Tag Archives: Saunders

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.



game 97. Yanks rout KC 12-6. Haren to Angels.

Forget those Haren to the Yanks rumors. He goes to the Angels, and the Angels gave up Saunders to get him. Seems like AZ got a better deal than what they would have had with Joba (more on that later).

Hughes wasn’t great, but got the win to go to 12-3, 4.04. Mediocre, though. 3 R in 5 1/3. The rains came and there was a 2 1/2 hour rain delay, hence the 5 1/3.

Logan (3.63) went  1 2/3 scoreless, then Joba for the 8th.

Here it got ugly… again. A 2-run HR by Scott Podsednik, his second of the day (he had one earlier off Hughes, as did Ankiel)….I mean…Podsednik? Joba pitches 1 inning, a walk, the 2-run HR and a K. Joba’s ERA went to 5.95. Ugly and he was booed off the mound at the end of the inning.

Maybe the Yanks SHOULD have included him in the Haren deal.

Don’t get me wrong. I talked up Joba. I wrote and talked about him far before ESPN, WFAN, etc. … and in 2007, he deserved it. He was a phenom and without him the Yanks would not have made the playoffs in 2007. He was good until he got hurt in August 2008. I like Joba…the Joba that WAS. Could he get back to that? Who knows. But right now, he isn’t a starter and should NOT be the 8th inning guy. A middle reliever, mop-up man is it. Maybe he can get it back. Maybe. But maybe the Yanks should look to deal him now.

Something went wrong somewhere and I don’t just buy into the flip/flop starter/reliever or the Joba rules. But something happened after Aug. 2008 when he got hurt. He hasn’t been the same since.

Park finished, one unearned run on ANOTHER Posada error. Jorge’s D is beginning to worry me. Park ERA 5.57. Here is hoping for relief help at the deadline.

As for the bats, no HR by Alex, but two by Granderson. Teix (2 for 4, RBI, .264) is heating up. If Granderson (9 HR now, .244) is starting to (FINALLY!) heat up, look out as far as the offense.

Jeter had 3 hits 1 RBI. 2860 hits now. 13 behind Babe Ruth’s total. .278, and hopefully on the way up after threatening to go below .270.

No 600th for Alex but 2 hits, 3 RBI and a scare when he was HBP on the hand in the 8th.

Cano 2 hits, 2 RBI.

Jeter (11), Gardner (27) and Granderson (8) all had sb.

On to Cleveland. Tampa won, lead still 3 but Boston fell 8 back.



Baseball today…

Putz fans

Hmm…The Chicago White Sox signed
the Grumpy Old Men’s favorite player…

The White Sox signed J. J. Putz to a deal today. I guess he’ll soon find out if manager Ozzie Guillen is a Grumpy Old Man. Putz will be 33 to start the 2010 season and went 1-4, 5.22 for the Mets last year (his only year in NY). He was hurt and missed about half the season. He went 10-2 with 76 saves for Seattle in 2006 and 2007.

MLB.com states that the Red Sox could be looking at Beltre. Beltre is still just 30, but is coming off an off-year where he missed about 45 games. .265-8-44, OPS+ 82. That 48 HR, 121 RBI mirage of 2004 with the Dodgers I believe won’t happen again, but Beltre could replace Lowell’s d at 3b for Boston. Beltre did win GG in 2007 and 2008 and could, with Youkilis at 1B (Youkilis can also play 3b) give the Red Sox good D at the corners. The Red Sox would then hope that Beltre goes back to .270-25-90 production.

MLB.com also states the basically obvious and what we suspected. Any Yankees getting Halladay talk begins with Joba or Hughes along with Montero. Cashman, wisely, will wait and see if the price drops. The Angels have apparently offered Joe Saunders (33 wins the past two years), SS Erick Aybar (.312 in 2009) and a minor leaguer.

St. Louis made an offer to retain Matt Holiday. The Mets supposedly made offers to Jason Bay and Bengie Molina.

Checking out the NY Post:

Bargains for Cashman?
Hmm, can Cashman find anything there?

Yanks are looking for value…or the old “Bang for the Buck.” As the Post states, they can now draw lines in the sand for Damon, Matsui and/or a Holiday trade. Part of me wonders if one offer…the same offer…will be made to Damon and Matsui with a “whoever accepts it first” scenario. If Damon really wants more than a two-year deal, then he’s gone.

