• No Shock, Just Questions, In Yankeeland The Morning After

    Posted by on October 23rd, 2010 · Comments (55)

    In their last 67 games of the 2010 regular season, the Yankees went 34-33. During this time, their pitchers allowed 4.5 runs per game and their offense scored 5.1 runs per game. Clearly, for the last 67 games of the season – which is more than 40% of the schedule – the Yankees were in tread water mode.

    And, it was worse towards the end. In their last 26 games of the 2010 regular season, the Yankees went 9-17. During this time, their pitchers allowed 5.4 runs per game and their offense scored 4.6 runs per game.

    So, should be be shocked that the Yankees averaged 4.0 runs scored per game and allowed 5.0 runs per game this post-season? What the Yankees did, collectively, in the ALDS and ALCS was basically the same poor performance that they had over their last 26 games of the season.

    Personally, I was concerned about their poor closing performance as they headed into the ALDS. Therefore, I’m not shocked that they Yankees went 5-4 in their 9 post-season games. Mediocre is as mediocre does, and all that.

    More so, at this point, I’m more interested in the “why?” than the “what.” Why did the Yankees play so poorly for so long at the close of the season? And, who was responsible for realizing what was going on and what did they do to address it? There’s failure here. And, there has to be a root cause. Further, what will be done to address it for next season? And, who’s on point for that?

    I have some preliminary ideas about all this – but, at this junction, I’d rather here from you. What do you think about this? How would you answer these questions?

    Comments on No Shock, Just Questions, In Yankeeland The Morning After

    1. October 23rd, 2010 | 10:03 am

      As it turns out, you were right to be pessimistic. Yes, I’m admitting you’re right!

    2. EHawk
      October 23rd, 2010 | 10:21 am

      I’d start with Girardi…I have no interest in bringing him back on a long term deal. His mismanaging of the team down the stretch really killed their momentum and I believe messed with whatever chemistry they had going. He managed this series scared and all those intentional walks early in games made no sense and a lot came back to cost the Yanks. I have no clue why in game 6 he didn’t have Kerry Wood ready in the 5th at the first sign of trouble…Robertson had been awful all series so why go to him there? Anyway I’m done with Girardi and its too bad they want him back because he is not the right manager for this team and that was proven this postseason…the guy looked confused and scared half the time they would show him on TV…If I picked up on that on TV I’m sure his players were as well.

      For this offseason I would offer Jeter a 3 year 45 million deal take it or leave it…he won’t get close to that from any other team. I’d try to get Pettitte back for another season and hopefully get Mo back on a 2 year deal. I’d try to resign Kerry Wood. As for new free agents obviously you want to get Lee. I’d consider maybe signing Vlad as a DH too. I’m going to throw a name out there that I think could be had for less right now since he was hurt last year and that is Grady Sizemore…I think he will be back big time next season and would love to see him in CF and move Granderson to LF and then Gardner can be that 4th OF where I think he belongs.

    3. Corey Italiano
      October 23rd, 2010 | 10:44 am

      EHawk wrote:

      I’d consider maybe signing Vlad as a DH too

      Pass.

      I’d rather not win with that and then have everyone say “Oh you got beat by them, so you bought them to win”

      Besides, that spot will be filled by Posada/Montero (who also split time at catcher) I believe.

    4. Corey Italiano
      October 23rd, 2010 | 10:49 am

      EHawk wrote:

      I’m going to throw a name out there that I think could be had for less right now since he was hurt last year and that is Grady Sizemore

      Pass on that too. Sizemore hasn’t been that great the past 2 years when healthy. I like the outfield as is.

      I try to get Lee, and another starter if Pettitte hangs it up. Sign a bullpen arm, but not Kerry Wood. He’s going to want a multi year deal after his performance in pinstripes and I’m not a fan of that potential move.

      Also, get the best treadmill money can buy and send it to Nebraska. That guy needs to come to camp read to prove himself.

