Tag Archives: milestones

No return of Fat Elvis

Even though the Yanks are looking for a DH, and Lance Berkman was available, there will be no return of “Fat Elvis” to the Bronx.

Berkman spent some time with the Yanks in 2010, hitting .255-1-9 in 37 games, OPS+ 90. 2010 was a rough year for Berkman, who had some injury issues and who only hit .248-14-58, OPS+ 112 that year. He rebounded in 2011 for the World Champion Cardinals, hitting .301-31-94, OPS+ 164, and was an All-Star and finished 7th in the MVP balloting. He played 1B and the corner OF spots.

But in 2012, Berkman had knee trouble again, and was limited to 32 games, hitting .259-2-7, OPS+ 126. For his career, the switch-hitting Berkman is a .296 hitter with an OPS+ of 146. His 162 game average is .296-32-108. He has 360 career HR—two more than Yogi and one less than Joe D. He has finished in the top 10 of MVP voting six times.

Berkman is also good friends with Andy Pettitte, with whom he was a teammate 2004-2006 and in 2010.

But the lure of his home state kept Berkman home. Berkman, a Texan, signed a deal with the Rangers. For most of his career, he was an Astro.

Although Berkman will be 37 next month, the switch-hitter would have been a fit at DH for the Yanks, especially if he could still play the field (1B/LF/RF) occasionally. But the contract Texas gave Berkman—one year, $11 MM with an option for 2014—was probably way more than the Yanks were willing to go. The Yanks apparently had some interest, but my guess is that they want someone on a deal like Raul Ibanez had last year—$1.1 MM with incentives. Heck, Chavez got $900K from the Yanks, Andruw Jones $1.5 MM. My guess is that if Berkman fell into that bracket, then the Yanks would scoop him up. But Texas’ offer blew the Yanks out of the water.

Maybe the Yanks are still looking for a DH in that money bracket.

Jim Thome, 42, is still out there. That lefty bat does intrigue me. You can only imagine what Thome could have done with that short porch in his prime. Even without the short porch, Thome has 612 career HR. But Thome will be 43 in August, has no speed on the base paths and can’t play the field. If only Thome can prove he can still play 1B or 3B, but he’s only played in nine games in the field since 2005.

Thome hit .252-8-25 in 163 at bats in 2012. For his career, his 162 g. average is .276-39-108. He does strikeout a lot, but he also draws a lot of walks. (He’s the active leader in both categories). His 162 g. average is 111 walks and 162 K.

In the last three years, Thome has made $1.5 MM, $3 MM and $1.25 MM.

The Yanks have an aging team already. I’m leery of getting a 42-year-old who can’t play the field.

But his lefty bat is intriguing, and maybe his price range is, too.

Even though I’m leery of Thome, would it surprise me if the Yanks signed him? No.

If they did, they would be the first team with two active 600 HR guys on it (he and A-Rod).

You just wonder if they are then sacrificing youth and winning for age and milestones.

Thome: 612 HR. 1699 RBI.
A-Rod:  647 HR. 2901 hits. 1950 RBI (active leader in HR and RBI). With A-Rod going to be out for half the season, it doesn’t look like he’ll get the 14 HR to pass Willie Mays or the 99 hits for 3000. He could get RBI #2000 though.
Jeter: 3304 hits (active leader). He could get close to 3500 this year. Heck, if he has a year like he had in 2012, he could get #3500 this year.
Rivera: 608 saves (all-time leader). #650?
Pettitte: 245 wins. #250 should come this year.
Ichiro: 2606 hits (MLB only; added to Japan, it’d be over 3800).
Sabathia: 191 wins. #200 should come in mid-summer.

In addition, could Curtis Granderson become the ONLY Yankee other than Babe Ruth to hit 40 or more HR in three consecutive years? Ruth did it from 1926-1932.

Looking at 2010 milestones to come

Ok, baseball talk. Let’s look at what could transpire for various Yankees in 2010:

Posada. 243 HR. Granted 115 behind Yogi. But 8th on the all-time Yankees list. #251 will pass Nettles on that list.  36 more RBI for 1000 in his career. 12 hits for 1500.

Jeter. 2747 hits. He will just add to his Yankee team record for hits. He won’t get #3000 in 2010, but should pass 2900. His 224 HR have him 10th on the Yankees list, but #9 and #8 are still active (A-Rod and Posada. Alex is five HR behind Posada, and I’d expect Alex to jump over Posada on that Yankees’ HR list).

A-Rod. #600* should be hit sometime in midseason. 17 away. Ok, send in your predictions for when Alex hits #600. I’ll take my stab now.  It gets done on the road, end of June, at Arizona or at the Dodgers. With 169 hits, A-Rod could reach 2700 this year. Three more steals for #300.

Cano. Needs 13 HR for 100. 125 hits for 1000. His next double is #200.  

Nick Johnson needs 11 HR for 100.

Andy Pettitte has 229 wins. 192 as a Yankee. He won’t catch Ford or Ruffing for wins by a Yankee, but if he can win 14 games like he did last year, he will pass Sam Jones,  Luis Tiant, Will White (tied with all three now), Charlie Buffinton, Tommy Bond, Whitey Ford, Waite Hoyt, Clark Griffith, David Wells, Mordecai Brown, Frank Tanana, Herb Pennock and be tied (at 243) with Juan Marichal.    

Mo. 526 saves and counting. Hoffman has 591. Mo’s ERA is 2.25.

There’s more. But those listed above are a few to chew on for now.

I see where Rex Ryan may have had good cause to flip the bird. Apparently the “flippee” (is that a word) was stalking Ryan, drunk, berating him to death and pulled a “Robbie Alomar” on him. For all that, what did the flippee expect(orate)? Rex to kiss him? I am not a Rex guy, but Rex probably should have done a “Billy,” not used one finger but all five—put together in a fist.