Tag Archives: Sheffield

Yanks prospects, and HOF to announce more inductees Wednesday.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Baseball America listed their top 100 prospects list and Yankee fans who have been treated to young stars like Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird and Luis Severino should be happy and anxious for more young players on the come.

Six Yankees’ prospects are part of that top 100.

Since Clint Frazier spent some time in the majors last year, he isn’t even listed.

The six are:

#6 INF Gleyber Torres who, if he doesn’t break camp as the Yanks’ 2B, should be called up very early this season for just that purpose.

#38. OF Estevan Florial, who will probably start at High-A Tampa.

#41. LHP Starter Justus Sheffield, probably ticketed for AAA SWB.

#59. 3B Miguel Andujar who could be the Opening Day 3B.

#77. RHP Albert Abreu who will probably start at AA or AAA.

#81. RHP Chance Adams. Probably AAA bound.

Three former Yankees’ prospects made the list as well. These are prospects traded for Sonny Gray and Giancarlo Stanton.

On Wednesday, the Hall of Fame will announce who the BBWAA has selected as their HOF inductees for this year. They will join Alan Trammell and Jack Morris, who were selected via committee.

So far, with some polling done, it appears these players will get in, having met 75% of the vote:

Chipper Jones
Jim Thome
Vladimir Guerrero
Edgar Martinez
Trevor Hoffman

Close (over 60%) are

Mike Mussina (tracking around 72%)
Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds, each around 66%
Curt Schilling, around 60%

Some views of mine: Disappointed in the possible steroid users getting more votes.

And hope Mussina makes it, especially since, as I noted before, you had jerks like the one guy from Cleveland who ONLY voted for two former Indian players (Thome and Omar Vizquel) and no one else.

Cross off a possible landing spot for Jacoby Ellsbury. Although Ellsbury has a no-trade clause, there was hope among Yankees fans that Ellsbury may waive it if dealt to SF, who trains in Arizona and who isn’t far from Oregon, where Ellsbury is from. Of course, how much the Yanks would have to eat as far as that contract is concerned is another matter. Besides, who wants him? And Ellsbury doesn’t want to go anywhere, even if right now he is a 5th OF.

But there was talk of SF, who needed outfielders. Instead SF traded for Andrew McCutchen and today signed Austin Jackson as a free agent. Interesting they went for A-Jax, because Lorenzo Cain is still available.

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Yanks sign lefty to minor league deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

From MLBTR.com (edited):

The Yankees have agreed to a minor-league deal with lefty Wade LeBlanc, according to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick (via Twitter). He’ll receive an invitation to MLB Spring Training and an opt-out opportunity just before the start of the season, per Crasnick, who notes that the deal comes with a potential $1MM base rate of pay in the Majors. USA Today’s Bob Nightengale adds that LeBlanc also has an opt-out on June 15 and would earn a monthly salary of $32K in the minors. …

LeBlanc, 33, engineered a return to the majors after spending a season in Japan in 2015. …  After spending some time as a swingman for the Mariners in 2016, he landed with the Pirates and threw well enough to earn a major-league contract in the following offseason.

Things didn’t go quite as hoped in 2017, as LeBlanc managed only a 4.50 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 in his 68 innings in Pittsburgh. …

As has long been the case, LeBlanc was much more effective last year against righties than when pitching against same-handed batters. It seems he’ll join a camp battle to earn a place as a long man for the Yankees.

The only lefty other than Chapman was Chasen Shreve, so LeBlanc gives Shreve some competition. LeBlanc, 33, was 5-2, 4.50, ERA+ 96 with a save for Pittsburgh last year. For his career, he is 30-35, 4.40, ERA+ 88. He has started 79 games, and relieved in 97.

He actually pitched in one game for the Yanks in 2014. If you remember that, you are better than me.

Also from MLBTR.com:

The Yankees were reportedly willing to part with outfield prospect Clint Frazier in a trade for then-Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole earlier this offseason, but no deal come together between the teams. Although Pittsburgh ended up trading Cole to Houston on Saturday for a four-player package, the Pirates valued Frazier over everyone they got back from the Astros, according to Jim Bowden of The Athletic. However, the Pirates liked the package they got from the Astros better than the offers the Yankees made, including a final pitch from the Bombers that consisted of three prospects, per Bowden (Twitter link).