    5. EHawk
      October 23rd, 2010 | 10:57 am

      Not saying to offer Wood a long term deal but I’d offer him 1 year and like 4 million at least…if he takes it then great. Sizemore hasn’t been healthy the last 2 years…he had an elbow issue in 09 and a knee problem this year…I’m not saying to give up much but if Indians are willing to trade him you have to listen. I’m fine with our OF as well and wouldn’t sign any big name free agent…But with Vlad he likely won’t be back in Texas and I think we need a little more insurance then Posada who is done and Montero who may not even be ready yet at DH. Besides AROD Yanks lacked any right handed power and were awful against lefties…that needs to change!

    6. Corey Italiano
      October 23rd, 2010 | 11:01 am

      EHawk wrote:

      Not saying to offer Wood a long term deal but I’d offer him 1 year and like 4 million at least…if he takes it then great.

      Oh sure definitely. But he’d never take that. Especially since he made 10.5 million last year.

    7. Evan3457
      October 23rd, 2010 | 11:15 am

      The Yanks did play poorly from August one, but most of it is concentrated in those last 26 games.

      They were 25-16 in the prior 41. Using your numbers without checking, that means they scored 5.4 runs a game (their seasonal average, more or less) in those 41 games, and allowed 3.9.

      So we’re basically talking about the last 26.

      As for realizing what was going on, and what was done to address it…there wasn’t too much that could be done. They brought up Nunez and Nova, their two most ready prospects, and both did reasonably well.

      Trades were blocked by waivers by that point in time, and it’s not like any major pieces changed hands. Waiver pickups that could’ve helped (Hawpe, Cody Ross, Manny) were snatched up by teams with higher claim priority.

    8. Evan3457
      October 23rd, 2010 | 11:22 am

      EHawk wrote:

      I’d start with Girardi…I have no interest in bringing him back on a long term deal. His mismanaging of the team down the stretch really killed their momentum and I believe messed with whatever chemistry they had going. He managed this series scared and all those intentional walks early in games made no sense and a lot came back to cost the Yanks. I have no clue why in game 6 he didn’t have Kerry Wood ready in the 5th at the first sign of trouble…Robertson had been awful all series so why go to him there? Anyway I’m done with Girardi and its too bad they want him back because he is not the right manager for this team and that was proven this postseason…the guy looked confused and scared half the time they would show him on TV…If I picked up on that on TV I’m sure his players were as well.
      For this offseason I would offer Jeter a 3 year 45 million deal take it or leave it…he won’t get close to that from any other team. I’d try to get Pettitte back for another season and hopefully get Mo back on a 2 year deal. I’d try to resign Kerry Wood. As for new free agents obviously you want to get Lee. I’d consider maybe signing Vlad as a DH too. I’m going to throw a name out there that I think could be had for less right now since he was hurt last year and that is Grady Sizemore…I think he will be back big time next season and would love to see him in CF and move Granderson to LF and then Gardner can be that 4th OF where I think he belongs.

      1. The meme that resting the players “killed their momentum” goes out the window when they sweep the Twins. It’s not logical.

      2. Some of the IBB worked, and some didn’t, but there were too many of them, I agree. The Murphy IBB may have been the biggest error.

      3. The point about not getting Wood up in the 5th is valid. It’s an elimination game; if you’d use Wood in the 6th, you can use him in the 5th.

      4. Robertson was not “awful in the series” to that point; he was awful in the 9th inning of game 3. He’d had two other successful appearances.

      5. Wood will not re-sign to be the backup closer with the Yanks unless they give him closer money, which they won’t do.

      6. No to Vlad. The DH slot belongs to Montero soon, until he’s ready to catch full time. After that, it has to be saved for Posada/Jeter/A-Rod, assuming Jeter and Posada are hitting enough to justify using them there.

      7. No to Sizemore, he can’t stay healthy.

      8. Girardi looked confused because his 95-win team was getting the crap kicked out of it for 80% of this series.

    9. Jim TreshFan
      October 23rd, 2010 | 11:39 am

      Well, let’s start at the top…the top of the order that is, where Derek Sanderson Jeter at the age of 36 started 150 games at shortstop and posted his lowest RF (3.78) in 11 years. And let’s not forget that from June 1st on Jeter batted .251 with 6 HRs in 431 ABs without walking all that much. Those offensive numbers are right up there with Bobby Richardson and Horace Clarke as leadoff hitters.

