Open Thread: 3/19 Camp Notes

Tanaka ranks second among Baseball America's top rookies for 2014
Dream of a young, power rotation is becoming a reality for 2014 and beyond
(Presswire)
(Presswire)

In a rare non-televised Spring Training game, the Yankees beat the Braves by the score of 7-0 this afternoon. Ivan Nova was dynamite, allowing just two hits and no walks in 6.1 innings. He struck out five and got seven outs on the ground compared to three in the air. That’s Nova at his best. Danny Burawa, Shane Greene, Cesar Cabral, and Dellin Betances got two outs apiece to close out the game.

Carlos Beltran was the star at the plate, going 3-for-4 and driving in a pair of runs. Brett Gardner went 0-for-1 with three walks and both Alfonso Soriano and Brian Roberts had a single. Derek Jeter‘s rough spring continued with an 0-for-4. He surely came to camp rusty after missing just about all of last season, and he has another eleven days to get ready for Opening Day. The Yankees drew eleven walks as a team while striking out only eight times. No television means no video highlights, but here’s the box score and the rest from camp.

  • Jeter said his twice-fractured ankle feels great and has been a non-factor in camp. He has been moving well all spring. “I haven’t worried about that for a while. I haven’t worried since I got here,” he said. “If you’re comparing the two years, it’s completely different. Just walking around last year was a struggle. This year, I haven’t thought about it at all.” [Dan Martin]
  • Jacoby Ellsbury (calf) feels “substantially better” and did some running and outfield work today. He still is unlikely to play before Friday. Brendan Ryan (oblique) and Scott Sizemore (calf) are both expected to play tomorrow. Russ Canzler, who recently missed time with a hip problem, now has a back issue and was scratched from today’s lineup. [Andrew Marchand, Jose Castillo]
  • Vidal Nuno and Adam Warren will pitch in relief Friday and Saturday, respectively. Sure seems like they’ve been ruled out as fifth starter candidates. Warren and Hiroki Kuroda threw their scheduled bullpen sessions when Preston Claiborne pitched in a minor league game. [Chad Jennings]
  • Also from Jennings: Alfonso Soriano is not longer taking ground balls at first base. They tried it and will now they’ll focus on more important stuff.

This is your open thread for the evening. MLB Network will show the Cubs and Rockies live later tonight, plus both the Knicks and Nets are playing. Talk about Nova, the games, or anything else right here.

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Tanaka ranks second among Baseball America's top rookies for 2014
Dream of a young, power rotation is becoming a reality for 2014 and beyond
  • TWTR

    I found this at Nate Silver’s new FiveThirtyEight blog:

    What to Expect From Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospects

    I gathered data on Baseball America’s historical Top 100 lists back to 1990 and tracked how many wins above replacement (WAR) each player generated over the seven seasons after each list was released. (A team has control of its players for the first six years of their careers, according to service time, but not every prospect’s clock starts ticking the same year he’s ranked by Baseball America.)

    • vicki

      (yay, nate silver. i do check in on grantland for sports features but their pop culture stuff grates. fivethirtyeight is so much smarter, without sacrificing wit.)

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I’m so glad to have FiveThirtyEight back. Daily reading for me.

      Thanks for sharing.

    • Cheval Anonyme

      One of the problems with aggregating WAR across prospects is that a negative lifetime WAR (player made the majors, but wan’t very good at that level) can be a better outcome than 0 lifetime WAR (player’s career died in the minors). But simply aggregating and averaging WAR penalizes the better outcome.

      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        Why I love this site, part 837,427.

        • Cheval Anonyme

          LOL. I actually had tried this approach one day, before this; and “proved”, by adding WAR, that the Yankees were better drafters than three quarters of the other teams. Then I realized the flaw in the methodology.

          • Can0fer29

            So you’re telling me that it’s better to have 10 rookies accumulate a -6 WAR than it is for those 10 players to stay in the minor leagues?

            Sorry, but Negative WAR is always worse than a 0 WAR.

            • vicki

              as mike has pointed out before, 0 WAR isn’t the same thing as no WAR.

              • Can0fer29

                Team A has 10 prospects. None of the ever make the MLB and produce no WAR.

                Team B has 10 prospects. All of them make it to the MLB and combine for -3.2 WAR.

                Team C has 10 prospects. All of them make it to the MLB and combine for 0 WAR.

                SO what team was more successful with their prospects?

                Team B loses everytime. Negative is always going to be worse than 0 (or no WAR)

                Team C comes in second. Zero WAR means nothing lost, but also nothing gained.

                Team A wins. They must have had better options if they never called up any of their prospects.

