"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Winter Meetings: Day Four

Do You Want Some More? 

paintings 033

Granderson and Pettitte are official.

So, what next? Scott Boras is talking up his client, Johnny Damon, right on cue.

What about Halladay? Coming to the Yanks? Not likely, opines Joel Sherman.

The Yanks done at these meetings? What do you think?

UPDATE: From Buster Olney at ESPN:  “Heard this: The Yankees are in the process of negotiating with Johnny Damon’s camp.”

UPDATE: Chad Jennings, who has been doing a terrific job covering the winter meetings, just posted a few final words from Brian Cashman as the Yankees General Manager was on his way out of town:

“I am definitely not in a position right now where I feel like I’m ready to do anything,” he said. “The next step isn’t ready to happen now, based on my conversations. There shouldn’t be another shoe to drop immediately.”

Cashman has options, and he has little need for urgency. He has to act, obviously, but the past four days have surely eased any need for desperation. Yesterday, Cashman acknowledged having talked to John Lackey’s agent. Today, he acknowledged talking about Ben Sheets. He’s met with the agents for Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui. He’s been engaged with multiple trade talks. As soon as something makes sense, he’ll be ready to move.

“Patience can benefit you, (or) it might not,” Cashman said. “You can wait something out and see if it falls in your lap, but by doing that you risk losing something that you want. It’s a little riskier for us to play that game. If we really want something and it fits in our criteria at some point, waiting it out to see if it gets cheaper, I’m not sure that’s the way we go about it.”

Much as I miss Pete Abraham over at Lo-Hud, I’ve got to give credit to Jennings, Sam Borden, and Josh Thomson for maintaining the blog’s high standard.

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Show/Hide Comments 1-100
1 Alex Belth   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:19 am

From ESPN: jaysonst: Rule 5 draft starts in half-hour. Buzz is that Yankees and Wash have arrangement where Nats take Yanks LH Zach Kroenke & sell him back to NY

2 Alex Belth   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:20 am

More on the Rule 5 Draft at Lo-Hud:


3 seamus   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:21 am

Chad's coverage of the rule 5 draft has been excellent. I'm really impressed.

4 The Hawk   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:26 am

[1] Huh?

5 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:37 am

The Nats (Yankees) actually took Jamie Hoffmann from the Dodger. He is 25 and has never had impressive numbers, so I am not sure what the catch is.

6 seamus   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:47 am

[5] Chad has a pretty good take on it.

7 rbj   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:51 am

I would say successful meeting. IPK was always #3 on the Hughes/Joba/IPK list, so trading him for Granderson isn't bad. Not easy to give up Jackson, but you don't get something for nothing and Curtis is a proven MLer.

I also like the Pettitte resigning. And no Halladay-to-Boston is also good.

8 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:52 am

[6] I still don't get it. He is a major league 5th outfielder who already cleared waivers last year. It seems to me the Yankees could have retained Kroenke or gone with the Nats pick (then they wouldn't have had to worry about keepin him on the major league roster) and picked Hoffman with their own pick. In any event, it probably doesn't mean much, but it is a little curious.

9 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:05 am

Meanwhile, it looks like the Red Sox will be paying Texas $9mn to take Mike Lowell, which means Boston is now paying $18mn to have their former left side of the infield play elsewhere (including Lugo's $9mn).

10 randym77   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:06 am

Well, maybe that explains why the Yankees were trying to trade their draft pick. After they got Granderson, they didn't need an outfielder so much?

11 Mattpat11   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:07 am

Is there any real reason the Yankees seem to have decided they only want one of Damon, Matsui and Swisher? Is it all so they can do that stupid damned rotating DH?

Have I mentioned how much I hate the rotating DH?

12 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:09 am

[11] I think it is baseless speculation. I can see picking from between Matsui and Damon, but Swisher should not be tied to the equation (unless the grand plan included Holliday in LF, Granderson in CF, Melky in RF and Damon/Matsui as the DH).

13 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:21 am

I'm still not thrilled about flipping A-Jax for Granderson (hoping to be proven wrong about this) and now Jamie Hoffmann?
Shelley Duncan hits lefties, too, and was probably worth more.
Weird move.

14 monkeypants   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:21 am

[11] They will sign a full-time DH, don't worry. They are playing it correctly, IMO, to hold back and watch the market develop. And right now there are plenty of DH options out there, which should drive their value down somewhat.

[8] I see this as a no harm move. If he sticks, he's a RH bat off the bench/5th OF...in other words, Shelley Duncan only younger (and better?). If not, he goes away. I am pretty convinced that Melky or Gardy are getting traded, so a little replacement level OF depth doesn't hurt, especially now that AJax is gone.

15 monkeypants   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:22 am

[13] Duncan was also 30 y.o., rather than 25. It would be helpful to know Hoffman's defensive reputation.

16 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:28 am

[15] looks like Hoff's a servicable fielder who hits lefties. I think I'd prefer Shelley's pop.

17 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:32 am

[14] It's definitely a no harm move (jettisoning Bruney and his salary was a benefit and unto itself). It just seems like they could have selected him AND retained Kroenke, but perhaps they were interested in doing that anyway.

There were reports that the Royals immediately called Cashman about Gardner. If Cash could clip Gardner now while he has some trade value, that could be a nice surprise. Too bad Billy Butler finally broke out because he would be a perfect right handed DH.

