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It’s easy for me to sit here and say that the Yankees should sign this guy or that they should sign that guy but what it all boils down to is how much do they want to spend? Now of course they could go out and spend huge money on a Prince Fielder to be the new DH, but a new fiscally conservative Yankees are only looking to spend around 2 million dollars. So far I have heard them connected with a few different names. Lets take a look at each of these and the good and bad. Then lets look at why I think the Yankees can do it even better without spending a dime.
The good: Could probably be had in this price range. Damon batted .262 last season which is still respectable. His HR and RBI totals have been fairly consistent and he still has a little speed on the base pads as he showed with 19 stolen bases last year.
The Bad: He is 38, His Batting average has gone down every year since 2008. He can’t play in the field anymore with any consistency due to his loss of range. His OPS and OBP are at an all time low. I love what he did in pinstripes in the past but I feel a return will just disappoint.
The Good: Pena is only 30 years old and has had consistent power numbers. You can almost guarantee 30 HR and 80 RBI. He is also a good first baseman who would provide plus defense on those days that Tex needs a rest.
The Bad: He hasn’t hit above .247 since 2007. He is likely to be more expensive than what they Yankee have budgeted due to the fact that he is only 30.
The Good: The Yankees are familiar with him and he brings a great presence to the club house as well as Japanese media attention. He was always a clutch hitter when the Yankees needed him to be. He still shows glimpses of Power and consistency. Probably fits in the Yankees budget.
The Bad: He is 37, has bad knees, can’t play in the field, and is coming off a bad year with the A’s.
So as you can see the bad outweighs the good in most of these cases. My vote goes to Jorge Vazquez. Vazquez is a corner infielder that the Yankees got out of the Mexican league who has great power and can play first and third base. Last season in AAA he hit 32 HR and 93 RBI. This guy can flat out hit. He did struggle a bit in the first half but ended up batting .262 with a good late season run. He was known in Mexico as El Chato and hits towering HR that often leave even the biggest ballparks. The Yankees already own him why not give the 29 year old power hitter a shot at DH.
Whatever the Yankees decide I for one am excited for spring training to begin. You would have to think with the recent pitching upgrades that the Yankees will be favored to win the AL East. Now the question remains will Boston make a move to try and keep up?
Seems that Roy Oswalt has lowered his contract expectations and is willing to except a one year deal to prove to all that his back is fine and he is worth a big contract.
His agent seems willing to talk to the Yankees about a contract but it seems the Yankees are reportedly not interested. If we have learned anything from history its that the Yankees are coy about their level of interest in anything. Remember when Bubba Crosby was going to be our starting CF? Just before Johnny Damon shocked everyone signing with the Bombers. Remember when the Yankees were out on Mark Teixeira?
Oswalt struggled with injuries last year but came back be dominate down the stretch. Last year he went 9-10 with an ERA of 3.69. He had more hits than innings pitched which for some reason is the first thing I personally look at for a quick snapshot of a pitchers worth.
Do I think Roy is worth a look? Yea he’s worth a look. Is he a legitimate number two starter? Probably not anymore. I think that the Yankees will look at his medical records at the least and have already had some internal discussions. They may even test to see how cheap he can be signed for.
I believe his value on a one year deal to be 7-8mil. That being said if the Yankees sign him it will probably be on a one year 11million dollar deal.
It seems that the Yankees can afford to approach the offseason with great caution now that CC Sabathia is locked up. Cashman has reached out to the agents of CJ Wilson and Edwin Jackson just to let them know that he is interested in talking to them. I’m sure the Yankees also have a foot in the Yu Darvish sweepstakes should he be posted from the Japan league and they are going to watch a private workout from Yeonis Cespedes, a cuban defector who is a rare five tool outfielder.
I suspect the Yankees will take a cautious approach to the off-season. Hopefully they don’t wait to long as other teams are also going to be looking at these players. It won’t surprise me if they offer Freddy Garcia a one year deal for something in the range of 2m. He would give them an option in the rotation or the bull pen if needed. Currently the rotation is CC, Nova, AJ,Hughes and ? I think it will be CJ Wilson but I would kinda like to see Darvish. Either way all we can do right now is sit and wait.
This game was exactly what the Yankees needed. It had some key elements that will get the Yankees out of the mini slump they have been sliding into.
1. Dominate performance from AJ: Actually it was his second great outing in a row. The two unearned runs hurt him a bit but his teammates picked him up with a five run seventh. Being able to go out and pitch the eighth with a pitch count already over 100 and recording two k”s was huge.
2. Mark Texeria feeling and looking like himself again. His three run homer in the Seventh was a Monster into the bleachers and you could tell he was feeling more comfortable and confident even with two strikes on him. Look for Tex to be the best hitter in the league in June, Id bet money on it. Except maybe Robinson Cano who Is my early bet for MVP and most certainly an all-star appearance. Cano is hitting .362 with 10 homers and 37 RBI. Even if he was mediocre for the rest of the season he would still have great numbers. Don’t count on that happening. Its a bit early but is it possible he could take a run at .400?? Like I said a little early but I wouldn’t be surprised if you see him around .380 in August.
3. Mariano looking like Mariano: Mo had a rough couple of outings giving up the grand slam and all but his last three appearances have shown that he is not slipping even one little bit.
4.Brett Gardner: Although his batting average has slipped a bit he still has hit safely i8n six of his last ten games. I don’t care what anyone says having Granderson back in the two hole will let Gardner steal more bases. It will also give Jeter more hits. Pitchers make mistakes when Brett is on base. Nobody hits mistakes better than Derek Jeter.
5. Speaking of Derek Jeter do you realize he is hitting close to .300 now and has 19 hits in his last ten games. He has two or more hits in 7 of his last 8 games.
6. Who said Granderson cant hit lefties? Seems the last couple of times he has been up in a big spot against a lefty he hit a double.
So there is a lot of things to be happy about right now to be only 3.5 out at the end of May compared to where we were at this time last year looks pretty good.
There are also a couple of concerns. Beyond Rivera the Bull pen has not been good as a team their ERA is over 4 and are among the worst in the league. Chamberlain is like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Robertson has looked a bit batter of late. Aceves is on the DL and that is a killer they need him healthy he is very important. Mitre has been solid and that helps but he cant go out there every day. Domaso Marte has been horrible and Logan was sent back down because he wasn’t performing either. So the Yankees have made a couple of moves in bringing back Chad Gaudin, who was crucial for the Yankees last year and Josh Towers who I am a big fan of. Towers was released by the Dodgers on Friday after pitching horible in tripple A. But Towers is one of those guys who has a funky delivery and can strike guys out and hell anything is better than putting Marte out there against a right handed batter. Id would bring back Jesse Orosco if I thought it would help.
Bottom line if the starters keep going seven or eight innings it wont matter, and the rotation is why the Yankees are a better team than last years world champs.
Everyone has there little predictions about how the post-season will shape up. Back in February I made some predictions of my own and this is what the great Rookstrdomous came up with.
AL East. Yankees
AL Central. Twins
AL West Angels
AL wildcard Boston
NL East Phillies
NL Central Cards
NL West Diamondbacks
NL wildcard Braves
WS Yankees VS Cardinals
AL cy young. Sabathia
NL cy young Licecum
AL ROY David Price
NL ROY Tommy Hanson
Honorable mention to Brett Gardner and Cameron Maybin
Well as you can see I’m not physic. But I didn’t do that bad either. I think a lot of what I predicted will be close to the mark and I’m not wavering from my WS pick. Now for my final pick (as if there is any doubt) Yankees in 6.