Category Archives: Offseason Moves

Despite the shutdown, a few moves.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Despite the shutdown of baseball (and everything) because of the coronavirus, the Yankees did make a few moves on what was supposed to be Opening Day.

  • Optioned INF Thairo Estrada, RHP Ben Heller and RHP Michael King to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
  • Optioned RHP Deivi García to Double-A Trenton.

Makes you wonder if the season DID start today, would Loaisiga have been the #5 behind Cole, Tanaka, Happ, and Montgomery?

Baker pleading for the A*trori*k* to be protected.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Dusty Baker is in a tough situation. He has to protect players he didn’t manage when those players cheated in the past few years. Now he is begging MLB to help protect them.

One thing you learn at an early age. Respect isn’t given, it is earned. And once lost, you have to work two or three times as hard to re-earn it.

I don’t advocate beanballs, but if some pitcher decides to fire a pitch at some Astro hitters’ butt or plunk him in the ribs, I would not mind that at all.

Put it this way. Houston is damned lucky. Imagine if they were facing a lawsuit because of a hitter— knowing what pitch was coming— hitting a line drive that hit a pitcher in the head.

So looking at it THAT way, I have no problem with some pitchers looking for retaliation. But once that pitch is thrown, then warnings have to be given out so that the game doesn’t get out of hand.

But Houston, you asked for it. And some of your comments defending yourselves are flat out ridiculous, like the little kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

Meanwhile, a couple of Little League organizations have removed the name Astros from their league because they don’t want kids associated with a name now synonymous with cheating. They want kids doing things the right way.

I do like this, from Mike Vaccaro’s NY Post column:

Dick Schlott: Were the umpires deaf during the Astros games? It is incumbent on the umpire crews to see and hear what is going on, including strange noises coming out of a dugout!
Vac: And to think, all these years, people thought you could only make fun of umpires being blind, not deaf.


Looking at pictures of Yankees’ C Gary Sanchez in spring training, it looks like he lost a good deal of weight. Looks trim and chiseled and hopefully more mobile behind the plate. Hopefully it helps him stay off the DL more often.


Another minor signing: Yanks sign Chad Bettis RHP, 31 in April. Bettis went 1-6, 6.08 in 39 games for Colorado in 2019 (3 starts). ERA+ 86. He is 31-31 in his career with an ERA of 5.12 (ERA+ 93). His best years were in 2016 when he went 14-8, 4.79, ERA+ 101 in 32 starts, and the year before when in 20 starts he went 8-6, 4.23, ERA+ 110. His 162 game average is 8-8, 5.12, ERA+ 93, 24 starts, 20 more appearances in relief.

No offense to Bettis, but it appears to be a depth signing. Not much to get excited about. Granted Colorado doesn’t help his numbers, but…

Yanks make minor signing; Maybin goes to Detroit.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Tony Zych is last in the baseball encyclopedia, and now is signed by the Yankees to a minor league deal.

Zych had thoracic surgery in November 2018, and hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2017. While with Seattle from 2015-2017, he got into 70 games, starting one, and was 7-3 with a 2.72 ERA (ERA+ 151) with one save.

The RHP is 29.


Cameron Maybin, who did so well as a sub for the Yanks last year, has signed a one-year deal with the Tigers for $1.5MM. Maybin hit .285-11-32 for the Yanks in 82 games last year. OPS+ 127.  He hit a postseason HR against the Twins in the ALDS.

Paxton to be out until early June after spinal surgery.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Well, now we know one reason why J.A. Happ wasn’t traded.

From mlb.com:

Paxton’s season debut will be delayed after the Yankees announced on Wednesday that the left-hander underwent a microscopic lumbar discectomy with removal of a peridiscal cyst.

The surgery was performed by Dr. Andrew Dossett in Dallas, and the club said that Paxton’s approximate timeline to return to Major League action is three to four months.

General manager Brian Cashman said that Paxton first reported the injury issue in September, receiving treatment after his final regular-season start on Sept. 27 against the Rangers in Arlington.

Paxton received an injection, and Cashman said the hurler’s recovery was part of the reason he was pushed back to start Game 2 of the American League Championship Series against the Astros, with the Game 1 nod going to Masahiro Tanaka.

