It’s been awhile

So I guess it’s been about two months since I’ve posted–that’s probably because the Yankees have been breaking my spirit since the start of the season.  After Mighty Matty D’s performance last night I feel somewhat better so I’ll give a run-down of some stuff I’ve been thinking about.

1. Brian Cashman made an egregious error by trying to depend on Carl Pavano.  I never understood why he thought that The American Idle would ever be a part of the rotation for more than  a start or two, and I never will.  This is one of the major reasons why the Yanks will NOT, I repeat WILL NOT, make the post-season this year.

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3. There was no need to sign Clemens.  He cannot go more than 5 or 5 2/3 innings, he’s old, he’s lost a great deal of velocity on his fastball and he’s the most overpaid pitcher in all of baseball except for maybe Carl Pavano. Anyway the reason to sign Clemens was to win a world series.  If the bombers don’t even make the playoffs (which they won’t the way they’re going) then bringing Clemens was all for nought anyway.

4. Mighty Matt n Co. get no respect.  So like Matt DeSalvo had a sub 2 ERA in Scranton and was basically blowing away the competition and yet he was called up after Phil "don’t call me Philip" and Chase Wright and Rasner.  Now, I didn’t really understand the logic but at least he was given his shot.  The problem I have now is the kid has had two very quality starts (last night included going 6.2 innings and giving up 7 hits and 2 runs while striking out 2), yet, the so-called rotation is going to comprised of Wang, Pettitte, Moose, CLEMENS, and HUGHES.  While Rasner was not so dominating his last start out, he’s been solid and DeSalvo has been sick.  Why can’t they get some acknolwedgement and a shot to be part of the ailing rotation and maybe turn things around? At least Matty is getting another start Thursday.  I think Joe likes him which could be a problem…for his arm at least.

5. Proctor’s arm will be delayed in falling off for at least 4 games!  Normally I wouldn’t be happy that one of the most dependable relievers is out, but I’m glad that Proctor hit Betancourt because now Joe can’t make him throw a thousand innings in the next 4 games. 🙂 yay for Scotty. Hopefully, when he returns, he will be refreshed. Hey, maybe he did it on purpose…

6. RJ and Gary Sheffield deals still ****.  I doubt we would be experiencing such heart ache if they were still here.  Lefty pitchers just keep shutting the lineup down (as predicted).

7. Why can’t the Yankees have a real first baseman?  Mark Texiera anyone??

That is all.  My boy Andy P goes today.  He better bring it.


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As Clippard and Karstens make their cases for not being sent to Scranton and Chase Wright makes his case for skipping AA, a few "studs" are showing their true colors.  Let’s go down the line:

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Phil stunk it up yet again.  I’m through defending him.  At one point, I revered him.  He personally has ended my worship of him by not exactly being friendly/ or nice when I spoke to him the other day.  The kid hasn’t even pitched above AA yet, does he really have a right to be such a prima donna?  I still have a great deal of respect for his abilities, but it will never be the same again.  He’s showing why he’s going to AAA.  Maybe he’ll even spend the entire year there!

Farnsworth was sick on friday.  Maybe he can actually put it together for a full season..maybe.

Jose Veras is also proving that he should be considered for the major league relief staff.  The kid is a solid ball player.  He needs a shot.

Tabata is the face of the future.  He’s going to be the Yankees franchise.  I guarentee it.  His bat is very special indeed and he’s got a good attitude.  He’s very exciting and mature to watch.

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Number one: Phil pitched well.  Although he only struck out one in two innnings, he appeared to be more comfortable and regained his superb control that he lacked in his first appearance.  He is proving that he should kick Igawa or Pavano out of the rotation.  Probably Igawa because if Pavano is healthy, he has 15-18 game winning potential especially on the yankees.

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"I think Oppenheimer has done a **** good job of drafting, he’s used the
Yanks financial advantage by taking risks in the later rounds(Betances
being the big pick up), and they’ve paid off so far. I’d do the Henry
and Kennedy picks again; you can’t argue with taking a high ceiling,
toolsy shortstop and polished college ace, plus Henry’s already served
a good purpose. As far as this year, there’s two names out there I
badly crave: Jack McGreary and Mitch Canham. I’ll go into more detail
about McGreary when I look ahead to the high school draft class, but
Canham is just a warrior behind the plate. The kid looks like he was
made to wear pinstripes. With the potential talent haul stemming from
the 07 draft, the Yanks should have a stacked farm system even if
Hughes, Clippard, Sanchez and Cox graduate to the majors this year."–Mike A.

