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Posted on: July 2, 2010 2:18 am
Edited on: July 7, 2010 9:11 pm
 

Jag's Trade Challenge Rosters

Yankees

Pitchers
David Aardsma
A.J. Burnett
Chad Gaudin
Phil Hughes
Boone Logan
Damaso Marte
Chan Ho Park
Andy Pettitte
Roy Oswalt
Mariano Rivera
David Robertson
CC Sabathia

Catchers
Francisco Cervelli
Jorge Posada

Infielders
Robinson Cano
Derek Jeter
Lyle Overbay
Ramiro Pena
Alex Rodriguez
Kevin Russo
Mark Teixeira

Outfielders

Colin Curtis
Brett Gardner
Curtis Granderson
Chad Huffman
Nick Swisher

Trades: Yankees receive P David Aardsma from Mariners for Jimmy Paredes and Corban Joseph
Yankees receive 1B Lyle Overbay from Blue Jays for C Gary Sanchez and OF Neil Medchil
Yankees receive SP Roy Oswalt from Astros for C Austin Romine, RP Joba Chamberlain,, OF Slade Heathcott, and SP David Phelps
Yankees receive OF Chris Coghlan from the Marlins for SP Javier Vazquez, prospects Brad Hand
Yankees receive LF Eric Hinske from the Orioles for prospects Jose Ramirez and Wilkin De La Rosa


Top 20 Prospects

1) Jesus Montero, C, Grade A: I know that his position is up in the air, but I love this bat so much that I'm going to give him a straight Grade A. This is a Mike Piazza/Manny Ramirez type bat.

3) Manny Banuelos, LHP, Grade B-: Borderline Grade B. Intriguing young lefty, undersized but has a very good arm and has performed quite well thus far.

4) Zach McAllister, RHP, Grade B-: Strike-throwing-ground-ball-generat
ing-inning-gobbler with advanced pitching feel. A fifth starter, long reliever, or trade bait in New York.

6) Mark Melancon, RHP, Grade B-: Borderline C+. Relief prospects are hard to grade, especially if they aren't going to get a chance to close, but I really like Melancon. Great stats in the minors, with very good stuff.

8) John Murphy, C, Grade C+: Scouts like the bat a lot, but raw defensively. As with Sanchez, need to see what balance he finds between tools and skills.

9) Kelvin De Leon, OF, Grade C+: Broken record: great tools, lots of power potential, questions about plate discipline, need more data from higher levels.

10) D.J. Mitchell, RHP, Grade C+: Picks up tons of grounders, throws strikes, very athletic, needs better secondary pitches to reach his full potential.

 

12) David Adams, 2B, Grade C+: Power spiked in the Florida State League. If he maintains that, could be a nice surprise in Double-A in '10.

 

14) Adam Warren, RHP, Grade C+: Polished college pitcher could develop into another inning-eater type.

 

17) Andrew Brackman, RHP, Grade C: He's horrible as a starter, but has a chance to develop in the bullpen.

 

19) Jeremy Bleich, LHP, Grade C: The Yankees like him a lot more than I do, but I can't rate him higher than this given how badly he pitched in Double-A.

20) Bryan Mitchell, RHP, Grade C: Live arm, cost $800,000 to buy away from North Carolina, will need time but has a high ceiling.

OTHERS (All Grade C): Sean Black, RHP; Gavin Brooks, LHP; Jairo Heredia, RHP; Jamie Hoffman, OF; Brandon Laird, 3B; DeAngelo Mack, OF; Melky Mesa, OF; Juan Miranda, 1B; Hector Noesi, RHP; Ivan Nova, RHP; Eduardo Nunez, , 2B; Kevin Russo, 2B; Romulo Sanchez, RHP; Graham Stoneburner, RHP; Brad Suttle, 3B; Pat Venditte, RHP-LHP; Kevin Whelan, RHP.