      And let’s not forget Brett Gardner. From July 1st on he batted .233 with 2 HRs in 227 ABs. And there’s Jorge Posada, too. From June 1st on Posada batted just .231 in 286 ABs—albeit with 12 HRs.

      So there you have it. Three automatic outs in the line-up during a fair stretch of the summer. The question is what do you do about it? Yes, you can make Gardner a 4th OFer, but what about Jeter and Posada? Does anyone realistically expect them to bounce back in 2011? Jeter will be 37, Posada will be turning 40. It’s getting close to gold watch time for both.

    10. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 12:13 pm

      I would not sign Lee. He will be 32 yrs old going into a 4-6 year deal. (I expect he will leverage all the interest in him to get 4 or more years.) CC and AJ are also locked into long term deals taking them both past 35. I can’t see giving so much money to 3 aging pitchers. You wind up paying them in later years for success in their prime. Yanks have a bad habit of doing this. (See: Arod, K Brown, R Johnson.)

    11. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 12:25 pm

      @ ken:
      Don’t agree here. Lee is a proven ace with success in the American League. It’ll be a 5Y/$100M deal, the first two or three years of which represent low risk. If the greatest risk enters in the last two years, then Burnett is already off the payroll at that time.

    12. Raf
      October 23rd, 2010 | 12:44 pm

      lisaswan wrote:

      As it turns out, you were right to be pessimistic. Yes, I’m admitting you’re right!

      Even a blind squirrel will find a nut :D

    13. Scout
      October 23rd, 2010 | 12:57 pm

      Rule number one, after losing a short series: Don’t panic. Don’t react emotionally. Let the dust settle and asses where the team is and where it is going.

      The rotation has been unsettled for several months. Beyond C.C., there isn’t a top-tier starter on whom you can count. I have enormous respect for Pettitte, but at his age he’s going to be a question mark over a long season. Cliff Lee addresses that for at least 2-3 years. If there are two horse atop the rotation, everything else will sort itself out over the next couple of seasons — a successor or two from the farm system for Pettitte, figuring out how to restore Burnett to back-end effectiveness or burying him in the pen (he did contribute to one world championship, which is what he was signed to do), seeing whether Hughes ever develops into more than a mid-rotation starter.

      To be continued….

    14. INAC
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:09 pm

      Honestly, Texas was the perfect match for this team, as it turned out. I didn’t place too much stock in the September sweep since Texas used a gigantic ‘pen and that undoubtedly aided their cause in those games, but wouldn’t in the playoffs. But, you know, Lewis was very good in his starts, Cliff Lee was Cliff Lee, and in their one other game, it was one mistake pitch to Bengie Molina that crushed them.

      Texas was the better team. And, even though Texas clownstomped the Rays too, I’m not too sure the Yankees would’ve won against them; the Rays were a pain in the ass all year too, even if they weren’t all that great a team altogether. The American League wasn’t as strong this year as it has been in past years, and it benefited the Rangers. I wish them luck in the World Series, especially if they end up playing the Phillies.

    15. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:16 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      Yes, but: In those last 2 years, AJ may indeed be gone. But you may have CC and Lee at about $25M each and counting the days until they are gone. Throw in Arod and you have over $75M in salary for overpaid aging players. And that doesn’t even project what Jeter will be making.

      Even for the Yankees, that is ugly.

    16. Evan3457
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:21 pm

      INAC wrote:

      Honestly, Texas was the perfect match for this team, as it turned out. I didn’t place too much stock in the September sweep since Texas used a gigantic ‘pen and that undoubtedly aided their cause in those games, but wouldn’t in the playoffs. But, you know, Lewis was very good in his starts, Cliff Lee was Cliff Lee, and in their one other game, it was one mistake pitch to Bengie Molina that crushed them.
      Texas was the better team. And, even though Texas clownstomped the Rays too, I’m not too sure the Yankees would’ve won against them; the Rays were a pain in the ass all year too, even if they weren’t all that great a team altogether. The American League wasn’t as strong this year as it has been in past years, and it benefited the Rangers. I wish them luck in the World Series, especially if they end up playing the Phillies.

