From the NY Post:
An industry source confirmed that on Friday, all 30 clubs received a memo from the representative for Shohei Ohtani — authorized and distributed by the commissioner’s office — asking interested clubs to answer a flurry of questions that will help determine which MLB team Ohtani, the pitcher-outfielder for the Nippon Ham Fighters, will join.
The memo, released in the name of Nez Balelo, co-head of CAA Baseball and Ohtani’s lead agent, asks each suitor to evaluate Ohtani’s talent as a pitcher and as a hitter; to explain its player development, medical training and player-performance philosophies and facilities; to describe its minor league and spring training facilities; to detail resources for Ohtani’s cultural assimilation into the team’s city; to demonstrate a vision for how Ohtani could integrate into the team’s organization; and to tell Ohtani why the team is a desirable place to play.
The deadline? As soon as possible, as per the memo.
Let’s hope the Yankees ace the test.
Also, I’ve posted this in some different places before, but if the Yankees sign Ohtani, could they go to a six-man rotation? This would enable Ohtani greater opportunity to DH on the days he doesn’t start, and Ohtani, a lefty bat, would be a plus at Yankee Stadium.
In the article, found here,
The NY Daily News suggests that it could not only help Ohtani DH, but also keep him on what has been his regular Japanese schedule of pitching once a week.
But what about the others?
First off, could it keep them fresher in September and later?
Could it help Masahiro Tanaka, whose slight UCL tear has been a ticking time bomb for a couple of years?
Could it help Luis Severino and Jordan Montgomery, both youngsters who aren’t used to pitching, say, 200 innings a year?
How about Sonny Gray, who missed a significant portion of 2016 and who has battled some arm problems?
What if CC is brought back even with Ohtani there? CC turns 38 next July and has had that knee issue…
There are rumors that the Yanks could go after 30 year old Alex Cobb, who missed all of 2015 and most of 2016 with TJ surgery. Could he benefit?
How much of a benefit would it be, and how much of a detriment in throwing off a pitcher’s rhythm?
Note Cobb is older than all of the above except for CC, and Cobb is only 30.
and as the Daily News states, In any case, adding another starter would also allow the Yankees to leave Chad Green in relief and keep their loaded bullpen intact.
So, a six-man rotation could be
CC or Cobb
Sonny Gray as your #4? Wow.
Of course, injuries happen. If someone gets hurt, you have Chance Adams, Albert Abreu, Justus Sheffield, Domingo German, Domingo Acevedo in the minors. Some aren’t on the 40-man.
As the saying goes, you never have enough pitching.
Now combine that with
Nice bullpen, nice rotation. And you still have guys like German, Heller, Holder, Cody Carroll (not on 40 man), Cessa, Gallegos, Mitchell, in case someone gets hurt.
Of course, if the Yankees land Ohtani, someone has to go from that 40-man roster.
13 pitchers, one of whom hits well enough to DH (and who, it is said, has more power than say Headley or Ellsbury….and as I mentioned above, Ohtani is a lefty bat, nice for Yankee Stadium).
The 12 position players? Sanchez, Romine, Bird, Castro, Torreyes, Didi, Headley, Gardner, Hicks, Judge, Ellsbury, and … the last one? Clint Frazier? Gleyber Torres?
and in the minors Tyler Wade, Tyler Austin, Jake Cave, Miguel Andujar, Billy McKinney, Thairo Estrada ….
A lot of things could change between now and the start of spring training. Trades, free agent signings (Ohtani? Cobb? an Alex Avila for a backup C upgrade from Romine?), a freak offseason injury (remember Aaron Boone and the pickup basketball game?)
It’ll be interesting to see how things shake out.
It’s been quiet over the Thanksgiving holiday, but between what I wrote above, not to mention the new manager search, things could get very interesting between now and Christmas.
Could the Yanks leave some very nice presents under our (the fans) tree?
Update: Times have obviously changed, with more emphasis on the bullpen than ever before, but here is a look at the 1939 Yankees, who some contend is the greatest team of all-time, even greater than the 1927, 1961 and 1998 Yankees, or for that matter, the Big Red Machine of 1976….
Just the rotation:
Red Ruffing 28 starts (and 22 complete games!)
Lefty Gomez 26 starts (and 14 CG!)
Bump Hadley 18 starts (and 8 relief appearances, 7 CG)
Atley Donald 20 starts (4 relief appearance, and 11 CG!)
Monte Pearson 20 starts (2 relief appearance, 8 CG)
Oral Hildebrand 15 starts (6 relief, 7 CG)
Steve Sundra 11 starts (13 relief, 8 CG)
Marius Russo 11 starts (10 relief, 9 CG)
8 guys, lots of CG, and for some, most of their starts were complete games.
Johnny Murphy, Marv Breuer (one game) and Spud Chandler were used only in relief. Wes Ferrell pitched in three games, all starts, one a complete game.