Oct
01

Thoughts following the day after the end of the season

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(Eric Christian Smith/Getty)

(Eric Christian Smith/Getty)

Later today, Brian Cashman will hold his annual end-of-season press conference, during which he’ll probably reveal … not much in particular. These things never really bring major news, but you never know. Three years ago we found out pitching coach Dave Eiland was being let go, for example. Both Ken Rosenthal and Jon Heyman say the Yankees are “decompressing” at the moment and will take a few days before getting down to business, most notably hammering out a new contract with Joe Girardi. Until then, here are some random thoughts.

1. My gut feel is heads on the player development side are going to roll this winter. The Yankees replaced both Billy Connors and Nardi Contreras — two long-time player development linchpins — last offseason, the first sign the braintrust wasn’t happy with the development staff. Yesterday we heard amateur scouting director Damon Oppenheimer and VP of Baseball Ops Mark Newman were most likely to get the axe, and it stands to reason director of player development Pat Roessler will be in that mix as well. The Yankees tend to promote from within and there’s definitely something to be said for loyalty and continuity, but it’s time for some new voices. If they make changes (they absolutely should at this point), they should bring in people from outside the organization. That’s easier said than done obviously — “throw money at whoever runs the Rays/Cardinals farm system” is not a realistic solution because those guys have contracts that usually aren’t broken for lateral moves — but what they’ve been doing isn’t working. It’s time for philosophical change, not rearranging the furniture.

2. Among players who are under contract/team control next season, how many would you say unquestionably belong on the Opening Day roster? Here’s the contracts info from Cot’s for reference. I count six: CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova, David Robertson, Brett Gardner, Alfonso Soriano, and Mark Teixeira. When Derek Jeter exercises his player option, it’ll be seven. I’m assuming Alex Rodriguez gets suspended. A few other guys deserve long looks in Spring TrainingDavid Phelps, Adam Warren, Austin Romine, Preston Claiborne, for example — but I’m not a big fan of handing young players who have been up-and-down (at best) jobs out of camp. Nova’s the exception. That’s just my preference, remember. Anyway, the point of this exercise was just to show just how many holes the Yankees have on their roster. Only seven guys who are slam dunks for the Opening Day roster? Yikes.

(Eric Christian Smith/Getty)

(Eric Christian Smith/Getty)

3. Eduardo Nunez played just well enough down the stretch to keep the Yankees from replacing him. That’s not a good thing. He hit .260/.307/.372 (83 wRC+) in 336 plate appearances overall this season and .284/.321/.426 (101 wRC+) in 211 second half plate appearances. The Yankees obviously love Nunez and saw just enough late in the year to not move on this winter. He was well on his way to playing himself out of the team’s plans with a rough first half, getting exposed by playing everyday as Jeter’s replacement. Now he’ll get another chance and be back next season. That would be fine if he wasn’t a disaster on defense or if I had any confidence in him being even a league average hitter in the near future.

4. Given the current state of the organization, my biggest concern right now is re-signing Robinson Cano to massive contract and being unable to surround him with quality support players because payroll is coming down. They can’t give Cano huge money and fill out the rest of the roster with washed up reclamation project types like Vernon Wells and Ichiro Suzuki. That’s a recipe for mediocrity and will waste however many elite seasons Robbie has left. This is where the unproductive farm system and having … well … washed up reclamation project types like Wells and Ichiro under contract next season really hurts. The Yankees are stuck relying on free agency which is a) not cheap, and b) completely inefficient. Getting bang for the buck is a thing now, the team has to consider that as long as they try to get under the $189M luxury tax threshold.

Categories : Musings

89 Comments»

  1. WFAN Caller says:

    What is one ‘logical’ reason for not cutting Vernon Wells? He’s owed $0, correct? There is absolutely no reason for him to be on the team next year. None. Unless he knows voodoo and is holding management hostage, he should be somewhere in Sarasota fishing come February. The Yankees would be better off putting a scarecrow at the plate in place of his AB’s.

    • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals says:

      “What is one ‘logical’ reason for not cutting Vernon Wells?

      He’s owed $0″

      There ya go–answered your own question!

    • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense & Baserunning says:

      He’s owed $2.4M for next season.

      • pat says:

        0$ on the books for next year.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense & Baserunning says:

          $0 towards the luxury tax cap.
          They still have to pay him $2.4M.
          That he counts for $0 towards the luxury tax cap makes it more likely that they keep him.

