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Yankees Winter Meetings Recap

The 2011 MLB Winter Meeting have come and gone without much noise from the New York Yankees.  Instead, the Miami Marlins and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim made all the noise in this years very active Winter Meetings.  What would George Steinbrenner think about all of this if he were alive? The Yankees have so far refused to overpay for anybody, or give up any top prospects.  The only thing they did was win the rights to sign Japanese shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima. There were some interesting rumors out there for starting pitchers that maybe will develop down the road this offseason.

First let’s start off with the only concrete thing that happened with the Yankees winning the Nakajima bid. It sounds like the Yankees really did not expect to win the bid and that Nakajima probably will not sign with the Yankees. He probably does not want to come to the Yankees in a backup role when he can be an MLB free agent next offseason. If Nakajima did sign with the Yankees he has good power and would be able to help the Yankees give their middle infielders and A-Rod a breather.  There was the idea that they could sign Nakajima and then dangle Eduardo Nunez in a trade, but I do not see that to be the case.

The major trade rumors involving the Yankees were about Oakland A’s pitcher Gio Gonzalez. One trade that was rumored by Mike Silva of New York Baseball Digest was the Yankees getting Gonzalez, the Royals getting David Phelps and Michael Taylor, and the A’s getting Brett Gardner and Clint Robinson. Also, Silva said the Yankees were the front runners for Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespesdes. I believe this would be an absolute steal and a no brainier for the Yankees. They would only have to give up Gardner and Phelps in this scenario. Gardner is a nice player and great on defense. However, he is replaceable especially by Cespesdes, who offers a similar kind of speed and defense. Doing that trade would be the much better alternative to what Bob Klapisch reported the A’s wanted, which was Jesus Montero, one of Manny Banuelos or Dellin Betances, and new stud prospect outfielder Mason Williams. That is obviously an asinine offer but I would be inclined to do a trade package around Montero for Gonzalez. The Yankees have a huge need for a number two pitcher and there is no way around it. Gonzalez I think would fit that bill well. Gonzalez is only 26 and is not a free agent until after the 2014 season year. He had an outstanding year last season going 16-12, with a 3.12 ERA, 197 strikeouts, and a 1.31 WHIP. His one negative is that he issued 91 walks last year. Scouts told New York Daily News writer John Harper, that they believe he was pitching too carefully due to lack of run support in  Oakland, and that it would change in New York. I tend to agree with that theory.  I think Gonzalez is the most talented pitcher on the trade market and has a very nice contract. The Yankees should be trying hard to land him.

The other relevant Yankees information that came out of the Winter Meetings is that Yu Darvish will be posted. As I said with Gonzalez, if the Yankees feel Darvish is a number two caliber starter the Yankees need to win the bid on him. It is currently all question marks behind CC Sabathia in the rotation. Will Ivan Nova have a sophomore slump? Can Phil Hughes and A.J. Burnett be trusted? Can Freddy Garcia repeat his 2011 year? Can Hector Noesi come in and live up to the potential the Yankees think he has? Do not relate Darvish to other Japanese pitchers like Dice- K or Kei Igawa, as he has much better stuff. Cashman has been lukewarm in the media regarding whether or not they will bid highly on him, although Yankee scouts are said to love Darvish.

Cashman has done a nice job of protecting his assets so far and not doing anything regrettable. However, one has to wonder with the Angels gaining a ton of talent in Albert Pujols and CJ Wilson, if he will get more aggressive.  The strategy paid off for Cashman last year, but he may be hedging his bet if he goes with the same starting rotation as he did last year. It will be very interesting to see how the rest of the offseason plays out.


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Hot Stove Targeting: Yu Darvish

Yanks finally get a shot at

After re-signing CC Sabathia in early November, Brian Cashman announced his OffSeason goal was “Pitching, pitching, pitching.”  Yet he has remained very patient and constantly said that the price for starting pitchers in Free Agency and the trade market was unreasonably high.  Although that is very true, could it be that Cashman has stalled so he can first take a shot at his most coveted target …….Yu Darvish?

By now, everyone has read a ton about Yu but let’s analyze his pros & cons to see if he’s worth the high cash commitment it will take to get him.