                • Winter

                  Or team A is getting -5 WAR from their players but have no in-house replacements because their 10 prospects flopped.

            • ALZ

              0 WAR is just a theoretical baseline. It isn’t the worst you can do. If you were negative that doesn’t mean you were worse than the player with no innings.

      • TWTR

        What would you replace it with?

  • JGYank

    Great performance by Nova against a Braves lineup with plenty of regulars. Spring training has gone great so far. Only thing left is for CC to gain velocity.

    • mustang

      MartinRanger says:
      March 16, 2014 at 5:45 pm
      The thing about Sabathia this spring is that 2 of 3 outings he’s been outstanding despite a subpar fastball. And that indicates that he’s making strides towards correcting what did him in last year, which was terrible location within the strike zone. 88 or 91, you can’t get away with pitches in the meaty part of the plate. If Sabathia can locate his pitches and make adjustments, he can be better than last year regardless of his velocity…….

      • mustang

        LOCATION!!!!

        • JGYank

          Hmmm…. I wonder if you think location is important. LOL

          I agree it will be very important for him to locate and become more of a finesse guy but adding some velocity wouldn’t hurt at all. It he’s around 90 I think he can be a pretty good starter. Everything else has gone well.

          • mustang

            Agree and your location is dead on here.
            ;)

    • Kiko Jones

      Such a fan of that kid. And if Pineda rises to the occasion, that could be a scary back end of the rotation. Fingers crossed.

  • vicki

    did anybody else listen to the braves radio broadcast? for the first couple innings i was convinced they were stoned; they grew on me though, in a john & suzyn way.

    • TWTR

      We can only wish that John and Suzyn are actually buzzed.

      • vicki

        dotage is an altered state, it seems.

        • TWTR

          Now you put it that way, something to look forward to, I guess. ;)

    • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks)

      I listened. They grew on me to … like fungus.

      • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks)

        *too*

    • Chip Rodriguez

      Listened to them for a bit. I will not complain about John as much after this.

    • Can0fer29

      When I listened there were two people in the booth, but only one ever talked.

      And often it was the filler talk we all love. “And he’s got a grey number 39 on the back of his jersey”, or talking about stupid made up crap, and rambling on about it for 5 minutes. “Venditte had surgery on both arms, Tommy on the Left, and John on the right.”

      • Yankee$ (Formerly Pseudoyanks)

        The obsession with the name Adonis bothered me.

        • Can0fer29

          What about Yangervis?

          He “studied the roster”, and said it about 75 times (randomly throughout the game), but never once pronounced it correctly.

  • Kenny

    May they broadcast for the Yanks for many more years!

  • mustang

    I know its silly and I’m going to end up eating my words, but I’m officially worried about Jeter. With that said he will probably go 4 for 4 on opening day because he is Derek Jeter.

    • Wheels

      Saw an interview with him yesterday, said he always hits like shit in the spring, and his goal is to stop hitting the ball on the ground by the start of the season. Not like he’s gonna tell you that he’s worried about it, but I have faith in him.

      • dkidd

        i just can’t picture jeter having a lousy final season

        i expect him to ops around .780 and retire with 3,500 hits

      • mustang

        Actually its funny that he talked about having shitty springs. I read somewhere that in his first year after replacing Tony Fernandez he had a shit spring some in the FO wanted to trade for a SS Torre argued for Jeter the rest is history. Of course that was at 22 not 39, but I agree with you on the faith part.

      • Mr. Roth

        Same here. Jeter’s never given me a reason to doubt his ability to put up solid offensive numbers. He’ll figure out a way to get close to 200 hits this year.

        • whozat

          What about the recent seasons during which he put up less-than solid numbers, losing last season to a fractured ankle, and trying to rebound from that lost season at age 40 while playing one of the most demanding positions on the diamond?

          It’s not a sin to admit that there are reasons to doubt. You can doubt and still be happy if he exceeds your expectations.

          • Mr. Roth

            I’m sorry, but I’m not going to hold last season against Jeter. He tried like hell to be able to get on the field and just couldn’t get his ankle healthy enough.

            “What about the recent seasons during which he put up less-than solid numbers”

            Which seasons are you referring to?

            • whozat

              That you phrase it as holding something against Jeter really crystallizes my last point. No one is holding anything against anyone, that’s far too emotional a way to think about it. It’s simply a fact that a 39 year old player spent a year away from the game because he broke his ankle — twice. To act like there’s no chance that this has a physical impact on his ability to play at the MLB level every day for 6 months is simply unreasonable.