Nationals

Pitchers
Luis Atilano
Miguel Batista
Nick Blackburn
Sean Burnett
Matt Capps
Jesse Crain
Livan Hernandez
J.D. Martin
Joel Peralta
Doug Slaten
Craig Stammen
Drew Storen
Stephen Strasburg
Carlos Zambrano

Catchers
Will Nieves
Ivan Rodriguez

Infielders
Ian Desmond
Alberto Gonzalez
Cristian Guzman
Adam Kennedy
Justin Smoak
Ryan Zimmerman

Outfielders
Roger Bernadina
Willie Harris
Nyjer Morgan
Mike Morse
Cody Ross 

Trades: Nationals receive P Carlos Zambrano from Cubs for SS Danny Espinosa
Nationals receive 1B Justin Smoak from Rangers for 1B Adam Dunn
Nationals receive OF Cody Ross and prospect SP Ryan Tucker from Marlins for OF Josh Willingham
Prospects

1) Stephen Strasburg, RHP, Grade A: He's done enough in Arizona to justify the Grade A rating in my opinion. We have to remember that he's a human being, but he is immensely talented.

2) Derek Norris, C, Grade B+: Somewhere on the Mickey Tettleton/Mike Napoli spectrum: high walks, lots of power, defense should be good enough, might not hit for average.

3) Drew Storen, RHP, Grade B+: Has put aside concerns about being an overdraft. Could help in pen very soon, future closer if all works out.

 

5) Chris Marrero, 1B, Grade B-: I don't think he's going to be a star, but with proper development he can be a solid regular.

6) Jeff Kobernus, 2B, Grade B-: Another guy who should be solid, though I'd like a larger pro sample size before going higher with the grade.

7) Michael Burgess, OF, Grade B-: borderline C+. Power potential, throwing arm, and youth are big positives, will take a walk, but strikes out a lot and batting average is quite low.

8) Justin Maxwell, OF, Grade C+: What you see is what you get: power, walks, speed, low batting average. Can they look past that and appreciate his secondary skills?

9) Ian Desmond, SS, Grade C+: I think he made some legitimate improvements, but not as much as the raw numbers indicate. BABIP probably unsustainable, and he needs to tighten his defense.

10) Bradley Meyers, RHP, Grade C+: One of several strike-throwing types with limited upside but good pitchability.

 

12) A.J. Morris, RHP, Grade C+: Kansas State ace may move faster in relief.

13) Eury Perez, OF, Grade C+: Need data from higher levels, but could be a Juan Pierre type. I don't mean that as an insult.

14) Aaron Thompson, LHP, Grade C+: Pitchability guy acquired from the Marlins. No longer a top prospect, but still a decent one.

15) Juan Jaime, RHP, Grade C: High-ceiling arm with strong fastball needs to improve secondary pitches. Could rise rapidly if he does so. Perhaps I should go with C+.

16) J.P. Ramirez, OF, Grade C: Production was somewhat disappointing in the New York-Penn League, but not terrible for context. Full-season data in '10 will be illuminating.

17) J.R. Higley, OF, Grade C: High-ceiling tools hound, didn't light up the NY-P but still has potential.

18) Paul Demny, RHP, Grade C: Went 3-11 with 5.14 ERA in the Sally League, but with 110 strikeouts in 105 innings. Could go a long way if he improves command.

19) Marco Estrada, RHP, Grade C: I have no actual evidence to support this, but I keep thinking he could have a surprisingly good season in 2010. Nothing left to prove in Triple-A.

20) Jeff Mandel, RHP, Grade C: Looked very good in Arizona Fall League relief action; he might sneak in some major league innings.

