Category Archives: Offseason Moves

Pitchers, 2019 S.T. schedule and 2020 AAA All-Star Game.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Sorry, was very busy at work with a lot of overtime and have been sick (to the point where I have very little voice left) but catching up…

Nathan Eovaldi won’t be coming back to the Yankees. The free agent re-signed with Boston on a 4-yr., $67MM deal.

Cleveland extended Carlos Carrasco for 4 years, but Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer may be had in a trade. Mike Clevenger is very cost effective for the Indians, so he may not be available.

Hyun-Jin Ryu re-signed with the Dodgers, one yr. $17.9 MM. Pitched well (1.97 ERA for them in 2018) but the lefty missed 1/2 the season.

Arizona may be looking to unload Zack Greinke’s salary in a deal, and the Giants may want to do the same with Madison Bumgarner.

But you wonder what the Yanks would have to give up in a deal. Miguel Andujar?

The Yanks are still looking to trade Sonny Gray and would like another starter to join Severino, Paxton, Tanaka and CC in the rotation. Hopefully a #3 or better.

Some free agents available are Happ, Lynn, Keuchel, Kikuchi,  Charlie Morton, Gio Gonzalez, Wade Miley…. so you can see outside of Happ and possibly Keuchel (who is up and down and slipping) a dropoff.

Apparently the Yanks didn’t even make an offer to Corbin. They apparently told him they were comfortable with $17-$20MM per year for 4-5 years and when Corbin said he was looking for Yu Darvish $$$ (and he eventually got 6 yrs at $23.5MM per from Washington), the Yanks basically said good luck.

The AAA All-Star Game will be hosted by the Yanks’ AAA club in Moosic, PA (Scranton/Wilkes Barre, or as is usually abbreviated, SWB).

Good video recently on the YES network showing how Luis Severino was tipping pitches at the end of last year. Apparently Boston picked up on it (hence Sevy’s poor outing in Game 3 of the ALDS) but the A’s didn’t (or else maybe Oakland wins the Wild Card game). It may also explain his pedestrian second half.

The Yanks announced their 2019 spring training schedule. Pitchers report Feb. 13, first workout the next day. Position players report Feb. 18 with the first full-squad workout the following day. The first spring training game will be Feb. 23 vs. you-guessed-it, Boston.

Sad to read about a failed car robbery that resulted in the deaths of two players (one being Luis Valbeuna) in Venezuela. You fear for the players from Venezuela and their safety, like Gleyber Torres. Maybe (hopefully?) Gleyber can just come and stay here in the U.S. instead of being subject to the B.S. going on in Venezuela.

 

 

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Yanks lose out on Corbin to Nationals.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

In the end, it didn’t matter that Patrick Corbin grew up a Yankees fan, or that his family, all Yankees fans, were hoping he’d sign with them (his brother apparently urged Corbin to sign with the Yanks while giving the best man speech at Corbin’s wedding). It didn’t matter that Corbin idolized Andy Pettitte or that maybe Ron Guidry could help Corbin refine his slider during some spring training tutoring.

It all came down to dollars and years. The Yanks offered 5 years and $100MM, and wouldn’t budge. Corbin chose the Nationals and 6 years, $140MM. So much for fulfilling your childhood dream of playing for your favorite team. Corbin chose the extra year and more $$. He joins Scherzer and Strasberg to give the Nats a formidable trio. Corbin also spurned the Phils, instead going to their NL East rival.

The Yanks now look to grab someone else. They could now bring back 36 yr. old J.A. Happ on maybe a two or three year deal (probably have to go three), look to Dallas Keuchel, or maybe Yusei Kikuchi of Japan (although a Japanese lefty still gives me Kei Igawa nightmares). If not a lefty, they could look at bringing back to NY Nathan Eovaldi or Lance Lynn. Or look into a trade with maybe the Indians for Kluber or Carrasco or see what Bumgarner of the Giants would cost. Other options exist, also.

But the #1 target, Corbin, is now off the board. Apparently, to borrow a NY Post headline from today, the Yanks are drawing their line in the sand and aren’t crossing it.

In other Yankees news, there are rumors of the Yanks moving Sonny Gray to the Brewers. No word on what the return could be.

The winter meetings start Sunday in Las Vegas. We’ll see what deals go down then, if not before.

 

 

Is trade of Torreyes a vote of confidence in Tyler Wade?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

As I am at home sick without much of a voice (useless when you work on the phones in a call center), a blog post:

EliteSportsNY.com has an interesting article on Tyler Wade, suggesting that the trade of Torreyes may be a vote of confidence in Wade as the utility infielder.

It does give Wade the opportunity to run with it. Wade, however, hasn’t done anything in the majors in his limited time there. He is only 24, but is a lefty bat on a righty-heavy team. He also offers speed that the Yankees haven’t been using too much of, especially with Gardner slowing down. The Yanks were 12th in the AL in SB in 2018 with 63, with the team leader being Gardner with 16. Hicks had 11, and Didi, who’ll miss most of the 2019 season, had 10.

Wade needs to hit better. In the majors, he has been overmatched so far. In 124 MLB at bats, he is hitting .161-1-7, OPS+ 25. Terrible.

In 176 AAA games, Wade has hit .282-11-58 with 37 steals.

So maybe this trade of Torreyes is a vote of confidence for Wade, who can play all three OF positions as well as 2B, 3B and SS. It’s an opportunity.

Now Wade has to take advantage of it.

….. and I now have to return to trying to get my health and voice back ….