      And even though the Rangers swept the Yanks in September, they didn’t dominate them like they did in this ALCS.

      Of course, they didn’t have Hamilton, either…

    17. Evan3457
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:23 pm

      Jim TreshFan wrote:

      Well, let’s start at the top…the top of the order that is, where Derek Sanderson Jeter at the age of 36 started 150 games at shortstop and posted his lowest RF (3.78) in 11 years. And let’s not forget that from June 1st on Jeter batted .251 with 6 HRs in 431 ABs without walking all that much. Those offensive numbers are right up there with Bobby Richardson and Horace Clarke as leadoff hitters.
      And let’s not forget Brett Gardner. From July 1st on he batted .233 with 2 HRs in 227 ABs. And there’s Jorge Posada, too. From June 1st on Posada batted just .231 in 286 ABs—albeit with 12 HRs.
      So there you have it. Three automatic outs in the line-up during a fair stretch of the summer. The question is what do you do about it? Yes, you can make Gardner a 4th OFer, but what about Jeter and Posada? Does anyone realistically expect them to bounce back in 2011? Jeter will be 37, Posada will be turning 40. It’s getting close to gold watch time for both.

      Posada isn’t that hard. 3-way catcher next year, dividing time among Motero, Posada and Cervelli, until Montero’s ready to handle most of the load.

    18. 77yankees
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:29 pm

      It’s a little too early to speculate on specifics, since there are other factors to consider about who or who will not be a Yankee in 2011, but there are three things that should be clear cut:

      1. Number 20 is aptly numbered so, because that’s the number of games he should be catching next year…..or less. The team defense is not horrible, but it’s time to shore it up to cut down on those handful of runs that can make or break a season. And cutting down on the brutal passed balls and dropped throws at the plate is a start. That said…..

      2. It’s time for Montero and/or Romine to take over behind the plate. This team needs an injection of youth and enthusiasm to supplement the veteran core. Will they have growing pains? Of course, but now is the right time to start moving forward.

      3. The bench can not continue to be neglected with minor league rejects and little talent from spring training on with the thought that it can be shored up at July 31 every year. You have two 35+ infielders on the left side who can’t play 160 games a year anymore. You’re going to need someone capable of starting 30-40 games there if necessary. Maybe Nunez is the answer, but having another option there would be a plus.

    19. Corey Italiano
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:36 pm

      77yankees wrote:

      It’s time for Montero and/or Romine to take over behind the plate

      Romine needs a bit of seasoning still. I could definitely see Montero and Posada splitting the dh and main catcher role while Cervelli backs them up.

    20. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 1:46 pm

      Posada and Cervelli are not every day catchers. Posada can still hit. Cervelli, as I read in a sportswriter’s Tweet, is Italian for “automatic out”.

      It’s easy to imagine the roles of Montero and Romine since nobody has any idea what they will do at the ML level. We do know, however, that Montero’s claim to fame is his bat, not defense.

      So, we are about as certain at the catching position as are the Red Sox!

    21. 77yankees
      October 23rd, 2010 | 2:04 pm

      ken wrote:

      It’s easy to imagine the roles of Montero and Romine since nobody has any idea what they will do at the ML level.

      Of course, but you have to give them the chance and expect there will be a learning curve there to adjust to.

      If the Yankees had taken the tact that Cano was a utility infielder type in 2005 (Remember the Diamondbacks refused to take him in the Randy Johnson deal that winter), we never would have found out how good he was.

    22. October 23rd, 2010 | 2:05 pm

      Cashman had a horrible winter that was one big reason for what happened this year. Vazquez and Johnson came with big red warning labels, what the hell was he thinking. Damon and Matsui, one had to be brought back (I would have picked Damon). Chan Ho Park, no one else in baseball was fooled, why was Cashman. With all that, Cashman came surprisingly close to fixing the preseason mess, the Lee deal, if it had happened, might have been enough by itself to get the Yankees another ring.

      Fixing the team begins with going after both Crawford and Lee. Of the two, Lee is a must. The Yankees need to address the catching situation. Jorge becomes the primary DH and second string catcher, a fulltime catcher with defensive skills is a must. Cervelli goes, trade him for whatever you can get, or send him to the minors. Be prepared to trade both Gardner and Joba to fill needs.