Yes, that’s right.  Mitch Canham.  I’m praying that they will take him.  He’s solid defense and solid offense.  The yankees have no future catcher..and even if Montero remains a catcher his ETA is 2011.  Posada is wearing down.  We need a guy fast who can start splitting duty and eventually learn to take over.  I think Canham is up to the challenge.  I doubt he will need much time in the minors before he is ready. PLLLEEEASEEEEEE.

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So I feel as if Ted Lilly were pitching yesterday I would not have been so cynical.  My expectations for Kei Igawa were already low.  I mean how good can he possibly be if he’s projected as a number 5 starter.  Suffice it to say I was not impressed yesterday.  After Pavano’s "return" I was semi relieved because it was neither stellar nor horrid so that was fine.  However, Igawa really ****** it up.  If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s walks.  I’d rather have my starter give up home runs than walks.  Walks are basically freebies and that is not ok. 

So anyway…the point is: After much reflection, I think Phil should start in the majors as the number 5 starter.  There will be very low expectations for him as a number 5 starter…all he needs to do is have a ERA slightly above 4 and maybe win 10-12 games.  That would be fine with me.  Kei Igawa was a pointless investment and I think Cash just did it to compete with the Sox.  However, whereas Igawa *****…Matsuzaka is totally legit. 

About Phil….previously I was completely against the notion of bringing him straight up, however, I was reading something on Baseball Prospectus yesterday and I think they’re right.  Let’s get him up before the injuries etc start.  C’mon….let phil make the team.  I know his first start wasn’t stellar but he showed a command that Igawa lacked even though he was really nervous.

*** is with Big Z guaranteeing a world series????

On another note….I really like Cole Hamels.  I think he has a lot of potential but can someone PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE fix his motion.  He has the make-up for an ace lefty but if someone doesn’t teach him a new motion his arm will go out very soon. 

T-Clip kind of owned yesterday.  That makes me happy. 

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Only 11 more days before I’m alive again….

I really can’t wait for the 15th.  There are so many looming questions of what February 15th-April 1st will bring. 

My hopes:
Carl Pavano has really gotten his act together and toughened up.  He gets back into the groove…gets good enough for trade bait.  Cash trades him for some young position players….a back up catcher perhaps?
Honestly, I know Pavano could be a very good pitcher.  He has a lot of potential but I’ve lost all faith in him.  I’d really just like to get rid of him for good no matter how much he’s "improved" himself.  There are plenty of young guys that deserve that number 5 spot a lot more than he.  Perhaps Rasner or Karstens??? Why does everyone discount them?  They both proved themselves to be very capable last year.  On pretty much any other team they could both fight for a 4 spots. Whatever.  I’m sure by this time next year they will no longer be playing for the yankees.

Phil Hughes completely blows everyone away and proves he’s ready to claim his spot in the rotation.  I don’t think this is impossible at all.  I don’t want him to start out in the rotation though I think he needs to make a few starts at AAA to prepare himself, however.

Pettitte proves his health.

Igawa looks like a major league pitcher.

Pitching wise those are the major things.

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Some things to ponder

So I was just reading some info on the weblog pinstripe alley and something interesting caught my eye.  A poll to see who would have preferred Ted Lilly to Igawa.  I’ve debated this a lot and the conclusion is always the same. 
1. Ted Lilly is home grown.  They best yankees have pretty much been the home grown ones at least in recent years.  For instance the world series from from 96-2000.  Jeter, Posada, Pettitte, Soriano, Mariano,etc…
2. Lilly is a known quantity.  You know you’re going to get a decent lefty who will be about a .500 pitcher with an era somewhat over 4.  That is perfectly acceptable for a number 4/5 starter.
Some people may argue that Lilly has attitude problems because of that tiff he had on the mound last year with Jay Gibbons during that game against Oakland.  However, if you know about Jay Gibbons you know he’s rather belligerent (ex. the Shea Hillebrand problem).  Whatever.

