Yankees acquire Chris Capuano from Rockies

Yanks wrap up series with 4-2 win over Rangers
Thursday Night Open Thread
(Jim Rogash/Getty)
(Jim Rogash/Getty)

The Yankees have acquired left-hander Chris Capuano from the Rockies for cash considerations, the team announced. Brian Cashman has been talking about making incremental upgrades in recent weeks and this move qualifies as an incremental upgrade over the Chris Lerouxes and Jeff Franci of the pitching world.

Capuano, 35, had a 4.55 ERA (4.06 FIP) in 31.2 relief innings for the Red Sox before being released earlier this year. He hooked on with Colorado and had a 2.79 ERA (~3.43 FIP) in four starts and 19.1 minor league innings split between Double-A and Triple-A. Lefties knocked Capuano around pretty well (.384 wOBA) during his time with Boston but he has dominated them in recent years (.260 wOBA from 2012-13).

I’m not sure if Capuano, who is not on the 40-man roster, will report to Triple-A or join the big league team. With eight relievers and Mark Teixeira banged up, some roster shuffling is in order. Leroux and Francis could both be on the way out with Capuano and a position player joining the team. We’ll find out soon enough. The Yankees are incrementally upgrading to glory.

Yanks wrap up series with 4-2 win over Rangers
Thursday Night Open Thread
  • http://www.penuel-law.com/ Cuso

    Yikes. I guess possible long man, spot starter emergency? But yikes. He looked cooked in Boston.

    • Tom K

      They may see him as nothing more than a small upgrade over Jeff Francis. Or they may try to park him in Scranton. Nothing for anyone to really get worked up about…unless they name him the #5 starter or something…

      • http://www.penuel-law.com/ Cuso

        I’m guessing the former rather than the latter. And I suppose he is an incremental upgrade over Francis. But that looks to be a minuscule increment. In fact, it may be excrement.


      • RetroRob

        Are we sure he’s not better than the current #5 starter?

        Overall, just another arm who might help on some level, or be jettisoned if not, as Francis maybe shortly.

        RABers have a tendency to overreact to these moves despite seeing them all the time.

  • Yankeefan91

    hopefully he replaces Huff.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense

      I’d guess the chances of that are very low.
      Huff has pitched semi-decently for the Yankees, and he isn’t the low man on the totem-pole right now.

    • http://www.penuel-law.com/ Cuso

      Huff is awful. But he hasn’t actually been THAT awful. Capuano may be an upgrade in theory, but not sure if he actually is in practice.

  • Yankee$

    Plus, breathing should be much easier in the Bronx than in the Rockies.

  • W.B. Mason Williams

    Ladies and gentleman, your 2014 Chad Gaudin….

    I only half-hope I’m kidding.

    • vin

      I can’t wait until the debate over whether or not Capuano should start game 4 of the World Series, or if Girardi should stick with the 3 man rotation.

  • TheRealGreg

    He had two great months for the Red Sox, then pitched to a 22.50 ERA in 5 June games.

    Unfortunately for Thornton haters, lefties are 19-57 against him for a .333 batting average.

  • Yankee$

    You think Hal called Joe and said “I just won you the pennant” the way his Dad did when he acquired Steve Trout ??

    • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense


    • All praise be to Mo

      Hal can make that call if he picks up Steve’s adopted son, Mike Trout.

  • TC

    Keep incrementally upgrading that last guy in the bullpen while you continue to trot out replacement level players for 1/3 of the lineup.

    • TheRealGreg

      You do know that the trade deadline isn’t for another week, right?

      And that they already acquired a 3rd baseman this week?

      • TC

        You do know that the answers to neither of those questions are relevant to the point I am making, right?

        • TheRealGreg

          Uh yeah they are. More moves are coming. Shut your trap and wait. They’ve won 6 of 7 with a crappy lineup.

          • TC

            Trades are not the only options available to them. They’ve been going all year with a dreadful offense while stubbornly continuing to play useless players(not talking about 3b). I’m thrilled they are on this hot streak. Though taking 3/4 at home against the worst team in the league should have been expected, not seen as an accomplishment. Winning over a small sample size despite your flaws doesn’t mean they no longer exist.

            • TheRealGreg

              I did use a SSS. However, since July 2nd, they’ve gone 12-6. Bit more meatier.

              • TC

                So they were 6-5 before they went on this death to opposing pitchers tear? Very beefy indeed.

                • TheRealGreg

                  Fair enough. I’m not saying stop. There is work to be done with this lineup. But it’s coming. Especially if Tex goes on the DL.

                  • TC

                    I don’t think this is their coup de grace, and I didn’t mean it to sound like that. Just letting off some steam.

          • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense

            Defending Cashman???

            Must be an impostor.

            • TC

              I’m not even a Cashman hater. I’ve been happy with him his entire tenure. I’ve been calling for the incremental improvements well over a month now, and think they can have major significance with where they are on the win curve. It’s just irritating to see the constant changing of the least important part of the roster, while maintaining the status quo with multiple everyday players who by definition should be easily replaceable.

          • mustang

            Yes they still have a bad line-up
            Yes they won 6 out 7 with that bad line-up largely because they play even worse teams.
            Yes there is a week left to the deadline and Cashman been on fire.
            Yes you should Shut your trap and wait.