Yanks trade Torreyes to Cubs, to meet with Corbin today.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks on Wednesday traded infielder Ronald Torreyes to the Cubs in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations.

The Yanks will meet with free agent prize LHP Patrick Corbin today. Corbin met with the Phillies Tuesday and Washington on Wednesday.

As far as the Robbie Cano rumors, I have nothing to say on that unless it becomes fact…. and right now, even though Seattle may be shopping the ex-Yankee, there is nothing to go by.

 

 

Yanks claim pitcher, DFA Torreyes

Yankee Stadium Frieze

From the NY Post:

The Yankees announced they designated Ronald Torreyes for assignment on Monday to make room on the 40-man roster for right-hander Parker Bridwell, who they claimed off waivers from the Angels.

Bridwell is a RHP, 27, and low cost, high reward. In 2017, he started 20 games for the Angels, relieved in one more, and was 10-3 with a 3.64 ERA (ERA+ 117). He was hurt for most of 2018, pitched in just five games, and was an awful 1-0 with a 17.55 ERA. The Yanks are hoping a healthy Bridwell can get back to 2017 form. For his career, Bridwell is 11-3, 4.60 (ERA+ 93) in 21 starts, 7 relief appearances.

To make room for Bridwell, the Yankees designated for assignment popular utility infielder Ronald Torreyes. A bit of a surprise move. Torreyes, 26, hit .280-0-7 in 100 at bats for the Yanks in 2018 (OPS+ 78). The diminutive Torreyes, in three years with the Yanks, 2016-2018, hit .281-4-55 in 570 at bats. (OPS+ 80). Not much power because of his small size, but the one knock against him (besides lack of power) would be that he rarely walked. In 607 plate appearances, just 23 walks. But a popular, versatile player, decent batting average, loved by the fans and in the clubhouse. He’ll be missed.

 

 

Corbin AND Happ? Six-man rotation?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Interesting comment.

MLB Network Radio’s Steve Phillips thinks Cashman could sign at least two more pitchers:

“Paxton is somewhat unpredictable with his health. In fact he is predictable, in that he’s never made more than 28 starts in a season. So you have to think he’s gonna have some time that he needs to be backed off. And Sabathia, too. He’s probably in that 25-to-28-start range as well. We saw Severino run out of gas late, right? Some questions about whether he in August was dinged up a bit. Tanaka, another year of wear and tear on that elbow. I could see them getting Happ AND Corbin. That they could get both of those guys and try to make that fit and make it work. And they could manage it like the Dodgers have done, using that 10-day DL to their advantage.”

Signing both would give the Yanks six starters: Severino, Corbin, Tanaka, Paxton, Happ and CC.

Four lefties, never bad at Yankee Stadium.

6 x 27 starts each equals, you guessed it, 162.

I don’t see it happening, but just to think about it,

Severino, 24, 32 starts last year, but seemed to peter out down the stretch.
Corbin, 29, had 33 starts.
Tanaka, 29, 27 starts on the nose, and of course he has been battling that ligament issue for a while now.
Paxton, 30, 28 starts, most of his career, has battled injuries the past few years.
Happ, 36, had 31 starts.
CC 38, 39 next July, had 29 starts last year, and that knee will still be a concern in his final season.

Interesting concept, don’t see it happening, but if the Yanks COULD get both Corbin and Happ…. nice rotation.

Meanwhile, the Yanks won 100 last year with

Domingo German 14 starts (AAA in 2019? MLB as a middle relief/spot starter?)
Sonny Gray 23 starts (Yanks to trade him away soon)
Lance Lynn 9 starts (Free agent who most likely is gone)
Luis Cessa 5 starts (AAA?)
Jordan Montgomery 6 starts (will miss all or most of 2019, TJ surgery)
Jonathan Loaisiga 4 starts (AAA? emergency starter?)
Chance Adams 1 start (AAA?)

Ok, those 7 combined for 62 starts of the 162 games (and another 34 relief appearances). A combined record of 21-22, 374.66 IP, ERA 4.95. That is like the equivalent of two starters each giving you 10-11, 4.95 and 182 innings each. Not good enough.

I like Loiasiga, 23. Others will be gone (Gray, Lynn) or unavailable (Montgomery). But getting more starts out of the established starters, and keeping them healthy, is important.

And by established starters, that means the newly acquired Paxton as well as one or TWO other established starters.

So maybe Phillips is on to something. Who knows? Worth a look.

 

 

 

 

 

Yanks make minor deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

From the NY Post:

The Yankees acquired outfielder Tim Locastro from the Dodgers on Wednesday for minor league right-hander Drew Finley and $75,000.

The 26-year-old Locastro made his big-league debut with the Dodgers in 2017, appearing in three games, and hit .182 (2 for 11) this year with one double and four steals in 18 games, including three starts in center field. He batted .286 with 23 doubles, four homers, 29 RBIs and 19 steals in the minors this year, mostly at Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Locastro is a native of Auburn, New York, and played at Ithaca College.

Finley, 22, spent the past three seasons with the Class A Staten Island Yankees and was 2-4 with a 7.24 ERA this year in one start and 15 relief appearances.

Locastro has played in only 21 MLB games, going 2 for 12 (.167) with 5 SB. A .292 hitter in the minors, it appears he has little power, about 7 HR, 50 HR per year if about 120 games, but has some speed, about 40 SB a year if at that pace. Bats righty.  Mostly 2B, CF and SS.  Put on the 40 man, now full. Basically minor league depth. Of course, with future moves and free agent signings, that 40 man will be very flexible this offseason.