"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

What Just Happened?

The New York Yankees were officially eliminated from playoff contention following their rain-drenched loss on Sunday afternoon, but the key word there is “officially.” Anyone who had been watching this team closely over the past few months must’ve seen this coming. This has been a flawed team for the past 200 games or so, and even though there was surely some bad luck that contributed to this season’s demise, at no point could anyone have looked at the 2023 Yankees and considered them a serious World Series contender, even though that’s exactly the message we heard from Yankee management coming out of Spring Training.

So what happened? There were some good ideas that backfired. Carlos Rodón, for example, was one of the most sought after free agents of the winter, but injuries postponed his debut until July, and he probably shouldn’t have been on a major league mound that soon. What would the season have looked like if the Yankees had gotten thirty healthy starts from him? Could that have been worth an extra seven wins?

Some bad decisions played out exactly as most expected. The acquisition of Josh Donaldson, for example, was never a good idea, and I’m guessing no one in the baseball world was surprised by how it played out. He was a known clubhouse cancer on the backside of his career. If he had been able to play 140 games a season with an OPS in the .800 to .900 range, his “personality” issues might have been tolerable, but that wasn’t the case. Instead the Yankees got the two worst seasons of his career (predictable for a third baseman in his age 36 and 37 seasons) which included an OPS of .682 in 2022 and .659 before he was DFA’d this August. Calling it a disappointment is like describing Romeo and Juliet as a failed relationship; in both cases the chorus told us exactly what was going to happen.

In some cases, there was just bad luck. Luís Severino was injured for much of the year. Anthony Rizzo fluked into a concussion, played with symptoms for about a month, and then went on the injured list for the rest of the season. Domingo Germán pitched well for much of the season and then threw the 24th perfect game in major league history; five weeks later he showed up at Yankee Stadium so drunk that the team had no choice but to end his season. We’ll likely never see him in pinstripes again. And obviously the unluckiest turn of all came when Aaron Judge, the best player on the planet not named Shohei Ohtani, fractured his toe on an inexplicably placed cement curb in right field at Dodger Stadium, causing him to miss a month of time. Oh, and one last thing. Jasson Domínguez’s torn elbow ligament came after the season had already cratered, but in some ways it was more crushing than any of these other misfortunes.

Just as championship teams can point to a dozen breakout performances and key moments that propelled them to success, so can the 2023 Yankees list all of these things and more as contributing factors in this disappointing season. The problem, though, is that many of these issues have raised questions that must be answered this off-season if the organization wants to get back to the playoffs in 2024.

Here’s an overview of the situation as I see it, beginning with a look at the sure things and then speculating about the rest of the roster.

The Foundation

No franchise in baseball can boast a stronger pairing of a starting pitcher with a position player than the Yankees do with Gerrit Cole and Aaron Judge. Both players are in the primes of their careers, and both are locked into long term contracts, and each player is among the best in the world at what they do. Even though Yankee fans took a while to warm up to Cole, he has been worth every penny of the nine-year contract he signed with New York prior to the 2020 season. If you’re strictly looking to quantify his value with statistics, consider that he’s led the league in starts and pitched 200 innings or more each of the past two seasons, and those have been dominant innings. With one start (probably) remaining this season, he currently leads the league in winning percentage, ERA, starts, innings pitched, ERA+, WHIP, and hits per nine innings. He probably won’t be the unanimous Cy Young Award winner, but he’ll win in a landslide.

All of that is what the Yankees knew they were getting for their millions, but I’m not sure they knew they’d also be getting a second pitching coach. The last time the Yankees had a starting pitcher this good, it was Roger Clemens, but there’s one huge difference between Cole and Clemens. (Okay, two, but that’s not what this is about.) Clemens famously disappeared between starts, as allowed by the organization. Cole, however, appears to be that rare pitcher who is constantly teaching the craft. During his starts this season he’s been guiding young catcher Ben Rortvedt, the rookie who became Cole’s personal catcher midway through the season. In July and August Cole was often seen vigorously shaking off Rortverdt from the mound and barking at him in the dugout, but they seemed to work well together in September. Cole often praised the rookie following starts. Rorverdt’s position on the roster is far from secure, but the growing relationship between the future Hall of Famer and the future journeyman speaks to Cole’s value. More important than that relationship, however, is what we see when Cole isn’t pitching, when he spends nine innings as a professor to the young starters on the Yankee staff, all of whom frequently credit Cole for their success. If we see Clarke Schmidt and Michael King and others develop into solid starters, it will be largely because of what they’ve learned from Professor Cole.