[15] Hoffman has a good defensive reputation and is thought to be able to play ever outfield position at least average, so on that basis alone he has much more value than a Shelley Duncan.

18 Horace Clarke Era   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:41 am

I think monkey has it (and Sherman in the linked piece). Cash is not done, but is now not hungry or in a hurry. I think he wants a reliever, and needs a DH, and there are lots of those. He may want a strong 4th OF/DH - which means Damon over Matsui. (And if Melky's dealt, then he DOES need a piece.) I also note Sherman to this effect:

The Yankees might be more amenable to building a trade simply around Montero. The Blue Jays love his bat, but view him as strictly a first baseman. The Yanks want to believe he still is a catcher. If he is not, however, first base is blocked by Teixeira, and the organization would not want such a young DH. In addition, the Yanks are deep in catching prospects, notably Austin Romine and John Murphy, and to a lesser extent Francisco Cervelli and Gary Sanchez.

As I said earlier, if we trust Cash and the braintrust, we trust them to judge if Montero really is a catcher. (I know it is HARD to call this on a 19-20 year old!) If he is not a catcher, he is purely a DH for us, at 21-22, and that can be done, though it is counterintuitive. It does bring his value down. Consider how we value Posada behind the plate and how we value him at DH.

19 monkeypants   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:41 am

[16] In general I agree with you, but the Shelley Duncan ship sailed two years ago. He's now a 30 y.o. career MiLeaguer. Even if his MiL pop could have translated to the MLB level (and the only evidence of this was a glorious couple of weeks a few years ago), he is probably already in his (relative) decline phase from his (relative) peak.

Raising Duncan is a red herring. He is simply not an option at this point.

20 monkeypants   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:45 am

[18] and the organization would not want such a young DH.

Why not? If he can hit well enough to play DH full-time, the worst case scenario is a really cheap DH (and emergency third C) for several years of indentured service, then bye-bye. This is a bad thing?

I really would not understand the alleged willingness of this organization to trade away the best impact bat they have developed since Nick Johnson if not longer, regardless of his position.

21 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:49 am

[19] true, true, the Shelley ship has sailed- and Bruney isn't a reliable enough reliever to warrant much more than a Duncan'esqe player in return, so maybe this move isn't as weird as I initially thought.

22 RagingTartabull   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:52 am

[19] agreed 100%...it was a fun 2 weeks 2 years ago, but anyone who thinks of him as a legit option for the ML roster is basing their opinion solely around those 2 weeks.

23 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:55 am

[22] I don't think anybody's pining for Shelley, just pointing out that the Yanks gave up Bruney for a Duncan'esque player who may be of less use to the Yanks than Bruney.

24 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:02 am

[23] Hoffman isn't Dun'esque though because he can field every outfield position and has above average speed. If Duncan had those skills, he likely would be a big leaguer.

Also, I think the Yankees wanted to dump Bruney regardless.

25 Shaun P.   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:06 am

[23] Ah, but Sliced, I think you miss the value of Hoffman that Shelley doesn't have - Hoffman can play CF, Shelley can't. With the loss of Austin Jackson, the Yanks have no one in the upper minors who can play CF and possibly hit in the majors (though I guess Colin Curtis could be an outside possibility, but not one I'd want to bet on).

Getting Hoffman is getting depth, and the Yanks need depth, even if they keep Melky and Gardner and sign a LF (Damon or Cameron or whoever).

[18] That's just silly - the organization would not want a young DH? One who could be a fantastic hitter? Why not? DH is a position like any other. Sherman's bit leaves aside two points. First, as I said yesterday, I've already read Kevin Goldstein of BP say that it is now thought to be possible in scouting circles that Montero could stick at catcher. And related/second, of course the Blue Jays are going to say they see Montero solely a first baseman - that drives down his value!

I'll add in that, even if Montero really can't catch (and I saw every season of Mike Piazza behind the plate, so I'm not convinced he can't catch), there is decades of precedent of catchers being taught to play left field passably well, and the Yanks do have a vacancy there with no viable long-term option currently anywhere in the organization . . .

26 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:07 am

[24] so Hoff is more Gardner'esque than Duncan'esque? OK.

27 RIYank   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:11 am

Getting Hoffman is getting depth, and the Yanks need depth, even if they keep Melky and Gardner and sign a LF (Damon or Cameron or whoever).

I don't get it, Shaun. Swisher, Melky, Brett, Damon-or-whoever, Granderson. You're saying they should/might have a sixth OF on the 25 man roster??

28 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:13 am

[26] He's actually neither...he seems to do a several things decently, while those two have limited things that they do very well (but not necessarily on a major league level). Because Shelley's skills are the ones hardest to reproduce in the bigs, he has been less likely to play in the majors.

29 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:13 am

[25] right, and I didn't want the Yanks to trade A-Jax. So had they retained A-Jax they wouldn't have used their Bruney chip to replace him.
The A-Jax thing is going to stick in my craw until Granderson wins me over, and/or until A-Jax proves to be a lesser player than I envisioned him to be (which was not a superstar, but a homegrown kid with tools). I was really looking forward to A-Jax. I take so much more pride in players that came through the Yankees system. But I'll get over him at some point.

