• CC’s Knee Needs Help

    Posted by on May 15th, 2014 · Comments (4)

    Via Mark Feinsand

    CC Sabathia’s knee troubles are far from over. In fact, they might just be beginning.

    General manager Brian Cashman confirmed that a second opinion by Dr. James Andrews revealed no tear in the meniscus in Sabathia’s right knee, which was surgically repaired following the 2010 season.

    Sabathia does, however, have what Cashman termed “degenerative changes” in the area, meaning that “some cartilage breakdown is occurring” in the 33-year-old’s knee.

    “His knee stability is fine, so there’s no ligament damage or anything like that,” Cashman said. “His knee is stable; but he does have some degenerative changes.”

    Sabathia stayed in Birmingham Wednesday night after having his knee drained of fluid earlier in the day. He’ll see Dr. Andrews again on Thursday to receive an injection of cortisone and stem cell, the standard treatment for his condition.

    “We have current players and we’ve had past players that have dealt with this in the past,” Cashman said. “There have been a number of successes throughout that process; hopefully CC will be in that success, also.”

    The Yankees remain hopeful that Sabathia will be ready to go when he’s eligible to return from his 15-day stint on the disabled list, but Cashman said he’ll wait to hear what Dr. Andrews has to say before making any such predictions.

    “I’m going to wait until he goes through the procedure on it,” Cashman said.

    Cashman listed Hideki Matsui, Randy Johnson, Carlos Beltran, Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones as players who have dealt with similar issues, playing through the knee problems while remaining productive. According to Cashman, Beltran continues to get treated for it even now.

    “Randy Johnson pitched for many, many years with it; when Arizona signed him from Houston, then we got him from Arizona, he was going through a lot of the same stuff,” Cashman said. “Everybody is different, but they had similar situations; hopefully far worse. They found some sort of happy medium between the treatments they received and performance.”

    I would feel better about Sabathia’s chances to have good seasons after this if he were pitching in the National League and there was no PED testing in place.


    Posted by on April 10th, 2014 · Comments (1)

    Look at the last 889 MLB PA that Brian McCann had prior to this season.

    Over that period, he hit .242 – including the second half of 2013, where his BA/OBP/SLG line was .220/.296/.384 (in 196 PA).

    Next, look at his Spring Training BA/OBP/SLG line this season: .200/.265/.333 in 49 PA.

    Lastly, note that his BA/OBP/SLG line to start this year is .152/.176/.152 in 34 PA.

    At what point does this become worrisome?

    Hey, How About Those Spring Training Stats?

    Posted by on March 28th, 2014 · Comments (4)

    Most notably, these three:

    • Brian McCann’s BA/OBP/SLG line this spring is .209/.277/.349 (in 47 PA to date).
    • Derek Jeter’s BA/OBP/SLG line this spring is .143/.208/.163 (in 53 PA to date).
    • Mark Teixeira’s BA/OBP/SLG line this spring is .091/.286/.121 (in 42 PA to date).

    Yeah, it’s only spring training…but…

    …no cause for concern, Yankees fans?

    .122/.182 /.146

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2014 · Comments (7)

    Yes, that’s Derek Jeter’s BA/OBP/SLG line this spring, so far (in 44 PA).

    And, the numbers have been going down as the spring has moved forward.

    Cause for concern…yet?

    Let’s Be Honest About Hiroki Kuroda

    Posted by on January 31st, 2014 · Comments (9)

    The dude will be 39-years old this season, and, in his last 8 starts of 2013, he went 0-6 with an ERA of 6.56 (in 46.2 IP).  Worse, his opponents’ BA/OBP/SLG slash line over these starts was .316/.364/.551 (against 215 batters).

    Eight starts is one-quarter of a season, for those scoring at home.

    Oh, and, by the way, the guy has been pitching in this country for six years and has won more than 11 games in a season only twice.

    I mean…heck…even Greg Maddux was cooked by the time he was thirty-nine.

    Anyone expecting Kuroda to give the Yankees a solid season in 2014 is not exactly smoking the objective pipe.

    Teixeira’s Stiff Wrist

    Posted by on January 29th, 2014 · Comments (7)

    Via the WSJ

    Teixeira’s doctors have told him that it will take a year for the wrist to feel fully normal, and that the tightness will likely remain throughout. It should improve, however, with every therapy session he completes and every swing he takes.

    “I’m expecting until June, and maybe even through this entire season, it’ll be a little tight,” Teixeira said.

    Brilliant move. Lay the groundwork now for an excuse in case you stink during the first three months of the season. And, if you happen to play well, it’s a miracle! Hallelujah!

    2014: The Derek Jeter Nightmare Season?

    Posted by on December 29th, 2013 · Comments (8)

    Everyone thinks that, potentially, the Alex Rodriguez situation could be a major headache in Yankeeland next season – at least at the start of the year. But, what about the Derek Jeter situation?