Positives

Yu Darvish is the most dominating pitcher in Japanese baseball with 5 straight seasons of sub-2.00 ERAs. It’s very difficult to translate NPB stats to MLB, but to give an idea of his dominance, Yu is 76-28 with a 1.73 ERA.  This season was his best as he went 18-6 with a 1.44 ERA , 10.7 K/9, 1.4 BB/9 and a miniscule 0.83 WHIP over 232 IP.

Once again, stats in Japan don’t translate well in the U.S. so it’s best to look at Yu from a scouting standpoint. From the videos I’ve seen and the scouting reports I’ve read, this is what I would say about him:

  • He’s a 25-year-old who really matured physically in the last 2 yrs. Films from early in his career were of a tall, lanky kid but it’s obvious he’s worked hard to add strength and he’s now a solid built 6’5″ 220 pounder with long arms & legs, a strong base and trunk – really an ideal pitcher’s body.
  • His solid base gives him good balance which he uses to maintain his delivery.  He has a fluid throwing motion with a slight pause that adds deception.
  • Darvish has a Plus-Fastball that sits in the 93-95 range and gets it up to 96-97.  He also throws a nice 2-seamer which is only about 1 MPH slower and gets good movement down and in on righties. Darvish also Cuts his Fastball away from righties in the 89-92 range
  • His Slider is his best pitch and a true out-pitch. He seems to change speeds on it, sometimes throwing a slower Slurve in the 79 to 82 range but its most effective when thrown harder with 2-plane break in the 83-86 range.
  • Yu throws both a Forkball and a standard ChangeUp that appear to be above average offerings as well
  • His balance and repeatable mechanics give him good command of his pitches and he attacks hitters.  Scouts have raved about his knowledge of pitching, pitchability and his competitiveness. All great attributes.

Negatives

There are really no negatives to his game.  All of the questions surrounding him are the typical ones that face any pitcher looking to make the jump from japan to the U.S.  How will he adjust to the different baseball, the 5-day rotation, the MLB hitters and the American culture.

While these are all legitimate concerns, I believe Yu is the best prepared of any Japanese pitcher to come to the U.S. ever. For one, he is still young enough to be able to adapt his routines and game as needed.  Secondly, he is a big, strong power pitcher with command who’s stuff should translate nicely to MLB.  Unlike DiceK who relied on deception and multiple off-speed pitches to get hitters to chase, Darvish comes right at hitters with stuff that will give any hitter a hard time.  He’s also been much more dominating in Japan than DiceK ever was.

Year Age Team W L SV ERA G IP SO
2005 18 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 5 5 0 3.53 14 94.1 52
2006 19 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 12 5 0 2.89 25 149.2 115
2007 20 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 15 5 0 1.82 26 207.2 210
2008 21 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 16 4 0 1.88 25 200.2 208
2009 22 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 15 5 0 1.73 23 182.0 167
2010 23 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 12 8 0 1.78 26 202.0 222
2011 24 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 18 6 0 1.44 28 232.0 276

Expectations

Of course he won’t dominate MLB hitters with a 1.44 ERA but I expect Darvish to have success right away and fall in as a solid #2 starter with ace potential when he reaches his prime. He’s still only 25 and growing as a pitcher so we still haven’t seen his best yet.  While the change to a 5-day rotation will take getting used to, I see Darvish as an eventual horse who could be a durable 200+ IP per year starter.

Fit for the Yankees?

Darvish is just what the Yankees need.  A big, strong, young, smart starter to slot in behind C.C. for the next 5-6 years.  The Yankee brass has been watching Yu for at least 3 years that we know of and everyone from scout Rick Williams to Director of Pro Scouting Billy Eppler to VP of Amateur Scouting Damon Oppenheimer have watched him pitch in Japan.  While Cashman is rightfully downplaying his interest in Darvish, he has conceded that he learned from his mistakes with Kei Igawa and made sure to get a full picture this time with numerous scouting reports and many different sets of eyes on him.  “I think with anything else, you learn over time.  I think we’re more prepared today than we have been in the past”, Cashman remarked when asked about Darvish.