And then there’s Judge. It’s hard to imagine that people once wondered about the player who is now universally seen as one of the five best overall players in the game. In 2022 he had one of the best offensive seasons in history, and he was almost as good this year. He won’t get any MVP votes this season, but you could argue that this year, even more than last, proved just how valuable he is to this team. The forty-five games he missed in the middle of the season doomed the Yankees, but somehow — even while playing hurt — he’s still been brilliant. Sure, there are the thirty-five home runs, but note that Judge has an OPS over 1.000 for the second year in a row, a rare exacta indeed. And while some have been asking for weeks that the Yankees shut him down, he showed this week why that never was going to happen. Even as Yankee fans drifted away from the season, they never drifted away from Aaron Judge. Their phones buzzed and told them about his first inning home run on Friday night, and then again when he hit his second. They raced to their televisions to see his fourth at bat, and they were rewarded with his third home run of the game, capping a 4 for 4 night that also included a double and reminded everyone that there is only one Aaron Judge. You don’t shut down a player like that for the same reason you don’t throw a sheet over Michelangelo’s David. There is a greatness in genius, even when the genius is playing out a string of otherwise meaningless games.

Like Cole, Judge’s leadership will be crucial as the Yankees look to rebuild either with youth or with external options. When he was named Captain after re-signing with the Yankees this winter, the general consensus from the rest of the players was that he had already been the de facto captain, the same as Derek Jeter had been the team leader long before he was officially named. What strikes me about Judge, though, is that his brand of leadership, at least what we see of it, isn’t as natural as Jeter’s. Judge has had to grow slowly into this role, and it still seems to be a work in progress. There’s always a pause before he answers any question, almost as if he’s asking himself how Jeter would respond. He always gets the answers right, and he seems comfortable, but it doesn’t come as easily for him. Jeter, it seems, was born to lead. Judge is teaching himself along the way, and it’s been interesting to watch.

The Supporting Cast

The success or failure of the 2024 Yankees will not be determined by Gerrit Cole and Aaron Judge, even if they’re both able to duplicate their stellar 2023 seasons.

The single most important Yankee next season will be Anthony Rizzo. In a lineup ridiculously devoid of left-handed power, Rizzo’s absence was crushing. Entering his age 34 season, there’s no reason to think that a healthy Rizzo won’t return to what he was before his concussion. He hit 32 home runs with an OPS+ of 132 in 2022, and his home splits look even better, with 19 home runs in 71 games in the Bronx. If the Yankees get more of this next season, the offense will be decidedly different.

Perhaps the most enigmatic player on the Yankee roster is Gleyber Torres, and there’s no telling how he will handle what could be his final season in the Bronx before he heads into free agency. Next season will be his age 27 season, a year typically seen as the peak of a baseball player’s career. Gleyber’s 2019 campaign — at only 22 — seemed to be the harbinger of a Hall of Fame career. With 38 home runs and an OPS of .871, it seemed the Yankees had found their next great player, but things went sideways. When compared to his brilliant first two seasons, the four seasons since can be seen as a disappointment, but it’s important to note that this is a young second baseman with 49 home runs and a 115 OPS+ over the past two seasons. It will be cheaper to let him go and put someone like Oswald Peraza at second base, so that’s probably how this will shake out following 2024. If so, I’ll miss him when he’s gone.

If Torres and Rizzo are healthy and productive in 2024, the Yankees will have some decisions to make regarding Peraza and D.J. LeMahieu. (I don’t expect Isaiah Kiner-Falefa to return, leaving that utility role to Oswaldo Cabrera.) Peraza is too young and (potentially) too good not to play regularly, but the only regular spot will be third base, which would leave LeMahieu without a position thanks to the fact that Giancarlo Stanton has become entrenched at DH.

Aside from the need for more left-handed hitting, this is probably the biggest problem facing the Yankees during this off-season, the $64 million question, if you will. (Coincidentally, Stanton is owed precisely $64 million over the next two seasons, then $54 million over 2026-27, with $20 million of that covered by the Marlins.) With a contract that doesn’t match his production, Stanton isn’t going anywhere unless the Yankees choose to put him out to pasture. Every time Stanton had a nice game or two, reporters dutifully asked Aaron Boone if he thought Stanton was getting on a roll, and Boone would always respond with some variation of the same script: “He looked good tonight, but we’re waiting for him to really lock in. When he gets on one of his rolls, it’s something special.”

