Tag Archives: Gray

Gray deal to Reds finalized.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks trade of Sonny Gray to the Reds is now finalized after Gray agreed to an extension with Cincinnati.

Gray and relief pitcher Reiver Sanmartin go to the Reds. The Yanks get the Reds #7 prospect, 2B/C Shed Long, and a competitive balance pick in the 2019 draft, someone between rounds 1 and 2.

Long won’t be Long with the Yankees, however. The NY Post states that the Yanks are flipping Long to the Mariners for minor league CF Josh Stowers, who was the Mariners’ 2nd round pick in 2018.

While Long would have had to be added to the 40-man roster, such is not the case with Stowers. (per MLB.com).

The trade(s) haven’t been confirmed as of yet, per MLB.com, but various sources now say it’s a done deal.

The Reds get Gray for $7.5MM this year (what he agreed to with the Yankees) and got a 3-yr. extension 2020-2022 for him for $30.5MM. There is a club option for 2023 for $12 MM.

Nice to get raises for a job not well done, right?

The trade reunites Gray with his pitching coach at Vanderbilt, Derek Johnson.

Ok, the particulars:

Gray, 29, RHP, was 11-9, 4.90 (ERA+ 89) for the Yanks in 2018. The problem was (30 games, 23 starts) he was 3.17 on the road, 6.98 at home. So there is hope for the Reds of a rebound. Maybe it was an “I cannot handle NY” kind of thing.

Gray was 4-7, 3.72 in 2017 after the Yanks acquired him in midseason. So his total time with the Yanks came out to 15-16, 4.51 (ERA+ 98, 100 being average).

He is 59-52, 3.66 (ERA+ 110) in his MLB career, which gives a 162 g. average of 13-12, 3.66. Going to a small market and to the NL could really help him. Gray was an All-Star and finished 3rd in the CYA voting in 2015.

Sanmartin 22, is a LHP who pitched in 4 levels in 2018, from Staten Island summer league right up to AA Trenton. His combined record was 5-7, 2.81 in 10 starts and 3 relief appearances. With Texas in 2017, in A ball, he was 7-2, 2.45 in 11 starts and 3 relief appearances.

Long is a lefty hitter, a 2B who has also caught some in the minors. He is 23 and in AA last year, hit .261-12-56 with 19 SB. In 2017, between High A and AA, he hit .281-16-50. Has a little pop for a 5’8″ 184 lb. guy.

Stowers turns 22 in February. A righty bat (I know, another RIGHTY bat, Yankees?) he played 58 games in low A in 2018, hitting .260-5-28 with 20 SB.




Yanks close to trading Gray to Reds

Yankee Stadium Frieze

It is not official yet, but it appears like the Yanks are close to trading Sonny Gray to the Reds for minor league 2B/C Shed Long (a LEFTY hitter btw) a draft pick and a lesser prospect.

I’ll have more, especially some info on Long when the deal does become official.


Mo still at 100% but why no love for Andy?

With the baseball HOF votes from writers that are known, Mariano Rivera is still tracking at 100%, meaning he COULD become the first unanimous selection ever. About 45% of the vote is known, and so far Mo is a unanimous choice.

But…. Andy Pettitte is only tracking at 6.5%. To stay ON the ballot, a player must receive 5%.

Why no love for Andy?

256 wins. Granted the ERA is high at 3.85 but being the steroids era and the ballpark he pitched in, his ERA+  is 117, 17% above league average.

He was 19-11 in the postseason. No one pitched more postseason innings (granted it is a different era, Whitey Ford never had wild card games, Division Series, ALCS to go through) but Andy Pettitte was a big game pitcher, going 19-11, 3.81 in the postseason, and was the ALCS MVP in 2001.

He started 44 postseason games. In half of them, he was still pitching in the seventh inning, and allowed 2 runs or less in those games. Half of his starts. In about 1/3 of those postseason starts, he allowed 1 run of fewer. Think about that.

Never-mind Grahame Lloyd, Ramiro Mendoza, Flash Gordon, Mike Stanton or Mariano Rivera or others. Pettitte was still on the mound in that seventh inning.


Per MLB’s Brian Kenny:


A 3x All-Star, 5x WS Champ. Pettitte also pitched in 3 WS that his teams lost (2001 and 2003 Yankees, 2005 Astros).

Yes, there is the allegations of HGH usage which Andy didn’t use all the time, but he admitted to using to get over an injury. A mistake, but if he only used it that once ….

As opposed to people (like Clemens) who it is said, used it ALL the time late in their careers. But Clemens, along with Barry Bonds  (another steroids cheat), is running at over 70%. Both Clemens and Bonds are close to that 75% threshold, and Manny Ramirez, who was suspended 2x and caught 3x (he retired after being caught the third time) is also running far above Pettitte, who, as we know was NOT a constant abuser as Clemens, Bonds and Manny appear to be.

