would continue to play Gardner and Altmonte with Ichiro with Wells sharing time with Ichiro and Altmonte when a lefty pitches. When the time comes if Altmonte has not come back to earth then it is big decision time.

    Third and first base are a problem both Adams and Overbay can field their positions but Adams has fallen down offensively with little or no contact of any worth. Overbay has lost it but still puts it in play. So one guy who can play third and first might be a positive pickup who can get his bat on the ball. This could fit nicely.

    As far as catcher, no one of any worth will become available unless something unusual occurs with another club. Cervelli should bolster the catching ranks at least give Stewart some time on the bench and not be exposed with his abundant playing time. Romine needs to be option out to AAA. He is not ready offensively or defensively.

    Arod and Cervrlli would help but Selig is just waiting to drop his hammer on them and the Yankees.

    • LK

      Sorry, I just can’t describe an OF that includes Vernon Wells, Ichiro, and a guy with <10 games of MLB experience "crowded."

    • TomH

      Arod and Cervrlli would help but Selig is just waiting to drop his hammer on them and the Yankees.

      This comment points to a problem with the general notion of ‘rebuilding.’ As most of us are aware, Seligism’s field-leveling moves have made life harder for the Yankees. As have too the cable $ that has begun flowing to certain teams, permitting them to lock up talent. Were the Yankees to really go into rebuilding mode, surely they could not do so under some sort of Rule 189 Austerity Plan, governed by a misleading principle that, say, a 200 mil payroll is not essential to winning a WS.

      It’s not. But it is essential to fielding a team–under Seligist rules–that wishes to be annually in the post-season.

      Were Rule 189 (in whatever avatar) to guide Hal S into the future, rebuilding might very well be as difficult as other posters have said, today, it is for teams like the Cubs.

  • FEED.ME.MORE!

    “Being 1 game back after over 40% of the season is a curse” – Commenters

    WTF?

    Winning and being competitive is a curse?

    It’s not 2 weeks into the season. It’s darn near 3 months of baseball. Now, it’s not to say they will continue this level of performance, but you can’t say they won’t either.

    We’ve been holding on and are in the thick of the race to this point. Who knows what the rest of the season holds?

    “Yankee fans: Looking for certainty in an uncertain sport.”

    • jjyank

      Hey man, don’t lump is all together. I’m thrilled that the Yankees are in the thick of contention after all the hurdles thrown at them.

      • jjyank

        lump *us* all together

        • MannyGeee

          “What do you mean ‘you people’?”

          “What do YOU mean ‘you people’?”

          • Pat D

            Be Australian!

      • FEED.ME.MORE!

        Yeah, I should have said “some commenters.”

        I can’t stand the “It’s over”, “1965”, “George, grave-rolling” crowd who only show up when they lose and are telling you the end is near for a team in the thick of an epic race.

        • trr

          +1
          yes, this team is scrambling and scraping, but as of this morning we were in a statistical tie for tle last wild card spot. Let’s hope the team pursues the upgrades we’ve discussed and fight until the end.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Love that last sentence.

      You add, but you don’t go for broke via acquisitions. These are still the guys that got you to competitiveness.

  • http://www.twitter.com/matt__harris Matt :: Sec110

    Is Morneau an option as a trade candidate at first? The Twins are awful, and he’s a FA at the end of the season. He’s obviously battled the concusion stuff of the last few seasons, but has played in 62 of the team’s 67 games this season, so hopefully he’s healthy.

    He’s lacking pop this season, just 3 HRs, and a SLUG% like 100 points below his career average, but maybe the short porch helps?

    Can’t imagine he’d cost a whole lot either trade wise, and they’d be on the hook for something like 6-7 million.

    • MannyGeee

      Yeah, he’s an option. I am not thrilled with the prospect, but he is an option.

    • Kramerica Industries

      Morneau has always raked at Yankee Stadium, but doesn’t he have quite a few years left on his contract?