    The Yankees captain will be 40-years old next summer. The last time he was an above average fielding shortstop was 2009. And, that was a bit of a fluke – since he was below average in the ten seasons before that year. Last season, he was limited to 17 games as he could not completely rehab from an injury that he suffered five months before the start of the season. Oh, and, he will be in the last year of his contract in 2014.

    The only way Jeter has a soft landing next season is if he comes out of the chute and is playing well both in the field and at the plate.

    Now, it’s not impossible. There have been guys who have hit .280 and slugged .400 or better in their “Age 40” seasons in the last 30 years or so. And, if Jeter can reach those levels, given his past performance and stature in Yankees history, I am sure that all concerned parties – meaning the team, media and fans – will give him a buddy pass on not having “Jeterian” numbers at the plate. Of course, the fielding thing, especially with his recent injury, is a whole ‘nother matter.

    But, what if Jeter is batting a buck-ninety, as he did last year on the season, come May 1st? How long will the Yankees be patient with him? How long will they bat him near the top of the line-up? If they are not patient with him, given Jeter’s pride, how will that go down? Further, if he’s still not playing well by June 30th, how long will the team and/or Jeter let it go? If he’s not contributing to the team, or, worse, if he is hurting the team, how long do you keep him on the roster – especially when you consider his age and contract situation?

    The biggest thing here is that Derek Jeter is a Yankees legend. And, everyone wants to see his career end in an acceptable fashion. Yet, will it? Or, will the whole thing just become an ugly situation for the franchise and the icon in 2014? It’s not outside of the possible outcomes, all things considered, is it? Related, is there any way possible that, if Jeter’s season is terrible come the summer, that he pulls a Mike Schmidt and just retires a few months into the season? What do you think?

    Will The 2016 Yankees Be Really Old?

    Posted by on December 7th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    As of today, assuming no one retires, gets traded, or is released, the Yankees will have the following on their roster in 2016:

    40-year old Alex Rodriguez
    39-year old Carlos Beltran
    36-year old Mark Teixeira
    35-year old CC Sabathia
    32-year old Brian McCann
    32-year old Jacoby Ellsbury

    McCann and Ellsbury really won’t be an issue until closer to 2018. And, maybe A-Rod will be out of baseball in the next year or two? And, I suspect that you could use Beltran as a bench player/DH come 2016 – like the Yankees used Ruben Sierra and Bernie Williams in their last seasons.

    But, the Yankees really need to start breaking in some younger players, right?

    Wow, Are The Yankees Going To Suck Next Year

    Posted by on December 6th, 2013 · Comments (15)

    Seriously, look at what would be the Yankees team, if the season opened today:

    Catcher: Brian McCann

    Infield: Decling Mark Teixera, Can’t Hit Kelly Johnson, 40-Year Old One-Legged Derek Jeter, and Soon To Be Suspended Alex Rodriguez

    Outfield: Brett Gardner, Jacoby Ellsbury and a Platoon Of Washed Up Vernon Wells & 40-Year Old Ichiro Suzuki

    Designated Hitter: 38-Year Old Thou Shalt Not Pass Alfonso Soriano

    Bench: Brendan Ryan, Eduardo Nunez, Francisco Cervelli and Zoilo Almonte

    Staring Rotation: Losing It CC Sabathia, 38-Year Old Hiroki Kuroda, Anyone’s Guess Ivan Nova, Michael Don’t Call Me Blutarsky Pineda and David Phelps or Adam Warren

    Bullpen: David Robertson, Shawn Kelley, Cesar Cabral, Preston Claiborne and David Huff (Yeah, That’s the bullpen they currently have under contract!)

    The pitching staff is a mess. They need at least two more solid starting pitchers. And, the bullpen…seriously…that group has to rank among the worst in baseball right now.

    The outfield is short a player – Wells and Ichiro shouldn’t be in the majors at this point. And, if you want to say that Soriano is the third out fielder, then you have no one at designated hitter. (And, by the way, Soriano ain’t exactly a great hitter either. To many whiffs and zero walks.)

    The infield? Jeter is done. A-Rod is a goner, if things go right, and you have no one to replace him. Second base is now a hole. And, Tex’s game has been trending in the wrong direction for a while now.

    Of course, you have Nunez, Cervelli and Almonte in reserve! Good luck with that…

    Shoot, the Yankees have a ton of work to do if they want to win 85+ games in 2014. If not, this crew might be lucky to go 81-81. What a train wreck.

    Yanks Have Even Less To Spend Next Year?

    Posted by on September 25th, 2013 · Comments (52)

    Via Joel Sherman

    Understand something about the $189 million luxury-tax threshold for next season. It isn’t really $189 million.

    Each team is charged roughly $11 million for items such as insurance and pension. Thus, if the Yankees are going to get under — and I believe they are determined to do so — then they can pay their players about $178 million.