One writer and MLB member, who I despise, voted for Bonds, Clemens and Manny, but not for Pettitte.

Sigh. I wonder if he cheated to get HIS job.

Pettitte’s character isn’t a question. Unlike some other guys, Andy is one of the nicest guys you would ever want to meet.

A staple of 5 WS Championship teams. Appeared in 8 WS. It seemed like every time you looked up, you saw Andy pitching a postseason game (and don’t get me started on the HOF qualifications of the Big 3—-Reynolds, Raschi and Lopat who are also overlooked).

If Andy is being given the shaft because of PED and his association with Clemens, then why is he at 6.5% and Clemens at 73.1% (75.00 or over gets you in, no rounding off).

I do want to make a very important point. This isn’t to say that I think Pettitte is or is not a Hall of Famer, just that he should be getting far more consideration than (at present) 6.5% of the vote (under 5% kicks him off the ballot).

But let’s compare Pettitte to some other pitchers. (Names at the end)

  1. MVP. 7 x CYA. 2 X Pitching Triple Crown. 11x All Star. 7x ERA title. 354 wins. 2x WS Champ. Average 162 g. season 17-9 3.12, ERA+ 143. JAWS has 3rd greatest starting pitcher ever. Postseason record 12-8, 3.75. 6x 20 game winner.   CLEMENS
    Accused of Steroid abuse.
  2. 216 wins. 6x All-star, 3X WS champ.  WS MVP, NLCS MVP. 162 game ave. 15-10, 3.46, ERA+ 127. 3x CYA runnerup. 11-2, 2.23 in the postseason. Won 20 games 3x. Considered 27th best starting pitcher ever.  SCHILLING, whose politics tick off some people.
  3. 270 wins. Average year 17-10, 3.68, ERA+ 123. 5x All Star, never won a WS title. 1x 20 game winner. Postseason record of 7-8, 3.42.  MUSSINA 29th JAWS
  4. 3x All-star, 5x WS champ. 256 wins. Average 162 game yr. 17-10, 3.85, ERA+ 117.  Postseason record 19-11, 3.81. 2x 20 game winner. Jaws ranking #90.  PETTITTE.
  5. ACTIVE. CC   162 g average 16-10, 3.70, ERA+ 117. CYA,. 6x AS, 1x WS champ. 246 wins. Jaws has at #71 all time. CC.  Postseason 10-7, 4.31, JAWS #71
  6. 243 wins. 10 x all star, 1 ERA Title. 6x  20 game winner. 162 g. ave. 18-10, 2.89, ERA+ 123. Jaws ranking #42 MARICHAL. Postseason 0-1, 1.50 (just two games).
  7. 254 wins. Average year 16-12, 3.90. 5x AS, 3x WS champ. WS MVP. Average year 16-12, 3.90, ERA+ 105. Postseason 7-4, 3.80. Jaws #163. Yup, you read that right. 163. Jack Morris.

#4 above is Pettitte.

I am not saying Andy deserves the HOF. I am saying that the 6.5% he is getting right now, which leaves him in danger of being left off the ballot, is far too low. He has numbers comparable to people already in the HOF, or those seriously being considered.

If it is the admission to limited usage of PEDS, then why the support for Clemens, who is rumored to be a constant user late in his career?

I don’t get it.

Now there is no I in TEAM, but … the greatest team I ever saw in my lifetime was the 1998 Yankees, who it seems will have only 3 HOF from that team and one is manager Joe Torre. The others, Mo and Jeter. (Yes, Tim Raines is in, but for deeds he did other than with the Yankees, for he was at the end of his career as a platoon OF in 1998 with the Yanks and I am not considering him since he was a part-timer in 1998.)

But other than Mo, Jeter (next yr. first year on ballot) and Torre:

Posada 3.8% first yr., off the ballot.
Tino 1.0% first yr., off the ballot.
Pettitte currently running at 6.5%
Bernie Williams 9.6 then 3.3%. Only on ballot 2 years.
O’Neill 2.2% One and done.
Wells 0.9% (239 career wins, 10-5, 3.17 postseason) 3x AS, 2X WS. ERA+ 108. One and done.
Cone 5x AS, 5 WS champs, 8-3. 3.80 postseason, 194 career wins, ERA+ 121. 3.9% one and done

So one of the greatest teams EVER has Posada, Tino, Bernie, O’Neill, David Wells, David Cone and now possibly Andy Pettitte where EACH of them may be off the HOF ballot in two years or less. This from a team that is one of only four teams ever to win three consecutive WS titles.

