The Granderson deal was finalized today. I do wonder how it impacts four players: obviously Melky and Gardner (although I wouldn’t necessarily pencil Granderson into CF yet…maybe he is the one who goes to LF?) but also Matsui and Damon.
Update: I now read where Cash states that Granderson is CF, which makes you further wonder about Melky and Brett the Road Runner. Are they moving from 8 to 7 should JD not return? Anyway, it’s a long way to the start of S.T. (and to Tipperary). Let’s see how things shake out and what else Cashman has up his sleeve.
It seems like now the Yanks have the leverage to offer Damon and Matsui what they want to offer them and not the other way around. It may be that both get the same offer and whoever takes it first is the one who comes back (and DHs, presumably) with the other one being gone. I would think—because he can still fill in outfield-wise—that Damon is preferred, but Damon, maybe moreso than Matsui, will want the multi-year deal that the Yankees will refuse to give. Boras, Damon’s agent, is looking at four years and pushing that JD could get his 3000th hit at the end of it. He is 575 away, meaning four years of 144 hits per year. He had 155 last year. Hmm…at 36, does he have enough in the tank to do it?
Matsui’s agent, Arn Tellem, seemingly is on better terms with the Yankees. The problem with Matsui is clogging up a DH spot that needs to be free for Posada (38) Jeter (36 next June) and Alex (35 next July). Matsui didn’t play the field at all this year, hence the preference for Damon. But could who stays/goes come down to the agents and their demands? To who is willing to come back on only a 1-year deal (or a year and an option?) To who is more likely to take what—with the Yankees holding the hammer after obtaining Granderson—will most likely be a bit of a pay cut?
Chad Jennings said it himself over at the LoHud blog:
Cashman said the Curtis Granderson trade has not completely eliminated the possibility of bringing back both Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui, though that doesn’t seem likely and “would come at the expense of a Gardy or a Melky.”
Hmm…I do notice the quotation marks. To paraphrase Thunderclap Newman, is “something in the air?”
Also from Jennings:
it’s clear that someone who is strictly a DH ranks low on the list.
Hmm…maybe that means Matsui is gone. Could Matsui AND Damon both be history?
Cashman does want younger, faster, cheaper…and more versatility.
I should have mentioned Michael Dunn—who the Yanks refused to part with in the Granderson deal—as a replacement for Coke. The 24 year old only pitched 4 innings for the Yankees this year, going 0-0, 6.75. Control was a problem. He walked 5, K’d 5. Combined in the minors (AA/AAA) he was 4-3, 3.31 and 99 K in 73 1/3 IP. 43 walks though.
At least the front three are set. Andy Pettitte re-signed today for $11.75 M. 229 wins (192 with the Yankees) and a record 18 postseason wins in his career (Remember though, Ford and Gibson never had LDS or LCS). He certainly knows, with 5 rings, what it takes to win in NY. Good to see Andy back. One concern though, is his age—38 next June.
Cashman also wouldn’t rule out the idea of making another big trade that involves multiple prospects. “It depends on the player I’d be getting,” he said. “I would in the right circumstances. I don’t like to for good reason.”
Does that mean Halladay? Can you imagine… CC/Doc/AJ/Andy and whoever stays between Hughes/Joba? With Aceves/Gaudin long relief; goodness knows whether Mitre would go to SWB to be an emergency option.
Now if we can only dump Igawa on someone.
The Orioles made a deal for Millwood for Chris Ray and a PTBNL. Millwood will be 35 and I wonder, in that bandbox, what a fit he’ll be. But then, Texas is a homer haven also, and Millwood went 13-10, 3.67 this year. But then again (switches back and forth), his ERAs in both 2007 and 2008 were both over 5.00. 155-121, 4.02, ERA+ 109 career.
The Astros dealt for reliever Matt Lindstrom from the Marlins.
Rich Harden is said to be close to a deal with the Rangers. Harden was 9-9, 4.09 for the Cubs last year.
Randy Wolf (11-7, 3.23 with LAD in 2009, 101-85, 4.13 career, ERA+ 103) to the Brewers. They also picke Also Latroy (Sadie) Hawkins, the one-time Yankee who, after bombing with the Bombers, pitched well after being sent to Houston.