OTHERS: All Grade C:  Evan Bronson, LHP; Clint Everts, RHP; Marcos Frias, RHP; Victor Garate, LHP; Luis Garcia, RHP; Trevor Holder, RHP; Hendry Jimenez, 2B; Taylor Jordan, RHP; Nathan Karns, RHP; Pat Lehman, RHP; Steve Lombardozzi, 2B; Jack McGeary, LHP; Tom Milone, LHP; Adrian Nieto, C; Brad Peacock, RHP; Atahualpa Severino, LHP; Josh Smoker, LHP; Greg Veloz, 2B; Dean Weaver, RHP; Josh Wilkie, RHP.  Most of these guys could fit into the 16-20 spots, depending on what you want to emphasize.

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 19, 2010 6:22 pm
 

Wimbledon Preview and Predictions

As I have done for the other two Grand Slams, I am offering a thread for your predictions while also giving mine as well for one of my favorite slams, Wimbledon. It has left us some great finals over the years, particularly on the men's side, but will there be a shocking upset like at the French Open? Will we finally have a non Serena-Venus final at Wimbledon?

Let's start with the ladies' side:

The number one woman Serena Williams won this title a year ago. However, just like the French Open, she faces a tough draw with a couple of major champions. She could face Sharapova in the 4th round and the ever so quiet Svetlana Kuznetsova in the quarterfinals. I have her facing Sam Stosur in the semifinals. Even though Stosur's best surface is not on the grass, she can take advantage of some players that don't play well in majors on a consistent basis such as Victoria Azarenka, Zheng Jie, and even Caroline Wozniacki. Wozniacki is capable of winning a Slam, but she showed at the French Open, she can have one great match and then come out flat against Schiavone or against Li Na at the Australian Open. I have been on the Wozniacki bandwagon, but I am getting off at the nearest stop for this grand slam.

On the other side, I like Justine Henin to beat Kim Clijsters in the 4th round. Both are capable of taking this title away from the Williams sisters, but Clijsters is coming off an injury herself and this comeback might be tougher than her retirement just because of the physical ailment she has to deal with. Henin would like to win a Wimbledon and I think she makes the semifinal here even with Melanie Oudin on this side of the draw. Melanie has struggled in the last two slams, but she did play well here a year ago. I like Venus to make the semifinals as well because her draw is fairly simple. Her main competition could come against Schiavone in the quarterfinals, but I like Venus to make the semifinals with the surprising withdrawl of Dinara Safina.

Semifinals: Serena over Stosur, Venus over Henin

Final: Serena over Venus

Now, to the Gentlemen's Side:

The major storyline is what has been mentioned on the tennis board and that was the abundance of upsets at Queen's Club a couple of weeks ago. However, I like most of the top men to go fairly deep into this major. My four semifinalists are Roger Federer, Andy Roddick, Andy Murray, and Rafael Nadal. Federer owns the grass courts at Wimbledon and has a beatable draw with the only possible threat being Tomas Berdych at the quarterfinals. On the bracket I did, I have him facing Feliciano Lopez in round 4. I like Lopez to go far because I liked the result he had against Nadal in one of the tune up tournaments and it seems he is ready to make a run here. I've seen people pick Lleyton Hewitt to go to the semifinals and even people picked him to beat Fed in the final, however I like Andy Roddick to make the semifinals here. Andy's game suits this grass court surface and he beat Hewitt in a 5 setter last year. Hewitt will battle for every point, but Andy's serve total should be enough in that match.

In the other half of the draw, I like Andy Murray because I feel some of the pressure could be placed off him if England can advance in the World Cup. That should take some of the attention off the Scot who has a very capable draw with Tsonga, Verdasco, and again I think Sam Querrey can make a run in this tournament. Eventually, I have to be right on Querrey, including picking him to upset Juan Carlos Ferrero. Murray however has a great chance in this tournament, but is he ready to take down the other top players? Murray goes through to take on yes, Rafael Nadal. Rafa has a tough draw for the number one player in the world, possibly facing John Isner in Round 3, then Youzhny and Soderling, who is not his best on the grass surface. So, Nadal marches on here.