The reality is that we should probably begin to talk about Stanton in the past tense. When he used to get on one of his rolls, it was incredibly impressive. But just like there was no legitimate comp for Stanton when he was in his prime aside from Paul Bunyan, we have no one to point to that gives us hope that he can return to his former fearsome self. He will still be relatively young next season at age 34, but it doesn’t seem likely that a muscle-bound, injury prone player like Stanton will somehow awaken memories of the athletic young right fielder that he once was. His last season in Miami was his best, as would be expected from a 27-year-old slugger, and but he hasn’t come close to that season as a Yankee. In fact, he has never been within a hundred points of his 2017 OPS (1.007), and this season he was three hundred points below that high water mark. Worse than that, in terms of outfield athleticism, he looked closer to Bill Buckner than Barry Bonds this season, and while there could be some lingering injury that we haven’t heard about it, he won’t be contending for any Gold Gloves moving forward.

So here’s the dilemma.

Let’s assume that Anthony Rizzo is healthy and plays 140 games at first base. That leaves three players (Torres, Peraza, and LeMaheiu) to cycle through second and third base with very few starts available at DH considering a healthy Stanton (I know, I know) will need at least 100 starts in that spot. Stanton isn’t just a short term obstacle in terms of daily lineup construction; that’s a relatively easy problem to solve. The larger concern is that he’s a long term obstacle in terms of roster construction. Because he can’t be moved, the Yankees might be forced to choose between Torres and Peraza this winter, not next. In an ideal world they’d enjoy 150 games each out of those two in 2024, then let Torres walk if that’s what they decide. (Fans would be wise to remember this log jam when they’re clamoring for the next high-priced free agent. There are always problems on the back end.)

All of this brings us to Anthony Volpe, the shortstop of the future who became, simply, the shortstop after the small sample size of spring training earned him the job. There’s a temptation to look at his year in two halves, before the June 13th chicken parmesan dinner and after, but even if we look at his full season, it’s hard to argue with the young man’s success, even if there are a few glaring questions.

Just for fun, let’s start out on the defensive side of the ball. Defensive stats are notoriously nebulous when you’re looking at only one season, but that’s all we have with Volpe. According to Fangraphs, he ranks thirteenth out of all major league shortstops, just ahead of Corey Seager in fourteenth and significantly ahead of Carlos Correa in fifteenth. Only Wander Franco and top-ranked Dansby Swanson have more defensive runs saved, and it should be noted that of the twelve players ranked ahead of Volpe, only the Mets’ Francisco Lindor has played more innings than the Yankee rookie. Volpe didn’t win the job with his glove, so it’s significant that he’s been above average in the field.

There’s an argument out there that Yankee fans want so badly for Volpe to be good, perhaps even become the next Derek Jeter, that they overlook his flaws as a hitter. I won’t bother to compare Volpe’s numbers to Jeter’s rookie season, because it wouldn’t be fair to compare him to the greatest shortstop in Yankee history, so we’ll just look at him alongside other rookies in 2023. Only eight rookies have more than Volpe’s 21 home runs, and only nine have more than his 60 RBIs, accomplishments that are both probably a bit surprising. If we narrow the focus a bit and look at his post-parm numbers, we find that he’s been slightly above average as compared to all other shortstops — twelfth in WAR, ahead of players like Jeremy Peña, Elly de la Cruz, and Carlos Correa.

One of the glaring questions I mentioned, however, has to with his stolen bases. Perhaps that famous meal weighed him down a bit; Volpe has only ten post-parm stolen bases, limiting a portion of his game that had been dynamic in the season’s first two months. Normally the league catches up with a rookie’s hot start at the plate, but we may have seen the same thing with Volpe’s base running. He never seemed to be a great base stealer, just a smart one. He mastered the hopping-skipping start that Yankees coaches have been teaching, but perhaps that was more gimmick than innovation. It’s possible that just like some young hitters are exposed once the league discovers they can’t hit curveballs, maybe the same thing has happened with Volpe. I have no way of knowing, but early in the season he was on pace to steal sixty bags; we may never see him swipe as many as twenty-five.