              2010 was a poor offensive year (93 wRC+), and 2011 was a mediocre year (104 wRC+).

              My point is not that Derek Jeter is certain to be awful. He may put up a year like he did in 2012, and that’d be amazing and wonderful. My point is that there are, in fact, reasons to doubt, and that it’s far from absurd to be cautious in one’s optimism.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I expect a surprising final act from him. His goal right now is to feel ready for the regular season, not impress us with his nightly line.

    • forensic

      I’m extremely worried about him, and I’m not calmed just because he’s ‘Derek Jeter’. Just being ‘Derek Jeter’ didn’t help him last year, or the first half of 2011, or 2010. I sure hope he figures something out, though, because I don’t see them having the guts to move him down in the lineup (at least not until at least after the ASB) and he’s going to be really aggravating if he’s hitting anything like this in the very important #2 spot in the lineup.

      • Darren

        Have a little faith, dawg. It’s Derek fuckin Jeter.

        • Mr. Roth

          A-fuckin’-men

      • Mr. Roth

        Being Derek Jeter did, however, help him bring his bad first half numbers in 2011 up to a .297/.355/.388 line and a 104 wRC+.

        Being Derek Jeter did, however, help him make his 2010 triple slash of .270/.340/.370 be considered a POOR year.

        • forensic

          Yup, and he did those things because he’s in the group of the best hitters in baseball history. That’s also the reason why he could still put up a nice year. But, those past things weren’t at age 40 off of basically a full season off with serious leg injuries.

  • Jorge Steinbrenner

    I have to say that, going back and reading this morning’s rotation comment section, I haven’t laughed that much at a comment thread here in years.

    • Alkaline

      Reading through that at the end of the work day was a great way to cap a solid day of work.

      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        He’s actually back for more on that thread.

        • Cool Lester Smooth

          You’re welcome.

          • Alkaline

            Ah, more fun reading for tomorrow. Alas, I dare not post during work.

          • Jim Is A (Bored) Peckerhead

            That guy has issues.

  • Alkaline

    This is for emac2 because I thoroughly was entertained by that rotation thread.

    I get what you were saying, hypothetically speaking, by saying matching up a bad CC against another team’s 3 allows him to win. Your logic is in a vacuum and assumes that 1. every team’s rotations will feature pitchers 1-5 with their ERA increasing as you go through (which may or may not be the case for a given team) and 2. that each of those pitchers will pitch to their ERA, but it doesn’t work that way. It’s an average, meaning some days they will pitch to a 2 ERA, other days a 4 ERA.

    Even if you say your logic plays the percentage, the games ares actually played for a reason. You can’t just say, “oh on paper, pitcher x has a 3 ERA and if he goes against pitcher Y, who has a 3.5, we’ll win!” Not to mention the reasons Mike, Tilapia, Peckerhead, etc. said.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      1. It’s sad that Tilapia died in that Port-a-Potty accident.

      2. That troll got fed aplenty already this morning.

      3. Other than seemingly sitting through CC vs. Verlander about fifty-two times a season, what percentage of the time does the person who started on Opening Day pitch against another starter who drew the same assignment throughout the season?

      4. Agreed on everything else.

      • mustang

        Seriously where is Tilapia? Did he change is name? Banned? or Just stop commenting?

        • Preston

          Like Fredo before hime, Robinson just broke his heart.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner

            I heard he drowned in a mother’s basement accident.

            *taps on Mustang’s shoulder*

            • Cheval Anonyme

              That actually happened to my cousin, you insensitive cretin.

              • Jorge Steinbrenner

                As someone who survived drowning in his mother’s basement and being reborn as Jorge Steinbrenner, I very much feel your pain. I am very sorry.

                Always install a safe room in your mother’s basement.

                • The Great Gonzo

                  That Tilapia guy was kind of a dick…

                  Oh, wait…

        • I’m One

          He’s right there above you.

          I read a post on pitching match ups a while back, possibly on The Yankee Analysts. If I remember correctly, a team’s #2 starter matches up against another team’s #1 starter more often than #1’s face each other over the course of a season. Maybe I’ll get motivated and look it up. Or not.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner

            As the dead often are…

            • I’m One

              Others might say they are below us, for a variety of reasons, at least one being physical.

          • I’m One

            Couldn’t find the exact post I was thinking about, but here’s a link to a similar post:

            http://www.hardballtimes.com/o.....abilities/

            • Jorge Steinbrenner

              Math faaaaaaaail.