Semifnals: Nadal over Murray

Upset: Roddick over Federer - This is Andy's time to pull the upset of Federer. He showed his guts and grit last year in the 5 set final last year and if you are Roddick, this might be the last chance he has to take down Fed at Wimbledon. He has the serve, groundstrokes, and the confidence from his coach Larry Stefanki to make the final again. Roddick in 5 sets.

Final: Nadal over Roddick - Andy runs out of gas in the end as Rafa is able to take back the Wimbledon crown from 2008.

Well, hoped you enjoy the read and the tennis. Let the debate begin !
Posted on: May 21, 2010 5:56 pm
 

French Open Preview and Predictions

Even though the French Open is not the most popular of the four Grand Slams, there are many storylines on both sides that could bring an entertaining two weeks of tennis to Roland Garros. Let's start on the Men's side:

The favorite is the man that the French have come to adopt as their own in Rafael Nadal. Last year, we all remember the scene of a heartbreaking loss for Nadal in the 4th Round to Robin Soderling. Now, Rafa seems to be healthy and you know he wants to take back the title that Roger Federer finally won a year ago. Nadal and Federer battled it out a week ago in Madrid with Rafa winning a tight two-setter. However, the court in Madrid was not the same as the one in Paris. Nadal's draw is not easy with Lleyton Hewitt in Round 3, but then he would have to take on the winner of possibly Verdasco and Gonzalez in the quarterfinals. Verdasco is a guy that I believe can make a big run down the line and win a Slam within the next year or two because he has developed a game on all surfaces.

As for the new leader in all-time grand slams, Roger Federer will not have an easy time at Roland Garros either. He has a draw that could include the likes of Montanes, Monfils, or Robin Soderling, who he seems to own in Grand Slam tournaments. However, keep an eye on Ernests Gulbis in the 3rd Round, who beat Federer earlier in the clay court season and played three three-setters with him. However, in a best of five, you have to take Federer right now like the pasting he gave Davydenko after the Russian beat him in London before the Australian Open. The American hope Andy Roddick can have a deep run with all the withdrawls on the men's side, but can also lose his first round match to the Fin Niemenan being that Andy hasn't participated in a clay event all year.

If you are looking for some sleepers, look at the Spaniard David Ferrer. Ferrer is making his run into the Top Ten and had a good showing in Madrid. Also, he leads the ATP in clay-court victories in 2010. With him in Djokovic's quarter of the draw, Ferrer has a great chance to make the semifinals. Also, look at Nicolas Almagro, who gave Nadal a run for his money in Madrid including breaking his serve four times. An American sleeper would be Sam Querrey who would be Ferrer's 3rd Round opponent as well as John Isner, who has had a solid clay court season and has risen to number 17 in the world.

On the Women's side, its down to two main favorites in Justine Henin and Serena Williams. Unfortunately, if all good things take place, Henin and Serena will battle in the quarterfinals. The last time these two played at Roland Garros was in Henin's French Open run in 2007 where she beat Serena in a controversial match that made Serena tear up during her postgame press conference. Henin has slowly gone back to form winning a tournament in Stuttgart. However, Henin has the possibility of dealing with Sharapova, Stosur, and Serena from the 3rd Round-Quarterfinal stretches. As for the bottom of the draw, Venus WIlliams is back to number two, but she is not a strong clay court player. I look for Kuznetsova or Jankovic to come from the bottom part of the draw.

The main sleeper for me on that side is the Frenchwoman Aravane Rezai. She is on the bottom part of the draw as well, so its more than likely a sleeper comes out of the bottom part with Wozniacki and Safina's troubles as well as Ivanovic and Dementieva's inconsistencies. Rezai won a week ago in Madrid over Venus Williams in the final, who is now the number two player in the world. So, look for the hometown Frenchwoman to make some noise in Paris

Predictions:

Men's Winner: Rafael Nadal over Roger Federer
Women's Winner: Justine Henin over Svetlana Kuznetsova

Thanks for the read and Enjoy the Tennis !