Considering all this, Volpe has shown enough that the Yankees don’t need to consider moving him off of shortstop either in favor of Peraza or any other external options. It’s easy to argue that they should’ve signed Correa or Seager or Trea Turner or someone else, but they didn’t. It makes no sense to re-litigate any of those cases. Anthony Volpe is the best option going forward.

The Fix

After Jasson Domínguez exploded on the scene in the first week of September, it seemed like maybe at least one problem was solved. The Yankees had their centerfielder, and they had some much needed left-handed power, albeit from a switch-hitter. Even at the time it seemed a bit silly to pin the organization’s hopes on a twenty-year-old, but with his injury putting the Martian in the background at least until July, that glaring hole in the lineup looms even larger.

The obvious fix for this is Cody Bellinger. Sure, it stings that the Yankees could’ve had him on the cheap last winter, but they should look forward, not back. After his resurgence with the Cubs this season (.305/.355/.531) with 26 home runs and 20 stolen bases heading into his age 28 season, Bellinger is primed for a pay day, and with such an obvious fit in New York — just imagine his left-handed bat hitting behind Judge — his agent Scott Boras must be drooling. Observers estimate that Bellinger could demand something in the neighborhood of $200 million over six or seven years. If that’s the case — and if the Yankees are serious about winning championships — this is a deal that must be done. He solves many problems immediately, and if Jasson Domínguez eventually becomes the player the organization hopes, his ascendancy would mitigate any concerns about the back end of Bellinger’s deal. Domínguez would take over centerfield in 2025 and Bellinger could move over to left. In 2027, after both Rizzo and LeMahieu are gone, he could even become a full-time first baseman. There have been no great Yankee teams without power threats on the left side of the plate. It’s high time they get back to that.

More Fixing

The pitching staff doesn’t demand as much attention as the offense, but there are still concerns. With Cole locked in as the #1 starter and a (hopefully) healthy Rodón at #2, and a (hopefully) healthy Nestor Cortés at #3, there are two spots to fill after that, or four if the Yankees adhere to David Cone’s way of thinking. Clarke Schmidt made significant strides this season, erasing any questions there might have been around him, but the biggest revelation has been Michael King.

When necessity forced King out of the bullpen and into the rotation, he showed why he has never stopped wanting to be a starter. All you really need to know is this. In his six games since being converted to a starter, King has allowed just four earned runs in 28.1 innings while striking out 42 and walking just 4. That translates to a 1.17 ERA with a WHIP under one. There’s no going back on this. He will be in the rotation in 2024, without question, and he just might be great.

The looming question mark is Luís Severino. No Yankee pitcher has endured as many injuries as Severino, but I still hope that the Yankees bring him back, if only because I love rooting for him. That injury history will certainly lower his price tag, but more importantly it will shorten his contract. I can’t imagine any serious contender will offer him more than a two- or three-year deal, which could make him affordable enough for a return to the Bronx. My fingers are crossed.

But the biggest wild card in all this, and perhaps the biggest prize, is 25-year-old Yoshinobu Yamamoto, a potential free agent pitcher from Japan. He has been the best pitcher in Japanese baseball, and while he isn’t Shohei Ohtani, he projects as a solid #2 or #3 pitcher in the major leagues. He has twice won the Sawamura Award as the NPB’s top pitcher, and the Yankees are interested. (So are the other usual suspects, namely the Mets and the Red Sox.) If you wondered why general manager Brian Cashman wasn’t on hand to celebrate the 1998 Yankees a few weeks ago in the Bronx, it’s because he was in Japan scouting Yamamoto; Cashman sat in the front row as Yamamoto threw a no-hitter. Sure, the Yankees could give Ohtani half a billion dollars, but it probably makes a lot more sense to give $60-$100 million to Yamamoto and hope for the best.

The other benefit of this is that Yamamoto’s addition to the rotation would make someone like Clarke Schmidt available as a possible trade chip to get a left fielder. They could even add Torres or Peraza and a prospect or two if they want to shop for someone like Pittsburgh’s Bryan Reynolds.

The Decision Makers

Notably absent from all of this is any speculation about Aaron Boone and Brian Cashman. Recently there have been some baseball insiders opining that the Yankees need a complete organizational overhaul, and while I understand that argument, there’s nothing I’ve seen from Hal Steinbrenner that indicates he might be inclined to take such drastic measures. I don’t think Brian Cashman is going anywhere, and if that’s correct, not only do I assume Boone will be back, I don’t think anything would change even if he were fired.

