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2014 Yankees Thread

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I don't really watch baseball anymore, and only have a sense of what's going on by listening to WFAN and this message board.  But from what I can tell, it seems like the Yankees could be pretty terrible for the next couple of years. 

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We commit enough money to the IR every year; I don't want Tulo unless we have a very good backup.  Yes, he's still a very good player, but he's another big-contract, questionable-health guy locked in long-term.  Tulo is more business as usual.

 

As to the "youth movement", it's already begun, and it started with the ridiculous overseas FA spending last year.  Seriously. here's a list of the prospects we just up and bought last year on Day 1 of international FA:

 

Dermis Garcia SS/3B Dominican Republic $3.2M
Nelson Gomez 3B Dominican Republic $2.25M
Jonathan Amundaray OF Venezuela $1.5M
Wilkerman Garcia SS Venezuela $1.35M
Antonio Arias OF Venezuela $1M
Diego Castillo SS Venezuela $750K
Servando Hernandez RHP Venezuela $200K
Miguel Flames C Venezuela N/A
Hyo-Joon Park SS South Korea N/A
Juan De Leon OF Dominican Republic N/A
 
That's our future right there.  We need a couple of these guys, and any of the other International FAs signed, to come up and be regular starting-caliber MLB players on the cheap, so that we can afford to pour money into stuff like starting pitching (because let's face it, $20 Million is now the cost of doing business for having an ace pitcher), which means if the Yankees are going to be "fiscally responsible", then some of these guys need to provide 2 or 3 WAR seasons for MLB-minimum yearly salaries.

I don't really watch baseball anymore, and only have a sense of what's going on by listening to WFAN and this message board.  But from what I can tell, it seems like the Yankees could be pretty terrible for the next couple of years. 

 

Yes, they may bottom out in the next two years unless all of our old and creakies can stay healthy for 140-ish games apiece (position players) or 25 starts (starters).  The Yanks have been staying afloat with an awful offense and above-average starting pitching.

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We commit enough money to the IR every year; I don't want Tulo unless we have a very good backup.  Yes, he's still a very good player, but he's another big-contract, questionable-health guy locked in long-term.  Tulo is more business as usual.

 

As to the "youth movement", it's already begun, and it started with the ridiculous overseas FA spending last year.  Seriously. here's a list of the prospects we just up and bought last year on Day 1 of international FA:

 

Dermis Garcia SS/3B Dominican Republic $3.2M
Nelson Gomez 3B Dominican Republic $2.25M
Jonathan Amundaray OF Venezuela $1.5M
Wilkerman Garcia SS Venezuela $1.35M
Antonio Arias OF Venezuela $1M
Diego Castillo SS Venezuela $750K
Servando Hernandez RHP Venezuela $200K
Miguel Flames C Venezuela N/A
Hyo-Joon Park SS South Korea N/A
Juan De Leon OF Dominican Republic N/A
 
That's our future right there.  We need a couple of these guys, and any of the other International FAs signed, to come up and be regular starting-caliber MLB players on the cheap, so that we can afford to pour money into stuff like starting pitching (because let's face it, $20 Million is now the cost of doing business for having an ace pitcher), which means if the Yankees are going to be "fiscally responsible", then some of these guys need to provide 2 or 3 WAR seasons for MLB-minimum yearly salaries.

 

Yes, they may bottom out in the next two years unless all of our old and creakies can stay healthy for 140-ish games apiece (position players) or 25 starts (starters).  The Yanks have been staying afloat with an awful offense and above-average starting pitching.

gotcha, i didn't know anything about the foreign prospects we have signed.  thats great news.. but of course it comes at an expense and not through our farm system :/

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gotcha, i didn't know anything about the foreign prospects we have signed.  thats great news.. but of course it comes at an expense and not through our farm system :/

 

Well, yes and no.  Yes, it's not a drafted player in the traditional sense of the MLB draft, and it does come with an attached extra spend, but these signees are all, for the most part, kids.  They're gonna go through the farm system and come up like other prospects.

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Well, yes and no.  Yes, it's not a drafted player in the traditional sense of the MLB draft, and it does come with an attached extra spend, but these signees are all, for the most part, kids.  They're gonna go through the farm system and come up like other prospects.

ok yea i see what you're saying.. so then i guess that counts.. i'm way more glad to see this than sign another 5 blockbuster busts

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The deadline to tender contracts to arb-eligible players has passed, and here are the players who were "non-tendered" (aka released).

 

On the Yankees front, Slade Heathcott, David Huff, and Jose Campos were the victims of release, giving the Yankees 4 open 40-man roster spots.

 

Also on the list are a couple of intriguing prospects to look into, and specifically I'd love for the Yankees to get Everth Cabrera on a "prove-it" type deal to see if he's got any juice.  He's primarily a shortstop, but has also played 2nd and 3rd.  I wouldn't mortgage the farm or anything for him, but if trades aren't going as expected (and the rest of the FA's aren't great...) then he's kind of a why not flyer.