      Note to Cashman, whatever else you do, do not under any circumstances, sign, trade for, another pitcher coming directly from the Braves. Karsay, Hammond, Wright, Farnsworth, Vazquez, when will he learn.

    23. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 2:51 pm

      I’m just not as sold on Lee, it seems, as the rest of the world. What guarantee does anyone have that you are getting the guy we have seen the past two years? And you are paying him top dollar for the next 4+ years. And what if one or part of those years is taken by an injury. (See my Lee post, above.) I have just seen too many bad pitching contracts around the league. You pay for the prior teams’ successes with that pitcher.

      I’d rather have a flame throwing setup guy for Mo.

    24. INAC
      October 23rd, 2010 | 2:52 pm

      @ Evan3457:

      That could’ve been used as the counter to my point, ironically enough. And it definitely manifested itself in this series, as Hamilton was awesome.

    25. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 3:23 pm

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Cashman had a horrible winter that was one big reason for what happened this year.

      The Yankees didn’t hit in the ALCS and the main culprits were Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Jorge Posada, Nick Swisher and Brett Gardner. What could Brian Cashman have done in the winter of 2009 to mitigate this?

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Vazquez and Johnson came with big red warning labels, what the hell was he thinking. Damon and Matsui, one had to be brought back (I would have picked Damon).

      Johnson absolutely came with a giant warning label. That was an obviously poor signing and showed a staggering lack of common sense. The other three moves (Vazquez in; Damon/Matsui out) were perfectly sensible decisions. At no point during the 2010 season did the Yankees miss Damon or Matsui’s services and to argue otherwise is to have not watched the Yankees this year.

      As for Vazquez, for the low cost it took to acquire him, it was a worthwhile gamble with a far greater upside than downside. The alternative, I hope you realize, was overspending on a free agent pitcher like John Lackey.

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Chan Ho Park, no one else in baseball was fooled, why was Cashman.

      At $1.5M, I hardly see where Cashman was “fooled.” He spent less than the average MLB relief pitcher’s salary to acquire a RHP. The move didn’t work. The Yankees lost absolutely nothing. The Park signing is a molehill which you’re turning into a mountain.

    26. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 3:26 pm

      ken wrote:

      I’m just not as sold on Lee, it seems, as the rest of the world. What guarantee does anyone have that you are getting the guy we have seen the past two years?

      The same could’ve been asked about CC Sabathia and we see how well that turned out.

      No free agent contract for #1 caliber starting pitchers is without risk but some risks are greater than others. I truly don’t see any reason to worry about Cliff Lee. He’s shown durability, in addition to his obviously abundant talent.

      ken wrote:

      I’d rather have a flame throwing setup guy for Mo.

      Spending on relief pitchers in the free agent market is FAR riskier, even if the dollar amounts are much smaller. Quick, name me the last time a big free agent reliever signed to a multi-year contract was a good investment.

      The Yankees have done a very good job of developing their bullpen from within the organization. Why deviate from that strategy now?

    27. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 3:50 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      CC was 28 yrs old when he signed with the Yanks. Lee would be 32. HUGE difference.

    28. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 3:54 pm

      ken wrote:

      CC was 28 yrs old when he signed with the Yanks. Lee would be 32. HUGE difference.

      Not so huge when you look at durability and injury history. Look at how old Mike Mussina was when the Yankees signed him in the 2000-2001 off-season.

    29. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 4:09 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:
      OK. I guess we will agree to disagree. But I have become very wary of long term contracts for pitchers especially in their late career.

      For every Mussina, how many others? Zito, K Brown (yes it was a trade but still..), Pavano (don’t forget: he was starting NL pitcher in ASG the year before signed by NYY), CHP’s first contract with TEX, even Mets’ Santana has had more injuries than anyone could have expected, Beckett (just signed for 4 more by BOS. don’t know yet but RSN is already groaning about this one), Pedro with Mets, M Hampton.