      I’m not keen at all on taking on reclamation projects with multi-year deals left. This is why I want no part of Andre Ethier.

      • http://www.twitter.com/matt__harris Matt :: Sec110

        According to Baseball Reference, he’s a free agent after this season.
        http://www.baseball-reference......ju01.shtml
        (scroll about 3/4 of the way down)

        That’s why he’s an attractive option IMO, almost Berkman like, but in better phyical shape.
        #FatElvis

        • trr

          I think he’s an obvious option, who would come more cheaply than Headley or McCann, but he’s no saviour. Still, if it doesn’t go well, easy enough to say goodbye at the end of the season.

          • http://www.twitter.com/matt__harris Matt :: Sec110

            Exactly…it almost seems like a no-brainer, but what will it cost?

  • fred robbins

    While it’s nice to be in the thick of contention, it only adds to the delusion that this team is not in need of almost 5 new regular position players. It seems the Yankee front office feels Jeter will be the shortstop forever and that 3rd base and two outfield spots and catcher are not that important. I would keep Gardner in the outfield and he is essentially their best hitter and player now. If he ever learns how to run the bases and steal bases, he would be an all star.
    Who plays shortstop next year? Who plays 3rd Base? Who will be the catcher? It’s mind numbing that these questions go unanswered in the Yankee front office. At least to me.
    I get the feeling that even if the Yankees end up in Last, they do not have the will to do what Boston did and turn over the team and start to play with a future in mind.

    • MannyGeee

      Wow…. Ironically, you mention in this dribble that something is mind-numbing. Don’t even know where to start with you.

    • Vern Sneaker

      Good questions. I have to believe Cashman is waiting to see how A-Rod and Jeter play when (if?) they get back and still hoping they may be viable for next year. Ditto for Texeira, who sure looks as though he’s having surgery and would next show up for spring training. Outfield??? Catcher? I’m clueless, unless Murphy turns out to be a real big-leaguer. Trades? Free agents? Not much out there, really. It sure feels like a mess.

    • I’m One

      As in every organization (baseball or otherwise) I’m confident there is a lot going on behind the scenes that we won’t ever know about. Cashman and crew have some idea of what to expect from Jeter, A-Rod, Teix, etc. upon their return (at least from a fielding perspective). The fact that we’re not hearing anything by no means indicates they’re not planning actions. Why would they tip their hand and allow all the other teams to know they have serious needs (if they feel they do) that must be filled? That would take away any leverage they might have. Makes no sense.

  • Darren

    The problem with Dan Johnson is that he can’t really field. It’s one thing to put a really big bopper at first ala Giambi, Big Daddy or Mo Vaughn. You live with the unstable infield because you know the dingers and walks are gonna outweigh the problems.

    But I’m not injecting some minor league strikeout machine into the mix. The team’s success is too precarious to start messing with one of its overlooked strengths – the solid but unspectacular defense. Unless we can get a real 1B with good defense AND an upgrade over Overbay, I’m sticking with him.

    Are there any Carlos Pena types out there who can be had for something reasonable? If not, is it insane to think about trying to get a 3B and converting Alex to first base? I mean, I know it’s insane, but just for laffs.

    • LK

      It doesn’t seem that crazy to me. I think they should have interest in acquiring any player that can hit at a league average rate who doesn’t have an onerous contract and wouldn’t cost a ton in prospects. As far as I’m concerned, 2B and one OF spot are the only things locked down in this lineup.

    • MannyGeee

      Also, you can sacrifice 1B defense when the remainder of your infield is strong defensively. With A-Rod/Jeter up in age and down in agility, you have to have something of a suitable glove before you literally give away runs in the infield.

      • LK

        It’s tough though. Right now they’re one of the 4 worst offenses in MLB, and they’ve been *the* worse in June, hitting .219/.289/.314 for a 63 wRC+. At some point that’s just not going to cut it no matter what your defense looks like.

