Monday, July 27, 2009

Tampa a Big Test

The Bombers have shown they can win against any team in the league consistently. . . that is, with the minor exception of teams they are likely to face in the playoffs.

I love the way the team is playing post A-Rod. However in order for me to truly think this year is different than the prior 7, I need to see convincing wins against the teams that pose a potential threat to and in the playoffs. In my mind, those teams are the Angels, Red Sox, and The Rays.

This is a big series for the Rays given where they stand right now and will likely bring a playoff-like mentality to the 3 gamer. If we can take 2 out of 3 now, in Tampa, I'm one step closer to believing.


Side note - great HOF inductions.



The Scooter said...

Who would have thought Ricky Henderson would have a heartfelt, touching, funny HOF acceptance speech in him? I think because of his mouth, sometimes we forget how good this guy really was. The best leadoff hitter in the history of the game. Congrats Ricky.

Jim Rice sucks.

When is the last time the Yankee bullpen could be considered one of the best in the game? Certainly not since the days of Nelson/Stanton setting up Mo. I think these guys may be even better than them. And if Bruney is really out!

Prof, here is a little snippet from Larry Brooks in the Post:

"The Yankees appear capable of winning games in different ways. They lead the league in home runs, but they win on baseball's most enduring formula -- pitching and defense. And Jeter has been an integral part of a uniformly outstanding infield defense; quick to both his left and right, seemingly better than ever at making the signature stab and jump-throw from short left field."


old professor said...

With the pitching that is lined up against the Rays, it would be nice for the Yankees to sweep which would put the Rays pretty much out of the race (kind of like the Mets).

Last comment regarding the Yankees putting a package together for Halladay (which seems more unlikely as the days pass). Let's say the Yankees include Joba in a hypothetical trade. Joba out and Halladay in. Okay how many more wins is Halladay going to give you versus the wins you will get from Joba's start? And the trade still leaves you with a big question mark at #4 (Pettitte seems to hit a wall in the sixth or seventh over the last several starts) and at #5 - Mitre does not appear to be the answer after two mediocre starts.

The Jays have turned down two trade offers from the Phillies. They apparently want both of the Phillies top prospects. Based on that information, the Yankees would have to package Hughes, Joba and Jackson to the Jays to get Halladay. TOO much to give up.

Nice to see that Ian Kennedy is starting his rehabilitation after the surgery. Currently only playing catch. Could be a factor next season.

Too bad about Gardner. Two weeks in a cast before the fracture is re-evaluated. Yankees have indicated they have not discussed bringing Jackson up. Even though they brought a pitcher up look for an arm to go down and Pena to come back.

Crash said...

Scooter said...
"Jim Rice sucks." LMAO!!! And couldn't agree more. He does not deserve to be in the HOF! If he's in, I still have hope for Mattingly getting in.

Scooter I also agree about the bullpen, and it's only going to get stronger with Marte on the verge of coming back (he's rehabing now and will likely be back mid-August).

Old Prof. AccuStat ran 10,000 different simulations if Halladay were traded to the Yankees and the results of those simulations foretasted 2 additional wins for the Yankees. The Blue Jays sent around there initial asking price to about 6 different clubs and the Yankees didn't make the list. If the Yankees can improve the team by picking up another back end starter without giving up any "major league ready talent" I would do that in a second. For instance I would trade Igawa and Montero for a solid #4 or 5 guy. No way the Yanks get Halladay, Lee, or even Bedard or Washburn.

Mid you actually make a very valid point (one a season isn't that bad) regarding winning against quality teams...They are actually 6-16 against the Rays (4-4), Sox (0-8), and Angels (2-4). It think we see a turn around this week against the Rays and Sox.

old professor said...

