Saturday Links: Trade Talks, Draft Picking Trading, Forbes

A-Rod's late home run gives Yanks 4-3 win over Mariners, Seager
Game 90: Big Mike vs. Mariners
Irrelevant photo is irrelevant. (Presswire)
Irrelevant photo is irrelevant. (Presswire)

The Yankees and Angels Mariners continue their weekend series a little later today, so, until then, here are some links to help you pass the time.

Yankees already engaged in trade talks

This is no surprise, but assistant GM Billy Eppler confirmed the Yankees are already having trade conversations with other teams during a recent radio interview. The trade deadline is two weeks from yesterday. Here’s what Eppler said, via Brendan Kuty:

“I know (Brian Cashman) has been having conversations with clubs, will continue to have conversations with clubs. We kind of check in. I’ll check in with some counterparts and our scouts out in the field will have some conversations here and there and just kind of keep their ears open. Our antennas are up. There will be some conversations. And Cashman will have those conversations regarding what we might be able to do. He’ll take those to ownership. But often times the seller is the one with the leverage and it’s generally a seller’s market with an extra wildcard added in. There’s less players. Less clubs that are out there. So that shrinks your player pool and raises the acquisition costs of guys. And a lot of time the opportunity just doesn’t present itself.”

The team’s needs leading into the trade deadline are pretty obvious: pitching depth and a second baseman, preferably. I’m glad they’re giving Rob Refsnyder a chance right now, but I don’t feel too comfortable rolling with him as the everyday second baseman in a pennant race. Another right-handed bat for the bench would make sense too. Given their position in the standings and the fact the Yankees haven’t been to the postseason since 2013, I expect them to be aggressive at the deadline. The other four AL East teams are begging New York to run away with the division.

Trading draft picks will be discussed for next CBA

Over the All-Star break, commissioner Rob Manfred told Eric Fisher he would like teams to have flexibility by allowing them to trade draft picks. He expects that to be part of talks during the next round of Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations following the 2016 season. Right now only Competitive Balance Lottery picks can be traded. Only small market and low payroll teams get those.

I’m curious to see how trading picks would work. They’d have to limit it to the first round or something like that, right? Maybe the first three rounds? If teams were allowed to trade every pick, I’d ask for a 30-something rounder in every trade. Why not? Free lottery ticket. The Competitive Balance Lottery picks that have been traded the last few years have been traded for small-ish returns — relievers, mid-range prospects, etc. I’m curious to see how, say, a top five pick would be valued in a trade.

Yankees rank as second most valuable franchise in sports

According to the latest Forbes rankings, the Yankees are currently the second most valuable sports franchise in the world at $3.2 billion. Only Real Madrid ($3.26 billion) is worth more, though the Dallas Cowboys are tied with the Yankees are $3.2 billion. Barcelona ($3.16 billion) and Manchester United ($3.1 billion) round out the top five. The Dodgers rank second overall at $2.4 billion and are the second most valuable baseball franchise. Here’s the blurb from Kurt Badenhausen:

The Yankees lead a group of 12 MLB teams, up from six last year, in the top 50. Credit the massive influx of TV money, both nationally and locally, for soaring baseball values. The Yankees were one of the first teams to recognize the importance of TV with their launch of the YES Network in 2002. It has been the most-watched regional sports network in 11 of the past 12 years. Yankee Global Enterprises retains 20% of the RSN with Fox owning 80% after upping their stake in 2014.

The value of the Yankees is up 28%, and the team moved up two spots to tie for second place. The 27-time world champions missed the postseason for the second consecutive season in 2014 and only the third time since 1994, but the Bronx Bombers still finished tops in the American League in attendance, averaging 42,520 fans per game. The Yankees generated $676 million in revenue before deducting for $90 million in revenue-sharing payments and $78 million in bond payments that go towards stadium debt.

The Yankees don’t have a Mariano Rivera or Derek Jeter retirement tour to lean on for a late-season attendance bump this year, but they are absolutely in contention, so that will help. There’s still an entire second half to go right now, but returning to the postseason is not a pipe dream, it’s a legitimate possibility. That will only improve the franchise’s value. The Yankees are a money-making machine. I truly believe the Steinbrenners will not sell the team, but, if they did, could they get $5 billion?

A-Rod's late home run gives Yanks 4-3 win over Mariners, Seager
Game 90: Big Mike vs. Mariners
  • MTU

    Great point about opportunity knocking for the first time in a while.
    Some smart acquisitions and we’re off and running.

    • Madrugador

      The Yanks are in the running now and whether they stay there or not will depend both on what they and the rest of the teams in the AL East do at the trade deadline.
      In order to make money, Hal needs to have good attendance through the end of the regular season. He does that by being competitive up until the very end. How much more does he earn if the team goes to the post season? Does he make enough profit with a team that is competitive until the end of the regular season but doesn’t go to the playoffs?
      Honestly, I don’t know but if he only needs to compete in the regular season to meet his financial goals, he may not be that interested in improving all that much at the trade deadline.

  • Austinmac

    Ref is playing today.

    • MTU

      They want to see what they have and/or showcase him.
      The TD looms.

      • Austinmac

        Yep.

  • Cathy Forman

    Um…playing Mariners not the Angels and trade deadline is TWO weeks from yesterday.

    Rough night? ;)

  • Mike Ehrmantrout

    Wrong west coast team in that opening paragraph. I’ve pretty much come to grips that the Yanks are gonna trade Refs for a rental before the break.

  • http://riveraveblues.com/ Mick

    Meredith Marakovits ?@M_Marakovits
    Ellsbury 8, Gardner 7, Rodriguez Dh, teixeira 3, McCann 2, Headley 5, jones 9, gregorious 6, refsnyder 4, Pineda 1

  • ohioyankee

    Looks like Mitchell is being sent down, I have no clue why they would do that. He has been pretty good

    • http://riveraveblues.com/ Mick

      Pinder up. Prolly gone for Beltran tomorrow. 6 man pen on the way.
      Mitchell needs the work in case CC goes down.

    • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

      Because he’s a starter masquerading as a relief pitcher at a time when they’re dangerously thin with SP replacement level pitching?