Quantity over Quality.

Also, it’s reported that the Yanks offered Frazier or Adams, but not both.

And, it’s also reported that Miguel Andujar was a deal-breaker. No surprise since Frazier is blocked by other outfielders, but Andujar really isn’t blocked by any other 3B right now, and Andujar is off the table.

Also interesting is that Adams may be available in the right deal, but Justus Sheffield is off the table (as are Gleyber Torres and Estevan Florial). As for Thairo Estrada, it probably depends on the right deal.

 

 

$alary Cap limiting Yanks moves, now.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Brrrr. There was a game at Yankees Stadium today but it was a college football game and not a baseball game.

You think of college football games being played in the Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl—warm weather sites.

But the Pinstripe Bowl is in Yankee Stadium, and Boston College and Iowa played in bitterly cold temps today. Iowa winning, 27-20.

The field was frozen, and instead of cleats, players had to resort to sneakers on a field that was like a hockey rink. Icy.

As for the Yankees themselves, the free agent and trade market is as icy as Yankee Stadium was today. But then, the whole free agent market has been like that so far.

With the Yanks, the problem is that Hal wants to get under the $alary cap, which is $197MM. Right now, depending on what source you are looking at, the Yanks are somewhere around $178-182MM, leaving little for arbitration raises or moves made mid-season 2018 at the trade deadline.

Of course, freeing themselves of some of Jacoby Ellsbury’s contract would help, but how much can they free for a fifth OF making $21MM?

As far as possible deals to give more depth to the starting rotation, the Yanks apparently have offered Clint Frazier, Chance Adams and/or Tyler Wade/ Thairo Estrada for Chris Archer or Mike Fulmer and a little lesser package for Gerrit Cole.

Gleyber Torres, Estevan Florial and Justus Sheffield are off the table.

So the Yanks, for now, have their hands tied.

That includes trying to re-sign Todd Frazier, who probably wants a multi-year deal. He made $12MM last year, and even re-signing him for 1 yr at the same price puts the Yanks perilously close to the limit they want to stay under.

Why stay under? It would reset the Yanks luxury tax penalty which is currently 50 cents to the dollar.

Then they could actively go after free agents after 2018 with no penalty and next years class is a monster class which includes Kershaw, Machado, Harper and Donaldson for starters.

Yankees thoughts after getting Stanton.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

From the NY Post. Interesting words from new Yankees manager Aaron Boone. Could this be his managerial style (barring the fights, controversy and drinking that went with Billy?)

Q: If you could pick the brain of one manager in the history of baseball, who would it be?
A: I think I’d want to go back and just sit down with Billy Martin … see what’s going on there. I’ve heard, obviously a number of (chuckle) incredible stories over the years, but he’d be a guy that I think it’d be cool to sit down with and just hear him talk about the game.

Q: What do you think you might ask him?
A: (Chuckle) I don’t know if I’d ask him much. I’d rather just be a fly on the wall and sit there and say, “Just start telling these stories.” I don’t know, “Just tell me about back in the day,” not only as a player but then obviously all of his managing stints and just the colorful character that he was. I would just want to sit there and listen to some of the stories he I’m sure has for days.

Also, an interesting article in the Post about how Jeter may NOT want to help the Yankees, despite what you may see on Twitter or YouTube about any possible “collusion” because of the Stanton deal.

Jeter does hold grudges, and still may hold one because of his last contract negotiation. He really (as the article points out) hasn’t shown up at the Stadium that much since his retirement, and now, as a part-owner of the Marlins, could be expected to show up even less—and this may have occurred even without his new ownership or new fatherhood.

Also, don’t you think Jeter would be aware of the backlash that would (and is) occurring anytime he makes a deal with the Yankees?

Also, …

All the talk will be about Judge and Stanton, and deservedly so, since you have the two HR leaders from last year on the same team, with 52 and 59 HR respectively. They are the ones who finished as the AL runner up for MVP and the NL MVP.

But let’s not forget…

Gary Sanchez also was in that HR derby at last year’s All-Star game, and actually was the one who knocked out Stanton. Sanchez, despite missing a few weeks last year, hit 33 HR. And how can you forget what he did at the end of the 2016 season?