We’re at a point where baseball managers are simply extensions of the front office. Even Boone’s in-game decisions regarding pinch hitters and pitching changes are likely informed by mountains of analytics and pre-determined organizational theories, and big picture strategies around lineup construction and load management are also data driven. If Cashman were to fire Boone and replace him with someone else, whether it’s Casey Stengel or Casey Kasem, I don’t think there would be much change aside from fewer arguments with the umpires and fewer pop culture references in the press conferences.

The Dream

Finally, here’s the team I hope I get to watch in 2024.

Staring Lineup
3B D.J. LeMahieu (R)
CF Cody Bellinger (L)
RF Aaron Judge (R)
1B  Anthony Rizzo (L)
2B  Gleyber Torres (R)
DH Giancarlo Stanton (R)
C    Austin Wells (L)
SS  Anthony Volpe (R)
LF  Oswaldo Cabrera (S)

Oswald Peraza
Estevan Florial
Ben Rorverdt

Starting Rotation
Gerrit Cole
Carlos Rodón
Michael King
Nestor Cortés/Clarke Schmidt/Luís Severino
Yoshinobu Yamamoto

Categories:  1: Featured  Hank Waddles

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Show/Hide Comments 1-100
1 Shaun P.   ~  Sep 26, 2023 12:57 pm

Hank, on the offense you had me up until you wrote the word "Cody". Here is why:


Bellinger might be great next year! But he might also be a giant disaster. That's too much risk.

I would do something quite different that has a lesser amount of risk: trade for Trout, preferably sending Stanton if he would agree to it, and eat some of the money owed G to make it work (otherwise still get Trout and trade Stanton to the Dodgers, who I imagine definitely think they could fix him and who he'd probably agree to go to).

I know Trout hasn't been healthy in a while. But I would gladly take 100-120 games a year of Trout - a guy who can actually play the outfield and who's offense hasn't cratered - over 100-120 games a year of Stanton for the next few seasons. Then you've got someone who can cover center and left, and DJLM slides into regular DH work with Peraza at third most days. The other OF slot is held warm until The Martian returns. Oh, and Rizzo is not relied on as much, since who knows how he will perform (if he will be able to, concussions are nasty).

The Angels are going absolutely nowhere and since I imagine Moreno will actually look to sell the team now, getting Trout's huge contract off the books would be a big win for them.

2 Bronx Boy in NC   ~  Sep 26, 2023 1:18 pm

Jose Trevino was on a one-year contract for 2023. Are you assuming he's out of the 2024 picture?

I know he's got a few years on Rortvedt and certainly Wells, but if he hadn't gotten hurt, I'd imagine him penciled in already. Wishful thinking maybe because I like him.

3 Hank Waddles   ~  Sep 26, 2023 1:32 pm

[2] Here's a true admission -- I spent a few hours writing this, and José Treviño never once entered my thoughts -- and not because I don't like him. I love him. So I'd prefer to see Treviño and Wells as catchers, but if they're ready to make Wells the main guy, that probably leaves Treviño out.

[1] Everyone would prefer Trout to Stanton, but it's hard for me to imagine anyone taking Stanton.

4 Bronx Boy in NC   ~  Sep 26, 2023 1:51 pm

[3] Thanks -- and my bad for leaving out the diacriticals!

I ought to have led with: Fantastic takes all around. Few downstream thoughts...

It's nice that Judge appears set to demand a voice in the offseason discussions. And I'll accept that he already captains it up behind closed doors with his teammates. What I'd like to see from him in addition is more field generalship. To say, for example: "Hey, skip, how about I run practice today?"

Whatever some coach whispered into Oswaldo Cabrera's head last winter, I hope they can un-whisper this winter. I don't need him to be another pull-happy launch angle guy. Give me the shorten-up-and-spray version. This kid showed up with infectious baseball joy and instincts and they didn't hesitate to force him into a mold.

I can't say you're wrong about IKF's fate, but if he's done in the Bronx, all the more reason to pause now and give him props for resilience. Not long ago he was in all the same gettim outta here conversations as Gallo and Hicks. Where they were brittle, he was flexible and team-oriented, and (cheerfully) found new ways to offer value. Good for him.