The Post states that if the Yankees are actually prioritizing another starter over LF, then it’s a bad omen for Damon. 575 hits from 3000, Damon’s agent, Scott Boras is going to try to get four years and that 3000th hit, but is there enough in the tank for that? The Yanks saw how Abreu’s salary dropped from 2007 (Yanks) to 2008 (Angels) and may be looking at JD with the same thing in mind.

The Post says that for now, Damon wants the same $13M he made in 2009 over at least the next three years. If so, nice to have had you, JD. Not at ages 36-38. No way. Joel Sherman writes that his suspicion is that the Yanks will offer a 1-year deal with an option at $10M…and I’d agree with that. Even more shocking could be the offer to Matsui that Sherman guess…1 year but at half that salary. Only $5M? I’d be more inclined to go higher for the WS MVP. Maybe not to $10M but that is one huge cut for a guy who still had 28 HR and 90 RBI.    

The Post states something I mentioned recently. Joba/Hughes battle for one spot in the rotation with the loser being Mo’s setup man? In such a scenario, it seems like no matter what, the Yanks’ win.

I still hear the Cameron talk and I’m not completely sold on him, but he could make sense. The Post suggests that (and Damon and Matsui would BOTH be gone if this happened) Granderson would be in LF, Cameron in CF and Melky in RF with Swisher DHing. Cameron is a free agent. Some reasons why I’m not sold…Cameron will turn 37 next month and you already have in Granderson a guy who whiffs a lot (141, 141, 174 seasons). Cameron whiffed 156 times last year and has had eight seasons of 140 or more. Between he and Granderson, Yankee Stadium could have air conditioning in an outdoor stadium. .250-24-70 in 2009 for the Brewers. The .250 was dead on Cameron’s career average. I can see the superb defensive OF that could develop, but Cameron’s BA and whiffs scare me. The whiffs—when added to Granderson’s—really concern me.

Marlon Byrd’s name also came up in the Post. Byrd is 32 and hit .283-20-89 in 2009 for Texas. It was a career high in HR and RBI for Byrd, who actually projects out to slightly better than Melky-type numbers.   (Byrd 162 g. average .279-12-69 8 SB, OPS+99; Melky (who is 25) has a 162 g. average of .269-10-65, 13 SB but an OPS+ of just 88).   

Cashman has suggested Miranda in the DH role and although Miranda was decent at SWB (.290-19-82 in 122 games in 2009, .287-12-52 in 99 games in 2008) and 26 next April, you wonder. The lefty hitter is 7 for 19 in his MLB career, 1 HR but 8 strikeouts. Could he handle it, or is Cashman blowing smoke like when he said that he was comfortable with Bubba Crosby as his starting CF going into the 2006 season? You have to wonder if it’s just a Miranda Act (sorry, had to write it)… 

Speaking of a Crosby and the Pirates…

Der Bingle
no, not that Crosby, even though
he had a Pirates connection…

Bobby Crosby signed with the Buccos. He hit .223-6-29 for the A’s last year. What year was it, 2008? when Peter Gammons (who is leaving ESPN for MLB network, BTW) predicted Bobby Crosby for MVP? What a miss that was. In 2004, Crosby won the ROY despite hitting just .239 (he did have 22 HR and 64 RBI). Since then, just one year over .240, never 10 HR in a season again, and just one year over 40 RBI as injuries and lack of production have limited him to just one year with over 100 games played.

One encouraging line of reading in the Post is this: Larry Bowa, who briefly saw Yankees Rule 5 pick Jamie Hoffmann with the Dodgers this year, thinks that the Yankees pulled a heist in getting him. Nice comparison to Hunter Pence, and Pence’s numbers as a Houston OF aren’t shabby. We’ll see. As long as he is a serviceable bench player. In the Post report, Bowa predicts more than that…he thinks Hoffmann (25, righty-hitting OF) will be an everyday big league player. Once more…we’ll see. As the Post notes, if the Yanks don’t have a spot for Hoffmann, they must offer him back to Washington.

The Post also states that Cashman (as he must) kicked the tires on Ben Sheets. You wonder what Sheets (so much potential, so many disappointing injuries) could be had for after missing all of 2009.

The Royals signed Jason Kendall, who will be 36 next June. Kendall, a 3x All-Star, hit .241-2-43 for the Brewers in 2009.

Looking at MLBTR, they have a list of possible non-tenders. I can see the non-tender of Wang, but predicting the Yanks non-tender Gaudin? I kind of like the job Gaudin did. Can be #5 starter or long-man.