      • Ewing33

        I like how a period would have worked just fine, but the question mark just changes the whole tone of the comment.

        • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

          I originally tried to use the interobang but wasn’t sure if the format would show up on other users browsers.

          • Ewing33

            I have no idea what an interbang is ha

            • https://www.flickr.com/photos/roadgeek/ Roadgeek Adam

              It’s an interrobang.

    • Ewing33

      Agreed with Memory Bread, but also a possibility he will be traded and teams will want a guy to put right into their rotation and not have to stretch him out.

    • Gregory Eckes

      Stretch him out back to a starter.

  • hansdee

    Generally don’t do this. Predict no trade of any consequence by Yankees. I truly believe they won’t be going that route. I strongly hope that is the case.

    • cashmoney

      my assumption is that any trades involving an impact player would require a package involving Sev, Judge or Bird, I just don’t see it. I like to keep those as they are almost knocking on the door and with what I think legit talents. But, who knows, Cashman might surprise all of us. I see maybe moves to add depth, that’s about it.

      • MTU

        No prospect is untouchable in the right deal.

      • hansdee

        The deadline acquisitions going back a long way, outside of Dave Justice, have all pretty much netted very little improvement. I want to believe the front office realizes that and will act accordingly going forward.

  • MTU

    Kazmir and Zobrist for ?

    • Preston

      MTPS

      Kazmir and Zobrist for Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird and Bryan Mitchell.
      Leake and Phillips for Bryan Mitchell, Ramon Flores and Tyler Wade.
      Latos and Prado for JR Murphy and Eric Jagielo.

      • MTU

        Do you have a preferred trade in that grouping ?

        • Preston

          Kazmir and Zobrist.

      • LazerTown

        I really don’t get the 2nd trade. Phillips is just owed way too much money, that I don’t see any positive value there.

        • Preston

          That’s also not a lot going back. But you’re right, it’s probably still an overpay.

          • LazerTown

            Right, I just really don’t want to take on over $30MM for someone who is 34, and really not that good. That is basically Wells/Soriano Round 3.

      • Dalek Jeter

        I wouldn’t do the second one because I don’t think it’s an upgrade…also, idk that you have to give up two pieces, let alone one as potentially good as Jags for Prado/Latos. Neither have been all that good. That first trade though, I actually think that’s fair for both sides…though I hate giving up 2 top prospects for rentals.

        • Preston

          Prado is still controlled next year, so the Marlins don’t have to move him and Latos FIP and peripherals are right in line with his career numbers. The Marlins aren’t going to give him away because of half a season with an inflated ERA and it’s going to be a sellers market at the deadline.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Really don’t want to do Bird, but I think I take that first deal.

        • Preston

          I don’t want to trade Bird or Sanchez. But you don’t get players like Kazmir and Zobrist without giving up players you’d rather keep.

          • Sir Didi Nakamura

            I’m okay with Sanchez, mostly because of McCann.

  • Gregory Eckes

    Tell you what, if I were the Blue Jays, I would make a trade for pitching right now. Yankees have the biggest lead in the AL and starting to run away.

    • MTU

      I agree.

    • W.B. Mason Williams

      There’s daylight between us and the division, but it’s still a pretty slim margin that could collapse at any moment. You’re definitely right about the Jays. Striking distance for them is close. A front and mid-rotation guy seems within their power, and that’d make them a pretty damn good team.

  • FriarFlyer

    Prado return? Gives same versatility as Zobrist at less cost

    • Preston

      Might as well. We’re already paying him 3 MM this year and next.

    • W.B. Mason Williams

      Not really sure that moves the needle though. Prado ain’t wavin’ a big stick this year. Zobrist would be a legitimate upgrade at the bottom of the order (depending on what we do with Headley), and at 2B.

  • Rob Reddardfsnyder

    I feel just fine with Refsnyder at 2B in a pennant race. They don’t need to trade the farm for Zobrist. He’s not an elite player that will make that big of a difference. The kid is playing again today against a RHP. Drew or Ryan is cooked.

    They should be able to trade draft picks. Ridiculous that they can’t already.

    A-Rod is big draw and being in contention will boost ratings. Hal should be increasing payroll but he won’t.

    • W.B. Mason Williams

      You’ve been on a subtle kick lately.

      Makes the whole thing more enjoyable.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Eddard’s in true midseason form now

    • hansdee

      Ryan I would think. Drew’s occasional power has value. Defense pretty close between the two. I’m okay with Refsnyder also. It’s not like there are any really elite teams in baseball right now.

      • MTU

        The Cardinals say Hi.

        • hansdee

          I’ve always like the Cards. My dad’s number two team, and my #3.
          I’m not sure they are quite elite though very good. A 3.5 game lead in an otherwise mediocre division outside the Pirates.

  • terry

    Repost from 4 days ago based on first impressions (actually reiterative first impressions) on Refsnyder:

    Defense is more consistent than Offense.

    So while it is too early to judge Refsnyder’s offense (although he has had good at-bats in two games), it is not too early to evaluate his technique and judgment in the field.

    To his credit, Refsnyder has been aggressive in the field. He’s charged the ball when possible and has not hesitated to try and make plays and throws that many a rookie might have shrunk away
    from. He doesn’t have the experience to meaningfully evaluate and choose between his best options, of course, going full tilt most of the time like a throttle stuck in overdrive.

    As a matter of mechanics, he’s “cleaner” than Gregorius, although their range is even by my estimate if you include all the attributes from footspeed to transition to ballspeed. Certainly, though, Refsnyder has more range than Pirela although reputation asserts that he’ll get more opportunities to make errors and misplays by getting to more balls.

    Fundamentally, Refsnyder should have more range than Gregorius, but there are reasons he doesn’t – from the fact that he sometimes gets caught doing the YMCA when ranging and pivoting, not using his hips to full effect, gets caught bouncing “up” during his prep-step when the ball meets the bat,
    etc. Gregorius is better in all these aspects which is to be expected given he’s played the infield longer. And of course, Refsnyder’s diving plays look painful – it’s not a dive at all, but a belly-flop that actually diminishes his range because he clearly stunned himself on his landings which retards his recovery/transition. Gregorius’ diving technique isn’t that much better, but at least they don’t hurt.