          • WFAN Caller says:

            So don’t cut him because he is free? He is horrible. He is worth negative WAR. There is literally nothing beneficial to having him on the team. The Yankees would be better off just donating a 40 man roster spot to charity.

            • Robinson Tilapia says:

              And thus my plan to be on the Yankee roster next season is born.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense & Baserunning says:

              I didn’t say they shouldn’t cut him.
              I said the fact that he counts for $0 against the luxury tax cap makes it less likely that he will be cut.

              He absolutely should be cut.
              He probably won’t be.

  2. Dan says:

    They really can’t be below $189 next year and be successful. The only way they can get there is by having basically the same team, with Tex back, and two SPs from within. If ARod is suspended maybe they can fill one SP hole.

    The options right now are (a) go for it. There’s enough out there where they could be back to the playoffs next year. They have to start by resigning Kuroda, Cano, and Grandy. Then they need to fill a few more holes: catcher (McCann?), SS/3B (Drew?), and an additional SP (Tanaka?). If they do this, they’ll be able to put a quality lineup out there every night, and depending on ARod, the payroll could come in at $210-$220, which is exactly where they’ve been.

    The problem is, if the Yanks do this, they’ll end up in the same spot they were this season, just a couple of years from now. But they could win a World Series in that time frame.

    Option (b) is to let everyone walk, trade who they can, go into a complete rebuild. Maybe they’ll be ready to have sustainable, longterm success in a few seasons, with the help of an influx of talent into the minor league systems (whoever they acquire via trade, and with compensatory picks this year, and with higher draft picks in the next couple of years) and returned payroll flexibility. To make this work they have to get their player development going in the right direction (easier said than done).

    Option (c) is the worst thing they can do–do what they did last offseason–a few bandages, a few re-signs, and no other impactful moves. That’s a surefire way for them to narrowly miss the playoffs again (and get stuck in a Philadelphia Philly like zone of mediocrity). I trust Cashman to not want to do this plan, but I don’t necessarily trust the Steinbrenners. It’s just enough to sell to the fanbase that you’re trying, but not enough to succeed or rebuild.

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:

      I couldn’t disagree with your opinion of option c more. That plan would have worked just fine with a healthy Tex and Granderson. All it really required was a more intelligent spending of the money they had(Martin instead of Ichiro, etc).

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        You can get it done with healthy regulars and role players. They just didn’t get the right role players.

        We can say handcuffing Cashman early in last off-season hurt, but the names we were throwing out there at this time last year didn’t really do much better, for the most part.

        Still, though, scrap the fucking plan already. Don’t spend for shits, but don’t let the tax stop you from putting the team you want on the field. It’s a noble effort, really, but it’s the wrong time to execute it.

        • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:

          Yup. The right time is post-Arod, post-Jeter. Not now.

          • Mister D says:

            But if you give Cano 7 years, you’re setting yourself up for a down-the-line “the right time is post-Cano”. At some point you have to break the cycle of massive contracts that pay for the past and near present at the expense of a few years from now.

            • Robinson Tilapia says:

              How much we give/don’t give Cano is a different topic, though.

              I will say that once Cano does hit the “victory lap” years, my initial thought is they’d be easier to swallow because he’d, hopefully, be the only guy on those years on the team. Right now, we’ve got several guy for which the checkered flag is waving loud on.

              ….and, no, we shouldn’t throw a blank check at him.

          • MannyGeee says:

            This. 189 Million Times this

          • Dick M says:

            Post-Arod, post-Jeter IS now. The era is over; the players as we know them are gone. They can’t even be counted on to stay on the field, let alone produce at a high level.

            I think Dan’s big picture is accurate, but there’s no way plan A leads to a championship.

            • Dan says:

              The thing isn’t post A-Rod/Jeter; it’s post A-Rod, CC, Tex’s contracts. It will be far easier to get under $189m then.

              The team I laid out, probably won’t win a championship–but it’s unlikely that any team will win a championship, but someone does every year. If all stay healthy, that team could win close to 90-95 games, especially if CC rebounds a bit.

        • Dick M says:

          Healthy regulars? Like it was a bad break that A-Rod and Jeter got hurt when they’re pushing 40? That’s the whole left side of the infield for god sakes.

          As for losing Tex, I can’t get all choked up about losing a guy who hits .220 vs right hand pitching.

      • Dick M says:

        Tex is part of the problem.

        • JGYank says:

          If you think a good power hitter that plays excellent defense is a problem then you need a new definition of the word. The only bad thing about him is his contract and hitting into the shift. Otherwise he’s still a good player.