5 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 6:40 pm

[0] Thanks for the write up, Hank ...

6 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 6:41 pm

I am *less* than sanguine that the 2024 Yankees will be appreciably better than the 2023 version.

7 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:00 pm

[1] Repeat after me ... nobody, I mean NOBODY is touching Stanton unless the Yankees essentially pay 100% of his salary and probably even not then.

He has a *negative* worth .. as in the Yankees are paying him to make their team worse.

Now, maybe he has a dead-cat-bounce year next year and manages positive WAR like 2022, but I'm not expecting 2021 Stanton to come walking through the door again.

But who knows, maybe he'll take up Pilates this offseason or travel to Central America and do ayahuasca and find a new, rejuvenated Frankenstanton for 2024.

Stranger things have happened, but I'm not counting on it.

8 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:05 pm

No hit through 4.

9 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:16 pm

Thanks for the write-up, Hank. This season was certainly a confluence of fucking bollocks. I rarely get into manager or GM bashing but the Josh Donaldson signing was terrible. Simply terrible. Ugh
[8] Thanks for the shout out in the last thread, cult. lol.... I guess my hope is officially dead NOW that that the Yanks are mathematically eliminated. Cheers. : )

10 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:21 pm

Peraza with the sweet play in the hole!

11 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:24 pm

There is one sweet mercy to the ending of this season ... I will NEVER have to sit through another night's worth of that Dunkin' Donuts commercial.

12 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:25 pm

Hit number 1!

13 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:27 pm

Well, bye-bye baserunner.

14 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:35 pm

Well, thank you Kay ... the Yankees are tied for the most games in a season in which they were held hitless for 5 or more innings!


15 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:39 pm

Great job Mike!

16 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:52 pm

Not pinch running for Stanton cost the Yankees a run there.

17 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:52 pm

Good thing Stanton was still in to run.

18 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:52 pm


19 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:53 pm


20 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:58 pm

[10] I saw now that replay on twitter. Wow!

21 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 7:59 pm

[20] Do you know baseball.theater?


Pretty neat little site.

22 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 8:01 pm

[19] Volpe would have scored easily on the single and it's not like he'd be much worse of a DH than FranK ... the non-move was just baffling.

23 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 8:16 pm

[21] I had not seen it. Looks good. Bookmarked for the playoffs.

24 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 8:22 pm


25 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 26, 2023 8:22 pm

Well Hell's Bells for Wells.
And off that pitcher I hate! lol....

26 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 26, 2023 8:36 pm

Nice ... suck it Jays!

27 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 11:38 am

[4] Or ... maybe, Cabrera's not that good and there's no "narrative" that changes that fact.

Remember how fantastic Shane Spencer looked at the end of season 25 years ago???

How did that work out in the end?


28 Shaun P.   ~  Sep 27, 2023 12:15 pm

[3] [7] Someone will take Stanton if the Yanks pay the freight. Which they should because they have to pay him anyway, so clear the roster spot and make the team better.

The Angels might because they don't care about the next 3 years anyway, especially if they get Trout off their books.

The Dodgers might because they probably don't pay to re-sign JD Martinez (and to be honest, I think the Mets blow away Ohtani with an offer he won't refuse) so they need someone to DH. And again, they have a reputation for fixing guys.

29 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 2:37 pm

[28] So yes, exactly what I said.

"Repeat after me ... nobody, I mean NOBODY is touching Stanton unless the Yankees essentially pay 100% of his salary"

So ... yes, I agree if the Yankees eat 99%+ of Stanton's remaining salary, they can move him.

That's not going to get them Mike Trout, however.

30 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 4:27 pm

[3] Here's the problem ... a healthy Trevino probably gets you ... something ... probably no more than a long-shot lottery ticket.

But ... he's coming off of *wrist* surgery ... which is NOT good.

Another thing ... Jose ISN'T the future for the Yankees ... and, very likely isn't even the present for the 2024 Yankees.

Wells is finishing strong, seeming to adjusting to MLB pitching AND has been getting great reviews from Yankees pitchers and staff.

I think the Yankees have to give him a shot at the #1 job next spring, assuming he performs OK in ST.

31 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 4:28 pm

[30] Gets you ... something ... in trade, I meant.