            See everyone right.

            • TC

              I will wait, but I will not shut my trap. Well, technically, my trap is shut, but my fingers are fidgety, and will remain so until I am placated!!

    • Get Phelps Up

      Comments like this may be my favorite part about these kinds of moves.

      • mustang

        Yep because they are not in a wild card spot and 2.5 games out…. oh! wait minute.

  • Ghost of Aaron Small

    I only support this move if he replaces the dreadful Matt Thornton.

    btw, why another Red Sox cast off???

    • mustang


      I hate Matt Thornton so much I change the channel when he pitches.

      • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense

        Guarantee Capuano has no effect on Thornton’s spot on the roster.

        • TheRealGreg

          Capuano has been worse against lefties this year than Thornton. Thornton ain’t going anywhere

      • mustang

        Ok then I will keep changing the channel.

  • Peter Lacock

    Capuano is another attempt at a small incremental upgrade. He replaces Bruce Billings.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting & Defense

      Bruce Billings isn’t on the roster.

      • edb

        Chris Leroux is Bruce Billings. They just change the jersey number to fool you.

      • Peter Lacock

        Exactly, Billings was DFA yesterday. Capuano takes his place. Leroux is still around.

  • CashmanNinja

    They got him for cash. That’s about the lowest trade risk there is. It’s literally impossible to fail that trade because they didn’t give up any player at all…not even some low level career minor leaguer. Anything good that Capuano provides is absolute gold since we gave up nothing to get him. And if he sucks then he’s an easy dump. I’m not expecting him to be this year’s version of Chad Gaudin or Shawn Chacon, but I think he’ll be better than guys like Huff and Thornton.

  • Jorge Steinbrenner

    Depth happens in all sorts of ways. Just cash. Doesn’t necessarily even need a 40-man spot and can go to AAA for now. Will fall off the radar quickly if not needed.

    Not much to see, but I like the little I see.

  • ropeadope

    Chase Capuano

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      It’s the gyroball of first names.

    • FIPster Doofus

      Chase Capuanoley.

  • Lehman College Rocks !!

    this worries me:

    “the 6-foot, 3-inch, Springfield, Mass., native”

    I am sure he is a big sox fan

    he might want to sabotage the yanks to help the sox !!!!

    • MB923

      Like Red Sox fans Phil Hughes and Tanyon Sturtze?

      • All praise be to Mo

        Didn’t Phil Hughes sabotage us for the past few years?

  • Mike

    Okay, I’m at a loss on this one. The Yankees just acquired a generic lefty two weeks ago. Why do they need another one?

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I didn’t know they were just slotted for one pitcher who meets a certain profile.

      He’s depth. He’s not on the 40-man. He has solid MLB experience. It’s a small move that may mean nothing, or may come in handy.

  • Robert

    If this is for the last man in the bullpen upgrade why not just call up Venditte, you get a lefty,a righty and a 26 year old who will bring energy to the club.Not a washed up 35 yr old!!!

    • edb

      Saving the sideshow just in case we fall out of the race.

  • Chip Rodriguez

    If he’s good, excellent.

    If not, there’s the new mop up/innings eater guy, as Francis actually looked OK against the Rangers the other night, and Huff’s been pretty deecnt.

  • Bill

    There are seven days left before the trade deadline. If there are not two legitimate bats on their way to the Bronx within that time frame, then Brian Cashman should be run out of Yankee Stadium on a rail. This team would be five or more games in front of the pack with even an average American League offense. God knows how far in front they’d be with the offense of even two years ago. They’ve got pitching. They need bats. Now.

    • http://Riveravenueblues Marty l

      Enough already. We get that Cash is a Georgetown grad. Good for him. But stop with the incrementally please,
      I m not bothering to check dictionary.com but to me, in the circumstances, it means that he is improving the team at such a small rate that it is almost immeasurable. Who s next?

      • hornblower

        Cashman went Catholic University not Georgetown. Same city different school.

        • D23

          Yep, was a pretty solid player there too.

  • Friendly Door-to-door Volcano Insurance Salesman

    My linguistics professor passed on some pet peeves to me after I took his course so I’m sorry but I have to point out as a public service announcement.

    It should be Francises, like syllabuses, instead of Francii. Pluralization using a second i is restricted to words of certain source. (Latin?) Words like syllabus and such do not pluralize under that rule.

    • Prof. Joe

      Beg to differ: in my field… College professor… we use the latinate i to pluralize a number of Latin- source words, like syllabii Stadii and alumni. But then, I am biased toward Latin in any case.

      • W.B. Mason Williams

        Ave Proctor ;)

  • CashManCash

    How do cash considerations differ from cash?

    • tom

      Cash consideration is to cover a partial salary of traded player.

      Cash means to give away a real $$$

      I guess.

      Anyways, Capuano should report to Scranton. Otherwise, it is a dumb trade.

      • Old Man Time

        Getting what could be an upgrade over the likes of Billings and Leroux (and various other filler) is far from dumb.

  • Prof. Joe

    Nothing to do with his professional baseball career, but what has always impressed me about Capuano is that he is a Phi Beta Kappa with an economics degree from Duke. Maybe a front office career for him someday soon?