    But wait. It isn’t like they could just get to $177.9 million in the offseason. They need to create spare money for promotions, potential bonuses reached and obtaining players via trade. Let’s make that a conservative $8 million.

    OK, now we are talking about the Yanks having approximately $170 million for players next season. Assuming Derek Jeter picks up his option and Alex Rodriguez’s suspension is upheld, the Yanks would have six players signed for next season — Jeter, CC Sabathia, Mark Teixeira, Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki and Vernon Wells. For luxury-tax purposes, that crew costs roughly $68.5 million.

    That would leave a little more than $100 million to spend, and you can subtract about another $14million-$16 million to reach agreement with the arbitration-eligible Brett Gardner, David Robertson, Ivan Nova, Shawn Kelley and Francisco Cervelli. We can assume another $3-$4 million for five or six non-arbitration players such as David Phelps and Adam Warren.

    That will leave around $80 million, and a good deal of that will be earmarked for Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Hiroki Kuroda — or their replacements.

    You can see how quickly the money goes and why the Yanks are pretty much desperate for A-Rod’s suspension to be upheld and his $27.5 million to go away from their ledger.

    It means the Yanks are going to have to count pennies elsewhere in trying to still have a deep/contending roster with the $189 million constraints.

    I really hope the Yankees do find a way to get Brendan Ryan to return in 2014. They’re going to need a shortstop. I have no faith in Jeter’s ability to man that position – either well or for a prolonged period. And, I can live with no stick when it’s a glove like Ryan.

    Rk Player dWAR From To Age G
    1 Brendan Ryan 13.7 2009 2013 27-31 631
    2 Clint Barmes 9.9 2009 2013 30-34 659
    3 Alexei Ramirez 8.8 2009 2013 27-31 774
    4 Yunel Escobar 8.2 2009 2013 26-30 703
    5 Andrelton Simmons 7.8 2012 2013 22-23 201
    6 Troy Tulowitzki 7.6 2009 2013 24-28 585
    7 Elvis Andrus 7.5 2009 2013 20-24 751
    8 J.J. Hardy 7.0 2009 2013 26-30 657
    9 Jack Wilson 5.5 2009 2012 31-34 286
    10 Alcides Escobar 5.4 2009 2013 22-26 651
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 9/25/2013.


    Things Bad For Yanks This Year, But, Will Be Worse In 2014

    Posted by on September 22nd, 2013 · Comments (5)

    Via Danny Knobler

    As it stands right now, it’s a whole lot easier to see the Yankees as a last-place team next year than as a first-place team. It’s easier to believe that they’ll be worse than this year, rather than better.

    Think about it. The first baseman (Mark Teixeira) will be trying to come back at age 34, after missing basically a full year with a wrist injury. The second baseman (Robinson Cano) is a free agent, and at this point there’s no guarantee he returns. The shortstop (Derek Jeter) will be closing in on his 40th birthday, with no guarantee his surgically repaired ankle will be any better than it was in this nightmare of a season. The third baseman (Alex Rodriguez) will likely be serving a suspension.

    How does it sound so far?

    They really don’t have a catcher. The three outfielders they have signed for 2014 — Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki and Vernon Wells — will be 38, 40 and 35 when next season begins. Their only position player under 30 is Eduardo Nunez, who has proven this year he can’t be a regular.

    The closer is retiring. So is one of the more dependable starters. There’s still uncertainty about whether Hiroki Kuroda will return (and he’ll be 39). CC Sabathia will be back, but he looks less and less like an ace.

    The free-agent market is awful. The owner would prefer to stay under the $189 million luxury-tax threshold. And the farm system offers so little help that even with all the injuries the Yankees had this season, they never saw a reason to give the young players a chance. Even if they want to trade their way out of this mess, they have little to offer.

    The truth is that the Yankees overachieved this year, just to get to the fringes of a pennant race.

    I agreed with everything that Knobler said here. And, to be honest, it’s not exactly breaking news. Others have made the same points already…writer, bloggers, fans, etc. But, what is missing here is assigning responsibility for this state of current affairs in Yankeeland. And, we need to see more of that…enough that it is hammered home on who is to blame. Once that happens, hopefully, Yankees ownership will address it.

    Until that happens, the Yankees will never get back to being a dominant championship-caliber franchise.

    Don’t Wait Till Next Year In Yankeeland?

    Posted by on September 17th, 2013 · Comments (11)

    Joel Sherman wrote this:

    Consider that the Yanks have deployed a team-record 56 players without offering one high-end prospect. Zero-for-56.

    In spring the Yanks suggested Slade Heathcott or Tyler Austin could possibly jump from Double-A to help in the majors down the stretch. Neither even shined at Double-A — and Heathcott’s season ended early yet again with another injury (right knee). Michael Pineda missed a second full major league season with shoulder problems. Manny Banuelos is just now throwing simulated games returning from Tommy John surgery.