Category: Tennis
Posted on: January 15, 2010 9:33 pm
 

Australian Open Preview and Predictions

Finally, the Grand Slam season is back. In terms of ranking the Australian Open, I have it 3rd on my list. Living on the East Coast and having to watch the premiere matches at 3:00 AM makes it tough to watch sometimes, but that's why they invented TIVO lol. I'll give credit to Melbourne, those primetime matches at 3 AM usually live up to the hype (ex. Nadal vs. Verdasco, Nadal vs. Federer, Dokic vs. Safina) just to name a few.

As for my predictions, we will start on the men's side:

On the men's side, it all starts with the two best players in Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Federer is coming off of a good 2009 with a Wimbledon and a French Open title. Now with the chase for Pete Sampras off of his back, he can relax and just play tennis, so I expect him to go deep into the second week as usual. As for the man from Mayorca, Rafael Nadal, the question surrounding him is his fitness. The legs did not look good last time out at the US Open particularly in the Del Potro semifinal match. But, he has looked well in the exhibition season and in the first hard court tournament from what I have seen. I root for a Federer-Nadal final in every Grand Slam, but there are a ton of players who can spoil the party.   Right now, I have Nadal winning the Australian Open.

1. Andy Roddick - He got placed in Del Potro's quarter of the bracket and with the reports of the Argentinean having a banged up wrist, it brings back the same question that Nadal had in August up in New York. This draw is a tough one for Roddick with Cilic and Fernando Gonzalez, two big hitters who have the ability to hit a Roddick serve back with a ton of power. Plus, if Roddick has to deal with Federer in the final, could he handle him this time around because he would have to go through Del Potro, Nadal,and Federer in 3 consecutive rounds. Time to see if he can do it

2. Marin Cilic - The sleeper of the tournament in my opinion. The young Croatian had his turning point last year in Flushing with making a quarterfinals including an upset over Andy Murray in the 4th Round. This guy is going to come into Melbourne with a ton of confidence and could give Del Potro a run for his money if they meet up in their section of the draw.

3. Nikolay Davydenko - Yes, the guy who usually does not show up for majors is in the people to watch conversation. The reason is look at his January performance in the warm-up tournament. Any guy who can knock out Federer and Nadal in the same tournament deserves a ton of credit and it will be interesting to see if he can give the Fed another run for his money in the quarterfinals.


Women's Draw

Well, Serena Williams is the number one woman in the world, finally. Now, she can stop complaining about Safina being number one and then focus on your game. She got dominated by Kim Clijsters in Flushing even with the tantrum she showed. Regardless, she is still the slight favorite in a wide open women's draw that includes the return of another Belgian Justine Henin. She got to the final of her 1st tournament back, and I wouldn't expect her to come back if she was not on top of her game. Elena Dementieva got a huge load off of her back by beating Serena Williams in the final up in Sydney. Once again, she comes into a major red hot but can she finish it in Majors ? Dementieva vs. Henin in round 2 could be one of the best matchups of the tournament at least in the early rounds. Also, the possibility of a Henin-Clijsters quarterfinal could possibly bring another classic from their final at Brisbane.

Prediction: Right now, I think Serena Williams will end up prevailing, but don't be surprised if Wozniacki is hoisting the women's championship trophy.

Some women who can make a deep run:

1. Caroline Wozniacki - The Dane has put up some deep runs over the past few months, including a Finals appearance in the US Open. She has the all-around game to beat the Williams sisters and she gave Clijsters a run for her money in that final. She has a solid all-around game and she will be a force in the women's game, especially in this tournament on the hard courts.

2. Maria Sharapova - I think this is the tournament where she makes a deep run. This is the tournament she does the best in and she is in a favorable draw with Safina and Jankovic who are both inconsistent players.

