Yankees Mailbag – 1/29/12

Hello Yankees fans and welcome to another edition of Yankees Mailbag, where you send in your Yankees questions and I answer them. Before we get into the questions, let’s recap a couple of things that have happened with the Yankees the last couple of weeks.

1. The Yankees agreed to contracts with all 6 of their arbitration eligible players (Joba Chamberlain, David Robertson, Brett Gardner, Boone Logan, Russell Martin & Phil Hughes).

2. The Yankees traded away C/DH Jesus Montero and RHP Hector Noesi to the Seattle Mariners for RHP Michael Pineda and pitching prospect Jose Campos

3. The Yanks signed RHP Hiroki Kuroda to a 1 year / $10M deal.

4. Jorge Posada officially retired from baseball after 17 years in the major leagues.

I asked fans to send in their questions on Twitter and you did! Here are your answers!

The first question comes from @AppFlyer and he asked:

Answer: Well, it all depends on if A-Rod is healthy. If A-Rod is working out his knee like he says he is, then there should be no reason that he can’t go over 99 games but right now, I don’t see A-Rod going over 100 games. Maybe it’s because of all the injuries last season, and if I were Girardi I’d make sure A-Rod takes it easy.

Our next question comes from @bootydrew and he asked:

Answer: I have a lot of favorite Jorge Posada memories, but the one that really stood out to me was the 6 RBI day that he had on August 13, 2011. The reason that the moment was special was for 2 reasons. One of them was that I was at Yankee Stadium that day and I got to witness a grand slam from the legend seats. The second reason was because it was my birthday. Jorge will always have a special place in my heart just because he made that day a day that I will never forget.

The next question comes from @brianbuck13 and he asked:

Answer:  Kim Jones was obviously a great reporter for the Yankees & it’s a shame that she’s no longer with YES but I think the network will be all right moving forward. The only negative that I could think of is with Jones no longer with the Yankees is that there are no female reporters with YES Network in a channel run predominantly by male reporters. Other than that, the station should be fine moving forward.

Our next question comes from @dystmedia. He asks:

Answer: I am not a big fan of Andruw Jones but I think the Yankees made the right call with re-signing Jones. Jones has a good bat that could be used in the DH spot if the Yankees don’t sign anyone in the remainder of the offseason and he knows how to hit left handed pitchers. All and all, the Jones signing was a good deal. To answer your second question, the Yankees just may have the best rotation in the AL East with the Tampa Bay Rays following close behind. They even have one of the better rotations in the AL with Sabathia, Pineda, Kuroda, Garcia and a TBD 5th starter. I wouldn’t say that the Yankees have the best rotation though because the Texas Rangers signed Yu Darvish & the L.A Angels added C.J Wilson, but the Yankees are currently up there.

Our next question comes from @Magnee_ and she asks:

Answer: I think it would be a great idea if the Yankees stopped trying to make Joba Chamberlain a starter. He’s fantastic in the bullpen, why make him into something he’s not?

Our next question comes from @mikeevan1306 and he asks:

Answer: I admit that in the beginning of the offseason, I was frustrated that Brian Cashman didn’t dive into the free agent market like some teams did (ex. Miami Marlins), but after seeing the results I was glad with the fact that Cashman actually stood back. I believe that Cashman wasn’t as aggressive as others have been early in the offseason because he knows how the the process works. Sometimes patience is the key and that is what Brian Cashman showed.

Our next question comes from @willpanagiotis. He asks:

Answer: For starters, this was an interesting question. For the 5th starter, I would say that A.J Burnett would get the spot solely because of the money owed to him, and the end of the year improvement. He came up in key situations and he showed that he could deliver. But I wouldn’t just hand him the spot if he walked through the doors of George M Steinbrenner Field on February 19. A.J would ONLY get the spot if he does well during Spring Training. What would happen to the other two would be interesting. I would put Phil Hughes in the bullpen for long relief since Hughes has the stamina of a starter but has been a bullpen pitcher before. Garcia would be in the bullpen as well but if he requested a trade before June 1 would give it to him. (Garcia can’t be traded until June unless he asks.)

The most realistic DH option would be to platoon the role between Andruw Jones, Alex Rodriguez & Derek Jeter. That way the Yankees save money and they wouldn’t have to trade a pitcher for a bat. Another option that the Yankees could do is to look into the FA market. There are hitters such as Johnny Damon, Raul Ibanez & Hideki Matsui who have had good bats, but their age would hinder their production. However, they do have veteran experience and are cheap.

Our final question comes from @NataliaYank2530. She asked:

Answer: The Yankees have expressed some interest with Luis Ayala but now that the Yankees are overflowing with pitching I don’t think that there is a place for him anymore. Other teams have made offers to Ayala and if the Yankees had really wanted to make an offer to Ayala, they would have done it. It’s only a matter of time to see where Ayala ends up – but it will most likely be with another team.

Those were all the questions that I got for the Yankees Mailbag. If you ever have a question about the Yankees, send it to either @dfiregirl4 or @yankeefansunite on Twitter, or email Mike at yankeesfansunited@gmail.com.

About Delia E.