Cost to Acquire

The bidding process is an archaic concept and a total crapshoot.  So as much as the Yankees may want him, there is no guarantee some team like the Marlins or Nationals doesn’t make a ridiculous bid that the Yanks will never have an opportunity to beat.  You get one shot at it.  It’s very difficult to estimate but I think the winning bid is going to be somewhere around the Matsuzaka bid and will be in the $40-60 Million range.

Once the posting fee is paid, Arn Tellem & Don Nomura will look to negotiate the best deal for him and I’d estimate it being a 5 or 6 year deal worth about $10-13 Million per yr. So I’d say the total outlay will be in the neighborhood of $100-130M.  When you consider that the posting fee doesn’t count towards the Luxury tax, it would seem that the total cost of signing Darvish would be the same or less than signing C.J. Wilson to a 6 yr – $100M+ deal.  Athough CJ has MLB experience, he’s also 6 full years older than Darvish and about to enter the downside of his career while the Yanks would be getting the 6 most prime seasons in a pitcher’s career from Yu.

The other obvious advantages of obtaining Darvish, is Cashman won’t have to give up any draft picks like he would for a FA or any prospects like he’d have to ship off in a trade. Also, the fact that Darvish’ salary will be significantly lower than a prime FA like CJ Wilson, it gives the team at least a chance to get the payroll under $189M for the 2014 season.  While this will be an extremely difficult chore and will preclude any other big-ticket signings for the next 3 years, it’s still a possibility.

And last but not least, there is the WOW factor and the instant media attention any team who gets Darvish will get.  Yu Darvish is an icon in Japan much like Hideki Matsui & Ichiro were so his new team will see added attendance and attention from Japanese fans and advertisers.  This is definitely important for any team.

Prediction?

I think Darvish is worth the risk since the Yanks potentially get the #2 they desperately need while keeping all their prospects, picks and keeping the total salary under control.  The big risk is the large posting fee but money is the Yankees #1 asset so why not use it?  They won’t be able to use it in the Draft or International Amateur market any longer so this is the chance to flex the financial muscle they have.  How much would they pay to acquire a Matt Cain, Josh Johnson, Stephen Strasburg or Felix Hernandez? Darvish compares favorably with those guys from a size, scouting and age standpoint – the only thing he lacks is the proof that he can succeed in MLB.

I think the Yanks will bid highly for Darvish as I think he’s their #1 target this yr.  However, teams like Texas, Washington, Toronto & Florida have also been linked as front-runners.  I wouldn’t rule out any team here. What about the Red Sox? Bobby Valentine coached in Japan for years and he said on a broadcast this year that Yu Darvish was the BEST pitcher in the WORLD! So if Bobby V. feels that strongly, you know he’s trying to lobby Boston to bid heavily. Then you have teams like Toronto, Texas & Florida who all are said to be raising payroll significantly this yr. And how about Epstein in Chicago? Or maybe the Angels if they miss on CJ….the possibilities are endless and the process gives any team a chance.

If you were the Yanks, what would be your bid and what will the winning bid be? I’d bid……$55,000,055 if I were Cashman but I have a feeling some crazy team will bid over $60 Million.

Yu Darvish to be posted

Yu Darvish confirms he’s being posted

by: Fishjam25

The Website NPB Tracker translated the following from the personal blog of Yu Darvish:

To all the fans, an announcement

At this time, Yu Darvish has decided to use the posting system. Because I wanted to relay this to the fans first, I am announcing this here. I greatly appreciate the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters Baseball Club. Because we’ve only just begun the posting process, I can’t talk about the details now. I wish to hold a press conference once everything is decided. Yu Darvish

This is big news around MLB as Darvish is expected to draw interest from a lot of clubs, including the Yankees. Cashman has remained patient all Winter but now is his time to act. I will be posting a full article on Yu at 12 Noon today.

Source: NPB Tracker http://www.npbtracker.com/

Yankees have “looked at” LHRP Mike Gonzalez

Yankees have “looked at” LHRP Mike Gonzalez

by Mike D.