32 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 4:50 pm

Here's a thing ... the 2023 Yankees were/are old and slow and several of those pieces will be back in 2024:

The Yankees are also last in the sport when it comes to sprint speed from home plate to first, with an average time of 4.62, and the Chicago White Sox come in at 4.59 as the next worst. They have some of the slowest players in the league by sprint speed percentile:

Jose Trevino (4th percentile)
Giancarlo Stanton (4th percentile)
Anthony Rizzo (5th percentile)
DJ LeMahieu (12th percentile)

Unsurprisingly, the Yankees’ average sprint speed is also the lowest in the league, coming in at 26.6 ft/second, followed by, you guessed it, the White Sox (26.7). There were just so many instances of the team looking sluggish and unathletic on the basepaths while bouncing into double play after double play.


33 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:08 pm

RIP, Brooks Robinson.

Newly wed niece is in town so had to go over to my sister’s for supper.

34 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:47 pm


35 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:47 pm

All rise!

36 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:47 pm


37 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:50 pm

Oh, FranK ... siiiiiigh.

38 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 6:59 pm

Good thing the Yankees never bothered to call Florial up for 95% of the season ...

Wow ... thought was gone ... Florial had to come in.

39 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:14 pm

What's a big hit from FranK without another dumb ass baserunner error from Gleyber to end the inning?

40 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:14 pm

Stanton not completely dead.

Oy, can they work on baserunning in ST?

41 Hank Waddles   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:16 pm

Not gonna lie — I kind of like when Gleyber thinks he’s invisible.

42 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:37 pm

[41] He needs more Jedi mind tricks then ... yeesh.

43 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:37 pm

Though I will say ... he's no Jorge Posada.

44 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:41 pm


45 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:42 pm


46 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:49 pm

So Judge needs 1 more homer to combine for 100 over two seasons, only Babe has done that.

47 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:50 pm

I'm not mad that the outfield gate cost the Yankees a post-season shot, I'm mad that fucking gate cost Judge a shot at back-to-back MVPs

48 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:54 pm

[46] Nope.
Maris had 39 in 60 and 61 in 61

49 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:56 pm


50 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:56 pm

[48] Thanks. I shouldn’t have relied on Kay.

51 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:56 pm

[48] And, of course a number of players during "that" era did it.

52 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 7:57 pm

[50] I did ... I swear he mentioned Maris.

53 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:07 pm

Can I be honest?

I know Bader was a great defensive CF ... but the *way* he played CF really rubbed me the wrong way.

And that stupid mouthguard irked me as well.

54 Hank Waddles   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:07 pm

At first he said it was only Babe, and didn’t even say Babe was the only Yankee. He said the only player. After a commercial, and I assume, a slew of texts and tweets, he read a list of Yankees who had done it.

55 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:12 pm

Ah ... I only caught the 2nd part, which also included players from other teams that had done it: Sosa, Centaur, Barry ...

56 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:13 pm

Yes ... the Judge is in the room!

57 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:17 pm


58 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:21 pm

I only caught the first part.

59 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:21 pm

Well, then ... we can still BOTH blame Kay!

60 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:23 pm

Well done, Gerrit ... hope you get your reward!

61 Hank Waddles   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:25 pm

Feels like I might’ve been wrong when I wrote that Cole wouldn’t be the unanimous winner. Quite a statement tonight.

62 rbj   ~  Sep 27, 2023 8:25 pm

CG two hit shutout. Solidifies the CYA.

63 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 2:25 pm
64 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 6:13 pm

I don't mean to judge you, Aaron ... but that?

Was NOT a strike.

65 Ara Just Fair   ~  Sep 28, 2023 6:45 pm

So an astro got absolutely drilled last night. It was glorious. He interfered with the 1st baseman on a bang-bang play in a previous inning.

67 rbj   ~  Sep 28, 2023 6:47 pm


68 rbj   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:14 pm

Solo shot at least.

69 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:14 pm

Poopy-poo and that makes 2

70 rbj   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:34 pm

Not good.

71 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:45 pm

Coney just said ... "Wells can run a little bit ... I won't even say for a catcher!"

72 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:48 pm


73 rbj   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:58 pm


74 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:58 pm


75 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 7:59 pm

Look ... at this point?
2 out of 3 is pretty good, no?

76 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 28, 2023 8:46 pm

Well ... 3 more games to go!