        A-Rod and Jeter’s issues defensively will likely be more based on range; when they get to balls they normally make pretty decent throws. Obviously you can’t put a total butcher out there, but I think we’re at the point where sacrificing some D for runs makes sense.

    • nycsportzfan

      Unless that 3rd basemen was Chase Headly(doubtful as pads are in contention and we just drafted Jaigelo with our 1st pick), then i doubt we’d do anything else to Alex to make coming back any tougher, which learning a new positon would be.

      I’m for going after Alex Rios peronally, and getting healthy as we go. Zoilo may keep hitting, which could also be a boost.( not 500ba but 290-310sh is not outta question).

      • LK

        I agree with most of your comment, but Jagielo shouldn’t factor into MLB decisions yet.

        • Crime Dog

          And he wouldn’t. MLB organizations wouldn’t ever operate that way.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      You still keep Overbay, though. Johnson at least gives you another option for now, until the inevitable DFA.

      If he had some pop AND played decent defense, he wouldn’t be stashed in AAA.

      That being said, I agree with the larger point.

  • Crime Dog

    The AAA turnover this year has been amazing. It’s definitely a byproduct of the big league problems, but its amazing that they have two high A ball emergency call ups playing on a daily basis. They had two players in the lineup last night that were in the lineup June 1st!

  • Mr. Roth

    I really think Mark Trumbo would be a good fit for us right if we could get him for a reasonable price. RH Power bat that can play 1B, DH, and the corner OF spots in pinch. Not to mention the team would still have a few years of control.

    Of course none of that matters if the Angels want some ridiculous package for him, but I think it would fit our needs well otherwise.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I assume they want a ridiculous package for him.

    • Dalek Jeter

      Yeah, He’d be great but he’d also cost an arm, a leg, 1 of our young back-end starters, and one of our legit prospects at least.

      • Mr. Roth

        I don’t think I’d be opposed to a deal like that. I guess it depends who we get the arm and leg from though. Maybe Wells would be willing?

  • Robinson Tilapia

    No one’s brought up Mike’s comments on Adams yet. I begrudgingly agree on that. I hate seeing him struggle as much as everyone else but, if there’s not a better option out there, seeing if he can make the adjustments he needs to make at the big league level, while not worrying about position, isn’t the worst thing. It’s the thing the lament the Yankees can’t do a lot of the time.

    Now whether he’ll do it is another question.

    I support Dan Johnson as call-up.

    • OhioYanks

      My reaction would be that his first 100 PAs aren’t necessarily indicative of his next 100. They don’t really have too many options, but there’s also not much reason to suspect that he’s actually a 35 wRC+ hitter.

      Mike is all about streaks. This guy is hot, this guy is cold. Play the hot hand. Sit the cold hand. Obviously a manager has to do some of that, but the problem with streaks is that they can start and stop at any moment. If a guy you judge to be the best player at that time is the most likely to play well. (Not saying talent because you might have more talent but have a mechanical, mental, or injury issue that makes you a worse player at that time.) Not sure that’s Adams, but I don’t really see another candidate.

      This is another market timing thing, by the way. Human nature is to buy high and sell low. To play the guy who has been doing well and sit the guy who has been doing poorly. The problem is that at some point you’re going to keep riding the guy who is coming back to earth and sitting the guy who is ready to shake off his slump.

  • HTD

    “4. How awful have the catchers been this season?”

    Call up Luis Torrens, obviously.

    Slightly OT, but if anyone subscribes to Baseball Prospectus could you tell us where they put Gary Sanchez in the updated top 50 rankings that were just released today? While respecting the paywall, of course.

  • WhittakerWalt

    “How awful have the catchers been this season?”

    Everyone who hated Jorge Posada, you’re welcome. This is what the state of Catcher offense looks like for everyone else.

    • Stan the Man

      You could probably mention Thurman Munson, Yogi Berra, Elston Howard, and Bill Dickey while you’re at it since they are all as relevant as Jorge Posada to the current state of catching with the Yankees.