Tag Archives: Ross

More uncertainty as Ibanez goes back to Seattle

The Yankees need a righty-hitting OF, what with their OF now consisting of three lefty hitters in Granderson, Gardner and Ichiro. Andruw Jones, who hit less than .200 last year, signed a deal with a Japanese team. Forget Cody Ross, for he signed with Arizona. Could Melky Mesa actually get a shot?

They may need a catcher, what with the defection of Russell Martin to Pittsburgh. The only in-house options are Francisco Cervelli (probably the best hitter of the bunch, and that’s not saying much), and the better defensive catchers in Austin Romine, Bobby Wilson and Chris Stewart. Romine, 24, has a shot to win the job, but he’s only played 21 games at the AAA level.

Now there is another hole that needs to be filled. Raul Ibanez signed a one-year deal with Seattle. So now the Yanks need to find a DH. They, of course, could DH Jeter, who will be 39 next June and who is coming off that broken ankle. The problem with that is that Eduardo Nunez isn’t known for his glove. So Jeter might have to be the SS but you wonder how his range (never great to begin with) will be after the injury. So you might DH Nunez. But Nunez is good for his speed (as are Gardner and Ichiro) and not power (likewise Gardner and Ichiro), so the Bronx Bombers might all of a sudden be the Bronx Burners. Ichiro won’t, at age 39, steal as many bases as he did before.

Now the loss of Ibanez, who’ll be 41 next June, might not be too bad. The biggest problem isn’t the loss (he hit .240 with 19 HR last year, but then had a great playoff run), but in the replacement. Who will it be?

In this respect it’s like losing Martin, who despite his 21 HR hit just .211. It’s not so much the loss, as it is who will be the replacement?

The Yanks have holes to fill. For right now it’s like too many holes in the dike. Sooner or later the dike bursts and you drown.

We’ll soon see how the Yanks fill these holes.

Who’s left?

Well, two people I would have been interested in are off the market. Victorino signed with Boston and Soria with Texas.

I was thinking Victorino for the OF (younger than Ichiro, and losing Swisher… 3 GG, speed) and Soria, coming off TJ surgery as a replacement for Soriano.

Now they are not there. Meanwhile the Yanks have needs at RF (Swisher leaving), C (Martin left), 3B (Alex out 1/2 a year, Chavez a F.A.),  DH (Ibanez a F.A.) and possibly SS (will Jeter be ready for the opener after that broken ankle?).

One person out there is Cody Ross. Ross, 32 soon, hit .267-22-81, OPS+113, for Boston this year and his 162 g. ave. for his career is .262-22-83, OPS+ 107. Swisher-like, but not a switch-hitter (he hits righty). He has postseason experience, having been on the 2010 WS Champs, the Giants (and he hit .294-5-10 in that postseason, winning the NLCS MVP). You wonder if he and the Yanks could reach a deal. What’s his a$king price?

But he’d fill just one hole (RF). There are many more holes to fill.

How many holes in the dike must Cashman plug?

More off the board.

So Shane Victorino, who I would have liked for RF (to replace Swisher, and in place of the aging Ichiro) is off the board, having gone to Boston as a free agent.

It does mean that Cody Ross, who hit .267-22-81, OPS+ 113 for Boston last year is available. The righty hitter could be a match for the Yanks for RF now. For his career, the 32 (soon) year old has a 162 g. ave. of .262-22-83, OPS+ 107… numbers similar to Swisher. In the postseason, he’s .294-5-10 in 51 AB. Do the Yanks pursue Ross, now?

I also wanted Joakim Soria, in part to replace Soriano, but Soria is off to Texas.

There isn’t too much more I wanted. Of those out there I was interested in, only Jeff Keppinger makes sense. He would be a better utility man than Nix, and could platoon with Chavez at 3B until A-Rod comes back.

With Jeter’s injury (will he be ready for Opening Day?), Keppinger would be insurance there.

You wonder about Nunez. If they won’t use him in a utility role, is he trade bait?

Posada retires today.

Jorge Posada announces his retirement at a press conference at Yankee Stadium today. See Bronx Baseball Daily (link at right) for a review of Posada’s career.

Cody Ross signed with Boston. He most likely will platoon in RF. Boston still has holes to fill.

Kevin Millwood signed a minor league deal with the Mariners. Omar Vizquel signed with Toronto. Vizquel, the active leader in games, PA and AB, will be 45 in April. He has 2841 hits.

Besides Ibanez, Damon, Vlad, Matsui… forgot another DH still out there: Derrek Lee. One off the board: Wilson Betemit, who signed with Baltimore.

Ex-Phils broadcaster Andy Musser died at the age of 74.