30 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:15 am

With the loss of Austin Jackson, the Yanks have no one in the upper minors who can play CF and possibly hit in the majors

As it is, the Yanks are 4 deep in CF'ers (Granderson, Melky, Gardner and Swisher in an emergency), so I don't think it's much of an issue.

31 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:17 am

[29] I can understand growing attached to a prospect, but admit I don't get why you would that smitten with A-Jax. He really isn't that high of a prospect. It's not like the Yankees have no home grown guys. After all, Melky is a Yankee kid, but it seems no one gives him any love. It seems like many (not saying you) clamor for the kids, but then sour on them quickly.

32 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:22 am

[30] I'll grant you Melky and Gardner for CF but not Swish :)

33 Alex Belth   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:27 am

29) And as Cashman said, it hurt to let A Jax go, but you've got to give something to get something. I don't think it will take long for Granderson to win you over, from everything that I understand about the guy. I mean, Leyland just gushed over the man, always a good sign.

34 Shaun P.   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:28 am

[27] No, not on the 25-man, somewhere in the upper levels of the organization. I know Hoffman, by the technical rules of the Rule 5 draft, has to stay on the 25-man roster "all year", but there are many ways around that. Many a Rule 5 pick, or someone else who'd have to be exposed to waivers otherwise, has suffered from lenghty, recurring "injuries" over the years, with much rehab time spent in the minors.

Even after this year, they will still need depth.

And, what if - I don't think this likely - the Yanks don't sign a Damon or a Cameron, but just a DH, and have Melky be the LF? And then what if 1 of the 4 OFs they do have (who Raf names in 30) gets hurt.

I should also add, and I think someone mentioned this above, picking Hoffman is another loud signal to Boras that no, the Yanks don't need Damon (i.e., a negotiating tactic at least).

[30] Perhaps so, but that does not mean they can or should have the upper minors devoid of anyone who fits that description. Injuries happen. And you also happened to name the only 4 OFs on the 40-man roster right now. =) And 3 of those 4 will start, meaning the Yanks have but one 1 real reserve OF. =) (Well, not counting Hoffman!)

35 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:31 am

[31] I was perfectly fine with Melky/Gardner platoon. In fact, I was proud that the Yanks won a championship with them. I envisioned A-Jax to be something better than Melky. He's a great looking athlete, and he's young. Even if he doesn't have anything more than gap-power, A-Jax seems like an exciting player, and he's "ours" which goes a long way with me..

Granderson's a big name with proven talent, but I would have preferred sticking with "our" centerfielders. I'll get over it.

36 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:33 am

[33] yeah, I've heard and read nothing but great things about Granderson.
He's literally got one of the best names in the game.

37 RIYank   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:34 am

Shaun, it's not that easy to hide a Rule 5 guy on IR. They have to be active for 90 days.
I think Hoffman will be traded or cut before Opening Day.

38 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:37 am

[35] I am not trying to convince you to abandon your affinity for homegrown players, but a big part of the reason the Yankees could win with Melky/Gardner was because of the talent assembled around them. With the prospect of losing Damon and Matsui (regardless of how they project going forward, both had excellent offensive years), the Yankees needed to regroup. Also, if A-Jax did become the CF'er, that would pretty much ace out Melky/Gardner, so ultimately there would be no net gain in home growns.

39 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:40 am

[37] 90 days is half the season. If you want to hide him, you could probably do it, but I don't see the impetus. If the Yankees don't actually need or want him, they might as well just give him back and use the $25K for a really nice party.

40 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:40 am

Perhaps so, but that does not mean they can or should have the upper minors devoid of anyone who fits that description. Injuries happen. And you also happened to name the only 4 OFs on the 40-man roster right now. =) And 3 of those 4 will start, meaning the Yanks have but one 1 real reserve OF. =)

Yes injuries happen, but Cashman isn't done with the team yet. Even so, how many teams carry 6 outfielders? And who's to say someone isn't picked up sometime down the line? It wasn't all that long ago that guys like Terrence Long, Felix Jose and Henry Rodriguez got playing time. In case of injury, pick up a stopgap for a couple of weeks, then deal for someone who offers a more permanent solution.

There is plenty of time to sign an OF, or invite one to spring training. Not quite worried about that yet.

41 Alex Belth   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:51 am

Curtis Granderson is a great name, isn't it?

42 RagingTartabull   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:56 am

[41] it's a name custom built for Ring Lardner

43 vockins   ~  Dec 10, 2009 12:15 pm

[41] Sort of unfortunate we won't get to hear Bob Sheppard do it.

44 randym77   ~  Dec 10, 2009 12:16 pm

Chad's post on Hoffman is interesting. He didn't clear waivers. There were multiple claims. The Dodgers kept him by offering him money to refuse the other teams.

45 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 12:34 pm

[44] Very interesting information is right. If the Yankees like him that much, they did a good job maneuvering to get him.

46 wsporter   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:02 pm

[41] We have some more nice names coming as well: "Stoneburner" and "Slade" Heathcott are two that occur to me. Slade Heathcott sounds like he tripped and fell out of a Damon Runyon story. It certainly would have been nice to hear Mr. Sheppard announce them.

47 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:03 pm

Hpw old was Papi when he was a full time DH? He helped his team a little bit, yes? And vis-a-vis Piazza, ya mean Montero could not be at least a BUC for 25 games a year as well as DH? This makes him MUCH more valuable then a Papi that can't run or field.

