• Joe Pendleton To Block, Peter

    Posted by on November 30th, 2005 · Comments (14)

    Wow. The Kyle Farnsworth signing is not even official yet and Yankees fans are getting the “Good Luck to you” messages from Cubs fans all over the internet. Know what? I don’t care what they say. Here are the stats/facts of all RH RP who have appeared in 200+ games (combined) over the last three seasons.

    farns.jpg

    Stats via the Sabermetric Baseball Encyclopedia.

    As you can see, in terms of limiting base runners, over the last three years combined, Farnsworth is the 10th best RH pen-man in terms of effectiveness, out of all durable RH RP in the majors.

    And, considering that Mo Rivera is one of the ten, Farnsworth was one of the nine best RP available to the Yankees this off-season. Taking it further, and realizing that the Yankees had zero chance of getting Joe Nathan or Brad Lidge, and factoring in that Ugueth Urbina is in jail for murder charges, Farnsworth – at the end of the day – was one of the six best RP available to the Yankees this off-season.

    Will Farnsworth be like Mo? No. Will he be like Gordon? Probably not. But, this is not Felix Heredia. This is not Felix Rodriguez. This is not Steve Karsay. This is not Paul Quantrill. This is not Chris Hammond. This is not Gabe White. This is not Jay Witasick. This is not Juan Acevedo.

    Level set your expectations. Farnsworth will be good. He will not be great. But, he’s not going to suck either.

    You cannot be in the top ten for RH RP limiting base runners (over the last 3 years) and be an arsonist at the same time. I think the Cubs fans are projecting some stuff on this kid that he does not deserve.

    Comments on Joe Pendleton To Block, Peter

    1. MJ
      November 30th, 2005 | 10:12 pm

      I just wonder — is it not worth it to overpay Gordon for two years just to have that much better a bullpen? If he ranks #3 on this list, to have #1, #3 and #10 working the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings (in reverse order) would go a long way to mitigating Mussina’s and Pavano’s inevitable 5 inning starts.

      I am sure that Gordon wants the chance to close again but am I to believe that, at his age, he wouldn’t rather have the financial security of an overloaded two year deal? And is it not worth it to us to overpay him like that? We overpaid for Karsay, Stanton, Quantrill, Hammond and the rest. Why not actually overpay for someone that’s proven goods?

    2. DFLNJ
      November 30th, 2005 | 10:33 pm

      Why not actually overpay for someone that’s proven goods?
      ================================

      If Gordon pitched in the playoffs like he did in the regular season, it would be worth it. But I can’t take another postseason with him. IIRC, Steve here did a little comparison of Flash in the regular season as compared to the playoffs, and it wasn’t pretty. I think it’s time to look elsewhere for relief options.

    3. Raf
      November 30th, 2005 | 10:46 pm

      MJ: I dunno, the Yanks are pretty funny the way they do things sometimes. I would have liked him to return, but if he was dead set on closing, I can respect that. I don’t know if he needs the financial security, he’s been in the league for almost 20 years, I would hope that he’s financially secure by now (:

      BTW, it looks that he may get his wish to close; reports are the Phils are hot after him…

      DFLNJ: I posted this in that thread “Many times either team was comfortably ahead, so we don’t know if that changed his approach. We also don’t know if he was hurt, missing a chunk of the season with a bum elbow. Also, 17+ innings is a small sample size to work with.”

    4. November 30th, 2005 | 11:12 pm

      Even if you don’t think Gordon is a post-season choker, there’s enough evidence out there that says he’s a risk now. See:

      http://stats.mostvaluablenetwork.com/pitching/the-slow-decline-of-tom-gordon/

    5. November 30th, 2005 | 11:24 pm

      I’m going to give an emotional response. Gordon has nothing in the post season. I’d be very happy with Farnsworth, and several of the pitchers we have in AAA. Along with Farnsworth and the young guy Cashman likes, a few like Colter Bean and maybe a Rincon/Villone signing, and our bullpen is not so bad. Gordon didn’t have it for most of the 2nd half of last season. Don’t know if he was hurt or what, but he wasn’t lights out. If you come in for the 8th inning for the Yankees, you need to be either situational, or lights out. He wasn’t either. Let him walk.