          • Dick M says:

            That contract is a huge problem. As is CC’s. And the MO is the same — paying for guys on the down side instead of developing your own.

            What’s notable is that they were 2009 era FAs. Today’s FA market is much worse. Which gets back to the need for development.

            We can argue Tex’s merits outside of his contract I suppose. But he’s been a 250 hitter for some time now and even worse from the left side.

            • JGYank says:

              I agree about the contract. Tex hasn’t lived up to it and is declining. But he’s still a good hitter overall that plays stellar stellar defense.

              He had a 116 wRC+ in 2012 and a 124 wRC+ in 2011. That’s above average and is actually pretty good even for a first basemen who only hits .250. His slash line was .251/.332/.475 in 2012 so he still can hit for power and get on base at a decent clip because he walks a good amount. His WAR was 2.7 (fangraphs) in 2012 so that’s a good starter. Unfortunately, his wrist injury could affect his production moving forward if it hasn’t already and he is already in decline although the shift probably has a lot to do with his numbers getting worse. But if the injury doesn’t affect him too much he can still contribute and be an above average player and that’s better than Overbay for sure.

    • mitch says:

      I don’t think option A necessarily puts them in the same spot they were this year a couple years down the road. They’d just need more production for the system. Sanchez, Austin, Jagielo, etc need to be better than Adams, Romine, Zoilo, etc

  3. Pseudoyanks says:

    “Contracts not broken for lateral moves”
    Guess they will need to attract people with promotions then.

  4. Vinny S. says:

    As a utility option, I don’t dislike Nunez. I think we saw some real defensive improvement from him earlier in the season, but let’s not forget that he was banged up with a dozen different injuries for a good chunk of the season and missed a lot of time, which could help to explain the defensive problems later in the year. If his second half batting numbers (while he was healthy) are an indication of how he’ll hit going forward, that’s a productive player worthy of a roster spot.

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      I don’t like him. I also am realistic here (OMGZ) and realize that the better options out there may be few and far between. Whoever steps in on that side of the IF has to pass a “Better than Nuney?” test to me.

    • Matt DiBari says:

      Does there really have to be a reason why he was the same defensive atrocity he always was?

      • Mister D says:

        To be fair, he’s a terrible SS, not a terrible defensive player. There’s a lot of guys who shouldn’t be major league SS.

        • Frank Costanza says:

          Where on the baseball field has he succeeded defensively? I suppose his time at 3rd base was somewhat better, but that’s only because he’s atrocious at SS. If he’s not a terrible defensive player… what IS a terrible defensive player?

          YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT THE HELL YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT!

    • Dick M says:

      Nunez is not a shortstop. Bring Ryan back.

  5. Bartolo's Colon says:

    I went to the Houston series this past weekend (just Sat and Sun.) and it was a pretty nice park. Thank god for the roof, Houston is disgustingly humid. Was a bit bummed that I didn’t see Mo play, especially considering I booked this trip just for that reason. At least I was able to attend the game at YS last Thursday. But the Pettitte game was well worth the trip, that was just awesome. Mo and Andy will both be missed, can’t wait for them to unretire in 2015.

  6. Mister D says:

    Go back in time to the trade deadline and cash in Cano, Kuroda, Granderson, Hughes, etc …

  7. Darren says:

    Which minor leaguers/young guys have a reasonable chance of making the team and being above average in their role?

    Betances?

    Zoilo?

    Probably not Warren, JR Murphy, Adams, or Marshall, right?

    Anyone?

    Musty, Mesa? Mason Williams? Heathcott? Tyler Austin? Venditte?

    Anyone??

    • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead says:

      Warren and Zoilo, if we’re talking average relative to expectations(long reliever, 4/5 OF). Probably not anyone else.

      • The Lime says:

        That’s fair for those two, given the roles you assigned them – I could see Betances being above average (yay high K rate) because he’s a reliever, so the smaller sample could lead to an outcome further away from the mean (so he could also be below average too, yay high walk rate).

    • Chris in Maine says:

      Based on what the Yankees threw out there on the left side of the infield and at catcher, I would settle for “average” in their role. Above average would be gravy.

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      Mesa’s not with the organization anymore.

      I wager that Zoilo could do well as a fourth or fifth outfielder, Betances could stick as a bullpen piece, and Marshall could be a long man.

      Warren already had a successful MLB season, so there’s definitely that. I’d say Romine and Murphy could theoretically take that step up.

      I’d say Slade and Austin would be ready for 2015 if things break right next season. Nothing wrong with that.