 

There's also a couple of interesting arms on the list, specifically Kris Medlan and Brandon Beachy.  They're both TJ recoveries, but we've seen this before from the Yankees (hello Andrew Bailey), and I wouldn't be surprised if the Yanks inquired on both.  You could fit Alexi Ogando into this realm as well, I suppose, though I'm not a fan (just kind of a gut feeling thing, nothing really statistic to back it up).

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Interesting...hopefully Yankee fans won't be comparing him to Jeter, and will just let this guy be who he is. 

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Agreed, CR.  The comparisons are inevitable since it's the first season after Jeter, but he should be allowed to make his own way with his own strengths (primarily defense).  Losing Greene stings slightly, but you have to give to get, and it's probably easier to replace a #5 starter than it is to find a good defensive shortstop.  And we made a trade without gutting the farm, yay!

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Re Non-Tenders: Hope that the Yankees can re-sign Heathcott and Campos to minor league deals. Talent is still there, it's a shame that injuries have derailed their careers. The Yankees got Didi now but regardless I would've stayed away from Everth Cabrera. He's never hit outside of 2013 and his defense seems to grade to just average to slightly below average.

Re Greene-Gregorius trade: I like it despite not being a big fan of Gregorius. Cashman did well to sell high on Greene and buy low on Gregorius. Yankees get Gregorius for his age 25-29 seasons which is great. Seems most of the defensive metrics rank his defense between average to above average with most people thinking it's above average and should continue to improve. His offense has been non-existent but as Mark Simon of ESPN NY notes, he is one of the best at hitting the ball hard and could see some positive regression that will make his numbers better. LHB so maybe he'll get some pop with the short porch in NY. Struggles against LHP in his career (33 wRC+) but hits RHP league average (102 wRC+) which is good for a SS. Maybe just limit his time against LHP.

 

A lot of people like to get on Cashman but I always thought he does a decent job in trades. Mike Axisa had this tweet which I thought was awesome:

"In the last nine months, NYY turned Solarte (MiLB FA), Nuno (indy ball signing) and Greene (15th rd pk) into Headley, McCarthy, Didi."

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And with the frugal trade also comes the spending of dollars: Yankees to sign Andrew Miller.  4/$36.

I hope this doesn't mean Robertson is gone but it's hard not to feel that way. Nothing against Miller but if the Yankees are going to give out a big contract to a relief pitcher, I'd rather it go to the better pitcher that is also home grown.

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I dont mind this at all. Would way rather let Betances take the job anyway

Betances had a great year but it's still just 65 innings to go off of. A team like the Yankees shouldn't be so frugal that they are willing to let their own home grown, best reliever leave for a reasonable contract while settling for an inferior player in Miller. I get walking away from Cano with the long term committment but to balk at the contract Robertson got makes no sense to me.
 
The other thing that bothers me is that this team is so weak offensively and questionable when it comes to the rotation, they need every bit of production they can grab. They essentially replaced Robertson with a lesser pitcher and are hoping that they get value out of that. I would've rather spent the $2.5M more per year to have Robertson over Miller. 

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Yankees open the wallets for Chase Headley to the tune of 4/52 with a 1MM trade kicker.

 

Assuming he can play good defense for at least 3 of those years and average around .260/20/60, I'm OK with this.  Our infield for next year is set, and a bit younger, and A-Rod doesn't have to "play defense" for us. It also enables us to get some groundball pitchers and have them be successful.

 

The main complaint I've heard on this one is it blocks Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela from competing for second because of Prado, and my problems with that are as follows:

 

1) Prado can play the corner outfield if needed, so when if one of our outfielders gets hurt, Prado can shift there and they can come up for 2B.

2) If Martin Prado (good player but certainly not elite) is blocking you from playing time in a fair competition, then the chances are your game needs work.

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I love the Headley deal, above average offensively and defensively. Don't really have to worry about a decline on a 4 year deal too. It will be nice to have solid defense on the left side of the infield for a change now that they have Headley and Didi.

I agree that I have no problem with this "blocking/challenging" Refsnyder. He's hit at every single level but only has 333 PA's at the AAA level. Add in the fact that he needs to work on his 2B defense and I don't see how more time in the minors can hurt him. Plus with how old this team is, he's bound to get a fair amount of MLB time this year even if he starts out in the minors.

I'm really indifferent towards Pirela. It's not like this guy was a consistent offensive threat through his minor league career and his defense has always been shaky - at least in my opinon based on seeing him play live a few times.

Yankees also brought back Capuano the other day for cheap to eat some innings. I like it given the state of the rotation. Still wish they had more than major injury risks and back end guys to fill the rotation. I love Tanaka and Pineda but am greatly concerned about them staying healthy the whole year. Sabathia has already started to decline and he's also a huge injury risk. Nova coming back from a major one too. Things could be pretty ugly for the Yankees rotation this year, though my gut feeling is Cashman is trying to make a trade for a pitcher or two.

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This is a bit of a shocker for me: Prado and Phelps to Marlins for Eovaldi and Garrett Jones.