    Refsnyder’s footwork, needless to say, is messy, especially around the bag. The missed double play (think it was Napoli running) being only the most obvious. This is as much a matter of Refsnyder’s lack of experience as much as it is a matter of technique. Whereas experienced infielders envision their techniques several steps ahead – a good MLB second baseman would have anticipated his footwork even before fielding the ball – it’s clear that Refsnyder “ad-libbed” his footwork around the bag which resulted in some awkward steps in a dangerous play with Sandavol bearing down on him. He’s fortunate Sandoval didn’t deck him outright.

    To use another example, Refsnyder’s “error” in his second game was a combination of Miller’s poor throw, the runner bearing down on him, and Refsnyder’s lack of judgment.

    Refsnyder tried to turn a double play instead of getting the sure out, consistent with his “balls-to-the-wall” play for the two games. Had he tried to get one sure out at second rather than trying to make an incredible play off a bad feed from Miller, the Yankees would have prevented the tying run from reaching – and the winning run from coming to the plate in Fenway. It was not so much “bad judgment” as what I would call “lack of judgment”. Refsnyder was simply going full-tilt on every play, heedless of the situation. Again, between exuberance and tentativeness, the former is clearly preferred over the latter in a rookie, and Refsnyder should be commended as far as that goes.

    But he needs tempering; more development. And a tight playoff race is not the time to do that.

    Which means that someone in that clubhouse has to keep a tight hold of the reins.

    So the real “error” on that play is actually Girardi’s. He should never have allowed Refsnyder to play the field in the bottom of the 9th – at best, it was an emotional decision that went to Girardi’s head. At worst, it was a conceived decision between himself and the FO that will become a pattern, putting both Refsnyder and the Yankees in the best position to fail. And it could well end in Refsnyder getting injured if Girardi or someone in that clubhouse doesn’t pull him aside.

    It may not seem like much, but 250 lbs MLB players and baserunners that run from first to second in 3 seconds are common in the Majors as opposed to the minors. It is unwise to place an earnest Refsnyder in high-leverage plays where he tries to stand his ground or make an incredible play, only to break or tear something and cut his season short.

    The Yankees must prioritize winning. In doing so, they will increase the chances of Refsnyder’s success as opposed to throwing him into the fire without a safety net. Refusing to admit that Refsnyder is not a good defensive MLB infielder will only risk damaging his value, his confidence, and his career – while at the same time damaging the Yankees prospects at a playoff berth.

    Can the Yankees win by constantly exposing Refsnyder defensively in high-leverage situations?

    Yes.

    Should they?

    No.

    There’s no reason to risk it except to give in to cheap pride.

    • https://www.flickr.com/photos/roadgeek/ Roadgeek Adam

      TL;DR&DGAF

    • Dalek Jeter

      800 words on like…5 defensive chances. Glad to know you’re already ready to pass judgement on his defensive ability after 18 innings. Shoot Cashman an email, I’m sure he’ll find your advice invaluable.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        The best part is he mentioned Didi and how he should be worse than Refs or something after a quick 5 second skim of his comment.

        • terry

          Between the two, it’s obvious that Refsnyder has the greater potential to grow defensively.

          The bottom line is that Refsnyder is obviously being taught “by the book” – not surprising given that he’s coming into the position raw. He’s missing many of the basic skills and instincts, but he’s also missing a lot of bad habits that too many infielders become immutably married to by the time they reach professional ball.

          Any baseball professional can tell you why – from his attempt to turn his feet and reverse his momentum into his throws rather than gliding into a sling, to using his lower muscles to ‘propel’ towards the ball in a dive and extend the range by – oh, it’s been estimated that it can give you an extra 6 inches of range, not including the other benefits if the transition is clean.

          All of his techniques that I can see are grounded in the right idea, just the wrong (and clumsy) execution.

          But inculcating these principles is the best way to get the ball from A to B given any physical attribute, and that’s why Refsnyder has been taught the way he has…

          …which is why Refsnyder’s mechanics resemble Stephen Drew’s, not Didi Gregorius’.

          Take a few tape reviews and compare. Who are you going to believe? The media, or your lying eyes?

      • terry

        GIrardi and the rest of the coaching staff, not to mention the players, saw the same thing on tape. Likely, they didn’t even need a tape review, and could tell this at first glance. Which is why Girardi started replacing Refsnyder late in close games last night.

        If it wasn’t made clear in the game before the All-Star break, the point was driven home in the first game after against the Mariners last night – in a potential double-play ball that would have ended the inning, but instead resulted in only one out.

        Seager’s two-run Homerun immediately followed.

        Refsnyder made did turn his feet enough to point in the right direction, resulting in double-clutching and having to reset his feet. The feed, needless to say, partially cost the Yankees the double play. And between that and Gregorius’ long throwing mechanics, it easily eclipsed 20 frames which made the difference between an inning-ending double-play and another Mariners opportunity that Seager would ultimately capitalize on.

        Again, while it may not make an impression on casual fans, stuff like this sticks out like a sore thumb to the professionals in the league, your dismissal of the above notwithstanding.

        It’s not that Refsnyder will cost the Yankees runs.

        It’s that Refsnyder will cost the Yankees outs, giving the opposition more scoring opportunities.

        As has been mentioned with Gregorius months ago in Spring Training, Refsnyder will have to hit to compensate for his lack of defensive proficiency. To presume otherwise is simply putting both Refsnyder and the Yankees in a position to fail out of cheap pride.

    • Bo Knows

      Comparing a SS in DiDi and a 2nd Baseman in Refs isn’t remotely fair. Also the only way Refsnyder is going to refine his technique is through working. It’s mid-season and these are the Yankees, granted they’ve had a rough couple of years but they are almost always in a tight race with someone. So if he’s not going to get the reps then they might as well send him down or trade him to a shitty team because that’s the only time he won’t be in a tight playoff race, while furthering his development in the MLB.