              • The Great Gonzo

                lolz

        • Tommy

          Idiot fool is sadly still here. I mean are you kidding me, that loser has absolutely NO LIFE outside of this place. Sad really…

      • http://www.timeanddate.com/countdown/generic?p0=179&iso=20140401T19&year=2014&month=4&day=1&hour=19&min=0&sec=0&msg=Opening%20Day! Get Phelps Up

        Last season CC faced an opening day starter 7 other times (Lester twice, Felix, Verlander, Weaver, Shields and Price). The Yankees won 4 of those 7 games.

        • http://www.timeanddate.com/countdown/generic?p0=179&iso=20140401T19&year=2014&month=4&day=1&hour=19&min=0&sec=0&msg=Opening%20Day! Get Phelps Up

          8 times for Hirok. Yankees were 4-4.

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          You’re good.

          So the Yankees won more than 50% of the games in which 2013 suck-ass CC pitched against another Opening Day starter, which only occurred SEVEN times throughout the season.

          I’ll take that.

        • Alkaline

          Nice!

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          Also, I very much commend you on the scrollover on your screen name. It’s the little details with this guy.

  • Farewell Mo

    Per Wally Matthews, Kelly Johnson is gonna be the everyday 3rd baseman and not really in a platoon with Nunez.

    Can’t say I’m disappointed to see old Scissorhands glued to the bench.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      Wally Mac? That’s probably great news……FOR SCOTT SIZEMORE!

      • Triumph the Insult Comic

        Wally Mac? That’s probably great news……FOR SCOTT SIZEMORE TO POOP ON!

    • forensic

      I’m actually still a fan of Nunez, but I don’t have a problem with starting the season off this way. Johnson certainly has his warts (that phrase is gonna be trouble) offensively, but I’ll take my chances with him mostly everyday to start the season. If he really gets nothing done against lefties, then give Nunez a shot to get in there more often and see what he does vs. lefties.

    • lightSABR

      Kelly Johnson’s career RHP/LHP split is pretty minimal (103 wRC+ / 105 wRC+, actually hitting lefties slightly better than righties). Last year the split was bigger than that, but still not very big.

      So, yeah. Not an obvious platoon candidate. Nunez is someone you’d be more likely to platoon, but Johnson outhits him against either lefties or righties, so why bother?

    • Triumph the Insult Comic

      Nunez will get his ABs when Johnson has to fill in for an injured Roberts or Teix, and against Lester and Price.

  • OjoGrande

    I swear when Nova is good he’s the best starting pitcher the Yankees have developed since Pettite.

    I know that’s not saying much, but I don’t even think it’s close. Way way better than Hughes at his best.

    • Mr. Roth

      Maybe, but it’d be a totally different story if Joba was allowed to be a starter…

      • lightSABR

        Or Betances! I’m sure he’d have pitched two perfect games this spring training if the Yankees would have just given him another chance. ;)

    • Fin

      I think hes got a ways to go before he can be considered as good as chin ming wong, let alone better.

  • nycsportzfan

    I know i’m beating a dead horse, but i’m gonna keep using the word I kept saying late in the offseason when the team took form, and that is “underrated”. I’ve said this team is underrated many times, and guaranteed postseason for the yanks, and I think soon enough, that will be the thought of just about everyone. This teams gonna roll. Trust that. A amazing offseason when we all ready had a few high upside guys in Beatances and Pineda ready to help, and a ever improving Nova in the rotation, and the fact we fought for a postseason spot without K.Johnson, Beltran, McCann, Cervelli(suspension), Grandy(mostly hurt), Tex(mostly hurt), Jeter(mostly hurt), and a off yr for the hefty lefty. This teams gonna be really good.

  • BFDeal

    Aroldis Chapman hit in the face by a line drive. Hauled off on a backboard. Really hate seeing this happen to pitchers.

    • TWTR

      Reportedly it is “just” a laceration and contusion, and he never lost consciousness.

      • BFDeal

        I just saw that report. Hoping that’s all it is.

    • Yankeefan91

      that was awful best video i found on youtube my prayers go out to Chapman

      http://youtu.be/9H2RpDnWrNc

  • Preston

    You know what I like about today’s shenanigan’s. We aren’t arguing about how bad this team is. We’re arguing about stupid bullshit like batting order and pitcher rotation. If that’s all the crazy negative haters can talk about at this point then the Yankees are doing pretty good.

    • I’m One

      Just wait till opening day when CC starts and McCann is catching (proving that Girardi isn’t going for the win). :-)

  • Farewell Mo

    Nice job by Arod not paying his $3 million in legal fees which could lead to his lawyers disclosing the specific issues they discussed with him.

    His ability to alienate people is just uncanny.