Interesting issue facing the Yankees. They brought up another pitcher to replace Gardner. They now carry 13 pitchers. With the team playing in Tampa and in Toronto they are pushing the envelope expecting Damon and Cabrera not to experience leg fatigue. They need to bring up an additional outfielder from the minors. If they do, none of the Triple A outfielders are on the forty man roster so either Wang goes to the 60 day or someone gets DFA. My bet Kevin Cash's days on the 40 man roster are numbered and the outfielder that comes up will be John Rodriguez or Colin Curtis not Austin Jackson.

Crash, your number crunching regarding Halladay confirms what I have been saying - they don't need Halladay. They should be able to pick up a serviceable starter and not give up a lot. (Unfortunately the names I have been hearing are like a reoccurring nightmare - Pavano, Sydney Ponson. Hate to say it but Josh Towers and Kei Igwa would be better options for them).

57 said...

Does Selig actually make the change on Rose... if he does, you might actually see me go to the induction ceremony next year.

As for Mattingly, Crash, Keith Hernandez would get in before Mattingly would. I am not kidding.. im being dead serious about that.

Congrats Ricky.... a great ex-Met.

Jim Rice is the Lynn Swann of the Baseball Hall of Fame

Hey.. Mets' bats are waking up.. too little too late. Grand Slam Fernando strikes again...

T.O. is in Rochester!! The savior has come (that's for you Prof)

Prediction: Halliday goes nowhere.

The Scooter said...

Has anyone in baseball pitched batter than AJ Burnett over the last month or so? DOMINATING

Cano is back on fire.....Jeter continues his run to the MVP. Prof, .325 with 65 runs scored. The guy is as amazing as Mariano if you ask me.

Was nice to be able to rest the back end of the bullpen, last night.

As for the trade market. The Padres have finally decided to move Heath Bell. If the Yankees find that the price of a middle to back of the rotation starter is too high, don't be surprised if they trade for Bell and move Aceves to the rotation. I know it would be hard to mess with the pen right now, but Bell would be a good addition (opponents batting .199 against him, he has 2.06 ERA and he doesn't walk anybody) and Aceves might be better than most of the starters out there on the market.

I watched Minaya's press conference, yesterday. What a tool. He totally tried to throw that Daily News writer under the bus. Hey, I'm no fan of your average sportswriter, but this was just a despicable move by Omar's. Absolutely NO CLASS. I have a feeling he will be joining Bernazard on the golf course once the season mercifully ends for the Muts. They are a friggin train wreck. They need completely new leadership.

old professor said...

Scooter, is Heath Bell the same guy that had a terrible time making it with Texas (maybe it was the heat)? While he would not be a bad pick up, it would make the bullpen predictable. Bruney comes out firing at 95-96, Hughes comes out with gas in the same range. Bell brings the same kind of pitching. Aceves gives up variety as does Coke who I believe tops out at 92-93.

Have to agree with your assessment regarding AJ Burnett. When he is on, he is dominating. Joba could learn from him.

Interesting article on Jeter regarding the improvement in his defensive range. Article is on the MLB website. Apparently the Yankees and Jeter recognized there was a problem with his range. They put him on some form of different workout last season and into this season to try and improve his range. Apparently it is working. (Yes Scooter that was almost a compliment for the guy). I still believe Mauer has the inside track to the MVP - two months to go in the season and a lot can happen. Good to see Damon finally get #200.

Crash said...

Old Prof I think I agree with you on the pitcher/OF situation. I don't understand carrying 13 pitchers either. Girardi was having a hard time getting everyone work when they had 12. This also leaves the bench short...Damon was complaining about tired legs...I like the addition of Hinske and giving him more time but he's not an everyday player, actually that can be said about the entire Yankee OF. They may try Matsui in the OF one of these days, he was suppose to be ready in June or July right??? I think this week is just a try out for Albaledejo and Melancon. Whoever pitches better stays with the big club, the other gets sent down and then you see another position player added.

57 I'm interested to hear your argument why Hernandez would go in the HOF before Mattingly. The only argument you have is the Gold Glove count, after that Hernandez has nothing over Mattingly. I realize this debate is moot because we both realize neither are getting in, but seriously what else do you have to do for the rest season...