Via SI.com’s Jon Heyman, the Yankees are looking for left-handed relief help, and have looked at Mike Gonzalez as a possible option. In 53.1 innings for the Orioles and Rangers, Gonzalez pitched to a 4.39 ERA / 4.11 FIP / 3.73 xFIP line, with an 8.61 K/9 and a 3.54 BB/9. I took a more in-depth examination of Gonzalez as a possible addition to the bullpen here.

Heyman goes on to note that the Yankees do not like the current prices of Edwin Jackson and C.J. Wilson, and despite what Hal has publicly stated, they are still a bit “gun-shy” regarding Japanese pitchers such as Yu Darvish. He also states that it is unlikely that the Yankees will trade for Atlanta’s Jair Jurrjens. Heyman sees a trade for John Danks of the White Sox more likely and sensible.

More Darvish News….

More Darvish News

by Matt S.

Yu Darvish is still expected to post this offseason, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com.

Heyman reported Friday that Darvish is “still seen as more likely than not to post,” and a source with knowledge of the situation told Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com that he would pitch in the Major Leagues next year. According to Heyman, a decision on whether to post will be made in the coming weeks. The Nationals, Yankees and Blue Jays have expressed interest in Darvish, who is reportedly seeking $50 million in exclusive negotiating rights.

Yu Darvish News…

Yu Darvish News

by Matt S.

Chuck Johnson of NY Baseball Digest reports that Yu Darvish likely won’t be posted this offseason due to ongoing divorce proceedings.

Johnson says that Darvish’s soon-to-be ex-wife’s lawyer, in an effort to make sure the pitcher’s MLB salary is counted towards her settlement, has already filed two depositions delaying their court appearance. Not surprisingly, Darvish and his agent don’t want to post until the divorce is final. Jon Heyman of SI.com, though, reported Friday that Darvish is “still seen as more likely than not to post.” No one seems to know for sure, but we should find out Darvish’s fate within a few weeks.

Yankees Mailbag: Part 1

Thank you to all who asked questions for this mailbag – let’s get started!

(If you don’t see your question, it will be answered in tomorrow’s Part 2.)

Billy Beane is willing to listen on anyone at the moment.

@AJ_Rotger asked:
What would you give up for Gio G. from Oakland?

I would give up anybody except Jesus Montero or Manny Baneulos. However, considering Gio Gonzalez is under team control for quite awhile, Billy Beane has no reason to ask for anything less than one of those two. Gio is young, talented and has plenty of low-dollars years ahead of him. However, I wouldn’t give up Montero or Banuelos for him. Although he generates a lot of striekouts (8.6 career K/9), I am not keen on his fastball command issues (4.4 career BB/9). If the Yankees are to give up Montero or Banuelos, it has to be for a sure thing elite starting pitcher. Gio Gonzalez, in my opinion, is not a sure thing. Would I like to have him pitching in pinstripes? No doubt about it…but not at the price Oakland is asking for.

@PrimoBledBlue asked:
Which prospective pitcher would you consider to be in the NYY rotation: Yu Darvish, CJ Wilson or Roy Oswalt?

Out of all those three, my favorite for the Yankees to acquire would be Yu Darvish. Although there is always the “Japanese-import” risk, its money the Yankees can afford to gamble on. Cashman may say he’s on a budget, but you can never put too much weight into comments like that. I think he has the highest “upside” of the three you mentioned. Also, if they were to make a trade for a John Danks etc., in addition, there would be less of an absolute necessity for Darvish to be as elite as he was in Japan.

C.J. Wilson would be a great pitcher to have…on a three-year deal. However, he is reportedly looking for a six year, $120MM deal, which is absolutely absurd. If I’m Brian Cashman, I walk away after the four year mark. His upside simply doesn’t match up with the enormous risk of a 5-6 year contract. Delia took a look at whether the Yankees should pursue Wilson, earlier in the month, before we found out what kind of lucrative contract he was looking for. I would take a pass on Wilson.

