Tag Archives: Lohse

Happy New Year! Things are quiet….

As we usher in the New Year of 2013, things have been quiet in Yankeeland.

There are no hot rumors of trades or signings as we still wonder who will be the Yanks’ catcher and DH in 2013, not to mention who’ll fill out the bench.

A couple aging Hall-of-Famers are coming off major injuries (Jeter, Rivera) and another (?; steroid abuse, Alex) will miss half the year if not more because of an operation.

Meanwhile, there are a couple of free agents still available. None of the major ones really fit the Yankees needs, and with the Yanks cutting back on spending, the $$$ isn’t there for them.

Michael Bourn, Kyle Lohse and Rafael Soriano are still out there. Soriano could be a fit, only because he went 2-1, 2.26 with 42 saves in filling in for the injured Rivera last year. But Soriano probably wouldn’t want to go back to the setup role he was unhappily doing in 2011. But after a strong year, it’s interesting that he opted out and still is unsigned.

Boston has been talking to Adam LaRoche, since the Napoli deal may fall through.

Shaun Marcum and Joe Saunders are out there. So are Jose Valverde and Delmon Young.

Young is a righty bat, which the Yanks could use, and a .284 hitter. He was the ALCS MVP vs. the Yanks last year. Although his 162 g. average is .284-16-89, his OPS+ is just 98 due to a poor BB/K ratio. (27/115).

There is still Scott Hairston. There’s Thome or Berkman.

There’s …. (fill in the blank).

But it appears the Yanks are “dumpster-diving.” Who they pick up between now and the start of spring training (and it’s getting closer), who knows?

As of now, who will  be the C, DH or bench?

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate has gone up 2%… and that’s just from all the NFL coaches and GMs being fired. Black Monday indeed.



Reyes, now Pujols?

It seems as if the Boss’s ghost has bought the Marlins. After the Bell and Reyes signings, apparently the Marlins are in on Pujols—for a 10-yr. deal. They better hope Pujols actually IS 31.

In the NFL, the Bears are wise. No interest in talking to Favre, no matter what their QB troubles are.

The Twins deal P Kevin Slowey (27) to Colorado for a PTBNL. Slowey had an awful 2011, 0-8, 6.67, ERA+ 60. Career? 39-29, 4.66, ERA+ 90. He’s 20.

Fired managers and ex-players have to love ESPN. Terry Francona replaces Bobby V in the booth for ESPN—after Bobby V replaces Francona as Boston mgr.

Rumor has P Mark Buehrle down to five teams.

The Pirates are interested in signing INF Wilson Betemit (30, KC/Det. 2011, .285-8-46, OPS+ 117, career OPS+ 105, .269 b.a.) to a deal as well as bringing back OF Nate McLouth (30).  McLouth platooned with the Braves, .228-4-16 in 2011, OPS+ 89. McLouth’s best year was in the ‘burgh in 2008, when he was an All-Star, GG, and finished 27th in MVP voting with a .276-26-94 year, 23 steals and a league-leading 46 doubles. Once dealt to Atlanta in 2010, he went south….in more ways than one.

The Cards apparently have P Kyle Lohse on the block…in order to make room for someone else? Lohse did win 14, with a 3.39 ERA, for the 2011 WS Champs.

Mets moves: Trade Angel Pagan (30, .262-7-56, 32 SB, OPS+ 93 in 2011, .279, OPS+ 101 career) to SF for Andres Torres in a trade of CF. Torres hit .221-4-19, 19 SB, 82 for SF in 2011. Alsong with Torres, the Mets get Ramon Ramirez, 30, 3-3, 2.62 in 2011. ERA+ 136. The Mets also signed Jon Rauch. The big righty (6’10”, 33) was 5-4, 4.85 for Toronto in 2011 with 11 saves but an ERA+ of just 88. Career 39-31, 3.82, ERA+ 113.

The Mets also signed Frank Francisco, 32, who along with Rauch was with Toronto in 2011. Francisco was 1-4, 3.55, ERA+ 120 with 17 saves. Career 18-19, 3.72, ERA+ 124.

3/14/08 Pregame. Don’t get soft, now.

Today’s lineup:

Damon CF
Jeter SS
Matsui DH
Rodriguez 3B
Posada C
Duncan 1B
Lane RF
Ransom 2B
Gardner LF (Interesting, it appears like the Yanks are taking a GOOD, LONG LOOK AT HIM).

Hughes (4-5 innings)

Wow. I’m a bit surprised. With split squads tomorrow, I didn’t expect Shelley Duncan to play against Tampa. I figured for appearance’s sake, he would go against the Tigers. Nope. I like it, though! It proves Joe G. isn’t getting soft and maybe it’s his way of giving Joe Maddon the finger. Lots of other news, hit “Read More”. Continue reading

More signings

Noon. ESPN reports that the Phils have signed Geoff Jenkins to a 2 year deal, and that he’ll platoon with Jayson Werth in RF. I wrote about Jenkins in an earlier post.