    Derek Jeter’s nightmare gave Eduardo Nunez an opportunity to prove he is an everyday shortstop. Instead, he proved brittle and suspect on both sides of the ball. Francisco Cervelli also squandered a chance created with the foolhardy decision to let Russell Martin leave. Cervelli could not stay healthy, and then he was handed a 50-game Biogenesis suspension.

    The Yanks’ best player (Robinson Cano), starter (Hiroki Kuroda) and reliever (Mariano Rivera) are free agents. Maybe Cano and Kuroda will be back — at the right price — but not the retiring Rivera. Curtis Granderson and Andy Pettitte are free agents, too. They will have to be replaced if they are not retained.

    You know who is staying? CC Sabathia for $23 million. Is he any better than a No. 4 starter now? Mark Teixeira, for $22.5 million. He was already in decline before a wrist injury essentially eliminated 2013. Jeter will probably pick up his $9.5 million option to try to play at age 40 on that fragile ankle. Ichiro Suzuki for $6.5 million also will be back for his age-40 season. But it seems all vitality has been lost from his game.

    The good news? Whether they keep him or not, Vernon Wells counts as zero toward the luxury payroll because of how his trade was structured. Alex Rodriguez might cost zero also — if his 211-game suspension is upheld. So there could be help in staying under the $189 million threshold. Hard to sell tickets on that.

    Alfonso Soriano for $6 million should be good value. But he turns 39 in January and, to date in this Yankee stint, we have not seen the extended funks to which Soriano is susceptible.

    It also is good that Brett Gardner and David Robertson will be back. But both are free agents after next season. Gardner flourished before another injury (oblique) raised concerns about how good a risk he is long term. Robertson probably will get the first crack to replace Rivera.

    Brian Cashman would not discuss if he would seek multi-year deals for either. But my sense from talking to the general manager about his philosophy is that besides Rivera, he does not value giving significant money to closers, particularly in long-term pacts.

    So if you are discouraged by the Yanks’ 2013, what are you seeing that makes you feel more optimistic about next year?

    It’s hard to argue with any of this…

    Yankees Fans CC (Cautious Concerning) Sabathia?

    Posted by on August 3rd, 2013 · Comments (2)

    This in the books, is it now time to start worrying about CC Sabathia – maybe even more with an eye towards next year (and beyond) over this season?

    Cano Injured In All-Star Game

    Posted by on July 16th, 2013 · Comments (1)

    Of course, yes, it’s another Yankees injury in 2013.

    On the bright side, after being hit by the pitch in his knee, before leaving the game, when Cano walked down to first base, escorted by a trainer, it was Robinson’s fastest time down the first base line in the last five years.

    Update: Good news. X-rays on Cano’s knee were negative. Even better news for Cano, this means Robinson can be partying at Jay-Z’s 40/40 Club before the start of the 5th inning of tonight’s game.

    Jeter To Get MRI On Quadricep Injury

    Posted by on July 11th, 2013 · Comments (15)

    Via USA Today

    Derek Jeter played his first game at Yankee Stadium since fracturing his ankle some eight months ago. And then departed early with another injury.

    Jeter singled and drove in a run in four at-bats Thursday against the Kansas City Royals, finally returning from two ankle surgeries in the wake of a gruesome ankle injury suffered in the American League Championship Series.

    But after his right quadriceps muscle tightened up, he conferred with trainers and manager Joe Girardi before his fifth at-bat, and was removed for pinch hitter Brett Gardner.

    Jeter will undergo an MRI on the quadricep.

    “It’s not frustrating. Yet,” Jeter said after the Yankees’ 8-4 victory. “I’m going to get an MRI. I hope it’s not a big deal.”

    Jeter began playing in rehab games more than a week ago. At 39, it’s somewhat understandable he’d have a few creaks in trying to return.

    It was an uncharacteristically cautious Jeter who met with the media after the game, striking a wait-and-see pose rather than his usual, defiant tone toward injury questions.

    “If it’s all good,” he said of the MRI, “then I’m playing.”

    Man, it’s really been that kind of a year, hasn’t it?

    Youk, You, You Need An Epidural Injection…

    Posted by on April 30th, 2013 · Comments (6)

    Via Wally Matthews

    The MRI on Kevin Youkilis’ back was “negative,” which according to Yankees manager Joe Girardi means there is no new structural damage to an area of his body that has been troublesome for some time.

    The 34-year-old third baseman will be given an epidural injection of a painkiller Monday night or Tuesday.

    Youkilis also might be headed to the disabled list. That’s something the Yankees might be regretting not having done when he first complained of lower back pain and pulled himself out of a game against the Blue Jays after five innings April 20.

    Youkilis has missed eight of the nine games since then. He played Saturday against Toronto but came up lame Sunday — and before the game, he conceded he might have tried to come back too soon.

    Now, he might be lost for the next 15 days at least.