  • Dos Luises

    “Could they get $5 billion?”
    All depends on how those valuations are done but if they are done properly, by discounting the expected stream of cash flows into the future, probably use a 30 year life, a conservative cost of capital, etc., then $3.2 billion IS, the expected price in a sale.

    • LazerTown

      Many recent teams have blown past the “value”. It is really hard to peg the value, because how awesome would it be for a billionaire to own the NYY? It’s basically the ultimate bragging rights.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Mark Zuckerberg: Future Yankees Owner

        • Ewing33

          That is no joke. The future may include Google, Twitter and Facebook all owning sports teams, ha

          • Sir Didi Nakamura

            Zuckerberg wastes his money. Buy a team.

        • LazerTown

          <- Not on Facebook.

          We will see how it goes, and if he even able to stick around. Is Facebook really going to be what it is in 10-20 years?

          • Sir Didi Nakamura

            Still a billionaire though

        • andrewyf

          Pretty much all of Zuckerberg’s wealth is in Facebook stock. He can’t just sell $3B of it because it would crash their stock price. Very few people on this planet can just free up $3B all at once. Warren Buffet might be one of them.

          No, that’s why you have ‘teams’ of owners, usually fronted by one guy, but most of the money comes from all the other guys in the deal. With these valuations, the days of ostensibly a single guy buying an MLB franchise are probably over.

      • Dos Luises

        Billionaires don’t overpay for anything.

  • Duzzi24

    The value of the franchise keeps going up astronomically and the money put back into the 25 man roster keeps dwindling. I would rather go with Refsnyder than give up a top prospect for a mediocre player in Zobrist. However I think Prado part 2 would be a good pickup. He’d give us Refsnyder insurance and a right handed bat that can play all over.

    • Still Stucky

      2015
      $217,758,571

      2014
      $197.230,609

      • Austinmac

        No, just being your misleading contentious self. Payroll in 2013 was $228M.

        • Still Stucky

          I know what “KEEPS dwindling” means. It went up 10%. Maybe you can argue it dwindled. But there’s not evidence the “dwindling” is ongoing.

      • Douglas Rau

        The major ingredient of that was the Yankees got off the hook for A-Rod’s $25 million last season and are on the hook for his $27 million ($21 mill base salary plus $6 million bonus for homer #661) this season.

  • Dos Luises

    Any free agent 2B out there this winter that could make the Refs trade for a rental “justifiable?”

    • Preston

      Howie Kendrick, Ben Zobrist, Daniel Murphy.

      • Dalek Jeter

        Eh, idk if I’m trading Refs for Murphy, Murphy seems like a best case scenario for Refs anyway.

        • LarryM Fl

          I like Murphy’s bat but he’s a lefty. It will be nice to have a second baseman with a RH bat.

          • Dalek Jeter

            Murphy’s also a disaster defensively. Like, “desperately should be moved off second” bad.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      Zobrist is the best of the list. Kendrick as well.

      from MLBTR:
      Joaquin Arias (31)
      Mike Aviles (35)
      Jeff Baker (35)
      Gordon Beckham (29)
      Emilio Bonifacio (31)
      Asdrubal Cabrera (30)
      Stephen Drew (33)
      Kevin Frandsen (34)
      Maicer Izturis (35) – $3MM club option with a $1MM buyout
      Howie Kendrick (32)
      Daniel Murphy (31)
      Cliff Pennington (32)
      Sean Rodriguez (31)
      Skip Schumaker (36) – $2.5MM club option with a $250K buyout
      Chase Utley (37) – $15MM vesting option with a $2MM buyout
      Ben Zobrist (35)

    • LazerTown

      I hate that idea. All it does is gives up 6.5 years of Ref, and then we basically just going back to Drew, or going for an expensive shitty player.

      • Dalek Jeter

        Unless we sign Kendrick, Cabrera, or Zobrist to a multi year deal (which probably a terrible idea, but it’s an idea).

        • LazerTown

          Asdrubal only has a wRC+ 5 points higher than drew. He in same category.

          Kendrick and Zobrist would both be upgrades, but do we really want to trade Ref so that we can dole out another $50MM+ contract? And for Howie he likely costs a draft pick too.

          • MTU

            Kendrick can be a difference maker but who says he’s even available ?

            • Dalek Jeter

              He’s a FA after the season, I’m talking about “replacing” Refs after the season if he were traded for a rental.

              • MTU

                Gotcha.

              • LazerTown

                I’d rather just stick with Ref/Drew for this year, then make the move next winter if he sucks. This isn’t the only year of this hopeful win window. Trading for Zobrist, so that we can instill a Drew equivalent next year is just stupid.

          • cxz

            We may need to dole out a contract of that status anyhow if Refsnyder doesn’t translate to be the answer. If we can land a real impact player with Ref being the biggest piece of the return, I’d be hard pressed not to consider it while his value is existent. The key thing there is a real impact though, which I’m not sure is reasonable to expect.

            • LazerTown

              Why not just wait and see?
              People are complaining about the Beltran contract. It just seems stupid to just jump into another 3-4 year deal at big money to get Zobrist. And is that even likely?

              With the way things have gone, aren’t the odds pretty high that we just return to someone like Drew next year? That is much worse than any good 2 months of Zobrist could bring.

              • Ewing33

                Yea, plus the fact we can’t just say we will be able to sign whoever we want. Kendrick and Zobrist may not want to play for the Yanks. And then no Refs too. Hello Stephen Drew, ha

              • cxz

                It’s not that I’d be disappointed to wait and see, but I think you need to take advantage of opportunities if you get them as well, and this team definitely has an opportunity to win. I’m not pushing for them to sell and sell now on him, but I really think he should be among the “on the table for the right deal” prospects. Prospect hugging should only reach so far, and Ref really doesn’t strike me as one of the guys that should be out of the conversation.

                • LazerTown

                  Sure, but the right deal is not just going for someone that will leave in 2 months, then your back to Drew.

                  • cxz

                    If we were trading away a guy that most are convinced will be the long term answer, I’d share your sentiment. But really, we don’t know what we’ll get out of Ref, he could underwhelm and force Cashman to sign a Drew as insurance for next season anyhow. Would I be mad to see what he’s got and give him this season to show us? Not at all, I’d be just fine with that if that’s the way things go. All that I’m getting at is, even if it’s a rental, if you can land a true blue season impacting piece, with Refsnyder being all that’s required to hand over, it should really be considered.