Scooter, Bell's #'s are nice, but let's not forget he's in the NL West (which is essentially AA ball). If there were question about Jake Peavy being able to handle the pressure of NY and the AL East, do you think Bell would is the right choice? I just don't know who else would be available.

Jeter MVP!

old professor said...

Crash, the questions about Matsui playing the outfield were answered by the doctors. Their recommendation was not to play him in the outfield because his knees would not hold up and they would lose him three to four days for every day in the outfield. Put him on the turf in Tampa or Toronto and you only ask for trouble.

After yesterdays outting, Albldejo's days are numbered. After recording two outs he gives up a couple of runs and two additional hits leaving it up to Robertson to clean up his mess.

Crash said...

Bad night for the Yankees...the ace CC takes the loss, to the Rays, while an ex-Met was pitching (who like the Mets is under .500). Rumored that Kazmir was "auditioning" as many scouts were in attendance at tonights game (Mets & Rangers are said to be interested).

So just when I thought it couldn't get any worse for the Yankees tonight...I read the Red Sox are now major players for Roy Halladay. They would send Bucholz, and Lars Anderson or Justin Masterson plus other lower level prospects. If I'm JP Ricciardi that's about as good as it's going to get. I would take either one of them (Anderson or Masterson) with Bucholz and call it a day. No one in baseball will match that offer.

Dodgers are said to have made Billingsley available, but I don't think that's enough if the Red Sox offer is truly there.

Other trade news: Freddy Sanchez could be traded today, he was a healthy scratch from the lineup. Anyone surprised that the Pirates are trading another player? Will they have enough left to field a major league team come August 1???

And lastly the Yankee update:

Yankees had scouts at the Seattle game to check out Jarrod Washburn's start and it is believed an offer will happen. Seems kind of anti-climatic given the above rumors...

old professor said...

Bad news on the Wang front - he will have season ending surgery on his shoulder. Apparently there was more damage in there than reported or the team thought. While this removes the question mark about him coming back and is bad news. It allows the Yankees to move him to the sixty day DL and bring a much needed outfielder up from Triple A. Melancon also pitched well last night.

The Scooter said...

Yea, a complete clunker last night. Bad pitching, bad defense and bad hitting. I guess you are going to have one of those every once in a while. The A's came back in the ninth (Papplebon blew a save)and beat the Sox in extras, so it's not all that bad.

I still think the Phillies will relent on Drabek and send him to the Jays for Doc.

I don't think Bucholz, Anderson or Masterson is a great package. Now if they throw Bard in the mix, then I would be concerned.

I still think the Yankees have an offer in them too. Joba, Melancon and Austin Romine, would be better than the Red Sox current offer.

Randy Johnson has a torn rotator cuff. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

old professor said...

Apparently, Cashman has talked to the Jays about Halladay. The asking price seems to be very steep: Joba or Hughes as the centerpiece of the deal and then Montero, Jackson, Romaine and Bleich. Montero is hitting .306 with a SLG of .578; Jackson is hitting .312 with a SLG of .515; Romaine (who is at Tampa and is only 21) is hitting.286 with a slg of .478. (It should be pointed out that Romaine is projected to be the long-term replacement for Posada). Bleich has pitched for Trenton and Tampa and has a combined record of 7-8. However, he is one of their better pitching prospects. To me that list is too steep of a price to pay for a pitcher that will be a free agent after next year.

The Scooter said...

Cliff Lee and Ben Francisco to the Phillies for four prospects (neither Drabek or Happ).

Now I'm really worried about the Red Sox getting Halliday.

Crash said...

Call me crazy but the Yankees will end up with Halladay on their lap. With Lee going to the Phills and Boston now engaging Cleveland about Victor Martinez (essentially offering the same players) that leaves the LA teams, TX, and the Yankees.

I think the Yankees have the most to offer and could probably get him without killing the farm. (Ok...I know...wishful thinking...)

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