"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Bottom’s Up

Nah, I’m not going to get into it, man–how mediocre Hiroki Kuroda was or that dumb base-running move by Curtis Granderson. The Royals had a couple of guys throwing cheddar tonight. Russell Martin had three hits including a long home run to left, okay? That’s the only good thing I have to report. You can read the play-by-play here if you’re a glutton for punishment.  Otherwise, know this: it was a miserable night for the Yanks. They lost two-of-three to the Orioles earlier this week and now two-of-the-first three against the Royals. Puts them just one game over .500.

Right now, the Yanks are playing a hair above full suck.

Final Score: Royals 5, Yanks 1.

[Photo Credit:Ed Zurga/Getty Images]

Categories:  1: Featured  Game Recap  Yankees

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1 Jon DeRosa   ~  May 5, 2012 9:28 pm

Pass the pessimism pipe over here. Stomach virus vomitorium hell for the young'un and the yanks providing no relief.

2 Bobtaco   ~  May 5, 2012 9:51 pm

It's too early to view this as a lost season, but the trend lines are bad. No Pineda, no Mo, a basically invisible Cano, Arod and Tex... Can Jeter keep hitting .400 to carry the offense?

Swisher and Gardner will come back, and maybe Andy has something left in the tank.

But with no 3-4-5 hitter production, this team will just idle at .500

3 Bobtaco   ~  May 5, 2012 10:29 pm

Sure is bittersweet watching Montero catch all 8 innings of Felix's shutdown 10K masterpiece tonight too... :-(

4 Ara Just Fair   ~  May 5, 2012 10:58 pm

[3] No way. He's too big to be a catcher.
Going to see Pettitte pitch tomorrow. Hopefully he'll offer a ray of hope.

5 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 12:56 am

[4] and in any case, there is no way he would have gotten ABs in the Yankees lineup this year...

6 Ara Just Fair   ~  May 6, 2012 1:10 am

[5] That trade is going to haunt me for years to come. Hate. Hate. Hate. Ugh. Chris Fucking Stewart, though. He's solid. And Nunez, he needs 400 ab's at least. Bollocks! Unless there's some personal issues about Jesus we are not privy to I will remain bitter.

7 RIYank   ~  May 6, 2012 7:57 am

Montero's OPS is .740.
You guys must really romanticize your ex-girlfriends too, huh? :-)

8 OldYanksFan   ~  May 6, 2012 8:02 am

[6] There are issues, but the main one is...
We have a guy named Alex Rodriguez.
We are paying him about $27m/yr.
He is 37 and currently plays 3B.
He is signed for this year, and 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.
My guess is he will be out full-time DH for 3 or 4 years.

Jesus is young and healthy.
While I don't think he will Catch full-time, he might for the Mariners.... but who cares? He could have 100 errors, but he will still be in the lineup. He is there for the fans, not to help the M's win a WS. The M's will not see a WS for a long time, exceot maybe on TV.

We need a Catcher who can anchor a World Series team.
I loved Jesus. I all but cried when he was traded.
But we needed a 'Pineda type' player much, much, much more than a 'Jesus type' player. That's just the way our roster is made up.

With BOTH Jesus and Pineda, the story is a long way from being told.

We really need to put a moratorium on Jeusus comments.
It's done. Like it or don't like it, there was very solid basis for the trade. Did we 'Win it' or 'Lose it'?
I don't know.
And I don't care.

I don't expect all our FAs to be Babe Ruth or all our trades to be Swisher.

I don't expect Jeter to bat 1.000. 0.300 would be fine.
I don't expect Cashman to bat 1.000. 0.600 makes him a better GM then most.

Do we really need to root against Jesus so we can feel like we 'won' the trade?

But what do I know. I wanted to keep a telented Roberto Kelly... but nooooooo.... instead he was traded for some Hot Heat named Paul O'Neil.


9 OldYanksFan   ~  May 6, 2012 8:17 am

I have been a Yankee fan since 1965.
I may be wrong, but it seems to me that over the last 15 years, the Yankees have spent a lot of money and honestly tried to put the BEST team on the field every year.

Now, those CHEAP sons-of-bitches want to ONLY spend $189 on payroll in 2014, for ONE year, so they can save a bit over $30m, which of course they will only reinvest in the team.


But I can live with it.
And if they do want to hit that $189m figure, there is a fair chance we will need a decent, young, cheap SS/BU3Bman for 2014.

Those are not easy to find. Just ask the Red Sox.
If that MIGHT be Nunez, that would be real handy.

Replacing Jeter and 'dealing' with the 'ARod situation' is difficut enough. If we can do that inhouse and cheap, that's one less worry we have to deal with.

I don't know if Nuzez can cut it... but I'm rooting for him.
Pissing is noaning is part of being a fan.
But so is... ya know.... rooting for your own players.

10 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 8:23 am

[7] Ibañez's OPS is .706, Stewart's is .558 (and for that matter, Martin's is .717). So not only would Montero's current slow start be a modest improvement over Raul and Russel, and a vast improvement over Stewart, we would have the visceral enjoyment of watching a homegrown future star, rather than hoping MLB has-beens and likely future zeros (like Nuñez) exceed our lowly expectations for a season.

11 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 8:34 am

[8] But we needed a 'Pineda type' player much, much, much more than a 'Jesus type' player. That's just the way our roster is made up.

I reject this conclusion outright. The biggest reason for trading Montero seems to be, in both your estimation and the narrative that has developed, that there was no place in the lineup for his bat. This season has already shown that this is demonstrably untrue. It is, I think, a long stretch to try to predict how many or how few ABs Montero would get three or four years down the road. EVERYONE agreed that he's gonna hit like a beast. If that's all but a given, the team would have found a position for him, even if it meant making him an awful defensive RF and letting him take over for Swisher, or whatever.

The Yankees traded a more secure asset (a hitting prospect) for a much less secure asset (a pitching prospect), indeed a position that the organization has proven surprisingly incapable of cultivating. And now it's not so unpredictably blown up on them. Moreover, the subsequent strategy has been equally suspect: signing Raul Ibañez because he "play a little OF" and watching him turn into a starting OF; carrying 13 pitchers for most of the season for no particularly good reason, forcing Nuñez and Ibañez into additional playing time; not bothering to maintain any OF depth at AAA; sending down their bad BUC in favor of a worse BUC, again for no clear reason, etc.

Sometimes this organization makes me scratch my head in bewilderment.

12 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 8:38 am

[9] nd if they do want to hit that $189m figure, there is a fair chance we will need a decent, young, cheap SS/BU3Bman for 2014

In 2014, Nuñez will already be 27. That's not old, but it's not exactly young either. ANd over his entire MiL career and now almost 450 PAs in ML he has proven to be a bad offensive player and a worse defender at all of the positions handed to him.

I'm pulling for him, but seriously, the odds are pretty long here. If the team is serious about replacing Jeter/ARod "inhouse," maybe they should be trading their alleged excess of MiL pitchers for IF prospects, or for that matter, trading Montero for a stud IF prospect.

13 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 8:50 am

He is signed for this year, and 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.
My guess is he will be out full-time DH for 3 or 4 years.

This is an interesting prediction, but does it really make as much sense as it seems? First, it appears that ARod's offense has declined noticeably, yet he seems to play a fine 3B. Isn't his value improved by trying to keep him in the field as much as possible (with plenty of off days), rather than having him gum up the DH spot? Second, as I wrote above, is it really wise to try to predict who is going to be in what position in 2015 or later? For all we know, ARod will suffer a catastrophic injury next year while shagging fly balls and then decide to retire.

Of course, an organization must plan for the future and not play only for this season, but in sports (especially with free agency) it is virtually impossible to construct a roster three or four or five years in advance.

14 OldYanksFan   ~  May 6, 2012 9:02 am

[10] No one is disputing that Jesus will be an elite bat. And maybe he would have been handy for this year. But the deal was NOT about this year only. It's about 6+ years of Montero vs, 6+ years of Pineda.