Didi Gregorius set a Yankees’ SS record with 25 HR last year, and how could you forget the two HR he hit in Game 5 of the ALDS off of Corey Kluber, the CYA winner?

Lastly, Greg Bird. Yes, Bird had a poor year because of the ankle injury that cost him most of the season and that required surgery. But remember the great spring training he had?

Not only that, but when he came back and was healthy, he hit .253-8-25 in his last 29 games.

Let’s do some math. 29 x 5 = 145. Basically a full season of 162 with some days off for rest.

Now multiply x 5. .253-40-125. Forget the batting average. 40 and 125.

Add this to Judge, Stanton, Sanchez and Didi. And don’t forget that Gardner even hit 20+ HR last season.

I think a lot of people are going to overlook Bird, and barring injury, I think he will shock some people next year.

Some people have come out with their lineups. Here is mine as for now, and my reasoning:

Gardner
Judge
Bird
Stanton
Sanchez
Gregorius
Hicks
Headley
Torreyes/Wade/Torres

Ok, some people may wonder why keep Judge at 2. Here’s why: 127 walks, which led the AL. An OBP of .422. You want guys with high OBPs in front of Stanton. Some people have Didi Gregorius #2 in the lineup. Not me. Didi only walked 25 times last year. OBP .318, over 100 points lower than Judge. Give Stanton more opportunities to drive in runs. That is why I have Didi in the 6 slot. Get a high OBP guy in front of Stanton.

Bird #3. You want to break up the righty bats. And with Stanton hitting behind him, Bird, whose lefty swing is tailor made for Yankee Stadium, gets protection like Maris got when Mantle was hitting behind him. Or Ruth got with Gehrig. Judge on base, you don’t want to face Stanton, Bird gets more pitches to hit.

Sanchez 5. Protects Stanton.

Torres could be in the minors until June. So Torreyes is probably a stop gap 2B until Torres is ready. Keeping Torres down for 2 1/2 weeks delays his free agency a year and keeping him there until early June delays his arbitration another year. Besides, he hasn’t played too much at 2B so he can get experience there and when he’s ready in early June you can bring him up.

Torreyes, despite hitting .292, doesn’t have much power, and only walked 11x in 2017. Hence the 9 spot.

A tough lineup to crack. Ellsbury, who is behind Stanton, Judge, Hicks and Gardner, becomes the most expensive defensive replacement (and with those guys, it won’t be necessary; all are decent outfielders)/pinch runner ever. Now if the Yanks can move Ellsbury and his no-trade clause, then that can open a spot for…

Clint Frazier or Billy McKinney. Otherwise both are blocked and could be trade bait for ….

pitching help.

Also blocked, for now, are Thairo Estrada (by Torres, Didi and Headley) and Miguel Andujar (by Headley and possibly Torres).

Not trading any of those top prospects in the Stanton deal (Guzman and Devers, both of whom haven’t even played at Low A Charleston, went in the deal) leaves you open to trading one of those top prospects for a top of the line starter.

You also have pitchers who are top prospects who are, as of now, blocked. Chance Adams, Justus Sheffield, Albert Abreu, Domingo Acevedo and Domingo German to name five.

So the Yanks, should they need to make a deal, still have top prospects to trade. Also, they could try to find a taker for Ellsbury or Headley, but may have to eat $$$$ in order to do so.

Only by dumping Headley do I feel that they can retain Todd Frazier. The Yanks still want under the cap, and that became more difficult with getting Stanton.

The Modern Era HOF voting will be announced tonight. We’ll see if anyone gets in.

From mlb.com: The 10 Modern Baseball Era finalists include nine former players and one former executive: Steve Garvey, Tommy John, Don Mattingly, Marvin Miller, Jack Morris, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, Ted Simmons, Luis Tiant and Alan Trammell. (One -time Yankees in bold).

 

 

 

Yanks make more minor deals to set 40-man roster, get more $$ for Ohtani.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Yanks made more minor deals today to free up more 40-man roster space and also got a little more international money that they could put towards Shohei Ohtani.