77 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 6:46 pm


WHO ... IS ... PUMPED???

78 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:21 pm

1-2-3 ... two run Royals lead!

79 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:22 pm

And 4 makes?


80 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:23 pm

SO glad Kei Rodon decided to show up for his last start of the season ...

81 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:24 pm

5 up ... 5 baserunners!

82 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:25 pm

That's 6

83 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:28 pm


84 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:28 pm

FINALLY ... someone is up.

85 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:32 pm

8 up?

8 reach.

FINALLY the hook.

86 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:35 pm

Frankly, I won't be surprised if it turns out he has an injury ... he was reaching back for something extra ... and throwing about 5mph slower than he normally does.

87 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:38 pm

10 FOR 10!!!

88 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:39 pm



89 rbj   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:42 pm

Not watching this shit show.

90 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 7:45 pm

How can you tear your eyes away!


[0] You didn't know how prophetic you would be, Hank!!!

What Just Happened?


91 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 8:12 pm

Another Gleyber-brain cramp

92 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 8:22 pm




93 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 29, 2023 9:40 pm

Eh, this got boring ... NOW, I'm out.

94 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:24 pm

2 games to go.

95 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:34 pm

Derpy Derp!

96 rbj   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:48 pm


97 rbj   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:49 pm


98 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:49 pm

He could ... maybe ... just possibly ... round the bases and get a triple!

He did ... but ... DJ is NOT swift.

99 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 6:55 pm



100 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:07 pm

They're not completely dead!

Show/Hide Comments 101-118
101 rbj   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:09 pm


102 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:12 pm

Still tied

103 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:38 pm


104 cult of basebaal   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:43 pm


105 rbj   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:51 pm

Phil Rizzuto approves.

106 rbj   ~  Sep 30, 2023 7:55 pm

And it produces a run.

107 OldYanksFan   ~  Oct 1, 2023 10:36 am

Last game of the season:
M. King against Z. Greinke 1-15(W/L), 5.18(ERA)
Yikes... I didn't know Greinke had shit the bed.

108 rbj   ~  Oct 1, 2023 11:28 am

Just not feeling it today, gonna sit this one out.

109 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 3:27 pm

Well, have a good off season and hopefully see you in 2024!
I might not be long for this game, either.

110 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 3:43 pm

Good to see Greinke go out with a good performance.

111 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 3:46 pm

Wells is finishing strong.

Very promising for 2024.

112 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 4:18 pm

Well, that's likely the last time this season I'll get to say:

Ein, zwei, drei ... VolKe!

113 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 4:19 pm

NICE AUSTIN ... 3-4!

114 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 1, 2023 4:23 pm

And that was the end of MY Yankees 2023 ... I'm sure I'll stop by from time to time as (and if) the Hot Stove demands, but everyone stay safe, healthy and happy until next time!

115 knuckles   ~  Oct 1, 2023 8:38 pm

I’ve been absent but the end of the season seems a good time to check in. The headline article above is spot on. I do love Torres so hope he has a great 2024 and the Yanks have reason to keep him around behind that.

Cashman is so done it’s not even funny and my take is that if you dump him you should also give Boone his walking papers. I’m not smart enough to recommend replacement GM’s but it’s time to correct prior errors and give Bam Bam a shit in the bench.

116 Bronx Boy in NC   ~  Oct 2, 2023 12:57 pm

Responding not to the conversation here but to a lot of talk I've seen elsewhere: I hear a lot of shouting about "Put Jeter in charge!" or "Coney!" or "Posada!" or "Paulie!" or or or ....

Most of those specific ideas have more shine than substance, and I discount them without feeling too critical. It's loyalty + spleen venting and perfectly natural.

But take a step back from naming actual names and I do think one thing is true: The Yankees need a daily presence in the clubhouse and in the dugout who has walked the walk of winning at a high level. Partly as a totem, but mostly as a source of attitude.

All props to Boone's one trip around the bases 20 years ago, but that's not the "walk" I'm talking about.

117 rbj   ~  Oct 3, 2023 4:58 pm

“ Jordan Montgomery of the Rangers makes his acquisition by Texas pay off with seven shutout innings against the Rays.”

Via David Pinto.

If only the Yankees could develop good young pitching like that.

118 Ara Just Fair   ~  Oct 4, 2023 6:42 pm

Jays and Rays out. Better luck next year, suckas.

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