    • viridiana says:

      If you’re talking about 2014, Betances, maybe Murphy, even Nuno, Banuelos if he is fully recovered by mid-season. But if you’re talking about over the next few years, there are many who could be above average.

    • Coolerking101 says:

      I think Zoilo has little chance of being above average next year. It’s pretty rare for a middle of the road prospect like Z to play well in the bigs in his rookie campaign, especially given that he wasn’t dominating AAA. Betances is unlikely to be above average, but he’s always had huge upside.

      If I was going to bet on above average production, I’d say look to the young relievers who were at AA and AAA this year. Rondon, Cabral, Burawa, Montgomery & Nuding (assuming he stays in the pen). Most of those goes dominated the minors for stretches last year and have 1 plus pitch.

    • MannyGeee says:

      Two different questions, methinks. I could see a number of those dudes making the team: Romine,Zolio, FHoFRM, Dellin, Warren, Adams, Marshall, Murphy. Hell, anyone who was in AAA this season has a goddam good chance of cracking the roster in 2014.

      Who will be above average? The guys who come up from the farms and turn into ‘above average’ in their first season ACROSS THE LEAGUE (let alone in the Bronx) is a thin subset. Gun to my head, Dellin could the most likeliest, with Murphy or Warren a distant second/third.

  8. crawdaddy says:

    Nardi Contreras is still part of the Developmental Staff. He’s not the pitching coordinator, but he is a pitching instructor for the Yankees.

  9. Jersey Joe says:

    I wonder what’s going to happen with Ichiro. He cannot start on opening day with a .297 OBP last year. I’m hoping that we can get a righty complement to Zolio not named Vernon Wells for RF. I wonder if there’s a team with a pitcher’s park that could use Ichiro’s speed and defense somehow next year on a young team, and maybe we could get a prospect back if we spend most of his contract. Maybe the Marlins would be a potential team that needs leadership and outfielders. If Ichiro wants to win a World Series, then I don’t know if NY is where he wants to be.

    • SDB says:

      At this point, late inning defensive replacement and pinch runner, and occasionally a platoon start to give someone a day off. Can’t do much more. I liked the guy a lot, thought it was a great signing in 2012, and even was tried to give the contract the benefit of the doubt… by about October, had to admit that Axisa was right on Ichiro, and now I’m just hoping they can trade him somewhere else.

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      If Grandy comes back, I’d say he only starts if Soriano goes straight to DH, which won’t happen.

      Your point is certainly taken, but nothing would surprise me here. It’s quite possible he’s out there next season. Love the player. Hate the performance.

  10. Geno says:

    What the Rays do isn’t rocket science. They would have traded Cano for a bunch of solid young players and gone on. This whole “We have to win every year” philosophy is bullsh!t, and it more than anything is what hurts us.

    • Jason says:

      Agree, but you know what’s also hurting us, Geno? Those damned INTs and fumbles!! Oh, wait…wrong blog….

    • JU says:

      You will get ripped for this, but honestly, you’re pretty much spot on. Good for you for having the onions to say it anyway.

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        What exactly did he actually say that was that groundbreaking?

        He thinks they should have traded Cano. So do a lot of people. That means that they should have, at the end of July, when they were well within reach of a playoff spot, punted on that chance. The fact that they didn’t make it doesn’t change that.

        “We have to win every year” and “We have a chance this season and aren’t going to ignore it” are two very different things.

        Who would do otherwise?

        • Mister D says:

          I can’t see us ever making a Tampa Bay trade where you move a key roster piece for a prospect while in the middle of a contention window. Not sure if that relates to the former or the latter, but it stands in direct contrast to the Yankees current “money fixes mistakes” operating scheme that has ceased to work as more and more players avoid UFA.

          • Robinson Tilapia says:

            I admire Tampa Bay from afar. I don’t want to be a fan of Tampa Bay. I don’t want my team to do business exactly the way they do.

            • SDB says:

              I also don’t want Chewbacca and penguins in my team’s dugout.

            • Mister D says:

              Not exactly because of the budget, but present day Tampa Bay has it a hell of a lot more figured out than NY. Or most anyone else for that matter. And when they trade Price (despite being a contending team) to restock for the long term yet again, its going to be the right move versus committing $20MM+ per for 7 years to a pitcher about to cross 30.

              • Mister D says:

                Maybe STL / Pujols is a better example? Just because you can keep Cano doesn’t mean you should keep Cano.