      Here is a related article on the subject I just found:
      http://tinyurl.com/yzjbbwt

    30. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 4:18 pm

      @ ken:
      Brown: Had pitched only a full season once in the three years before the Yankees acquired him.

      Pavano: Averaged 134 innings (21 starts) in the seven full seasons of his career before the Yankees signed him.

      Pedro: The decline was obvious in 2004. The Mets signed him for reasons beyond just pure baseball.

      Mike Hampton: Those two years in Colorado killed him. I have no idea what happened thereafter.

      If your argument is that there is risk in the pitching free agency market, you’re absolutely right. But if you can’t accept that not all pitchers come with the exact same degree of risk, I don’t know what to tell you. A lot of the evidence you’re citing was bad decision-making anyway.

      Bottom line: if the Yankees don’t pursue Cliff Lee, what do you think they should do to fill their rotation behind Sabathia, Burnett and Hughes? Vazquez is a free agent and will not be brought back and Andy Pettitte is notoriously Clemensian/Favrian about his retirement plans. The Yankees need two starters. Tell me what you’d do besides pursue Cliff Lee.

    31. Raf
      October 23rd, 2010 | 4:36 pm

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Cashman had a horrible winter that was one big reason for what happened this year.

      Not quite. Chances are if Girardi hadn’t decided on resting his players, that they would’ve won the east. As it were, they won the wild card and beat the Twins who were in a dance along with the Yanks and Rays for the best record in the league.

    32. Raf
      October 23rd, 2010 | 4:38 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      The alternative, I hope you realize, was overspending on a free agent pitcher like John Lackey.

      Or returning #62 to the rotation :)

    33. MJ Recanati
      October 23rd, 2010 | 4:46 pm

      Raf wrote:

      Or returning #62 to the rotation

      LOL, soooooooo glad they didn’t do that.

    34. Hobbie
      October 23rd, 2010 | 5:30 pm

      Winter is upon us
      The crowds all melt away
      The Yanks clear out their lockers
      for an unwelcome holiday.

      This winter will be longer
      than the winter just before
      Some teammates will be leaving
      Maybe breaking up the core.

      I’ma certain Jeter will return
      to chase three thousand hits.
      Jorge’s under contract
      so I’m sure that he won’t sit.

      Andy Pettite still can pitch
      but there’s doubt that he’ll return
      and Rivera’s just turned Forty-
      does the will to win still burn?

      He alone unbeaten
      by the Texas Rangers’ core
      Though Moreland got a hit or two
      he didn’t yield a score.

      Has Sandman played for the last time
      If so, It’s no disgrace.
      Before him lies the Hall of Fame
      but who will take Mo’s place?????

    35. ken
      October 23rd, 2010 | 5:33 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      I have to believe that AJ will bounce back. That puts Hughes in the 3 or 4 slot which is fine while he continues to develop. Maybe Andy comes back and then the rest doesn’t really matter. Sign a back of rotation guy, continue to develop the Ivan Nova’s, etc. That is, do what the rest of the league does. (Would you have been happy with any TEX pitcher not named Lee in your rotation this past Spring? Neither would I but look what happened.)

      Quite honestly, I can;t be proud of following a team that identifies the best FA each off season and throws him enough money so that no one else can play the game. Where’s the sport? The year we signed CC and AJ was a bit different because the Yanks had Zero starting pitching at that time (how we got there is a different thread). What’s wrong with a little intrigue?

      Let Lee stay in TEX. Crawford to Angels. Probably Werth to BOS. And then play it out…..

      I know that I’m not a typical Yankee fan. But I am old enough to have started rooting for them in what has come to be referred to as “the Horace Clark years”. I don’t need to guarantee a WS every year.

    36. October 23rd, 2010 | 6:22 pm

      Regarding this part of what Steve wrote: “More so, at this point, I’m more interested in the “why?” than the “what.” Why did the Yankees play so poorly for so long at the close of the season? And, who was responsible for realizing what was going on and what did they do to address it? There’s failure here. And, there has to be a root cause. Further, what will be done to address it for next season? And, who’s on point for that?”

      I agree. I still want to know how A.J. Burnett got his black eye, why Dave Eiland disappeared for a month, why Joe Girardi looked so gaunt this year, and why this team looked so bad down the stretch.