So far, it looks like Montero has better MiLB numbers then Murcer and Mattingly... and that's at being one of the youngest guys in his league. Between A+ and AA ball, he has averaged a .950 OPS at NINETEEN! I don't think you can trade him until you see at least a year of AAA ball. You really have to think twice about trading away a .900+ OPS bat. And hell... maybe he can play RF. He hasn't been given a shot there yet.

With the longtern, expensive contracts we already have, 1 or 2 injuries to those guys would REALLY hurt. We want to add Halladay, a pitcher, to that formula?

This team NEEDS cheap, quality players... now and in the future.
It's time to give Joba, Phil and Montero a shot of 'being the best they can be'.

REMEMBER 1965!!!!!!

48 Sliced Bread   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:11 pm

[46] hey, good to see you back on the Banter, wsporter!

Would have been nice to hear Sheppard announce "Austin Jackson," too, but yeah, he would have hit "Curt-is Grand-er-son" outta the park.

49 51cq24   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:18 pm

[38] the thing about jackson is that he had a chance to be a good home grown player. you may not think he would have become that, but he is certainly a better prospect than either melky or gardner ever were. you are missing the point by comparing him to lesser players. we want home grown players who are good, like hughes, joba, cano, jeter, rivera, posada and pettitte, and so we are disappointed when the yankees trade away a prospect who has a chance to be a good major leaguer.

50 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:22 pm

[49] Everyone wants homegrown players who are good, but I just don't think A-Jax rates in the class of the other names you mentioned. He was definitely talented, but I would not be shocked at all if Melky winds up having a better major league career. If the Yankees held on to every prospect who had the chance to be a good major leaguer, they would have forfeited some pretty good players for some pretty big busts.

51 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:25 pm

I wonder how much of this handwringing over traded prospects is a product of the information age. I remember when practically no one (or in fact actually no one) in the minor leagues was known even to the avid fan, to say nothing of the casual. That is, until they were either called up or traded, at which point we usually asked "who the fuck is that guy?"

I think the first prospect I recall hearing about pre-internet was Steve Balboni. Yikes.

Sometimes ignorance is bliss.

The reality is that most prospects fizzle. The ones that come back to haunt are the exceptions that prove the rule.

Not saying Montero is not a complete beast, btw, and I'd like to keep him all else being equal :)

52 Jon Weisman   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:29 pm

Jamie Hoffmann won't be more than a fringe player wherever he goes, but he's a pretty fun player. He played some great defense for the Dodgers during his brief stay, including a diving catch-throw-to-the-plate DP to kill a sacrifice fly. Also had a big three-run homer in a game.

Without having much instinct in the Yankee roster, I have trouble imagining he's good enough to stick. But he's definitely capable of making big plays. I'd like him back in the Dodger organization as a potential midseason callup again.

53 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:30 pm

[51] I think that's definitely the case. With all the avenues of information, diehard fans can spend years learning about a prospect (usually through the team's prism), so when he gets traded, it almost like losing paper profits.

I agree that Montero has enough sizzle to make his expectations more reasonable, but even players of his stature have a relatively high failure rate. Meanwhile, lesser prospects can wind up being stars. So, instead of worrying about losing a prospect like A-Jax, I prefer to enjoy a known talent like Granderson while realizing that someone less hyped could emerge from the farm.

54 51cq24   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:30 pm

[50] obviously that's true. and i've softened on this trade and think granderson will be good. my only point is that it's disappointing when we lose a prospect who has a chance to be good. maybe jackson won't be good, but he does have a chance, more so than melky or gardner did when they were in aaa.

55 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:31 pm

[52] Thanks for the info. I've read one account calling him the best all around defensive player in the Dodgers system, so if he could hit lefties even a little, I think he'll have a good chance of sticking.

56 51cq24   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:33 pm

[51] the other side of that is that now there are more scouts and better statistical metrics with which to judge the prospects. so we not only hear more about prospects, but we have a better idea about how good they are or might be. obviously that doesn't mean that we know which prospects will work out and which won't, but i do think we have a better idea.

57 RagingTartabull   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:35 pm

Lil' Mikey Francesa reporting (seriously!) that the Mets are readying offers to Bay and Bengie Molina

58 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:40 pm

[54] All fair points, except I think you are selling Melky a little short. He may not have been highly touted by some major publications, but the Yankees thought enough about him to promote him at age 20 (Melky is still only 2 years older than A-Jax). Also, at a younger age, Melky did have more success in AAA (in half the PAs) than A-Jax has had so far.

Melky (ages 20 and 21): 247 PAs - .323/.368./.475
A-Jax (age 22): 507 PAs - .288/.357/.406

59 Shaun P.   ~  Dec 10, 2009 1:59 pm

[52] Thanks for the info, Jon! Good to see you stop by.

60 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:05 pm

[58] WOW about Melky's stats. Nicely found (and used!) Easy to forget how young Melky still is too, after all these years.

So [53] [56], do you think the increased info/scrutiny and better metrics make a 22nd round pick emerging as a star less likely - thinking one A. Pettitte here...

61 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:08 pm

Some more perspective on the Granderson trade: The Astros have just signed Pedro Feliz and Brandon Lyon for about the same amount as Granderson will make in 2010.

