Monday, December 5, 2016

CLOSER OPTIONS NARROWING FOR YANKS

(Aug. 28, 2016 - Source: Drew Hallowell/Getty Images North America)
If the Yankees decide they don't want to give a guy like Aroldis Chapman a 5 or 6 year deal hovering around $100 million,  a good idea would be to get Mark Melancon. But they're too late.  Turns out Melancon just signed with the San Francisco Giants... and just like that, the Yankees are down a free agent closer.

(Oct. 13, 2016 - Source: Rob Carr/Getty Images North America)
Hardball Talk writes of Melancon that the Giants have a deal in place. Buster Olney just tweeted this:

Jesus Buster, we're right in that physical room with Melancon, huh? Your tweet is so dramatic.  I guess that's what baseball insiders do.

(Photo Credit: Chicago Tribune)
But the point is this, The Yanks have money to spend, and if Mark's gone, Aroldis Chapman and the Yanks, really need to try and work things out.  Look, the Cubs want him back, and he won with them, so no doubt they'll aim to snag him. But will any team offer Chapman 5 or 6 years? Seems steep.

MLB Trade Rumors wrote this of the Yankees:

(Photo Credit: Los Angeles Times)
"The club is also talking to Kenley Jansen and looking at trade opportunities, so the Yankees are clearly flexible in their search for back-end relief help if Chapman’s bidding gets too high."

So this is where we're at... to be honest, it's the same as it was yesterday, except that the Giants got Melancon and come to think of it, I don't even know if the Yanks were ever truly "in" on Melancon... it was more like he was an option.

NJ.com File Photo
Don't worry Yankee fans... Hal Steinbrenner put us all at ease last week when he said this: "He said he believes in Dellin Betances as a capable closer, but "that doesn't mean we're not going to strengthen the bullpen in one way or the other." That comes from NJ.com.

Let's see what happens next.


YANKEES CELEBRATE BY SIGNING HOLLIDAY. NOW WHAT?

(Oct. 1, 2016 - Source: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images North America)
The Yankees got an early Holliday gift. Okay, so maybe not as funny as it sounded in my head but nonetheless, it has happened. The Yankees have been looking for a DH and they finally have one. It may not have been the most obvious choice but it does make some sense. If I have learned anything since the end of last season it is "trust in Cashman" so.....why the hell not?

(Sept. 29, 2016 - Source: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images North America)
Welcome to pinstripes Matt Holliday. I'm personally not "in love" with the deal but I don't hate it either. It's short term and it doesn't cost a lot of money and if does offer the Yankees a lot of options. Now we have some new veteran blood in the clubhouse and suddenly Joe Girardi has a much more versatile line up. I am starting to really talk myself into it....sort of.

(Oct. 13, 2016 - Source: Jason Miller/Getty Images North America)
As much as I liked the idea of Edwin Encarnacion in pinstripes, I just didn't like the idea of having to spend all of the money for another long term contract. I am looking forward to having even more money to spend on the free agent classes of 2018 and 2019 which has some of the biggest names in baseball. The Yankees are rebuilding and if they stay patient we could land some of the biggest names later when we really are chasing another World Series ring.

Holliday will be taking over as the full time DH, and the Yankees could even give him some time at first base or the outfield if needed. His best outfield days are over but in a pinch he can still play left field. The more important possibility here is being able to play him at first base if Greg Bird misses any time or struggles. Holliday may not be a very experienced first basemen but he did play 10 games in the position last year for the Cardinals. The Yankees just got a three for one signing.

(Sept. 7, 2016 - Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America)
When the Yankees traded Brian McCann they lost a valuable, respected clubhouse voice and a powerful bat. Holliday is a 7-time All-Star and widely respected in the game. He also managed to hit 20 home runs and 62 RBI's after missing seven weeks with a fractured thumb. The American League could be a very good move for Holliday and even better for the Yankees if he stays rested and healthy.

(Sept. 13, 2016 - Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America)
The Yankees are making moves, and I think in the long run this makes sense. Now they get to keep their first round draft pick which they would've lost if they signed Encarnacion and they get some pop and versatility. And just because it is fun to stir the pot could this move or Holliday be the start of other moves....like Brett Gardner? Last month we wrote IS BRETT GARDNER BEING SHOPPED? and maybe there is something brewing after all. He's been the subject of trade speculation for years, especially recently. Maybe the Yankees are on the verge of dumping him for a younger and cheaper piece?

