Category Archives: Mike’s Musings

“Minor” Yankees news.

Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte has signed on with the A’s. Even if just a “novelty act,” Venditte was entertaining.

The Yanks have sold the contract of Zelous Wheeler to a Japanese team.

Stanton, Martin and a big trade.

Giancarlo Stanton was given a —- wait for it —- 13 yr.  $325MM contract by the Marlins today. Ridiculous.

Russell Martin signed with the Blue Jays.

The Cards and Braves pulled off a trade in which Justin Heyward (RF) goes to the Cards for P Shelby Miller.

Yanks’ prospect named AFL MVP

1B Greg Bird, who got up to AA last year, was named the Arizona Fall League MVP. Bird had a fine AFL and topped it off with a massive HR in the AFL All-Star game that had to go some 450 feet.

Here is a link to more about Bird:

http://m.yankees.mlb.com/news/article/101542126/yankees-greg-bird-named-arizona-fall-league-mvp

 

For more on various prospects and winter ball, check out this post from the LOHUD Yankees blog.

 

http://yankees.lhblogs.com/2014/11/14/winter-league-notes-tyler-austin-resting-left-knee-injury/

Trout, Kershaw MVPS; Dark dies

Mike Trout was named the unanimous MVP in the American League yesterday, and Clayton Kershaw became the first N.L. pitcher since Bob Gibson in 1968 to win the CYA and the MVP in the same season.

Kershaw is the third Dodger pitcher to be the CYA winner and the MVP in the same season, following Don Newcombe (1956) and Sandy Koufax (1963). When Newcombe and Koufax won, the CYA went to only one pitcher in all of baseball. With all due respect to Cleveland’s Corey Kluber, this year’s AL CYA winner, had those rules been in effect today, it’s safe to presume Kershaw would have been the CYA winner had there only been one award as it was from 1956-1966 and not have it split across leagues as it is today.

Alvin Dark, a SS and later manager, died yesterday at the age of 92. Dark played for the Boston Braves from 1946-1949, winning the NL pennant with them in 1948, the NY Giants from 1950-1956, winning the NL pennant in 1951 and the WS in 1954, the St. Louis Cardinals 1956-1958, the Chicago Cubs 1958-1959, the Philadelphia Phillies 1960 and the Milwaukee Braves 1960.

He managed the SF Giants to the 1962 pennant and the 1974 A’s to the World Championship. He won the AL West with the A’s in 1975.

He managed the Giants 1961-1964, KC A’s 1966-1967, Cleveland Indians 1968-1971, Oakland A’s 1974-1975 and SD Padres 1977.

He was a 3x All-Star and ROY in 1948.

He also was a fine football player (LSU) who was drafted by the Eagles.

His MLB debut was delayed due to WWII. When he won the ROY voting in 1948, he was 26 years old.

He was a .289 hitter with 126 HR in his career.

He finished 3rd in the voting for 1948 MVP (won by Musial), and hit .322 when the Braves won the pennant. In 1951, for the Giants, he hit .303, led the NL with 41 doubles and hit .417 in the WS. In 1954, he hit .293, had 20 HR and finished 5th in the MVP voting (won by Mays). He hit .412 in the WS that year.

 

Yanks trade Cervelli; CYA winners announced

The Yanks traded backup C Francisco Cervelli to Pittsburgh on Wednesday for LH reliever Justin Wilson. Wilson, 27, was 3-4, 4.20 for the Pirates in 2014. He has a 2.99 career ERA.

Cervelli, 28, hit .301-2-13 with the Yanks in 2014, OPS+ 126 in 49 games. He is a .278 career hitter, OPS+ 97 for his career. His 162 g. average is .278-6-60. You wonder if, after the Biogenesis suspension, the Yanks were looking for just the right deal to dump him.

As for A-Rod, no dumping him. Too much $$$$. Not so with Cervelli.

The funny thing is that Pirates starting catcher, Russell Martin, is a free agent and now the Pirates have Chris Stewart and Cervelli, all three going from the Bronx to the “Burgh.”

This clears up a bit of a logjam that the Yanks had at catcher. Brian McCann remains the starter, but it appears as if John Ryan Murphy and Austin Romine will compete for the backup job, with the loser of the competition going to AAA to play there along with prospect Gary Sanchez.

The Yanks also signed a minor league lefty, 26 yr. old Jose De Paula, yesterday. De Paula is 33-27, 3.86 in his minor league career.

MLB announced the CYA winners yesterday. The Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw won the NL CYA unanimously. It’s his second straight Cy Young award and third in four years. He finished second in 2012. The AL CYA winner was Corey Kluber of Cleveland.

 

Robertson rejects qualifying offer; ROY voting

To no surprise, David Robertson has rejected the Yankees’ qualifying offer and is free to negotiate with any team, including the Yankees. The qualifying offer this year is $15.3MM.

To date, no player has ever accepted a qualifying offer. If Robertson signs elsewhere, the Yanks get a compensatory draft pick.

In Rookie of the Year voting, Dellin Betances finished third in the A.L., and Masahiro Tanaka fifth. Tanaka probably would have finished higher had he not lost 1/3 of the season to injury.

Manager of the Year gets announced today. Baseball is in their awards stage.

Michael Cuddyer signed a deal with the Mets. The Mets’ DeGrom won the N.L. ROY.

New names were added to the Rays’ search for a manager: Barry Larkin & Doug Glanville.

Yankees re-sign OF Chris Young

Well, there goes my hope in the Yanks maybe going after Michael Morse for corner OF/backup 1B/ backup DH.

The Yanks re-signed Chris Young to be their 4th OF. The righty-hitting Young started last year with the Mets and finished it with the Yanks. He gets a one-year deal for $2.5 MM.

Young hit .222-11-38 combined last year, OPS+95. His 162 g. average is .234-23-71 with 19 SB. OPS+ 94. Has power and speed, but low batting average and averages 143 strikeouts a year.

Mostly a CF, he can play all 3 OF positions, and hit 32 HR in 2007 for Arizona. In 2010, he was an All-Star, when he hit 27 HR and had 28 SB for the D-Backs.

While Ichiro Suzuki, who just turned 41, still wants to play in the majors next year, the signing of Young probably means Ichiro is done with the Yankees. The Yanks have Gardner, Ellsbury and Beltran in the outfield, two lefty hitters and a switch-hitter, and now have Young, a righty batter, to back them up. Ichiro, of course, is a lefty hitter.

Meanwhile, Raul Ibanez isn’t only being talked about as perhaps the Yanks next hitting coach, but he also is a finalist for the Rays’ open managerial position now that Joe Maddon has gone to manage the Cubs.

New Twins manager: HOF Paul Molitor.