Yankees Hot Stove: Top 3 Brendan Ryan conspiracy theories - Lady Loves Pinstripes Yankees Hot Stove: Top 3 Brendan Ryan conspiracy theories - Lady Loves Pinstripes Yankees Hot Stove: Top 3 Brendan Ryan conspiracy theories - Lady Loves Pinstripes

Yankees Hot Stove: Top 3 Brendan Ryan conspiracy theories

The signing of middle infielder Brendan Ryan to a $2 million deal according to ESPN’s Buster Olney, is the first official New York Yankees news this off-season.

And according to MassLive.com, Red Sox fans are elated that their World Series Champion shortstop, Stephen Drew is still available on free agent market.

With Alex Rodriguez’s (3B) possible suspension and 40-year old Derek Jeter’s (SS) bum ankle, the Yankees left infield is in some flux.

So that lends reason why the Red Sox, along with a lot of Yankees fans thought that Drew would be atop of GM Brain Cashman’s wanted list.

Fact is no matter if Jeter proves ageless and his ankle holds up, playing shortstop even close to everyday is not going to happen. And ditto for A-Rod that is if he even plays next season, as two damaged hips at 38-years old is not exactly comforting.

But I did not expect the Yankees answer to be Ryan until I thought about it some more.

And here are the three scenarios that popped into my brain.

1) Focusing on defense was the reason given by the Yankees for let starting catcher Russell Martin walk last offseason.  And the same is being said for signing Ryan because this guy is an offensive liability (see #2).

What I want to know is when did defense become such a priority for the Yankees?

Jeter and retired catcher Jorge Posada, who won five World Series rings in pinstripes, were dreadful defenders but elite hitters. And overall if defense were that essential to winning than players like Ryan would be coveted free agents instead of really cheap fill-ins.  Also, when Ryan was acquired last September in a trade with the Mariners, I saw him botch a bunch of double plays (not an error), as well as miss a few hops in the 17-games he played in the Bronx. So not so sure that Ryan’s defensive wizard reputation seems to be outdated and stale.

2) The 2013 Yankees biggest weakness was hitting. 

Curtis Granderson

Curtis Granderson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

That is why signing big, power bats this offseason is absolutely critical in order for the Yankees to field a contending “championship caliber” team.

That is why signing a player who couldn’t hit a tennis ball at the plate seems like the Yankees are going in the wrong direction. It certainly explains why inherited owner Hal Steinbrenner is so defensively focused…. it costs nothing.

The Yankees have Mark Teixeira’s big bat returning, along with Alfonso Soriano who can knock in 30+ homers but that is not enough.

What I don’t get is how Ryan’s league worst slugging percentage, third worst OPS and a BA below the Mendoza-Line gets a pass, but Granderson’s high strikeout numbers are so worrisome that the Yankees are willing to his 40+ homers and 100+ RBIs walk?

3) First priority was Ryan, really? What about…Curtis Granderson? Robinson Cano? Brian McCann? Signing those three players would fix the offense issues, so what is the hold-up? MLB Network’s Peter Gammons tweeted that this Ryan deal was actually done weeks ago.

The Phillies just re-signed starting catcher Carlos Ruiz to a three-year, $26 million deal. The Phillies added a third year, and increased the average annual value of the deal to guarantee Ruiz in stayed put, as the Red Sox and Rockies were in hot pursuit.

So why haven’t the Yankees done this with Granderson, Jayson Nix or Mark Reynolds?

What about Stephen Drew or Johnny Peralta?

And where the heck is Eric Chavez?

Even thought Chavez is older and has had a ton of injuries over the years, he is still a way better option than Ryan.

Another reason is due to Hal’s preference of shopping in the bargain bin, inking Ryan frees up Nunez to be traded for a starting pitcher.

Bottom line is you don’t talk righteousness and go sleep with the devil.

And it is about time that baby Hal puts is money where his mouth is.

As the saying goes, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.


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  1. Tom says:

    You are getting all worked up for nothing. Ryan is a fill-in, utility player and insurance. The market is just beginning to take shape. Also your use of Inherited owner on and on is beneath you.

    • Tom I appreciate your patience but there are better utility players. And Jeter/A-Rod's "fillers' will see a lot more time than the average utility guy, and Ryan's bat is so terrible that the Yankees cannot afford have a batter like that in the line-up two or three times a week without signing McCann, Cano and Grandy.
      Makes no sense to me why Granderson is not signed already…he said he wants to stay and his stock is lower because of the two freak injuries he had last season. Yes, Grandy strikes out but you are telling me his 40+ HRS and 100+ RBIs is meaningless? But Ryan's overrated defense is enough to overlook the fact he is one of the worst hitters in the game?

      Point taken about inherited owner Hal but until he shows me he wants to own his father's Yankees that is all he is to me.

  2. Tom says:

    I see Ryan as a late game replacement which is why (if the reports are true) that Drew is in play. I like Grandy a lot but Beltran would be a nice fit as well.

    I think Hal has woken up to the fact that he screwed up his Multi-billion dollar franchise last year. Time will tell.

  3. Zigggy Barone says:

    No to Beltran….he will go on the DL after signing the contract. Plus he is not use to the pressure of playing in the AL East. Finally the Yanks already have a compliment of Senior Citizen OFs: Ichiro; Wells and Soriano is getting their…

    Yes to all McCann and maybe Garza. For Cano….4-5 yrs max at 22-23m plus incentives. After 2017…no A-Rod (for sure); No Tex and probably no CC. So, team will have freed up a lot of $.

  4. Tom says:

    Beltran has great post season stats. He's played the last 2 full seasons. Why do you thing Boston and NY want him??

    Cano will get a 8-9 yr contract.

    Yes to McCann for sure.