    6. MJ
      December 1st, 2005 | 8:57 am

      For the sake of argument, I’ll use the theory that improved depth in the bullpen corps (ie Farnsworth) should actually make Gordon more effective because he can rest more frequently. We are judging Gordon, on some level, by the fact that he’s exhaused come September 1st. While I love how Mo Rivera is willing to pitch 30 games from September 1st on, not everyone is Robocop like he is. I think with Farnsworth in the mix, Gordon would be able to get more regular rest and maximize whatever is left in his old arm.

    7. JohnnyC
      December 1st, 2005 | 10:01 am

      Yeah, but, considering Torre’s track record, chances are Farnsworth will be gassed by Sept 1st as well. The key is not who they get to set-up the 7th and 8th but how many of the other bullpen arms get to face more than 2 batters a month. Buddy Groom was a waste but, frankly, no one has been able to refute his parting shots.

    8. December 1st, 2005 | 10:16 am

      //I think with Farnsworth in the mix, Gordon would be able to get more regular rest and maximize whatever is left in his old arm.
      //

      Fair point. But, will Gordon’s ego allow him to be the #3 man in the pen?

    9. JohnnyC
      December 1st, 2005 | 10:24 am

      You’re assuming if we re-sign Gordon that he’d be pushed back to #3…not at the dollars they’re discussing. He’s going to get, as a compromise, a hefty two-year deal with a 3rd year option that’s close to closer money.

    10. MJ
      December 1st, 2005 | 11:06 am

      As far as I’m concerned, it should be that way. Gordon should remain in the 8th as a 1-inning specialist setting up Mo and Farnsworth can assume the Tanyon Sturtze role of giving 1 to 1 1/3 innings of relief starting in the 6th or 7th inning, as necessary. Sturtze will then get pushed to facing 1-2 batters in the 6th and Wright will be there to either mop up for Pavano or Mussina when they do their usual sh*tting of the bed or to provide extra support.

      The more I think about it, the more I think that overpaying for Gordon is really in our interests.

      With respect to Buddy Groom…had be actually been decent I suppose his criticism would’ve been valid. But his soft-toss, underhand, rec-league meatballs pretty much disqualify him from making critical remarks. What was his ERA?

      Finally, in terms of overuse of either Farnsworth or Gordon, someone else mentioned that it’s Cashman’s and Kerrigan’s job to make sure that doesn’t happen. Hopefully Torre takes that lesson to heart.

    11. YankeeInMI
      December 1st, 2005 | 1:47 pm

      I agree with Steve 100%. Here in Detroit, Farnsworth was a stud. His only missteps were getting into a brawl (keep him and Sturtze separated) and rejecting a contract extension.

      MJ writes, “We overpaid for Karsay, Stanton, Quantrill, Hammond and the rest. Why not actually overpay for someone that’s proven goods?” Hammond was “proven” over only one year. Karsay was proven but injury-prone. Quantrill and Stanton (2005 version) were proven but over-the-hill. Gordon fits into this last category. Farnsworth is almost proven (two good years and one great one) and young. The Yankees bullpen budget is being well invested. From here, they can just throw low-cost options against the wall and see what sticks.

    12. JohnnyC
      December 1st, 2005 | 5:40 pm

      MJ, you make my point for me. Groom’s ERA was a cruddy 4.91 in 24 games, 25 innings. He was essentially replaced by Wayne Franklin (6.39, 13 g, 13 ip) and Alan Embree (7.54, 24 g, 14 ip). That’s the logic I’m talking about.

    13. joejoejoe
      December 2nd, 2005 | 11:15 pm

      Nice of the Marlins to throw in Guillermo Mota for a prospect to the BoSox. He’s the sixth best RH on the list and the Sox got him for a bag o’ balls.

    14. Raf
      December 3rd, 2005 | 1:24 pm

      Nice of the Marlins to throw in Guillermo Mota for a prospect to the BoSox. He’s the sixth best RH on the list and the Sox got him for a bag o’ balls.
      ===========

      Not suprising; being 6th best costs, and the Marlins are trying to dump salary.

      It is a crime and a disgrace the way the Marlins are run. Loria should be kicked out of baseball for his work with the Expos and the Marlins.

      Want a new stadium, build it your damn self

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