    “We’re deciding what we’re going to do,” Girardi said. “He’s having a problem. Over the next couple of hours we’ll decide. I’ve had epidurals and played either the next day or two days later. But I don’t know if he’s in a position to play in two days. We’re gonna make a decision on him tonight.”

    So, is Kevin Youkilis’ Yankees career going to be more or less than 100 games?

    Derek Jeter – Absence Makes The Heart Forget?

    Posted by on April 26th, 2013 · Comments (9)

    Derek Jeter says he can return to form.

    That’s good.

    But, what if Jeter comes back this year and plays in 70 games and bats .260? And, what if his range in the field is even worse than before his injury?

    Will the Yankees then look at him and think “We survived most of 2013 without him – so, why do we need him in 2014?”

    And, if the team brass takes this approach, and tells Jeter “Thanks, but, no thanks” for next year, how will that impact the relationship between the player and the team? Think Yogi Berra was thick? He’s nothing compared to Jeter. Imagine a world where Derek Jeter ices out the Yankees and boycotts a return to Yankee Stadium because of bad blood over the way his career ended…

    It could happen.

    CC Sabathia’s Frank Tanana Impersonation

    Posted by on April 2nd, 2013 · Comments (6)

    Great job by Anthony McCullough doing a point-counterpoint analysis, on CC Sabathia’s fastball speed yesterday –

    Here’s a point-counterpoint analysis on Sabathia:

    Reason for concern: Sabathia’s fastball topped out at 91.7 mph on Monday, according to Pitch f/x data from Brooks Baseball. On Opening Day in 2012, his fastball hit 94.5 mph. On Opening Day in 2011, his fastball touched 94.7 mph.

    Reason for calm: Sabathia understands there’s work to be done. “I’m sure that the velocity will keep coming back, and the arm strength will keep building up the more I throw,” he said.

    Reason for concern: Sabathia’s fastball velocity fell to 92.3 mph in 2012, according to FanGraphs. That was a career-low.

    Reason for calm: Sabathia still struck out 8.87 batters per nine in 2012, the second-best mark of his career. In other words: His offspeed stuff is nasty enough to compensate for a diminishing fastball.

    Reason for concern: Sabathia generated just three swings and misses with his fastball on Monday.

    Reason for calm: Sabathia generated 11 whiffs with his changeup.

    Reason for calm: Sabathia starts slow. His 4.13 career ERA in April is his worst in any month (September/October is his time: 2.86 ERA).

    Reason for concern: Sabathia isn’t always terrible in April.

    April 2009: 1-2, 4.73 ERA.
    April, 2010: 3-1, 3.12 ERA.
    April, 2011: 2-1, 2.25 ERA.
    April, 2012: 3-0, 4.58 ERA.

    Reason for concern: The Red Sox peppered Sabathia on Monday. They put 12 men on base in just five innings (eight hits, four walks).

    Reason for calm: If Sabathia gets a strike call on a 1-2, second-inning slider to Jackie Bradley, Jr., maybe we aren’t fretting about his velocity at all.

    It’s still early – and Sabathia barely got any work in this Spring.  (In fact, that’s a concern of mine for the entire Yankees starting staff – as it feels like CC, Pettitte and Hughes didn’t start throwing in games until the last week or so.  Stress:  feels like.)  And, as noted above, Sabathia can be an effective pitcher throwing in the low 90’s.    Look at Pettitte.  He doesn’t throw that hard – but he knows how to pitch and get people out.  But, on the bad side, if Sabathia isn’t pitching well, he’s going to have to hear about the drop in velocity until his ears start to bleed.

    Jeter Gets Cortisone Shot

    Posted by on March 20th, 2013 · Comments (1)

    Derek Jeter received a cortisone shot in his left ankle after yesterday’s discomfort and there’s now a chance that he may start the season on the disabled list.

    The Yankees Opening Day line-up in 2013 is really starting to take an interesting shape…

    Capt. Cranky Ankle

    Posted by on March 19th, 2013 · Comments (8)

    Via MLB.com

    Derek Jeter’s left ankle acted up on Tuesday, forcing the veteran shortstop out of the Yankees’ lineup against the Phillies.

    Manager Joe Girardi termed the ankle as being “cranky,” and said general soreness in the surgically repaired part has Jeter as day to day. Jeter had been penciled into Tuesday’s lineup against the Phillies in the No. 2 hole in the batting order and was expected to play shortstop. Gil Velazquez took his place.

    Jeter told a trainer on Tuesday morning that he felt fine and he participated in batting practice. Later, however, Girardi revealed that the 13-time All-Star’s ankle was bothering him.

    Girardi said Jeter could return to the lineup as soon as Wednesday.

    Jeter fractured his left ankle during Game 1 of the American League Championship Series last October. He had surgery later that month and played in his first Spring Training game on March 9. He has three hits in 11 at-bats in Grapefruit League action thus far.