 

Oswalt would be a nice addition, since it would be on a relatively short contract, such as a two-year deal. He’s been very consistent throughout his career, never having a FIP over 4.00 in 11 MLB seasons. Matt examined the idea of Roy Oswalt on the Yankees earlier in the month. Oswalt has consistently manufactured plenty of ground-balls, and successfully limited the walk. However, his back is definitely something to think about, as back problems are a tricky thing to come back from, although there are always exceptions. I would not want Oswalt to be the one pitcher the Yanks acquire for the rotation next year, as if his back problems flare up again, well…

 

@GITGUYfoREVer asked:
What are your thoughts about Albert on the Yankees?

Although it’s impossible as a Yankee fan to not want to see Albert Pujols in pinstripes, there’s really no spot currently open for him. Ricky, a few weeks ago, shared his thoughts on Pujols. Some have said they could trade Tex, but that’s just typical Yankee-fan greediness. His ability to drive a pitch anywhere in the ballpark at a far distance is something we would all drool over to have on the team. But as long as A-Rod, Tex, and Montero are on the team, there’s no reason to sign Pujols. If, however, Jesus Montero was traded for an elite starting pitcher, then there is a scenario where I would absolutely, positively go after Albert. You could sign Pujols to play third base, move A-Rod to DH, and keep Tex at first. That is, if Montero is traded, which I don’t exactly advocate.

That’s it for the Yankees Mailbag: Part 1. Anybody that asked any questions that weren’t on today’s mailbag, will be answered tomorrow by Ricky. A reminder that if you have a question you’d like to ask, either email me at yankeesfansunited@gmail.com or contact us on Twitter at @yankeefansunite. Have a great rest of the day.

Morning Bits: Darvish, Chavez, Hal

Good morning all. Here are today’s links:

The Yankees have their eye on Japanese pitcher, Yu Darvish.

— Brian Cashman may strongly consider bringing Eric Chavez back next year for the right contract.

— Hal Steinbrenner called the status of the Yankees rotation a “concern”.

— Despite past failures in Kei Igawa and Hideki Irabu, the Yankees are not worried about Japanese pitching imports.

Have a great day.

State of the Yankees Rotation

The much maligned 2011 New York Yankees starting rotation exceeded all expectations. It was the reason most prognosticators picked the Boston Red Sox to win the AL East. However, nobody expected a rookie of the year campaign for Ivan Nova, or renaissance years from Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia. The Yankees finished a very respectable 4th in the AL in team ERA, with a 3.73 team ERA.   The starting rotation also pitched well in October, with the notable exception of CC Sabathia, and once again was not the reason the Yankees went home early. Yet, Brian Cashman has gone into this offseason, like last offseason, looking to improve the starting rotation.

In my opinion, I think we can expect a pretty similar rotation to last year’s.  This year’s crop of free agents is extremely weak.  The Yankees already got their main job done by extending CC Sabathia’s contract. Sabathia did the Yankees a favor by not going to free agency, and potentially getting a 7 year offer that Cashman would have been hesitant to match.  Sabathia vowed to come to spring training in better shape, so he does not falter down the stretch again. Ivan Nova stepped up and proved to be a capable number two starter.  Nova had a sparkling rookie year going 16-4, with a 3.70 ERA, and a 1.33 WHIP.  The development of Nova’s slider as a put away pitch catapulted him down the stretch. However, in a perfect world, the Yankees would find a starter to slide in between Sabathia and Nova. That pitcher is not a free agent right now, unless the Yankees see Japanese star Yu Darvish as that guy. However, that guy may be available at the trade deadline, or in next year’s free agency class. Cole Hamels and Matt Cain are ideal candidates.  Dan Haren and James Shields would also make great candidates if their team options are not picked up.

