Saturday, December 15, 2012

Finally a post! 12-15-12

Longest drought of not writing for me in years.   The playoffs were so disappointing in that we played very poorly against a team (Detroit) that didn’t play that well against us.  When Detroit played a "real” team they got crushed.  Our pitchers did well mostly because Detroit didn’t swing the bats well and Detroit’s pitching while not terrible, looked like All Stars with us swinging the bat as poorly as I have ever seen.  I just didn’t feel like writing…

That being said I had a bunch of ideas that I just never got down on this site.  Maybe I need to use twitter to get my thoughts out?  Let me know if you have an interest in that?

Anyway, so here goes…

Why do I feel that I am the only person who does not (didn't) want to re-sign Ichiro?  I know he did really well down the stretch for us, but I have said for many years that signing players in the middle range (roughly 6-13 mil is usually a bad idea for teh yanks unless you know what you are getting.  I am in favor of the Superstar and then filling in with role players and rookies/young players.  Some people have talked about trading Cano; I would not do that, I lock him up.  I know he was horrible in the post season this year, but do you really think that is an indication how he will do in the future playoffs?

Back to Ichiro...His overall numbers were by far the best we could have hoped for with us, but at 39 I think he is shot and I would rather play Dickerson out there every day rather than Ichiro. My thought was if they could get him for a year at 4-5 mil then maybe worth it, but 13 mil for 2 years???  No thanks.  I do not believe that is money well spent...what do you really think is a realistic expectation of his OPS this year and next?  While with us he was decent/good, but I don’t think the 230 AB’s with us is an indicative of his playing ability as the prior 1800 AB’s where is OPS was about .670, especially when you consider he will be 39 next year and his game was mostly predicated on speed. Ichiro walked only 5 times in all those AB’s with us…I don’t like that part of his game…in fact I hate it. the Yanks go well when they wear down pitchers and I don't want guys who take away from that ability as a team to do it. First pitch outs kill a team.
Ichiro had 2 straight years as the worst every day player in the majors.  My guess is if he can get to .750 that would be at the top end of the specturm and the bottom end is 150 points less.  There are people that do no nothing but make these projections, but if I had to guess, .710 is probably about right...with pretty solid defense (but not great).  That is no where near worth that money and could be filled probably better with Dickerson.

Youk is hard to figure. He dropped off pretty darn quick and that usually doesn’t happen; the real question is was he hurt last year?  I do not know this, but that is the only area (and an important one to know) where this signing makes sense.  His numbers were mediocre overall (.745 - now look at Ichiro), but he played better with the White Sox; if he continued to play well for them I would have said that he just had a bad start, but his final 100 AB’s were not good either (under .700 OPS) and that is the one reason I would not sign him for $12 mil, even if it is only one year.  Youk is a pretty good defender and a hard nose guy and I do like the guys who work the count (one of the reasons Ichiro drives me nuts), but $12 mil is a lot of coin and if you take the two of them (Ichiro) that is 18.5 mil you could have signed a heck of a player, or wait until after the All Star break and pull two significant salary dumps into your roster of $20 mil type of players.  That would be a great shot in the arm.  This would also give you time to develop some players (my main issue last year signing all these old guys who don't project to be better than the young guys.

I would made a bold move and move Jeter to 3rd base as his range is shot at SS anyway and throw Nunez out there every day. I hate his Nunez' glove and honestly have doubts he will ever be average, but he does have the tools, if not the smooth glove.  Jeter should be fine at 3rd base and I would put Dickerson in RF and sign a platoon partner for the OF for a low level signing or a minor leaguer who could be tried.

Kuroda was a good signing for us and so was Pettitte.  $15 mil for Kuroda was probably at market value or below and getting him for one year was good for our $185 mil imposed cap.  I don;t necessarily have a big issue with this cap, but I think the team is not being managed consistently, if you are going to charge such exorbitant prices for seats you need to field a really good team.  the Yanks have been successful because they have spent money on the field which has led to significant money through gate receipts, memorabilia and concessions...if the product suffers so does the revenue brought in.  George understood that; not sure the sons do unfortunately.

Other points:

Excited to see Rivera come back; I hope he can be good...I don;t expect great.  Not resigning Swisher and Soriano but tendering them were very good moves so that we get draft picks for them leaving (and free up their salary).  Just for the record, Swisher is much more valuable than Ichiro as a RF, regardless if I wanted him gone (and I liked his energy)

Pineda should be ready for the latter part of this year; I still have very high hopes for him and even Campos, the other guy who got injured but was part of the Montero deal.  Hard to predict injuries and if you remember I was in favor of the move to trade Montero for them.  At this point what we got has been useless, but Montero proved he really is not a major league catcher and is probably just a DH (as I predicted).  Oddly, he had an OBP below .300 and a slug below .400 so he hit poorly also.  I would expect him to hit well, but if we get the pitchers like they were, we will be ahead in that deal.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season!

1 comment:

  1. Just noticed this post. I always appreciate your thoughtful comments.

    Plenty of us agree with your view of the Ichiro signing. From what I read, one or two other teams had offers to Ichiro in the area where the Yanks signed him. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I hope Ichiro proves me wrong.

    One small positive is that Ichiro was able to use the short porch in Yankee Stadium a couple of times. Maybe he's just a better hitter in the Stadium.

    I like you thought of making Nunez the regular SS. I think he's at least as good a fielder as Jeter. His greater range offsets Jeter's greater steadiness. Also, if Nunez is the regular SS for several months, we'll find out whether regular play makes him a better fielder. If he never gets the chance, we'll never know.