    This, is not good news.

    Warning On Tex’s Condition

    Posted by on March 10th, 2013 · Comments (12)

    Via Ken Rosenthal

    Mark DeRosa is waiting for a call back from Mark Teixeira, his friend and former teammate with the Texas Rangers.

    DeRosa, now with the Toronto Blue Jays, says a wrist injury “wrecked” his career – and he wants to issue a warning to Teixeira, the New York Yankees’ first baseman.

    “Don’t come back until it’s right or you’ll never be right again,” DeRosa said. “Your bat speed, your stability, your power, your stamina, everything (gets) compromised by it.”

    The injury-depleted Yankees had a rare good day on Saturday, with both shortstop Derek Jeter and closer Mariano Rivera making positive impressions in their first appearances of the spring.

    Teixeira, 32, suffered a strained tendon in his right wrist Tuesday and will miss 8 to 10 weeks, according to the Yankees. A more extended absence would increase the urgency for the team to acquire another corner infielder.

    DeRosa said he had a different problem then Teixeira – he tore the tendon sheath in his left wrist, then re-tore it, then ruptured the entire tendon, undergoing surgery in October 2009 and again in July 2010.

    DeRosa’s new Blue Jays teammate, right fielder Jose Bautista, tried to return from an injury to his left wrist last August, but required surgery to repair a torn tendon sheath in September. He is now fully recovered and on Saturday hit his third home run of the spring.

    Teixera’s injury, as described by the Yankees, is not as severe as either DeRosa’s or Bautista’s. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that in speaking with the team’s doctors, “I never heard anything about a sheath.”

    Some in the industry, however, are skeptical that Teixeira will meet the Yankees’ timetable and return in early May. Teixeira addressed the issue Thursday in a conference call with reporters.

    “The doctors made it very clear to me that that they aren’t going to let me swing until it’s 100 percent pain-free,” Teixeria said. “However long that takes, we don’t know.

    “That’s why we had the conservative 8 to 10 weeks. But we really don’t know how long it’s going to take before I can swing pain-free.”

    The recovery time, if Teixeira eventually required surgery, obviously would be longer.

    “I can’t rule that out,” Cashman said of surgery, “But it’s not something has been discussed.”

    The prognosis could change, Cashman conceded, if Teixeira does not recover through rest and rehabilitation.

    This one could go from two weeks, to 8-10 weeks, to six months in a hurry…and, maybe even longer.

    Cano, A-Rod & Granderson To Get 50-Game Suspensions?

    Posted by on March 4th, 2013 · Comments (14)

    One person thinks this could happen.

    If true, now we know why Brian Cashman is jumping out of planes…

    Worst Yankees Lineup Since 1991?

    Posted by on February 25th, 2013 · Comments (10)

    Dan Szymborski says maybe.

    On the bright side, it could be worse. He didn’t say since 1990.

    Granderson Breaks Arm

    Posted by on February 24th, 2013 · Comments (3)

    Via the Times

    The Yankees were already trying to gird themselves for a season without a ton of power in their lineup, and then Curtis Granderson stepped into the batter’s box to face the Toronto Blue Jays’ J. A. Happ on Sunday.

    In his first plate appearance of spring training, Granderson fractured his right forearm when he was struck by a pitch in the first inning of the Yankees’ 2-0 loss. Granderson, an outfielder, is expected to miss 10 weeks, an absence that will extend into May. The Yankees’ regular-season opener is April 1.

    “Well, it’s not what you want,” Manager Joe Girardi said. “We have plenty of time to figure out what we’re going to do. I mean, Grandy’s not a bat that you’d say is easy to replace, but we’re going to find a way.”

    Granderson, a three-time All-Star who joined the Yankees in 2010, led the team last season with 43 home runs with 106 runs batted in. He started Sunday’s game in left field, part of an experimental switch with Brett Gardner, who played center.

    “That experiment is over,” said General Manager Brian Cashman, who appeared dejected.

    Kurtis Blow says: These are the breaks. I say: Good teams overcome them.

    Cano & Granderson About To Fall Off A Cliff?

    Posted by on February 22nd, 2013 · Comments (2)

    Good stuff on this from Bill Petti.

    Little Given On The Current Yankees

    Posted by on February 13th, 2013 · Comments (9)

    Good summary on the current state of the Yankees via Joel Sherman

    The Yankees have played .540-or-better ball (the equivalent of 87.5 wins in a 162-game season) for an unprecedented 20 straight seasons. The previous record was 18 consecutive years by the dynastic 1926-44 Yankees.

    It is an amazing streak that speaks to the depth of talent the Yankees have had, a depth that has meant even if things pretty much went haywire, the Yankees still would figure out how to win 87 games. Heck, in 2008, the only season they failed to make the playoffs since 1993, Jorge Posada, Hideki Matsui and Chien-Ming Wang got hurt, Andy Pettitte pitched through injury and Darrell Rasner was essentially the No. 3 starter, yet that team still managed 89 wins.