  • LazerTown

    I hope they get rid of the competitive balance picks, or at least fix the system. Cleveland, San Diego, Milwaukee, Tampa, sure. Miami, St Louis though?

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      St. Louis getting competitive balance picks is the stupidest thing I’ve seen in awhile

      • LazerTown

        They got an extra first round pick, but their fan base is massive. It extends way beyond just STL.

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          Hilarious. And they make the postseason like every year.

          • LazerTown

            Yea, but they are still in Missouri…. At least it’s not southern Missouri.

            • Sir Didi Nakamura

              I bet they do fine financially

  • Dalek Jeter

    Imagine the ability to just “trade” cash for draft picks? I wonder how much cold hard cash a top pick would be worth.

    • Still Stucky

      Would unite Yankees fans around with world with a whole new thing to complain about – ‘The Yankees have all the money in the world, why aren’t they buying as many first round draft picks as they can??

      It’ll Moncada x 29 … annually.

      Good times.

    • Preston

      The Diamondbacks just traded Touki Toussaint (the 16th pick last year) for the Braves to take on the 10.1 MM that was owed Bronson Arroyo. Many thought that was an underpay. Moncada was compared to a 1st pick and they paid 63 MM for him. It would be a lot of money. But I don’t see the league allowing cash for pick trades (although absorbing dead salary like the Braves did would be an option).

      • Dalek Jeter

        Probably not, because that might possibly give an advantage to a big market club…and at least in Bud Selig’s MLB any chance to screw over “big market teams” (re: The Yankees) was a shot worth taking.

  • Dalek Jeter

    I’m all for “win now,” but at the same time, this division is probably winnable with the Yankees current roster. Another starter and a proven 2nd baseman and/or RH bat would be awesome, but I’m totally on team “hug the prospects” because the division is so bad.

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      ZOBRIST

    • cxz

      I’m sort of in the in between. I’m on team hug Severino Judge Bird Mateo and don’t let go, but be willing to listen on pretty much anyone else on the farm if it helps the team enough.

      • Dalek Jeter

        I’m definitely in between too, which is why it is tough. Like if San Diego called tomorrow and offered Myers and Shields for Severino, Sanchez, and Bird…that’d be hard to say no to.

        • Ewing33

          That would be a relatively easy no for me. A semi bad to bad contract and a guy who is still unproven himself is not enough for three of our top prospects.

          Although I think the general trade is fair and SD might even say no to that.

        • LazerTown

          I’d pass on that deal. Shields has no value theoretically in the trade market, probably negative just because of the down year. So then it’s those 3 for Myers. He looks good, but so do the others, and Myers really doesn’t fit on this team. They don’t need an outfielder.

      • Dalek Jeter

        Definitely leaning team “hug the prospects” today though.

        • Austinmac

          Hugh is very good. :)

    • Dan A.

      I mostly agree. I’m hugging the top guys unless a trade makes them (more or less) World Series favorites. Obviously, I’m all for smaller upgrades.

    • Ewing33

      I’m with you. Let Boston and Toronto deal all their prospects for rentals. We still might win the division and then be in a better position for the next 5 years too.

    • levendis

      I feel you. But on the flip side there really isn’t a major threat in the AL this year. The yankees have a seriously good opportunity to make the WS. I might be willing to trade Sanchez for a Zobrist/Kazmir package. Don’t think that would even be enough though.

      • cashmoney

        I just think the will be better opportunity that will present itself down the road, in short. it’s a lot things, Rod and Tex health and age, Hal’s intent to get under LT in 2 years requires a healthy dose of controllable talents (or at the least, making that goal easier) to keep this team afloat and competitive in two years The AL is weak, I am tempted, but I rather wait. I like think this way, Do I shove in a hand where I know I might be 60/40 favor if that’s all the money I have left or wait for better odds to build a bankroll first.

    • LazerTown

      I’m on hug the prospects. I want them to win this year, but I want them to win next year and every year. I don’t want to see Drew next year. I don’t want to have Bubba Crosby replace Beltran.

    • HoopDreams

      Just not feeling the Zobrist love, imo roll with Refsnyder for the remainder of the season. Smaller moves like last year is what Im a big fan of, get a bench bat and another starter for insurance.

  • Still Stucky

    LA Dodgers are 1.5 games ahead of the NY Yankees, enjoy a smaller divisional lead and currently their winning % of behind the 2014 version of the team.

    Maybe it’s time to just consider the notion that at some point, MLB payroll reaches a level of diminishing returns?

    • Austinmac

      Probably fifty million or more goes to players no longer on the team. Payroll, in and of itself, doesn’t win. Adding good players your franchise can afford certainly makes the team better.

      • Still Stucky

        Fair enough. Where on this roster would more money have gone to?

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          Could’ve signed Scherzer for one and had Scherzer-Tanaka-Pineda and theoretically have CC in the bullpen. Swapping CC for Scherzer would be an insane upgrade.

          • Still Stucky

            I think the Yankees are making it clear they’re getting out of the 7 year+ contract game.

            I think that has less to do with $ per and more to do with # of years.

            And I get the theoretical Sabathia in the bullpen idea, but sometimes you have to separate fantasy from reality, don’t you?

            The Yankees were/are not going to commit to paying a reliever $25m for each of the next 3 seasons.

            • Sir Didi Nakamura

              I didn’t want them to get Scherzer, just saying he was a player they coulda gotten.

            • Ewing33

              But that is how you add money and not have diminishing returns. By knowing you will have to eat some of these long term contracts on the back end by replacing them with another big deal.

            • Austinmac

              They would then be out on any good free agent. Should the most valued team not be involved?

          • Fawn Lopez

            Until 2019 and you are wondering why the hell you signed Scherzer in the first place.

            • Ewing33

              Then you eat his contract and sign the next guy.

            • Austinmac

              Depends on what success you had in the years before.