    37. October 23rd, 2010 | 7:26 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      The trade for Vazquez was a disaster from the get-go. Cashman admitted this week in an interview with Mike Francesa that several of his baseball people warned against making the deal. He was already with the Yankees, Cashman should have known what he was about, he gets no pass from me on this one. Joba should have been a starter this year instead of wasting a rotation spot on Vazquez.

      As far as Damon or Matsui goes, the idea of having one of them was to have someone who might be better able to handle the postseason. Gardner was terrible in the postseason last year, as was Swisher, Teixeira didn’t hit much, you need people who can play in October.

    38. October 23rd, 2010 | 7:30 pm

      @ Raf:
      ken wrote:

      I’m just not as sold on Lee, it seems, as the rest of the world. What guarantee does anyone have that you are getting the guy we have seen the past two years? And you are paying him top dollar for the next 4+ years. And what if one or part of those years is taken by an injury. (See my Lee post, above.) I have just seen too many bad pitching contracts around the league. You pay for the prior teams’ successes with that pitcher.I’d rather have a flame throwing setup guy for Mo.

      The Yanks have to improve their starting pitching, Lee is the Jack Morris of this generation, you need guys who can get it done when the big spotlight gets turned on.

    39. October 23rd, 2010 | 7:33 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Raf wrote:Or returning #62 to the rotationLOL, soooooooo glad they didn’t do that.

      So it’s your opinion thaat Joba is a nothing more than another arm in the bullpen?

    40. October 23rd, 2010 | 7:37 pm

      Raf wrote:

      Joseph Maloney wrote:Cashman had a horrible winter that was one big reason for what happened this year.Not quite. Chances are if Girardi hadn’t decided on resting his players, that they would’ve won the east. As it were, they won the wild card and beat the Twins who were in a dance along with the Yanks and Rays for the best record in the league.

      The best thing that happened to the Yanks all year was not winning the east, Texas would have knocked them out of the playoffs in three games flat.

    41. October 23rd, 2010 | 8:13 pm

      @ Joseph Maloney: I heard that Cashman interview, too. I think Javy and Nick Johnson were Cash trying to be all “look how clever I am at noticing their numbers.” But he didn’t take into account how poorly Vazquez pitched in meaningful games (it wasn’t just with the Yanks) or Johnson’s obvious injury concerns.

    42. MJ Recanati
      October 24th, 2010 | 10:23 am

      @ ken:
      That’s too much faith to put into AJ Burnett and Ivan Nova, if you ask me. I’m with you that I don’t believe a season has to end in a World Series but I don’t agree that the Yankees should just assume that their current rotation is good enough to win a World Series. If improvements can be made, they should be.

    43. MJ Recanati
      October 24th, 2010 | 10:24 am

      @ Joseph Maloney:
      If you’re saying that Damon or Matsui should’ve been kept around for the playoffs, where would one of them have played during the regular season? Your argument makes no sense.

    44. MJ Recanati
      October 24th, 2010 | 10:27 am

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      So it’s your opinion thaat Joba is a nothing more than another arm in the bullpen?

      Correct. Until Chamberlain improves the consistency of his fastball, learns how to throw his secondary pitch(es) for called strikes and improves his pitch sequencing, he’s unfit to be a starter.

      I endorsed the idea of keeping Chamberlain in the rotation as long as he was sent to the minor leagues coming out of spring training to continue working on improving himself as a starter. The Yankees relegating him to the bullpen this year tells me that they don’t think his stuff plays up as well three times through the order and I can’t say that I blame them.

      He’s not a good relief pitcher by any stretch of the imagination but he’s not an MLB-ready starting pitcher without making some very significant adjustments.

    45. jvk
      October 24th, 2010 | 1:31 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      No free agent contract for #1 caliber starting pitchers is without risk but some risks are greater than others. I truly don’t see any reason to worry about Cliff Lee. He’s shown durability, in addition to his obviously abundant talent.