Posted on: August 19, 2009 7:39 pm
Edited on: August 23, 2009 10:13 pm
 

Roxfan4life and Ichiro51's Trade Challenge Roster

Rox- Rangers
Ichiro - Braves

Rangers

Pitchers (Starters)

Scott Feldman - 434,000
Matt Harrison - 405,500
Derek Holland - 400,000
Felix Hernandez - 3,800,000
Scott Kazmir - 6,000,000
Brandon McCarthy - 650,000
Randy Wolf - 1,500,000 (FA)
Gavin Floyd - 750,000

Total: 13,939,500

Relievers


Scott Schoenweis - 400,000 (FA)
Billy Wagner - 4,000,000
Brad Lidge - 12,000,000
Frank Francisco - 1,615,000
Neal Cotts - 1,100,000
Jason Grilli - 800,000
Darren O' Day - 406,000
Dustin Nippert - 411,760
J.C Romero - 4,250,000

Total: 24,982,760

Catchers

Jarrod Saltalamacchia - 410,890
Kenji Johjima - 7,666,666

Total: 8,076,666

Infielders
Willy Aybar - 975,000
Ian Kinsler - 3,200,000
Elvis Andrus - 400,000
Hank Blalock - 6,200,000
Esteban German - 400,000
David Eckstein - 400,000 (FA)
Carlos Delgado - 6,000,000 (FA)
Troy Glaus - 400,000

Total: 17,575,000

Outfielders
Vernon Wells - 4,000,000
Josh Hamillton - 555,000
Brian Giles - 400,000 (FA)
Nelson R. Cruz - 408,670


Total: 5,363,670

Designated hitter
Gary Sheffield - 400 K (FA)

Payroll: 70,337,596
Max: 89,057,000

Payroll started at 71 million dollars

Free agent sum: 9,500,000

Braves roster to come later
Category: MLB
Posted on: July 27, 2009 5:11 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2009 12:01 am
 

My take on Mike Vick (with some Plaxico Burress)


It seems like Goodell has a personal grudge with Vick and wants to punish him for lying to him. Well, he got punished for that by getting a longer prison sentence than his partners in crime. Now, let him be cleared to play in the regular season, so a team might actually sign him because with the conditional reinstatement, it doesn't mean he will be back in the league this season. Goodell, don't ruin his career yet Plaxico brings a loaded gun to a nightclub which can hurt innocent people and yet no punishment from Goodell. Keep it consistent.

On the plus side, Mike Vick at least has the chance to sign with another team and it will hopefully be great to see him again on the field, and this guy is going to come in motivated to get a new contract and continue to have success in the NFL. I wouldn't mind Michael Vick on my team, especially the New England Patriots because he could learn under Tom Brady, plus he would be a really solid backup QB and its an organization that is greatly ran by Belichick and Robert Kraft, the owner. The NFL is a sponsor-driven league and Goodell wanted to please the sponsors or apparently not take away the joy of Opening week or have the Vick story be the opening headline, but there are other headlines for Week 1:

Brady's return to the NFL after injury
T.O in Buffalo
Brett Favre's first game with Minnesota ??
Pittsburgh's title defense
Cutler's debut vs. Green Bay
Indianapolis' first game w/o Dungy as head coach

On the other hand, let's give credit to Tony Dungy. This guy, although I did not like him when he was with the Colts, is one of the nicest most-caring guys in the NFL. To take on a project such as this as your first mentoring project takes great guts and he is the classiest guy who always puts other's needs before himself and he is going to help him realize the reality of living outside of the NFL, such as the importance of family and staying out of trouble, and in the end Vick has to focus before he signs with a team is how to help his family as well as himself and I think he is a changed man after spending 2 years in a federal prison.

It would be nice however to tell these teams when exactly Mike Vick is allowed back into the NFL, because if an owner signs him onto a football team, they don't know what exactly they are getting him for and the latest he would decide is Week 6, but is a team willing to wait that long ? It depends on the need of the football team, but if I had to choose between Burress and Vick, I would choose Vick mainly because Plaxico, even before the incident with the loaded gun in the club, was a cancer to a team's locker room and was previously suspended for not showing up for practice and did not show one act of contrition towards it.