              • Robinson Tilapia says:

                It’s all going to be genius until the day it stops working and they begin to miss the playoffs. At that point, if they had fans to begin with, those fans will sound like our fans here.

                • Mister D says:

                  But the debate is process, not results. If they lost 1 more game this year and didn’t play last night, their process would still be miles ahead of the Yankees.

                  • Robinson Tilapia says:

                    Maybe we’re missing each other’s point here, but i’d like to think the process which gets you resukts is the best one.

                    Gotta run to another meeting. Won’t be able to reply further.

                    • Mister D says:

                      Did SF’s process tangibly change from 2012 to 2013? Process is just one piece subject to a multitude of variances, most far more out of a team’s control.

                      Hope the meeting went “real cool”.

                    • Robinson Tilapia says:

                      It’s child welfare. They’re never very cool.

                • JGYank says:

                  One day their system will run dry from the lower picks from winning and some bad luck. Once their system worsens they will plummet right back down to earth and probably into the cellar since they won’t be able to sign guys.

                  • Mister D says:

                    Except that’s not how they’re built. They had 5 guys besides Price and Longoria who were >= 2 fWAR this year and none were 1st round picks.

                    Zobrist: Flyer trade
                    Escobar: Dump trade
                    Jennings: Draftee (10th)
                    Cobb: Draftee (4th)
                    Loney: Scrap heap
                    Myers: Trade for former 16th rounder

                    • Mister D says:

                      (6 guys.)

                    • Robinson Tilapia says:

                      I absolutely get that and have no argument with that end of things.

                      Perhaps the Rays won’t fall on bad habits once they’re not able to produce winning pieces from within while winning themselves with such regularity because of sheer need. They’re never going to be able to pretend to a big market team. However, at some point, the promotions will fail them. How do they then dig out of that?

                      I’d always rather be the Yankees. They may cyclically fall into traps, but they have the flexibility to make adjustments. I’m not sure Tampa has that, or ever will.

                    • JGYank says:

                      Good farm systems don’t last forever. Whether from bad luck, injuries, poor performances, trading prospects for proven talent, or just poor drafting/developing every team’s system stops churning out Major Leaguers from there system at some point. Look at our system. We may not draft or develop as well as they do, but our system has had many guys get injured or take steps backward. Eventually you will hit a bump in the road for whatever reason. They might get good players from the later rounds but that could just be luck or that could be from good drafting.

                      As for the guys they traded for and signed on the scrap heap, they got lucky in some cases (Loney) and usually make good trades (Myers) but small moves like scrap heap signings and won’t keep them afloat for more than a year or two.

    • MannyGeee says:

      What the Rays do isn’t Rocket Science. Its called suck for the first 15 years of existence and stockpile talent. They would have traded Cano and continued being a 70 win team. But they DIDN’T trade Longoria, who is an inferior player because he is:

      1) a health liability
      2) a guy who was willing to take .45 on the dollar to stay in that shit hole stadium playing in front of 2500 people a night.

      Please don’t tell me what Tampa, the baseball genius that is Joe Maddon, and the rest of that clown show are doing is proper or the ‘right way’ to do it… especially when they haven’t even turned the lights off in 2013 and are ALREADY talking about cutting payroll in 2014.

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        This.

      • Mister D says:

        Except that’s barely true anymore. Aside from Price and Longoria, prior sucking isn’t what led to the roster that Tampa Bay is currently working with. Other teams have had high draft picks and done far less later on so waving it off as “you sucked before so of course you’re good now” is pretty inaccurate.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense & Baserunning says:

          So other than their ace and their MVP, much of the rest of the team wasn’t a result of the sucking.

          They have done pretty well with their draft picks, and success certainly isn’t automatic. But they also wouldn’t be where they are now without having sucked for so long.

      • Dick M says:

        That Longoria stuff is rich. I guess you didn’t watch the game last nite.

        They didn’t trade him because he was a health liability? Really?

        Getting your foundation players to sign BEFORE they get to free agency is the memo that everyone else BUT the Yankees seem to have gotten.

  11. LarryM Fl says:

    I believe Eduardo showed enough at the end to warrant a real look at third especially. Shortstop to seems its above his ability to slow down the game. Another player is Almonte. I liken him to Roy White with maybe more power eventually but he needs to play regularly. Skip the Ichiro and Wells tour. If Granderson is not resigned than Almonte should get the regular spot.

    • Darren says:

      Please tell me you didn’t just compare a fringe-y fourth outfielder like Zoilo Almonte with Roy White, one of the all time leading Yankees in terms of longevity who played for 15 productive years, was an excellent defender, had a career OBP .360 and was a big part in winning World Series.