Following the season, Cashman said multiple doctors recommended a conservative treatment program that did not require surgery. Paxton contacted the Yanks about four to six weeks ago to report a recurrence of the discomfort, at which time the conservative protocol was again recommended.

So with this, Tanaka moves to #3 (with Cole 1 and Severino 2) and Happ moves up to 4. It opens #5 up for Jordan Montgomery, or perhaps, Luis Cessa, Jonathan Loaisiga, Mike King or even maybe Clarke Schmidt or Deivi Garcia.

Not only that, it means that both Paxton and Domingo German would be scheduled to come back at about the same time.


Meanwhile big news as Boston trades Mookie Betts and David Price to the Dodgers. The Dodgers make two moves, sending Kenta Maeda to the Twins and Joc Pederson to the Angels.

Yankees/Dodgers WS?

Yanks hedging their bets, sign another veteran to compete for backup C.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Ok. We know the Yankees would like for Kyle Higashioka to win the backup C job, especially since he is out of options.

That doesn’t mean the Yanks are giving it to him or that the Yanks won’t have options if he can’t cut it, or that there won’t be competition in spring training.

Already the Yanks have signed Erik Kratz and Chris Iannetta to minor league deals and today they signed another veteran C to a minor league deal—Josh Thole.

Thole, 33, is a lefty bat, as opposed to the other three. He hasn’t played in the majors since 2016. He was with the Mets 2009-2012, Toronto 2013-2016. He doesn’t have much pop, as his 162 game average is .242-3-38, OPS+ 73.

But more experienced MLB insurance in case Higashioka can’t cut it.

Yanks bring back Lyons on minor deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yankees have re-signed LHP Tyler Lyons to a minor league deal.

Lyons split 2019 between the Pirates and Yankees, going 1-2, 6.39 with an ERA+ of 72 in 14 games.

With the Yankees, he was 0-1, 4.15 in 11 games. ERA+ 111.

Lyons, who will be 32 next month, has a career record of 13-12, 4.20, ERA+ 95 with 3 saves. He has pitched for St. Louis (2013-2018), Pittsburgh (2019) and the Yankees (2019).

He got into two postseason games with the Yankees last year, going 0-0, 0.00 in a total of 1 2/3 IP.

 

Yanks make a minor signing. Thoughts on comparing players.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks made a minor signing on Wednesday, signing lefty reliever Luis Avilan to a minor league deal.

Avilan, 30, pitched for the Mets in 2019, going 4-0 but with a 5.06 ERA (ERA+ 81). Not so good.

Avilan has pitched for the Braves (2012-2015), Dodgers (2015-2017), White Sox (2018), Phillies (2018) and Mets (2019).

His MLB record is 23-10, 3.28, ERA+ 121 so 2019 was a really off, bad year for him.

His 162 game average is 4-2, 3.28, ERA+ 121. He is a lefty specialist (averaging 68 appearances a year but only 52 IP per year) so how these new rules would affect him would be interesting.

He has pitched in 11 postseason games, going 0-0, 0.00 in 7 2/3 IP. Nice.

Not a bad signing on a minor league deal. Good track record, hoping for a bounce back season.


Some people comparing Derek Jeter to other greats miss the point. You cannot compare across positions. If you are going to compare Jeter to anyone, it has to be against a Honus Wagner, Cal Ripken, A-Rod (when A-Rod was a SS), Nomar, Ernie Banks (as a SS), Nomar, etc.

You can’t compare Jeter to  Griffey, Mays, Aaron, Musial, Mantle, DiMaggio, etc.

Really. You have to compare him to other SS. You can’t compare a SS to a CF.

Do you really want to compare HOF credentials Rizzuto vs. DiMaggio?

Ozzie Smith vs. Pujols?

Luis Aparicio vs. Mickey Mantle?

Ridiculous.

I wish people would stop saying  “Jeter isn’t Mays or Aaron.”

Of course not. Jeter was a SS.

Stop comparing SS against OF.

Make similar comparisons. Like Jeter vs. Cal Ripken, Miguel Tejada, etc.