Yeah so what I really wanted to discuss was CNN’s list of top 75 prospects.  I’m really not happy with it.  You know fine Delmon Young and Alex Gordon I completely agree with.  However,
Ok first of all…
Just look at this:
I always think the most important quality a pitcher should possess is control which hughes clearly has and Bailey does not.  Hughes completely dominated in double A and consistenly had about 10 Ks/the five innings he was allowed to pitch.  I always get annoyed when a pitcher won’t just throw the freaking ball over the plate (Cough cough Kyle Farnsworth anyone???)  Control has proven to be more effective than pure stuff.  Look at a guy like Greg Maddux–throws junk but has pinpoint control.  Hughes has incredible stuff (mid 90s fastball and sick slider) and CONTROL.
Tabata is in the top 25…maybe he would have been higher if he had not been at low A last year and moved to Tampa I don’t know.  They gave an honorable mention Tyler Clippard.  People don’t give the guy the respect he deserves.  He did throw a no hitter last year if anyone remembers….

Hughes will prove them wrong. I can guarentee it. That’s my rant.

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Starting Rotation

So I was thinking about it and I don’t believe that the bombers have a number one starter.  I doubt Wang will be as dominant as he was last year unless he learns another pitch.  The power sinker is pretty sick but I really think if he’s going to be a one he needs to get something else.  There are very few pitchers who can own everyone with one pitch (ex. Mariano). 
    Hopefully Pettite’s elbow will hold up and he can pitch like he did that first season in Arizona (and much like how he pitched for all those years in NY).  I was incredibly happy that they resigned him however, he is a question mark.  At the top of his game I’d say he’s a 2. 
    Moose–I hope his arm can hold up too.  If he can hold up and pitch like he did the first half of last season I’d put him at a low 2 high 3.  He’s solid and he can throw any pitch for a strike.  I like him a lot but he’s getting old. 
    Igawa-????  Who knows how that will go. I just hope he doesn’t require time in the minors because that will be a disaster.  If he projects as a number 4 that will be fine.  I just hope he doesn’t require a great deal of bullpen use. 
    Who will be the number 5 starter?  Who knows?  If they sign the Rocket he can hardly be called a number  5 starter so he would definitely be high up in the rotation but I feel like  that’s a far out idea.  I think he would really be disrespecting Houston if he plays for the Yankees again.  Then again his best friend is back on the roster so that’s definitely reason for him to come along for the ride. 
    Out of the minor leaguers….who knows?  Sanchez is probably closest to ready considering he’s already been in triple A.  Clearly Karstens and Rasner are ready but i don’t feel like they get a huge amount of respect.  Philip Hughes has been babied and needs to rack up the innings in AAA.  Tyler Clippard needs some time there too.  Ross Olhendorf could possibly fight for a spot in the rotation but I don’t know…We’ll see

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So I haven’t written in months because I was just way too depressed about he Yankees state of affairs.  I’m starting to like the way Brian Cashman’s moving, however, it made be deleterious for the current team (2007 season).  There is a vast amount I feel like commenting about so here goes:

1. Thank god Cash didn’t trade Melky and Proctor for Gonzalez.  I really didn’t understand the point of that at all.  Proctor has proven himself as a strong and capable force out of the bullpen whereas Gonzalez had one good run and then was injured for the rest of the year.  Whatever, leave it to Atlanta to make a lame to deal for him.  I personally like Adam Laroche and think he’s a fine ball player.  He’s only 27 and last year he was .285, 32, and 90.  I know Gonzalez was 26/26 but after deals like Jaret Wright and Carl Pavano I’m very wary of injury prone players.  Also….Adam Laroche vs. Craig Wilson…hahahahhahaha. anyway.