Things are heating up....we'll see what happens next. In the meantime, welcome to the Team Holliday!



 --Jeana Bellezza
BYB Managing Editor
Follow me on Twitter: @NYPrincessJ





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YOUNG GUNS


I have always loved the movie Young Guns. Not so much the sequel...too much Christian Slater.
Anyway, it's a great story about a young Billy The Kid and his crew of Regulators. We have a similar story taking shape in the Bronx and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!

Photo: Nick Wass/AP
I have to admit I didn't shed a single tear upon hearing that Carlos "Charlie Bone Spur" Beltran signed with the Astros. Look, he is a really good guy, a hell of a hitter (at times) and was a pretty solid Yankee (when healthy). He wanted to come back after being dealt to Texas and boring the Lone Star State to tears. I can appreciate that, but his asking price was COCO PUFFS! Even for a year. 
 
(May 31, 2016 - Source: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images North America)
So the Astros ponied up the chicken to land him and he and Brian McCann (still can't believe he didn't work out) can mentor the relatively young Houston club. They were both stand up guys while in New York. I wish them well.
(Feb. 26, 2015 - Source: Brian Blanco/Getty Images North America)
The bigger story is that Brian Cashman has become the guy that he was praised as when he was a kid in the organization. He is making us the Million Dollar Man...BETTER, STRONGER, FASTER...and YOUNGER! Gone are the days of dropping a boat load of green on an old player with a past due reputation. Beltran would have been an OLD Cashman move. And I'll bet you dollars to donuts he would have come up limping after running down a liner to the gap or hustling down to 1st...considering he wasn't going to see the field. He's old. We dodged a bad deal. Although, truth be hold, Matt Holliday is 36, not sure it's much better, but whatever the case, this is a wonderful new gang.

(Aug. 29, 2015 - Source: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images North America)
Look at our possible cast of Young Guns....Bird, Judge, Frazier, Sevy, Sanchez, Austin....I mean it staggering. And, because we didn't bite on a Beltran deal we are in great shape to take a realistic swing at a Machado or Harper down the line. The Yankees could be rebuilding a NEW Battle Station! 


(Oh I fully root for the Empire in the Star Wars movies...except for Han Solo who is the best ever. Luke is a geeky kid who kissed his sister and I don't buy them having the...anyway. The Death Star is a metaphor for building a massive, powerful team). 


This was a strange non-move Christmas present to the Yankee fan! Normally we look under the tree and see a big ticket free agent (CC, Tex etc...). This year, we stand pat and hold our course. I dig it like the 1st Young Guns. 

This looks like we are being Skippered by the Ghost of Christmas Past...a Stick Michael's Christmas Carol!!

I'm truly excited to watch this club go!

This song is awesome! I think its from the sequel...but it's my tag line to end with music.




 
  
--Mike O'Hara
BYB Contributor
Follow me on Twitter: @mikeyoh21





Sunday, December 4, 2016

THE YANKEES SIGN MATT HOLLIDAY!

(April 13, 2016 - Source: Jeff Curry/Getty Images North America)
The player was pretty much interchangeable, wasn't he? I mean yes, I wanted Carlos Beltran to sign with the New York Yankees for about $16 million (or less), but in reality, it could have been Carlos, Frank Jones, Matt Holliday or my mailman... as long as the price was low, as long as that player would contribute and as long as the Yankees had enough dough to sign Aroldis Chapman and a starter or 2 down the road.

(May 11, 2016 - Source: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images North America)
My beef wasn't with the Yankees NOT signing Beltran.


My concern was that the Yankees needed to sign a DH low... so they had money left over.  Unfortunately some out there that read only headlines and didn't understand my concern... BECAUSE THEY NEVER READ THE ACTUAL STORY! If you want a refresher, read ARGUING WITH IDIOTS WHEN IT COMES TO BELTRAN.