    46. jvk
      October 24th, 2010 | 1:34 pm

      Cliff Lee without a doubt showed duribility. His first start with the Rangers he went 9 IP with 6 ER! Thats what i call durability. (I kinda messed up the quote thing. OOPS! LOL!) :)

    47. October 24th, 2010 | 1:47 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      I would have kept Damon and used him as a DH leftfielder. I am not a big Gardner guy, I see him as a 4th outfielder type.

      The Yankees are about the postseason, winning during the regular season is a means to an end. There isn’t a Yankee fan who isn’t disappointed at the outcome of this season. Other teams (like the Braves for instance) take great pride at making the postseason, but around here it just doesn’t cut it.

    48. October 24th, 2010 | 1:54 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      Joba could have won ten games in the starting rotation this year. My feeling coming out of spring training was Javy would finish with between 10-9 and 12-10. I can’t understand what folk were looking at to think this guy was any better than that. Basically his whole career is aabout being a .500 pitcher. And on top of that, as I stated earlier, he is a horrible postseason pitcher. Joba pitched pretty well last postseason.

    49. jvk
      October 24th, 2010 | 2:31 pm

      Bottom line the Yankees screwed up with Joba. Period! End of story!

    50. Evan3457
      October 24th, 2010 | 5:03 pm

      Joba was not really good or reliable in the postseason last year. He was in trouble constantly in the 1st 2 rounds, trouble that pitchers who followed him got him out of. He did better vs. the Phillies, but even in that series, he blew a save by giving up a HR to Feliz in game 4, before getting the win when the Yanks rallied for 3 in the 9th. It is true that none of the 5 runners he inherited scored, but most of the time, he promptly followed it up by leaving a mess for some other reliever to clean up.

    51. Evan3457
      October 24th, 2010 | 5:04 pm

      His opposition OPS in the post-season was .974, because they hit 3 doubles, a triple and a home run off him in his 6 innings over 10 appearances.

    52. MJ Recanati
      October 25th, 2010 | 2:02 pm

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Joba could have won ten games in the starting rotation this year. My feeling coming out of spring training was Javy would finish with between 10-9 and 12-10. I can’t understand what folk were looking at to think this guy was any better than that. Basically his whole career is aabout being a .500 pitcher. And on top of that, as I stated earlier, he is a horrible postseason pitcher. Joba pitched pretty well last postseason.

      What you wrote makes no sense. If you saw Vazquez as a .500 starter with between 10-12 wins but thought Chamberlain could win 10 games, where exactly was the upgrade to the Yankees (ignoring, of course, that wins by starting pitchers is a putrid yardstick).

    53. October 25th, 2010 | 11:27 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      With Chamberlain there is hope that maybe he can be more someday, with Vazquez there is no hope. Chamberlain pitched decently in last year’s postseason (he certainly pitched better than Hughes last year), Vazquez has never pitched well in the postseason.

    54. MJ Recanati
      October 26th, 2010 | 8:54 am

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      Chamberlain pitched decently in last year’s postseason (he certainly pitched better than Hughes last year),

      Evan already addressed this just four comments above your own. Chamberlain, in fact, did not pitch well in last year’s playoffs.

      Chamberlain, 2009 playoffs: 6.1 IP, 9 H, 1 BB, 5 XBH, .333/.345/.600 batting line against.

      The sample size is obviously tiny but it speaks directly to the point that your perception is off about Chamberlain. He was ineffective in the 2009 playoffs. It may have seemed like he had a good post season because that was a drastic improvement over the shit he’d been slinging over the final six weeks of the season but the numbers don’t paint a picture of effectiveness in the ’09 playoffs.

      I’m not sure your reference to Hughes is about the regular season or the post-season so I can’t address it.

    55. McMillan
      October 25th, 2013 | 7:58 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      The Yankees didn’t hit in the [2010] ALCS and the main culprits were Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Jorge Posada, Nick Swisher and Brett Gardner. What could Brian Cashman have done in the winter of 2009 to mitigate this?

      The Yankees didn’t hit in the 2012 ALCS, and the main culprits were Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Russell Martin, Nick Swisher, and Curtis Granderson. What could Brian Cashman have done in the winters of 2010 and 2011 to mitigate this? Build teams with better starting pitching depth and a more balanced postseason lineup, as Cherington has done in Boston.

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