The only HOF are RIvera, Jeter, and the manager, Torre? (see what I said about Raines above).

Ok. This team won 3 in a row, 1998-2000.

The 1936-1939 Yankees have DiMaggio, Gehrig, Gomez, Ruffing, Lazzeri/Gordon (Gordon replaced Lazzeri in 1938). Dickey and McCarthy.

The 1949-1953 Yankees have Stengel, Yogi, Ford, Mantle, DiMaggio, Berra, Rizzuto, Mize (at the end of his career, part-timer). See above about Reynolds, Raschi and Lopat.

The 1972-1974 A’s have Hunter, Jackson, manager Dick Williams, Rollie Fingers. Guys like Bando, Campaneris, Rudi, Blue and Holtzman in the good but not HOF camp.

The 1927-1928 Yanks only won two in a row, but have Gehrig, Lazzeri, Hoyt, Pennock, Huggins, Combs and Ruth.

But the 1998 Yanks only have Mo, Jeter and Torre?  Really?

Ok, on to the current…

Bill Madden of the NY Daily News states that along with Robertson, Gray was the one who screwed many Yankees’ employees out of postseason shares, another reason they would like him gone.

Rumors are that the Yanks could be more enamored with Nolan Arenado than with Manny Machado. Arenado is a free agent after 2019, and appears to be going to arbitration. He wants $30MM, the Rox offer is $24MM. Now say the Rox will move him b/c they fear getting nothing for him.

If the Yanks agree with Arenado (who has won the Gold Glove each of his six years in the majors, along with a doubles title, 2 RBI titles, 3 HR titles, 2 total bases titles) to a contract extension and Arenado then does NOT hit the free agent market after 2019, could he then join ex-Rockies teammates LeMahieu, Tulo and Ottavino? Let’s say the Yanks give up Andujar, a minor league pitching prospect (Cessa or Adams, I want to keep Loaisiga and King) and Ellsbury.

You give up Ellsbury in order to have the Rox p/u a little of his salary in return for how much you have to pay Arenado.

Even if that little is 1/3 ($7MM) that helps.

Also, by getting rid of Ellsbury, you clear Clint Frazier to platoon with Brett Gardner in LF.

Just a thought.

Yanks solidify bullpen, sign Ottavino.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

If this keeps up, we’ll be singing Rocky Mountain High or Rocky Mountain Way soon.

Shortly after getting ex-Rockies Troy Tulowitzki and D.J. LeMahieu, the Yanks now get Adam Ottavino.

Now we can only hope for Nolan Arenado (LOL/ JK).

But Ottavino, who wore 0 or O with Colorado, and who could be the first Yankee to do so, is someone I really wanted them to get to replace the departed (to the Phillies) David Robertson in the bullpen.

The Yanks brought back Britton to go with Green, Betances and Chapman. Now they add Ottavino to replace D-Rob. It gives them a killer bullpen, and I didn’t even mention Holder, Tarpley, or Kahnle.

Ottavino, a NYC native, comes back home. He is a 33 year old RHP with a killer frisbee slider who will get $27MM over the next 3 years. In 2018 he was 6-4, 2.43 with 6 saves for the Rockies. ERA+ 193 and 112 K in 77 2/3 IP.

For his career, he is 17-20, 3.68, ERA+ 125. His 162 g. average is 3-4, 3.68. He had a 2.64 ERA in 2013, 3.60 in 2014, and 2.67 in 2016. 2017 wasn’t a good year, 5.06. He can have control issues.

He’s averaged 10.1 K/9 in his career and really helps give the Yanks a killer bullpen.

Consider (2018 stats)

Ottavino 6-4, 2.43 112 K in 77.2 IP
Chapman 3-0, 2.45, 32 saves, 93 K in 51.1
Betances 4-6, 2.70, 4 saves, 115 K in 66.2
Britton (as NYY) 1-0, 2.88, 21 k in 25 iP
Green 8-3, 2.50, 94 K in 75.2
Holder 1-3, 3.14  60 K in 66
Tarpley was 0-0, ERA 3.00 in 10 games, the first 10 of his MLB career.
Kahnle had a bad 2018, 2-0, 6.56, but in 2017 between the Yanks and White Sox was 2-4, 2.59 with 96 K in 62.2 IP.


The Yanks are heavy in discussions with clubs about trading Sonny Gray. It could happen soon.

Clint Frazier has been medically cleared from his concussions. The problem is, he missed most of last year and may need a full year at AAA. Of course, he is saying that he is ready to compete for a MLB job. But he has Gardner, Ellsbury, Hicks, Stanton, and Judge in front of him.