I understand the opinions of dog-lovers, but are we really going to value animals' lives over the lives of other people ? Think about that question, because guys who have alledgedly shot people or hit-and-run or even manslaughter are in this league (Chris Henry, Tank Johnson, Pac-Man Jones). Now, I like the idea of the Stallworth suspension, but the legal suspension was just harsh enough to nearly ruin his career and his financial endeavors.

Let's hear your opinions.



Category: NFL
Posted on: July 26, 2009 12:31 am
 

The Great Yankee Debate

Should We Change Anything With the Bullpen, and is it one of the best, if so where does it rank amongst?
Does anything need to be changed in the batting order?
Is Adding Another Starter Neccassary, Should we trade Hughes or Joba?
How far do you think the Yankees will go, keep this unbiased!


1. You could always use bullpen arms, but I feel it is not an imminent need as it once was about a few months ago. Ever since June, the Yankee bullpen has been as dominant as it could possibly be and the move that made that happen was the move to put Phil Hughes in the bullpen. With Hughes in the pen, the Yankees now have something they did not have over the first two months of the season and that was a bridge to Mariano Rivera. Hughes has an ERA of below 1 ever since being moved to the bullpen and even Rivera is its same dominant self having 28 saves in 29 save opportunities. The first two months was more of a trial-and-error phase in which Girardi was trying to figure out the right combinations, but I think he has that now. Aceves has been solid other than today and he can be used in a variety of ways such as spot starter or in long relief as well as in the 8th inning if Hughes needs a day off. Also, Coke has improved as well and is a great lefty specialist in place of Damaso Marte. The Yankees bullpen is top five, but I can not put them as the best bullpen because there are still a ton of holes with guys like Bruney and Robertson, but can I trust this bullpen right now. I can trust it enough that the game is back to being a virtual lock after seven innings.

2. The batting order is just as fine as it is and I like how Girardi has rotated in the outfield very well and it comes with the key acquisition of Eric Hinske. Hinske can play a ton of positions including RF in place of Swisher and if Alex Rodriguez has one of his days off due to the hip injury, he could play 3B as well. The move to put Jeter into the leadoff spot in spring training has worked well especially with the lack of double plays Jeter has hit into, which is always a plus. Damon hitting in the two order is fine, but when he gets the day off, I prefer to play both Brett Gardner and Melky Cabrera in the outfield. The reason for my assumption is that Gardner is an athlete that has the ability to change a game with his baserunning and his solid contact hitting. I like how Robinson Cano has been placed toward the bottom of the order to put some power into it as well, and the guy that keeps the players in line should have been given credit is hitting coach Kevin Long. Long always discusses the pitcher between every at-bat to keep these guys focused, which is why they are 19-8 against rookie pitchers, which is the best in the American League.

3. I think adding another starter for the Yankees is vitally necessary and I will tell you why: This all comes down to who I trust in the playoffs. CC and AJ are a great 1-2 combo, but then after that, there is a huge question mark. Andy Pettite has kept the Yankees in the game, but he has not exactly been the Pettite of old, especially in the second half over the past two years. Our 5th starter without Chien Ming-Wang is a huge liability and Sergio Mitre is a nice stop-gap, especially since he is familiar with Girardi, but is he the answer for the long term this season ? No, he is not and neither is Kei Igawa, who should stay far away from the Bronx as possible. Now, the main question that is if the Yankees front office should trade Joba Chamberlain ? I say you don't do a package for Joba and Hughes, but trading Joba might be the best answer for the Yankees. You only need about 3-4 guys in a playoff rotation and you have your 8th inning and future 9th inning guy in Phil Hughes already. Although Joba has dominated in his last two starts, he is still a fairly inconsistent starting pitcher and Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee can really help this team this season and in the long run. Doc, just like CC is an innings eater which helps the bullpen and Lee, although on a bad team still has an ERA in the low 3's this season. If the Yankees front office is going to continue to baby Joba Chamberlain and risk further injury, like the one in Texas last season, then what is the point of having him if the Yankees don't use him to his full potential.