Checking in with MLB Trade Rumors: The Phils reached an agreement with Chad Durbin to a contract yesterday. Durbin was 8-7, 4.72 (ERA+ 97) for the Tigers this past season. For his career, the 30-year-old is 25-37, 5.75 (ERA+ 82). I have a feeling Durbin won’t like CBP. The back end of the Phils’ rotation doesn’t look inspiring. After Hamels, Myers (going back into the rotation) and Kendrick (nice rookie year), the # 4 starter appears to be 45-year-old Jamie Moyer and Durbin or Adam Eaton (10-10, 6.29; ERA+ 73) for the last spot. The Phils can hit, and it looks like they may need to. They have dropped out of the bidding for Kyle Lohse, who could be Mets-bound. See the previous post on Lohse. The Phils (smartly?) don’t want to go more than three years on Lohse. As I mentioned before, Bora$$ is being his usual self, and trying to get more for someone not worth it. You have to love how someone who earned $4.25 million last year and who went 9-12, 4.62 figures they are worth a four-year deal worth $10-11 million a year. If only the real world was like that for you and me.

The Padres have signed Robert Fick and Jeff DaVanon.

MLB also quotes Hank Steinbrenner as stating that as of now the Yanks are not currently interested in Mark Prior. I guess the Yanks have learned a lesson from Jaret Wright, Carl Pavano and others with injury backgrounds.

As of now, the top FA pitcher out there appears to be Livan Hernandez. See my previous post about Livan, who has gotten progressively worse in each of his last four seasons.

Outside of Bonds and Cameron, who teams are shying away from for obvious reasons (Bonds’ age and indictment; Cameron’s suspension), the best player still on the market could be Brad Wilkerson. The 30-year-old hit .234-20-62 for the Rangers last year (OPS+ 104). A troublesome trend is Wilkerson’s walks. He walked 80 or more times each year from 2002-2005, topping 100 in 2004, but he only walked 80 times COMBINED in the past two seasons. His 162 g. average is .250-22-69 with 85 walks but 164 Ks. He can serve as a decent platoon player between the OF and 1B, but he needs to get back to being selective and cut down on the K’s a bit.

Two fading 39-year-olds are still out there if anyone wants them: Sammy Sosa (probably going back to Texas) and Mike Piazza.

Chad Jennings, who runs an SWB blog, reports that Eric Duncan and Juan Miranda will most likely be splitting time at 1b/DH for SWB this year. I have written before that I am not sold on Eric Duncan as I believe Jennings is more positive on him than I am. I would be inclined to include Duncan in a deal if it lands a Santana or Marte, but if Duncan wasn’t claimed in the Rule 5 Draft, how much in demand could he possibly be?

There are some traditions I like, and others that to me, seem hokey. The roll call by the Bleacher Creatures–classic. Some traditions by other teams, like “Sal’s Pals” for Sal Fasano when he was on the Phils, or the Cubs “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” I am still trying to figure out what the heck Ozzy Osbourne was singing that time he was at Wrigley Field. The Presidents’ Race at Washington was cool, even if it is a rip-off of the Brewers Sausage and Kielbasi race (or whatever–ask Randall Simon). The Rally Monkey was novel. The hokey things are naming something “Nation”. I mean, Red Sox Nation sounds like a Communist conspiracy out of the McCarthy era. Sweet Caroline? I don’t get it. After all, Neil Diamond was born in Brooklyn and I think having “gone Hollywood”, is most likely a Dodger fan. “Thank God I’m a Country Boy” in Baltimore? I don’t get that either. Baltimore isn’t exactly Hicksville. Don’t get me started on the “wave”, which should have died out 20 years ago. One thing I found funny was in going to Chicago a few years ago. I appreciated the White Sox “Go-Go” pregame video, and know about their Fox and Aparicio “Go-Go” history, but attributing Konerko or Thome to “Go-Go” was just hilarious. One thing about Chicago that was great though, was the best fireworks show I ever saw. They were celebrating the 40th anniversary of a Beatles concert at Old Comiskey, and had fireworks to Beatles music. Absolutely awesome.

Update 10:15 p.m. Jason Grimsley’s statement was made public, and it revealed some new names regarding HGH usage, steroids, uppers and PE drugs. Allen Watson, Geronimo Berroa, Pete Incaviglia. In addition, there is a mention of uppers usage in 2005 with his then teammates Tejada, Raffy and Sosa.

Take a Chance On Me

4 p.m. A check of the MLB site gives news that the Yanks could be looking at Mark Prior and/or Kris Benson (we’re probably looking at Anna). We’ll see. As I’ve stated before, it seems like the Yanks are linked to everyone–whether they actually are interested or not.