 

2010 WS Game 3. Home cooking. Texas wins 4-2, now down 2 games to 1.

Colby Lewis went 7 2/3, and the Rangers rode the home cooking to a 4-2 win to cut the Giants lead in the Series to two games to one.

Mitch Moreland hit a three-run HR and Josh Hamilton a solo HR for the Texas runs. SF got HRs by Cody Ross and Andres Torres.

SF’s Pat Burrell took the golden sombrero.

  

SF to take on Rangers for the title.

The Giants are going to their first WS since 2002 as Juan Uribe’s 8th inning HR was the difference in the 3-2 win.

The Phils didn’t go down easy, as Ryan Howard was caught looking by Brian “the Beach Boy” Wilson with two on to end it.

And so the 1942-1944 Cardinals are still the last NL team to win three straight pennants.

So the Series comes down to a franchise making its very first trip to the Fall Classic vs. another whose last WS title came in another city 56 years ago.

Too close to call? The fact that four games are scheduled in the NL park (SF) means that Texas will have to do without the DH. Meaning what do they do with Vlad?   

NLCS MVP: Cody Ross.

Cervelli starts ALCS Game 4. Yanks lose Teix, lose game 10-3. Down 3 games to 1. Kiss season goodbye.

Here is today’s lineup. Posada sits.

 

Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Lance Berkman DH
Brett Gardner LF
Francisco Cervelli C

A.J. Burnett P

Ok. I’m pissed. I had a report all written up and lost what I wrote (damned computer). I know I need to save. But…

I will try to recapture as much as I can.

 

NLCS: Phils only get 3 hits as they are shut out 3-0. Ross another RBI. Fox s***ting bricks as they realize they may get SF/Texas WS and no NY or Philly market.

ALCS: Cano HR’s in the 2nd. 1-0 Yanks. At this point, 3 Cano HRs and a 5 run comeback are all but one of the Yankees runs.

But Berkman misses a HR by inches. An omen of things to come.

AJ gives up two in the 3rd as only AJ can. Walk, WP, HBP, sac. Groundout and infield hit. No balls out of the infield. 2 runs. What have I been saying about too many free bases he gives up?

Jeter triples, Granderson singles. Tie game. Kudos to Jeter, who hustled out of the box. Others think the ball is gone, watch it thinking that it is a HR and are on second. Then they don’t score on Granderson’s hit. But another omen? Jeter missed a HR by maybe two feet.  

In the fourth, the Yanks are tied 2-2, but I feel that the Yanks lost the game…and the season….starting here. A-Rod HBP. Cano singles.

You have Swisher up. You haven’t been scoring runs. Swisher at this point was 4 for 41 vs. Texas pitching all year. You need runs…badly. 

Swisher strikes out. The Yankees play for the three-run HR again instead of playing littleball. No bunt. They do get a run on a Gardner forceout, but…

I am sick of no aggressiveness from this team. Bunt the runners over. Especially from someone who isn’t hitting in this ALCS and who hasn’t hit Texas pitching all year.

In the fifth, Teix, 0 for the ALCS, grounds into a force but appears to pull a hammy in trying to beat out the DP. There were 1st and 2nd, no out. Now Alex. He GIDP. Nothing. Again.

Sixth. A.J. has given you five. Just two runs. More than you thought and better than you thought. Hit, force, flyout. Here the season gets away.

For God knows what reason, Girardi calls an intentional walk to Murphy to face Molina. If such is the case, A.J. went 5 2/3. Just bring in Logan.

A.J. vs. Molina. Are you that confident there? Why not just bring in Robertson or Joba if you don’t want A.J. to face Murphy, why have him face Molina?

Damned “matchups.”

Since when did A.J., who didn’t pitch from October 2nd to today (19 days), and who was 1-7, 6.61 in his last 12 starts, deserve a long leash?

Molina hits a 3-run HR. For all extensive purposes, that appears to have ended the Yankees season. 5-3 Texas.

A.J. got the last out. 6 IP, 5 R, 6 H, 3 walks and 4 K. It could have been 5 2/3, 2 R, 5 H, 2 walks and 4 k if you brought someone in (Logan?) to pitch to Murphy.

The 7th. Robertson, who COULD have faced Molina. But no. Robertson gets the first two guys out. Readers of this blog for years know that I NEVER change a rhythm of a game when it is good. It’s like going from Led Zep to a polka in mid-beat. Robertson, who sucked the night before, got two guys out. Let him get the third! Nope. NOW he brings in Logan for Hamilton. HR. 6-3. Now Joba. Hit, walk, single. 7-3.

Doesn’t take Burnett out after 5 2/3. Pulls Robertson after D-Rob gets two guys. Not Girardi’s finest moment.