    But the 2013 club does not project to have as much depth (they are still looking for a right-handed DH/outfield bat, as an example). Their farm system is not ready to help. They just might have the oldest average age ever for a team. They are more fragile than they were even last year, when they felt like an egg wobbling on the edge of a table. They do not have the Bronx Bombers power oversaturation that compensates for shortcomings elsewhere. And — as important as anything — the up-and-down strength of the AL East is arguably the best it has ever been.

    Thus, if matters go haywire this year — Derek Jeter and/or Mariano Rivera cannot defy age/injury any longer, Mark Teixeira continues to recede, Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Phil Hughes and/or Joba Chamberlain are undermined by walk-year pressures, Kevin Youkilis cannot provide a legitimate stopgap for Alex Rodriguez — the downside is much worse than 87 wins.

    Look, at this time last year, not even the biggest pessimist foresaw 69 wins for the Red Sox. But injuries, lack of depth and disenchantment formed the basis for implosion. The Yankees have some of the same issues right now.

    Now, it should be noted the death of the Yankees — due to concerns such as age, injury and lack of following George Steinbrenner’s shoot-for-the-stars heritage — has been forecast quite a bit the past two years. I have written a few columns wondering if 1965 (the end of a another Yankees dynasty) was knocking. To their credit, the Yankees won 97 and 95 games and two more AL East titles.

    In the second half last season, the Yankees endured injuries to CC Sabathia, Pettitte, A-Rod and Teixeira and still held off the Orioles. Girardi cited character and a group understanding of how to persevere and win despite hurdles.

    Of course, it didn’t hurt to have depth in the now-departed Raul Ibanez and Eric Chavez plus the nine homers Martin hit the last two months of the season — as many as Cervelli and Stewart have combined for in their careers.

    Even with the key departures and greater austerity, the Yankees still are blessed with high-end talent and a $200 million payroll. They are not underdogs. But what also is evident is they are no longer overdogs, certain to win big no matter what.

    The weak bench, lack of help in the farm system, and age on the roster would be the responsibility of whom? I believe that’s the purview and bailiwick of one Mr. Brian Cashman, no?

    Cashman: A-Rod Could Miss Season

    Posted by on January 25th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    Via Jon Lane

    The arthroscopic surgery New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez had on January 16 to repair a torn labrum and impingement in his left hip went, according to a subsequent statement released by the team, “as planned and without complications.” While it’s anticipated A-Rod will return after the All-Star break, general manager Brian Cashman did not dismiss the possibility that Rodriguez would be sidelined the entire 2013 season.

    “I think, because of the serious nature of the surgery and the condition that he’s trying to recover from, there is that chance,” Cashman told WFAN-AM in New York on Friday. “I would say it’s not going to be because Alex doesn’t do everything in his power to put himself in a position to get back, and be healthy and productive. He’ll do everything necessary and his part. It’s just will the success of the surgery and the condition that he has recover optimally as everybody expects, but there’s no guarantees in this stuff. Best-case scenario, yeah, he should be back. Worst-case scenario he won’t be back or there might be something in between. These are unique circumstances and new experiences injury wise that has a very small history behind it in the last decade or so.”

    Sounds like ol’ Cash is greasing the skids of the news that’s coming down the pipe this summer when A-Rod is MIA at the time he’s expected to return.

    Me? I wouldn’t miss Alex at all if he sat out the whole season. And, if he does, then, stick a fork in him…because there’s no way he’s coming back from that long of a lay off, given all the other time he’s missed recently, and coming to the table with something to offer.

    A-Rod Not Out Of The Woods Yet

    Posted by on January 17th, 2013 · Comments (10)

    Via Sweeny Murti

    If A-Rod comes back on schedule after the All-Star break — let’s assume July 19, first game of the second half — then he will have played only 33 games in the previous 12 months (remember the broken hand that knocked him out most of the second half last season).

    Only 33 games in 12 months. Only 130 Major League at-bats (and four home runs) in 12 months. At age 37. No matter how well the doctors repaired A-Rod’s hip, will he be able to regain something resembling his old self after missing so much game time at that age?

    Off the top of my head the only player I could recall in recent history that went through something comparable was Dave Winfield, who actually missed the entire season in 1989 — at age 37 — due to a back injury. How did Winfield respond?

    He capped his Hall of Fame career with four impressive seasons from 1990-1993, averaging 145 games per year, .273 BA, .342 OBP, and .465 SLG (96 home runs total in four years). It adds up to an OPS of .808 over four seasons from ages 38-41. That’s what you’d call a successful comeback.

    The Yankees will have A-Rod under contract for four and a half more seasons upon his projected return this July. A Winfield-like comeback would be a lofty goal. The complexity of this second hip surgery in four years makes it hard to believe it’s possible, especially when you consider that his production has dipped every year since 2007 already.