      I know Roy White is one of the most underrated Yankees, but comparing him with Zoilo Almonte is taking it a little too far, sir.

      • LarryM Fl says:

        You know I understand your comparison issue but if the kid could get to play. He may turn out like Roy. Kids have to get a chance to play. I watched Roy all those years. He was an excellent defender, could run the bases, so-so arm, had about 160 Hr’s and hit about .270. Why couldn’t Almonte be in that league without the average. To call the kid a fringy 4th OF after a small sample is a bit of a rush assessment.

        The kid just reminds of Roy!

  12. Bo Knows says:

    You’re right most guys aren’t going to make lateral moves but there’s plenty of talented blood in other organizations that deserve promotions. Most Gms are pretty good with one another and don’t have issue vouching for or allowing a team to talk to one of their underlings if it’s a promotional move

    • Farewell Mo says:

      This.

      They need to revamp their approach because everything else is futile without building a strong pipeline from the farm.

      Free agency isn’t cost effective and the FA market sucks since everyone is signing their young talent long term.

  13. I'm a looser baby so why don't you kill me? says:

    All of you who love to grouse about process as distinct from outcome should outright hate the fact that he dogs it running out ground balls (not to mention preening at the plate watching triples become doubles, doubles become singles or worse…outs). The fact that you post his triple slash and absolve him of his shortcomings is hypocritical. In many ways he is historically great. In others he is an embarrassment.

    I would not want my franchise player, future face of the franchise, possibly captain, etc etc etc set such a lowly example.

  14. Tom says:

    Eduardo Nunez for his career: -1.9f WRAR
    Eduardo Nunez last year: -1.4 fWAR

    Now defensive metrics aren’t perfect but unless they are just absurdly bad Eduardo Nunez is below replacement level both last year and in his career.

    Had he been an offseason pickup or a waiver wire sign, I’d imagine there would be little doubt that he has no business being on a roster if you are planning to be competitive. But because he is home grown, some people around here and people in the organization for some reason seem to think he can be a utility guy, despite all evidence to the contrary. That they would consider him when you have a position where the backup infielder may see substantial playing time just seems like a really bad plan (Stewart, Ichiro level of planning badness)

    If he has an option left (not sure), stash him in AAA for depth, but he has no business being on an MLB roster opening day.

  15. ClusterDuck says:

    I was surprised to see it but Nunez did look pretty good at 3B down the stretch.

  16. Fin says:

    Next year, will be their first under .500 in what 19yrs? I thought it would happen this year, but they managed to stay above. It only gets worse in 14. All these bad contracts will still be bad, and now there is no one left to pitch. For a very good front office, I think it would take a little while to turn this around. However, with no help coming from the minors next year and a front office that committed 2 yrs to Wells and Ichiro, this could take a while.

  17. bkight13 says:

    Tex, Cano, Ryan, Jeter
    Soriano, Gardner, Granderson
    McCann
    Abreu=106m

    CC, FA, Nova, Pineda, Phelps
    Roberson, Kelly, Logan, Betances, 3 RPs=50m

    Ichiro, Nunez, Almonte, Cervelli= 9m =165m

    If 189 Plan is in effect, this could work. Maybe still upgrade SS and SP a little.

  18. emac2 says:

    Fun column.

    1. I think you have to go outside at this point and I think you do raid the best systems for the best people and you give them whatever money and title it takes to make it happen. Maybe you even trade a player or give the other team some cash make it happen. The bottom line is that if you want to be the best you have to find the best people. If you limit your hiring to the few hundred people you know (staying within the organization) you are guaranteed to fail on a simply mathematical basis. It isn’t possible that the best 1,000 people for the job will happen to be working for you already.

    2. Jobs should be available for anyone who earns it in spring training. Good players do come out of A ball sometimes and we have to stop making players work to a timeline. Do the job and it’s yours until we have a better option.

    3. Nunez is an asset and while I wouldn’t want to count on him at any position I would love to give him a chance to earn a job. I think he might be most valuable as a trade chip but I wouldn’t move him until we have better options at SS and 3B.

    4. I can’t see paying what he’ll get from the Mets and being happy with the deal. He just has more value to the Mets. The Yankees need to look at a window of two years rebuilding before a return to regular contention. Cano at 25+ million is a great player but if he isn’t there you have 25 million dollars to spend improving the team in addition to anything the team would have done this winter anyway. You really can’t say for sure that the team is even worse in year one.

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