Logan had the one batter. HR. The lack of another lefty in the bullpen hurt the Yankees. Logan’s ALCS ERA? 27.00. Joba went 1 1/3, 1 R.

In the 8th, the Rangers loaded the bases all on walks. Swisher pops up. What an awful job vs. Texas this year. 4 for 44? (yanks 2 for 13 with RISP tonight). 1 for 16 in the ALCS. Berkman grounds out.

Mitre comes in. Hamilton HR, his 4th of the ALCS (MVP?). Cruz a 2-run HR. Meat Tray with the Meat Balls. 10-3.

Yes, the Yanks won game 5 of the 1958 WS at home and the last two on the road. Yes, Wilson, Lewis and Lee aren’t Burdette, Spahn and Burdette again. Yes, in 1958 the Yanks came back from 3-1. Yes, it’s CC, Phil and Andy.

But this team is dead. If not for a 5-run 8th in game 1, they’d have been swept.

Teix is most likely done for 2010 with a pulled hammy. 0 for the ALCS. Alex .133 in the ALCS. Swisher .067. Other than the 5-run comeback and 3 solo HR by Cano, this team has scored only three other runs in four games.

CC may give a good outing. But then it’s back to Texas. Hughes in 6? Question mark. If you somehow force a 7, there’s Lee.

But they aren’t hitting. If this was tennis, the score would read 6-5, 2-7, 0-8 and 3-10. The pitching has given up 30 runs in 4 games. Take away the 5-run comeback inning and Cano’s 3 solo HR and you don’t have much.

I hate to say it, but 2010 is thisclose to over.       

             

 

NLCS. Giants go up 1-0.

LIncecum vs. Halladay. Good pitcher’s duel.

Each gave up 2 HR. Lincecum to Ruiz (solo) and Werth (2-run jack) for all 3 of Philly’s runs.

Halladay gave up two solo blasts to Cody Ross, but also a couple other runs. Ex-Phillie Pat Burrell had a big double for an RBI.

4-3 Giants, with Brian “the Beach Boy” Wilson getting the save.  

For those thinking a Yanks=Phils cakewalk to the WS, think again.    

Not a no-hitter, but Lincecum is masterful nonetheless.

For those of us on the East Coast who had to go to bed, the Giants won game 1 of their NLDS matchup vs. the Braves. 1-0.

Tim Lincecum, didn’t pitch a no-hitter as Roy Halladay did, but he was masterful nonetheless. A complete-game two-hit shutout with 14 Ks. Just one walk.

Cody Ross drove in the only run of the game on a two-out single in the 4th on a ball that perhaps Omar Infante, who was playing third for Atlanta, should have had. But without Chipper and Prado, the Braves are shorthanded. 

A bad day for the umpires, as a controversial call led to the run on a SB attempt. This after the check-swing call in Tampa helped lead to a three-run HR, and an apparent strike three to Lance Berkman in Minnesota led to a double and two runs there. Meanwhile, on the replay issue, Bud Selig is still back in the Stone Age.

 

  

Minor moves as we wait for the Winter Meetings to Begin.

As I wrote yesterday, Russell Branyan went to the Mariners. Branyan is known for his hr, low ba, and high # of strikeouts. .250-12-20 last year in 132 AB for the Brewers. 12 HR, nice. 42 K, not nice. All or nothing. He is a .230 hitter whose 162 g. ave is .230-28-68 with 169 K, OPS+ 109. Which explains why the soon-to-be 33 year old has never received 400 AB in a season.

Bobby Howry has signed on with SF. Howry, 35, righty reliever, was 7-5, 5.35 for the Cubs in 2008. 1 save, ERA+ 84. For his career, he is 42-43, 3.68, ERA+ 125.

Yankee OF (10 for 40 this year, 7 for 8 in sb) Justin Christian is playing winter ball in Mexico, and not doing badly. .294-3-17 in 143 AB, 12 SB in 13 attempts.

I read recently where Freddy Garcia’s comeback has hit a bump as he has more arm trouble.

Dave Ross is rumored to be going to Atlanta to be their backup C. Ross only hit .225-3-13 in 142 AB (Cin/Bos) in 2008 but had 21 and 17 HR respectively for the Reds in 2006 and 2007.

For the latest, check out MLB Trade Rumors.
With the winter meetings starting up next week, it’s like a lull right now…before the storm?

An add-on before heading to work (swing shift Th. and Fridays, then a short turnaround and reg. shift Sats.): Auburn is looking for a new football coach now that Tommy Tuberville is gone. I was never a fan of Pat “Tie” Dye. I always thought the biggest mistake they made was in forcing Terry Bowden out.