Every offseason the rumors surrounding the possible targets of the New York Yankees are abundant.
But following a demoralizing 2013 season, things on the hot stove are getting silly, as the team seems to be interested in everybody and anybody available except the legit superstars.
Add that to the fact that inherited owner Hal Steinbrenner has yet to declare to the fan base whether or not his “goal” of keeping the payroll under $189 million is being implemented or not.
No doubt the Yankees have a ton of holes to fill but this wish-washy approach, regardless of what is valid or not, is not breeding much confidence that things will be fixed properly.
I mean some of these free agent rumors are downright frightening that treating any as truthful is a darn right joke.
Here are four early things off the hot stove that have made me literally almost to throw-up.
1) Robinson Cano should be the Yankees number one priority and making that a known publicly is what fans want to hear. Instead Hal, GM Brian Cashman and President Randy Levine have all made negative statements as if pre-warning fans that the Yankees might be without their best player, and last homegrown superstar from here on out.
2) Starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo in Yankee Stadium is a scary thing to imagine. Arroyo will be 37-years old come February and will want a multi-year deal. Some fans are saying that Arroyo’s past AL East experience with the Boston Red Sox makes him a good fit in the Bronx. Well that was eight years ago, as he has been a Cincinnati Reds since 2006, enough said. Over his 14-year career, Arroyo eats about 208 innings a season, but he also gives up an average of 29 homers too. Actually, over the last three seasons Arroyo was taken deep 104 times in total, which is huge red flag. Bottom-line is any groundball pitcher with a fastball that clocks in the mid-80s would get eaten alive in the AL East. I would almost rather inking Phil Hughes instead of enduring the starts of another older veteran in his twilight years. Wait I take that back, as the only time Hughes or Arroyo should ever be in the Bronx again is if their team is playing the Yankees.
3) One would think that starting catcher Brian McCann would be atop the Yankees list but top media insiders have not mentioned his name too much, and Cashman’s only comment sounds like a broken record from last off-season when they let Russell Martin walk, “We will certainly explore the options on the catching market. But we do have catchers.” Considering Hal’s frugal formula of two back-ups = one legit backstop proved itself so wrong last season, I was anticipating that the rumors linking McCann to the Yankees would be everywhere. Again, this is not the confident attitude fans are used to hearing, not expected to after not having October baseball this past season. The Star-Ledger reported retired Yankees catcher Jorge Posada’s endorsement early this week for the seven-time All-Star McCann for his old job. Fans want McCann in pinstripes too, so lets hope he is not another causality of Hal’s cheapness again. The only acceptable option that won’t have Yankee Universe in uproar would be inking A.J. Pierzynski.
4) CBS Sports Jon Heyman wrote an article six days ago claiming that the Yankees would rather sign Carlos Beltran or Shin-Soo Choo over Curtis Granderson. According to Heyman, the Yankees have already dismissed Granderson because “they think he strikeouts too much.” This point is valid but to dismiss Granderson so fast seems a bit drastic as he brings what the Yankees lacked tremendously last season, power and a lot of it.
(All stats courtesy of baseball-reference.com)
PLAYER YEAR AGE RUNS RBI HR BB SO AVG OBP SLG OBS TB
Beltran 2013 37 79 84 24 38 90 0.296 0.339 0.491 0.830 272
Granderson 2012 31 102 106 43 75 195 0.232 0.319 0.492 0.811 293
Choo 2013 31 107 54 21 112 123 0.285 0.423 0.462 0.885 263
Let me just point out that Beltran’s 90 strikeouts last season was exceptionally low as his 16-year career average is 112 a season; and Choo’s career strikeout season average is 146 a season. I used Granderson’s 2012 numbers as he had two unlucky pitch to hand, injuries that kept him out for most of 2013.
Granderson’s 40+ home runs is something the Yankees desperately missed last season. His injuries were freak accidents so there is no reason to think Granderson will not go deep 40+ times, and hit 100+ RBIs again, as his swing is built for the bandbox confines of Yankee Stadium. I am not dismissing the other two, but Choo lacks power and Beltran is a 37-year-old with bad knees who barely draws walks. This makes me suspect of the real reasons the Yankees supposedly dismissed Granderson so fast. In my opinion the Yankees should keep the Grandyman in the Bronx on a $22-$23 million, two-year deal with a team option for a third season.