Sunday, February 26, 2012

One and Done for Mo?

The buzz thus far in Yankees world is the strong hint that Mariano Rivera plans to hang 'em up at the end of this season.

Random thoughts on this:

I cannot think of another player that has been the best at his position longer than Rivera. Often, when a player is viewed as "the best" it typically only lasts for few seasons. Mo's dominance has been for a decade and half. Has there been a player viewed as the best at their position for as long or a longer period than that? (those that do come to mind have some taint of PEDs - Mo looks the same as he did 17 seasons ago)

In addition to his overall dominance, his game actually stepped up in the post season. Maybe John Smoltz is in the conversation, but no one performed better than Mo in the post season from a body of work standpoint of 32 series.

First Ballot HOF


Crash said...

What I'm curious about is the Hall vote in 5 years, assuming this is in fact his last year. I think Rivera will set the highest percentage of votes, beating Tom Seaver (98.84%) But I cannot even fathom what BBWAA wouldn't vote for him. I'm absolutely certain that he won't receive 100% of the vote, I'm absolutely certain he should have 100%. But I want to hear the rationalization from the guy that doesn't vote him in.

old professor said...

I cannot see Mo asking for another contract. He is 42 years old and has indicated he wants to spend more time with his family. Baseball is not a sport that allows for that kind of commitment. At somepoint, he will wonder: what more is there to accomplish, what more can I get from the game, what more can I give to the game, and how much more time do I want to stay away from the family?

Being the man that he is, Mo will be at peace the moment he makes the decision and will walk away with no regrets.

Martin and the Yankees no longer talking contract extension. Apparently both sides have agreed to wait until the end of the season. Swisher is also in his walk year and there has been no talk about extension with him either.

Chris Dickerson clears waivers to make room for Chavez. Interestiing in that there was some thought that Ardsma would be placed on the sixty day DL to make the room for Chavez - wonder if the Yankees are contemplating another move?

Crash said...

I think the Yankees will wait and see on Swisher. While I'm certain they like him at about $9MM, they may not like him for that much over the next 3-4 years. Speaking strictly from an on-field baseball perspective, I would think they would offer Josh Hamilton a contract (probably ~$17MM per) before Nick Swisher. If I could, I would put in a clause about his alcohol and drug stuff, if he tests positive on anything they can void the contract.

Crash said...

Pineda threw a BP session today and was promptly swarmed by the media. He wasn't prepared for it, asked for a couple minutes to think about things then ducked out the back avoiding reporters. Welcome to NY Mr. Pineda. Be a man, stand by your locker, and answer some questions even if it was just your first spring session. Imagine what it will be like when the season starts, or it's against the Red Sox, or in October.

old professor said...

You have to again take into consideration what will be going on with the salary cap information next year. What if the Yankees decide to go after Cole Hamels. (there will be two openings in the rotation next year). Will the team be forced to make a decision between an outfielder who has problems or a starting pitcher that has the potential to be an ace?

Crash said...

I'm not sold on Hamels. On the best team in the NL for his entire career, he has never had more than 15 wins and he only did that once. While his WHIP and ERA are good, keep in mind he's been in the NL the whole time.

That being said, if he hits the FA market I do think the Yankees make a play for him. It's easier to find an economically friendly RF than a quality starting pitcher.

old professor said...

At some point, the Yankees are going to have to begin relying on the farm to fill some of the positions. All we keep hearing is how stocked the system is, but none of them seem to make their way to the show. Gardner and Cano are the exception (yes Jeter going back to 1995). But if you look at position by position, not many home grown talents: Left field - yes, center - no, right - no, third - no, ss- yes, second - yes, first - no, catching - no (backup yes). Bullpen Mo and Robertson. Starting pitchers; Nova and Hughes.

old professor said...

Interesting comment by Girardi that the only two pitchers set in the rotation are CC and Kuroda. Obviously that has to make Cashman's stomach turn. Pineda was traded for to become a solid #2 or 3 not be in competition for the rotation.

Crash said...

Completely agree that the Yankees need to use the farm more. It provided a generation of talent recently. Cano is that bridge for the next wave. Doesn't seem to be a lot of position players in the farm though. Strong pitching prospects but not much in the field.

As for the rotation, I think they're trying not to put too much pressure on Pineda right away. He's had 1 complete season in Seattle no less. NY is a little different. To immediately say Pineda is your #2 may be too much. Don't listen to Girardi. I would dare say that Garcia is in the rotation and #4 and 5 are a battle between Hughes, Nova, and Pineda.

Crash said...

Tough break for AJ Burnett and the Pittsburgh Pirates, literally. While taking BP, practicing bunting, AJ fouled a ball off his eye, and will now require surgery to repair the fractured orbital bone. OUCH!

old professor said...

There are only three or four real prospects in the system for position players. That would be Slade Heathcock (the number one from two years ago that seems to not be living up to expectations), Dante Bichette last year's #1, Sanchez,Romine and Murphy all of whom are catchers. Other than that and some kid in the outfield named either Marshall or Mitchell, the team does not have any real projected major league talent.

The shortstop they drafted from the Rochester area last year had a good year in the minors, but where is he going with Jeter around for the next three years?

Too bad about AJ Pirates were looking for him stabalizing the rotation - guess having played in the American League as long as he had, he forgot how to bunt properly.

Crash said...

1. Jeter is under contract through 2013, player option at $8M for 2014.

2. The Yankees best position prospect is Mason Williams. Very good defensive OF, speed, and great potential offensively. Kind of like Austin Jackson, but better, more offense. Then you have Sanchez and Bichette. I think the SS they drafted was Culver. Culver is only 19 and didn't make it out of the NY-Penn league last year. He's at least 2 seasons away, so no conflict with Jeter. Heathcott has fallen to about #15 overall, and probably about #10 if you're looking at position players only.

The Top 5 Yankee prospects for 2012: 1. Banuelos, 2. Betances, 3. Mason Williams, 4. Gary Sanchez, 5. Jose Campos.

Old Prof you are right that the Yankees still have a ton of prospects at the catcher position even after dealing Montero. By the end of this season they need to decide what they want to do. They can trade some of these guys for other positions of need (SS, OF, P, etc.) They also have a bunch of near MLB ready P prospects that they should be able to move anytime they want to fill other needs too.

First spring game is tomorrow. Tune in early if you want to see the regulars as they probably get 1 AB. I'll be watching after that to see the prospects on the farm.

Crash said...

Former #1 draft pick Brien Taylor arrested for cocaine trafficking. LOSER!

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