Sweeny Murti has the story about the signing of Holliday:
And now it's pretty much done.   1 year, $13 million and a veteran in the clubhouse to help mold the kids, and help be productive at the plate... his only jobs as a New York Yankee.  Now look, this is a very good thing. As fellow BYB senior writer Dan Lucia texted me just a short time ago:


It's very true.

And for the record... Suzie Pinstripe called it.  Read  3 GOALS FOR CASHMAN AT THE WINTER MEETINGS..., writing,

(April 10, 2015 - Source: Joe Robbins/Getty Images North America)
"Now, among those available, we are left with a very expensive Edwin Encarnacion and a more affordable Matt Holliday, who I believe could be a 'Zobrist' for the Yankees.  "Holliday isn’t be looked at by the Yankees as a left-field possibility. He is considered a DH at this point with the possibility of playing some first base, a position at which he has played just 10 games in the big leagues," reported the Post on Saturday.  In 2016, Holliday played a total of 110 games with 382 AB, .246 BA, 20 HR and 62 RBIs.  He could definitely be a worthy DH for us following the departure of Brian McCann."

The off season has begun folks.  With Holliday signed... CHEAP by the way... now we look at guys like Aroldis Chapman.  Yanks need to make that deal...

And to all of you out there that had no idea why I would want to sign Beltran... now you know because we signed Holliday.  It's essentially the same signing... now we have some cash to spend!

Go Yanks!





3 GOALS FOR CASHMAN AT THE WINTER MEETINGS...

And we have them right here at Bleeding Yankee Blue. Thanks for joining us this morning...
Source: CHRISTIAN RED/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
We have been previewing the MLB Winter Meetings over the last week with much of the discussion centered around protecting our farm while shopping for big arms and big bats.  This year's Meetings tout the biggest free agents in history and with the Meetings about to begin, the New York Post is reporting that Brian Cashman has three goals for this year's meetings and it will be interesting to watch and see if he achieves these.

 Source: AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez
Goal 1:  Land a DH- This has been a priority from the start and with Houston's signing of Carlos Beltran on Saturday, the market is down one prospect that the Yankees could afford without giving away the bank.  Recall that the Chicago Cubs were able to sign free agent Ben Zobrist for an affordable price that paid big dividends as the veteran outfielder earned MVP honors in this year's World Series victory.  Now, among those available, we are left with a very expensive Edwin Encarnacion and a more affordable Matt Holliday, who I believe could be a 'Zobrist' for the Yankees.  "Holliday isn’t be looked at by the Yankees as a left-field possibility. He is considered a DH at this point with the possibility of playing some first base, a position at which he has played just 10 games in the big leagues," reported the Post on Saturday.  In 2016, Holliday played a total of 110 games with 382 AB, .246 BA, 20 HR and 62 RBIs.  He could definitely be a worthy DH for us following the departure of Brian McCann.

Source: CBS New York - CBS Local
Goal 2:  Decide how much Aroldis Chapman is truly worth and take action- Hmmm...I am not a fan of Chapman but he was a huge reason for the Cubs' Playoff and eventual World Series win.  I also think the way Joe Maddon managed him was also a huge factor in Chapman's success.  According to Fox Sports' interview with Maddon at the Yogi Berra Museum this week,  Maddon stated with confidence that because of the way the pitching staff worked him at the end of the season, Chapman was more than ready for the challenge he would face in the playoffs. "We thought by the time we got to the end, that’s what he (Chapman) was there for, man. He was there to be that horse. He’d come in and have conversations all the time in my office. We’d talk through this before every game. What are you capable of? What can you do? What can you not do? The conversation was pretty much going on throughout the entire playoffs."

Source: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
Goal 3: What would the clubs offer for veteran outfielder Brett Gardner- I'm not happy about this goal at all.  I believe Brett Gardner brings more to the team than speed, continuity and longevity.  He brings leadership, mentorship and a club house presence that is invaluable.  But according to the Post, the teams will offer and the Yankees will listen.  I believe that there is no replacement for Gardner because his contribution is too many layers thick for any price tag.


The Winter Meetings begin today and end on Thursday, December 8th.  There's a lot at stake and I am hopeful that the Yankees and Cashman score a win-win without giving away the farm or veteran players that are a mainstay for the culture and future of our team.



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof