• We want some pitchers

    Not Jeff Karstens, Jim Brower or Ron Villone. I wonder if Chris Britton and Edwar Ramirez have tickets to New York yet. And if they don’t, then why the hell not? They can’t be worse than the clowns on the mound tonight. Back to the Tier Reserve I go. · (9) ·

From the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer:

Even with Wednesday’s midnight signing deadline quickly approaching, Columbus High catcher Chase Weems was never worried whether he’d sign with the New York Yankees.

Weems, who was taken with the final pick in the sixth round of June’s Major League Baseball amateur draft, is expected to sign with the Yankees today, according to his father Rick Weems.

The Blue Devils catcher was able to remain calm and relaxed being that he and Yankees agreed to the terms of his signing bonus on June 9 — the day after he was drafted — Rick Weems told the Ledger-Enquirer.

Rick Weems wouldn’t release the amount of the signing bonus, saying the Yankees asked them not to reveal it. He did indicate that it would be “way over the slotted” — or recommended — amount.

Rick Weems also said it would be about second-round money.

Second round money huh? Nice pull by Weems and his agent, that should be good for around $300-500k. Weems isn’t as good a prospect as 2nd rounder Austin Romine, but he’s a darn good prospect in his own right, and improves the Yanks’ depth behind the plate considerably.

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Categories : Draft
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Beloved Yankee great and former announcer Phil Rizzuto passed away today. The Scooter, the oldest living Hall of Famer, was 89.

Rizzuto was long a favorite in the Bronx. A 40-year veteran of the broadcast booth, he coined the catch phrase “Holy Cow!” during his colorful commentaries on the game. During broadcasts, he would describe the action in a ramblingly poetic style often discussing marriages and birthdays more than the play on the field. He would leave games early to beat the traffic, saying to his wife over the air, “I’ll be home soon, Cora.” Generations of Yankee fans came to know and love the game through the Scooter’s broadcasts.

On the field, Rizzuto’s thirteen-year career – interrupted by three years in the war from 1943-1945 – earned him a spot in Cooperstown. A five-time All Star, he won the MVP in 1950 and finished second in the voting in 1949. He played in nine World Series, winning seven of them and remained a part of the Yankee family long after he retired in 1956.

Phil also gained some fame, amusingly enough, in 1977 when he appeared on the Meatloaf hit single “Paradise by the Dashboard Light.” As Meatloaf and Ellen Foley recall the tango of their teenage days by the like, Rizzuto’s announcing serves as the not-so-veiled euphemism for the action in the car. This part of the song ends, fittingly enough, with a well-timed “Holy Cow!”

Recently, Rizzuto’s health had been failing. He was noticeably absent from Old Timers’ Day, sending a letter for Michael Kay to read in his place. The flags will be at half staff in the Bronx today as the Yanks are sure to honor Number 10 before tonight’s game. This one’s for you, Scooter.

Categories : Days of Yore
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I absolutely cannot stand Ron Villone. Yes, he pitched well for us during a crucial stretch last year, but he turned putrid down the stretch. And when you consider his season numbers — 5.04 ERA, 1.57 WHIP, only 59 percent of pitches for strike, and only 49 percent of first-pitch strikes — you really have to wonder why he was brought back.

His numbers seem to be decent this year: 3.34 ERA, 6.12 K/9, 2.00 K/BB, 62% of pitches for strikes, 1.27 WHIP. However, at this point last year, he was sitting on a 2.26 ERA. So from August 15 through September 30, his ERA rose 2.78 points. That’s not what we need this year. Then again, at this point last year, he also had 64.1 innings under his belt, whereas this year he has just about half that, 32.1, though if you add in his Scranton numbers it’s 56, so he’s not that far off.

My biggest gripe with Villone this year, though, is his almost automatic way of allowing inherited runners to score. To date he has come in with 23 runners on base, of which he has allowed nine to score. That’s nearly 40 percent, and it’s completely unacceptable. Yes, we’re dealing with a small sample size. But we’re also dealing with Ron Villone.

This is the exact reason we need Britton and Edwar in the pen. Wouldn’t you feel much more comfortable with one of them coming into a game with a two-run lead and a guy on first base? I sure would. Lefties be damned, I don’t want Ron Villone on this team anymore.

Categories : Pitching
Comments (10)
  • Olney: Igawa sticking around Scranton

    With the Yanks and Padres facing a 2 p.m. deadline to complete a deal, Buster Olney is reporting that the Yanks plan to withdraw the disappointing Kei Igawa from waivers. While most talent evaluators feel Igawa won’t succeed in the AL and is a better fit for a team like the Padres and a park like Petco, the Yanks aren’t quite yet ready to give up on a pitcher in which they invested $26 million in posting fees. I think the Yanks should just cut their losses, but so be it as long as Igawa doesn’t get starts next year over Ian Kennedy or Joba Chamberlain. · (3) ·


Draft signing grumblings

By in Draft. Tags: · Comments (11) ·

Bullet-point style…

  • Rick Porcello is about to become a very, very rich man kid. There’s a chance the Porcello deal could affect how much the Yanks give Andrew Brackman, but frankly, they’re rumored to already be giving him $3M, which is more than anyone else would have offered.
  • Word on the street is that second round pick Austin Romine is already in Tampa getting his workout on, although a deal has not been made official. IPK & Joba did something similar last year, and obviously they both went on to sign. I take this as a good sign.
  • Nothing new the report on 4th rounder Brad Suttle (3B, Texas) or 10th rounder Carmen Angelini (SS, some HS in Louisiana), both are expected to sign well above slot deals, Suttle around $1M and Angelini around $900k.
  • The Yanks have made some minor signings, locking up 29th rounder Matt Pilgreen (RHP, Louisiana-Lafayette) and 37th rounder Steven Strausbaugh (OF, Western Carolina). No word on where the two will be assigned.
  • Last I heard, the Yanks had signed the fewest picks from the top 10 rounds, and the fewest picks overall. It’s about quality, not quantity I say.
  • Officially, the draft deadline is midnight tomorrow, so in reality you won’t get the full details on all the deals/signings until Thursday.
  • Looking back on it a year later, I think I over-estimated how long it’ll take Yankee fans to fall in love with Joba. The cool part is that the scouting report I gave back then was accurate; Nardi Contreras cleaned up Joba’s mechanics last year during Instruction League last fall, and bam, 92-93 became 98-99.

I’ll post any signing news as I get it, so check back often.

Categories : Draft
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With Joba now smiting hitters in the bigs, Ian Kennedy flies solo as the only Yankee farmhand on BA’s Hot Sheet this week. Another Baby Bomber is mentioned in the “Helium Watch” section, and it’s about time he started to get some love.

Triple-A Scranton (5-4 win over Buffalo in 11 innings)
Brett Gardner: 1 for 5, 2 R, 1 BB, 1 K – threw a runner out at first…damn
Alberto Gonzalez & Kevin Reese: both 2 for 5, 1 RBI, 1 BB - Gonzalez scored a run & tripled
Angel Chavez: 2 for 6, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 3 K
Bronson Sardinha: 3 for 6, 2 K
Andy Cannizaro: 2 for 3, 2 BB
IPK: 6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 4 BB, 2 K – one of those walks was intentional…not his best night, but it’s still only the 3rd time this year he’s allowed 3 or more ER in 23 starts
Sean Henn: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K – 17 of 20 pitches were strikes…damn
Edwar: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 HB - 16.17 Kper9…but he did blow the save
Brian Bruney: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K – 12 of 16 pitches were strikes…

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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