            • cashmoney

              If they win then it’s justifiable. the other way to go about it is build a strong farm and supplement with choice spending when the time is right. But that’s not always possible without respite (retooling period). Would the NYY had gone anywhere or enjoy any degree of success without adding expensive contracts such as Arod, Giambi, Mussina, Tex, Burnett, etc, etc…

        • Austinmac

          A starting pitcher.

          • Still Stucky

            Which?

            • Austinmac

              Scherzer, perhaps. Price, this winter. I understand the lost value at the deal, but that seems to be the market reality and the Yankees can afford that more than most any other team.

              Going to the World Series makes an estimated $70M from what I have read.

        • Dalek Jeter

          You’re going to make me GM and give me an extra $50 mil this past off season? First and foremost Sherzer or Lester. I’d probably go Sherzer just because, but either or. Position player wise I’d have signed one of Yasmany Tomas or Kang and stuck them in the minors.

  • Tony Wilson

    Please don’t trade the farm for Zobrist, I think his bat is overrated and the only player worth giving top prospects for is an elite player which Zobrist is not.

    • Preston

      His career wRC+ is 119, last year he posted a 119, so far this year it’s a 120. What’s over-rated about his bat?

    • Austinmac

      Zobrist, while helpful, is not a guy I would give up a top guy for either. What would Prado cost? I presume less than last year with one year lesscontrol.

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      Zobrist is one of the best players on the market right now

      • dave_8

        That says more about the market. And that’s exactly when an overpay happens. Zobrist has been made “the guy” when he really isn’t that kind of impact player. Too many want him; everyone can afford him. Then it comes down to better prospect packages for a rental.

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          Will Zobrist require an overpay? Yes. But it doesnt mean he’s not a good player. 120 wRC+ rental utility guy? Umm yeah, that’s really damn good.

          • dave_8

            It’s not that he isn’t good. It’s that you’re saying “Oh well” we’ll overpay for that good thing then. We’ll outbid the others and give great player prospects for a good player for 2 months.

  • Sir Didi Nakamura
    • dkidd

      there’s a jeffrey maier joke here somewhere…

  • Austinmac

    People talk regularly about not “giving up the farm.” What does that mean? One player, three, five? We have real needs to thin the group of guys needing to be on the 40 man roster. Some should be traded or list for nothing.

    • Preston

      I think people mean a trade that takes you from a good farm system to a bad farm system. Take Judge and Severino out of the farm and all of a sudden the farm system doesn’t look so great. Trade one of them and 2-3 more of the top ten and the result is the same. Keep those two and only trade one or two of those top ten guys and the impact on your talent pool is much less.

      The problem with trading players clogging the 40 man is they aren’t worth very much, and we’d probably be surprised how many of them could pass through waivers. It was impossible to think Romine would pass through at the start of the season (he’s a former top 100 prospect at an up the middle position) but he did. Because 29 other teams have all their own failed formerly promising prospects too.

      • LazerTown

        Basically every team has this full 40 man situation, so it’s not like everyone just going to steal all our players. Also the thing is that to build up your farm system takes years, and part of it is luck just finding Judge and Severino. One late 1st round, other didn’t get a large bonus. Your very potentially setting back your flow of young talent into your team for years down the road. And it’s not just the Judge and Severino. Many of the other guys will be depth, or relievers.

      • Austinmac

        Certainly trading two of your top five guys is a big loss, but trading someone like Sanchez and a top 15-20 guy such as Wade is an important use of your system. The team has redundancy at these positions.

        • LazerTown

          For now, but how many more years is Brian really the starter?

          • Dalek Jeter

            Next year and the following, I’d say. Who knows though, really.

          • cxz

            At least a few more years, but that really shouldn’t have much to do with what the team does with Sanchez.

            • Austinmac

              Why wouldn’t it? If you could get a player who helps rather than one who is, at best, a BUC for 2-3 years that seems to me to be good use of a prospect. I don’t have a clue what one could get for him.

              • cxz

                I’m confused. I was basically getting at the same thing,lol. I don’t think how long McCann will continue to catch should have to do with Sanchez’s marketability from the Yankees standpoint. If there’s one prospect with intrigue they have that they should be entirely open to shopping to improve the team now, Sanchez is the guy if you ask me.

          • Austinmac

            Probably two more after this year. That’s my guess. There are limited roster spots that must be a factor in dealing the young players.

        • Preston

          I don’t think either Sanchez or Wade are redundant. Wade is the most advanced legitimate SS prospect we have in our system and he’s far enough away from the majors that you don’t care about what’s happening on the MLB team.
          Yes, Sanchez is now at AAA and Brian McCann is signed for 3 more years, but he’s also 31 with a lot of innings. And Sanchez is still really young. He could stay at AAA all next year and half the year after and debut at the same age as Refsnyder. Jorge Posada spent 306 games at AAA before sticking in the majors. That didn’t hurt him one bit. And nobody is going to call a prospect of Sanchez’s caliber a clog on the 40 man roster. Nearly half the roster has less value than him.

    • Too Many Idiots

      Look at this list and imagine something like 1-4 or 1,2, 5, and 7 being traded for one player. The system would look pretty bare. http://riveraveblues.com/2015/07/aaron-judge-tops-baseball-americas-midseason-top-ten-yankees-prospects-lists-124220/

    • Dalek Jeter

      “Giving up the farm” is like “pornography vs art.” I can’t describe it, but I know it when I see it. For example, when they traded Montero for Pineda, I considered that trading the farm because he was our best prospect and a top prospect in baseball.

      • Dalek Jeter

        And that was only trading 1 guy.

      • LazerTown

        I didn’t see it that way. My whole thing is that people often completely ignore years of team control. Even after this year we still got Pineda for 2 more years. I see targeting long term pieces, but trading top talent for someone who just leaves in 2 months is idiotic.

    • OldYanksFan

      Well…. I don’t think you’re ‘Trading the Farm’ if you only trade One guy… unless he’s Strasberg or Harper. In the Montero trade, like it or not, and the time it appeared we got ‘equal value’.
      If you trade 2 of our top 5, your system takes a big hit. Imagine our farm without Judge and Servy.