62 The Hawk   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:09 pm

I feel like Melky is going to get better. I think given the opportunity he'll solidify his "comeback" this season, in 2011 I suspect if he's still on the team everyone will be glad about it. Just a hunch, I guess.

I have zero problem with one of the OF spots being Melky's, with Gardner there in case he slumps badly. Replacing Damon with Granderson essentially, which is fine with me.

Whenever I read or hear the name Curtis Granderson I think of the once-alleged Star Wars character, Grando Calrissian. I may have to call him Grando, so pardon me in advance.

63 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:11 pm

[60] In many ways, I grow more attached to players like Melky who have grown up in front of my eyes. A-Jax may be a home grown prospect, but he has been doing it in foreign places like Tampa, Trenton and Scranton.

I don't the amount of info. and scrutiny detracts from late rounders becoming stars because most of the information is still coming from the same source: scouts. Also, many baseball skills are often developed after a player is drafted, which is why the draft is really a crap shoot for all but the most talented.

64 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:14 pm

[62] I'd think Melky could have a big role even if the Yankees sign Damon and Matsui. If you rest Matsui and Damon about 30 games and Swisher and Granderson about 15, Melky could still carve out a nice 90 game niche.

If they go with only one, I also have no problem with Melky in left, provided the Yankees have a bonafide bat in the DH slot.

65 Horace Clarke Era   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:16 pm

I dunno how it happened, but everyone seems to think it is 'silly' to not be flat-out in love with a kid. I confess I tend to think the other way, and baseball fandom has steered me that way. Nor am I saying (really!) bail on him. I am saying it is possible to consider dealing him for one of the 3-4 best pitchers in the game. Especially because Montero is likely a couple of years away and given the nature of the NY operation.

That's as far as I go Shaun! I've even noted I think I'd prefer Lackey and Montero + Hughes to Roy - both of those. So I am not climbing on any get-rid-of-the-kid bandwagon. I suppose I am just trying to slow DOWN the Montero or Death rallying! Remember we all went through this with Santana, when most of us said we'd prefer to watch the kids (PhilJobaAPK) develop. That's still a work-in-progress, but Cash's decision to wait a year and get a Santana Equivalent without a trade did work out, after a missed playoff year. (The horror! The pain!)

DH at 22? Happens, rarely on winning teams, best I can tell. And there are a lot of people here agitating about the need to leave DH at-bats for aging vets. (I'm not one of them, myself.) I just note the VALUE of a player is higher if he is a catcher than if he is a DH ... surely that's a no-brainer? Shaun, you repeated the bit about some people thinking he might be a catcher yet ... and I am not even engaging on that because I have no way of commenting. I just said on this, that if the Yankee people decided he wasn't going tk be, it is easier to deal him.

In a way, I think we're having a debate at cross-purposes. I think, leaving aside the DH/catcher stuff and early comparisons, it comes down to this: I'm disinclined to exalt kids, even those with stellar early stats (even really stellar ones). Some here think Montero is going to be massive, magnificent, memorable, Mantle-like.


66 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:18 pm

[63] Tampa, Trenton and Scranton are indeed foreign!

I hear you all around.

You wonder with guys like Pettitte (again just an easy example I can cite offhand) - did the guy who actually scouted him have any sense of what he'd ultimately become? I suppose that's why we keep drafting guys way way way down into many rounds - because "you never know." But at some point it must be tough to rank guys and decide where/if to pick them.

67 RIYank   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:19 pm

Meanwhile, what the hell are the Red Sox doing? Dumping Lowell (and paying his salary) for a doubtful catching prospect? Hopeful Sox fans think it's a sign that they're going to go hard after Adrian Gonzales. I dunno.

68 The Hawk   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:22 pm

[64] I hear ya and that seems to be kind of the consensus - I guess I'm just saying, on this team anyway, Melky is fine in the OF, and plus he has that kind of talisman vibe at this point. I'd hesitate to trade Swisher for similar reasons ... I mean he switch-hits, 30 HRs and is a laugh riot. Sometimes a team need that.

Thinking about Swisher, I look forward to more of his adventures in RF.

69 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:28 pm

Over at RAB, it was posted that currently, we have $180m+ tied up in 12 players. Can someone please tell me how we field a winning team for around $200m, without a bunch of free, quality players?

For 2011
ARod - $31m
CC - $23m
Tex - $22.5m
A.J. - $16.5m
Jeter: $15m (guessing)
Cano: $ 10m
Posada - $13m
Swish - $9
Granderson - $8.5
Thats $149m for Nine players, leaving $51m for 16 players

Can someone please tell me how we field a winning team for around $200m, without a bunch of free, quality players?

The issue isn't exactly how good AJax or Montero, or Joba or Phil are. The issue is are they good enough, combined with the BIG salaries above, to be a contending team.

If Montero is our future C, he buys us $13m/yr (replacing Posada)
If you trade Montero for Halladay, you will have $170m into TEN players.
And that's without Mo.... at another $15m

We won't even talk about injuries, or age, of any of the big guys.
Nobody else here thinks we are walking a serious tightrope?

70 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:36 pm

We won’t even talk about injuries, or age, of any of the big guys.
Nobody else here thinks we are walking a serious tightrope?

Nope, not at all.