Both of these pitchers, along with Freddy Garcia, wouldn’t be ready until the 2008 season is already underway. Prior went 1-6, 7.21 in 2006 in nine games before requiring surgery that would knock him out for all of 2007. He went 11-7, 3.67 in 166.7 IP (188 K) in 2005. There is no question he is talented, but only once has he pitched 200 innings in a season–2003. Maybe he needs to switch to the bullpen as did Kerry Wood. He is just 27 so if he shows something, someone will take a chance on him. His lifetime record is 42-29, 3.51 (ERA+ of 123). 757 K in 657 IP is promising and you wonder how much surgery took off his stuff. If healthy, a decent gamble now that the Cubs non-tendered him. You have to wonder though, a) is he healthy b) how much he will have and c) can he ever stay healthy?

Kris Benson missed all of 2007 also. He went 11-12, 4.82 for the Orioles in 2006. Your typical “average” 4 or 5 pitcher, Benson is 68-73 in his career with a 4.34 ERA (ERA + 102). Some of that was pitching for bad Pirate teams. In getting Kris, you also get Anna, and you have to wonder what kind of distraction that would bring. Teams may shy away. Benson is more of a risk because of his age (33) and the fact that he has never won more than 12 games in a season. Prior has only done it once–in his brilliant 18-6, 2.43 season of 2003.

Garcia is 32 and coming off a season of 1-5, 5.90. His career ERA isn’t great, 4.07 (ERA+ 111) but he does have a .606 winning pct. His 117-76 career record reflects on seven seasons of pitching 200 or more innings. He has topped 15 wins in a season four times. If healthy, he seems to be the best risk, even though the younger Prior may have the greatest potential.

All three would serve as mid-season insurance for a staff and could possibly help a team who may have one of its starters go down in mid-season or that insurance could serve to provide a youth-laden staff (Yankees?) with a veteran should a youngster run into trouble.

It will be interesting to see who takes a flyer at these three.

MLB also reports that the Rockies are listening to offers for lefty set-up man Brian Fuentes. I’ll be surprised if the Yanks are not one of the teams who have checked in. Remember that as of now, the only lefties the Yanks have to put into the bullpen are Sean Henn (ugh), Kei Igawa (hoo-boy) and Chase Wright, and that is taking into account that Igawa and Wright would have to be converted from starting to relieving. The 32 year old Fuentes was 3-5, 20 saves and an ERA of 3.08 for the NL champs last year. He is 16-22, 3.53 (ERA+ 137) for his career with 85 saves. He saved at least 30 games in 2005 and 2006. He made the All-Star team in each of the past three years. Now here is a guy worth pursuing. He is lefty, which the Yanks need. He can set-up Mo, and with his closer’s experience, close out a game once in a while to give the 38 year old Rivera a rest. Put it this way, who would you trust more, Fuentes, Farnsworth(less) or Hawkins?? Fuentes also has K ability which Hawkins doesn’t. For his career, Fuentes has K’d 398 in 359.3 IP. He had 56 in 61.3 last year. He did give up 4 runs in 3.7 IP vs. Boston in the WS. His 2008 salary of $7 million may scare off some teams but would make him a perfect fit for—you guessed it–the Yankees. 

I don’t expect the Yanks to make a move on him, but Tony Clark is available. The 6’7″ Clark is known as one of the “good guys” in baseball, and did relatively well in a platoon role for the D-Backs last year, hitting .249-17-51 in only 221 at bats. You may remember that Clark was with the Yanks in 2004, and had a 3-homer game for the Yanks in August of that year up in Toronto (in a game attended by yours truly). The switch-hitting Clark is a .265 career hitter with 244 career HR (113 career OPS+). He is 35 and hit .221-16-49 in 253 at bats for the 2004 Yankees. His size presents a nice target at 1B. With Shelley Duncan, Wilson Betemit and Jason Giambi all looking like they will get 1B time, Giambi, Damon and Matsui getting DH time, and LF probably being alternated between Damon and Matsui, there appear to be enough bodies. Clark’s numbers have been shaky since 2001 (bad year/good year/bad year/good year). He can whiff a lot, but still has a lot of power and could probably still help somebody in a platoon role. Don’t expect a high average, though.

7 p.m. Gotta love that Scott Bora$$ (not…). MLB trade rumors states that he is looking for a five-year deal for Kyle Lohse. Lohse is 63-74, 4.82 (ERA+ 95) in his career. Lohse won 13 in 2002, 14 in 2003 and hasn’t hit the 10 mark for a season since, but that’s what agents are for, right? To wear the rose-colored glasses? After royally messing up the A-Rod negotiations, A-Rod isn’t speaking to Bora$$. His comments on Bora$$ last night on CBS’ 60 Minutes were quite telling. Lohse is 29, but any team giving him (32-48 in the last four years; an 8-12 average) a five-year deal is nuts.

12/18, 1:50 p.m. The MLB official site states that Benson had a great workout on Monday, with many scouts (including the Yankees) present to see it.

12/19 5 p.m. Reports are that the Giants are looking at Clark.