2. Gary Sheffield.  I know everyone thought Cash was so smooth with that one but I think the smooth one was Dombrowski was the slick dude in this one.  With one small move, he completely transformed his team for next year.  I know everyone was like "Humberto Sanchez blah blah blah" whatever. He’s a good prospect but he’s not great.  He gave up very little and got a great deal.  Even at 38 years old, Sheffield is still one of the best hitters in baseball.  He didn’t get a chance to shine last year do to his long stint on the DL but whatever.  I still have a lot of respect for the guy even if he is kind of a jerk.  IMO, the yankees should have just picked up the 13 million dollar option and forced him to play first base.  Now they are almost completely devoid of good righties (there is still jeter and arod…but arod…yeah) and Mientkiewicz is a lefty and can’t hit for ****.  I’m glad we have a good fielder at first now but that does not solve the problem of driving in runs.  I’m sure Wang is happy though.

3. RJ. I still have no idea how I feel about this deal.  I wouldn’t have been so on  the fence if Cash had made a run at Montero.  They still have no back up catcher thanks to Randy of course.  Everytime I watch a Tampa Bay game and see Navarro i cringe.  I mean it’s nice to have the curmudgeon out of the club so that the atmosphere is better but now they don’t really have a 4th/5th  starter.  I know Johnson had a ****** year last year but that doesn’t take away the fact that he did win 17 games.  Thinking about who the options to be the number 5 starter: Sanchez, Karstens, Rasner, Ohlendorf (?? who knows), I mean I’ll put Clippard and Hughes here but I’m not into bringing kids straight up from AA I think it’s cruel and look how Kasmir is suffering.  Those guys will NOT win 17 games.  But again, I’m glad that BC is looking towards the future and trying to get younger (then why did he try to ditch melky??!?!?!?) whatever. 

25 more days. sigh.

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I just don’t understand.  I’m starting to get extremely angry.  Why does Scott Proctor have to pitch in every game?????!!!?  There are plenty of pitchers in the yankees bullpen now.  Why can’t we bring in say…I dunno…kyle Farnsworth? How come he’s allowed to rest and Proctor isn’t?  I have this theory that maybe Joe is trying to burn out as many 7th inning guys as possible.  THEY HAVE A 10 1/2 game lead LET HIM REST. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.

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So I hadn’t updated in awhile because I sort of felt badly about praising the yankees and bashing the red sox.  I’ve spent a great deal of time in the past week or so thinking about Jon Lester and co.  I’m happy to see that David Ortiz is back as well as Varitek…etc.  However, I’m feeling incredibly sorry for the ailing Red Sox.  It’s like I can’t really say anything negative.  I have one negative comment though.  I don’t think that it was very nice what they did to Javy Lopez.  At least when he was with the Orioles he had a job.  Anyway…
   After last night, the Yankees now have a 10 game lead in the AL east.  A play off birth is certainly not certain, but it’s looking pretty good.  Wang had another excecllent showing–winning his 17th while giving up 1 run on 8 hits in 7 + innings.  Farnsworth is again pitching rather poorly.  I’m really starting to feel that there are currently other pitchers on the team who are more qualified to pitch in the play offs than him.  I think Brian Bruney has really earned his spot on the post season roster.  I know there’s a debate about him vs Dotel but why don’t we ditch Farnsworth. Yeah right.  I guess that wouldn’t look considering his bloated salary.
   One of the great things about a 10 game lead is the fact that Joe is now resting his lethargic players ie SCOTT PROCTOR (others too).  Yesterday Proctor pitched a third of an inning and his previous outing was Wednesday.  Mariano is also getting some much needed rest for his elbow tendinitus. 
    I’m angry that the Yankees management seems to be belittling the accomplishments of Darrell Rasner and Jeff Karstens.  They have been pitching SO much better than Cory Lidle and Jaret Wright.  In his last outing, Rasner pitched 6 innings and gave up one run.  Karstens last outing was not great (he pitched 5 2/3 innings and gave up 3 runs) but prior to that he had been pretty awesome.  The thing is, I don’t feel like throwing up every time they pitch.  With Lidle and Wright (especially Wright) I always feeling ill and on the edge of my seat.  It almost never looks easy.  What I love about Rasner is that he has such pinpoit control that he DOESN’T WALK PEOPLE.  There’s nothing I hate more than free outs. 
   Good luck to Jaret Wrong today.  Maybe he can get through 6 innings without making me puke. That is all.

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