In one deal, they dealt Ronald Herrera, 22, to the Rangers for pitching prospect Reivar Sanmartin. Herrera was 0-1, 6.00 in 2 games, 3 IP, for the Yanks this year. Sanmartin, 21, is a LHP who had a 2.45 ERA at A ball. If the Yanks lose Herrera in the Rule 5 draft they can lose him for nothing, and they wanted something back. They also had people they wanted to protect on the 40 man roster who they felt were better than Herrera.

In another deal, they dealt Garrett Cooper and Caleb Smith to the Marlins. Cooper, a 1B, played in 13 games for the Yanks this year, going .326-0-6, and Smith was 0-1, 7.71 in 9 games, 2 starts. They got some international bonus $, which they could use toward Ohtani, and pitching prospect Mike King, 22. King had a 3.14 ERA at low A.

As for Ohtani, MLB extended the posting deadline to reach an agreement with Japan 24 hours. It is expected that if Ohtani is posted, the Yanks would be the heavy favorite to land him.

If they do, then they probably wouldn’t need to re-sign CC or go after Alex Cobb. Peter Gammons thinks the Cubs and Yankees are the favorites for Cobb, but if the Yanks get Ohtani, then they don’t need Cobb or CC.

Cobb, 30, is 48-35 in his MLB career, all with Tampa Bay. ERA 3.50, ERA+ 111.

With the minor deals, the Yanks were able to add to the 40 man roster Gleyber Torres, Albert Abreu, Domingo Acevedo, Thairo Estrada, Billy McKinney and Jonathan Loaisiga. I am a bit surprised Chance Adams and Justus Sheffield aren’t on the 40 man. The additions of Abreu, Acevedo and Loaisiga over Adams and Sheffield surprise me.

Hideki Matsui joins Johnny Damon, Kerry Wood and Andruw Jones as newcomers on the HOF ballot who once played for the Yankees. I don’t expect any to make it this year. All may be close but no cigar.

Matsui presents a special case. Are they judging him by just his MLB career (175 HR) or by his Japanese and MLB careers (507 HR)?

Damon had over 2700 hits and over 400 SB in his career, Jones over 400 HR with 10 Gold Glove Awards.

They join Mussina and Clemens on the ballot.

 

Sheffield avoids injury in AFL; Also, links to articles on Boone, Otani.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Yankees’ prospect Justus Sheffield avoided more serious injury when a comebacker struck him in the leg on Saturday.

The lefty pitcher was removed in the second inning of Scottsdale’s 12-7 loss.

Yankees’ prospects in the game:

1B BIlly McKinney 1 for 2, scored two runs, 1 RBI. Single and walk. .298
3B Kyle Holder 2 for 4, double, RBI. .350

Sheffield (L, 2-2; 3.10) 1 1/3 IP, 2 R,  1 H, 1 W, 1 K.
Andrew Schwaab 2 IP, 3 R, 5 H, 1 W, 0 K. 6.75
Cody Carroll 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K. 0.00

Jim Bowden, Reds’ GM from 1992-2003 has interesting things to say about Aaron Boone possibly becoming a manager. You can access the link here (copy and paste into browser):

http://nypost.com/2017/11/11/why-no-experience-is-not-a-problem-for-aaron-boone/

MLB.com has some more information on Shohei Otani here:

http://m.mlb.com/news/article/261421270/shohei-ohtani-says-he-will-do-what-teams-ask/

 

 

 

Arizona Fall League All-Star Game.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

The Arizona Fall League had its All-Star Game last night (some of you may have caught some of it on the MLB network) and the East (the team with some Yankees’ prospects) beat the West, 4-2.

Yankees’ prospects in the game:

Justus Sheffield started for the East. 2 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 W, 2 K.

Billy Mckinney started in LF, cleanup hitter. 0 for 2. Struck out once.

Thairo Estrada started at 2B. Batted 8th. 0 for 2. Struck out once. Was robbed of a double on a great catch his first time up.

Someplace brought up the name of Aaron Boone as someone who may want to leave the broadcast booth and get into the dugout. Tough to leave that broadcast booth, but Boone does have a lot of baseball in him. His grandfather Ray was a player in the 1950s, his dad Bob a catcher for many years (and a manager himself) and Aaron’s brother Bret also a player. Aaron, of course, will always be remembered for his HR that won the 2003 pennant for the Yankees. Once again, would Cashman take on someone without previous managerial experience?