      I consider the Yanks to be in ‘rebuilding mode’. Our mode ain’t the same as Houston’s, but we ARE rebuilding. So Trading the Farm is more about TODAY vs The FUTURE.

      I think our team TODAY has a decent PS chance. I also think there are still a ton of things that could derail us.
      I’m open to consider any deal, but in general…. I am against trading The FUTURE for TODAY.

      REMEMBER: Our Dynasty was built on the backs of FIVE homegrown players.

  • Sir Didi Nakamura
  • Dalek Jeter

    #rays announce 2nd rd pick C Chris Betts will undergo Tommy John surgery. Injury discovered during team physical before he signed— Roger Mooney (@RMooneyTBO) July 18, 2015

    Wow. Major bullet avoided there.

    • LazerTown

      Didn’t realize they were doing brain scans now to see what’s in his head.

    • Preston

      Pretty crazy that even knowing he needed TJS he demanded 325k over slot. They probably wouldn’t have been able to afford to sign him at all if he was healthy.

    • Frittoman626

      Guessing this is one of the reasons why the Yankees avoided drafting him.

    • Austinmac

      He was a guy I liked. I guess the Rays did too after still signing him.

      I hope Torrens TJS recovery in going well.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        No reason not to sign him

    • CashmanNinja

      I really liked Betts and that injury isn’t any cause for concern. It’s not like he’s a pitcher. Now if it were a shoulder injury then I’d be a bit more wary, but as long as he can throw the ball back to the mound and whip it to 2nd a few times a game then he’ll be fine for the future. It still sucks how late these injuries can be determined though. Maybe he had played with it and didn’t even know. I like players that can tough things out…especially when it comes to that position.

      • Dalek Jeter

        I liked him a lot too, but I’m looking at this through “average Yankee fan” eyes. If they drafted a guy in the first round (it’d probably be him over Holder at 30), regardless of position and he immediately needed major surgery people would freak.

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          “Freak”

          You underestimate people too much Dalek. Definitely an issue you need to work on.

          I personally have my pitchfork ready for times like these. There woud be blood. Thankfully it wasn’t needed this time. But I keep her polished; polished and ready to be used at a moment’s notice. Here she is in all her glory; I call her “Judgement”

          ———————E

          She’s pretty, ain’t she?

        • CashmanNinja

          I liked the Holder pick, but I’d have absolutely taken Betts over him. A ton of fans would definitely be pissed off about an injury like that and would question whether the Yankees really did their due diligence, etc. Some of these injuries are hard to diagnose because they may be minor and these surgeries are to try to be more preemptive rather than to help them improve/deal with pain. It’s more about making sure they don’t mess it up worse in the future. But anyway, yeah…fans would have freaked out. I think the whole Brackman saga kind of did that to everyone. Clarkin better get his shit together…

  • Hankflorida

    The fact that Ref was pinch hit for yesterday with the Yanks ahead and a righty on the mound may imply that there will be a Drew and Ref platoon instead of trading for Zobrist. Maybe?

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      Drew is no platoon option Hank. Jones vs a righty makes sense. (Ended up facing a lefty though) Drew will also always (hopefully) come in the later innings (7-9) for defense with a slim lead. That’s how Drew should be used.

    • Dan A.

      Ref is hitting today versus a righty pitcher. Girardi said yesterday he pinch hit because he was trying to get a quick homer with Jones going for the short porch against a righty (they ended up making a pitching change after Jones was already up).

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        That was a good move for Jones. He’s got power and they needed a homer there above all else. Drew was going to come in anyway so it made sense.

    • WT2

      I really doubt it Hank. I think Ref is here to stay for a while. Drew is a late inning defensive INF and INF back up at this point (and has been one for a while now). He knows it and we all know it.

      I really think that Cash just read the market and saw what we all saw, the market is way to thin for 2B and the few sellers have all the leverage. So he realized his only shot would be to give Ref a shot and see what the kid got.

      At this point, anyone is an upgrade over Drew at 2B, but we need to keep Drew as an INF back up, so even if the Ref experiment doesn’t work, we’ll always have Drew (or maybe Ryan) back. Keep in mind Drew has actually been healthy for the Yanks. It has been the only plus from him honestly, which works really well for the UTL position.

  • dkidd

    this is such a tricky year. everything the org has been doing suggests they’ll hoard prospects and continue to try and build a future core, but the division/league/sport is so watered down there’s an argument for going for it now

    • LazerTown

      Hoarding prospects could allow them to go for it every year.

      • dkidd

        imo, the dynasty years created an unrealistic sense of how to build a young core

        would hate to miss a short term opportunity dreaming of a future dynasty

        • cxz

          It’s definitely a balancing act that needs to be played. Don’t give up every bit of young talent you get, hold onto some of those guys so you can build a core. But also be willing to make moves with some young talent to help your team be great in the present, you can’t be unwilling to deal talent and just expect prospect hoarding to automatically result in success.

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          And for the kids who had no dynasty but a lifetime of playoff appearances, the fact of no playoffs has been an eye opener.

  • grandedan

    Finally making some sense.

    As I suggested weeks ago, it appears the Yanks have come around to making Drew their utility infielder, according to Jennings reporting on Girardi earlier today. Drew is set to play 3b, SS and 2b. Thank you.

    This has always made a ton of sense. And Drew should play a lot. There’s no reason for Didi, Ref and Headley not to get a day off each week. That’s something I’ve always liked about Girardi. He likes to give his regulars regular time off. Frankly, other that Arod and Tex, there’s no one in the lineup really needed everyday, given available backups. The Yanks lose a lot without Arod or Tex but can easily replace the others at least once a week.

    • Dalek Jeter

      Yup, dan, you were totally the only person suggesting this.

      • grandedan

        Yep, as early as last year when I pointed out Drew’s value is really only as a SS. And over the winter when I pointed out it made little sense to sign Drew to start at 2b since the Yanks had two excellent candidates in Pirela and Ref (and Pirela may even be the better choice but the Yanks blew the chance discover that last June when I insisted Pirela play over Roberts). But as the season developed and even as Didi struggled, I continually pointed out that Drew’s value now was as a backup to Didi, and eventually as a backup to everyone.

