"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Success, Success, Success: Does it Matter?

Beautiful day in New York, not too hot, not muggy, as the Yanks looked to sweep the Indians.

What could go wrong?

Well, C.C. Sabathia was placed on the DL before the game with a groin strain. Chad Jennings has the skinny:

“I talked to our doc and he was talking to me about the DL situation,” Brian Cashman said. “(Steve) Donahue was telling him CC was like, ‘Well, maybe miss a start, I don’t know about DL.’ I said, ‘Well start preparing, because I’m going there tomorrow and he’s going on the DL.’ I came in here and it was a one-way conversation. I did all the talking. I know what he wants to do, but this is what we’re going to do. You have to protect players from themselves. He’s a competitor and he wants to be out there. He feels he can pitch with it right now, but we’re not going to mess with it.”

Okay, they are being cautious, it’s not so bad.

Then Andy Pettitte got whacked in the ankle by a line drive off of Casey Kotchman’s bat and before the game ended the word was in and it was not good–a fractured ankle and Pettitte will be lost for a minimum of six weeks. Let’s call it two months. Most us figured that Pettitte would get hurt at some point this summer, perhaps just not this soon. The only blessing here is that he’ll hopefully have the chance to get healthy and return for fall baseball.

Freddy Garcia, who pitched well in relief today, will take his place. I expect that Mr. Cashman will work some sort of deal in the near future as well, though right now it’s like shopping for an umbrella in the rain. Maybe he trades for a decent starter but why not roll the dice and make a boffo move for a guy like Cole Hamels?

Be bold, Mr. Cashman: Be Bold.

In the meantime, today’s come-from-behind 5-4 win, led by Robinson Cano’s go-ahead home run, feels like an afterthought. That despite a tense ninth inning– a bona fide “I Miss Mo” moment–where Rafael Soriano loaded the bases and walked in a run before retiring Assdribble Cabrera to end it.

It is rare when a five-game winning streak felt so somber.

[Photo Credit: Craig Robinson and Frank Franklin II/AP]

Categories:  1: Featured  Game Recap  Yankees

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1 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:31 pm

Carrying over our discussion of what to do about the pitching...

I think the team needs arms in the short and long term and now is the time to get them. Don't play coy for a month and let this pole position to the divisional title slip away while tampa and boston figure it out.

Remember if the Yanks fall into the wild card they might get one game only. Pettitte could be fully healed, the Yanks could make the postseason, and andy still might not pitch an inning.

Plus, looking ahead to 2013 and beyond, we've got CC and Nova. That's it. Pineda's no sure thing and everybody else is a free agent. This is a very similar spot to 2010 when the Yanks sat tight after they lost out on Lee. They've been paying the price for that decision ever since.

2 RagingTartabull   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:33 pm

The CC injury doesn't concern me that much outside of the normal "well I'd rather NOT have my ace on the DL" But between the schedule and the All Star Break I feel like it should be relatively painless.

But Andy on the other hand...

Unless Adam Warren somehow works out I don't see how Cashman can avoid making a deal.

3 RIYank   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:34 pm

Well, there are AAA arms, and they could be ready fairly soon. And presumably Hughes will sign an extension. So I don't think it's as urgent as you're thinking.
Still, I think Hamels might be a good fit, and I bet he'd sign up for an extension, too. I could see that.

4 RIYank   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:35 pm

Oh, I didn't mean to say that Banuelos or Betances or anyone could be ready to take Andy's place this season. I meant next year.

5 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:37 pm

"it’s like shopping for an umbrella in the rain." - i really like this line!

i'm also glad you used my personally penned "Assdribble"! : )

Andy and CC to DL: double-plus un-good.

bring back Mikey Moose!!!

6 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:38 pm

i hear Rawga Clemens is free...

(i kid, i kid)

7 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:39 pm

i think Andy might come back next season...

(not that that is a solution as good as Hamels. he might go hollywood way though. ya never know...)

8 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:43 pm

[4] Please go check what Betances has done this year.

9 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:44 pm

tampon ties up the royales in teh eighth.

10 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:45 pm

not that it matters, but...

the jankees have identical 23-14 home/away records.

11 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:46 pm

mutts have dropped 17 runs (and counting!) on boy wonder's cubbies.

12 Alex Belth   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:50 pm

From Hardball Talk: "Warren is 5-5 with a 3.86 ERA in Triple-A, but he’s gotten stronger as the year has gone on; in June, he has a 2.03 ERA in five starts."

13 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 3:55 pm

and i think Phelps is being stretched out again, after his stint in the big league bullpen.

meanwhile, the royales take the lead back. giants leading the dodgers and can (surprisingly) tie them with a win...

14 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 4:01 pm

there are two big risks taken if we go with low ceiling in house solutions. the replacements could suck and then the vets could come back rusty.

if the yanks acquire a great pitcher, they'd be in a better place to hold onto the division and to win the playoff games once they play them.

that's just this season. they still have to worry about next year. right now we know two of the first five pitchers next year. i'm not worried about clogging the works with another ace.

15 Chris in Sydney   ~  Jun 27, 2012 4:05 pm

I'm in tatters.

16 Chris in Sydney   ~  Jun 27, 2012 4:09 pm

And I was worried when it was just CC....

I'm 100% in favor of getting another pitcher on the market. Jon is spot-on in [1]. On the other hand, I'm really bummed that thelarmis apparently [5] copyrighted "Assdribble" before I did. I was saying it in the top of the 9th, but I was too busy watching to write it down anywhere. Still, as long as the world gets to enjoy it, that's all that really matters.

17 thelarmis   ~  Jun 27, 2012 4:11 pm

[16] i've been calling him "assdribble" since he came into the league! : )

18 seamus   ~  Jun 27, 2012 5:08 pm

[17] i can pretty much guarantee thelarmis was even if i don't remember.

19 seamus   ~  Jun 27, 2012 5:09 pm

i got to watch today's game at work in my ipad. losing andy hurts.

20 RIYank   ~  Jun 27, 2012 5:12 pm

Buster Olney says he doesn't expect Cashman to make a major move to replace Pettitte. But he also said he thinks there's a chance they could go after "a Matt Garza or someone like that", which sounds crazy to me, so maybe he doesn't know what he's talking about.

21 Bruce Markusen   ~  Jun 27, 2012 6:10 pm

Short term, the Yankees have enough pitching to get through it: Kuroda, Nova, Hughes, Garcia, and either Warren or Phelps.

I wouldn't expect a trade from Cashman. Historically, he doesn't like to make trades in response to injuries.

22 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 7:06 pm

[21] Sure they could. But then what happens if either Andy or even CC doesn't come back 100% by the playoffs? You are going into the postseason with a bad rotation - again. The best way to win in the postseason is to be good at everything so that if one of your pistons isn't firing, you're not out of it.

CC, Pettitte, Kuroda, & Nova is fine by me. Eliminate either CC or Andy, bump Hughes up and that's a playoff loser.

23 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Jun 27, 2012 7:06 pm

[16][17] I like the name Asdrubal. It sounds nice in Spanish. :(

24 RIYank   ~  Jun 27, 2012 7:22 pm

Jon, yes, the best way to win in the playoffs is to be good at everything. I mean, obviously! The best way to win in the regular season is to be good at everything, too. Or better yet, to be great at everything.
But Cashman has a point: if you decide you need to trade when everybody thinks you need to trade, you get fleeced. The upgrade might not be worth it.

I still like the idea of trading for Hamels, myself. I like it because we know the reason Philadelphia is looking to deal him, and it's not a reason that the Yanks should avoid him. I think Hamels is probably more valuable to the Yankees than to the Phils, which means it should be possible to make a trade without selling the... farm.

25 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 9:09 pm

[24] I didn't hear/read any of Cashman's comments, so I don't know his point. But it's never cheap to acquire superstar pitching. They had to trade Jesus friggin Montero to get a promising arm in the winter.

Bargains come on players who are severely underperforming or from teams crippled by a contract. The Hamels and Greinkes cost a fortune no matter the season and no matter the perception of the buyer's need.

So I really don't care what it cost in terms of these prospects. None of them are anywhere near as good as Montero was, I'm not going to sweat trading them for a short & long term answer.

Of course Cashman should be saying he'll gladly stay with what he's got, but he shouldn't actually stay with what he's got.