Shiny new stadium + YES Network = $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Then you have cases where the Yanks get cheaper (Swisher vs Abreu), (Granderson vs Damon).

Having said that, I'll believe the Yanks are losing $$ when I see it.

In 2007, the Yanks suffered a lot of injuries, had a pitching staff in transition, and they STILL won 89 games. They'll be fine.

71 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:37 pm

[69] Last year, the Yankees had about $190mn tied up in their 12 highest paid players and managed to do ok filling out the roster. As for 2011, some teams manage to fill out their entire 25 man with $50mn. I think the Yankees can find a away to manage too.

72 The Hawk   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:43 pm

[69] Good LORD they pay A Rod a lot of money

73 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:49 pm

If the Rays leave the meetings with Bradley and Soriano, I think they did quite well. While he may be a head case, Bradley can hit when healthy, so his addition to the Rays lineup would be significant. Meanwhile, Soriano gives the Rays the reliever they desperately need.

74 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:49 pm

[72] It's amazing, isn't it? I wonder if he has a vault of money to swim in like Scrooge McDuck?

75 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:56 pm

[73] Bradley was traded to the Rays? I haven't seen anything.

76 williamnyy23   ~  Dec 10, 2009 2:58 pm

[75] Not official, but a rumor.

77 wsporter   ~  Dec 10, 2009 3:01 pm

[48] Hey Slice, thanks hope it's all been good for you. Yeah, it would have been nice to hear the great voice say ". . . Austin. . . Jack-son" or ". . .Curtis. . . Grand-er-son" in that way he has of saying things like that.

[50] I think I have to agree, A-Jack's ceiling was about what Granderson can give us now and who is to say that A-Jack would have hit that ceiling anyway? Given what what we already have in the Bronx and in the pipeline below AA and the ceilings they represent (Almonte, Heathcott etc) it's not clear A-Jack could or would have stayed in CF for long once he got here anyway. I think B. Ca$h Money got it right on this one. As I said somewhere else we got A-Jack with immediacy and certainty in the person of Granderson and paid the price of IPK and Coke for that immediacy and certainty. Given what we needed now I think making this deal was ultimately an easy call for the Yankees despite being "distraught" about giving up what they did.

78 ms october   ~  Dec 10, 2009 3:08 pm

[69] some people like tightropes. :}.
i completely get where you are coming from oyf because we have similar economic views - but enjoy the monster in this case - it's good for you.

i am assuming the cubs will pick-up a good chunk of bradley's salary.

i always get a kick out of how accessible damon is - reporters seem to be able to track him down very easily for a quote.

79 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 4:08 pm

Boy I hope Theo and Co. get pummeled as much as we would for dumping Lowell and eating 75% of his salary if the deal to Texas goes through. B/T that and what they're paying for a certain no-longer-employed shortstop...jeez. If we did that we'd never hear the end of it (looking at YOU Gammons!)

I love how much it hamstrings them on a relative basis though :)

80 Shaun P.   ~  Dec 10, 2009 4:12 pm

[69] Tightrope? No. Because a lot can change in two-three years. Just look at what the Yanks' OF picture was at the end of 2006!

That said, I tend to agree that much of Montero's value, to me, apart from his bat, is that the Yanks could pay him "peanuts" (less than ~$1.5M total) for 2010 (presume a September callup) to 2013. Forget replacing Posada, or anyone else. That's what let's them pay A-Rod, and Tex, and CC, and AJ, obscene amounts of money, and still field a contending team, and go out and spend for a high-quality free agent in 2011.

Note too that in 2010, the Yanks will likely pay 9 out of 25 on the roster (3/4 of the bench (Cervelli, Pena, and Gardner/Hoffman), and 4/7ths of the bullpen (everyone but Mo, Marte, and Gaudin), and Hughes and Joba) a combined salary of ~$4.5M. Cash is the man.

81 Shaun P.   ~  Dec 10, 2009 4:14 pm

[79] And of course, because Mike Lowell was a hero in 2007, the word on the street in RSN is that this is a very, very, very stupid move.

I think its smart, but what do I know? I don't understand why Texas is doing it, though. What does Lowell bring them? They have a thirdbaseman already, and he's pretty good, and they have no where to move that guy because their SS and 2B are also pretty good!

82 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 4:54 pm

I don’t understand why Texas is doing it, though. What does Lowell bring them? They have a thirdbaseman already, and he’s pretty good, and they have no where to move that guy because their SS and 2B are also pretty good!

Andruw Jones is gone, so I suspect Lowell will take his DH at bats. He can also pitch in @ 1b, platooning with Chris Davis, and spell Michael Young @ 3b on occasion.

83 wsporter   ~  Dec 10, 2009 5:10 pm

[80] MFD, once again sir you prove the value of a solid liberal arts education! I think you just about nailed the multiple reasons Montero is so valuable specifically to the Yankees; if he is what he so definitely appears to be.

84 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 5:24 pm
85 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 5:33 pm

From a Detroit Fan:
"It also bothers me to think that Detroit wanted Phil Hughes and NY didn’t want to give him up in the original package. So instead of saying thanks, but no thanks Dombrowski goes back and gets pushed into taking less than what he originally wanted."

Cashman: +1

86 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Dec 10, 2009 5:40 pm

Andy's still a Yankee: Praise Jesus!