Manager Aaron Boone has been to the Dominican Republic for a few days and is encouraged by the work Miguel Andujar is doing on his defense. Boone, like Andujar, was a 3B.


Luxury vs. Necessity and the best solution?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

As the Yanks weigh various options, a take.

Re: Machado. The White sox now signed one of Machado’s friends to be on the team along with Machado’s brother in law.

Sing it with me (Sly and the Family Stone) It’s a Family Affair….. it’s a Family affair…

Family or no family, I wonder, even if the White Sox offer the most $$$ and years, whether Machado wants to go to a team that was 62-100 last year.

So, if Machado decides on the Yanks (and his wife may like the shops in NYC over Chicago), what then? What would be the best plan of attack?

For me, if Tulo proves he can handle SS again, then…

C Sanchez, 1B Voit (unless Bird can win his job back)
2B Torres SS Tulo 3B Machado DH Andujar (great D on left side of the infield)

Move Stanton back to LF, CF Hicks, RF Judge

Gardner and Ellsbury are backup OF, PR and Defensive replacements  (Frazier, who missed almost all of 2018, gets the AAA time he missed last year).

The only problem is that the lineup does not have enough lefty hitters. Yankee Stadium has always been for lefties, hitters and pitchers.

With the lineup they currently have without Machado, adding Machado is more a luxury to me than a necessity.

The greater need, to me, is to add Adam Ottavino to the bullpen. Adding him to Green, Betances, Britton and Chapman really solidifies that bullpen.

Now that CC has been cleared for baseball activities after his stent operation, the road is clear to dump Gray.


Yanks lose D-Rob to Phils

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Well, now we see if the Yanks can keep Zach Britton or if they go after Adam Ottavino.

Yesterday David Robertson left the Yanks again via the free agent route. While last time he went to the White Sox, this time he goes to join the Phillies on a 2 yr. $23MM deal with an option for a third year.

Robertson was 8-3, 3.23 for the Yanks last year with five saves. ERA+ 136. In his time with the Yanks he is 38-22, 2.75 and when he was with the White Sox 15-10, 3.28. His total career record is 53-32, 2.88 with 137 saves. 162 g. average 6-3, 2.88, 14 saves, ERA+ 147.

Still no word on getting Manny Machado or in trading away Sonny Gray.

What will Yanks infield look like in 2019?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The NY Post reports that if Troy Tulowitzki proves himself capable, and even if the Yanks do land Manny Machado, that Tulo would be at SS (and what happens when Didi comes back?) and that Machado would be at 3B (meaning what happens with Andujar?)

Would Andujar move to 1B (meaning what happens to Voit and Bird?) or would he DH (meaning Stanton to LF and Gardner joins Ellsbury as backup outfielders, with Clint Frazier apparently headed to AAA since Frazier missed most of last year with an injury.)

Now I’ve also heard that if Tulo is the SS, and they land Machado and Machado is at 3B, that Andujar could be traded for a starter (Corey Kluber?). But with a rotation currently set as Severino, Paxton, Tanaka, Happ and CC, who would go? And remember, Sonny Gray is still on this team as of now, too.

From the NY Post and Joel Sherman (who also is with the MLB Network):

The Yankees reached an agreement with Tulowitzki with the plan, if healthy, to play him at shortstop even if they end up signing Manny Machado…

Tulowitzki had looked so good in a workout — athletic and lively in the Yankees’ estimation — about half the major league teams were looking to sign him for the low-risk, high-reward possibilities.

That Tulowitzki picked the Yankees without the assurance of 500-plus plate appearances exemplifies just how motivated he is to play for them. Tulowitzki wore No. 2 with the Rockies and Blue Jays as an homage to his idol, Derek Jeter, and — at 34 — decided if not now, when would he ever be a Yankee?

Both ex-Toronto Manager John Gibbons and MLB Network’s Dan O’Dowd said they believe Tulowitzki is healthy now. Their concerns were if he could maintain his health and how quickly and to what level his offense would return. As far as defense, both said they thought it would still be special. Gibbons said Tulowitzki took infield during batting practice while the Blue Jays were in Oakland in the second half and “he looked great. I have no doubt about his defense if he is healthy.

“If he gets to it, you are freaking out. He will make the backhand play as well as anyone I’ve ever seen. His off-balanced throws will be on the money. I can’t say enough good things about him.”

As far as offense, O’Dowd said because Tulowitzki’s power is to right-center, Yankee Stadium plays to his strengths.

“It is as good a move as you can make,” Gibbons said of the Yankees’ signing of Tulowitzki. “You have almost nothing to lose and if he stays healthy, you have one of the best shortstops of all time.”

Stay tuned. What happens with the infield is bound to be interesting.