26 flycaster   ~  Jun 27, 2012 10:54 pm

The Yankees don't have anyone the Phillies would take for Hamels. So stop. Just stop.

27 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 27, 2012 11:18 pm

[26] sorry if our discussion of cole hamels perturbs you mr. Phanatic, but can you check with your colleague Bernie to see if it is also ridiculous for us to consider Greinke?

And when you visit Milwaukee does he let you use the slide?

28 RIYank   ~  Jun 28, 2012 6:17 am

Jon, I don't see how you have addressed the point. It's irrelevant that top pitchers are always expensive. Flights to Paris are also expensive, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try to find the cheaper time of year to go.
Do you agree that making a trade when the league thinks you have to is going to cost you a lot more? I think that's certainly true. Did you mean to disagree?

So that's a good reason not to try to trade for a star pitcher now.

29 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 7:52 am

[28] No, I don't think that is true at all. The Yankees are not the only team after these pitchers, the price is the best deal the seller can extract from the market. The airlines don't change the ticket price to Paris based on if I really need to go there or not.

30 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 8:10 am

[28] Think about what you (and Cashman?) are suggesting here - that the Brewers (so as not to offend 26) would accept a lesser deal from, say, the Angels because they have a good rotation than they would from the Yankees because they have holes. In the same marketplace.

That only makes sense if the Yanks are the only bidder. They won't be.

31 RIYank   ~  Jun 28, 2012 8:24 am

They won't prefer to accept a lesser deal from the Angels, but on the other hand they'll consider it worth some risk to tell Cashman he has to pay more. Cashman doesn't know exactly what the Angels are offering, after all. (So I admit, the airfare analogy is of limited use.) They risk the Yankees walking away from the table, but a good GM will do that.
Think about how we landed Teixeira -- because Teix had the balls, he got the Yankees to put up more money than it would have taken to sign him.

32 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 8:32 am

[31] It's not the ideal negotiating situation for Cashman, but that's why he should be giving off all indication that he's not that interested in making a deal.

But if the scenario plays out as you describe, and the Yanks are close to acquiring one of the top pitchers in the game in a deal he finds acceptable, giving them a clear leg up on the 2012 world series and multiple titles after that, then whatever incremental premium cash has to pay due to his relatively poor negotiating position is meaningless to me.

33 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 8:34 am

Again, this is because they have to address the rotation this winter anyway. Why not do it now and put a choke hold on the 2012 world series?

34 RIYank   ~  Jun 28, 2012 10:25 am

Jon, why not always trade whatever it takes for whatever really good pitchers are on offer?

Because under certain circumstances the price is likely to be much higher, and it makes more sense to wait and strike when the price falls. A team that's well-managed will be in a position to take this sound long-term approach.

35 Alex Belth   ~  Jun 28, 2012 10:37 am
36 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 10:41 am

[34] OK, sounds good. You'll let us know when the price comes down on elite starting pitchers?

37 RIYank   ~  Jun 28, 2012 1:22 pm

[36] Not sure what you mean -- it sounds sarcastic, but if so I'm missing your point.

I assume you aren't implying that the price of elite starting pitchers is always the same. That's absurd. So I wonder what you do mean...

38 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 1:54 pm

[37] I just mean that the price of elite starting pitching does not flucuate with the health of the Yankee rotation. The price of elite starting pitching ebbs and flows with the number of elite starting pitchers available and the number of teams looking to acquire them. (and the quality of the pitcher is a variable and the contract status and the quality of the team he plays for etc...)

So if now's not a good time to buy, when is? And assuming you can identify the right time, is the benefit of waiting for that time worth fielding an inferior team in 2012?

39 Jon DeRosa   ~  Jun 28, 2012 2:50 pm

[37] Just now revisiting your last comment, it seems like I irked you in 36 and I missed it the first time. Sorry if so, I'm just rushing around, not being antagonistic :)

40 RIYank   ~  Jun 28, 2012 4:28 pm

I guess I don't get it. The price to the Yankees is apt to be higher when the Yankees are over the proverbial barrel.
I'm still not quite sure whether you are denying this.

This particular post has now disappeared off the sidebar list, so it's unlikely I'll check it again -- but you didn't irk me, Jon, don't worry! (I'm pretty hard to irk. I'm almost inirkable.)

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