4. How far do I think the Yankees wll go ? This team has the potential to win a World Series championship, but the odds of getting that done will increase if they add another starting pitcher in either Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee to bring stability to the rotation and then we can put Andy Pettite in more of a lesser role as our number four starter. The question will be can this team get over the hump and defeat the Red Sox and Angels ? As we all know, they are 0-8 vs. Boston and are coming off of being swept by the Angels earlier in the month. This team can get it done in the clutch and come-from-behind victories, but they can do it in games that really matter because we have seen them not come through against big teams this year other than the Tigers and Rangers. Right now, I have the Yankees as my AL Wild Card team and the reason I pick the Boston Red Sox is because of their depth in the starting rotation, which is better as of right now than the Yankees, since we are going based on if they do not make a deal for a starting pitcher. Boston has seen two guys improve mightily this season in Tim Wakefield and Brad Penny and they could be a reason why the Yankees don't go over the top, although the Yanks historically have had success against Wakefield. NYY will make the playoffs, and I think they will beat the Angels because I think they will hit their way through and CC Sabathia will finally come through. The question is can CC and A-Rod come through in big situations ? CC, I say yes and A-Rod is a huge question mark. I trust Burnett because of his success in the postseason (2003 World Series with the Marlins. ) Plus, you can't count out a team that has the best road record in the AL.

Prediction: Yankees - ALCS (Without Halladay or Lee) World Series (with Halladay or Lee)

I give the  coaching staff a B+ overall because of the way Kevin Long has helped this lineup, especially with guys like Robinson Cano and the rest of the offense by helping them fix mistakes in between at-bats such as against rookies in adjusting their at bats. Eiland has not been noticeable, but I do not think that he has done anything to put a negative reputation of himself this season.

- Girardi gets a B+ as well because I think he has improved certain things from where they were last year. He started in spring training with establishing a loose atmosphere and allowing the guys to bond together as a team and play with more of a fun attitude like the teams of the 90's rather than the teams of this decade. He made some questionable decisions in the bullpen over the course of this season, such as in the game against Fenway in June with leaving Sabathia in the game when the Yankees had to win that game, but he has found the right roles for these guys in the bullpen by using the trial-and-error method. He has done well with the rotation of the outfield and has looked good through the success of the team with Alex Rodriguez back in the lineup since this team has had the best record in baseball since Alex has returned.

Category: MLB
Posted on: July 21, 2009 11:58 am
Edited on: July 22, 2009 12:22 am
 

The Trade Deadline Roster # 2

Here is our roster (Phillies):

Starters

Antonio Bastardo (DL)
Joe Blanton
Cole Hamels
Carl Pavano
Rodrigo Lopez
Pedro Martinez (DL)
Jamie Moyer

Relievers
Ramon Troncoso
Clay Condrey
Chad Durbin
Scott Eyre
Brad Lidge
Ryan Madson
J.C Romero

Catchers
Paul Bako
Carlos Ruiz


Infielders
Eric Bruntlett
Greg Dobbs
Pedro Feliz
Ryan Howard
Jimmy Rollins
Chase Utley

Outfielders
Raul Ibanez
John Mayberry Jr.
Matt Stairs
Shane Victorino
Jayson Werth

Prospects
Kyle Drabek - SP
Dominik Brown - OF
Jason Knapp - P
Lou Marson - C
Jason Donald - SS/3B
Antonio Bastardo - P
Drew Carpenter - P
Anthony Gose - OF

Trades: Received Ramon Troncoso for Chan Ho Park.
            Received Roy Oswalt from Astros and Carl Pavano from Indians for J.A Happ, Michael Taylor, Carlos Carrasco, Joe Savery
Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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