 

I guess Refsnyder is going to get his looks after all...

i don't understand this... Prado who had a strong end of the year as a yankee and Phelps for a 1B that hit .246 last year?? I don't know who Eovaldi is but this doesn't make a whole lotta sense for me.. unless they're just trying to clear some cap off the books...

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Nathan Eovaldi - from Baseball Reference

 

He's an SP that's estimated to cost 3 million in arbitration.  This has GOT to be a cost-cutting move, or maybe a move to get a young pitcher.  Jones has 1/5 left on his deal and could easily be DFA'd, and Eovaldi is arb-eligible for the first time this offseason.  The two together will make less than Prado will make this year, and Prado still has one more year at 11 million left, so the deal saves $14 million plus whatever Phelps would have cost.  The upside is that Eovaldi is young and somewhat durable: he pitched 200 innings last year as a 24 year old and stuck out 148 (though it was to the tune of a 4.37 ERA/1.33 WHIP/3.37 FIP).

 

EDIT: Also reported that the Yanks will get a Class A starter Domingo German from the Marlins.

Edited by Hi, I'm VALUE!

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I'm a bit "meh" on this trade but I'll defer to Cashman's judgement. I think he tends to trade well.

I didn't know anyting about Eovaldi but it seems like the Yankees value his ability to give them innings more than Phelps. Apparently, Eovaldi throws hard (~95 MPH fastball) with a slider (~86.2), curve (~75.9), and change (~86.3). Despite that, he only has a 6.28 K/9 rate for his career so I suppose the Yankees hope Rothschild may be able to help Eovaldi improve that. Last year he cut his BB/9 rate down to 1.94 and had a nice K/BB rate of 3.30. Made 33 starts last year so hopefully he can be healthy enough to eat a lot of innings and be a solid 4/5. I really do like that he's under team control for a bit too. Fangraphs has this excellent breakdown of Eovaldi.

Jones was the only guy coming to the Yankees in the deal that I was familiar with. He's a solid bench player given that he can play 1B, RF, and DH. Given that the Yankees have Teixeira, Beltran, and A-Rod for those spots, they're going to need a guy that can provide some cover. He's hit about league average the last 2 years but still has some pop. Can't provide value defensively but they really just need a warm body that will be able to fill in when the injuries happen. Does hit RHP a lot better than LHP (107/52 wRC+ split last year) which falls inline with his career history.

Domingo German is the interesting part of this trade to me. Losing Prado is going to hurt the Yankees offense but they were probably going to be bad with or without him next year. German gives them some hope for the future, though there is always the chance he goes more Jose Campos or Humberto Sanchez. Baseball America recently ranked him as the 6th best Marlins prospect. He has nice minor league numbers so far and Baseball America had this on him in their recap of the trade:

 

The Marlins’ lone representative at the 2014 Futures Game, German impressed with a scoreless inning that featured strikeouts of top prospects Kris Bryant and Joey Gallo. Pitchability isn’t German’s strength right now, but throwing strikes is. He has an easy delivery he repeats well to go with a loose, live arm that produces above-average life on a heavy sinking fastball that sits in the 91-96 mph range and touches 97. He’ll need to develop his secondary stuff to be a future rotation option in Miami.

Fangraphs has this interesting background/scouting report on German.
Also from Chad Jennings of LoHud:

 

Here’s what an opposing team’s scout had to say: “Chance to be a back-end starter or potential bullpen piece. (In rookie ball in 2013), the fastball was 91-94 but needed strike control and polish. Excellent feel for the changeup (83-87) and wider break (on the) curveball (78-81) that needed to tighten. Interesting arm to acquire.”

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Not really a fan of the Gonzalez Germen move but it's so miniscule, it's not worth getting upset over. His K rates are nice and his BB, HR, and fly ball rates are troublesome. They DFA'd Claiborne for him so it's essentially a low end reliever replacing a low end reliever.

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Yankees have made some RP moves lately. First they traded Shawn Kelley for RP Johnny Barbato who is 22 and never pitched above AA yet. I liked Kelley a lot, his K/9 and K/BB rates and FIP were always solid for a middle reliever but the Yankees wanted to avoid paying him a raise in his final year of arbitration. Normally this would bother me but since 2015 is going to be a lost season anyway, might as well get a young cost controlled pitcher that may become a nice bullpen down the road.

Then they traded Manny Banuelos for RP David Carpenter and  RP Chasen Shreve. Seems like the Yankees understandably gave up on Banuelos due to health reasons. Carpenter is 29 and has nice K/9 and BB/9 rates and is cheaper than Kelley who he is essentially replacing. Shreve is 24 and has limited MLB experience but is a LHP that can face both sides.

Overall I'm satisfied with the moves. They're minor and this team is still bad but they're sound to me. Seems like the bullpen will definitely include Miller, Betances, Carpenter, and Warren with guys like Wilson, Shreve, and Lindgren also having decent chances to fight each other for a spot.
 

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