    If he gets back on the field as projected this summer, then at least on one level the Yankees can say A-Rod’s surgery was “successful.” But the return on the investment is still a long way from being determined. And the odds aren’t in his favor.

    Then again, for all we know, Winfield could have been juicing in the early ’90’s? There were no tests back then…

    See Brian Downing and Candy Maldonado, who were Winny’s teammates at that time.

    A-Rod? I’ve said this before, and, I will say it again. He’s the new Juan Gonzalez. Even if he comes back from the hip surgery, it will only be a matter of time before something else on him breaks and he’s back on the disabled list. He’s a china doll at this point. Unless the Yankees ensconce him in bubble wrap and nurse him through the rest of his career as a D.H., you cannot count on him to play in more than 120 games in a season, ever, again.

    O.K., I’ll Say It…

    Posted by on January 12th, 2013 · Comments (20)

    Your starting shortstop will be 39-years old three months into the season and he’s coming off surgery for a fractured ankle.

    Seriously, if his name was anything else but Derek Jeter, how would you feel about that?

    Unrelated, a fun list

    Rk Yrs From To Age
    1 Derek Jeter 14 1996 2012 22-38 Ind. Seasons
    2 Luke Appling 11 1933 1949 26-42 Ind. Seasons
    3 Joe Cronin 11 1929 1941 22-34 Ind. Seasons
    4 Cal Ripken 10 1983 1996 22-35 Ind. Seasons
    5 Miguel Tejada 9 2000 2009 26-35 Ind. Seasons
    6 Pee Wee Reese 9 1946 1955 27-36 Ind. Seasons
    7 Honus Wagner 9 1904 1915 30-41 Ind. Seasons
    8 Jim Fregosi 8 1963 1970 21-28 Ind. Seasons
    9 Vern Stephens 8 1942 1950 21-29 Ind. Seasons
    10 Lou Boudreau 8 1940 1948 22-30 Ind. Seasons
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 1/12/2013.


    It’s Hard To Think About The Yankees This Post-Season…

    Posted by on October 5th, 2012 · Comments (6)

    …and not think about:


    Year Age Tm Series Opp G PA AB HR RBI SO BA OBP SLG
    2005 29 NYY ALDS LAA 5 23 15 0 0 5 .133 .435 .200
    2006 30 NYY ALDS DET 4 15 14 0 0 4 .071 .133 .071
    2007 31 NYY ALDS CLE 4 17 15 1 1 6 .267 .353 .467
    2010 34 NYY ALDS MIN 3 13 11 0 1 2 .273 .308 .273
    2010 34 NYY ALCS TEX 6 25 21 0 2 4 .190 .320 .286
    2011 35 NYY ALDS DET 5 23 18 0 3 6 .111 .261 .111
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
    Generated 10/5/2012.


    Year Age Tm Series Opp G PA HR RBI SO BA OBP SLG
    2009 29 NYY ALDS MIN 3 13 1 1 1 .167 .231 .417
    2009 29 NYY ALCS LAA 6 31 0 4 8 .222 .290 .259
    2009 29 NYY WS PHI 6 27 1 3 8 .136 .296 .318
    2010 30 NYY ALCS TEX 4 17 0 0 4 .000 .176 .000
    2011 31 NYY ALDS DET 5 21 0 1 5 .167 .286 .278
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
    Generated 10/5/2012.


    Year Age Tm Series Opp G PA H HR RBI SO BA OBP SLG
    2009 28 NYY ALDS MIN 3 12 1 0 1 4 .083 .083 .167
    2009 28 NYY ALCS LAA 6 25 3 0 0 7 .150 .292 .150
    2009 28 NYY WS PHI 5 19 2 1 1 4 .133 .316 .400
    2010 29 NYY ALCS TEX 6 25 2 1 1 7 .091 .200 .273
    2011 30 NYY ALDS DET 5 20 4 1 1 5 .211 .250 .368
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
    Generated 10/5/2012.


    Year Age Tm Series Opp W L ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9
    2010 29 NYY ALDS MIN 1 0 4.50 1 1 6.0 1.333 7.5 1.5
    2010 29 NYY ALCS TEX 1 0 6.30 2 2 10.0 2.100 15.3 1.8
    2011 30 NYY ALDS DET 0 0 6.23 3 2 8.2 2.077 10.4 1.0
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
    Generated 10/5/2012.

    And, Hughes

    Year Age Tm Series Opp L ERA G IP H R ER WHIP
    2009 23 NYY ALDS MIN 0 9.00 3 2.0 5 2 2 3.000
    2009 23 NYY WS PHI 0 16.20 3 1.2 2 3 3 2.400
    2010 24 NYY ALCS TEX 2 11.42 2 8.2 14 11 11 2.423
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
    Generated 10/5/2012.


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