        But Cashman had a fixation with Drew, thinking he was some sort of hidden gem. It finally took about 500 ABs before he realized his mistake. Better late than never.

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          Pirela sucks. He proved that already. You were wrong. *Shocked gasps*

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Better than saying “I predicted” That’s what he always used to say instead, right? He’s taken a more humble route this time around, merely stating that he suggested things. Makes him look more like an annoying guy always saying he had the right idea instead of the dick who makes it seem like he knew it before everyone. Smart move.

      • WT2

        As Dalek said, approximately 40% of the blog has been saying this for more than a month. Especially when the Ref vs Drew argument kept being brought up.

        Putting all this silliness aside, I am glad Bid Dan came back. I’ll read his comments as long as he doesn’t go back to that incoherent “haha troll move” he was throwing out there before he left.

        I never understood that.

    • cashmoney

      Big, as the lone chronicler of your high adventures, this simply is another worthy but not glorious chapter in your amazing tales. nonetheless,another parchment is added to your legend.

      • grandedan

        You are my Homer lol.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Historians will one day gather his numerous parchments and proclaim him as the “One who knew all before everyone else” And they will pray to this seeing all God.

        • cashmoney

          I find Big entertaining. I don’t think Big takes himself that seriously,it’s all for giggles in the end. it helps that Big is civil as well.

          • Sir Didi Nakamura

            I find him mildly entertaining at times. I really like Eddard recently, he’s stepped it up. He was bland, boring, and annoying earlier this year. He’s back to his good form now.

    • OldYanksFan

      “according to Jennings reporting on Girardi earlier…”
      Got a Link?

  • Austinmac

    He’s not on the 40 man, at least I don’t think so, but Goody has been fabulous this year.

    • LazerTown

      Yes, and he is someone I’d rather they bring up if they do need a reliever rather than Severino.

      • Sir Didi Nakamura

        Have to say I agree. Unless they believe Severino could use the development from the bullpen. If they do it to get some value out of him, Goody should get a shot 1st. But if they think he’ll gain valuable development, then please call him up.

        • RetroRob

          Severino is there if needed, but they’ll go through every other option before calling him up, which is why Mitchell is now being stretched out again. Goody is there as a bullpen arm, as well as some others. The pen is deep enough again..

    • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

      He’ll need to be added in the offseason before the rule v draft.

  • Centaur Hips

    OT but I found this interesting. The Dodgers are last in SB and have the 2nd worst baserunning but are still 1st in offense since they lead in wRC+ by a good margin if you take out pitchers.

    http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=np&stats=bat&lg=all&qual=0&type=8&season=2015&month=0&season1=2015&ind=0&team=0,ts&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&sort=18,d

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      Dee Gordon effect

    • Centaur Hips

      Yanks are a solid top 5 offense. 5th in both wRC+ and OFF. lol White Sox.

  • grandedan

    Interesting that Mitchell is out of the bullpen now. I thought he’d be an asset in that role for the rest of this season. With Ref now the regular 2b, Drew in utility and Mitchell gone, I think the Yanks are setting themselves up for a move. Hopefully adding a quality starter and moving CC, Eovaldi or Nova to the bullpen.

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      It’s not interesting because the reason was to stretch him out to be a potential SP replacement for injury or spot start.

      *head explodes*

      • grandedan

        Which begs the question, why was he sent to the bullpen in the first place?

        • Sir Didi Nakamura

          To see what he’s got? They were doing a merry go round of relievers from AAA and his turn was up. They wanted to see how he’d do for a couple weeks, he impressed (At least in my eyes) and now it’s time to get back to business with him in the rotation.

          • grandedan

            Or perhaps to let other team’s see what he’s got.

            Either the Yanks have changed their mind as to him being a useful ML reliever for the rest of the season or they never intended him in that role in the first place and were just “showing him off.” I don’t think they’d just bring him up to see if he could get major leaguers out for an inning or two only to send him back to AAA to stretch out again. That’s a waste of time and resources. If there were a short term need there were others more suited like Pinder.

            As I said above, I think the Yanks are adjusted their whole roster in preparation of a move.

            • LazerTown

              He has 9 innings so far. He is exactly the type of player that is just going to be up and down.

              • RetroRob

                Right. He has value and can be used in multiple roles, from bullpen arm to swingman to spot starter. In order for the last to happen he needs to be stretched out, and that’s where they see his value now that Miller is back and Warren is in the pen. They need him starting, because right now Severino is just about the only arm they could call on for a spot start, and I doubt they want to bounce him up and down, or put him on the 40 man unless forced to by circumstances. This move alleviates that concern.

            • BillyBall

              Wow I disagree 100%. Mitchell is going down to be stretched out. Simple and no conspiracy theory. Yankees have pitchers that are fragile and between him and Severino they are gearing up for any injuries. This move was talked about on this bread a week ago. I’m thinking cash reads what we write on here!

    • Patrick

      Honestly, CC is probably their weakest starter right now, though Nova hasn’t exactly been impressive since his return. Eovaldi still has work to do, but a 9-2 record is nothing to sneeze at. Unless they can get a really good deal for a starter on the market without giving up their major prospects, I’d rather see them bring up someone like Severino and give them a shot. He’s apparently been blazing through the minors.

  • Monterocouldstillbedinero

    Yanks need Montero. Trumbo blocking him with Seattle. Garrett Jones sucks against any pitching. Get it done Cash!

    • Peter W Russo

      Hi: Why would they want Montero back?

    • Patrick

      Where would Montero fit in? He never really developed as a catcher, so he moved to first base. The Yanks don’t need an up and coming first baseman. Tex is making a resurgence, and should at the very least be able to stay productive long enough for Greg Bird to be ready for the majors. If Montero really does have his head on straight now, I’m happy for him, but it’s not worth the risk of him buckling under the pressure of playing in New York City.

      • Monterocouldstillbedinero

        He’d be better than Garrett Jones as a hitter against either side. Yanks would need to bring up Flores for the backup OF I guess. I really did not expect Alex or Carlos to play as much/be as healthy as they have this year. My plan is not working out!