Now that we have dealt with the top of the rotation we will move onto the bottom. This is where you will probably see the Yankees add a starting pitcher. The Yankees have been linked to Edwin Jackson, Mark Buehrle, and Hiroki Kuroda already, but it is was too early to get a sense of what Cashman will do. The Yankees and Freddy Garcia also seem to have a mutual interest in putting a deal together to resign Garcia for next year.  I would have no issue with Garcia returning as a back of the rotation pitcher. Garcia can get by on his smarts and guile alone, especially against young and free swinging teams.  It is when he faces the patient teams that will make him throw strikes, is when you are worried.  If Garcia could repeat his year of 12-8, with a 3.62 ERA, and a 1.34 WHIP the Yankees would love it. Phil Hughes and A.J. Burnett are two Yankees who can help the rotation if they can pitch to their capabilities.  Hughes will have to earn his spot in spring training, especially since the Yankees will probably bring in at least one pitcher via free agency or trade, other than Freddy Garcia.  Hughes struggled with injuries, fastball velocity, and putting hitters away in 2011. However, he did have his best stuff in the playoffs. so perhaps that can carry over. Like it or not, A.J. Burnett will more than likely have a spot in next year’s rotation based on his contract.  Burnett’s last two years have been brutal, posting ERA’s over 5.00 in each of them, and walking what seems like a village per start. Burnett does have two shining moments in his Yankees career. He did pitch the biggest game in the 2009 World Series by getting the Yankees a split at home. If he stinks up the joint there, the Yankees are probably still searching for their first title since 2000. Also, Burnett came through big time by extending the Yankees’ season in game 4 of the ALDS last year. One can only hope that will give him some confidence going into next year, but unfortunately that is probably wishful thinking.

Again, I do not see any huge changes with the Yankees starting staff heading into the year. I see Sabathia and Nova as obvious locks and Burnett is pretty close to one. Another spot I see going to a new pitcher, and the last one going to Hughes, or a resigned Freddy Garcia. I would also expect the Yankees to add that number two starter to place in between Sabathia and Nova at the trade deadline, or next year in free agency. If the starting rotation can repeat what they did last year the Yankees would almost surely sign for it.  They boast the one of the league’s top offenses and one of the top bullpens to help take the burden off the rotation.  The Yankees will rely on the continued growth of their rotation to have success in the 2012 season.

Not the offseason for change

The Yankees concluded their 2011 season in a way that is all too familiar to us. Unfortunately, we have to deal with the sting of yet another brutal first round exit from the playoffs.  This one hurts a lot because it was all lined up so perfectly. We had Mariano Rivera and David Robertson available for two innings each, and we were coming home with momentum.  All we needed was one big hit and we could not get it. That is the main difference between the Yankees dynasty of the 90s and the last decade. Those teams had players like Bernie, Brosius, Tino, O’Neill, and Jeter who raised their game from the regular season to the playoffs. The teams of the last decade have had better regular seasons than postseasons.  However, another disappointing playoff series does not mean that this team should make radical changes this off-season.

Brian Cashman has always said you cannot make decisions based solely on the postseason. He is absolutely correct. The sample size is way too small to be considered worth more than the regular season. Nick Swisher, Mark Teixeira, and Alex Rodriguez obviously were the main goats of this postseason and. The only one of those three you could do anything with is Swisher.  Let’s say hypothetically, you do not pick up Swisher’s option, and you replace him with Michael Cuddyer.  You cannot guarantee me Cuddyer, or any other replacement, would hit in the playoffs. There is no possible way of knowing. However, I do know that Swisher will produce better in the regular season based on a larger sample size. Plus his 10 million dollar option is cheap and you can go out and find somebody else next year.  As for Teixeira and Rodriguez you have to hope they dedicate themselves this off-season to get better.  Teixiera needs to improve his mechanics from the left side as his line of .218/.327/.462/.788 suggests. Rodriguez needs to develop an exercise routine that can help him stay on the field.  Signing Albert Pujols or Prince Fielder to big bucks is not the answer with all money they have tied into Teixiera and Rodriguez. Texeira and Rodriguez improving is the only option.

This is also not the off-season for radical change because of the big free agent class next year.  Matt Kemp is an elite outfielder who could potentially replace Swisher. He is a five tool player and is only 27. He makes much more sense than Pujols or Fielder would.  Stud pitchers also will be available like Cole Hamels, Matt Cain, Zack Grienke, John Danks, Shaun Marcum, and potentially Dan Haren and James Shields. Some of these guys may also be available at next year’s trade deadline. This is why the Yankees should not blow their money on C.J. Wilson or Yu Darvish this off-season. Sure they will need to sign or trade for a pitcher or two, but it does not have to be for major money. It is also why the Yankees do not have to go completely all out to extend CC Sabathia. I say 6 years at 150 million is a good meeting point. If Sabathia is dead set on 7 years letting him walk is probably the better option. The long term risk of a man who is close to 300 pounds is scary. All those innings will have to take its toll at some point right? Th St.Louis Cardinals are proved you do not need outstanding starting pitch to win a championship. You can win with clutch hitting and an outstanding bullpen. The Texas Rangers also got to the World Series without great starting pitching. So I would defiantly try to extend Sabathia, but it is not a necessity.