87 sonyahennystutu   ~  Dec 10, 2009 5:47 pm

[82] Yeah I'd assumed DH and 1B for Lowell on Texas.

88 Yankster   ~  Dec 10, 2009 6:46 pm

[62] Grando Calrissian - love it. Henceforth so shall he be known (by me).

89 thelarmis   ~  Dec 10, 2009 7:16 pm

i've long been a fan of Grandy - both on and off the field. kinda kool we got him for a coupla few years.

[88] heretofore, he shall be known as DANCERS GROIN RUST (by me, ri yank, and diane). well, at least until a better anagram comes up...

btw, HI EVERYONE!!!! goddamn, i've missed all of you and this place in general. long story short - i moved and at&t completely fucked me out of internet service for this entire month. i switched and got back online today. now, my computer is acting up. hopefully, i can get back to some normalcy - webwise - soon and catch up on all the december baseball news. my brother has been calling me to fill me in on some of the recent goings on.

i've got a funny/nightmare moving story to share w/ yins ('sup seamus?!), but i've gotta go teach now. i hope to have some time online tonight and again next week...

i'm still super psyched about us winning the fucking world serious!!!!!!!!

rock on,

90 thelarmis   ~  Dec 10, 2009 7:17 pm

hey, the clock's been fixed - hurrah!!!

soooo glad Andy's back!!! : )

91 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 7:51 pm

Nice to hear from you Thelarmis. Hope your new digs are cool. HOPE YOU GOT CABLE!

92 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 8:56 pm

I found this from a commenter on RLYW:

I still imagine that one of the reason Damon via a 1 or 2 year deal was attractive was because AJax was around. The nearest OF prospect now is 3-4 years away, maybe Cashman will look for a longer term solution. Or stick with the one year plan and go hard for next year’s FA? Or trade?

We have no OFers anywhere near MLB ready.
I predict....
A real run at Holliday and a rotating DH.

93 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 8:57 pm

[92] This warrents some discussion, no?

94 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 8:57 pm

[92] Or... it might warrant some discussion.

95 OldYanksFan   ~  Dec 10, 2009 8:58 pm

[92] Or.... I should go back and finish the 8th grade,

96 ms october   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:27 pm

hi thelarmis - glad you have settled in - and i would have bet $50 that the reason we hadn't heard from you lately was internet issues after your move :}

[92] well the yanks have colin curtis - who sounds close to mlb ready just not an impact player. the just got the kid from la that also sounds close to mlb ready just maybe nothing good. but more importantly they have granderson now.
so i don't really agree with the notion that damon was attractive since jackson was around. i don't think jackson was ever the linear replacement for damon.
now if the price comes down on holliday then i think there is a strong chance they get him as a replacement to damon - gets boras has to decide which commission is more important to him.

97 RIYank   ~  Dec 10, 2009 9:40 pm

Hey, thelarmis! So that's where you were. Groin Rust Dancer indeed -- sounds like someone Tiger Woods might know.

Do you know that I have never once used AT&T? Really!

98 Raf   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:00 pm

[92] Not quite sure what the issue is. Outfielders are fairly easy to replace.

09: 9 different outfielders
08: 8 different outfielders
07: 9 different outfielders
06: 13 different outfielders
05: 12 different outfielders
04: 6 different outfielders
03: 11 different outfielders
02: 11 different outfielders
01: 14 different outfielders
00: 14 different outfielders

As this relates to Damon vs Jackson, it's attractive to have Damon on a short contract is because he'll be 36 at the beginning of the season. If Jackson is ready, that's a bonus, but I have a hard time seeing a long term contract for a player with the wear and tear that Damon has.

99 Chyll Will   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:13 pm

[92] (psst, two words: Crawford, Carl...)

(Four more words in general: Lee, Cliff, Webb, Brandon...) yunnow, just in case... >;)

100 The Hawk   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:26 pm

I think Cashman's attitude at this point is that Granderson has replaced Damon, not Melky. So if Damon wants back in, cool - at the Yankees' price. But they don't need him, or at least that's what Cashman thinks, or how he's playing it, anyway.

Show/Hide Comments 101-110
101 edoubletrouble   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:40 pm

is that your drawing Alex?

102 thelarmis   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:42 pm

oyf, ms. o, ri - hi friends!

missed you guys...

[91] new digs is pretty cool, i suppose. gettin' a bit better each day. really weird and different though. it's gonna take me a minute...

i've always had cable; it's just 'basic' cable though. still no mlbn or yes. i originally set up for directv, but after reading some bollocks they sent me in the mail and other bullshit on the phone, i bagged it and stuck with what i've had. even for basic cable, they had to send me some converter box just for espn. then today, i'm told i didn't get the 'digital' box to get my 'full' basic cable. whatever. i'm never gonna watch on demand movies and music channels, so fuck it. at some point, i might upgrade my tv and the package.

looks like i'm a-gonna have to get a new laptop sometime in the near future. with that, and high-speed comcast, i might be able to get some kinda mlb package and watch games online. i'll do more research (read: ask you guys!) around when the season begins...