You and I and Cashman did not know that Pineda would be out all this year, or that Teix AND ARod AND robbie would all suck, and we would actually NEED Montero's bat. Our NEED was, and STILL is, starting pitching. There is still hope for our 3-4-5.

"In 2014, Nuñez will already be 27. That's not old, but it's not exactly young either."

It's young enough that his 'prime' is still in front of him, and he is still, and will be for a while... CHEAP. With that $189m figure, and Siwsher/Cano/Granderson contracts looming, CHEAP is VERY important. It is not about Nunez the player, but about how he fits with this team's composition.

And he fits perfectly. The question is: can he be an 'average' SS? Can he be 'better'? For league minimum, that would be just great for us. On top of everything else, do you really want to be shopping for a SS in the next few years? Or would you rather keep Robbie... and maybe Grandy... and maybe Swisher?

I mean, this isn't a perfect world.

15 OldYanksFan   ~  May 6, 2012 9:09 am

"... it is virtually impossible to construct a roster three or four or five years in advance."

This is true... but ARod IS signed thru 2017. That's a done deal.
So you would rather have a possible elite BUC/DH rather then a possible elite SP.... in case ARod has a career ending injury?

ARod is decent at defense now... but he is 37. For most elite and power hitters, like Jones, their defense goes befor their offense. And there is the hope that if he doesn't play the field, that healthwise, he will be more productive with the bat if he doesn't have to worry about/work on fielding. My guess is the odds are better then 50/50 that ARod is our DH starting in 2014. Maybe 2015.

16 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 9:28 am

[15] So you would rather have a possible elite BUC/DH rather then a possible elite SP.... in case ARod has a career ending injury?

That's an unanswerable question. What is the possibility (i.e. chance of success) of each? Plus, since we are talking about "possible," there was a still a possibility that Montero would have become an elite slugging starting C.

Now, to answer your question more generally, I would rather have a potential elite slugger than a potential elite pitcher, because it is easier (given the current state of the metrics) to predict the career path of an elite hitter. Pitchers are still simply too hard to predict. And in the Yankees' case, I have zero faith that they can handle getting the most out of a young pitcher.

17 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 9:35 am

With all the talk about ARod's contract, I think Teix's is by far the worse.

18 RIYank   ~  May 6, 2012 12:19 pm

Oh, yes, Montero would be a slight upgrade over Ibañez, I agree. It's just funny that people get all misty-eyed over a .740 OPS bat. There are plenty of other guys we could have signed in the off-season who would be much, much better.

19 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 12:40 pm

[18] Is it really so odd? He was homegrown. Keeping would have meant doing nothing. We all know he's going to produce. He's 22 and got off to a horrible start and he's already better than what the Yankees have now. And he's not out for the season.

What's not to weep over?

20 RIYank   ~  May 6, 2012 12:59 pm

What's not to weep over is a .740 OPS. He's a single and a double better than Frankie Cervelli's career average. Frankie was also homegrown, and he could throw better than Montero.

Jesus may well turn out to be a great player; but he isn't one right now.

21 monkeypants   ~  May 6, 2012 1:27 pm

[20] Well, if we're gonna play that game, then really we should look at Montero's career, which shows an .841 OPS, which is pretty excellent. Seriously, to claim to not *understand* (regardless of whether you agree) why folks would be upset over trading Montero, despite his slow start *this* year, strikes me as being intentionally obtuse.

22 flycaster   ~  May 6, 2012 4:37 pm

Not sure I want to wade into this, but...to me, you give up a Montero for a Pineda because it's about winning World Series, not generating a great stratomatic profile. You win in the postseason by out pitching the opposition, and an arm like Pineda, teamed with a Sabathia, if both are healthy and hot come October, you could roll. Look what's happened to us over the last two seasons. It wasn't because we didn't have enough good hitters. This year we were looking at CC, then what? Hughes? Kuroda? Yikes. You had to get another elite starter, seems to me...

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