Thursday, August 11, 2011

The State of the Yankees August 2011

So we are at the 3/4 mark of this season (boy that has gone very, very fast!!) and so I thought that it was about time to make a few observations about where we have been, where we are going and what we can expect when we get there, otherwise known as a State of the Yankees address. So, a couple of observations about the players this year are in order:

-Posada has gone from “Where is my catcher’s gear?” to “Where does the DH bat?” to “Where’s Waldo?” How many at bats can he expect the rest of the way? 10, 12, that is a lot of money to pay a pinch hitter. You have to wonder if one J. Montero is in his immediate future.

-Hughes – So Phil’s job was on the line and he responded last week with a neat 6 innings, 3 hit, zero run performance. Even more importantly, for someone whose velocity has been questionable, he hit 95 on the radar gun several times. Nothing like the threat (implied…) of banishment to the bullpen to get the adrenaline flowing and adding about 5 mph to your bread and butter. I hear rumors that he may be headed to the bullpen but personally I am hoping it is AJ instead.

-Montero – I have said it before and I will say it again, where is Montero and why is he not getting a few at bats for the Yankees right now. There are lots of rumors floating around that he will be called up soon but for my money (and Posada’s batting average as DH…) he should have been here weeks ago. Getting him some at bats now can only serve to help him, help the club this year during the pennant chase and the help the club in the immediate future.

-Banuelos – I am just hoping that this is not Déjà vu all over again (tip of the hat to Yogi if he even said this…) in regards to this talented, young starting pitcher, who has been the darling of the franchise for a while now, who has moved up the minor league chain in a quick manner and who, the rumor is, that he will be called up soon to be an extra left handed reliever in the bullpen (did anyone say Phil Hughes or Joba Chamberlain??). I want him here, I just do not want some bullpen/starter controversy. Lets get in front of this from the start. Just say we want to keep his innings low, we want him to get a taste of the major leagues, we want to see how he can do against major league caliber batters AND he will go back to being a STARTER in the minors next year with a chance to make the big club AS A STARTER, out of spring training as A STARTER. Did I mention he should stay a STARTER!

-ARod – This has been a bit of a lost season for the big third baseman and if you told me how he would have performed before the season started, I would have said without him, the Yankees would be lost but this has been far from the truth and the club continues to score lots of runs. I thought he was going to have a big year and bet my Fantasy Baseball team on his anticipated monster season that never happened. I thought he was going to fade and ended up trading him and have not regretted it although my trade partner JHop has as stated in her blog that she is disappoint..

-Chavez – Hopefully this gets published before Eric gets injured AGAIN but I wonder what the over/under is for games before he is injured, is. He has been better than expected at bat and in the field but has been right on target around anticipated injury and time missed. It would be great if he could go about 3 months without a trip to the DL. That is all I ask.

-Cervelli – each season has its surprises and this is one of them as our backup catcher played several innings of second base on a Sunday a couple weeks ago. He took a couple of throws on stolen bases and looked awkward at best. If the Yankees had a bit more of a lead, I would have loved to see him field a ground ball or try to turn a double play, just for the pure entertainment value. Of course if that occurred, Eric Chavez would have gotten hurt on the play…

- Despite the occasional criticism, I for one, think that Joe Girardi Manager, and Brian Cashman, GM have done good jobs this year. Although I do not agree with every one Girardi makes, I think he has done a good job especially in light of ARod’s under performing, some injuries and the Derek Jeter contract distraction and chance for 3000 hits spectacle. Cashman made no move at the trade deadline and a lot of criticism was aimed at him but I for one am glad that we still have a few minor league chips in our bag. I just hope we get to see one or two of them before much more time goes by.

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