[96] ms. o - you get 50 buckers! it was a nightmare dealing w/ at&t. they disconnected my landline & internet (not to mention discontinuing my freaking email address) waaaay before they were supposed to, then weren't gonna get it turned back on til after i moved out and then NEVER figured out how to turn on my service at the new place. what a bunch of jackasses.

anyway, i'm NOT settled in yet. gettin' a lil' closer each day, but i'm still really far from being 'settled in'. i think it's gonna take a coupla months, actually. but i'll get there eventually...

how was 'bama? hope you had a great turkey day w/ your mom and her animules! (can't remember if it was a dog or cat or what...)

[97] hey man! Dancers' Groin Rust - YEAH!

i'm not surprised you haven't ever tried at&t - it always comes with mustard and everyone knows: mustard is ICK!!!

i followed the banter up in NY around turkey day, but never commented. i generally had my niece in my arms and at least one nephew nearby. got some cool Yankees WS gear at Mo's for my birthday. i was displeased Diane didn't mention my b-day in her NOTD column. i've got a bone to pick with her! ; )

hopefully there'll be a good time soon to post my funny/nightmare moving story. i'm sure you'll all get a kick out of it!

103 thelarmis   ~  Dec 10, 2009 10:44 pm


Lee = Morgan

Cliff = Corcoran

Webb = Wilder

Brandon = Arroyo

what'd i win?

104 Chyll Will   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:18 pm

[103] A new car, wired with [local cable operator] Triple-Play service!! >;)

Hope you end up liking your new crib, though I suspect anywhere is better than what you were enduring all that time. On my part, I've been putting more energy out in the universe than usual, hoping that the Christmas season will inspire some goodwill towards moving to a much more relaxed home conducive to acting on creative inspiration (so to speak...)

105 thelarmis   ~  Dec 10, 2009 11:27 pm

[104] can i trade in the new car for a hot, skinny blonde chick? if not, i'll settle for a hundred more Blue Note jazz cd's! : )

yeah man, i've been thinkin' about you and hoping/wishing you can get yourself into a new pad. i still have my old apt for this month and i've gone back a coupla times. part of me misses the inside and the location, but every time i've been over there, the idiots below are at it. he/they are moving out at the end of the year, but who knows what evil will move in. i was there exactly one DECADE, so it was time.

i have no doubts i'll end up digging it here quite a bit, come a coupla months, and i'm good and settled. that said, it's not a perfect palace. i am renting and it is a duplex (of sorts), but it's definitely a step up. i think it's a good "interim" move for me.

my folks are coming down the last week of the year to do their parental units' duties and set me up at the new digs! : )

106 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Dec 11, 2009 12:02 am

[105] Wazzzzzzzzzzzup??? Congrats on the move, always annoying to re-do the web connection. Most important Q: are you within wakling distance of a bar? (man, living in Tokyo has me spoiled..I can either walk or get a 15min train ride and have access to over 100 music joints! Couldn't face having to drive anywhere now..)

Get yerself settled in, get the mlb.com package next year (only $100) for the year and with your schedule being what it is, it's perfect for watching games on replay late at night.

Live Chick Corea & Roy Haynes album on the web radio last night..Roy was killing it!! I heard he still is at 80+ years.

Take care, buddy!

107 thelarmis   ~  Dec 11, 2009 12:15 am

[106] hey pal !!!

thanks, man. i'm doing all the online changes right now - email, home addy, phone #. pain in the arse.

listenin' to geri allen blue note cd's all the while. she's got a trio record w/ ron carter & tony williams. i hear they're pretty good! ; )

no, that's the one thing about this place - NOT walking/stumbling distance from a pub. i'm on my 3rd beer now. that said, i'm only 3 miles from my old stomping grounds and a bunch of watering holes. it's like a $10/10-minute cab ride.

you can watch games on replay? hella cool! yeah, i'll prolly do that. i'll really need to upgrade this old laptop though. my computer tech buddy (music guy) is coming by sunday evening to take a look-see.

hope all is well with you, your lady and ok jazz jr.!!!

108 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Dec 11, 2009 12:20 am

Geri Allen..she is married to Wallace Roney, right? I think I have (had?) one of their cds together...didn't know about that trio but it must be awesome.

10mins cab ride is fine once a week, always remember: Safety first!

The replay thing is amazing..perfect for me as I follow Gameday and the Banter while "working" every morning, then can watch at leisure in the evening. You can also watch live via the web if you are in the US..it's well worth the money!

Me and the fam all good, work has been insane the last 3 weeks but almost there for the 10-day winter break..3 hours till friday evening, home for some nabe (Japanese winter hot-pot) and some sake...ahhhhh.....

109 thelarmis   ~  Dec 11, 2009 12:47 am

[108] is it wallace roney? i think i'm confusing it with renee rosnes being married to billy drummond. roney is on one of the allen cd's. prolly the case... both geri & renee are amazing female jazz pianists.

hell yeah, always safety first! i'm thinkin' more like cab ride once every TWO weeks. unfortunately, my work has not been busy...at all.

my childhood best friend is coming to visit this weekend. i won't have much time for brew though, as i've got late gigs both weekend nights...

can you forward through the replays at all?

110 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Dec 11, 2009 1:04 am

[109] You can skip by half-innings on the replayed games, it's great. Especially when the feed happens to be with FOX...i really can't sit through 4-hours of Timmah and John Boy Buck.

Going to see Peter Brotzmann this sunday, ready for a sonic explosion!!

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
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