Delia Enriquez is the managing editor of Yankees Fans Unite. She enjoys analyzing the New York Yankees whether it be their pitching, roster or their manager. You can follow her on twitter @dfiregirl4 for more tweets, analysis and opinion on the Yankees.

Posted on January 29, 2012, in Yankee Mailbag and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. Arod has to play over 125 games IMO for the Yankees to have a great season. The Yankees need a healthy A-Rod.

    • I hope ARod can be healthy also but I don’t want to push him. If regular days off during the year can keep him 100%, that is the way to go.

      The old ARod of .300+, 45 HRs+ is gone. Even with optimal health, I think the expectations are much lower.

      My hope for him would be to get about 120 QUALITY starts out of him AND for him to be 100% at the end of the season going into the playoffs where they will really need him.

      Losing Montero’s bat really hurt this lineup IMO and the only 2 guys I think that could offset that loss are ARod & Tex. If Tex can get back to the guy who used to hit around .290 with 35-40 HRs that would be huge. For Arod, I also want to see a return to his .300 BA with pop even if he only makes 100-120 starts, as long as he’s there in October because he clearly wasn’t this season.

      I also think they need to add a high BA hitter to this lineup.

      • If Granderson can have close to the year he had last year would help a great deal as well.

        • Yeah if he regresses that will hurt. The Blogpost by Joel Sherman you referenced in Morning Bits today was very interesting and I totally agree with it. I was going to comment on it but I think I’ll write an article about it this week. But it basically says that the yankee offense scores a lot of runs but doesn’t have many hitters that can handle better pitching.

          • Nice I will be looking forward to that article.

          • Sorry to say, we all saw it for the last couple of years.
            Of the hitters we have now, who can best handle top end pitchers better (or well enough)?
            My thoughts are; Cisco, Cano and A-Rod (if healthy)! Now don’t laugh about Cisco being on my list, we have seen him, time and again, come up in a must hit situation and come through, more often then not!
            But what do you think?

            • I agree with you when you mention Cervelli. The only issue with Cervelli is that for some reason he forgets how to hit when no one is on base. Once you put runners in scoring position that is when a pitcher doesn’t want Cervelli to come to the plate.

              • You got it lady, sometimes there is a guy that just can’t seem to concentrate when the game is in hand or out of hand. Run across a few people like that in my work back in the day, as well as in sports.

      • Hi Fishjam…
        I disagree somewhat, with your prognosis of the slow demise of A-Rod.
        Yes, he needs time off to stay fresh but, if he is truly healthy, his numbers should show a vast improvement over the last few years.
        I agree, the .300+ and 45+HRs days are long gone but you are talking about one hell of a Talent and ego…I just can’t see him being much lower then his normal numbers.
        As with you, I want A-Rod hitting more like he did at one time…Line-drives all over the place (ala. Dave Winfield) with his power, many will go out without trying to put them in the stands. Thus, we may get .300+/- and 35-40 HRs and more able to be one of the clutch hitters on the team.
        Let’s face it, come play-off time, one would not want to depend on Cisco and Brett to be the run producers would we?

        Looking forward to your Post this week or when ever!

  2. Guys do NOT be surprised if you see both Tex and A-Rod rebound from their performances in 2011. Tex I anticipate will hit between .280 and .290 and drive in some of those critical men he left on base last year. The same for A-Rod I expect him to bat about .285 to .295 with 30 to 35 HR’s. I think both these guys have a lot of pride and realize that 2011 was not up to their’s or Yankees expectations. We’ll see.

  3. I’m going to make one more prediction. I anticipate the Yankees leading the league in most of the major offensive categories including: HR’s, RBI’s, Runs Scored, OBP, SLG and OPS.

    We’ll see if I’m close.

  4. ARod was healthy as he’s gonna be at the start of the 2011 season and he looked as good as he’s looked in a few years. But even then, his prodigous power wasn’t the same. He was having a very good year although not up to the standard he set for himself. Up through the series in Chicago where he hurt his knee his numbers were as follows:

    .289/.372/.506/.878 with 13 HRs – 43 RBI in 66 games

    Extrapolating that to a full-season of 162 games his power numbers would be 32 HRs & 106 RBI. That was a fully healthy ARod. So if he remains fully healthy over the season, let’s say he plays 145 games, He would have hit about 28-29 HRs & 95 RBIs

    I’d be VERY happy with that but since he hasn’t played more than 138 games in 5 YEARS, I’m not too confident he’ll play 145 games. But more important than the number of HRs I think is him being productive when he does play and for him to be 100% come Sept/Oct. If he could get back to .300/.380/.525 then I’d really like our chances.

    • I think we all would be happy with those numbers you mention. But I do think you are selling his power and RBI’s a little short.

      He’s not that far removed from either the 2009 or 2010 season. In 2009 he played in 124 games and in 2010 a 137 games. He hit 30 HR’s in both season and 100 and 125 RBI’s respectively.

      I think we will all be happy if he’s in the neighborhood of those numbers and as you said healty and productive come Sept. and Oct.

  5. Depending on what happens with Burnett, this Yankees pitching staff looks beast.

    • I’m hoping that Burnett can turn it around very quickly so that he can avoid getting traded, but that’s just me being optimistic. The Yankees pitching staff does look amazing though.

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