This Yankee team needs fine tuning this off-season and not a major overhaul. Winning 97 games in the AL East this year was a major accomplishment and should not be taken lightly. That is the sample size that you should trust more. The postseason is a complete crap shoot that can never be predicted.  However, if next year we have similar results in the postseason, we can consider more major moves because there will be elite players out there.  The outlook for the Yankees next year is bright and winning the World Series should be within our reach.

Yankees News

Yankees News

by Delia E.
  • According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Yankees would prefer Yu Darvish over soon to be free agent C.J. Wilson.
  • The Pirates have made it clear that they are looking for catchers this offseason and the Yankees would “definitely” trade backup catcher Francisco Cervelli in the right deal, Sherman also said. However, the Pirates might not view Cervelli as a starting catcher.

Morning Bits: Darvish, Cashman, Sabathia, Garcia

Good morning all. Here are two links, and a bunch of notes. Enjoy–

— According to Anthony McCarron of the NY Daily News, and this is nothing particularly new, Yu Darvish is certainly an option for the Yanks this offseason.

In Jon Heyman’s latest column, he mentions a variety of things pertaining to the Yankees:

— Yu Darvish is likely to cost a team about $100MM between posting price and salary. As you know, the Yankees like Darvish, but according to Heyman, they are very gun-shy because of past Japanese-pitcher flops, such as Kei Igawa and Daisuke Matsuzaka.

— The negotiations with Brian Cashman are supposedly going well, and should be done by the end of the month. Hopefully they are finished as soon as possible, so Cashman can get to work on his off-season plan and course of action.

— Talks with C.C. Sabathia are expected to start up next week, as he will most likely be opting out.

— The Yankees people liked how Freddy Garcia pitched for them this season. Garcia reportedly enjoyed his time pitching in New York this year. He could possibly be re-signed for next season, if the Yankees have the interest.

Have a great Saturday. A reminder that Game 3 is at 8:05pm ET, in Texas.

Open Thread | Evening Notes

A day off today, but Game 3 is tomorrow at 8:05 ET.

Good evening everyone. Hardly anything going on in the Yankee realm today, but here are some notes / links for this open thread.

— If you have MLB Network, tune in at 8pm ET. Bob Costas will be interviewing MLB commissioner, Bud Selig, in a 30 minute taped interview. It will cover: “Selig’s thoughts on the 2012 All-Star Game, expanding the use of instant replay, adding a Postseason Wild Card team in each league, and divisional realignment.” (Lohud)

— According to Wallace Matthews of ESPNNY, the Yankees will meet the Mets in the 2012 Spring Training. The last time the two teams met in Spring Training was in 1996.

— The World Series will recommence tomorrow in Game 3, in Texas. A quick fact: The winner of Game 3 has gone on to win 10 of the past 11 World Series’. (MLB)

— The Yankees like Yu Darvish quite a lot. They see him as a his powerful young arm, in addition to his ability to throw his secondary pitches for strikes as well. The overall consensus is that Darvish has been scouted by the Yanks’ over the past 3 years, with positive reports, but unidentifiable interest. (Marc Carig)

Morning Bits: Darvish, Ortiz, Swisher, Beltran

— Despite the love Yankee scouts hold for Yu Darvish, Joel Sherman says the front office is unlikely to pay an expensive posting fee for him.

— Wallace Matthews writes about the Yankees’ scouting of Darvish.

— Ok, now David Ortiz says he wants to stay with the Red Sox, not to sign with the Yankees, like he implied a short while ago.

— The Yankees will most likely be picking up Nick Swisher’s option. However, after that, there have been rumors that they may trade Swish for a pitcher. One option to replace him, if that were to happen, may be Carlos Beltran.

Have a great day.

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